KarmasSo I spent the weekend listening to my Tibetan Buddhist Teacher, Robina Courtin. I got a lot of clarity and a real sense of purpose and action--not quite hope, but close enough. Her teacher, Lama Yeshe, has a summary of 'karmic appearances', things to look for in your life today that show you the root or seeds of past actions. He listed several karmic appearances for past sexual misconduct; one in particular resonated with me: your partner has lots of people vying for him.
I am continually attracted to men who operate within their own variation of the harem. Not that they're doing anything wrong, necessarily, but there have been lots of opportunities to work on my jealousy, to say the least. It's been a steady theme throughout my life to question, Why me? Why don't my relationships work out? My parents have been married 50 years; my brother and sister's marriages are each approaching 25 years. If I truly accept the hypothesis of karma, then I have an answer; and I have a solution. I'm not just a failure or morally incompetent. My experiences are the direct result of past actions; and my instincts and habits arise from those seeds as well. And I can begin planting new seeds. I can resolve to never participate in sexual misconduct again, because I truly never want to suffer in this way again.
The Sikh Dharma path has an understanding of karma as well; although it's not as intense a focus as in Buddhism. But either way, I can begin to make the changes today, so that my tomorrow can be better and my life can be of benefit to others. It's truly a relief to recognize and own my own experience and commit to changing it. It's also freeing to turn my attention away from all those things I long for and simply direct my gaze at those things I can truly make a difference in--my own actions, my own life.
I have begun a purification practice within our teachings called Kirtan Kriya. It is said to heal and clear the arcline, which is damaged by sexual misconduct. I am committing to 120 days, which I've never been able to accomplish before. 40-yes. 90-once. But 120? With a true heart and a steady effort, I hope to see my way to the end of suffering and purify my past so that I can have a bright and ever shining present.