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Karma – Analogy with Four Laws of Harvest

Field of Harvest 

My wife, Eva, and I lived in the Czech Republic for eight years (1993-2001) – about 12 kilometres from Trebon in picturesque south Bohemia. Our home lay in a village (Smrzov) nestling in a landscape where forests, fields, and meadows were interspersed with large and small fishponds that sparkled in the sunshine. During autumn and winter walks we experienced the stillness and silence of forest paths, contrasted with the sounds of chirping birds in the spring and summer. We enjoyed picking mushrooms and wild berries. Occasionally, deer crossed our path, as did hares, squirrels, and pheasants. Every spring, storks returned to the tall chimney in the village to bring forth a new generation of chicks.   

However, it was the golden fields of grain (wheat, barley, and rye) surrounding our village at the end of summer that now bring back vivid memories. Harvester machines arrived in August and farmers worked into the night under tractor lights to bring in the harvest. It was the climax of the annual cycles of fields ploughed under cool autumn skies; lying fallow during the snowy winter days; and being planted with grain in the spring.  

In reflecting on the yearly harvests, I have pondered four laws of harvest. These, I believe, apply to our day-to-day lives. They are as follows:   

·    We reap what we sow. 

·    We reap far more than we sow. 

·    We won't reap if we don't sow. 

·    We reap though there may be a delay from when we sow. 

In this article, I offer the following comparison: The seeds a farmer sows and the resulting crops with the intentions (or motives) we plant in our minds and the resulting feelings and memories that live with us. 

First, we reap what we sow. When a farmer plants wheat seeds, wheat grain always results – not rye or barley. The crop harvested is exactly based on the seed planted.   

Likewise, for every intention we set and act on, we will experience the result of that intent. If I have good motives, then in my mind I will always feel good about it. I will have good feelings and good memories – regardless of what the outcome might be (how others respond to our actions is something we cannot control). On the other hand, if my motives are bad, then in my mind I can never experience positive feelings or memories. (A friend asked: "What is good?" In a nutshell, everyone desires happiness and doesn't want suffering. If my actions lead to the well-being of others, then they are good. If they hurt others, they cannot be good.) How important to be mindful of our motives behind any action – because our intent will determine whether we experience misery and suffering, or peace and happiness.
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