Karma and Dharma can both be simply defined as the cosmic law of cause and effect, stemming from your past-life and present-day decisions.
Recently one of my Athena Sisters shared the story of a young girl who was asked to explain what happens when people tell a lie. The young girl, all of seven years old, replied: “When you lie, you get bad karma.” It’s interesting how such a young girl can understand the concept of Karma, and also be brave enough to state it as matter-of-fact in a world that often views such language to be absurd. Clearly this young lady is still attuned to her innate wisdom.
You were born perfect and ready for the lessons Earth School would bring your way. You signed up for the experiences you are living during this lifetime, previous lifetimes ago. Both karmic and dharmic moments serve to elevate you spiritually and enlighten your present and future journeys. Karma often comes in the eventual form of sadness and pain, but those challenging experiences serve to release you from the binds that previously prevented your soul from learning a lesson. Dharma, on the other hand, brings moments of joy and happiness as a result of the good you have brought into this life, your past lives, and the truth you lived throughout.
As you age, your innate wisdom can become clouded by social and familial ‘rules’ or expectations. Often these rules and expectations are never even voiced or explained; they’re just ‘felt’ and that feeling comes with heaviness and fearful energy. The games humans play always come with a price (karma)—sometimes immediately, sometimes unexpectedly, and sometimes during the next go-around. In the story of the young girl above, she knew telling a lie was wrong, so she naturally avoided doing so. Life would be so much easier to navigate if no one told a lie, wouldn’t it?
Though we are born perfect and pure, Earth School has a way of testing all of us, and no one is perfect all the time. To even declare that you are would be untrue. We are all guilty of little lies—and big ones—and the reasons vary and can often feel justifiable: to fit in, to protect someone or ourselves, to avoid confrontation or hard truths. Sometimes these actions can have darker energy: to control someone, to manipulate an outcome or situation, to gain access to that which is not yours; greed, revenge. It’s not a tricky rope to walk… you know when you are playing a game, and that’s where karma and dharma decide who wins.
Many women have been raised to avoid confrontation, i.e., not rock the boat. We have been advised to not ask too many questions or speak our truth if it meant upsetting the patriarchy or status quo. So, therefore, we were groomed to either lie or live a lie from a very young age. Now, as society and women’s rights expand, we are seeing and feeling our truth like never before. This expansion IS upsetting the status quo, and it’s about time! It’s also opening up wounds you may have buried or feelings you repressed all in the name of staying small or quiet. The emotions attached to this release can be intense, terrifying, beautiful, scary, freeing, and a mixture of all of the above.
Let’s take inspiration from our seven-year-old muse, and ask: what do I need to release to see the truth? To speak my truth? To live my truth? Then be brave enough to say to anyone, at any time, especially when you feel scared to be authentic:
This is who I am.
I will not play small (or lie) to make you comfortable.
This is my truth.
I will not deny my truth, nor will I deny you the right to express your truth, even when they do not align. The world is a complex place and can hold both of our experiences as truth.
When this mindset is grounded in compassion, honesty, and (of course) beautiful and raw vulnerability, karma and dharma become your allies. A lie is never needed. Your innate wisdom grows and strengthens. Your tribe expands. Lessons are learned. Sure, much of what you previously thought to be real will have to be released. And what will be gained? Your Truth.