Placating the Karma Gods

Aside

Karma’s a bitch sometimes huh?  Or at least it is if you’re a bitch as well.  🙂

I’m not particularly a spiritual person, nor am I overly materialistic, but a discussion last night at my friend ‘M’s delayed (and relocated) 40th birthday party got me thinking about it.

The original plan was M and his partner were going to hold the party at one of their local pubs about 3 weeks ago, but unfortunately the partner’s mother passed away, so he had to go home to be with his family in the US.

So of course this meant rescheduling the party which I’m sure everyone understood (how could they not?) .. except at the last minute the pub cancelled their booking, stating they couldn’t hold their party anymore.

So M and his partner decided to hold it at their flat in Barbican instead.. with them catering the party themselves quite simply.  A few nibbles, some delicious samosas, a gorgeous lasagna and parmigiana, and the cutest birthday cake.

Oh.. and lots of booze and wine.  They made sure they had enough for everyone throughout the night.  M even specifically picked up some pear cider cause he remembered I liked it.  How sweet.

The only thing M asked in return, instead of gifts or bottles of wine, was that everyone gave a donation to a cancer charity in M’s hometown back in Italy.

I thought that was an absolutely lovely idea .. and really showed that there truly are people out there who are interested in something other than the material things in life, and are willing to give back to their roots.

M mentioned later on that his dear departed mother had instilled in him the belief that if you give selflessly to the world, then you’ll receive it back when you least expected it.  That it wasn’t about doing something nice for others in order to expect something back, but was more about karma.

It kind of got me thinking: Am I too selfish?  Do I do enough for those around me, and for the karma gods, in order to be rewarded spiritually?  Or am I just over thinking it?

All my life I’ve barely had enough money to get by and pay for myself.. basically living paycheck to paycheck like so many people do.  Of course I’m well aware that you can do something special for someone without spending any money or giving to charity.

But is that a crutch because I don’t want to change the way I live my life (bitching and moaning about it aside)?  Or is it me being reluctant to give something of myself because I’m afraid it’ll be ignored or taken advantage of?

I wonder if as a society we’ve convinced ourselves that we HAVE to do certain things in order to be considered a good person, like give to charity or help those less fortunate than ourselves.  That we’re so worried about our souls and the empirical balance of good or bad contained therein that we feel an overwhelming urge to do something charitable in order to make ourselves feel better about our materialistic lives.

To me, being a good person is about being good to those around you, and being there for them when they need you the most.  A shoulder to cry on when they’re sad.. Someone to just listen when they need to talk through something.. Someone willing to be there for them when going through a tough time.

But is that enough?  It does seem at times that only a very small handful of people are willing to be there for me when I’m having a hard time, despite me being there for them.

Or is that just selfish of me to expect something in return.  Or naive to hope others would treat me as I treat them.

Or am I just over thinking it?

Only time will tell I suppose..

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