BEING able to manifest positive emotions and happiness “is perhaps one of the greatest gifts you have been given as a human being,” writes Dr. Joseph M. Mercola, a prominent alternative medicine advocate.
“But to some extent, being happy is a choice you need to make,” he says, “much like choosing to exercise or eat right. Happiness comes from within — it’s not meted out by circumstance alone.”
Karma is a word of many meanings, and has a special term for almost every one of its aspects according to Theosophy.
As a synonym of sin, an action for the attainment of worldly, selfish desire, “it cannot fail to be hurtful” to almost everyone. Yet karma is also “the law of ethical causation,” Theosophical Pioneer William Q. Judge wrote. The effect of an act produced egotistically, against the great law of harmony which depends on altruism not selfishness.
In reality the condition is not inevitable. “No one has a right to say that he can do nothing for others, on any pretext whatever,” Blavatsky insists in her Key to Theosophy. The poor widow in the Synoptic Gospels gives everything she had, she points out, while others give only a small portion of their own wealth.
“A cup of cold water given in time to a thirsty wayfarer is a nobler duty and more worth than a dozen dinners given away, out of season, to men who can afford to pay for them.”
Following Mme. Blavatsky’s death in 1891, an editorial published in the New York Daily Tribune (founded by Horace Greeley) said of her: “Madame Blavatsky held that the regeneration of mankind must be based upon the development of altruism. In this she was at one with the greatest thinkers, not alone of the present day, but of all time,” the Editorial acknowledges.
“And, it is becoming more and more apparent, at one with the strongest spiritual tendencies of the age.
“This alone would entitle her teachings to the candid and serious consideration of all who respect the influences that make for righteousness.”