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I don't understand karma

Old 06-02-05, 10:05 AM
  #1  
Mr_Super_Socks
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I don't understand karma

I wasn't going to post this since it's sort of a sour grapes story, but after telling a friend about it, I realized it's kinda funny. Plus, I am bored.

So I am riding to work on my normal route across the Manhattan bridge. all is well and the weather was lovely (though raining lightly.) Then I see this guy pulled over with his bike upside down -- probably a flat tire. I have seen this many times and always ask if folks are ok (I know what it's like to discover your pump is broken or not there, or you forgot a tube, etc.) Anyway, he doesn't respond right away, so I stop and check it out. He's fine and has all the gear to get back on his way and says "thanks, but I'm fine."

So I am feeling good about myself for (almost?) being helpful and a moment later, WHAM! - I feel like a rock hit my helmet. It took me a second to notice the HUGE amount of bird **** on my leg. I connect the dots and realize I must have been hit on the head as well. I pull over toward the bottom of the bridge and take my helmet off to discover that my hair is SOAKED in bird s**t. and it stinks unbelievably bad. I use my entire bottle of water to rinse out my hair and try to get it clean. fortunately I have short hair, but it is still a major challenge. Still stinking a bit, the guy with the flat rides by and thanks me for stopping to help. I feel a little better, but my head is soaking and still smells like crap. I fortunately had rain pants on, so the s**t wiped right off my pants and I made my way to work. so I arrive and put on my suit and go to my office feeling a little humbled by this giant bird I never saw.

My questions are two:
1) what the hell kind of bird can produce this amount of excrement?!? I mean it was probably close to a pint! truly disgusting.
2) how can you say there is balance in this mad world, when a guy stops to help a neighbor and literally gets s**t on a moment later?

If you can answer both questions, you get a dollar.

Oh, by the way, when I got home my wife asked what was all over the back of my t-shirt. it was more s**t I hadn't noticed. I wore that shirt under my suit all day long. horrible.
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Old 06-02-05, 10:17 AM
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Originally Posted by Mr_Super_Socks
My questions are two:
1) what the hell kind of bird can produce this amount of excrement?!? I mean it was probably close to a pint! truly disgusting.
2) how can you say there is balance in this mad world, when a guy stops to help a neighbor and literally gets s**t on a moment later?
1)Eagle, large hawk
2)Karma can work on a large time scale. Maybe in a past life you were a bird and you spitefully crapped on someone.
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Old 06-02-05, 10:22 AM
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I don't know about the first question but the karma may be in something you'll never know. Maybe if you had continued riding and not been stopped by this you could have wound up in a horrible accident with a car. You just never know how the slightes thing can affect your entire life. Seems like the bike gods could have handled it better. Maybe you pissed them off on something before and although they didn't want you killed in an accident they did want to keep you humble.
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Old 06-02-05, 10:24 AM
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1) Big Bird! Probably a heron or a crane. I had one crap on my windshield and I almost drove off the road from shock and the sudden lack of vision. It covered my entire field of view.

2) Technically karma isn't paid off. You don't actually receive good karma or bad karma points that get redeemed. Besides, true karma is realized in the next life. If you're looking for good luck in this life, you've got to check out the last life. That's what I was taught as a Buddhist.
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Old 06-02-05, 10:33 AM
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Considering that NY borders the great ocean there are several falvors of larger bird that could produce such excriment. You must also take into account that a bird does not have two orifices for "doing the deed" but rather a single one called a cloaca that releases both urine and feces at the same time. Normally when a bird takes of from a grounded position it releases all of its waste at one time to "lighten the load" one could say, it's actually quite interesting to those of us who do or used to study such things.
Since you were on a bridge my best bet would be that the bird was most likely a Herring Gull which is similar to the more common California Gull except that it is much larger, has pink legs, yellow eyes, and a thicker, more orange colored bill with larger gonys at a distinct angle.
Since their diet is so wide (they'll eat anything from fish to french fries to their own species young) It could be concluded that this bird most likely dined on some mollusks and or shell fish before acquireing you as a target.

As for the karma thing. You were being paid back by the bird society as a whole because, unknown to you, the person you had stopped to help had dropped his half eaten Snickers bar on the ground and the birds were waiting to snatch it up, but when he had to turn and look at you, he noticed it on the ground, picked it up, and disposed of it thoughtfully in the nearest trash receptical.

You enraged the birds my friend.

Now, gimme my damned dollar!
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Old 06-02-05, 11:00 AM
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Been nailed by an albatross-sized seagull before. I empathize. Reminder: get haircut this weekend.
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Old 06-02-05, 11:15 AM
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Originally Posted by Shimpie
2) Technically karma isn't paid off. You don't actually receive good karma or bad karma points that get redeemed. Besides, true karma is realized in the next life. If you're looking for good luck in this life, you've got to check out the last life. That's what I was taught as a Buddhist.
Now I undestand karma a bit better. I was misinformed by Mr. Lennon's musings on the "instant" variety. I guess he would have called this "instant inverse karma," or "drive my karma," or perhaps "Here Comes the sun, which at the moment is temporarily obscured by a giant load of waste from an Eastern Herring Gull." Anyway, I guess pop music isn't the best source of theological info.

Everyone gets a dollar!!!
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Old 06-02-05, 11:23 AM
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Originally Posted by Mr_Super_Socks
Oh, by the way, when I got home my wife asked what was all over the back of my t-shirt. it was more s**t I hadn't noticed. I wore that shirt under my suit all day long. horrible.
Soooo, how many people wanted to sit next to you at meetings or lunch??
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Old 06-02-05, 11:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Mr_Super_Socks
I guess pop music isn't the best source of theological info.
...Unless its from Mr Pete Townsend.
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Old 06-02-05, 11:26 AM
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Look at it this way: had you not stopped, you would have passed by before the bird came along. This isn't really karma; it's more an example of "No good deed goes unpunished."
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Old 06-02-05, 11:35 AM
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I bet that the North African Ostrich can really put out some serious dumpage. It can't fly though, so it would have to be dangling from an airplane. It's the largest bird on earth, and can run 45mph. Hope you can crank becuase if this thing wanted to crap on your head you may have a difficult time outrunning it.
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Old 06-02-05, 12:36 PM
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Little birdie in the sky,
what's that you dropped in my eye?
I don't mind. I don't cry.
I'm just glad cows don't fly!






Maybe they do!?!
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Old 06-02-05, 01:24 PM
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1. On the outskirts of Houston, I'll see HUGE vultures with at least 6+ foot wingspans. I bet they could drop a massive load, but I imagine you don't see too many of those in NYC.

2. Good deeds bring more good deeds, and bad deeds generate more bad deeds. Personally, as a Buddhist, I think the concept of karma is simply dogma, but to each their own...
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Old 06-02-05, 02:03 PM
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Don't confuse immutable Karma with affectable Dharma, which is what most people mean when they say "Karma"
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Old 06-02-05, 02:17 PM
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The concept of 'karma currency' is mostly pop culture. Though even Buddhists disagree on what they really mean when they discuss it, in particular theraveda and mahayana buddhists see things in very different lights.

Typically though the concept people are reaching for is one where every action an individual makes plays a role in shaping the world around them. There is no action that 'doesn't matter'. This doesn't mean that a good action is 'paid back' with another good action, but it can imply that many good actions produce a better world around you, which will in turn affect the things that happen to you in a positive way.

Again, this is another point that is debated among buddhists of different sects, but based on what I've learned and lived, these affects come from previous lives, since your actions shape the world around you for a long time, but also from your current life. Again, no action is meaningless, and actions that you do today will have an affect on your world in the same way as an action you may have done in a previous life. Mahayana buddhists pay little attention to the previous life aspect, since there is very little to be done about it either way, but pay a lot of attention to the 'this life' aspect, since it is what we choose every moment of the day, and is something we can really change.

Its easy to toss the term karma around, and based on its overly simplistic definition that we normally use, it is easy to refute, but the more complex concepts are much more sound.

peace,
sam

P.S. I vote for a heron or crane, fish eating birds make terrible smelling poo.
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Old 06-02-05, 02:34 PM
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PPS. You may enjoy this very detailed primer on the concept of buddhist karma. It is a long read, but detailed. If you take the time to look it over, it explains many common misperceptions, and clarifies a lot of the more subtle points of karma.

https://www.buddhanet.net/e-learning/karma.htm
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Old 06-02-05, 03:15 PM
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/hides skydiving equipment


This mad flying being must be stopped!
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Old 06-02-05, 08:51 PM
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You neglected to wear a large hat.

Atoms collide.

**** happens.

Woodward and Deep Throat just happened to have been waiting at the same time in the same room at the White House. Woodward was a Naval courier. Deep Throat was there on G-Man business. (See Imus transcript on MSNBC). The two men struck up a conversation to kill time.

Or try this:

**** happens to me, I get mad, I blame external cause, I act on that blame. Wheel turns forward. **** happens to me, I consider karma, I do not blame external cause, and so I do not act on that blame. I do not blame myself. Wheel stops turning. I have always been fascinated with the effect of subscribing to karma.
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Old 06-03-05, 12:04 AM
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OK I'm thinking bird **** loads up on various ledges etc on the bridge, when it's too much ... ****slide!! And you were the lucky winner!

I had a bird **** on my head on the way to work and no helmet, luckily I worked at an animal hosp. with lots of nice dog shampoo.
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Old 06-03-05, 08:46 AM
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In some circles it's considered good luck to have a bird s**t on your head (seriously). Based on the amount that got dumped on you, I think purchasing a lottery ticket would be a good idea.

Last edited by Vision-; 06-03-05 at 10:38 AM.
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Old 06-03-05, 08:54 AM
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Originally Posted by Vision-
I some circles it's considered good luck to have a bird s**t on your head (seriously). Based on the amount that got dumped on you, I think purchasing a lottery ticket would be a good idea.
Exactly what I was thinking! -I think it may be an Italian thing, not sure. But-yeah play the lottery, that's some huge luck!
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Old 06-03-05, 11:41 AM
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That story is both unfortunate and hilarious at the same time. I'd vote for a meat-eating bird of some sort. Carnivores have some foul smelling dumps, while herbivores' poo doesn't really stink that much.

"But cows stink!" you say? Ever smelled a lion's turd? Be smart and don't investigate. You'll be sorry if you do.
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Old 06-03-05, 01:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Mr_Super_Socks
My questions are two:
1) what the hell kind of bird can produce this amount of excrement?!? I mean it was probably close to a pint! truly disgusting.
2) how can you say there is balance in this mad world, when a guy stops to help a neighbor and literally gets s**t on a moment later?
1) Are you sure it was in fact a bird and that some huckster didn't lob some sort of home-made ***** bomb at you?

2) I sympathize. But the theory that "what goes around comes around" just doesn't always pan-out.

Do your friends refer to you as "*****-head" now?
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Old 06-04-05, 07:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Crash Dummy

"But cows stink!" you say? Ever smelled a lion's turd? Be smart and don't investigate. You'll be sorry if you do.
Especially if the lion hasn't quite finished yet
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