Official Review: Karma in Action by Constance L Vincent

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Official Review: Karma in Action by Constance L Vincent

Post by CataclysmicKnight » 07 Mar 2018, 19:33

[Following is an official review of "Karma in Action" by Constance L Vincent.]
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3 out of 4 stars
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Before I dove into Karma In Action: Finding Meaning, Making Choices by Constance L. Vincent I, like many people, was mistaken about karma. I always thought karma was the idea that what you do, whether good or bad, comes back to you at some point in the future. While this is partially true, Karma in Action opened my eyes to not one, not two, but ELEVEN additional rules of karma!

Karma in Action is a nonfiction book that explains and then explores karma. Constance begins by defining the difference between coincidence, luck and karma. Many folks use these terms interchangeably; I've certainly been known to throw phrases like "that's just my luck" or "I just have bad luck today" around myself. To clear these up, Constance explains each term in a clear way, then goes into some great depth about karma. She gives details on how Carl Jung, the famous psychatrist, brought some great insight to the word, explained that "karma" comes from a Sanskrit word from 1500 BCE meaning "action", and details the "twelve universal laws of karma". These laws include things like the most famous law of karma - "the great law - the law of cause and effect" (Constance points out that the Bible quote 'as you sow, so shall you reap' is a perfect example of this) - as well as "the law of connection - everything in the universe is connected" and "the law of focus - you cannot think of two things at the same time". These laws show that karma is far more than a punishment/reward system, and that we have far more influence over it and our lives than we may initially think.

[W]hen scientists first pair two particles and then separate them by a long distance, such as by keeping one in New York City and moving the other to Los Angeles, changing the spin on one causes the other particle to simultaneously change its spin too.
The above quote comes from Constance's explanation of an experiment on entanglement, and it's a great comparison to how karma works in the world. She says this is also referred to as "action at a distance", and since "karma" means "action", it makes for an incredibly full-circle experiment!

Following this first chapter that explains karma, the rest of the book shifts into an autobiography that details various parts of Constance's life. In the process of highlighting various points of her life, she also shows how, where and which laws of karma come into play. She also weaves great quotes from various sources, book references (with footnotes at the bottom of their respective pages) and stories from research, friends, parables and jokes along with her own autobiographical writing. Her own stories range from negative to positive, but they're all insightful. For example, the second chapter is about her discovering that a very scary medical condition she had where her feet went numb wasn't even something physical. She ended up finding that by taking control of her life and strengthening her will, she was able to strengthen her body as well. Another story, one steeped even more in tragic karma masked as coincidence, was when Constance was about to break up with her then-boyfriend Ed. He ended up getting terribly wounded - almost fatally so! - by falling through their sliding glass door and severing the nerves in his arms up by his armpits. This injury left him with terrible long term effects, and the author points out that this terrible accident actually caused them to not only stay together, they eventually got married and have been married for well over 30 years since! This accident happened on Bastille day, and she points out that the glass he landed on was essentially an upside-down guillotine. Furthermore, they'd recently hired a contractor to replace the glass with safety glass, and it would've been replaced by then if he hadn't ripped them off and run off with their money.

I was really blown away by the first chapter. I went into this book expecting some fluff piece about how to create good karma and thus live a fantastic, magical life. Instead, that first chapter was full of fantastic information, stuff that would compete with textbooks without actually feeling like a textbook. I felt a little disappointed by the following autobiographical chapters at first, but I really ended up liking the book overall. Some bits may have gone into a bit more detail than I would've liked, but at under 120 pages it's far from dry, dull or drawn-out, and the drawn-out pieces are the exception, not the rule. She also did an excellent job showing how karma is woven through her life, even "couples karma" that ran through her and Ed's past lives!

Karma In Action: Finding Meaning, Making Choices is informative, inspirational and a quick read. I only noticed one error, and it was an incredibly minor error in a footnote (the word "italicize" was in parentheses before a book title that should've been italicized). The book even ends with 11 discussion questions, although I'm a bit ashamed to admit I didn't even remember one of the answers mere days after finishing the book myself. I'm happy to give the book 3 out of 4 stars - I would have loved more about karma itself as the first chapter was stellar! It's an easy recommendation for anyone interested in karma, people who love books about looking at life in a new way and people who are interested in alternative medicine (in one of the chapters Ed is fighting lung cancer, and the following methods and research they used were fantastic!).

Karma in Action
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Post by Kat Berg » 08 Mar 2018, 13:48

I think this would be more my kind of book it was more textbook, less memoir. I do appreciate that it isn't a fluff book. Glad you enjoyed it. Nice review.

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Post by Amulya1984 » 08 Mar 2018, 18:22

Karma In Action: Finding Meaning, Making Choices by Constance L. Vincent I, like many people, was mistaken about karma. I always thought karma was the idea that what you do, whether good or bad, comes back to you at some point in the future. While this is partially true, Karma in Action opened my eyes to not one, not two, but ELEVEN additional rules of karma!
I like this book, I rate this book 4/5.

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Post by Dispark » 09 Mar 2018, 01:32

Karma is more than punishment as the writer has stated :tiphat:

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Post by Sahani Nimandra » 09 Mar 2018, 08:16

There is more to karma than what one can think. As a buddhist I have been studying karma (action) and it's vipaka (reaction) for years and it never ends just like life. Most of the facts related are true and according to psychology in the west world supports the idea. Truly a insightful book! Thank you for sharing!
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Post by KLafser » 09 Mar 2018, 08:45

One of my favorite things to say in response to people who say 'karma's gonna get him/her' is, 'be cafeful, that bus might be coming for you with that attitude!' Certainly in the vein of thinking of karma as some sort of astral punishment system, but an attempt to point out that the individual doesn't get to decide what the universe will or will not accept. This book sounds right up my alley, I look forward to reading it!

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Post by lavellan » 09 Mar 2018, 14:41

Thanks for your review! I had similar thoughts about the definition of karma so I was surprised to hear that there was more to it! I’m happy to hear that the book was engaging and informative.

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Post by NL Hartje » 10 Mar 2018, 01:14

Although I primarily choose fiction, this book appeals to me. Did the author touch on "dharma" at all, or did she focus primarily on karma? Thank you for putting so much detail into this review!
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Post by Gerry_9 » 13 Mar 2018, 10:18

Wow I never thought that karma involved all that. That was quite a mouthful. I think the author did a great job to enlighten us. That's why I love books.

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Post by Rolemodelgh » 14 Mar 2018, 13:11

Wow! Did I just know that karma is something more than punishment??.... I'm just knowing it by the help of the author.... thanks much Constance

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Post by Mimiy » 18 Mar 2018, 05:44

I really had no idea that Karma was more of a punishment ....woow

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Post by SABRADLEY » 21 Mar 2018, 13:39

Sounds interesting. I also thought karma simply referred to the cause and effect scenario. I had no idea there was so much of a back story. I would read this. Thank you for the review.

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