Karma: Is there a Cosmic Boomerang?

DR JOHN DEMARTINI   -   Updated 3 months ago

Dr Demartini explores the questions, “What is karma?” and “How does so-called karma work?”, while also unlocking the role your perceptions play in the so-called karmic wheel.


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DR JOHN DEMARTINI - Updated 3 months ago

Have you ever pondered the mystical concept of karma? Is there, as some suggest, a cosmic boomerang effect? Some kind of feedback loop that reflects your actions and behaviors back to you through a cause-and-effect relationship.

Throughout my decades of researching and teaching and work in human behavior, I've observed a intriguing principle: the way you perceive others, and how you compare yourself to them, can significantly impact the subjectively biased conscious, unconscious, and subconscious potions of your mind.

Consider this: when you admire or infatuate with someone, perceiving them to have more so-called positive than negative traits, actions, or inactions, and you place them on a pedestal, you tend to minimize yourself relative to them. This act of self-minimization creates a psychological imbalance, where you’re essentially assigning a negative value to yourself and a positive one to the other individual. This skewed perception can lead to internal feelings of inferiority and shame, simultaneously counter balancing the admiration you feel towards them.

The reverse is also true. When you look down upon someone, focusing on their flaws, perceiving them to have more negative than positive traits, actions, or inactions, and you place them in a pit, you tend to maximize yourself relative to them and inflate your virtues. You're again creating a psychological imbalance because you’re essentially assigning a positive value to yourself and a negative one to the other individual.  This time, you elevate yourself, assuming that you are a source of pleasure and they are a source of pain.

Polarized judgments, whether they elevate or diminish others, lead to a split in your consciousness. This split is a result of a deflective awareness, where you become conscious of only certain aspects of an individual (a confirmation bias) – their positives or negatives – and remain unconscious of their other traits (a disconfirmation bias).

This imbalanced perception not only affects how you view others but also how you view yourself. It can also lead to a sense of emptiness, a void created by the parts of yourself that you disown or are possibly unable or unwilling to recognize within you.

However, there is a path to balance and fulfillment. When you recognize that the qualities (both those you label negative and those you label positive) you see in others also exist within you, you begin to level the playing field.

This reflective awareness fosters equanimity within yourself and equity in your relationships with others. You are also more likely to see that the seer (you), the process of seeing, and the seen (the other individual) are interconnected and actually the same.

Embracing this balanced, reflective and loving orientation - where you are neither exaggerating nor minimizing others or yourself, is what Eastern mysticism refers to as the middle dharma path, what Aristotle called the Golden Mean and what the non-historical Lao Tzu called The Way of the Tao.

It's a journey of self-awareness and appreciation, where you learn to love both the admirable and the less favorable aspects of yourself and others. This reflective awareness is the antidote to the karmic wheel of judgment, where your infatuations and resentments can so easily trap you in a cycle of imbalance – futilely seeking and avoiding and attracting and repelling.

You've likely experienced restless nights, your mind churning with resentful thoughts or infatuations. These intrusive thoughts are the product of a polarized mind, one that exaggerates or minimizes others and yourself. Such thoughts tend to reverberate within your subconscious, creating static or “brain noise” that disturbs your inner mental peace.

The key to transcending this state lies in balancing these lopsided perceptions.


Achieving this balance ushers in a state of transcendence, where love, appreciation, inspiration, and certainty can flourish instead of judgment. In this balanced state, you are less likely to be swayed by uncertainties, and more likely to be present, integrated, and connected.

You may have heard of the term, false causality. This idea emerges when you exaggerate or minimize your perceptions, either of yourself or of others. When you're filled with pride, you might believe that your actions are predominantly positive. Conversely, feelings of shame can lead you to think you've actions are more negative than positive. This imbalanced perception applies equally to how you perceive others - through admiration, you assume they do more positive than negative, and through resentment, the opposite. Thus you’re in false causality taking or giving credit or blame when in fact all actions and inactions are neutral and neither positive nor negative but rather they’re a synchronous balance of both polarities.

Any imbalance in your perception, is a result of deflective awareness, it is similar to being on a karmic wheel. Why? Because your judgments, influenced by skewed perceptions, continuously shape your life and your reactions.

These judgments are stored in your brain, particularly within the more primitive and reactive amygdala and hippocampus, influencing your thoughts and actions until you consciously address and balance them. It’s one of the reasons why I teach my signature Breakthrough Experience program most every week, where I introduce a scientific method known as the Demartini Method. This method is a series of specific questions designed to help you dissolve these judgments and liberate you from the brain noise that distracts and holds you back. As I often say, anything you infatuate with or resent is an impulse or instinct that distracts you from being present, certain and empowered in your life.

So, is there a karmic wheel? The answer is both yes and no.

Why? Because your imbalanced perceptions are not the actual truth but incomplete or misinterpretations of reality. For example, you might have experienced being initially infatuated with someone, only to realize over time that they possess as many downsides as upsides. Similarly, events that initially appear negative can later be recognized as pivotal, positive turning points in your life.

Through applying the Demartini Method, you will learn to ask quality questions to help you balance these perceptions. This proactive approach can prevent the emotional toll that prolonged imbalances in judgment often incur.

The karmic wheel symbolizes the emotional aging process you undergo when you fail to neutralize your judgments. In contrast, the dharmic path – the path of purpose – recognizes that every event in your life contributes to both a balanced and balancing act, guiding you back to a state of equilibrium. Your intuition acts as a homeostatic mechanism in your brain, striving to help you balance your perceptions by revealing the downsides when you are overly optimistic and the upsides when you are overly pessimistic. As such, you may experience skepticism to balance any gullibility, and feel inspired to seek meaning and purpose when you are feeling resentful. It is inwardly working to bring you consciously back into balance.

Whenever you experience an imbalanced ratio of perceptions, polarized emotions are likely to arise. These emotions are causal and tend to keep you trapped in a cycle of regurgitation and static in the brain, creating persistent noise. As such, you tend to become bound to whatever you excessively desire or resent, as it intrusively occupies space and time in your mind.

Therefore, the bondage of the so-called karmic wheel is essentially your inability to ask the right questions to balance the equation and achieve reflective awareness over deflections.

By understanding the inherent balance in all aspects of your life and applying tools like the Demartini Method, you can achieve a state of reflective awareness and emotional freedom. This balanced approach to your judgments and perceptions allows you to navigate life with greater clarity and purpose, which is more likely to result in a more fulfilling and empowered existence.


When you ask equilibrating questions, as I have developed in the Demartini Method, you are more able to address these imbalances. These precise questions help you neutralize limiting beliefs and perceptions that are running your life and holding you back. By holding yourself accountable and balancing your mental 'balance sheet,' you can liberate yourself from emotional baggage. This shift from the karmic wheel to the dharmic path allows you to stop going in circles and regain focus.

In The Breakthrough Experience, I emphasize the importance of learning and using this method. It can be the difference between being weighed down by emotional baggage or being lightened and inspired by balanced perceptions.

Remember, it's not what happens to you in life, but how you perceive it. If you choose to perceive events in a way that leaves you feeling empty and judgmental, you trap yourself. You choose to be caught in a cycle of a moral hypocrisy.

The things you perceive as terrible often contain terrific elements, and the terrific can have terrible aspects. It’s like the yin and yang symbol, illustrating the balance of opposites.

As Empedocles stated over 2,500 years ago, there are two forces: love and strife. Integrating and balancing these opposing elements is more likely to lead to love, while imbalance tends to lead to strife.

A balanced perspective often results in a balanced physiology and psychology, and the ability to see the hidden order in life. In contrast, imbalance tends to result in chaos.

This so-called karmic wheel, which keeps you regurgitating judgments of yourself and others, doesn't exist as a punishment or reward system. Instead, I believe it to be a mechanism to remind you of what you haven't yet balanced and loved, while also providing you with an opportunity to embrace it by seeing both sides.

The quality of your life is determined by the quality of the questions you ask. Questions, such as those in the Demartini Method, that help to equilibrate your mind and transform the karmic wheel into the dharmic path that leads to liberation.

In this state of liberation, you are more likely to experience moksha or satori, a rejuvenation of your being. You are also more likely to live in the essence of your being rather than in the existence of becoming, free from the personas and masks of the imposter syndrome. In this state of grace, love, inspiration, enthusiasm, certainty, and presence, you can more effectively access the transcendental state, the superconscious mind.

You have the choice to either live influenced by your subconscious mind, caught in the karmic wheel, or to ascend to the superconscious mind and follow your true path of authenticity.

My mission for since 1972 has been to teach principles that help guide people onto this path. Through the classes I present each week, including The Breakthrough Experience, I ask you quality questions that equilibrate and empower your mind and bring you back to a state of equanimity and authenticity.

By doing so, you can liberate yourself from the thoughts that preoccupy your mind and recycle in your life, breaking free from the karmic boomerang. You then can pursue your inspired mission, a path of clarity and full consciousness. This is the essence of mindfulness, the goal of meditation, and the purpose of the Demartini Method.

With over 5 decades of studying human behavior helping people transform their perceptions and lives,  I know that you have the capacity to transform your life. You don't need to remain trapped, blaming past life karma or any other external factor. Even in the realm of multi-generational epigenetics, we understand that we have the power to change our epigenetic influences at any moment. This change can be initiated by asking quality questions that equilibrate the mind, liberating us from the misinformation we often feed ourselves. Just as misinformation campaigns exist in the media, we can also mislead ourselves with our internal narratives.


This is why I emphasize the importance of living by priority. When you align your life actions with your highest priorities, you naturally adopt a more objective and balanced viewpoint, reducing the influence of the karmic wheel. Prioritizing your life – as in how you spend your time, what you eat, how you manage your finances, and more – aligns you with your highest values and your true path in life, your teleological purpose.

It is wise to give yourself permission to prioritize your life, to ask those quality, equilibrating questions, to live objectively and not subjectively. If you’d love to learn how then join me at the Breakthrough Experience, where I will guide you in breaking through the limitations you may have imposed on yourself. You'll learn how to transcend the cycles of impulse and instinct that trap you and discover how to live a life of inspiration. This path of inspiration is a possibility for all of us.

To Sum Up

  1. It is wise to recognize that the so-called karmic wheel is a metaphor for the cycle of judgment and emotional imbalance you often find yourself in. This can help you understand that your perceptions, whether they elevate or diminish yourself or others, can trap you in a cycle of deflective awareness.
  2. It is wise to shift your perspective from deflective to reflective awareness. This means acknowledging that the qualities you admire or resent in others are also present within yourself.
  3. Utilize tools such as the Demartini Method to ask precise, quality questions that help neutralize your imbalanced perceptions.
  4. Align your life with your highest priorities and values. This will help you develop a more objective, balanced viewpoint, reducing the influence of emotional extremes and helping you live a more focused and purposeful life.
  5. Understand that you have the capacity to change and shape your life, regardless of past experiences or external influences.
  6. The Breakthrough Experience and the Demartini Method offer practical tools and insights to break free from the cycles that bind you. These resources are designed to empower you, offering a path to a life of inspiration, balance, and fulfillment.

In summary, the journey to personal transformation is within your grasp. By understanding the dynamics of judgment, asking empowering questions, prioritizing your life, and becoming aware of the inherent balance, you can break free from the constraints of the karmic wheel. This path leads to a life of authenticity, inspiration, and fulfillment. Remember, the quality of your life is determined by the quality of the questions you ask and the priority actions you take. So, give yourself permission to embark on this transformative journey and discover the true potential that lies within you.


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