This I Believe

Nichole - Brewster, Massachusetts
Entered on January 12, 2009
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: golden rule
  • Podcasts

    Sign up for our free, weekly podcast of featured essays. You can download recent episodes individually, or subscribe to automatically receive each podcast. Learn more.

  • FAQ

    Frequently asked questions about the This I Believe project, educational opportunities and more...

  • Top Essays USB Drive

    This USB drive contains 100 of the top This I Believe audio broadcasts of the last ten years, plus some favorites from Edward R. Murrow's radio series of the 1950s. It's perfect for personal or classroom use! Click here to learn more.

In a world where society is constantly stimulated and influenced by the media, it is difficult to establish a steady belief system. However, through all the smog I have been able to develop a belief in which to live by. I believe in the power of thought. Within this belief the theory of cause and effect is most important and should be regarded with the utmost respect. It was with the development of this belief system that the theory of “karma” became a large part of my vocabulary.

Contrary to popular belief, I do not believe that karma is composed of random events that occur by some divine force. What I believe is that if one participates in risky behavior or treat people badly, that you attract bad things to yourself. The concept behind this belief is that people who do dishonest things regularly are driven by the way they think. It is possible that these people have a negative overall view of their lives and all that surrounds them. As a result these individuals reverberate bad energy which, in turn, pulls more bad things to themselves. On the flip side if one thinks positive thoughts about their daily lives and the people around them more positive things will come their way. I believe that defeatist and dishonest thoughts are the difference between people that succeed and are happy and those who are down in the dirt every single day. Having said that, honesty (and honest thoughts) truly is the best policy.

In the past I have found myself sitting at the bar at the end of a work-night counting my money with bad thoughts going through my mind. For a while I would think of how many of my tips were cash and unaccounted for by the system. Could I, potentially, pocket some of those and skip tipping out the bar? It is not as though I would step outside to be immediately greeted by a bolt of lightning from above. Instead, I have decided that by doing people wrong that have worked just as hard as I have, the guilt in the back of my mind could potentially do terrible things to my psyche or break me down mentally. Some may even argue that acting out this thought even once without having to face the immediate effect (punishment) could spark a pattern of doing things similar or worse more often. To reiterate a point I have already made, my belief system is not based on single isolated actions, but instead focuses on the grand scheme of things.

I often extend my beliefs and offer my thoughts to people who feel as though nothing goes their way, or that they have bad luck. I try to explain to them that they need to look at the cause and effect of these situations and what they could be doing to bring these bad things into their own lives. It never ceases to amaze me how many people cannot hold themselves accountable for the things that happen to them. I say; if you don’t like the way that other people treat you, look at what you could do differently to make them respond to you a different way. If you are unhappy with the way the world works, be the change you wish to see.