You are what you are right now because of your genetics, your environment, and the choices you’ve made. You couldn’t be anything else.
All of those past experiences? The environment you lived in? The momentary expression of those genes? The choices you’ve made?
Gone. Completely, utterly gone.
Their bones are the state of your mind, body, life, and universe right now.
The person you were when you started reading this post? Gone. Replaced by someone with a brain that’s been wired slightly differently, with different cells in their body, different molecules of oxygen, carbon dioxide, and other gases feeding those cells.
The person you were when you started reading that last paragraph?
The person you are now (and now and now and now) was and is partly created by that previous person, partly by factors outside of that previous person’s control. The mix will be different depending on a near infinite number of factors. The percentage of that mix that is made up of your own choices is impossible (considering the current capacity of human beings) to calculate accurately.
But it exists – your own choices make up a non-zero percentage of the quality of the lives you will lead as you are reborn and reborn and reborn again. Karma is real – at some level, right-now-you is experiencing the effects of the you from a moment, a minute, an hour, a day, a year, a lifetime ago.
No matter what you’ve chosen in those infinite past lives, you can choose differently now. Or not. It’s up to you. Maybe not in a big way, but there is always some tiny little choice you can make to change the direction in which you are headed.
Don’t get me wrong – this shit ain’t easy. It’s like water dripping on solid rock. Yes, eventually you’ll create the Grand Canyon, but it takes a whole lotta time and a whole lotta water. You might die before you make any visible progress. You’ve been programmed over and over and over again, by both your own actions and the actions of those around you. There’s a lot of momentum to work against here.
But every choice matters. Celebrating or berating yourself for past choices is useless. Learning from them isn’t.
Apply what you’ve learned, and make your next choice with as much wisdom as you can muster.
Lather. Rinse. Repeat.