In everyday life, we usually talk about karma as good or bad luck, resulting from our actions. It is fundamentally a religious and therefore potentially an unscientific concept rooted in Buddhism. A teacher I met at my retreat asked us to consider a possibility that karma could also be explained scientifically as a consequence of learned behaviour. A person cheating on his partner is likely to be dishonest in other situations, developing a pattern of behaviour, which simply reproduces bad habits, which eventually - in one situation or another - may lead to unfortunate consequences. Conversely, a person offering a seat on a bus to a fellow passenger, then helping a stranger with directions and letting an elderly person jump the queue is likely to keep on acting kindly, attracting reciprocity along the way. This line of thinking resonated with me and I was inspired by the teacher's encouragement to practise generosity and kindness, so that one day they become habits.
My personal project is selling off my collection of 25 photographs to raise money for two charities close to my heart. The photographs were taken during my round the world trip a few years back showing my favourite images from Russia, China, Australia, Antarctica, India, Laos, New Zealand, Argentina, Bolivia and Chile. They have been taken with love, carefully selected, professionally printed and framed, and even(!) exhibited at a private gallery in London in the summer 2010.
All funds raised will be donated to either of the two charities:
St. John's Hospice in London, which cares for terminally ill patients. Its staff are incredible and provide amazing support to families in the time of need.
Gaia House is a meditation centre which, in addition to paid retreats, provides financial assistance to people who may not be able to afford the costs of a course but would greatly benefit from it. I met people suffering from chronic fatigue, depression and chronic pain who have improved quality of life through mindfulness. The staff at Gaia House were similarly incredibly generous and caring towards all of their guests despite receiving little financial compensation for their work.
You will be able to choose either charity yourself.
It took £50 to print and frame each photograph in 2010, and therefore I would like to ask you, respectfully, to bid a minimum of £30 for each photograph. Please simply email me and offer a donation for a photo of your choice (1-25). You will be able to donate money yourselves online and claim Gift Aid (UK taxpayers only). In addition, I will ask you to reimburse me for P&P, unless you are able to meet me in London (in which case I may ask you to buy me a coffee instead!).
If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to get in touch.
Thank you in advance for your generosity!