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Karma Cleanser

Will kitty's hunting prey affect my karma?

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Dear Karma Cleanser:

I rescued a kitten from the engine block of a car. He was hissing mad, skinny, and filthy with his whiskers burnt off when I plucked him out. The lady at the nearby drug store said he came from a feral litter lingering by their dumpster. Not wanting to return him to his former life, I took him home and nursed him back to health with the intention of finding him a good home. In the meantime I fell in love with him and he with my dog (who he still follows around like a shadow). Because the cat was found feral, he prefers to be outdoors. He does come home on occasion for food, cuddling and shelter from the rain. He is fully vetted, neutered, with all the appropriate vaccinations.

In the four years since his rescue, he's brought home about a handful of chipmunks, rabbits and birds sometimes alive and unharmed, sometimes headless. I put a collar with a bell on him in hopes that it will give advance warning but he still manages to catch them.

How will my karma be affected by saving the life of one animal only to have him kill others?

---- Monster Maker

There's an adage about a turtle that lets a snake ride on his back to cross a flooded river. Halfway across, the snake suddenly bites the turtle. As they both drown, the turtle asks why would the snake do such a stupid thing. The serpent replies, "You knew I was a snake when you let me on your back." You knew it was a cat you were rescuing, not a gerbil. His predatory nature will win in the end. Your karma isn't necessarily affected, but if the massacre truly unnerves you, perhaps you should try a louder bell

Dear Karma Cleanser:

I am having a debate with my boyfriend. Every time one of his co-workers has any sort of success, he starts to burn with envy and sometimes outright aggression. He always says things like, "That should've been me."

I tell him that he's looking at things the wrong way, and that he should celebrate the successes of his co-workers because he'd want them to celebrate his. It seems to me like his envy comes from a bad place, and one that will ultimately poison any success he might have. Am I wrong?

---- So You're Scaring Me

As we read your letter, Billie Holiday's "Easy Living" played in the background. "I'll never regret the years that I'm giving/They're easy to give when you're in love," she sings, which fits your situation perfectly. Your beloved's envy is rooted in fear, a view that if other folks succeed, he will surely fail. But when you're in love -- with life, with the universe, with yourself -- giving compliments and wishing others well comes easily. Until your boyfriend discovers this for himself, the jealousy will prevail.

Been bad? karmacleanser@gmail.com.

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