If we are experiencing the fruits of our karma of previous lifetimes in this life, then when will we attain the fruits of karma of this lifetime? To this question by a disciple, Sri Sri Ravishankar (Founder of Art of Living) replied like….
That is not how it is! The outcome of some of our actions is experienced in this life as well.
Let me give you an example: if you soak moong daal, the sprouts appear within two to three days. If you sow groundnut; it takes three to four months for it to bear peanuts. However, if you plant a coconut tree, it will take three to four years to bear fruit, and if a mango tree is planted, it will take even longer. In the same way, some karma bear fruit immediately – if you place your hand in fire, it will get burnt immediately, not tomorrow. But if you plant a pomegranate tree in the field, it will take time to yield fruit. So some karma bear fruit instantly, whereas some karma yields after some time.
For instance if someone wants to set up a factory, it takes them God knows how many years. Nowadays, getting the license itself takes so much time. You set up a factory and ten licenses will be needed. In between, one has to bribe so many people.
People like us, who refuse to give bribes, would have to wait twenty years to obtain a license. So a person who sets up the factory with so much effort, his children reap the fruits of his labor. In his lifetime he cannot make ends meet.
All the good and honest businessmen, their businesses have rarely been established instantly. Many businesses take many decades to establish. Ten, twenty, fifty years later, one reaps the fruits of one’s labors.