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There's a fashionable use of “instant karma” at the moment on the internet, notably in relation to martial arts, boxing, fights… which is basically about fighters being ‘punished’ after being cocky, arrogant, overly confident, disrespectful of their opponent or blindly unaware of the risks they were taking. E.g. (not for the faint-hearted):
Unfortunately, while karma is clearly visible in such context, it's not how the popular use of the term suggests it is.
Karma, in this situation, appears thus:
If you're disrespectful of your opponent, or of the ‘title’ of your opponent, don't expect to be respected even if you win: if you assert the title is worthless, then it still is worthless after becoming ‘yours’! If you assert your opponent is weak, then there's no glory in winning, and others will assume you're weak too (if only for the fact that you chose to fight a ‘weak’ opponent, rather than a ‘serious’ one)!
If you think beating someone up is a way to win, to get the girls or to make a living, then others will think beating you up is a way to win, to get the girls or to make a living… Basically, you're setting yourself to be beaten up, to loose and to suffer! You led by example, an example you'll suffer from, not because of some cosmic balance but because you have to live in the very same world resulting from you legitimizing this-or-that conduct.
Every ‘champion’ thinks he's unique and above others, until the next champion… This might well be one of the clearest examples of ‘rebirth’: he who ‘owns’, who appropriates as one's ‘own’, some specific views about what a champion is, is the champion… except there's nothing inherent with that! The qualities are not inherent, nothing is permanent in relation to that title, etc. It's just a view! and clinging to such a view ultimately sets one up for suffering (on the way up as well as on the way down). Then the view is appropriated by a new ‘owner’, the champion is reborn: it's neither the same, nor is it meaningfully different… Saṃsāra just is perpetuated, cyclically renewed…
A monk asked T'ou-tzu Ta-t'ung (819–914) “What is the final word?”
The Chán master replied “The word you didn’t understand at the beginning.”