What goes around comes around, another way of saying action and reaction. They say that if you do something to another person what happens to you in return is the Karma created by the action or event that you did to that other person. If you do good things you'll have good Karma, if you do bad things bad Karma. The measure of your Karma will determine if you're going to Heaven or if your damned to Hell.
What I'm going to tell you now is that Karma is non of these things. Karma is simply the action itself. If you do a thing, the doing to get to that thing is Karma. When you do something, what ever it is to whom ever, that doing is the Karma that you are putting into the machine. The reaction that is created from your doing is Dharma. Dharma is the collective results of the actions or Karma that you pour into an object, space, time, or place, it is your doing that determines your outcome. The outcome itself is not Karma.
Now, if you do something with good intentions; you wish the best results for all and the better good, but still a bad thing happens does not necessarily mean that bad things will happen to you. Often good Karma creates negative Dharma and verse visa. It is your intentions that count. I know it sounds counter productive. You work a lifetime doing good to try to get into Heaven, hoping that your actions will pave the road for you. That's not how it works. The road to Hell is paved on good intentions.
The road to Heaven is paved on the backs of the pious and is preached through the eyes of our children. Through our Children we see ourselves and are judged accordingly. A Mother can do no evil through her Childs eyes. Karma is like the cookie you bake for the kids, they either like it or spit it out. The Karma was baking the cookie, the Dharma was the cookie being spat out, Cause and Effect.
Do thyself no harm and harm not thy friends for everyone is a friend and all are thee. No Karma, no Dharma, all just is.
Peace and Balance,