If there’s any definition of karma that makes sense then it is that the more you force the world around you into a particular path then the more difficult it becomes to shift from the path that you’ve set out for yourself. That’s certainly more believable than any idea of divine retribution or cosmic inevitability.

Control freaks obviously put all their efforts into controlling the world around them. This means taking away fluidity and replacing it with rigidity, taking away opportunity and replacing it with predetermination and taking away spontaneity and replacing it with predictability. It’s a closed, dark and ordered world where the colour and spark of life is almost driven out.

But this isn’t a ‘build it and leave it’ world, it’s one that requires constant defence and constant upkeep, otherwise free will exerts itself and the edifice fades into the past. Walls built with willpower require constant willpower to keep them up. This use of willpower to maintain the walls becomes more than a habit, it becomes a way of life. Control is everything and a life without control is unthinkable. After all it’s worked so well so far so why should it not work forever more?

Then along comes an opportunity that tempts the control freak – more money, more power or more prestige. But how can they make the move? Everything they achieve now comes from control and the longer they’ve being doing this the less they can remember how other people do things. They’ve lost that fluidity, lost that spontaneity, lost that inner spark and most of all lost the ability to grow. With a personality now defined by the world they’ve defined they don’t stand a chance.

Of course the natural reaction of a control freak is to try and control this new environment too. But this never works, no matter how hard they try, because they’re not embedded in the new environment enough to do that. So their efforts get undone, diluted and lost. Not only that, but attempts at control from a distance stand out and they get spotted for what they are and so a natural resistance builds up. Even worse, they are bound to have made enemies on the way that are unpredictable wildcards.

So we end up in a position where the walls the control freak builds to control the world within now work just as effectively to trap them inside. They can’t get out without letting the walls down and they can’t let the walls down without dropping the control and they can’t drop the control. They’re trapped and by being trapped they can’t reinvent themselves and can’t rejuvenate, which is where the rot sets in.

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