I have been through much personal healing in my journey, on so many levels. I have found it spiritually useful to view my young experiences not as me being "responsible for" what occurred in my life (i.e. karma), but being "responsible to" how I address these issues as an adult. In terms of my identity, I am certainly more than the sum of my past experiences, joys, and wounds. I would hope that the wounds have gently probed a place in my heart where I can feel compassion for others. And so that my experience of my own "buddha nature" is expanded, rather than contracted. It also seems that collectively, humans have certain "karma" which we all have some piece in--for example, the experience of war and race hatred is so prevalent and common in so many places in the world, that we cannot simply point at "them" as the cause. Sometimes too, it is necessary to enter directly in to the pain, so as to find the levels of soul which are in waiting.