Karma is one of those destructive ideas people try to pass off as a natural law, proven by science, and pretend to be an example of cause and effect: You do good, you see good. You do evil, you see evil.
I get worked up about the topic of karma because it leads to so much guilt, misery and confusion that it acts as a massive obstacle on the path to success and happiness.
If you’re offended by my jab at karma, I’d like you to consider the following examples:
When Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans, some evangelical ministers said that it was divine punishment (i.e. karma) against the city because of it’s sexual sins.
Isn’t that offensive?
When Haiti was struck by an earthquake in early 2010 and some 230,000 people were killed, Pat Robertson, an evangelical minister, said that the earthquake was a result of a “pact with the Devil” the founders of Haiti had made.
Isn’t that offensive?
I know a woman who had a string of miscarriages and was asked by her husband: “What have you done in your life that God is punishing you in this way?”
Isn’t that insanely offensive?
I find these examples offensive to human intelligence, a distortion of morality and a recipe for suffering.
When you see natural disasters and calamities to be a cosmic response to sin, you won’t empathize with the victims, but condemn them as sinners.
Karma isn’t a natural law and it certainly doesn’t explain a cause-effect relationship in the world.
Giving karma any sort of significance is unhealthy.
Will you sever ties if you disrespect others? Of course you will. But karma has nothing to do with that.
Causal relationships aren’t proof that karma is true. They’re proof that causality is true.
If you eat at a restaurant and get food poisoning, causality would point to the food as the likely suspect.
Karma will point to your past for something bad you may have done.
And astrology will point at the stars, because that’s where your fate is written (apparently).
Do you see why karma is a problem?
For one thing, you’re overlooking the real cause of your ailment. Karma shifts your focus in the wrong direction. It assumes that your moral conduct defines the level of success and failure you experience in life.
If you fail, then you have done something immoral in your past. If you succeed, then you can clear your conscience.
I’m not saying that morality is irrelevant in your life. It’s an essential aspect to healthy living, but not the root cause of all your problems.
At times you need to acquire knowledge you don’t possess.
At times you need to develop skills you lack.
At times you need to focus on the present rather than question your past.
Your circumstances may be the result of past decisions, but you can also be the victim of other people’s poor decisions.
You can’t blame yourself for that.
It’s time that you ditch karma and embrace causality.
Look at the real factors that are shaping your life and decide what you will do about them.
Don’t burden yourself with unnecessary guilt or cloud your judgment with considerations about karma.
You don’t deserve it.