Some Thoughts on Karma

Karma is one of those words that gets thrown around all the time.  I see people use that term frequently on the internet, and I hear it in conversation.  They say they believe in karma, or hear about an event and say “Ha!  That’s Karma for ya!”
These people aren’t Buddhist or Hindu, but I understand that they are using the common or ‘informal’ usage of the word….sort of.

kar·ma
noun: karma
(in Hinduism and Buddhism) the sum of a person’s actions in this and previous states of existence, viewed as deciding their fate in future existences
informal – destiny or fate, following as effect from cause.

But I have to tell you, I am not quite so certain that karma really works the way some people seem to think it does. Sure, it’s easy to say, when something unfortunate happens to someone you dislike ,”Well, that’s what they get, karma’s a bitch!”  But in my many years on this earth, I’ve seen a lot of things happen to people.  Good people and bad people.  Good things and bad things.  And I’m just not sure I believe in that kind of balance, reward, retribution theory.
We all know people who are just….unpleasant.  Gossipy, rude, arrogant, or much worse.  And sometimes, those people seem to have it made.  Nothing negative ever seems to happen as a result of the harm that they do to others.  They seem to just live their life on their terms and never suffer any consequences.

But what really causes me to question the theory is when really, really horrible things happen to really, really wonderful people.  Particularly, things like, when children get cancer.  That child has done NOTHING to deserve that, ever.  Or when good parents lose their children.  In particular, I think of my longtime blog friend Hallie, who tragically  lost her precious son CJ to suicide.  Nobody deserves that.  Period.

And the situation going on right now in Georgia, with the older couple, Bud and June Runion, who went to buy a classic car from someone they contacted via Craiglist.  They haven’t officially stated that the bodies they found are the Runions, but it’s very clear that they have been killed.  This story has grabbed my heart, and now, broken it.  They had three daughters who loved them, grandchildren, etc….that is NOT karma, my friends.  Nothing you can say would convince me otherwise.

And of course, there are tons of people in this world who have literally gotten away with murder, rape, child molestation, on and on.  Where’s karma in those situations?

I’ve tried throughout my life to treat people the way I wished to be treated.  I am not in any way claiming to have been perfect in my attempts!  But I truly have tried.  Yet, I’ve had some pretty awful things happen to me in the past, things that I know in my heart I did not deserve in any way.  For example – a 100% faithful wife being cheated on doesn’t make sense under the “karma” theory, does it?  (although in the end, it ended up being a blessing, but that’s a whole ‘nother post!)
Oh and I am NOT referring to my current wonderful husband, by the way.  He’s a far better man than that.  

And I wonder how other things could be explained by people who firmly believe in the popular concept of karma.  Like, a relatively young, married couple BOTH being diagnosed with major, serious, lifelong health problems/diseases.  While not life-threatening, they are incurable and will cause both of them pain, discomfort, struggles, money concerns, etc. throughout the rest of their lives.  By this logic….what did they do to deserve such “bad karma”?

What are your thoughts on karma?  Why do terrible things happen to wonderful people?  Why do good things happen to bad people?

karma-yesterdays
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6 thoughts on “Some Thoughts on Karma

  1. I agree Cyndy. There are so many bad people out there who need to get a dose of pain they have dished out. I don’t know if there is a reason why bad things happen to good people. I think things happen (good or bad) through the choices me make. If I went to the grocery story in the morning like I planned, my car wouldn’t have gotten rear ended in the afternoon? If I put the cake on the floor instead of the seat, it wouldn’t have gotten smashed when my car got rear ended! I know these examples are not devestatingly bad things, but I hope you can understand my point.
    Then again good things happen to good people, you just don’t hear about it as much unless it’s winning million in the lottery. =D

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  2. I can’t answer to much, but I do know that bad things happening, like illness and being a victim of crime, is in no way a punishment for past sins. It is not karma.

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  3. Bad things happen to good people. In my family, we use the saying, “Nothing good done goes unpunished.” Because for a while there, no matter what we did to help, we were getting bad things happening to our family. I believe that if we send out positive vibes to the universe, eventually it comes back to us – positive things. But the universe is mighty big, so it might take a while and in the meantime, it’s an easier life to try to be positive, be nice, be giving and kind. Well, not easier sometimes, but worth it in the long run. My heart aches as well when cruel things happen to children or good people. The best we can do is offer our support and love, be their strength when they need it and a shoulder for their tears.

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  4. You know me. I think what you give – you eventually receive. I think the problem with most of us is we’re impatient. We want those idiots who did wrong to us to get their comeuppance NOW! Right this second. It took 10 years for my ex to get what he had coming but he did. And I was lucky enough to get to sit here and watch the karma train roll over the top of him. Do bad things happen to good and innocent people? Always. That’s life. Do bad people sometimes appear to not face the consequences of their actions? Yep. But does that mean that they never have to or does it mean we haven’t seen it?

    Deep thoughts… LOL

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  5. Well, I suppose I believe a little bit in karma but only when it reflects from a direct action. Let’s say a person steals a car and then immediately gets into a car accident with that car. That kind of thing. All though really, it is probably all just chance.
    I think some things are fated and some things are just luck or bad luck. Bad things happen to good people all the time and I just think it is because this is earth and bad things happen. This can be a really tough and crappy place to be. I don’t think things like cancer or horrible things like that are karma at all.

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