ink for thought: do you believe in karma?

Sunday, 25 January 2009

do you believe in karma?

I got stopped the other day by a girl wanting me to sign up to some charity. now I'm a fairly charitable person...but at the same time I'm broke, not only am I broke...I foresee myself being broke for some time to come. I don't really have a problem with this, in fact, I'm pretty chilled about it but it does mean I really oughtn't be giving away any new money on a regular basis.

when I tried to explain this to the eager charity worker she countered with 'do you believe in karma?' didn't take me too long to say no. I don't believe in very much to be honest and karma never did appeal to me.

but the question has stuck with me. days later I'm asking myself, what did she mean by karma? I mean, I believe in actions and consequence and if she meant that then we've pretty much agreed but if she meant that when you do good things, then good things come back to a kind of cosmic balancing act where all things exist in equal portions and reality as we know it is constantly in a battle to maintain its own equilibrium...then I ain't buying it.

if somebody out there can pin down what exactly karma is then please let me know. the way I see it, good things happen to bad people all day (and double on the weekends) where's the delicate balance then? and what about bad stuff happening to good folks? where's the karma in that?

I'm gonna get personal with this one because I know I say some cruel stuff sometimes. I've been known to be mean to vertically challenged people, sarcastic and not especially kind to domesticated quadrupeds amongst other short comings. but what karma says to me is that one day, bad things will happen to me as a result. period. well....what happened to grace? ya see, in my book grace doesn't give you what you deserve and mercy gives you what you couldn't earn.

I guess that's my main problem with karma. as far as quasi religious theories go I have to say that "shit happens" works much better for me. with karma there's no room for accidents. there's no understanding of mistakes. the human is elevated to a state of infallibility that no wrong doing can be forgiven and punishment looms over us all. that's a harsh way to live. besides, if I'm only doing 'good' stuff so that 'good' stuff can happen to me (I call that "the santa syndrome") then surely that doesn't count. does karma differentiate between actions and motivations??

no charity worker lady, I don't believe in karma. but can I ask you something as you stand there collecting money for unfortunate children who are beaten, abused and abandoned, the cancer patient who may never see their childs wedding day or even the mentally challenged, daily facing an onslaught we could never imagine, a war in their minds we could never begin to comprehend? if you believe in karma.....what did they do?

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