Karma - A Natural Law
|Buddha reinterpreted the theory of karma|
The theory of karma originated in ancient India and is central to Hinduism. Buddha later reinterpreted and explained the doctrine. He taught that karma is a complex, non-linear, unseen natural law that flows freely through the universe. The Buddhist version was exported to the United States where its true meaning has been lost in translation. Karma is the force that initiates the cosmic principle of cause and effect. Buddhists imply that there is no such thing as good or bad karma, there is just karma.
In its original sanskrit form, karma means action or deed. Buddha also translated it as intention. Many of the Eastern religions believe that a person's thoughts, words and physical actions, whether good or bad, will have consequences, good or bad, for that person. A Western interpretation for this thought process would be "What goes around, comes around." As a Christian, we are taught God's justice from Galatians 6:7 "Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatever a man sows, that shall he also reap." In the cycle of action and consequences, karma refers to the action part only. The consequences or reactions are known as vipaka.
Karma works in very mysterious ways. One aspect of causality I find interesting is the payback. You may receive results that are impossible to trace back to their original actions because it doesn't always happen instantly. It could take days, months or years and if you believe in reincarnation it could take several lifetimes. It all seems fairly logical. If you give kindness, compassion and generosity, you will receive peace and happiness in return. Anger, cruelty and greed will be met with suffering and misery. It's such a simple concept but often difficult to put into practice.
|Karma comes from ancient India|
|Free Will is symbolized by flowing water|
|Karma is a complex, natural law|
|Kindness, compassion and generosity brings happiness|