Karma: The sum of a person’s actions in this and previous states of existence, viewed as deciding their fates in future existences. Good or bad luck, viewed as resulting from one’s actions.
For as long as I can remember I had been a believer of Karma. I grew up reading about it, hearing about it being talked about at home, discussed among friends and strangers alike. Karma meant ‘you would get your due, when the time was right’ and/or ‘what you did came back to you’.
Karma was supposed to be cool that way.
So I believed. I waited, and did the best I could while I did. I waited. The cows came home, many times over and I was still waiting, ‘to get my due’.
As I waited and did the right things, unpleasant things happened to me, and kept happening. People who were family and friends, people who were supposed to have my back kept stabbing it. People who I wished well for, wished ill for me. People whom I helped out, hurt me.
This happened with clockwork regularity, on repeat mode. Even as I waited for ‘Karma to give me my due’.
By now I had started getting impatient, and started feeling pretty foolish too, with this concept of Karma. While I waited I began to realise a few things;
Believing in Karma was like hiring someone to do your dirty work for you:
Yes, that is how it had begun to feel like. You waiting patiently, all safe and clean, while you kept prodding Karma to get back on your behalf. Not cool at all!
Believing in Karma is silent vengeance:
You may think you are noble when you say ‘I forgive and forget’, and don’t believe in revenge. But if you are waiting for Karma to settle scores for you, somewhere inside there is vendetta brewing.
Karma keeps you connected:
When I am done with someone, I am truly done with someone. That person ceases to exist for me. I realised that Karma kept me connected to people I don’t like or want to be part of my life, as they continued to be in my thoughts what with me wondering if Karma had got back to them.
What do I think of people who believe in Karma?
Everyone is welcome to have their beliefs. I hope they get to keep their faith.
I know people for whom ‘conscience’ is an alien concept. People who use everything, from death to disease, even their children, to get their way and move forward. Who think nothing of coveting what is someone else’s and destroying something beautiful. Whose only aim in life is to cause and spread unhappiness. And they sleep well despite it all, justifying their wrongs as rights.
I don’t know if Karma exists or doesn’t. What I do know is that it just doesn’t work for me. I now believe in reacting in the moment, so people get what they give me. I am much happier.
My Mom believes in and keeps reminding me of a previous life and an afterlife. With all due respect, I have trouble remembering what I did last week, so obviously the concept of what I may or may not have done on my past life to go through all that I am going through in this life is redundant for me.
As for collecting brownie points for my next life? Oh please!