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Do You Believe In Karma ?


JosephM
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Karma - the sum of a person's actions in this and previous states of existence, viewed as deciding their fate in future existences.

 

While this is a common belief held by Buddhism and Hinduism, it seems the word "karma" and Christianity do NOT go well together with many. For other Christians there seems to be some correlation or hints in the Christian Bible of such. Any thoughts on this subject? What do you believe?

 

Joseph

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PS Read this on an internet site but haven't researched it.


Reincarnation in early Christianity


http://www.near-deat.../rebirth03.html



Also this.....


Reincarnation is commonly represented in the West as being an exclusively Hindu or Buddhist belief, but it is not. Reincarnation is a tenet of orthodox Judaism, wherein it is called gilgul or ha’atakah, and was so at the time of Christ, and automatically passed over into Christian theology. -

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I tend to believe in the notion of karma. Today, many people would probably refer to it as “genetic and cultural predisposition”, but I just overlay the word “karma” on that long-winded statement.

If you believe in an “afterlife”, then you can easily believe in rebirth or reincarnation, going hand in hand with karma.

 

I don’t necessarily believe in an afterlife, but more like a continuation of mind, which is capable of regenerating a material form from one life to another. The problem is that I don’t remember anything except my present life, but that might not be “present” at all. It may just be all one thing, during which I experience changes to my karma and consequent actions which follow.

 

I know, it sounds very odd, but it’s interesting to ponder.

 

Peace.

Steve

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I haven't reasearched reincarnation much in early Christianity, but I do notice that people were questioning if Jesus was a reincarnated Elijah, so I guess the concept must have been around then.

 

I don't believe in karma because I can't see how it is at all useful. To believe in karma, to me, would suggest 'the system' has somehow designated it as necessary, yet if we take previous life as a given, and most of us don't know anything about our previous lives from which to learn from, then it all seems rather pointless to me.

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Paul,

 

I think some people see justice in it . Like in sowing and reaping what you sow. Perhaps not always in this life but the next. It also offers some type of explanation to people on why we are born with predispositions and talents that are sometimes unexplained. Child prodigies etc.

 

It is interesting reading\\

 

Joseph.

 

PS This explanation referencing Edgar Cayce take on it is quite interesting

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Again though Joe, I don't see the point of karmic 'justice' if you don't know what it is in your past that you are being punished for, or what lesson you are meant to learn. Now if you knew the errors or misdeeds you carried out in a past life, that would make sense.

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Read some of the articles and i think it will make more sense. Cayce doesn't focus on the justice of it but rather that we are placed again and again in similar circumstances until we learn to make the wisest choice that lead to enlightenment or liberation.. All choices have consequences. Some describe it as the natural order of the cosmos which will eventually lead All to Love and our source

 

For example.... If our consciousness is say stuck at a bitterness, resentment,or anger level, it is probably there because we chose unforgiveness over forgiveness. In time , sometimes many lifetimes we will again and again be faced with the the opportunity to chose differently and when we do we understand what that choice was doing to us and then move on. In essence our choices bring on consequences and we are our own judges and jury by the choices we make.. The universe is designed with a karmic order and justice to it. At least that is what some say. Its interesting reading whether one agrees with the concept or not. Its purported to be the order by which our consciousness can evolve and is designed to progress.

 

Joseph

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As far as my personal belief in Karma goes............It seems to me,,,, life is a school and all about choices and consequences regardless of any particular religion or belief in karma or all that which it entails. My experience shows certain choices lead toward Love/Reverence, Joy/Serenity, Peace/Bliss, and Enlightenment/Pure consciousness while others toward Anger/Hate, Desire/Craving, Fear/Anxiety, Grief/Regret, Apathy/Despair, Guilt/Blame or Shame/Humiliation.

It seems to me it is as simple as that in conceptual terms. As far as making the choices that lead to the one end of the scale versus the other, it is a lesson that each must learn for themselves. Perhaps we all pass through and revisit phases of all these levels or emotions. I believe if one places Love Joy and Peace above all other options he/she will gravitate to the choice that insure that fruition.
Joseph
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Karma doesn’t hold anyone accountable for their past actions, or even their current manner of being in the universe. There is no justice, reward, or punishment implicit in the doctrine. Fundamentally, it is the law of cause and effect. One action will give rise to a certain related effect, and so on. The metaphor is that of an acorn, which properly nurtured and cared for, will grow into an oak tree. It will never produce a cottonwood. The oak tree is the result of an acorn and its environment.

 

It’s not necessary for people to “remember” their karma from past lives, as the present resultant is sufficient to deal with. The sum total of what we are now is at least partially dependent on our karmic imprints.

A person can become aware of their various karmic imprints through meditation, reflection, psychotherapy, etc. Karma can also be “purified” in so far as the cause which produced a particular effect can be permanently removed, so that our past karmic imprints are no longer an issue.

 

Many religions have specific practices for this type of purification, even without the acknowledgement of the existence of karmic forces per se. In contemplative Christianity there is a general description of the spiritual life progressing in terms of stages. One of the most popular templates for this is: purgation-illumination-union. The great mystics, John of the Cross, Teresa of Avila, and others referenced these stages in their teachings. I would say the stage of purgation is similar to the purification of one’s karmic imprint. At the stage of “union with God”, “enlightenment”, or whatever you choose to call it, karma is extinguished, and we are no longer subject to any causal conditioning at all. Christians call this heaven or the “beatific vision”. Other religions use different terms. From a more secular perspective, Abraham Maslow used the terms “self-actualization” and “peak experience”.

 

Peace.

Steve

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Maybe 'consequence' is a better word than 'judgement'. It would seem that as a consequence of not learning the right lessons in this life, something/someone causes you to have another crack at getting it right. In some instances, there is the belief that you are returned as a 'lower' life form (I see that as punishment but let's say it's just a consequence).

 

Whilst it might not be necessary to remember our past lives, to me it would make a lot more sense if we did. If the ultimate goal in this karmic system is to achieve enlightenment and learn from our mistakes, I think building in knowledge of our past lives into this system would make it a lot more efficient.

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I agree that this probably isn't the most efficient system for navigating life, but what's done is done. A few years ago, there was a poll done in the States asking people what they thought of God's overall management of the universe. Apparently, Americans are a bit hard to please, because He only came in at a 52% approval rate. Still, that's not bad for this country! You can read about the results of the poll in the link below.

 

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/07/27/god-congress-approval-rating_n_911220.html

 

Steve

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I believe in karma, cause and effect and whatever you sow you shall reap. The reason is it relaxes and frees my mind. Most movies deal with revenge and justice because that is what many are seeking, if I believe the universe is just I don't have to to be the one to provide justice for every wrong on me and others. I feel everything is energy so the thoughts I think are also energy and projected attract thoughts that are similar positive or negative. The hard part is to control the negative aspect, but karma helps one accept it and not fight the consequences positive or negative.

 

Man can’t create energy, but we can stop wasting it on negative outcomes. Interior silence is a good place to begin. We just need to turn the radio of the mind off, which gets rid of the energy of fear, tension and pressure that short circuits our flow. The law of karma is a great tool to direct interior attention to prayer, contemplation or meditation. Karma frees the mind to relax and that is always present when the mind is free. It is an inner peace that connects us to the pure energy, consciousness, or Divinity within. This state of awareness opens us up to something that is deeper and this state of grace is the heart of every religion. This grace of recognition is an experience beyond mere belief, statements and words. karma not just keeping rules it is a transformation to new way of life. It is a new relationship with energy, ourselves, and everything, which we may call God. It is a redefining our relationship from fear to love, respect and connection. This energy heals and balances, sustains and preserves all things. Our universe is created with energy and it seems to always be moving and will respond to our energy if we let go, relax and be still, letting God’s energy be God we can enjoy the ride. I have found that the karma of attachment works in the positive or negative and seems to attach my mind to something good or bad. If I am in gold chairs or iron attached to the wall I am not free so my mind has observed the cause and effect of attachment.

 

The ancient story has it that heaven and hell are exactly alike in that each is an enormous banquet with every wonderful dish imaginable crowding the great round table. The diners are provided with chopsticks -- five feet long!

In hell, the diners give up struggling to feed themselves with these impossible tools and sit in ravenous frustration. Negative energy attached and attracted to negative energy

In heaven, everyone simply feeds the person across the table where positive energy is attracting positive energy.

 

Chungliang Al Huang, Quantum Soup (1983

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