What Does Karma Mean?

The term “karma” is used a lot in everyday life. It is usually used as a synonym for the word “luck” or “fortune” as in “The meteorite hit her because she had bad karma”. This concept of karma holds the concept of predestination or even worse the handwork of an angry supreme deity. This is more of a western or judeo-christian idea.

Karma is more like a way to express a certain type of record life leaves on people. “Bad” karma means the same thing as “a lot” of karma. Karma is like the record of rainfall of hard things one encounters in their life. This does not mean that karma is a static thing. By working hard to confront the sources of karma in your life whether they are bad memories or current logistical problems a person can lessen the effects of karma.

But just because you have a lot of karma doesn’t mean you are “cursed” or “suffering from decisions of a past life”. This reality is fraught with accidents and calamities. That is just the nature of a material reality. When we see a person who has had bad luck it is tempting to say they have bad karma as a way to explain the vagaries of fate. But the concept of karma exists as guard against cruel fate, not an explanation for it.

One way to think of karma is as an opportunity for growth. The hard things one must face in life can teach us lessons and these lessons are valuable for us and for others.

So the next time you say “karma” remember it can change for anyone and isn’t written in the stars!

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