Let’s Be Honest, There Is No “Karma”

I know a lot of people that talk about the Westernized concept of karma (as distinct from the original concept found in Indian religions). They say they believe in karma; that bad people get what they deserve and all of that lovely feel-good stuff.

The thing is, there’s about as much evidence for this Western idea of karma as there is for a god and that teapot in the sky*. There’s at least as much evidence contradicting the existence of karma as there is contradicting the existence of a god (there’s not much evidence either way for the teapot).

Think about Hitler, Mao, Stalin, Saloth Sar (Pol Pot), Henry VIII, and any other awful leader, murderer, or otherwise “bad” person – how many of them died the death they deserved? Did Hitler experience starvation, losing his family, being treated like a dog, tortured, murdered and buried in a nameless mass grave? Did Pol Pot experience extreme malnutrition while doing forced hard labor, watch his children die, and then get executed?

Have the Catholic priests that raped children been thrown in prison and raped? Have they had some equivalent experience to being a child forced into a very alarming and damaging adult situation?

I get tired of people saying they believe in karma. Or, “They’ll get what’s coming to them.” No, they won’t. It’s a tragedy of the universe, but they won’t get what’s coming to them.

Yeah, maybe that rather unpleasant person that treats people like crap with get the same treatment back. But that mass murderer? The one that killed who knows how many people and hurt hundreds more through their actions? You think they’ll “get what they deserve”? Because the way I see it they deserve a hell of a lot worse than loss of their life, but I’m pretty sure that hell of a lot worse isn’t going to happen.

Don’t tell me this is an unfortunate outlook on life. I’m not being negative or pessimistic, I’m being pragmatic and realistic. I think I’d appreciate a world in which this “karma” thing was real, but it’s pretty clearly not. What I do appreciate is when people are honest with themselves about the world.

*I sometimes think writers reference this teapot to make themselves look more intelligent or well-read or something. I think I may have unintentionally fallen into this trap.

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3 thoughts on “Let’s Be Honest, There Is No “Karma”

  1. Richard says:

    I liked this blog post of yours because it reminded me of how awful this world really is for a lot of folk similar to me, my friends and family… and that there is no *real* way for them to hide from it. This is because human beings do stuff that causes other entities to suffer and sometimes stuff just occurs that is out of anyone’s control… like I suppose a tornado or a genetic disease… and strange cosmic forces like karma or those silly religious concepts of a heaven and a hell simply do not exist to punish the wicked citizens and reward the first-rate citizens.

  2. Kyle says:

    I feel like you missed the last step in this train of thought. I don’t believe in ‘karma’. If everyone else shared this point of view (or at least the majority of people), society as a whole might realize the importance of acting to right what is wrong with the world. Or, at least what we perceive as wrong.

    • You’re going to have to clarify a little – why do you think that if everyone didn’t believe in karma, people would try to right the wrongs in the world? That is what you were trying to say, right? Correct me if I misunderstood.

      I don’t really think I missed any steps in this train of thought. My point is simply that karma is just as fake/ridiculous/silly as believing in god, homeopathy, invisible pink unicorns, fairies, etc. There was no need to go beyond that point, and I actually think that going beyond it and discussing why I feel it’s better to be honest with ourselves about the world would take an entirely new post.

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