Are sorrows & happiness influenced by my karma?

If the sorrows and happiness are the influence of our karma in our past life, then why do we pray to God for help in times of distress, knowing that suffering is imminent and predestined?

If you had planted cactus, no amount of prayers can help you harvest mangoes out of it. Prayers give inner strength to face the challenges of life. So, while it is good to pray, it is also important to be good and do good. We often want short-cuts for everything in life. Instead of putting effort in working out our karma, it is easier for us to seek salvation from ‘miracle men’, who promise an easy escape. The solutions, if they ever come, will only be when we are karmically ready to enjoy good fruits.

Create adversity into advantage

Do not look for life that is problem-free. Adversity is often the best university that can teach valuable lessons in life. Here is a small story.

“Once a farmer’s donkey fell into a well. As the well was dry and the donkey was old, the man decided to fill-up the well. As he shoved soil and rubble, the poor donkey cried. But later, it shook off the rubbish as it came on him, and used it to move up; and finally jumped out of the well.”

Create your destiny

“Nanhe munnhe bachhe teri mutthi mein kya hai; Mutthi mein hai taqadir hamaari…”.

This is a song from film Boot Polish, which came in 50s. Our destiny is in our hands. People often pay huge amount to know their future and spend a fortune in gems and rituals (havan, pooja, etc.) to solve their misfortunes. If they use this money to help the poor and the needy, this good karma can make their future definitely better. Even those people who advise us to use gems and rituals are not free from miseries. Even for blessings of God and the Universe to work, we need some credit balance in our ‘Bank of Karma’.

Why Karma?

This question is a very profound one, even though it appears to be very casual. We have understood the Karma theory as something similar to “newton’s third law of motion” – for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.

Karma does not act that way. Before jumping into what is Karma, let us look at “why” Karma? Karma is a governing law set by the God or call it Universe to make the individuals learn from their mistakes and improve. The ultimate purpose is to make the individual realize the real self and merge in the universal consciousness.

What is Karma?

We have two eternal accounts; good karma and bad karma. Good karma is for all the good deeds we perform for the benefit of the world with good intentions. Bad Karma is for all the deeds we perform that create disharmony in the world.

In good times, a person feels that he is doing everything and the reason for all the good things happening around him. He does not realize that whatever he is getting is through his good karma. He is exhausting his good karma account. However, he does not realize that it is not going to last forever. Either in this life or other life, once his good karma becomes less, he needs to face consequences of bad karma.

Why do we pray to God?

The bad karma makes a person suffer and puts him in distress.  Unless one goes through bad karma, a he will not understand the suffering of fellow beings. If he sustains hope and becomes more compassionate, he will turn good. Praying to God is to gain that hope, that this bad time will go, and good time will come.

Actually, the God will not interfere in that individual’s Karma. God may not help that person to get rid of bad times. However, he is the source of hope that helps the person to sustain and endure the bad times.

The Karmic account is not a static account like “for x amount of bad karma, it shall be y amount of suffering”. God, who is the creator of the rule book, knows the intricacies of it too and help the person in the path of improvement to move forward by removing bigger blocks and replace them with minor obstacles. That is the “Grace” of God.

Rejoice in the success of others

When people are successful, it is because they have worked for it, if not now, surely in the past. So even if they do not deserve it now, they are still reaping the fruits of their good karma. No one ever gets something that does not belong to them. Also, you will surely get that which is yours at the right time.

Do not envy someone’s success as this will block your own success. In the Mahabharat, it is shown that Duryodhan’s envy of the fortune of the Pandavas was the root-cause of his tragic death and destruction of Kauravas clan. Though he had plenty for himself, he could not accept his cousins having more. Therefore, rejoice in the success of others, and help people to grow. When you support others to become successful, you will also be supported to accomplish all that you deserve.


7 thoughts on “Are sorrows & happiness influenced by my karma?

  1. This is exactly Rshi Dayanand Saraswati was explaining in his times to people in India, that don’t pray to get perks from God, human has has to bear result of bad karma, however pray will help him in improving himself.

  2. Thank you for explaining karma so beautifully. I especially like the references that you make to our holy scriptures.
    I have often heard elders saying “ I don’t know what bad I have done in my past life to go through such suffering or vice versa. My father also believes that the good karma of your ancestors will help you in times of difficulty.
    Life experiences have taught me and is still teaching me about how my behaviour with everyone affects me at a later stage. Therefore as you have explained, what we reap we shall sow.

  3. Dear Mr. Mehta,

    one more important concept explained in simple way . Karma……such an important principle of each life. When I was young, it only the Gods that I believed in. But as I matured, I realised, its only the karma.
    But today’s generation is different. They believe only in Karma. And I am happy about it.
    Like you mentioned in ” create your destiny” …..this is the only important fact of life. and yes, the law of universe, ” what you give, comes back to you” is the only fact.

    thank you once again

  4. Excellent explanation of Karma. Thank you very much. With profound regards.
    CDR G R Sreenivasan, IN
    (Retd )

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