Listening: Karma






People live their lives according to their own beliefs. Whereas some people believe in God, others believe in fate or a modern way of thinking - karma. But what is karma and how does it work?

Karma is a Buddhist and Hindu way of thinking. It explains daily events. In Buddhist teaching, the law of Karma says, "for every event that occurs, there will follow another event whose existence was caused by the first, and this second event will be pleasant or unpleasant according to whether its cause was skilful or unskilful". To put it another way, the law explains that if a human being acts in a good manner, his life will receive good events.

Let's take an example of a sequence of events. One day a man gets up, leaves his house and goes to catch the bus. When the bus arrives he does not wait his turn in the queue but jumps it. The people are angry but he does not really care. As he is getting off the bus he trips and hurts his knee (now this is a direct result of his unskilful action, for example jumping the queue).

Later that day the man goes to the supermarket and buys some fresh strawberries. He has to weigh them and so he weights them, puts the sticker with the price on the bag but continues to fill up the bag. Two hours later, the man goes to buy a coke from a vending machine, he puts the money in, presses the button, but nothing comes out. He has lost his money. These are examples of unskilful actions. The result is that the person carrying out the action is 'punished'.



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