Right, Wrong and Karma
My friend and I recently got into a “conversation” about right and wrong. I kept insisting that right and wrong do exist. If they did not exist, then why would Karma exist or matter? My friend kept telling me that ultimately, there is no right or wrong. This conversation started because I recently visited a past life regressionist and asked her if I had done anything wrong in my past lives. Like my friend, she said there is no right or wrong. Is she right? If she is, then why does Karma matter?
Greetings, Kiran. Your question is indeed an interesting one. From the outset, though, I must point out that simply by asking me to answer a question regarding the existence or non-existence of so-called “right” and “wrong” puts me in a position of presenting my opinion as “right” in opposition to any other opinion which must, by definition, be “wrong.” Hence I ask that we proceed with the understanding that what I am about to say is my opinion only and I make no claims that this opinion is in any way “right” in relation to anyone but myself. That being said I will attempt to offer my insights on the subject by saying that when people approach psychics or other individuals immersed in the study of the mystical realms, they do so holding tightly to the assumption that all of these people believe the same things, when the fact is no two psychics will hold exactly the same spiritual beliefs or follow the same philosophical models in their work. Not all of us believe in soul mates or reincarnation or universal truth or even objective reality. As for Karma as it is presented in the New Age (as some sort of universal justice system), I do not subscribe to such a notion.
I am a student of Tantra, and in the precepts of that philosophy there is a yogic interpretation of Karma which is devoid of our Western obsession with good vs. evil. What you are referring to in your inquiry is something far different. Essentially what you’re asking me about is the rather problematic notion that people who do good get good in return, while people who do evil get evil. I know it sounds reasonable, even delightful considering the things some people do, but if you look very closely with the most realistic of eyes, you will find at the core of this very reasonable-sounding notion the basis for pretty much all the world’s hatred, prejudice and problems. For who defines what is good and what is evil? And if you assume that certain fundamental notions are universal and easily applied to all cultures, religions and situations, then you are sadly mistaken.
Like all notions of “some things are good and other things are bad,” Karma simply provides a means to exercise control. The foundation of the idea, however well hidden, is an implied centric belief in the personal mindset of whoever is in charge at the time. Wars are fought, people are raped, killed and tortured most often in this world because one group is convinced by their moral or theological standards that they are right while the other guy is wrong. That some cosmic force is going to punish people who think differently than we do or behave in ways we don’t approve of is only a variation on the theme. Centric good vs. bad thinking is a curse to humanity.
Mystics of various schools and Magi of certain traditions know the score. In the last words of Hassan-I Sabbah “Nothing is truth. Everything is Permitted” If you embrace that concept, all of your perceptions will alter. The idea is to find a way to respect our fellow humans without the imposition of spiritual laws and mandates. We see how well all our laws and rules have worked for us so far. But to alter our own ideas enough to see that our truths are not true for others, is a genuine challenge. It is also a point of spiritual liberation.
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