(A somewhat tongue in cheek discourse)
I just noticed on a web site the idea of Jesus breaking the Hindu Karma. I did not read further, because it may cut across my thoughts on Christ and Karma, and I want to put it as I see it, rightly or wrongly.
It seems the Jewish law is largely a matter of Karma. In fact, any philosophy probably enters into this thinking because it seems the natural thing to do. Natural justice, the thought that there must be some balancing action that pays back evil for evil, and good for good.
That everyone will get their “just rewards” [or “just desserts”] in the end.
The Jewish (and other law systems) seemed to be aimed at controlling man’s actions, and perhaps redeeming man towards complying with God’s requirements, except that where there was a penalty of death exacted, there was no further redemption possible – it then became an example to others of what NOT to do, how NOT to behave, but at the cost of this individuals possible eternal life.
But at the heart of it is the notion that, in the end, God will indeed equalise all things.
Karma has to surely be seen in the aspect of “the law of sin and death”. Which is really the Mosaic law’s portrayal of action and (by the law) reaction. Of cause and effect, of consequence. [but the law of sin and death is also of course the natural spiritual law].
But the problem with this is that it really is simply an observation – there is no significant intervention that produces the good result of the person turning their life around, after intervention by the processes of law. The person who stole, has his hand cut off. The person who gouged out another’s eye was to have in turn, his own eye gouged out. There is an interesting aspect here where Jesus commented on the law (I don’t know offhand the circumstances) by saying it was better to enter life maimed than to go to hell whole. I don’t think he at all condoned the law in this regard, but was perhaps offering the crude logic behind it.
So while all this cause and effect type of justice was floating around, and law was the natural influence of the day, there was little in the way of mercy going on. (With apologies to the provisions of mercy set within the Jewish law). Karma was pretty much set in its ways, there was to be no relief from the ways of man in his thinking and execution of the crudity of basic law. The God of Israel, while promising mercy, had, up till that time, not produced the master stroke for the world’s redemption.
JESUS BROKE THE KARMA
“Justice came through the law, but truth and grace [mercy] through Jesus….”(?) If everything was left as it was, if God had not intervened through his son, we were all dead. Dead dead. Karma, in that sense, could not have any sort of happy ending, and, if it suggests such, it is wrong.
Through Jesus, death itself was destroyed within his own body, and trust and faith in his redeeming love will restore our own futuristic bodies, to be like his.
The Karma that said we were all “locked in” to the destiny that our actions had “earned”, was wrong. But we have a choice, to remain in the existing “Karma”, or to accept God’s intervention and change. If we remain in the “Karma”, the “Karma” is true. Eternal death will certainly be the result of sin. Of our actions. Of our disbelief.
Paul showed an example of how “Karma” is no longer in place for the Christian. He was on the island of Malta, when a poisonous snake [serpent] latched onto him. The villagers all thought he must be a fugitive from justice, but that justice (“Karma”) had caught up with him. They expected him to die. But this was not the case. The last example of the serpent trail, showed victory over sin and death. It showed that Karma was a lie.
In the end, perhaps we could say that Karma holds true. Those to be unacceptable to God will meet their end. There will be judgement on all. But this judgement will be different for the many people who turned away from the (law) of sin and death at Christ’s invitation, who altered or changed their “Karma” through the acceptance of God’s mercy in Jesus. For them, judgement has already taken place. They released themselves from such judgement through their choice of righteousness over unrighteousness. They will be “judged”, but only in the sense of the reward they will receive, not the “punishment”, not the sentence of eternal death, because God altered their “Karma” at his own expense, through the suffering obedience of his Son, who abolished death, and abolished the law (Karma).
The greatest Karma issue is that Jesus took OUR Karma upon HIMSELF, having left HIS “Karma” to do so. The injustice of this grabs our attention. Although he was then rewarded? Is this then, the WARPING of Karma? And has God proved that he is also the God even of karma?
[who has sinned, this man or his parents, that he be born blind?] [some wag has said that, “my karma ran over your dogma”]