When I think of Karma, I think of Jim Williams of Savannah falling dead in his office after Sonny Seiler convinced a Chatham Co. jury that Jim was not guilty of murdering Jim’s lover in the true story depicted in “Midnight In The Garden Of Good And Evil.” The voodoo priestess, Minerva, warns Jim that he must “ask the boy for forgiveness.” Minerva tells him to visit the graveyard at night and follow Minerva’s light and dark magic. But, Jim angrily refuses. Minerva is right. Jim is released from punishment by a jury, but as he falls to the floor he cannot escape what is commonly known as karma.
But, what does karma really mean?
Karma finds its roots in the world of Eastern religion. It means action, work or deed; it also refers to the spiritual principle of cause and effect where intent and actions of an individual (cause) influence the future of that individual (effect). Good intent and good deed contribute to good karma and future happiness, while bad intent and bad deed contribute to bad karma and future suffering.
With origins in ancient India, karma is a key concept in Hindu and Buddhist religions.
Karma is also considered in Christianity. Christianity teaches morals such as reap what one sows (Galatians 6:7) and live by the sword, die by the sword (Matthew 26:52).
Some Christians believe that the last judgment is a form of karma. However, I consider the concept of last judgment as different than karma, with karma as an ongoing process that occurs every day in one’s life. The last judgment is a one-time review at the end of life.
Some people believe in karma while others do not.
I am a firm believer in karma because I see it function so often in my life.
I once knew an extremely arrogant businessman who was on top of the world before the global financial crisis. A few years ago, I witnessed him tell a young man, who looked up to the arrogant businessman and was starting his own business, that the young man would never amount to anything. He said this in an angry tone as he swirled his whiskey on the rocks.
The young man’s confidence was shattered.
Today, you would not believe that this conversation ever took place. The arrogant businessman financially lost everything. The young businessman regained and built his confidence over the years and now runs one of the most profitable companies in his community while serving that community as an honorable elected official.
Better known examples of karma may (depending on your view) be the terrible downfall of almost every evil leader in history (Saddam Hussein, Adolph Hitler, Idi Amin, Manuel Noriega, etc.). Other examples may be the downfall of President Nixon (I disagree with many of the “facts” associated with ole Dick and would vote for him today for sure.), Bill Clinton after his history of how he treated women, Bernie Madoff after he defrauded his friends and others out of millions of dollars, and the treachery of Benedict Arnold.
Good karma could be illustrated by the courage and “no quit” attitudes of Presidents Lincoln, Reagan, and Franklin Roosevelt.
There are millions of examples throughout history and perhaps in your lifetime.
I also see karma in the justice system. Our legal foundation is the best that humans can create. Thus, it is flawed. However, I have often seen unjust outcomes in court followed by positive and negative life circumstances follow the court cases. It seems that sometimes, life corrects injustices that humans cannot.
Please do not misunderstand. I do not personally wish evil upon anyone. I just see these adjustments in life play out often.
I also believe based on my experience that karma affects those who purposely engage in good or bad acts. Honest mistakes with sincere apologies do not seem to be associated with karma. It seems that malice is always involved in dark karma while benevolence is involved in the light.
I do not seek to convince anyone that karma exists.
I just hope that you will take a moment t