Sunday, May 17, 2015

Consciousness, Karma and Deliberate Action

There are many people who believe that everything that happens to people is either karmic or a result of what's in their consciousness. Try telling that to the children who got gassed during the Holocaust. It couldn't have been anything in their consciousness, because they were too little to have a consciousness. And it couldn't have been anything karmic, because if it had been, then there would be a sizable population today with similar karma who would experience similar outcomes.

The idea that everything that happens to people is their own doing absolves oneself of responsibility for doing right by the next person. If this is the case, then if I were to rape you and kill you, it would be your fault rather than mine. And that is not only wrong factually. It is wrong morally. In every sense, it is sociopathic.

When I was writing on this matter on New Age – influenced forums, I was accused of seeing myself as a victim and not wanting to take responsibility for my life. I was not writing about my life, and I was not writing about myself. I was writing about how these attitudes affect people. And I was also writing from the perspective of someone who knows enough about history to know just how much things differ from one age to the next, and how much of it is a result of some people impacting upon others.

Where these people are right is in claiming that most of us are not children during the Holocaust, and that there are any number of things that people can do to improve their lot. They are also right that in many cases people being in a bad way is a result of their weakness, ignorance or incompetence. You will not see me argue with these propositions. You will however see me argue intensively against the proposition that, if I were to rape and kill you, it would be your fault rather than mine.

Corollary with this idea is the notion that nobody can help or injure another. A demonstrably false statement. People both help and injure others all the time. One does not need, as some of these people claim, to see oneself as a victim or to avoid responsibility for one's life in order to understand this. One simply needs to take a look at history.

If everything that happened to people was a result of their karma or their consciousness, then the world would have been the same way through all of history. As many people would have the karma for gas chambers now as did in 1940s; and as many people would have the karma for grinding poverty now as did during the Middle Ages. That things have changed, all the time, as a result of human behavior in politics, business, science and the arts, shows that it is this action that truly determines the fate of humanity.

Much of what came out of the New Age is good; and I am all in favor of the Western people becoming acquainted with Zen, yoga and herbal medicines. However this attitude has to go. There are all sorts of ways in which people influence others. And for that reason it is imperative that the influence exercised be right rather than wrong.


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