Don't Be Afraid of Discussing "Karma"

By Jing Zhi

PureInsight | June 29, 2008

[] A short while
ago, the internationally - renowned actress Sharon Stone mentioned the
word "karma" during an interview with media in regards to the recent
earthquake in China. This has stirred up much emotion in China, where
voices condemning Ms. Stone are everywhere. Though she was very popular
just yesterday, Stone has suddenly been portrayed as a vicious woman
who is cruel, pitiless, and takes pleasure in the misfortune of others.
With this national calamity in front of us today, if someone dares to
suggest that it is due to karma, he will be cursed at by all and given
no chance to explain himself whatsoever.

The "karma" mentioned by Sharon Stone is a concept that deals with
retribution, cause and effect, and predestined relationships. It comes
from the teachings of Buddhism. In Buddhism, people believe in
reincarnation, which is a belief that a person does not really
disappear when he dies and that life is eternal. Things done in
previous lives can bring about consequences in future lives. Therefore,
in Buddhism, people care more about future lives than the current life.
They have a saying, "good is rewarded with good, and evil receives
retribution." If one does good deeds, he will accumulate good karma in
this lifetime, and thus in his next lifetime, he will have good
fortune, such as great power, wealth, etc. On the other hand, if one
does bad and evil deeds in this lifetime, then in future lives he will
receive punishment, such as suffering from natural disasters, diseases,
dying young, etc. The goal of these religious teachings is to maintain
human moral standards above a certain level. People therefore would not
do too many bad things. The principle of "karma" is also a way in which
Buddhism teaches people to do good things. Thus, based on the teachings
of Buddhism, "karma" is a neutral term. It is basically the effects
resulting from what one did before, where the effects can be either
good or bad. The word "karma" has no negative connotation itself.
Therefore, one really should not get angry about people using this term.

There is a story from the time of Bao Zheng. Bao Zheng was a high -
ranking official in the Song Dynasty and was famous for being just. He
was known by the common people as "Blue Sky Bao" ("blue sky" referred
to his justness). At that time, there was a young man whose parents had
both passed away. This young man also had a disability and survived by
begging for food everyday. However, he was a very kind person and often
helped others. In the place where he lived, there was a river without a
bridge. The river was quite dangerous and when the water ran high, no
one could cross. This made life difficult for the local residents. The
young man observed this and began carrying stones to a location near
the river in preparation for constructing a bridge. Days, months, and
years passed by, and the stones he carried eventually formed a small
hill. Everyone was touched by this and eventually began to work
together to construct the bridge. However, before the bridge was
finished, an accident happened when the young man was hammering rocks,
and small chips of rock flew into his eyes and he became blind.
Everyone lamented and wondered why heaven was so unfair and why such a
kind person had such bad fortune. But the young man had no complaints
and he continued to help others. However, another unexpected disaster
came upon him. One day during a thunderstorm, the young man was struck
by lightning and died.

When Bao Zheng heard about this, he was filled with indignation. He
wrote "Better to be evil, rather than be kind" in a poem of lament for
the young man. Not long after, the Emperor had a son. The newborn baby
would not stop crying and none of the doctors knew what to do. They
asked Bao Zheng to come examine the baby. Bao Zheng saw that this
baby's skin was as pure and white as snow, and on one of his little
hands, there were several tiny characters. After he figured out what
they said, he remembered that it was what he had written in his poem
for the young man. Bao Zheng was shocked, and as he put up his hands
and tried to erase the characters, they all disappeared from the baby's
skin instantly. The baby also stopped crying. Later, through a dream,
Bao Zheng finally understood the cause and effect relationship of the
young man. It turned out that in his previous life, the young man was
very wicked and had accumulated much bad karma. This resulted in his
being disabled and having to live as a beggar. However, in this same
lifetime he was kind and honest and liked to help others. Therefore, he
had accumulated much good karma at the same time as he paid his debts
from before. Although he continued to suffer, his kindness did not
change. As a result, what originally had been arranged as three
lifetimes of suffering was fully paid in one lifetime, and he also
reincarnated as a prince and enjoyed great wealth. This was a hint to
Bao Zheng from heaven that one must not only look at the surface
appearance of things.

People who believe in the existence of Gods and Buddhas also believe in
karma. Therefore, these people try to do more good things and less bad
things, with the hope of having a bright future. People who do not
believe in Gods often do not believe in karma. Therefore, out of
ignorance they disobey the laws of heaven and do many bad deeds. It is
said that during the "Great Cultural Revolution" in China, the
Communists lead the Chinese people to break with the "Four Olds" (Old
Custom, Old Culture, Old Habits, and Old Ideas), smash Buddha statues,
and destroy temples. The Communist Party completely destroyed people's
faiths and disallowed anyone's belief in Gods or Buddhas. They treated
Gods equally with "cows, ghosts, and snakes," which is totally
disrespectful to Gods. Even young kids were affected by these evil
concepts. One day, a child peed on a school field and said that he was
offering a sacrifice to heaven. Suddenly, a bolt of lightning came from
the sunny sky and the child was electrocuted to death. Looking at the
cases of these two young people, we can see how the first one continued
to do good deeds and accumulate good karma even though he kept
suffering, and he even had no complaints in the end, so he received
good rewards. Whereas, the latter child had no respect and insulted
Gods and heaven, and thus he received retribution.

During the recent Sichuan earthquake, tens of thousands of children
were killed. People lamented and wondered why heaven would arrange for
innocent children to suffer disaster. However, more and more evidence
has shown that heaven does not overlook any being. Before the
earthquake, several experts predicted that there would be an earthquake
in that area during May. In the Mianzhu area of Sichuan province, there
were countless frogs moving together through the streets in the
daytime. Word of an impending earthquake was spread widely in the
society. There were even citizens who called the Earthquake Prediction
Bureau to try to verify this. However, the Communist officials widely
propagandized in the newspaper and told people not to spread the rumor
of an earthquake.

Although natural disasters are unavoidable, it is the disasters caused
by humans that are the most catastrophic and brutal. In order to
maintain so - called "Olympic stability," the Chinese Communist Party
(CCP) had no consideration for people's lives and refused to announce
the forecast of the earthquake. Shoddy construction killed tens of
thousands of children and the corrupt officials gained much wealth
pocketing disaster relief funds. The television news did not report
about the suffering people and how to justify their losses. Instead, it
praised how great the Communist Party was. Exploiting people's
suffering to try to elevate itself, how could this Party keep saying
that it "serves the people"? Isn't this lying to everybody in China?
Isn't this the most disrespectful act toward Gods? Shouldn't these
killers be punished? Isn't it correct then to say that "Heaven will
destroy the CCP!"? Those who have been brainwashed by the Communists'
propaganda are still singing songs of praise for the CCP. As for these
people, please ask yourselves, how could you face the souls of those
tens of thousands children who were killed by the shoddy construction,
how could you face their parents, and how could you face those millions
of people who have lost their homes? Shouldn't you quit such an evil
party? Only by paying respect to heaven and following the laws of
heaven, could the number of disasters be reduced. Now is the time for
the Communist Party to pay for its evil deeds. It is time to end the
Communist disaster for the people in China. Let us all show our
conscience, support justice, and quit the evil CCP. When your just
actions receive good rewards, you will not regret.

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