Thursday, June 23, 2011
Why Do Things Happen They Way They Do
Why do things happen the way they do? Why are some experiences good while others are not? We've all heard the question, "why do bad things happen?". From a Buddhist perspective we would say it has to do with karma---but be careful---karma has nothing to do with reward or punishment. Karma has nothing to do with judgment. Karma is about result; a non-judgmental result. Karma is a result from an intention and/or action taken. Think of it as a consequence. If we put a match to paper it catches fire. If we tell someone we love them we feel good and maybe they do as well. If we hold a negative thought, negative things sometimes happen. Natural disasters occur because certain factors coincide to bring about e.g., an earthquake, tornado, or tsunami. Just the simple result of the rising of certain causes and conditions. In our lives what is happening now is the result of past actions. What we are doing now will cause certain results in the future. Those results are not rewards or punishments, they are just the result of actions taken and nothing more or less. So when the question of "why is this happening" comes up, don't look for a reason, look instead to intention and action---what is happening results from those and not from a place of reward or punishment. To reward or punish is to judge. Karma makes no judgments. Only we do. Wonder what would happen if we made no judgments? What karma results then?