"Karma is not a punishment bestowed by heaven. It is not a painful work given by deity to wayward children." - Manly P. Hall
There are many misconceptions being perpetuated by ignorant people about the phenomenon known as Karma.
The laws of karma are and have always been about cause and effect, and for every action, there is a reaction.
As Buddah said, "Effects follow their causes; As the wheels of the cart follow the foot of the oxen."
33rd Degree Freemason, Manly P. Hall had said this on Karma, "We are not dealing with a punishment persay. We are not referring to a condition after death or in life in which evil forces take over the life or consciousness of a human being. We are not relating to demonology; nor to a Hades populated by ghosts and monsters. The word is simply a term to signify that the effects are inherent in their causes."
In other words, if you are sick, and or are having money problems, there is a cause that has created this effect in your life. It does NOT mean that you were bad and or evil in a past life and your illness or lack of money is the effect of a past life event that has caused to have a life of poverty. Your current situation does NOT mean that it was caused by some fantastical metaphysical phenomenon that cannot be explained by science and or common sense and reason.
Karma simply means that something had caused the current effect in your life.
For example, you may be having financial issues because your business is suffering from a down turn in the economy or unforeseen circumstances that caused your income to go down. Quite possibly you lost your job because your company shipped all its jobs over seas to China in order to get cheaper labor and this increase the company's profits so the CEO and investors can simply make more money. Maybe this job loss caused you to then lose your home and to become homeless.
God forbid that you are really ill and or have some type of disease. Your illness may have been caused by by environmental toxins such as toxic pesticides and or molds that are everywhere these days. Quite possibly it was caused by the highly toxic vaccines you were given over the course of your life; Or possibly the cause is your bad eating habits and lifestyle such as smoking and or drinking alcohol which effected your health. Hell, maybe you had sex with someone without a condom who had a sexually transmitted disease that made you also get the disease.
Your karma did not cause this. They were caused by something, someone or your own actions.
The simple explanation of cause and effect is a relationship between events or things, where one is the result of the other or others. In other words, a cause is why an event happens. An effect is an event that happens because of a cause.
The etymology of the word karma proves these facts as well. Karma as kárman a neuter n-stem, nominative kárma कर्म from the root √kṛ कृ, means "to do, make, perform, accomplish, cause, effect, prepare, undertake".
The meaning of cause is a person or thing that gives rise to an action, phenomenon, or condition, and effect means a change that is a result or consequence of an action or other cause.
Ralph Waldo Emerson had said, “Shallow men believe in luck or in circumstance. Strong men believe in cause and effect.”
The consequence or effects of one's karma can be described in two forms: phalas and samskaras. A phala (literally, fruit or result) is the visible or invisible effect that is typically immediate or within the current life. In contrast, samskaras are invisible effects, produced inside the actor because of the karma, transforming the agent and affecting his or her ability to be happy or unhappy in this life and future ones.
Theosophist I. K. Taimni wrote, "Karma is nothing but the Law of Cause and Effect operating in the realm of human life and bringing about adjustments between an individual and other individuals whom he has affected by his thoughts, emotions and actions."[
To give you a simple example of cause and effect in my life, I would like to share with you an example in my life involving my beautiful and innocent 9 year old son who is very ill at the moment. Some ignorant people would say that it was something he did is a past or this current life that is causing him to become ill.
I have even heard people say that it was me and my actions that caused his illness as if it being cause by some metaphysical phemomenon in which our father/son relationship is causing him to become very sick. As if my thoughts and his thoughts caused this mold to invade his body.
If I took this advice of profane people and or blamed my son's illness on some past life issues, I would not have researched and figured out using knowledge, reason and science that his illness was caused by the effect of mold from a home we had rented for 5 years.
These toxic molds such as aspergillus and stachybotrys that I had scientifically verified by an actual certified mold expert with 30 years experience is well know to be one of the most toxic and dangerous mold toxins in the world. It effects and makes millions of people ill and causes death every year.
This illness caused by these molds that is the effect of being exposed to its toxic properties. My son wasn't a bad or evil boy in his past life that caused his illness. It is NOT the result of bad karma and or some metaphysical unseen and or unknown cause of the universe.
Hence, "Logical consequences are the scarecrows of fools and the beacons of wise men." – Thomas Henry Huxley
In Aristotelian philosophy, the word 'cause' is also used to mean 'explanation' or 'answer to a why question', including Aristotle's material, formal, efficient, and final "causes"; then the "cause" is the explanans for the explanandum. In this case, failure to recognize that different kinds of "cause" are being considered can lead to futile debate.
Masonic author, Norman de Clifford's in his book, "Egypt: Cradle of Ancient Masonry," had written;
"It was simply impossible for Osiris in any way to interfere with the Law of Cause and Effect; or, in other words, any man's ' Karma'. When a man's life actions are weighed in the balance, his dues are rendered to him with perfect justice. He has made his own record and he will reap the full effects of it, be it good or evil, and this fact alone shows that 'Man is the master of his own destiny'. What he has sown, that must he also reap, and there is no power in earth or in heaven that can alter his Karma."
I know that people who perpetuate such BS that Karma is the sole cause that make people to become ill, have financial issues and or death are either ignorant of the laws of cause and effect or they are either ignorant and or simply charlatans selling their metaphysical books and or courses. Hence, arguing with them can lead to a futile debate because I have learned people will fight you to the death in order so they are not proven wrong and or cannot admit they are wrong.
One fact is for sure, they are certainly hurting more people than they are helping with their poor advice and ignorant thinking.
Here are a few simple graphics below showing you basic grade school karmic causes and effects for the karmically mentally challenged people out there.