How Does Karma Actually Work?


Karma is an ethical cause and effect, where the intentional actions a person takes now affect the quality of their life now and in future lives. It is often thrown around in modern casual conversations as a type of luck, but it is the central concept of many Eastern religions including Hinduism, Buddhism, Sikhism and Jainism.

Karma is an intentional thought, word or deed. Past actions will affect a person’s present and future quality of life, and present actions will affect the person’s future quality of this life and future lives. Good actions create positive future karma, and bad actions create negative future karma.

Eastern religions share beliefs about karma, but they aren’t exactly the same. Hinduism and Buddhism both believe karma is tied to reincarnation, but Hindus believe that if one lives ethically and spiritually and performs the responsibilities of their caste (or social class), they will be born into a higher caste in the next life. Buddhists believe karma is accumulated through all of a persons past and present lives, and follows them to the next life.