India culture belief is wide and very confusing, and today I will try to cover one of them. We will try to define and understand the basic understanding of karma and dharma. I will not go into deep details on the history of it, but I will try to keep everything simple to understand. Another reason is that I don't want to bore you to death with it. As, I have done in the articles of population of India and China.
Just as Justin Timberlake singing his hit song "What comes around, go around," the Indian belief somewhat a similar view. For their belief is karma, it can easy be describe as for every action there is a consequences. To define dharma, it simple means accepting one's place in the society.
The reason I describe two of the ideas together because it tie closely to another belief, which is the reincarnation. This belief says that you will be born again, again, and again on this earth. In Indian, reincarnation can also known as Samsara "The cycle of rebirth." You may ask, what is the relation for all three beliefs?
Let me give you an example.
Let say, when you born in this life as a beggar. In India belief, if you want to be a good person, first you must accept your place in the society as a beggar (dharma). Even as a beggar, during the time of this life, you have to be a good person because you are trying to build your good karma. Hence, when you die and reincarnate to the next life, god will reward you to be in the higher rank of the society because of all the good karma you have build in the past. This is the simplest way I can think of to explain it.
Now, I will break it into piece by piece and explain the beliefs in detail.
As you notice, karma does not believe to be a short term; however, it carries on from this life onto the next. This can explain why India people do not worry about missing opportunity, rather who deserve it. If good fortune come your way that mean you have a good karma, and vice versa, bad fortune equal to bad karma.
Because of the theory, some experts even go far as using this to explain the beggars in India. Expert explain that beggars in India are not national tragic or scandal but as just the country's karma. What do you think?
There is an old India proverb for karma. It said, "When you are grown up, you get marry. When you have a family, you make money to keep your family. And, when you get old you stop worry about money, but you should work on your wisdom and built your karma for the next life (talk about long term investment)." What do we get out of the proverb? We should always do business with elder Indian people just to be save (hehe).
Indian has a very strong belief in karma, and they will use it to explain everything that happens. For example, if you are poor is because of karma, if you are sick is because of karma, and if you make a bad deal in business is because of karma. Hopefully, you use this life to cultivate the good karma, and invest it in your next life.
The theory of dharma can elaborate a little more by saying that not only you have to accept your place in the society but you have to be good at what you doing and be happy about it. What is the reward you may as ask? When you die and reincarnate to the next life, you will be in a higher position in India social class.
The theory or belief of dharma is not survived in the modern day. The young people and the people in the city point of view start to change and they ignore the theory. As, you probably already know that India is build on hierarchy system or also known as the caste system (I will cover this subject really soon).
Dharma is just a technique created to prevent people from crossing the line of social statue or relationship. If you are a lower class, you should stay there; then when the next life come around you may get your turn as life as a sex icon in Bollywood (hehe).
The reason for people goes against this theory is because many people in upper hierarchy use the theory to get special treatment in their life such as go to better school, bribe, and everything in between. To them, the upper class feels that it is their turn to have their place in the society, and dharma is a license for them to do so.
Thank you for joining me today. So, how was it? Good or bad. If it is bad, pleases, do let me know. From where I am and wherever you are, have a wonderful night and wake up tomorrow do some good deed everybody.