Karma Has No Deadline

I wish to take something badly out of context. In large part because I have no idea what the context is, and so wild speculation is practically invited. If this speculation has any relevance it is simply that any concept bordering on anything religious is a target.

The inspiring quotation (as it were) is ‘karma has no deadline’, and depending on one’s initial impression of that concept this could seem fairly benign. That type of impression goes along with a certain tendency to view karma as more a comforting idea than otherwise. It has no deadline. One does not risk passing the point at which the karmic blanket is removed from your frail form.

And I use ‘karma’ in a broad sense. Simply the idea that there is some form of cause and effect in which actions result in consequences in a more wide-ranging sense than your typical billiard balls colliding example. Generally with an ethical slant. As usual, sophist exegeseis could always define themselves into untouchable nooks of definition, but the more restricted, rarefied and specialist they become, the further removed from any actual use or (for want of a better word) understanding there is of the concept.

Karma is a bizarre concept, coming as it does from a worldview with a central idea of evaluation, perhaps even justice, which is other than the anthropomorphic varieties found in the Abrahamic religions. Which is not to say those religions are not bizarre, of course. But this is a peripheral criticism: if such belief systems took the time to try and explain exactly was going on they would talk themselves out of existence. That is, the only sense of existence they actually have.

My main criticism of the concept, and which lends the above quotation a truly sinister aspect, is that it implies that everything is deserved. Those who karma (or that whatever-the-hell does the approval via karma) deems worthy eventually get off the mortal/material ride and bid goodbye to the inevitable suffering of corporeal existence. Those who don’t… Well, that is the point. They recede from nirvana; they endure less bearable modes of existence.

An insipid complacency is invited through this whole idea. The idea that everyone’s present mode of life is, to whatever extent, deserved. Investment in the whole idea contains a commitment, on some level, no matter how one may feel motivated to act in accordance with local virtue, to thinking the wretched people you help deserve their plight.

Karma has no deadline. It never expires. Everything sick, blighted, afflicted and twisted is deserving of this only. The only option to mitigate is to follow the rules of the system which has cursed them.

Even the outwardly cuddliest religiously/derived concepts are invariably inverted expressions of despite.

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