WHAT IS THE CONCEPT OF 'KARMA' ?
Belief in karma is an important element in superstitious eastern religions
such as decadent Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism. Karma is a Sanskrit word
meaning "action" or "movement". In Indian religions, karma is conceived
of as "the law of cause and effect". According to those who believe in
karma, in the future people will experience the consequences of whatever
they have done in the past. Good comes from good, and evil from evil.
It therefore follows that the situation they are in today is the result
of the past.
No matter how much the philosophy of karma
appears to encourage people towards ethical behaviour, it is in
fundamental conflict with belief in the hereafter and a great many
matters of faith described in the Qur'an.
According to this belief, however, what is meant by "the past" is the
life that a person lived before their current life; what is meant by "the
future" is their next life back on this Earth that will begin (or so it
is claimed), after death. The reason for this is that the belief in karma
is based on a belief in reincarnation-the belief that after death, people
return to the world in a different body, and that this process of death
and rebirth is continuous. It therefore follows that someone who believes
in karma believes that in the so-called life they will have after death,
whatever successes they have, whatever position in society they occupy
and whatever way of life they enjoy will have been determined by how they
behaved in their previous life and on their degree of morality in that
For example, someone who is rich and successful in this life is being
rewarded with wealth for having been a good person in their previous life.
In the same way (according to the concept of karma), someone who is poor,
crippled or a failure in this life will have done bad things in their
previous life and is now reaping the reward for those actions. In fact,
it is claimed by those who subscribe to this superstitious belief system
that people may take the form of plants or animals in their successive
lives, depending on the nature of the evil they have done. Later in this
book we will demonstrate in detail that belief in reincarnation is mere
first sight it might appear that a belief in karma would provide a strong
incentive for people to adopt attractive moral qualities, since they will
want to enjoy the best possible conditions when they are reborn into this
world. However, the belief in reincarnation and other superstitious concepts
fostered by religions which espouse karma (such as Hinduism and decadent
Buddhism), are contrary to human logic, human nature and the human conscience.
Thus, the laws and practices of these religions cannot possibly endow
people with good moral qualities; they cannot bring individuals peace
of mind, inner confidence or happiness. The poor living conditions and
the injustice prevalent in those countries where these religions are common
or where they have, in fact, been adopted as the national religion, quite
clearly demonstrate the truth of this.
One of the main reasons why some of the teachings of Hinduism and Buddhism
attract attention is the interest shown in them by certain world-famous
film stars and musicians. Some of these famous people have their photographs
taken wearing Buddhist robes in Tibet, or they claim to have found peace
of mind in meditation. Another thing that makes people interested in these
religions is the aura of mystery and mysticism with which they are associated
in the mind of the public.
But the great majority of people who are influenced by this mystical
aura and who make a belief in karma the foundation for their way of life
do not carry out any detailed investigation into these philosophies and
do not think about them carefully enough. This is because they are too
focused on the positive spiritual and moral aspects to see that these
religions in their decadent conditions contain many beliefs that are inconsistent,
illogical, and contrary to human nature and conscience, or perhaps they
simply prefer to ignore these anomalies altogether.
This is a communication to be transmitted to mankind so that they
may be warned by it and so that they will know that He is One God
and so that people of intelligence will pay heed.
(Surah Ibrahim: 52)
However, anyone who wishes to escape from the difficult and depressing
life they are leading and who sincerely wants all humanity to be able
to live a life full of happiness and inner tranquility ought to make an
effort to find the right way. Therefore, they should carefully investigate
the philosophies by which they are influenced and should be inwardly certain
which path is the most correct, the wisest and the one that best accords
with their conscience.
The purpose of this book is to show people whose quest for the truth
has led them to adopt the positive messages of the karma philosophy, that
it is not the best path since it is derived from a religion based on myths,
superstitions and practices that defy reason. The only way for people
to live happily and enjoy peace of mind in this life and in their eternal
life after death is for them to have faith in Allah and to act in accordance
with the dictates of the Qur'an. The Qur'an is the book of truth revealed
by our Lord, Allah, for the sake of thinking people; it is our only guide
to salvation, bringing people from darkness into light. The only true
way is to put into practice the ethics of the Qur'an and to fear Allah,
the Creator of the heavens and the earth, Who keeps people from wickedness,
discord, cruelty, oppression, intolerance, despair, pessimism, unhappiness
and every kind of reprehensible act, and to live in accord with the Sunnah
of His Noble Messenger, Muhammad, may Allah bless him and grant him peace.