The doctrine of karma, an inherent component of Eastern religions, contains complexities that the Western mind may have difficulty grasping. In its simplest terms, it is cause and effect, acts and consequences, “just desserts,” or … the law of moral causality. For every action taken by a human being, good or evil, karma is the giant tote board that keeps a running score and affects the quality of this life, past lives and future lives. The roots of Buddhism and Hinduism from which the concept of karma grows originate from the same garden, but branch off into two different schools of thought.
To understand the religion of Hinduism and its view of karma, one must start by examining the Vedic Hymns and the Upanishads. The Vedic Hymns, believed written as long ago as 1500 B.C. are ancient compositions of Indo-European literature and philosophy. The Rig-Veda is considered to be the most important as it holds the core beliefs of Hinduism, the foundation of the religion as practiced from early times to the present.
In his book Religions of India, he describes the Upanishads as “a group of mystical-intuitional writings that were inspired by an amazing intellectual experience of the absolute reality beyond the phenomenal world”. If the Vedic Hymns provided the inspiration, the Upanishads focused on the intellectual and spiritual interpretation. A focal point in the Upanishads is its emphasis on Brahman or the true self. Bramanism is the state of perfection for which Hindus strive. Human life is considered to be a lower existence, a temporary state until the person is deemed worthy to become one with the Supreme Being.