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Old 01-02-2005, 02:39 PM   #91
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Quote:
Originally posted by joyfulgirl
...
So how then can a natural disaster such as the tsunami, and all the suffering it has caused, be viewed as anything but terrible? Well, first of all, since the soul is immortal, nobody really died. The ones who lived through the ordeal suffer, no doubt, but when viewed from the whole (and by whole, I mean the general bigger picture, the specifics of which none of us can know) you see it is God’s plan playing out once again in perfection. While it looks terrible to the mind, it is in fact unconditional love playing out once again because these souls have to burn this karma off and in their next incarnation, they will have much better circumstances and their journey continues on. In viewing from the whole I would have to say that we have all been through such terrible things, and more may await us, but one of the gifts is that the veil drops between each incarnation so that we don’t remember these things although occasionally we get glimpses in dreams, or in attitudes that we seemed to have been born with, etc.

We see the law of karma playing out in all of life—in science, in physics—where there is a cause there is an effect. I agree with Irvine that I don’t really understand how Christians make sense of these kinds of things, often one minute quoting popular Biblical verses such as we reap what we sow and an eye for an eye, while simultaneously denying the existance of karma (which by definition is reaping what you sow and an eye for an eye) and their unwillingness to apply these principles as God’s law even when the appearance of things suggests some kind of injustice to seemingly innocent people, or making separations between God and nature. This does not mean that I don’t feel pain when I look at the images on TV and hear the stories of what people are going through. It does not mean that I shrug and go, "Oh well, they had it comin' to them." This is a subject that one must approach with great sensitivity. But I do find comfort in knowing that it is temporary and that these people paid, and are paying, HUGE karmic debts, and we don’t even know the grace and mercy that was bestowed in doling out this karma, or the gifts they have earned in bravely facing their karmas. According to the teachings of karma and reincarnation, this world is where we come to learn lessons, pay debts, and return to God. It's ugly down here for the most part and these kinds of horrible things have existed since the beginning of time. I don't agree with people who say the world is getting worse; it's pretty much always been like this.

Obviously there is much, much more to karma than this. It is a vast, vast subject and one I have been reluctant to get into because I find that most people have already rejected it before they know anything about it and only want to talk about it so they can dismiss it loudly. It's almost like people get angry hearing that they are ultimately reponsible for their lives, which I present as an idea that does not negate the existence of God but which is part of God's plan, and for me there is great liberation and comfort in that idea.
Thanks for your post.
While I'm a Christian, I have no problem with the message of reincarnation, I go to a mainstream church but as of now really have been researching to the gnostic form of Christianity, most which welcome the idea. My inability to believe this and other things were the traditional "God's will" has lead to me to expand my interest.
One could also say that the suffering survivors are also paying off a karmic debt. Not that I would in any way suggest they shouldn't be helped, that's may be part of our debt.
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Old 01-02-2005, 03:22 PM   #92
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joyfulgirl, you wrote the post I was wishing I could write. It was thoughtful, detailed, simple, and complete. Very well done.


Quote:
Originally posted by joyfulgirl
I have been reluctant to get into because I find that most people have already rejected it before they know anything about it and only want to talk about it so they can dismiss it loudly.
This is why I hesitated to do it, and we'll see what happens here.
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Old 01-02-2005, 03:25 PM   #93
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Well of course everything you do is significant to yourself and those around you...and leading a good life can make a difference in someone's life, make someone's life a little better, and that's important. I guess my point is that things like this happen and are out of our control and will always happen throughout the centuries...it's tragic, it's RANDOM, and that's why I don't believe it's the work of some sort of God...punishing people...

It sickens me when people suggest that it was somehow their doing, these poor people, often very religious, in fishing villages, that they somehow deserved this.

On a somewhat related note...if religious people truly believe in "Heaven" then why is death tragic at all? And it's nothing to do with "I'm glad that person is in a better place, I'll just miss them" because if people only cry for selfish reasons, why do they say "She was so young" or "He never got to live a full life"? Something I also wonder about...

(edit: this was in response to Dreadsox's post, btw)
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Old 01-02-2005, 03:26 PM   #94
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Originally posted by indra
I personally don't believe in a god, but I don't deny the possibility there is one (or more).
At the risk of needing a tissue for my ass, this is fence-sitting. So God exists, but you don't believe in Him?
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Old 01-02-2005, 03:27 PM   #95
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Quote:
Originally posted by VertigoGal

It sickens me when people suggest that it was somehow their doing, these poor people, often very religious, in fishing villages, that they somehow deserved this.


This is what I was afraid of.
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Old 01-02-2005, 03:32 PM   #96
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I'm sorry martha...I admit I didn't read your post or joyfulgirl's and I will...I don't mean to be closed-minded, but I'm sure you can imagine the idea seems so...cruel...at first mention that it's hard for your brain to even try to understand.

But I'll read joyfulgirl's post...

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Old 01-02-2005, 03:50 PM   #97
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Quote:
Originally posted by martha
joyfulgirl, you wrote the post I was wishing I could write. It was thoughtful, detailed, simple, and complete. Very well done.
I agree joyfulgirl - your post was very well done.

I believe something happens to our spirits when we die. I believe in God, I believe we could go to heaven - I also believe we could be reincarnated. I don't know enough about karma to make an educated opinion. I find it comforting to know somehow there is more, but not concerned at this time as to the exact details. Who really knows anyhow?

I also believe that where you go all boils down to how full your heart is. All of us should live our lives taking care of each other.. carry each other.. one. (I started this sentence without the lyrics, but it clicked in so I'll leave it.)

It is comforting to know that all of the lives lost aren't really lost as their souls are immortal. Whether they are in heaven with God or being reborn again soon. It seems to me that all of us left behind feel the greatest pain.
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Old 01-02-2005, 04:13 PM   #98
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Just interested, anyone here believe, like Alvin Plantinga, in 'natural evil' (that Nature herself has fallen from grace)?

joyfulgirl: that was enlightening. I have some questions. Assuming that most of the people in the affected areas of the tsunami suffered greatly, how does one explain the coincidence that everyone living in the area happened to have the same 'huge karmic debt' to pay?

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Old 01-02-2005, 04:25 PM   #99
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Quote:
Originally posted by VertigoGal
Well of course everything you do is significant to yourself and those around you...and leading a good life can make a difference in someone's life, make someone's life a little better, and that's important. I guess my point is that things like this happen and are out of our control and will always happen throughout the centuries...it's tragic, it's RANDOM, and that's why I don't believe it's the work of some sort of God...punishing people...

It sickens me when people suggest that it was somehow their doing, these poor people, often very religious, in fishing villages, that they somehow deserved this.

On a somewhat related note...if religious people truly believe in "Heaven" then why is death tragic at all? And it's nothing to do with "I'm glad that person is in a better place, I'll just miss them" because if people only cry for selfish reasons, why do they say "She was so young" or "He never got to live a full life"? Something I also wonder about...

(edit: this was in response to Dreadsox's post, btw)
What part of my post...I am very confused, because I never said that the people somehow deserved it.

EDIT:

I am also confused, I am not worried about significance for myself. Someone made a comment about human beings being insignificant to God, and that was my response.
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Old 01-02-2005, 04:27 PM   #100
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Quote:
Originally posted by martha


At the risk of needing a tissue for my ass, this is fence-sitting. So God exists, but you don't believe in Him?
Martha HATES the Humpty Dumpty complex.
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Old 01-02-2005, 04:35 PM   #101
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Dreadsox...

Oh nevermind!

I had posted something about how we were all pretty insignificant in the whole scheme of things, and thought your response about how we ARE significant in each other's lives was directed at ME...nevermind!

So the beginning of my post was in reply to yours, the rest was general, not directed at you at all...

Sorry for the confusion!
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Old 01-02-2005, 05:13 PM   #102
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Quote:
Originally posted by foray

I have some questions. Assuming that most of the people in the affected areas of the tsunami suffered greatly, how does one explain the coincidence that everyone living in the area happened to have the same 'huge karmic debt' to pay?
There are no coincidences.
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Old 01-02-2005, 05:19 PM   #103
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joyfulgirl, how can the death of 120,000 people, 40% of whom are children, be part of "perfection" or some sort of "unconditional love"?? I fail to see how a father or mother who watched their child slip from their grasp to be swallowed by the sea would find comfort in the idea that their little child is responsible for the "sins" of others. Or that they will be much happier in their next life. They will, I can only imagine, desperately want them back in this life...
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Old 01-02-2005, 05:31 PM   #104
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Quote:
Originally posted by u2lassie
joyfulgirl, how can the death of 120,000 people, 40% of whom are children, be part of "perfection" or some sort of "unconditional love"?? I fail to see how a father or mother who watched their child slip from their grasp to be swallowed by the sea would find comfort in the idea that their little child is responsible for the "sins" of others. Or that they will be much happier in their next life. They will, I can only imagine, desperately want them back in this life...
I read your post joyfulgirl, but I'm still gonna have to agree with u2lassie. I understand your beliefs/logic, like I "understand" any religion, but I can't believe it to be true and I also can't understand how these parents should be comforted in knowing their babies paid off some "karmic debt."
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Old 01-02-2005, 05:33 PM   #105
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Thanks for providing me with the reasons why I don't bother to explain karma to people here on this board.
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