Phena wrote:I agree with this Mr Man. I don't think kamma quite covers it in many cases. If we look at Donald Trump for example, he clearly is not a person of bright kamma, wisdom, virtue or generosity, yet he has much wealth and power.
Although a response from me is probably not very welcome at this moment .. cannot help but .. respond
What I say probably has parallels in Buddhism but I will share the Hindu perspective (because I believe they are not competing but complimentary philosophies on Kamma, Dhamma and liberation).
Karma is always to be viewed alongside Puruṣārtha. Puruṣārtha literally means an "object of human pursuit". It is a key concept in Hinduism, and refers to the four proper goals or aims of a human life. The four Puruṣārthas are Dharma (righteousness, moral values), Artha (prosperity, economic values), Kāma (pleasure, love) and Mokṣha (liberation).
All four Purusarthas are important, but in cases of conflict, Dharma is considered more important than Artha or Kama in Hindu philosophy. Moksha or liberation is considered the ultimate ideal of human life.
Even if Prarabdha Karma (Karma from past births that bears fruit in this life) provides the right birth, the trajectory of ones life is decided by Puruṣārtha that one chooses. Also Puruṣārtha plays a role in deciding Kriyamana Karma (Karma acquired in this lifetime the fruits of which will be experienced in the future) while birth is decided by Prarabdha Karma (Karma of past lifetimes).
The best way to explain is through a story -- two friends, one extremely virtuous and one a drunken fool visited an astrologer. The astrologer told the virtuous one .. you have a very bright future .. you will become very wealthy and your fame will spread far and wide .. to the drunk he said .. I can only see darkness in your future .. you will keep falling and falling .. till one day you die by the roadside .. poor, alone and a beggar.
The virtuous young man thought .. my life will be wonderful .. all I need to do is sit back and enjoy .. he never did a day's work from that day forward but indulged in sensual pleasures and wine.
The drunk thought .. since I am going to have a miserable life and death .. I might as well spend what time I have left being a good Dharmic man.
Three decades passed .. the once virtuous man did not prosper and neither did the once drunk person die a miserable death.
They decided to revisit the astrologer and ask for a refund. The astrologer asked the once virtuous man "did nothing good ever occur to you .. no stroke of unexplained good fortune?" to which he replied "yes, one day I found a gold coin by the roadside".
The astrologer then asked the other one "did nothing unexpected and bad ever occur to you?" to which he replied "yes, once when I was cutting a fruit I chopped off my thumb accidentally".
The astrologer told the once virtuous man "by your wrong Puruṣārtha you destroyed your good Karma .. what was to be millions was whittled down to a single gold coin" and to the once drunk person he said "by your Dharmic life you destroyed your past Karma .. what was to be a miserable death passed by with loss of no more than a thumb".