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 Karma is not an old word?

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Kapitan_Prien
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PostSubject: Karma is not an old word?   Mon 27 Jun 2011 - 18:09

(I'm not posting this to offend anyone who believes in this, but I wasn't sure where else to post it.)

I was browsing through my dictionary on my computer and decided to look up Karma. I was just curious because it always seems to be touted as some sort of 'ancient sanskrit word'. My dictionary stated that it dates from the early 19th century (1800s). The dictionary I have is the Encarta World Dictionary.

I don't believe in this...but, it has really made me wonder about much of the information out there presented in new age books, sites, etc. and how legitimate (historically speaking) it is.

I tend to question things like these new age things, when I see something like this even more so. I begin to question things on a larger scale....

...was the whole 'Karma' thing made up to justify suffering (amongst other nonsense), to rationalize it, by the new age community? (it's a rhetorical question). I mean, if the word came out/originated not that long ago, then what of the belief itself? (again rhetorical).

Just thought I'd share this.
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Helen
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PostSubject: Re: Karma is not an old word?   Mon 27 Jun 2011 - 19:24

mmmmmm very interesting, thank you I wouldnt have thought to look it up lol!

I will have to have a think on this and get back to you, not sure how I feel that it is a relatively new word....


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Kapitan_Prien
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PostSubject: Re: Karma is not an old word?   Mon 27 Jun 2011 - 19:53

Ok - I wonder what some online dictionaries would say:

Merriam Webster says 1827: http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/karma

Just as a reference: Wiki - Karma: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Karma
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Helen
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PostSubject: Re: Karma is not an old word?   Mon 27 Jun 2011 - 23:51

from reading what the online dictionaries say, do you think that the word karma has only been used in 'Western' societies since mid 19thc? is that the time when people started exploring other religions and then discovered this and other words?


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Kapitan_Prien
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PostSubject: Re: Karma is not an old word?   Tue 28 Jun 2011 - 0:10

Well that's what I'm beginning to wonder - I'm sure many have heard of the Theosophical movement, and then Wicca which was from the mid-20th century (correct me if I'm wrong on that).

I went through the Wiki site and the word 'karma' was never used by the eastern religions to denote such a concept as it is now known, so that made me wonder if someone who knew sanskrit chose the word for that specific sort of 'belief' or 'concept'.

I think what I'm trying to get to is that the 'concept' of karma was actually created during the 19th century and not ages before...because it's not mentioned as an actual 'belief' from what I could get from the Wiki site. What I'm trying to say, is like the 'Wiccan' path was not created until the mid-20th century...rather than what some may believe about it. We know that the actual 'Witchcraft' is far older, but 'Wicca' is a more modern path...that's what I'm trying to say about karma...if that makes sense.
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aulair
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PostSubject: Re: Karma is not an old word?   Sat 9 Jul 2011 - 0:52

I would definately say that Karma is a concept that has been around for a long time. I would venture to guess it has been around since human society has existed. The idea that you will receive what you put out, or you will be treated how others treat you...I think this has been a truth for many since before the written word. If one looks at historical oral stories that have been saved from cultures who still remember thier oral heritage...the creature (usually another animal...such as a spider, snake, lizard or something we struggle to identify with as warm blooded mammals) in the story which has gotten through life by tricken and stealing is stolen from and tricked at the end. Is this not a similar idea?
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Kapitan_Prien
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PostSubject: Re: Karma is not an old word?   Sat 9 Jul 2011 - 16:55

I agree that the 'concept' has been around, because in the Wiki site, they mention the Christian quote from the Bible - you reap what you sow...something like that.

But the word itself, being applied to the concept, and becoming what is known now didn't exist until the 19c. from what I understand. But prior to someone actually 'naming' the concept...I think it was just another concept.
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pluralone
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PostSubject: Re: Karma is not an old word?   Tue 12 Jul 2011 - 21:49

The issues I have with such concepts is how they're so often referred to without context, as though they are 'laws' unto themselves and not dependent upon other contingencies. Or as though there is only one interpretation of such concepts and only one possible outcome of their influence on any given situation. I think that's where the 'newness' of these concepts comes in, not that they're new but that their singular interpretations are a new way of looking at them.

But that's just my thinking.


From time to time, I do consider that I might be mad. Like any self-respecting lunatic, however, I am
always quick to dismiss any doubts about my sanity.
-Odd Thomas
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Kapitan_Prien
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PostSubject: Re: Karma is not an old word?   Tue 12 Jul 2011 - 23:44

That's an interesting point you bring up and I think it's a valid one too from my view.

There is that one site - Rethinking Karma which explains the mess behind having applied the eastern concept to western judeo-christian thinking:

http://www.zimbio.com/Spirituality+and+You/articles/5202093/Rethinking+Karma

Even this poor author (they're great actually - I really liked many of their writings) thought that Karma was an 'ancient' sanskrit word.

Quote :
Things got more complicated when Eastern ideas, including karma, were
adopted by Westerners with little frame of reference for the paradigm
in which those concepts originated. Western ideas of karma were largely
shaped by the west’s own Judeo-Christian influenced paradigm, with its
moral framework and emphasis on rewards and punishments. While many
people seek to distance themselves from this framework while moving on
to more recently founded traditions in western spirituality, it shows up
as a recurring theme nonetheless. Wicca, for instance, has added extra
incentive (or deterrent, as the case may be) to follow their moral
framework, in the form of the Threefold Law. This is a bit like karma
on steroids, as it states that everything we do comes back to us
multiplied by three. Among the various schools of thought under the New
Age umbrella, it’s not uncommon to find teachings like the idea that
there are “Lords of Karma” who fill in for the previously mentioned
Hindu deities, although in this case there is often a clearly implied
sense of reward and punishment. Alternately, between lives we are
sometimes said to appear before “councils” of varying descriptions, who
either decide how we will work out our karma in the coming lifetime, or
otherwise help us do so. So, having laid out the explanation of the
most familiar and historical views of karma, now for the fun part:
deconstructing them.
Back somewhere in the annals of time, a wise Yogi probably observed
the same thing Newton would notice centuries later: that for every
action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. This works great as a
general rule for objects in motion at the observable level, but both
Newton and our mystery Yogi attempted to apply it in ways well beyond
its usefulness. Not that we should fault ‘em for it, as neither could
have possibly forseen the advances of quantum mechanics.
In any case, when we try to apply this physical law as a metaphysical
explanation for “why bad things happen to good people,” (and conversely,
why “bad” deeds often go unpunished), we run into problems.
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pluralone
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PostSubject: Re: Karma is not an old word?   Wed 13 Jul 2011 - 0:57

"Karma on sterioids" LOL! What a great article! The 'threefold law' never did resonate with me; I'm glad to see I'm not alone there.


From time to time, I do consider that I might be mad. Like any self-respecting lunatic, however, I am
always quick to dismiss any doubts about my sanity.
-Odd Thomas
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Lynn
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PostSubject: Re: Karma is not an old word?   Wed 13 Jul 2011 - 3:01

Hello


Like many words it comes to be popular when the times are ripe for it to do so.

It dates to Sanskript and if ye find a very early dictionary for the translations to English it is in there but as Karmic or Kri. Might have been changed so it simply rolled of the tounge better.

I go to the what goes around comes around and that if one acts out in a negative way there will be a price to pay but it might not be in this lifetime that lesson comes. The lesson or debt might well belong to one's very Soul.

Its like how the work Medium has changed over the year's from what it oringally meant to the NEW meaning. Modern Mediumship but we simply do not use the Modern in front of it.

Or New Age Spiritualism its just Spiritualism but really the TRUE meaning has gone forth with a transformation of meaning.

There too are words that we use in our day to day that are not words but what one calls " slang " in English. So how does a new word make it into Websters Dictionay. Wikki seems to just ADD what it feels to without at times due care and attentions to whom it might well effect.

Lynn



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“In a castle on a hill
A past of war and haunt
An ancient secret love
Kept hidden by the hands of the stable boy
A knight and a witch
Secrets and promises
Deep in the war torn walls
Some codes forgotten by time
Some codes forever engraved in the minds of the new
Stories and legends
Kept in the walls of that castle on a hill”


Nicholas Hartman
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aulair
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PostSubject: Re: Karma is not an old word?   Wed 13 Jul 2011 - 6:38

I enjoy seeing the context and meaning of words as they change over the centuries. I think the fluidity of our language reflects the changing of our minds and society. In this way the meaning of words changing is a good thing. However, as pointed out with using "karma" or the idea of bad will happen to you when you are bad and vice-versa which is a view adopted by more than one monotheistic religion (not the general societal viewpoint from which energy flowing through a circle of life came from) can make things unduly complicated and leave conversation regarding such words stunted. I would like to see the fluidity of language remain; perhaps a change in ego and more awareness of valid viewpoints outside of our own would help in the future as we try to redefine our language. I hope I’m making a sliver of sense in all this mumble.
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Kapitan_Prien
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PostSubject: Re: Karma is not an old word?   Thu 14 Jul 2011 - 16:07

Re Plur. - it's nice to know I'm not alone either Wink

Re Aulair - that's kind of what I'm getting to - the use of the words, the concept, etc. - the historical background of it all...how things have changed with it. While I don't believe in it myself, I do find a healthy objective, 'deconstruction' of the belief necessary in order to understand it more. Just like I've done with Christianity as well.
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simonk
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PostSubject: Re: Karma is not an old word?   Fri 5 Aug 2011 - 17:18

As someone once said; Karma, like love, is a word that implies a meaning. I would say that the meaning of any word is unique to every user. The word may be young but the idea is very very old. Ideas and words evolve and grow with each new level of understanding we reach. I have a particular interest in words, as a writer, storyteller and communicator. It always a good thing to take a step back from the common usage of words to seek a truer meaning of them which is not nor ever as singular as our common perspective can be. It is fair to say that words are living things just as ideas and thoughts are substantial forces in our living reality.

I have come to accept Karma as a word to describe a totality of experience of the core being which is a multidimensional+ perspective that the individual you are is a part of. There is much definition that is needed to fully describe the idea. Simply; you had existance before and your soul/spirit/consciousness has made the experience you are now having which in all experiences is necessary for your growth and development as an entity of consciousness and light. Karma can be said to be; that which you are here to do/experience of free will. There is no bad or good in it but that which you make of it in the now and that will shape the future of this and the total experience of the multispacial/multidimensional you.
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catsquotl
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PostSubject: Re: Karma is not an old word?   Thu 25 Apr 2013 - 16:17

Hi..
Great thread. I have had a love/hate relationship with karma for a long time...

these days i think. (like i think of most new agy ideas lately) That the idea of karma is a mental construct designed to keep one from expressing him or herself fully.

As long as you percieve life as a series of incarnations that need to bance itself out and has to do with growth towards home. You just don't realize you are allready there.

the simple truth in my mind is just that. Be who you are. period. no better,greater,more advanced state of being exist.

now if only I could convince my body of that... Wink

with Love
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