Karma Can Be a Misleading Conception: Are We Living in a Sufferer-Blaming World?  

People tend to perceive life troubles as God’s punishment because they have a limited knowledge about the Bible. People know nothing about “God’s discipline.” (Hebrews 12:11, Hebrews 12:5-7, Proverbs 3:11-12).[1]

 

Karma is originated from the idea of reincarnation in Buddhism.[2] People tend to believe that a good person will have a wonderful life and those who suffer are deserved to take the blame. The law of causality builds the link between suffering and punishment. The benefits of positive emotions are backed up by science. Good deeds lead to good feedback. Positive emotions guarantee positive thinking and vice versa.

 

What makes karma a problematic concept? We are not living in heaven.[3] Thus, things are much more complicated than we thought. We are living in a material world where countless people reject to practice the 7 heavenly virtues before their death. In the Bible, it says “Wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it” (Matthew 7:13–14). God makes it clear in the Bible about the tips to visit the heaven. People do not believe in God’s existence, God’s justice or God’s wrath. People are allured by material comfort or false beliefs.

 

The deep-seated belief of karma shapes the world into a global victim-blaming society that people tend to treat the sufferer with bias.[4] This belief is so universal and it rubs people’s compassion to others’ plight. That’s why many victims choose not to expose the wickedness and the wicked. Since the law of causality is a widely accepted idea, people become judgmental and indifferent to others’ predicaments consciously or not. We are not all-knowing as God. We might misjudge anyone. By misjudging people, we’re doing them injustice. That’s partly why the Bible says “Judge not” (James 1:26, (Matthew 7:1-3 KJV). [5] As we judge people, we love them less and we might be wrong. By judging people, we might develop anger or hatred against someone who deserves our love and respect.

 

People have heard the retribution theology in the Bible, such as narrative of Noah and the flood (Genesis 6:5–7). The righteous and the chosen ones will not be exempt from life troubles, but they will survive. The Sumerian Epic of Gilgamesh tells the story of a catastrophic flood. The gods bring rain down to end the “uproar” of humankind. But Enki, the god of the waters, warns the righteous man, Utnapishtim, about the impending disaster. In 2000 B.C., the Sumerian Epic of Gilgamesh mentions a catastrophic flood. Noah is a “blameless” human being. God tells him to build an ark beforehand. So, Noah survives as other people perish in a deluge. In other words, Noah experiences the traumatic event as well.

God Sees Things Differently from Human Beings

A Life Trouble≠God’s Punishment

 

What I learn from Bible, God wants to bring more people to the heaven. Thus, God tend to correct those He love with discipline so they can be qualified to visit heaven and live with him. God has to select the chosen ones carefully. Thus, God has to “test” the character of the righteous (Psalm 11:5 ESV).[1]Beyond that, people doubt God’s existence. People do not believe in God’s mighty power. People are prideful. For instance, a righteous person can be prideful. Thus, God will use His ways to show His existence and mighty power. God wants human beings to “revere” Him so as to “shun evil” (Proverbs 14:16-22).[2]

 

A blessed life is not an easy life without any life troubles and worries. According to the Bible, God grants suffering of the chosen ones, namely the righteous, for 4 justified reasons, as the following.

1) God’s discipline: To lead the righteous to the right path (Psalm 23:1-6 ESV).

It’s never easy to remain tender, humble, righteous, hopeful, compassionate and self-disciplined in the hard times. That’s why only a limited number of people are able to witness blessings and miracles from God. Those who receive God’s blessing should not be prideful for that. Pride is the capital sin in God’s eyes. God gives blessings and God will take back the blessings if we do not deserve it.

 

Again, God is not the cause of everyone’s affliction. What I learn from life, people are not mentally comfortable even during the times without any life troubles. Bible reveals common causes for mankind’s suffering: selfishness, greed, and hatred (Ecclesiastes 8:9). In a sense, we are our greatest enemy. Master your emotion and master your life. Love, forgiveness, repentance and compassion will be the antidote no matter what. The purpose of God’s discipline is to correct our unshakable unalterable weaknesses, so we can live a better life, mentally and physically[3]

 

2) To manifest God’s existence and God’s mighty power to human beings so as to shake off our little faith (John 9:2-4).[4]

People do not believe in God’s existence. People do not have the conviction of things not seen” (Hebrews 11:1 ESV). Thus, God has to show his existence and mighty power in His ways.

 

Before restoring a man’s sight, Christ explains that the blindness occurred not for the sins but for the purpose of manifestation of God’s power and God’s existence (John 9:1–3, John 111). God expects human being to revere him so as to shun evil (Proverbs 3:7-8). What Does the Bible Say About disabilities? People ask “Why was this man born blind? Was it because of his own sins or his parents’ sins?” Jesus answered, “It was not because of his sins or his parents’ sins.” This happened, so people could witness God’s power in the man. (John 9:2-4). What I learn from life, God’s arrangement is unpredictable and God’s mighty power is unfathomable.

 

That’s why the Bible says, “do not rely on our “own understanding” (Proverbs 3:5-6). It says, “Do not be wise in your own eyes” (Proverbs 3:7-8). We must trust God’s arrangement, God’s judgment and God’s justice rather than “our own judgment” (Proverbs 3:5-6).

 

3) To test the faith of the righteous (1 Peter 1:3-9 ESV)

God tests “genuineness” of our faith in the tough times (1 Peter 1:3-9 ESV). Those who remain righteous, humble, tender, self-disciplined and compassionate in the hard times will receive God’s rewards from God’s discipline (Job 5:17). The Bible says, “Blessed is the one whom God corrects” and “God promises to make something good out of the storm for the righteous (Job 5:17, Roman 8: 28).

 

We are not all-knowing as God. Judge not. Do not presume God’s intention. According to the Bible, people suffer for several reasons. Thus, we should not identity anyone’s affliction as God’s punishment. Remember, making a reckless ill-advised judgment is dangerous. There are replete with examples in the Bible which proves that a life trouble does not amount to God’s punishment.[5]

 

God’s discipline can be interpreted as God’s well-meaning intention to train those He loves into a mentally stronger person by going through life challenges. No suffering, no self-awakening, especially for those who fail to well discipline themselves, including me.[6]

 

It’s so easy to go with the flow and waste our time and life on something foolish or insignificant. It’s so hard to resist food pleasures and it’s so hard to well discipline ourselves on a daily basis. Essentially, God tends to correct character weaknesses of those He loves. Thus, people fall short of God’s love and benevolence by stigmatizing life challenges in their life. Again, anger stop us from seeing the gift, once-a-lifetime chance, and blessings behind a disaster. Negative emotions make us foolish and impair our judgments.

 

4) To defeat the adversary

The calamity that befalls upon the blameless Job is to fulfill God’s divine plan to defeat the adversary (Job 1–2). Again, that’s why the Bible warns us not to Judge anyone (Matthew 7:1-3 KJV). Again, do not presume the cause of anyone’s suffering.

 

 

At bottom, the righteous and the chosen ones will not be exempt from life troubles, but they will survive and grow dramatically from a life challenge.

[1] The Bible says, “The Lord tests the righteous” (Psalm 11:5 ESV).

[2] The Bible says, “The wise fear the LORD and shun evil, but a fool is hotheaded and yet feels secure” (Proverbs 14:16-22).

[3] For instance, the righteous and the chosen ones might commit the 7 deadly sins such as binge eating and laziness.

[4] Be aware of the danger of “little faith” (Matthew 17:20). The Bible says, “Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering” (Hebrews 10:23).

[5] The Bible says the wise revere God and “shun evil” (Proverbs 14:16-22).

[6] Without life challenges, no dramatic developmental growth.

[1] The Bible says, “You are a chosen people…Him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light” (1 Peter 2:9).

 

[2] The concept of karma is in accordance with the law of causality by believing that anything happens for a reason. Buddhism interprets every happening by the law of karma based on the past or past life. This belief somehow becomes an impetus to shape a victim-blaming society. Karma is based on a retributive conception. This belief somehow unjustly blames the victim, the abused and the weak.

 

[3] The Bible clearly mentions that “The whole world is lying in the power of the wicked one” (1 John 5:19).

 

[4] In the Bible, Jesus makes it very clear when he and his disciples saw a man who had been blind from birth. “His disciples asked: ‘Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, so that he was born blind?’ Jesus answered: ‘Neither this man sinned nor his parents, but it was so that the works of God might be made manifest in his case.’ (John 9:1-3). Ultimately, Jesus cures the man’s blindness. By so doing, Jesus overturns the false belief that suffering is absolutely the punishment from God. (John 9:6, 7)

 

[5] The Bible says, “Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you” (Ephesians 4:32). Angel Gabriel was sent from God to Nazareth and the angel came to Mary and said, “Hail, O favored one, the Lord is with you!” The angel told Mary that she will bear a son who will be great and influential to the world. Angel said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you” and “the child to be born” is “the Son of God.” Mary believe that God is “mighty” and God “has done great things” for her (Luke 1:49)

 

#WhyIDidn’tReport|“Too Many of Us Have Never Felt Safe” in a “Victim-Blaming"Culture…

According to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center, 63 percent of sexual assaults in the United States did not report to the police. More than 90 percent of sexual assault survivors on US college campuses do not report the incident.

 

The official Women’s March account tweeted: “There are too many of these stories. Too many of us have these stories. Too many of us have never felt safe to share them. And men like @realDonaldTrump are why”

“I was afraid”, “Nobody would believe me,” were among the reasons why thousands of sexual assault survivors did not go to authorities after they encountered sexual assault.

The hashtag trended on Twitter after Trump tweeted: “I have no doubt that, if the attack on Dr. Ford was as bad as she says charges would have been immediately filed with local law enforcement by either her or loving parents. Trump’’s response is what sexual assault survivors often face when they report sexual assault. Consequently, Trump’s defense of Kavanaugh triggered thousands of tweets under the #WhyIDidntReport hashtag. 

Donald Trump defended his Supreme Court nominee on Twitter and suggested that Ford was not telling the truth. In response to Ford’s allegation. Trump implies that the judge’s reputation was unfairly under attack in saying that “Judge Brett Kavanaugh is a fine man, with an impeccable reputation, who is under assault by radical left-wing politicians who don’t want to know the answers, they just want to destroy and delay,” Trump tweeted. “I have no doubt that, if the attack on Dr. Ford was as bad as she says, charges would have been immediately filed with local Law Enforcement Authorities by either her or her loving parents. I ask that she bring those filings forward so that we can learn date, time, and place!”

▲Donald Trump, current President of the United States, has been accused of sexual assault and sexual harassment by at least 19 women.

“ If my father knew what they did, he would’ve killed them [….] I didn’t say a word. Not to anyone. It didn’t seem constructive to do so. So, I went with the twisted misogynistic story that the two boys made up and spread around like wildfire […] It didn’t paint me as some poor pathetic victim and that felt better than the truth [….] acknowledged that I was sexually assaulted by my crush and his teammate, that it would make me seem weak […] I shoved the trauma down so deep[…] I’ve written about it countless times. Never publically. It wasn’t for anyone to know. It was for me to make peace with. Maybe I have. Maybe I haven’t. [….] Trump’s lack of compassion and inability to fundamentally understand human beings and humanity as a whole[….] society seems to be shining a light on the pieces of shit that have been hiding in the dark for far too long, while lighting a fire under the people who have stayed quiet for just as long.” -Brenn Colleen, Why I Didn’t Report…

“I am sick of hearing people ask “but why didn’t she report it?” There are a million reasons why someone who has been through trauma, any type of trauma, won’t want to talk about it [….] WHY they didn’t report should not be what we focus on, HOW we encourage victims to come forward is. Telling victims that we believe them is the first step to abolish the ‘victim blaming’ culture we live in and finally put the responsibility where it lies – on the attackers, and the rapists”- tovaleigh1

▲Indisputably, Exposing a huge trauma in public demands great courage and strength, cau’z it might destroy the survivor once again.  

#I blamed myself for putting myself in that situation

#I knew that I had no proof.★

#I could hear people’s judgments saying, “Well, why did you do that? It was your fault.”

#Oh, well no one is going to believe me.★

#It was my word against his.★

#Everyone was just going to go, “This girl just, you know, slept with this guy and changed her mind.

#I figured, who’s going to believe some cokehead college girl.

#I didn’t know that I was important enough to draw boundaries around what people could and couldn’t do with my body.

#Who wants to come forward with the literal most violating thing that can happen to you, relieve it, and then have people telling you that you’re making it up?

#I thought I would just be better off trying to put this behind me.★

#I couldn’t imagine pressing charges and then having to sit in a courtroom and look at his face over and over.★

#I imagine-and I think rightfully so- that it would have been more traumatizing for me in many ways had I reported it.

#It’s up to a survivor to decide what they do with their story. It’s up to them if they want to report it or not.

#I don’t want this to be a part of who I am.★

#We are trapped, we are scared.

# And I think it would be wrong to tell them that they don’t get to decide what happens next.

It’s the “victim-blaming “culture which makes the survivors silent for their pain.


▲The hashtag WhyIDidntReport on Twitter from those who chose to keep their silence:

#He told me no one would ever believe me.★

#I didn’t want to get into trouble.★

#I was terrified.★

#I didn’t want my parents to ever find out something horrible happened to me.★

#Because I didn’t want to admit what happened, even to myself.★

#I knew people would question my clothes and I couldn’t bear that.

#He said he would kill me.

#I didn’t want to ruin his live. He had kids and a wife, it wasn’t their fault.

#My dad would have killed him.

#I was told to keep my mouth shut.

#I was told I didn’t know what I was talking about.

#My friends didn’t believe me.

#He was my father’s friend. I was 9.

#I couldn’t be the cause of my family being torn apart. I was 13.

#He was a friend of my brothers.

#I didn’t want to break my father’s heart.

#I was ashamed.

#I didn’t want to lose my job.

#I thought maybe I deserved it.

#He beat me to a pulp in broad daylight. Nobody helped. I was 17.

#I thought it was my fault.

#Because I had been drinking.

#Because he was the nephew of my father’s girlfriend. I was 7.

#Because he was my boss.

#I was afraid it would ruin my professional reputation before I had even started.

#Because I agreed to have one drink with him. He was supposed to take me to my car, but instead, he raped me. I knew nobody would believe me.

#I was four, and he said he’d kill me.

#Because he was a celebrity and had money and I was a nobody.

#I did, it didn’t matter, I was dismissed, disparaged, & I still got blamed.   


Many sexual assault survivors use Twitter to express their support for those who chose not to share their traumatic stories.

Sexual assault survivors use Twitter to voice their mental support after US President Donald Trump questioned Christine Blasey Ford’s allegations against Supreme Court nominee, Kavanaugh.

▲According to Ford, Kavanaugh groped her and tried to take off her clothes at a party when they were both high school students in the 1980s. Nevertheless, Kavanaugh has repeatedly denied the allegations. Ford wrote it was “upsetting to discuss sexual assault and its repercussions,” but she “felt guilty and compelled as a citizen about the idea of not saying anything”.

 

Some claims that they feared repercussions….

Some who shared their stories online said they did report an assault. Some Twitter users said “I still get blamed. Many sexual assault survivors fail to report abuse when the criminal is the one who is their relative or family friend.

“It breaks my heart to see these #WhyIDidntReport tweets, but my pride and love for every single one of these people is endless,” tweeted Delaney Tarr. “Every story here MUST be listened to. We must listen to women. We must #BelieveWomen.

The Joyful Heart Foundation tweeted: “Reporting sexual assault – or sharing your story with anyone – is your decision and your decision alone. Every survivor, whether they speak out or not, is brave. We see you. We believe you. You matter.

Donald Trump defended his Supreme Court nominee on Twitter and suggested that Ford was not telling the truth. In response to Ford’s allegation. Trump implies that the judge’s reputation was unfairly under attack in saying that “Judge Brett Kavanaugh is a fine man, with an impeccable reputation, who is under assault by radical left-wing politicians who don’t want to know the answers, they just want to destroy and delay,” Trump tweeted. “I have no doubt that, if the attack on Dr. Ford was as bad as she says, charges would have been immediately filed with local Law Enforcement Authorities by either her or her loving parents. I ask that she bring those filings forward so that we can learn date, time, and place!”

Trump’’s response is what sexual assault survivors often face when they report sexual assault. Consequently, Trump’s defense of Kavanaugh triggered thousands of tweets under the #WhyIDidntReport hashtag.

▲Protesters gather outside the White House to protest Kavanaugh’s nomination and voice their mental suport for Dr. Ford. image source:  Brian Snyder/Reuters

Patti Davis speaking at the funeral of her mother, the former first lady Nancy Reagan, in 2016. The Washington Post published her experience of being sexually assaulted. image via Getty Images


美國總統川普日前提名卡瓦諾(Brett Kavanaugh)為最高法院大法官人選。加州巴羅艾托大學(PaloAlto University)的教授福特(Christine BlaseyFord),日前公開表示她在念中學時,曾遭卡瓦諾性侵。由於她當時並未報警,且對於具體細節無法清楚說明,遭到多方質疑。

為了聲援Christine BlaseyFord,雷根的女兒戴維斯(Patti Davis)投書華盛頓郵報(Washington Post),揭露自己約四十年前遭性侵的過往,盼外界理解受害者沒有報案或發聲的原由。性侵留下苦痛記憶,但細節早已模糊。

戴維斯在40年前和一位著名音樂人的會面。身為音樂創作者、急欲在娛樂圈發展的她並未多想。諸多年後,她完全不記得兩人對話內容,卻清楚記得窗外的景色、性侵者的臉孔、髮型與穿著,性侵過程,及事後羞愧與自責的自己。她說,多年來,她從不曾向任何友人、男朋友、心理治療師,甚至是日後的丈夫透露過這件事戴維斯說,這便是為何她能理解Christine BlaseyFord 三十多年來不曾對外透露遭遇性侵的事件。

對於外界質疑福特不能清楚指認出遭性侵的地點、時間或場合,Patti Davis以自身經歷表示:記憶會抓住的是那些永遠困擾你的片段,也抹去故事裡對你來說不重要的其他細節Patti Davis認為一個遭性侵女子需要極大的勇氣,才能面對自己不願說出的過去。

▲相關報導:性侵犯再犯率高|台灣平均每天都有三個兒童遭受性侵… …

▲相關報導:彼此對關係的認定不同,「約會強暴」比例高,熟識者性侵比率高達75.65% …


相關字:性侵。福特。大法官。ME TOO 。

#METOO Vol. 1 | Stories of sexual harassment & abuse

 

tag: trump’s tweet/sexually assaulting/Sexual assault survivors/why I didn’t report’/Trump’s tweets/ #WhyIDidn’tReport hashtag on Twitter/ survivors of sexual violence/Christine Blasey Ford/sex assault allegations /Brett Kavanaugh

Margaret W. Lavigne

As to God’s discipline, it’s comforting to know that “God promises to make something good out of the storm” (Roman 8: 28). Do not keep “record of wrongs” (In Hebrews 13:5; 1 Peter 4:8). God will do the justice in due course (Matthew 12:36 NIV). Negative emotions stop us from seeing God’s blessings behind a traumatic event. 看過太多經濟無憂的長者,卻很難真正快樂,我清楚明白資本主義過大放度金錢承諾人們的美好!老天爺想的和我們不同,所以別用這個世界或資本主義的思維去解讀老天爺的想法或做法。禍福相依,禮物或災難很多時候一時看不透,旁人也看不準。創傷之所以存在,往往不是事件本身,而是人們的負面解讀和負面標籤!掉牙與產子都是巨痛,但創傷比例偏低,是因為人們給予了事件正面的存在意義,並且相信所有人都能熬過去的意志!聖經有所謂的7 deadly sins,而傲慢是seven deadly sins 之首,因為傲慢帶來偏見,偏見引發暴力、歧視、霸凌與迫害,如種族主義等等。inner peace是老天爺(上帝)給人們的禮物。老天爺(上帝)時刻關注記錄我們的言行,聖經強調柔軟、正直、自律、謙卑、憐憫與耐心,同時聖經點出了怠惰、憤怒與追逐私利(self-seeking)之過錯。聖經提醒人們勿低估言語之惡,因為言語也能左右生死。不記他人之惡,因為老天爺(上帝)都記在本子裡了!理財時代,從照顧好自己的健康開始!做該做的事,而不是想做的事。想著別人的壞,為難了自己,想著別人的好,溫暖了自己!別執著或強求,不屬於你的,只會逗留不會久留。中醫主張悲觀是疾病之根源,而西醫證實正面情緒可降低身體發炎指數和血糖指數。不安、焦慮說的都是恐懼。勿低估甜食之惡,國外研究證實阿茲海默症患者禁糖可逆轉病情。學問、宗教和人際關係,最怕道聽塗說和一知半解。道理太多,柔軟與耐心就足夠!太多人大概都想不到,不自律就不太可能快樂....因為不自律,我們就很難肯定自己

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