Is Karmic Retribution True?


Many people believe that troubles in life are a result of Karmic retribution. Well, it is quite understandable that past Karma could be a cause for not only the bad times that one experiences in life but also for the good ones, but calling it ‘retribution’, goes against the very principle of ‘Cause and Effect’. The term ‘retribution’ is defined as “a punishment for a crime, especially punishment which is carried out by someone other than the official authorities.” It means that retribution is a punitive action carried out by a ‘doer’, or by someone or some entity. A lot of people usually believe the ringed planet Saturn to be the one that causes troubles in their lives. The planet is blamed when jobs are lost, businesses crash, when accidents happen or even when a spouse or loved one decides to leave. Until people continue to be convinced that there is an external force causing challenging situations in life, neither can they achieve peace of mind nor can they plot a clear path towards a higher state of spiritual and Karmic evolution.

Can you imagine singling out one single-celled bacteria in a remote corner of your stomach, knowing it by its first name, and causing it to suffer or die by sending a dose of an anti-bacterial drug specifically aimed at it only because you want to punish it for being a part of a ‘team’ that had caused you a stomach ache some time ago? That is how far-fetched imagining that planet Saturn is out to destroy your career or family is! THERE IS NOTHING CALLED KARMIC RETRIBUTION. Such absurd ideas are similar to the concept of a personal God residing in heaven, of Satan, of sin, hell, eternal damnation or purgatory, propounded by certain organised religions. They stem from the lack of rational thinking and of ignorance of the timeless Advaita Vedanta and the priceless teachings of Dharmic scriptures, particularly, of the Srimad Bhagavad Gita.  The Dharmic philosophy is absolutely scientific, rational and logical.

Karma is not recorded in some ‘Divine or heavenly server’ with the planet Saturn managing the system. How ridiculous can it be to think of something like that! A person’s Karma is recorded in his or her own mind in the form of general nature, character and attitude, which are called Gunas. The mind, which does not have a physical form but is a particular pattern of the flow of one’s thoughts based on one’s nature, is carried by the Atman or the life force when it leaves one body at the end of a Janma and enters into a new one (SBG 15:08) It is the Gunas that cause action which either balances previous Karma or add more to it. Based on the ‘Cause and Effect’ principle, all of us attract both ‘good’ as well as ‘bad’ into our lives. We might not do it consciously, but deep within our minds, the processes of attracting and repelling are constantly taking place. The ancient system of Vedic Astrology reveals the patterns that take place in people’s lives. A person’s mind which has been conditioned to attract or repel certain aspects of their life continues to do so over large periods of time through multiple Janmas until he or she is ‘woken up’ by the mounting effects of doing so. That is when self-realisation happens. The Sadé Sati is one such period. This pattern is indicated by the seven and a half year course that Saturn takes to transit through the 12th, 1st and the 2nd houses from the natal moon of one’s chart.

Digging into one’s natal chart, waiting for the Sadé Sati period to end without working on oneself, logically speaking, can get no positive results. Remember, “If I continue to be what I have always been, I will continue to get what I have always got.” An idle mind can only add more negative energy to a person’s life. It is lamentable to see educated people actually cursing planet Saturn, believing that it is the planet that is causing them troubles in life, not getting them a good job or not helping them find a good life partner! Entertaining such vacuous ideas in the mind can surely have one effect, and that is of DELAYING the beginning of a (positive) change in your life.

The first few steps that I would suggest to people who feel they have been affected by Sadé Sati or by any other ‘unfavourable’ planetary period would be to put everything aside, to go to the ‘Bhaja Govindam‘ page, read and understand the philosophy of life explained in it in such a crisp and direct manner; and then read the Srimad Bhagavad Gita (only the translation with no detailed and also boring explanations and interpretations!) followed by three of my posts given below:

It would be of great importance to completely remove the thought of being a victim of some ‘planet’s cruelty’, of Karmic retribution, of someone’s curse or of some witchcraft performed against you by one of your adversaries or enemies. Such a thought of victimhood promotes the swelling of ego through the feeling of entitlement, and it increases self-pity to dangerous levels.

The cause for both good as well as bad events in your life is within you. It normally takes some time to understand this and to actually carry out a major corrective procedure in one’s personality. If changes have still not happened in your life, it could only mean that your Gunas have not fully changed yet and not that planet Saturn, Rahu or Ketu have not ended their project to destroy you! In astrological parlance, Saturn is called a ‘tough taskmaster’ which is, in fact, a metaphor that helps people develop a no-compromise, no excuses or no-nonsense attitude when it comes to self-improvement.

I know a lot of people who have been through extremely gruelling situations in the last few years of their Sadé Sati but are in fact immensely thankful for all that happened. They have offered complete Sharanaagati to the Supreme Omnipresent Brahman or Krishna, and have succeeded in ‘resetting’ their Karmic course. Take a look at the Shloka 18:66 of the Srimad Bhagavad Gita: “Giving up all your ideas of righteousness or religion, take complete refuge in Me. I will liberate you from all sinful reactions. Do not fear.” This Shloka means that when a person clears his or her mind of fallacious ideas of life, happiness, wealth and success; and learns Karmayoga, as well as the non-dualistic philosophy, taught by Krishna, all their past negative Karma will be erased. It only shows that it is never too late and that there is always a possibility to set things right.

The gratitude of the people that I talked of above, for the trying period they have been going through which included, shocking downfalls, insults, loss of position and wealth, being let down or being abandoned by those whom they trusted with their life, and other arduous events; is mainly because they have now found their true Self which is nothing but sheer Divinity or Krishna residing within them, and this knowledge is powerful enough to help them comfortably steer their way in their journey of destiny. One of those lucky people happens to be me.

Jai Shri Krishna


Life is a gift - Let's live it!

6 thoughts on “Is Karmic Retribution True?

  1. Hello Jana,

    Praying and meditating are two of the most powerful mental tools that a human being can ever possess..

    You have motivated me to write a new post on this topic. Please remind me to do it asap!

    Stay blessed.

    Jai Shri Krishna


    1. Dear Sir,

      You know everything about me sir how I can remind you!

      Thanks and pranam,
      Jai shri Krishna



        1. Sorry Sir! I meant you know about my poor memory but I will definitely remind you again in a few days. I would like to let you know that I am regularly practicing the brain jogging exercises given by you.

          Pranam sir.

          Jai Shri Krishna



  2. Dear Sir,

    Always when I read new articles from you I get a lighter feeling in my heart. I am able to understand about karma but sir why are we taught since childhood that god will reward us for our good deeds and punish us for our sins? IMO that is why we start to believe that there is somebody behind our problems. Please explain again whenever you have time what you told me about the effects of praying.You told me about the different aspects of god when wepray.

    I wish all sadesathi and nonsadesathi good confidence and happiness.

    Thanks and pranam,
    Jai shri Krishna



  3. Krishna what I like the most in you is the honesty in what you write. It is full of experience. After being influenced by you, I have stopped trying to find reasons for the struggles faced. What we learn during difficult times can never be done during good times.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.