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Q & A: Contradiction: How can God help if he cannot change Karma?
How do you explain the following contradiction in Law of Karma?

Swami Samarth's miracle cure page explains a detailed Upasana (efforts to please God) to be done to resolves problems in life. Generally a person would seek this (cure) for some worldly problem e.g. disease, financial crisis, psychological problem. But these are on account of past karma & God does not interfere with the law of the karma (that is what is mentioned on your site at several places). Then how can there be any cure?

Moreover since the law of karma is absolute, even an atheist can achieve positive karma in his life if he does good deeds. On the other hand daily Pooja (worship), religious rituals are of no use if you have bad past karma. Please clarify.

I am a normal householder who does daily prayers, occasional Pooja (Kuladevata, Satyanaranyan) & do not have a Guru. Of late, I have learnt about Swami Samarth as there is a Swami math close to our house.

Pranesh (Name changed), India

Good questions.

You asked: “Disease, financial crisis, psychological problems are on account of past karma & God does not interfere with the law of the karma. Then how can there be any cure?”

God does not change Karma under “normal circumstances”

Your questions are absolutely logical. It is true that under all “normal circumstances” God does not and will not interfere with the law of Karma. God is the creator of the law-of-Karma why should he break it? The same goes with Gurus and various Avatars. There is an extreme reluctance on their part to interfere in human worldly life to change the Karma-Phala - fruits of past Karmas (to resolve problems).

There is another aspect to this. When there is Karma there is bound to be Karma-Phala. What it means is - if one has done Karma there “WILL” be consequences of that Karma (called Karma-Phala). If that is so, how can a consequence (Phala) be destroyed? If God or Guru can destroy Karma-Phala then that contradicts with Law of Karma itself. It would mean that they break their own law and also change the fundamental rules of the law which is supposed to apply to all equally. This cannot be possible.

Both the things above, if applied together, leave all efforts to change past Karma useless. This closes all doors of improvement for every individual. If the law is eternal then there is no use of doing any Upasana (spiritual efforts), Prarthana (prayers) and Seva (divine service) to please the God so that he resolves issues in our life (because they are Karma-Phala which cannot be changed.)

Fortunately for us, God is biased

Fortunately, the God is biased for those who believe in him and do sincere spiritual efforts by preying and worshiping him. God is rightly said to be very kind even though he is stern in punishing the wrong-doers and sinful persons with merciful intention to improve them. The fact is: God is absolutely keen to help you in facing your Prarabdha provided you turn your mind away from gross desires, Vasanas (subtle desires) and Shadripus * (six passions) of the material life and confess your sins committed up-till now open-heartedly with tearful eyes and start behaving properly hereafter in right earnest in obedience to his orders keeping your face towards him only.

God is considered omnipotent, omnipresent and omniscient who always protects his Bhaktas (devotees.) If this is true, how can he protect the Bhaktas if he does not interfere and change the events when necessary? He must interfere in response to Bhakta’s prayers, otherwise why should we even believe in a God who is helpless?

Consider God as a mother in a smaller comparison. Mother is always stern to her child even though she is merciful and some times she is biased and changes the rules because of her love towards the child. At the same time a good mother will not want to break the rules every day, she will do so very rarely. A good mother would want her child to grow as abider (follower) of law, not the one who breaks the law.

In the same way, God will certainly help those who do their actions with Vichara (Self-enquiry, sustained thinking) and Viveka (discrimination). The percentage of that help is determined by the intensity of their prayers against the thickness of their Karma-Phala. Thicker and stronger the Karma higher the intensity (of prayers) required to move the God in order to change events in our life.

Let us use some analogy: The sun is keen to give you full light provided you go out and face towards the sun in open space. Instead if you stay inside your home and close your doors and windows and do not allow rays of the sun to enter your home, you and you alone are responsible for keeping yourself in darkness for which you should NOT blame the sun who is helpless in your case. The sun never wishes you to remain in darkness in his presence. It is you who chose to remain in the darkness. The same is true about the God, he is always merciful towards us and wants you to receive his grace, but it is up to you how to receive it.

God WILL be biased and WILL interfere in our life if the intensity of our call (prayers) can be strong enough to move God (or Guru or Avatar) from their place. God WILL respond to our prayers and WILL interfere in case our faith and feelings and extremely intense…Believe me, there is no cheating at the feet of the God. One must go before the God with extremely honest mind and desire to change our ways.

Where does God interfere?

There are two cases where God literally interferes in the life events of a Bhakta (devotee).

1) Those who are seeking God with an objective of leaving the Desires and Shadripus* behind. God will bring event changes in the life of the devotee in order for him (Bhakta) to be able to reach his goal (the Divine.) Such people are extremely rare. Only one in thousands is capable of doing spirituality without material expectation. God will certainly remove obstacles in his path many times.

2) The other type of people are commoners (ordinary individual who is seeking God’s grace for material purpose) that are seeking God’s help to solve one problem or other in their life (like - disease, financial crisis, psychological problems etc.) Such people generally have a strange combination of weak Sattva (spiritual powers), bad Karma (at that point of time) and relatively strong faith.

When this individual does strong spiritual efforts (Naam, Seva and Meditation) to resolve issues in their life, the God is bound to help them. Again that help purely depends on the intensity of the call or prayers.

How does God interfere?

It is important to understand that when the God (or Guru) interferes in life of Bhakta, he does not break the law of Karma but just bends it conveniently to defuse the problem for now. One thing is ALWAYS true: God or Guru will never destroy the Karma-phala. They will just rearrange the events so that the issue appears to be resolved. Eventually someone has to face the Karma-phala at some time or other. Generally the Bhakta faces it in the future life. Or there are instances where the Guru has taken the Karma-phala from the disciple (such events are very rare).

I have seen many examples of events where God (mainly Guru) did interfere decisively. One of them being – a friend of mine (in India in 1980s) did not have child till his age of 45. The doctors had given up and told them they cannot have a baby. At the age of 45 he started Shri Swami Samarth Upasana and Seva (divine service) at Samarth math. He did Naam Japa (repetition of God's name) and Seva for 2-3 years, every day without giving up. Finally at the age of 47 his wishes were fulfilled and the family was graced with a baby boy. This is just one example of the power of prayers and God’s grace in human life.

Does God or Guru make the Karma-Phala to disappear?

God or Guru cannot make the Karma-phala disappear. Once Karma is performed the Karma-phala must be consumed. There is no other option. The only possibility is to change the order and timing of events (through prayers). In fact it is good not to try to escape from the Karma-Phala, it is bound to catch with you one day or other (when it finds right environment to fructify.) It is always better to consume the Karma-phala than postponing or rearranging it.


You asked: “Moreover since the law of karma is absolute, even an atheist can achieve positive karma in his life if he does good deeds. On the other hand daily Pooja, religious rituals are of no use if you have bad past karma. Please clarify”

Law of Karma demands faith in Karma, it does not require faith in God

First part of your statement is absolutely true – “even an atheist can achieve positive karma in his life if he does good deeds” – Yes he will.

Law of Karma is very simple – it just asks good deeds and not hurting others. As long as person follows it, the consequences (Karma-Phala) will always be good. Law of Karma does not demand faith in God. It demands faith in pure Karma. If one understands and follows Law of Karma sincerely, he will reach much closer to God than the one who does all the Poojas, worships and rituals but does not follow low of Karma.

God has given us Freedom to perform Karma

Part two of your statement is not right though – “On the other hand daily Pooja, religious rituals are of no use if you have bad past karma” – this is not correct.

Bad Karma of past will not get cleaned because of Pooja and religious rituals, but they will change his Trigunas (give him more Sattva Gun – Purity or divinity and reduce his Raja - Passion and Tama - Ignorance and Inertia) which will eventually change his Karma in the future. It is extremely important to do Pooja, rituals, Naam, Jaapa, Seva and meditation. These are the only things that change human life and take it to higher plane. All other things (desires, enjoyment and greed) take human life to lower level or away from the God (all the times.)

In short, God has given freedom of action to every individual. Human being has complete freedom of choosing the right and wrong actions (speech and thoughts) in our life. Karma freedom applies to all the future actions and thoughts starting from this moment. At the same time Karmic freedom does not apply to the karma that is already performed (in the current and past lives). We all carry Sanchita Karma (Sum Total of Karma or "Accumulated actions" performed in the past) and Prarabdha karma (the fruits that will be delivered in this life) with us in the form of karmic seeds that eventually must fructify (Karma-Phala).

Spiritual efforts (Naam, Seva, spiritual readings) in combination with understanding of law of Karma are absolutely necessary tools to improve one’s life that eventually is lifted towards the God where one can attain eternal Bliss (Self-Realization) after being liberated from miserable cycle of birth and death.
Please continue to raise your faith in Shri Swami Samarth. I can assure you, your efforts done at the feet of Swami will NEVER go waste. Road starting at the feet of Saints and Gurus is the closest and simplest road to the God. It is too long and very difficult in absence of the Saints and a Guru. Eventually you will get answers to all your questions and doubts Why should we believe in God if he cannot clear our doubts?

Hope I answered you questions.

* Shadripus – are six enemies or passions of mind: Kama (Lust), Krodh (anger), Lobh (Greed), Moh (attachment), Ahankar (Ego) and Matsarya (envy).

Thank you.
Mahendra Joshi

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Q & A: Contradiction: How can God help if he cannot change Karma? Topics: Karma and Healing, Cure

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