The Stanly News and Press (Albemarle, NC)

Opinion & Letters to the Editor

January 4, 2013

Feng shui, karma and sin

Friday, January 3, 2013 — The group Gnarls Barkley, on the album “St. Else-where,” has a song called “Feng Shui.”

Feng shui, in a nut shell, is the Chinese belief in spatial orientation, often associated with Daosim and other Chinese religions. With the proper feng shui, arrangemnet of furniture or east/west spatial orientation for the home, you gain a sort of proper spiritual alignment.

For the most part, Iā€ˆbelieve Americans understand this concept and find some amount of comfort from having their homes properly ordered, whether it follows traditional feng shui or not isn’t important as long as the person engaged in it feels comforted (that is feng shui, by the way).

However, another foreign religious concept used in modern America that I don’t think most of us have a good grasp on is the Indian idea of “karma.”

As it was explained to me, karma is the belief in the accrued merits and demerits that one has in a given lifetime. Depending on how it balances out depends on your particular station in the afterlife.

Most of us will remember a TV show that was quite popular a while back featuring the theme of karma, “My Name is Earl.”

Earl believed he had so much bad karma that it caused him to get hit by a car right after he’d won the lottery. And though the idea did get the character to shape up, I’m not quite sure karma works like that.

Aside from Earl, I’ve heard similar ideas expressed by those around me.

“Why did that happen to me? Must be bad karma.”

If anything, I think the expression Earl and others are trying to go for is “I’m not doing my dharma.”

Dharma is the Indian religious belief of what one is supposed to do in a given lifetime, a destiny or path, if you will.

If one were not following their dharma, then I would expect some “bad things” to occur.

It’s like taking the wrong road home; sometimes unforseen complications arise.

In any case, dharma aside, karma isn’t something to affect you while you’re alive. While still living, you have the chance to gain good karma to balance out the bad. It’s only tallied once you’re dead.

To me, this speaks of an inherant idea of forgiveness. When I think of forgiveness and religion the first person I think of is Jesus of Nazareth.

Within Christianity there is always the chance of forgiveness, no matter the sin. That was the purpose of Jesus’ sacrifice.

That’s why I don’t think of sin as being able to dominate us while we’re alive: there is always the chance for it to be washed away. That’s the beautiful part of Christianity.

Don’t get me wrong, perceived sins and immoralities have a way of weighing on the soul, but I don’t think it’s impossible to bounce back.

One of my friends said it quite eloquently: “There is no deadline for redemption.”

Sin and karma are similar in this regard; there is always the chance to improve.

Though, perhaps, if you achieve the proper feng shui, it will help you avoid any of the nastier aspects of either sin or “bad” karma.

At the least, a clean house won’t hurt anything.


Text Only
Opinion & Letters to the Editor
  • Do White Castle prices tell us anything about the minimum wage?

    NEW YORK - Economists love hamburgers. Specifically fast-food burgers. This is partly because all right-thinking human beings love ground meat on a bun, but it's also because the sandwich makes a handy yardstick for international financial comparisons. The ingredients and labor involved in preparing a Big Mac are pretty much the same no matter where you are in the world, so by looking at how many hours of toiling it takes a worker to earn enough to purchase one, you can get a sense of how wages really stack up across countries. The Economist famously created the Big Mac index in 1986 to see which currencies were overvalued. It started as a joke. Now, as the magazine proudly notes, it's a subject of academic study.

    April 22, 2014

  • Can Hillary Clinton rock the cradle and the world?

    WASHINGTON - What's most interesting to contemplate is the effect becoming a grandmother will have on Hillary's ambition. It's one of life's unfairnesses that a woman's peak career years often coincide with her peak childbearing years.

    April 22, 2014

  • Doug Creamer All in the Family

    We had a family get-together at my brother’s house on Easter Sunday. It’s hard to get our family together because we are spread out, especially when you consider nieces and nephews. My parents and siblings all made the gathering this year. Some of my nieces and nephews are far away, but they all remember gathering at my brother’s house for the holidays. Easter is known for the Jell-O eggs and the famous Easter egg hunt.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Victimized by the 'marriage penalty'

    In a few short months, I'll pass the milestone that every little girl dreams of: the day she swears - before family and God, in sickness and in health, all in the name of love - that she's willing to pay a much higher tax rate.

    April 19, 2014

  • The case for separate beds

    WASHINGTON - The other night I slept on a twin bed in the guest room of the house I share with my husband and our two kids.
    It was the best night's sleep I've had in years.

    April 19, 2014

  • taylor.armerding.jpg Obama's equal pay exaggeration leads us all into danger

    The president's claims of national shame over gender-based pay inequity spring from distorted calculations, as well as some convenient political math.

    April 12, 2014 1 Photo

  • Teens trading naked selfies for mugshots

    Will teenagers ever learn? You think yours will. Maybe so. But it's likely that was also the hope of the parents of children who were so shamed by nude photos of themselves that went south - how else can they go - that they killed themselves.

    April 12, 2014

  • Brent Laurenz If you want to vote in primary, you need to register to vote now

    RALEIGH – North Carolina voters will head to the polls on May 6 this year to cast ballots in important primary elections across the state.

    April 11, 2014 1 Photo

  • Scott Mooneyham Heeding the voter fraud call in N.C.

    RALEIGH – Legislators found the findings outrageous.

    April 11, 2014 1 Photo

  • Doug Creamer Roots

    I took a few minutes over the weekend to enjoy our yard and the arrival of spring. There seems to be so much work that needs to be done, it is hard to decide what to do first. I am excited that I got to run my tiller through the garden. I didn’t go very deep, but I did at least break up the soil. I have a couple of raised beds and the soil in them was in very good shape. I didn’t plant my peas and now after the big rain we got on Monday I realize that I missed a window of opportunity.

    April 11, 2014 1 Photo

House Ads
Seasonal Content