Why do bad things happen to good people?

bad-things-good-people_origThis is a long standing question. During conversations, when this question comes up, I usually do not give my input. My religion (Hinduism)  has answered this question for me many times but I feel as though persons may be offended by what I would have to say.

I was recently watching a documentary on Amazon about an athlete (Stephen Gleason) who was diagnosed, at the age of 34, with ALS. This is a disease where, progressively, your body can no longer function physically. All your motor functions are lost. You can feel everything but you can no longer move, speak & eventually even breathe on your own. Its a complete shutdown of all your neurological and in turn physical systems. For this person who was an athlete, this was a huge contrast to how he lived his life. He tried to take it in stride along with his pregnant wife & he created a video log from the time he was diagnosed til he could no longer speak (He is still very much alive). He asked one day, “Why us? We are good people. We don’t hurt anyone. Why is this happening to us?” It’s such a sad situation to be in. He knew what was coming.

So this leads me to his question. Why me? Why us? Well in my religion, we are taught about Karma. It is one of our greatest laws & it depicts what we do in our everyday lives. Many people in the western world are now familiar with the law of karma. What you sow, you reap. Actions have consequences. What you put out, you get back. The list goes on. So if you are doing good in this lifetime, why are you still suffering or going through bad times or trying situations. In my religion we believe in reincarnation of the body & of the soul & we believe that karma transcends. This means that a previous birth’s karma can transcend into another birth. Why you are suffering, despite being a good person, can lie in the chance that you are reaping what you sowed from a past birth. There is debate on whether karma is scientific, however, numerous cases have been recorded whereby persons can remember their past births & what they did or what happened to them.

What can you do to end your suffering? How do you know if you’re suffering consequences from past actions? It’s a sensitive topic. People who don’t believe in reincarnation, usually don’t want to accept this. People often get angry at the idea especially if you belong to another religion that disregards reincarnation or are very orthodox. In Hinduism, the way to stop suffering is to be good & do good things. We still have to suffer the consequences of our actions, but we are taught that with continued kindness & prayer, the severity of our suffering can be lessened. It’s very difficult to be in a situation where  you are suffering & still have to be good & kind. It seems unfair. Based on our law of karma though, you can break the cycle of suffering by recognizing that you are suffering consequences & to not make things worse for yourself when you enter another birth after this one.

Reincarnation in itself is a very complex subject. One that I continue to learn about everyday. It wasn’t always clearly explained to me & I didn’t always understand it, but with experience & continued research I try to embrace it as I go along. This was just the tip of the iceberg in terms of why good people suffer. If you have any other theories please feel free to share. Thanks for reading.

Love & Light xobad-things-good-people_orig


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