Leaving Treadmarkz Across the Universe

Karma and Disabilities

with 7 comments

Karma and Disabilities

by Treadmarkz,

In this link is a story about a British soccer coach who was fired for making the comment that disabilities were the result of those people’s actions in past incarnations. His remarks were said to be insensitive.

I disagree.

I don’t intend to start an ideological/theological debate by posting this link (though you are always free to use this forum to vent your thoughts on the issue). From the third paragraph on, the story in the link is bulletproof. Whether you take Karma and reincarnation to be truth or not is irrelevant because your opinion cannot be proven by mundane evidence. Taken for what it is, based on the experience we have however, the argument becomes perfectly logical and practical.

Worldviews like those of this British soccer coach are said to be an excuse for mistreatment of, and the looking down upon the disabled. I am disabled and I don’t see it as such. I see my current physical life to be part of a process beyond what I can now perceive. Therefore it is not “unfair” for me to work through karma for something “I” did not do. But it also gives me the knowledge of the divine source of all, regardless of their current, temporary situation.

7 Responses

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  1. Nice to see you’ve returned; it had been prophesied. Great piece. Let’s not forget the possibility that someone might incarnate as a handicappable person not because of past karma, but just out of the desire to experience what it’s like.


    February 1, 2012 at 5:00 PM

  2. Thanks Thomas. And thanks for holding your breath until I returned.:) And you make a valid point, and I am grateful to have it added to the discussion.


    February 1, 2012 at 5:07 PM

  3. Namashkar,
    I remember at the time of Glenn Hoddle’s sacking thinking that it was not only unjustified, but set a dangerous precedent. When you read what he actually said, he made no link between disability and wrongdoing, instead saying that things happen for a reason that we don’t understand. I wonder if people would have called for a Christian to be sacked if he said that disability was because one’s parents, grandparents, and or great grand parents were sinners?

    I really don’t think that we can say anything about people’s previous lives from their situation in this one. It occurs to me that if some alien who knew nothing about human growth saw an infant’s class in school, where the basics of handwriting was being patiently explained to the children, and their first efforts being praised, then moved to a senior school and saw a pupil being told off for handing in shoddy scrawled work, the alien might ,conclude that the kids in the secondary school were being punished and must have done something very bad.

    It may be that on a spiritual level, people who lead what we might see as privileged lives, not having to struggle or work for anything, filling their lives with superficial pleasures, are the ones being punished.


    February 4, 2012 at 11:12 AM

  4. […]  talks about his experiences, to help others with disability. I was particularly interested in his posting about when the British football coach Glenn Hoddel was sacked for expressing a belief in […]

  5. I also wanted to say thank you for bringing this issue up. I think a lot of people misunderstand what Hindus and others who believe in reincarnation, samsara, and karma believe about disabilities. You have done a great service by explaining that it is not a simplistic belief that disabled people have been bad in previous lives.

    Nobody can say why someone’s life is like it is, whether it is a punishment, a reward, an opportunity, or a necessary experience. I have a colleague at work who is registered disabled, he has severe Crohn’s disease which means that some times he is relatively unaffected but at other times can be bed-ridden for weeks. He once told me that though he would be really pleased if they found a cure now, he would not want to have never have suffered from it, because it made him who he is and meant that he met a wonderful girl who is now his wife at a disability support group.


    February 4, 2012 at 12:31 PM

  6. Thank you for your thoughtful responses, and Namaste Tandava, Also thank you for the posting recommending this blog. I appreciate being able to get my postings out to a diverse audience. I have actually read your blog quite a bit, but haven’t really been blogging lately.

    I am glad I was able to explain this so clearly. You know its odd but I never heard about this concept of “the sins of the father” until I had started reading Yogananda who looked at it as a parable for the karma that we are now discussing. Karma makes more sense than a totally separate soul (who just happens to be a descendent) paying for MY sins.


    February 4, 2012 at 2:11 PM

    • Also, Tandava, you reminded me in your second response, I have a friend who reminded me that we dont know if being able bodied is a reward or a punishment, as being able bodied can lead to so many trappings of Maya.


      February 4, 2012 at 2:13 PM

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