Karma Misconception: “Karma Is A Bitch”

Yes, I know I’m not supposed to get riled up about the small things but when I hear people say “Karma Is A Bitch” for some reason it gets under my skin. Not everyone understands karma, I understand this and identify with the ignorance, but why say something so silly?

About.com says this about karma:

Karma means “intentional action” and refers to the universal law of cause and effect. Karma is created not only by physical action but also by thoughts and words.

Just as action causes reaction, karma causes effects that come back to the original actor. Karma also tends to generate more karma that reaches out in all directions. We bear the consequences of the karma we create, but everyone around us is affected by our intentional acts as well, just as we are affected by theirs.

Buddhists do not think of karma as “destiny” or as some kind of cosmic retribution system. Although the fruits of “good” karma might be pleasant and beneficial, all karma keeps one entangled in the cycle of death and rebirth.

Actions free from desire, hate and delusion do not create karma. The enlightened being ceases to create karma and thus is liberated from rebirth.

The last thing I want to do is come off as a smart ass but I feel like going into a tirade with the people saying “Karma Is A Bitch”. It seems like I hear it everyday, if not twice or even thrice! I’ll work on the irritation it causes my mind but what can we do about people’s assumptions on what karma is?


  1. hey i cant understand how karma can be a bitch…i mean whatever it is,though,its a phenomenon. how can a phenomenon be a bitch?

  2. If phrases like, “karma is a bitch” get under your skin, then you my friend have to work on your spiruality. Obviously it’s something that makes you toss and turn at night, since you took the time to post about it. Here’s an idea, let people have their own beliefs. If they want to believe Karma is a form of Action/Reaction then they are free to do so. Once you follow things by the book, then you fall into a form of organized religion unless that is what you are aiming for.

  3. Your condescending nature weighs heavy in your comment, “my friend”.

    You seem to forget, people come here to read my opinions, I am not forcing them to believe anything. This blog is a commentary on how I see things, and again, my opinions of them.

    I’m still looking for this book you were talking about…

  4. don’t be an idiot, when people say: ” karma is a bitch”, they mean it like an example, if your girlfriend cheats on you, she will be in some sort, punished by karma, in that case you say: “karma is a bitch, ain’t it?”. the end .l.

  5. Dude I am hindu by birth (though I am nothing now ) ..and Karma is a concept of Hinduism.And I agree with you but still I enjoy the line that” karma is a bitch”

  6. I was just discussing this with someone last night! I have similar feelings about this cliche saying.
    I like how you mention that karma is not a type of retribution-that is one of the points I made. Elaborating on that though, I argued that this phrase reflects a Christian model of karma; if someone does something “bad” they will be “punished” and that is exactly the context in which many people use this phrase.

  7. where do guys get this stuff about rebirth reincarnation, karma, whatever goes always comes round bullshit. I think its just a religious gimmick for the mundane masses to feel like there is natural justice.
    But guess what life is unfair sometimes Goliath beats the hell out David

  8. I totally agree with Joan. Karma is a bitch when people are ignorant en not aware of their own actions. When they think they can get away with everything en karma strikes back, then Karma is a bitch. In a kind of way it’s the same as what goes around comes around!
    x From the Netherlands

  9. actually i think “karma is a bitch” but at certain point… which is when it is used when talking about someone who hurt the narrator when the narrator can’t get back at them…
    thats the only context where it makes sens… when a bad person thinks they got away with their bad actions, karma will be waiting for them..
    i dont find the expression wrong as long as its used in the right place instead of being said whenever..
    but being used twice a day is too much… as much as u showed that karma is misunderstood and underestimated..

  10. […] “Karma is a b!tch” is a phrase often used by people that seem to misunderstand the whole concept, it always makes me chuckle a little inside. I don’t think that many in the western world understand the concept enough to really use a motivator. The golden rule concept has the same flavor and its more in line with our society, but not many people truly live it. I will always be impressed by Christians that really “walk the walk” and love everyone, not just who their congregation sees as righteous people of God. […]

  11. Actually you completely missed the point of calling Karma a bitch.And contrary to your conclusion,your explanation of Karma is exactly what a retribution phenomenon is all about.

  12. To some people you will always be condescending. A fundie asks “Do you believe in god?” You answer “No” and suddenly you are condescending christian hater. Accept that and you’ll be happier.

    Try this idea sometime:
    The next time somebody says “Karma is a bitch.” Reply with “I’ve always thought it was more than that.” Just that one sentence and nothing else. By doing that you have planted the seed of a deeper converstaion. If the person wants to know more they let you know. If they don’t want to know more the conversation is over and you can move on to other things.

  13. Why not use it as an opening to eductae?

    “Did you see what happened to so&so on the news last night?”
    “Yeah. Karma is a bitch.”
    “Actually, Karma is spiritual concept a little deeper than retribution. Think of it as a moral compass.”

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