Why do we suffer? There must be some reason for it. In the Hindu Philosophy, it is explained by the theory of Karma. Even in the Bible, , it is said that we reap as we sow. But we are always in doubt. If the Karma theory was true, why are those people who are doing good have to suffer? All this remains a mtstery. Perhaps the reason for this is because no one has a complete history of oneīs past actions. Our sufferings may be due to our actions done in the past which we have forgotten. The good we are doing now, we will reap itīs effect later. The canvas of our actions is so vast, while our vision is limited and we are not able to connect our present experiences to our past actions. One would question why the system of justice in Godīs realm is not instant? But if that was so would there be any excitement in living? Then every thing would be so exact that there would be no mystery, no suspense, no anticipations. Any one could forecast what would happen next in our lives. But in actual life, it is not that simple. One has to decide his future course of action , without knowing, what his future is going to be. The future is all along shrouded in mystery. As far as suffering on account of oneīs own actions is concernrd, I know about two instances, that happened to people personally known to me and who could be relied upon. They themselves narrated them to me and so they are worth being put on record.
Time however passed. Ganguly was married and had two sons. In January 1934, a few years after the children were born, he was working as an Assistant Engineer on the East Indian Railway, stationed at Jamalpur. There was a severe earthquake, resulting in a huge loss of life and property. The bungalow in which Ganguly was living was razed to the ground. Mrs. Ganguly was burried under the debries and lost her life. The two sons were saved. It was a great shock to Ganguly, and he felt that he met his fate as a retribution for having killed the pregnant doe. In fact later, Ganguly was looking after his two sons and brought them up, but he lost both of them also in his life time.
The second incident was narrated by a friend of mine. He went on a picnic with some friends. While returning from there by bus, he bought some oranges. A female monkey rushed and picked one orange from his hand. My friend got so angry that he ran after her and kicked her hard. While doing so, his leg hit her stomach. The monkey dropped the orange and fainted. My friend was shocked and felt verry sorry in having acted so rashly but could do nothing except to leave the orange near her and pour some water in her mouth. As the bus was about to leave, he left the monkey there and did not know what happened thereafter.
Sometime later, his younger son became very seriously ill. , having his lever damaged. The best doctors in town were consulted, but all of them felt that the condition was really bad and it was a lost case. My friend was convinced that he was being punished for having hurt the female monkey and her unborn child. He was very repentent and prayed to God for days to forgive him as he had hit her in ignorance. Whether it was as a result of his prayers or for his having done the good turn in having attended the injured monkey, but a miracle did take place. His son started recovering and regained his normal health.
The two incidents are so dramatic that they leave very little doubt in the mind about the Karma theory and that one reaps, sooner or later, what one sows. It also leads us to believe that one could be spared lightly, if one was truely repentent and atoned for it. People continue to suffer as they are not able to inter-relate such incidents and consider them as mere chances, They would only learn their lesson if they were punished directly after their misdeed. But where would then be the mystery in living? Where would be the excitement? Wouldnīt life be boring? After all the excitement in a drama is in itīs suspense. One keeps watching in wonder of the next one, as the scenes unfold themselves, one by one.
One of the saints of India, Sant Kabir, said, "Donīt trouble the weak, whose sigh is so powerful, as one sees that even with the sigh of a dead skin iron could be melted." Here the poet saint has referred the dead skin of the bellows of a blacksmith and hints that if that has so much power, living entities would certainly be much more powerful. How much Philosophy has gome into this couplet of sant Kabir?