noun \ˈkär-mə also ˈkər-\

: the force created by a person's actions that is believed in Hinduism and Buddhism to determine what that person's next life will be like

: the force created by a person's actions that some people believe causes good or bad things to happen to that person

Full Definition of KARMA

often capitalized :  the force generated by a person's actions held in Hinduism and Buddhism to perpetuate transmigration and in its ethical consequences to determine the nature of the person's next existence
:  vibration 4
kar·mic \-mik\ adjective

Examples of KARMA

  1. She believes that helping people produces good karma.
  2. <as the site of a string of failed businesses, the building definitely had bad karma>

Origin of KARMA

Sanskrit karma fate, work
First Known Use: 1827

Other Religion (Eastern and Other) Terms

Zen, antinomian, avatar, gnosticism, illuminati, ineffable, koan, mantra

Rhymes with KARMA


noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

In Indian philosophy, the influence of an individual's past actions on his future lives or reincarnations. It is based on the conviction that the present life is only one in a chain of lives (see samsara). The accumulated moral energy of a person's life determines his or her character, class status, and disposition in the next life. The process is automatic, and no interference by the gods is possible. In the course of a chain of lives, people can perfect themselves and reach the level of Brahma, or they can degrade themselves to the extent that they return to life as animals. The concept of karma, basic to Hinduism, was also incorporated into Buddhism and Jainism.


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