Karma & Dharma
The Law of Karma is the universal law that all embodied beings have to follow. There are many confusion about the law of Karma. People think of it as a system of rewards and punishments based on a moral code or dharma that God imposes on all creation. This is not true. The law of karma is not a moral code or even Dharma. Instead, the Law of Karma is part of the very fabric that the universe is made up of. The universe functions the way it does because the inherent logic of the universe is based on the principle of cause and effect. Thus the law of Karma is the very founding principle of creation. Nothing in creation can ever escape the law of karma. The law of karma is not a policeman or a judge who punishes or rewards you based on some moral codes or laws. It is simply cause and effect. It simply means that whatever we do has a repercussion. For example if I do some thing for some one, then some thing is done for me by some one in return. If I harm some one I will be harmed. It is as simple as that. For the Law of Karma to operate, the sense of the ‘I’ is important. Without the sense of ‘I’ Karma can not be accrued by an individual. Thus It can be said that whatever a being does with a specific personal purpose, it creates an entry into his Karmic account. That means that the being, in the future, either pays that karma or enjoy the fruits of that karma.This is how Creation keeps going as all beings that are at present in creation, are endlessly creating and paying off their karmas to each other. A typical jeevatma, goes through life after life and takes birth after birth, paying for old karmas and creating new karmas. This is why we are born into a certain situation in life. Someone is born poor someone is born rich.Someone lives happily and someone has to struggle etc. Each of us have a unique and complex Karmic history that we have to live out.
Dharma is also Karma but there is a vital difference. Dharma is that action that we do that has no element of selfish or personal objective. Instead, whatever we do is with the objective of supporting God’s creation. When this is the motive, then that class of karma is called Dharma.In case the action is as per Dharma-or is Dharmic-then the fruit of that action does not accrue to us and therefore we are not karmically bound by our actions. An example will make this difference clear. A soldier fighting on the battle field kills an enemy combatant. And so does a cold-blooded murderer kill his victim. The act of killing is the same but the intent behind the two actions are completely different. The soldier does not kill for personal gain while the murderer does. This results in their fruits being very different. The soldier is committing Dharma and on the other hand, the murderer is committing karma for which he will have to account for later. For the average person when this difference is understood then the path way to liberation is opened since then a person can make sure that he can choose to only Dharma and choose to avoid karma in his daily life. The easiest way to do this is to offer whatever one does, to God. That way karma is decreased and Dharma increases and the practitioner progresses quickly towards liberation.
In summary it can be said that Dharma is that karma that does not stain the soul with there percussion of the action taken and therefore such an action leads the soul to Moksha or liberation.