Jody,

You wrote:

>I have never believed in God but the reason why I can never steal or lie is 
>because I would know.

>I was not afraid of getting caught and I was not worried what
>God would think, I just knew I could not do such a thing.

>I NEVER cheated on a test because the better grade was 
>not worth violating my own code of ethics.

This is exactly how I understand the concept of karma.  If you do something you 
think is bad, then you feel guilty and feel bad.  Bad acts bring unhappiness.

>I have never understood how people can lie, cheat or steal because
>THEY would have to live with themselves.

Perhaps these people do not think lying, cheating or stealing is wrong - but 
more than likely they are able to justify (to themselves) doing these things.  
By doing that they do not feel guilty and therefore are not unhappy.  What's 
happened to karma in this case?  As you know I believe karma is maya so I'm not 
too worried about rationalizing this situation - but you could say karma is 
still working because the effect on them is that they lose more and more of 
their ability to discern right from wrong every time they justify their bad 
actions.  Maybe when they die they'll go to hell, or even Iowa.  Who knows?

...Bill!  



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