A leaflet for inquirers, compiled by the Seattle (Wash.) Theosophical Club
Karman is that majestic operation of Nature, that so-called 'Law of Nature' if you will, which is set forth in the saying of Paul: "For whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap." It is the doctrine of consequences, of results following action, inevitably, ineluctably, whether such consequences or results be immediately forthcoming, or be postponed to a later time. — G. de Purucker
The word itself is Sanskrit and literally means: to do, to make — doing or making; in other words, action. From a moral, ethical, and philosophical standpoint it means that no matter what we think, or what we feel, or what we do, we have released certain energies, set up certain actions that will some day have a consequence. It will some time change things in our lives, either spiritual, mental, or physical. Somewhere, at some time, a reaction will come. Our actions are preceded by thoughts and by will, and therefore, we shall become involved in the results. Our lives are built up of minor events, daily habits and thoughts. Through a long chain of such causes, followed by results, the pattern of our lives is woven. It is the sum-total of these minor events, that makes or mars our lives; they form a web around us, from which we cannot escape. If we think, feel and act in accordance with Nature's harmonious laws, the consequence will be beneficent. If the contrary is the case, the result will bring suffering. It will come, not only to the individual who originated the disharmony, but it will also bring suffering to those who, through the inter-relation of the human family, are also woven into the web. Daily we have the power to choose and direct our thoughts and actions. It is done through our spiritual will. Through this action of free will and choice, man becomes an entity totally responsible, not only to himself, but to his family, city, state and nation.
The Theosophical ForumTHEOSOPHICAL UNIVERSITY PRESS ONLINE