We Are All “Karmic Agents”


“A statement of the law of Karma of course makes not only men karmic agents but also every other being in the Cosmos, inasmuch as they are all under the law of action and reaction, and, with the same law, go to make Cosmos what it is. Taken as a unit in the general mass of men, each man is a Karmic agent . . . in our daily actions, even the smallest, whether we are conscious or not of the effect, we are such agents. A single word of ours may have an influence for a lifetime upon another. It may cause once more the fire of passion to blaze up, or bring about a great change for good. We may be the means of another’s being late for an appointment and thus save him from calamity or the reverse, and so on infinitely. But all this is very different from the technical sense I have referred to, . . .

“The special sense is in this: a “Karmic Agent” is one who concentrates more rapidly than is usual the lines of influence that bring about events sometimes in a strange and subtle way. Of these there are two classes; the first, those among the mass who, from the lives they have led in the past, arrive in this one gifted – or cursed – with the power unknown to themselves. The second, those who by training have the power, or rather have become concentrators of the forces, and know it to be the case. Of these are the Adepts, both great and small. . . .

“It is a well-known tradition in India, called by the civilized West a superstition, that if one should meet and talk with an Adept his Karma good and bad would come to a head more quickly than usual, and thus that the Adept could confer a boon, letting the evil pass and increasing the good. . . . And others met such men, who told them that the meeting would bring on the opposite by reason of quick concentration, but that even that would be a benefit, as it would, as it were, eat up much unpleasant Karma once for all. . . .

“And H.P.B. held that there are many people in the world, engaged in its affairs, who are, without knowing it, Karmic agents in this special sense, and continually bring to others good and bad sudden effects which otherwise would have come slowly to pass, spread over many more days or years, and showing in a number of small events instead of in one.

“If this theory be true, we have here also the explanation of the superstition of the evil eye, which is only a corrupt form of the knowledge that there are such Karmic agents among us who by looking at others draw together very quickly effects that without the presence of the Karmic agent might never have been noticed because of their taking more time to transpire.

“But if we follow too strictly the theory that men are Karmic agents for the punishment or reformation of others, many mistakes will be made and much bad feeling engendered in others, . . . we should not shrink from the duty to relieve pain and sorrow if we can, for it is both cowardice and conceit to say that we will not help this or that man because it is his Karma to suffer. In the face of suffering it is our good Karma to relieve it if in our power.”

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The complete article is in “William Q. Judge Theosophical Articles” Vol. 1, p. 147-149, and WQJ Pamphlet #6 “Karma,” published by Theosophy Company and available from the United Lodge of Theosophists. Please click here for more information about recommended Theosophical books and how to order them.

For more about William Judge, including his close connection with H. P. Blavatsky and the Masters, the articles Who Was William Quan Judge?, William Q. Judge and The Masters of Wisdom, and Understanding The Importance of Mr. Judge will be found helpful.

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