It is wrong to
think of karma in terms of what is under stood by the word fatalism. Destiny as taught in
Vedanta does not involve an unscientific attitude towards natural laws or a breakdown of
faith in human effort, which is fatalism. Karma is the unalterable law of effect following
previous causes. This is what distinguishes Vedanta from its half- brother, fatalism, as
it emerged in the West from the pagan philosophies.
a Hindu speaks of the decree of fate, the word he uses for fate is vidhi, which means law.
He means thereby that one should expect only" the fruit of ones action and
nothing else. Far from under- estimating human effort, Vedanta puts the highest value on
it. It points out that it is foolish to do one thing and expect to undo it before it
produces its effects because they will not be to your liking.
No act can over fail to produce its result. Nor can any act
produce anything but its true result. It is not possible to do a thing and escape its
result. One cannot expect something to happen for which something, else appropriate to
produce that result should have been done. Given the necessary acts, the natural
consequences must follow.