Karma vs. Grace

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Difference between Karma and Grace

The human combination of spirit and mind makes human life seemingly superior to all other life forms on this planet as we know them. And the thought of utilizing this precious life and mind in the right direction has made humans ponder over the goal or meaning of their lives. During this course of finding reason of life and adding meaning to it, various conceptions of living have been devised in different cultures and religions. All these theories and conceptions aim to achieve similar goals or states – salvation, Moksha, Nirvana or Heaven. To define the subtleties of these terms is beyond the scope of this article. However each of these goal states is known to be a state of elated bliss, the kind of bliss you've never experienced before. Here we will discuss two such conceptions known as karma and the grace, which are believed to help us on our way towards achieving these goal states.


Definition and Description:

Karma is the cycle of cause and effect. It is based upon the principle – as you sow so shall you reap. It is the concept of actions or deeds where you are free to choose an action based in good or evil. You yourself are responsible for the consequences you’ll have to suffer. What you put out comes back to you. Karma essentially relies on the theory of reincarnation. Your deeds shape your present as well as future lives. Karma theory instructs you to do good works. Grace, on the other hand, is the state of sanctification by God. It is the realization of the life as a precious gift from God, a realization of divine influence where you feel deeply thankful and grateful to the Almighty for this life. The concept of grace is based upon the death of Jesus Christ; it is based upon the thinking that Jesus Christ took on all the sins of world upon himself and he’d take all the sufferings from you once you surrender your life in his hands by way of your heart. Grace teaches you to develop love for one and all.


The theory of ‘karma’ is rooted in the Indian religions: Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism and Sikhism. The law of karma theory in Hinduism states God’s will is essential for the implementation of the consequences of karmic effects earned by the human deeds. However Buddhism and Jainism do not believe in God’s intervention in the karma principle. The theory of ‘saving grace’ was developed in Christianity with slight variance in the conceptions developed by different branches within Christianity.

Salvation, Nirvana, Heavens

According to the laws of karma, you can achieve nirvana, salvation or go to heaven by earning good karma through your own good deeds. The karma theory is often thought of as a tough way to achieve salvation by those who believe in grace. Grace is considered as a painless path to achieve salvation. Grace is what happens when you hand over your life in the hands of Jesus and develop a true love for Him and God. Grace is considered as a gift or undeserving mercy that God bestowed upon us by sending His son Jesus to die on the cross and take all the pains away from those who are with Him and help their way to the gates of heaven. Believers of karma do believe in grace but they believe that grace is not gifted but is a result of your actions and thinking.


  • Karma and Grace are two different theological concepts of life.
  • Karma originated in the Indian religions such as Hinduism.
  • Grace on the other hand, originated in Christianity.
  • Grace is a gift while karma has to be earned through deeds.
  • Karma is deemed as a tougher path than grace to achieve nirvana, salvation.

Which principle is most active in your life?
  • Karma
  • Grace

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