The theory of karma posits a natural relation between an agent, the agent’s action, and the fruits of the agent’s actions. The theory connects virtuous actions to virtuous fruits and vicious actions to vicious fruits. My talk addresses this puzzle: if karma is such a relation, then can it provide a reason to be just? While it is easy to motivate the thought that it provides a reason to perform imperfect duties like charity, it is harder to make the case that it provides a reason to perform a perfect duty like justice, which may impose enormous costs on the agent. I construct an argument that analogises our ignorance about our future states and our circumstances in them with Rawls’ veil of ignorance, to argue for the conditional: if the theory of karma is true, you have a reason to be just.
Kranti Saran, Asst Professor of Philosophy at Ashoka university
Kranti Saran is Assistant Professor of Philosophy at Ashoka University.
His research interests span the areas of perception, attention, bodily awareness, introspection, mimicry, and how these topics are related to our moral relation to others.
A common thread that runs through his research is a concern with understanding facets of our cognition: its faculties and modes (perception, attention), its embodiment (bodily awareness), its consequences for our relation to our selves and our immediate social milieu (introspection, mimicry), and finally, the manner in which these topics interact with culture and so either constrain or enable dimensions of our moral relation to others.
More about Kranti at www.krantisaran.net including links to his publications.