I ask this question in the context of one who does wrong action and gets right results anyways, which happens a lot. Someone with a pretty good understanding of Kamma but to my knowledge it doesn't usually work like that. So, wrong action produces right results regularly, a lot of times ends up on top and in a better situation even through challenging circumstances... practices diligently.

What is known about this phenomenon?

  • You say it is a wrong action. Therefore you already know that it is wrong. Many do not even realize that there actions are wrong, when they take from others (greed) and perhaps hurt others as a result of the 'wrong' action.
    – user6918
    Commented Sep 11, 2015 at 13:52

4 Answers 4


Let me put it this way.

If you steal, you temporarily get ahead in wealth, but if you get caught you are looking at some jail time and returning what you stole, legal fees and all kinds of other headaches in the process. This would means you are worse off than before on average for thieves.

Like wise this extends to many other situation where you can temporarily get ahead in life to fall back to worst situations later on.

Also some may get away but if you look at the average over a majority you take one step forward and then two steps back in many of these situations.

  • 2
    Indeed, kamma comes in many forms and ways. There is no way telling one is has to suffer more or less for it's deed. Commented Aug 31, 2014 at 14:40

There is no such thing as instant Karma. We sometimes might have an impression that one action directly led to some result but we really cannot know it for sure.

The world we experience now is a result of karmic seeds we planted during countless of lifetimes. Results of some actions ripen for centuries, some ripen for weeks. Imagine you have a Karma to win the lottery - you never played it so there were no conditions for the karmic seed to ripen. You did lots of bad deeds in your current life and one day you decide to play the lottery for the first time. The seed finally ripens and you win the lottery. Then you think that your immoral deeds have some connection with the winning and conclude that you can still be immoral if good things happen to you anyways. The truth is that these things are not connected at all. Every bad deed will plant a seed which will give you suffering in the future. Every good deed will bring something positive. The trick is that we don't know when exactly.

  • my understanding of karma was cause and effect as far as external situations were concerned. the internal (as far as i know) that transmutes through death translates into personality builders from what i would think... wherein the kid grows on top of that and of course dependent origination loses its dependant factors and hanges leading to more kamma being built... like... i find it hard to see how you would kammicly be "supposed to win the lotto"... but if you play all the time your chances are kammicly strong...
    – A Nonimous
    Commented Sep 1, 2014 at 2:15
  • i'll just be straight... in a worldly sense, i have not fulfilled m obligations because practice got in the way... so it would seem that (cause and effect) a negative outcome would be expected... yet time and time again things seem to work in my favor despite others input...
    – A Nonimous
    Commented Sep 1, 2014 at 2:18
  • although the worldy things are not neglected entirely... just off meditating and contemplating when i should be doing other things some of the time... haha
    – A Nonimous
    Commented Sep 1, 2014 at 2:20

We engage in various thoughts, speech and physical actions. We are aware of some things happening to us. It is quite difficult to see the relation between all of them. I disagree with your statement "wrong action produces right results regularly". If by "right results" you mean positive events occurring, this is the result of positive actions you have taken in the past.

In the Sutra of Instructions to the King it says:

When the moment comes to leave, 0 King,
Neither possessions, friends nor family can follow.
But wherever beings come from, wherever they go,
Their actions follow them like their own shadow.

as mentioned by Patrul Rinpoche in Words of my Perfect Teacher.


In short: No, because wrong action cannot, and does not EVER, yield "right" results. A wrong action taints the outcome of that action; the quality of an action is born in the intention that led to that action. The difficulty in practicing right action comes from our misperception of the results of wrong action as being desireable, which is not the same as right.

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