The recent comments by Sharon Stone regarding the Dalai Lama, Karma, and the earthquake in China has got my dander up just a tad. If you are familiar with this blog, you know that I have a strong affection for and connection with the Chinese people. I served on the mission field over there for five-plus years; my wife is Chinese; and we have family and friends all over China.
In case you didn’t hear her brick-headed comments, actress Sharon Stone suggested that the suffering caused by the recent earthquake in Sichuan Province was the result of “karma”, gleaned from the fact that the Chinese government “has not been nice to my friend the Dalai Lama.” Good Grief!!!!
What Ms. Stone fails to understand is that, even if one subscribes to the notion of karma, it doesn’t work quite the way she states it. First of all, it is the Chinese government, not the Chinese people who have a problem with the Dalai Lama and the whole Tibetan issue. The central government didn’t suffer so much as a result of the disaster, but the Chinese people surely did. At last count, over 69,000 dead and the toll is still rising. Also, in her myopic vision, Ms. Stone also fails to realize that, outside of Tibet, the largest population of Tibetans in China is in the mountain areas of Sichuan, the very epicenter of the earthquake. I dare say that there were quite a few Tibetans in those 69,000.
In the wake of her comments, the people of China are in an uproar. Movie theaters in China now refuse to carry her movies, and she has I think three or four new releases coming out over the next two years. So now, Ms. Stone will not profit from the largest population of movie goers in the world. Now that, my friends, is karma!
Stone’s comments are similar to those made by John Hagee on the heels of Hurricane Katrina. Hagee said that the disaster was a result of God’s wrath over an upcoming parade celebrating homosexuality. I find it ironic that Jesus, who Hagee says is his Lord, stated that “if you have seen me you have seen the Father.” Hmmmm. Let’s see, I don’t recall Jesus unleashing a hurricane on the woman caught in adultry or the Samaritan woman at the well. No, he exhibited a God of grace, not a God of retribution.
Do you see the similarities between Stone and Hagee? Both are suggesting that these disasters came about as a result of some sort of cosmic retribution. In Hagee’s case, it was God who was miffed. In the case of Stone, it was an impersonal but equally nasty force at work.
In either case, I am saddened by these comments. It is a shame, really it is.