Karma, Baby!

Karma, Baby!

Sunday, November 19, 2006
| Hebrews 10:11-14 (15-18) 19-25

Some critics call it Hindu Lite — this trendy fascination with Eastern religions. It’s seen most noticeably on NBC’s hit show My Name Is Earl. Some would say not to worry: Christianity has its own version of Faith Lite.

What do Britney Spears’ maternal instincts, the owner of Homer Simpson’s local convenience store and NBC’s sitcom My name is Earl all have in common?

“Karma, baby!”

That itself is a line borrowed from Alicia Keys’ song, “Karma”: “It’s called karma, baby … and it goes around. What goes around comes around. What goes up must come down.” Although the lyrics are lame, they do point to the way that Hindu concepts have become part of our pop culture landscape.

Hindu is hip and Karma has gone kitsch.

Earlier this year, Britney Spears had her baby son blessed in a Malibu Hindu temple — a blessing he’ll need if he travels a lot in his mom’s SUV. Apu is the loveable Hindu owner of the Kwik-E Mart who sells Homer tofu hot dogs and other convenience store delights, all under the shadow of statues of the gods Vishnu and Ganesha which are featured prominently in his store. And the popular first season of My Name Is...

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