Richard Cory, expectations vs reality and Karma

Richard Cory by Edwin Arlington Robinson proves to be a deep realization about a reality of human lives. They are full of expectations which are sometimes beyond the capacity of humans who expect miracles. The reality is hardly people achieve their expectations. Expectations are the cog-wheel that runs the lives of humans. Otherwise, the world would not exist!  According to the Buddhist belief, the success or failures are the results of human beings depend on their Karma which are the results of their previous actions in this life or the early lives. 

According to the poem, the person called Richard Cory is looked as royal. He is seen as rich and orderly in contrast to onlookers. His appearance en-kindles the inward expectations of them. They experience the beauty of their dreamy lives in his royal appearance. The reality is they cannot reach to the life of Richard Cory from their miserable pavement lives. This is the real framed picture of the divided high and low classes of human life. Who actually draw this line between their lives? Is it capitalism? Is it geographical? The reality is, this is a universal reality where people suffer for better lives. Some strive and work hard without results while some succeed. What is the mechanism behind all these? According to the Buddhist belief, People reap their harvest according to their own cultivations. If they give something to others with good intention, they will surely receive the benefit of it for sure. This goes beyond their grave to afterlife; simultaneously they receive the result of their good deeds from their previous life too. This is like a cycle. It is true to the bad actions too. People who are poor experience the bad deeds of their previous life while rich people harvest their good deeds in this life. This is called Karma according to Buddhism.

Although Richard Cory is seen as royal and a role model to others of a luxurious life, he puts a bullet into his head and commits suicide. Although quite disturbing, this is another side of expectations vs reality. What people expect is always not true. What people see is not always true – that is the reality of almost everything. People expect Richard Cory to live a perfect fairytale life but he had been living in a life of turmoil. People on the pavement think that their life is worse when compared to Richard Cory’s life but their lives may be better than Richard Cory’s life. People never get satisfied with what they have. May be Richard Cory would have been craving for a life of onlookers. According to Buddhism, this insatiable desire of human lives takes them to numerous cycles of lives which has no end. Throughout this cycle of lives the actions they do decide the lives of them. This is called Karma. During this cycle of life, Richard Cory must have done a grave sin to result him killing himself in this life.

In that light, the poem Richard Cory by Edwin Arlington Robinson is an eye opener to humans to think about the lives they lead. Every good actions matters for this life and the beyond. As well as, it teaches us to see at the lives realistically. No life is perfect; expectations are not always come true but understanding about reality gives answer to them according to the Buddhist teaching of Karma.

What is your idea, Let's discuss it in the comments section. 

Post a Comment