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Karma and Rebirth Summed Up

Karma for a deep balance

Karma may get to a person from within and without so long as actions leave traces (a) in the doer; and (b) in others and the surroundings: in the world. Many effects in oneself might be weakened or may made ineffective by means of yoga. However, the effects in the world may not. One may try sound, productive counter-measures, suck as doing much good and attempting some balance, run away from some fiends, or trick a bad lot in life by wearing gold and great gems. Some do, but there is little or no solid down-to-earch comparative research on how such measures work, to my knowing.

As for your deep, good karma, why lose all of it by having it made ineffective, or "all roasted" within you somehow? For a greater good, Guru Dev says: getting Self-realised is the greater good, the summum bonum, one's supreme good and goal. But applying yourself much and with sound skills matters too.

Making good karma is advocated

A quite general drift based on a blend of formerly made karma and newly made karma is told of by Guru Dev, and Buddha too, in his karma teachings. One's associates and the humdrum may also become influencing factors, as many lives depend on others and what they do, set in motion, or omit doing. Thus, many factors will probably intertwine in the webs of life. (2) Developing various skills and sound, helpful attitudes are advocated for Buddhist and Hindu yogis too, showing "Making good karma matters." In other terms: "Do good and be careful too".

"It may depend on karma, at least in part:" Much may co-depend on a blend of said consequences of formerly made and of newly made karma and other factors, including the general conditions. On an ice floe there may be too little good to do. Or much co-depends on what you do wisely and well there too, and today in another setting. To bulwark against bad things may be part of karma (doings) in the making.

Several sides to karma

The karma of an individual may be considered to have four main sides: (a) The total mass of karma, sanchita karma from earlier on; (b) the hovering karma portioned out (set off) for one life, prarabdha karma; (c) the good and bad karma created in this life, agami or kriyamana karma; and (d) the rest of the previous total karma that mingles with the karma created in this life, and possible with unfinished business in this life too and becomes sanchita karma in a later life on earth. But what happens if the earth becomes inhabitable? Take a guess.

In the case of the (b) karma portioned out for one lifetime, prarabdha, some of it may have started, and the rest of it may not. In the case of premature death, pent-up karmic patterns or karma-in-store may have to follow that individual into the beyond and back in some future life as resolution may be attempted all over again.

Often we suffer from what others do and don't. We may be severely harmed by the karma (doings) of others - as victims of crimes, mingling with or marrying others who have karma too - and also what we fail do to on our own behalf. On the brighter side of intertwining and mingling, often we get it better from wise encounters of others. So it may not be all your karma if things go wrong or very well. It could be the amassed karma of a partner that makes the impact. Or not. It is not always plain to detect the lots of persons, but you might try to create karma to bulwark well, forestall bad happening, and work to improve the lot of yourself, your family and so on. It is fine to do good (make good karma), then.

Karma as 'unfinished business': It is assumed that that karma works in accord with the principle "as you sow you may eventually reap unless something or someone interferes."

A common teaching: karma is intertwined with rebirth

Karma may be thought of as one form of moral reciprocity or retributive justice that becomes quite like a well thrown boomerang in that it returns to the thrower some time after throwing it. If one throws evil at another person in this life the evil may circle around and hit the thrower either in the same life or some later life.

The term 'karma' also suggests that we reap the fruit of what we sow - what we do and participate in. It tends to help to sow what is constructive or skilful. Then we may reap what is constructive or skilful. Compare farming and gardening, for "there may be many a slip between table and lip." if we sow what is destructive or unskilful, we may reap it unless we are lucky. Supporters of rebirth and karma, in both the East and the West, believe much like this, but maybe not all the way, and maybe not reflectingly either.

Traditionally, rebirth is thought to be the vehicle for manifestations of karma. In order for karma to produce substantial effects (for seeds to sprout), suitable overall conditions are required. Otherwise, karma may not produce any results to mention. Thus, karma may be nipped in the bud, more or less prevented, and maybe constrained.

Massive and heavy karma is said to produce results in the present life or the next and so on.

There is also the karma of what one does or thinks or says right before death - and after death too, if the Tibetan Book of the Dead has got it right. Lamas beside the corpse tell the deceased one how to behave in various after-death phases or bardos. Either it works or it does not - the practice is there.

The karma that is had around one's death karma is said to determine the conditions of the next birth, or perhaps co-determine such conditions is a better guess when we take into account the postulates of massive and heavy karma and also consider the total mass of karma of many lives has to have outlets in the form of such as good and bad repercussions of a sort. It might be smart to take into account one's blends of karmic influences of many lives - old and newer ones - and that a human life might be in part for resolving such issues.

What determines the conditions of the next births could be what Buddha teaches: a totality of different forms of karma may give rise to the karma portioned out for each life to come, and maybe a part of the rest of one's present life. He teaches, by the way, that some who do good, may go to a hell for a while, and some who do bad things, may get to a heaven. [Buddha tells of many patterns and the general trend]

But it depends on the enemies too, and what they cook up. It also depends on how reserved, cool, farsighted and forewarned we may be, and how well we rise in our society, what wall we benefit from and so on.

One rebirth may not be suitable for resolving all and get rid of loose ends. Then some karma may have to be in store for several lifetimes before it can be suitably and justly resolved.

Karmic ties are believed to develop when two or more persons in the same life-time have an intense relationship that requires some sort of closure or resolution. It may or may not happen.

A wider look at "sowing and reaping"

Don't expect an evil being (psychopaths also) to keep a bargain that is good for you. They may swindle when they find it fit and otherwise be up to something bad for others; expect something like that.

Don't expect evil and fallen ones to give you conditions that fulfil the splendid or good karma in store for you in a life. Fair deals belong to fair persons.

You may not reap all the karmic consequences that are interfered with a lot. For example, you sow rye, but geese eat all of it. Or the rye seeds starts to sprout, only to be stepped down by geese and seagulls. Or a thief steals the rye right before you meant to harvest it. Or the whole field and its harvest is bullied out of your hand. It all four cases you would not reap as you sowed.

If good karmic effects are given just a semblance of what good they were supposed to be or do, good things are swindled away from you.

What if the devil prevents good karmic effects to enter your door? It may be very wise to consider who or what is in charge of the large society and profit-minded firms too.

One's spirit may manage its own past life record too -

What if the road within to God's Book of Life should be blocked by some hovering, dark, dense demon-cloud so that neither good nor bad deeds get recorded? Many sorts of trickery exist, also outside the malign Christian world from antiquity.

Some escape bad karma for a time by marrying well and taking protective measures that "sit".

Anyway: "Don't put all your eggs in one basket (Proverb)." That is, don't trust mainly in good karma, but also go for fit progress in life; skills in dealing with what comes up, and meditation - such a trio might help along with being on your guard, being careful, bulwarking well and sanely, and so on. - It is part of the general teachings.


karma thinking, Literature  

McClelland, Norman C. 2010. Encyclopedia of Reincarnation and Karma.

Jefferson, NC: McFarland and Co.

O'Flaherty, Wendy Doniger. 1980. Karma and Rebirth in Classical Indian Traditions. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press.

Reichenbach, Bruce R. 1990. The Law of Karma: A Philosophical Study. London: Macmillan Academic and Professional.

Tull, Herman Wayne. 1989. The Vedic Origins of Karma: Cosmos as Man in Ancient Indian Myth and Ritual. Albany, NY: State University of New York Press.

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