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Old 03-28-2011, 07:16 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Re: Karma

CZ,

The purpose is two-fold. First, we have to burn off all of our bad karma before we can achieve enlightenment. (I know a lot of people — especially Zen Buddhists — disagree with me on this, but this is what I believe.) The more we stumble and fumble, the more bad karma we burn off, and the faster we make progress towards enlightenment.

Second, our striving for and achieving enlightenment must be 100% our own idea. We cannot rely on any kind of coaxing or encouraging to achieve enlightenment. Only people who are totally committed to the huge sacrifices that enlightenment require (yes, enlightenment requires huge sacrifices, and most people are not aware of this) are ready to start making real progress towards achieving enlightenment, and it must be totally a free choice. It is the same as the question, "Why is there evil?" Here is a quote from Annie Besant (former Theosophical Society President):

"We sometimes hear the question, 'Why does God allow so much evil in the world?' The author quoted below is saying that we must freely choose to be good, and at the next level of existence only good people will be allowed in. We must allow people here at this level to be good or bad, so they can make that choice freely:

"And then the question arises - as I know it arises in many minds, for it has been put to me both in the East and in the West over and over again - why so much difficulty in the evolution, why so much apparent failure in the working, why should men go wrong so much before they go right, why should they run after the evil that degrades them instead of following the good that would ennoble them? Was it not possible for the LOGOS of our universe, for the Devas who are His Agents, for the great Manus who came to guide our infant humanity - was it not possible for Them to plan so that there might be no such apparent failure in the working out? Was it not possible for Them to guide so that the road might have been a straight and direct one instead of so devious, so circuitous?

"Here comes the point that makes the evolution of humanity so difficult, having in view the object which is to be gained. Easy in truth would it have been to have made a humanity that might have been perfect, easy to have so guided its dawning powers that those powers might have traveled towards what we call the good continually, and never have turned aside towards what we call evil. But what would have been the condition of such an easy accomplishment? It must have been that man would have been an automaton, moved by a compelling force without him which imperiously laid upon him a law which he was compelled to fulfil, from which he could not escape. The mineral world is under such a law; the affinities that bind atom to atom obey such an imperious compulsion. But as we rise higher we find greater and greater freedom gradually making its appearance, until in man we see a spontaneous energy, a freedom of choice, which is really the dawning manifestation of the God, of the Self, which is beginning to show itself through man. And the object, the goal which was to be attained, was not to make automata who should blindly follow a path sketched out for their treading, but to make a reflection of the LOGOS Himself, to make a mighty assemblage of wise and perfected men who should choose the best because they know and understand it, who should reject the worst because by experience they have learnt its inadequacy and the sorrow to which it leads. So that in the universe of the future, as amongst all the great Ones who are guiding the universe of today, there should be unity gained by consensus of wills, which have become one again by knowledge and by choice, which move with a single purpose because they know the whole, which are identical with the Law because they have learned that the Law is good, who choose to be one with the Law not by an outside compulsion, but by an inner acquiescence. Thus in that universe of the future there will be one Law, as there is in the present, carried out by means of Those who are the Law by the unity of Their purpose, the unity of Their knowledge, the unity of Their power - not a blind and unconscious Law, but an assemblage of living beings who are the Law, having become divine. There is no other road by which such goal might be reached, by which the freewill of the many should reunite into the one great Nature and the one great Law, save a process in which experience should be garnered, in which evil should be known as well as good, failure as well as triumph. Thus men become Gods, and because of the experience that lies behind them, they will, they think, they feel, the same."

Besant, Annie, The Path of Discipleship, paragraphs 3-4 (online)
Theosophy : Path of Discipleship by Annie Besant : AnandGholap.net
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Old 03-29-2011, 05:46 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Re: Karma

Quote:
Originally Posted by Annie Besant, via Nick the Pilot
" ... in the universe of the future, as amongst all the great Ones who are guiding the universe of today, there should be unity gained by consensus of wills, which have become one again by knowledge and by choice, which move with a single purpose because they know the whole, which are identical with the Law because they have learned that the Law is good, who choose to be one with the Law not by an outside compulsion, but by an inner acquiescence. Thus in that universe of the future there will be one Law, as there is in the present, carried out by means of Those who are the Law by the unity of Their purpose, the unity of Their knowledge, the unity of Their power - not a blind and unconscious Law, but an assemblage of living beings who are the Law, having become divine. There is no other road by which such goal might be reached, by which the freewill of the many should reunite into the one great Nature and the one great Law, save a process in which experience should be garnered, in which evil should be known as well as good, failure as well as triumph. Thus men become Gods, and because of the experience that lies behind them, they will, they think, they feel, the same."
What a beautiful, concise summary ... a clear statement of the Vision!
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Old 03-29-2011, 09:43 AM   #18 (permalink)
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Re: Karma

Andrew, I agree. Another Theosophical writer said that we will all become psychic in another several thousand years. At that time, all religious differences will disappear. (It is a day I am very much looking forward to.)

This also shows that humanity as a whole is making progress along the path to enlightenment. There are times when it does not seem like it (just look at all the reports of war and religious hatred in the news), but yes we are. The day will come when war and religious hatred are things of the past.
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Old 04-05-2011, 12:08 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Re: Karma

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Originally Posted by Snoopy View Post
I'm a little confused. You are from India and from your website link I'm guessiing you are Hindu. Is this right? If so I am wondering why you need to ask 'what is karma?' on the Hindu sub-forum here?

For the record! -

Karma is a Sanskrit word meaning action or deed. After this, one would have to specify which context the word was being used; it is treated differently in Hindu, Buddhist, Jain and Sikh philosophies.

From its origins in India it has been given other meanings, specifically by the New Age and Theosophy movents. AndrewX and Nick the Pilot are both Theosophists I think, and have provided the Theosophical viewpoint. AndrewX's phrase is the very phrase used in the Theosophy section of the Wikipedia entry on karma for instance.

More generally the term has come to enter the common lexicon of the West, transmitted through a haze of 60's hippiedom.

s.
I just now settled in my motherland India after many years. I just came across the site once browsing liked it very much so have kept as my favorite site. I am not introduced to hindu religion deeply, so have participated in the forum to learn more snoopy.
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Old 04-05-2011, 05:35 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Re: Karma

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Originally Posted by murugan View Post
I just now settled in my motherland India after many years. I just came across the site once browsing liked it very much so have kept as my favorite site. I am not introduced to hindu religion deeply, so have participated in the forum to learn more snoopy.
We need more Hindus to learn from, murugan!
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Old 04-05-2011, 07:35 PM   #21 (permalink)
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Re: Karma

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Originally Posted by murugan View Post
I just now settled in my motherland India after many years. I just came across the site once browsing liked it very much so have kept as my favorite site. I am not introduced to hindu religion deeply, so have participated in the forum to learn more snoopy.
It seems that Hindu means People from the Indus, yes? and then some ignorant people (that'll be Westerners then...) decided the religion of these people was to be called Hinduism, not realising that there was not one religion or philosophy common to all Hindus. So if you're the only Hindu on this forum, there's a lot that you can teach!! starting with Advaita please!

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Old 03-31-2012, 04:26 PM   #22 (permalink)
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Re: Karma

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Originally Posted by marykabrown View Post
Can i know the correct definition of Karma please?
I can't give you the Hindu version of karma, but there is a nice thread on the Buddhist version of karma here:

Karma ~ The Penetrative Explanation
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Old 03-31-2012, 07:28 PM   #23 (permalink)
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Re: Karma

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Originally Posted by marykabrown View Post
Can i know the correct definition of Karma please?
Not to worry. Free of charge; and, lifetimes' worth of voluminous updates. This may occupy alot of storage space:

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Karma’s Attributes and relevance
---notes by a bhaktajan:

God almighty in heaven is transcendent with his own personal pastimes far from the souls cycling in Time.
Presently, in this material world, everything is relative and mostly composed of inanimate matter.

Karma is a part of Physics!
"Karma" means "Action".


Karma is NOT a reference to pre-destined Destiny.

It simply means, 'work'.

The work you sow is the work you reap.

Without the soul's presence (a persona, as God is the Supreme, First & Original reservoir of Persona) all interactions (activities) are simply sand in an ocean of marbles (molecules) without any other significance.

But there is a soul ---yet the soul is bounced around in the dynamic machine known as the material physical world:


The soul is all there is that comprises a living-enitity's personhood.

The Soul takes afresh a new birth in a new model off the assembly line in one of Millions of available models (species) of Human, Para-Human, or any of the economy-size sub-human species to live out the birthright to perform actions.

Look up the desk top novelty called “A Newton’s cradle” ---this is how the elements of material energy work---and similarly this is karma is perpetuated. Karma is a mechanical expression of how the cosmic machine acts.


This is the material world's mechanics in microcosism.
The person viewing it is the soul's consciousness.
The banging of the molecules (ie: waveforms etc) will transpire and pass and cause [interact with] other such waves ---yet the soul is aloof . . . unless it wrongly identifies itself as equal to those marble-like-molecules of inanimate matter.

The External energy is material-transcient-created/maintained/destroyed. It is the material world that we are in now.

The Internal energy is transcendent to the Material/External.
The Internal energy has three attributes: Eternal-Cognisant-Blissfull.

The Soul is a part and parcel individual spark of Godhead's Internal Energy [hladini-shakti ~aka, daiva-prakriti] . . . but the soul is now present in the material world [God’s external energy ~ maya-Shakti ~aka, maya-prakriti] where “Time” exists.


Future Karma may be personally-custom-fitted … but it is impersonally lumped together and carried out.


The 5 topics of discussion addressed in the Bhagavad-gita:

Three are eternal:
1 Isvara - (Controller) - God
2 Jiva-atma – (Indiviual Soul) - Living Entity
3 Prakriti – Energy (Material & Spiritual)
4 Kala – “Time”

One is transient:
5 Karma – Action = a) artha—wealth, abundance b) kama—enjoyment, pleasure
c) dharma—work, duty

"Maya"= the Cosmic Material Energy' recognized as a field of temporary matter and energy in flux, whence, the soul appears, to lord it over as best as can be had. All the whilst identifying with the present body, which was afforded by the fruits of prior actions.

Karma & Reincarnation=Karma means, 'action'. All living creatures Eat/sleep/mate/defend---one must rise above the mundane order of life and death. We are all destined to take repeated births in various bodies until we are re-acquainted with The grace of Mukunda (a name for Krishna---the sole Bestower of Liberation from the material ocean of repeated births and deaths—since time immemorial). This is done by approaching the top experts in the world authorized to instruct novices in the science of Bhakti-yoga.


IIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII IIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII


Karma—1. material action performed according to scriptural regulations;
2. action pertaining to the development of the material body;
3. any material action which will incur a subsequent reaction;
4. the material reaction one incurs due to fruitive activities; This Sanskrit word means 'action' or, more specifically, any material action that brings a reaction binding us to the material world.

According to the law of karma, if we cause pain and suffering to other living beings, we must endure pain and suffering in return.

Karmendriyas—the working senses.

Karmis—fruitive laborers.

Karmi—one engaged in kärma (fruitive activity); a materialist.

Karma-bandhana—bondage to the reactions of fruitive activities.

Karma-bandha—the bondage of fruitive activities.

Karma-kanda—the division of the Vedas which deals with fruitive activities performed for the
purpose of gradual purification of the grossly entangled materialist.

Karma-kandiya—relating to karma-kanda.

Karma-mimamsa—one of the six main Vedic philosophies. It states that the subtle laws of nature reward or punish one according to how one acts, without reference to an independent God.

Karma-nishthas—those who consider devotional service to be fruitive activities.

Karma-tyaga—the giving of the results of karma to the Supreme Lord.

Karma-vira—a successful fruitive worker.

Karma-yoga—action in devotional service; the path of God realization through dedicating the fruits of one’s work to God.
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Old 06-14-2012, 04:51 AM   #24 (permalink)
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Re: Karma

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This is exactly what I think Karma is not. A record? Where is this record kept? Who is keeping it? How does this record know how and when to extract its reward? How does your karmic record influence others to cooperate in its designs?
You got a theosophic reply. Here is a traditional theist hindu reply (though I am not one).

Karma is action/deed. A person's 'karma record' is kept in the office of the God of Death (Yama) who is the designated person to give rewards or punishment. Yama is helped in keeping the 'karma records' of all living beings (humans or animals, don't know about vegetation but most probably not) by an able accountant (Chitragupta) who is the originator of Kayastha caste of hindus.

The time and date of death of a person is decided in advance by Lord Brahma (Vidhata). At exactly that time and date, Yama makes his assistants (Yamadoota - Messengers of Lord Yama) bring back the soul of the living being. Chitragupta presents the beings record of karma, and according to standing instructions of Gods the person is awarded stay in heaven for his/her good deeds and hell for his/her evil deeds. These two are not compounded and have to be enjoyed or suffered separately, though the person has the choice to choose which one to be the first, heaven or hell.

The punishment or reward is irrespective of race, nationality, religion, sect, caste, etc. It is absolutely fair to all. To add some fun, Vidhata keeps the effect of some good or evil deed in abeyance, which is awarded in some future life without notice. That is why some people win lotteries (good deeds) or get involved in car accidents (evil deeds). Others are not involved in the affects of your karma. Those involved are paying for or reaping benefits of their own karma. For example, the driver of the car with which you met with an accident might be paying for his/her own bad deeds. But if the person is getting the reward of his/her good deeds, the car may not topple over in the accident.
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Old 06-14-2012, 05:31 AM   #25 (permalink)
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Re: Karma

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Originally Posted by citizenzen View Post
So what is the purpose of life if its already mapped out before we're born?
What is the role of free will?
What is the value of living if our higher selves already appear to know so much before we ever exit the womb?
If I were to reply as a theist: 1. God's wish. 2. None. 3. What we will do or experience is already decided by Lord Brahma. We are only symbolic (nimitta-matra) and what seems to happen is illusion ('maya').
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Old 06-14-2012, 05:37 AM   #26 (permalink)
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Re: Karma

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Originally Posted by Nick the Pilot View Post
--> And that difference is…?
In theistic hinduism, soul carries the load of karmas. In buddhism, karmas flit and attach to a being, there being no soul.
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Old 06-14-2012, 06:00 AM   #27 (permalink)
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Re: Karma

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Originally Posted by Nick the Pilot View Post
"the hindu and buddhist ideas of karma are not the same."

--> And that difference is…?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aupmanyav View Post
In theistic hinduism, soul carries the load of karmas. In buddhism, karmas flit and attach to a being, there being no soul.
In Yogacara school, karma resides in the eigth consciousness.


The result of our intentional actions is karma. The consequences of these actions remain as traces or seeds planted in the storehouse consciousness. These seeds germinate over time and generate more seeds. Therefore, our lives, are driven by past actions which compel us to decisions about future actions. The theory of karma accounts for the "continuity of personality through death, or unconsciousness..." Once a seed produces its fruit, it is used up. However, new seeds come to fruition in each moment. Until the time of enlightenment, while we continue to believe in the reality of our perceptual framework, this process "...creates seeds that will ripen into further delusion."
Because of the similarity of karmic seeds, and the corresponding delusions they produce, our perception of the world matches that of other people. Consequently, in our samsara (the cycle of existence and rebirth that is the cause of suffering), we are usually in agreement with others about the external sensible world. We also experience interaction via our streams of mental phenomena, since one person's mental representations can effect those of another. The karmic process has three stages: 1) Giving rise to delusion has one root in the sixth consciousness [10], whose actionslead to activity and therefore karma. 2) Creating karma involves planting seeds in the eighth consciousness [8]. The ongoing cycle of life, death, and rebirth draws the eighth consciousness back into the six levels of existence [15]. 3) Finally, undergoing retribution is the germination of karmic seeds; we reap what we have sown.
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Old 06-14-2012, 04:52 PM   #28 (permalink)
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Re: Karma

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The theory of karma accounts for the "continuity of personality through death, or unconsciousness..."
What kind of death do you mean? The buddhist moment-to-moment death or perceived physical death? What happens to karmas after perceived physical death? Where do they linger or to what do they attach?
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Old 06-14-2012, 05:08 PM   #29 (permalink)
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Re: Karma

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What kind of death do you mean? The buddhist moment-to-moment death or perceived physical death? What happens to karmas after perceived physical death? Where do they linger or to what do they attach?

YES YES YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Excellent series of queries!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

That is why I advised you to Run very quickly and learn these things ASAP! ---especially at your age!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The first step it to indentify and publically acknwoledge one's faults and weaknesses. Congrats. That is step 1.

The Gita is written just for this purpose.

I recommend Orthodox Hindus scripture esp for old world Orthodox Hindus.

So read the Gita translated by and commented on by the Orthodox Hindu Swami that the Governement of India vetted as Orthodox Hindu, just right to be Put on its federal post stamp, A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami.




Do not worry. Do not fear. Do not hesitate. It is your Birthright.
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Old 06-14-2012, 05:26 PM   #30 (permalink)
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Re: Karma

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Originally Posted by Aupmanyav View Post
What kind of death do you mean? The buddhist moment-to-moment death or perceived physical death? What happens to karmas after perceived physical death? Where do they linger or to what do they attach?
According to the Yogacara school, the eighth consciousness, or storehouse (alaya) consciousness, contains the karmic seeds and gives rise to the other eight consciousnesses on rebirth. (There are different Buddhist schools of thought regarding this.)
Eighth Consciousness
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