The Concept of KARMA

“Speech is not what one should desire to understand. One should know the Speaker
  The deed is not what one should desire to understand. One should know the Doer
  Mind is not what one should desire to understand. One should know the Thinker.”
Kanshitaki Upanishad

‘I’ (the Atman) is the one worthy to be known. The ‘I’ who owns the speech, act and thought

Even the 5 Why’s of the Root Cause Analysis will not get you to the root problem of the Karmic cycle. It is like a vicious cycle; your every Act, Thought and Word, has a short-term and long-term repercussion. Instead of getting to the root of this cycle, the ingenious would find a reason to save him from this cycle.

What is Karma?  

KARMA refers to both Action and Reaction.

Karma.png

If we identify the CAUSE, we can CHOOSE to ACT and thereby have control over our ACTIONS but yet never over the RESULTS. [B.G. 2.47,51 ]So, advice is not to cling to the results of the action and to free ourselves.

Good Karma & Bad Karma?

The Gita points out that it is nearly impossible to differentiate between action that is meritorious and action that is not.

Who is responsible for the Karma phenomenon?

Krishna tells us in Bhagavad Gita that “Mayadakshena Prakriti, Suyate sa Characharam” [B.G. 9.10]

The Gita says, in the guidance of the ParamAtma, Prakruti with the help of Gunas creates and maintains everything that you see here. So, God has nothing to do with what you are bestowed here, good or bad.

Will Karma affect you?

If you think YOU are the KARTA (the agent of all kinds of action)then YOU will be the BOKTHA(the receiver of all the results of action).

The divine knowledge is Self-knowledge – YOU are nothing but GOD.

According to Gita, so many things should come together for you to act upon anything. Despite that, only an ignorant man thinks he is the agent behind that action.

What should Guide the MIND?

The INTENT behind the actions is crucial. The Mind should act like an INSTRUMENT, not the DOER. Anything that you do with your mind, body, speech will never be completely 100% good. Think about it, you will know what I am talking about.

Remember EVERY WORK has INADEQUACIES 
[B.G. 18.48] Sarvarambha hi Dosena

For example, everyday chore like bathing also comes with merits and faults. That doesn’t mean people should go without a bath. A man gotta do what a man gotta do ;). Rather than burdening ourselves by Merit or Demerit, every thought/action should be guided by Proper INTENT.

Bath2.png

Since you are not the actor but a witnesser, can you choose INACTION?

Gita says you are neither the body nor the mind and thereby Activity or Inactivity doesn’t exist for you. But the bodily functions has to be maintained, so learn to be an observer (Inaction) in Action. [B.G. 4.18] [B.G. 3.4-8]. Moreover, the action should be performed to clear the MIND and keep it in the Present [B.G. 5.11].

So, if you are the one who believes in KARMA then you are the one who DOES NOT

  • Blame
  • Judge
  • Think you are the DOER nor the RECEIVER
  • Attach themselves over the RESULTS
  • Think everything will remain Constant
  • Have a Troubled Mind over the Consequences
  • Rock as pendulum
  • Act with Expectations

 

Happy Makara Sankranti

IMG_20160115_065235

Today is Makara Sankranti. We do have set rituals that accompany these festivals. Do we understand the essence of these festivals or is it too mechanical in nature? Do we have an answer for our kids who would like to know its significance?

 We celebrated Bhogi yesterday at our apartment having a bonfire. Kids just loved it. These festivals indeed bring us all together as a family to mark its importance but the essence of it is lost somewhere. What will our future generations carry forward when the soul of the festival is forgotten? When the spirit is lost, importance also faints. Maybe that is why kids like to be confined in the four walls and play video games than to be on the roof flying kites.

My grandmother once said while you burn old things on bhogi. Do remember to also discard your vices along with the things in the fire. She said this does not only mark a new season but also a new beginning to inculcating good thoughts. It stayed with me. Every time I celebrate it, it reminds me to start afresh at all levels.

Sankranti is the movement of the Sun from Dhanu Rashi into Makara. It sets the completion of harvesting days and calls for an elaborate 4 day celebration. One of the days is marked to recall the role played by the animals in harvesting and in our lives. Forget about paying respects, we indulge in betting on cock fights, bull fights, elephant mela etc etc. We torture them more than respecting them.

 Sankranti in Sanskrit is derived from the word Sankramana meaning commencement of movement. Now “Movement”, that’s an interesting word. Isn’t it? Anything that has life has a beginning and an end. Gita says Jatasya hi Dhruvo Mrutyh,Druvam Janma Mrutyascha. Movement takes place in Space. Now Space is still. So, we can say movement is supported by stillness.

Numerous Planets are hung in that space revolving around that one Sun which makes life possible. Gita says like the Sun that illumines the whole universe, there is only one Atman that illumines the entire field of physical activity (ref:Chapter 13, shlok 33). Movement, however it be, can only be enjoyed by the One who has experienced the stillness of his being. Would you want to disagree on this? If the movements in our lives are unfavourable, we experience lopsidedness. Latest study shows one in every 10 Indians are depressed (ref: article,Times of India dtd 29th March 2015 read”One in 10 Indians depressed and do not ignore the subtle symptoms”). Depression,stress and anxiety are no longer foreign to us. Trying to calm our mind and disciplining it for an hour or so each day will help us to create a balance. Else, we might be forced to get introduced to stillness as we grow old. We should befriend the stillness when we have control on the movement.

We are taught to pay respect to the Sun who contributed to our existence on this planet on Sankranti. Is it not necessary to pay attention to the SELF which is the source of our existence?  Ponder on it.