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Featured Karma - Is it a Universal or Dharmic principle?

Discussion in 'Religious Debates' started by adrian009, Jan 7, 2019.

?
  1. Universal

    39.1%
  2. Dharmic

    13.0%
  3. In part Universal, in part Dharmic

    8.7%
  4. I don't know

    8.7%
  5. This poll doesn't reflect my thinking

    30.4%
  1. Marcion

    Marcion Well-Known Member

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    The idea that people are "rewarded" for their suffering with "good karma" is wrong.
    What happens when people suffer for reasons they have not immediately caused themselves is that their burden or load of karma is becoming lighter (if they don't acquire new karma by their new actions) as the karma is being expressed or undergone by the mind.

    In fact, the karmic load does not only become lighter by suffering or extra suffering through performing service to others or undergoing uninvited suffering, but also by enjoying the pleasant rewards of previous actions.
    Because so-called "good karma" only consists of golden chains, i.e. they keep you bound just as well as the iron chains of so-called "nasty karma".

    So if you spend a life time of good actions and you have not offered all of those actions to God (or not accepted them as your own), your karmic load has increased tremendously and you need to undergo a long time of reaping the so-called "rewards" of the karma. This may seem as a nice thing but spiritually speaking it is as bad as a life time of suffering painful events.
     
    #61 Marcion, Jan 8, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2019
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  2. loverofhumanity

    loverofhumanity Well-Known Member
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    Thanks for your reply. Just my opinion but I am not an expert so it’s just my vision of how karma operates according to our actions or inactions. Only my personal view so please question it. I’m here to learn.

    My understanding is that karma is associated with our conscious actions and deliberate inactions we reap the fruit of them in terms of development of our soul, spirit or inner being.

    Whether one belongs to a royal family or is homeless our conscious choices as to how we act, react or inact determines our karma in my view.

    So a king may be surrounded by wealth, power and every luxury and fame but the condition of his soul is his true reality and if he is just then his soul becomes enlightened but if he is a tyrant his spirit becomes ill.

    The same with the homeless person. If he acts nobly he will advance spiritually but if he becomes a thief instead of trying to earn an honest living then he pollutes his own soul and like the king’s soul becomes ill or enlightened.

    Each one of us determines our own fate no one else. We make choices and decisions and there is karma or consequence attached to each action or non action.

    So for instance there are sins of omission and commission. It’s not only things we do wrong or right but things that we dont do that have significant consequences on our souls.

    Allowing wars, poverty, oppression and crime to continue i feel strongly is our fault collectively. I believe we as human beings have a responsiblity to eliminate poverty and such. While these things exists humanity i believe is to blame because if we really care there are options and resources available to wholly eliminate poverty but have thus far choosen not to do do because war and arms sales are profitable.

    Then where are the people uniting against war and violence war and military spending? Where is the movement for world peace? So we just enjoy our lives while others suffer?

    We can all come together and people can end wars and poverty if we really want to. Why then out of compassion for the suffering don’t we unite?

    The wrong and injustice in the world is allowed to continue simply because good people don’t speak up and unite. We have allowed our world to do this to itself. We can unite and turn around this ship, why don’t we? The question is not whether can do it but whether we really care about humanity.

    So karma decrees that peace and unity and happiness evades us as long as we don’t care and I believe we don’t
     
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  3. Vinayaka

    Vinayaka devotee
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    My 'defense' is in regard to the reality of caste today, which is really far far different from how it's portrayed by the western press. I've been to India, and never noticed caste at all. Movement between castes these days is incredibly widespread, just as job shift, rural to urban shift, and all the other shifting. Caste based discrimination is illegal.
     
  4. atanu

    atanu Member
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    I have not read the whole thread. In my opinion, the principle of karma is universal. Our desires, choices and mental and physical actions determine the outcome. The fact that you wrote the OP has led to certain results. Whether the results are beneficial or not you can only tell. To start with, why you made the OP must have had a reason. Katha Upanshad has this to say regarding the choices that we make:

    ”There are two paths—one is the ‘beneficial’ and the other is the ‘pleasant’. These two lead humans to very different ends. The pleasant is enjoyable in the beginning, but it ends in pain. The ignorant are snared to the pleasant and perish. But the wise are not deceived by its attractions, choose the beneficial, and finally attain happiness.”
    This, in general, is the teaching of all religions. So, I aver that the principle of karma is universal but its understanding and its applications vary across religions. The understanding is most developed in Hinduism and Buddhism, the two religions that teach continuity of the living soul/mind stream, until liberation (moksha or nirvana).
     
    #64 atanu, Jan 8, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2019
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  5. loverofhumanity

    loverofhumanity Well-Known Member
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    Although we understand things differently, I have great admiration for so many teachings of Hinduism like ahimsa and tolerance. It is a tribute to Hinduism that all religions can practise their Faith in India and even erect a Lotus Temple.

    The world has so much it can learn from Hinduism especially those nations which are intolerant towards different religions.
     
  6. stvdv

    stvdv Veteran Member

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    One of my favorite quotes on this is "Dharma protects those who protect Dharma"

    If this is true then it seems to me that "Karma is a universal as well as a Dharmic principle"
     
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  7. InvestigateTruth

    InvestigateTruth Well-Known Member

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    So, the purpose of reincarnation is to come back to this world to refine the soul everytime?
    When people return again and again, everytime their soul gets better, or it might be that, sometimes the soul gets better, and sometimes gets worst?
    If the idea of reincarnation is true, I don't know why I and almost all other people do not remember it. Very few people claim they remember it. Why is that?
     
    #67 InvestigateTruth, Jan 8, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2019
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  8. Vinayaka

    Vinayaka devotee
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    The Hindu belief is that generally it gets better, unless there is major unrighteousness (like in a brutal dictator) in which case it might take many lifetimes of suffering to get back to where you were. So it could be up and down, but generally improving. Some lessons are hard to learn. But generally the intent is to at least improve a little bit. We are all progressing towards moksha, and it is inevitable for all.

    So yes, you have it basically right. Thanks for that.
     
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  9. InvestigateTruth

    InvestigateTruth Well-Known Member

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    So then, does Karma determine in what form the person return to this world depending on how he did in the past life? So, for example, if a person did crimes, in the next life he would return in a poor family to suffer more? And if a person acted humanly in previous life, he returns in a comfortable family, so, there would be less suffering this time?
     
  10. Vinayaka

    Vinayaka devotee
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    My understanding is that it isn't quite that simple, but generally, yes. For example, as I explained earlier in the thread, you have sanchita karma. (The sum total of all karmas form all lives that are awaiting to remanifest) So in your example, it wouldn't be 'in the next life' but 'in some future life'. Karma doesn't happen just in the next life, but it will manifest in some future life.
     
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  11. InvestigateTruth

    InvestigateTruth Well-Known Member

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    So, you believe that God created such a system which has been working naturally and automatically, without Him interfering with it, as it works by itself?
     
  12. Vinayaka

    Vinayaka devotee
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    Basically, yes, although 'creation' isn't really an accurate term. The physical laws and the spiritual laws are also part of God. The Hindu view is that God isn't separate from His creation, but rather it's an extension. But the idea that it works well by itself, just like gravity, is accurate. We consider the law of karma as infallible, just like gravity. You can't escape the effects of gravity.
     
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  13. Jainarayan

    Jainarayan ॐ नमो भगवते वासुदेवाय
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    Hindus in general don't believe God wants us to suffer for any reason, especially not for him.
     
  14. Jainarayan

    Jainarayan ॐ नमो भगवते वासुदेवाय
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    It may not be through no fault of our own. There are those who believe (I am one of them) that a sufficiently spiritually-advanced soul can choose its next birth or births. It may choose to "suffer" for its own purposes... ameliorating past bad karma, gaining good karma, helping someone else's karma. Some of us believe we know each other throughout many lifetimes. We just don't know. I personally believe that many animals and even children who are abused, abandoned, neglected, choose this birth for the good of their rescuers or benefactors. It's a pretty selfless act that should gain oodles (I should use that word more often :D) of good karma. But who knows? :shrug:
     
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  15. Vinayaka

    Vinayaka devotee
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    Some folks take on prayaschitta penance to atone in this lifetime. Not understood outside of our paradigm. But those ho have done it will attest to it working.
     
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  16. Jainarayan

    Jainarayan ॐ नमो भगवते वासुदेवाय
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    That's the word! Thank you! :D
     
  17. YmirGF

    YmirGF Bodhisattva

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    I understand the various Karma concepts just fine and I do not accept karma as a being valid or actual. I will go so far as saying that action has consequences, beyond that, I'm not inclined to hyperventilate about whether something was good or bad karma. In the larger picture of reality, karma is irrelevant.
     
  18. Marcion

    Marcion Well-Known Member

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    He created the universe as a system with fixed laws in which everything is interconnected. If His will would try to change just a part of that system in a frivolous isolated way, the whole thing would collapse.
    Karma is the psycho-spiritual law that governs living entities leading to the liberation of their unit consciousness from bondage back to its original unity.
     
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  19. adrian009

    adrian009 Veteran Member
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    Thank you @Jainarayan ,
    That makes sense. I'm better appreciating how inextricably interwoven concepts of karma and reincarnation can be for many Hindus. It is an interesting idea that a soul gets to choose his next birth rather than a more enlightened being making that decision. I'm presuming there must be limited options for some souls based on accumulated karma. could a sociopath in this life wouldn't cheat the whole process and try to selfishly advance in the next life to escape the consequences of bad karma?
     
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  20. Jainarayan

    Jainarayan ॐ नमो भगवते वासुदेवाय
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    Very likely. The sociopath example is interesting, because what we consider sociopath is tied to the bodily form. The soul might choose that form for its own purposes. But this is conjecture on my part, picked up from gleanings here and there. I don't know if there are any "official" writings on it.
     
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