Karma in Buddhism



What is Karma in Buddhism?

The Sanskrit term Karma in Buddhism literally means an action or doing. Any sort of intentional activity or action whether mental, verbal, or physical is view as Karma. All good and bad activities or actions comprise Karma. All moral and immoral volition means Karma in Buddhism. Unintentional, unconscious or involuntary actions though technical deeds, do not constitute Karma, because volition, the most important factor in determining Karma is absent.

The Buddha says, “I pronounce that volition is Kamma. Having willed one acts by body, speech, and thought.”

Every volitional action of human being, except those of Buddha’s an Arahant’s, is called Karma. An exception is made in their case since they are conveying from both good and evil. They have eradicated ignorance and craving, the underlying foundations of Karma. This does not imply that the Buddhas and Arahants are latent. They are tirelessly active in working for real well-being and happiness of all. Their deeds accepted as moral or as good as creative power lacking in themselves. Understanding things as they truly are. They have finally shattered their cosmic binds i.e. the chain of cause and effect.

A few religions credit this unevenness to Karma, they vary from Buddhism. When they express that even unintentional activities should be view as Karma.

Also, read the following relevant articles:
Vipassana Meditation in Buddhism
Eightfold Path in Buddhism
The Four Noble Truths of Buddhism

Working of Karma in Buddhism

The mind is the most important feature in the working of Karma. Mind or consciousness color all our words and deeds. Which we experience at such particular moments. Mind perform all our bodily action, speech and thought. Acts or speaks with a wicked mind, pain follows. With a pure mind, happiness follows. Immaterial mind conditions all karmic activities.

Karma does not mean only past actions. It is the combination of both past and present deeds. In other words, we are the result of what we were, we will be the result of what we are. The present is offspring of the past and is the parent of the future, but the present is not always a true index of either the past or the future, such complex is the working of karma. For example, a murdered today may be a saint tomorrow, a good person yesterday may be a criminal today.

In this doctrine of karma, the Buddha said, “If you are good you will be happy if you are bad you will be unhappy.” Like attracts like, good generates good, evil creates evil. This is the law of karma. It is the law of cause and effect in the ethical state.

Karma and Vipaka

Karma is activity and Vipaka (fruit or result) is its response. Every object is accompanied by a shadow. All things being equal. Each volitional action is inevitably assisted by its due effect. Seed is like karma and fruit arising from the tree is the Vipaka effect or result. As karma may be good or bad, so may Vipaka, fruit be good or bad. As karma is mental, so Vipaka too is mental. According to the nature of the karma seed, it is experienced as happiness or bliss, unhappiness or misery. Anisamsa is the associated advantageous material conditions, such as prosperity, health, and longevity. At the point when Vipaka’s connected material conditions are disadvantageous. They are known as Adinava (evil consequences) and show up as poverty, ugliness, disease, short life expectancy and such.

By Kamma are implied the Moral and Immoral sorts of mundane consciousness. And By Vipaka, the resultant sorts of unremarkable awareness.

About Karma in Buddhism

Karma constitutes the twelve and eight types of immoral and moral consciousness respectively concern to the living or reactive state, five and four types of moral consciousness involving to realms of forms and formless state respectively.

About Vipaka

These twenty-nine types of awareness or consciousness are called karma. Since they have the ability to produce their due impacts naturally. Free of any outer agency. Those sorts of consciousness which one encounters as inevitable results of one’s moral and immoral considerations are called resultant consciousness relating to the Sentient Domain. The five types of resultant consciousness concerning the Realms of Form. The four types of resultant consciousness relating to the Formless Realms are called Vipaka or fruit of Karma.

karma of buddhism

Karma is a law in itself. It works in its own particular field without the intercession of any outside, autonomous ruling agency. Inherent in Kamma is the possibility of creating its due effect. The reason delivers the effect, the effect clarifies the reason. The seed produces the fruit, the fruit clarifies the seed, such is their relationship. Indeed, even so, are Kamma and its effect.

The Karma Mystery Revealed

Happiness and misery, which are a normal lot of humankind, are the inevitable effects of causes. From a Buddhist perspective, they are not rewards and punishments, assign by a supernatural, omniscient decision capacity to a spirit that has done good or evil. Buddhism that aggressively denies an emotionally made undying soul. The trust in natural law and equity which cannot be suspended by either an Almighty God or an All-humane Buddha. According to this natural law, acts bring their own rewards and punishments to the individual performer. Whether human justice discovers him or not. The Buddhist principle of Kamma does not expound such a fatalistic perspective.

The All-tolerant Buddha, who had no ulterior selfish motives. He did not teach this law of Kamma to ensure the rich and comfort the poor by promising deceptive satisfaction in a the great beyond. According to the Buddhist doctrine of Kamma, one is not continuously constraining. For Kamma is neither fate nor predestination. It imposes upon us by some mysterious unknown capacity to which we should powerlessly submit ourselves. It is one’s own doing responding on oneself, this one has the ability to redirect the course of Kamma to some extent. How far one diverts it, depends on oneself.

The Cause of Karma in Buddhism

Ignorance or not knowing things as they genuinely are is the main cause of Kamma. Subject to ignorance emerge Karmic activities, states the Buddha in the Paticca Samuppada (Dependent Origination). Associated with ignorance is its partner craving, the other root of Kamma. Evil actions are a condition of these two causes.

All good deeds of a worldling, relate with the three healthy roots of generosity, goodwill, and knowledge. All things consider respect as Karma because the two roots of ignorance and craving are asleep in him. The moral sorts of supramundane Path consciousness are not viewing as Kamma in light of the fact that they tend to destroy the two underlying two root causes.

The Doer (Performer) of Karma

Who is the doer of Kamma? Who reaps the fruit of Kamma? “Is it a kind of accumulation about a soul?”

As per Buddhism, there are two substances – apparent and ultimate. Apparent reality is a common traditional truth. Ultimate reality is theoretical truth.

Similarly, for conventional purposes, such terms as a man, woman, being, self and so forth are using. The so-called fleeting forms consist of psycho-physical phenomena which are constantly changing, not remaining for two consecutive moments the same.

Buddhists, in this way, do not have faith in an unchanging entity, in a performing apart from action, in a perceiver apart from observation, in a conscious subject behind awareness.

 Who then is the practitioner of Kamma? Who encounters the effect?

Volition or will is itself the practitioner. The feeling is itself the reaper of the fruits of activity. Aside from these pure mental states, there is none to sow and none to procure.

Read Buddha Quotes:
Buddha Quotes on Karma
Lord Buddha Thought on Happiness
Gautama Buddha Quotes on Life

Where is Karma?

“Store within the mind”, composes a specific psychoanalyst. “But usually inaccessible and to reach only by few. It is the entire record, without exception, of every experience. The individual has passed through, every impact felt, each impression received. The subconscious mind is not only a permanent record of individual experiences.

But also retains the impress of primeval impulses and tendencies. Which so far from being outgrown as we affectionately esteem them in civilizing a man. Subconsciously active and well suited to break out in disconcerting strength at unexpected moments.”

karma in buddhism

A Buddhist would make a similar declaration with an essential modification. Not put away inside any postulatory “psyche”. There is no evidence of any such repository or storage facility in this regularly-changing complex machinery of man. But dependent on the individual psycho-physical continuity or transition is every experience. The so-called being has passed through. Every influence felt every impression received, every characteristic –divine, human, or brutal – developed.

Conclusion of Karma in Buddhism

In short, the whole Karmic force is reliant on the dynamic mental transition ever prepare to manifest itself in diverse phenomena as an event arises. Karma is not said to be store someplace in this passing awareness or in some other part of the body. But dependent on mind and matter it rests manifesting itself at the fortunate moment. Neither fire nor breeze is store in any specific place, nor is Kamma store anywhere inside or outside the body.

Karma is an individual force and is transmitted from one existence to another. It plays the chief part in the molding of character and explains the marvelous phenomena of genius, infant prodigies, and so forth. The clear understanding of this doctrine is essential for the welfare of the world.


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *