the Law of Causality (karma)

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the Law of Causality (karma)

Postby enjitsu » Wed Oct 13, 2010 1:53 am

This topic will discuss the Law of Causality. If you understand the Law of Causality well then you are able to obtain enlightenment. If you use this method you are called a Causality Enlightenist.

Simply, the Law of Causality means that everything has a Cause and Effect. There cannot be one without the other. So when you do good deeds, good things will happen. Either in the present or in the future, perhaps even a future lifetime. This is what people mean when they are talking about Karma.

There is both personal karma and also group karma. Know that the Law of Causality is utterly fair. It is not biased in any way, and is the ultimate justice. All good you do and all bad you do have coresponding effects. If you experience difficulties it is a Karmic result of your past actions. This is a fundamental belief of Buddhism.

The Law of Causality basically states that every effect was generated by a cause. It is impartial and absolutely fair to everybody without differentiation.

So in previous lives, you lived your life and made certain decisions and took certain actions, these are causes. Some of the decisions and actions you took in previous lives would have had an immediate effect, some would have taken a short time to see the effect. Some decisions would take longer to see the effect. Then your lifespan in previous lives came to an end, everything was impartially reviewed (good and bad) and you were reincarnated as you deserved. The process is the same for everyone. When you are reincarnated you brought over the previous actions (good and bad) as well as causes which had not yet resulted in the effects being played out. (I.e., long term effects) (this is what is referred to as Karma specifically)

Some effects still need to play out. Think of actions/causes as deposits or withdrawls to your bank account, and your balance as your Karma. Those transactions have already taken place. What you can do to improve your Karma is to take actions now(make deposits), that will positively effect your Karma (bank account). Some of your positive actions will have immediate or short term effects, some will only resolve themselves after you have been reincarnated again.

The reason why good and bad things (effects) happen to people are because of causes, both in this life and your karma from previous lives. As the Law of Causality is utterly impartial and fair all causes generate effects and the effects play out for everyone without exception. You can also try to improve your situation by reading the Sutra's and doing as instructed in them. There are often specific actions you can take to help greatly mitigate specific poor actions in the past and it will say in the sutra in more detail.

For example the sutra might say something along the lines of, if in a past life you had done x, y ,z but now you might read, recite, understand, comprehend, uphold and relate even as little as a quatrain (4 lines) of this sutra to others then (positive benefits x, y, z listed)

How to deal with negative effects when they resolve themselves is to do either positive actions as expounded by the Buddha in Sutras or to Do Nothing. Doing Nothing is actually very powerful, not taking action is a kind of action. What you are really doing by not taking action is to Stoically take the full force of the effects of previous actions, and in doing so keeping in mind that it is just temporary and will pass. The doing positive actions approach is an attempt to mitigate to some degree the force of the effects you feel from previous actions. You might not be able to dodge All of the negative effects but you can greatly reduce it.

There is a link in the authorized books section where you can receive buddhist sutras translated by authentic monks. You might want to take a look at the Altar Sutra.

So to summarize if you do good things good stuff will happen, if you do bad things bad stuff will happen.
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Re: the Law of Causality (karma)

Postby ground » Wed Oct 13, 2010 6:32 am

Neither from an inherently identical entity,
Nor from an inherently different entity,
Nor from both,
Nor without a cause
Does anything anywhere, ever arise.

According to Nagarjuna, MMK1


And:


Is is not possible for omniscience to be produced without causes, because if it were everything could always be omniscient. If things were produced without reliance on something else, they could exist without constraints - there would be no reason why everything could not be omniscient. Therefore since all functional things arise only occasionally, they depend strictly on their causes. Omniscience too is rare because it does not occur at all times and in all places, and everything cannot become omniscient. Therefore it definitely depends on causes and conditions.

Also from among these causes and conditions you should cultivate correct and complete causes. If you put the wrong causes into practice, even if you work hard for a long time, the desired goal cannot be achieved. It will be like milking a [cow's] horn.
Likewise the result will not be produced when all causes are not put into effect. For example, if the seed or any other cause is missing, then the result, a sprout, and so forth will not be produced. Therefore, those who desire a particular result should cultivate its complete and unmistaken causes and conditions.

Kamalashila, Stages of Meditation.



Kind regards
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Re: the Law of Causality (karma)

Postby shel » Wed Oct 13, 2010 7:20 pm

enjitsu wrote:So to summarize...

Moral behavior is habit forming. :smile:
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Re: the Law of Causality (karma)

Postby swampflower » Thu Oct 14, 2010 3:02 am

This topic will discuss the Law of Causality. If you understand the Law of Causality well then you are able to obtain enlightenment. If you use this method you are called a Causality Enlightenist.


Causality Enlightenist...ha ha. Did you make this up?
Enlightenist is an old school philosophy, N'est-ce pas?
Oṃ Tāre Tuttāre Ture Svāhā
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Re: the Law of Causality (karma)

Postby Individual » Fri Oct 15, 2010 2:44 am

enjitsu wrote:So to summarize if you do good things good stuff will happen, if you do bad things bad stuff will happen.

:good:
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Re: the Law of Causality (karma)

Postby Huifeng » Fri Oct 15, 2010 5:03 am

Though that is the common expression, it's probably more accurate to say:

If you do good things, pleasant things will happen to you;
If you do bad things, unpleasant things will happen to you.

Otherwise, if "good" leads to "good", then it can easily fall into a type of infinite progression. One single good thing would be enough to have an infinitely recurring amount of good things as results.

In the Dharma, deeds or actions, which are causes, are classified as wholesome, unwholesome, mixed or neutral (we could add "immovable", too); whereas experiences, which are results, are classified as pleasant, unpleasant, or neither nor.

It often helps to distinguish the two types of classification into the two types of action-causes and experience-results, respectively, to avoid confusion and the possibility of a doctrine entailing infinite repetition.
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Re: the Law of Causality (karma)

Postby Nosta » Fri Oct 15, 2010 6:39 pm

There is no group karma, just people with common effects, suffering teh same things.I may rebirth in a country where i will be hungry, without food everyday, because in my last life i've done xyz action. But you my rebirt like me in that same country, hungry and without food, because of another bad action.

You can read that (that there is no karma group) here:
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... el394.html
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Re: the Law of Causality (karma)

Postby Individual » Fri Oct 15, 2010 8:58 pm

Huifeng wrote:Though that is the common expression, it's probably more accurate to say:

If you do good things, pleasant things will happen to you;
If you do bad things, unpleasant things will happen to you.

Otherwise, if "good" leads to "good", then it can easily fall into a type of infinite progression. One single good thing would be enough to have an infinitely recurring amount of good things as results.

In the Dharma, deeds or actions, which are causes, are classified as wholesome, unwholesome, mixed or neutral (we could add "immovable", too); whereas experiences, which are results, are classified as pleasant, unpleasant, or neither nor.

It often helps to distinguish the two types of classification into the two types of action-causes and experience-results, respectively, to avoid confusion and the possibility of a doctrine entailing infinite repetition.

You could say there is no individual karma either because there is no individual to attribute kamma to.

But because we all perceive subject and object as distinct, it is sometimes more or less clear and necessary to discuss kamma in different modes of explanation.

Comforting a person facing recent suffering--> "Hey, stuff happens. It's not your or anyone's fault."
Counseling a person troubled by morality-->"Everything you do will have a result, everything until now has been because of your actions."
Kamma understood through meditation-->"There is no action and no result".

Even the idea of group kamma might be an applicable form of speech for a given situation. It may be good for a society's morality to be told that they are responsible as a group. For western individualists, this idea is absurd, but it can serve to bolster one's confidence to think of oneself as part of a responsible group than an individual who sinks and swims on their own.
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Re: the Law of Causality (karma)

Postby Nosta » Sun Oct 17, 2010 9:24 pm

That some good point of views indeed.

:-)
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Re: the Law of Causality (karma)

Postby Heruka » Wed Oct 20, 2010 3:39 am

what do we make of karma as an explanation of ones imagined caste, the social standing perpetrated upon the masses?

after all, the elite are born from special wombs right?

if we consider the revolution of the buddhas teaching we can understand its underclass popularity, but what of the flip side, the well off, and merchant elites? what was in it for them?
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