_is a concept in Hinduism which explains causality through a system where beneficial effects are derived from past beneficial actions and harmful effects from past harmful actions, creating a system of actions and reactions throughout a soul’s reincarnated lives forming a cycle of rebirth. The causality is said to be applicable not only to the material world but also to our thoughts, words, actions and actions that others do under our instructions
Everything that we have ever thought, spoken, done or caused is karma, as is also that which we think, speak or do this very moment.
_literally means “deed” or “act”, and more broadly names the universal principle of cause and effect, action and reaction, which Hindus believe governs all consciousness
_through actions that we perform ourselves
_through actions others perform under our instructions
Hindu scriptures divide karma into three kinds:
_is the accumulated karma
It is the sum of one’s past karmas_all actions, good and bad, from one’s past lives follow through to the next life
It would be impossible to experience and endure all karmas in one lifetime. From this stock of sanchita karma, a handful is taken out to serve one lifetime and this handful of actions, which have begun to bear fruit and which will be exhausted only on their fruit being enjoyed and not otherwise, is known as_
Prarabdha karma =
_Fruit-bearing karma is the portion of accumulated karma that has “ripened” and appears as a particular problem in the present life.
_is everything that we produce in the current life. All kriyamana karmas flow in to sanchita karma and consequently shape our future. Only in human life we can change our future destiny. After death we lose Kriyā Shakti (ability to act) and do (kriyamana) karma until we are born again in another human body.
_meaning “continuous flow”
_is the repeating cycle of birth, life and death (reincarnation) as well as one’s actions and consequences in the past, present, and future
_In Hinduism, it is avidya, or ignorance, of one’s true self that leads to ego-consciousness of the body and the phenomenal world. This grounds one in kāma (desire) and the perpetual chain of karma and reincarnation. Through egotism and desire one creates the causes for future becoming. The state of illusion that gives rise to this is known as Maya.
Broadly speaking, the celibate holy life (brahmacarya) which leads to liberation is a path of self-purification by which the effects of negative karmas are avoided.
Reasons for Reincarnation_
Hindus provide several reasons why the jiva takes on various physical bodies_
To experience the fruits of one’s karmas_
This is the main reason for rebirth. Sattvika (good or righteous) karmas reward one with the pleasures of Svarga. Rajas (pleasure-seeking) karmas reward one with mrutyuloka (mortal realm or earth). And Tamas karmas (actions related to inertia, laziness and evil) condemn one to patala-loka.
To satisfy one’s desires_
When a person indulges in material pleasures, he or she subsequently develops a stronger desire to enjoy more of it (Vāsanā). This unending craving to satisfy one’s desires causes the jiva to assume new physical bodies.
To complete one’s unfinished sadhana_
When an aspirant making spiritual efforts for liberation from maya dies without attaining his or her goal, the jiva gets as a natural cause-effect another human body to complete its sadhana.
To fulfil a debt_
When a jiva is indebted to another jiva, it gets a human birth to fulfil its debt and receive what is owed to it. The jiva comes in the form of a relative, friend or an enemy.
To undergo sufferings because of a great soul’s curse_
A person’s grave error or sin may incur the wrath or displeasure of God or a Rishi. This results in the jiva of that person getting another birth, not necessarily into a human body.
To attain moksha_
By the grace and compassion of God or a God-realized guru, a jiva gets a human body to purge itself of the layers of base instincts.
The Hindu Yoga traditions hold various beliefs Moksha may be achieved by_
Love of Ishwar/God (see bhakti movement, see Mirabai)
_psycho-physical meditation (Raja Yoga)_
discrimination of what is real and unreal through intense contemplation (Jnana Yoga)
_and through Karma Yoga, the path of selfless action that subverts the ego and enforces understanding of the unity of all.
_literally means an “object of human pursuit”.It is a key concept in Hinduism, and refers to the four proper goals or aims of a human life.
_The four puruṣārthas are
_Dharma (righteousness, moral values)
Dharma in Hinduism, is an organizing principle that applies to human beings in solitude, in their interaction with human beings and nature, as well as between inanimate objects, to all of cosmos and its parts. It refers to the order and customs which make life and universe possible, and includes behaviors, rituals, rules that govern society, and ethics. Hindu dharma includes the religious duties, moral rights and duties of each individual, as well as behaviors that enable social order, right conduct, and those that are virtuous.
is one of four age-based life stages discussed in ancient and medieval era Indian texts. The four asramas are: Brahmacharya (student), Grihastha (householder), Vanaprastha (retired) and Sannyasa (renunciation).
The Ashramas system is one facet of the Dharma concept in Hinduism. It is also a component of the ethical theories in Indian philosophy, where it is combined with four proper goals of human life (Purusartha), for fulfillment, happiness and spiritual liberation
_Artha (social, legal, economic and worldly affairs)
The word artha literally translates as “meaning, sense, goal, purpose or essence” depending on the context. Artha is also a broader concept in the scriptures of Hinduism. As a concept, it has multiple meanings, all of which imply “means of life”, activities and resources that enables one to be in a state one wants to be in.
_Kāma (pleasure, psychological values)
Means desire, wish, longing in Indian literature. Refers to any desire, wish, passion, longing, pleasure of the senses, the aesthetic enjoyment of life, affection, or love, with or without sexual connotations. It is considered an essential and healthy goal of human life when pursued without sacrificing the other three goals.
_Mokṣa (liberation, spiritual values)
Sāmkhya and Yoga systems_
In Sāmkhya literature, liberation is commonly referred to as kaivalya. In this school, kaivalya means the realization of purusa, the principle of consciousness, as independent from mind and body, as different from prakrti.
_the emphasis is on the attainment of knowledge, vidyā or jñāna, as necessary for salvific liberation,
_Yoga’s purpose is then seen as a means to remove the avidyā – that is, ignorance or misleading/incorrect knowledge about one self and the universe.
This takes the form of questions about self, what is true, why do things or events make us happy or cause suffering, and so on.
considers moksha achievable by removing avidya (ignorance). Moksha is seen as a final release from illusion, and through knowledge (anubhava) of one’s own fundamental nature, which is Satcitananda.
Advaita holds there is no being/non-being distinction between Atman, Brahman, and Paramatman. The knowledge of Brahman leads to moksha, where Brahman is described as that which is the origin and end of all things, the universal principle behind and at source of everything that exists, consciousness that pervades everything and everyone.
The Dvaita (dualism) traditions_
define moksha as the loving, eternal union with God (Vishnu) and considered the highest perfection of existence. Dvaita schools suggest every soul encounters liberation differently.
God as the object of love, for example, a personified monotheistic conception of Shiva or Vishnu. By immersing oneself in the love of God, one’s karmas slough off, one’s illusions decay, and truth is lived. Both the worshiped and worshiper gradually lose their illusory sense of separation and only One beyond all names remains.
Defines avidya and moksha differently from the Advaita tradition. Avidya is a focus on Self, vidya is focus on a loving God. Mukti, to Vishistadvaita school, is release from such avidya, towards the intuition and eternal union with God (Vishnu)
In this life_
jivanmukti, and the individual who has experienced this state is called jivanmukta (self-realized person).
Some contrast jivanmukti with videhamukti (moksha from samsara after death).Jivanmukti is a state that transforms the nature, attributes and behaviors of an individual.
Virtues and ethical premises are considered as necessary for an individual to achieve a self-realized, enlightened, liberated state of existence (moksha).
In its Yoga school, they are described in first two of eight limbs (steps, branches, components).
The first limb is called Yamas, which include virtuous self-restraints_
The ten yamas listed by Śāṇḍilya Upanishad, as well as by Svātmārāma are:
Ahiṃsā_ अहिंसा_ Nonviolence
Satya_ सत्य_ Truthfulness
Asteya_ अस्तेय_ Not stealing
Brahmacharya ब्रह्मचर्य_ Continence
Kṣamā_ क्षमा_ Forgiveness
Dhṛti_ धृति_ Fortitude
Dayā_ दया_ Compassion
Ārjava_ आर्जव_ Non-hypocrisy_ Sincerity
Mitāhāra_ मितहार_ Measured diet
Śauca_ शौच_ Purity_ Cleanliness
The second limb is called Niyamas which include virtuous habits, behaviors and observances_
The Hatha Yoga Pradipika lists the ten niyamas in the following order_
Tapas: persistence, perseverance in one’s purpose, austerity
Santoṣa_ contentment, acceptance of others and of one’s circumstances as they are, optimism for self
Āstikya_ faith in Real Self (jnana yoga, raja yoga), belief in God (bhakti yoga), conviction in Vedas/Upanishads (orthodox school)
Dāna_ generosity, charity, sharing with others
Īśvarapūjana_ worship of the Ishvara (God/Supreme Being, Brahman True Self, Unchanging Reality)
Siddhānta vakya śrāvaṇa_ listening to the ancient scriptures
Hrī_ remorse and acceptance of one’s past, modesty, humility
Mati_ think and reflect to understand, reconcile conflicting ideas
Japa_ mantra repetition, reciting prayers or knowledge