Questions on the selected Subject, selected Topic:

What more can be said about Kamma?

Other Topics Under selected SUBJECT:

1. Unsub-divided General Information
2. Merit and Goodness in Society
4. Developing along Path, Details & Elaborations
5. Meditation
6. More perspective and perspectives
7. Stages on the Path to Enlightenment
8. Requisites of Enlightenment & Concepts Overview

SUBJECT: II. Comprehensive Intro. to Buddhism (from the Buddha and B. Bodhi)


Topic: 3. Kamma (and Merit)

The currently selected QUESTION:

What more can be said about Kamma?



Kamma (aka Karma): 2 major categories: wholesome and unwholesome (the criterion
for judging: underlying motives).

3 unwholesome roots: greed, hatred, and delusion. From these arise wide
variety of secondary defilements (e.g. anger, hostility, envy, arrogance,
presumptuousness, laziness)
And from three root defilements and secondary defilements arise defiled actions
(from a B. Bodhi Intro., ... Anthology ..., 2005 p. 146).


3 wholesome roots: generosity, loving-kindness, and wisdom.

With Enlightenment is Kamma that dismantles karmic causation.

Acceptance of principle of Kamma and its fruit is an essential component of right view
Right view (at best): understanding (fully):
4 Noble Truths
dependent origination
and non-self

Acceptance of the principle of Kamma is a radical transformation that enables us to
see external as reflection of internal (mind). That is: that that corresponds to karmic
tendencies of our minds.

10 kinds of unwholesome kamma:
3 bodily: killing, stealing, sexual misconduct
4 verbal: lying, malicious speech, harsh speech, idle speech
3 mental: covetousness, ill-will, and wrong view

Wholesome action is the exact opposites: abstinence from each of the above and/OR doing
its opposites (depending on the case)

Wholesome kamma is the support for the destruction of taints

10 courses for rebirth into good destinations (correspond to 10 types of Kamma):
* sense-sphere
* form-realm (minus grosser types of material form) (objective
counterparts of the first 3 jhanas)
Form-realm also contains 5 planes for non-returners.
* formless realm: rebirth among divas of great fruit (4th jhana): involves
disgust for perception. In this third (highest) realm: material form is
non-existent and bare mental processes exist.

BUT know that all realms are still impermanent

There are rebirths also which correspond with types of bad behavior.

Nibbana ( aka Nirvana ) transcends all conditioned planes of being.
Wholesome Kamma produces mundane benefits and enhancing conditions for
supra-mundane benefits.

[ Be sure to read the last Comment, below, for a clarification.:
This will give you a way to read this whole site as reality-based and fully rational (verifiable). ]

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Added by Brad on Sat 24th January 2015 1.37PM

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Comments about this question/Answer
I have heard one ask how to make sure of a fortunate rebirth by BradI have heard one ask how to make sure of a fortunate rebirth. Based on statements made by the Buddha (put together), I believe he would say:

Do not think about past, future, or present existence. To be fortunate upon death: You have, in life, through intentional actions earned merit (& generated & changed/created kamma). And, thus to be so fortunate, in life: you have engaged in what you have to do & gotten it DONE (even if it may not be finished).

Some relevant quotes re: the topic of the Comment above by BradSome relevant quotes re: the topic of the Comment above:

The Buddha said: "When, bhikkhus, a noble disciple has clearly seen with correct wisdom as it really is this dependent origination and these dependently arisen phenomenon, it is impossible that he will run back to the past thinking: 'Did I exist in the past? What was I in the past? How was I in the past?' OR that he will run forward into the future, thinking: 'Will I exist in the future? Will I not exist in the future? What will I be in the future? How will I be in the future? Having been what, what will I become in the future?' OR that he will now be inwardly confused about the present thus: 'Do I exist? Do I not exist? What am I? How am I? This being -- where has it come from, and where will it go?' ..."

"... When, bhikkhus, the Dhamma has thus been well-expounded by me, elucidated, disclosed, revealed, stripped of patchwork, this is enough for a clansman who has gone forth out of faith to arouse his energy thus: 'Willingly, let only my skin, sinews, and bones remain, and let the flesh and blood dry up in my body, but I will not relax my energy so long as I have not attained what can be attained by manly strength, by manly energy, by manly exertion'..."

"... Considering your own good, bhikkhus, it is enough to strive for the goal with diligence; considering the good of others, it is enough to strive for the goal with diligence; considering the good of both, it is enough to strive for the goal with diligence."

(quoted from the Nidanasamyutta, Book II, Connected Discourses)

Examples: Buddha refers to one's purpose by BradRelated to the Comment above: The Buddha clearly and repeatedly seems to refer to one's purpose fulfilled (OR achieving major goals) as: "life has been lived, what had to be done has been done". Here is a typical context:

"Through dispassion [his mind] is liberated. When it is liberated there comes the knowledge: 'It's liberated.' He understands: 'Destroying birth, the holy life has been lived, what had to be done has been done, there is no more for this state of being.'"

Buddhist Cosmology is largely extraneous by BradBelief in the Buddhist cosmology is at least largely extraneous:

Though this is my opinion, it would be very hard or impossible to refute:
I believe it is incumbent on me to point out that there is no need to believe the
Buddha's cosmology (i.e. believe in any after-life, happenings after death, _or_ reincarnation)
to fully obtain all the benefits of behaving and thinking as prescribed by the Buddha.
Furthermore, not only all the benefits will accrue if you know nothing about this
cosmology but it seems all the natural intrinsic motivations to progress down the path are
still there. [ I lived for quite a long while as a thorough-going practicing
Buddhist, knowing nothing about this cosmology (NOTHING) and after learning
about this teaching, I noted no further benefits. ]

A way I can view the Buddha's talks about gods and heavens and hells (and some
other matters) is: for some of his audiences, this might have been the only way to connect
with them (and then, after connecting, he could teach his wonderful system of
living). The pervasive concepts of Hinduism in the India where he taught may have
not infrequently required this approach to attract sufficient initial interest, even
from certain very good people. He perhaps knowingly sacrificed the consistency of
his belief system for the good of people -- this seems an interesting idea,
and we cannot rule it out: He was, perhaps, in a big sense "Bodhicitta" and sacrificing
for others. To the extent we cannot verify parts of his system for ourselves, as the Buddha
said we should ALWAYS do
, perhaps he would expect us to be able to have this
understanding, that I just expressed. Thus, he does not corrupt us as he did what
he had to do to be of benefit to other groups. (It is also helpful to keep in mind
that the Buddha taught in India for 45 years.)


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