Manatita is an esteemed author living in London, UK. He writes spiritual books, flash fiction and esoteric poetry, his favourite genre.
In Part one I introduced you to a bit of history, of some of the major players of the Mahabharata. We also talked a little about the immortality of the soul. In Part two I touched on the importance of Dharma and what it implies. Now I would like to touch on,
Karma and Reincarnation
We come now to where Sri Krishna teaches Arjuna the priceless wisdom of these two inseparable friends. Life itself is caught up in Karma. Every action will produce a reaction and every cause will produce an effect. It is neither good nor bad and in fact can be quite complex, so is not to be taken lightly.
We say in local parlance, that ‘what goes around comes around’ and our scriptures (Holy Bible) tells us that whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he reaps. The farmer tills the soil, awaits the rain, utilizes good manure and at the right time, he gets a bumper harvest. However, he has to do the work. The bad or neglectful farmer cannot reap the same results. This is just how the Universal Law works.
Shankya Philosophy puts it in a very sublime way: “Cause is the effect silently and secretly involved and effect is the cause actively and openly evolved.” - Sri Chinmoy’s commentary on the Gita. So, you see that they both rely on each other and are inseparable. Guruji teaches that karma will coil around us like a snake, we have to pay the price. Only if Grace or a Spiritual Master of the Highest Order intervenes, can it be changed.
Arjuna is confused, but finally, accepting Sri Krishna as his Guruji, asks for the Masters’ wisdom. Sri Krishna tells him that there never was a time that he, Arjuna, was not, neither will there be a time when he will cease to be. Put a different way:
“That which does not exist, can never come into existence, that which exists, can never cease to be.” The Gita. We worry so much about scriptures, about people … things. However, if we die, what does it matter? As long as we exist, everything else does.
If we don’t, of what use is scripture? So, Sri Krishna goes on to tell Arjuna, that the wise mourns neither the living nor the dead. All is in fact, in God and as I said in Part 1, the soul, is immortal. What dies? Where then is death?
“Birth is the passing of the soul from a lower to a higher body in the process of evolution, in the course of the soul’s journey of reincarnation.” -Sri Chinmoy.
Sri Krishna teaches Arjuna that they have had many births and that he, Sri Krishna, knows them all. He carries on with his immortal utterance:
“As a man casts of his worn out garments and puts on new clothes, so too, the soul casts of its worn-out garments and enter into a new form, for manifestation.” Sri Krishna. To continue:
“Even as man discards old clothes for the new ones, so the dweller in the body, the soul, leaving aside the worn-out bodies, enters into new bodies. The soul migrates from body to body.” The Gita of Sri Krishna.
Reincarnation exists for the development of the soul. We come into life with many desires and our Lord allows us to fulfill our desires. The wise say that we are on a wheel of Samsara, spinning and spinning, until such time as we have learnt life lessons, then we fall off. (Realize our Godhead, in other words… our true nature)
Life gives the soul an opportunity to realize and manifest its divinity and death allows it to take rest. Death is the road, life is the traveller, the soul is the guide. Death is the bedroom and life, is the living room. They are not separate. One is asleep and the other dynamic. Hence Sri Krishna urges Arjuna to fight … to fulfill his dharma (duty), Brahman or God, is the only reality and he, Arjuna, is made in Its image.
Arjuna is finally made aware, that dwelling on sense objects, would lead to attachments, attachments give birth to unfulfilled desires, which fuels anger. This creates delusion which leads to confusion of memory and man is lost.
So, Sri Krishna teaches Arjuna that Yoga is equanimity or skillful wisdom in action, not inaction.
In the true spirit of Sankhya knowledge, Arjuna is taught that both victory and defeat are imposters, rather like joy and pain, gain or loss. The great Rudyard Kipling mentions this in his immortal poem called ‘If.’
Types of Karma
Karma or action, can be performed by the heart, the mind and the body. There are three types of Karma:
- Sanchita Karma, is amassed or collected Karma. It is actions that we have sown consciously or unconsciously, by our own deeds, thoughts, words or volution. They come from our past life and also our present life, but has not yet borne fruit, has not yet been worked out.
- Prarabdha Karma, is that which we call fate or destiny. The karmic effects have begun but not yet finished. It is that part of Sanchita Karma, which is already in motion, while at the same time, we continue to sow new seeds for future reaping.
- Agami Karma is approaching or future Karma, that which is not yet complete and is done only by perfect Masters, for the good of humanity … for the good of the world.
The soul exists in all beings and is immortal. Yet it has an upward urge to be more complete, more perfect … more divine. Hence in the process of evolution, it passes from the lower to the higher, from body to body, “At each stage, it takes into itself the real value of all its earthly experiences. Thus, the soul grows, enriching itself, making its divinity more integral, more harmonious and more perfect.” -Sri Chinmoy
Have you found these series useful?
https://letterpile.com/religion/The-Bhagavad-Gita-The-Song-Celestial-Saturdays-Inspiration-23 Part 2
https://letterpile.com/religion/A-Glimpse-Into-the-Bhagavad-Gita-Part-1-The-Song-Celestial-Thursdays-Homily-for-the-Devout-10. Part 1
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