Understanding of karma

Understanding of karma

Postby kng » Mon May 26, 2014 3:39 pm

Hi everyone

I am not sure if you will like my post, but I still find the topic itself worth a discussion. I know that I can't request that, but I would like to kindly ask you, that if you wish to discuss the validity of Aro gTer in general, please do that in separate topic. But feel free to discuss validity of teaching contained in this particular video.

Here you can find the link:

Code: Select all
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MyDaznDqjhc


For those who would wish to participate in discussion, without having to watch the video, maybe you could suggest some sources from which to study karma or give overview about karma from the point of view of nine vehicles.

Thank you very much

kng
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Re: Understanding of karma

Postby Malcolm » Mon May 26, 2014 4:12 pm

kng wrote:
For those who would wish to participate in discussion, without having to watch the video, maybe you could suggest some sources from which to study karma or give overview about karma from the point of view of nine vehicles.


The point of view of karma in the conventional is the same for all nine vehicles. In other words, Dzogchen does not deviate in any significant way from the standard presentation of Karma given in chapter 4 of the Abhidharmakośa.

There is no karma in the ultimate, so in that respect too, the point of view of all nine vehicles is the same.

The treatment of karma absolutely does not change from one vehicle to the next.
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འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


One who explains any Dharma
without possessing trustworthy scriptures,
has a conceptual nature,
spoiling himself and spoiling others.

-- Ghanavyūha Sūtra
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Re: Understanding of karma

Postby Andrew108 » Mon May 26, 2014 4:21 pm

Malcolm wrote:
kng wrote:
For those who would wish to participate in discussion, without having to watch the video, maybe you could suggest some sources from which to study karma or give overview about karma from the point of view of nine vehicles.


The point of view of karma in the conventional is the same for all nine vehicles. In other words, Dzogchen does not deviate in any significant way from the standard presentation of Karma given in chapter 4 of the Abhidharmakośa.

There is no karma in the ultimate, so in that respect too, the point of view of all nine vehicles is the same.

The treatment of karma absolutely does not change from one vehicle to the next.


Really? Dzogchen accepts a conventional view of karma?
The Blessed One said:

"What is the All? Simply the eye & forms, ear & sounds, nose & aromas, tongue & flavors, body & tactile sensations, intellect & ideas. This, monks, is called the All. Anyone who would say, 'Repudiating this All, I will describe another,' if questioned on what exactly might be the grounds for his statement, would be unable to explain, and furthermore, would be put to grief. Why? Because it lies beyond range." Sabba Sutta.
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Re: Understanding of karma

Postby Malcolm » Mon May 26, 2014 4:38 pm

Andrew108 wrote:
Really? Dzogchen accepts a conventional view of karma?


Very much so, as Garland of Pearls Tantra [one of seventeen tantras] states:

One is placed in the dungeon of name and matter
in the castle of the three realms,
tortured with the barbs of ignorance and so on,
oppressed by the thick darkness of samsara,
attached to the salty taste of desire,
bound by the neck with the noose of confusion,
burned with the hot fire of hatred,
head covered with pride,
setting a rendezvous with the mistress of jealousy,
surrounded by the army of enmity...
tied by the neck with the noose of subject and object, [29b]
stuck in the mud of successive traces
and handcuffed with the ripening of karma.
Having been joined with the ripening of karma,
one takes bodies good and bad,
one after another like a water wheel,
born into each individual class.
Having crossed at the ford of self-grasping,
one sinks into the ocean of suffering
and one is caught by the heart on the hook of the three lowers realms.
One is bound by oneself; the afflictions are the enemy.


The whole purpose of practicing rushan, especially outer rushan, is to eliminate the causes of birth in the six lokas.
http://www.atikosha.org
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http://www.bhaisajya.guru
http://www.sakyapa.net
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


One who explains any Dharma
without possessing trustworthy scriptures,
has a conceptual nature,
spoiling himself and spoiling others.

-- Ghanavyūha Sūtra
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Re: Understanding of karma

Postby smcj » Mon May 26, 2014 5:08 pm

...feel free to discuss validity of teaching contained in this particular video.

Well he got the whole "habit is a facet of karma" thing ok, which is usually not handled very well. But then he denies that the idea that events in one's life are the results of karma, which is not how I've heard it said by all the traditional teachers and texts I've come across in 30+ years. That's ok if he is presenting it as his opinion, but he is presenting it as the buddhist perspective.

My position is that you can believe or not believe whatever you want, and you are welcome to express your opinion, but please do not distort the teachings to fit your your limited viewpoint. See my signature below.
There is a tradition of making a distinction between two different perspectives on the nature of emptiness: one is when emptiness is presented within a philosophical analysis of the ultimate reality of things, in which case it ought to be understood in terms of a non-affirming negative phenomena. On the other hand, when it is discussed from the point of view of experience, it should be understood more in terms of an affirming negation.
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Re: Understanding of karma

Postby Andrew108 » Mon May 26, 2014 6:22 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Andrew108 wrote:
Really? Dzogchen accepts a conventional view of karma?


Very much so, as Garland of Pearls Tantra [one of seventeen tantras] states:

One is placed in the dungeon of name and matter
in the castle of the three realms,
tortured with the barbs of ignorance and so on,
oppressed by the thick darkness of samsara,
attached to the salty taste of desire,
bound by the neck with the noose of confusion,
burned with the hot fire of hatred,
head covered with pride,
setting a rendezvous with the mistress of jealousy,
surrounded by the army of enmity...
tied by the neck with the noose of subject and object, [29b]
stuck in the mud of successive traces
and handcuffed with the ripening of karma.
Having been joined with the ripening of karma,
one takes bodies good and bad,
one after another like a water wheel,
born into each individual class.
Having crossed at the ford of self-grasping,
one sinks into the ocean of suffering
and one is caught by the heart on the hook of the three lowers realms.
One is bound by oneself; the afflictions are the enemy.


The whole purpose of practicing rushan, especially outer rushan, is to eliminate the causes of birth in the six lokas.


Yes agreed, but if Dzogchen accepted a conventional view of karma then one would think that one needs to accumulate vast stores of merit and purify oceans of negativities. For example:

"Bodhisattvas do not understand that those objects are their own Presence. Seeing those objects as objects to be purified, they try to purify their own essence."
The Blessed One said:

"What is the All? Simply the eye & forms, ear & sounds, nose & aromas, tongue & flavors, body & tactile sensations, intellect & ideas. This, monks, is called the All. Anyone who would say, 'Repudiating this All, I will describe another,' if questioned on what exactly might be the grounds for his statement, would be unable to explain, and furthermore, would be put to grief. Why? Because it lies beyond range." Sabba Sutta.
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Re: Understanding of karma

Postby Malcolm » Mon May 26, 2014 6:31 pm

Andrew108 wrote:Yes agreed, but if Dzogchen accepted a conventional view of karma then one would think that one needs to accumulate vast stores of merit and purify oceans of negativities.



Khenpo Ngachung, someone who attained the pinnacle of Dzogchen realization in the last century, and then wrote of his experiences states:

In any system of sutra or tantra, without gathering the accumulations and purifying obscurations, Buddhahood can never be attained. Though the system of gathering accumulations and purifying obscurations is different, in this respect [dzogchen] is the same.
http://www.atikosha.org
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://www.bhaisajya.guru
http://www.sakyapa.net
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


One who explains any Dharma
without possessing trustworthy scriptures,
has a conceptual nature,
spoiling himself and spoiling others.

-- Ghanavyūha Sūtra
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Re: Understanding of karma

Postby asunthatneversets » Mon May 26, 2014 6:46 pm

Someone shared this from Tulku Pema Rigtsal some time ago, good insight for this thread:

"Until our pure presence is a constant, until we attain fearless confidence, we must attend to karmic causality, vows and samayas, accumulation of merit, abstention from vice, and so forth. As Padmasambhava famously said, quoted in The Chronicles of Padmasambhava, which were revealed by Orgyen Lingpa, My view is higher than the sky; My karma is finer than barley flour. Pay attention to karmically effected events with the same care we reserve for protection of the eyes. But at the same time, such events should not be seen as real and true. Quoted in The Samye Chronicles, Padmasambhava again says, 'Maharaj! In my tantra it is the view that leads; but don’t let your conduct bend toward the view. If you do let it stray, you take the black demonic sophistic view that may justify any wicked action by emptiness. But on the other hand, don’t let the view tend toward conduct because if you do, trapped by notions of concrete materialism and specific attributes, the occasion for liberation will never arise.' Due to his misconception of karmic cause and effect, Tarpa Nakpo was born in hell and then reborn as Rudra. For further details of this story, browse through the tantra The Discourse of the General Assembly. Tarpa Nakpo’s fate was determined by his contempt for karmic repercussion in his confusion about the causal process. As Jowoje Atisha said in The Lamp of the Path, until concepts are exhausted, there is karma; believe in the repercussions of karma."

And this from Longchenpa:

"Some say: 'Cause and effect [karma], compassion and merits are the dharma for ordinary people, and it will not lead to enlightenment. O great yogis! You should meditate upon the ultimate meaning, effortless as space.'

These kinds of statements are the views of the utmost nihilism, they have entered the path of the most inferior. It is astonishing to expect the result while abandoning the cause."
- rdzogs pa chen po sems nyid ngal gso
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Re: Understanding of karma

Postby smcj » Mon May 26, 2014 11:26 pm

...feel free to discuss validity of teaching contained in this particular video.

p.s. This video is a perfect example of why I don't trust white guys with the title "lama" to get it right.
There is a tradition of making a distinction between two different perspectives on the nature of emptiness: one is when emptiness is presented within a philosophical analysis of the ultimate reality of things, in which case it ought to be understood in terms of a non-affirming negative phenomena. On the other hand, when it is discussed from the point of view of experience, it should be understood more in terms of an affirming negation.
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Re: Understanding of karma

Postby kng » Thu May 29, 2014 4:52 pm

I would like to share with you an interesting video of Igor Berkhin(student of Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche, SMS teacher)

Code: Select all
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hZkUUwbzuHM


You can find the relevant sequence when you go to 34:39, here I offer self-made transcript:

"For example in dzogchen teaching, which is somehow different from other buddhist teachings, we do not
say that, for example for meeting the teaching of Buddha we need to have some good causes, some merits
etc., we need to do something good during many lifetimes and then as a result we meet this high
teaching, that can help us to free ourselves, to become liberated. In dzogchen teachings we say, we are lucky.
We have good luck of meeting this teaching. And this is just good luck. This is something that
just happened. We are meeting this teaching, it does not mean, that we are immediately interested
in that teaching, but this interest can evolve gradualy. With the time passing it can evolve this
interest. But very fact of meeting the teaching is not a result of some cause. In dzogchen teaching
we call it good luck."

and it can be usefull to read the description of video from Igor where he says that:

"Note. When I'm talking about causes for knowledge and good luck it doesn't mean that we encounter the teaching without a cause (that would be a view called murtugpa in Tibetan). "Good luck" refers to our fortune to have connection with somebody who has knowledge. And this connection becomes a cause for meeting the teaching. And there are different ways how such connection can be created. If I'm an insect and somebody just by chance steps on me and kills me, ordinarily we would say that it is a result of my bad karma. But if the one who steps on me is on a sprirtual path and this is the first time I meet something like that then I can say that I was very lucky to be killed this way.:-))))"
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Re: Understanding of karma

Postby Malcolm » Thu May 29, 2014 5:02 pm

kng wrote:
"For example in dzogchen teaching, which is somehow different from other buddhist teachings, we do not
say that, for example for meeting the teaching of Buddha we need to have some good causes, some merits
etc., we need to do something good during many lifetimes and then as a result we meet this high
teaching, that can help us to free ourselves, to become liberated.


Berkhin has a little misunderstanding here. We say that people who meet Dzogchen (and Dharma in general) are fortunate, why are they fortunate? Because they have the merit to meet the teachings. Why do they have that merit, because of positive actions performed over countless lifetimes.
http://www.atikosha.org
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http://www.bhaisajya.guru
http://www.sakyapa.net
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


One who explains any Dharma
without possessing trustworthy scriptures,
has a conceptual nature,
spoiling himself and spoiling others.

-- Ghanavyūha Sūtra
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Re: Understanding of karma

Postby dude » Fri May 30, 2014 5:51 am

smcj wrote:
...feel free to discuss validity of teaching contained in this particular video.

Well he got the whole "habit is a facet of karma" thing ok, which is usually not handled very well. But then he denies that the idea that events in one's life are the results of karma, which is not how I've heard it said by all the traditional teachers and texts I've come across in 30+ years. That's ok if he is presenting it as his opinion, but he is presenting it as the buddhist perspective.

My position is that you can believe or not believe whatever you want, and you are welcome to express your opinion, but please do not distort the teachings to fit your your limited viewpoint. See my signature below.



, but please do not distort the teachings to fit your your limited viewpoint. See my signature below


That's exactly where I'm coming from.
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Re: Understanding of karma

Postby kng » Sun Jan 04, 2015 11:42 am

I am still thinking about it. Especially this part:

2:43
Code: Select all
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gaHnQml59E0


Here my transcription, possibly with mistakes as I am not native english speaker


"Accidents can happen. People die in accidents and it is not their fault. People... When large numbers of people are killed….
I have read, I remember, an interview, an interesting interview which has been conducted by a particular buddhist professor with a particular buddhist lama on a subject of karma.
And the professor was really checking out what this lama seemed to believe. And I think the professor has asked him about the holocaust. Like all those millions who had been put to death, you know was that their karma? Was that… And …
And the teacher... And this is an eminent Rinpoche, said, there must have been something for all those people to suffer in that way.
There must have been something in their joint, their collective karma that was responsible for that, for such a thing to have happened.
And even on the printed page it was pretty clear that the Buddhist professor absolutely loathe that answer, that he did not respect it, that is not the buddhist view, it is a totally shameful thing for a buddhist teacher to put forward such a view. That because bad things were done to people, they must have been somehow responsible for that. That is not buddhism!"


I understood buddhist concept of karma in a way, that people who died in holocaust were responsible for their death, because they commited something bad in the past(for example killing other beings). Which seems to be in contradiction with following part:

"And even on the printed page it was pretty clear that the Buddhist professor absolutely loathe that answer, that he did not respect it, that is not the buddhist view, it is a totally shameful thing for a buddhist teacher to put forward such a view. That because bad things were done to people, they must have been somehow responsible for that. That is not buddhism!"

Do you find explanation for this?

Please, if you want to participate, discuss the particular topic.

Thank you

kng
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Re: Understanding of karma

Postby Ayu » Sun Jan 04, 2015 1:15 pm

kng wrote:I am still thinking about it. Especially this part:

2:43
Code: Select all
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gaHnQml59E0


Here my transcription, possibly with mistakes as I am not native english speaker


"Accidents can happen. People die in accidents and it is not their fault. People... When large numbers of people are killed….
I have read, I remember, an interview, an interesting interview which has been conducted by a particular buddhist professor with a particular buddhist lama on a subject of karma.
And the professor was really checking out what this lama seemed to believe. And I think the professor has asked him about the holocaust. Like all those millions who had been put to death, you know was that their karma? Was that… And …
And the teacher... And this is an eminent Rinpoche, said, there must have been something for all those people to suffer in that way.
There must have been something in their joint, their collective karma that was responsible for that, for such a thing to have happened.
And even on the printed page it was pretty clear that the Buddhist professor absolutely loathe that answer, that he did not respect it, that is not the buddhist view, it is a totally shameful thing for a buddhist teacher to put forward such a view. That because bad things were done to people, they must have been somehow responsible for that. That is not buddhism!"


I understood buddhist concept of karma in a way, that people who died in holocaust were responsible for their death, because they commited something bad in the past(for example killing other beings). Which seems to be in contradiction with following part:

"And even on the printed page it was pretty clear that the Buddhist professor absolutely loathe that answer, that he did not respect it, that is not the buddhist view, it is a totally shameful thing for a buddhist teacher to put forward such a view. That because bad things were done to people, they must have been somehow responsible for that. That is not buddhism!"

Do you find explanation for this?

Please, if you want to participate, discuss the particular topic.

Thank you

kng

This topic gets extreme quickly very, very heated in German buddhist forums. Just mention the words "holocaust and karma" and people will soon start to bang their heads and threaten eachother with bringing them to court...

My conclusion is: if you want to discuss karma for to comprehend it, leave out extreme examples like holocaust, children's killing, rape and all this. The matter is difficult enough to understand. These heavy examples just disturb the minds ability to understand anything.
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*** May these efforts be helpful.
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Re: Understanding of karma

Postby Ayu » Sun Jan 04, 2015 1:19 pm

The main misunderstanding is to think karma is about guilt and innocence.
Riping of bad karma is a natural normal thing and it happens not only once to certain people but to everybody all the time with time delay.
Metta, Karuna, Mudita, Upekha
*** May these efforts be helpful.
Djang chub sem chog rinpoche, ma kye pa nam kye gyur chig. Kye pa nyam pa me pa yang, gong nä gong du phel war sho._()_
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Re: Understanding of karma

Postby kng » Sun Jan 04, 2015 4:38 pm

Thank you for your answer, should my post be deleted?
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Re: Understanding of karma

Postby Sherlock » Sun Jan 04, 2015 4:53 pm

Some lamas who went through torture and criticism under the Cultural Revolution also treated that as part of their negative karma ripening.
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Re: Understanding of karma

Postby Ayu » Sun Jan 04, 2015 5:04 pm

kng wrote:Thank you for your answer, should my post be deleted?

No, it was not my intention to critisize. :emb:
I was writing as user, not as mod, about my personell experiences with this topic.

Karma is not only about the big things that happen. The word is that even the slightest blowing of air on your cheek happens due to karma. But why and how exactly only a buddha can realize.
Metta, Karuna, Mudita, Upekha
*** May these efforts be helpful.
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Re: Understanding of karma

Postby Konchok Namgyal » Thu Jan 08, 2015 4:35 pm

To fully understand Karma one would have to be able to know each and every one of our previous lives, how we lived and died , what actions we took and what the results were ......
Having a basic understanding of Karma helps us to understand how our present activities will effect our current and next incarnation.
Only the Buddhas can understand Karma fully, however .
Trying to fully decipher our own Karma is like trying to figure out who shot the arrow that has pierced us rather than getting treated for the wound.
The treatment of course is The Teachings of the Buddha, and only by following this path can the endless cycle of Karma...birth/rebirth be ended.
Recognize that your mind is the unity of being empty and cognizant, suffused with knowing. When your attention is extroverted, you fall under the sway of thoughts. Let your attention recognize itself. Recognize that it is empty. That which recognizes is the cognizance. You can trust at that moment that these two – emptiness and cognizance – are an original unity. Seeing this is called self-knowing wakefulness. ~ Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche
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Re: Understanding of karma

Postby Lucjan » Tue Jan 13, 2015 9:20 pm

Karma is the linkage of causes and their effects. There seems to always be a preoccupation with the effect side of the equation, particularly, AFTER the effect has ripened. This is typical human nature of humans in samsara. Objectively, until we are irreversibly self-realized, we will either be producing karmic causes by our intention or unconsciously "functioning" as agents of karma. Virtually everyone has a basic understanding of karma due to our capacity for pattern-recognition. But this capacity is limited in unenlightened beings. So, we only recognize certain outer patterns that are more or less obvious. Sometimes, although we may in fact see inner patterns that completely overrule the outer pattern, we ignore this insight due to our delusive craving for the outer. But in any case, we are always either producing karmic causes or being unconscious karmic agents. The latter is the case when we unknowingly step on an insect, for example. Even though that unconscious killing does not initiate the karmic effect of murder for us, due to our direct physical connection to the death we do become karmically linked to the insect with the specific karmic characteristics of accidental death. If, on the other hand we intentionally rescue an insect, such as a cricket from the claws of a cat, a karmic effect will accrue to us directly because the act was intentional. And then there are four (sometimes taught as 3) factors that determine the weight of the karmic effect: 1. the idea comes to mind 2. a plan is made to carry out the idea 3. the act is perpetrated 4. there is satisfaction. The weight of the karma increases as the four factors append, all four together promising a complete karma effect. So, because we presently dwell in the delusory dualistic state of subject and object, Guru Rinpoche admonished his followers to take great care of karmas, even those that seem as small as a single speck of finely ground barley flour.
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