An Indian Civilizational Perspective

Law of Karma and Freedom

Law of karma comes from one shloka in Bhagwad Gita which is, in my view, certainly the most misunderstood. In that shloka, Krishna tells Arjun to do his Action and NOT have “Asakti” or attachment to the result.

Several commentators translate it as “Do Action but not worry about the result” .. in my view that is as nonsensical as it can possibly get!

Now, to fully understand this.. ask your self .. when you say you want to “Do Good” …. what do you mean? Are you saying you want to do an action that leads to “good” result? If so, then ask yourself – Is “Good” an adjective to the Action … or the Result? If you seriously question yourself, you will come to realize that Action has NO adjective! Action is COLORLESS!

Strangely all those who assert they want to “do good” also assert that only “God” can “ensure” anything. So, they obviously speak in two different ways.. no one can “Do Good”.. for the Result of any Action is NOT the prerogative of the doer!

It is also not the prerogative of the “God”. If it was, then God would be bound by the Law of Karma also!

Now, in Gita, besides talking about Law of Karma, Krishna also tells us that we need to go beyond Maya or illusion – which is “Trigunmayi” (of three Gunas.. or characters).. the Good (Sattvik), the Neutral (Rajasik) and the Bad (Tamasik). Going BEYOND all these Gunas. .. is going beyond Maya.

Therefore EVEN if God, in his Infinite Piety was to do “Good”, he would be bound by Maya! So God, CANNOT, by definition “do” anything!

How do you go beyond the ‘Circle of Karma’? By breaking the link between Action And Result. Our Actions are not actions.. but reactions. They have their own results. When we do NOT bring the baggage of the results (or sum total of the past Karmas) to an “event” or a moment…. then in that moment we are set free!

This is PRECISELY what Krishnamurti also said. In fact JK spent his whole life defining how to break free of Law of Karma in an entirely new way…. which, nevertheless was TOTALLY in consonance with Krishna’s Gita… and still no one really paid attention!

I personally reject the Inertia effect that is usually linked to Law of Karma – where we are told that “soul” (or basically sum total of our Karmas/deeds/thoughts .. all synonyms) takes its time to “dissipate” the baggage of Karma. The results of past action (or Sanchit Karmas) will be faced by a person.. but THAT does not make you BOUND by those results.

What sets you free is when your Actions are NOT linked to the Results of your past actions! That can happen anytime! And obviously “Time” has NOTHING to do with breaking that link and the Karmic Cycle! So quit waiting for 84 lakh births.. and break that cycle in this “moment”!

In fact a person who is living (getting to face results of past karmas) AND Free is known as Jivan mukta (or free from “life”). Such a person’s Karmas are still “hitting” him… but he is no more affected.. as he has freed himself of the link between Action and Result.. and is no longer creating new Result-creating-Karma/Action!

That’s how simple it is. There is no ambiguity anywhere.

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