The Laws of Karma

The next sutra is Kleshamoolaha karmashayo drushtadrushta janmavedniyaha  meaning “Suffering has to be undergone because of the karma bank; Some bear fruit in this birth itself whereas some bear fruit in their next.”

 

Patanjali Maharishi says that there is no other way and you will have to suffer this in this life. You have to undergo this suffering, this misery, not only in this life, but also in the coming life, because they form as karmâshaya, as a bank of karma which is reserved!

 

But through meditation this karma can be washed off right now, here. Before the body drops, you get rid of the karma and lessen the sheaths of ignorance over you. Otherwise there is no escape for you from there. Drishta adrishta janma vedanîyaha means some will give you fruits in this life itself and some will stay back with you to give fruits in the next life. Now, some people have an argument. They ask, “If you put your fingers in a fire, will it burn today or tomorrow or in your next life? There is nothing like karma. Every action has got its repercussion, but it has to happen immediately. It does not come with you to your next life.”

 

Not all the seeds you sow take the same amount of time to reap. Some seeds sprout in two days. Peanuts take five days. A coconut takes several months. A mango tree takes ten years to give fruit. Similarly, different karmas will give fruit at different times. As you sow, so shall you reap.

 

The next sutra is Sati moole tadvipako jatyayurbhogaha meaning “If the roots of karma are existing, they ripen and result in the body into which you are born and the fruits of the karma are experiences throughout life.”

 

Patanjali goes on to explain about our births. Jati is the body you come from. Your birth is determined. The length of your life is determined. What you will get in your life, your joy, your miseries are also determined. Why is someone born in Ethiopia and someone else in Switzerland? Is there any explanation?

 

Patanjali has an explanation for this. This is the usual question asked, “Why is it that one person was born a pauper and another a prince?” “Why is one person’s life full of pain and suffering while another’s is full of joy and comfort?” These are big questions. There is no logic that can give you any understanding or explanation. Patanjali Maharishi says that it is because of your past karmas.

 

It is the strongest impression in the mind that persists. Try this tonight. Just before going to bed, think of something. Think very strongly about it. As soon as you get up in the morning, it will be your first thought. The same thought will also come up in the dream. If you practice this for four months or six months, they will assume those qualities in you. Those thoughts will begin to take control of you. It gains such a pattern inside you because that karma, that impression has become so strong. So, the wise people say that the last days of your life is much more important than your whole life.

 

To emphasise this in India there are many, many stories. There is a story about a king called Ajamila. He was an atheist until his death. When he was dying, he called out: “Narayana, Narayana’’. His son’s name was ‘’Narayan’’ and he was calling his son. God thought that he was being called and he came and liberated him. This is a story. It is an extreme way to say that the last impression carries much weight in spite of whatever one does the whole life.

 

There is another story about a saint, a very enlightened rishi named Jadabharatha who was on the bank of a river in meditation. He saw a young deer caught in a flood. So he jumped into the water and like any one would and have done, he saved the deer from drowning. The deer had hurt its leg. He cared for it. He got so attached to the deer. When he died he became a deer. This is the only instance where an enlightened person became an animal. It is said that it is almost impossible for a liberated man to be driven back into an animal’s body. This is one of the impossibility. This example of Jadabharatha is quoted through out just to tell you that the last impression is most important.

 

Same thing, when children go to bed in the night after watching horror movies, they get nightmares. They cry and shout and do all sorts of things. How do you get rid of this?

 

That is the next sutra.

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