Contributed by M K Subramanian
This is in conjunction to
Is my Fate and Destiny Same? ….No says MK
Karma is not an unknown term. But it means different things to different people. So I think it would be appropriate to first address, what all it means….
“The Future already surround us” (- Peter Drucker-Management Guru)
2. Technically, this word also means the effect of actions
3. In connection with metaphysics, it sometimes means the effects of which our past acts were the causes…
4. But in “Karma Yoga, we have to do simply with the word ‘Karma’ as meaning ‘Work’…
I have actually quoted above, the statements of Swami Vivekananda.
[But while explaining the shloka from Bhagavat Gita – ‘Karmanyevaadhikarasthe maa phaleshu kadachana…’ many use the term ‘Duty’ (to describe ‘Karma’) and impose a lot of actions on humans as binding on them. This is wrong. In this shloka ‘Karma’ only means ‘Authority or Control’. Contextually, Krishna says …”Arjuna… you have authority (and control) only to decide (and perform) certain ‘Actions’ and have no control over the results/consequences of your acts.]
1. Every act has its appointed effect. The law of cause and effect is unalterable. The effect is inherent in the cause, like tree in its seed.
2. ‘Destiny ‘as taught in Vedanta does not involve a surrender of effort or a breakdown of faith in natural law.
3. Karma is the unalterable law of effect following previous causes.
4. This is what distinguishes Vedanta from ‘Fatalism’ as it emerged in the West from pagan philosophies…
5. …The Law of Karma thus constitutes true freedom of action.
6. Thus Freedom is Secured not taken away!
Rajaji has illustrated with an example. I am not quoting him, but it is like this…
• If a pebble is thrown in a pond containing still water, ripples and waves ensue. These waves and ripples subside over a period of time after the entire impetus of the force exerted by the pebble comes to naught.
• [Thus acts of individuals take effect and may fructify immediately or over a period of time. Until all these results are enjoyed/ suffered/ (experienced) by the individual, he/she may have to keep taking repeated births. Is it possible to intercept and liquidate the pending ‘Karma’? Normally, ‘NO’! It’s just like the ripples in the pond cannot be halted by any external means! However in Srimad Bhagavata, (which enunciates Bhagavata Dharma) a solution is prescribed – All acts, when performed, make an offering of entire results to the Lord. This will ward off all kinds of impact. This is what we are told to do when we say “Kayenavatcha Manasaindriya va…..” etc. By this means it is possible to attain deliverance from the cycle of birth and death, expeditiously.]
कायेन वाचा मन्सेंद्रियारवा बुदुयात्मना वा प्रकट: स्वभावात
करोमि यद्यत सकलं परस्मै नारायेनेती समर्पयामि
Kaaayena -bodily (With body);vaacha – spoken words; manas – mind; inriyahi -(with) limbs; va – or; Bhuddyatmanava – with knowledge (or unknowingly); prakrithaihi swabhavath – natural habits(inclinations/tendencies); karomi – my doings; yad yad -whatever; sakalam – all; parasmai narayanayethi – that to narayana; samarpayami – I offer”
I offer to (Lord) Narayana all my actions (and their results/consequences), whatever they are (may be) done bodily, by spoken word, mindfully,or using any of my limbs (including gestures)