9

Kamma, Rebirth and Nibanna —
Kamma

3 of 3

Qualities of the Dharma
The Four Noble Truths
The Noble Eightfold Path
The True Nature of Existence
  The Five Aggregates of Clinging
  Anicca, Dukkha and Anatta
  Dependent Arising
  Kamma, Nibbana and Rebirth
  Kamma
  Rebirth
 

Nibbana

Meditation
The Sangha
The Buddhist Sangha


 

 

The results of kamma

The good and bad results that arise from kamma are not rewards or punishments. They are not imposed by any outside power. Actions produce their results naturally through the law of cause and effect working in the moral realm. This natural law is called kamma niyama, the order of kamma, which functions autonomously.

Mind is the architect of the whole universe

If we look into our mind, we can see that the different planes of existence are  already contained in the mind in seed form.

The mind, Buddha says, is the architect of the whole universe. We should not think of the rebirth process in terms of a human being appearing in different realms, moving from realm to realm. But rather these planes simply provide the field for the mind to work out the  accumulated tendencies. The realms are only visible manifestations, the outer projections of the forces that work in the mind.

Contemplation on the operation of kamma is not a cold and calculated expedient for justifying a stoical resignation to the status quo. The pathways of kamma are labyrinthine in their complexity, and acceptance of this causal order does not preclude a battle against human avarice, brutality and stupidity or stifle beneficent action intended to prevent unwholesome deeds from finding the opportunity to ripen. Deep reflection on kammic retribution does, however, brace us against the shocks of calamity and disappointment by opening up to our vision the stubborn unwieldiness of a world ruled by greed, hate and delusion, and the deep hidden lawfulness connecting its turbulent undercurrents with the back-and-forth swing of surface events. While on the one hand this contemplation awakens a sense of urgency, a drive to escape the repetitive round of deed and result, on the other it issues in equanimity, an unruffled inner poise founded upon a realistic grasp of our existential plight