You suffer countless losses, diseases, heartbreaks in life and feel sorry for yourself. And here, oscillates the pendulum—good, bad, right, and wrong. One moment you like yourself, the other you do not. Duality has its day. Delusion has its way!
What is the first question that comes to your mind? “Why me? What did I do deserve this?”
The answer to this lies in understanding the concept of samskars.
Every action and thought that crosses your mind leaves an imprint on your destiny, it gets stored in the karmashaya, an ethereal hard disk so to say, to be fructified at a later point in this life or future lives. This stored data is called samskars. These samskars fructify, deciding the course of your life because in attaching emotions to your actions you gain a sense of ownership towards these actions. When your destiny is paired with the data stored in your ethereal hard disk, those stored samskars fructify in congruence with the rays of the planets. So, if at a particular time, your destiny is meant to provide you with wealth, good looks, luxury, good times, the stored samskars that match your destiny at the time will fructify. On the other hand, if physical pain, loss in business, difficult days, are a part of your destiny at a particular time, then the karmas matching this negative period will come to fore and fructify. And what you receive in the fructification of these past karmas, you take ownership of and begin the cycle all over again, reloading your karmic matrix instead of exhausting it.
You have thoughts all day, every day. You think about your thoughts, about why you have these thoughts, feel good about some and chastise yourself for some. Of course you do, they’re your thoughts, right? Wrong! They’re thoughts that you receive, which come and go through your mind. Our minds should be open vessels allowing these thoughts to enter and leave, watching them from a distance, in third person. Instead we lid the vessel as soon as a thought comes floating in, paint it in emotion and make it ours. It then adds to our karma, positive or negative depending on the thought. And before you know it, one thought links to another and you gain ownership of a long chain of thoughts.
The positive samskars will be converted in the future into bhog (pleasure and riches). The negative samskars into rog (debt, disease, and misfortune). And divine deeds will get converted into yog (spiritual evolution). One can extend this point to the fate of countries as a whole too. Countries can be divided into those that offer lesser comforts and luxuries called Tapo Bhoomi, where people exhaust more of their negative karmas and also practice penance and austerity. And other countries that fulfil the Rajasic experience called Rajo Bhoomi, are where people enjoy and exhaust their positive karmas, by getting consumed by luxury, comfort and wealth.
Spiritually evolved people know how to re-balance their karma and negate samskars through the practice of recitation of advanced mantras and performing a lot of seva, thereby tilting the balance in favour of perceived positivity.
When your thoughts, which are not really your own, lead you to perform actions you consider worthy of pride, you take ownership of these actions and add to your samskars. It could be something as simple as helping an elderly cross a road to something as large as donating a large sum of money to charity. You feel good about yourself and add to your positive karma.
When positive samskars fructify, rewarding you with good days, prosperity, health, you tend to spend it in indulging your whims and fancies. Some become vain, some abuse this reward and eventually end up with a massive karmic negative tilt. It is important to realise that while it is your past actions that have earned you such luxuries, it is your destiny that lead you to earn them and you as an individual have no role in it. Credit for the good deeds or blame for the bad, neither is yours to take. These rewards are automatically fructified to balance the karmic balance sheet thereby leading to automatic exhaustion and redemption of stored samskars. Knowledge or gyan helps people to re-examine the above principles and use them for personal evolution.
There are essentially three types of people:
• The astute, who understand this subject and try to improve their balance sheet by simply reducing their desires, thereby spending less of their positive karmas.
• The more astute, who practice tapasya, including voluntary suffering, for example fasting, long hours of meditation and spiritual sadhana.
• The most astute, who understand the only way to transcend karma is to not take ownership of their actions, thereby exhausting the all kinds of samskars and karmas and eventually freeing themselves from the shackles of karmic connections.
It takes a certain level of spiritual evolution to be the third type of person but that is the ultimate goal.
May this dawn upon you and may you succeed in your endeavour.
Hingori is the author of Hingori Sutras