In the previous post on the subject Five Ways Soul attracts new Karma we have seen how a soul attracts new Karma. However, by now we know complete annihilation of Karma is Moksha. Therefore, an attraction of new Karma means an extension of cycles of life and death. Knowing how to stop attracting new Karma and shedding of existing Karma is extremely critical & I would say the most critical for every human being.
In this post, we will know HOW a soul can do that. Yes, stopping of new Karma and shedding of existing one is very much possible.
Common sense suggests NOT doing things which attract NEW Karma means a soul is not attracting new Karma. This act of not attracting the new Karma is known as SANWAR. Tattvarthigam Sutra (The Sutra) defines 57 ways this can be done. These are classified into six categories. These are;
1. Gupti: Not indulging in the wrong conducts in order to win over Kashayas is known as Gupti. This can be done in three ways: through thoughts, body and speech.
2. Samiti: Alertness while conducting the self. Indulging in alert conducts to avoid any kind of violence. These are:
2.1) Irya Samiti: Carefulness while walking to avoid the killing of any living being.
2.2) Bhasha Samiti: Carefulness while speaking so as not to hurt anyone. Even truth should be spoken in soft and non-harming language.
2.3) Aeshna Samiti: Carefulness in not only in what one eats, but in cooking and bring the food so as to avoid any kinds of violence.
2.4) Aadana Nikehsp Samiti: Carefulness in handling clothes and utensils to avoid any form of violence.
2.5) Utsarg Samiti: Carefulness in human discharge so as to avoid any form of violence.
Usually in all the situations except 2.2 if one is not careful and alert small insects get killed by our carelessness. This is the level of consciousness is expected to be practiced if a soul wants to avoid new Karma and practice Sanwar.
3. Yati Dharma: There are 10 kinds of conduct which is to be practiced in respective circumstance to avoid Ashrav and practice Sanwar. These are:
Forgiveness, humility, honesty, purity, truthfulness, self-restraint, penance, renunciation, non-attachment, celibacy.
4. Anupreksha: There are twelve types of Anupreksha or Bhavana or Reflections which every soul should practice daily to conduct restraint in the behaviour which help in SANWAR. These are:
4.1) Anitya: Body, family, wealth, fame nothing is permanent.
4.2) Asharan: In pain no one can save us not even family and friends.
4.3) Sansar: This world is full of mental, physical and social pain where no one is happy.
4.4) Aekatva: Every soul is responsible for its own Karma. Every living being is born alone and will die alone.
4.5) Anyatva: Body and soul are both different. The body will be destroyed, soul will remain permanent.
4.6) Asuchi: Everybody is a source of filth & it’s stinking. It keeps generating discharges from every hole it has. Usually, this impure body is disgusting, but we aspire to get pleasure out of it.
4.7) Ashrav: Soul is attracting new Karma with every act of mind, body and speech. This entangles the soul for more and more bodies after every death.
4.8) Sanwar: Soul can stop attracting new karma and thinking about these 57 ways, it can stop it.
4.9) Nirjara: By practicing penance soul can gets rid of existing Karma.
4.10) Lok Swabhav: Thinking about the enormous nature of the Universe.
4.11) Bodhi Durlabh: It is only in human life right and true understanding of the self ie. Soul is possible, but it is extremely rare.
4.12) Dharma Swakhyatva: Getting to know and learn from learned and enlightened souls is very very rare.
If a soul can think about all these twelve reflections daily it will realise the true understanding of the universe and the role of the soul in this human birth.
5. Victory over Parishaha: The Sutra further explains, there are 22 situations in which usually a soul gets disturbed and that can cause Ashrav. Unwanted natural situations are known as Parishaha. Not getting disturbed in all unwanted natural conditions and maintaining equanimity is known as Victory over Parishaha. If a soul is conscious about the situations it can exercise restraint to avoid Ashrav and that is Sanwar.
6. Charitra: Conduct in which a soul does not practice any form and intensity of Kashaya is known as Charitra. Equanimity in all conditions. The sutra explains five degrees of achieving this.
Kashaya was explained in the previous post, but at the cost of repetition:
There are four kinds of Kashaya:
• Kroadh: Anger, rage, insult, hatred, excitement, passion
• Maan : Arrogance, Self Pride, Conceit
• Maya: Deceit (See all synonyms)
• Lobh: Greed (See all synonyms)
Gupti stated above means indulging in activities which help us avoid Kashaya and Charitra is actually not practicing Kashaya when the situation occurs.
These are the ways and means for every soul to avoid attracting new Karma and practice Sanwar. One can imagine how every aspect of WHAT a good conduct is, is defined and explained.
May times we may not want to indulge in wrong doings, but sheer unawareness can cause unwanted conduct. If one is aware about the possibilities of bad conducts which can be the cause of Ashrav, one can practice it and over the period of time it becomes the self-nature.
After Ashrav and Sanwar next time we will see How a soul can even get rid of existing Karma even before it matures.