How actually reincarnation happens
Reincarnation by http://www.flickr.com/photos/ms-ito/
I am very much confused about the teachings of Karma and its relation to our next life (reincarnation) , because buddhism do not have any concept of God. Basically I have multiple questions:
1) “What we put in universe , comes back to us” … now how it will come back? Let’s say I rob a person , who will keep the record that I robbed a person and bad should happen to me?
According to the research I made, and from what I understand, the answer is: nature.
The Universal Law of Nature.
This law called Dharma part of this law is the law of cause and effect.
According to Wikipedia:
Any action is understood as creating “seeds” in the mind that will sprout into the appropriate result (Pāli vipaka) when met with the right conditions.
Most types of karmas, with good or bad results, will keep one within the wheel of samsāra (reincarnation), while others will liberate one to nirvāna.
Karma is one of five categories of causation, known collectively as niyama dhammas, the first being kamma, and the other four being utu (seasons and weather), bīja (heredity, lit. “seed”), chitta (mind) and dhamma (law, in the sense of nature’s tendency to perfect).
What this means is that nature tends to always balance itself. When there is a void, it fills it. Any action we take will affect a web of interwoven causes and effects. This will in later have repercussions on you and others.
No God is necessary as nature acts as the record keeper.
2) What is the concept of reincarnation? Lets say I died, how will the conditions of my next life be decided? Because there is no record of my bad or good deeds because buddhism do not have concept of god…..so what will decide my next life? Can someone be reborn as an animal ? or are we reborn every time as human beings? What good things should we do in order to get good next life?
First, you need to understand that the whole goal of Buddhism is to break the cycle of rebirth. You do not want to be reborn in a better life as life is suffering however good it is.
Having said this, in Hinduism, one can be reborn as lower creatures if they do not have a good Karma. In Buddhism, it is not the case. We stay human.
In relation to your first question and this one, we have a life force (shiki in Japanese and Vijñāna in Pali) This is what carries on after death. Each seeds (actions taken in the past) will sprout into different results in this life or another as they stay attached to this life force that carries on from life to life.
See it this way: If you start drinking alcohol heavily as a teenager(the seed), there are some chances that you will become alcoholic in your life time and maybe also in the next life if you do not solve the problem before dying. Maybe another action you will take (or have taken in another lifetime) will make it so that you will not be alcoholic in the next life time but maybe in 2 lives from now.
So, suffering is certain, you want to break that cycle of birth-suffering-death.
The Buddha gave us the way to end it in its teachings. Ending it requires a sustained effort and the formula is called the The Noble Eightfold Path
I hope this answers your questions.
Bita, a regular contributor has added this in the comment section:
“I would like to say that Buddhism teaches that there are six realms of suffering: “The realms of delusion through which sentient beings transmigrate. Specifically: hell (the world of extreme agony); the world of hungry ghosts (insatiable desires); the world of animals (the law of the jungle); the world of asuras (perpetual combat); the world of human beings (a mixture of pain and pleasure); and the world of celestial beings (ample pleasure that does not last).
I quoted from the book Unlocking Tannisho: Shinran’s Words on the Pure Land Path
by Kentetsu Takamori. Hope this helps!”
Thank you Bita, I haven’t studied the different realms of existence yet but I plan on making a page on them.