“Of all the religions in the world, Hinduism is arguable the most complex.” (CCN, 2019).

The key concept that I chose to discuss is Karma. “If one should desire to live in this world a hundred years, one should live performing Karma (righteous deeds).” (Paramananda, 2012). Karma means not only actions, but also the intentions and consequences associated with each action. Karma is “any mental, verbal, or physical action or intention, especially a morally correct or textually prescribed activity.” (Michael, 2014). The word karma is often used by many of different religious beliefs. I, for one, was not aware that karma and the idea of it that many of us speak about relates back to Hinduism. Karma is what determines the direction of an individual’s rebirth (Molloy, 2018). It is said that if one is to be reborn into a cruel living situation or even a dog or cat, then he/she did not live properly (Molloy, 2018). Today the concept of karma carries an in this lifetime immediacy to it but the Upanishad version is more of actions that ripple out from one lifetime to the next. With evil thoughts and deeds comes rebirth into bad conditions. With good thoughts and deeds comes rebirth into uplifting conditions. Karma is directly related to Samsara which is referred to as the wheel of life, and moksha which is freedom and really the ultimate human goal (Molloy, 2018). With rebirth comes the result of one’s karma. Freedom, the ultimate goal, is something that can be achieved with a huge leap upward with one’s karma to a level of complete freedom.

References:

Chamberlain College of Nursing. (2019). RELI448N Week 2: The Many Paths of Hinduism [Online lesson].

Michael, S. P. (2014). Karma Yoga in the Bhagavad Gita: Way for all to Self-Realization. Asia Journal of Theology, 28(2), 203-227.

Molloy, M., (2018). Experiencing the World’s Religions: Tradition, Challenge, and Change (7th ed.). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill.

Paramananda, S. (2012). The UPANISHADS. Duke Classics.

 
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