The Doctrine of Karma finds no place in the Rig Veda

VSF: The Rig Veda is said to be the source of all the sacred Sanskrit texts that throughout time followed. Its date of origin remains unknown. The Rig Veda was from memory passed verbally and later written in the Vedic Sanskrit — which is quite different from the classical Sanskrit that is structured with Panini’s grammar (6th-4th century BCE). The Rig Veda remains a ’puzzlement’ and you will find that the translations vary to an astonishing, often perplexing and bewildering degree. Scholars cannot agree on the precise meaning.

I have been pursuing these mysterious verses since 2012 and have posted many of my intuitive translations on my primary website. My Sanskrit is admittedly limited, however I find immersing my consciousness in the primordial regions within the Rig Veda requires a disciplined concentrated focus. Reaching and maintaining the effort of such focus is truly purifying.

So recently I have returned to this adventure as a Refuge from the insanity, corruption, and mendacity of our current times. In doing so I came upon an interesting observation from Shyam Ghosh, the Indian scholar who I have become very fond of, and who translated many of the Rig Veda verses in his refreshing book, ‘Rigveda for the Layman.’ Here I will share with you my conclusions regarding the doctrine of Karma.

The Doctrine of Karma finds no place in the Rig Veda

In his book ‘Hindu Concept of Life and Death,’ Shyam Ghosh says that the doctrine of Karma finds no place in the Rig Veda. The ancient Vedic Seers Rishis merely testified the fact of re-births. As evidence, Ghosh quotes two verses from the Rig Veda:

S. Ghosh: IV.26.1
I became Manu [the progenitor of mankind], and also Surya [the Sun], and then the wise Rishi Kakshivana. I then went down as the scion of a procuress, and I have met also the wise Ushana.

R.L. Kashyap’s translation IV.26.1:
[The Rishi Vamadeva is saying] I became Manu, I am Surya, I am Kakshivan, the rishi of illumined mind. I crown Kutsa, son of Arjuni. I am Ushana, the seer. Behold me.
[The Brihadaranyaka Upanishad (1,4.10) quotes (the above line) as: “The sage Vamadeva, realising his own self as THAT (Brahman), knew ‘I was Manu and the Sun.’ Even now, whoever knows that is a similar way viz., as ‘I am Brahman,’ becomes this universe. Even the gods are powerless to prevent his becoming the universe.”]

From this verse we understand that the Seer/Rishi Vamadeva moved from one part of the Universe to another. He became Manu and the Sun. When we Become the eternal, imperishable, immutable One — which in Advaita Vedanta is termed Brahman and Parabhairava in Kashmir Shaivism — we can move into any expression of this amazing holographic dance. We are liberated from imagining that we are limited to this our small temporal identity, our body, the proclivities and compulsions of our current data-collecting vehicle.

S.Ghosh: Rig Veda IV.27.1
I (the Rishi Vamadeva) have entered and passed through (many) wombs and experienced the life of gods (good souls) everywhere. Hundreds have been the iron-bound dwellings (of mine) here below of this hawk who espied (surveyed) many a pasture land.
[The hawk is understood as the soul and the iron-fortresses are the bodies through which it wanders.]

R.L. Kashyap: IV.27.1
While I was in the womb, I knew in their order all the births of these gods, A hundred cities of iron kept me in. Now I have cleft my way out of them as the hawk in my speed.

TAT TWAM ASI. Thou are That.
We have always been and shall always all be That which we term God. How can anyone or anything be separate from the Infinite Great One that permeates and pervades All. We have intentionally veiled our Selves, our Soul, our consciousness in innumerable diverse layers of ‘forgetting’ to project, experience and express temporal Illusions within Time and Space. We are ‘playing’ — pretending to be separate from the One in the Divine Lila, our Play! Sin is merely the distance between us, our consciousness and God-Consciousness.

Shyam Ghosh also states that the seers of the Rig Veda affirmed the possibility of physical existence in many other worlds:

S.Ghosh: Rig Veda X.56.5
Patiently did they traverse the whole universe, fully conscious (pulsating) and covered with the earlier particles of dust. In (physical) body they surveyed the worlds below, spread afar and peopled abundantly.

R.L. Kasyap X.56.5:
They (the Rishis) traversed the whole worlds by their strengths. They measured the realms which were not yet measured. They assigned all existing forms to their (appropriate) forms. They distributed (the light) in many ways to all the peoples successively.

Swami Satya Prakash Saraswati & Satyakam Vidyalankar:
Our progenitures have been lords over the might of these divine powers. They having become glorious, impose their Will upon the divines. They embrace within themselves all energies, and with further luminescence, they again enter into their own bodies.
They (the Rishis who have Become One with Brahman) stride through all the regions with victorious might, measuring the eternal regions, ever-unmeasured. They compass in their bodies all existing things, and distribute their light in all directions and among the people.

We earthlings have been lied to and cut off from our origins and our true history for centuries. We are now aware that there are billions of other galaxies. It is absurd to assume we are the only life in the universe!

There are many stories of other realms in the sacred Sanskrit texts and depictions of what is probably scalarwave and plasma technologies, including weaponry. The Rig Veda itself has descriptions of ‘aerial ships’ and “one deed that destroyed 90 cities by heat.”

The Ramayana, the Mahabharata and the Puranas are also filled with descriptions of amazing advanced technologies.

As we have descended ever deeper into this cycle of time, our current Kali Yuga, so much has been lost. Most of what we imagine we know is false — a lie. We have been lied to on a monumental scale to gain power and control over us. Now is the time to pull back the Veil and take our innate power back from those who would seek to enslave us in the chains of deception.

Is it possible that the doctrines of Karma are in fact only another part of the Illusion — designed to keep us recycling into the realms controlled by tyrants who seek to use our divine energies to enrich themselves and continue their hold over this once beautiful planet. Perhaps the chains of karma have increased and been thickly woven throughout this Kali Yuga — like the threats of hell worlds from a remote judgmental overlord. Perhaps there is no such thing as karma in the Satya Yuga.

Swami Muni Narayana Prasad has written a very intriguing book on ‘Karma and Reincarnation’ from which I drew the following conclusion:

The eternal imperishable (akshara) One is only one Soul (the ATMA). There is only one Soul that manifests itself as endless multiplicity, experiencing and expressing the infinite potential of God’s totality in thousands of millions of forms throughout endless Cycles of Time.

There is no you or me! What we have wrongly identified as our ‘self’ is nothing more than the aggregate of impressions (vasanas) that have been collected in our DNA. Even the memories of our ‘past’ lives are only the wave-form impressions of the data-collection vehicle, meaning our current human body.

Only the unenlightened, those lost in the delusion of solidity, cling to the reincarnation theory. The ones who are wise, the enlightened know there is no death or birth — and thus are Liberated.

How can they be trapped in any illusory delusional realm?
Time to come Home.
Our Refuge is a Higher Consciousness — God-Consciousness — Our true nature and reality.

RIGVEDA for the Layman, A Critical Survey of One Hundred Hymns of the Rigveda, with Samhita-patha, Pada-patha and word meaning and English translation, by Shyam Ghosh; Munishiram Manoharlal Publishers Pvt. Ltd., New Delhi, 2002, Nandi, Indira.

Hindu Concept of Life and Death, Shyam Ghosh; Munshiram Manoharlal Publishers PVT. Ltd., New Delhi, 1989.

RIG VEDA SAMHITA: Mandalas 1 – 10, 12 volumes, (Text in Devanagari, Translation and Notes), by R.L. Kashyap; Saksi, Published in collaboration with ASR, Melkote; Sri Aurobindo Kapali Sastry Institute of Vedic Culture, Bangalore, India, 2009.

RIG VEDA: Mantras in Sanskrit with English Translation & Transliteration; translated by Swami Satya Prakash Saraswati & Satyakam Vidyalankar; DAV Publication Division, Delhi, 2011.

KARMA & REINCARNATION, Swami Muni Narayana Prasad; D.K. Printworld, New Delhi, 1993.

Bibliography / Rig Veda related book list:

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