The Doctrine of Karma : Its Origin
and Development in Brahmanical, Buddhist and Jaina Traditions/Yuvraj
Krishan. 1997, xv, 650 p.,
Contents: Preface. 1. The
doctrine of Karma in the Vedic literature. 2. Heterodox elaborations. 3. Karma
in popular religious literature. 4. Philosophical acceptance of the doctrine of
Karma. 5. Karma Vipaka: maturation of Karma. 6. Karma and Moksa. 7. Anti-Karma.
8. Strengthening the roots of the Karma doctrine. 9. Impact of the doctrine of
Karma. 10. Management of Karma. 11. Social consequences of the doctrine of
Karma. 12. Modern controversies about the doctrine of Karma. 13. The doctrine of
Karma. 14. Summary. Appendices. Select bibliography. Author and title index.
"Here is a work that deals with the
doctrine of Karma in all its comprehensiveness and covers all its conceivable
facets in Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism. Essentially the approach is
historical. It traces the genesis of the doctrine in the early Vedic literature,
and explains how from a doctrine of sacrificial Karma it becomes an ethical
doctrine in the Upanisads. In addition it also explains how the concept of
transmigration to another world or loka, such as heaven, becomes the doctrine of
punarjanma, rebirth, in this world.
"The doctrine of Karma had profound
effect on the cultural practices in India. To get round the rigours of the 'law'
of Karma, which operates inexorably and invariably, certain religious practices
were involved, besides tapas or austerities, such as japa (recitation of sacred
texts), dana (charity), tirthayatra (pilgrimage), vrtas (fasts), and performance
of rituals (karmakanda).
"The book also investigates critically
certain modern misconceptions about Karma.
"In truth Karma is the master
conductor of the composite Indian cultural orchestra, harmonizing different and
varied notes and tunes." (jacket)