Yoga Sutra 4.08 the cessation of karma and of samskara groups

Sūtra IV.8

Therefore their consequent manifestation is of those saṃskāra-groups (vāsanā) that are compatible with it

Aloneness has been praised, and now the taints and karmas and saṃskāra-groups (vāsanā), which are causes of the obstructions to it, have to be set out. But the working of the taints, their antagonist, and their cessation, have already been described in detail. The next sūtra-s therefore are begun in order to explain similarly in detail the workings, the states, the antagonists and the cessation, of karma and of saṃskāra-groups, because it is when they cease that Aloneness is attained, and not otherwise.

Therefore, because there are the three kinds of result of the karmas, their consequent manifestation is of those saṃskāra-groups alone that are compatible with it. The fruition is like whatever kind of karma caused it; it is only saṃskāra-groups consonant with it that follow from the karma-fruition. The manifestation is of them alone. For when karma justifying heaven comes to maturity, there is no possibility for anything to bring into manifestation saṃskāra-groups producing birth in hell or as an animal or man, and it is only what are in accordance with a heavenly life that are manifested in that case. The argument is the same with birth in hell or in an animal or human state.

Therefore for that reason because there are the three kinds of result black, white and mixed as explained before, of the karmas when they have matured into causal efficiency, their consequent manifestation, the result of that alone, is of those saṃskāra-groups alone that are compatible with it, of nature consonant with, and form similar to, the result.

It is explained: Among karmas which mature as divine, animal, or human birth, the fruition is like whatever kind of karma caused it; it is only saṃskāra-groups consonant with it the matured karma that follow from arise out of the karma-fruition. The manifestation is of them alone. This is because the fruition is of saṃskāra-s which are like the original karma. Just so a boy, seeing someone like his mother, runs after her. There is no manifestation of other saṃskāra-groups which would not be compatible.

For when karma justifying heaven comes to maturity, is just about to fructify, there is no possibility for anything to bring into manifestation saṃskāra-groups producing birth in hell or as an animal or man, since cause and effect must be of conformable nature, and it is only what are in accordance with a heavenly life that are manifested in that case. The argument the reasoning is the same with birth in hell or in an animal or human state.

When karma manifests as hell, the saṃskāra-groups in accordance with that karma are blazing up, but when animal karma matures, such saṃskāra-groups are repelled. The principle is the same for the human state. For the saṃskāra-groups of the respective kinds cannot come to fruition except in the company of those whose fruition is of similar kind. Neither do the saṃskāra-groups manifest their results at intervals in the fruition of other karma of comparable form which are in process of fructifying on their own account. Thus there is a beginningless cause–effect relation of karma and saṃskāra-group.

The saṃskāra-groups which are more remote, as having been laid down as members of a different class, or at different times, or at different places, are not in immediate proximity to karma that is now maturing. They are like remote friends and connections, and the nearer group has more effect than remoter ones. So there is no immediate consequence of very distant ones.

(Opponent) If it is so, one ends up with this conclusion: Suppose there is karma laid down a hundred aeons ago which should result in birth as a cat, while in the immediate past there is karma which would justify divine birth. From the opposition of the nearer saṃskāra-group of the divine, the causal potency which should manifest in a cat birth will not be actualized. The saṃskāra-groups of the cat karma, distant by a hundred aeons, would not be fulfilled because of remoteness, and it would have to be supposed that the karma which should have caused that fruition did not actualize it. The corollary would be that karmas and saṃskāra-groups are meaningless.

(Answer) To this he says:

 

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