Hey! You Guys Misunderstood the Concept of Reincarnation and Karma for This Whole Time

Let me clarify

Saranamkaro Bhikku
10 min readMay 11, 2021
Photo by Usukhbayar Gankhuyag on Unsplash

Several days ago, a man posted on his Facebook, showing his hospital fee from curing COVID-19 for 17 days. It’s around 1,000,000 baht or 32,000 dollars. He said he don’t want to wake up to see this bill.

It was a huge amount of money that most Thai salarymen never achieved within ten years, or even in their lifetime.

It would be different if he has insurance but he hasn’t.

We buy insurance for managing risk and unfortunate situations. It will ensure financial security for us and our family. At least, the doctors can’t kill us with their bill. That’s why we should buy insurance for any unknown situations in the future.

How about the insurance in the afterlife?

No, there is no such promotion. If you want to manage that risk you have to learn and prepare for it. That’s why some people are looking for the answers about afterlife, reincarnation, and karma. However, those answers they get do not point in the same direction, causing them to confuse and misunderstand. So, I am here to clarify you.

The Meaning of Karma

In Quora, I was requested to answer the questions about Karma, and saw that they misunderstood this word as action, result, and the law. Karma means action, work, or deed. Even your speech and thought are counted. The ripening or maturation of karma is called Vipāka. As for a law, we, the Buddhists, call it the law of karma. They will be confusing if use the same word in different meanings.

Karma, Merit, and Demerit

A good deed or good karma produces merit while the bad one produces demerit. In financial terms, merit looks like cash and demerit looks like debt. You can buy something good with your cash but lost something good with your debt and might be harmed by the debt collectors.

I would like to describe merit and demerit as a spiritual currency in the case of reincarnation. When people want to move to live in another country, they have to exchange everything they have into currency they can use in that place and also do the same thing if they want to move back.

When you go to heaven, you need a spiritual currency to exchange everything but it will do automatically by karma for your real estate and servents. I will not detail this as it will take a long time to read. Then, when you came back to the earth, you have to spend the spiritual currency to exchange for life span, appearance, wealth, health, potential and social status. It also automates by karma but you can choose a direction by making a wish in your previous life.

In this case, making a wish is similar to code a program engraving it into merits. If you have enough merit, the spiritual currency, the karma will do as it is programmed. It looks like you subscribe to it with your debit card. You can’t earn a great amount of merit when you are a spiritual being, thus, you should making merit as much as you can while you are human.

The Law of Karma

The law of karma is a subset of the order of Norm. As this site said:

  • Utu Niyama — Physical Inorganic Order (seasonal changes and climate), the natural law pertaining to physical objects and changes in the natural environment, such as the weather; the way flowers bloom in the day and fold up at night; the way soil, water, and nutrients help a tree to grow; and the way things disintegrate and decompose. This perspective emphasizes the changes brought about by heat or temperature
  • Bīja Niyama — Physical Organic Order (laws of heredity), the natural law pertaining to heredity, which is best described in the adage, “as the seed, so the fruit”
  • Citta Niyama — Order of Mind and Psychic Law (will of mind), the natural law pertaining to the workings of the mind, the process of cognition of sense objects, and the mental reactions to them
  • Kamma Niyama — Order of Acts and Results (consequences of one’s actions), the natural law pertaining to human behavior, the process of the generation of action, and its results. In essence, this is summarized in the words, “good deeds bring good results, bad deeds bring bad results”
  • Dhamma Niyama — Order of the Norm (nature’s tendency to produce a perfect type), the natural law governing the relationship and interdependence of all things: the way all things arise, exist, and then cease. All conditions are subject to change, are in a state of affliction, and are not self: this is the Norm

How does it work?

Your karma stores in your mind like a microchip. When your pass away, the law of karma, the server, will calculate your merit and demerit. If you have merited more than demerits, you more likely to go to heaven. If your demerit is more then you sink to hell. This is the basic function of the law of karma.

When will karma mature?

First, you need to know that karma in current life will mature around 10 percent and mature in the next lives for 100 percent. It does not something like buy one get one but planting. When you grow an apple tree, one seed of an apple does not give you only one apple but countless apples till the tree dies. However, you have to wait for it until full growth.

Fig. 1 Timeline of Vipāka

In fig.1, it is a timeline of Vipāka. The previous life of this person does (+5) good karma and (-3) bad karma. He got what he did in that life for 10 percent and got 100 percent next lives. Karma will weaken over time. So, good or bad situations from that karma will crease once they are completely depleted.

Past karma and the current one

If your good karma exchange for 100 years lifespan to this life then you will die at 100 years old from old age. However, if you have killed any being in your past life, your total life span will be less than 100 years.


Because you have shortened that being’s life span then the law of karma will shorten yours. Well, let’s assume that you will be alive for 70 years old in this life. It is not a certain number because you can change it with karma in this life. You might get older than 70 years for saving one’s life such as freeing the cow from a butcher. Also, your life span might be lower than 70 years if you kill something.

Why did I use the word “might be?”

Because the law of karma is too complex for us to understand its algorithm. Even the lord Buddha who was able to see how it functions clearly was still unable to explain the detail with words. Only the simplified version of it could be told.

The law of attraction

As you know about karma that “good deeds bring good results, bad deeds bring bad results.” Rhonda Byrne interpreted it as the law of attraction and wrote in her book, “The Secret.”

If you want to buy a car but do not have enough money, what will you do? That’s no problem, you just saved money till you can buy it, right? The same goes for spiritual currency. You can think about what you want but it will succeed when you have enough merit for it.

Fig. 2 Order of karma

No one does only good deed or bad deed. So, they will be mixed and wait in line. In this function, the order of mind and psychic Law si involved. There are millions of karma in 1 millisecond and it works fast. Good and bad things are attracted faster than the speed of light.

Fig. 3 Attraction from new karma

However, when you make new karma in any form, the new karma will attract the same kind of it. That way you should always think in a positive way and avoid the negative one. Rhonda Byrne suggests an actual, three-step process to make the law of attraction works for us but it does not necessary. You can pass to the final step to imagine what do you want. This step is what Buddhists calls making a wish.

The combination of karma

Karma is not straightforward like the images I shown, like doing X then get Y as result. Let me ask if you bake some bread, do all of them look exactly the same shape? Do they have exactly the same color code? Do they have exactly the same weight? Do they have exactly the same amount of atoms?

No, it looks similar but not the same.

People all have different experiences in their life. Vipāka also has different factors of karma combining into one.

Let’s see examples of the main factors of Vipāka.

Brain cancer = [killing] + [making a strategy for war]

Lung cancer = [killing] + [smoking]

Prostate cancer = [killing] + [having sex with other’s wife]

The main factor of cancer is killing. The secondary factor will decide the organ for having cancer.

When you make a strategy for war, a lot of people die because of your thought then Vipāka will be brain cancer. Each time you smoke, you are harming your lung, killing yourself slowly, then Vipāka will be the lung cancer. The married woman has his husband as owner, having sex with her is the same thing as stealing, Vipāka will be prostate cancer as you use your sexual organ to make a sin.

Can the doctor cure it?

When will it happen?

How will it happen?

Will you get a lot of pain?

All questions and answer related to this Vipāka are all factors in different ratios. For example,

Vipāka = karma A [40%] +karma B [35%] + karma C [15%] +karma D [5%] + karma E [3%] + karma F [1%] + karma G [0.7%] + karma H [0.3%]

With these same core factors, people will have similar Vipāka but different in detail as the small factors are not the same.

People will go to see the doctor once they get sick but it does not mean they can be cured. As long as bad karma which is the source of their sickness still active, they will suffer or die with it and it will be worse if they let negative emotion take control themself. Bad karma will smile at them and call his colleague in the past to join hand and make it worse.

How to destroy bad karma?

The law of karma is the back-end, invisible, law while the physical, biological and chemical laws are front-end law. Like an application, the front-end function only sends and receive information from the back-end, which calculates everything with his database.

Then how can users break free from reincarnation and karma?

It’s Dhamma Niyama that allows us to do that. If we completely purify our mind, extinguishing the source of reincarnation, we will attain to nirvana in the afterlife.

If you can’t do that then let destroy bad karma as much as you can.

Fig. 4 Destroying bad karma or sin by a lot of merits

In fig. 4, when people earn a lot of merit from good karma, it will be spending to destroy bad karma in the future life and the density of bad karma in current life might be weakened. In this example, the bad karma has 1 unit each life then when you earn +50 merits then spending +10 unit to destroy that 1 unit in each life. By the way, please note this is an example, not the real formula.

Then, how does the density of the bad karma in this life weaken?

It’s because the 10% of good karma in this life represents. The sin is like salt, the merit is like water. If you put 300 g. of salt in your glass, it will be really salty but dilute in the dam, it is nothing even it exists. So do merits, if you have the merit like the dam, the tiny of sin is just a mosquito to you.

How to get better in your next life?

Making a lot of merits, that’s it. Then, the next question has risen. What is merit? I mean the merit as described in Buddhism But I will not mention it in this post as it is about reincarnation.

For you successful in this life, make merit then imagine what you want in this life. You can read the list but imaging it will be more effective. You can also do the same thing for your next life. Make a long wish to design it.

Why do you need to do this?

Because you can not control outer factors in your life but the law of karma can. You can get help, you can get good teammates, you can get good opportunities and you can get anything you wish as long as you have enough merit to exchange. However, the most effective moment to make a wish is when you enter a calm state of mind. That’s why you should meditate every day. It is the most powerful catalyst in the world.

Do not look into the sky and make a wish like atheists. Just make it right in your center of the body when you find peace in your mind.