From_the_Upanishads_Karma_and_Reincarnation_pg.79

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Unformatted text preview: From the Upanishads 79 But people say: “A person is made not of acts, but of desires only.” In reply to this I say: As is his desire, such is his resolve; as is his re- solve, such the action he performs; what action (karma) he performs, that he procures for himself. On this point there is this verse: — Where one’s mind is attached — the inner self Goes thereto with action, being attached to it alone. Obtaining the end of his action, Whatever he does in this world, He comes again from that world To this world of action. — So the man who desires. -* Now the man who does not desire. — He who is without desire, who is freed from desire, Whose desire is satisfied, whose desire is the Soul— his breaths do not depart. Being very Brahman, he goes to Brahman. Accordingly, those who are of pleasant conduct here — the prospect is, indeed, that they will enter a pleasant womb, either the womb of a Brahman, or the womb of a Kshatriya, or the womb of a Vaishya. But those who are of stinking conduct here — the prospect is, indeed, that they will enter a stinking womb, either the womb of a dog, or the womb of a swine, or the womb of an outcaste (candala). From the Upanishads: Brahman and Arman In this selection Brahman does not refer to priests or to a specific god. In the late Vedas, or Upanishads, Brahman is all divinity, and all is Brahman. Even the individual soul or atman can be one with the uni- versal Brahman, “as the Father of Svetaketu demonstrates to his son through the examples of a banyan tree and salt water." How would ideas like these challenge the caste system? Chandogya Upanishacl, in The Upanishads, trans. Juan Mascaro (Harmondsworth: Penguin Press, 1965}, 113—14. ...
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