Mechanism of Karma: Asanga’s Presentation

According to Asanga’s explanation, karma is exclusively a mental impulse – a mental factor, a way of experiencing something. Specifically, karma is the mental factor of an urge, which sets the mind in motion and brings on the karmic behavior that results in suffering. After a karmic action has ended, there is karmic aftermath, everything left on someone’s mental continuum as a consequence of a karmic action. There are cases where karmic aftermath ripens into the aggregates of a future rebirth as explained in the mechanism of the twelve links of dependent arising. It also ripens into what is experienced in such rebirths. We can get rid of karmic aftermath in stages and then become liberated, and we no longer have suffering. This talk includes useful graphs that explain the mechanisms of karma.