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Part of the List of Dharma Terms from the Buddhist Ayurveda Course (SKT220 ) on Sanskrit Terms of Ayurveda and Dharma



Bodhisattvas are afraid of the cause, not its result;

Living beings are afraid of the result, not its cause.

(Rev. Master Hsuan Hua)

Deep is this doctrine of events as rising from causes, and it looks deep too. It is through not understanding this doctrine, through not penetrating it, that this generation has become a tangled skein, a matted ball of thread, like to munja-grass and rushes, unable to overpass the doom of the waste, the Woeful way, the Downfall, the Constant Round [of transmigration].

(Dialogues of the Buddha II 50)

Basic Teachings about Cause and Effect

“A cause refers to the cause you plant, from which you reap a corresponding result. If you plant a good cause, you will get a good result. And if you plant a bad cause, you will obtain a bad result. . . . You plant a certain cause, myriad conditions assemble, and a certain retribution or result is brought about.” (EDR VI 215)

Cause and effect “is not a matter of belief or disbelief. If you believe in it, there is such a thing as cause and effect; if you do not believe in it, cause and effect operate just the same. For example, if you go punch someone, you will certainly get hit back. Your initial punch is the cause, and your being beaten in return is the effect . . . . ” (SPV 128)

“The cause is the seed. What contributes to its growth are the conditions. planting a seed in the ground is a cause. Conditions are the aiding factors which contribute to the growth–soil, water, sunlight, and other such things…” (SS II]] 112)

Causes and Effects Operate Over Many Lifetimes

From causes made in lives gone by comes your present life; results you'll get in lives to come arise from this life's deeds. (AS 30)

The Interwoven Net of Karmic Responses of Cause and Effect

“The Dharma Realm is not large; a mote of dust is not small. Why? All is one, and one is all. Yet there is something more wonderful, subtle, and difficult to believe than even this: the net-like interweaving of karmic responses and the wheel-like spinning of cause and effect.

“For example, the karmic influences between countries are interwoven; the causes and effects of their mutual debts and repayments compel them to ceaseless wars. It becomes difficult to stop the murders and massacres which increase endlessly until the final destruction]] of the countries and the annihilation of all races when everything is eradicated and brought to an end. There is a saying, 'plant good causes, reap good results; plant bad causes, reap bad results.' How true it is!

“There is also this interweaving of karmic influences as well as the causes and effects of mutual debts and repayments between families. When there is kindness, there is harmony]], but when enmity arises there is revenge. The participants do not understand and continue to rail at each other for life. Who awakens from this?

“A Sutra text says, 'Even though a hundred Thousand kalpas pass, karma which is created does not perish. When causes and conditions come together, retribution will still be personally underGone.' In all our actions, how can we possibly not be cautious and attentive, 'as if standing on the edge of a deep abyss, as if treading on thin ice'!” (WM 41 Rev.)

The Buddha Speaks the Sutra of Cause and Effect in the Three Periods of Time

The Buddha gave this advice in The Buddha Speaks the Sutra of Cause and Effect in the Three Periods of time:

Wealth and dignity come from one's Destiny

From causes planted in lives in the past.

People who hold to this simple principle

Will reap good fortune in lives in the future.

Kind men and women, listen to the causes,

hear and remember this Sutra's reminder

Of the causes and effects of karmic deeds

In the past, in the future, and in the present.

Cause and effect is no small care.

True are my words; don't take them lightly

Sometimes people have plentiful goods,

The reason, in fact, again is quite fair.

In the past these people gave food to the poor.

Others don't have food or drink.

Who can guess the reason why?

Before those people were plagued with a fault:

stingy greed made them squeeze every penny.

Enjoying Blessings and justly prosperous,

Are people who reap a fitting reward.

In times now past they helped build Temples

And saw that the Sangha had huts and shelters.

Some have long lifespans; why are they lucky?

Liberating creatures, they ransomed lives.

Have you seen how many suffer short lifespans?

Their wanton slaughter of beings is why.

Most cows and horses were humans before–

people who didn't settle their debts.

Many former people are now pigs or dogs

Because they injured and cHeated others.

In our Myriad deeds, whatever we do,

We reap our own rewards, it's true.

Who can we blame for our woe in the hells?

Who can there be to blame but ourselves?

Don't say that cause and effect is unseen.

Look at you, your offspring, heirs, and grandchildren.

If you doubt the good of pure eating and giving,

Look around and find those enjoying fortune.

Having practiced of old, they now harvest abundance.

To cultivate now will bring Blessings anew.

If you care to know of past lives' causes,

Look at rewards you are reaping today.

If you wish to find out about future lives,

You need but notice what you are doing right now.

(FHS I 24-32)

1) Chinese: yin yuan , 2) Sanskrit: hetu-pratyaya, 3) Pali hetu-paccaya , 4) Alternate translations: causes and conditions, conditioned cause, causal conditions.

See Also: Twelvefold Conditioned Arising (Dependent Arising or Pratitya Samutpada or Twelve Links), karma, rebirth.

BTTS References: DFS V 936-9; CL II 27 (=SPV Ch. 5); FHS I 22-32 (Buddha speaks the Sutra on cause and effect); BRF 52; SPV 128-9; EDR II 123, 130-1 (Nagarjuna); WM 41, 47-49; SS VII]]; TT 33-35, 131 par 1; SM I 95; EDR VI 215; FAS Ch7 11; FAS Ch22–2nd ground; SS II]] 47 (finger pointing at the moon), 112 (par 2); AS 30;

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Fair Use Bibliographic Sources

Fair Use: Primary Fair Use Compilation Source: Ron Epstein, Ph.D, compiler, Buddhism A to Z, Burlingame, California, Buddhist Text Translation Society, 2003, p. ISBN 0881393533 Paperback: 284 pages. and many other sources (see Bibliography).

Primary Original Source: The Tripitaka of Sutra, Shastra and Vinaya Dharma teachings (as found in the scripture storehouse of the Indian Sanskrit- Siddham, Chinese, Tibetan and Japanese traditions of the Nalanda Tradition of ancient Nalanda University) of Shakyamuni Buddha, and his Arya Sagely Bodhisattva Bhikshu Monk and Upasaka disciples.

These Good and Wise Advisors (Kaliyanamitra) Dharma Master teachers include Arya Venerables Om Tare Tuttare Ture Om Ah Hum and Namo to Jivaka, Charaka, Lao Zi - Mahakashapa, Ashwagosha, Shantideva - Hui Neng - Shen Kai Sheng Ren Shr, Bodhidharma, the 16 Nalanda Acharyas 1. Nagarjuna-Manjushri, 2. Arydeva, 3. Buddhapalita, 4. Bhavaviveka, 5. Chandrakirti and Chandragomin, 6. Shantideva, 7. Shantarakshita, 8. Kamalashila, 9. Asanga-Maitreya, 10. Vasubhandu, 11. Dignaga, 12. Dharmakirti, 13. Vimuktisena, 14. Haribhadra, 15. Gunaprabha, 16. Shakyaprabha; Dharmarakshita, Atisha, Tsong Khapa, Thogme Zangpo, Nyingma Padmasambhava, Yeshe Tsogyel, Machig Lapdron, Tilopa, Naropa, Milarepa, Sakya Pandita, Fazang, Yunmen, Nichiren, Honen, Shinran, Kukai, Dogen, Hakuin, Jamgon Kongtrul, Nyingma Penor Rinpoche, Bakula Rinpoche, Dagri Rinpoche, Kirti Tsenshab Rinpoche, Geshe Lama Kongchog, Longchen Rapjampa - Gosok Rinpoche, Phabongkha Rinpoche, Patrul Rinpoche, Mingyur Rinpoche, Geshe Ngwang Dakpa, Geshe Sopa Rinpoche, Garchen Rinpoche, Karmapa, Sakya Trizin, Tenzin Gyatso the Dalai Lama, Hsu Yun, Hsuan Hua, Lama Zopa Rinpoche, Choden Rinpoche, Ajahn Chah, Seung Sahn, Thich Nhat Hanh, Ajahn Sumedho, S. N. Goenka, Mama Ayur Punya Jyana Pushtim Kuriye Svaha, bowing at your feet I make requests. Please bestow on me the two attainments of Maha Punya and Maha Prajna Paramita. And thanks to other modern day masters. We consider them to be in accord with Tripitaka Master Hsuan Hua’s ”Seven Guidelines for Recognizing Genuine Teachers

Nalanda Online University's teachings are based especially on the following Buddhist Scriptures: Lama Tsong Khapa's Lam Rim, the Dharma Flower Lotus Sutra, the Avatamsaka Sutra, the Shurangama Sutra, the Ksitigarbha Sutra, the Bhaisajya Guru Sutra, the Dharani Sutra, the Vajra Sutra, the Prajna Paramita Hridayam Heart Sutra, the Vimalakirti Sutra, the Sanghata Sutra, the Sutra of Golden Light, the Srimala Devi Sutra, the Sutra in 42 Sections, the Mahaparinirvana Sutra, the Hui Neng Sutra, Vasubandhu's Shastra on the Door to Understanding the Hundred Dharmas, Maitreya's Ornament for Clear Realizations (Abhisamayalamkara), Chandrakirti's Supplement to Nagarjuna’s Treatise on the Middle Way (Madhyamakavatara), Vasubandhu's Treasury of Manifest Knowledge (Abhidharmakosha) and the Tantras and Mantras of the Vajrayana the 42 Hands and Eyes, Guhyasamaja, the Kalachakra, the Vajrayogini, the Heruka, the Chakrasamvara, the Chod, the Hayagriva, the Hevajra, the Yamantaka, the Kalarupa, the Manjushri Nama Samgiti, the Vajrakilaya, the Vajrapani, the Vajra Claws Dakini, the Mahakala, the Tara, the White Umbrella Goddess (She Dan Do Bo Da La), Kirti Losang Trinle's Grounds and Paths of Secret Mantra, and Aku Sherab Gyatso's The Two Stages of the Guhyasamaja Tantra and their commentaries (shastras) by the above Arya Tripitakacharya Dharma Masters.

Secondary Fair Use Compilation Source: The Seeker’s Glossary of Buddhism, 2nd ed., San Francisco, California: Sutra Translation Committee of the United States and Canada, 1998:

Secondary Fair Use Compilation Source: Muller, Charles, editor, Digital Dictionary of Buddhism [DDB], Toyo Gakuen University, Japan, 2007: Username is “guest”, with no password. - Based in large part on the Dictionary of Chinese Buddhist Terms with Sanskrit and English Equivalents (by Soothill and Hodous) Delhi, India: Motilal Banarsidass, 1997.

Secondary Fair Use Compilation Source: Ehrhard, Diener, Fischer, et al, The Shambhala Dictionary of Buddhism and Zen, Boston, Massachusetts: Shambhala Publications, 1991. 296 pages. ISBN 978-0-87773-520-5,, Secondary Fair Use Compilation Source: Vaidya Vasant Lad, Textbook of Ayurveda, Ayurvedic Press, 2002; Vasant Lad, BAMS, MAsc, Ayurvedic Institute Gurukula Notes, Ayurvedic Institute, 1994-2006;

NOTE: Numerous corrections and enhancements have been made under Shastra tradition and ”Fair Use“ by an Anonymous Buddhist Monk Redactor (Compiler) of this Online Buddhist Encyclopedia Compilation)

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causation.txt · Last modified: 2016/02/01 07:47 (external edit)