|Karma is my ticket to everywhere.|
It powers us and makes our lives what they are. Its working out is imponderable, but there are general trends one can discover. As we know so we do; mind precedes all conditions (Dhp. 1).
Therefore, learning can help us a great deal. The Buddha was not called a "Buddhist" in his day. He was called a karmavadin, a "teacher of the efficacy of action."
Natural order: niyama
- The Aṭṭhasālinī (272-274), the commentary on the Dhammasangaṅi attributed to Buddhaghosa, the first book of Theravāda's "Collected Teachings in Ultimate Terms" (Abhidhamma Piṭaka) ;
- the Sumaṅgala-Vilāsinī (DA 2.431), Ven. Buddhaghosa’s commentary on the Long Discourses of the Buddha (Dīgha Nikāya) ;
- the Abhidhammāvatāra (PTS p.54), a verse summary of Abhidhamma by Buddhaghosa’s contemporary Buddhadatta .
- Abhidhammamātika Internal Commentary (p.58) The Abhidhamma-mātika is a matrix of abstracts for the Abhidhamma, with lists of pairs and triplets of terms from which the whole of the text can theoretically be reconstructed. The passage on the orders (niyamas) is from an internal commentary on the mātika associated with the Dhammasaṅgaṇī. (The orders do not appear to be mentioned in the matrix itself but only in this appendix), composed in South India by Ven. Coḷaraṭṭha Kassapa (12th-13th century).
- Abhidhammāvatāra-purāṇatīkā (p.168) composed in Sri Lanka by Ven. Vācissara Mahāsāmi circa 13th century or Ven. Sāriputta circa 12th century. This text is a commentary on the text of the Abhidhammāvatāra Nāmarūpa-parichedo (ṭīka) so is technically a sub-sub-commentary. This commentary is an incomplete word-by-word commentary.
- Dhp. 127: Neither in the sky nor in mid-ocean, nor by entering into mountain clefts, nowhere in the world is there a place where one may escape from the results of unwholesome deeds.
At the end of the discussion in the Sumaṅgalavilāsinī passage, the Commentary says that dhamma-niyāma explains the term dhammatā in the text of the Mahāpadāna Sutra (DN ii.12) (Cf. S 12.20 for a discussion of the use of the word dhammaniyamatā in the sutras).
C.A.F. Rhys Davids' system
In Rhys Davids' scheme the Five Orders become:
- kamma niyama: ("action, karma, deeds") consequences of one's intentions/actions.
- utu niyama: ("time, season") seasonal changes and climate, law of inanimate matter.
- bīja niyama: ("seed") laws of heredity.
- citta niyama: ("mind") will of mind.
- dhamma niyama: ("law") nature's tendency to perfect.