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December 2008
« Nov   Jan »
Lesson 12 -a) E-Social Engineering in Practice-Mayawati’s victory - social engineering or social transformation? -i)U.P. C.M. pays her tributes on eve of Dr. Bhimrao Ambedkar Parinirvan Diwas-U.P. C.M. sanctions Rs. 2 lakh each to the family members of deceased and Rs. 50,000 each to those injured Lucknow- iii) Teaching in Dr. Shakuntala Mishra U.P. Disabled University to commence from next session to provide higher education to disabled persons -iv) UP does a first, revamps NREGS -v) After Maya, UPA hikes mid-day meal costs -b)E-Social Transformation in Practice-International Federation for Freedom of Aboriginal Inhabitants and Migrates (IFFAIM) -c) E-Economic Emancipation in Practice-3. Sanmjivikata- d) E-Sutta Pitaka at Practice Kindada Sutta A Giver of What -e) E-Vinaya Pitaka in Practice Mindfulness & Alertness-f) The Abhidhamma in Practice-The mind at the time of death
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Lesson 12
a) E-Social Engineering in Practice

Mayawati’s victory - social engineering or social transformation?


VARIED REACTIONS: Many reactions are expressed by many people, some
had frivolous views of judging Mayawati’s work on her ability to clean
Jamuna and Ganga. These must, I am afraid, be called stupid, to use a
mild word and ignore.

There are others, who are sworn enemies of BSP. Their views also
should be ignored. But even some true Ambedkarites have expressed
doubts, which need some clarification. A healthy discussion of such
views must always be welcome.

I am trying to put forward my views, for whatever worth they are. I
am not very euphoric about her victory, but I am definitely happy about
it and I believe the steps taken by her are in right direction and it is
the very first step. The uphill task is further ahead in front of all of
us. I do not think that it is a Social Revolution; that stage is yet to
come. But I do believe that it is a Social Transformation.

Mayawati did not use any short cuts. Those who know the working of
BSP cadres would know that the BSP workers use the most grassroots level
and reach all voters. Is Mayawati likely to work under pressure of
Brahmins? This is very unlikely, if we remember her past actions. In
2003, she resigned instead of submitting to pressure of giving 80% seats
to BJP.

Let us not forget that Mayawati is not a religious leader, she is a
political leader. Those who wish to propagate religion are most welcome
to do so. Mayawati has never objected to workers who wish to propagate
Buddhism. She had in past helped such workers and would do in future
whatever is possible for her to do.

Dr. Ambedkar had advised that his followers should see that the
chariot of his movement, if could not be taken forward, must not be
allowed to slip backward. Everybody in the movement knows this and
everybody believes that what he is doing, he is helping to push the
chariot of Ambedkars movement upward against the uphill task.

At the same time, he thinks that others are trying to let it slip
backwards. Therefore, he opposes all others, whom he considers as
others. Unfortunately whom he considers as others outnumber many times
than his own supporters. This is the cause of fracturing of Ambedkarite
movement in India, and especially in Maharashtra.

Dr. Ambedkar, during the days of conversion in Nagpur had advised
future action to his follower workers in a special tea party meeting
held in Shyam Hotel. Entry was with passes. I had the privilege of
attending that meeting, being a student worker.

In that meeting, Dr. Ambedkar, speaking in Hindi, perhaps for the
first time, advised his workers to develop mindset to work with other
castes in tandem. That was the idea behind the formation of RPI.

Unfortunately, that advice was not followed during and after the
formation of RPI next year after his parinirvan. As a result, the party
remained one caste party. When there was the rise of Kanshiram in
Northern India, people in Maharashtra ignored his rise.

They wanted the Sun to rise; there is no doubt about that, but they
wished that the Sun should rise after hearing the sound of their cock.
As the Sun rose in Uttar Pradesh, without hearing the voice of cock from
Maharashtra, the people from Maharashtra pretended that there is no
sunrise. That gave rise to fractured politics in the region.

Mixing politics and religion defeats both causes In earlier times,
the meetings of RPI used to start with Buddha Vandana. And religious
meetings were addressed by the political leaders. May be it was
necessary at that time.

Later it dawned on the people that religious movement must be kept
separate from the political movement. When people from other political
parties wish to adopt Buddhism but still keep working in their previous
non-RPI political party, felt disadvantageous. And those who were not
Buddhists but wished to join RPI, were labelled by their own caste men
as untouchable. This disadvantage was either less or negligible with BSP
as compared to RPI, especially in Maharashtra.

So the point is, if the religious movement and political movement are
not kept separate, neither grows and both suffer. Those who want to mix
religion and politics do justice neither to religion nor to politics.

In spite of this, time and again, some people keep on saying that RPI
and Buddha Mahasabha are both the wheels of the same chariot of
Ambedkars movement and they should work in tandem. I have time and again
stressed the danger in keeping both the organisations dependent on each
other. I think, they must be both independent of each other and work
independently for their own aims.

Chariot of Ambedkar has multiple wheels, not only religious and
political, others being cultural, educational, economic, co-operative
and many more. All must work in cooperation, no doubt, but still be
entirely independent. This is especially true and more important now
that there are many new entrants to Buddhism in Maharashtra and we must
not ask them to join this or that political party. Otherwise both
politics, as well as religion, would suffer.

Babasaheb did give 22 vows, in which there were injunction of not
having any faith in Brahma, Vishnu, Mahesh, Gauri and Ganpati should not
be worshipped. Mayawati has asked her Hindu followers to see their
favourite god Ganesh in the BSP election symbol elephant. What is wrong
in that? She did not denigrate Buddhism in saying that in any way.

Those who criticise Mayawati on this ground have forgotten that these
vows given by Babasaheb are meant for the Buddhist converts. Not for
Hindus. These were the religious injunctions for the Buddhists. He gave
advice to the Political leaders of Scheduled Caste Federation, the very
next day in Tea Party at Shyam Hotel, wherein he asked his workers to
work with other caste leaders, and that is what Mayawati is doing.

Did Babasaheb, anytime, say that Hindus should be kept away from the
Ambedkarite political party? As a matter of fact, he always wanted
people from all religions to join his political parties, he formed from
time to time. His Independent Labor Party was for all castes and
religions. Dr. Panjabrao Deshmukh was its president of the province.

He had to start Scheduled castes Federation only under some
restrictions put by the British, the history of which is well known to
Ambedkarites. But even in that party, there was admission of
non-scheduled caste sympathizers. This I know because I heard Babasaheb
saying so in Shyam Hotel Tea Party.

When Republican Party of India was envisaged, he told in the speech
that, he had already contacted leaders from other political parties. Dr.
Ram Manohar Lohia, Pralhad Keshav Atre, S. M. Joshi, Nanasaheb Gore and
Madhu Limaye were already contacted.

If RPI was formed during his life time, all these dignitaries would
have been among the leaders of the party of Dr. Ambedkar, and all the
old leaders of SCF, now converted to Buddhist faith, were ordered by him
to work along with them. That was the main item in Babasahebs speech at
the tea party of Shyam Hotel.

If he was alive for some more time, and if the party of his vision
had come in effect during his lifetime, all these Hindu leaders would
have been the members of the Babasahebs Party.

Those who object to Mayawati’s admitting Brahmins to her Party should
try and understand, what the Babasahebs vision of his Political Party
was. Does this mean Babasahebs views about Buddhism were clouded by
political thoughts? Let us remember these were his thoughts about
political party during the days of conversion, when he expressed these
in Shyam Hotel.

Babasaheb never shunned away the Brahmins. Right from the days of
Manu Smruti Dahan Day in 1927, till the formation of Peoples’ Education
Society, Brahmins were associated with him.

One may remember that he had fought a case for Dinkarrao Jawalkar and
got him acquitted from charges of defamation of Lokmanya Tilak. Jawalkar
put a condition that, if Babasaheb kept away the Brahmins from his
movement, he would join Ambedkars movement. Babasaheb refused to accept
this saying he was against the Barhmanya and not against Brahmins.

One would also remember Babasaheb was friendly with the son of Bal
Gangadhar Tilak, and had common interests and organisations. Even during
the earlier days of RPI, I remember entertaining and honouring Brahmin
leaders like Sriram Lagu and Anant Kanekar, who were invited for a
function in local Siddharth High School, and also sharing a platform
with Brahmin leaders like Dwadashiwar on many occasions like Ambedkar
Jayanti and even in political meetings.

So why object to Mayawati admitting Brahmins to her Party? Let us
remember that BSP, right from the times of BAMCEF and DS4 was Never a
Dalit Party, it has Always been a Bahujan Party. Now only upper castes
are admitted and made it a Sarvajana Party.

Mayawati and Reservations is a subject not understood by many. Those
who heard Kanshiram would remember that he never wanted to be
beneficiary of Reservations.

He always said that we must become the givers of reservations and not
the receivers. That status, of giver of reservations, Mayawati has now
achieved. For those who have a mindset of becoming the picchlaggu (in
Kanshirams words), it would be difficult to understand this sentiment.

The Brahminic authors and journalists have termed this change of
political power as Social Engineering, thereby implying that there is
some element of trickery, dishonesty, deception, or deceit in her
victory. This is because they are not digesting her victory.
Unfortunately, our own people are using that term.

It is not Social Engineering but is Social Transformation, which has
always been the aim of BSP and which was always elucidated by Kanshiram.
Kanshiram, referring to Andhra, had said that giving rice for two rupees
a kilo may be social justice, but enabling people to buy rice at market
price of Rs. Seven is the Social Transformation, and that BSP always
stood for Social Transformation and Economic emancipation of all.

Those not acquainted with BSP rhetoric taught in BSP cadre camps may
think what Mayawati is trying to do is a new thing.

But there is nothing new in what Mayawati is doing. What was taught
by Babasaheb was perfected for practical purposes by Kanshiram. That is
only being implemented by Mayawati. Therefore, I have always said that
teach Ambedkar to the Hindus and teach Kanshiram to the Buddhists. Let
our intelligentsia be not misguided.

Mayawati has set new goals for herself - to rule India some day and
build a “casteless society”. This is reported in Brahminic press with
some sense of implied ridicule.

This is not a new goal. It has always been the goal of BSP, and
always declared in public meetings, private sittings and cadre camps. As
the Brahminic press never does proper reporting the general public may
not know this, but those attending Kanshirams meetings know it well.
Will she succeed in this? It is difficult to say, but surely she is on
the right path.

Dr. Ambedkar envisaged the ideal society in the Constitution, to make
it a socialistic, democratic, secular republic with equal rights to all.
What he dreamed was the unity of all varied castes and creeds, religions
and regions, varied cultures and taboos, thus forming a casteless

What are the means of achieving such a unity in multicultural
environment? Scholars have laid down that there are three stages through
which such a process has to go. The main points are, first, the
political unity, where people try to live by the same rules and follow
same laws; next the religious unity where people follow same faith; and
ultimate unity is cultural unity where people unite by matrimonial
alliances that would be the formation of casteless society. Babasaheb
has given the constitution and paved the way of political unity; but his
dream of bringing various creeds under one political party could not be
fulfilled. Mayawati is trying to fulfil that aim.

Let us remember that casteless society cannot be created by
annihilating people of any particular caste. It certainly does not mean
society devoid of Brahmins. Let us all try and strengthen her hands
instead of expressing any doubts.

Will Mayawati become the Prime Minister of India? Why not? I see no
reason why this cannot be accomplished. Not failure but low aim is
crime. We must aspire to become the supreme in each and every field.

If Devegauda, Gujral, Chandrashekhar (and may be Devilal) could
aspire even when their scope was limited, why not Mayawati, when she is
the leader of an All Indian National Party of number three stature? Let
us not forget that BSP is the National party and not a Dalit party, and
not a party of Buddhists alone, it is equally a party of Hindus, Sikhs,
Muslims and all others, who like to follow Phule, Shahu, Ambedkar,
Periyar and ideals and idols of BSP.

C.M. pays her tributes on eve of Dr. Bhimrao Ambedkar Parinirvan Diwas

C.M. sanctions Rs. 2 lakh each to the family members of deceased and Rs. 50,000 each to those injured

in Dr. Shakuntala Mishra U.P. Disabled University to commence from next
session to provide higher education to disabled persons

Press Information Bureau (Chief Minister’s Information Campus) Information & Public Relations Department,

i) U.P. C.M. pays her tributes on eve of Dr. Bhimrao Ambedkar Parinirvan Diwas

BSP Government committed for fulfilling incomplete works of Dr. Ambedkar —Chief Minister Lucknow :

05 December, 2008

The Uttar Predesh Chief Minister Ms. Mayawati has paid her tributes on behalf of her government on the occasion of Parinirvan Diwas (Death Anniversary) of architect of the Constitution Bharat Ratna, Dr. Bhimrao Ambedkar. She said that Dr. Ambedkar struggled throughout his life for providing social justice to the Aboriginal Inhabitants of Jambudvipa, that is,the Great Prabuddha Bharath (SC/STs) backwards and poor, who remained victims of injustice and harassment for centuries. She underlined the need for taking resolve on this occasion to complete his works and fulfill his dreams. In a message, on the eve of Parinirvan Diwas of Dr. Bhimrao Ambedkar, the Chief Minister said that saints, gurus and great persons of Bahujan Samaj struggled in their own ways for the social, educational and economic uplift of dalits from time to time. Dr. Ambedkar was a staunch supporter of equality based society. He made several provisions in the Constitution for giving proper participation to the Aboriginal Inhabitants of Jambudvipa, that is,the Great Prabuddha Bharath (SC/STs) and deprived people in every sphere of life. She said that BSP Government of Uttar Pradesh was doing its best efforts for establishing equality based social system following the principle of ‘ Survjan Hitai, Survjan Sukhai ’ for fulfilling the dreams of Dr. Bhimrao Ambedkar. Ms. Mayawati said that Dr. Ambedkar crossed the boundaries of time and space and was a great person in real sense. He made arrangements for providing all Constitutional rights and opportunities, besides human rights to the Aboriginal Inhabitants of Jambudvipa, that is,the Great Prabuddha Bharath (SC/STs) , deprived and exploited people available in a democratic system. She said that real tributes towards Dr. Ambedkar would be to follow his path on the occasion of his Parinirvan Diwas.

ii) U.P. C.M. sanctions Rs. 2 lakh each to the family members of deceased and Rs. 50,000 each to those injured Lucknow :

04 December, 2008

On the directives of the Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Ms. Mayawati, the D.M. of Sant Kabirnagar provided Rs. 2 lakh each to the family members of four deceased, who belonged to the district and died in Mumbai terrorist incident recently. Likewise, 2 injured persons from Ballia district were also provided Rs. 50,000 each. The deceased included Akhlak Ahamad s/o Shri Mushtaq Ahamad (r/o Thuranda, Tehsil Khalilabad), Maqsood Ahamad s/o Shri Tavarak Ali (r/o Maghauli, Tehsil Khalilabad), Firoz Ahamad s/o Shri Jamil Ahamad (r/o Paraswa, Tehsil Khalilabad) and Hidayatullah s/o Shri Anwarulhaq (r/o Bakauli, Tehsil Ghanghata, Sant Kabirnagar). Most of the families of these deceased live in Sant Kabirnagar. The injured persons included Shri Suryabhan Gupta s/o Shri Sampati Gupta (r/o Awaya, Tehsil Belthara Road) and Shri Bechan Prasad Gupta s/o Shri Ram Prasad Gupta (r/o Jajla, Tehsil Rasda) in Ballia district.

iii) Teaching in Dr. Shakuntala Mishra U.P. Disabled University to commence from next session to provide higher education to disabled persons

Reservation of 50 per cent seats in the University for handicapped students State Government committed to educational and economic benefit of disabled persons Lucknow :

 03 December, 2008

The announcements, made on the last year’s World Disabled Day (03 December) by the Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Ms. Mayawati, are being carried out at a rapid pace and the Disabled Welfare Department is also running several welfare schemes for the handicapped people. Besides, several important decisions for the welfare of the physically challenged have also been taken. The State Government is fully alive to the problems of the disabled persons. Several programmes are being effectively implemented in their interest. It may be recalled that when Ms. Mayawati came to power in U.P. for the first time in 1995, she created a separate Disabled Welfare Department with a view to bringing the disabled persons into the mainstream of development. The State Government is running various employment oriented programmes to make handicapped persons economically self-sufficient. Provision of Rs. 304.63 crore has been made under the disabled pension scheme during the current financial year to provide pension to 5,73,589 persons. An amount of Rs. 2 crore has been provided to give free of cost artificial limbs and equipment to handicapped persons. This will benefit 10,000 disabled persons. Likewise, a provision of Rs. 2.10 crore has been made to encourage marriage with disabled persons and about 1700 couples would be encouraged for it. A provision of Rs. 96.46 lakh has also been made under the shop construction/running scheme to provide self- employment opportunities to disabled persons. As many as 500 persons would benefit from it. Action on the several announcements made by the Chief Minister for disabled persons is being taken. Under it, land for establishing one inter college each for visually impaired girls (at Gorakhpur) and visually impaired boys (at Meerut), one 100 room hostel for boys each at Meerut, Lucknow, Gorakhpur and Allahabad and a 100 room hostel for girls each at Lucknow and Gorakhpur for solving housing problems of visually impaired students pursuing higher education, has been arranged and the work on it would begin very soon. The high school for the visually


UP does a first, revamps NREGS

Lucknow: Uttar Pradesh has become probably the
first state in the country to eliminate the role of Public Works
Department (PWD) in the implementation of the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGS).

Now, instead of PWD deciding the Schedule of Rates (SOR) for works
assigned to labourers under the NREGS, state rural development
department will determine the wages.

The decision was taken in a state Cabinet meeting recently
held by Chief Minister Mayawati. Rural development department officials
said, “The decision will benefit the villagers, who receive work under
the Centrally-funded scheme.”

The need for clipping the wings of the PWD was felt for long.
Under the NREGS, men and women workers are given eight and seven hours
of work respectively and their daily wages are decided according to the
amount of the work done. The Act says each state can decide the SOR for
the work done. Since this work mostly relates to areas like digging and
basic construction, the rates are decided by the PWD.

“PWD follows its norms while deciding the rates. It ignores that
its work is mostly done by machines and skilled labourers, whereas
under the NREGS, poor unskilled labourers perform the work,” said
Arundhati Dhuru, the advisor to the Supreme Court Commissioner in the
Right to Food cases, who is also supervising the NREGS.

On many occasions, digging of a road or a canal on a rocky and dry
soil took two to three days but the labourer received only a day’s
wages because according to the PWD norms, the work should be completed
in a day, she added.

The PWD norms stipulated that 110 cubic feet of work per day qualifies for a wage of Rs 100.

Several NGOs and the state Government
had opposed these norms. They contended that blanket wages could not be
applied in a state like Uttar Pradesh, whose topography is not uniform,
with extremely rocky and dry areas like Bundelkhand and Vindhyachal.
Dhuru said in other states, the PWD reviewed its work measurement under
the NREGS but nothing of this sort happened in the state.

Noting the anomaly, the government had brought an amendment
nearly six months ago and the work measurement was brought down from
110 cubic feet to 60 cubic feet in Bundelkhand and Vindhyachal region. 

To implement similar work scale in the entire state, the department has conducted an extensive study in various regions of UP.


After Maya, UPA hikes mid-day meal costs

At present, a meal costs Rs 2.08 each for a primary student
and Rs 2.60 for an upper primary student, of which 50 paise is
contributed by the state governments and rest by the Centre.

The cost of a meal has now been fixed at Rs 3.08 for a primary student and Rs 4.60 for an upper primary one.

The state’s share will now be 75 paise for primary and Rs 1.15 for upper primary.

Incidentally, before the Centre agreed on increasing the cost,
the Uttar Pradesh government had voluntarily increased its share by 50
paise each for primary and upper primary on November 10.

Based on the increase in the price index, the Centre will revise
the cooking cost every year in February, beginning from the next
financial year.

The officials of the state government who attended the meeting
said the Centre has also decided to provide LPG connections to those
schools where food is cooked on the campus.

In Uttar Pradesh, the Mayawati government has already decided
to go for annual audits of the scheme by chartered accountants, besides
regular monitoring of the scheme by reputed institutes.

b) E-Social Transformation in Practice

c) E-Economic Emancipation in Practice

3. Sanmjivikata

This is the third of the three basic principles in the Buddhist
Economic system. A person should spend reasonably in proportion to his income,
neither too much nor too little. In the discourse relating to the householders’
happiness (gahapati sukha) enjoyment of one’s income
appropriately and wisely (bhoga sukha) is given as one of the four
factors conducive to lay happiness.

In the Pattakamma Sutta the manner in which a person should spend his wealth is given in
detail as follows:

1. Expenditure on food and clothing and other needs.
2. Maintenance of parents, wife and children and servants.
3. For illness and other emergencies.
4. For charitable purposes.
5. For the performance of the following:

(i) treating one’s relatives;
(ii) treating one’s visitors;
(iii) offering alms in memory of the departed;
(iv) offering merit to the deities;
(v) payment of state taxes and dues in time.

The Buddha extols simple living as being more conducive to the
development of one’s mind. A society progresses to the extent the mind of the
individual is developed. Administration of such a society becomes easier, when
law and order is well established. Knowing this, ancient kings in Sri Lanka gave
much publicity to the contents of the Ariyavamsa Sutta.’ In this Sutta,
preached by the Buddha for the benefit of the bhikkhus, the latter are
exhorted to be contented with

(i) The robes (clothes) they receive (whether coarse or fine). .
(ii) Alms (food) they receive (whether unpalatable or delicious).
(iii) The abodes (houses) they receive (whether simple or luxurious).
(iv) Meditation (development of mind).

Becoming content with the first three it is possible to reduce
economic restlessness, and at the same time to inculcate the habits and values
of simple living. Through meditation the human mind develops itself both
morally and spiritually, resulting in reducing social disharmony and
insurrection which arise first in the minds of men and then put into action.
Peace and progress of a country is thus assured.

In this modern world although highly advanced in science and
technology, with its rapid expansion of knowledge, there appears to be a steady
deterioration of human values. Present day politics, the economy, and
educational systems are some of the more important reasons for this state of
affairs. In this context it is considered desirable that the existing political
and economic thought and educational systems should be changed so as to give
priority to the development of human values.

Buddhism is both a path of emancipation and a way of life. As a way
of life it interacts with the economic, Political and social beliefs and
practices of the people. It is felt that the time is now most opportune to make
known to the world each of the above aspects of society within the framework of
Buddhist Ethics and the basic principles of Buddhism. The progress of a country
depends ultimately on the progress of the individual. Over 2500 years ago, the
Buddha was born into a confused society entangled in various views regarding
life and thought in general. Through Buddhism it was possible to disentangle
this tangle of views and to reduce this confusion. Today too, in This
Confused Society
it is generally believed that Buddhism could again help in
lighting a path through the darkness of this confusion.

d) E-Sutta Pitaka in Practice

Kindada Sutta
A Giver of What

[A deva:]

A giver of what is a giver of strength?A giver of what, a giver of beauty?A giver of what, a giver of ease?A giver of what, a giver of vision?And who is a giver of everything?	Being asked, please explain this to me.

[The Buddha:]

A giver of food is a giver of strength.
A giver of clothes, a giver of beauty.
A giver of a vehicle, a giver of ease.
A giver of a lamp, a giver of vision.
And the one who gives a residence,
is the one who is a giver of everything.
But the one who teaches the Dhamma
is a giver of
the Deathless.

e) E-Vinaya Pitaka in Practice

Mindfulness & Alertness

“And how is a monk possessed of
mindfulness and alertness? When going forward and returning, he acts with alertness.
When looking toward and looking away… when bending and extending his limbs…
when carrying his outer cloak, his upper robe, and his bowl… when eating,
drinking, chewing, and tasting… when urinating and defecating… when
walking, standing, sitting, falling asleep, waking up, talking, and remaining
silent, he acts with alertness. This is how a monk is possessed of mindfulness
and alertness.

f) The Abhidhamma in Practice

The mind at the time of death

When a person is about to die the bhava”nga is interrupted, vibrates
for one moment and passes away. The interruption is caused by an object
which presents itself to the mind-door. As a result of this a
mind-door-adverting citta arises. This is followed by five javana
thought moments which are weak, lack reproductive power, and serve only
to determine the nature of rebirth consciousness. The javanas may or
may not be followed by two registering thought moments (tadaalambana).
After this comes the death consciousness (cuti citta), which is
identical in constitution and object to the bhava”nga citta. The cuti
citta merely serves the function of signaling the end of life. It is
important to appreciate the difference between the cuti citta and the
javanas that precede it. The cuti citta is the end of the bhava”nga
flow of an existence and does not determine the nature of rebirth. The
javanas that occur just before the cuti citta arises form a kammic
process and determine the nature of the rebirth consciousness.

The object that presents itself to the mind-door just before death is determined by kamma on a priority basis as follows:

  1. Some weighty action performed earlier by the dying person. This may
    be meritorious such as a jhaanic ecstasy, or it may be demeritorious,
    some heinous crime. Either of these would be so powerful as to eclipse
    all other kammas in determining rebirth. This is called garuka kamma.
  2. If there is no such weighty action, what has been done habitually — either good or bad — will ripen. This is called kamma.
  3. If habitual kamma does not ripen what is called death-proximate
    kamma fructifies. In this case the thought that was experienced at the
    time of a good or bad action in the recent past recurs at the time of
    death. This is referred to as aasanna kamma.
  4. If the first three are lacking, some stored up kamma from the past will ripen. This is called ka.tatta kamma.

Dependent on one of the above mentioned four types of kamma, the
object that presents itself to the mind-door could be one of three

  1. The act (kamma) itself, especially if it was a weighty one.
  2. Some sign of the act (kammanimitta); for example, a butcher
    may see a knife, a hunter may see a gun or the slain animal, a pious
    devotee may see flowers at a shrine or the giving of alms to a monk.
  3. A sign of the place where the dying person will be reborn (gati nimitta), a vision of heaven, hell, etc.

This brief account of what will happen to us at death should impress
on us the urgency of avoiding all evil acts by deed, word or thought
and of performing wholesome meritorious acts. If we do not do so now,
we cannot do so at the moment of death, which may come quite
unexpectedly. As the Dhammapada states in verses 288 and 289:

There are no sons for one’s protection,
Neither father nor even kinsmen;
For one who is overcome by death
No protection is to be found among kinsmen.

Realizing this fact,
Let the virtuous and wise person
Swiftly clear the wayThat to nibbaana leads.

Dhp 288

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