Anjali: Thank you in advance for your time and guidance:)
In the suttas, it is said that kamma affects how we are reborn (i.e. beautiful, ugly, wise, dullard, wealthy, or poor). I have developed confidence in this teaching from my own personal observations.
Now as far as my practice have taken me, from my own observation of my mind, I’ve seen how this could be as all the emotions affect my physical appearance especially the facial features. I observed just how the mind feels when it is feeding on joy from kindness and compassion and generosity. That to me is what the Buddha meant by wealth and beauty, with the mind being bright, on the next birth, the new physical form and character tends to be pleasant.
Emotions project out via facial, speech, and bodily expressions and everyone experiences them. But the real danger I found is the mind getting overcome by negative emotions. Negative emotions becomes deeply ingrained when one hasn’t developed enough awareness of them. I have a friend whose life outlook isn’t that great and negativity is so ingrained in her mind that she doesn’t see it at all. I’ve tried my best to uplift her world view but not luck at all. Now to me, this is what the Buddha meant by ugliness and being poor, the mind clouded, on the next birth, the new physical form and characteristics tends to be just mediocre and at worst unpleasant.
Would it be right understanding to say that the mind, with its accumulated characteristics from previous kamma, is the forming and conditioning force behind the physical body upon rebirth? This also brings memory of a sutta where the Lord Buddha refers to the physical body as past kamma.
Have I approached this teaching and contemplated it in the right way?