Opposite of Vipāka?

Hello Hivemind,

I often hear the term “vipāka kamma” used to describe past karma which is ripening in present conditions. Is there a specific term of the form “____ kamma” for the karma that you’re making right now? That is to say, the cause (as opposed to the result).


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Not sure if this fits with what you’re looking for, but in DN 30:
"Due to performing, accumulating, heaping up, and amassing those deeds, …
So tassa kammassa kaṭattā upacitattā… Appears to refer to kamma-making in the present, with katatta defined “as the doing of.”

Other than this, the other “present tense” forms appear to be adjectives, such as puñña-kamma rather than specific terms for “present kamma.”

But others in the hive may help to further clarify this. :slightly_smiling_face:

I feel like, in the suttas, the action is just called “kamma.” I think I’m looking for an Abhidhamma term which specifically means “kamma in the ordinary sense of the action itself [which may cause later fruit]”

Bhante, I would have said the same.

One thing that comes to mind is kamma-patha (course of action) which can be either wholesome or unwholesome, see AN 10.176

For an intersection of kamma and Abhidhamma the best ‘classical Theravada’ source would probably be Pa Auk Sayadaws’s The Workings of Kamma.

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Agree. I had the same view of it being just called kamma, as you wrote. The other examples were what came up that might have been of interest…

Ah, thank you, that’s helpful!

Pa Auk has:

  • nānākkhaṇika kamma = “the other moment’s kamma
  • paccaya kamma = “the causal kamma

As two disambiguating terms.

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