How to wipe out all your previous bad karma? Shankaracharya answers

When through spiritual practice's a little awakening comes, do not mistake that for the Goal. Do not STOP. Move onward! Go deeper and deeper. You must see Him face to face and talk to him- Bhagwan Ramakrishna

A follower once approached Shankaracharya with a question,

"Is there a way to erase all of my past wrongdoings?"

Shankaracharya responded,

"The key thing to know is that bad karma can only be eliminated by experiencing its effects. All that it does is give you pain.

Here are three ways to better manage this:

1)In everyday life, you can reduce future bad karma by willingly expanding your tolerance limit.

He suggested actions like fasting once a while when hungry, bathing in cold water, avoid arguing and harsh words in relationships when others speak negatively.

These may seem small, but they can lessen your future bad karma greatly when you see the bigger picture.

It may seem silly to boost your tolerance of pain.

He advised this because the devotee was facing huge daily problems that were growing.

This was a simple way to cut the future bondage of suffering by voluntarily expanding your tolerance limit for mental pain. In sanskrit it is called "titiksha"

2)Acquiring direct knowledge of Atman...

As Krishna mentions in the Bhagavad Gita, "Just as fire reduces everything to ashes, the fire of knowledge burns all bad karma to ashes."


Shankaracarya states that fire first burns clothes, turning them to ashes. Similarly, knowledge of Atman first acts by burning your karma.

That's the prime target.

It eradicates the causal body karma, offering significant relief from future bad karma.

3)Tapas involves intensifying your prayers to God, which can help burn away the bad karma.

By adopting these three practices, not only will your future bad karma significantly decrease, but its binding power will also be destroyed, sparing you from suffering.

Coupled with God's grace, these practices will bring joy into your life."

In time the mind itself becomes the Guru- Sharda Devi wife of Bhagwan Ramakrishna

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