Using the Power of Penance to Mitigate the Effects of Misdeeds

In a traditional analogy, karma is described in a bow and arrow analogy. The full complement of arrows in quivers represent sanchita karmas, all those possessed by a soul. The prarabdha karmas are all the karmas a person brings into the present life. When a man is impelled to act, he sets one of these karmas in motion. Should the action have unexpected negative consequences for which the man is remorseful, it is possible for him to do a penance,resulting in the breaking of the karmic cycle.