Yogasadhanas in the Gita – Part 3

The satsang is divided in three parts:

Part One Part Two Part Three

Bhagavad Gita begins with a person in grief and despair who finds it difficult to decide what his dharma is. This difficulty and indecision arises due to attachments and desires which have given birth to grief, dejection and depression. On the other side stands Sri Krishna who sees this person forgetting what his dharma is and falling into a depressive, grief-stricken state of mind and undergoing a nervous breakdown which is affecting his entire personality. Sri Krishna has no other choice but to try to bring Arjuna out of that physical and psychological condition, so he can remember what his dharma is and find the appropriate understanding which will lead him towards success in life.

Sri Krishna is continuously inspiring the warrior Arjuna to become active and involved in the performance of his duties. Again and again Sri Krishna reminds Arjuna to perform his duty with detachment, perfection and creativity, to express and give his best. In the early days when I came to the ashram, this was one  of the few instructions that Sri Swamiji gave me. He said, “Niranjan, believe that every day is a new day and that there is always something to learn in that new day. The day that has gone does not come back again. Always be alert to learn whatever you can every day.” In this way, Sri Swamiji inspired me to become active mentally, keep the eyes open and awareness expanded to see what new lessons I could learn and imbibe every day. That process continues even today and is one way of understanding involvement in karma.

As Sri Krishna goads Arjuna to perform action he also instructs him to keep actions and attachments separate. Actions and the desire for action or the results of actions have to be kept separate. Do not let anything affect your creative and natural skill and ability to perform. If at any point there is an expectation from the action, for the result and gain or loss, then the mind will become entangled in that action and will reap the consequences of either grief or elation.

In this manner the mind will continue to swing between grief and happiness and this swing of mind will always keep it disturbed, distracted and looking outwards. The more you look out, the more entangled the senses become with the sense objects. The more thesenses are entangled with sense objects, the more desires and attachments will arise. The mind will again be buffeted by the winds of loss and gain and the cycle of grief will start once again. Involve yourself physically, mentally, whole-heartedly in the present moment, in the karma that you are performing, according to time, space, location, environment, and the need of the present moment.

If one is aware of the present karma and tries to do one’s best, then that karma will free one from the negative and the binding, conditioning expressions, behaviours and moods of the senses. Senses are both physical and internal; the internal senses are the mental vrittis. Towards the behavior of both physical and internal senses one must cultivate detachment. From one aspect Sri Krishna is constantly inspiring Arjuna to become involved in action, and on the other he is telling and reminding him not to fall in the trap of grief, delusion, dejection and depression but to find mental balance. In order to find mental balance Sri Krishna guides Arjuna into the process of pratyahara.