स एवायं मया तेऽद्य योगः प्रोक्तः पुरातनः ।
भक्तोऽसि मे सखा चेति रहस्यं ह्येतदुत्तमम् ॥४-३॥
In Bhagavad Gita chapter 4 verse 3 Lord Krishna eulogizes the importance of Arjuna following path of jnana yoga, nishkama karma yoga to reach God in his lifetime! The primary purpose of Lord Krishna advising Arjuna does not relate to Arjuna becoming a seeker of God Almighty. Lord Krishna advised Arjuna path of jnana yoga, nishkama karma yoga to emphasize futility of pursuing materialistic goals of life.
Most human beings world over never cared for travelling path of pure spirituality! Most indulged in religious activities (rituals) that never led to God Almighty. The entire sermon of Bhagavad Gita by Lord Krishna to Arjuna contains one and only one message… travel path of pure spirituality to reach God at the earliest! Why? It was for simple reason that we were spiritual beings, never manifest physical self that carried no meaning in spiritual world.
The ultimate goal of life for all humanity all the time remained reaching 8.4 millionth manifestation, last in cosmic life cycle! If human beings could realize and understand that life in human form was never meant for passing but was meant to be lived fully to the extent possible. By indulging in nishkama karma yoga and jnana yoga alone human beings could achieve this spiritual goal of life! No other way could human beings reach 8.4 millionth manifestation!
Confronted with dilemma of fighting his own brethren who were his arch enemies in present… Arjuna behaved like a coward! He never wanted to indulge in karma that leads to his sinning. It was only through sermon of Bhagavad Gita Lord Krishna could make Arjuna realize mortality of present ephemeral life. To save lives of millions of countrymen and soldiers if a few were killed in the battle… then no sin was incurred as per Lord Krishna!
Lord Krishna says… every single human being must indulge in karma, no matter what! Even for a traveler of pure spirituality… indulging in path of nishkama karma yoga was an absolute must! None could escape clutches of karma, not even an ardent seeker of spirituality like Swami Vivekananda. To re-establish Dharma (righteousness), Arjuna facing evil forces of adharma (lawlessness) was destined. Lord Krishna advised Arjuna that he fight for sake of his countrymen keeping aside his own ego (Aham in Hinduism).
On path of Dharma, our personal ego (Aham) was meaningless! Confronted with enemy in battlefield, how we could invoke our ego (Aham)… countered Lord Krishna! As a king… a Pandava scion one had to work for benefit of entire mankind, never the individual self or a group of people with vested interests! Making Arjuna understand workings of law of karma was what Lord Krishna desired all the time. As we sow so shall we reap, nothing less or more… says doctrine of karma!
If Arjuna was to fight the enemy in the battle of Mahabharata… it was his part of karma from which he could not absolve self! As the sermon of Bhagavad Gita progressed further… Arjuna finally realized his folly and prepared self to fight the enemy head-on! Lord Krishna advised Arjuna to indulge in karma, offering fruits of karma performed to God Almighty all the time! As fruits of karma performed belonged to our soul atman, the consciousness within… by fighting battle of Dharma (righteousness), Arjuna was doing nothing wrong!
Lord Krishna further advises Arjuna that doctrine of jnana yoga and nishkama karma yoga had always been secretive and must never be divulged one… incompetent! If Lord Krishna was advising Arjuna to follow path of jnana yoga, nishkama karma yoga… then he must be a suitable candidate, thought Arjuna! The total belief of Arjuna in teachings of Lord Krishna was the prime factor in deciding whether Arjuna would fight the war or not.
To make matters clear, to bring Arjuna to same level of understanding Lord Krishna addresses Arjuna as his friend. As the charioteer guides a chariot out of chaos, lord Krishna wanted to guide Arjuna for taking right decisions at the right moment. Succumbing to pressure in battlefield of Mahabharata war was not for Pandava kings… advised Lord Krishna to Arjuna! Under no circumstances of life, Arjuna could behave like a coward!
For benefit of individual self… for following dictates of our soul atman, the consciousness within, for benefit of entire mankind… Arjuna must pick arms and fight the enemy. Lord Krishna acting as charioteer of Arjuna simply implies our soul atman, the spirit within guiding the physical manifest self! Most human beings never want to understand this allegory. Prompted by a bloated ego (Aham) most human beings world over pursued worldly goals of life, than path of spirituality!
As per Lord Krishna… the physical manifest human form was just a medium for our soul atman, the consciousness within to cleanse self of dross impurities within! In absence of a body… no soul atman could purify self of its own. Similar as one KG of pure gold sandwiched in a lump of hundred KG of gold ore needs requisite mining machinery and processes for its extraction, every soul atman also requires manifesting a maximum of 8.4 million bodies to work out its karma!
Lord Krishna advising Arjuna to follow path of nishkama karma yoga was not meaningless. Every human being practically was a trustee of God Almighty. As per sermon of Bhagavad Gita by Lord Krishna… nothing ever belonged to our physical manifest self, the human body! A truthful human being all the time worked as a true trustee of God Almighty… offering fruits of karma performed to God Almighty all the time! When everything belonged to God Almighty, fruits of karma performed also belonged to God Almighty!
JRD Tata, scion of Tata Empire was a true karma Yogi par excellence. Throughout his life JRD Tata never considered Tata Empire as his own! JRD Tata always acted as a true trustee of God Almighty… a humble servant of God! The Tata Empire in India is the foundation stone of entire technological development in the country. In absence of Tatas’, life in India practically was meaningless! The workings of Tata gave meaning to life in India. Ever since 13 years of age, I have been following example of Tatas, working as a true trustee of God Almighty all the time!
The concept of trusteeship is the backbone of law of karma! As detailed by Lord Krishna in Bhagavad Gita, everything in cosmos was made up of basic building block of cosmos… clusters of atoms and molecules! Only when viewed from senses point of view… things appeared solid, truthfully all was gaseous formation! Perceived from senses point of view… we appeared as human beings, in fact we were a mass of gaseous formation! When everything in cosmic system was directly governed by our soul atman, the spirit within… why not follow dictates of our soul atman all the time?
Lord Krishna advises Arjuna to hear the sweet small inner voice that always comes from within our heart! The voice of our soul atman, the spirit within always prompts us on the right path! Whenever we trend to go wrong… our soul atman, the spirit within always tries to correct us! Prompted by a bloated ego (Aham in Hinduism), if we neglect the voice of our soul atman… we are practically walking path of negative karma! Unless we were positive in life, we could never reach our goal of life! By remaining truthful all the time, any human being world over could hear the sweet small inner voice of our soul atman that always seems to come from within our heart!
Indulging in good karma, positive karma all the time was not that difficult! We only require highest level of patience, persistence and perseverance that could ever be practiced by human beings! If Arjuna had Lord Krishna for backing, how could he possibly fail in any of his attempts? If one had absolute belief in preceptor (spiritual master), no spiritual seeker could ever fail in life! As trust between Arjuna and Lord Krishna was hundred percent, it was only through dialogues and logistical conclusions… Arjuna could assimilate teachings of Lord Krishna! Lord Krishna repeatedly asserting Arjuna to fight battle of Mahabharata was not without reason.
As there was none more competent or equivalent of Arjuna, the teachings of Lord Krishna could only be assimilated by Arjuna… none other! Such a trust between Lord Krishna and Arjuna resulted from Arjuna travelling path of absolute truthfulness always and ever. Arjuna was a born Kshatriya… who always wanted to travel path of Dharma (righteousness), no matter what! A Kshatriya wanting to travel path of absolute truthfulness is what makes a spiritual seeker complete. Mere desires and wishes carried no meaning in spiritual world.
At any given moment of time… not more than one or two persons world over travelled path of pure spirituality! This is proved from the fact that at a time no two spiritual preceptors descended on mankind! Initially came Lord Krishna. He was followed by Mahavira. About 77 years later came Gautama Buddha. About 423 years later came Jesus Christ. A few centuries later followed Prophet Mohammed. And in last 150 years… only Sri Ramakrishna Paramhansa and Maharishi Ramana travelled path of jnana yoga, nishkama karma yoga to reach God!
A serious seeker of spirituality always remembers… we had one life to live, the present earthly domain of 70 to 80 years of life! As we do not know after death of present body what form our soul atman manifests in next life… it is in our interest to travel spiritual path and cover entire spiritual journey in present life. Unless we reached 8.4 millionth manifestation in present manifest physical domain, we could not complete spiritual journey as ordained by God Almighty! To know God, to reach God… our travelling path of jnana yoga (absolute wisdom) was an absolute must… something one could never do without!
Essay by: Vijay Kumar “Atma Jnani”… The Man who Realized God in 1993 – May 8, 2013
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