Likewise bhakti yoga and jnana yoga… karma yoga also was the path to reaching God in present life. But God could not be realized through path of karma yoga alone. One had to ultimately travel path of jnana yoga to reach God. By karma yoga we meant path of nishkama karma yoga following which one offered fruits of all karma performed to God Almighty all the time. Unless we became a Nishkama Karma Yogi… we could not gain enlightenment (kaivalya jnana).
Following path of nishkama karma yoga in present life… in the present materialistic world was extremely difficult. Only a person who exhibited willpower possessed by Swami Vivekananda could finally travel path of nishkama karma yoga to reach God in present life. Practice of nishkama karma yoga seemed easy but was very difficult to practice. Our ego (Aham in Hinduism) stopped us from offering fruits of all karma performed to God Almighty.
In the present scientific age… most human beings dominated by a bloated ego worked with a vested self-interest. In the circumstances… how could one offer fruits of karma performed to God Almighty? Only a serious traveler of spirituality who had absolute faith in God Almighty all the time could finally travel path of nishkama karma yoga as traveled by Swami Vivekananda.
Path of nishkama karma yoga had nothing to do with religion… path of rituals! Only a traveler of spiritual path needs to indulge in path of nishkama karma yoga. One who desired reaching absolute truths of life… one who wanted to know, “Who am I”… one who wanted to understand teachings of Bhagavad Gita in entirety needed traveling path of nishkama karma yoga.
The path of nishkama karma yoga was explicitly detailed in Bhagavad Gita of Hinduism. By reducing I of ego within, human beings step-by-step negated their ego (Aham) to zero. This became possible by having absolute faith in God Almighty. By traveling path of absolute truthfulness… human beings finally eliminated their ego (Aham) forever. The moment our ego reduced to zero… our submission to God Almighty became absolute.
As long as human beings had trace of ego aham within… total submission to God Almighty was not possible… prime reason why in present times God could not be reached via path of bhakti yoga (a path that required total submission to God Almighty). Dissolving I of ego forever was a difficult task… something that most human beings on mother earth failed to realize. Unless our I of ego merged with supreme whole (God Almighty himself)… one could never reach God Almighty.
King Janaka (father of Sita in RaMayana) was a true nishkama karma yogi par excellence. Even while living in family and conducting affairs of his kingdom he lived like a true trustee as if nothing ever belonged to him. JRD Tata… the scion of Tata Empire in India always lived like a true nishkama karma yogi that had no parallel in the industrial belt of India. Throughout his life, JRD Tata lived like a trustee… taking care of Tata empire as if everything belonged to God Almighty.