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(The Philosophical Part)
Arjuna is now confused and asks Shri Krishna. “First you told me to give up actions and now you are insisting on actions. (5:2). Which of the two paths is better?” (5:6)
KARMAYOGA AND KARMASANYAS ARE SAME IN EFFECT
Shri Krishna said, “Both Karmasanyasa (renouncing actions) and Karmayoga (performing actions without desire for fruits) lead to liberation. But it would appear that Karmyoga is clearer and easier to follow for big and small. If one thinks carefully. it would be clear that by this path the fruits of Karmasanyasa are also gained automatically. I shall now tell you the qualities of a sanyasi and then you will realise that both paths are the same. (5:14-18).
QUALITIES OF A SANYASI
A sanyasi does not grieve about his gains or losses and does not crave for what he has not received. His mind is steady as a mountain. He does not at all have feelings in his mind about “me” and “mine”. Such a person is forever a sanyasi (renunciate). In this state of his mind he is dissociated from the fruits of actions and he is ever happy. Such a person does not have to leave his home. family and possessions to become a sanyasi because he is already dissociated from desires in his mind. (5:19-22). He whose intellect is free from desires does not get caught in the bindings of the actions. A person attains the qualities of a sanyasi (renunciate) only when desires are given up. Therefore both Karmasanyasa (renouncing actions) and Karmayoga (performing actions without desire for fruits) are the same. (5:23-25). Only ignorant persons think that the two (i.e. Jnyanayoga of the Sankhyas and Karmayoga) are different but those who have experienced Self know that they are not different. (5:26-28). One who follows the Yoga path attains very soon the bliss of the Brahman but one who cannot succeed in it wastes his efforts and cannot be a real renunciate. (5:32-33).
ATTITUDE OF A NON-DOER IS NECESSARY
A person who has kept his mind free of delusion and by purifying it with the help of Guru's mantra merged it in the Self. becomes the Self. (5:34). A person who, after getting rid of desires, has become consciousness (Brahman) itself, pervades the expanse of the three worlds (i.e. heaven. earth and the nether) through the form of the Self, even by being at one place. ( 5:36). For such a person. language like "This is done by me" or "I want to do this" becomes redundant and he remains a non-doer in spite of his actions. Because such a person is not even conscious of his body, even though his outward behaviour and his bodily functions appear to be normal. Then how can he have the ego about his actions? (5:37-38).
When we think about the Almighty God we see that the all-pervading God is apparently a non-doer. He creates this expanse of the three worlds but He does not get involved with these actions even if you call Him a doer. He raises populations of creatures from the five elements (earth. water. air. fire and sky or space. See note at the end of the Chapter) and He is in all but belongs to none. In fact He is not even aware about the creation and destruction of the world. (5:76-79). He assumes form by taking birth but His formlessness is not affected. Therefore to say that He creates. maintains and destroys is rooted in ignorance. (5:81-82).
When this ignorance is totally destroyed then delusion goes and non-doing nature of God becomes clear. Once a person is convinced in his mind that God is a non-doer then the fundamental idea that "He is not different from me" is naturally established. Once this sense has arisen in the mind then he does not see himself different from anything in the three worlds and considers the world to be as liberated as he is. (5:83-85). Such persons have a sense of equability towards everything in this world, (5:88). Such men of Knowledge do not notice differences between different creatures. (5:93-95). Listen now to the characteristics of the person who possesses this sense of equability. (5:102).
INDIFFERENCE TO SUCCESS OR FAILURE
One who is not affected by the success or failure (or gains and losses) of his actions is a person with sense of equability. He is the Brahman personified. (5:103-104). Due to the limitless internal bliss of the Self he is not attracted towards the external worldly pleasures. (5:105-106). It is only those who have not experienced this internal bliss that are attracted towards the impermanent worldly pleasures. (5:110). The pleasures of the sense-objects are actually miseries from the beginning to the end but ignorant people cannot do without them. (5:120). It is these people who are addicted to the sense pleasures that have given the appearance of truth to this worldly delusion of Maya. (5:126).
Persons who have controlled passions totally are not at all aware of the sorrows born out of sense-pleasures. (5:129). They are internally filled with bliss. But their way of enjoying that bliss is unusual. They are not aware that they are the enjoyers because they are in a state of egolessness and oneness with the Supreme. (5:131-133). This Bliss of the Self is the best, is indestructible and limitless. Only the desireless persons are worthy of it. (5:146). If you ask how these persons reached this stage while still living, it is because first they give up the pleasures with dispassion and concentrating at the point in between the eyebrows and while controlling the breath (Pranayama), they meditate with their eyes turned backwards. (5:151-153). Thus their mind turns inwards and through the state of samadhi they take the life-force and the mind upwards towards the experience of Brahman. When mind dissolves, all desires and ego also dissolve. Therefore he who experiences the bliss becomes one with Brahman while still living. (5:155-157).
Five elements or Principles (5:76-79): Indian philosophy postulates the world to be made of five principles or elements. Earth, Water, Air, Fire and Sky or Space. This is as per the understanding of the thinkers at the beginning of human civilisation. When seen from the modern scientificl point of view, the first three are the three states of matter namely solid, liquid and gaseous states. The fourth represents the energy while the fifth is the space. Modern science has found more than 100 elements, about 92 of them occurring naturally. But this does not change the basic arguments.
Samadhi (5:155-157): This is a state of deep trance without thoughts during meditation.
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