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Harih Om Tat Sat. Jai Guru. Jai Guru.
Most of you or many of you may not know how the scriptural reading and introspection work on you and will help you and guide you. I may have spoken about it earlier on some occasions, but I don’t think many of you really know how the scriptures work on a serious student or a seeker.
Arjuna was already a religious man, what more, he was a very austere person. He had done a lot of austerity. He was religious, he was pious. To a very large extent, he was also knowledgeable. He had read and heard about the scriptures. With all these merits, when he came to the battlefield, he simply blinked, crumbled, and that too, in front of his elders standing on a chariot driven by no less a person like Krishna. All the good thoughts and positive thoughts completely deserted him. On the other hand, all negative and belligerent and resistential thoughts ruled his mind. Can you imagine a graver tragedy?
From such a situation, Krishna did not have any time at all, he started speaking to him. You know when a conversation starts between two people, what actually takes place? You think that it is a past time. Not at all! If the conversation is assiduously done, faithfully done, whatever transpires in the conversation will penetrate into each other and it will bring about such a transformation in the psycho–intellectual level of your personality that you cannot imagine the consequence. This is what happened in Arjuna.
What did Arjuna do? He only received what Krishna said. What do you mean by reception? You mean to say the body was receiving it? Certainly not! The ears were instrumental in receiving what Krishna said. But the actual reception takes place in the mind level, in the intelligence level. It is the mento–intellectual personality that gives rise to all kinds of activity, interaction that receives the impacts of these interactions, assimilates them. Now a thorough transformation of the mento–intellectual personality was taking place as Arjuna was listening to Krishna’s words. I am wondering whether such a transformation takes place in you also when you listen to spiritual dialogues. This is something that you have to enquire into and verify.
In seventeen chapters, Krishna held Arjuna in a variety of thought processes, in a variety of exposures, evaluations, assessments, inspirations, enlightenments, and what not! In the eighteenth, he was giving a summary. It was started with an enquiry from Arjuna as to what is tyāga and what is sannyāsa. Krishna is very faithful about it. He holds on to the sannyāsa and tyāga, explains that it is all of three kinds, tāmasa, rājasa, and sāttvika. And finally after explaining the three categories, he comes to a summary position. Do you know what is that summary position? Only if you read Gita, absorb it, understand it, think about it, think about it, compare and contrast, put one proposition alongside another and the whole message gets assimilated into your system, by simply reading, thinking, thinking, thinking, thinking, thinking, thinking – that is the sādhanā. The sādhanā is not with flowers, it is not in a tīrthādana, it is a pilgrimage for the intelligence and the mind within the body. Understand it very well.
And finally what does he say? What does he say? The whole nature is encircling everyone. Nature’s influences penetrate into every being, nature’s influences surrounds everyone, whether it is thought processes, instigations, and inspirations arising from the inner personality or influences coming from the panchabhūtas and so many other creatures around. Understand that the nature works inwardly and outwardly and you are under their grip. Therefore what you should do? You should still find your escape and freedom, remaining within the orbit of nature. How can this be done? Just see what he says.
Human beings are categorized as four. You may fall into one category - either the Brahma svabhava, or the kshātra or the vaiśya or the sūdra. If you fall in one of the categories, you are likely to continue in that category, unless you want a promotion. And he says, no matter, it does not matter to which category you belong. It is just like the feet, head, hands and waist of a human body. No part of the body can be superior to the rest. All together constitutes the body and its welfare and its functional life. So the feeling of inferiority and superiority should be abandoned and you should find harmony in wherever you are and whatever you are. Then can I get my objective in life? Yes! This is the great statement.
स्वे स्वे कर्मण्यभिरतः संसिद्धिं लभते नरः ।
Sve sve karmaṇyabirataḥ samsiddhiṁ labhate naraḥ
(Bhagavad Gita 18.45)
If you can understand this one line from Gita, I think you have fulfilled your life. Sve sve karmaṇyabirataḥ samsiddhiṁ labhate naraḥ. He uses the word karma and not dharma. All talk about dharma is gone. Karma done properly becomes dharma. Karma done properly becomes dharma. How many times shall I say this? Karma done properly becomes dharma. So, when will you be a dharmishta? When your karma is well done.
What is the ‘doing it well’, wellness in doing? Sve sve karmaṇyabirataḥ, in all the karmas that you are performing, don’t choose, don’t select, don’t worry. Remain engrossed; give the whole of your being and attention to whatever you do. It may be pasting the flap of an envelope, fixing a stamp, going through Vicharasetu and finding whether pages are in order, serving some food in the kitchen, maybe cleaning your own dress, wiping or sweeping your floor – let the karma be anything. Maybe it is giving a talk like this. In whatever karma you do, you should become abirataḥ, you must be having interest in whatever you do. Don’t do anything disinterestingly. Then you attain siddhi.
How it can be attained, he says:
असक्तबुद्धिः सर्वत्र |
Asakta buddhih sarvatra |
Bring that asakta buddhi. This buddhi is an inwardly operating factor. Do everything with the maximum of interest. At the same time, have no delusional clinging towards anything. Where is dharma gone now? And for doing your svakarma, do you have to work for it? You are already doing it, already doing it, already doing it. Do it with interest, do it with love, fondness, dedication, do it with a sense of offering. At the same time, never be sakta in whatever you do. Performance of one’s own actions without any choice being applied in the way of good, bad, superior, inferior, mine worse, another’s better – avoid all these things. And then do it with interest, with application, with attention. Remain asakta.
असक्तबुद्धिः सर्वत्र जितात्मा विगतस्पृहः |
Asakta buddhiḥ sarvatra jitātmā vigatah spṛhaḥ |
(Bhagavad Gita 18.49)
See that asakta buddhi gives you perfection. Now, what have you understood? You don’t have to do anything. Karmas are automatically being done by the force of nature. It is a question of whether you accept it and understand it as such, and then bring one element of not clinging to anything. That non-clingingness, non-clingingness makes you perfect. That is called the samsiddhi.
What have you understood, think about it. This is how Bhagavad Gita works. I always used to say, the real sādhanā is studying the Gita and reflecting upon its messages. Go on thinking. When you think, the mind is active. It is a mind sādhanā. When you introspect, it is an intelligence sādhanā. When you do a physical act, it is only a bodily act. The mind may not do the sādhanā there. The sādhanā part comes only from the attitude and objective of the mind and the evaluative introspection of the intelligence. As much as you can do, reading the Gita verses, listening to them, introspecting over them – that is how the mind imbibes purity, the intelligence imbibes clarity, and the heart becomes purer, expansive, finally it becomes spatial and sentient space. This is how it works. You don’t have to go anywhere. You don’t have to do anything special. But, do this mento–intellectual association with the scriptures in the way of an introspection, evaluation, assessment, and self verification.
Harih Om Tat Sat. Jai Guru. Jai Guru.