Gita Study Group : Chapter 3 : Karma Yoga

Bringing back the much enjoyed open discussion on the Gita, for general public. Proceeds Chapter and verse wise. For the keen student seeking a deep understanding of Krishna’s counsel! Registration necessary.
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Bringing back the much enjoyed open discussion on the Gita, for general public. Proceeds chapter and verse wise. For the keen student seeking a deep understanding of Krishna’s counsel! Registration necessary.

Re: Gita Study Group : Chapter 3 : Karma Yoga

Postby uma » Tue Jan 17, 2012 10:26 am

Hari Om. Pranam.

Reflections on Verses 40-41

Our inner enemy, the desire has been described in stanza 40, as to where it originates from or where it resides. Sense, mind and intellect are the seats of the desire. Why desires are called sinful is that they give rise to different emotions, anger, greed, hatred etc and they are never completely satisfied or abolished. A satisfied desire leads to further desires and unsatisfied one leads to anger. Hence, it is essential to keep our own desires under our own control. But it is very difficult to conquer the desires and what should be done has been given in Stanzas 41 and 42.

Meera, thanks for such nice elaborate discussion on desire, with current examples.

Ganeshji and Muruganji, both have contributed nicely in explanations.

Vighneshji and Sathiavathiji, please give your thoughts, study notes, reflections, then we will proceed further.

Let us also start a discussion in Bhagvad Geeta Course – Student’s forum as to “How to control our own desires” by citing practical ways and means in today’s life.
Regards

uma
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Re: Gita Study Group : Chapter 3 : Karma Yoga

Postby vignesh » Fri Jan 20, 2012 6:27 am

The desires, delude the individual by covering the knowledge. The seat or base of the desires is the sense organs, the mind and the intellect. One has to retraint the sense organs first, which come into contact with sense objects.
If we can manage our sense organs well with alertness, it will be relatively easier to manage the mind and intellect and therby the desires arising in them.

regards
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Re: Gita Study Group : Chapter 3 : Karma Yoga

Postby sathiavathi » Fri Jan 20, 2012 5:11 pm

HARI OM
VERSE-40
Arjuna wants to know the exact hide out of the dangerous bandid desire. Krishna, as a spiritual teacher indicate his adventurous student exactly from where
desire plans his nefarious activities. As an efficient leader of a gang desire functions at three main offices to destroy our inner peace. Senses mind and intellect
are the three main offices where desire functions to destroy the peace of our inner health. First place where desire functions is our sense organs. When
sense organs come in contact with the world of sense objects, external stimuli from the sense objects reach our mind. Mind becomes a brooding centre of sorrows
created by desire.The intellect functioning with the memories of sense enjoyments it had lived and the mental attachments it had entertained becomes the
third safe den for desire to function in. The deluded ego in us foolishly identifying with the body, desires sense enjoyments. Thoughtlessly identifying with the
mind it thirsts to experience more and more emotional satisfactions.And lastlyidentifying with the intellect it plans to re-live the remembered experience
of sense enjoyments and mental joys.
VERSE-41
In this verse how can we overcome inner enemy called desire is described. After giving all the arguements Krishna summarises to Arjuna to restrain the senses
first to throw the inner enemy desire and to protect our inner wisdom. As desire in all its textures contributes to the sins of man, it is called a sinful thing.
Desire does not allow even the sattwic to be with his true self, like that of smoke that covers the fire.Desire in its grosser manifestations tends to make us live
and work satisfying of lower nature and tempt us to live lower devolutionary life. If a doctor priscribes a medicine that is available it is easy to treat.
It would not be possible to treat with a non available medicine.Patient will never gain a cure if the priscription requires to prepare an ointment out of skyflowers.
So Krishna prescribes the easy available medicine that is with him."controll the senses and cast of the desire, 0 best of man."Unless the teacher gives us a method
by which we can get this prescription dispensed it will be as useless as the skyflower treatment for our painful wound.
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Re: Gita Study Group : Chapter 3 : Karma Yoga

Postby sganesh0112 » Sat Jan 21, 2012 10:05 am

Hari Om! Pranams to all

Uma ji, as per your suggestion, I've already posted certain points in the Gita students forum.


Hari om!

Ganesh
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Re: Gita Study Group : Chapter 3 : Karma Yoga

Postby uma » Mon Jan 23, 2012 11:30 am

Hari Om. Pranam.

Kindly post :

Stanza 42 - Muruganji
Stanza 43 - Ganeshji

HGRR -

Thoughts and Concepts 42- Uma

All to give reflections, study notes.

Muruganji, would you please summarize the entire chapter on Karma Yoga for the forum, giving the gist of important concepts?

Regards

uma
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Re: Gita Study Group : Chapter 3 : Karma Yoga

Postby meera » Mon Jan 23, 2012 1:54 pm

Hari Om..


Verse 41

Synopsis: Here Krishna says, to kill desire one must control the senses. Thus Krishna conclusively declares in this verse that Desire is finally that which impels man to sin.

All said and all done, the only thing for a jiva to do is control his desires.

In 40, Krishna has already explained how wisdom is dulled by desire, in answer to Arjuna’s question –Impelled by what does man commit this sin? – for Arjuna has seen how deep is delusion and how easily and compellingly man stoops, even justifying his sin and choosing to see it as a legitimate action.

Krishna then points to the residences of desire and across 4 verses He has explained the root cause as being DESIRE.

The first thing that Desire does is veil knowledge and wisdom – Knowledge that that which compels us is born of wrong thinking, and wisdom to know the difference (between right and wrong, sat and asat).

When a terrorist wishes to kidnap an individual, he will first present himself as somebody trustworthy or dependable in order to win the trust of the victim – say through phone, ad etc. Once he wins trust, he will blindfold the victim so that he cannot see (sense of vision) where he is being taken and by whom! Next he will use loud voice, harsh words ( sense of hearing) and hurting the body (sense of touch) if there is resistance to instil fear in the person being kidnapped.

This is EXACTLY what Desire does. It will first win our trust so that we are willing to be engaged by its lucre. Then it will grip us in its hold so that we are unable to wriggle free. And if we try to use reason or logic, it will immediately activate the ego and its insecurity (fear, doubt, etc)

Bhagawan says both Jnana (knowledge gained theorectically) and Vijnana (experience of this knowledge) are threatened by Desire. In the example of terrorist, the newspaper knowledge of how to behave/conduct oneself in the face of a threat is almost immediately forgotten as well as any self defence techniques we know and most of all – crucially relevant for us – the thought of Bhagawan does not even occur to us. All this is owing to the singlemost enemy number One: Fear or desire for self preservation. This fear makes us forget God only because we have never tried to remember Him during good times.

If we make it a habit to be in constant dialogue and friendship with God – through scriptural appreciation of His greatness, or rituals if we like that, or training the mind to spend a little time with Bhagawan daily (Bhagawan today I have so much work to do, I might forget you but You please do not forget me!) then He ever remains in our mind as a thought and on the tips of our tongue as a Naam! If not, in moments of crisis we are unable to remember Him.

So, being unable to remember the solution for crisis is the threat to wisdom from Desire.

Gurudev goes on to show how desire – in all its appearances: satwik, rajasic and tamasic – contributes to sinful ways. Tamasic desire needs no imagination. Rajasic desire whips up the froth of power, glory and an ego constantly in need of being fed.

Satwik desire too, although only lesser of the three evils, veils the brilliance of Truth, like the smoke of a lamp can blur its brilliance. Thus it will create a dependency that takes away discrimination. Like the desire to attend satsange can become one where inability to attend it during child’s exams can cause one to become irritable with the child!

Hari Om..
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Re: Gita Study Group : Chapter 3 : Karma Yoga

Postby murugans61 » Tue Jan 24, 2012 12:28 am

Hari OM

VERSE 42:

Indriyani paranyahur-indriye-bhyah param manah
mana-sastu para buddhiryo buddheh para-tastu sah.

indriyani - the senses, paraani- superior, ahuh - ( they) say, indriyebhyah - than the senses, param - superior, manah- the mind, manasah - than the mind, tu-but, para- superior, buddhih - intellect, yah -who, bhuddheh - than the intellect, paratah - greater, tu - but, sah -he.

They say that the senses are superior ( to the body); superior to the senses is the mind; superior to mind is the intellect; one who is even superior to the intellect is He,( the Atman).

pranams
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Re: Gita Study Group : Chapter 3 : Karma Yoga

Postby uma » Wed Jan 25, 2012 10:21 am

Hari Om. Pranam.

Posting from HGRR :

42. How is desire conquered?

एवं बुद्धे: परम् बुद्ध्वा संस्तभ्यात्मानमात्मना |
जहि शत्रुं महाबाहो कामरूपं दुरासदं ||43||

Desire is conquered by the Knowledge of the Self. This is made clear in the following verse:

evam buddheh prama buddhvaa sanstabhyaatmaanamaatmanaa |
jahi shatrum mahabaho kaamaroopam durasadam ||43||

Thus knowing Him, who is superior to intellect and restraining the self by the Self, slay you, O mighty armed, the enemy in the form of "desire", no doubt hard indeed to conquer. (3.43)

Regards

uma
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Re: Gita Study Group : Chapter 3 : Karma Yoga

Postby sganesh0112 » Wed Jan 25, 2012 7:27 pm

Hari Om!

Posting of verse 3-43


Evam Buddhehe Param Buddhva Samsthabhyatmaanam aathmanaa |
Jahi Shatrum Mahaabaaho Kaamaroopam Duraasadam || 3.43||

Evam – Thus, Buddhehe –by the mind (knowing Him), Param Buddhva – Who is superior to intellect, Samsthabhyam – Restraining, Aathmanaa – the self, Aathmaanam-by the Self, Jahi – Slay,, Shatrum – the enemy, Mahaabaaho – O mighty-armed, Kaamaroopam- In the form of Desire, Duraasadam – No doubt hard indeed to conquer


3.43 – Thus knowing Him, who is superior to intellect, and restraining the self by the Self, slay you, O mighty-armed , the enemy in the form of “desire”, no doubt hard indeed to conquer.

Pranams,

Ganesh
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Re: Gita Study Group : Chapter 3 : Karma Yoga

Postby sganesh0112 » Wed Jan 25, 2012 7:57 pm

Hari Om!

Reflections on verse 42 and 43.

The last two stanzas give a clear introduction to the technique of Meditation. Once we understand, that the sense organs are more subtler to the objects of the world, subtler to the sense organs is the mind, intellect is more superior to the mind, and the Supreme or the Self is more subtler or superior to the intellect. Thus the Supreme, is beyond the BMI equipment in us. No doubt it is extremely difficult to control the desires, however, if we start restraining our senses, we can control the mind, then the intellect and so on and thus we will be able to triumph over the biggest obstruction to the path of the Sadhaka, i.e. the Desires, be it Saattwic, Raajasic or Taamasic, depending on the nature of one's Sadhana.

My own understanding of this chapter, has been, "Do your Actions rightfully as a sense of duty and surrender to the Almighty" Actions have to be done continuously, and keeping all our senses together, do not let the devil in you (also called the Sanshayatmika Manas or the mind) be idle so that it may generate in you the negative thoughts or the thoughts of objects or the world, however, always keep it active and dissolved in the world of Selfless Actions by going out into the world and doing your duty as a service to the Lord. This is one of the simplest ways of keeping the all destroying "desire" at bay.

In the concluding remarks, Poojya Gurudev says, " it is very interesting to note that the philosophy of the Geeta preaches a constructive re-organisation of life and not the destruction or rejection of life's possibilities. "desire' being a painful leprous oozing wound, we are lovingly advised about the balm to cure the malady, and to live thereafter, in all efficiency, as a Master of circumstances and al Lord of our own emotions. A seeker, who has accomplished this in himself is called a God-man, a Sage, a Prophet!"

Pujya Gurudev also states, " The training of Karma Yoga prepares us for the greater fights on life's battle-fields."


Pranams

Ganesh
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Re: Gita Study Group : Chapter 3 : Karma Yoga

Postby sathiavathi » Wed Jan 25, 2012 8:36 pm

VERSE-42
As long as we are after the world of objects , we cannot realize our inner potentialities. We will understand ourselves to be nothing more than the little ego.
when we find our own diviner existance we will be able to live restraining the self by self.In his perfection his ego functions completely under the control of
diviner in him. Desire impulses no more play on him.If at all they arise in the mind they cannot destroy our inner peace. Phylosophy of Geeta preaches a constructive
re-organisation of life and not the destruction or rejection of lifes possibilities. Desire being a painful leprous oozing wound caused by spiritual ignorance can
be ended by knowledge alone.Through the process of meditation, when we withdraw from our false identification with the objects, the body mind and desire
faculty that was till now roaming about and functioning in the outer fields, is gathered and established in the intellect. Thus when the ignorance is ended one starts
mastering the circumstances and becomes the lord of his own situations. He is able to keep a healthy relation with the world of objects and there by functioning
well in the society.
VERSE- 43
Compared with the objects of the world the sense organs are more sacred and divine. Of the instruments that constitutes our physical structure , sense organs are superior
than the organs of action. Our mind orders and controls our sense organs. Therefore, mind is superior to indriyas.Mind has a vast kingdom to roam about in.
But it has its own limitations and fixed frontiers. It is the intellect that crosses the existing frontiers of mind. So intellect is superior to mind. That which lies beyond intellect
is called the the supreme Atman.There is nothing subtler than the atman. The inner conciousness in an individual that lights up the ideas. The techenique of meditation
lies in the conscious withdrawal of all our identifications with our body mind and intellect.All efforts end when we have gathered our entire awareness from
its delusory pre-occupations and made it live in itself as itself as objectless awareness and there by capturing the inner enemy desire.
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Re: Gita Study Group : Chapter 3 : Karma Yoga

Postby uma » Thu Jan 26, 2012 9:20 am

Hari Om. Pranam.

Here are the Verses 42-43 for our discussion. Please post your thoughts, your study notes, reflections on these verses.

Offering this garland of verses to you O Krishna with Love from all of us...please help us in our studies.
============================================================

Verse 42:


इन्द्रियाणि पराण्याहुरिन्द्रियेभ्य: परम् मन: ।
मनसस्तु परा बुद्धिर्यो बुद्धे: परतस्तु स: ।।४२।।

Indriyani paranyahur-indriye-bhyah param manah
mana-sastu para buddhiryo buddheh para-tastu sah.


इन्द्रियाणि: - indriyani - the senses,पराणि - paraani- superior, आहु:- ahuh - ( they) say, इन्द्रियेभ्य:-indriyebhyah - than the senses, परम् - param - superior, मन:-manah- the mind, मनसा:-manasah - than the mind, तु - tu-but, परा - para- superior, बुद्धि: - buddhih - intellect, य: -yah -who, बुद्धे: - bhuddheh - than the intellect, परत: -paratah - greater, तु - tu - but, स: - sah -he.

They say that the senses are superior ( to the body); superior to the senses is the mind; superior to mind is the intellect; one who is even superior to the intellect is He,( the Atman).


Verse 43


एवं बुद्धे: परम् बुद्ध्वा संस्तभ्यात्मानमात्मना ।
जहि शत्रुं महाबाहो कामरूपं दुरासदं ।। ४३ ।।

Evam Buddhehe Param Buddhva Samsthabhyatmaanam aathmanaa |
Jahi Shatrum Mahaabaaho Kaamaroopam Duraasadam || 3.43||

एवं - Evam – Thus, बुद्धे: - Buddhehe –by the mind (knowing Him), परम् - Param , बुद्ध्वा - Buddhva – Who is superior to intellect, संस्तभ्य - Samsthabhyam – Restraining, आत्मानं - Aathmanaa – the self, आत्मना - Aathmaanam-by the Self, जहि - Jahi – Slay, शत्रुं - Shatrum – the enemy, महाबाहो - Mahaabaaho – O mighty-armed, कामरूपं - Kaamaroopam- In the form of Desire, दुरासदं - Duraasadam – No doubt hard indeed to conquer


Thus knowing Him, who is superior to intellect, and restraining the self by the Self, slay you, O mighty-armed , the enemy in the form of “desire”, no doubt hard indeed to conquer.


HGRR - Thoughts and Concepts :

42. How is desire conquered?

एवं बुद्धे: परम् बुद्ध्वा संस्तभ्यात्मानमात्मना |
जहि शत्रुं महाबाहो कामरूपं दुरासदं ||43||

Desire is conquered by the Knowledge of the Self. this is made clear in the following verse:

evam buddheh prama buddhvaa sanstabhyaatmaanamaatmanaa
jahi shatrum mahabaho kaamaroopam durasadam

Thus knowing Him, who is superior to intellect and restraining the self by the Self, slay you, O mighty armed, the enemy in the form of "desire", no doubt hard indeed to conquer. (3.43)

Ganeshaji and Sathivathiji have already given their reflections. Vighneshaji, Muruganji and Meeraji to post their study notes.

Regards

uma
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Re: Gita Study Group : Chapter 3 : Karma Yoga

Postby vignesh » Fri Jan 27, 2012 1:35 pm

V 42 -43

Once the hold of our desires on us become weak, we can discover the Atman, which is beyond the senses, the mind, and the intellect and thus destroy the kama for good.
Knowing the Self, which is beyond the intellect, and steadying the mind with the mind, one can conquer the enemy which is in the form of desire.

regards
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Re: Gita Study Group : Chapter 3 : Karma Yoga

Postby murugans61 » Sat Jan 28, 2012 1:23 pm

Hari OM

Verse 42 & 43

A subtle thing is always superior to gross. The senses excel the gross body, mind dominates over senses and Intellect comes above the mind. Atman enlivens the intellect and therefore it is above all these instruments utilized by it.

Desires clings more tenaciously to the subtle than to the gross. Attachment to the body easily gives place to the attachment to the senses and so on. Attachment to all these leads to bondage and brings misery.

When desire is centered on the body, the senses ,mind and intellect, the Jiva consciousness is fostered. The happiness associated with the body, senses, mind and intellect is bound and reappears as misery. When Spiritual consciousness is awakened, the base desires automatically vanish. The Jiva bhava goes away giving place to the knowledge and glory of Sat Chit Ananda Atman.

pranams
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Re: Gita Study Group : Chapter 3 : Karma Yoga

Postby uma » Mon Jan 30, 2012 12:43 pm

Hari Om. Pranam.

Reflections on Verses 42 and 43 :

As Ganeshji has brilliantly summarized in one line “My own understanding of this chapter, has been, "Do your Actions rightfully as a sense of duty and surrender to the Almighty" and also as he and Sathivathiji rightly say we have to withdraw our attention and identification from the outside world of objects and concentrate it on inner Self. So meditate. Meditate on Self, subtler than even mind and intellect. Withdraw from the gross and contemplate on the subtlest. And this has to be done consciously, purposely and deliberately.

Conquering desires is not easy, but still an attempt can be made by regulating our life, by meditating and most of all with an effort to understand Him, by devotion as well as following Karma Yoga.

Regards

uma
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Re: Gita Study Group : Chapter 3 : Karma Yoga

Postby meera » Fri Feb 03, 2012 8:25 am

Hari Om.....


42, 43

Verse 42:

Synopsis: The graded order of superiority or subtlety is given here. Grossest is the body, subtlest is the Consciousness pervading it. How does one cast off desires?

Having homed in on Desire as the fundamental destroyer of man, Bhagavan the true manager, tells us how to return to the right address.

To capture the enemy, we need to know its composition, or its weaknesses or its make up, so that we can plan our moves. So far we have identified where desire resides. The location of the enemy has been spotted. [This is a lot like how a certain unfortunate terrorist was captured in our neighbourhood – for years they hunted and sought him everywhere…he remained elusive and also had the upper hand on our lives, as he terrorised our existence. Then they found out which country he was hiding in, within that country which region, within that region which direction,…and finally the place where he was revelling.]

So too desire. We have been shown how to locate where it resides. And now we know. That it sits enveloping our wisdom. When we go to meet wisdom, we are instead faced by desire! But now we know where it resides.

Its residence is so well chosen that it impacts/influences through and through all subsequent layers. Having dulled thee wisdom with its grip, it in turn controls the mind, and its subordinate the sense organs. With all 3 doors fully in its control, desire reigns free.

Controlling wisdom too, desire makes intelligence work for it. I love saris. So I go to the shop across the street every time fresh supplies arrive and I buy. Then one day I think where are other shops? So I Google and find online shops that don’t even need leaving my home (fresh knowledge to feed desire). This shows us that our intellect is even subtler than our mind. If the intellect could refuse, then the mind cannot be fed. But enveloped as it is by desire, the intellect, excited by serving its kidnapper, starts searching for more shops. Then various funding methods, then more techniques to cut other costs to pay for more saris….this is called obsession.

This is the state where we justify with emphatic vehemence that “I buy the best saris because I find the best shops with so much effort….” And in the process I have made a holy monument out of my obsession.

But enabling all this activity is the life force. The Consciousness. So at one extreme of the spectrum is Consciousness and at the other is Desire. And man is being tossed about at the hands of desire and he foolishly is gurgling with joy thinking ‘This is the life!’ Until one day he realises that this is the disease that he is in the grip of.

Now how does he travel back to Consciousness? To do that man has to dis-identify one by one with all the doors that he had entered, doors that had said ‘Enter’. So he is being told, look for the only door that says Consciousness, that is the address we want to reach. Don’t enter any other door….so from the hand that reaches for the chocolate, to the mind that urges the feeling for it, to the intellect that enabled this choice,…he has to exit all these doors and come to Consciousness.

This is what Gurudev and Krishna are teaching as the art of meditation, which is the art of removing the meditation from chocolate (sense object), from eyes (sense organ), from hand (organ of action), from mind (emotion), from intellect (that is now guiding the emotion too, justifying the chocolate), turning away from all these doors one by one, and be guided by the call of the flute…..to the door of Consciousness which is simply without any object of any kind. Where desire cannot even enter, let alone reign.

Verse 43:

Synopsis: In this manner, having found that which is superior even to the intellect – (we won’t give it any name now) -- we can conquer the little instruments of this individuality (sense organs, mind, intellect). That is how touch desire is to eradicate.
The beauty of this lesson is in being able to accept its prescription: that, our problem is desire
.

If we do not recognise this home truth, then we are sucked deep and hard into the pits of delusion and the worst of that is where the highest power in us, the intellect too convinces us that we are so noble. And our life force (Consciousness) is willy nilly channelled into serving (illumining) such an intellect.

But once we recognise this as the original sin, then a tougher task awaits us, eradicating it.

[Here I am painfully reminded of a parallel in my life – a young friend who had been unwell for sometime; all kinds of tests and checks went on and on wondering what is ailing him… frustrating number of tests…and finally he was diagnosed with cancer of the blood. The worst is now – when knowing what ails him, we are unable to find the money to treat him, Rs 20 lakhs!)

Likewise, the means to scrape off a virus called desire from our identification is simple, but the skill required to accomplish it is very hard to develop.

Naturally, since a life time has gone into building that desire-led living!

Yet all is not lost. Just the acceptance (knowledge) that desire is the root of all this, is the end of avidya. But that alone will not let in Knowledge. One has to learn to live without desire, that is all. The demand is the simplest of any demand, But one will need to equip this very BMI with the power of the Conscious Higher Self, the power of Will, to dis-identify with all this, so that one may attain back to That.

Even so, it is not as if desire goes away. But the power to shoo it away gets stronger. And the moment we discover that That Brahman is Me after all, this ignorance that nurses on desire, will also end.

The essence of this is negating these upadhis and their compulsions. Negating the limiting small self that we believe we are and having to the courage to say ‘No’ to all that we see, for what we see and are able to see, smell, hear, taste and touch are all mithya, unreal, delusion.

As long as there is identification with sense organs, there will be identification with the BMI and its obsessions.

Say no to this, and say Yes to That.

So the idea is not to ‘not enjoy the things of the world’, but to develop the inner means to enjoy them without being enslaved.

Where enjoying is not impulsive but a choice that is made in control.

Om Tatsaditi…..
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Re: Gita Study Group : Chapter 3 : Karma Yoga

Postby murugans61 » Fri Feb 03, 2012 8:47 am

Hari OM

CIF - online Bhagavad Gita course gives the following crisp summary.
Karma-yoga means the Path of Action. Most of us like Arjuna are guided to follow this path to qualify for the higher Path of Knowledge. This chapter is an important and practical guide on the Art of Dynamic Living.
This elaborate exposition on Karma-yoga includes concepts of action, inaction, right action, right attitude in action, bondage through action, freedom in action, wheel of action, exception to wheel of action, the great man’s action, secret of successful action, nature-prompted action, desire-prompted action, sinful actions and how to overcome wrong tendencies of action.

Detailed summary:

The Third chapter begins with Arjuna’s doubt – “Oh Lord! You seem to confuse me by contradictory statements. Tell me one-knowledge or karma- which will lead me to Moksha”.

Bhagavan answers that there are two lifestyles called karma-yoga-nistha ( social life) and jnana-yoga-nistha (secluded life). One can choose any one of them as a house holder or as a monk.
Whatever lifestyle one chooses, one has to follow relevant karma for purity and then pursue knowledge to discover the freedom that is one’s true nature.

Of these two lifestyles, Krishna gives preference to social life. From the 4th to 7th verse,Bhagavan condemns inaction and praises an alert and active life. Inaction should be avoided because:
1) Neither purity nor knowledge can be achieved by that
2) Desires force one to act and inaction will be suppression
3) A mind without occupation will be idle.It will brood over sense pleasures.Such a hypocritical mind will soon fall.
Having created the world and the intelligent human beings, the Lord Himself advocated the way of life which is karma-yoga. By following this, material and spiritual progress can be attained (10-14)
Since it is the teaching of the Lord, the Master of the universe, human being has to take it as a command and obey it as a servant of the Lord.

When we follow the teachings of the Lord, it becomes a gesture of our appreciation for all the gifts and blessings that the Lord has bestowed upon us.Thus, our work becomes a worship or loving offering (yajna) to God. It purifies the mind also.
Lastly, karma-yoga is necessary to maintain the harmony of the universe upon which we are dependent. The working of the universe being a cyclic process, with the human beings as its important link,one must be aware of ones responsibility (duty). Thus,karma-yoga is only the duty of a responsible citizen of the world.One who does not discharge it, proves himself to be an immature human being ( 14-16).

Thus karma-yoga is to be pursued because:
1) It contributes to material and spiritual progress
2) It is the commandment of the Master of the universe
3) It is our grateful offering ( yajna) to the Lord, acknowledging his gifts
4) It is the only way of maintaining the harmony

Karma-yoga ultimately leads one to liberation through the stages of purity, enquiry and knowledge (17,18). Krishna cites the example of Janaka who successfully pursued knowledge while remaining in karma-yoga-nistha (social life).
From the 20th to 29th verse, the Lord talks about the role of a wise man in the society. Any person with a higher status or knowledge (srestha), can influence the others positively or negatively. Hence, even though Arjuna might not benefit from this war, he has to fight as ksatriya’s duty and set an example to others. Else,he will be responsible for anarchy in his own time as well as in the future. (22-25)

Thus, both the wise and the ignorant should act- the former for teaching others , and the latter,for purity. The only difference is that the former will be detached while the latter won’t be(27-29).

The 30th verse summarizes karma yoga.
1.Keep the spiritual goal. 2 Offer all actions to the Lord 3.Don’t be bound by the results 4 Be free from possessiveness 5 Be calm.
One who follows karma-yoga reaches the goal of life and the other is lost (31,32)
Likes and dislikes ( raga –dvesha) born of habits ( vasanas) pull a person astray. Still, a person should not go by what he likes to do but what he has to do ( duty), even if it involves difficulties (33 to 35).

As an answer to Arjuna’s question (36), Lord elaborately discusses the problem of kama-krodha and raga-dvesa. They are the real enemies of a seeker.(37). Clouding the knowledge, they force a person to run after endless insatiable desires and take away all the chances of peace and progress (38,39). The senses, the mind and the intellect are the base of desires. They have to be taken care of ( 40,41). Durvasanas should be replaced by subhavasanas by practice. False values should be replaced by right ones through discrimination.
Once kama becomes weak, one can discover the Atma, which is beyond the senses, the mind, and the intellect and thus destroy kama for good (42,43).
(As explained by Swami Paramarthanandaji).
pranams
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Re: Gita Study Group : Chapter 3 : Karma Yoga

Postby uma » Fri Feb 03, 2012 11:50 am

Hari Om. Pranam.

Dhanyavad Meera for such nice, in depth reflecions.

Thanks Muruganji for a detailed summary.

Thanks to all other contributors and regular participants.

Lets us begin our study of Chapter 4 - Dnyan Karma Sanyasa Yoga as a new topic under this forum.

Regards

uma
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Re: Gita Study Group : Chapter 3 : Karma Yoga

Postby geetha123 » Sun Mar 30, 2014 9:37 pm

HARI OM , i will be happy to be an active participant of category 2 . I am GEETHA VASUDEVAN . , a student of philosophy . Did the advanced vedanta course and just finished the Bhagavad Gita course . The Bhagavad Gita course provided an over all analytical view of the chapters without going into explaining verse by verse. I am interested in reading the explanations from the first chapter on wards , verse by verse in order to clarify my doubts . My question then is

Even as the two paths are to be followed serially , how do I know where I stand and which of the two paths is best suited for me ?please advice . I am contemplative by nature and get inspiration in knowing and studying vedantic texts . . I must confess that I have not done much of selfless actions to be called a karma yogi . Please advise

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Re: Gita Study Group : Chapter 3 : Karma Yoga

Postby Arvind » Mon Mar 31, 2014 8:46 am

Hari Om Geetha ji,

The current forum you have posted now is available only for reading and not active.

Currently the Chapter going on for study is Chapter 8. I would encourage you to join that by posting your
introduction in that forum (Chapter 8 under Public Forum).

However all discussions from Chapter 1 are available in the forum and additionally you can go through them as well.

With regards to your question on the two paths with respect to Karma Yoga, please post your question under
the forum Home Study Course=> Bhagavad Gita => Student Queries. The reason being, the forum where you have posted
in now an older one, all queries for home student students will be taken in the link I have mentioned.

Please email me if you have further questions.

Pranaams
Arvind
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