Bhagavad Gita yajna - 12th chapter day 2 notes


Verse 12.1
अर्जुन उवाच |
एवं सततयुक्ता ये भक्तास्त्वां पर्युपासते |
ये चाप्यक्षरमव्यक्तं तेषां के योगवित्तमा: || 1||
arjuna uvāca
eva
satata-yuktā ye bhaktās tvā paryupāsate
ye ch
āpy akharam avyakta tehā ke yoga-vittamā

Arjuna’s question
Amongst the devotees, who is greater?
The seeker who worships the Lord with the form or the one who worships the Lord as nameless & formless?
Nirguna upAsakAs or saguna upAsakAs?


This question of Arjuna makes us think whether the Lord is with form or without form. To understand this, let us start from ourselves. Are we with form or without form? When asked thus, we say that we are both. i.e. we exist as form when seen at the gross level, but also, we exist without form as in the state of sleep or deep thinking.

Hinduism embraces both ways of worship. i.e. worshipping the supreme reality in form and also without any form and attributes.
Reference from kandar anubhuti

உருவாய் அருவாய், உளதாய் இலதாய்
மருவாய் மலராய், மணியாய் ஒளியாய்க்
கருவாய் உயிராய்க், கதியாய் விதியாய்க்
குருவாய் வருவாய், அருள்வாய் குகனே

The Lord doesn’t give a one-word answer. Instead …

Verse 12.2

श्रीभगवानुवाच |
मय्यावेश्य मनो ये मां नित्ययुक्ता उपासते |
श्रद्धया परयोपेतास्ते मे युक्ततमा मता: || 2||
śhrī-bhagavān uvācha
mayy āveśhya mano ye mā
nitya-yuktā upāsate
śhraddhayā parayopetās te me yuktatamā matā
Lord Krishna certifies that the seeker with the below 2 qualities is great. He is not bothered about whether the seeker is worshipping the reality with form or without form.
  1. Mind completely absorbed in me (nitya yuktAh)
  2. And having great faith (shraddhayA)
The above said 2 qualities can be applied to seeker of any field, not necessarily restricted to spirituality. A person wanting success even in worldly endeavour, must have these qualities. The aspirant must work with total involvement and must have great respect/ value for whatever work he does.

Example 1 – a mason built a low-quality house with an intention to make more profit. And he was completely shocked when the owner presented the house to him. Work should be done not for the result but because we love it and value our own work.

Example 2 – a 95 year old grandma regularly doing yoga and also preaching it, was awarded Bharat Ratna award. She didn’t do the yoga for award. But was awarded for her sincerity and passion for her work.

To think – do we have our mind on what we do? Do we have great value for the work that we do?
To think – which list is bigger? Our blessings list or our missing list?

Our tongue licks the fallen tooth only and not the remaining 31. We think of one thing that we don't have and not the 100 things we have. Lord saves us from our arrogant ego by not giving certain things. Let us thank the Lord for what he has blessed us with – a human birth, good health, ability to read, external facilities to make our lives more comfortable and many more blessings. To compare our blessings with that of someone else is not good and it will not help us. We are given what is good for us. Never compare our blessings with that of others. Stop begging – even to the Lord.

Mind absorbed in work + great value for our work = gives contentment.
What is not prayer? Continuously distracted mind and begging attitude.
What is shraddha? Strong conviction that the Lord is the ultimate power, ultimate controller, ultimate source of knowledge and that Lord will take care of me. This is shraddha.

Overall summary

The whole chapter is divided into 2 major sections – 5 types of bhakti/ bhakta and the characteristics of each of them. An overview is given in the below table.

Verse numbers
Description
3 to 12
5 types of bhakti
3 to 5
Nirguna bhakta
6 to 8
Vishvarupa bhakta
9
Ishta-devata bhakta
10
nishkAmya bhakta
11
kAmya bhakta
12
Summary verse
13 to 20
Bhakta lakshanam. 36 qualities of bhakta

Verse 12.3
ये त्वक्षरमनिर्देश्यमव्यक्तं पर्युपासते |
सर्वत्रगमचिन्त्यञ्च कूटस्थमचलन्ध्रुवम् || 3||
ye tv akṣharam anirdeśhyam avyaktaṁ paryupāsate
sarvatra-gam achintyañcha kūṭa-stham achalandhruvam
Tu means but, here it indicates a change in topic
Lord Krishna enumerates eight qualities of nirguna-brahman or the formless aspect of the absolute truth

Aksharam – indestructible, anirdeshyam – inexplicable, avyaktam – umanifest, sarvatragam – all pervading, achintyam – unthinkable, kUtastham – unchangeable/ no modification, achalam – immovable, druvam – firm/ eternal
For our understanding sake, we can apply all these qualities to aakAsha (space) and see how it has these qualities. Space is the subtlest of the 5 elements and the Lord is subtler than the space also.

Verse 12.4
सन्नियम्येन्द्रियग्रामं सर्वत्र समबुद्धय: |
ते प्राप्नुवन्ति मामेव सर्वभूतहिते रता: || 4||
sanniyamyendriya-grāma sarvatra sama-buddhaya
te pr
āpnuvanti mām eva sarva-bhūta-hite ratā

Lord Krishna says that the seekers with the below 3 characteristics attain me –
  1. Senses in control
  2. Mind in control
  3. Serving all beings
Sense control means sense management. i.e. we should not mistake sense control as not utilising them, rather we should utilise them for good things. Reference from vedic mantra

ॐ भद्रं कर्णेभिः शृणुयाम देवाः ।
भद्रं पश्येमाक्षभिर्यजत्राः ।
स्थिरैरङ्गैस्तुष्टुवाग्‍ँसस्तनूभिः ।
व्यशेम देवहितं यदायूः ।
Om Bhadram Karnnebhih Shrnnuyaama Devaah |
Bhadram Pashyema-Akssabhir-Yajatraah |
Sthirair-Anggais-Tussttuvaamsas-Tanuubhih |
Vyashema Devahitam Yad-Aayuh |

Meaning
  1. Om, O Devas, May we Hear with our Ears what is Auspicious,
  2. May we See with our Eyes what is Auspicious and Adorable,
  3. May we be Prayerful (in Life) with Steadiness in our Bodies (and Minds),
  4. May we Offer our Lifespan allotted by the Devas (for the Service of God),
  • One who has the capacity to rule oneself only will have the ability and eligibility to lead others. Thus a leader must be capable of having his senses in control
  • One who is a slave can never be active and energetic
What happens to those who are slaves to their sense organsReference from Viveka choodamani
Firefly has weakness for form, slave to eyes and because of that it dies
Deer has weakness for sound, slave to ears and so it is caught by the hunter
Bees has weakness for smell, slave to nose and there it is bound
Fish has weakness for taste, slave to tongue and thus it is caught
Elephant has weakness for touch, slave to skin – because of this they are trapped into trenches

What is brahmacharyam or sense control?
Not wasting energy through the senses. Doesn’t mean we are depriving the basic needs for our senses. To live in brahmacharyam is to live a life of moderation.

One should remember that அளவுக்கு மீரினால் அமுதும் நஞ்சு.
Bhagavad Gita chapter 6 guides us to live a life of moderation in sleep, food and activity.

Sama buddhayah – samam – equanimous mind

Here Lord Krishna is prescribing the technique of mind management.
What is the secret of mind management?

Bhagavad Gita chapter 17 gives us the following pointers which are to be practiced at the speech level. Once we ensure the below 5 in our speech, that ensures a good mind
  1. Satyam – truthfulness – always to tell the truth
  2. Priyam – to tell in a nice way without hurting or without being rude
  3. Hitam – to tell for the welfare of others
  4. Mitam – to tell in a short way
  5. pArAyanam – daily chanting – this will help us develop the above listed 4
how pArAyanam helps?
During chanting, our mind goes to likes and dislikes. This helps us to be more aware of the nature of our mind. Once we are aware, we can introspect and handle it.

Working for welfare of all
One who has a well-managed senses and mind is naturally bound to perform actions which will help everybody.

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