Gita Series 63. Bhagavad Gita Chapter V. Verses 8 – 13.

“The one who follows samkhya yoga knows the reality and thinks that he does nothing for seeing, hearing, touching, smelling, eating or drinking, moving or walking, sleeping, breathing, speaking, answering the calls of nature, grasping, opening the eyes, closing the eyes realising that it is the senses that work among sense objects. He, who performs actions dedicated to God devoid of attachments, remains unaffected by sin, like unstained water on a lotus leaf. He having abandoned attachments performs actions with his body, mind, intellect and senses for the sake of self purification. The karma yogi by surrendering the fruits of actions to God attains ever lasting peace. But he who works with a selfish motive and concerned with the fruits of actions persists in bondage. The samkhya yogi by controlling his mind neither acts nor makes others to act and blissfully remains in the city of nine gates.”

Reality means the Brahman. Samkhya yoga is the yoga of knowledge. By acquiring knowledge, a samkhya yogi understands the truth that all his actions are not done by him but by the Brahman. He also understands that he is merely a tool of the Brahman. A samkhya yogi knows that his senses are no more controlled by him, as he has surrendered all his actions to God. Claiming ownership of actions is the cause for egotism and ego is the dreadful enemy to spirituality. Claiming ownership of actions is due to illusion. Samkhya yogi transcends shapes and forms and time and space. When one is able to transcend limitations, he understands the manifestation of the divine energy also known as the cosmic energy. Only the Brahman is the eternal witness to entire actions. Witness does not partake in actions and samkhya yogi by his enriched knowledge, understands this reality. Since he does not consider himself as different from that Witness, he does not claim ownership of his actions. This is the point on which one has to meditate. One should repeatedly ask to himself “who am I’, the great saying of sage Ramana. Ramana maharishi is a typical example of a yogi in our times. When one gets an answer for this question, he becomes a Brahma jnani (the one who has knowledge about the Brahman). This type of knowledge cannot be acquired but to be experienced. This has to be explored within and the realisation takes place suddenly. He has already surrendered the fruits of his entire actions unto God, therefore the fruits of his actions, be it favourable or unfavourable do not affect him. Unless one claims ownership of his actions, the results of his actions do not affect him karmically as his actions become devoid of sins as well as virtues. He is like a lotus leaf that is always in water, but never gets smudged by water.

Krishna says that such a karma yogi lives in eternal peace. When mind is not influenced by senses, pleasure and pain are not felt. But he continues to perform actions as required by scriptures for the sake of his further mental purification. Mental purity is an ongoing process. Purified body is a prerequisite for mental purity and the latter is far superior to the former and yet the latter does not depend upon the former. Only a purified mind (devoid of ego) is capable of renouncing the fruits of actions unto God. Such a mind remains unattached to materialistic word. Bondage arises only if one remains selfish, hence Krishna says fruits of actions exist in bondage. Next to ego, bondage is another impediment to spirituality. A man is supposed to nurture his family and this duty is explicit. According to Bhagavad Gita, if this man fails in his duty, it is considered as a sin. What Gita says is that he should continue to nurture his family, leaving the results of his actions to the Brahman. He alone is known as yogi. Yogi does not mean wearing saffron coloured clothing and renunciation has nothing to do with attire. It is only the mind free of sensory influence is paramount. Such a mind realizes that the body is like a city with nine gates. These nine gates are the nine openings in the body. They are pair of ears, eyes, nostrils, mouth, organ of procreation and organ of excretion. These nine openings are the source of sensory influences that are passed on to the mind making the mind impure. A samkhya yogi understands the potential of these nine openings of the body and keeps them under control. He is aware that ownership of actions does not belong to the living beings and therefore neither concerned with actions of others nor his own actions. He knows that he is either directly or indirectly responsible for such actions. Having thus understood the supreme reality, samkhya yogi always remains in the state of bliss. Krishna says that one should perform all his actions without bondage, attachment and ego.

Further Readings:

Bhagavad Gita. Chapter V. 14-17

Bhagavad Gita. Chapter V. 4 - 7

E-Book - Bhagavad Gita - Chapters I and II