Gita Series – 81: Bhagavad Gita Chapter -VI. Verses 44 – 47

For him, the impressions of his practice in his previous birth are enough to pull him towards God. He who advances towards the path of Self realization, transcends the rituals advocated in scriptures for personal upliftment. The yogi, who strives hard to attain liberation is removed of all his sins over previous births and finally attains liberation. A yogi is superior to an ascetic, scholars and the one who performs actions with a motive. Therefore, Arjuna! Be a yogi. Out of all yogis, the one who worships Me by always fixing his consciousness on Me is considered by Me as the best amongst yogis.

The result of his practice that has accrued from his previous birth makes him to continue from where he had left in his previous birth. This mainly happens because of his karmic manifestation. Whatever one does in his lifetime gets embedded in karmic account and manifests at an appropriate time either later in the present birth or at the appointed time in his subsequent births. There is no way that Law of Karma can be circumvented. His sincere effort to attain emancipation in his previous birth gets embedded in his karmic account. During his next birth, this karma manifests at the appropriate time and makes him to progress from where he had left in the previous birth.

If he practices with more intensity and dedication, he is bound to get emancipated, as sincerity and dedication never goes unrewarded. When he makes significant progress, he transcends all types of ritualistic worships. The aspirant now gradually gets transformed into a true yogi and he clearly perceives the Lord within. Rituals are generally performed towards personal upliftment. But, a yogi firmly decides that God is not someone who is to be revered outside his mental arena. As a result of his persistent practice, he now knows that God is to be realised within. This change in his mental attitude is called dawn of knowledge. A connection with the Lord can be established only through fixing his consciousness on Him and not by any external links. Now the stage is set for the yogi to get liberated. By repeated births, he had already exhausted all his sins and his karmic account is about to become naught. Precondition for emancipation is that one’s karmic account should be annulled. At this stage, he stands on a pedestal surpassing the eminence of scholars and pundits. Recitation of holy verses is a necessity only at the time of preliminary stages of spirituality. If one continues to be associated with rituals, it means that he has not commenced his spiritual journey. It also means that he continues to live in materialistic world. That is why Krishna says that a yogi is much superior to scholars and ascetics. A yogi need not be a scholar and a scholar need not be a yogi. Scholars generally attach more importance to rituals and practices. They, by relying more on sastras attach more importance on external cleanliness than mental purity. Ascetics, though deny themselves materialistic way of life, lose out the important concept of realizing the Lord. But, a yogi stands tall amongst the scholars, ascetics and ritualistic, as he alone is very close to the Lord. Hence Krishna tells Arjuna to become a yogi.

Krishna concludes this chapter by saying that amongst the yogis, the one who always worships Him by fixing his consciousness on Him perpetually is the best. Krishna did not say that the one who worships Him with flowers and other offerings is close to Him. He specifically says that the one who always thinks about Him is very close to Him. Closeness to the Lord can be attained only through the mind and not through any other sources. One can continue to live in this world and partake in normal human activities. But while doing so, he should never disconnect his awareness from the Lord. Then the Lord leads him forever.


Further Readings:

Bhagavad Gita. Chapter VII. 1 - 3

Bhagavad Gita. Chapter VI. 40 - 43

E-Book - Bhagavad Gita - Chapters I and II