Gita series – part 24. Bhagavad Gita Chapter II - Verses– 48 and 49:
Krishna continues “Oh! Dhananjaya! Perform all your actions concentrating on yoga, forgetting attachments, and considering both success and failure equally. This evenness of mind is called yoga. Actions performed with desire are greatly inferior to this yoga. Arjuna! Take refuge in balanced wisdom, as those who perform actions for the sake of benefits of its fruits are in miserable condition” (verses 48 and 49). This is only a prelude to the karma yoga that Krishna is going to talk about in the subsequent chapters. Those who perform actions attaching importance to the results of such actions are considered to be in miserable state. While performing such actions, their mind will be only with the results of the actions and not on the action itself. What Krishna says is that one should perform his duty without aiming at the end result. Such an attitude can be developed only if one considers success or failure with a balanced mind. This attitude is called yoga by Krishna. Generally yoga can be explained as the union between the individual self and the supreme self, where the duality of mind and matter is dissolved into the supreme Self or the Brahman. In can also be explained as a process by which internal instrument called anthakkaranam is merged with the Supreme.
The basic requirement of yoga is the mind un-afflicted by sensory organs. Evenness of mind is the first step towards spirituality, as the evolution of a soul purely depends upon the modifications of the mind. There is a saying that there should be no longing even towards God. The process of yoga has a direct bearing on karma that gets embedded in the soul which unfolds by causing various actions through the body. That is why there is always a link between mind, body and soul, the one affecting the other two. Therefore any action that we perform is due to the unfolding of karma in this birth. We fail to understand this reality and out of our ego and ignorance, we take credit for the good results and curse our fate for the bad results. Fate is nothing but the state of mind afflicted with ego when the desired result is not achieved. At the same time if the result of an action turns out to be positive, we never talk about fate and we take the credit for its success. Fate can also be explained as the power of our will. If our will is powerful, the end result of our action also turns out to be positive and if our will power is not that powerful, the end result of our action turns out to be negative. That is why Krishna says that we should never get involved with end result of an action as the mental state begins to differentiate between happiness and sorrow based on the outcome of the result of an action. Such a stage becomes possible only if one is able to dispense with material attachments.
This stage is called Krishna consciousness or Christ consciousness. For the one who practices regular meditation, this state becomes a reality only when his consciousness level reaches and transcends ajna chakra or the third eye. What is balanced wisdom? Krishna gives a detailed description of this in ‘buddhi yoga’ in later chapters. At this point let us know the balanced wisdom as the un-afflicted state of mind beyond discrimination and desire. All the actions performed with an eye on its fruits, will lead only to miseries, says Krishna. When an action is performed with intent of desire, naturally it leads to miseries. Any action performed without surrendering its fruits to God is the cause for all miseries. This is because, desire leads to bondage and attachments, affecting our senses and ultimately causing a deep dent in our karmic account. The karmic account is sure to unfold either in this birth itself or during subsequent births. That is why fruits of actions are considered as miseries as they are sure to land you in sufferings. Krishna’s concept is very simple. What He says is that ‘you do your duty and I shall perform mine’. Though He does not say this explicitly at this point, He dwells on this elaborately in later chapters. The point driven home is that one should perform his duties without looking into the fruits of such actions. If one does so, he is bound to undergo sufferings and miseries. These sufferings and miseries arise due to mental changes causing desire and attachment working through our senses. When mind gets afflicted by the influence of sense organs, then it does not augur well with the progress in spirituality.