Despondency of Arjuna
Karma Yoga -
Path of Action
- Path of Wisdom
Renunciation of Action
Mystery of Mysteries
- The Path of Love
The Lord -
“Lord Shri Krishna said: He who acts because it is his duty, not
thinking of the
consequences, is really spiritual and a true ascetic; and not he who
merely observes rituals
or who shuns all action.
O Arjuna! Renunciation is in fact what is called Right Action. No one
can become spiritual
who has not renounced all desire.
For the sage who seeks the heights of spiritual meditation, practice is
the only method,
and when he has attained them, he must maintain himself there by
When a man renounces even the thought of initiating action, when he is
not interested in
sense objects or any results which may flow from his acts, then in truth
Let him seek liberation by the help of his Highest Self, and let him
never disgrace his own
Self. For that Self is his only friend; yet it may also be his enemy.
To him who has conquered his lower nature by Its help, the Self is a
friend, but to him
who has not done so, It is an enemy.
The Self of him who is self-controlled, and has attained peace is
equally unmoved by heat
or cold, pleasure or pain, honour or dishonour.
He who desires nothing but wisdom and spiritual insight, who has
conquered his senses
and who looks with the same eye upon a lump of earth, a stone or fine
gold, is a real saint.
He looks impartially on all – lover, friend or foe; indifferent or
hostile; alien or relative;
virtuous or sinful.
Let the student of spirituality try unceasingly to concentrate his mind;
Let him live in
seclusion, absolutely alone, with mind and personality controlled, free
from desire and
Having chosen a holy place, let him sit in a firm posture on a seat,
neither too high nor too
low, and covered with a grass mat, a deer skin and a cloth.
Seated thus, his mind concentrated, its functions controlled and his
senses governed, let
him practise meditation for the purification of his lower nature.
Let him hold body, head and neck erect, motionless and steady; let him
look fixedly at the
tip of his nose, turning neither to the right nor to the left.
With peace in his heart and nor fear, observing the vow of celibacy,
with mind controlled
and fixed on Me, let the student lose himself in contemplation of Me.
Thus keeping his mind always in communion with Me, and with his thoughts
he shall attain that Peace which is mine and which will lead him to
liberation at last.
Meditation is not for him who eats too much, not for him who eats not at
all; not for him
who is overmuch addicted to sleep, not for him who is always awake.
But for him who regulates his food and recreation, who is balanced in
action, in sleep and
in waking, it shall dispel all unhappiness.
When the mind, completely controlled, is centered in the Self, and free
from all earthly
desires, then is the man truly spiritual.
The wise man who has conquered his mind and is absorbed in the Self is
as a lamp which
does not flicker, since it stands sheltered from every wind.
There, where the whole nature is seen in the light of the Self, where
the man abides within
his Self and is satisfied there, its functions restrained by its union
with the Divine, the
mind finds rest.
When he enjoys the Bliss which passes sense, and which only the Pure
Intellect can grasp,
when he comes to rest within his own highest Self, never again will he
stray from reality. Finding That, he will realise that there is no possession so precious.
And when once
established here, no calamity can disturb him.
This inner severance from the affliction of misery is spirituality. It
should be practised
with determination and with a heart which refuses to be depressed.
Renouncing every desire which imagination can conceive, controlling the
senses at every
point by the power of mind;
Little by little, by the help of his reason controlled by fortitude, let
him attain peace; and,
fixing his mind on the Self, let him not think of any other thing.
When the volatile and wavering mind would wander, let him restrain it
and bring it again
to its allegiance to the Self.
Supreme Bliss is the lot of the sage, whose mind attains Peace, whose
who is without sin, and who becomes one with the Absolute.
Thus, free from sin, abiding always in the Eternal, the saint enjoys
without effort the Bliss
which flows from realisation of the Infinite.
He who experiences the unity of life sees his own Self in all beings,
and all beings in his
own Self, and looks on everything with an impartial eye;
He who sees Me in everything and everything in Me, him shall I never
forsake, nor shall
he lose Me.
The sage who realises the unity of life and who worships Me in all
beings, lives in Me,
whatever may be his lot.
O Arjuna! He is the perfect saint who, taught by the likeness within
himself, sees the same
Self everywhere, whether the outer form be pleasurable or painful.
Arjuna said: I do not see how I can attain this state of equanimity
which Thou has revealed,
owing to the restlessness of my mind. My Lord! Verily, the mind is fickle and turbulent, obstinate and
strong, yea extremely
difficult as the wind to control.
Lord Shri Krishna replied: Doubtless, O Mighty One, the mind is fickle
difficult to restrain, but, O Son of Kunti, with practice and
renunciation it can be done.
It is not possible to attain Self-Realisation if a man does not know how
to control himself;
but for him who, striving by proper means, learns such control, it is
Arjuna asked: He who fails to control himself, whose mind falls from
contemplation, who attains not perfection but retains his faith, what of
him, my Lord?
Having failed in both, my Lord, is he without hope, like a riven cloud
having no support,
lost on the spiritual road?
My Lord! Thou art worthy to solve this doubt once and for all; save
Thyself there is no one
competent to do so.
Lord Shri Krishna replied: My beloved child! There is no destruction for
him, either in this
world or in the next. No evil fate awaits him who treads the path of
Having reached the worlds where the righteous dwell, and having remained
many years, he who has slipped from the path of spirituality will be
born again in the
family of the pure, benevolent and prosperous.
Or, he may be born in the family of the wise sages, though a birth like
this is, indeed, very
difficult to obtain.
Then the experience acquired in his former life will revive, and with
its help he will strive
for perfection more eagerly than before.
Unconsciously he will return to the practices of his old life; so that
he who tries to realise
spiritual consciousness is certainly superior to one who only talks of
Then after many lives, the student of spirituality, who earnestly
strives, and whose sins
are absolved, attains perfection and reaches the Supreme.
The wise man is superior to the ascetic and to the scholar and to the
man of action;
therefore be thou a wise man, O Arjuna!
I look upon him as the best of mystics who, full of faith, worshippeth
Me and abideth in
Thus, in the Holy Book the Bhagavad Gita, one of the Upanishads, in the
Science of the Supreme
Spirit, in the Art of Self-Knowledge, in the colloquy between the Divine
Lord Shri Krishna and the
Prince Arjuna, stands the sixth chapter entitled: Self-Control.