Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Bhagavad Gita - Chapter-12

“Bhagavad Gita – Chapter-12”. Bhakti Yoga

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Preface :-
Before we go into the study of Bhagavad Gita, we have to fully understand what is Bhagavad Gita. Who wrote it? When was it written? And who said this to whom and where? What is the significance of this? Why is it considered so important to the Hindus? …. And many more questions.  

There are many philosophical ideas that are present in our Hindu religion, which no other religion has.  And ‘Bhagavad Gita’ contains the highest of all Philosophical teachings.  The holy book of Hindus is the “VEDAS”.  So before we try to understand ‘Bhagavad Gita’ we have to understand what is ‘Hinduism’ and what is ‘Vedas’. Let us start with ‘Hinduism’ first. 

The word “HINDUISM” is a misnomer.

The word Hindu is a geographical definition, which refers to the people living on the banks of river Sindhu, or people living in the land watered by the river Indus.

According to the Historians, this word was first used by the Persians, when they first came to Indiathrough the North-west.

According the “Encyclopedia of Religion & Ethics”, the word Hindu is not found in any Literature or scripture before the coming of the Muslims to India

Pundit Jawaharlal Nehru, in his book “Discovery of India”, says that the earliest occurrence of the word ‘Hindu’ can be traced to a Tantrik of 8th Century.

According to the “New Encyclopedia Britannica” – the word Hinduism was first used by the British writers in the year 1830 to describe the religion and the beliefs of the people of India.
The right word for Hinduism is ‘Sanaathana Dharma’ that is 'eternal religion', or the 'Vedic Dharma' or the “Religion of the Vedas”.

According to Swamy Vivekananda, ‘the Hindus have received their religion through revelations, the Vedas. They hold that the Vedas are without beginning and without end. It may sound ludicrous to this audience, how a book can be without beginning or end. But by the Vedas no books are meant. They mean the accumulated treasury of spiritual laws discovered by different people in different times. Just as the law of gravitation existed before its discovery and would exist if all humanity forgot it. So is it with the laws that govern the spiritual world. 
The moral, ethical and spiritual relationship between soul and soul and between individual spirits and the father of all spirits, were there before their discovery and would remain even if we forget them. The discoverers of these laws are called Rishis and we honor them as perfected beings'. 

Concept of Sanaathana Dharma 

“From the high spiritual flights of Vedanta philosophy, of which the latest discoveries of science seems like echoes, to the lowest ideas of idolatry with its multifarious mythology, the agnosticism of the Buddhists and the atheism of the Jains, each and all have place in the Hindu’s religion”.

The holy book of Hindus is the ‘Vedas’, Since, it is the source of all other Hindu scriptures.

The Hindu Scriptural literature is so vast and comprehensive that there is no branch of knowledge left uninvestigated by the great seers of this Country – India.
The Hindu was never satisfied unless every question that he faced, be it material, scientific, religious, physical, metaphysical, philosophical or purely spiritual, was thoroughly discussed in all its varied aspects, to its irrefutable conclusion. To these people “SANAATANA DHARMA” meant the “ETERNAL VALUES OF LIFE”

The Hindu Scriptural literature with knowledge so vast and comprehensive, can be divided and sub-divided in to many divisions for easy understanding. Please refer to the table “Veda = Knowledge” in the next page.  The Knowledge gained by our Rishis were so vast that it practically covered every aspect of life and the science of everything that is and yet to be discovered in this Universe.  For our understanding we are dividing the sum of all these knowledge into various segments. On a broader scale the entire knowledge gained can be divided into two namely, Para Vidya (Intuitive knowledge) and Apara Vidya (Intellectual knowledge).

For our study at present we will deal with only Apara Vidya.  This is again divided into Secular and Sacred and for our study we will take only Sacred. 
Sacred Knowledge can be divided into 2 namely, Srutis dealing with eternal principles and Smritis dealing with practical applications of eternal principles.  

Before we go into further study we have to understand the time factor of these collected knowledge.  From when and from where, were these knowledge gathered.  It is said the during the initial stages of creation, the Supreme Lord Para-Brahman or the Virat Purusha revealed the Vedas to demi-God Brahma Deva the creator. And he in turn revealed it to Swayambhuva Manu who was the first creation.  This year according to the Christian calender is 2014, and this means 2014 years have passed since the crucification of Jesus Christ.  So, what is this year in Hindu Calender? 

According to the Hindu calender it is Kaliyabtham 5115. This means 5115 years have passed since the dissapperance of Lord Krishna from the Earth.

Kali yuga is supposed to have been started since the dissappearance of Lord Krishna from this Earth.  The duration of Kali yuga is calculated to be around 4,32,000 years out of which only 5115 years are over. So there is 4,26,885 years more for the Kali Yuga to end and the total annihilation of this world, before creations starts once again. Before Kali Yuga was Dwapara Yuga which lasted for 8,64,000 years.  Krishna’s time was at the end of Dwapara Yuga.
Till the end of Dwapara yuga all the Veda were available as a collective lot and hence there were no divisions.  During the end of Dwapara Yuga Maharishi Krishna Dvaipayana Veda Vyasa catagorised these Vedas and divided it into 4 divisions namely Rig, Yajur, Sama and Atharva.  

Bhagavad Gita - Chapter -12 contiued.... page - 2

And in turn Krishna Dvaipayana Veda Vyasa gave these Vedas to his sishyas (pupils) to prapagate it among the people. 
Rig Veda        = Maharishi Paila
Yajur Veda     = Maharishi Vaisampayana
Sama Veda    = Maharishi Jaimini
Atharva Veda = Maharishi Sumantu Muni Angirasa. 

Each Veda consisted of 2 parts. The first 3/4th of the Veda is Karma Kanda and the last 1/4th is the Gnana Kanda. Karma Kanda deals in detail about the Mantras and the rituals to be performed. While the Gnana Kanda deals with the description of the Supreme God known as the Para Brahman or the Virat Purasha. 
Karam kanda has 2 divisions namely Samhita (Mantras) and Brahmanas (ritualistics). And Gnana Kanda has          2 divisions namely Aranyakas (Contemplative) and Upanishads (Highest philosophical thoughts).  Each of the 4 Vedas have its own Upanishads. 

“Bhagavad Gita” we are going to deal with, in this book is an essence of all the Upanishads. Since the Upanishad are very high philosophical thoughts it has been condenced and given for the comman man to understand. 

Maharishi Krishna Dvaipayana Veda Vyasa also wrote the great Epic Mahabharata in Sanskrit, which runs to about 1Lakh and 25 thousand verses.  It is one of the longest and the greatest Literatures to have been ever written in this world, revolving around hundreds of charectars.

In this Mahabharata, right in the centre, like a centre piece jewel in the neclace is placed the“Bhagavad Gita”.   Bhagavad Gita is a samvaada (a conversation) between Lord Krishna and Arjuna, which brings out the highest of all the philosophical thoughts in 700 verses divided into 18 chapters.  Gita dyana sloka which has been written in praise of Bhagavat Gita is as follows….. 
सर्वोपनिषदो गवो दोग्धा गोपालनन्दन: ।
पार्थो वत्स: सुधीर्भोक्ता दुग्धं गीतामृतम् महत् ॥
Sarvopanishado gaavaha dogdha gopalanandanaha,
Partho vatsaha sudheerbhokta dugdham geetaamrutam mahat. 

Its meaning is…… all the Upanishads are like cows. Gopalanandana, that is Lord Krishna is the milkman milking the  cows. Arjuna is like the calf for whom the milk is. The amrutham that is milked, called Bhagavad Gita is for all to enjoy.   

In the battle field of Kurukshetra, a war that is fought between the counsins Kauravas and the Pandavas is the scene for Bhagavad Gita.  Pandava Arjuna is backed by Lord Krishna in this war.  In the battle, at the last minute Arjuna becomes mentally weak overcome with grief, as to how he can fight with his own kin, elders and Acharyas.  Lord Krishna advises Arjuna the complete philosophy of life and how to live it.  Basically he lays 3 paths namely Karma Yoga, Gnana Yoga and Bhakthi Yoga.  

The chapter 12 we are going to deal in this book is “Bhakthi Yoga”.  This consists of only 20 slokas. 

Ithihasaas is classified under Smritis dealing with pratical applications of eternal principles. Mahabharatha of which Bhagavad Gita is a part, is classified under Itihasaas. So Bhagavad Gita is nothing but the essence of the Upanishads which are the Highest Philosophical thoughts.   

Bhagavad Gita -Chapter-12- verse-1

Bhagavad Gita – verse-1
अर्जुन उवाच -
एवं सततयुक्ता ये भक्तास्त्वां पर्युपासते ।
ये चाप्यक्षरमव्यक्तं  तेषां के योगवित्तमा: ॥ ।१।
अर्जुन उवाच -
एवं सतत युक्ता ये भक्ता: त्वां पर्युपासते
ये च अपि अक्षरम् अव्यक्तम् तेषां के योगवित्तमा:
अर्जुन:–Arjuana: उवाच–said; ये भक्ता:-those devotees who; एवं –thus; सततयुक्ता:-always engaged in exclusive; पर्युपासते -worship; त्वां-of you personally; च अपि-and then again; ये -those who betake; अक्षरं -the impersonal absolute; अव्यक्तं -devoid of perceptible form and attributes; तेषां -between them; के -who; योगवित्तमा:-is most perfect in knowledge of yoga.  
Arjuna said: Those devotees who thus are always engaged in exclusive worship of you and then again those who betake the impersonal absolute devoid of perceptible form and attributes;  between them who is most perfect in knowledge of the Yoga.

Bhagavad Gita - Chapter-12 - verse-2

Bhagavad Gita – verse-2
श्री भगवानुवाच -   
मय्यावेश्य मनो ये मां नित्ययुक्ता उपासते ।
श्रद्धया परयोपेता: ते मे युक्ततमा मता: ॥ ।२।
श्री भगवानुवाच -
मय्य आवेश्य मनो ये मां नित्य युक्ता उपासते
श्रद्धया परयोपेतास् ते मे युक्ततमा मता:
श्री भगवान्-Lord Krishna: उवाच-said: ये-those who: श्रद्धया उपेता-are endowed with firm faith:  परया-of a special kind beyond material conceptions:  अवेश्य-fixing:  मन:-the mind:   मयि-on me: नित्ययुक्ता -always engaged exclusively:  उपासते worships:  मां-me:  ते – they:  मे मता: are considered by me:  युक्ततमा - he most superior of all. 
Lord Krishna said: of those who are endowed with firm faith of a special kind beyond material conceptions; fixing the minds on me, always engaged exclusively worshipping me. They are considered by me the most superior of all. 

Bhagavad Gita – Chapter-12- verse-3 & 4

Bhagavad Gita – Chapter-12-verse-3 & 4

Verse- 3 & 4
ये त्वक्षरमनिर्देश्यं अव्यक्तं पर्युपासते ।
सर्वत्रगमचिन्त्यं च कूटस्थमचलं ध्रुवम् ॥ ।३।
सन्नियम्येन्द्रियग्रामं सर्वत्र समबुद्धय: ।
ते प्राप्नुवन्ति मामेव सर्वभूतहिते रता: ॥ ।४।
ये त्व अक्षरम् अनिर्देश्यं अव्यक्तं पर्युपासते । 
सर्वत्रगम् अचिन्त्यं च कूटस्थम् अचलं ध्रुवम् ॥ ।३।
सन्नियम् इद्रियग्रामं सर्वत्र समबुद्धय: ।
ते प्राप्नुवन्ति माम् एव सर्व भूत हिते रता: ॥ ।४।
ये तु- But those who: पर्युपासते- Worship: अनिर्देश्यं- Indescribable: सर्वत्रगम्- all pervading: अचिन्त्यं- inconceivable: कूटस्थम्- immutable: अचलं- constant: ध्रुवम्- eternal: अक्षरम्- impersonal absolute: अव्यक्तं- devoid of perceptible form and attributes:
सन्नियम्य- completely controlling: इद्रियग्रामं- all the senses: समबुद्धय- with spiritual intelligence equally disposed: सर्वत्र- to everything: - and: रता:- dedicated: सर्व भूत हिते- to the welfare of all living entities: ते एव- certainly they also: प्राप्नुवन्ति- achieve: माम्- me: 
But those who worship the indestructable, all pervading, in conceivable, immutable, constant, eternal, impersonal absolute devoid of perceptible form and attributes; completely controlling all the senses with spritual intelligence equally disposed to everything and dedicated to the welfare of all living entities; they certainly also achieve me. 

Bhagavad Gita – Chapter-12- verse-5

Bhagavad Gita – Chapter-12-verse-5
क्लेशोऽधिकतरस्तेषां अव्यक्तासक्तचेतसाम् ।
अव्यक्ता हि गतिर्दु:खं देहवद्भिरवाप्यते ॥ ।५।  
क्लेश अधिकतर तेषां अव्यक्तासक्त चेतसाम् ।
अव्यक्ता हि गतिर् दु:खं देहवद्भिर् अवाप्यते ॥ ।५।
तेषां- those: अव्यक्तासक्त चेतसाम्- whose minds are attached so to the unmanifested aspect: अधिकतर- have much greater: क्लेश- tribulation: हि- because: अव्यक्ता- devoid of perceptible form and attributes: गति- success: अवाप्यते- is achieved: दु:खं- with great difficulty: देहवद्भि:- due to the beings identifying with the body:
Those whose minds are attached to the unmanifest aspect have much greater tribulations because devoid of any perceptible form and attributes success is achieved with great difficulty due to the beings identifying with the body. 

Bhagavad Gita – Chapter-12- verse-6 & 7

Bhagavad Gita – Chapter-12-verse-6 & 7
ये तु सर्वाणि कर्माणि मयि सन्न्यस्य मत्परा: ।
अनन्येनैव योगेन मां ध्यायन्त उपासते ॥ ।६।
तेषामहं समुद्धर्ता मृत्युसंसारसागरात् ।
भवामि नचिरात्पार्थ मय्यावेशितचेतसाम् ॥ ।७।
ये तु सर्वाणि कर्माणि मयि सन्न्यस्य मत्परा: ।
अनन्येनैव योगेन मां ध्यायन्त उपासते ॥ ।६।
तेषाम् अहं समुद्धर्ता मृत्यु संसार सागरात् ।
भवामि न चिरात् पार्थ मय्य् आवेशित चेतसाम् ॥ ।७।
ये तु- but those who: सन्न्यस्य- surrendering: सर्वाणि- all: कर्माणि- activities: मयि- unto me: मत्परा:- being attached to me: मां ध्यायन्त- meditating on me: अनन्येन- exclusively: उपासते- worships: योगेन- by yoga: पार्थ- O Arjuna, son of Prita: तेषाम्- of these persons: आवेशित चेतसाम्- whose minds are absorbed in thoughts: मयि- of me: अहं- I: समुद्धर्ता भवामि- become their deliverer:  न चिरात्- without delay: मृत्यु सागरात् संसार- from the ocean of death in the material existence.
But those who surrendering all activities unto me, being attached to me, meditating on me with exclusive worship by Yoga: O Arjuna, of these persons whose minds are absorbed in thoughts of me, I become their deliverer without delay from the ocean of death in the material existence.