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Bhagavadgita - A Guide to Life

Bhagavadgita Chapter 9 Raja Guhya Yoga Verse 23

Chapter 9 Raja Guhya Yoga Verse 23
Shloka

Api chet suduraachaaro bhajate maamananyabhaak;

Saadhureva sa mantavyah samyagvyavasito hi sah.

Translation

Even if the most sinful worships Me, with devotion to none else,

he too should indeed beregarded as righteous, for he has rightly resolved.

Interpretation

Continuing from the previous shloka where Lord Krishna talks about his devotees who worship Him, in this shloka He talks about more people who worship Him. He says that even the most sinful person, if they worship Him with total devotion will get His attention. But at the same time, He should only stick to Him with total devotion. Such a person who has been loaded with sins and falsehoods will be considered as the righteous and this is because of his resolve which has rightly come into His fold. In short, when a person Worships Him, leaving everything of his past, he will become dearer to God.

Extending Interpretation to Mankind’s Life!

I will tell you a story to explain the concept. Once upon a time there was a child called Ratnakar. He lost his way in a forest and was found by a hunter who didnt have children. The hunter adopts him and treats him like his son. He teaches him hunting and killing for survival. Ratnakar grows up to become a young man who was ferocious and deadly. He used to kill animals and tear their skin, sell and used to take that money home to feed his parents. Ratnakar gets married and has children. As the family size grew, his responsibilities increased and money from hunting was not sufficient to run the household.

So, to give his parents, his wife and his children a good living, he resorted to looting and killing the travellers and took away their wealth and started feeding his family. Very soon he became a dreaded killer and had killed hundreds of people and looted a lot of wealth for the sake of his family. One day, Sage Narada was passing through that way and he attacks sage narada. Narada asks him a question that you are killing people and looting them and you are sinner. But the wealth you are giving to your family. Tell me, are they sharing your sin also, like the way they are sharing the wealth you are looting? Ratnakar was puzzled. Narada tells him to go home and ask that question to his family members.

Ratnakar ties narada to a tree so that he doesnt escape and goes to ask the question. His father scolds him and says he is not a part of that sin. His mother says cooking is only her responsibility and all his actions are his and she has no role in that. His wife says that since he is her husband and it is his duty to take care of her and she is in no way responsible for his sins. Shocked Ratnakar returns to narada and falls on his feet. He pleads narada to relieve him of all his sins. Narada whispers in his ears to keep chanting the name of “Sri Ram”. Ratnakar closes his eyes and stats worshipping Lord Sri Ram.

Years pass and he keeps chanting the name of Lord Rama. He doesn’t move, nor eats or drinks any water. Ants create a hill on him but he doesnt get disturbed. Narada comes one day and sees that Ratnakar has gone completely inside the ant hill. So, he comes near the ant hill and whispers the name of Lord Rama again. Ratnakar open his eyes and breaks free of the ant-hill and see Narada. Narada tells him that for his worship of God with a single minded devotion all his sins were washed off and he is a pious person now and a “Brahmarshi”. Since he came out of an ant-hill he would be called Valmiki. And the great sage valmiki is the one who gave us the epic “Ramayan” which he narrated because of the devotion he had towards Lord Rama.

Valmiki was from the time of Rama in Treta Yug and has given shelter to Goddess Sita when Lord Ram abandoned her. In his Ashram itself she gives to Luv and Kush and the whole Uttara Ramayan episode happens during this time, when Treta Yug ends and Dwapara Yug starts. The killing of humans for wealth, started from the time of Valmiki twards the end of Treta Yug and that has continued into the Dwapara yug also. This story is self explanatory as to how a sinner when he worships God with single minded devotion gets rid of all his sins.

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