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Bhagavadgita Chapter 13 Kshetra-Kshetrajna Vibhaga Yoga Verse 8

Chapter 13 Kshetra-Kshetrajna Vibhaga Yoga Verse 8

Amaanitwam adambhitwam ahimsaa kshaantiraarjavam;
Aachaaryopaasanam shaucham sthairyamaatmavinigrahah.

Humility, unpretentiousness, non-injury, forgiveness, uprightness, 
service of the Guru, purity, steadfastness, self-control,

Interpretation

This shloka is a 5 part shloka that talks extensively about the things that a person has to pursue to get the knowledge of the field. The first quality Lord is talking about is humility, which is nothing but simplicity that a person should approach with while learning. Second is the unpretentiousness. It is the ability of a person to remain humble by not showing off about himself to others. Lord also talks about a person who is upright in all situations, willing to forgive the mistakes. He then goes to talk about the important qualities for knowledge like service to Guru, remaining focussed in all situations and the ability to self-control by not getting tempted with things. 

Extending Interpretation to Mankind’s Life!

Guru is an important person in one’s life, who can change your dasha (state of mind) and disha ( direction of thought process) of an individual. However talented one might be, absence of Guru will always make him handicapped and sometimes directionless also. If you have a person in your life who can change your state of mind, when you are in dilemma and show you the right path in thinking, what else a person needs? Choosing a right Guru and serving him is the most important quality that Lord Krishna is talking about. In today’s context serving the Guru has an altogether different meaning.

No longer you find students who are devoted to a single Guru or the Gurus who thinking only about their students. We are living in times where education has become a commercial activity and Guru is reduced to just teaching a subject in school or college.
In such environment, what is required is a person who can show you the direction? He might not be your teacher but he can be a person who can put your life on the right track. He can be younger or elder to you, but from a Guru what you learn is life, with its various aspects. Once you find that person you need to serve him, in the sense obey his teachings and understand his mind-set to ensure that you take the learning from him in the right form. These days such Gurus are very rare to find. But once you find him, preserve him at any cost. Once the learning commences you need to be focussed on the learning and not waver. Many people tend to lose focus after few days and wonder if they are learning right things. Trust and belief on your Guru is an important virtue which is equivalent to serving him with utmost devotion.

Humility and unpretentiousness are two very important virtues that an individual has to possess to acquire a proper learning from his Guru. If you are not humble, how can you receive what your Guru is giving? You need to always bend your head, accept the fact that your Guru knows more than you and receive things. In today’s world of varied points of view, you can always differ with your Guru. But that has to be put in a way which is respectful and that is where unpretentiousness comes into picture. You are putting forth a point not to impress others but to test your point of view versus your Guru’s point of view on the same thing. If you do it alone infront of Guru or infront of others it should be with zero intension of impressing others or showing off your knowledge. These are very difficult to imbibe but the one who does imbibe, knowledge will keep flowing to him.

Bhagavadgita Chapter 10 Vibhuti Vistara Yoga Verse 27

Chapter 10 Vibhuti Vistara Yoga Verse 27
Shloka

Pavanah pavataamasmi raamah shastrabhritaamaham;

Jhashaanaam makarashchaasmi srotasaamasmi jaahnavee.

Translation

Among the purifiers or the speeders I am the wind; Rama among the warriors am I;

among the fishes I am the shark; among the streams I am the Ganga.

Interpretation

In this shloka Lord Krishna compares Himself to some more entities and the forces of nature after comparing Himself to demons, reckoners, beasts and birds. Here He compares Himself to wind amongst the speeders. In the list of warriors, Lord Krishna compares Himself to Lord Rama, which was His previous avatar. He then goes on to compare Himself to the water-beings ie fishes. There He compares Himself to shark. Then finally He compares Himself to the streams, when He says He is like Ganga, the holiest of all the streams.

Extending Interpretation to Mankind’s Life!

Wind is called as purifier as well as speeder, because there is no comparison to the force of wind and the speed and force of wind can destroy everything around. Wind is also a purifier because, it removes everything that is toxic. It removes every form of foul smell and protects the humanity from deadly diseases. The comparison to Lord Rama is obvious because Lord Rama is considered as the greatest amongst the warriors or Kings. Lord Rama kept Himself behind and kept the other person ahead in every situation, which is unusual to any warrior in those times as well as these days.

You can look at His life, He put the word given by His father ahead of Him and went to forests. Next, He gave a chance to Ravana to reform himself and return Sita and avoid a war, because even as a warrior He understands the destruction that a war can cause. After killing Ravan, He puts the husband in Him behind to subject Sita to Agnipariksha, as He is a King who is accountable to His people and He had to prove the chastity of Sita to the world. And despite all this, when whispers arose on her chastity, Lord Rama put His Raj Dharma ahead of His love for Sita and sent her to forests. In every way, life of warrior Rama is an ideal lesson for everyone who wants to lead a life of ideals.

Lord Krishna finally compares Himself to Shark which is the most stealth fish in the Ocean against whom all the other fishes are scared of. And finally amongst the streams, Lord compares Himself to Holy Ganga. Ganga for millions of years has been the spiritual guide to millions of people. It criss-crosses the holy Uttarakhand and passes through the holiest places like Rishikesh and Hardwar before touching the Kashi, Varnasai and finally Prayag or Allahabad. Many Rishis and munis have attained salvation on the banks of Ganga and many more like me have visited this great river and experienced the holy vibes that it carries.

Bhagavadgita Chapter 9 Raja Guhya Yoga Verse 3

Chapter 9 Raja Guhya Yoga Verse 3
Shloka
Yathaakaashasthito nityam vaayuh sarvatrago mahaan;
Tathaa sarvaani bhootaani matsthaaneetyupadhaaraya.
Translation
As the mighty wind, moving everywhere, rests always in the ether,
even so, know thou that all beings rest in Me.
Interpretation
From this sloka onwards Lord Krishna started telling the great secret to Arjuna. The first aspect that He touched upon is His existence. He gives the analogy of wind to explain this concept. He says that the mighty wind moves from one place to another still exists in the ether space. Ether space is the empty space that extends to the upper layers of the atmosphere. Winds move horizontally and vertically in this ether space. They reach different heights and different places. Like wise all the living beings live within the Lord and in that space he moves both vertically and horizontally.
Extending Interpretation to Mankind’s Life!
There is a very big truth and the secret that Lord Krishna is sharing here. Life in this Universe moves in all directions, vertically as well as horizontally. When a living being attains a life which is superior in its form than the previous birth then it is considered to be a vertical movement. Example is a fish being born as a crocodile in the coming birth and crocodile being born as a reptile like snake. Horizontal is when a snake is again born as a snake or a human again born as a human in the coming births.
This Universe has many beings and all of them will be dying and again coming back to the World in the same form or in a superior form. Where is all this happening? It is happening inside the Lord Himself. The whole Universe is covered by the Lord and all beings are inside Him. If we have to equate it with something you can comprehend, its like some bacteria that exists in your body. For that bacteria your body is like whole life. Your body might hold a limited number of beings but the Lord holds all the beings of this universe in Him.

Chapter 7 Gnana-Vignana Yoga Verse 4

Chapter 7 Gnana-Vignana Yoga Verse 4

Shloka
Bhoomiraapo’nalo vaayuh kham mano buddhireva cha;
Ahamkaara iteeyam me bhinnaa prakritirashtadhaa.
Translation
Earth, water, fire, air, ether, mind, intellect and egoism—
thus is My Nature divided eight fold.
Interpretation
The previous sloka was a very important sloka where Lord Krishna tells that out of lakhs of men and women, only one will get to know Him. That brings a curious question in our mind that What is God? In this sloka Lord Krishna explains to Arjuna what He is. Lord Krishna says that His natue is divided into Eight parts or Eight folds. These are Earth, which is the soil element, Water which is a liquid and a life giver, Fire, which is a purifier as well as destroyer, Air, which is the source of life, Ether which is the empty space around us, Mind which is connected to senses, Intellect which is knowledge and Egoism which is a self worth of a person. The combination of all this is the God.
Extending Interpretation to Mankind’s Life!
Can God be explained in through these 8 elements is the question that one needs to understand. These 8 elements mentioned here is called “Apara Prakriti” or Lower nature. Lower nature doesnt mean it is inferior. It means that is the basic form of God. It has 5 elements that are taken from the nature and the remaining 3 elements are taken from the human body. The five elements are Earth, Water, Air, Fire and Ether. These are also called “Pancha bhootalu” which are a part of mother nature but inherently linked to the five sense organs of human beings.
The first one is Earth, which is something we have come from and where we will all go. We as human beings have the same elements and same chemical composition that is found underneath the Earth. This is linked to the sense organ Nose, which we use to smell. The second is the Water which is the source of all life. No organism can survive without water and Tongue in our body which is used by us to eat and taste food is linked to this. The third is the Fire, which is a purifier, destroyer. It is linked to our sense organ Eye. Fire is light and light is essential to us to see anything. The fourth element is the Air which is a life giver. We cannot see the Air, we can only feel it, so it is linked to our sense organ of Skin which senses every touch. The last element is the Ether or empty space through which we hear things. When someone talks to us, we hear them only through Ether space, where the sound waves travel. That is our fifth sense organ.
Added to this 5 elements are the 3 elements of Mind, Intellect and Ego that exists within the body. Mind collects the information from the sense organs and categorizes the data and creates inputs for reactions using logic and reason. Intellect observes the inputs given by the mind and observes a situation, differentiates various situations and determines the right actions. Intellect helps you to sort out any situation that you encounter by carefully weighing all options. A person with higher intellect will take a more thoughtful and wise decision than  person with lower intellect. Then the third element is the Ego which prompts to develop Who you are, What you stand for and helps you to develop self worth. Usually Ego is because of the perceptions that others have on you or you have on situations. It usually takes you away from your true self or the soul.
Thus God is present in all these 8 elements and one, who wants to feel God has to live in all these 8 elements of nature and should feel God in all the 8 elements.

Chapter 7 Gnana-Vignana Yoga Verse 3

Chapter 7 Gnana-Vignana Yoga Verse 3
Shloka
Manushyaanaam sahasreshu kashchidyatati siddhaye;
Yatataamapi siddhaanaam kashchinmaam vetti tattwatah.
Translation
Among thousands of men, one per chance strives for perfection;
even among those successful strivers, only one per chance knows Me in essence.
Interpretation
In this sloka Lord Krishna talks about the difficulty of knowing God. In the previous sloka He said that there is nothing more that a person needs to know, once he knows the Lord. But is it that easy? Lord Krishna says that amongst thousands of people only one strives for attaining perfection. Perfection is doing things right and following dharma. Even amongst those successful strivers who strived to attain perfection only one person, that too per chance gets to know the essence of Lord. This in a way explains how difficult it is to know the Lord.
Extending Interpretation to Mankind’s Life!
There are two points one needs to understand here. One is why is that out of thousands of men, only one strives for perfection? Perfection is something which comes only with discipline and in-deterring hard work. That person should never take his eye off his goal and constantly keeps working towards it. How many of us do that? We all start the work we want to do, somewhere in the middle we all give up. Very few people, maybe a handful of people amongst the lakhs of people are there, who are striving for perfection can actually achieve perfection.
Next is why, even after achieving perfection, that only one amongst them knows God? Knowing God is not an easy thing. Just because you have perfected something doesn’t mean a person can attain moksha. There are millions of things in this World that a person needs to perfect, to know God. God is physics, God is matter, God is energy, God is love, God is care, God is philosophy, God is logic, God is education, God is curing, God is guiding, God is loving, God is giving, God is sacrifice, God is mercy, God is honesty and God is omniscient, omni present and omni potent. To know Him, you have to go everywhere, do everything, experience every emotion then you will know what is God. God is not a lesson to be learnt, God is the one who is there in every lesson that life teaches us!

Chapter 6 Dhyana Yoga Verse 12

Chapter 6 Dhyana Yoga Verse 12
Shloka

Sukhamaatyantikam yattad buddhi graahyamateendriyam;
Vetti yatra na chaivaayam sthitashchalati tattwatah.

Translation
When the Yogi feels that infinite bliss which can be grasped by the pure intellect
and which transcends the senses, and, established where in he never moves from the Reality.
Interpretation
Lord Krishna here talks about the feelings of a Yogi who has experienced the deep meditation. He says that a yogi who experiences the bliss of meditation with pure intellect can only experience the reality. Reality here means Brahman. This intellect that he acquires is because the yogi transcends all his senses while meditating and establishes himself in a positions which is beyond the grasp of any of the senses. Such a person gets to know what is real and once he understands the reality he will never move from that position of reality.
Extending Interpretation to Mankind’s Life!
The key words that one has to understand here are infinite bliss, pure intellect, transcending of senses and sticking to Reality. First let us understand what exactly is the reality. Reality can be explained through a phrase from upanishads which says “Brahma Satyam , Jagat Midhya”, which means only truth in this World is the Brahma and everything else is an illusion or maya. Brahma here means God. So God is the only real thing and all the other things are illusions. When you reach Brahma you remain still there and you also experience infinite bliss. It is because the person who sees reality does not need to see anything else and that is the point of infinite bliss for him.
The other two things we need to understand are the pure intellect and transcending of senses. These two things have a strong link to the eternal bliss that I mentioned previously. Here we have to understand that a person can only transcend his senses with his intellect. The knowledge he acquires takes him into situations where he understands how senses are binding him and are hampering his spiritual progress. Once he understands that he will try to transcend the senses by acquiring more and more intellect and that in turn takes him to the reality of Brahman.  Once he gets that experience he will feel an eternal bliss which is nothing but reality. This is how a yogi meets the reality.

Chapter 5 Sanyasa Yoga Verse 25

Chapter 5 Sanyasa Yoga Verse 25

Shloka
Yatendriya manobuddhir munir mokshaparaayanah;
Vigatecchaabhaya krodho yah sadaa mukta eva sah.
Translation
With the senses, the mind and the intellect always controlled, having liberation as his supreme goal,
free from desire, fear and anger—the sage is verily liberated for ever.
Interpretation
This is the second part of the sloka where it talks about the way a sage gets liberation from this world. The first part says that he needs to control his eye movements and his breathing, the second part focuses on other things to control. Lord Krishna says that apart from the senses, the sage has to always control his mind and intellect. Having done that, the sage will then keep the liberation from this world as his ultimate goal and starts getting himself freed from all the desires such as fear and anger. When he ultimately wins over all this, he will get the liberation from this world forever.
Extending the Interpretation to Mankind’s Life!
This is the sloka which is the last sloka of the renunciation. This talks about the combination of factors that brings liberation to an individual. Here there are two things that a person has to do. First is he needs to bring a control on his mind and intellect. Mind can be brought in control by concentrating and meditation but how to bring intellect under control? Intellect can be brought under control by changing the way we think. A person has to slowly broaden his way of thinking and should expand the scope of his thinking process as he continues to evolve spiritually.
The second aspect that he needs to focus on is he needs to built liberation as his supreme goal. Many of the sages waste a lot of time in bring themselves to accepting liberation as a goal. We all want to lead a simple life, help others. Have you ever thought why we are doing that? We dont have an answer. We think we are doing it because we like doing it. But the answer goes much beyond that. We do it because we have to be liberated. That thought many of us cannot take because liberation means losing everything and somewhere in a corner of our minds we are scared of losing everything because in a way we are still attached to some things. That feeling stops us from preparing for liberation.
Thus Lord Krishna in this chapter of renunciation talks about an important thing to end this chapter. Unless a person is not scared of liberation and fully prepares himself for liberation, he cannot attain liberation. Liberation is ever soul’s ultimate goal, by postponing that we are only delaying the inevitable. If we understand that life becomes much simpler and renunciation much easier. With these thoughts we will go to the next chapter that is the Yoga of Meditation.

Chapter 5 Sanyasa Yoga Verse 18

Chapter 5 Sanyasa Yoga Verse 18

Shloka

Ihaiva tairjitah sargo yeshaam saamye sthitam manah;
Nirdosham hi samam brahma tasmaad brahmani te sthitaah.

Translation

Even in this world everything is overcome by those whose minds rest in equality;
Brahman is spotless indeed and equal; therefore, they are established in Brahman.

Interpretation

In this sloka Lord Krishna talks further about the qualities of Brahman or all pervasive. He says that in every world including this world everything is overcome by those whose minds rest in equality. It means that people whose minds rest in equality will be able to solve any problem or a challenging situation that he might face. Lord Krishna also says that this quality makes a person go nearer to Brahman. The second part of the sloka talks about the qualities of Brahman. It says that Brahman is spotless and equal and everything which is equal is established itself in Brahman.

Extending Interpretation to Mankind’s Life!

This sloka talks about mind that rests in equality and how the mind that rests in equality equates itself to Brahman. What is the relationship between these two? Let’s observe. A mind that rests in equality cannot be touched by anything, neither anger, fear, greed, victory, happiness or achievement. For him everything is same. His mind will not react nor will show that. There is a renunciation involved here also. If you have not renounced the job that comes from being happy, then how will a person not feel happy when he is supposed to? So this explains how a person has the stability of mind.

It is then linked to becoming a part of Brahman himself. Brahman is God and God is a perfect equilibrium. He can balance everything in this universe and that equilibrium is something that Brahman expects from every being that He creates. So, as the person tries to attain equality of mind slowly starts seeing the Brahman within himself. Once he is able to see Brahman within himself he starts moving towards aligning himself with the qualities of the Brahman himself.

Chapter 5 Sanyasa Yoga Verse 16

Chapter 5 Sanyasa Yoga Verse 16

Shloka

Tadbuddhayas tadaatmaanas tannishthaas tatparaayanaah;
Gacchantyapunaraavrittim jnaana nirdhoota kalmashaah.

Translation

Their intellect absorbed in That, their self being That; established in That, with That as their supreme goal,
they go whence there is no return, their sins dispelled by knowledge.

Interpretation

In this sloka Lord Krishna talks about the characteristics of a person who has come out of the clouds of ignorance and has embraced the knowledge. He explains step by step about the process of acquiring knowledge. The first step is that the intellect of a person should be dipped in knowledge. Here knowledge is referred to as “That”. The second step is the soul of a person should be equal to the knowledge. Third step is that he should have acquiring knowledge as his supreme goal. Once that is done the last step is when the person flows with the knowledge and doesn’t return to his older realms which he has left behind. That is when that person will have all his sins dispelled by that knowledge.

Extending Interpretation to Mankind’s Life!

This sloka talks about how the sins of the person will be dispelled by the knowledge. When one acquires knowledge that makes him to come in touch with the realities that never existed before. Its not a simple process, it all starts with a person using his intellect to increase his knowledge. What is the difference between knowledge and intellect? Knowledge is information and intellect is the capacity to absorb and analyse the information. When a person has only knowledge but no intellect he will take that knowledge separately. Simple example is a person like APJ Abdul kalam got educated in a Govt school like millions of children but why he became one in a million kind of student? It is because of the intellect that he possess which he uses to assimilate the knowledge he got.

The next most important step is that the goal of a person should be knowledge and only acquiring knowledge. People acquire knowledge for money, for power and for recognition but how many of them acquire knowledge for the sake of knowledge. If a person does that he starts walking in a path that has only one direction and never turns back. The Abdul Kalam example holds good here also. He walked ahead only with the knowledge as his supreme goal and never bothered about recognition or money. Thus he was instrumental in building so many missiles for India as well as conduct a nuclear test which put us on top of the World. Thus knowledge alone can dispel you from all the sins and paves the way for acquiring salvation.