2.3.4 no compulsion to follow this or that

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Last updated: August 25, 2019

2.3.4 Bhagavadg?t?: the Harmony ofDifferent Paths THEHARMONY OF DIFFERENT PATHS oFYoGA IN THE GITA Karma-yoga, Bhakti yoga, andJnana-yoga these four to the Supreme Being.

Seekers choose that path which isbest suited to their nature and temperament its superi yoga not a few proclaimthe importance of their own particular path, and try to establish th byproducing arguments in Not their but the extent of condemning other paths asworthless and wretched. This has led to bitter controversies olent and mutualhatred among the followers of the different creeds. The Lord was quite aware ofthe danger of such futile controversies to establish the superiority of onepath o another.

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Therefore he set himself the task of putting down thesedifferences, and proclaiming once all the equality and harmony of all the pathsof yoga. These four paths, as it were, four gateway are the four to enter themansion of liberation, and through whichever one reach he reaches the innerJust as different rivers flowing through regions finally All the ocean, evenso, all the various paths of yoga lead man to the ultimate goal of Truth. freeperfectly paths There is no compulsion to follow this or that path. Each man ithe goal choose that path which suits character and temperament, and moveforward towards By nature, the mind of some people is inclined to action. Suchmen inevitably take to Karma-yoga. They find pleasure in activity, and delightin service to society.

The Gita teaches them what action is, and how actionshould be one without attachment to the fruits thereof The chapter entitledKarma-yoga is intended to guide men of action in the proper way, so that theymight not blindly plunge into wordly activity and get themselves caught in thesequence of action and reaction. The Gita teaches that action, without thefeeling of personal doership and without attachment to the fruits thereof, isthe secret of Karma-yoga Again, some people by nature are emotional. They havestrong feelings of love and affection. Such men choose the path of devotionBhakti yoga.

They worship, they pray, they sing the name of the Lord in ahundred ways, and find inexpressible joy in the love for their chosen deityTheGita exhorts them to rise higher and higher in their devotion, and come closerto their object worship. This Bhakti yoga is meant for such aspirants, A thirdcategory of men are meditativ They do not find pleasure in action, or in theflow of emotion. So they meditate (Dhyana) the highest reality, by withdrawingtheir minds from the distracting influence of the sense objects and by turningit inwards to find out the very source and the ultimate origin of their beingsuch inward exploration of the reality gives them great satisfaction. For suchmen the Gita explains the nature of Dhyana (meditation) and control of thesenses and mind. This is AtmaSamyama in the Gita. Apart from these threecategorics, there is a fourth category of aspirants, and they are manis.

Theyare rational in their outlook and attitude. They think, analyse, discriminate,and rejec hat is not real, and try to grasp the reality a process ofun-compromising reason. They discriminate between the real and the unreal,between matter and spirit, between the mind and that which knows the varioustransformations of the mind. It requires great will power to hold on to thisrational into the nature of Truth, without being side tracked or pulled out bythe appetites of the body or the impulses of the mind. For these aspirants, theGita teaches Kshetraksbetrajna yoga separate chapter in the book.

which forms aIn this way the Gita accepts the predispositions of different minds andencourages people to adopt the most suitable path for their progress. The Gita deniesthe superiority or inferiority of any form of practice and maintains a balanceamong the various creeds, Bitter controversies among are due to ignorance, andGita upholds the importance of every yoga in proper place and aspirants.Vivekananda asserts, of different paths of and work without desire are the twospecial characteristics of the Gita Gita universal in its message, leaders ofdifferent doctrines and creeds have all offered their homage t. Sankara, theexponent of Advaita, Ramanuja of qualified monism, Madhava of dualism,srikantha have all praised the Gita unanimously. Thus the Gita explains onafter another all the paths of union with the Supreme, and finally concludesthat all paths leads the goal.

The ultimate aim of all religions is to root outthe cgo infinite. Contradictions and denunciation of principles other thanone’s own is detrimental to spiritual ment. The Gita has donc the greatestservice to mankind by setting at rest all such foolish controversion, and bydeclaring the balance and harmony of all paths of yoga   

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