Diving into the Bhagavad Gita: Devotional Service, Bhakti Yoga and the way of Love (Chapter 12)
by Daniel Maciejewski
How to come closest to Krishna consciousness and what to do to obtain that, is the key message of this month’s theme, the 12th chapter of the Bhagavad Gita.
“Still your mind in me, still your intellect in me, and without doubt, you will be united with me forever. If you cannot still your mind in me, learn to do so through a regular practice of meditation. If you lack the will for such self-discipline, engage yourself in my work, for selfless service can lead you at least to complete fulfilment. If you are unable to do even this, surrender yourself to me, disciplining yourself and renouncing the results of all your actions.”
Krishna, the symbolic personification of the fully realised state of mind, explains Arjuna to come closer to him and eventually become him/that state of full self-realisation or enlightenment.
As an easier option to worshipping consciousness as an “eternal formless reality” without name or form, it helps to imagine Krishna as a “person” to love and serve. This form of worshipping is more suited for us humans as we are bound to form, our bodies and therefore relating to Krishna comes more naturally.
“To know God as the essence within yourself and your true self always with god” is a state that can be achieved in various ways. The highest way according to the Gita is the surrender of attachment to results. Dropping all questioning, reasoning and expectation while trusting with full belief and no doubt, devoting your life and all your actions to the higher consciousness.
Meditation is seen as the second highest form to train and relieve the mind. If there is not enough discipline for such devoted practice, you can engage in “mechanical” work or practice that has the goal of liberation in all its actions. “Simply” performing tasks that carry the right intention can lead to the same goal of self-realisation.
Translated into our modern reality it is for me a liberating thought that you don’t need to be in constant formal practice but can come closer to a higher form of consciousness and self-realisation through simple actions and tasks that carry a form of devotion towards consciousness.
Waking up with love and compassion towards your loved ones and throughout the day as well towards all others, choosing your words and thoughts wisely in the name of conscious speech and actions; Performing small tasks like lighting a candle in the morning or putting down a flower or an offering at a devoted place in your home, can become actions that shape your life.
Shaping your life in a natural way, that is not forced into a formal practice parse but shifts the focus from the “I” and “mine” towards heartfelt compassion towards all that lives. No need to chase pleasure and avoid discomfort but allowing things to come and go as they happen.
Joy and lightness are the driving forces behind Daniels yoga practice. His vinyasa classes include elements from various practices. Tibetan joint loosening warmups, an astanga inspired flow and mindful observation of stillness and movement; Together with the use of sound in the form of your own voice reciting mantras, music he creates or songs he selects, Daniel invites you to an inward journey beyond the stories of the mind.