Absorption and Devotion

I will split the next few chapters up as they cover some topics pretty easily separated out. Chapter 12 basically gives a reminder that whatever action we take, we must remain absorbed and devoted to the focus on the inner Self and the Higher Purpose.

Arjuna asks “what kind of devotee has a greater understanding of yoga?” and Krishna responds – “Those whose minds are fixed on me in steadfast love, worshipping me with absolute faith. I consider them to have the greater understanding…Be absorbed in me, lodge your mind in me: thus you shall dwell in me, do not doubt it, here and hereafter.”

What we have to remember is though Krishna is speaking again as himself, he had in previous chapters reminded us that he dwells within each individual and so, in steadfast focus and absorption, the aim of yoga is toward the inner Self…the inner Divinity…without distraction.

This pretty short Chapter aligns with the Yoga Sutras in may ways, but most specifically with Yoga Sutra I.33 – asking for us to develop friendliness, compassion, cheerfulness, and uninvolved observation with all situations and all people. https://yogainternational.com/article/view/yoga-sutra-1-33-translation-and-commentary

But also, this chapter covers some of the many tenets of the first two limbs of yoga, Yamas and Niyamas, moral precepts and personal observances.

YAMAS

Satya – Truth : “Control of speech”

Ahimsa – Nonviolence : “neither molests his fellow men, nor allows himself to become disturbed by the world”

Barahmacarya – Moderation : “control lusts of your heart, forgiving, ever contented, self-controlled”

Asteya – Nonstealing : “content with whatever he gets, free from attachment, his home is everywhere and nowhere”

Aparigraha – Non Coveting : “pure and independent of desire, renounce fruits of every action”

NIYAMAS

Tapas – Disciplined Practice : “By working for my sake only, you will achieve perfection”

Svadhaya – Self study : “free himself from the delusion of ‘I’ and ‘mine’, dedicated to me in intellect and in mind”

Sauca – Cleanliness : “works which will please,”

Santosha – Contentment : “no longer swayed by joy, envy, anxiety, and fear”, “neither vain nor anxious”, “does not desire or rejoice in what is pleasant, does not dread what is unpleasant, or grieve over it”

Isvara Pranidhanani – Surrender to the Higher : “The faithful practice with devotion, taking me for their highest aim”, “surrender in heart and mind”

The Yamas and the Niyamas are the foundations limbs to any and even action we may take through posture and any mental concentration practices we partake in. If we are able to look to the foundation at a practical level, then the less we will distracted off the path of yoga.

 

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