Bhagavadgita: 12. The Yoga Of Devotion

Krishna and Arjuna in the Bhagavadgita

Translated by Jayaram V

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Summary: This chapter is about the importance of the path of devotion. Those who worship God with devotion, with their minds fixed on Him and ever absorbed in His thoughts are rescued from the word of impermanence and the cycle of births and deaths. A virtuous yogi who is equal to all and fully devoted to God is the dearest to him.


Bhakti Yoga

1. Said Arjuna, Those devotees who are always engaged in Your worship or those who worship the Inexhaustible and the Unmanifested, which of these two know the Yoga better?

2. Said Lord Supreme, With their minds fixed on Me, those who worship Me always, with faith and sincerity, they are considered to be the most qualified in the Yoga by Me.

3. But those who are engaged in the worship of the Imperishable, the Indefinable, the Invisible, the Omnipresent, the Unthinkable, the Immutable, the Immovable, and fixed

4. Controlling all the senses, maintaining equanimity everywhere, engaged in the welfare of all beings, they also come to Me only.

5. It is very difficult for those whose minds are preoccupied with the Unmanifested because for the embodied souls it is indeed very painful to make progress towards the Unmanifested.

6. He, remains attached to Me, renouncing all his acclivities to Me, meditating upon Me without any distractions and worshipping Me,

7. And whose minds are set upon Me, I rescue them from the ocean of mortal samsara (worldly life).

8. Upon Me fix your mind, in Me operate your intelligence, and thereafter without doubt you shall live in Me only.

9. If you are unable to concentrate your mind steadily upon Me, then strive to attain Me by practicing (Bhakti) Yoga, O Arjuna.

10. If you are not competent to practice Yoga, then do My work dedicating it to Me. By doing work for My sake you will achieve (spiritual ) perfection.

11. If you are not interested in doing even this, then seek refuge in My Yoga, renouncing the fruit of all your actions, established in the self.

12. Certainly knowledge is better than practice, but better than knowledge is meditation, superior to which is renunciation of the fruits of actions. Indeed after renunciation there is only peace.

13. Without any hatred towards all beings, friendly and compassionate, without any sense of possessiveness, without any egoism, equal in pleasure and pain and forgiving.

14. The Yogi who is always contended, self-controlled, strongly determined, his mind and intelligence offered to Me, that devotee is dear to Me.

15. He who nether disturbs the world nor is disturbed by it, who is free from joy, envy, fear and excitement - he is dear to me.

16. He who is without expectations, pure, dexterous, impartial, undisturbed, renouncing all effort in undertakings - that devotee is dear to Me.

17. He who neither likes nor dislikes, neither bemoans nor desires, who has renounced both the auspicious and the inauspicious and who is full of devotion to me- he is dear to ME.

18. Equal to friend and foe, in honor and dishonor, heat and cold, pleasure and pain and equally free from all attachment.

19. Equal to being criticized or praised, silent, contended with whatever he has, without a fixed abode, stable minded, engaged in devotion- that devotee is dear to Me.

20. But who follows completely the immortal dharma (righteousness) as ordained, with faith, holding Me as the Supreme such devotees are exceedingly dearer to Me.

Thus ends the twelfth chapter named Yoga of Devotion in the Upanishad of the divine Bhagavad-Gita , the knowledge of the Absolute, the yogic scripture, and the debate between Arjuna and Lord Krishna.

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