The Bhagavadgita on Worshipping gods and ancestors
Chapter 9 - Sloka 25
yānti devavratā devān pitrn yānti pitrvratāh
bhūtāni yānti bhūtejyā yānti madyājinopi mām
yanti = achieve; deva-vratah = the worshipers of divinities; devan = to the divinities; pitrn = to ancestors; yanti = go; pitr-vratah = worshipers of the ancestors; bhutani = to spirit world; yanti = go; bhuta-ijyah = worshipers of spirits; yanti = go; mat = My; yajinah = devotees; api = only; mam = to Me.
"The worshippers of the divinities go to the divinities; the worshippers of the ancestors go to the ancestors; the worshippers of spirits go to the spirit world. My devotees come to Me only.
Our minds play an important role in creating our future. What we think mostly, we become.
Our predominant thoughts sow the seeds of our future and our destinies.
As they are strongly etched in our consciousness due to our obsessive thinking, they become our latent impressions (samskaras).
They are the sources of our karma and the process of our becoming and being.
Only those who perfect their practice on the path of yoga and achieve the highest level of self-absorption (dharma mega samadhi) are able to rid them and stop their further formation. Whomever we worship and think at the time of our departure from the world, we go to them only.
Thus, the worshippers of gods go the world of gods; and those of ancestors go the ancestral world.
The worshippers of animals, living beings, elemental spirits and dark forces go to them only.
We are not supposed to worship human beings, however exalted they may be, although many Hindus do it, out of ignorance, fear and greed.
The knowers of Brahman, who are forever absorbed in the thought of Brahman and worship Him at all times reach Him only travelling by the sunlit path of immortality (uttarayanam).
Just as our actions are, thinking is also a form of karma. We not only act with our bodily organs but also with our minds and its faculties.
Our mental actions and habitual thought patterns have profound consequences, from which we cannot easily escape.
Our scriptures, therefore, suggest that we should refrain from thinking hateful thoughts towards others, because just as love is positive devotion, hatred is negative devotion.
What we resist we attract.
Eventually, we have to resolve what we hate and make peace with it.
If our minds are consumed with hatred, we will form an attachment with what we hate and very likely, we may end up becoming part of it.
Suggestions for Further Reading
- Om, Aum, Pranava or Nada in Mantra and Yoga Traditions
- Brahmacharya or Celibacy in Hinduism
- Atheism and Materialism in Ancient India
- Solving the Hindu Caste System
- How To Choose Your Spiritual Guru?
- Creation in Hinduism As a Transformative Evolutionary Process
- Wealth and Duty in Hinduism
- Do You Have Any Plans For Your Rebirth or Reincarnation?
- Understanding Death and Impermanence
- Lessons from the Dance of Kali, the Mother Nature
- Letting your God live in You - The True Essence of the Hindu Way of Life
- prajnanam brahma - Brahman is Intelligence
- Maslow's Hierarchy Of Needs From The Perspective Of Hinduism
- The Defintion and Concept of Maya in Hinduism
- The Meaning of Nirvana
- Self-knowledge, Difficulties in Knowing Yourself
- Hinduism - Sex and Gurus
- The Construction of Hinduism
- The Meaning and Significance of Heart in Hinduism
- The Origin and Significance of the Epic Mahabharata
- The True Meaning of Prakriti in Hinduism
- Three Myths about Hinduism
- What is Your Notion of God?
- Why Hinduism is a Preferred Choice for Educated Hindus