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What is Karma-Yoga ?

Discussion in 'Chitvish on Hindu Culture & Vedanta' started by Chitvish, Mar 1, 2007.

  1. Chitvish

    Chitvish Moderator IL Hall of Fame

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    Karma-Yoga is a compound word consisting of two simple words Karma and Yoga.

    By Karma, we mean “proper action”. What is proper action ? Based on the scriptures, all actions are broadly divided into 3 categories:

    Satvika karmas ( satva means equilibrium) which are compulsory for every seeker of Moksha ( freedom from dependence). They are not based on our likes and dislikes or on our Kama (desire) and hence are called Nishkama karma. They contribute to the inner and spiritual growth of a person. Their focus is inner growth. So the benefits are subtle internal benefits.

    Pancha-maha-yajnas come under this. One has to do them whether one likes it or not.
    Please refer to
    http://www.indusladies.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2877

    Rajasa Karmas (rajas means activity) form the second kind of action. These are actions based on our desires.
    Hence they are called sakama-karmas (desire-prompted actions). A person can fulfill desires in a legitimate manner. They primarily contribute to our material well-being. It contributes only secondarily to inner growth. We must remember that knowledge and not pleasure is the primary goal of man.

    Tamasa Karmas (tamas means inertia) form the last type and are called Nishiddha Karmas (prohibited action).
    They are wrong actions like violence, cheating etc. They have a retarding effect on one and they should be avoided. We come across certain situations when Nishiddha karmas have to be done by us like using insecticides, harming vegetable kingdom etc. We should reduce these to the minimum. These choiceless Papas ( wrong actions) have to be neutralized by pancha-maha-yajnas.

    Yoga:
    This means “ proper attitude”. It is the mental state of equanimity, balance, an unperturbed condition which helps in making life effective. For this, the following traits have to be developed:

    Acceptance – Learn to accept all pleasant and choiceless actions. Also accept results of actions in the same way.

    Non-comparison – Avoid comparison while doing actions or while receiving results because comparison creates problems.

    Humility - Always remember that you are an instrument of the Lord.

    Devotion – Dedicate all actions to the Lord as worship, chanting
    “Oh! Lord, whatever be the consequences, I will accept them as your Prasada, your gift.
    It may be spiritual growth or material growth or adverse effect. I will accept everything as your gift. I do not resist anything that comes in my life. That is the result of my own good or bad action and I know that You are never unjust. Whatever comes from you will refine and elevate me”.

    Thus, Karma-Yoga is doing the right karma with the right state of mind which gives me inner growth. I am rich and calm and grow internally . The benefit of inner growth is called refinement and is an important discipline.

    Karma-yoga is the first stage in Sadhana (a man’s pursuit for moksha or inner liberation).

    In short, the RIDE formula for Karma yoga is
    Reduce non-righteous actions

    Increase righteous actions
    Dedicate all your actions to the Lord
    Experience everything as the “prasada” from God


    The four-fold benefit is;
    Serenity of mind
    Self-satisfaction
    Contribution in macro level to universal harmony
    Getting spiritual growth gradually

    Once we understand the full meaning of karma yoga, all our powers will be concentrated and the knowledge which is ours will be manifest. We will be able to do really unselfish work.

    A karma-yogi is he who in the midst of the greatest silence and solitude finds the most intense activity and in the midst of the most intense activity finds the silence and solitude of the desert. He has learnt the secret of restraint, he has controlled himself.

    Love,
    Chithra.
     
  2. aishu22

    aishu22 Gold IL'ite

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    Dear Chithra,
    Wonderful article on Karma -Yoga.Even though a complicated topic to understand , wonderfuly penned by you to give clear explanations.

    One is responsible for all his actions and deeds.Whether good or bad, he needs to accept life as it is and follow basic dharma.

    Thank you on enlightening us on karma yoga.
     
  3. Chitvish

    Chitvish Moderator IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Aishu,
    Thankyou for sending such a quick F B.
    K Y consists essentially of selfless service to man, animal or plant, surrendering the ego completely.
    It is the path of doing the right dharmic action, without expecting fruits of action. It is literally
    Do your duty, that is best:
    Leave unto Lord the rest.

    I thankyou again for patiently reading through the post & sending a F B.
    Love,
    Chithra.
    என் கடன் பணி செய்து கிடப்பதே.
     
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2007
  4. Shanvy

    Shanvy IL Hall of Fame

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    dear chitra,

    Nice Article very well written.
    Need of the hour.

    Wonder ful effort and keep it growing.
    Love,
    shanthi
     
  5. Chitvish

    Chitvish Moderator IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Shanthi,
    Thankyou very much for the prompt feed back.
    Love,
    Chithra.

    என் கடன் பணி செய்து கிடப்பதே.
     
  6. tejudatla

    tejudatla Bronze IL'ite

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    Dear Chitra ji,

    Though it's very tough to understand u made me to understand...
    Karma performed by right means does not harm anybody in accordance with Dharma...

    Very luvly presentaion done by u agian...:2thumbsup:

    Thannq Chitraji...
    Tej:wave
     
  7. vidhi

    vidhi Senior IL'ite

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    Dear Chithra

    Another beautiful piece of work from you. I liked the following line very much

    Experience everything as the “prasada” from God

    Accepting everything as prasada is a beautiful concept. The very thought itself is more pleasing. It will give us more calmness. Thank you chithra

    regards
    vidhi
     
    1 person likes this.
  8. meenaprakash

    meenaprakash Silver IL'ite

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    Dear Chitra,

    whether I understood your post fully or not, I understood one thing. I can never become a karma yogi.
    I was just wondering if one can even dream of becoming one. look at our society, look at the people we interact, look at our life, look at ourselves, we are ever changing and we live in the most uncertain environment. with such uncertainty around, how do we ever look at fellow humans with love & trust??
    whenever I thought, I shldn't hurt others & submit myself too much, it was reverse - I got hurt tooo much so I stopped doing things going out of way & wow, now I'm happy. I've felt this Inner peace when I did things with the right attitude - that I agree cent percent.
    I'm taking a print of this post & shall read it after few more years, i'd like to see how I'd react to it. by then, I would've crossed a donkey's years.
    Serenity of mind and self satisfaction is something I can relate to and do realise it very often compared to my friends.
    shld think of the 3rd level now.
    But too good a post - shall ponder on this.

    Love,
     
  9. Chitvish

    Chitvish Moderator IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Teja,
    Thankyou very much for the F B.
    It also means
    Karma performed by right means
    without expecting a favourable result.
    I am glad you liked it.
    Love,
    Chithra.
     
  10. Chitvish

    Chitvish Moderator IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Vidhi,
    Thankyou for the F B.
    Prasada buddhi, though tough, has to be developed choicelessly.
    Love,
    Chithra.
     

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