Bhagavad Gita- Chapter 6 (Part-2) Dhyaana Yogah- Yoga of Meditation

arjuna uvaacha
    ayatih shraddhayopeto  yogaacchalitamaanasah
    apraapya yogasamsiddhim kaam gatim  krishna gacchati  // 6.37 //

Arjuna  said
    He  who is endowed with faith, but not with self-control, and whose mind wanders  away from Yoga - to what end does he go, O Krishna, having failed to attain  perfection in Yoga?

This  verse relates to a seeker who has faith in the efficacy of Yoga but who is  unable to control the senses and the mind. Arjuna asks what happens to such a  person for he may lose both the joys of the sense objects and the Absolute  Bliss hereafter. The word Sraddha does not mean blind faith but an intellectual  understanding of the deeper significance of what the teachers teach and  scriptures declare.

kacchinnobhayavibhrashtash  chhinnaabhramiva nashyati
    apratishtho mahaabaaho vimoodho  brahmanah pathi  // 6.38 //

Fallen  from both, does he not, O Mighty Armed, perish like a rent cloud, supportless  and deluded in the path of Brahman?

Arjuna  wonders as to what will happen to the seeker who though full of faith but for  want of mental restraint fails to achieve success having fallen from both.  Fallen from both means achieving no success  in the path of worldly success as also in the path of Yoga.
  Rent  cloud is that very small portion of the large cloud which gets detached from  the latter on account of heavy winds and as a consequence moves about without  any set direction hit by every passing breeze. Arjuna enquires whether such  unsuccessful seekers will meander about the universe as the rented clouds and  get lost.

etanme samshayam krishna  chhettumarhasyasheshatah
    twadanyah samshayasyaasya chhettaa na  hyupapadyate  // 6.39 //

O  Krishna, please dispel this doubt of mine completely for, it is not possible  for anyone but you to dispel this doubt.


sri bhagavaan uvaacha
    paartha naiveha naamutra vinaashastasya  vidyate
    nahi kalyaankrit kaschid durgatim taatagacchati  // 6.40 //

Sri  Bhagavan said
    O  Partha, there is no destruction for him either in this world, or in the next  world; none verily, who does good, O My Son, ever comes to grief.

In  the following five verses Sri Krishna elucidates the path of progress of a  seeker whose spiritual endeavors have not been met with any success either on  account of death or due to any other temptation. The Lord assures him that he  who does not achieve perfection in Yoga in this birth will not be destroyed  either in this world or in the next. No destruction means that surely he will  not take a birth lower than the present one in his next life. Doing good means  striving for Self-realization.

What  happens to him is as follows.

praapya punyakritaam lokaanushitwaa  shaashwateeh samaah
    shucheenaam shreemataaam gehe  yogabhrashto'bhijaayate  // 6.41 //

He  who has fallen from Yoga goes to the world of the righteous and having lived there  for long years, he is born again in the house of the pure and the prosperous.

The  Lord says that the one who was not able to attain perfection in Yoga or the one  who achieved some progress in Yoga but had fallen due to lack of dispassion or  on account of turbulent senses, attains the worlds inhabited by those pious  souls who performed great religious sacrifices while living on this earth.  Having lived there as long as the merit of his past spiritual life lasts he is  born again in the house of those whose conduct is governed by religion where he  can continue his spiritual journey from the point where he had left in the  previous birth.

athavaa yoginaameva kule bhavati  dheemataam
    etaddhi durlabhataram loke janma yadeedrisham  // 6.42 //

Or  he is born in a family of yogis rich in wisdom; verily such a birth is very  difficult to obtain in this world.

Sri  Krishna says that those who are possessed of genuine dispassion but yet fail to  achieve success in Yoga are born in the family of enlightened yogis poor in  resources but rich in wisdom. A birth in such families is rare to obtain than  the one mentioned in the preceding verse. It is rare because he is placed right  from the beginning of his life in an environment which is conducive for the  practice of Yoga so that he could start his spiritual journey from a very early  stage. Considering the greatness of the illumined souls, a birth in their  families is stated to be very difficult to obtain.

Mundaka  Upanishad (III-ii-9) says “In the family of a Knower of Brahman, none remains  ignorant of Brahman. Transcending both grief and sin, and freed from the knot  of ignorance in the heart, the member of such a family becomes immortal, i.e.  attains freedom for all time from birth and death”.

tatra tam buddhisamyogam labhate  paurvadehikam
    yatate cha tato bhooyah samsiddhau  kurunandana // 6.43 //

There  he comes in touch with the knowledge acquired in his former body and strives  more than before for perfection, O Son of the Kurus.

When  he takes a human body again in this world, his previous efforts and practice of  Yoga do not go in vain. They bear fruit in this birth and hasten his moral and  spiritual evolution. Our thoughts, actions and experiences are left in our  subconscious mind in the form of subtle impressions. These impressions of the  present and the past births will be re-energized in the next birth. The  impressions of the yogic tendencies will compel the seeker to work with greater  vigor than in his former birth. Whatever progress a man makes in the path of  yoga he retains. He again starts from there when the next opportunity arises.

poorvaabhyaasena tenaiva hriyate  hyavasho'pi sah
    jijnaasurapi yogasya  shabdabrahmaativartate  // 6.44 //

By  that former practice alone he is borne on in spite of himself.  Even he who merely wishes to know Yoga goes  beyond the world of Vedic rites.

The  man who had failed in yoga is carried to the goal, which he intended to reach  in the previous birth, by the force of impressions of his past yogic practices,  though he may not be aware of it. If he had not done that many evil deeds as to  overcome his yogic tendencies, he will certainly continue his yogic practices  in this birth with great vigor by force of the impressions of the previous  birth.

If  the force of evil actions is very strong, the yogic tendencies would be  overpowered or suppressed by them temporarily. As soon as the fruits of evil  actions are exhausted the yogic vasanas will again manifest themselves and he  will eventually attain the final realization.

Sri  Krishna says even a man of enquiry in whom a desire to know about Yoga goes  beyond the Brahmic word i.e. beyond Vedas. He raises superior to the Vedic  rituals and ceremonies. He is not satisfied with mere ritualism and yearns for  a higher fulfillment. If this is the case of an aspirant without any spiritual  inclinations of the previous birth, how much more exalted will be the state of  a seeker who takes up the practice of Yoga in this birth after having fallen  from that path in his previous birth?

What  the Lord implies is that no effort in the practice of yoga goes waste.  Even the least effort bears fruit either in  this birth or in another and there is no cause for any disappointment for any  one including the dullest seeker.

prayatnaadyatamaanastu yogee  samshuddhakilbishah
    aneka janma samsiddhastato yaati paraam  gatim  // 6.45 //

But  the Yogi, who strives diligently, purified from sins and perfected through many  births, attains the Supreme Goal.

Mind  and intellect of an individual function through the body in the world outside  as per the qualities they assume because of the actions performed in their  earlier births. The wrong and negative qualities of the mind and intellect are  sins in the language of Vedanta. After purifying the mind from these sins the  aspirant practices meditation and ultimately the mind becomes devoid of  impressions which is called the end of the mind since the mind is nothing but a  flow of thoughts. 

When  there is no thought, there is no mind and where there is no mind there is no  ego which is termed as `reaching the highest goal' or Self-Rediscovery. Little  by little acquiring, through many births, the knowledge of Reality, he  ultimately attains perfection. The Gita gives us hopeful belief in the  redemption of all.

Although  this theory is explained here in one or two sentences, in actual  implementation, it is an achievement of many life times - `many births' as The  Lord puts it.

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