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The Bhagavad-Gita

The Yoga of Meditation

6:1: The Blessed One said: One who performs his obligatory activities without taking refuge in them is the true renouncer and yogi, not someone who lives without fire and performs no actions.

6:2: What they call renunciation, O son of Pandu, know to be yoga, for truly one who has not renounced desire cannot become a yogi.

6: 3: For one who wishes to ascend to sagehood, karma-yoga is said to be the means. For one who has ascended to this plateau, tranquility is said to be the means.

6:4: When one is not attached to sense objects or activities and has renounced all desire, such a person is said to have ascended to yoga.

6:5: One must raise oneself up by his or her self, otherwise the person will surely sink. Indeed, the Self is one's only friend, but the Self is also one's only enemy.

6:6: For one who has conquered the self, the self is a friend. However for one whose mind is not conquered, the self is the greatest enemy.

6:7: Being entrusted to the supreme Self, for one who has conquered the individual self, the mind is tranquil in cold, heat, happiness, pain, honor or dishonor.

6:8, 9: One who is satisfied with the knowledge one has both learned and realized, and who stands firm therein, whose senses are subdued and yoked, and to whom a lump of earth, a stone and gold are the same, is said to be a yogi.
Such a person equally regards well-wishers, friends, enemies, those who are neutral and those who mediate between them, as well as those are who envious, relatives, the righteous and the unrighteous, and thus surpasses all others.

6:10: One who is a yogi must constantly keep the mind steady, abide in solitude, restrain the consciousness, be devoid of expectations and free from greed.

6:11, 12: Such a person should choose a clean place and there establish a firm meditation seat - composed of a cloth and deerskin covering kusa-grass - which is neither too high nor too low.
There, with the mind focused on one point, one who has controlled the mind, senses and actions, sitting on the seat, should practice yoga for self purification.

6:13, 14: Holding the body, head and neck straight, maintaining a still and steady gaze on the tip of the nose, without looking around,
The self being tranquil having cast off all fear, one who is a brahmacari [a devoted student of enlightenment] of steadfast mind, who completely controls the thinking processes and who is yoked to Me, should sit and meditate upon Me as the ultimate goal.

6:15: Thus always practicing that which leads to nirvana, one who is a yogi, whose mind is always controlled, abides in Me and attains peace.

6:16, 17: Yoga can not be practiced by one who eats too much nor by one who eats too little, by one who sleeps too much nor sleeps too little, O Arjuna.
For one who practices [self] control in eating, recreation, exertion, activities, sleeping and wakefulness, yoga becomes the destroyer of pain.

6:18: When one perfectly controls the mind, is free from material longings and is devoid of all desire, then that person is said to be well established in yoga.

6:19: "As a lamp in a windless place does not flicker" - this is the comparison considered by the yogi whose mind is likewise controlled by the practice of yoga.

6:20-23: Where mental activities are restrained in the quietude of yogic service [or practice], certainly the living entity, by virtue of yoga, realizes the Supreme Being and is thus satisfied. The infinite bliss which is conceived through this intelligence is transcendental. Established in this Reality, one knows what is and what is not. By understanding this, one knows what is gain and what is loss. Being so established, one understands that there is nothing greater [than that realization] and is not disturbed by even the weightiest sufferings. One must know what suffering is through yoga, and thus enter into yogic trance [or equanimity]. This yoga should be practiced without deviation.

6: 24, 25: Mentally renouncing all material desires which are born of mental resolve without exception, and restraining the senses from all sides,
Step by step, with the intellect held in great conviction, by the power of the mind, one should attain repose in the self.

6:26: From wherever the restless and unsteady mind wanders, from there restrain it and bring it back under the control of the self.

6:27: A yogi whose mind is peaceful, whose passions are pacified and who is free from sin, attains the greatest happiness and becomes one with Brahman.

6:28: Thus practicing yoga the yogi is freed from all material contamination and relishes the highest happiness by being in contact with Brahman.

6:29: The Self is abiding within all beings. One who sees the Self within, is yoked by the yoga system and one who sees impartially, sees Me everywhere.

6:30: One who sees Me everywhere and sees everything in Me, from such a one I do not disappear nor is that person ever lost from Me.

6:31: One who worships Me as abiding within all beings attains unity in every way. Such a person is a true yogi and always abides in Me.

6:32: One who sees the Self manifested everywhere, who regards happiness and suffering equally, O Arjuna, is considered to be an accomplished yogi.

6:33: Arjuna said: This yoga of equanimity expounded by You, O slayer of the demon Madhu, I do not consider viable, because of the restless condition [of the mind which is not] steady.

6:34: The mind is restless, O Krishna, it is turbulent, strong and obstinate. I think that to restrain it must be more difficult than restraining the wind.

6:35: The Blessed One replied: Without a doubt, O mighty armed one, the restless mind is difficult to control. However, O child of Kunti, by detachment it can be restrained.

6:36: For one who is unbridled [the fruits of] yoga are very difficult to obtain. In My opinion however, for one who is self controlled and who endeavors by the proper means it is possible.

6:37-39: Arjuna inquired: What is the destination of one who has faith in the yoga process, but whose mind wanders and is uncontrolled and who therefore fails to attain perfection in yoga?
O mighty armed, does such a person not, fallen from both [material and spiritual success] like a torn cloud, perish without support, being deluded concerning the path of Brahman?
This is my doubt, O Krishna. Kindly dispel it completely, for other than You there exists no one who can.

6:40: The Blessed One said: O child of Partha, neither in this world nor in the next does destruction exist for one whose activities are good. Such a person never ends in indigence.

6:41, 42: Having achieved the planets of the righteous, one who has fallen from the yogic principles dwells there for countless years. At last such a person takes birth into a wealthy and/or pious family,
Or else takes birth in a family of wise yogis. Indeed, such a birth is very rare in this world.

6:43: Then the person regains the knowledge acquired in the previous body and resumes the endeavors for perfection from that point, O child of Kuru.

6:44: As a result of that previous practice the person is captivated and instinctively becomes inquisitive about yoga. She or he transcends the ritual observances and scriptural edits.

6:45: By determined practice a yogi whose sins have been washed away by constant endeavor, after many births, at last attains the highest refuge.

6:46,47: The yogis are superior to those who undergo austerities [the ascetics], to the followers of wisdom [jnana-yogis] and to the devotees of action [karma-yogis]; therefore, O Arjuna, be a yogi. And of all the different types of yogis, one who is situated in Me with his or her full being, in absolute faith, who worships Me, such a devotee is considered the most devout by Me.

Here ends Chapter Six.

Go to: Chapter Seven.

Go to Notes and References.

Go to: the Beginning.

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