Daily Readings from the Works of Swami Venkatesananda

Song of God (Bhagavad Gita) - Chapter VI: 31-32

May 19, 2017

™sarvabhūtasthitaṁ yo māṁ bhajaty ekatvam āsthitaḥ
sarvathā vartamāno ’pi sa yogī mayi vartate (VI-31)

™ātmaupaṁyena sarvatra samaṁ paśyati yo ’rjuna
sukhaṁ vā yadi vā duḥkhaṁ sa yogī paramo mataḥ (VI-32)

VI/31. He who, being established in unity, worships me who
dwells in all beings, that yogi abides in me, whatever be his
mode of living.

VI/32. He  who,  through  the  likeness  of  the  self,  O  Arjuna,
sees  ‘same-ness’ everywhere, be it pleasure or pain,
he is regarded as the highest yogi.

Swamiji's Commentary

      This is the goal of yoga, clearly stated here and still more graphically reiterated in verse 46 of the eighteenth chapter. We worship God in shrines, churches and mosques; we approach him through his various manifestations (which we shall study in the tenth chapter); we sit in a secluded spot and meditate upon his presence in our heart, but all these are the ‘exercises’ necessary to acquire proficiency in the art of yoga. Without them we shall get nowhere; but if we get stuck in them we shall get nowhere either.

      Krishna clearly declares two vital truths here: the yogi should worship all beings in whom God dwells, and his mode of living is immaterial if this attitude of worshipfulness is ensured. Whatever be one’s trade or occupation, one can be a yogi. Whatever be one’s caste, religion, colour or nationality, one can be a yogi. From God’s standpoint, there is nothing secular or mean, profane or impure, because he is the source of everything. It is the inner attitude of worshipfulness that is important. That is the philosopher’s stone which transforms all activity into yoga. The yogi does not entertain the least idea of profit; he does not feel he helps anyone or even that he serves anyone; he worships all beings. This worship naturally takes the form of loving (God-loving) service.

      Just as the Lord dwells in one’s own body and mind. with all their weakness and imperfections, he also dwells in others’ bodies and minds. The yogi transcends good and evil. Pleasure and pain are events, not experiences: praise and censure are opinions which do not affect him. His mind (or, rather, the mind) is rooted in God-consciousness and therefore he goes beyond all these and rests in ‘same-ness’ which is the omnipresence of God.

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