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Jan. 22, 2023

Thoughts on The Bhagavad Gita (Chapter 7: Verse 12 - Verse 15)

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In this episode, we discuss the 7th chapter of the Bhagavad Gita, specifically verses 12 - 15. 

Translation used: The Bhagavad Gita Comes Alive: A Radical Translation by Jeffrey Armstrong

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Hello, and welcome to another episode of The Bearded Mystic Podcast and I'm your host, Rahul N. Singh. Thank you for taking out the time today to either watch or listen to this podcast episode. Today, we will be continuing on with my thoughts on the Bhagavad Gita. But before we do begin, there's a few things I would like to let you know about. Please give your support to the Bearded Mystic Podcast by signing up to the podcast's Patreon page for ad free and bonus episodes and other benefits depending on the tier that you select. Details are in the show notes and video description below.

Every Saturday at 11:

00 AM Eastern Standard Time, there's a free virtual meditation session along with discussion and Q and A for around an hour. Please find the details in the show notes and video description below if you're interested in meditating as a community. If you have any questions, you can ask me with the new series Direct and Unfiltered with the Bearded Mystic. More information is in the show notes and video description below. Please like, comment, and subscribe if you're watching this on YouTube. If you're listening to this on your favorite podcast streaming app, please rate and review the podcast and do follow or subscribe to get future episodes. Today we'll be continuing on with Chapter seven, verses 12 to verse 15. Verse 12. The three gunas, the dynamic states of matter - sattvic, rajasic, and tamasic emanate from me. Yet though they come from Me, I am neither produced from them, nor am I under the influence in any way. So let's break this verse up a little. The three gunas, 'the dynamic states of matter' sattvic, rajasic, and tamasic emanates from Me. In yoga, the three gunas run the whole universe. This is why they're called dynamic states of matter. One thing is that these states are dynamic, so they're constantly changing. So even within us, what we'll find is, or in the universe that some things are pure, there's inertia, there's laziness, and some things are just hyperactive and that's how the universe runs. Now sattva as we know is purity, rajas we know is energy or energetic, and tamas is darkness or inertia. Sattva will give you some level of happiness because it's pure. When we are pure, we have a still mind. And with that still mind, we may find that there is happiness there and therefore we are calm and peaceful. With rajas, it will give us agitation because there's energy there, there's hyperactivity, and when we're active we find that our mind is unfocused. It's literally looking at 10,000 things at one time. There's no stillness. A lot of us may be in that way, especially if we work in the corporate environment. We're expected to really exercise our rajasic energy where we are constantly on the go. Even the hustle culture nowadays is all about being on the go. You know, being able to have a full-time job and then do a side hustle and all this, all these things may seem fine, but actually they're in constant change and if we utilize this rajasic energy too much, we can get burnt out and we can literally have a breakdown. Then you have tamasic energy, which will give you dullness and sorrow. When we are lazy, we can't be bothered to do anything. That can happen to a lot of us too. When our mind is depressed or we are upset about something and we are constantly in sorrow, what happens is this tamasic energy takes over and we just can't be bothered to do anything. We find there is no purpose or meaning in life and that can happen. This whole universe is basically functioning in that matter. And what Sri Krishna is saying here that all these energies emanate from Brahman or emanate from Saguna Brahman. What we have to understand is that these energies are from Brahman. The base of existence that these three energies run from, that this universe runs from is from Brahman.

Then he says:

Yet though they come from Me, I am neither produced from them, nor am I under their influence in any way. Despite the fact that all these dynamic and changing states of matter arise from Brahman, they cannot create nor produce Brahman. There's no way it can do that, because the base of its existence is from Brahman. It is from that unfiltered state, you could say that really pure state where there's no blemish at all. Now, these energies also cannot influence Brahman in any way. Remember, if you feel lazy, Brahman is not lazy. If you feel hyperactivity, Brahman is not hyperactive. If you are feeling that you are pure and you have a still mind, Brahman is not a still mind. Yeah, Brahman is the base of a still mind but it is not a still mind. Mind is still mind. Now, for example, you may still your mind, you may be able to stabilize your mind, but there still be some sort of activity no matter what we say. The only thing with the still mind is that there is no thoughts and emotions or images or sensations, but even then we can come outta that state. That's why it's a changing state. It's a dynamic state. That's why even sattvic energy is not seen as something completely pure in that sense. It's purity, but it's not the same purity as Brahman. We have to really understand that. These energies really can't influence Brahman in any way. Therefore the Formless energy, that Formless Awareness is beyond purity, inertia, and hyperactivity. Remember this always that the state of Turiya, that fourth state is when we are beyond these three gunas. None of these states can produce Formless Awareness because it is Formless Awareness that gives them power to emanate from it. So without that power, these dynamic states cannot be produced. They cannot be formed. Therefore, we need Formless energy. Without Formless energy, they cannot exist. Awareness can never be influenced, nor can it be mixed by anything. Just remember this. Awareness always is pure in itself, unfiltered, untouched, unblemished. It is not mixed with anything. It's very, very still. Awareness is stillness, but the mind is only still when it connects with that stillness, otherwise it will not be still. These little things that are very important to understand when we look at these gunas. The context of the whole verses that Sri Krishna states how Brahman is beyond these three dynamic states of matter. Neither do they create awareness, nor do they influence awareness in any way. We need to really understand that these states of matter, sattvic, rajasic, and tamasic are not what we really are. It is not Formless Awareness. It is far from it. Formless Awareness can never be those three things, in totality, so to speak. Even those people that live a pure sattvic diet or something like that, or living. Even that can become delusion, or can become ego, or I am better than the other person. There is a, a big warning here that don't fall under that trap because remember, if you're pure one day, you never know, even by accident, by karma, that you can become impure the next day. By accident you could eat a piece of meat and you know, you didn't mean it, but it happened. These are very, very subtle points, but they're very important to understand. Verse 13. Because of the deluding influence of these three gunas, those under their influence cannot see Me, even though I am timeless and always visible beyond the wall of matter. We are gonna look at the whole verse in itself. Whenever we enter a state of purity, so that can be done by, you know, cleanliness, good hygiene, and if we start thinking that brings awareness or we produce or we perform good karma from ritualistic actions and therefore we are now pure and we are now Brahman, actually, that's the deluding influence of sattva, the sattva energy. Now, whenever we enter a state of inertia, when we think we are too tired or we can't be bothered for spiritual practice, then we are under the deluding influence of tamas. Why should we meditate? Why should we read the scriptures? I'm too tired. I'm too tired to read the scriptures. I don't care. It is too much work. It's boring. That's inertia. And then whenever we enter a state of hyperactivity, we cannot fix our attention to practice, or we are too fidgety for no reason, or we get bored really quickly. We are unfocused. Then we are under the deluding influence of rajas. Just remember these things that whenever we notice that within ourselves, we can see we're under the influence of those three gunas, those three dynamic states of matter. Now, if we are under any of these three influences, then we cannot see Formless Awareness at all because even though the Formless Awareness is the easiest thing to perceive, we would escape it because we're constantly associating it to something. Even if we associate Formless, Awareness to being a pure state where we eat sattvic food, we only study the scriptures. We only do ritualistic actions that can become a subtle ego and we associating an action to Formless Awareness, which is not the case in Reality. Formless Awareness, even though it appears to be the doer, really, there's no doing in Formless Awareness. It's just simply the observer and everything that is being done is nature and nature emanates from Brahman or from Formless Awareness. Now, although Formless Awareness is timeless and beyond the wall of matter, all experiences, thoughts, feelings, sensations, any sensory data and memories are all objects in Formless Awareness. Now, all these senses, these thoughts, these experiences belong to time, but its True Self is beyond it. Now the Formless Awareness is always visible and the true sage can see the Formless even when matter tries to cover it. When we look at Maya, this cosmic illusion or when we look at this world of the transactional reality, we think that is real. But actually when we go deeper into our awareness, we realize actually there is awareness is observing all this. All this sensory data I'm comprehending is being screened upon awareness. This matter that I see, these physical objects that are all around me, I'm aware of them. What is this Awareness? And then we go back to Formless Awareness and it all makes sense. The True Sage can see Formless Awareness regardless of how much Maya or this matter tries to cover it. We do not see the physical objects. We see that which is aware of the object. Yeah, that's what we understand. We understand that that which is aware of the object is that Formless Awareness, that does not change according to the objects that it is observing. Once you break free from these three gunas in terms of their influence, you know you're no longer driven by them, then there is only Formless Awareness ever present and omnipresent. The context of the whole verse is that Sri Krishna is guiding us to go beyond the deluding influence of the three gunas, and we can then see the Formless Awareness very clearly and as mentioned, it is ever present and omnipresent. It's the only thing present. Therefore it's always present. It's timeless, it's eternal. Verse 14. The Gunamayi ' the illusory, divine energy of Mine', which I personally designed, using My divine and mystical intelligence is exceedingly difficult to transcend and go beyond. Only those who completely take shelter in Me can go beyond the deluding influence of the three gunas of Prakriti. Let's break this up a little. So this gunamayi, this illusory divine energy of Mine, which I personally designed using My divine and mystical intelligence is exceedingly difficult to transcend and go beyond. Now we're entering some interesting ground, and this is where we'll utilize the help of Saguna Brahman or the ishta-devta, which in this case should be Sri Krishna. I do admit that I'm making a massive concession here because usually I see everything as Formless Awareness. But here I want to personalize it a little, by understanding what Sri Krishna is saying. Now, what Sri Krishna is saying is that this gunamayi is from nature. It is Prakriti. Now anything that is Prakriti is going to create this illusion. Really the subtle thing to understand here is that Sri Krishna is talking about how nature creates all this and that Formless Awareness is separate to it. Or Formless Awareness is beyond it, shall we say. Saguna Brahman is still an illusion remember, even though I'm maybe referring to Sri Krishna or to Saguna Brahman, it's still an illusion because it's an object that is full of attributes. So whatever you can observe as an attribute is an object. Therefore, Saguna Brahman is an object. Now, eventually what we have to understand that Saguna Brahman is Nirguna Brahman. It's not separate at all. It's from Nirguna Brahman that Saguna Brahman is. All these attributes of Brahman emanate from Brahman, although Brahman is beyond those attributes. Yeah, that's why it's Nirguna. One attribute is that it is the creator, as the creator is also the creation. Therefore, we can see this part of the verse in that sense that the creator and the creation are one that Prakriti is creating itself. You could say. This Saguna Brahman is what personally designs this gunamayi, this illusory divine energy and is personally designed by Saguna Brahman, by utilizing divinity and mystical intelligence. And because of it being created by that One, by Saguna Brahman, the highest form of intelligence in terms of Prakriti, in terms of nature, in terms of Maya, it's very difficult to transcend it and go beyond it. To do that, you have to go to Nirguna, right? One way to do this is just to be in wonder of the Divine and Mystical Intelligence of Saguna Brahman. Look at it and be like, wow, all this that I see and perceive through my senses, all these energies that I am made of, these three gunas, they are an illusion that makes me think that this is everything, this intricate design of the Lord has hidden itself from Me. But when I observe these three gunas, I realize that the Observer is eternal. But until you realize that it will be very difficult to transcend and go beyond. Now, if we look at it through wonder, we see right through that subtle veil of matter, that subtle illlusory divine energy of Saguna Brahman. Otherwise, we will be stuck, and we will fail to transcend. We will be constantly struggling to go beyond this illusory, divine energy of Saguna Brahman. So without viveka, we will constantly struggle in trying to go beyond what is Real and unreal. We will not be able to see the Real, we will not be able to go beyond what is unreal. We'll constantly struggle, constantly be fighting this, but observe who is fighting this, and you go to your answer. Look at these three gunas and be amazed by them, be in wonder and then see right through them. Then there will not be a struggle. A struggle because we think we are this very illusion itself. Then in the next part of the verse, Sri Krishna says only those who completely take shelter in Me can go beyond the deluding influence of the three gunas of Prakriti. Now to go outta this tricky maze, this illusion of objects, this illusion of energies of creation and creator, this is when we have to go straight to Formless Awareness. So we have to take shelter in Formless Awareness, not in Saguna Brahman. Not in the attributes. We have to go beyond the attributes, go beyond this illusory divine energy, and we cannot do it with halfheartedness. We have to go there without complete heart. With our complete surrender, we completely let go, and we just go and rest into the Witness of all. That Witness Consciousness, that Formless Awareness. We surrender with all our might and we just completely let go and empty ourselves of any energy that is observed. And then you just watch how this gunamayi, this illusory divine energy dissolves away in a matter of milliseconds. This is what can happen. We completely take the shelter of Nirguna Brahman because only Nirguna Brahman is the one that is beyond this all. The energies cannot influence it in any way, it does not mix with it in any way. Therefore, take that shelter. The context of the whole verse is that Sri Krishna gives us the key to transcend the illusory divine energy, this gunamayi by surrendering completely to Formless Awareness, otherwise, it is very, very difficult to do so. It will be very challenging. Therefore, remain as the observer, remain as Formless Awareness, and therefore it will be a lot easier to not be influenced by these energies, whether that is sattvic, tamasic or rajasic. Verse 15. The final verse of today's episode. Therefore, those whose actions are harmful to others, who are low minded and unevolved, who are deluded and confused, whose Gyana has been subverted by delusion and who are dedicated to the path of tamas leading to darkness and destruction cannot see Me. Let's look at the whole verse altogether. Let's understand the qualities of those people that will never be able to see this Formless Awareness. How can we recognize them? This is where Sri Krishna helps us by recognizing them we have to then analyze ourselves to make sure we do not have those qualities. We have to make sure we are beyond those. First of all, their actions will always cause harm for others because they are selfish, they are power hungry, they're full of enmity, and their actions are always full of injustice. They don't care about others. They're selfish. They want their rights to be more than your rights. They want to have better healthcare than you get. They want better wages, but make sure that your wages do not increase. They look to steal your rights. They dampen your sewa. They dampen your remembrance of the Lord. Those people who steal your peace, they are low minded and unevolved, and that's not what we want to be. They are low minded. Why? Because they cannot think beyond themselves. They can't think of anything but themselves. Even if they think of their family, they're just extensions of themselves. They are just creating a larger ego. My son, my daughter should be on top. My brother should be on top. My sister should be on top. They should have the highest positions in my company or in the thing that I'm looking after. That's just an extension of the ego. They don't care about their family. They care about their own name, their own respect, what respect will you have if all you are thinking of is my family should be at the top, they should be benefiting? Nobody else should benefit. My Guru often needs to say, do not trust your friends, do not trust your family, because even they can betray you. What he meant was that don't be attached. Have a detached attitude. Just be alert that not everyone thinks of your favor. Not everyone thinks in the benefit of you. Most people are selfish. Therefore, just be alert. Now they are unevolved, meaning that they have nothing about them that is humane. They lack humanity. They are even worser than animals. Animals still have some basic instincts that are still better than human beings. When one is meant to be a human being, they should have those virtues of a human being. They should be kind, they should be tolerant, they should be accepting, they should be happy, they should be unselfish. Now because they are deluded and confused, they don't know what is Real and unreal. Their buddhi is underdeveloped, and they are drowning in ignorance. They don't know themselves at all. They don't know the Self, the Real Self, the True Self. They think that the world is Real and everything else is unreal. They may worship God, but their God is just another figment of their imagination. They only worship God either because they find some benefit. That. Oh yeah. If I worship God, I will have respect in society. Or if I believe in God, maybe I'll get what I want. Their belief is fake. Their whole energy is fake because they think this world is real. My position is real. My power is real. My wealth is real. These people are not spiritual at all. They may appear spiritual, but they're not. When this gyana has been undermined, demolished, and annihilated from their consciousness, and because they're in this delusion that they are this name and form, they think they are Prakriti. They do not see themselves as this Witness Consciousness, as the Purusha, as this Formless Awareness, as Nirguna Brahman. They think they are name and form with likes and dislikes. They think they are this body and mind alone or maximum they think they are a separate Jiva that can never be close to God. They have attractions and repulsions, and they are driven by those very things, by those raga and dvesha, those people, they are dedicated to the path of tamas, to laziness, to darkness. They don't want to do anything for spiritual practice, and hence everything they do is in the darkness of ignorance and leads to nothing but destruction. Leads to nothing but to harm and they will never be able to be realized. They will never understand what Formless Awareness is. They can talk about it. They may know lines in the scriptures. They may talk the talk, but they will not walk the walk. The path is not for them to walk upon. They only talk about the path, but they do not walk the path. Those people stay away from them. They are harmful to others. They will always cause harm. Therefore stay away from them. I'm not saying don't love them, love everybody, but just be alert. Be aware that not everyone can be trusted because most people are living with this tamas, this energy of tamas. The context of the whole verse is that Sri Krishna tells us of those people who cannot see Formless Awareness and basically is telling us to not be like those people at all because they are totally confused and deluded. They're low minded, and that person who is a Gyani, where the Gyana has got rid of the delusions and illusions. They are always in Formless Awareness and their actions, they are pure, they're full of love, compassion, and they're always caring about others, not just themselves, but others too and that's the way we need to be. That is the end of the episode. Please do share this podcast with your friends and family who may enjoy this content. Follow me on social media to keep getting updates. Join The Bearded Mystic Podcast WhatsApp Community Group to continue this podcast discussion details are in the show notes and video description below. If you would like to support the Bearded Mystic Podcast, do check out the podcast Patreon page details are in the show notes and video description below. Please rate and review the podcast on our website, www.thebeardedmysticpodcast.Com. Please like and comment on this video and subscribe to this YouTube channel. Please follow and subscribe to this podcast on your favorite podcast streaming app. Also, as I mentioned earlier, we have started a new series where you can ask questions and it's a series called Direct and Unfiltered with the Bearded Mystic. For more information, check the show notes and video description below. Thank you very much for listening and let's end with the Soham and Shanti Mantra. Soham Soham. I am That. I am That. Aum Shanti Shanti Shanti. Aum Peace Peace Peace. Namaste