Essays on the Gita -Aurobindo 239

Essays on the Gita -Sri Aurobindo
First Series : Chapter 24
The Gist of the Karmayoga

Arjuna, himself, if the Teacher were to break off his dis- course here, might well object: “You have spoken much of the destruction of desire and attachment, of equality, of the con- quest of the senses and the stilling of the mind, of passionless and impersonal action, of the sacrifice of works, of the inner as preferable to the outer renunciation, and these things I under- stand intellectually, however difficult they may appear to me in practice. But you have also spoken of rising above the gunas, while yet one remains in action, and you have not told me how the gunas work, and unless I know that, it will be difficult for me to detect and rise above them. Besides, you have spoken of bhakti as the greatest element in Yoga, yet you have talked much of works and knowledge, but very little or nothing of bhakti. And to whom is bhakti, this greatest thing, to be offered? Not to the still impersonal Self, certainly, but to you, the Lord. Tell me, then, what you are, who, as bhakti is greater even than this self-knowledge, are greater than the immutable Self, which is yet itself greater than mutable Nature and the world of action, even as knowledge is greater than works. What is the relation between these three things?

between works and knowledge and divine love? between the soul in Nature and the immutable Self and that which is at once the changeless Self of all and the Master of knowledge and love and works, the supreme Divinity who is here with me in this great battle and massacre, my charioteer in the chariot of this fierce and terrible action?” It is to answer these questions that the rest of the Gita is written, and in a complete intellectual solution they have indeed to be taken up without delay and resolved. But in actual sa ̄dhana ̄ one has to advance from stage to stage, leaving many things, indeed the greatest things to arise subsequently and solve themselves fully by the light of the advance we have made in spiritual experience. The Gita follows to a certain extent this curve of experience and puts first a sort of large preliminary basis of works and knowledge which contains an element leading up to bhakti and to a greater knowledge, but not yet fully arriving. The six chapters present us with that basis.


References and Context

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Essays on the Gita -Aurobindo
Serial No Chapter Name Page No
First Series
1. Our Demand and Need from the Gita 1
2. The Divine Teacher 9
3. The Human Disciple 17
4. The Core of the Teaching 26
5. Kurukshetra 37
6. Man and the Battle of Life 44
7. The Creed of the Aryan Fighter 56
8. Sankhya and Yoga 67
9. Sankhya, Yoga and Vedanta 80-81
10. The Yoga of the Intelligent Will 92
11. Works and Sacrifice 102
12. The Significance of Sacrifice 110
13. The Lord of the Sacrifice 119
14. The Principle of Divine Works 128
15. The Possibility and Purpose of Avatarhood 139
16. The Process of Avatarhood 151
17. The Divine Birth and Divine Works 161
18. The Divine Worker 169
19. Equality 180
20. Equality and Knowledge 192
21. The Determinism of Nature 203
22. Beyond the Modes of Nature 215
23. Nirvana and Works in the World 225
24. The Gist of the Karmayoga 238
Second Series
1. The Two Natures 250
2. The Synthesis of Devotion and Knowledge Gita 262
3. The Supreme Divine 271
4. The Secret of Secrets 282
5. The Divine Truth and Way 291
6. Works, Devotion and Knowledge 301
7. The Supreme Word of the Gita 314
8. God in Power of Becoming 330
9. The Theory of the Vibhuti 340
10. The Vision of the World-Spirit Time the Destroyer 350
11. The Vision of the World-Spirit The Double Aspect 360
12. The Way and the Bhakta 367
13. The Field and its Knower 377
14. Above the Gunas 388
15. The Three Purushas 402
16. The Fullness of Spiritual Action 416
17. Deva and Asura 429
18. The Gunas, Faith and Works 442
19. The Gunas, Mind and Works 458
20. Swabhava and Swadharma 471
21. Towards the Supreme Secret 490
22. The Supreme Secret 503
23. The Core of the Gita’s Meaning 525
24. The Message of the Gita 534