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Sunday, October 30, 2011

The Three Paths

In the Bhagavad Gita, Krishna tells Arjuna about the three paths of yoga.  These paths are...
1. karma yoga: the way of action
2. jnana yoga: the yoga of wisdom and realization
3. the royal path

Karma yoga is the way of action and may even be defined as selfless service.  Therefore, Krishna is trying to teach Arjuna that all individuals are expected to work towards the well-being of others, not for personal motives.  This path seems like the practical path.

Jnana yoga denotes a type of wisdom that connects the individual to God.  This path is about spirituality and the relationship with the Divine.

Lastly, the third path is the royal path.  The royal path involves a pure devotion to God.  Krishna teaches Arjuna that he will receive complete unity with Krishna if he follows the royal path.  To do this, he must do everything as an offering to God.

I believe that I am currently doing karma yoga.  I am very practical in the way that I show my devotion to God.  I pray certain prayers, go to certain ministries, and believe in certain things that have been written down.  As stated above, karma yoga also involves doing things for other people.  I do many things for other people, but I have not yet accomplished the goal of doing everything for other people without any self-interest.  There are times when I look out for my own well-being, knowing that it might hurt someone else...that sounds so selfish.  =(

I think I am also doing jnana yoga because I am focusing on creating a personal relationship with God.  Oftentimes I do get sidetracked and find my focus has drifted from God.  I believe this will always be a growing process for me.

The royal path is the ideal path though.  I would love to do everything as an offering to God, to always have my focus on God.  I would love every part of me to be glorifying God and doing His will.  I do not know if I will ever reach this point though.

** I hope I got all the paths right.

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