Essays on the Gita

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The kind of synthesis that you find in the Gita is not in the Veda, although the Gita is supposed to be the summary of the Veda, the quintessence of the Veda. As a quintessence it is true, but the kind of synthesis that the Bhagavad Gita gives you even of karma, jnana, and bhakti, that kind synthesis, that kind of formulation, that kind of depth, the supreme manifestation of Karma Yoga particularly, you don't find anywhere in the world as far as `that particular point' is concerned – `the supreme manifestation of Karma Yoga'. So the peculiarity of the Gita is the knowledge of the integral Karma Yoga. That kind of synthesis is neither in the Upanishads, nor in the Veda, therefore it is inevitable that if you really want to make a good grand synthesis, you have got to turn to the Gita, because that is the knowledge which is given in the Gita.

So, in the Veda particularly what you find is the synthesis of man with 'gods', supreme 'God' and the 'Reality', and the highest and loftiest experiences of the Divine. This is the peculiarity and speciality of the Veda. There is a further specialty of the Veda and that is that the human faculties, the faculties of the body, of the life, of the mind, of reasoning, ethicality, aesthesis, all these different faculties of man, each faculty is related to a corresponding godhead, to a corresponding god in which that faculty is most manifestly perfect. If for example you are in search of perfecting your power of inspiration then it is to be connected with Saraswati, one of the goddesses of the Vedic pantheon, because Saraswati is perfect in inspiration, not perfect in revelation, not perfect in intuition, not perfect in discrimination, but perfect in inspiration. So if you want to develop your power of inspiration, then you need to synthesise yourself with Saraswati, although it is also true that Saraswati can function for intuition, if necessary. It is not as if Saraswati is so exclusive that she keeps only one shop and nothing else! She can also open up the doors for Sarama, for Daksha, for Illa.

Question: What does relating to God mean?

How do you relate yourself?

All relations can ultimately be spoken of in terms of threads. Every individual may be conceived as a knot of threads and out of that knot several threads spread out. Now these threads go on, and on, and on, until they reach another knot, and there are so many knots, actually each one of us is a kind of a knot from which many threads are spreading out, and they are in turn tied up with another knot. If I am to be related to you, the threads that are passing through me or from me meet the threads that are passing from you and the junction of these two create a special relationship. Now similarly, the threads of my powers of inspiration which are very feeble in my case, if they are allowed to spread out by an effort and reach where the threads of Saraswati are moving downwards towards the whole world and if I can really tie up my threads with the threads that are coming from Saraswati then the force of Saraswati will descend into me much more clearly, much more powerfully. And then with this infusion of the powers from Saraswati, I will become more and more inspired. So relating means only this: threads of powers coming out of your personality, out of your character, out of your aspiration, whatever you are – that `complex', if these threads are spread more and more powerfully, then they can reach. This was the discovery of the Veda: how to relate yourself with the `gods'. And then: how to receive from the gods the corresponding powers so that you can be united with them. Is it clear so far?

Question: What does it mean that when one is connected with those powers, then the other knots or other relations also get loosened or straightened out?

Answer: It depends, yes. But more you are with some other forces, then other things suffer also, therefore, there a need of a synthesis. There is a whole science as to how to tie up yourself with all the gods and then similarly how to tie up yourself with other human beings, with the creatures of the world. May be your love for your cow is very great, your thread of relationship with your cow is very great; and how to harmonise your relationship with the cow? Even while you are developing many other relationships with so many other forces, is also a problem of human life, and that also has to be considered, has to be solved. So there has to be from a given individual a very vast network and ultimately you reach a point of perfection where you become like a musician where so many notes can be played by your hands and you can combine, recombine, `discombine', you can create new kinds of tunes and so on. So you become a musician in the world as it were. Like Sri Krishna  if you see the Mahabharata, you can see what a great `musician' he was, that he could play upon any note of the world, there was not a single problem of the world which baffled him. He knew the right connections, he knew when Karna is to be approached, at what time, and he had found out all the knowledge that was regarding Karna. What is the secret of Bhishma? How Bhishma should be approached? He knew it very well.

If you read only even from a human point of view not Sri Krishna as an Avatar, as a Supreme Being on the earth in a human form, but merely as a human being, in fact Mahabharata regards Sri Krishna both as a human figure and as an Avatar and you find both these elements mingled very beautifully in the Mahabharata. So if you see Mahabharata simply from the human point of view, how Sri Krishna works upon many fields and he baffles everybody actually, He is not baffled. But whenever something happens He is able to bring out the right knowledge, which is appropriate at that moment. That is why His enemies actually were extremely troubled by Him, He was even criticized as a diplomat, as an intriguer, as a `manoeuverer', as somebody who tells one thing here and another there, and manipulates people, manipulates things, events, and so on. But that is because He is such a great musician, wherever there is a need for anything He is able to bring out the right tune at the right moment. He knows each one intimately, He knows Yudhishthira very well, where is his weakness, where is his greatness, why he is obstinate, where he will not agree, where he will agree, and so on. Even from a human point of view you can see that Sri Krishna had the widest and deepest knowledge of every important figure in Mahabharata. He knew each one very well and how to deal with that person. That is because of the capacity of relationships. How to relate oneself with the others?

In a certain sense you might say that human life is nothing but a problem of relationships. And harmonizing relationships may be regarded as `the' problem of human life. In fact, Sri Aurobindo in his  The Life Divine, in the third paragraph of the first chapter he says: "...all problems of existence are essentially problems of harmony".

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