[July 22, 2013 Guru Purnima Day Message] Mind always vibrates (Chanchalamhi manah– Gita) and the vibration indicates the continuous activity. If the mind becomes static or inactive, it is no more a mind, which becomes inactive and inert stone. The activity of mind is the nature of attraction by aspiring and attaching itself to something. Such aspiration for something to be achieved generates action or work. Hence, any living being having developed mind is always identified with constant work. It means that the mind of such living being is always active generating continuous action or work. Hence, the internal mind means external work and vice-versa.
[Example:] You saw the daughter of the king and you fell in love with her. This love is the first mental attachment. Due to the impossibility of making efforts to achieve her, the external work may not be generated but, the process of constant thinking about her is generated, which can be also taken as the work. Hence, the generation of the work from the mind is nowhere violated. Such person without the external work, but, involved in the mental work of continuous thinking is called as hypocrite (Mithyacharah sa uchyate– Gita). This resisted work is also not universal because some person may be mad of her love and may put the external practical effort or work and sometimes may succeed also.
If this is the case, why the Lord advised the human being to do external work or effort constantly without mental attachment for the fruit? This means that He advised for constant work resisting the mental activity or attachment. This is impossible since we have already understood that work means mind and mind means work. If the mind is detached from one issue, the work concerned with that issue also must disappear. If the mind and work concerned to one issue disappear, it means that the mind and work concerned to some other issue must have appeared since mind can never be inactive by detaching itself from all issues resulting in the disappearance of all types of concerned works. Even in the case of resisted work, there may be absence of external work, but, the mental attachment always existed.
Nishkama Karma Suggested to Reduce Excess Attachment
Resisting Mental Attachment is not Samnyasa
For example, in the verse ‘Samnyasah karmayogascha’ the word ‘Samnyasa’ means leaving the worldly work, since in the third line the word ‘Samnyasa’ is cleared as ‘Karma Samnyasa’ and ‘karma’ means worldly work, which is different from ‘karmayoga’, the God’s work. The essence of this verse is that though both the detachment from the world and attachment to God are good, the attachment to God is far superior to the detachment from the world. You cannot remain in the state of detachment from the world for a long time, since total detachment is impossible. In this verse, the word ‘Samnyasa’ is used in the sense of perfect leaving. Similarly, in another verse ‘Nacha samnyasanaadeva’, the word ‘Samnyasa’ means perfect leaving of the worldly work. Here, the essence is that you cannot attain the goal by simply leaving the worldly work since the goal is achieved only through God’s work. Similarly, in the verse ‘Samnyasastu mahabaaho duhkha maaptu mayogatah’, the ‘Samnyasa’ means leaving the worldly work. Here, the essence is that it is very difficult to leave all the worldly work and continue in the state of inactivity without involving in God’s work, since the human being cannot remain idle continuously without any type of work.
The Gita says that the detachment from the world comes by the attachment to God (Naishkarmyasiddhim paramaam Samnyaasenaadhigacchati…). In this verse, the word ‘Samnyasa’ means taking the work of God. In another verse, ‘Jneyah sa nityasamnyasi’, the word ‘Samnyasa’ means involvement in God through mind and work. Like this, as per the context, the meaning of the word ‘Samnyasa’ should be taken in the sense of leaving or taking.
The concept of Shankara is always related to the topmost devotees, who are mentally detached from worldly issues due to mental attachment to God and also physically detached from the concerned worldly works due to involvement in the work of God. In the case of such devotees only, God interferes and does the work bringing the fruit (Ananyaah chintayantomaam– Gita). The devotee Tyagaraja had one daughter and the devotee never thought of her marriage due to mental detachment from the worldly issues, since his mind was attached to God. The detached mind could not generate the concerned work and therefore, the devotee became inactive in the trial efforts for the marriage since the devotee was always involved in the work of God by propagating God through songs. In such case only, God brought an excellent alliance for the daughter of this devotee. The Gita explains the state of such a top devotee in the following verse ‘Gata samgasya muktasya, Jnanaavasthita chetasah, Yajnayaacharatah karma, samagram pravileeyate’. This verse means that in the case of the devotee detached from the world due to the digested spiritual knowledge and involved subsequently in the work of God (Yajna) alone, all the worldly work completely disappears.
Attachment of Tyagaraja to God’s Work
A person detached from the worldly issue and also detached from the concerned worldly work without the attachment to God by mind and work may be similar to Tyagaraja. But, the similarity is partial only. The similarity is only in the detachment from the world only, but the similarity is not complete since the person is not attached to God by mind and work like Tyagaraja. Such a lazy person can be never helped by God (Maate samgostvakarmani– Gita). The other person, who does the work speaking that he is detached from the fruit also cannot be helped by God since, there is no reference to God in his case. The basic reason is that both these persons are not attached to God. The second person has already the consolation of reduced tension and cannot claim the help from God, which is the additional fruit.