Gradually, step by step, one should become situated in trance by
means of intelligence sustained by full conviction, and thus the mind
should be fixed on the self alone and should think of nothing else.
By proper conviction and intelligence one should gradually cease
sense activities. This is called pratyahara. The mind, being con trolled by conviction, meditation, and cessation from the senses,
should be situated in trance, or samadhi. At that time there is no
longer any danger of becoming engaged in the material conception
of life. In other words, although one is involved with matter as long
as the material body exists, one should not think about sense gratification. One should think of no pleasure aside from the pleasure of
the Supreme Self. This state is easily attained by directly practicing
- yato yato niscalati manas
- cancalam asthiram tatas
- tato niyamyaitad atmany
- eva vasam nayet.
From wherever the mind wanders due to its flickering and unsteady
nature, one must certainly withdraw it and bring it back under the
control of the self.
The nature of the mind is flickering and unsteady. But a self-realized
yogi has to control the mind; the mind should not control him. One
who controls the mind (and therefore the senses as well) is called
gosvami, or svami, and one who is controlled by the mind is called
go-dasa. Or the servant of the senses. A gosvami knows the standard
of sense happiness. In transcendental sense happiness, the senses are
engaged in the service of Hrsikesa, or the supreme owner of the
senses—Krishna. Serving Krishna with purified senses is called Krishna
consciousness. That is the way of bringing the senses under full
control. What is more, that is the highest perfection of yoga practice.
- prasanta-manasam hy
- enam yoginam sukham
- uttamam upaiti santa-rajasam
- brahma-bhutam akalmasam.
The yogi whose mind is fixed on Me verily attains the highest
perfection of transcendental happiness. He is beyond the mode of
passion, he realizes his qualitative identity with the Supreme, and
thus he is freed from all reactions to past deeds.
Brahma-bhuta is the state of being free from material contamination and situated in the transcendental service of the Lord. One cannot remain in the quality of Brahman, the Absolute, until one's mind is fixed on the lotus feet of the Lord. To be always engaged in the transcendental loving service of the Lord, or to remain in Krishna consciousness, is to be factually liberated from the mode of passion and all material contamination.
- yunjann evam sadatmanam
- yogi vigata-kalmasah
- sukhena brahma-samsparsam
- atyantam sukham asnute.
Thus the self-controlled yogi, constantly engaged in yoga practice,
becomes free from all material contamination and achieves the
highest stage of perfect happiness in transcendental loving service to
Self-realization means knowing one's constitutional position in relationship to the Supreme. The individual soul is part and parcel of the
Supreme, and his position is to render transcendental service to the
Lord. This transcendental contact with the Supreme is called
- atmanam sarva-bhutani
- catmani iksate yoga-yuktatma
- sarvatra sama-darsanah.
A true yogi observes Me in all beings and also sees every being in Me. Indeed, the self-realized person sees Me, the same Supreme Lord, everywhere.
A Krishna conscious yogi is the perfect seer because he sees Krishna, the
Supreme, situated in everyone's heart as Supersoul (Paramatma).
The Lord in His
Paramatma feature is situated within both the heart of the dog and
that of a brahmana. The perfect yogi knows that the Lord is eternally transcendental and is not materially affected by His presence in
either a dog or a brahmana. That is the supreme neutrality of the
Lord. The individual soul is also situated in the individual heart, but
he is not present in all hearts. That is the distinction between the
individual soul and the Supersoul. One who is not factually in the
practice of yoga cannot see so clearly. A Krishna conscious person can
see Krishna in the heart of both the believer and the nonbeliever. In the
smrti this is confirmed as follows: The Lord, being the source of all beings, is like the
mother and the maintainer. As the mother is neutral to all different
kinds of children, the supreme father (or mother) is also. Consequently the Supersoul is always in every living being.
Outwardly, also, every living being is situated in the energy of the
Lord. As will be explained in the Seventh Chapter, the Lord has,
primarily, two energies—the spiritual (or superior) and the material
(or inferior). The living entity, although part of the superior energy,
is conditioned by the inferior energy; the living entity is always in the
Lord's energy. Every living entity is situated in Him in one way or
The yogi sees equally because he sees that all living entities,
although in different situations according to the results of fruitive
work, in all circumstances remain the servants of God. While in the
material energy, the living entity serves the material senses; and
while in spiritual energy, he serves the Supreme Lord directly. In
either case the living entity is the servant of God. This vision of
equality is perfect in a person in Krishna consciousness.
- yo mam pasyati sarvatra
- sarvam ca mayi pasyati
- tasyaham na pranasyami
- sa ca me na pranasyati.
For one who sees Me everywhere and sees everything in Me, I am
never lost, nor is he ever lost to Me.
A person in Krishna consciousness certainly sees Lord Krishna every-
where, and he sees everything in Krishna. Such a person may appear to
see all separate manifestations of the material nature, but in each
and every instance he is conscious of Krishna, knowing that everything
is a manifestation of Krishna's energy. Nothing can exist without
Krishna, and Krishna is the Lord of everything—this is the basic principle of Krishna consciousness. Krishna consciousness is the development of love of Krishna—a position transcendental even to material liberation. At this stage of Krishna consciousness, beyond self-realization, the devotee becomes one with Krishna in the sense that Krishna becomes
everything for the devotee and the devotee becomes full in loving
Krishna. An intimate relationship between the Lord and the devotee
then exists. In that stage, the living entity can never be annihilated,
nor is the Personality of Godhead ever out of the sight of the
devotee. To merge in Krishna is spiritual annihilation. A devotee takes
no such risk. It is stated in the Brahma-samhita:
"I worship the primeval Lord, Govinda, who is always seen by the
devotee whose eyes are anointed with the pulp of love. He is seen in
His eternal form of Syamasundara, situated within the heart of the
- sarva-bhuta-sthitam you
- mam bhajaty ekatvam
- asthitah sarvatha vartamano
- pi sa yogi mayi vartate.
He is a perfect yogi who, by comparison to his own self, sees the true
equality of all beings, in both their happiness and their distress, 0
One who is Krishna conscious is a perfect yogi: he is aware of every-
one's happiness and distress by dint of his own personal experience.
The cause of the distress of a living entity is forgetfulness of his
relationship with God, And the cause of happiness is knowing Krishna
to be the supreme enjoyer of all the activities of the human being, the
proprietor of all lands and planets, and the sincerest friend of all
living entities. The perfect yogi knows that the living being who is
conditioned by the modes of material nature is subjected to the
threefold material miseries due to forgetfulness of his relationship
And because one in Krishna consciousness is happy, he
tries to distribute the knowledge of Krishna everywhere. Since the
perfect yogi tries to broadcast the importance of becoming Krishna
conscious, he is the best philanthropist in the world, and he is the
dearest servitor of the Lord. In other words, a devotee of the Lord
always looks to the welfare of all living entities, and in this way he is
factually the friend of everyone. He is the best yogi because he does
not desire perfection in yoga for his personal benefit, but tries for
others also. He does not envy his fellow living entities. Here is a
contrast between a pure devotee of the Lord and a yogi interested
only in his personal elevation. The yogi who has withdrawn to a
secluded place in order to meditate perfectly may not be as perfect as
a devotee who is trying his best to turn every man toward Krishna
- atmaupamyena sarvatra samam
- pasyati yo ’rjuna sukham
- va yadi va duhkham sa
- yogi paramo matah.
One should engage oneself in the practice of yoga with determination and faith and not be deviated from the path. One should
abandon, without exception, all material desires born of mental speculation and thus control all the senses on all sides by the mind.
The yoga practitioner should be determined and should patiently
prosecute the practice without deviation. One should be sure of
success at the end and pursue this course with great perseverance,
not becoming discouraged if there is any delay in the attainment of
success. Success is sure for the rigid practitioner. Regarding bhakti-
yoga, Rupa Gosvami says:
"One can execute the process of' bhakti-yoga successfully with full-
hearted enthusiasm, perseverance, and determination, by following
the prescribed duties in the association of devotees and by engaging
completely in activities of goodness,"
As for determination, one should follow the example of the
sparrow who lost her eggs in the waves of the ocean. A sparrow laid
her eggs on the shore of the ocean, but the big ocean carried away the
eggs on its waves. The sparrow became very upset and asked the
ocean to return her eggs. The ocean did not even consider her
appeal. So the sparrow decided to dry up the ocean. She began to
pick out the water in her small beak, and everyone laughed at her for
her impossible determination. The news of her activity spread, and
at last Garuda, the gigantic bird carrier of Lord Visnu, heard it. He
became compassionate toward his small sister bird, and so he came
to see the sparrow. Garuda was very pleased by the determination of
the small sparrow, and he promised to help. Thus Garuda at once
asked the ocean to return her eggs lest he himself take up the work of
the sparrow. The ocean was frightened at this, and returned the eggs.
Thus the sparrow became happy by the grace of Garuda.
Similarly, the practice of yoga, especially bhakti-yoga in Krishna
consciousness, may appear to be a very difficult job. But if anyone
follows the principles with great determination, the Lord will surely
help, for God helps those who help themselves.