Swami Bhoomananda Tirtha

181 – Bhagavad Gita – Swami Bhoomananda Tirtha – Take refuge in Self-Knowledge – 5

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The chapter 5 is given the title renunciation, relinquishment. Swamiji explains that these words refer not to the objects of the world, but to the mind and intelligence, their attitude, outlook and resolution. What is to be renounced is the attitude of ego, possessiveness and desires in mind and all the wrong understanding and assessment of the intelligence. The correction comes through a dedicated and continuous practice of Truthful Introspection.

Fulfilment in human life is attained only by gaining Supreme Knowledge and not from any objects. Fulfilment is a feeling generated by the mind; no objects can ever enter or touch the mind to generate fulfilment. It is the knowledge alone which can touch and transform our mind.

Explaining the verse 5.18, Swamiji said that be it a celebrated brahmana, a cow, an elephant, a dog or an outcast - an enlightened person will look at them alike. The power and presence animating all bodies is the same, there is no difference. The knowers are always guided and led by this knowledge.

Narrating the incident which transpired in Varanasi twelve centuries ago, where the great Shankara encountered an outcast and the conversation which took place between them, Swamiji described how an ordinary man woke the great Acharya from his delusion with his enlightened outlook - All bodies are made up of the five elements and they are inert, they cannot move on their own. The inner presence which animates the bodies is all pervading, It too cannot move. So, whom are you asking to move? and what is the impurity in my body which is not there in yours?. Shankara immediately accepted his mistake with humility and declared that anyone who has this kind of a firm realisation and rootedness in Knowledge, is indeed a Guru.

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Narayanashrama Tapovanam, an Ashram located in Thrissur, Kerala, embodies the unique tradition of Guru-shishya Parampara, disseminating Brahmavidya (Science of Self-knowledge) through regular classes, satsangs, and above all, through learning in the association of a realized spiritual master.

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