Continued from Gita for Children – 3
Mommy: Well, for the purpose of our understanding, what we call the B-M-I manual is the Bhagavad Gita. We usually refer to it as the Gita.
The Gita has eighteen chapters and the subject matter or the topics are divided into three sections of six chapters each. Actually, the three sections of the Gita somewhat overlap the topics.
The first six chapters
The first six chapters of the Bhagavad Gita predominantly relate to the path of action or karma yoga also known as the yoga of action. (The relationship between the body and the soul is explained in the second chapter).
The middle six chapters
The middle six chapters (7th to 12th) explain the paths of meditation (Dhyana Yoga) and devotion (Bhakti Yoga). The sixth chapter already begins to deal with the mind through the topic entitled as Dhyana Yoga or the Yoga of Meditation. Here, the mind is the equipment that is involved. For the purpose of our understanding, it will help to remember that the mind has two fold tendencies. 1. The mind can be full of emotions and can lead a person to the path of devotion or bhakti. One can sing the praises of the Lord and cultivate the very fine emotions of pure love (eg., Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, Mirabai). 2. The second tendency of the mind is its ability to lead a person into meditation. The Yoga of meditation is also known as Raja Yoga.The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali Maharaj are the best guide since the ancient times, for the practice of Raja Yoga.
The last six chapters
The last six chapters (13th to 18th) relate to the path of Knowledge or Jnana Yoga. This relates to the intellect portion of B-M-I.
Thus we are able to emphasise four major Yogas of the Bhagavad Gita.
- Karma Yoga (Yoga of Action).
- Dhyana Yoga (Yoga of Meditation).
- Bhakti Yoga (Yoga of Devotion).
- Jnana Yoga (Yoga of Knowledge).
To be continued………