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Happiness is our nature. It is not wrong to desire it. What is wrong is seeking it outside when it is inside - Ramana Maharshi

Q & A: Get out of negative spiritual trap of A-Karma, start Karma
Don't know if this is the right question to put forth before you but since I am of the thinking that I can find an answer to it from you...so here it goes;

I am a 20 year old girl in my graduation final year and I have planned to take up Law as my career and would proceed on to do a L.L.B next year. Now after much reading and comprehending the truth of life and life beyond birth and death I somehow feel to have lost that fire to achieve and become a big lawyer...which I otherwise wanted to be very badly, it is not that I completely lost interest but my effort seems diluted and adulterated. I don't want that to happen, I want to do a work with full effort and give my best also keeping in mind that I am here for a different purpose. Sir, I know this kind of a question is silly and gross materialistic but I guess I am not able to pen down my words in accordance with my thoughts. I would request you to reply if you think my doubt is worth it!

Amodini (Name changed), USA

Probably you are misunderstanding the message of spirituality and that can be harmful to your material as well as spiritual world. God never tells anyone to stop their duties and doing efforts for material progress. It is extremely important for you to understand this message, gather your initial spirit and do efforts to be a big lawyer as you always dreamt of.

It is great to read and understand the real purpose of life and try to be detached from the material world. But that does not mean you stop doing the material duties (Karma that you got by your birth and life so far). Material duties are absolutely necessary for spiritual progress. You must earn your bread & butter and also do everything that is acceptable socially (completing education, finding job, getting married, looking after family etc.) God wants Vairagya (dispassion, indifference, non­attachment) of mind from devotee, not a Vairagya of body. You can spiritually progress only when you are well placed in material world. If you lose your desire to be lawyer and fail to attain necessary education you will probably not get desired social status (which is absolutely necessary for well-being of your mind, body and your spiritual progress.)

It is always better to continue your normal worldly life and attain God (by slowly taking your mind away from the material world and Vasanas - subtle desires) than leaving all your duties and keeping your mind still engaged in the material world and Vasanas.

On the other hand it is also extremely important for you to understand that path of spirituality is extremely treacherous and unpredictable. It is great to read about Bliss but it should also be remembered that it cannot be attained in one life. It takes efforts of several lives to attain status of a Yogi and one must walk on this path slowly, step by step. One must do spiritual efforts while being in the material world and fulfilling all their duties. Consistent thinking and contemplation while being in the material world is key to success, on the other hand leaving the material duties is sure to lead you to disaster – material as well as spiritual.

Most of the people who leave their duties and go after God end up in extreme disappointment (and depression) because at some point of time they realize the attainment of the Bliss is not easy without material support. This is especially very true in Kali-Yuga (Iron age).

The message of spirituality is to do efforts to “mentally” detach yourself from the material world. God does not tell you to leave your Karma. That is exactly the message of Bhagavad Gita. Lord Krishna tells Arjuna “You must fight this war because you are Kshatriya and that is your Dharma (Duty). If you don’t do war you will be a looser in the material as well as spiritual world. So stop being coward, get up and start fighting the war”. The same message applies to you too!

There are three types of Karma Gita talks about – Karma, Akarma and Vikarma. Karma is doing Karma with attachment - this is what average person does. Akarma is NOT doing Karma at all - this is absolutely not acceptable in spirituality (Unfortunately many people think they need to leave Karma to attain God – which is absolutely wrong). Lastly, Vikarma is doing Karma without Sankalpa (intention, thought or will) - this is ideal but it takes efforts of several lives to achieve ability to do Vikarma.

The bottom line is - You can achieve your spiritual goal only when you are contented with your material life. It is your job to do all that you are supposed to as a daughter, sister and all other roles you are playing currently and wife, mother etc you will be in the future.

You must be a winner and Yogi. You will never be a Yogi without Karma.

To be a winner you better do all your Karmas (education, job etc.) with full energy. To be a Yogi you should consistently think and contemplate (while doing all your Karmas.) Please note: You will be a loser - in both the worlds material as well as spiritual - if you leave your Karma.

I would like to suggest you to read Bhagavad Gita regularly to get back on your material and spiritual track.

And if you are serious about God and attaining permanent Bliss you should follow one of the following Yogas or combination suitable for your character. These Yogas are made for people like us who are living in material world and wish to attain God. They are all appropriate in Kali-Yug (Iron-age) where all societies are degrading and will continue to degrade.

Karma Yoga, Siddha Yoga, Naam yoga or Bhakti Yoga

Here is most important message for you:

God is all about application to daily life, not about gathering knowledge of God. There are millions who have some knowledge about God (with their own imagination) but there is only one in million who is "Jeevanmukta" (a realized soul) who has crossed the river of Samsara (worldly life). He is the only one who has overcome the Maya (grand illusion of mind) and the cycle of life and death. Everyone else is either a sufferer or a traveler...and most of the initial travel is in the dark engulfed with doubts about the existence of the God. After efforts of several decades or lives one starts seeing the dawn.

Best of Luck!

Thank you.
Mahendra Joshi

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Q & A: Get out of negative spiritual trap of A-Karma, start Karma Topics: Karma and Vedic Philosophy, Ideology

Yoga is an exact science. It aims at the harmonious development of body, mind and soul. Everyone should follow one Yoga as their primary Yoga (based on their character). Then we must combine Karma Yoga, Hatha Yoga, Raja Yoga, Bhakti Yoga and Gyan Yoga. This “Yoga Synthesis” will lead one to the God.
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Kundalini Yoga is also known by the names: Siddha Yoga, Sahaj Yoga, Shaktipat Yoga, Maha Yoga, Shakti Yoga or Kriya Yoga