Q&A: The Spiritual Effort

1. What is the reason behind emphasizing 'karmaphala tyaga' or the sacrifice of the fruit of one's actions?

2. Which is the best path, karma (work, action), jnana (knowledge) or a combination the two (Karma-jnana samucchaya)

3. Why do You say that foreigners are doing more sacrifice than Indians?

4. Can we get salvation by offering money to God earned by sinful ways?

5. Sacrificing the ambition on the fruit of the work is sufficient. It is not necessary to sacrifice the fruit of the work as per the Bhagavad Gita. Is it not correct?

6. If sacrifice of money is all important then would it not mean that only the rich can 'purchase' God?

7. A certain verse goes thus "Gange gangeti...sivalokam gamisyati"It means that he who utters the word Ganga (the holy river Ganges) is liberated from all the sins and will reach Lord Siva. In such case what is the use of all the spiritual effort? Could we not just utter the word Ganga and be assured of reaching the Lord.

8. What is the relative importance of capacity (Shakti) and devotion (Bhakti) in sacrificing the work and the fruit of the work?

9. Sankara clearly advises us through the Bhaja Govindam, to sing in praise of Lord Krisna or Visnu, in order to please the Lord. Yet you preach karma yoga (service) as the way to approach the LordCould you please explain?

10. How can You say that service (Karma Yoga) is the highest when people say that by devotion one can attain the Lord?

11. It is said that Dharma (justice, righteousness, or duty) is greater than the LordLord Krisna asked Dharmaraja to tell a lieDharmaraja told the lie hesitantly by uttering the word 'elephant' in low voice. Why was Dharmaraja sent to hell if he refused to violate Dharma and lie, as per the Lord's instructions?

12. What is the importance of jnana yoga for attaining the salvation?

13. What use is the knowledge gained by us through discussions on the Sastras (scriptures)?

14. You often compare our devotion to God and our love for our children. The Lord is worshipped either as the Formless One or in the form of idols. Children are mere human beings. How can there be a comparison between the Lord and children?

15. You are advising homogeneity in action, words and mindIn this world it is not possible to live with such homogeneity. What is the solution?

16. What do you mean by self-analysis?

17. Can we use all the religions in our spiritual effort?

18. Why can the the mind not be permanently fixed on the Lord?

19. How can one fix the wavering mind on a single point?

20. What is the appropriate way of posing a question (Pari Prashna) to the Guru?

21. Should we pray to the Lord for capacity or for devotion?

22. I cannot see the Lord or the upper worlds with my eyes. How do I know whether they are even real? Why couldn't I just enjoy this life?

23. In a certain verse in the Bhagavad Gita it is said that one can attain Vasudeva over the course of several births. Why then should we be hasty to reach God in this birthCan we not take our own time?

24. Can we not reach the goal through our own spiritual effort, without a Guru? What is the difference between sadhana and upasana?

25. Can you explain the terms such as yoga, kundalini and the six chakras..

26. What are the various stages in the worship of the Lord?

27. Should we ask the Lord to protect us at the end of our prayers and meditation?

28. There should be corrections made in the astrological calendars so that the real dates of the present festivals can be correctly and easily identified. Is it not necessary?

29. If a child is weak in studies, you suggested that the child should serve God insteadWe would have expected you to suggest something like meditation or something to improve the child's concentrationIs it not what the child should be made to do?

30. When Sankara chanted the Kanaka Dhara prayer, golden fruits fell as rain from a tree. Even if we chant the same prayer hundreds of times trees do not rain even ordinary fruitWhat is the reason?

31. How can we attain jivanmukti i.e., 'liberation while alive'?

32. When we propagate your divine knowledge to people, some of them say "We don't need any new knowledge. Whatever knowledge we possess is sufficient for salvation "How can such people be liberated?

33. What is the specialty of Lord Datta? Who is the best devotee of Lord Datta?

34. The essence of the Bhagavad Gita is that we should do our duties without mental attachment. This is the highest end of yoga. What do you say, Swami?

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