Shri Datta Swami

Posted on: 22 Jun 2022


Jnaana Yoga Prakaranam (Topic of Spiritual Knowledge)

1) Jñānā dākarṣaṇaṃ paścāt, prayatna iti lokavat |
Puro jñāna priyā dyānam, Rukmiṇī Kṛṣṇayorapi ||

[To know the details of the goal is knowledge or Jñāna yoga, which generates attraction towards the goal finally resulting in the practical effort to reach the goal. This is the common concept in spiritual line as well as worldly life. By knowing the details of a city, you are developing attraction to reach the city and finally making the practical effort of journey. Even in the case of Rukminii marrying Krishna, the same sequence can be observed. She heard the details of Krishna from sage Narada (Jñāna yoga), got attracted to Krishna (Bhakti Yoga) and finally made practical attempts (karma yoga) to reach Krishna to marry Him.]


2) Saṃnyāsaśca phala tyāgaḥ, trutīye yati gehinoḥ |
Ubhau gehī pare tvekaḥ, dṛṣṭāntau sulabhānvayau ||

[The third part called karma yoga is divided into sacrifice of service (karma saṃnyāsa) and sacrifice of fruit of work (karma phala tyāga). For saints, only sacrifice of service is mentioned because the saint, who lives on begging, can’t do the sacrifice of fruit of work. But the house holder can do both sacrifice of service as well as sacrifice of fruit of work. In the above given two worldly examples, both these two sub-parts can be seen. In the first example of the city, walking to the Railway station is karma samnyasa and purchasing the ticket to the city in the Railway station is karmaphala tyaaga. In the second example of Rukminii, sending the priest to Krishna with a love letter is karma samnyaasa and presenting a gold chain to the priest after the work is karmaphala tyaaga.]


3) Uktatribhāgāt tripuṭi- jñānamatrāpi yujyate |
Jñātā jñānaṃ jñeyamiti, trutīyādyau hi naikavat ||

[All the three steps are described in this first step called Jnaana yoga itself, because this first step contains the knowledge of all three parts. Apart from these three parts of the path, there are three parts called Triputi including:- 1) Jnaataa or the traveler interested in reaching the goal. A very important point of this part is that the traveler shall clearly know that he/she is not God, the goal. If both are one and the same, the effort to be put to reach the goal (sādhanā) becomes meaningless. 2) Jnaanam or the path to reach the goal and 3) Jneyam or the goal to be reached.]


4) Tripuṭi Jñāna mārga ścet, kuto bhakti riti bhramaḥ |
Jñānaṃ kasyeti cākāṅkṣā, bhakteḥ pūrvāparānvayaḥ ||

[The opponent may say “you have told about Triputi in which, knower, knowledge and knowable goal exist. Among these three, the knowledge is said to be the path. Through this path only, the goal is reached. Then, why again to say about theoretical and practical devotions?” Our answer is “The simple word knowledge does not mean anything. The full word is knowledge of the path. In this, knowledge and path are not one and the same. The word knowledge raises immediately the question ‘knowledge of what?’ The answer is knowledge of devotion, which is theoretical and practical. You have taken only the word ‘knowledge’ from the full word ‘knowledge of devotion’. Of course, the devotion deepens more and more as you know more and more about God and thus the knowledge of God is the root basis of the path to God.”]


5) Laukikeṣu cedamīkṣyaṃ, guṇāt prema hi vardhate |
Ubhayo rathamaṃ sthānam, tasmādubhaya mekavat ||

[Even in worldly affairs the knowledge of merits increases the attraction whereas the knowledge of defects decreases the attraction. If you are admitting your issue into a school, as you go on knowing the merits of the school, your attraction to the school increases proportionally. If you come to know the defects of the school, your attraction to the school decreases. Hence, knowledge and attraction have a cause-effect relationship. Knowledge is like gold and attraction is like the chain. You can’t separate both. Hence, knowledge and attraction can be treated as if both are one and the same. The chain becomes bigger and bigger as the used gold is more and more. Due to this reason, God Krishna gave top most place to both knowledge and devotion (Priyo hi jñānino'tyartham…, Bhaktāstetīva me priyāḥ— Gita). Two items can’t get the same top most position unless the two items are treated as one item.]


6) Trimārgā eka mārgo hi, jñāte premeti saṅgrahaḥ |
Jñānān muktissadeva syāt, caryābhāga pramā balāt ||

[Knowledge was preached by Shankara. Devotion in the initial theoretical phase was preached by Ramanuja. Same devotion in advanced practical phase called as service and sacrifice was preached by Madhva. Hence, there is no difference among the three divine preachers since there is no difference among the three paths suggested by them. All the three paths are simply “Know and Love”. Shankara told that by knowledge (knowledge means knowledge of God) alone, one can reach God. This must be understood in a scientific way with the help of Reaction kinetics. If a reaction takes place in different steps and after the first step, all the other steps are spontaneous, the time taken for the first step is the time taken for all the steps or the total reaction. Hence, acquiring right knowledge from Satguru is the first step whereas the other subsequent steps like generation of devotion from knowledge, generation of service and sacrifice from devotion and final attainment of divine fruit (very important note is that fruit shall not be aspired by the devotee at any stage) are spontaneous steps. Hence, what Shankara told is correct in this scientific angle.]


7) Mārgaśca gamanaṃ bhakteḥ, guru Sadguru bhedadhīḥ |
Syādādya skhalanaṃ tvanyaḥ, vimarśena sadarthadaḥ ||

[After knowing from the knowledge that theoretical and practical devotion is the path to reach God, you must know that theoretical devotion is the theoretical knowledge of path whereas practical devotion is the actual walking on the path, which is the practical knowledge. Knowledge of God is very very important because you must distinguish the guru (human scholar as guide) from Sadguru (human scholar as guide and goal). This difference is very significant because a guru may become wrong on certain concepts, but, the Sadguru is never wrong. The Sadguru convinces you with the correct logic of the concept and does not insist you accept His concept based on your faith on Him. At the end of the Gita, Krishna told Arjuna to analyze any concept in the Gita and then only accept it (Vimṛśyaitadaśeṣeṇa).]


8) Jñānaṃ sarvapradaṃ gatyai, daṇḍavacca kare bhavet |
Bhāvarūpī bhāva rūpān, ākṣeptuṃ kṛūra vairiṇaḥ ||

[Knowledge gives the total information of your action to achieve the true goal and hence, it is praised very much in the Gita. Knowledge also acts as your hand stick, when you start travelling in the path of theoretical and practical devotion. When you start the practical journey, several opposing forces hinder your forward motion like poisonous creatures in your path while walking. Just like you remove the poisonous creatures with your stick on the way, the spiritual knowledge about God will help you in removing unnecessary opposing forces, which are always psychological and can be cut by the conceptual true knowledge only.]