Friday, April 24, 2015

Action is superior to inaction - on Karma Yoga

Not by nonperformance of actions does a man attain freedom from action; nor by the renunciation of actions does he attain his spiritual goal.

For no one, indeed, can remain, for even a single moment, unengaged in activity, since everyone, being powerless, is made to act by the dispositions (gunas) of matter (prakiti). Whoever having restrained his organs of action still continues to brood over the objects of senses — he, the deluded one, is called a hypocrite. But he who, having controlled the sense-organs by means of the mind, O Arjuna, follows without attachment the path of action by means of the organs of action — he excels.

Do you do your allotted work, for action is superior to nonaction. Even the normal functioning of your body cannot be accomplished through actionlessness. Except for the action done for sacrifice, all men are under the bondage of action. Therefore, O son on Kunti, do you undertake that action for that purpose, becoming free from all attachment.

— III.4–9, Bhagavad Gita

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