Free of Encumbrances – Bhagavad Gita, Ch 12, Vs 18-19

Himalayan Sadhu
Himalayan Swami

The Bhagavad Gita appears in the story of the Mahabharata. It is a conversation between Lord Krishna and his devotee and childhood friend, Arjuna. Listening in, we receive the teachings of Lord Krishna as he relates them to Arjuna.

The subject of this chapter is Devotion.

This post describes the characteristics of the devotee who is free of obstacles to advancement.

18 – 19
Thus the same toward enemy and friend, honor and disgrace, cold and heat, pleasure and pain, free of attachments, indifferent to praise or blame, silent, content with what comes his way, unattached to domestic life, determined and full of devotion, this one is dear to Me.

Beginning with the word “thus” implies that this verse is the culmination of the previous verses.

“Unattached to domestic life”

First let me point out that “unattached to domestic life” does not necessarily mean that one does not live a domestic life, but that one is not attached to it. By ‘not attached’ what I mean is that one is not ruled by the ongoing determination for this situation to never change. (This is not an easy thing.)

At a certain age though, everyone naturally falls away from this lifestyle, and those who try to thwart this, experience various difficulties. This is the time to take up your spiritual path full time. It is at this time that yoga sadhana (the practice of divine union) becomes the focus of life as opposed to getting to work every day, or retiring and taking the RV to the next destination. There are many exceptions to this rule of thumb. For instance, there are those who will begin this kind of sadhana earlier than others.

This chapter is about bhakti, devotion. Through devotion to the Higher Power that I call Absolute God, all these intrusive feelings of love and hate, self-importance, cravings and attachments, etc., will automatically withdraw, and you will find yourself in a fulfilling state of contentment. In this experience, you are truly free.

With a strong sense of devotion, you will naturally surrender to God. When you are surrendered to God you won’t have desires or attachments of any kind because your focus is on God, not on desires and attachments. Then faith arrives, and you become determined to continue to pursue your path so that you can live in this state of being in God’s presence all the time.

Here I think it is important to understand that all this develops over time through Natural Surrender Meditation. Then, what spills out into your life outside of meditation, is an ongoing sense of God’s presence. This subtle, divine experience increases your love for God, thereby deepening your meditation. The goal of freedom is impossible to come by any other way than through complete surrender to God. 

There are those who are devoted to God/Truth who do not practice meditation. But it has been my experience that those most devoted will always turn to meditation. Even though they may not realize that this is what they are doing because they have some other term for it, it is the same. They find the time and space for it, and they surrender to God or their chosen ideal (i.e., Jesus, Buddha, Ala, Truth, etc.).

Meditation is a steady slow of attention to a single object. Love automatically draws the attention to the loved one in such a way that the flow of attention becomes easily established, one-pointed and unwavering. This is the definition of meditation. When the object or objective is God/Truth, we think of it as meditation. But what if a person does not believe in God, or actively believes that there is no God?

An atheist either believes that God does not exist, or that God cannot be proved. My take on this is that if one doesn’t believe in God, this is a belief in God. A belief is a certainty about something, even if that something is in the negative. Such a belief is that person’s god. But those of us who have taken up this non-willful path of surrender to God come to know God as proved, even though it cannot be proved to anyone else.

God, Truth is not dependent upon our belief.

Most human beings have some sense of something greater than themselves. That is all that is necessary to use surrender meditation. By surrendering to this Higher Power, and continuing with this practice, its existence will become known, and eventually proved through personal experience. On the way, one experiences many delights. As to how to understand devotion in this rather loose context, one simply applies this idea of devotion to any of the following definitions:

  • Bhakti – Devotion to God: ‘love, adoration, affection, faith, trust, commitment, worship, assumption of the form of, loyalty, dedication, fondness for, reverence, homage, making obeisance by bending down in devotion, surrendering to, firmly attached or devoted to’.

Namaste (I bow to the divine one that you really are),
Durga Ma

P.S.  Please read this special message from Anandi and I. Together we are presenting something that I truly think will be greatly advantageous for you:

Spiritual Leadership

Do you feel that your life has a purpose? Do you struggle with getting yourself to act on it?

You may be inspired at the possibility of fulfilling your purpose as a Spiritual Leader, but struggle with implementing it. And even though you know that you are meant to have a positive impact in the world in a big way, you aren’t sure how to do this while maintaining your current responsibilities. Does this sound like you?

It is not difficult to change all this, realize your purpose, and act on it. In fact, it takes very little effort. But no one can do it for you—it’s your life…..but you don’t have to do it alone.

You have a very important life purpose that will have an impact on the world. This purpose is filled with joy, abundance and happiness, and is literally waiting for you right now.


In a world that is plagued by stress and overwhelm, the responsibilities and influences of to-do and should-do are often louder than the call of our true purpose.

The fulfillment of your purpose as a Spiritual Leader will demonstrate your own true nature, and your True Self will emerge.

This can happen to you.

Take this opportunity to put the knowledge of meditation into action, catapult your personal and spiritual growth into Mastery, and share it with the world: Become a Spiritual Leader.

It’s easier than you think.

Aligned with your True Self in everyday life, become a leader who exemplifies the possibility of sustainable joy, abundance and fulfillment. 

  • Discover and live your life purpose
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Act now and be the Spiritual Leader you were born to be.

Questions? Want to know more? Schedule a complimentary discovery session with Anandi:


Call 860-899-4429

“Every step you take pulls every one of us with you.” — Durga Ma

The Whole World Is One Family


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