Karma Yoga (the yoga of selfless service)
What is Karma?
In Sanskrit, karma means deed or action. It denotes physical or mental action. Karma also means the result of our actions. So, the consequence of our actions is not separate, but part of our actions.
What is Karma Yoga?
Karma Yoga means dedicating all actions and their results to god. A karma yogi performs all actions, while dwelling in the divine. His or her activities are performed without attachment. So, he or she remains balanced in failure and success.
Karma yoga means selfless service to humanity. It purifies the heart and prepares it for receiving divine wisdom. A karma yogi serves humanity without egoism or attachment. The idea of doership binds one to phenomenal existence. Therefore, performing actions without expectation of fruit is liberating. Unselfish deeds free one from the bonds of karma and bestow peace.
Practice of Karma Yoga
Wealth is not a pre-requisite for practising karma yoga. Serve with your body and mind. A karma yogi is free from the negative feelings of egoism, anger, greed and lust. He or she does not have any kind of desire for fame, applause, gratitude or admiration. Practise karma yoga with humility and without jealousy, hatred or harshness.
Qualities of an Ideal Karma Yogi
He or she should have a large heart. The practitioner of karma yoga should have a loving and amiable nature. He/she should not discriminate between color, creed or caste. His/her mind should be balanced and cool. The ideal karma yogi is simple and rejoices in others’ welfare.
Benefits of Karma Yoga
Selfless service purifies your heart. The negative qualities of egoism, hatred, jealousy etc. are gradually extinguished. In their place arise mercy, tolerance, sympathy, pure love and humility. Karma yoga helps one develop a liberal and broad outlook on life. It fosters a feeling of unity and oneness. Eventually, it leads to self-realization and bliss.