Lord Krishn himself bears the burden of the ardent worshiper’s progress along the path of yog. He takes upon himself the responsibility for the protection of his yog.
Lord Krishn sings:
“I myself protect the yog of men who abide in me
with steady and undeviating faith and who worship me selflessly,
constantly remembering me as God.”
Despite this, however, men are given to worshiping other gods.
Lord Krishn adds:
“Although even covetous devotees indeed worship me
in worshiping other gods, their worship is against the ordained provision
and therefore enveloped by ignorance.”
Yogeshwar Krishn has here for the second time taken up the subject of other gods. It was in Chapter 7 of Bhagavad Gita that he first told Arjun that deluded men whose wisdom is ravished by desires worship other gods, and that there truly exist no such entities. It is Lord Krishn who steadies and strengthens the faith of such worshipers in whatever it is inclined to, whether a Peepal tree, a piece of rock, some departed Spirit, or a goddess.
He is also the provider of their rewards. The fruits of devotion are doubtlessly achieved by these worshipers, but the rewards they obtain are momentary and ephemeral. They are here today, but they will be consumed tomorrow after they have been enjoyed. They wear out, whereas the rewards of the true worshipers of Lord Krishn are never destroyed. So it is only the ignorant who have been robbed of their wisdom by desire that worship other gods.
Yogeshwar Krishn reiterates that they who adore other gods also really worship him, but their worship is improper because this form of devotion is not ordained. There is no power like gods and to endeavour to realize them is, therefore, like striving for the unreal.
But what exactly is wrong with the worship of other gods if it is in fact a worship of Sri Krishn himself and also a begetter of rewards?
Sri Krishn answers the question in next verse.
“They have to go undergo rebirth
because they are ignorant of the reality
that I am the enjoyer as well as the master of all yagya.”
Lord Krishn is the enjoyer of yagya because whatever is offered as sacrifice is dissolved in him. He is the blessedness that results from yagya and also the master of the sacred rite. But they who do not know this fall from grace. They are destroyed, sometimes caught in the trap of worship of other gods and sometimes in the web of their own desires. Until they have perceived the essence, they are deprived even of the everlasting fulfillment of their desires.
What ultimately becomes of them is disclosed in the next verse?
“Men who are devoted to gods attain to gods,
worshipers of ancestors attain to their ancestors,
worshipers of beings attain to the state of beings,
and my worshipers attain to me.”
Rather than really attaining to gods because they are nonexistent, their worshipers just delude themselves with fancies. They who practise ancestor-worship are trapped in the abyss of the past. Worshipers of beings end up in mortal bodies. But they who are single-mindedly dedicated to Lord Krishn attain to him.
Although yet in their mortal bodies, they truly become him. That is the identity of the worshiper with the adored God. And such worshipers never come to grief. Moreover, even the mode of this worship of Lord Krishn is so simple.
Lord Krishn sings:
“I lovingly accept the offerings of leaves,
flowers, fruit, and water the selfless worshiper makes to me
with true devotion.”
This loving acceptance by Lord Krishn of whatever offering is made to him by the earnest and devoted worshiper is the commencement of devout reverence.
“You should, O son of Kunti,
dedicate to me whatever you do, eat, offer as sacrifice,
give as alms, and also your penance.”
Lord Krishn will bear the responsibility for guarding the sphere of Arjun’s yog if he performs all his deeds, from the humble act of eating to the mortification of his mind and senses to shape them in accordance with the nature of his quest, with a sense of total resignation.
Lord Krishn adds:
“Possessed thus of the yog of renunciation
by the sacrifice of all your acts,
you will be freed from good as well as evil fruits
which are the shackles of action, and attain to me.”
In the above three verses, Lord Krishn has systematically dealt with the means of accomplishment and its outcome. The three suggested ways are: first, offering of humble gifts such as leaves and flowers, fruit, and water with total devotion; secondly, performance of action with a sense of dedication, and; lastly, complete renunciation in the spirit of self-surrender. By practicing them Arjun will be doubtlessly freed from the bonds of action and by this liberation he will attain to the sublime state of Lord Krishn. The terms “liberation” and “achievement” as employed here complement each other.
~Revered Gurudev Swami Adgadanand Jee Paramhans~