Karma Yoga

Karma means work. In the broad sense, the term karma includes all actions, physical and psychical. Karma marga is the path of selfless work. To the practitioner of Karma Yoga (a karma yogi), work is a means to perfection. The sage Sri Sankara rightly maintains that purification is impossible without actions. The impurities that have accumulated within the human system can only be removed through constant action and exercise of the organs and also faculties. Almost all the schools of Indian philosophy propound the idea that Karma helps us to ascend the steps to the highest spiritual realization.

In the Bhagavad Gita Lord Krishna says, “Your duty is to act and not to crave the fruits of your work. Do not work for rewards, and yet do not desist from work.” The Gita tells us that we must all work incessantly and with absolute detachment. So long as there is the sense of ‘I’ and ‘mine’, such dissociation cannot be attained. One’s mind should be brought under control by practicing the yoga of meditation to attain this state of non-attachment.

Karma Yoga is one of the greatest concepts of Indian philosophy and it teaches us how to perform all actions without being affected by their consequences. The detached person can perform selfless work with equanimity. This purifies the self in one’s long march towards realization of the Absolute. In this manner work itself becomes devotion.