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Knowledge to service

Lord Krishna proved that knowledge is always the highest because knowledge is related to intelligence (Buddhi). Therefore, the Jnana Yoga is also called as the Buddhi Yoga by which you can certainly attain God (Dadami...). The knowledge gives devotion and you can attain God by devotion. Unless you know that the boy is your son, you will not love him. When you know more and more about God’s greatness, your love increases proportionally. Therefore knowledge generates devotion and also develops the devotion. Knowledge also leads to right action by which the goal can be achieved. Krishna said that He would not fight in the war but He would only advise. Advice means a flash of intelligence which is a superior knowledge. His advices at every stage alone brought victory to the Pandavas. This proves that knowledge also leads to the correct action. Even wrong knowledge leads to action, but the action is a wrong action. Therefore, in order to enter into right action, right knowledge is needed, which can only be given by a Sadguru like Krishna. The Pandavas could achieve the goal in this world (victory in the war) only by the guidance of Krishna, who was the Sadguru.

Dharmaraja was very intelligent. Before the war started, he approached Bhishma requesting him to give a clue to defeat him [Bhishma was invincible since he had received a boon that he would die only when he wished so. Although he was fighting against the Pandavas, he internally wished for the victory of the Pandavas]. Bhishma told Dharmaraja that he would reveal the clue later. However, due to tension during the first ten days of war, Dharmaraja forgot this. This means that the soul may be very intelligent and may be a great scholar who has realized the truth. However, due to tensions, ignorance hides the truth. Dharmaraja knew that he should approach Bhishma to get the clue. However, he forgot the truth due to tension. This means that the Sadguru is needed not only to know the unknown truth but also to remember the known truth. Therefore, the soul has two types of ignorance; the ignorance of not knowing the truth and the ignorance of forgetting the known truth. When Bhima was fighting with Duryodhana in the end, Bhima was becoming weaker and weaker by the blows of Duryodhana. Here Dharmaraja was worried and he did not know the clue to defeat Duryodhana. This was not a case of forgetting the truth.
All the body of Duryodhana was made as hard as diamond by the sight of his mother [boon given by his mother] except his thighs. Only Krishna knew the truth. Here also Krishna helped them by indicating to Bhima to hit Duryodhana on the thighs. Thus, the Sadguru is needed to reveal the unknown truth as in the case of defeating Duryodhana and also to reveal the known forgotten truth as in the case of defeating Bhishma. When Bhima hit the thighs of Duryodhana, Balarama became angry and was ready to kill Bhima because it was against the rules to hit below the belt. However, Krishna convinced Balarama by saying that Duryodhana had asked Draupadi to sit on his thighs and Bhima had taken an oath to break those thighs. Krishna argued that inviting Draupadi to sit on his thighs was a fundamental sin and therefore the consequence need not be analyzed. Balarama was convinced and Bhima was saved. Therefore, you can realize that the knowledge coming from the Sadguru is the real essence which will guide you to the right action and there by you can achieve the goal. Shankara stressed on knowledge and said that if knowledge is perfect, achievement of the goal is a spontaneous consequence.

If you analyze the Mahabharata, Arjuna approached Krishna for personal help. This is the lowest stage where God is involved in the personal service of soul. The whole war was essentially for the personal service of the souls [Pandavas]. However, Krishna analyzed this and showed another dimension, which is social service. By destroying injustice and establishing justice, social service is done. Therefore, the war was also for social service, which is an incidental angle of the service to the soul. The next higher level is Hanuman on the flag [an image of Hanuman is shown on the flag on Arjuna’s chariot]. In the Ramayana, Hanuman was involved only in the personal service of the Lord. He was waiting only to serve Rama personally. He was not bothered about the injustice done to Sugriva by Vali, even though he was capable of killing Vali. The war in Ramayana was purely the personal service to the Lord and the killing of Ravana (social service) was again an incidental angle. Rama advised Ravana that if Sita were returned, He would not fight with Ravana. This means that killing Ravana (social service) was not the aim of the Lord. Mahabharatha is a lower level because Arjuna approached Krishna for personal help. However, it became a somewhat higher level when the incidental angle of the destruction of injustice was explained by the Lord. Ramayana is a higher level than this in which Hanuman concentrated only on the personal service of the Lord and even social service (killing Ravana) was an incidental angle.

Now if you see the Bhagavatam, it is the highest level where only the personal service to God was present to the greatest extent. Even if you think that Krishna’s killing of the demons sent by Kamsa can be called as social service, the Gopikas, unlike Hanuman, were not at all involved in it even indirectly. They always wanted the physical presence of Lord Krishna and became mad for that. They were always involved only in the personal service to the Lord by giving butter and doing other personal services. Arjuna was reborn as a hunter. Hanuman became God [Creator in the next cycle of creation]. The Gopikas became the masters of God [the Lord created a world higher than His own abode, for the sake of the Gopikas]. Thus, there is a transformation of your personal service to the personal service to the Lord in the spiritual journey. Social service is only a middle stage.
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