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Importance of Bhakti Yoga

by Swami Sivananda

Purushah sa parah Partha bhaktyaa labhyastvananyayaa;
Yasyantahsthani bhutani yena sarvamidam tatam.

"He, the Highest Spirit, O Partha, may be reached by unswerving devotion to Him alone, in Whom all beings abide, by Whom all this is pervaded. " (Gita: VIII-22. )

Bhaktya tvananyaya sakya ahamevamvidhorjuna;
Jnatum drashtum cha tattvena praveshtum cha Parantapa.

"But by devotion to Me alone I may thus be perceived, Arjuna, and known and seen in essence, and entered, O Parantapa. " (Gita: XI-54. )

Mayyavesya mano ye mam nityayukta upasate;
Sraddhaya parayopetaste me yuktatama matah.

"Those who, fixing their mind on Me, worship Me, ever steadfast and endowed with supreme faith, are the best in Yoga in My opinion. " (Gita: XII-2. )

Yoginamapi sarvesham madgatenantaratmana;
Sraddhavan bhajate yo mam sa me yuktatamo matah.

"And among all the Yogins, he who, full of faith, with the inner self abiding in Me, worships Me, he is considered by Me to be the most completely harmonised. " (Gita: VI-47. )

Let me say a word on practical Sadhana. The Sastras are endless; there is much to be known; time is short, obstacles are many; That which is the Essence should be grasped, just as the swan does in the case of milk mixed with water.

O Nectar's sons! Wake up. Open your eyes. Grasp the Essence (God). Remember the pains of Samsara. Remember death. Remember the saints. Remember God. Sing His names: "Hare Rama Hare Rama, Rama Rama Hare Hare; Hare Krishna Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna Hare Hare. " Cultivate Bhakti. Develop the nine modes of devotion (Nava Vidha Bhakti). Serve Bhagavatas. Feel His Indwelling Presence everywhere. Have Darshan of Sri Krishna in this very birth, nay this very second. Become a glorious Bhagavata, a Jivanmukta and radiate joy, bliss and peace all around and everywhere. Friends! Let me remind you once more. Forget not even for a second that Flute-Player of Vrindavana, thy Immortal Friend, thy joy, thy solace in life. Repeat always His Mantra 'Om Namo Bhagavate Vasudevaya. ' May the blessings of Sri Krishna be upon us all!

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