As the name of this yogic system implies, the discipline involves action. The aim of Karma Yoga is to attain union with the Supreme by means of right action, which means, quite simply, action undertaken for its own sake and not for the sake of reward.
Karma in Sanskrit means action and this variety of yoga derives its name from the fact that even after attainment of the goal of yoga, i.e. jivanmukti, one does not renounce the various acts themselves.
Two things are indispensably requisite in the practice of Karma Yoga. The Karma Yogi should have non-attachment to the fruits of actions and secondly he/she will have to dedicate his/her actions at the altar of God with the feeling of Ishvararpana.
Benefits of Practicing Karma Yoga
- By doing selfless service you can purify your heart.
- All negative qualities like egoism, hatred, jealousy, ideas of superiority will vanish.
- You will develop humility, pure love, sympathy, tolerance and mercy.
- Selfishness will be eradicated.
- You will get a broad and liberal outlook on life.
- You will begin to feel oneness and unity.
- Finally, you will obtain knowledge of the Self. You will realize One in all and All in one.
How to practice Karma Yoga ?
The practice of Karma Yoga does not demand possession of wealth or power. You can serve with your mind and body. If you find a poor sick man lying on the road side, give him some water or milk to drink. Cheer him up with sweet, encouraging words. Put him in a carriage and take him to the nearest hospital. If you do selfless service, your heart will be purified. God is more pleased with service for the poor helpless people.
If any one is suffering from acute pain in any part of the body, at once massage the affected part very quickly. Feel, when you massage, that you are shampooing the body of the Lord (Virat). Repeat your Ishta Mantra or any name of the Lord while massaging. Pray also from the bottom of your heart: “O Lord! Remove the pain of this man. Let him rest in peace. Let him possess good health.” Feel, when you massage, that the energy from the cosmic source, Hiranyagarbha, is flowing continuously through your hands. Some neophytes are afraid their energy will be depleted by massaging another person. This is a serious mistake. The more you give, the more you will get. You will be in tune with the cosmic energy or the Infinite. This is the divine law.