The power of good deeds: embracing the present with the Bhagavad Gita

Guided by the wisdom from the Bhagavad Gita, one of the most profound spiritual texts of India, I find myself drawn towards the philosophy of karma, which underlines the significance of virtuous deeds and their long-lasting effects on our lives.

One of the most prominent lessons in the Gita comes from Lord Krishna’s words to the warrior Arjuna, “Karmanye Vadhikaraste Ma Phaleshu Kadachana” (Chapter 2, Verse 47). This quote translates to, ‘You have the right to perform your prescribed duties, but you are not entitled to the fruits of your actions.’ This wisdom urges us to focus on our actions and good deeds rather than getting attached to the outcome. The focus is on living our life to its fullest potential in the present moment.

To exemplify this philosophy, let’s consider a tale of a man who spent his entire life in pursuit of material wealth. Though he achieved vast material success, he missed out on the richness of human connections and virtuous deeds. When he found himself confronted with Time, personified as Kaal, he realized his amassed wealth held no real value in the face of eternity.

 This tale illustrates a profound lesson from the Gita, “Vasamsi jirnani yatha vihaya” (Chapter 2, Verse 22). The verse signifies that just as we discard old clothes for new ones, we renew ourselves continuously through our actions and deeds, leaving behind what no longer serves us. Material possessions, wealth, and status do not define our true worth; it is our actions and the positive karma we amass through them that truly matters.

The philosophy of the Gita teaches us that while we might not have control over all aspects of our lives, we do have the ability to shape our actions. Our actions then become our legacy, impacting not just us but those around us and even the world at large.

Inspired by the wisdom of Kaal and the teachings of the Gita, we’re called upon to lead a life of virtue, truth, and love. Instead of chasing ephemeral materialistic gains, we should strive to create positive karma that echoes beyond our immediate realm of existence. This understanding resonates with the Gita’s teaching, “Nainam chindanti shastrani” (Chapter 2, Verse 23), suggesting that our virtuous deeds and the positive karma we generate enrich our soul and outlast our transient material acquisitions.

Our journey through life should underscore the importance of every action we undertake, every decision we make. These are opportunities to contribute to the positive karma that guides our path. This notion finds its root in the wisdom of the Gita, “Yoga Karma Su Kaushalam” (Chapter 2, Verse 50). It translates to the idea that skill in actions comes from the disciplined practice of Yoga, which is about performing our duties without attachment, thus contributing positively to our karma.

In conclusion, drawing inspiration from the wisdom of Kaal and teachings from the Gita, we’re reminded of the genuine treasures we should aspire for in life – the lasting riches of truth, kindness, and virtuous actions. By focusing on good deeds, speaking our truth, and being kind, we contribute to a wealth of good karma. This wealth is our real treasure as it transcends the boundaries of our physical existence and shapes the essence of who we truly are.

By – Pratibha Rajguru