God’s work

dattaswami2's picture

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God’s work

O Learned and Devoted Servants of God,

[January 16, 2009 Shri R Parthasarathy asked a question: “the Gita says that we should do the action without aspiring for its fruit. How is it possible? We do any work expecting some fruit only”.]

You must understand that the context of the Gita does not apply to your worldly works by which you earn the livelihood. If you do not aspire for the livelihood by doing some worldly work, how can you sustain yourself and your family? The Gita also says that you have to do the work for earning your livelihood (Sharira Yatraapichate…). Moreover, the Gita says that you have to sacrifice the fruit of your work for the sake of God. If you apply this statement to all the works, where is the fruit with you that can be sacrificed? Therefore, the sacrifice of the fruit of work is confined to the context of God’s work only. In the case of worldly works, this does not apply and you have to earn the fruits as per your preliminary agreement with your employer. You have to enjoy the fruits to sustain yourself and your family. A part of the fruit should be sacrificed for the work of God. Both enjoyment and sacrifice are advised simultaneously by the Veda (Tyaktena Bhunjeedhaah...). The sacrifice for God’s work applies to the part of the fruit earned by your worldly work. The sacrifice does not apply to your worldly work, in which case, you have to do the work without taking the fruit at all. Then, you cannot sustain yourself and there is no fruit at all to be sacrificed for the sake of God.

Hence, you are confused by applying the Gita to the worldly context. Due to this confusion, several misinterpretations have come up. People interpret that you need not sacrifice the fruit but you have to sacrifice your mental attachment for the fruit only. This is the most wonderful misinterpretation since Gita says clearly that you have to sacrifice the fruit directly (Phalam Tyaktvaa…). By this wonderful misinterpretation, people say that they have to take their salary without mental attachment. They say that they enjoy the salary also without mental attachment! Of course, if you do the work without mental attachment to the fruit, your tension is reduced and you become more energetic to do the work more effectively. You have achieved the fruit of lack of tension already in doing the work and you cannot aspire any other fruit.

People aspire God’s grace for taking and enjoying their salary without mental attachment! In this worldly work, there is no reference of God at all since you have not done any work of God. Hanuman attained the grace of God for doing the work of God without aspiring for any fruit. Previously, He served Sugriva also without any aspiration for fruit and for this, He has already achieved mental peace. He attained the grace of God only for serving Rama in search of Sita and further, for fighting the war. He did not achieve the grace of God for serving Sugriva without aspiration for fruit. Of course, such detached service to Sugriva gave Him perfect mental health thereby, perfect physical health also since mind and body are interlinked with each other. Such perfect health of Hanuman helped Him in the service of God for better efficiency. In fact, Hanuman served Sugriva without aspiration for fruit because His mother told Him to wait for and serve the contemporary human incarnation of God in that place of Sugriva. His preliminary association with Sugriva was also with the aim to serve the contemporary human incarnation and such direct service to God is perfect and gives immense fruit as in the case of Hanuman and Draupadi. Serving the statues in temples is also good since the worship of statues is inevitable for beginners (Pratimaa hyalpabuddhinaam…). It is not direct worship of God since it is only a representation model of God (Natasya Pratima— Veda). Such service is also good though it gives limited fruit because it is indirect worship of God.

Both the wars in Lanka and Kurukshetra ended in the social welfare due to destruction of evil forces and result of social service to maintain the balance of justice, which is also indirect service to God. Such people will get a chance of direct service to God also either in this birth or in the future births. Mere social service without the idea of God gives only a temporary heaven. The social welfare was thus common to both the wars fought by Hanuman and Arjuna. However, the other fruit of the war in case of Arjuna, which was the attainment of kingdom, went to Arjuna only. But, the other fruit of the war in case of Hanuman, which was the attainment of Sita, went to God Rama only. Thus, the service of Hanuman was without any trace of selfishness and hence, He was given the unimaginable fruit.

madan_gautam's picture

God's Work

Each and every action in this Universe is God's work/action.
It is only the ignorance of the person due to which he/she does not identify/recognize it.

madan_gautam | Sun, 04/05/2009 - 11:21
dattaswami2's picture


The Gita says that the meaning of the word Karma has very deep sense (Gahanaa Karmano Gatih). This world is called as creation. Creation means work like explanation etc. Karma means work. Therefore this world is a form of work only. Work is a form of energy. Energy is dynamism or action or work. Matter is energy. Heat, sound etc. are forms of energy. Therefore the world which consists of space, matter, light, heat, awareness etc. is essentially energy or work only. Space is a form of energy. Awareness is also a form of energy. Therefore all this creation is work only. Work needs the worker. The worker is God. God is the creator and creation is His work. This entire world is said to be the dance (work) of Shiva. This entire world is just a game (work) of God.

Therefore you should realize that any part of this creation is work or dance or game of God. The working material (matter) is also a form of His work only. The forces in this creation are again His works only. Thus you should realize that every part of His creation as the work of God and thus we should constantly remember God. When you see an object, the object is His work. The process of seeing is His work. The subject (yourself), who is also an object for others, is also work of God. If you analyse yourself, you can realize that you are entirely His work only. The matter of your body, working forces like heat, circulation force of blood etc. are also His works. Awareness is His work. The basic form of your awareness which is energy is also His work only. Knowledge is the work of intelligence. Devotion is the work of mind. Service is the work of your body. Sacrifice which is a process of leaving something is also a work.

Therefore whatever you understand is work and understanding itself is work. The word Karma is frequently repeated in the Gita. There is nothing like static condition. Even in a static stone, the molecules, atoms and subatomic particles are rotating, vibrating and spinning indicating essentially the work only. The Gita says that work should be found in static state (Akarmanichayah). The Gita also says that you should find no work in the work (karmanya karma yah pasyet). What does this mean? This means, you should not think that the work is the work of itself. You should find the worker who is doing the work. You should not think that the work is going on by itself. The work is done by somebody.

At Thy Lotus Feet His Holiness Sri Dattaswami

Anil Antony
Universal Spirituality for World Peace

dattaswami2 | Sun, 04/05/2009 - 11:50