"Karma Yoga" by Shrii Shrii Anandamurti
This is my guru, so it's difficult to be objective. These are discourses mostly from the late 70s and early 80s. (I like how they cite the place also, at the essay's end: "15 October 1979 Morning, Nagpur".) Baba (as we call him) was released from prison in 1978, after serving seven years for murder. (He was cleared, at that point, of all charges.) So Baba was in an expansive mood at this time. "Karma yoga" means work, but joyous work -- a bit like making a spaghetti dinner for your girlfriend. These talks -- which have titles like "Yajina and Karmaphala" and "Service to Humanity Is the Supreme Ideology of Life" -- cover a variety of topics. Here's two excerpts I liked, paging through Karma Yoga:
In the ancient days, there was a popular belief that even the gods were to come down to earth to perform spiritual practice. The reason is, when one does not have a physical existence, one cannot perform action.
... but Paramapurusa [The Supreme Consciousness] says... "Its not a fact that I am very far from common people, Furthermore, I am not in the heart of the yogis." This sounds strange. The existence of mind depends on the psychic propensities. When in pleasure people laugh and when in pain they cry. This is a natural tendency of mind. By special effort, they restrain their propensities. They check them. When the propensities are fully restrained, there is, no expression at all. If propensities are checked like this, human beings will neither laugh in pleasure nor cry in pain but the natural thing in human life is to laugh in pleasure and cry in pain. When daughters come from their father's houses to fathers-in-law's house their mothers feel very sad. Hence, the daughter and the mother clasp each other and cry for a long time; this is natural for human beings. This does not apply in the case of yogis as their hearts feelings are completely checked. If something pleasant happens they don't burst out in joy. Even if the thousands of people die, they remain unaffected. God wants human beings to laugh and cry, dance and sing, eat and feed others. That is why the hearts of yogis are not an ideal abode for Paramapurusa. Here Paramapurusa says "I don't remain in the hearts of the yogis because their hearts are like stone."
[I tried to keep in all the weird punctuation.] The point of the first quote is that we are lucky, having human bodies, according to yoga. We can make more spiritual progress than the gods!
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