Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 2, Vs 28-32

Life and Death and Heaven 

28 – 29 
Beings are such that their beginnings are non-manifest, their middles are manifest and their ends are non-manifest again, so why worry?

Someone experiencing this, amazed and full of wonder, tells another who hears of it and is amazed, but even though he has heard about it he cannot know it.

“Someone experiencing this” — ‘this’ refers to the above and previous verses of this chapter.

Self-reference: You cannot know Truth by hearing about it (or reading about it), but only through your own ‘direct experience‘. Direct experience can be had for a brief moment with the use of certain techniques*, or through spontaneous samadhi attained in Surrender Meditation (shaktipat kundalini yoga, sahaja yoga, natural meditation).

The one in the body is eternally inviolable in the body of all, Bharata. Therefore, you do not deserve to be compelled to lament any born being.

“The one in the body” is the ‘embodied one’ as described earlier. It cannot be slain, cannot die, cannot be harmed, and cannot harm.

“in the body of all”:  This has two meanings: (1) What is said is true for everyone, and (2) what you really are is not located somewhere, but is everywhere. As a non-physical individual, you have no limitations, so you are not limited by space or time.

In other writings, I have talked about our connectedness through our sameness as divine, perfect, non-physical individuals, but this verse demonstrates yet another way in which we are all connected: What each of us really is, is this unlimited, all-pervasive individual. We ‘wear’ a body made up of everyone, and everyone makes up our own body. Because we all constitute everyone else’s body, everything we think, say, or do, affects them. Conversely, everything everyone else thinks, says or does, affects us. The way this plays out is determined by the order of our original connection, our original conscious awareness of each other.

Bharata — Krishna is once again referring to Arjuna as Bharata, ‘constantly-knowing’ in the sense of knowing Truth. We all already know Truth, whether we are aware of it or not. Enlightenment is simply becoming aware of what we already know.

Self-reference:  Which of these describes you? (1) Constantly engaged in acquiring knowledge, (2) constantly knowing Truth/God but not realizing that you know It, or (3) enlightened.

“you do not deserve to be compelled to lament any born being” — “to be compelled” are my own words interjected to clarify the statement. Otherwise, we would be left with, “you do not deserve to lament any born beings”, but Krishna is trying to spare you of sorrow, not blame you for an error. He is trying to help you to eliminate errors altogether.

Also, considering your own dharma, you deserve not to feel compelled to hesitate. Indeed, anything superior to battle for a Kshatriya is not known.

Once again my interjection, “‘not to feel compelled’ to hesitate” satisfies the Sanskrit meaning. Krishna is urging Arjuna to get on with it and ignore his compulsions.

“Kshatriya” — A warrior. Kshatriya means ‘to give protection from harm’.

“your own dharma”The word dharma means ‘the way things really are’. The Sanskrit is svadharma, which refers to one’s own personal dharma — your own special condition, the way you really are; your essential quality, unique ability or talent, what is good and right for you to utilize in your life. Ultimately, everyone’s svadharma is spiritual in nature. Meanwhile, we do the best we can.

Self-reference:  One does what must be done in life that is in accordance with one’s svadharma. Arjuna is a warrior. What are you? To consider your own dharma, look in these four basic categories: Are you a (1) God-person, (2) a protector or leader, (3) a business person, merchant or artisan, etc., or (4) do you serve someone else.

Better one’s own dharma done poorly than another man’s done well.
— Bhagavad Gita

Which category do you fit best? What is your special gift, talent or ability? Are you honoring that dharma? Or are you an enlightened or liberated God-person living an exclusively spiritual life without exception (without doing other things, such as working a job, running for office, etc.)?

And if by good fortune they should gain the door to heaven, happy are the Kshatriyas to encounter such a battle.

“the door to heaven” — In the battlefield, a king or warrior fighting in defense against another king, is said to achieve heaven upon death. Heaven refers to the paradise where the virtuous are transferred until the time comes for re-entering earthly bodies.

Self-reference:  Do you defend your ‘kingdom’ from being taken over by another? In order to answer this question, ask yourself, What is my ‘kingdom’?. HINT from chapter two, verse 15:

All activities of the mind vanished, I sit happily as the ruler within the city whose gates are nine [the body], not acting at all, nor causing action.
— Lord Krishna, Bhagavad Gita, ch 5, vs 13

This is also a good time to remember what this ‘battle’ is. Do you remember?

Durga Ma

*  “certain techniques”:  Enlightenment Intensives — Click on “Jack Wexler” to see an excellent video on Enlightenment Intensives. To find an intensive near you, click on “Contacts Around the World”. More links can be found here — scroll down to “Enlightenment Intensive Contacts”.

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Spiritual Ego

This is just me, Anandi. Writing to you from the top of a mountain. A silently alive paradise that sits suspended in the ether — between the dramatic waves of the Pacific and the gentle giants that are the Redwoods.

I am going to share the dialogue that has been running through my head from the night, early morning into now. Im doing this to help hang onto the things that are arising for contemplation and with the hope that it may somehow be beneficial for you in some way.

Just a recollection of my stream of consciousness … no edits. sorry.

One of the most valuable things I have learned from being with Durga Ma is about ‘identification’ and beginning to understand the spiritual ego. It’s not anything specific she has said, but the way that she has interacted with me on a ‘human’ and personal level.

I had created an idea in my mind unknowingly about what spirituality looked like and how it would behave and present itself. This came after awakening experiences in the wake of phenomenon, and was strengthened by the way others around me were presenting themselves in the spiritual community. None of them were masters.

What I have come to learn and what has had the most profound outward effect for me is the roundedness and down to earth regularity of Durga Ma. I wouldn’t necessarily know that she was a master if I didn’t know. This is really important, I don’t know if it was so important in days gone by.

What I see increasingly in the world is people trying to transcend their humanness. This is like “throwing the baby out with the bathwater” as Ma says… I think transcending the humanness becomes the “danger zone” where the spiritual ego can really take shape and the difficulty on recognizing it and moving beyond it comes from the fact that the mind has used, and will continue to use, the aspects of spirituality (teachings, experience, etc.) in an effort to establish a pure logic (all or nothing) type of state.

What is more, I think that if the mind has a memory of an awakening it can use this to further make the mind’s alibi watertight. Stuck in transcendence. This is a doozy…. really getting stuck in a deeper state of separation in some ways because now the mind has not only gone into transcendence but is constantly working to stay there outside of the body and physical existence and can use the information gathered ‘spiritually’ to keep it there. It is a trap without the guidance of a master, or a stroke of absolute Grace.

I see a LOT of people doing this now. Most of the ‘spiritual’ people I know.

I’m wondering now if what is often needed is just normal, ‘non-spiritual’ company — in other words, real spiritual people, actual yogis, real people — not the people who are riding around in inflated spiritual egos. It’s easier to become relaxed and trusting when we talk about normal everyday things, our experiences, our lives and where we came from. We don’t have to work at conversation to maintain what we think is spirituality and how it should be talked about and communicated…the only real substance (energetic alignment so to speak) comes from the way we actually relate with each other.

The longer I stay with Durga Ma, the more I get out of it. I want to absorb as much as I possibly can, although the speed at which it occurs when I get to be physically present is such that I find myself experiencing a sensation of near explosion. My head literally goes through periods of feeling like its going to explode. I don’t care, because there is this part of me that just doesn’t care and wants to go on ahead regardless.

I want to be here or near Durga Ma wherever she is, but even in the days of being here I feel myself taking off and abandoning my life responsibilities. I use the word ‘abandon’ because of a control aspect…a subtle piece that I can’t exactly identify other than that it is not a completely conscious choice to surrender. It’s what my heart wants, but it’s like there is a piece that is missing and first I have to reclaim it to surrender it. Sounds ironic but its the only way I can manage to say it.

Particularly with Sam at this age (3), Im not boasting but I’m the sanest person he knows, and I’m his mother. I feel it is my duty to keep him close, and my responsibility to do my best to stay with him until I either just can’t anymore or until he’s gotten enough independence for himself to choose otherwise.

This path is sometimes difficult with a family. Not impossible.

Om Shanti, Namaste,

Bhagavad Gita, Ch 2, Vs 22-27

You cannot know the Real by means of something that is unReal. 

The Gita Is All About You 

Just as after throwing away worn out garments one takes new ones, so after casting away worn out bodies the embodied one takes new ones. 


You are not going to die. Only your body can die. You are the ‘embodied one’, you are not what you are being.

23 – 24
Weapons do not pierce the embodied one, fire does not burn it, water does not wet it, and the wind does not cause it to wither.

It cannot be pierced, burned, saturated or withered. It is fundamental, stationary, all-pervasive, and inactive.


Not only are you immortal, you are invulnerable, and no element of nature — earth, water, fire, or air — can change this. In nature, every thing is relative to and dependent upon something else. In nature, everything is constantly changing. But you are not nature. You are YOU, the absolute constant in a world of change.

The embodied one is non-manifest, unimaginable, and unchanging. Having understood this, you should not grieve.


The Real You is not manifest nor does it ever change. What you really are is not imaginable to the you that you believe yourself to be. You cannot become aware of this through mind or reason, as these are of nature and the quality of change, so they are not Real either, and you cannot know the Real by means of something that is unReal.

26 – 27
Moreover, even if you think the embodied one eternally born or dead, even then, you should not grieve for it.

For the born, death is certain, and for the dead, birth is certain. So, these things being inevitable, you should not morn.


There is nothing to gain or lose because You exist in all that Is. Nothing that is Real can be lost because the Real doesn’t come and go, so regret is without foundation.

When feelings of loss, fear, anger or worry arise,
know that they arise within that which you are being,
never in the Real You.

Attaining Enlightenment

Enlightenment — Self-realization, God-realization, Christ Consciousness — is attained outside of the realm of the mind, thinking, intellect, and the senses, which are all relative and always in flux, but You are not. You are Absolute.

Consciousness is a power, an ability, that you have, but not what that power does. Consciousness is the ability, using it is an action. Consciousness is a characteristic of the Real You — You have the ability to be conscious. When you are being conscious, you are being conscious of something other than you. Consciousness is being used to be conscious of something other than you.

Why do I say “other than you”? How can you be conscious of you? How can you be something that you are perceiving? Who or what is doing the perceiving in that case? If you are thinking that you must be able to do this to become self-realized, you are missing the point: you are attempting to use something that is unReal to know the Real.

How Enlightenment Is Attained

Having heard about it from Lord Krishna, we know what enlightenment is. We now have that knowledge. But knowing about something is different than knowing it. This kind of knowing can only occur through ‘direct experience’. The highest form of this is nirbija, or asamprajnata samadhi* — union with the Absolute (raja yoga).

Prior to nirbija samadhi, union involves direct perception — perception without the aid of the senses (sabija, or samprajnata samadhi). Prior to this, there is union of the warming and the cooling energies in the body (hatha yoga), which makes the higher states of union (raja yoga) possible. During this period and prior to it, there may be spikes lasting only a fraction of a second in which one has direct experience of what one really is. That there are degrees of enlightenment is demonstrated by these different experiences.

In the highest samadhi (nirbija, asamprajnata), you are not conscious of anything. There is no knowing going on, no one engaged in knowing, nothing to know, not even the bliss. Your ability to be conscious is not engaged, so you are not self-conscious either. You are just You, this bliss, this wondrous joy: It is You. You and everyone else. This can only be awkwardly expressed after the fact.

* The term 'experience' is insufficient for describing nirbija samadhi. The terms asamprajnata (without a knowable) and nirbija (without a seed) explain that there is nothing to be conscious of. There is absolute union with the Absolute. One is 'merged' with That without any self-sense, and no experiencing is going on.

What you are being, is a being that passes through many changes
in a world of change.

What you Really are never changes,
is never born and never dies.  What you Really are is Absolute.

I bow to the Divine One that You really are,
Durga Ma

Enlightenment — Click on “Jack Wexler” to see an excellent video. To find an Enlightenment Intensive near you, click on “Contacts Around the World”.

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Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 2, Vs 16-21

Enlightenment, Self-realization, God-realization, Christ Consciousness… 

There is no coming to be of the non-existent. What is not non-existent is Real. These statements are understood by Knowers of Truth*.

The subject is sat — ‘the real; truth, existence; that which is without change, that which really is’.

“There is no coming to be of the non-existent. What is not non-existent is Real.”

• What is not real goes through changes. What is Real never changes.

• The unReal never is. The Real eternally remains.

• With the unReal nothing remains the same. The Real is ever-existent without modification.

• The changeless is what exists and is Real. Anything that can change does not really exist so it is not Real.

* The Knowers of Truth are the enlightened ones, the sages, those who have reached this understanding through direct experience.

Understand that that by which this universe is pervaded is imperishable, and that no one can destroy that which cannot be destroyed but endures always.

‘The Real’ is given more descriptors — it is ‘all-pervasive’, unlimited, everywhere always.

Self-reference:  What you really are has no limitations, is not located anywhere, is everywhere. You seem to have limitations and to be located somewhere, due to identification with the unReal.

These bodies, inhabited by the eternal, indestructible, immeasurable embodied one, come to an end. So fight, Descendant of Bharata!

“immeasurable” — all-pervasive and unlimited.

‘Descendant of Bharata':  Krishna uses this epitaph of Arjuna’s to remind him that, having come into being from an original state of ‘continuous knowing’ (Bharata), he already knows all this and just needs to realize it.

Self-reference: God is reminding you that you already know this for the same reason.

He who imagines the embodied one to be a slayer, and he who imagines that the embodied one can be slain, does not understand. The embodied one does not slay, nor is it slain.

Krishna subtly weaves in the reality of ‘non-doership’ here:  What Arjuna truly is does nothing, so his arguments in previous verses have no foundation.

Self-reference:  What you really are is invulnerable, and what you really are never harms anyone. This is the basis of the first yama, ahimsa (harmlessness). Hurting others doesn’t work and can only cause your own downfall, because it is not possible for the Real You.

20 – 21
The embodied one is never born, nor does it die at any time. The embodied one is not a being, does not become a being, and will never become a being at any time in the future. It is birthless, eternal, and ever-existent. It is not slain when the body is slain.

How can anyone who knows this embodied one to be indestructible, eternal, birthless, and imperishable, kill or be killed?

Well obviously, this simply cannot happen. We are convinced!

Our bodies come into being, live for a while, and then they die, so by definition they are not Real, nor is anything in the world Real. If you don’t believe this, just try finding something that NEVER changes.

Self reference: The above verses suggest that what is Real is something that is constant. In other words, it is something that is always present no matter what is happening, what is going on around you, in the outside world or within. Think this over and look for this constant. Ask yourself what it is. There is an answer. It is below. Don’t look yet. Think it over and see if you can come up with the answer first, then take a peek.


Opposites Neutralized

In the unReal, the ‘relative’, everything is relative to and dependent upon everything else. The Real, the ‘absolute’, is unchanging, never-ending, true and constant existence. The relative (non-existent) describes what we are ‘being’, i.e., physical beings in a world of change. The absolute (existent) describes us as we really are.

Realizing this to be true, we can understand now, why polarizing opposites ultimately become neutralized, and why this is inevitable: they are unReal and we seek the Real. During the process, there is a state we can achieve in which opposites do not arise, where heat and cold, pleasure and pain, attraction and aversion, etc., do not arise and therefore do not exert any influence on us. This state is called Yoga (Union).

Namaste — I bow to the Divine One that you really are,
Durga Ma

Self-reference:  That which is constant no matter what, is YOU.

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Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 2, Vs 15

When the evolutionary force kundalini completes the transformation of the body, Death loses it power. 

15 Considering them common, Arjuna, one who does not waver on account of these and remains resolute, is ready for immortality. 

“these” refers to opposites as mentioned in verse 14:  

It is perception by the senses that produces the sensations of heat and cold, pleasantness and pain. These appear and disappear and are impermanent, so have patience, Arjuna.”

The keyword in verse 15 is ‘ready’. The ultimate outcome is liberation and immortality. In the Bible and other mystical texts of the East, this reference to immortality is literal — the corruptible becomes incorruptible; the yogi cheats death; etc.

When this perishable will have put on the imperishable, and this mortal will have put on immortality, then will come about the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting? — 1 Corinthians 15:54-55

Two conditions then, are necessary for this transformation: resolute determination, and indifference to opposites.

When truly indifferent to opposites, such as heat and cold, and pleasure and pain, one is in a state in which opposites have been neutralized through union (yoga). The instant prana and apana* unite within the body, opposition vanishes and the Life Energy takes on an evolutionary function (kundalini), and though this may only last for a moment, in that moment there is absolute indifference to opposites. Attractions and aversions cannot exist where there are no likes or dislikes, and likes and dislikes cannot exist in the complete satisfaction and fulfillment of this moment of union. Thus begins the work of neutralizing the polarized pull of the very things that support ignorance (Dhritarashthra): the desires of the mind (the sons of Dhritarashthra).

* 'prana and apana': The Life Energy moving upward that warms the body is called prana; moving downward and cooling the body it is called apana. When these opposing functions of the Life Energy collide, they are united as one, and the evolutionary force, kundalini, becomes active within the body. This is Yoga ('union').


Desires of the mind (the sons of Dhritarashthra) appear as things you like as opposed to things you do not like, and visa versa—opposites. Begin by simply noticing these when they arise.

Ignorance refers to non-enlightenment. In the West, this is called ‘ego’, but the Sanskrit word (ahamkara) suggests that what this ‘ego’ is, is the sense of yourself as ‘doing’. This in turn suggests that what you really are is something other than what does things, and begs the question: “What am I?” Begin contemplating this question.

Enlightenment happens when you know through direct experience that what you really are does nothing. This unfolds by degrees.

All activities of the mind having vanished, I sit happily as the ruler within the city whose gates are nine [the body], not acting at all, nor causing action. — Lord Krishna, Bhagavad Gita, ch 5, vs 13

Sensible Spiritual

As a sadhika, I lived in the woods on very little of anything in order to find the time and solitude to practice yoga full time. I had no frills like air-conditioning and often no heat in winter, so I bore up under a great deal of discomfort. I told myself that I was cultivating dispassion and indifference to heat and cold, and pleasure and pain. What was really happening was that I was so miserable, and it took so much will to endure this misery, that I was not only holding myself back, I was getting over-exposed without realizing it. This resulted in the body becoming even more sensitive to heat and cold than it was in the beginning, and I have had to deal with this every day of my life since that time. It was a kind of ‘mortification of the flesh’ that I didn’t realize I was ‘doing’. And it didn’t work. It doesn’t work. It won’t work.

Scriptural injunction insists that we take proper care of the body so that it is fit for sadhana, not beaten down. So now, instead of tents, cars, vacant houses, or huts with quarter-inch cracks between the boards, I live in a simple house with AC and heat, and I do not put up with tolerating anything any more, if I can help it. That’s full circle from an ordinary life, to a determined and devoted spiritual life, and back to where I started from, only now I live a devoted sensible-spiritual life.

Indifference to opposites must come naturally and spontaneously as a result of surrender to God/Truth. You cannot make it happen. If you try, you will pay. The trick is to monitor your own motives as you live sensibly spiritually: Are you taking care of your body for sadhana? or are you using this principle as an excuse for seeking pleasure? And then, when you make a mistake (you will), you must ignore the temptation to put yourself down, forgive yourself, and move on.

I bow to the Divine One that you really are,
Durga Ma

Enlightenment — Click on “Jack Wexler” to see an excellent video. To find an intensive near you, click on “Contacts Around the World”.

The Song of God — The ‘original’ Bhagavad Gita in plain English.

Surrender Meditation — Meditate your way to enlightenment: Apply for Remote Shaktipat.

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