Bondage



Bondage means the state of being a slave,  or of being severely restrained by obligations or circumstances. A state of subjection to a force, power, or influence or being under restraint. In general, to refer to anything that keeps us from being fully submitted to the Almighty.


A person who is attached to his job and no choice to leave it because of financial pressure for maintaining his family is an example of bondage.

The following incident in Mahabarath shows us how a courageous personality's life ended miserably tied in bondage restrained by obligations or circumstances by supporting an unrighteous person.

Guru Drona, Master of the Kaurava dynasty arranged a tournament between the sons of the kings to display their skills. Arjuna was the chief attraction of the tournament as an efficient archer. Karna, who was also an Archer was not allowed to showcase his skills on the basis of his caste by Kripacharya, another Master. 

Duryodhana, son of Dhritarashtra, the king of the Kauravas Dynasty, supported Karna, the son of a low caste person ie., Sutha with his selfish motive and crowned him as king of a small country called Anga, to participate in the tournament and take revenge against Pandavas who are sons of King Pandu, as he desperately wanted a good Archer on his side to match Arjuna.   Karna was emotionally moved at this incident and asked Duryodhana how he could repay him for the great help. This event was a key event of Mahabharata that established strong bondage between Duryodhana and Karna, an intense rivalry with Arjuna, and as a whole Karna had an opportunity to take revenge against Arjuna.  Duryodhan and Karna were not best friends and joined together for their own selfish interests. This unrighteous bondage made Karna die miserably in the war at the hands of Arjuna and made the tragic hero of the epic Mahabharata.

Freedom from eternal bondage is not possible so long as we are within entanglements.  The natural craving of the soul is to be free from bondage. The problem before us is not mere deliverance from pain and misery but freedom from the bondage which is the ultimate cause of pain and misery. Freedom from bondage is liberation. 

Lord Krishna in Bhagavath Githa Chapter-3 Verse-9 explains how we can be freed from bondage.

yajnarthat karmano ’nyatra loko ’yam karma-bandhanah
tad-artham karma kaunteya mukta-sangah samachara

Work must be done as a yajña (sacrifice) to the Ultimate(God); otherwise, work binds one to this material world. Therefore, O son of Kunti, perform your prescribed duties for the satisfaction of God, without being attached to the results and free from bondage. 

Yajna means the Ultimate(God), or sacrificial performances. The Vedas urge: yajno vai vishnu. It means Vishnu and Yajna are one and the same and they are identical.  Yajna releases us from the bondage of samskaras as it is performed with a spirit of sacrifice without the sense of  "I"  associated with it. Therefore we must perform all the works for the satisfaction of God and by doing so one is in a liberated stage and not bound by any samskaras. No one can remain without doing any action. Bondage does not arise from the action but any expectation of the result from that action creates the bondage. 

Now the question before us is how we can live nowadays without expecting any result of our Karma (action)?

This can be easily achieved if we surrender to a Capable Master(Guru) who should do this by his own effort exercising the power of transmission in order to create a permanent and deep-rooted effect. A man who is himself free can free us from eternal bondage.  If he is not free from the bondage of Sanskaras, Maya, or Ahankar it is not possible for him to free you from those bondages. Suppose you are bound to one pole and your Master to another, how is it possible for your Master to free you from the bondage? Only a man who is himself free can release you from the bondage. If we are fortunate we can find such a Master in our lives.

Nowadays it is very difficult to find such a Master. Then  God's love can only free us from bondage and we must prepare ourselves with a strong will to follow what Lord Krishna has taught us. While working one can think that he is not doing it for himself, but for the sake of God, or rather think that God himself is doing it for himself. Then the God's power will begin to flow in to relieve you from the result of that work and no sanskaras will be formed.








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