Who Are You?

This is the teaching of the Bhagavad Gita (God’s songs or teaching):

  • You are the ‘self soul’ covered by a material body.
  • You are bewildered by Maya, the illusion of identifying the self with bodyIn this material body you go through the pangs of birth, disease, old age and finally reach death.
  • You will reincarnate from body to body, life after life. At death you will take on another body in the animal kingdom, or again in the human form. What your next body will be is dependent on your karma (good or bad actions) of your previous life.

The above precepts can be analyzed in the following way.

Just as you change your old clothes, furniture, cars, shoes, houses, jobs, etc., you also change your body after death. As manufacturer designs material products today for tomorrow, you design your next body today with your current actions or karma.

The individual soul is known to make its journey through 8.4 million different material bodies. So, Gita advises us not to get too attached to this ephemeral body.You are ‘too busy’ in mundane functions, such as eating, sleeping, mating and in making a career. You do not try to find time to think and inquire seriously into life’s absolute truth. Instead, you waste time in chasing mirages in the desert or building castles in sand.

People are busy in a modern excessive life style, such as partying, discoing, drugs and such. While deeply engaged in such frivolous activities, you tend to forget the inevitability of your imminent death.

You do not realize the fact that, like all other animals, you will be killed by the laws of nature. You remain busy in material enjoyment, the so-called jolly life, but, believe it or not, you are like chicken, cows and goats waiting to be killed. Death is certain, and it can inflict on you anytime. At death, the laws of nature will determine what your future will be according to your previous karma.

Human birth is rare, precious and sacred. You are presently in this human form. Therefore, you should use your consciousness to inquire more into the Absolute Truth of your existence than the frivolous matters around you, such as nine-to-five work schedule, marital and medical problems, and even filing income-tax returns. Unfortunately, most humans still remain deeply involved in excessive worldly desires and pleasures, which, in fact, are known to be present among all animals too.

A knowledgeable person, therefore, knows that death is certain to any one born. Knowing that the imminent death is unpredictable, he prepares himself for the next life or for his liberation from the cycle of birth and death all together. Recognizing the ephemerality of human existence, he also questions – who he is, where he came from and what his future destination would be after the present life? An ignorant person, on the other hand, is ‘too busy’ engaged in the material life, trying to satisfy his own material desires and pleasures, ignoring the fact that the death is certain and just around the corner!

Remain devoted to God!