Sri Ramakrishna on Karma Yoga: Devotion as a Safeguard

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Beloved yogi Ramakrishna gives this advice regarding how to approach the practice of Karma Yoga:

“First cultivate devotion. All the other things—schools, dispensaries, etc.—will, if you like, be added to you. First devotion, then work. Work, apart from devotion or love of God, is helpless and cannot stand.”

A disciple: “The pressure of work stands in the way of giving one’s mind to God, does it not?”

The Master: “O yes, no doubt, that is so; but a Jnani may work unattached, and then work will not harm him. If you sincerely desire, the Lord will help you, so that the bondage of work will gradually fall away.”

“Should you think of God only at the time of meditation and remain forgetful of Him at all other times? […] Similarly, after installing the Deity on the lotus of your heart, you must keep the lamp of remembering Him ever burning. While engaged in the affairs of the world, you should constantly turn your gaze inwards and see whether the lamp is burning or not.”

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