Karma yoga is a form of yoga that is based on the teachings of the Bhagavad Gita. It basically means discipline of action. By discipline of action we mean yoga of selfless service and according to the Gita, by selfless service we can reach higher states of mind by serving the divine in all living creatures. The highest Goal of man is always achieved by doing selfless action (Yajna) – Gita.Ch.3.19
What is karma? Contrary to the popular misconception that Karma is fate, Karma means action or work. Karma is further of two kinds, first is Niskama Karma which means work without any emotion or attachment and the second being Sakama Karma which is work done with a motive.
Let us talk about Yoga, generally we know of yoga as pranayams which involves breath control and taking different postures, but here we are toking of yoga as described in the Gita. Sri Krishna, in the Gita, explains that doing things with skill, fineness and expertise is yoga.(“Yogah Karmasu Kausalam- Gita 2.50”)
Karma Yoga, therefore, refers to all work or activity performed with expertise, skill and perfectness without any attachments or expectation of rewards.
There are three yogas , firstly Karma Yoga which is the path of Karma or action, secondly Bhakti Yoga which is the path of Bhakti or devotion and thirdly Jana Yoga which is the path of Jana or knowledge. So we can do any of these three things that are to act, to feel, to do nothing at all or to think. So when you are acting in selfless service it is Karma Yoga, when you are thinking the truth devoid of any corrupt thoughts it is Jana Yoga, when all you feel is love it is Bhakti Yoga. Karma yoga and Bhakti yoga flow together, for how can one serve others selflessly without love and bhakti. Purity of heart and the soul comes by serving humanity driven purely by altruistic reasons.
Find your inner peace and learn to act with love towards all. It is very important to achieve inner peace so that you have a calm mind. Calmness is achieved by concentrating on spirituality and overcoming or mastering the negativities inside you. Face your fears, addictions at the same time enhance your positive qualities because by focusing on your qualities you focus on God.
Remove all negative thoughts. This will help you maintain your inner balance. Focus on strengthening the inner calmness in you, your inner positivity and love and you will see yourself growing into the light. Positive actions, thoughts and words are the keys to inner peace.
Give selflessly, without worrying about the fruits of your Karma. Spread happiness by your actions and that will make you happy too. This is how you grow further towards enlightenment.
At some point, though, Karma Yoga teaches us that as we advance or grow spiritually our ignorance towards the suffering of others slowly disappears and there develops compassion. So, in essence, we can feel other’s pain and suffering as our own and hence we feel driven to relieve it, treating it as our own. The path to enlightenment is by selfless service and kindness towards all.