In today's world of turmoil and complexity, Bhakti is believed to be the simplest of the roads. It is accessible to everybody, regardless of mental or physical capacities, and does not need intensive yogic practices. This makes it appealing for many who want to embrace a spiritual life but cannot handle the extreme demands of Hatha yoga or other more advanced techniques.
Bhakti can be understood as a relationship with God in which one loves Him deeply and seeks His pleasure above all else. The mind becomes devoted to God alone, and He begins to reveal Himself through His love letters called "Kirtan." These songs come from the heart and find expression through music and poetry. They invite us to surrender to God completely and give up our desires for earthly things. As we open ourselves up to Him, He starts to transform us into like Himself. Gradually we begin to see things as He does, and take pride in being His beloved children instead of craving material wealth.
The eightfold path is actually three paths divided into two sets: the spiritual path and the secular or worldly path. On the spiritual path, there are three ways to reach enlightenment: meditation, wisdom, and devotion. Through meditation, or thought control, one develops the capacity to control the mind.
Bhakti yoga is the devotional path, the means of approaching God via love and loving memory of God. Because it is the most natural, most faiths stress this spiritual route.
It is also called "religion" because it involves connecting with God through prayer and meditation. Bhakti yoga is the only sure way to salvation in the Hindu religion. The other paths are very broad and diverse, but they don't guarantee anything!
Bhakti yoga is easy because it is natural. You just need to love God and pray to Him regularly. No complicated rituals, no miracles, just love and hope for better things.
It's also beautiful because it comes from the heart. You can't fake that kind of devotion. It has to be born from deep inside you since childhood.
Finally, bhakti yoga is simple because it leads to union with God. There are many stories in the scriptures about people who practiced bhakti yoga and became immortalized as saints. They achieved moksha or liberation in this life and continued to enjoy His affection in next life too.
The goal of every human being is to unite with God. Bhakti yoga is a quick and easy way to do it.
As a result, the sages established four ways of yoga. Bhakti Yoga, Karma Yoga, Jnana Yoga, and Raja Yoga are the four types of yoga. In Bhakti Yoga, the seeker seeks redemption via the heart, submitting to God's will. In Karma Yoga, one earns merit by doing good deeds and avoids demerit by committing evil acts. In Jnana Yoga, one realizes God through understanding and wisdom. Finally, in Raja Yoga, one becomes free from the cycle of death and rebirth by mastering the mind, which controls all aspects of life.
Bhakti Yoga- devotion to God. One who follows this path seeks redemption through submission to God's will. This path is considered as the easiest because it does not require any special skills or knowledge. Anyone can practice it by just sitting down with faith and trust that God will lead him on the right path.
Karma Yoga- earning merit by doing good deeds and avoiding demerit by committing evil acts. One who follows this path strives to improve himself/herself and lives according to moral principles. He/she tries to be selfless and help others by performing good works. By doing so, one gains spiritual merit which helps in advancing along the spiritual path. However, one must be careful not to commit any sin because it would nullify all his/her good deeds!
The First Route (Bhakti Yoga): the devotional path. The oath of action is the second path (Karma Yoga). The Path of Wisdom is the Third Path (Jhana Yoga). Ahimsa is the philosophy of nonviolence toward all living things.
The Fourth Route (Anitya Yogi): the path of extinction. It's the only route to enlightenment for those who live in daily experience, without any intention to free themselves from death.
The First Route (Bhakti Yoga) consists in loving God fervently and seeking His love in return. This means to engage in the practice of devotion, or worship, which is one of the three main pillars of Hinduism. The other two being religion's core beliefs - karma and moksha - both of which will be discussed in greater detail below.
Bhakti is a Sanskrit word that means "devotion." It's the path that leads to liberation through faith, love, and surrender. It involves using the mind to focus on God with single-minded attention and longing, and also to express that love by engaging in acts of kindness and charity.
The most important aspect of bhakti is that it's achievable by anyone, no matter what their background or situation in life.
The Hindu Paths to Salvation are encapsulated in the hallowed teachings of the Bhagavad Gita. The three routes to salvation are Karma yoga, Jnana yoga, and Bhakti yoga, as told in a lengthy discourse between Krishna and Arjuna.
Karma Yoga is the path of action that involves engaging in activities determined by one's own free will without expecting anything in return (such as moksha or heaven). One engages in these actions from the desire to better oneself and to help others, with the aim of advancing along the ladder of success. This path was followed by Lord Buddha when he renounced the kingdom of heaven for the welfare of all beings.
Jnana yoga is the path of knowledge that involves striving to know God through your intellect instead of relying on emotion alone (like karma yoga). Those who follow this path try to understand the nature of reality and strive to know God directly through meditation or other means. People following this path hope to be liberated after death.
Bhakti yoga is the path of devotion that involves surrendering yourself to someone or something with the aim of gaining happiness in this life and beyond. One engages in these activities with the belief that they will bring you closer to God. People who follow this path hope to be granted divine love by God during meditation or other spiritual exercises.