The Bhagavad Gita was spoken by Sri Krishna to His friend and disciple, Arjuna at the beginning of the epic war, Mahabharata. Bhagavad Gita provides the concise conclusion of the millions of verses in all the Vedic scriptures. In just eighteen chapters containing seven hundred verse, Sri Krishna answers all questions about the duty of the living entity. In glorifying the Bhagavad Gita, Lord Shiva says in the Gita Mahatmya (Padma Purana) that it is sufficient to lead one to liberation.
The Bhagavad Gita was spoken to guide the conditioned soul on the path of the spiritual advancement. It is presented as principle and details. The dominating principle of the BG is to develop God consciousness. In the details, Sri Krishna explains three primary ways of doing this and then further expands on these paths. He then relates them to each other and brings forth the single most effective path for returning back to God.
What is Bhakti yoga according to Bhagavad Gita?
The path of devotion is described as the most confidential path back to Godhead. It is described as the “elevator” approach to Krishna as opposed to all the other “staircase” paths. The essence of the Bhakti yoga is summarized by Sri Krishna in Chapter 9, Verse 34, as follows: “Engage your mind always in thinking of Me, become My devotee, offer obeisances to Me and worship Me. Being completely absorbed in Me, surely you will come to Me.”
This verse, often considered to be the summary verse of the entire BG, contains the essence of the existence of a spirit soul. In the material world, trapped in the illusory sense of identifying with the body and its extensions, a spirit soul remains forever bewildered by the duality of existence. However by simply surrendering to Krishna, understanding Him to be the original, primeval cause of all causes and thus worshipping Him without any desires of material benefit, one can easily go back to Him.
Bhakti yoga does not mean inactivity. Indeed a bhakta is most active, for he sees all his activities now in relation to the Supreme. But he is detached from the activity and the fruits of the activity, neither happy in success nor distressed in failure, understanding that all this is ultimately for Krishna and coming from Him only