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Worksheet 56



(Sanyasa and Tyaga)


Self-Inquiry: Mulling Over Different Kinds of Renunciation:


(a) Point out the 2 or 3 messages below that are most

      significant for you at this time.


(b) Think: what 1 or 2 things should I do during the next

      few years to improve my own karmic rewards?


(c) Be ready to discuss.



In the Bhagavad Gita Krishna asks us and then enlightens us:


“As both sanyasa and tyaga signify renunciation, what is the difference between them?


___ 1) Sanyasa, giving up selfish actions, is one kind of renunciation.


___ 2) Tyaga, abandoning the fruits of your actions, is another kind of renunciation.


___ 3) Renunciation is not a negative process, it is the positive act of giving up. There are many examples of this in nature:

  • the Sun constantly giving up its heat and light to foster life
  • ripened fruit abandoning its parent tree
  • the mother giving birth to the baby she has carried
  • students leaving school upon graduation
  • grandest of all, the individual giving up worldly entanglements to

join Me, God.


___ 4) The essential law that governs life is to contribute to the world by giving, not amassing.


___ 5) Sacrifice, purification, and charity are the three highest of human activities. Never give them up because all three are methods of removing impurities, and purity is absolutely essential to move Godward.


___ 6) You have to perform these three activities selflessly with no attachment, no desire.


___ 7) There are three ways to perform sanyasa and tyaga:


a. Sattvic people do them for duty’s sake alone, with no attachment

or desire for reward. Calmness and purity are born of this attitude.


b. Rajasic people avoid renunciation out of fear or aversion to

physical discomfort. No spiritual benefit will accrue to them.


c. Tamasic people, ignorant, do not perform them.


___ 8) Recall that it is impossible for a human to fully be a renunciate. To give up all ‘actions’—one’s breath, heartbeat, and so forth—simply cannot be done.


___ 9) The person who detaches from the fruits of actions can be regarded as a genuine renunciate.


___10) True ‘renunciation’ is relinquishing all desire for personal reward.


___11) People who do these activities for selfish purposes reap their

karmic rewards in due season. Those rewards can be bad, good, or mixed, depending on the actions:


  • Being hurled into darkness and reborn as a beast is an example of a reward for evil acts.
  • Being born as a celestial being in heaven is an example of a reward for good acts.
  • Being reborn as a human is an example of a mixed reward.”


– Krishna



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