Throughout the month of January so far, we’ve explored some of the practices and deities traditionally invoked in times of ‘beginning’, such as at the outset of a journey, the beginning of a celebration, project, or indeed – a new year.
While the deity Shiva teaches us that in order for transformation to occur and something new to be created, something old must be destroyed; Ganesh ‘the remover of obstacles’
teaches us to embody strength, wisdom and power in order to overcome any challenges or obstacles we might face on life’s path. Lakshmi brings beauty, wealth, abundance and generosity – teaching us that in order to be generous towards others, we must first have an attitude of abundance and of ‘being enough’ within ourselves.
All of these things are tied to one purpose; to help us realise our potential.
I don’t mean academic or physical potential, but the potential each one of us has to be our most true, powerful selves. The potential we have to live a life we’re truly passionate about and one that speaks our truth. The deities teach us to embody their qualities in order to grow and learn, but in the end, it is our own truth we have to embody in order to be most effective in the world.
The Bhagavad Gita & The Message Of Dharma
The story of the Bhagavad Gita explores the battlefield of Kurukshetra, and the entire story depicts a conversation between the warrior Arjuna and Krishna. This text – a part of the epic tale, the Mahabharata, and the ‘longest poem ever written’ – is highly symbolic, and one that we can come back to reading again and again throughout life, only for it to reveal more to us each time.
The war takes place between the Pandavas and the Kauravas; the Pandavas represent the virtues within us, and the Karuvas the opposing forces within us. 
Arjuna represents us in our human, ego-centred form, while Krishna represents the divine truth, higher self or ‘true self’.
Arjuna’s chariot represents the body, pulled by horses seen as the senses – which we have to learn how to master and keep under control.
The battlefield itself represents the mind, and how life is often a battle between our virtues and truth, and all opposing forces within us….
Living Life With Purpose & Truth
Essentially, the Bhagavad Gita is the central ‘Dharma’ text. The word ‘dharma’ literally translates as ‘that which upholds’. It’s the thing that sustains our love for life and upholds who we really are. It’s that thing we feel most naturally drawn to, and basically our ‘life purpose’. Dharma or life purpose’ is often thought of as something we must look for, think about excessively and define, but in fact Dharma is far more about how you live your life, rather than what you label it as.
To live a life in accordance with your Dharma is to live in accordance with your truth, core values and highest morals. You know you’re living in line with your Dharma when everything seems to ‘flow’ in life and things ‘just seem to happen’. You’ll meet the ‘right people’, be ‘in the right place at the right time’, and generally have a deep and sustained inner knowing that you are on exactly the right path. This doesn’t mean it’ll be an easy ride of course; obstacles will always arise, and we’ll always question whether we’re ‘good enough’- but a life lived in line with your Dharma truly brings us alive and has the potential to allow us to reach our highest potential.
In contrast to Dharma, there is Adharma. The prefix ‘a’ negates the word it proceeds, so A-dharma, means ‘non dharma’. It’s often translated as immoral, sinful, wrong, wicked, unjust, unbalanced, or unnatural .
The Law of Entrainment: Lift yourself In order to lift others….
Adharma can also be translated as ‘non-harmonious’, and it’s important to understand why this is….
By living in accordance with Dharma, we live in accordance with truth, nature and – in essence – the way it’s ‘meant to be’. The law of entrainment governs that everything in the universe is at all times trying to live harmoniously; just as every atom is made of vibration, so is the whole universe and everything within it. We are created by vibration and so is the energy each of us carries around with us. When we’re living our life’s purpose and our truth, we know how that feels; we’re more powerful, positive, kind, open minded and actually we ‘vibrate’ at a higher and ‘better quality’ frequency.
You’ve felt this for yourself even if only subconsciously; being around someone who embodies their truth and is living their life purpose has a big effect on how you may feel yourself; these people give off the feelings of passion and power, and make us believe anything is possible. This is the law of entrainment; whenever one person vibrates at a higher frequency, the other people around them will naturally begin to do the same. When enough people find themselves at this ‘higher frequency’, big changes start to happen; the world is created by the people in it. If most of the people have low energy, then the whole world will look pretty bleak and dark, but if most of the people are living their dharma, have passion for life, and give off an energy of positivity, then the world will indeed look like an entirely different place.
This is how we change the world without even doing anything. Just by being. In the Bhagavad Gita, the cycle of Karma and Samsara is explored, and we find that it is only by living as an example of the purity, truth and practice of what Yoga is that we can make a positive change; talking and performing actions have little value if they’re not underlined with truth.
In the text, Krishna tells Arjuna not to rely upon anyone or anything else external to make him happy or give him peace. He says to Arjuna; “Lift the self up by the Self”, (self with a small ‘s’ represents us in our human ego-centred form, and Self with a capital ‘S’ represents our highest, truest, divine essence). This inherently means that in order to live up to our potential, we must listen to our truth, which lies within us, not without.
If we take the Law of Entrainment into consideration with this, then we can remember that by lifting ourselves up, we automatically begin to lift others up too. From this place, the world begins to change, and what was once a battlefield becomes bliss.
 Patel, Barrington, MacCuish, Jones (1998). Dru Bhagavad Gita. UK: Life Foundation Publications.