The determination to serve Krishna doesn’t just herald victory – it is victory
The Bhagavad-gita concludes ((18.78) with a prophecy: when the devotee is one in will with the Lord, victory will ensue.
This prophecy was fulfilled when Arjuna, by Krishna’s grace, overcame insurmountable odds in the Kurukshetra war and attained a glorious victory. Paradoxically, that victory didn’t last for long – the Pandavas’ reign ended after just thirty-six years. Yet the Gita has remained inspirational for thousands of years. Why is that? Could its concluding declaration also refer to something greater than the Kurukshetra victory – something that resonates with a universal human need?
The fundamental universal need of the heart is love. To fulfill that need, the Gita outlines the path of bhakti that unites us with Krishna in pure spiritual love. Bhakti-yoga guides us to act spiritually in this world. By using our talents for serving Krishna and implementing his will here, we nourish our love for him and progress towards his supreme world of love.
For Arjuna, choosing the path of love meant fighting to remove anti-social, anti-spiritual elements, thereby restoring divine law and order. Arjuna’s readiness to fight after hearing the Gita indicated his determination to serve Krishna.
Gita wisdom can make all of us similarly determined to serve Krishna. Our inner determination will please him and he will guide us from within through inspiration. This will help us choose wisely and act resourcefully, and thus win more of life’s battles. But we may still face failures, because duality is the nature of this world.
Nonetheless, if we stay determined in our devotion, then we will always relish Krishna’s sweet love that transcends all material situations and lasts forever. Thus the determination to serve Krishna is itself the supreme victory, for it takes us beyond the ultimate defeat of death to life and love eternal.