Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 3 verse 11. Sacrifice sustains the gods* and the gods sustain you. Sustaining one another, you reach the highest good.
Each in their own way the gods and man share responsibility to further evolution to ‘reach the highest good’ for all (the goal set by Arjuna in 3.01 - 3.03). The gods preside over the innumerable laws of Nature, governing impulses of intelligence and energy, and working out the mechanics of evolution. Man's carries forward these impulses of intelligence, energy and mechanics to enact the evolution the gods preside over.
A fundamental law of Nature is evolution through sacrifice. This Law of Sacrifice achieves the god's mission and fulfills man's actions to further evolution. The gods exist, and only exist, to create the mechanics of evolution. This same evolution is in our DNA (3.09) and is our natural duty to carry out (3.08). This Law of Sacrifice, which binds gods and man at the hip, is as fundamental and atomic as any law of physics, dirt simple, immutable, everywhere and at all times applicable. It works and has a 100% guaranteed success rate: we sacrifice desire, we evolve, we fulfill desire (3.10).**
Our sacrifice of desire to further evolution stands in the god’s favor, strengthening and sustaining them in their purpose to work out the mechanics of evolution. Having curried the god’s favor and working with them towards a common goal, they in turn deepen their efforts to support and sustain our evolution. Working together to work out evolution harmonizes the mutually beneficial relationship between gods and man, and this is very important, a relationship we set in motion by doing our natural duty to sacrifice desire in the first place (3.08, 3.09, 3.10). That is, we manifest the gods through our experience of them. ‘Sacrifice sustains the gods and the gods sustain you.’
Having sacrificed desire, we operate on Nature’s desire to create a more evolved, prosperous and just world. Together, gods and man operate from Nature’s level. Working together — hand in hand sustaining each other, as it were — with the support of Nature we ‘reach the highest good’ mutually beneficial to both gods and man.
*gods: We have sayings such as, “a stitch in time saves nine,” “fortune favors the bold,” “the early bird catches the worm,” “faint heart never won fair lass” … "you can't do two things at once." These aphorisms are universal, as true in the Owen Stanley range of New Guinea as the taco stands of Kiev. Pop the hood on any one of these and you see subtle forces of Nature at work. The gods operate just below this level, creating first truths to sustain spiritual and material evolution.
**The Law of Sacrifice may be the manifestation of an even more basic law: you can't do two things at once. Once we serve others' desires we innocently renounce our own. Desires renounced, evolution naturally flows along on its own accord: the outward direction of attention stops dead in its tracks. We turn within ... (2.45).
copyright Keith R Parker 2021