yoginam api sarvesam
shraddhavan bhajate yo mam
sa me yuktatamo matah
"And of all yogis, and all others, he who directs his mind in Me and sincerely worship Me, is the best. That is My opinion."
This is a very important sloka. It is a deviation from the path Sri Krishna telling Arjuna. The destination is changed now. We have to take a decision to follow which direction as two routes branch off from here. Till now Sri Krishna was telling about the greatness of atman sakshatkaram. Once we reach that we have no more body, no more rebirths, no karmas and so no consequent happiness and sorrow, and all these are surely, very noble. This is called atman prapti or Kaivalyam. We have seen the path to that destination only all these slokas. Arjuna thought that reaching atman prapti is the ultimate goal. Before he reached that conclusion, Sri Krishna changes the course as in a railway track, the points-man operates a lever to change the track for trains to move. In complete Chapters 2, 3, 4 and 5, and upto sloka 46 in Chapter 6, Sri Krishna was directing Arjuna on a route and now from this sloka He changes the route and destination would be Himself. Of course, till now the path for reaching Kaivalyam and reaching Sri Krishna is common. Yoginam api = better than the yogi described earlier, sarvesham [api] = [ and so better than ] all others like the thapasvi, gyani and those who perform only karma, mad-gate = towards Me [Sri Krishna], antaratmana = mind, shraddhavan = with desire [to reach Sri Krishna], sa = such a person, bhajate yo mam = devoting to Myself [Sri Krishna], yuktatama = best, matah = is [Sri Krishna's] opinon. He now talks of three categories of persons and grade them. Earlier we saw those who meditate for inferior results like reaching heaven or extencding life, etc.; similarly those who are intellectuals , but knowledge is about worldly matters; and those, who perform karma for inferior results - all these people are good. But the yogi who does meditation, who has knowledge about atman and who does karma for atman sakshatkaram, is better. But, this person mentioned in this sloka, who does all these meditation, knowledge and karma, for reaching Sri Krishna, is the best. Yukta, yukta tara and yukta tama to put it in Sanskrit. So performing everything to reach the Paramatman is yuktatama. Yoginam also indicates all the four types mentioned in slokas 29, 30, 31 and 32. This person dedicating himself to Sri Krishna surpasses all of them. We nave to discuss more in this sloka and we will see it in the coming days.