tasmaadasaktah satatam kaaryam karma samaachara |
asakto hyaacharan karma paramaapnoti purushaha || 19 ||

Therefore, always perform prescribed actions diligently without attachment; for, by performing action without attachment, an individual attains the supreme.

tasmaat : therefore
asaktah : without attachment
satatam : always
kaaryam : prescribed
karma : actions
samaachara : diligently
asaktah : without attachment
hi : because
aacharan : perform
karma : action
param : highest
aapnoti : attain
purushaha : an individual

In this shloka, Shri Krishna concludes his answer to Arjuna’s question from the first verse in this chapter. Arjuna had asked Shri Krishna as to why he should commit the act of war, which in his opinion was a ghastly act. Let us recap Shri Krishna’s answer.

Shri Krishna replied by explaining that no one can flee from action, that one should perform selfless rather than selfish actions, that selfless actions in the service of a higher ideal do not create bondage, and that performance of selfless action or yajna is the key to participating in the evolution of oneself and of the universe.

Another point emphasized in this shloka is that karmayoga should not be something that is restricted to only a few aspects of life. The karmayoga mindset should eventually become second nature, in other words, it should be embedded in each and every action that we perform. So therefore, in each and every action that we perform, from writing an email to eating our meals, we should remember to derive joy from the action itself rather than in the result. Only then will we begin to drop attachment to the action and to the result.

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