Bhakti Yoga (The Yoga of Devotion)

Bhakti yoga is the path of devotion, of channelling emotion into love. It is the path of transmuting our emotional nature to a higher purpose. Bhakti is intense devotion and supreme attachment to God. It is the path to intuitive realisation of the Supreme through intense love and affection. Bhakti is a higher level of consciousness in which, through love, we become one with God and attain Self-realisation. The practice of bhakti yoga brings humility, compassion and unconditional love. Working with our emotional energy, through faith, prayer, and worship we surrender ourselves to God and transform our emotions into selfless devotion. This sublime love eliminates restlessness and distraction and opens the heart; we see the universe as a manifestation of the divine. We practice love for love’s sake. There is no selfish expectation, nor is there fear. The enemy of devotion is egoism and desire—lust, anger and greed. The path requires thorough discipline and a training of the will and the mind. Love, surrender, service, sacrifice and faith are all practices on the bhakti yoga path. We develop love towards all things at all times. Prayer, kirtan (chanting the names of God), japa (repetition of God’s name), hearing stories of the Lord, serving saints and holy ones, satsang, rituals and worship, charitable acts and service in God’s name all lead us to a higher level of consciousness and union with the Supreme.