Karma Yoga and Andy Murray

There was a cheerful Andy Murray on BBC Radio 4 yesterday. He spoke about his mood for Wimbledon and it was all upbeat. It didn't seem like the Andy I generally hear or see on the media. Andy is far more often quite miserable and mumbles his words out monotone. Andy seemed unusually happy.

Explaining his enthusiasm, he said that in the past he was terribly troubled that he may retire from tennis having not won a grand slam. But he was now no longer worried about that and was not only playing better tennis--he was far happier. And that happiness was very notable in his tone.

Now competing at Wimbledon, and obviously to win, Andy is no longer troubled as he has detached himself from the worry of not winning, or the winning for names sake only. Andy is now 'detached'.

This is a practice and mind set for those who practice Karma Yoga, which is taught by Krishna in the Bhagavad-gita. In simple terms Karma-yoga means to be performing your occupation to the best of your ability with detachment from what may or may not come in consequence. A karma-yogi is traditionally said to be detached from the fruits of their work (karma-phala).

As Andy Murray is playing to win, similarly the ancient warrior Arjuna, whom Krishna personally instructed, was fighting for all that was good and determined to overcome evil. His objective was to win and as the legend goes--he did. For Arjuna the winning was not for his own name, fame and distinction, he was detached. Whatever the outcome was to be, it was not for his material ego. He had transcended the fear of losing and also the pride of victory. He performed his duty for duties sake, but even more he dedicated it all as an offering to Lord Krishna.

I guess this only goes to show that the practice of such detachment is a natural step towards personal success. Playing for playings sake and with detachment, Andy is enjoying his game and playing better tennis. And now with Nadal and  Federer knocked out, perhaps Andy might even win.

Being a fellow Scot and admirer,  I guess I should be somewhat 'detached' if he does.

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