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Atma Nivedana In Hinduism – Total Self Surrender To God

"Atma Nivedana" in Hinduism refers to the concept of total self-surrender to God. This concept is deeply rooted in the spiritual traditions of Hinduism and is closely associated with the path of devotion or bhakti and is mentioned in is mentioned in the Srimad Bhagavad Purana (7.5.23).. The term "Atmanivedana" is derived from two Sanskrit words: "Atman," which means the self or soul, and "Nivedana," which means surrender or offering.

The essence of Atma nivedana lies in the complete surrender of one's individual self, ego, desires, and will to the divine presence, often personified as a deity. This surrender is not passive but involves an active and wholehearted submission of the self to the will of God. It is a profound spiritual practice that seeks to dissolve the boundaries between the individual soul (Atman) and the universal divine (Brahman).

Key aspects of Atma Nivedana include:

Trust and Faith: Atma Nivedana requires a deep trust and faith in the divine. Practitioners believe that surrendering to God's will is the ultimate act of wisdom and leads to spiritual liberation.

Relinquishing Ego and Desires: True surrender involves letting go of the ego and desires that bind the individual to the material world. By surrendering these aspects, the individual seeks to align their will with the divine plan.

Devotional Practices: Atma Nivedana is often practiced within the context of devotional rituals and prayers. Devotees may engage in worship, chanting of sacred hymns, and other devotional activities as a means of expressing their surrender to God.

Acceptance of Divine Will: Practitioners of Atma Nivedana cultivate an attitude of acceptance towards whatever comes their way, seeing it as a manifestation of the divine will. This includes both joys and sorrows, success and failure.

Freedom from the Cycle of Birth and Death: The ultimate goal of Atma Nivedana is spiritual liberation or moksha. By surrendering completely to God, individuals aim to break free from the cycle of birth and death, attaining union with the divine.

Notable examples of Atma Nivedana can be found in the stories of various saints and devotees in Hindu mythology and history, such as the surrender of Draupadi to Bhagavan Sri Krishna in the Mahabharata or the devotion of Meera Bai to Bhagavan Sri Krishna. These stories illustrate the transformative power of total self-surrender on the spiritual journey.

In summary, Atma Nivedana is a profound spiritual practice in Hinduism that involves surrendering one's ego, desires, and will to the divine with unwavering trust and devotion, ultimately leading to spiritual liberation.