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Bhagwad Gita
 
  The Bhagavad Gita  
   
  Commentary by Paramahamsa Swami Shivananda Sarawati  
     
  1.The Yoga Of the Despondency of Arjuna  
  Summary of First Discourse  
  The great Mahabharata war between the Pandavas and the Kauravas took place on the holy plain of Kurukshetra. After the failure of Lord Krishna peace mission, when He Himself went to Hastinapura as the emissary of the Pandavas, there was no other alternative for the Pandavas but to engage in war for their rightful share of the kingdom.All the famous warriors from both sides had assembled on the battlefield. Tents and wagons, weapons and machines, chariots and animals covered the vast plain. Lord Krishna arrived on the scene in a magnificent chariot yoked by white horses. He was to act as the charioteer of Arjuna, one of the Pandava princes.
The din of hundreds of conches, blaring forth suddenly, announced the commencement of the battle. Arjuna blew his conch Devadatta¯, while Bhima, his brother, sounded the Paundra¯. All the other great warriors blew their respective conches.As the two armies were arrayed, ready for battle, Arjuna requested Krishna to place his chariot between them so that he might survey his opponents. He was bewildered by the scene before him, for he beheld on both sides, fathers and grandfathers, teachers and uncles, fathers-in-law, grandsons, relatives and comrades. Confusion reigned in Arjunas mind. Should he participate in this terrible carnage? Was it proper to destroy ones relatives for the sake of a kingdom and some pleasures? Would it not be much better for him to surrender everything in favour of his enemies and retire in peace? As these thoughts rushed into his mind, a feeling of despondency overtook Arjuna. He had no enthusiasm to engage in this battle. Letting his bow slip from his hands, Arjuna could do nothing but turn to Lord Krishna for guidance and enlightenme
 
     
  Dhritaraashtra Uvaacha:  
  Dharmakshetre kurukshetre samavetaa yuyutsavah;
Maamakaah paandavaashchaiva kimakurvata sanjaya.
 
     
  Dhritarashtra said:  
     
 

1. What did the sons of Pandu and also my people do when they had assembled together, eager for battle on the holy plain of Kurukshetra, O Sanjaya?
Sanjaya Uvaacha:
Drishtwaa tu paandavaaneekam vyudham duryodhanastadaa;
Aachaaryam upasamgamya raajaa vachanam abraveet.
Sanjaya said:
2. Having seen the army of the Pandavas drawn up in battle array, King Duryodhana then approached his teacher (Drona) and spoke these words:
Pashyaitaam paanduputraanaam aachaarya mahateem chamoom;
Vyoodhaam drupadaputrena tava shishyena dheemataa.
3.Behold, O Teacher, this mighty army of the sons of Pandu, arrayed by the son of Drupada, thy wise disciple!

Atra shooraa maheshwaasaa bheemaarjunasamaa yudhi;
Yuyudhaano viraatashcha drupadashcha mahaarathah.
4. Here are heroes, mighty archers, equal in battle to Bhima and Arjuna, Yuyudhana, Virata and Drupada, of the great car (mighty warriors),

Dhrishtaketush chekitaanah kaashiraajashcha veeryavaan;
Purujit kuntibhojashcha shaibyashcha narapungavah.
5. Drishtaketu, Chekitana and the valiant king of Kasi, Purujit, and Kuntibhoja and Saibya, the best of men,

Yudhaamanyushcha vikraanta uttamaujaashcha veeryavaan;
Saubhadro draupadeyaashcha sarva eva mahaarathaah.
6.The strong Yudhamanyu and the brave Uttamaujas, the son of Subhadra (Abhimanyu, the son of Arjuna), and the sons of Draupadi, all of great chariots (great heroes).

Asmaakam tu vishishtaa ye taan nibodha dwijottama;
Naayakaah mama sainyasya samjnaartham taan braveemi te.
7.Know also, O best among the twice-born, the names of those who are the most distinguished amongst ourselves, the leaders of my army! These I name to thee for thy information.

Bhavaan bheeshmashcha karnashcha kripashcha samitinjayah;
Ashwatthaamaa vikarnashcha saumadattis tathaiva cha.
8.Thyself and Bhishma, and Karna and Kripa, the victorious in war; Asvatthama, Vikarna, and Jayadratha, the son of Somadatta.

Anye cha bahavah shooraa madarthe tyaktajeevitaah;
Naanaashastrapraharanaah sarve yuddhavishaaradaah.
9.And also many other heroes who have given up their lives for my sake, armed with various weapons and missiles, all well skilled in battle.

Aparyaaptam tad asmaakam balam bheeshmaabhirakshitam;
Paryaaptam twidam eteshaam balam bheemaabhirakshitam.
10.This army of ours marshalled by Bhishma is insufficient, whereas their army, marshalled by Bhima, is sufficient.Ayaneshu cha sarveshu yathaabhaagam avasthitaah;
Bheeshmam evaabhirakshantu bhavantah sarva eva hi.
11.Therefore, do ye all, stationed in your respective positions in the several divisions of the army, protect Bhishma alone¯.

Tasya sanjanayan harsham kuruvriddhah pitaamahah;
Simhanaadam vinadyocchaih shankham dadhmau prataapavaan.
12. His glorious grandsire (Bhishma), the eldest of the Kauravas, in order to cheer Duryodhana, now roared like a lion and blew his conch.
Tatah shankhaashcha bheryashcha panavaanakagomukhaah;
Sahasaivaabhyahanyanta sa shabdastumulobhavat.

13. Then (following Bhishma), conches and kettle-drums, tabors, drums and cow-horns blared forth quite suddenly (from the side of the Kauravas); and the sound was tremendous.
Tatah shvetair hayair yukte mahati syandane sthitau;
Maadhavah paandavashchaiva divyau shankhau pradadhmatuh.
14. Then also, Madhava (Krishna), and the son of Pandu (Arjuna), seated in their magnificent chariot yoked with white horses, blew their divine conches.
Paanchajanyam hrisheekesho devadattam dhananjayah;
Paundram dadhmau mahaashankham bheemakarmaa vrikodarah.
15. Hrishikesa blew the Panchajanya¯ and Arjuna blew the Devadatta¯, and Bhima, the doer of terrible deeds, blew the great conch, Paundra.

Anantavijayam raajaa kunteeputro yudhishthirah;
Nakulah sahadevashcha sughoshamanipushpakau.
16. Yudhisthira, the son of Kunti, blew the Anantavijaya¯; and Sahadeva and Nakula blew the Manipushpaka¯ and Sughosha¯ conches.

Kaashyashcha parameshwaasah shikhandee cha mahaarathah;
Dhrishtadyumno viraatashcha saatyakishchaaparaajitah.
17. The king of Kasi, an excellent archer, Sikhandi, the mighty car-warrior, Dhristadyumna and Virata and Satyaki, the unconquered,
Drupado draupadeyaashcha sarvashah prithiveepate;
Saubhadrashcha mahaabaahuh shankhaan dadhmuh prithak prithak.
18. Drupada and the sons of Draupadi, O Lord of the Earth, and the son of Subhadra, the mighty-armed, all blew their respective conches!
Sa ghosho dhaartaraashtraanaam hridayaani vyadaarayat;
Nabhashcha prithiveem chaiva tumulo vyanunaadayan.
19. The tumultuous sound rent the hearts of Dhritarashtra party, making both heaven and earth resound.Atha vyavasthitaan drishtwaa dhaartaraashtraan kapidhwajah;
Pravritte shastrasampaate dhanurudyamya paandavah.
Hrisheekesham tadaa vaakyamidamaaha maheepate;
20. Then, seeing all the people of Dhritarashtras party standing arrayed and the discharge of weapons about to begin, Arjuna, the son of Pandu, whose ensign was that of a monkey, took up his bow and said the following to Krishna, O Lord of the Earth!

Arjuna Uvaacha:
Senayor ubhayormadhye ratham sthaapaya mechyuta.
Yaavad etaan nireeksheham yoddhukaamaan avasthitaan;
Kair mayaa saha yoddhavyam asmin ranasamudyame.Arjuna said:
21-22. In the middle of the two armies, place my chariot, O Krishna, so that I may behold those who stand here, desirous to fight, and know with whom I must fight when the battle begins.
Yotsyamaanaan aveksheham ya etetra samaagataah;
Dhaartaraashtrasya durbuddher yuddhe priyachikeershavah.

23. For I desire to observe those who are assembled here to fight, wishing to please in battle Duryodhana, the evil-minded.
Sanjaya Uvaacha:
Evamukto hrisheekesho gudaakeshena bhaarata;
Senayor ubhayormadhye sthaapayitwaa rathottamam.
Sanjaya said:
24. Being thus addressed by Arjuna, Lord Krishna, having stationed that best of chariots, O Dhritarashtra, in the midst of the two armies,
Bheeshmadronapramukhatah sarveshaam cha maheekshitaam;
Uvaacha paartha pashyaitaan samavetaan kuroon iti.
25. In front of Bhishma and Drona and all the rulers of the earth, said:O Arjuna, behold now all these Kurus gathered together!

Tatraapashyat sthitaan paarthah pitrin atha pitaamahaan;
Aachaaryaan maatulaan bhraatrun putraan pautraan sakheemstathaa.
26. Then Arjuna beheld there stationed, grandfathers and fathers, teachers, maternal uncles, brothers, sons, grandsons and friends, too.
Shvashuraan suhridashchaiva senayorubhayorapi;
Taan sameekshya sa kaunteyah sarvaan bandhoon avasthitaan.
Kripayaa parayaavishto visheedannidam abraveet;

27. (He saw) fathers-in-law and friends also in both armies. The son of Kunti”Arjuna”seeing all these kinsmen standing arrayed, spoke thus sorrowfully, filled with deep pity.

Arjuna Uvaacha:
Drishtwemam swajanam krishna yuyutsum samupasthitam.
Arjuna said:
28. Seeing these, my kinsmen, O Krishna, arrayed, eager to fight,
Seedanti mama gaatraani mukham cha parishushyati;
Vepathushcha shareere me romaharshashcha jaayate.
29. My limbs fail and my mouth is parched up, my body quivers and my hairs stand on end!
Gaandeevam sramsate hastaat twak chaiva paridahyate;
Na cha shaknomyavasthaatum bhramateeva cha me manah.
30. The (bow) Gandiva¯ slips from my hand and my skin burns all over; I am unable even to stand, my mind is reeling, as it were.Nimittaani cha pashyaami vipareetaani keshava;
Na cha shreyonupashyaami hatwaa swajanam aahave.

31. And I see adverse omens, O Kesava! I do not see any good in killing my kinsmen in battle.
Na kaangkshe vijayam krishna na cha raajyam sukhaani cha;
Kim no raajyena govinda kim bhogair jeevitena vaa.
32. For I desire neither victory, O Krishna, nor pleasures nor kingdoms! Of what avail is a dominion to us, O Krishna, or pleasures or even life?
Yeshaam arthe kaangkshitam no raajyam bhogaah sukhaani cha;
Ta imevasthitaa yuddhe praanaamstyaktwaa dhanaani cha.

33. Those for whose sake we desire kingdoms, enjoyments and pleasures, stand here in battle, having renounced life and wealth.
Aachaaryaah pitarah putraastathaiva cha pitaamahaah;
Maatulaah shwashuraah pautraah shyaalaah sambandhinas tathaa.
34. Teachers, fathers, sons and also grandfathers, grandsons, fathers-in-law, maternal uncles, brothers-in-law and relatives,

Etaan na hantum icchaami ghnatopi madhusoodana;
Api trailokya raajyasya hetoh kim nu maheekrite.

35. These I do not wish to kill, though they kill me, O Krishna, even for the sake of dominion over the three worlds, leave alone killing them for the sake of the earth!
Nihatya dhaartaraashtraan nah kaa preetih syaaj janaardana;
Paapam evaashrayed asmaan hatwaitaan aatataayinah.
36. By killing these sons of Dhritarashtra, what pleasure can be ours, O Janardana? Only sin will accrue by killing these felons.
Tasmaan naarhaa vayam hantum dhaartaraashtraan swabaandhavaan;
Swajanam hi katham hatwaa sukhinah syaama maadhava.
37. Therefore, we should not kill the sons of Dhritarashtra, our relatives; for, how can we be happy by killing our own people, O Madhava (Krishna)?
Yadyapyete na pashyanti lobhopahatachetasah;
Kulakshayakritam dosham mitradrohe cha paatakam.
38. Though they, with intelligence overpowered by greed, see no evil in the destruction of families, and no sin in hostility to friends,
Katham na jneyam asmaabhih paapaad asmaan nivartitum;
Kulakshayakritam dosham prapashyadbhir janaardana.
39. Why should not we, who clearly see evil in the destruction of a family, learn to turn away from this sin, O Janardana (Krishna)?
COMMENTARY: Ignorance of the law is no excuse and wanton sinful conduct is a crime unworthy of knowledgeable people.
Kulakshaye pranashyanti kuladharmaah sanaatanaah;
Dharme nashte kulam kritsnam adharmobhibhavatyuta.

40. In the destruction of a family, the immemorial religious rites of that family perish; on the destruction of spirituality, impiety overcomes the whole family.
COMMENTARY: Dharma pertains to the duties and ceremonies practised by the family in accordance with scriptural injunctions.
Adharmaabhibhavaat krishna pradushyanti kulastriyah;
Streeshu dushtaasu vaarshneya jaayate varnasankarah.
41. By prevalence of impiety, O Krishna, the women of the family become corrupt and, women becoming corrupted, O Varsneya (descendant of Vrishni), there arises intermingling of castes!
Sankaro narakaayaiva kulaghnaanaam kulasya cha;
Patanti pitaro hyeshaam luptapindodakakriyaah.
42. Confusion of castes leads to hell the slayers of the family, for their forefathers fall, deprived of the offerings of rice-ball and water.
Doshair etaih kulaghnaanaam varnasankarakaarakaih;
Utsaadyante jaatidharmaah kuladharmaashcha shaashwataah.
43. By these evil deeds of the destroyers of the family, which cause confusion of castes, the eternal religious rites of the caste and the family are destroyed.
Utsannakuladharmaanaam manushyaanaam janaardana;
Narakeniyatam vaaso bhavateetyanushushruma.

44. We have heard, O Janardana, that inevitable is the dwelling for an unknown period in hell for those men in whose families the religious practices have been destroyed!
Aho bata mahat paapam kartum vyavasitaa vayam;
Yadraajya sukhalobhena hantum swajanam udyataah.
45. Alas! We are involved in a great sin in that we are prepared to kill our kinsmen through greed for the pleasures of a kingdom.
Yadi maam aprateekaaram ashastram shastrapaanayah;
Dhaartaraashtraa rane hanyus tanme kshemataram bhavet.
46. If the sons of Dhritarashtra, with weapons in hand, should slay me in battle, unresisting and unarmed, that would be better for me.
Sanjaya Uvaacha:
Evamuktwaarjunah sankhye rathopastha upaavishat;
Visrijya sasharam chaapam shokasamvignamaanasah.

Sanjaya said:
47. Having thus spoken in the midst of the battlefield, Arjuna, casting away his bow and arrow, sat down on the seat of the chariot with his mind overwhelmed with sorrow.
Hari Om Tat Sat

Iti Srimad Bhagavadgeetaasoopanishatsu Brahmavidyaayaam
Yogashaastre Sri Krishnaarjunasamvaade
Arjunavishaadayogo Naama Prathamodhyaayah.

Thus in the Upanishads of the glorious Bhagavad Gita, the science of the Eternal, the scripture of Yoga, the dialogue between Sri Krishna and Arjuna, ends the first discourse entitled:The Yoga Of the Despondency of Arjuna

 
     
  II. Sankhya Yoga  
  Summary of Second Discourse
Sanjaya explains the condition of Arjuna, who was agitated due to attachment and fear.
Lord Krishna rebukes him for his dejection, which was due to Moha or attachment, and exhorts him to fight. After failing to convince Sri Krishna through his seemingly wise thoughts, Arjuna realises his helplessness and surrenders himself completely to the Lord, seeking His guidance to get over the conflict of his mind.
The Lord takes pity on him and proceeds to enlighten him by various means. He explains to Arjuna the imperishable nature of the Atman, for which there is no past, present and future. The Atman never dies, therefore Arjuna should not grieve. As It transcends the five elements, namely, earth, water, fire, air and ether, It cannot be cut, burnt or dried. It is unchanging and eternal.
Everyone experiences conditions like pleasure and pain, heat and cold, due to contact of objects with the senses. The senses carry the sensations through the nerves to the mind. One should be able to withdraw the senses from objects, like the tortoise which withdraws all its limbs within. Krishna asserts that only one who has the capacity to be balanced in pleasure and pain alike is fit for immortality.
Krishna goes on to tell Arjuna that if he refuses to fight and flees from the battle, people will be justified in condemning such action as unworthy of a warrior.
Having taught Arjuna the immortal nature of the Atman, Lord Krishna turns to the performance of action without expectation of fruit. A man should not concern himself about the fruit of the action, like gain and loss, victory and defeat. These are in the hands of the Lord. He should perform all action with a balanced mind, calmly enduring the pairs of opposites like heat and cold, pleasure and pain, that inevitably manifest during action. Krishna advises Arjuna to fight, free from desire for acquisition of kingdom or preservation of it.
Arjuna is eager to know the characteristics of a man who has a stable mind. Such a person, Krishna tells him, will have no desires at all. Since he is content within, having realised the Self, he is entirely free from desires. The consciousness of the Atman and abandonment of desires are simultaneous experiences. The various qualities of a Sthitaprajna (a stable-minded person) are described by the Lord. He will not be affected by adversity and will have no fear or anger. He will take things as they come, and will not have any likes and dislikes. He will neither hug the world nor hate it.
The man of stable mind will have perfect control of the senses. The senses are powerful and draw the mind outwards. One should therefore turn ones gaze within and realise God who resides in the heart. The Yogi, having achieved a stable mind, remains steadfast even though all sense-objects come to him. He is unmoved and lives a life of eternal peace.Krishna concludes that the eternal Brahmic state frees one from delusion forever. Even at the end of life, when one departs from this body, one does not lose consciousness of ones identity with Brahman.
 
     
  Sanjaya Uvaacha:  
  Tam tathaa kripayaavishtam ashrupoornaakulekshanam;
Visheedantam idam vaakyam uvaacha madhusoodanah.
 
     
  Sanjaya said:  
     
 

1. To him who was thus overcome with pity and who was despondent, with eyes full of tears and agitated, Krishna or Madhusudana (the destroyer of Madhu), spoke these words.
Sri Bhagavaan Uvaacha:
Kutastwaa kashmalam idam vishame samupasthitam;
Anaaryajushtam aswargyam akeertikaram arjuna.
The Blessed Lord said:
2. Whence is this perilous strait come upon thee, this dejection which is unworthy of thee, disgraceful, and which will close the gates of heaven upon thee, O Arjuna?
Klaibyam maa sma gamah paartha naitat twayyupapadyate;
Kshudram hridaya daurbalyam tyaktwottishtha parantapa.
3. Yield not to impotence, O Arjuna, son of Pritha! It does not befit thee. Cast off this mean weakness of the heart. Stand up, O scorcher of foes!
Arjuna Uvaacha:
Katham bheeshmamaham sankhye dronam cha madhusoodana;
Ishubhih pratiyotsyaami poojaarhaavarisoodana.
Arjuna said:
4. How, O Madhusudana, shall I fight in battle with arrows against Bhishma and Drona, who are fit to be worshipped, O destroyer of enemies?
Guroon ahatwaa hi mahaanubhaavaan
Shreyo bhoktum bhaikshyam apeeha loke;
Hatwaarthakaamaamstu guroon ihaiva
Bhunjeeya bhogaan rudhirapradigdhaan.
5. Better it is, indeed, in this world to accept alms than to slay the most noble teachers. But if I kill them, even in this world all my enjoyments of wealth and desires will be stained with (their) blood.
Na chaitad vidmah kataran no gareeyo
Yadwaa jayema yadi vaa no jayeyuh;
Yaan eva hatwaa na jijeevishaamas
Tevasthitaah pramukhe dhaartaraashtraah.

6. I can hardly tell which will be better: that we should conquer them or they should conquer us. Even the sons of Dhritarashtra, after slaying whom we do not wish to live, stand facing us.
Kaarpanyadoshopahataswabhaavah
Pricchaami twaam dharmasammoodha chetaah;
Yacchreyah syaan nishchitam broohi tanme
Shishyasteham shaadhi maam twaam prapannam.

7. My heart is overpowered by the taint of pity, my mind is confused as to duty. I ask Thee: tell me decisively what is good for me. I am Thy disciple. Instruct me who has taken refuge in Thee.
Na hi prapashyaami mamaapanudyaad
Yacchokam ucchoshanam indriyaanaam;
Avaapya bhoomaavasapatnam riddham
Raajyam suraanaam api chaadhipatyam.
8. I do not see that it would remove this sorrow that burns up my senses even if I should attain prosperous and unrivalled dominion on earth or lordship over the gods.
Sanjaya Uvaacha:
Evam uktwaa hrisheekesham gudaakeshah parantapah;
Na yotsya iti govindam uktwaa tooshneem babhoova ha.
Sanjaya said:
9. Having spoken thus to Hrishikesa (Lord of the senses), Arjuna (the conqueror of sleep), the destroyer of foes, said to Krishna: I will not fight,¯ and became silent.

Tam uvaacha hrisheekeshah prahasanniva bhaarata;
Senayor ubhayor madhye visheedantam idam vachah.
10. To him who was despondent in the midst of the two armies, Sri Krishna, as if smiling, O Bharata, spoke these words!
Sri Bhagavaan Uvaacha:
Ashochyaan anvashochastwam prajnaavaadaamshcha bhaashase;
Gataasoon agataasoomshcha naanushochanti panditaah.
The Blessed Lord said:
11. Thou hast grieved for those that should not be grieved for, yet thou speakest words of wisdom. The wise grieve neither for the living nor for the dead.
Na twevaaham jaatu naasam na twam neme janaadhipaah;
Na chaiva na bhavishyaamah sarve vayam atah param.
12. Nor at any time indeed was I not, nor these rulers of men, nor verily shall we ever cease to be hereafter.
Dehinosmin yathaa dehe kaumaaram yauvanam jaraa;
Tathaa dehaantara praaptir dheeras tatra na muhyati.

13. Just as in this body the embodied (soul) passes into childhood, youth and old age, so also does he pass into another body; the firm man does not grieve thereat.
Maatraasparshaastu kaunteya sheetoshnasukhaduhkhadaah;
Aagamaapaayinonityaas taamstitikshaswa bhaarata.

14. The contacts of the senses with the objects, O son of Kunti, which cause heat and cold and pleasure and pain, have a beginning and an end; they are impermanent; endure them bravely, O Arjuna!
Yam hi na vyathayantyete purusham purusharshabha;
Samaduhkha sukham dheeram somritatwaaya kalpate.

15. That firm man whom surely these afflict not, O chief among men, to whom pleasure and pain are the same, is fit for attaining immortality!
Naasato vidyate bhaavo naabhaavo vidyate satah;
Ubhayorapi drishtontastwanayos tattwadarshibhih.

16. The unreal hath no being; there is no non-being of the Real; the truth about both has been seen by the knowers of the Truth (or the seers of the Essence).
COMMENTARY: What is changing must always be unreal. What is constant or permanent must always be real. The Atman or the eternal, all-pervading Self ever exists. It is the only Reality. This phenomenal world of names and forms is ever changing. Names and forms are subject to decay and death. Hence they are unreal or impermanent.
Avinaashi tu tad viddhi yena sarvam idam tatam;
Vinaasham avyayasyaasya na kashchit kartum arhati.
17. Know That to be indestructible, by whom all this is pervaded. None can cause the destruction of That, the Imperishable.
COMMENTARY: The Self pervades all objects like ether. Even if the pot is broken, the ether that is within and without it cannot be destroyed. Similarly, if the bodies and all other objects perish, the eternal Self that pervades them cannot be destroyed; It is the living Truth.
Antavanta ime dehaa nityasyoktaah shareerinah;
Anaashinoprameyasya tasmaad yudhyaswa bhaarata.

18. These bodies of the embodied Self, which is eternal, indestructible and immeasurable, are said to have an end. Therefore, fight, O Arjuna!
Ya enam vetti hantaaram yashchainam manyate hatam;
Ubhau tau na vijaaneeto naayam hanti na hanyate.
19. He who takes the Self to be the slayer and he who thinks He is slain, neither of them knows; He slays not nor is He slain.
Na jaayate mriyate vaa kadaachin
Naayam bhootwaa bhavitaa vaa na bhooyah;
Ajo nityah shaashwatoyam puraano
Na hanyate hanyamaane shareere.

20. He is not born nor does He ever die; after having been, He again ceases not to be. Unborn, eternal, changeless and ancient, He is not killed when the body is killed,
Vedaavinaashinam nityam ya enam ajam avyayam;
Katham sa purushah paartha kam ghaatayati hanti kam.
21. Whosoever knows Him to be indestructible, eternal, unborn and inexhaustible, how can that man slay, O Arjuna, or cause to be slain?
Vaasaamsi jeernaani yathaa vihaaya
Navaani grihnaati naroparaani;
Tathaa shareeraani vihaaya jeernaa
Nyanyaani samyaati navaani dehee.

22. Just as a man casts off worn-out clothes and puts on new ones, so also the embodied Self casts off worn-out bodies and enters others that are new.
Nainam cchindanti shastraani nainam dahati paavakah;
Na chainam kledayantyaapo na shoshayati maarutah.
23. Weapons cut It not, fire burns It not, water wets It not, wind dries It not.
COMMENTARY: The Self is partless. It is infinite and extremely subtle. So the sword cannot cut It, fire cannot burn It, wind cannot dry It.
Acchedyoyam adaahyoyam akledyoshoshya eva cha;
Nityah sarvagatah sthaanur achaloyam sanaatanah.

24. This Self cannot be cut, burnt, wetted nor dried up. It is eternal, all-pervading, stable, ancient and immovable.
Avyaktoyam achintyoyam avikaaryoyam uchyate;
Tasmaad evam viditwainam naanushochitum arhasi.

25. This (Self) is said to be unmanifested, unthinkable and unchangeable. Therefore, knowing This to be such, thou shouldst not grieve.
Atha chainam nityajaatam nityam vaa manyase mritam;
Tathaapi twam mahaabaaho naivam shochitum arhasi.
26. But, even if thou thinkest of It as being constantly born and dying, even then, O mighty-armed, thou shouldst not grieve!
COMMENTARY: Birth is inevitable to what is dead and death is inevitable to what is born. This is the law of Nature. Therefore, one should not grieve.
Jaatasya hi dhruvo mrityur dhruvam janma mritasya cha;
Tasmaad aparihaaryerthe na twam shochitum arhasi.

27. For, certain is death for the born and certain is birth for the dead; therefore, over the inevitable thou shouldst not grieve.
Avyaktaadeeni bhootaani vyaktamadhyaani bhaarata;
Avyakta nidhanaanyeva tatra kaa paridevanaa.
28. Beings are unmanifested in their beginning, manifested in their middle state, O Arjuna, and unmanifested again in their end! What is there to grieve about?
COMMENTARY: The physical body is a combination of the five elements. It is perceived by the physical eye only after the five elements have entered into such combination. After death the body disintegrates and all the five elements return to their source. The body cannot be perceived now. It can be perceived only in the middle state. He who understands the nature of the body and human relationships based upon it will not grieve.
Aashcharyavat pashyati kashchid enam
Aashcharyavad vadati tathaiva chaanyah;
Aashcharyavacchainam anyah shrinoti
Shrutwaapyenam veda na chaiva kashchit.
29. One sees This (the Self) as a wonder; another speaks of It as a wonder; another hears of It as a wonder; yet, having heard, none understands It at all.
COMMENTARY: The verse may also be interpreted in this manner: he that sees, hears and speaks of the Self is a wonderful man. Such a man is very rare. He is one among many thousands. Therefore, the Self is very hard to understand.
Dehee nityam avadhyoyam dehe sarvasya bhaarata;
Tasmaat sarvaani bhootaani na twam shochitum arhasi.

30. This, the Indweller in the body of everyone, is always indestructible, O Arjuna! Therefore, thou shouldst not grieve for any creature.
Swadharmam api chaavekshya na vikampitum arhasi;
Dharmyaaddhi yuddhaacchreyonyat kshatriyasya na vidyate.

31. Further, having regard to thy own duty, thou shouldst not waver, for there is nothing higher for a Kshatriya than a righteous war.
COMMENTARY: To a Kshatriya (one born in the warrior or ruling class) nothing is more welcome than a righteous war.
Yadricchayaa chopapannam swargadwaaram apaavritam;
Sukhinah kshatriyaah paartha labhante yuddham eedrisham.
32. Happy are the Kshatriyas, O Arjuna, who are called upon to fight in such a battle that comes of itself as an open door to heaven!
COMMENTARY: The scriptures declare that if a warrior dies for a righteous cause on the battlefield he at once ascends to heaven.
Atha chettwam imam dharmyam samgraamam na karishyasi;
Tatah swadharmam keertim cha hitwaa paapam avaapsyasi.
33. But, if thou wilt not fight in this righteous war, then, having abandoned thine duty and fame, thou shalt incur sin.
Akeertim chaapi bhootaani kathayishyanti tevyayaam;
Sambhaavitasya chaakeertir maranaad atirichyate.

34. People, too, will recount thy everlasting dishonour; and to one who has been honoured, dishonour is worse than death.
Bhayaad ranaad uparatam mamsyante twaam mahaarathaah;
Yeshaam cha twam bahumato bhootwaa yaasyasi laaghavam.
35. The great car-warriors will think that thou hast withdrawn from the battle through fear; and thou wilt be lightly held by them who have thought much of thee.
Avaachyavaadaamshcha bahoon vadishyanti tavaahitaah;
Nindantastava saamarthyam tato duhkhataram nu kim.
36. Thy enemies also, cavilling at thy power, will speak many abusive words. What is more painful than this!
Hato vaa praapsyasi swargam jitwaa vaa bhokshyase maheem;
Tasmaad uttishtha kaunteya yuddhaaya kritanishchayah.
37. Slain, thou wilt obtain heaven; victorious, thou wilt enjoy the earth; therefore, stand up, O son of Kunti, resolved to fight!
Sukhaduhkhe same kritwaa laabhaalaabhau jayaajayau;
Tato yuddhaaya yujyaswa naivam paapamavaapsyasi.
38. Having made pleasure and pain, gain and loss, victory and defeat the same, engage thou in battle for the sake of battle; thus thou shalt not incur sin.
COMMENTARY: This is the Yoga of equanimity or the doctrine of poise in action. If a person performs actions with the above mental attitude, he will not reap the fruits of such actions.
Eshaa tebhihitaa saankhye buddhir yoge twimaam shrinu;
Buddhyaa yukto yayaa paartha karma bandham prahaasyasi.

39. This which has been taught to thee, is wisdom concerning Sankhya. Now listen to wisdom concerning Yoga, endowed with which, O Arjuna, thou shalt cast off the bonds of action!
Nehaabhikramanaashosti pratyavaayo na vidyate;
Swalpam apyasya dharmasya traayate mahato bhayaat.

40. In this there is no loss of effort, nor is there any harm (the production of contrary results or transgression). Even a little of this knowledge (even a little practice of this Yoga) protects one from great fear.
COMMENTARY: In Karma Yoga (selfless action) even a little effort brings immediate purification of the heart. Purification of the heart leads to fearlessness.
Vyavasaayaatmikaa buddhir ekeha kurunandana;
Bahushaakhaa hyanantaashcha buddhayovyavasaayinaam.

41. Here, O joy of the Kurus, there is a single one-pointed determination! Many-branched and endless are the thoughts of the irresolute.
Yaam imaam pushpitaam vaacham pravadantyavipashchitah;
Vedavaadarataah paartha naanyad asteeti vaadinah.
42. Flowery speech is uttered by the unwise, who take pleasure in the eulogising words of the Vedas, O Arjuna, saying: There is nothing else!

COMMENTARY: Unwise people who lack discrimination place great stress upon the Karma Kanda or ritualistic portion of the Vedas which lays down specific rules for specific actions for the attainment of specific fruit. They extol these actions and rewards unduly.
Kaamaatmaanah swargaparaa janmakarmaphalapradaam;
Kriyaavisheshabahulaam bhogaishwaryagatim prati.
43. Full of desires, having heaven as their goal, they utter speech which promises birth as the reward of ones actions, and prescribe various specific actions for the attainment of pleasure and power.

Bhogaishwarya prasaktaanaam tayaapahritachetasaam;
Vyavasaayaatmikaa buddhih samaadhau na vidheeyate.
44. For those who are much attached to pleasure and to power, whose minds are drawn away by such teaching, that determinate faculty is not manifest that is steadily bent on meditation and Samadhi (the state of Super consciousness).
Traigunyavishayaa vedaa nistraigunyo bhavaarjuna;
Nirdwandwo nityasatwastho niryogakshema aatmavaan.
45. The Vedas deal with the three attributes (of Nature); be thou above these three attributes, O Arjuna! Free yourself from the pairs of opposites and ever remain in the quality of Sattwa (goodness), freed from the thought of acquisition and preservation, and be established in the Self.
COMMENTARY: Guna means attribute or quality. It is substance as well as quality. Nature is made up of three Gunas”Sattwa (purity, light, harmony), Rajas (passion, restlessness, motion), and Tamas (inertia, darkness). The pairs of opposites are pleasure and pain, heat and cold, gain and loss, victory and defeat, honour and dishonour, praise and censure.

Yaavaanartha udapaane sarvatah samplutodake;
Taavaan sarveshu vedeshu braahmanasya vijaanatah.
46. To the Brahmana who has known the Self, all the Vedas are of as much use as is a reservoir of water in a place where there is a flood.
COMMENTARY: Only for a sage who has realised the Self are the Vedas of no use, because he is in possession of knowledge of the Self. This does not, however, mean that the Vedas are useless. They are useful for neophytes or aspirants who have just started on the spiritual path.
Karmanyevaadhikaaraste maa phaleshu kadaachana;
Maa karmaphalahetur bhoor maa te sangostwakarmani.

47. Thy right is to work only, but never with its fruits; let not the fruits of actions be thy motive, nor let thy attachment be to inaction.
COMMENTARY: Actions done with expectation of its rewards bring bondage. If you do not thirst for them, you get purification of heart and ultimately knowledge of the Self.
Yogasthah kuru karmaani sangam tyaktwaa dhananjaya;
Siddhyasiddhyoh samo bhootwaa samatwam yoga uchyate.
48. Perform action, O Arjuna, being steadfast in Yoga, abandoning attachment and balanced in success and failure! Evenness of mind is called Yoga.
Doorena hyavaram karma buddhiyogaad dhananjaya;
Buddhau sharanamanwiccha kripanaah phalahetavah.
49. Far lower than the Yoga of wisdom is action, O Arjuna! Seek thou refuge in wisdom; wretched are they whose motive is the fruit.
COMMENTARY: Actions done with evenness of mind is the Yoga of wisdom. Actions performed by one who expects their fruits are far inferior to the Yoga of wisdom wherein the seeker does not seek the fruits. The former leads to bondage, and is the cause of birth and death.
Buddhiyukto jahaateeha ubhe sukrita dushkrite;
Tasmaad yogaaya yujyaswa yogah karmasu kaushalam.
50. Endowed with wisdom (evenness of mind), one casts off in this life both good and evil deeds; therefore, devote thyself to Yoga; Yoga is skill in action.
COMMENTARY: Actions which are of a binding nature lose that nature when performed with equanimity of mind.
Karmajam buddhiyuktaa hi phalam tyaktwaa maneeshinah;
Janmabandha vinirmuktaah padam gacchantyanaamayam.
51. The wise, possessed of knowledge, having abandoned the fruits of their actions, and being freed from the fetters of birth, go to the place which is beyond all evil.
COMMENTARY: Clinging to the fruits of actions is the cause of rebirth. Man has to take a body to enjoy them. If actions are done for the sake of God, without desire for the fruits, one is released from the bonds of birth and death and attains to immortal bliss.
Yadaa te mohakalilam buddhir vyatitarishyati;
Tadaa gantaasi nirvedam shrotavyasya shrutasya cha.
52. When thy intellect crosses beyond the mire of delusion, then thou shalt attain to indifference as to what has been heard and what has yet to be heard.
COMMENTARY: The mire of delusion is identification of the Self with the body and mind.
Shrutivipratipannaa te yadaa sthaasyati nishchalaa;
Samaadhaavachalaa buddhistadaa yogam avaapsyasi.
53. When thy intellect, perplexed by what thou hast heard, shall stand immovable and steady in the Self, then thou shalt attain Self-realisation.
Arjuna Uvaacha:
Sthitaprajnasya kaa bhaashaa samaadhisthasya keshava;
Sthitadheeh kim prabhaasheta kimaaseeta vrajeta kim.
Arjuna said:
54. What, O Krishna, is the description of him who has steady wisdom and is merged in the Superconscious State? How does one of steady wisdom speak? How does he sit? How does he walk?
Sri Bhagavaan Uvaacha:
Prajahaati yadaa kaamaan sarvaan paartha manogataan;
Aatmanyevaatmanaa tushtah sthitaprajnastadochyate.
The Blessed Lord said:
55. When a man completely casts off, O Arjuna, all the desires of the mind and is satisfied in the Self by the Self, then is he said to be one of steady wisdom!
COMMENTARY: All the pleasures of the world are worthless to an illumined sage who is ever content in the immortal Self.
Duhkheshwanudwignamanaah sukheshu vigatasprihah;
Veetaraagabhayakrodhah sthitadheer munir uchyate.
56. He whose mind is not shaken by adversity, who does not hanker after pleasures, and who is free from attachment, fear and anger, is called a sage of steady wisdom.
Yah sarvatraanabhisnehas tattat praapya shubhaashubham;
Naabhinandati na dweshti tasya prajnaa pratishthitaa.
57. He who is everywhere without attachment, on meeting with anything good or bad, who neither rejoices nor hates, his wisdom is fixed.
Yadaa samharate chaayam kurmongaaneeva sarvashah;
Indriyaaneendriyaarthebhyas tasya prajnaa pratishthitaa.

58. When, like the tortoise which withdraws its limbs on all sides, he withdraws his senses from the sense-objects, then his wisdom becomes steady.
Vishayaa vinivartante niraahaarasya dehinah
Rasavarjam rasopyasya param drishtwaa nivartate.

59. The objects of the senses turn away from the abstinent man, leaving the longing (behind); but his longing also turns away on seeing the Supreme.
Yatato hyapi kaunteya purushasya vipashchitah;
Indriyaani pramaatheeni haranti prasabham manah.
60. The turbulent senses, O Arjuna, do violently carry away the mind of a wise man though he be striving (to control them)!
Taani sarvaani samyamya yukta aaseeta matparah;
Vashe hi yasyendriyaani tasya prajnaa pratishthitaa.
61. Having restrained them all he should sit steadfast, intent on Me; his wisdom is steady whose senses are under control.
Dhyaayato vishayaan pumsah sangas teshupajaayate;
Sangaat sanjaayate kaamah kaamaat krodhobhijaayate.

62. When a man thinks of the objects, attachment to them arises; from attachment desire is born; from desire anger arises.
Krodhaad bhavati sammohah sammohaat smriti vibhramah;
Smritibhramshaad buddhinaasho buddhinaashaat pranashyati.
63. From anger comes delusion; from delusion the loss of memory; from loss of memory the destruction of discrimination; from the destruction of discrimination he perishes.
Raagadwesha viyuktaistu vishayaanindriyaishcharan;
Aatmavashyair vidheyaatmaa prasaadamadhigacchati.
64. But the self-controlled man, moving amongst objects with the senses under restraint, and free from attraction and repulsion, attains to peace.
Prasaade sarvaduhkhaanaam haanir asyopajaayate;
Prasannachetaso hyaashu buddhih paryavatishthate.
65. In that peace all pains are destroyed, for the intellect of the tranquil-minded soon becomes steady.
COMMENTARY: When peace is attained all miseries end.
Naasti buddhir ayuktasya na chaayuktasya bhaavanaa;
Na chaabhaavayatah shaantir ashaantasya kutah sukham.
66. There is no knowledge of the Self to the unsteady, and to the unsteady no meditation is possible; and to the un-meditative there can be no peace; and to the man who has no peace, how can there be happiness?
Indriyaanaam hi charataam yanmanonuvidheeyate;
Tadasya harati prajnaam vaayur naavam ivaambhasi.

67. For the mind which follows in the wake of the wandering senses, carries away his discrimination as the wind (carries away) a boat on the waters.
Tasmaad yasya mahaabaaho nigriheetaani sarvashah;
Indriyaaneendriyaarthebhyas tasya prajnaa pratishthitaa.
68. Therefore, O mighty-armed Arjuna, his knowledge is steady whose senses are completely restrained from sense-objects!
Yaanishaa sarvabhootaanaam tasyaam jaagarti samyamee;
Yasyaam jaagrati bhootaani saa nishaa pashyato muneh.
69. That which is night to all beings, then the self-controlled man is awake; when all beings are awake, that is night for the sage who sees.
COMMENTARY: The sage lives in the Self; this is day to him. He is unconscious of worldly phenomena; this is like night to him. The ordinary man is unconscious of his real nature. So life in the Self is like night to him. He experiences sense-objects; this is day to him.
Aapooryamaanam achalapratishtham
Samudram aapah pravishanti yadwat;
Tadwat kaamaa yam pravishanti sarve
Sa shaantim aapnoti na kaamakaami.
70. He attains peace into whom all desires enter as waters enter the ocean, which, filled from all sides, remains unmoved; but not the man who is full of desires.
Vihaaya kaamaan yah sarvaan pumaamshcharati nihsprihah;
Nirmamo nirahankaarah sa shaantim adhigacchati.
71. The man attains peace, who, abandoning all desires, moves about without longing, without the sense of mine and without egoism.
Eshaa braahmee sthitih paartha nainaam praapya vimuhyati;
Sthitwaasyaamantakaalepi brahmanirvaanamricchati.

72. This is the Brahmic seat (eternal state), O son of Pritha! Attaining to this, none is deluded. Being established therein, even at the end of life one attains to oneness with Brahman.

 
  Hari Om Tat Sat  
 

Iti Srimad Bhagavadgeetaasoopanishatsu BdyaayYograhmaviashaastre Sri Krishnaarjunasamvaadeaam
Saankhyayogo Naama Dvitiyodhyaayah

Thus in the Upanishads of the glorious Bhagavad Gita, the science of the Eternal, the scripture of Yoga, the dialogue between Sri Krishna and Arjuna, ends the second discourse entitled:
The Sankhya Yoga

 
     
  III.The Yoga of Action  
  Summary of Third Discourse  
 

In order to remove Moha or attachment, which was the sole cause of Arjunas delusion, Sri Krishna taught him the imperishable nature of the Atman, the realisation of which would grant him the freedom of the Eternal. A doubt therefore arises in Arjunas mind as to the necessity of engaging in action even after one has attained this state.

Sri Krishna clears this doubt by telling him that although one has realised oneness with the Eternal, one has to perform action through the force of Prakriti or Nature. He emphasises that perfection is attained not by ceasing to engage in action but by doing all actions as a divine offering, imbued with a spirit of non-attachment and sacrifice.

The man of God-vision, Sri Krishna explains to Arjuna, need not engage in action, as he has attained everything that has to be attained. He can be ever absorbed in the calm and immutable Self. But to perform action for the good of the world and for the education of the masses is no doubt superior. Therefore, action is necessary not only for one who has attained perfection but also for one who is striving for perfection. Sri Krishna quotes the example of Janaka, the great sage-king of India, who continued to rule his kingdom even after attaining God-realisation.

Prakriti or Nature is made up of the three qualities”Rajas, Tamas and Sattwa. The Atman is beyond these three qualities and their functions. Only when knowledge of this fact dawns in man does he attain perfection.

The Lord tells Arjuna that each one should do his duty according to his nature, and that doing duty that is suited to ones nature in the right spirit of detachment will lead to perfection.

Arjuna raises the question as to why man commits such actions that cloud his mind and drag him downwards, by force, as it were. Sri Krishna answers that it is desire that impels man to lose his discrimination and understanding, and thus commit wrong actions. Desire is the root cause of all evil actions. If desire is removed, then the divine power manifests in its full glory and one enjoys peace, bliss, light and freedom.

 
     
  Arjuna Uvaacha  
     
  Jyaayasee chet karmanaste mataa buddhir janaardana;
Tat kim karmani ghore maam niyojayasi keshava.
 
  Arjuna said:  
 

1. If it be thought by Thee that knowledge is superior to action, O Krishna, why then, O Kesava, dost Thou ask me to engage in this terrible action?

Vyaamishreneva vaakyena buddhim mohayaseeva me;
Tadekam vada nishchitya yena shreyoham aapnuyaam.

2. With these apparently perplexing words Thou confusest, as it were, my understanding; therefore, tell me that one way for certain by which I may attain bliss.

Sri Bhagavaan Uvaacha:

Lokesmin dwividhaa nishthaa puraa proktaa mayaanagha;
Jnaanayogena saankhyaanaam karmayogena yoginaam.

The Blessed Lord said:

3. In this world there is a twofold path, as I said before, O sinless one,”the path of knowledge of the Sankhyas and the path of action of the Yogis!

Na karmanaam anaarambhaan naishkarmyam purushoshnute;
Na cha sannyasanaad eva siddhim samadhigacchati.

4. Not by the non-performance of actions does man reach actionlessness, nor by mere renunciation does he attain to perfection.

COMMENTARY: Even if a man abandons action, his mind may be active. One cannot reach perfection or freedom from action or knowledge of the Self, merely by renouncing action. He must possess knowledge of the Self.

Na hi kashchit kshanamapi jaatu tishthatyakarmakrit;
Kaaryate hyavashah karma sarvah prakritijair gunaih.

5. Verily none can ever remain for even a moment without performing action; for, everyone is made to act helplessly indeed by the qualities born of Nature.

COMMENTARY: The ignorant man is driven to action helplessly by the actions of the Gunas”Rajas, Tamas and Sattwa.

Karmendriyaani samyamya ya aaste manasaa smaran;
Indriyaarthaan vimoodhaatmaa mithyaachaarah sa uchyate.

6. He who, restraining the organs of action, sits thinking of the sense-objects in mind, he, of deluded understanding, is called a hypocrite.

Yastwindriyaani manasaa niyamyaarabhaterjuna;
Karmendriyaih karmayogam asaktah sa vishishyate.

7. But whosoever, controlling the senses by the mind, O Arjuna, engages himself in Karma Yoga with the organs of action, without attachment, he excels!

Niyatam kuru karma twam karma jyaayo hyakarmanah;
Shareerayaatraapi cha te na prasiddhyed akarmanah.

8. Do thou perform thy bounden duty, for action is superior to inaction and even the maintenance of the body would not be possible for thee by inaction.

Yajnaarthaat karmanonyatra lokoyam karmabandhanah;
Tadartham karma kaunteya muktasangah samaachara.

9. The world is bound by actions other than those performed for the sake of sacrifice; do thou, therefore, O son of Kunti, perform action for that sake (for sacrifice) alone, free from attachment!

COMMENTARY: If anyone does actions for the sake of the Lord, he is not bound. His heart is purified by performing actions for the sake of the Lord. Where this spirit of unselfishness does not govern the action, such actions bind one to worldliness, however good or glorious they may be.

Sahayajnaah prajaah srishtwaa purovaacha prajaapatih;
Anena prasavishyadhwam esha vostvishtakaamadhuk.

10. The Creator, having in the beginning of creation created mankind together with sacrifice, said: By this shall ye propagate; let this be the milch cow of your desires (the cow which yields the desired objects¯.

Devaan bhaavayataanena te devaa bhaavayantu vah;
Parasparam bhaavayantah shreyah param avaapsyatha.

11. With this do ye nourish the gods, and may the gods nourish you; thus nourishing one another, ye shall attain to the highest good.

Ishtaan bhogaan hi vo devaa daasyante yajnabhaavitaah;
Tair dattaan apradaayaibhyo yo bhungkte stena eva sah.

12. The gods, nourished by the sacrifice, will give you the desired objects. So, he who enjoys the objects given by the gods without offering (in return) to them, is verily a thief.

Yajnashishtaashinah santo muchyante sarva kilbishaih;
Bhunjate te twagham paapaa ye pachantyaatma kaaranaat.

13. The righteous, who eat of the remnants of the sacrifice, are freed from all sins; but those sinful ones who cook food (only) for their own sake, verily eat sin.

Annaad bhavanti bhootaani parjanyaad anna sambhavah;
Yajnaad bhavati parjanyo yajnah karma samudbhavah.

14. From food come forth beings, and from rain food is produced; from sacrifice arises rain, and sacrifice is born of action.

Karma brahmodbhavam viddhi brahmaakshara samudbhavam;
Tasmaat sarvagatam brahma nityam yajne pratishthitam.

15. Know thou that action comes from Brahma, and Brahma proceeds from the Imperishable. Therefore, the all-pervading (Brahma) ever rests in sacrifice.

Evam pravartitam chakram naanuvartayateeha yah;
Aghaayur indriyaaraamo mogham paartha sa jeevati.

16. He who does not follow the wheel thus set revolving, who is of sinful life, rejoicing in the senses, he lives in vain, O Arjuna!

COMMENTARY: He who does not follow the wheel by studying the Vedas and performing the sacrifices prescribed therein, but who indulges only in sensual pleasures, lives in vain. He wastes his life.

Yastwaatmaratir eva syaad aatmatriptashcha maanavah;
Aatmanyeva cha santushtas tasya kaaryam na vidyate.

17. But for that man who rejoices only in the Self, who is satisfied in the Self, who is content in the Self alone, verily there is nothing to do.

Naiva tasya kritenaartho naakriteneha kashchana;
Na chaasya sarvabhooteshu kashchidartha vyapaashrayah.

18. For him there is no interest whatsoever in what is done or what is not done; nor does he depend on any being for any object.

COMMENTARY: The sage who rejoices in his own Self does not gain anything by doing any action. To him no real purpose is served by engaging in any action. No evil can touch him as a result of inaction. He does not lose anything by being inactive.

Tasmaad asaktah satatam kaaryam karma samaachara;
Asakto hyaacharan karma param aapnoti poorushah.

19. Therefore, without attachment, do thou always perform action which should be done; for, by performing action without attachment man reaches the Supreme.

Karmanaiva hi samsiddhim aasthitaa janakaadayah;
Lokasangraham evaapi sampashyan kartum arhasi.

20. Janaka and others attained perfection verily by action only; even with a view to the protection of the masses thou shouldst perform action.

Yadyad aacharati shreshthas tattadevetaro janah;
Sa yat pramaanam kurute lokas tad anuvartate.

21. Whatsoever a great man does, that other men also do; whatever he sets up as the standard, that the world follows.

Na me paarthaasti kartavyam trishu lokeshu kinchana;
Naanavaaptam avaaptavyam varta eva cha karmani.

22. There is nothing in the three worlds, O Arjuna, that should be done by Me, nor is there anything unattained that should be attained; yet I engage Myself in action!

Yadi hyaham na varteyam jaatu karmanyatandritah;
Mama vartmaanuvartante manushyaah paartha sarvashah.

23. For, should I not ever engage Myself in action, unwearied, men would in every way follow My path, O Arjuna!

Utseedeyur ime lokaa na kuryaam karma ched aham;
Sankarasya cha kartaa syaam upahanyaam imaah prajaah.

24. These worlds would perish if I did not perform action; I should be the author of confusion of castes and destruction of these beings.

Saktaah karmanyavidwaamso yathaa kurvanti bhaarata;
Kuryaad vidwaam stathaa saktash chikeershur lokasangraham.

25. As the ignorant men act from attachment to action, O Bharata (Arjuna), so should the wise act without attachment, wishing the welfare of the world!

Na buddhibhedam janayed ajnaanaam karmasanginaam;
Joshayet sarva karmaani vidwaan yuktah samaacharan.

26. Let no wise man unsettle the minds of ignorant people who are attached to action; he should engage them in all actions, himself fulfilling them with devotion.

Prakriteh kriyamaanaani gunaih karmaani sarvashah;
Ahamkaaravimoodhaatmaa kartaaham iti manyate.

27. All actions are wrought in all cases by the qualities of Nature only. He whose mind is deluded by egoism thinks: I am the doer.

COMMENTARY: Prakriti or Nature is that state in which the three Gunas exist in a state of equilibrium. When this equilibrium is disturbed, creation begins and the body, senses and mind are formed. The man who is deluded by egoism identifies the Self with the body, mind, the life-force and the senses, and ascribes to the Self all the attributes of the body and the senses. In reality the Gunas of nature perform all actions.

Tattwavittu mahaabaaho gunakarma vibhaagayoh;
Gunaa guneshu vartanta iti matwaa na sajjate.

28. But he who knows the truth, O mighty-armed Arjuna, about the divisions of the qualities and their functions, knowing that the Gunas as senses move amidst the Gunas as the sense-objects, is not attached.

Prakriter gunasammoodhaah sajjante gunakarmasu;
Taan akritsnavido mandaan kritsnavin na vichaalayet.

29. Those deluded by the qualities of Nature are attached to the functions of the qualities. A man of perfect knowledge should not unsettle the foolish one of imperfect knowledge.

Mayi sarvaani karmaani sannyasyaadhyaatma chetasaa;
Niraasheer nirmamo bhootwaa yudhyaswa vigatajwarah.

30. Renouncing all actions in Me, with the mind centred in the Self, free from hope and egoism, and from (mental) fever, do thou fight.

COMMENTARY: Surrender all actions to Me with the thought: I perform all actions for the sake of the Lord only.¯

Ye me matam idam nityam anutishthanti maanavaah;
Shraddhaavantonasooyanto muchyante tepi karmabhih.

31. Those men who constantly practise this teaching of Mine with faith and without cavilling, they too are freed from actions.

Ye twetad abhyasooyanto naanutishthanti me matam;
Sarvajnaanavimoodhaam staan viddhi nashtaan achetasah.

32. But those who carp at My teaching and do not practise it, deluded in all knowledge and devoid of discrimination, know them to be doomed to destruction.

Sadrisham cheshtate swasyaah prakriter jnaanavaan api;
Prakritim yaanti bhootaani nigrahah kim karishyati.

33. Even a wise man acts in accordance with his own nature; beings will follow nature; what can restraint do?

COMMENTARY: Only the ignorant man comes under the sway of his natural propensities. The seeker after Truth who is endowed with the Four Means and who constantly practises meditation, can easily control Nature if he rises above the sway of the pairs of opposites, like love and hate, etc.

Indriyasyendriyasyaarthe raagadweshau vyavasthitau;
Tayor na vasham aagacchet tau hyasya paripanthinau.

34. Attachment and aversion for the objects of the senses abide in the senses; let none come under their sway, for they are his foes.

Shreyaan swadharmo vigunah paradharmaat swanushthitaat;
Swadharme nidhanam shreyah paradharmo bhayaavahah.

35. Better is ones own duty, though devoid of merit, than the duty of another well discharged. Better is death in ones own duty; the duty of another is fraught with fear.

Arjuna Uvaacha:

Atha kena prayuktoyam paapam charati poorushah;
Anicchann api vaarshneya balaad iva niyojitah.

Arjuna said:

36. But impelled by what does man commit sin, though against his wishes, O Varshneya (Krishna), constrained, as it were, by force?

Sri Bhagavaan Uvaacha:

Kaama esha krodha esha rajoguna samudbhavah;
Mahaashano mahaapaapmaa viddhyenam iha vairinam.

The Blessed Lord said:

37. It is desire, it is anger born of the quality of Rajas, all-sinful and all-devouring; know this as the foe here (in this world).

Dhoomenaavriyate vahnir yathaadarsho malena cha;
Yatholbenaavrito garbhas tathaa tenedam aavritam.

38. As fire is enveloped by smoke, as a mirror by dust, and as an embryo by the amnion, so is this enveloped by that.

Aavritam jnaanam etena jnaanino nityavairinaa;
Kaamaroopena kaunteya dushpoorenaanalena cha.

39. O Arjuna, wisdom is enveloped by this constant enemy of the wise in the form of desire, which is unappeasable as fire!

Indriyaani mano buddhir asyaadhishthaanam uchyate;
Etair vimohayatyesha jnaanam aavritya dehinam.

40. The senses, mind and intellect are said to be its seat; through these it deludes the embodied by veiling his wisdom.

Tasmaat twam indriyaanyaadau niyamya bharatarshabha;
Paapmaanam prajahi hyenam jnaana vijnaana naashanam.

41. Therefore, O best of the Bharatas (Arjuna), controlling the senses first, do thou kill this sinful thing (desire), the destroyer of knowledge and realisation!

Indriyaani paraanyaahur indriyebhyah param manah;
Manasastu paraa buddhir yo buddheh paratastu sah.

42. They say that the senses are superior (to the body); superior to the senses is the mind; superior to the mind is the intellect; and one who is superior even to the intellect is He”the Self.

Evam buddheh param buddhwaa samstabhyaatmaanam aatmanaa;
Jahi shatrum mahaabaaho kaamaroopam duraasadam.

43. Thus, knowing Him who is superior to the intellect and restraining the self by the Self, slay thou, O mighty-armed Arjuna, the enemy in the form of desire, hard to conquer!

 
     
  COMMENTARY: Restrain the lower self by the higher Self. Subdue the lower mind by the higher mind. It is difficult to conquer desire because it is of a highly complex and incomprehensible nature. But a man of discrimination and dispassion, who does constant and intense Sadhana, can conquer it quite easily.
 
  Hari Om Tat Sat  
 

Iti Srimad Bhagavadgeetaasoopanishatsu Brahmavidyaayaam
Yogashaastre Sri Krishnaarjunasamvaade
Karmayogo Naama Tritiyodhyaayah

Thus in the Upanishads of the glorious Bhagavad Gita, the science of the Eternal, the scripture of Yoga, the dialogue between Sri Krishna and Arjuna, ends the third discourse entitled:

 
     
  IV : The Yoga of Wisdom  
     
  Summary of Fourth Discourse  
 

Lord Krishna declares that He is born from age to age, in order to raise man and take him to the Supreme. Whenever there is a prevalence of unrighteousness and the world is ruled by the forces of darkness, the Lord manifests Himself to destroy these adverse forces and to establish peace, order and harmony. Hence we see the appearance of the great saviours of the world.

What is the secret of Yogic action? This the Lord proceeds to explain to Arjuna. Even though one is not engaged in action, but if the mind is active with the idea of doership and egoism, then it is action in inaction. On the other hand, though engaged physically in intense action, if the idea of agency is absent, if one feels that Prakriti does everything, it is inaction in action. The liberated man is free from attachment and is always calm and serene though engaged in ceaseless action. He is unaffected by the pairs of opposites like joy and grief, success and failure.

One who has true union with the Lord is not subject to rebirth. He attains immortality. Such a union can only be achieved when one is free from attachment, fear and anger, being thoroughly purified by right knowledge. The Lord accepts the devotion of all, whatever path they may use to approach Him.

Various kinds of sacrifices are performed by those engaged in the path to God. Through the practice of these sacrifices the mind is purified and led Godward. Here also there must be the spirit of non-attachment to the fruits of actions.

Divine wisdom, according to Sri Krishna, should be sought at the feet of a liberated Guru, one who has realised the Truth. The aspirant should approach such a sage in a spirit of humility and devotion. God Himself manifests in the heart of the Guru and instructs the disciple. Having understood the Truth from the Guru by direct intuitive experience the aspirant is no longer deluded by ignorance.

The liberated aspirant directly beholds the Self in all beings and all beings in the Self. He cognises through internal experience or intuition that all beings, from the Creator down to a blade of grass, exist in his own Self and also in God.

Arjuna is given the most heartening assurance that divine wisdom liberates even the most sinful. When knowledge of the Self dawns, all actions with their results are burnt by the fire of that knowledge, just as fuel is burnt by fire. When there is no idea of egoism, when there is no desire for the fruits of one actions, actions are no actions. They lose their potency.

In order to attain divine wisdom one must have supreme faith and devotion. Faith is therefore the most important qualification for a spiritual aspirant. The doubting mind is always led astray from the right path. Faith ultimately confers divine knowledge, which removes ignorance once and for all.

Mere intellectual knowledge does not lead to liberation. It cannot grant one supreme peace and freedom. When one has achieved complete self-mastery and self-control, when one has intense faith and devotion, then true knowledge dawns within and one attains liberation and freedom from all weaknesses and sins.

The Lord concludes by emphasising that the soul that doubts goes to destruction. Without faith in oneself, in the scriptures and in the words of the preceptor, one cannot make any headway on the spiritual path. It is doubt that prevents one from engaging in spiritual Sadhana and realising the highest knowledge and bliss. By following the instructions of the Guru and through sincere service, ones doubts are rent asunder and divine knowledge manifests itself within. Spiritual progress then goes on at a rapid pace.

 
     
  Sri Bhagavaan Uvaacha:  
  Imam vivaswate yogam proktavaan aham avyayam;
Vivaswaan manave praaha manur ikshwaakavebraveet.
 
  The Blessed Lord said:  
     
 

1. I taught this imperishable Yoga to Vivasvan; he told it to Manu; Manu proclaimed it to Ikshvaku.

Evam paramparaa praaptam imam raajarshayo viduh;
Sa kaaleneha mahataa yogo nashtah parantapa.

2. This, handed down thus in regular succession, the royal sages knew. This Yoga, by a long lapse of time, has been lost here, O Parantapa (burner of foes)!

COMMENTARY: The royal sages were kings who at the same time possessed divine knowledge. They learnt this Yoga.

Sa evaayam mayaa tedya yogah proktah puraatanah;
Bhaktosi me sakhaa cheti rahasyam hyetad uttamam.

3. That same ancient Yoga has been today taught to thee by Me, for, thou art My devotee and friend; it is the supreme secret.

COMMENTARY: This ancient Yoga consists of profound and subtle teachings. Hence it is the supreme secret which the Lord reveals to Arjuna.

Arjuna Uvaacha:

Aparam bhavato janma param janma vivaswatah;
Katham etadvijaaneeyaam twam aadau proktavaan iti.

Arjuna said:

4. Later on was Thy birth, and prior to it was the birth of Vivasvan (the Sun); how am I to understand that Thou didst teach this Yoga in the beginning?

Sri Bhagavaan Uvaacha:

Bahooni me vyateetaani janmaani tava chaarjuna;
Taanyaham veda sarvaani na twam vettha parantapa.

The Blessed Lord said:

5. Many births of Mine have passed, as well as of thine, O Arjuna! I know them all but thou knowest not, O Parantapa!

Ajopi sannavyayaatmaa bhootaanaam eeshwaropi san;
Prakritim swaam adhishthaaya sambhavaamyaatmamaayayaa.

6. Though I am unborn and of imperishable nature, and though I am the Lord of all beings, yet, ruling over My own Nature, I am born by My own Maya.

Yadaa yadaa hi dharmasya glaanir bhavati bhaarata;
Abhyutthaanam adharmasya tadaatmaanam srijaamyaham.

7. Whenever there is a decline of righteousness, O Arjuna, and rise of unrighteousness, then I manifest Myself!

COMMENTARY: That which elevates a man and helps him to reach the goal of life and attain knowledge is Dharma (righteousness); that which drags him into worldliness is unrighteousness. That which helps a man to attain liberation is Dharma; that which makes him irreligious is Adharma or unrighteousness.

Paritraanaaya saadhoonaam vinaashaaya cha dushkritaam;
Dharma samsthaapanaarthaaya sambhavaami yuge yuge.

8. For the protection of the good, for the destruction of the wicked, and for the establishment of righteousness, I am born in every age.

Janma karma cha me divyam evam yo vetti tattwatah;
Tyaktwa deham punarjanma naiti maameti sorjuna.

9. He who thus knows in true light My divine birth and action, after having abandoned the body is not born again; he comes to Me, O Arjuna!

Veetaraagabhayakrodhaa manmayaa maam upaashritaah;
Bahavo jnaana tapasaa pootaa madbhaavam aagataah.

10. Freed from attachment, fear and anger, absorbed in Me, taking refuge in Me, purified by the fire of knowledge, many have attained to My Being.

Ye yathaa maam prapadyante taamstathaiva bhajaamyaham;
Mama vartmaanuvartante manushyaah paartha sarvashah.

11. In whatever way men approach Me, even so do I reward them; My path do men tread in all ways, O Arjuna!

Kaangkshantah karmanaam siddhim yajanta iha devataah;
Kshipram hi maanushe loke siddhir bhavati karmajaa.

12. Those who long for success in action in this world sacrifice to the gods, because success is quickly attained by men through action.

Chaaturvarnyam mayaa srishtam gunakarma vibhaagashah;
Tasya kartaaram api maam viddhyakartaaram avyayam.

13. The fourfold caste has been created by Me according to the differentiation of Guna and Karma; though I am the author thereof, know Me as the non-doer and immutable.

COMMENTARY: The four castes are Brahmana, Kshatriya, Vaisya and Sudra. This division is according to the Guna and Karma. Guna is quality. Karma is the kind of work. Both Guna and Karma determine the caste of a man.

In a Brahmana, Sattwa predominates. He possesses serenity, purity, self-restraint, straightforwardness and devotion.

In a Kshatriya, Rajas predominates. He possesses prowess, splendour, firmness, dexterity, generosity and rulership.

In a Vaisya, Rajas predominates and Tamas is subordinate to Rajas. He does the duty of ploughing, protection of cattle and trade.

In a Sudra, Tamas predominates and Rajas is subordinate to the quality of Tamas. He renders service to the other three castes. Human temperaments and tendencies vary according to the Gunas.

Na maam karmaani limpanti na me karmaphale sprihaa;
Iti maam yobhijaanaati karmabhir na sa badhyate.

14. Actions do not taint Me, nor have I a desire for the fruits of actions. He who knows Me thus is not bound by actions.

Evam jnaatwaa kritam karma poorvair api mumukshubhih;
Kuru karmaiva tasmaat twam poorvaih poorvataram kritam.

15. Having known this, the ancient seekers after freedom also performed actions; therefore, do thou perform actions as did the ancients in days of yore.

Kim karma kim akarmeti kavayopyatra mohitaah;
Tat te karma pravakshyaami yajjnaatwaa mokshyaseshubhaat.

16. What is action? What is inaction? As to this even the wise are confused. Therefore, I shall teach thee such action (the nature of action and inaction), by knowing which thou shalt be liberated from the evil (of Samsara, the world of birth and death).

Karmano hyapi boddhavyam boddhavyam cha vikarmanah;
Akarmanashcha boddhavyam gahanaa karmano gatih.

17. For, verily the true nature of action (enjoined by the scriptures) should be known, also (that) of forbidden (or unlawful) action, and of inaction; hard to understand is the nature (path) of action.

Karmanyakarma yah pashyed akarmani cha karma yah;
Sa buddhimaan manushyeshu sa yuktah kritsnakarmakrit.

18. He who seeth inaction in action and action in inaction, he is wise among men; he is a Yogi and performer of all actions.

COMMENTARY: It is the idea of agency, the idea of I am the doer¯ that binds man to worldliness. If this idea vanishes, action is no action at all. It does not bind one to worldliness. This is inaction in action. But if a man sits quietly, thinking of actions and that he is their doer, he is ever doing actions. This is referred to as action in inaction.

Yasya sarve samaarambhaah kaamasankalpa varjitaah;
Jnaanaagni dagdhakarmaanam tam aahuh panditam budhaah.

19. He whose undertakings are all devoid of desires and (selfish) purposes, and whose actions have been burnt by the fire of knowledge,him the wise call a sage.

Tyaktwaa karmaphalaasangam nityatripto niraashrayah;
Karmanyabhipravrittopi naiva kinchit karoti sah.

20. Having abandoned attachment to the fruit of the action, ever content, depending on nothing, he does not do anything though engaged in activity.

Niraasheer yatachittaatmaa tyaktasarvaparigrahah;
Shaareeram kevalam karma kurvannaapnoti kilbisham.

21. Without hope and with the mind and the self controlled, having abandoned all greed, doing mere bodily action, he incurs no sin.

Yadricchaalaabhasantushto dwandwaateeto vimatsarah;
Samah siddhaavasiddhau cha kritwaapi na nibadhyate.

22. Content with what comes to him without effort, free from the pairs of opposites and envy, even-minded in success and failure, though acting, he is not bound.

Gatasangasya muktasya jnaanaavasthitachetasah;
Yajnaayaacharatah karma samagram pravileeyate.

23. To one who is devoid of attachment, who is liberated, whose mind is established in knowledge, who works for the sake of sacrifice (for the sake of God), the whole action is dissolved.

Brahmaarpanam brahmahavirbrahmaagnau brahmanaa hutam;
Brahmaiva tena gantavyam brahmakarmasamaadhinaa.

24. Brahman is the oblation; Brahman is the melted butter (ghee); by Brahman is the oblation poured into the fire of Brahman; Brahman verily shall be reached by him who always sees Brahman in action.

COMMENTARY: This is wisdom-sacrifice, wherein the idea of Brahman is substituted for the ideas of the instrument and other accessories of action, the idea of action itself and its results. By having such an idea the whole action melts away.

Daivam evaapare yajnam yoginah paryupaasate;
Brahmaagnaavapare yajnam yajnenaivopajuhwati.

25. Some Yogis perform sacrifice to the gods alone, while others (who have realised the Self) offer the Self as sacrifice by the Self in the fire of Brahman alone.

Shrotraadeeneendriyaanyanye samyamaagnishu juhwati;
Shabdaadeen vishayaananya indriyaagnishu juhwati.

26. Some again offer hearing and other senses as sacrifice in the fire of restraint; others offer sound and various objects of the senses as sacrifice in the fire of the senses.

Sarvaaneendriya karmaani praanakarmaani chaapare;
Aatmasamyamayogaagnau juhwati jnaanadeepite.

27. Others again sacrifice all the functions of the senses and those of the breath (vital energy or Prana) in the fire of the Yoga of self-restraint kindled by knowledge.

Dravyayajnaas tapoyajnaa yogayajnaastathaapare;
Swaadhyaayajnaana yajnaashcha yatayah samshitavrataah.

28. Some again offer wealth, austerity and Yoga as sacrifice, while the ascetics of self-restraint and rigid vows offer study of scriptures and knowledge as sacrifice.

Apaane juhwati praanam praanepaanam tathaapare;
Praanaapaana gatee ruddhwaa praanaayaamaparaayanaah.

29. Others offer as sacrifice the outgoing breath in the incoming, and the incoming in the outgoing, restraining the courses of the outgoing and the incoming breaths, solely absorbed in the restraint of the breath.

COMMENTARY: Some Yogis practise inhalation, some practise exhalation, and some retention of breath. This is Pranayama.

Apare niyataahaaraah praanaan praaneshu juhwati;
Sarvepyete yajnavido yajnakshapita kalmashaah.

30. Others who regulate their diet offer life-breaths in life-breaths; all these are knowers of sacrifice, whose sins are all destroyed by sacrifice.

Yajnashishtaamritabhujo yaanti brahma sanaatanam;
Naayam lokostyayajnasya kutonyah kurusattama.

31. Those who eat the remnants of the sacrifice, which are like nectar, go to the eternal Brahman. This world is not for the man who does not perform sacrifice; how then can he have the other, O Arjuna?

COMMENTARY: They go to the eternal Brahman after attaining knowledge of the Self through purification of the mind by performing the above sacrifices. He who does not perform any of these is not fit even for this miserable world. How then can he hope to get a better world than this?

Evam bahuvidhaa yajnaa vitataa brahmano mukhe;
Karmajaan viddhi taan sarvaan evam jnaatwaa vimokshyase.

32. Thus, various kinds of sacrifices are spread out before Brahman (literally at the mouth or face of Brahman). Know them all as born of action, and knowing thus, thou shalt be liberated.

Shreyaan dravyamayaadyajnaaj jnaanayajnah parantapa;
Sarvam karmaakhilam paartha jnaane parisamaapyate.

33. Superior is wisdom-sacrifice to sacrifice with objects, O Parantapa! All actions in their entirety, O Arjuna, culminate in knowledge!

Tadviddhi pranipaatena pariprashnena sevayaa;
Upadekshyanti te jnaanam jnaaninas tattwadarshinah.

34. Know that by long prostration, by question and by service, the wise who have realised the Truth will instruct thee in (that) knowledge.

Yajjnaatwaa na punarmoham evam yaasyasi paandava;
Yena bhootaanyasheshena drakshyasyaatmanyatho mayi.

35. Knowing that, thou shalt not, O Arjuna, again become deluded like this; and by that thou shalt see all beings in thy Self and also in Me!

Api chedasi paapebhyah sarvebhyah paapakrittamah;
Sarvam jnaanaplavenaiva vrijinam santarishyasi.

36. Even if thou art the most sinful of all sinners, yet thou shalt verily cross all sins by the raft of knowledge.

COMMENTARY: One can overcome sin through Self-knowledge.

Yathaidhaamsi samiddhognir bhasmasaat kuruterjuna;
Jnaanaagnih sarvakarmaani bhasmasaat kurute tathaa.

37. As the blazing fire reduces fuel to ashes, O Arjuna, so does the fire of knowledge reduce all actions to ashes!

Na hi jnaanena sadrisham pavitram iha vidyate;
Tat swayam yogasamsiddhah kaalenaatmani vindati.

38. Verily there is no purifier in this world like knowledge. He who is perfected in Yoga finds it in the Self in time.

Shraddhaavaan labhate jnaanam tatparah samyatendriyah;
Jnaanam labdhvaa paraam shaantim achirenaadhigacchati.

39. The man who is full of faith, who is devoted to it, and who has subdued all the senses, obtains (this) knowledge; and, having obtained the knowledge, he goes at once to the supreme peace.

Ajnashchaashraddhadhaanashcha samshayaatmaa vinashyati;
Naayam lokosti na paro na sukham samshayaatmanah.

40. The ignorant, the faithless, the doubting self proceeds to destruction; there is neither this world nor the other nor happiness for the doubting.

Yogasannyasta karmaanam jnaanasamcchinnasamshayam;
Aatmavantam na karmaani nibadhnanti dhananjaya.

41. He who has renounced actions by Yoga, whose doubts are rent asunder by knowledge, and who is self-possessedactions do not bind him, O Arjuna!

Tasmaad ajnaanasambhootam hritstham jnaanaasinaatmanah;
Cchittwainam samshayam yogam aatishthottishtha bhaarata.

42. Therefore, with the sword of knowledge (of the Self) cut asunder the doubt of the self born of ignorance, residing in thy heart, and take refuge in Yoga; arise, O Arjuna!

Hari Om Tat Sat
Iti Srimad Bhagavadgeetaasoopanishatsu Brahmavidyaayaam
Yogashaastre Sri Krishnaarjunasamvaade
Jnaanavibhaagayogo Naama Chaturthodhyaayah

Thus in the Upanishads of the glorious Bhagavad Gita, the science of the Eternal, the scripture of Yoga, the dialogue between Sri Krishna and Arjuna, ends the fourth discourse entitled:

The Yoga of Wisdom

 
     
  V The Yoga of Renunciation of Action  
 

Summary of Fifth Discourse

In spite of Sri Krishnas clear instructions, Arjuna still seems to be bewildered. He wants to know conclusively which is superior, the path of action or the path of renunciation of action.

The Lord says that both the paths lead to the highest goal of God-realisation. In both cases the final realisation of the Atman is the aim, but the path of Karma Yoga is superior. Actually there is no real difference between the two.

Krishna further asserts that perfection can be attained and one can be established in the Atman only after the mind has been purified through the performance of selfless action. The Karma Yogi who is aware of the Atman and who is constantly engaged in action knows that although the intellect, mind and senses are active, he does not do anything. He is a spectator of everything. He dedicates all his actions to the Lord and thus abandons attachment, ever remaining pure and unaffected. He surrenders himself completely to the Divine Shakti. Having completely rooted out all desires, attachments and the ego, he is not born again.

The sage who has realised Brahman and is always absorbed in It does not have any rebirth. Such a sage sees Brahman within and without”within as the static and transcendent Brahman, and without as the entire universe. He sees the one Self in all beings and creatures”in a cow, an elephant, and even in a dog and an outcaste. He is ever free from joy and grief and enjoys eternal peace and happiness. He does not depend upon the senses for his satisfaction. On the other hand the enjoyments of the senses are generators of pain. They are impermanent. Sri Krishna reminds Arjuna that desire is the main cause of pain and suffering. It is the cause of anger. Therefore, the aspirant should try to eradicate desire and anger if he is to reach the Supreme.

The Lord concludes by describing how to control the senses, mind and intellect by concentrating between the eyebrows and practising Pranayama. One who has achieved perfect control of the outgoing senses and is freed from desire, anger and fear attains liberation and enjoys perfect peace.

 
     
  Arjuna Uvaacha:  
  Sannyaasam karmanaam krishna punar yogam cha shamsasi;
Yacchreya etayorekam tanme broohi sunishchitam.
 
     
  Arjuna said:  
 

1. Renunciation of actions, O Krishna, Thou praisest, and again Yoga! Tell me conclusively which is the better of the two.

Sri Bhagavaan Uvaacha:

Sannyaasah karmayogashcha nihshreyasakaraa vubhau;
Tayostu karmasannyaasaat karmayogo vishishyate.

The Blessed Lord said:

2. Renunciation and the Yoga of action both lead to the highest bliss; but of the two, the Yoga of action is superior to the renunciation of action.

Jneyah sa nityasannyaasi yo na dweshti na kaangkshati;
Nirdwandwo hi mahaabaaho sukham bandhaat pramuchyate.

3. He should be known as a perpetual Sannyasin who neither hates nor desires; for, free from the pairs of opposites, O mighty-armed Arjuna, he is easily set free from bondage!

COMMENTARY: A man does not become a Sannyasin by merely giving up actions due to laziness, ignorance, some family quarrel or calamity or unemployment. A true Sannyasin is one who has neither attachment nor aversion to anything. Physical renunciation of objects is no renunciation at all. What is wanted is the renunciation of egoism and desires.

Saankhyayogau prithagbaalaah pravadanti na panditaah;
Ekam apyaasthitah samyag ubhayor vindate phalam.

4. Children, not the wise, speak of knowledge and the Yoga of action or the performance of action as though they are distinct and different; he who is truly established in one obtains the fruits of both.

Yatsaankhyaih praapyate sthaanam tad yogair api gamyate;
Ekam saankhyam cha yogam cha yah pashyati sa pashyati.

5. That place which is reached by the Sankhyas or the Jnanis is reached by the (Karma) Yogis. He sees who sees knowledge and the performance of action (Karma Yoga) as one.

Sannyaasastu mahaabaaho duhkham aaptuma yogatah;
Yogayukto munir brahma na chirenaadhigacchati.

6. But renunciation, O mighty-armed Arjuna, is hard to attain without Yoga; the Yoga-harmonised sage proceeds quickly to Brahman!

Yogayukto vishuddhaatmaa vijitaatmaa jitendriyah;
Sarvabhootaatmabhootaatmaa kurvannapi na lipyate.

7. He who is devoted to the path of action, whose mind is quite pure, who has conquered the self, who has subdued his senses and who has realised his Self as the Self in all beings, though acting, he is not tainted.

Naiva kinchit karomeeti yukto manyeta tattwavit;
Pashyan shrunvan sprishan jighran nashnan gacchan swapan shwasan.

8. I do nothing at all”thus will the harmonised knower of Truth think”seeing, hearing, touching, smelling, eating, going, sleeping, breathing,

Pralapan visrijan grihnan nunmishan nimishannapi;
Indriyaaneendriyaartheshu vartanta iti dhaarayan.

9. Speaking, letting go, seizing, opening and closing the eyes”convinced that the senses move among the sense-objects.

COMMENTARY: The liberated sage always remains as a witness of the activities of the senses as he identifies himself with the Self.

Brahmanyaadhaaya karmaani sangam tyaktwaa karoti yah;
Lipyate na sa paapena padmapatram ivaambhasaa.

10. He who performs actions, offering them to Brahman and abandoning attachment, is not tainted by sin as a lotus leaf by water.

Kaayena manasaa buddhyaa kevalair indriyair api;
Yoginah karma kurvanti sangam tyaktwaatmashuddhaye.

11. Yogis, having abandoned attachment, perform actions only by the body, mind, intellect and also by the senses, for the purification of the self.

Yuktah karmaphalam tyaktwaa shaantim aapnoti naishthikeem;
Ayuktah kaamakaarena phale sakto nibadhyate.

12. The united one (the well poised or the harmonised), having abandoned the fruit of action, attains to the eternal peace; the non-united only (the unsteady or the unbalanced), impelled by desire and attached to the fruit, is bound.

Sarvakarmaani manasaa sannyasyaaste sukham vashee;
Navadwaare pure dehee naiva kurvan na kaarayan.

13. Mentally renouncing all actions and self-controlled, the embodied one rests happily in the nine-gated city, neither acting nor causing others (body and senses) to act.

Na kartritwam na karmaani lokasya srijati prabhuh;
Na karmaphala samyogam swabhaavas tu pravartate.

14. Neither agency nor actions does the Lord create for the world, nor union with the fruits of actions; it is Nature that acts.

Naadatte kasyachit paapam na chaiva sukritam vibhuh;
Ajnaanenaavritam jnaanam tena muhyanti jantavah.

15. The Lord accepts neither the demerit nor even the merit of any; knowledge is enveloped by ignorance, thereby beings are deluded.

Jnaanena tu tad ajnaanam yeshaam naashitam aatmanah;
Teshaam aadityavaj jnaanam prakaashayati tatparam.

16. But, to those whose ignorance is destroyed by knowledge of the Self, like the sun, knowledge reveals the Supreme (Brahman).

Tadbuddhayas tadaatmaanas tannishthaas tatparaayanaah;
Gacchantyapunaraavrittim jnaana nirdhoota kalmashaah.

17. Their intellect absorbed in That, their self being That; established in That, with That as their supreme goal, they go whence there is no return, their sins dispelled by knowledge.

Vidyaavinaya sampanne braahmane gavi hastini;
Shuni chaiva shvapaake cha panditaah samadarshinah.

18. Sages look with an equal eye on a Brahmin endowed with learning and humility, on a cow, on an elephant, and even on a dog and an outcaste.

Ihaiva tairjitah sargo yeshaam saamye sthitam manah;
Nirdosham hi samam brahma tasmaad brahmani te sthitaah.

19. Even here (in this world) birth (everything) is overcome by those whose minds rest in equality; Brahman is spotless indeed and equal; therefore, they are established in Brahman.

Na prahrishyet priyam praapya nodwijet praapya chaapriyam;
Sthirabuddhir asammoodho brahmavid brahmani sthitah.

20. Resting in Brahman, with steady intellect, undeluded, the knower of Brahman neither rejoiceth on obtaining what is pleasant nor grieveth on obtaining what is unpleasant.

Baahyasparsheshwasaktaatmaa vindatyaatmani yat sukham;
Sa brahma yoga yuktaatmaa sukham akshayam ashnute.

21. With the self unattached to the external contacts he discovers happiness in the Self; with the self engaged in the meditation of Brahman he attains to the endless happiness.

Ye hi samsparshajaa bhogaa duhkhayonaya eva te;
Aadyantavantah kaunteya na teshu ramate budhah.

22. The enjoyments that are born of contacts are generators of pain only, for they have a beginning and an end, O Arjuna! The wise do not rejoice in them.

Shaknoteehaiva yah sodhum praak shareera vimokshanaat;
Kaamakrodhodbhavam vegam sa yuktah sa sukhee narah.

23. He who is able, while still here in this world to withstand, before the liberation from the body, the impulse born of desire and anger”he is a Yogi, he is a happy man.

Yontah sukhontaraaraamas tathaantarjyotir eva yah;
Sa yogee brahma nirvaanam brahmabhootodhigacchati.

24. He who is ever happy within, who rejoices within, who is illumined within, such a Yogi attains absolute freedom or Moksha, himself becoming Brahman.

Labhante brahma nirvaanam rishayah ksheenakalmashaah;
Cchinnadwaidhaa yataatmaanah sarvabhootahite rataah.

25. The sages obtain absolute freedom or Moksha”they whose sins have been destroyed, whose dualities (perception of dualities or experience of the pairs of opposites) are torn asunder, who are self-controlled, and intent on the welfare of all beings.

Kaamakrodhaviyuktaanaam yateenaam yatachetasaam;
Abhito brahma nirvaanam vartate viditaatmanaam.

26. Absolute freedom (or Brahmic bliss) exists on all sides for those self-controlled ascetics who are free from desire and anger, who have controlled their thoughts and who have realised the Self.

Sparsaan kritwaa bahir baahyaamschakshus chaivaantare bhruvoh;
Praanaapaanau samau kritwaa naasaabhyantara chaarinau.

27. Shutting out (all) external contacts and fixing the gaze between the eyebrows, equalising the outgoing and incoming breaths moving within the nostrils,

Yatendriya manobuddhir munir mokshaparaayanah;
Vigatecchaabhaya krodho yah sadaa mukta eva sah.

28. With the senses, the mind and the intellect always controlled, having liberation as his supreme goal, free from desire, fear and anger”the sage is verily liberated for ever.

Bhoktaaram yajnatapasaam sarvaloka maheshwaram;
Suhridam sarvabhootaanaam jnaatwaa maam shaantim ricchati.

29. He who knows Me as the enjoyer of sacrifices and austerities, the great Lord of all the worlds and the friend of all beings, attains to peace.

Hari Om Tat Sat
Iti Srimad Bhagavadgeetaasoopanishatsu Brahmavidyaayaam
Yogashaastre Sri Krishnaarjunasamvaade
Karmasanyaasayogo Naama Panchamodhyaayah

Thus in the Upanishads of the glorious Bhagavad Gita, the science of the Eternal, the scripture of Yoga, the dialogue between Sri Krishna and Arjuna ends the fifth discourse entitled:

The Yoga of Renunciation of Action¯

 
     
  VI The Yoga of Meditation  
 

Summary of Sixth Discourse

Sri Krishna emphasises once again that the Yogi or Sannyasin is one who has renounced the fruits of actions, not the actions themselves. The performance of actions without an eye on their fruits brings about the purification of the mind. Only a purified mind, a mind free from desires, can engage itself in constant meditation on the Atman. Desire gives rise to imagination or Sankalpa, which drives the soul into the field of action. Therefore, none can realise permanent freedom and tranquillity of mind without renouncing desires.

The lower self must be controlled by the higher Self. All the lower impulses of the body, mind and senses must be controlled by the power of the higher Self. Then the higher Self becomes ones friend. He who has perfect control of the body, mind and senses and is united with God, sees God in all objects and beings. He sees inwardly that there is no difference between gold and stone, between friends and enemies, between the righteous and the unrighteous. He is perfectly harmonised.

Sri Krishna proceeds to give various practical hints as to the practice of meditation. The aspirant should select a secluded spot where there is no likelihood of disturbance. He should arrange his meditation seat properly and sit in a comfortable posture, with the head, neck and spine erect but not tensed. He should fix his purified mind on the Atman by concentrating between the eyebrows or on the tip of the nose.

The practice of Brahmacharya is absolutely necessary if one is to succeed in meditation. The conservation and transformation of the vital fluid into spiritual energy gives immense power of concentration. Fearlessness, too, is an essential quality on the Godward path. It is faith in the sustaining protection and Grace of God.

The aspirant is advised to practise moderation in his daily habitsin eating, sleeping, recreation, etc. Extremes are to be avoided as they hinder the practice of meditation. Living a life of such moderation, and gathering up all his forces and directing them towards meditation upon the Atman, the aspirant gradually transcends the senses and intellect and merges himself in the blissful Atman. He finds that the bliss of the Atman is incomparable, that there is no gain greater than the Self. Having thus attained perfect union with the Self, the Yogi no more descends into ignorance or delusion. He does not relish any more the pleasures of the senses.

Lord Krishna again emphasises that the concentration of the mind on the Atman should be like a steady flame in a windless place. This ultimately leads to the vision of the Lord in all beings and creatures. Arjuna is doubtful whether it is at all possible to engage the mind steadily on the higher Self, as its very nature seems to be one of restlessness. Krishna assures him that the practice can succeed through Vairagya (dispassion) and constant effort.

Arjuna wishes to know the fate of the aspirant who fails to realise the Supreme in spite of his faith and sincerity. Krishna tells him that the accumulated power of his Yogic practices will assure him a better birth in the future, with more favourable conditions for Sadhana. The aspirant will then be compelled to carry on his Yogic practices with greater vigour and faith and will finally achieve God-realisation.

Krishna concludes that the Yogi”one who has attained union with the Supreme Lord”is superior to the ascetics, to the men of book knowledge and the men of action, as the latter have not transcended ignorance and merged in the Self.

 
     
  Sri Bhagavaan Uvaacha:  
  Anaashritah karmaphalam kaaryam karma karoti yah;
Sa sannyaasi cha yogee cha na niragnirna chaakriyah.
 
     
  The Blessed Lord said:  
     
 

1. He who performs his bounden duty without depending on the fruits of his actions”he is a Sannyasin and a Yogi, not he who is without fire and without action.

Yam sannyaasamiti praahuryogam tam viddhi paandava;
Na hyasannyastasankalpo yogee bhavati kashchana.

2. Do thou, O Arjuna, know Yoga to be that which they call renunciation; no one verily becomes a Yogi who has not renounced thoughts!

COMMENTARY: Lord Krishna eulogises Karma Yoga here because it is a means or a stepping stone to the Yoga of meditation. In order to encourage the practice of Karma Yoga it is stated here that it is Sannyasa.

Aarurukshormuneryogam karma kaaranamuchyate;
Yogaaroodhasya tasyaiva shamah kaaranamuchyate.

3. For a sage who wishes to attain to Yoga, action is said to be the means; for the same sage who has attained to Yoga, inaction (quiescence) is said to be the means.

Yadaa hi nendriyaartheshu na karmaswanushajjate;
Sarvasankalpasannyaasee yogaaroodhas tadochyate.

4. When a man is not attached to the sense-objects or to actions, having renounced all thoughts, then he is said to have attained to Yoga.

Uddharedaatmanaatmaanam naatmaanamavasaadayet;
Atmaiva hyaatmano bandhuraatmaiva ripuraatmanah.

5. Let a man lift himself by his own Self alone; let him not lower himself, for this self alone is the friend of oneself and this self alone is the enemy of oneself.

Bandhuraatmaatmanastasya yenaatmaivaatmanaa jitah;
Anaatmanastu shatrutwe vartetaatmaiva shatruvat.

6. The self is the friend of the self for him who has conquered himself by the Self, but to the unconquered self, this self stands in the position of an enemy like the (external) foe.

Jitaatmanah prashaantasya paramaatmaa samaahitah;
Sheetoshna sukha duhkheshu tathaa maanaapamaanayoh.

7. The Supreme Self of him who is self-controlled and peaceful is balanced in cold and heat, pleasure and pain, as also in honour and dishonour.

Jnaana vijnaana triptaatmaa kootastho vijitendriyah;
Yuktah ityuchyate yogee samaloshtaashmakaanchanah.

8. The Yogi who is satisfied with the knowledge and the wisdom (of the Self), who has conquered the senses, and to whom a clod of earth, a piece of stone and gold are the same, is said to be harmonised (that is, is said to have attained the state of Nirvikalpa Samadhi).

Suhrinmitraary udaaseena madhyastha dweshya bandhushu;
Saadhushwapi cha paapeshu samabuddhirvishishyate.

9. He who is of the same mind to the good-hearted, friends, enemies, the indifferent, the neutral, the hateful, the relatives, the righteous and the unrighteous, excels.

Yogee yunjeeta satatamaatmaanam rahasi sthitah;
Ekaakee yatachittaatmaa niraasheeraparigrahah.

10. Let the Yogi try constantly to keep the mind steady, remaining in solitude, alone, with the mind and the body controlled, and free from hope and greed.

Shuchau deshe pratishthaapya sthiramaasanamaatmanah;
Naatyucchritam naatineecham chailaajinakushottaram.

11. In a clean spot, having established a firm seat of his own, neither too high nor too low, made of a cloth, a skin and kusha grass, one over the other,

Tatraikaagram manah kritwaa yatachittendriyakriyah;
Upavishyaasane yunjyaadyogamaatmavishuddhaye.

12. There, having made the mind one-pointed, with the actions of the mind and the senses controlled, let him, seated on the seat, practise Yoga for the purification of the self.

Samam kaayashirogreevam dhaarayannachalam sthirah;
Samprekshya naasikaagram swam dishashchaanavalokayan.

13. Let him firmly hold his body, head and neck erect and perfectly still, gazing at the tip of his nose, without looking around.

Prashaantaatmaa vigatabheer brahmachaarivrate sthitah;
Manah samyamya macchitto yukta aaseeta matparah.

14. Serene-minded, fearless, firm in the vow of a Brahmachari, having controlled the mind, thinking of Me and balanced in mind, let him sit, having Me as his supreme goal.

Yunjannevam sadaatmaanam yogee niyatamaanasah;
Shaantim nirvaanaparamaam matsamsthaamadhigacchati.

15. Thus, always keeping the mind balanced, the Yogi, with the mind controlled, attains to the peace abiding in Me, which culminates in liberation.

Naatyashnatastu yogosti nachaikaantamanashnatah;
Na chaatiswapnasheelasya jaagrato naiva chaarjuna.

16. Verily Yoga is not possible for him who eats too much, nor for him who does not eat at all; nor for him who sleeps too much, nor for him who is (always) awake, O Arjuna!

Yuktaahaaravihaarasya yuktacheshtasya karmasu;
Yuktaswapnaavabodhasya yogo bhavati duhkhahaa.

17. Yoga becomes the destroyer of pain for him who is always moderate in eating and recreation (such as walking, etc.), who is moderate in exertion in actions, who is moderate in sleep and wakefulness.

Yadaa viniyatam chittamaatmanyevaavatishthate;
Nihsprihah sarvakaamebhyo yukta ityuchyate tadaa.

18. When the perfectly controlled mind rests in the Self only, free from longing for the objects of desire, then it is said: He is united.¯

COMMENTARY: Without union with the Self neither harmony nor balance nor Samadhi is possible.

Yathaa deepo nivaatastho nengate sopamaa smritaa;
Yogino yatachittasya yunjato yogamaatmanah.

19. As a lamp placed in a windless spot does not flicker”to such is compared the Yogi of controlled mind, practising Yoga in the Self (or absorbed in the Yoga of the Self).

COMMENTARY: This is a beautiful simile which Yogis often quote when they talk of concentration or one-pointedness of mind.

Yatroparamate chittam niruddham yogasevayaa;
Yatra chaivaatmanaatmaanam pashyannaatmani tushyati.

20. When the mind, restrained by the practice of Yoga, attains to quietude, and when, seeing the Self by the Self, he is satisfied in his own Self,

Sukhamaatyantikam yattad buddhi graahyamateendriyam;
Vetti yatra na chaivaayam sthitashchalati tattwatah.

21. When he (the Yogi) feels that infinite bliss which can be grasped by the (pure) intellect and which transcends the senses, and, established wherein he never moves from the Reality,

Yam labdhwaa chaaparam laabham manyate naadhikam tatah;
Yasmin sthito na duhkhena gurunaapi vichaalyate.

22. Which, having obtained, he thinks there is no other gain superior to it; wherein established, he is not moved even by heavy sorrow,”

Tam vidyaad duhkhasamyogaviyogam yogasamjnitam;
Sa nishchayena yoktavyo yogonirvinna chetasaa.

23. Let that be known by the name of Yoga, the severance from union with pain. This Yoga should be practised with determination and with an undesponding mind.

Sankalpaprabhavaan kaamaan styaktwaa sarvaan asheshatah;
Manasaivendriyagraamam viniyamya samantatah.

24. Abandoning without reserve all the desires born of Sankalpa, and completely restraining the whole group of senses by the mind from all sides,

COMMENTARY: The mind is so diplomatic that it keeps certain desires for its secret gratification. So one should completely abandon all desires without reservation.

Shanaih shanairuparamed buddhyaa dhritigriheetayaa;
Aatmasamstham manah kritwaa na kinchidapi chintayet.

25. Little by little let him attain to quietude by the intellect held firmly; having made the mind establish itself in the Self, let him not think of anything.

Yato yato nishcharati manashchanchalamasthiram;
Tatastato niyamyaitad aatmanyeva vasham nayet.

26. From whatever cause the restless, unsteady mind wanders away, from that let him restrain it and bring it under the control of the Self alone.

Prashaantamanasam hyenam yoginam sukhamuttamam;
Upaiti shaantarajasam brahmabhootamakalmasham.

27. Supreme bliss verily comes to this Yogi whose mind is quite peaceful, whose passion is quieted, who has become Brahman, and who is free from sin.

Yunjannevam sadaatmaanam yogee vigatakalmashah;
Sukhena brahmasamsparsham atyantam sukham ashnute.

28. The Yogi, always engaging the mind thus (in the practice of Yoga), freed from sins, easily enjoys the infinite bliss of contact with Brahman (the Eternal).

Sarvabhootasthamaatmaanam sarvabhootaani chaatmani;
Eekshate yogayuktaatmaa sarvatra samadarshanah.

29. With the mind harmonised by Yoga he sees the Self abiding in all beings and all beings in the Self; he sees the same everywhere.

Yo maam pashyati sarvatra sarvam cha mayi pashyati;
Tasyaaham na pranashyaami sa cha me na pranashyati.

30. He who sees Me everywhere and sees everything in Me, he does not become separated from Me nor do I become separated from him.

COMMENTARY: The Lord describes here the effect of oneness.

Sarvabhootasthitam yo maam bhajatyekatwamaasthitah;
Sarvathaa vartamaanopi sa yogee mayi vartate.

31. He who, being established in unity, worships Me who dwells in all beings,”that Yogi abides in Me, whatever may be his mode of living.

Aatmaupamyena sarvatra samam pashyati yorjuna;
Sukham vaa yadi vaa duhkham sa yogee paramo matah.

32. He who, through the likeness of the Self, O Arjuna, sees equality everywhere, be it pleasure or pain, he is regarded as the highest Yogi!

Arjuna Uvaacha:

Yoyam yogastwayaa proktah saamyena madhusoodana;
Etasyaaham na pashyaami chanchalatwaat sthitim sthiraam.

Arjuna said:

33. This Yoga of equanimity taught by Thee, O Krishna, I do not see its steady continuance, because of restlessness (of the mind)!

Chanchalam hi manah krishna pramaathi balavad dridham;
Tasyaaham nigraham manye vaayoriva sudushkaram.

34. The mind verily is restless, turbulent, strong and unyielding, O Krishna! I deem it as difficult to control as to control the wind.

COMMENTARY: The mind ever changes its point of concentration from one object to another. So it is always restless. It is not only restless but also turbulent and impetuous, strong and obstinate. It produces agitation in the body and in the senses. That is why the mind is even more difficult to control than to control the wind.

Sri Bhagavaan Uvaacha:

Asamshayam mahaabaaho mano durnigraham chalam;
Abhyaasena tu kaunteya vairaagyena cha grihyate.

The Blessed Lord said:

35. Undoubtedly, O mighty-armed Arjuna, the mind is difficult to control and restless; but, by practice and by dispassion it may be restrained!

Asamyataatmanaa yogo dushpraapa iti me matih;
Vashyaatmanaa tu yatataa shakyovaaptumupaayatah.

36. I think that Yoga is hard to be attained by one of uncontrolled self, but the self~controlled and striving one attains to it by the (proper) means.

Arjuna Uvaacha:

Ayatih shraddhayopeto yogaacchalitamaanasah;
Apraapya yogasamsiddhim kaam gatim krishna gacchati.

Arjuna said:

37. He who is unable to control himself though he has the faith, and whose mind wanders away from Yoga, what end does he meet, having failed to attain perfection in Yoga, O Krishna?

Kacchinnobhayavibhrashtash cchinnaabhramiva nashyati;
Apratishtho mahaabaaho vimoodho brahmanah pathi.

38. Fallen from both, does he not perish like a rent cloud, supportless, O mighty-armed (Krishna), deluded on the path of Brahman?

Etanme samshayam krishna cchettumarhasyasheshatah;
Twadanyah samshayasyaasya cchettaa na hyupapadyate.

39. This doubt of mine, O Krishna, do Thou completely dispel, because it is not possible for any but Thee to dispel this doubt.

COMMENTARY: There is no better teacher than the Lord Himself as He is omniscient.

Sri Bhagavaan Uvaacha:

Paartha naiveha naamutra vinaashas tasya vidyate;
Nahi kalyaanakrit kashchid durgatim taata gacchati.

The Blessed Lord said:

40. O Arjuna, neither in this world, nor in the next world is there destruction for him; none, verily, who does good, O My son, ever comes to grief!

Praapya punyakritaam lokaanushitwaa shaashwateeh samaah;
Shucheenaam shreemataam gehe yogabhrashtobhijaayate.

41. Having attained to the worlds of the righteous and, having dwelt there for everlasting years, he who fell from Yoga is reborn in the house of the pure and wealthy.

Athavaa yoginaameva kule bhavati dheemataam;
Etaddhi durlabhataram loke janma yadeedrisham.

42. Or he is born in a family of even the wise Yogis; verily a birth like this is very difficult to obtain in this world.

Tatra tam buddhisamyogam labhate paurvadehikam;
Yatate cha tato bhooyah samsiddhau kurunandana.

43. There he comes in touch with the knowledge acquired in his former body and strives more than before for perfection, O Arjuna!

Poorvaabhyaasena tenaiva hriyate hyavashopi sah;
Jijnaasurapi yogasya shabdabrahmaativartate.

44. By that very former practice he is borne on in spite of himself. Even he who merely wishes to know Yoga transcends the Brahmic word.

COMMENTARY: One who had fallen from Yoga is carried to the goal (which he intended to reach in his previous birth), by the force of the impressions of his past Yogic practices, though he may be unconscious of it and may not be willing to adopt the course of Yogic discipline due to the force of some evil Karma.

Prayatnaadyatamaanastu yogee samshuddhakilbishah;
Anekajanmasamsiddhas tato yaati paraam gatim.

45. But, the Yogi who strives with assiduity, purified of sins and perfected gradually through many births, reaches the highest goal.

Tapaswibhyodhiko yogee jnaanibhyopi matodhikah;
Karmibhyashchaadhiko yogee tasmaad yogee bhavaarjuna.

46. The Yogi is thought to be superior to the ascetics and even superior to men of knowledge (obtained through the study of scriptures); he is also superior to men of action; therefore, be thou a Yogi, O Arjuna!

Yoginaamapi sarveshaam madgatenaantaraatmanaa;
Shraddhaavaan bhajate yo maam sa me yuktatamo matah.

47. And among all the Yogis, he who, full of faith and with his inner self merged in Me, worships Me, he is deemed by Me to be the most devout.

Hari Om Tat Sat
Iti Srimad Bhagavadgeetaasoopanishatsu Brahmavidyaayaam
Yogashaastre Sri Krishnaarjunasamvaade
Aatmasamyamayogo Naama Shashthodhyaayah

Thus in the Upanishads of the glorious Bhagavad Gita, the science of the Eternal, the scripture of Yoga, the dialogue between Sri Krishna and Arjuna, ends the sixth discourse entitled:

The Yoga of Meditation

 
     
 

VII The Yoga of Wisdom and Realisation

Summary of Seventh Discourse

Sri Krishna tells Arjuna that the supreme Godhead has to be realised in both its transcendent and immanent aspects. The Yogi who has reached this summit has nothing more to know.

This complete union with the Lord is difficult of attainment. Among many thousands of human beings, very few aspire for this union, and even among those who aspire for it, few ever reach the pinnacle of spiritual realisation.

The Lord has already given a clear description of the all-pervading static and infinite state of His. Now He proceeds to explain His manifestations as the universe and the power behind it. He speaks of these manifestations as His lower and higher Prakritis. The lower Prakriti is made up of the five elements, mind, ego and intellect. The higher Prakriti is the life-element which upholds the universe, activates it and causes its appearance and final dissolution.

Krishna says that whatever exists is nothing but Himself. He is the cause of the appearance of the universe and all things in it. Everything is strung on Him like clusters of gems on a string. He is the essence, substance and substratum of everything, whether visible or invisible. Although everything is in Him, yet He transcends everything as the actionless Self. Prakriti or Nature is made up of the three Gunas or qualities”Sattwa, Rajas and Tamas. These three qualities delude the soul and make it forget its true nature, which is one with God. This delusion, termed Maya, can only be removed by the Grace of the Lord Himself.

Thus far Arjuna has been taught the highest form of devotion, which leads to union with God in His static aspect as also with His dynamic Prakriti. Krishna tells him that there are also other forms of devotion which are inferior as they are performed with various motives. The distressed, the seeker of divine wisdom, and he who desires wealth, worship Him, as also the wise. Of these the Lord deems the wise as dearest to Him. Such a devotee loves the Lord for the sake of pure love alone. Whatever form the devotee worships, the ultimate goal is the Lord Himself. The Lord accepts such worship, knowing that it is directed to Him only.

 
  Sri Bhagavaan Uvaacha:  
     
 

Mayyaasaktamanaah paartha yogam yunjanmadaashrayah;
Asamshayam samagram maam yathaa jnaasyasi tacchrinu.

The Blessed Lord said:

1. O Arjuna, hear how you shall without doubt know Me fully, with the mind intent on Me, practising Yoga and taking refuge in Me!

COMMENTARY: If you sing the glories and attributes of the Lord, you will develop love for Him and then your mind will be ever fixed on Him. Intense love for the Lord is real devotion. With this you must surely get full knowledge of the Self.

Jnaanam teham savijnaanam idam vakshyaamyasheshatah;
Yajjnaatwaa neha bhooyonyaj jnaatavyamavashishyate.

2. I shall declare to thee in full this knowledge combined with direct realisation, after knowing which nothing more here remains to be known.

Manushyaanaam sahasreshu kashchidyatati siddhaye;
Yatataamapi siddhaanaam kashchinmaam vetti tattwatah.

3. Among thousands of men, one perchance strives for perfection; even among those successful strivers, only one perchance knows Me in essence.

Bhoomiraaponalo vaayuh kham mano buddhireva cha;
Ahamkaara iteeyam me bhinnaa prakritirashtadhaa.

4. Earth, water, fire, air, ether, mind, intellect and egoism”thus is My Nature divided eightfold.

Apareyamitastwanyaam prakritim viddhi me paraam;
Jeevabhootaam mahaabaaho yayedam dhaaryate jagat.

5. This is the inferior Prakriti, O mighty-armed (Arjuna)! Know thou as different from it My higher Prakriti (Nature), the very life-element by which this world is upheld.

Etadyoneeni bhootaani sarvaaneetyupadhaaraya;
Aham kritsnasya jagatah prabhavah pralayastathaa.

6. Know that these two (My higher and lower Natures) are the womb of all beings. So, I am the source and dissolution of the whole universe.

Mattah parataram naanyat kinchidasti dhananjaya;
Mayi sarvamidam protam sootre maniganaa iva.

7. There is nothing whatsoever higher than Me, O Arjuna! All this is strung on Me as clusters of gems on a string.

COMMENTARY: There is no other cause of the universe but Me. I alone am the cause of the universe.

Rasohamapsu kaunteya prabhaasmi shashisooryayoh;
Pranavah sarvavedeshu shabdah khe paurusham nrishu.

8. I am the sapidity in water, O Arjuna! I am the light in the moon and the sun; I am the syllable Om in all the Vedas, sound in ether, and virility in men.

Punyo gandhah prithivyaam cha tejashchaasmi vibhaavasau;
Jeevanam sarvabhooteshu tapashchaasmi tapaswishu.

9. I am the sweet fragrance in earth and the brilliance in fire, the life in all beings; and I am austerity in ascetics.

Beejam maam sarvabhootaanaam viddhi paartha sanaatanam;
Buddhir buddhimataamasmi tejastejaswinaamaham.

10. Know Me, O Arjuna, as the eternal seed of all beings; I am the intelligence of the intelligent; the splendour of the splendid objects am I!

Balam balavataam asmi kaamaraagavivarjitam;
Dharmaaviruddho bhooteshu kaamosmi bharatarshabha.

11. Of the strong, I am the strength devoid of desire and attachment, and in (all) beings, I am the desire unopposed to Dharma, O Arjuna!

Ye chaiva saattvikaa bhaavaa raajasaastaamasaashcha ye;
Matta eveti taanviddhi na twaham teshu te mayi.

12. Whatever being (and objects) that are pure, active and inert, know that they proceed from Me. They are in Me, yet I am not in them.

Tribhirgunamayair bhaavairebhih sarvamidam jagat;
Mohitam naabhijaanaati maamebhyah paramavyayam.

13. Deluded by these Natures (states or things) composed of the three qualities of Nature, all this world does not know Me as distinct from them and immutable.

Daivee hyeshaa gunamayee mama maayaa duratyayaa;
Maameva ye prapadyante maayaametaam taranti te.

14. Verily this divine illusion of Mine made up of the qualities (of Nature) is difficult to cross over; those who take refuge in Me alone cross over this illusion.

Na maam dushkritino moodhaah prapadyante naraadhamaah;
Maayayaapahritajnaanaa aasuram bhaavamaashritaah.

15. The evil-doers and the deluded, who are the lowest of men, do not seek Me; they whose knowledge is destroyed by illusion follow the ways of demons.

Chaturvidhaa bhajante maam janaah sukritinorjuna;
Aarto jijnaasurartharthee jnaanee cha bharatarshabha.

16. Four kinds of virtuous men worship Me, O Arjuna! They are the distressed, the seeker of knowledge, the seeker of wealth, and the wise, O lord of the Bharatas!

Teshaam jnaanee nityayukta eka bhaktirvishishyate;
Priyo hi jnaaninotyarthamaham sa cha mama priyah.

17. Of them, the wise, ever steadfast and devoted to the One, excels (is the best); for, I am exceedingly dear to the wise and he is dear to Me.

Udaaraah sarva evaite jnaanee twaatmaiva me matam;
Aasthitah sa hi yuktaatmaa maamevaanuttamaam gatim.

18. Noble indeed are all these; but I deem the wise man as My very Self; for, steadfast in mind, he is established in Me alone as the supreme goal.

Bahoonaam janmanaamante jnaanavaanmaam prapadyate;
Vaasudevah sarvamiti sa mahaatmaa sudurlabhah.

19. At the end of many births the wise man comes to Me, realising that all this is Vasudeva (the innermost Self); such a great soul (Mahatma) is very hard to find.

Kaamaistaistairhritajnaanaah prapadyantenyadevataah;
Tam tam niyamamaasthaaya prakrityaa niyataah swayaa.

20. Those whose wisdom has been rent away by this or that desire, go to other gods, following this or that rite, led by their own nature.

Yo yo yaam yaam tanum bhaktah shraddhayaarchitum icchati;
Tasya tasyaachalaam shraddhaam taameva vidadhaamyaham.

21. Whatsoever form any devotee desires to worship with faiththat (same) faith of his I make firm and unflinching.

Sa tayaa shraddhayaa yuktastasyaaraadhanameehate;
Labhate cha tatah kaamaan mayaiva vihitaan hi taan.

22. Endowed with that faith, he engages in the worship of that (form), and from it he obtains his desire, these being verily ordained by Me (alone).

Antavattu phalam teshaam tadbhavatyalpamedhasaam;
Devaan devayajo yaanti madbhaktaa yaanti maamapi.

23. Verily the reward (fruit) that accrues to those men of small intelligence is finite. The worshippers of the gods go to them, but My devotees come to Me.

Avyaktam vyaktimaapannam manyante maamabuddhayah;
Param bhaavamajaananto mamaavyayamanuttamam.

24. The foolish think of Me, the Unmanifest, as having manifestation, knowing not My higher, immutable and most excellent nature.

Naaham prakaashah sarvasya yogamaayaasamaavritah;
Moodhoyam naabhijaanaati loko maamajamavyayam.

25. I am not manifest to all (as I am), being veiled by the Yoga Maya. This deluded world does not know Me, the unborn and imperishable.

Vedaaham samateetaani vartamaanaani chaarjuna;
Bhavishyaani cha bhootani maam tu veda na kashchana.

26. I know, O Arjuna, the beings of the past, the present and the future, but no one knows Me.

Icchaadweshasamutthena dwandwamohena bhaarata;
Sarvabhootaani sammoham sarge yaanti parantapa.

27. By the delusion of the pairs of opposites arising from desire and aversion, O Bharata, all beings are subject to delusion at birth, O Parantapa!

Yeshaam twantagatam paapam janaanaam punyakarmanaam;
Te dwandwamohanirmuktaa bhajante maam dridhavrataah.

28. But those men of virtuous deeds whose sins have come to an end, and who are freed from the delusion of the pairs of opposites, worship Me, steadfast in their vows.

Jaraamaranamokshaaya maamaashritya yatanti ye;
Te brahma tadviduh kritsnam adhyaatmam karma chaakhilam.

29. Those who strive for liberation from old age and death, taking refuge in Me, realise in full that Brahman, the whole knowledge of the Self and all action.

Saadhibhootaadhidaivam maam saadhiyajnam cha ye viduh;
Prayaanakaalepi cha maam te vidur yuktachetasah.

30. Those who know Me with the Adhibhuta (pertaining to the elements), the Adhidaiva (pertaining to the gods), and Adhiyajna (pertaining to the sacrifice), know Me even at the time of death, steadfast in mind.

COMMENTARY: They who are steadfast in mind, who have taken refuge in Me, who know Me as knowledge of elements on the physical plane, as knowledge of gods on the celestial or mental plane, as knowledge of sacrifice in the realm of sacrifice,”they are not affected by death.

Hari Om Tat Sat
Iti Srimad Bhagavadgeetaasoopanishatsu Brahmavidyaayaam
Yogashaastre Sri Krishnaarjunasamvaade
Jnaanavijnaanayogo Naama Saptamodhyaayah

Thus in the Upanishads of the glorious Bhagavad Gita, the science of the Eternal, the scripture of Yoga, the dialogue between Sri Krishna and Arjuna, ends the seventh discourse entitled:

The Yoga of Wisdom and Realisation

 
     
  VIII The Yoga of the Imperishable Brahman  
 

Summary of Eighth Discourse

Lord Krishna explains how those who attain Him do not have to come again into this impermanent world of sorrow and pain. All beings, including even the gods, come again and again into this created universe from the state of unmanifest being wherein they remained at the end of an age-cycle. But the Lord exists even beyond this unmanifest being. That radiant, imperishable Divine Reality is the highest goal to be attained. Single-minded devotion of our heart is the means of attaining this highest blessed state.

Even though there are auspicious and inauspicious circumstances of departing from the physical body and journeying forth, yet if one steadily abides in the Lord through firm devotion and faith, then these conditions do not matter. By always remaining in tune with the Lord through pure love, everything is made auspicious, if one can ever remain united with the Divine through deep devotion, constant remembrance, regular meditation and continuous communion, then all times, places, conditions and situations become auspicious and blessed. This is the secret of invoking His Grace and attaining Him and becoming eternally free and blissful.

Arjuna here asks Lord Krishna about the meaning of the different terms referred to by Him in the last two verses of the previous chapter. He wishes to know what is the Supreme Being, what is Karma or action that He refers to, and what is the meaning that pertains to this spirit, the elements and the centre of all things within this human body.

Beyond all things manifest and unmanifest, beyond these names and forms, there is the Supreme Being”Brahman. He indwells this body as the centre of all things, including even our own self (individual soul). We are a spiritual being residing in this body and supported by the Silent Witness within”the Supreme Antaryamin. Prakriti or Nature is the being pertaining to the elements. Worship, prayer and offering to the gods with faith and devotion constitute actions that lead to blessedness.

The secret of reaching the Divine Being and thus freeing oneself forever from birth and death and the pains and sufferings of this earth-life, is to constantly practise unbroken remembrance of the Lord at all times, in all places and even amidst ones daily activities. If one practises such steady remembrance through regular daily Sadhana, then he will be rooted in His remembrance even at the time of departing from this body at death. Thus departing, he will go beyond darkness and bondage and attain the realm of eternal blessedness.

One must practise sense-control. The senses must be well disciplined and gradually withdrawn from outside objects. The mind should be centred within upon God, by uttering Om or any Divine Name. By such steady practice daily the Lord is easily attained.

 
 

Sri Bhagavaan Uvaacha:

 
 

Idam tu te guhyatamam pravakshyaamyanasooyave;
Jnaanam vijnaanasahitam yajjnaatwaa mokshyaseshubhaat.

The Blessed Lord said:

1. I shall now declare to thee who does not cavil, the greatest secret, the knowledge combined with experience (Self-realisation). Having known this, thou shalt be free from evil.

Raajavidyaa raajaguhyam pavitramidamuttamam;
Pratyakshaavagamam dharmyam susukham kartumavyayam.

2. This is the kingly science, the kingly secret, the supreme purifier, realisable by direct intuitional knowledge, according to righteousness, very easy to perform and imperishable.

Ashraddhadhaanaah purushaa dharmasyaasya parantapa;
Apraapya maam nivartante mrityusamsaaravartmani.

3. Those who have no faith in this Dharma (knowledge of the Self), O Parantapa (Arjuna), return to the path of this world of death without attaining Me!

Mayaa tatamidam sarvam jagadavyaktamoortinaa;
Matsthaani sarvabhootaani na chaaham teshvavasthitah.

4. All this world is pervaded by Me in My unmanifest aspect; all beings exist in Me, but I do not dwell in them.

Na cha matsthaani bhootaani pashya me yogamaishwaram;
Bhootabhrinna cha bhootastho mamaatmaa bhootabhaavanah.

5. Nor do beings exist in Me (in reality): behold My divine Yoga, supporting all beings, but not dwelling in them, is My Self, the efficient cause of beings.

Yathaakaashasthito nityam vaayuh sarvatrago mahaan;
Tathaa sarvaani bhootaani matsthaaneetyupadhaaraya.

6. As the mighty wind, moving everywhere, rests always in the ether, even so, know thou that all beings rest in Me.

Sarvabhootaani kaunteya prakritim yaanti maamikaam;
Kalpakshaye punastaani kalpaadau visrijaamyaham.

7. All beings, O Arjuna, enter into My Nature at the end of a Kalpa; I send them forth again at the beginning of (the next) Kalpa!

Prakritim swaamavashtabhya visrijaami punah punah;
Bhootagraamamimam kritsnamavasham prakritervashaat.

8. Animating My Nature, I again and again send forth all this multitude of beings, helpless by the force of Nature.

Na cha maam taani karmaani nibadhnanti dhananjaya;
Udaaseenavadaaseenam asaktam teshu karmasu.>

9. These actions do not bind Me, O Arjuna, sitting like one indifferent, unattached to those acts!

Mayaadhyakshena prakritih sooyate sacharaacharam;
Hetunaanena kaunteya jagadwiparivartate.

10. Under Me as supervisor, Nature produces the moving and the unmoving; because of this, O Arjuna, the world revolves!

Avajaananti maam moodhaah maanusheem tanumaashritam;
Param bhaavamajaananto mama bhootamaheshwaram.

11. Fools disregard Me, clad in human form, not knowing My higher Being as the great Lord of (all) beings.

COMMENTARY: Fools who do not have discrimination despise Me, dwelling in human form. I have taken this body in order to bless My devotees. These fools have no knowledge of My higher Being. I am the great Lord, the Supreme.

Moghaashaa moghakarmaano moghajnaanaa vichetasah;
Raakshaseemaasureem chaiva prakritim mohineem shritaah.

12. Of vain hopes, of vain actions, of vain knowledge and senseless, they verily are possessed of the deceitful nature of demons and undivine beings.

Mahaatmaanastu maam paartha daiveem prakritimaashritaah;
Bhajantyananyamanaso jnaatwaa bhootaadimavyayam.

13. But the great souls, O Arjuna, partaking of My divine nature, worship Me with a single mind (with the mind devoted to nothing else), knowing Me as the imperishable source of beings!

Satatam keertayanto maam yatantashcha dridhavrataah;
Namasyantashcha maam bhaktyaa nityayuktaa upaasate.

14. Always glorifying Me, striving, firm in vows,