Bhagavad- gt As It Is
Macmillan 1972

[NOTE: This page uses Balarama font (available here)
for better transliteration of Sanskrit into English]

with original Sanskrit text,
Roman transliteration, English equivalents,
translation and elaborate purports

His Divine Grace
A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupda

Collier Books
A Division of Macmillan Publishing Co., Inc.

Collier Macmillan Publishers

who presented so nicely
the Govinda-bhya commentary
Vednta philosophy

Bg. Foreword


The Bhagavad-gt is the best known and the most frequently translated of Vedic religious texts. Why it should be so appealing to the Western mind is an interesting question. It has drama, for its setting is a scene of two great armies, banners flying, drawn up opposite one another on the field, poised for battle. It has ambiguity, and the fact that Arjuna and his charioteer Ka are carrying on their dialogue between the two armies suggests the indecision of Arjuna about the basic question: should he enter battle against and kill those who are friends and kinsmen? It has mystery, as Ka demonstrates to Arjuna His cosmic form. It has a properly complicated view of the ways of the religious life and treats of the paths of knowledge, works, discipline and faith and their inter-relationships, problems that have bothered adherents of other religions in other times and places. The devotion spoken of is a deliberate means of religious satisfaction, not a mere outpouring of poetic emotion. Next to the Bhgavata-pura, a long work from South India, the Gt is the text most frequently quoted in the philosophical writings of the Gauya Vaiava school, the school represented by Swami Bhaktivedanta as the latest in a long succession of teachers. It can be said that this school of Vaiavism was founded, or revived, by r Ka-Caitanya Mahprabhu (1486-1533) in Bengal, and that it is currently the strongest single religious force in the eastern part of the Indian subcontinent. The Gauiya Vaiava school, for whom Ka is Himself the Supreme God, and not merely an incarnation of another deity, sees bhakti as an immediate and powerful religious force, consisting of love between man and God. Its discipline consists of devoting all ones actions to the Deity, and one listens to the stories of Ka from the sacred texts, one chants Kas name, washes, bathes, and dresses the mrti of Ka, feeds Him and takes the remains of the food offered to Him, thus absorbing His grace; one does these things and many more, until one has been changed: the devotee has become transformed into one close to Ka, and sees the Lord face to face.

Swami Bhaktivedanta comments upon the Gt from this point of view, and that is legitimate. More than that, in this translation the Western reader has the unique opportunity of seeing how a Ka devotee interprets his own texts. It is the Vedic exegetical tradition, justly famous, in action. This book is then a welcome addition from many points of view. It can serve as a valuable textbook for the college student. It allows us to listen to a skilled interpreter explicating a text which has profound religious meaning. It gives us insights into the original and highly convincing ideas of the Gauiya Vaiava school. In providing the Sanskrit in both Devanagari and transliteration, it offers the Sanskrit specialist the opportunity to re-interpret, or debate particular Sanskrit meaningsalthough I think there will be little disagreement about the quality of the Swamis Sanskrit scholarship. And finally, for the nonspecialist, there is readable English and a devotional attitude which cannot help but move the sensitive reader. And there are the paintings, which, incredibly as it may seem to those familiar with contemporary Indian religious art, were done by American devotees.

The scholar, the student of Gauya Vaiavism, and the increasing number of Western readers interested in classical Vedic thought have been done a service by Swami Bhaktivedanta. By bringing us a new and living interpretation of a text already known to many, he has increased our understanding manyfold; and arguments for understanding, in these days of estrangement, need not be made.

Professor Edward C. Dimock, Jr.
Department of South Asian Languages and Civilization
University of Chicago

Bg. Preface


Originally I wrote Bhagavad-gt As It Is >in the form in which it is presented now. When this book was first published, the original manuscript was, unfortunately, cut short to less than 400 pages, without illustrations and without explanations for most of the original verses of the rmad Bhagavad-gt. In all of my other booksrmad Bhgavatam, r opaniad, etc.the system is that I give the original verse, its English transliteration, word-for-word Sanskrit-English equivalents, translations and purports. This makes the book very authentic and scholarly and makes the meaning self-evident. I was not very happy, therefore, when I had to minimize my original manuscript. But later on, when the demand for Bhagavad-gt As It Is considerably increased, I was requested by many scholars and devotees to present the book in its original form, and Messrs. Macmillan and Co. agreed to publish the complete edition. Thus the present attempt is to offer the original manuscript of this great book of knowledge with full parampar explanation in order to establish the Ka consciousness movement more soundly and progressively.

Our Ka consciousness movement is genuine, historically authorized, natural and transcendental due to its being based on Bhagavad-gt As It Is. It is gradually becoming the most popular movement in the entire world, especially amongst the younger generation. It is becoming more and more interesting to the older generation also. Older gentlemen are becoming interested, so much so that the fathers and grandfathers of my disciples are encouraging us by becoming life members of our great society, the International Society for Krishna Consciousness. In Los Angeles many fathers and mothers used to come to see me to express their feelings of gratitude for my leading the Ka consciousness movement throughout the entire world. Some of them said that it is greatly fortunate for the Americans that I have started the Ka consciousness movement in America. But actually the original father of this movement is Lord Ka Himself, since it was started a very long time ago but is coming down to human society by disciplic succession. If I have any credit in this connection, it does not belong to me personally, but it is due to my eternal spiritual master, His Divine Grace Om Viupda Paramahasa Parivrjakcrya 108 r rmad Bhaktisiddhnta Sarasvat Gosvm Mahrja Prabhupda.

If personally I have any credit in this matter, it is only that I have tried to present Bhagavad-gt as it is, without adulteration. Before my presentation of Bhagavad-gt As It Is, almost all the English editions of Bhagavad-gt were introduced to fulfill someones personal ambition. But our attempt, in presenting Bhagavad-gt As It Is, is to present the mission of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Ka. Our business is to present the will of Ka, not that of any mundane speculator like the politician, philosopher or scientist, for they have very little knowledge of Ka, despite all their other knowledge. When Ka says, man-man bhava mad-bhakto mad-yj m namaskuru, etc., we, unlike the so-called scholars, do not say that Ka and His inner spirit are different. Ka is absolute, and there is no difference between Kas name, Kas form, Kas quality, Kas pastimes, etc. This absolute position of Ka is difflcult to understand for any person who is not a devotee of Ka in the parampar (disciplic succession) system. Generally the so-called scholars, politicians, philosophers, and svms, without perfect knowledge of Ka, try to banish or kill Ka when writing commentary on Bhagavad-gt. Such unauthorized commentary upon Bhagavad-gt is known as Myvd-Bhya, and Lord Caitanya has warned us about these unauthorized men. Lord Caitanya clearly says that anyone who tries to understand Bhagavad-gt from the Myvd point of view will commit a great blunder. The result of such a blunder will be that the misguided student of Bhagavad-gt will certainly be bewildered on the path of spiritual guidance and will not be able to go back home, back to Godhead.

Our only purpose is to present this Bhagavad-gt As It Is in order to guide the conditioned student to the same purpose for which Ka descends to this planet once in a day of Brahm, or every 8,600,000,000 years. This purpose is stated in Bhagavad-gt, and we have to accept it as it is; otherwise there is no point in trying to understand the Bhagavad-gt and its speaker, Lord Ka. Lord Ka first spoke Bhagavad-gt to the sun-god some hundreds of millions of years ago. We have to accept this fact and thus understand the historical significance of Bhagavad-gt, without misinterpretation, on the authority of Ka. To interpret Bhagavad-gt without any reference to the will of Ka is the greatest offense. In order to save oneself from this offense, one has to understand the Lord as the Supreme Personality of Godhead, as He was directly understood by Arjuna, Lord Kas first disciple. Such understanding of Bhagavad-gt is really profitable and authorized for the welfare of human society in fulfilling the mission of life.

The Ka consciousness movement is essential in human society, for it offers the highest perfection of life. How this is so is explained fully in the Bhagavad-gt. Unfortunately, mundane wranglers have taken advantage of Bhagavad-gt to push forward their demonic propensities and mislead people regarding right understanding of the simple principles of life. Everyone should know how God or Ka is great, and everyone should know the factual position of the living entities. Everyone should know that a living entity is eternally a servant and that unless one serves Ka one has to serve illusion in different varieties of the three modes of material nature, and thus perpetually one has to wander within the cycle of birth and death; even the so-called liberated Myvd speculator has to undergo this process. This knowledge constitutes a great science, and each and every living being has to hear it for his own interest.

People in general, especially in this age of Kali, are enamored by the external energy of Ka, and they wrongly think that by advancement of material comforts every man will be happy. They have no knowledge that the material or external nature is very strong, for everyone is strongly bound by the stringent laws of material nature. A living entity is happily the part and parcel of the Lord, and thus his natural function is to render immediate service to the Lord. By the spell of illusion one tries to be happy by serving his personal sense gratification in different forms which will never make him happy. Instead of satisfying his own personal material senses, he has to satisfy the senses of the Lord. That is the highest perfection of life. The Lord wants this, and He demands it. One has to understand this central point of Bhagavad-gt. Our Ka consciousness movement is teaching the whole world this central point, and because we are not polluting the theme of Bhagavad-gt As It Is, anyone seriously interested in deriving benefit by studying the Bhagavad-gt must take help from the Ka consciousness movement for practical understanding of Bhagavad-gt under the direct guidance of the Lord. We hope, therefore, that people will derive the greatest benefit by studying Bhagavad-gt As It Is as we have presented it here, and if even one man becomes a pure devotee of the Lord we shall consider our attempt a success.

[signed] A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami
12 May 1971
Sydney, Australia

Bg. introduction


om ajna-timirndhasya
cakur unmlita yena
tasmai r-gurave nama

sthpita yena bh-tale
svaya rpa kad mahya
dadti sva-padntikam

I was born in the darkest ignorance, and my spiritual master opened my eyes with the torch of knowledge. I offer my respectful obeisances unto him.

When will rla Rpa Gosvm Prabhupda, who has established within this material world the mission to fulfill the desire of Lord Caitanya, give me shelter under his lotus feet?

vande ha r-guro r-yuta-pada-kamala r-gurun vaiav ca
r-rpa sgrajta saha-gaa-raghunthnvita ta sa-jvam
sdvaita svadhta parijana-sahita ka-caitanya-deva
r-rdh-ka-pdn saha-gaa-lalit-r-vikhnvit ca

I offer my respectful obeisances unto the lotus feet of my spiritual master and unto the feet of all Vaiavas. I offer my respectful obeisances unto the lotus feet of rla Rpa Gosvm along with his elder brother Santana Gosvm, as well as Raghuntha Dsa and Raghuntha Bhaa, Gopla Bhaa, and rla Jva Gosvm. I offer my respectful obeisances to Lord Ka Caitanya and Lord Nitynanda along with Advaita crya, Gaddhara, rvsa, and other associates. I offer my respectful obeisances to rmat Rdhr and r Ka along with Their associates, r Lalit and Vikh.

he ka karu-sindho dna-bandho jagat-pate
gopea gopik-knta rdh-knta namo stu te

O my dear Ka, You are the friend of the distressed and the source of creation. You are the master of the gops and the lover of Rdhr. I offer my respectful obeisances unto You.

tapta-kcana-gaurgi rdhe vndvanevari
vabhnu-sute devi praammi hari-priye

I offer my respects to Rdhr whose bodily complexion is like molten gold and who is the Queen of Vndvana. You are the daughter of King Vabhnu, and You are very dear to Lord Ka.

vch-kalpatarubhya ca kp-sindhubhya eva ca
patitn pvanebhyo vaiavebhyo namo nama

I offer my respectful obeisances unto all the Vaiava devotees of the Lord who can fulfill the desires of everyone, just like desire trees, and who are full of compassion for the fallen souls.

r ka caitanya prabhu nitynanda
r advaita gaddhara rvsdi-gaura-bhakta-vnda

I offer my obeisances to r Ka Caitanya, Prabhu Nitynanda, r Advaita, Gaddhara, rvsa and all others in the line of devotion.

hare ka, hare ka, ka ka, hare hare
hare rma, hare rma, rma rma, hare hare.


Bhagavad-gt is also known as Gtopaniad. It is the essence of Vedic knowledge and one of the most important Upaniads in Vedic literature. Of course there are many commentaries in English on the Bhagavad-gt, and one may question the necessity for another one. This present edition can be explained in the following way. Recently an American lady asked me to recommend an English translation of Bhagavad-gt. Of course in America there are so many editions of Bhagavad-gt available in English, but as far as I have seen, not only in America but also in India, none of them can be strictly said to be authoritative because in almost every one of them the commentator has expressed his own opinions without touching the spirit of Bhagavad-gt as it is.

The spirit of Bhagavad-gt is mentioned in Bhagavad-gt itself. It is just like this: if we want to take a particular medicine, then we have to follow the directions written on the label. We cannot take the medicine according to our own whim or the direction of a friend. It must be taken according to the directions on the label or the directions given by a physician. Similarly, Bhagavad-gt should be taken or accepted as it is directed by the speaker himself. The speaker of Bhagavad-gt is Lord r Ka. He is mentioned on every page of Bhagavad-gt as the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Bhagavn. Of course the word bhagavn sometimes refers to any powerful person or any powerful demigod, and certainly here Bhagavn designates Lord r Ka as a great personality, but at the same time we should know that Lord r Ka is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, as is confirmed by all great cryas (spiritual masters) like akarcrya, Rmnujcrya, Madhvcrya, Nimbrka Svm, r Caitanya Mahprabhu and many other authorities of Vedic knowledge in India. The Lord Himself also establishes Himself as the Supreme Personality of Godhead in the Bhagavad-gt, and He is accepted as such in the Brahma-sahit and all the Puras, especially the rmad-Bhgavatam, known as the Bhgavata Pura (Kas tu bhagavn svayam). Therefore we should take Bhagavad-gt as it is directed by the Personality of Godhead Himself.

In the Fourth Chapter of the Gt the Lord says:

(1) ima vivasvate yoga proktavn aham avyayam
vivasvn manave prha manur ikvkave bravt

(2) eva parampar-prptam ima rjarayo vidu
sa kleneha mahat yogo naa parantapa

(3) sa evya may te dya yoga prokta purtana
bhakto si me sakh ceti rahasya hy etad uttamam

Here the Lord informs Arjuna that this system of yoga, the Bhagavad-gt, was first spoken to the sun-god, and the sun-god explained it to Manu, and Manu explained it to Ikvku, and in that way, by disciplic succession, one speaker after another, this yoga system has been coming down. But in the course of time it has become lost. Consequently the Lord has to speak it again, this time to Arjuna on the Battlefield of Kuruketra.

He tells Arjuna that He is relating this supreme secret to him because he is His devotee and His friend. The purport of this is that Bhagavad-gt is a treatise which is especially meant for the devotee of the Lord. There are three classes of transcendentalists, namely the jn, the yog and the bhakta, or the impersonalist, the meditator and the devotee. Here the Lord clearly tells Arjuna that He is making him the first receiver of a new parampar (disciplic succession) because the old succession was broken. It was the Lords wish, therefore, to establish another parampar in the same line of thought that was coming down from the sun-god to others, and it was His wish that His teaching be distributed anew by Arjuna. He wanted Arjuna to become the authority in understanding the Bhagavad-gt. So we see that Bhagavad-gt is instructed to Arjuna especially because Arjuna was a devotee of the Lord, a direct student of Ka, and His intimate friend. Therefore Bhagavad-gt is best understood by a person who has qualities similar to Arjunas. That is to say he must be a devotee in a direct relationship with the Lord. As soon as one becomes a devotee of the Lord, he also has a direct relationship with the Lord. That is a very elaborate subject matter, but briefly it can be stated that a devotee is in a relationship with the Supreme Personality of Godhead in one of five different ways:

1. One may be a devotee in a passive state;
2. One may be a devotee in an active state;
3. One may be a devotee as a friend;
4. One may be a devotee as a parent;
5. One may be a devotee as a conjugal lover.

Arjuna was in a relationship with the Lord as friend. Of course there is a gulf of difference between this friendship and the friendship found in the material world. This is transcendental friendship which cannot be had by everyone. Of course everyone has a particular relationship with the Lord, and that relationship is evoked by the perfection of devotional service. But in the present status of our life, we have not only forgotten the Supreme Lord, but we have forgotten our eternal relationship with the Lord. Every living being, out of many, many billions and trillions of living beings, has a particular relationship with the Lord eternally. That is called svarpa. By the process of devotional service, one can revive that svarpa, and that stage is called svarpa-siddhiperfection of ones constitutional position. So Arjuna was a devotee, and he was in touch with the Supreme Lord in friendship.

How Arjuna accepted this Bhagavad-gt should be noted. His manner of acceptance is given in the Tenth Chapter.

(12) arjuna uvca
para brahma para dhma pavitra parama bhavn
purua vata divyam di-devam aja vibhum

(13) hus tvm aya sarve devarir nradas tath
asito devalo vysa svaya caiva bravi me

(14) sarvam etad ta manye yan m vadasi keava
na hi te bhagavan vyakti vidur dev na dnav

Arjuna said: You are the Supreme Brahman, the ultimate, the supreme abode and purifier, the Absolute Truth and the eternal Divine Person. You are the primal God, transcendental and original, and You are the unborn and all-pervading beauty. All the great sages like Nrada, Asita, Devala, and Vysa proclaim this of You, and now You Yourself are declaring it to me. O Ka, I totally accept as truth all that You have told me. Neither the gods nor demons, O Lord, know Thy personality. (Bg. 10. 1214).

After hearing Bhagavad-gt from the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Arjuna accepted Ka as Para Brahma, the Supreme Brahman. Every living being is Brahman, but the supreme living being, or the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is the Supreme Brahman. Para dhma means that He is the supreme rest or abode of everything, pavitram means that He is pure, untainted by material contamination, puruam means that He is the supreme enjoyer, divyam, transcendental, di-devam, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, ajam, the unborn, and vibhum, the greatest, the all-pervading.

Now one may think that because Ka was the friend of Arjuna, Arjuna was telling Him all this by way of flattery, but Arjuna, just to drive out this kind of doubt from the minds of the readers of Bhagavad-gt, substantiates these praises in the next verse when he says that Ka is accepted as the Supreme Personality of Godhead not only by himself but by authorities like the sage Nrada, Asita, Devala, Vysadeva and so on. These are great personalities who distribute the Vedic knowledge as it is accepted by all cryas. Therefore Arjuna tells Ka that he accepts whatever He says to be completely perfect. Sarvam etad ta manye: I accept everything You say to be true. Arjuna also says that the personality of the Lord is very difficult to understand and that He cannot be known even by the great demigods. This means that the Lord cannot even be known by personalities greater than human beings. So how can a human being understand r Ka without becoming His devotee?

Therefore Bhagavad-gt should be taken up in a spirit of devotion. One should not think that he is equal to Ka, nor should he think that Ka is an ordinary personality or even a very great personality. Lord r Ka is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, at least theoretically, according to the statements of Bhagavad-gt or the statements of Arjuna, the person who is trying to understand the Bhagavad-gt. We should therefore at least theoretically accept r Ka as the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and with that submissive spirit we can understand the Bhagavad-gt. Unless one reads the Bhagavad-gt in a submissive spirit, it is very difficult to understand Bhagavad-gt because it is a great mystery.

Just what is the Bhagavad-gt? The purpose of Bhagavad-gt is to deliver mankind from the nescience of material existence. Every man is in difficulty in so many ways, as Arjuna also was in difficulty in having to fight the Battle of Kuruketra. Arjuna surrendered unto r Ka, and consequently this Bhagavad-gt was spoken. Not only Arjuna, but every one of us is full of anxieties because of this material existence. Our very existence is in the atmosphere of nonexistence. Actually we are not meant to be threatened by nonexistence. Our existence is eternal. But somehow or other we are put into asat. Asat refers to that which does not exist.

Out of so many human beings who are suffering, there are a few who are actually inquiring about their position, as to what they are, why they are put into this awkward position and so on. Unless one is awakened to this position of questioning his suffering, unless he realizes that he doesnt want suffering but rather wants to make a solution to all sufferings, then one is not to be considered a perfect human being. Humanity begins when this sort of inquiry is awakened in ones mind. In the Brahma-stra this inquiry is called brahma-jijs. Every activity of the human being is to be considered a failure unless he inquires about the nature of the Absolute. Therefore those who begin to question why they are suffering or where they came from and where they shall go after death are proper students for understanding Bhagavad-gt. The sincere student should also have a firm respect for the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Such a student was Arjuna.

Lord Ka descends specifically to reestablish the real purpose of life when man forgets that purpose. Even then, out of many, many human beings who awaken, there may be one who actually enters the spirit of understanding his position, and for him this Bhagavad-gt is spoken. Actually we are all followed by the tiger of nescience, but the Lord is very merciful upon living entities, especially human beings. To this end He spoke the Bhagavad-gt, making His friend Arjuna His student.

Being an associate of Lord Ka, Arjuna was above all ignorance, but Arjuna was put into ignorance on the Battlefield of Kuruketra just to question Lord Ka about the problems of life so that the Lord could explain them for the benefit of future generations of human beings and chalk out the plan of life. Then man could act accordingly and perfect the mission of human life.

The subject of the Bhagavad-gt entails the comprehension of five basic truths. First of all, the science of God is explained and then the constitutional position of the living entities, jvas. There is vara, which means controller, and there are jvas, the living entities which are controlled. If a living entity says that he is not controlled but that he is free, then he is insane. The living being is controlled in every respect, at least in his conditioned life. So in the Bhagavad-gt the subject matter deals with the vara, the supreme controller, and the jvas, the controlled living entities. Prakti (material nature) and time (the duration of existence of the whole universe or the manifestation of material nature) and karma (activity) are also discussed. The cosmic manifestation is full of different activities. All living entities are engaged in different activities. From Bhagavad-gt we must learn what God is, what the living entities are, what prakrti is, what the cosmic manifestation is and how it is controlled by time, and what the activities of the living entities are.

Out of these five basic subject matters in Bhagavad-gt it is established that the Supreme Godhead, or Ka, or Brahman, or supreme controller, or Paramtmyou may use whatever name you likeis the greatest of all. The living beings are in quality like the supreme controller. For instance, the Lord has control over the universal affairs, over material nature, etc., as will be explained in the later chapters of Bhagavad-gt. Material nature is not independant. She is acting under the directions of the Supreme Lord. As Lord Ka says, Prakti is working under My direction. When we see wonderful things happening in the cosmic nature, we should know that behind this cosmic manifestation there is a controller. Nothing could be manifested without being controlled. It is childish not to consider the controller. For instance, a child may think that an automobile is quite wonderful to be able to run without a horse or other animal pulling it, but a sane man knows the nature of the automobiles engineering arrangement. He always knows that behind the machinery there is a man, a driver. Similarly, the Supreme Lord is a driver under whose direction everything is working. Now the jvas, or the living entities, have been accepted by the Lord, as we will note in the later chapters, as His parts and parcels. A particle of gold is also gold, a drop of water from the ocean is also salty, and similarly, we the living entities, being part and parcel of the supreme controller, svara, or Bhagavn, Lord r Ka, have all the qualities of the Supreme Lord in minute quantity because we are minute varas, subordinate varas. We are trying to control nature, as presently we are trying to control space or planets, and this tendency to control is there because it is in Ka. But although we have a tendency to lord it over material nature, we should know that we are not the supreme controller. This is explained in Bhagavad-gt.

What is material nature? This is also explained in Gt as inferior prakti, inferior nature. The living entity is explained as the superior prakti. Prakti is always under control, whether inferior or superior. Prakti is female, and she is controlled by the Lord just as the activities of a wife are controlled by the husband. Prakti is always subordinate, predominated by the Lord, who is the predominator. The living entities and material nature are both predominated, controlled by the Supreme Lord. According to the Gt, the living entities, although parts and parcels of the Supreme Lord, are to be considered prakti. This is clearly mentioned in the Seventh Chapter, fifth verse of Bhagavad-gt: Apareyam itas tv anym. This prakti is My lower nature. Prakti viddhi me parm jva-bht mah-bho yayeda dhryate jagat. And beyond this there is another prakti: jva-bhtm, the living entity.

Prakti itself is constituted by three qualities: the mode of goodness, the mode of passion and the mode of ignorance. Above these modes there is eternal time, and by a combination of these modes of nature and under the control and purview of eternal time there are activities which are called karma. These activities are being carried out from time immemorial, and we are suffering or enjoying the fruits of our activities. For instance, suppose I am a businessman and have worked very hard with intelligence and have amassed a great bank balance. Then I am an enjoyer. But then say I have lost all my money in business; then I am a sufferer. Similarly, in every field of life we enjoy the results of our work, or we suffer the results. This is called karma.

vara (the Supreme Lord), jva (the living entity), prakti (nature), eternal time and karma (activity) are all explained in the Bhagavad-gt. Out of these five, the Lord, the living entities, material nature and time are eternal. The manifestation of prakti may be temporary, but it is not false. Some philosophers say that the manifestation of material nature is false, but according to the philosophy of Bhagavad-gt or according to the philosophy of the Vaiavas, this is not so. The manifestation of the world is not accepted as false; it is accepted as real, but temporary. It is likened unto a cloud which moves across the sky, or the coming of the rainy season which nourishes grains. As soon as the rainy season is over and as soon as the cloud goes away, all the crops which were nourished by the rain dry up. Similarly, this material manifestation takes place at a certain interval, stays for a while and then disappears. Such are the workings of prakti But this cycle is working eternally. Therefore prakrti is eternal; it is not false. The Lord refers to this as My prakti. This material nature is the separated energy of the Supreme Lord, and similarly the living entities are also the energy of the Supreme Lord, but they are not separated. They are eternally related. So the Lord, the living entity, material nature and time are all interrelated and are all eternal. However, the other item, karma, is not eternal. The effects of karma may be very old indeed. We are suffering or enjoying the results of our activities from time immemorial, but we can change the results of our karma, or our activity, and this change depends on the perfection of our knowledge. We are engaged in various activities. Undoubtedly we do not know what sort of activities we should adopt to gain relief from the actions and reactions of all these activities, but this is also explained in the Bhagavad-gt.

The position of svara is that of supreme consciousness. The jvas, or the living entities, being parts and parcels of the Supreme Lord, are also conscious. Both the living entity and material nature are explained as prakti, the energy of the Supreme Lord, but one of the two, the jva, is conscious. The other prakti is not conscious. That is the difference. Therefore the jva-prakti is called superior because the jva has consciousness which is similar to the Lords. The Lords is supreme consciousness, however, and one should not claim that the jva, the living entity, is also supremely conscious. The living being cannot be supremely conscious at any stage of his perfection, and the theory that he can be so is a misleading theory. Conscious he may be, but he is not perfectly or supremely conscious.

The distinction between the jva and the vara will be explained in the Thirteenth Chapter of Bhagavad-gt. The Lord is ketra-ja, conscious, as is the living being, but the living being is conscious of his particular body, whereas the Lord is conscious of all bodies. Because He lives in the heart of every living being, He is conscious of the psychic movements of the particular jvas. We should not forget this. It is also explained that the Paramtm, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is living in everyones heart as vara, as the controller, and that He is giving directions for the living entity to act as he desires. The living entity forgets what to do. First of all he makes a determination to act in a certain way, and then he is entangled in the acts and reactions of his own karma. After giving up one type of body, he enters another type of body, as we put on and take off old clothes. As the soul thus migrates, he suffers the actions and reactions of his past activities. These activities can be changed when the living being is in the mode of goodness, in sanity, and understands what sort of activities he should adopt. If he does so, then all the actions and reactions of his past activities can be changed. Consequently, karma is not eternal. Therefore we stated that of the five items (vara, jva, prakti time and karma) four are eternal, whereas karma is not eternal.

The supreme conscious vara is similar to the living entity in this way: both the consciousness of the Lord and that of the living entity are transcendental. It is not that consciousness is generated by the association of matter. That is a mistaken idea. The theory that consciousness develops under certain circumstances of material combination is not accepted in the Bhagavad-gt. Consciousness may be pervertedly reflected by the covering of material circumstances, just as light reflected through colored glass may appear to be a certain color, but the consciousness of the Lord is not materially affected. Lord Ka says, maydhyakea prakti. When He descends into the material universe, His consciousness is not materially affected. If He were so affected, He would be unfit to speak on transcendental matters as He does in the Bhagavad-gt. One cannot say anything about the transcendental world without being free from materially contaminated consciousness. So the Lord is not materially contaminated. Our consciousness, at the present moment, however, is materially contaminated. The Bhagavad-gt teaches that we have to purify this materially contaminated consciousness. In pure consciousness, our actions will be dovetailed to the will of vara, and that will make us happy. It is not that we have to cease all activities. Rather, our activities are to be purified, and purified activities are called bhakti. Activities in bhakti appear to be like ordinary activities, but they are not contaminated. An ignorant person may see that a devotee is acting or working like an ordinary man, but such a person with a poor fund of knowledge does not know that the activities of the devotee or of the Lord are not contaminated by impure consciousness or matter. They are transcendental to the three modes of nature. We should know, however, that at this point our consciousness is contaminated.

When we are materially contaminated, we are called conditioned. False consciousness is exhibited under the impression that I am a product of material nature. This is called false ego. One who is absorbed in the thought of bodily conceptions cannot understand his situation. Bhagavad-gt was spoken to liberate one from the bodily conception of life, and Arjuna put himself in this position in order to receive this information from the Lord. One must become free from the bodily conception of life; that is the preliminary activity for the transcendentalist. One who wants to become free, who wants to become liberated, must first of all learn that he is not this material body. Mukti or liberation means freedom from material consciousness. In the rmad-Bhgavatam also the definition of liberation is given: Mukti means liberation from the contaminated consciousness of this material world and situation in pure consciousness. All the instructions of Bhagavad-gt are intended to awaken this pure consciousness, and therefore we find at the last stage of the Gts instructions that Ka is asking Arjuna whether he is now in purified consciousness. Purified consciousness means acting in accordance with the instructions of the Lord. This is the whole sum and substance of purified consciousness. Consciousness is already there because we are part and parcel of the Lord, but for us there is the affinity of being affected by the inferior modes. But the Lord, being the Supreme, is never affected. That is the difference between the Supreme Lord and the conditioned souls.

What is this consciousness? This consciousness is I am. Then what am I? In contaminated consciousness I am means I am the lord of all I survey. I am the enjoyer. The world revolves because every living being thinks that he is the lord and creator of the material world. Material consciousness has two psychic divisions. One is that I am the creator, and the other is that I am the enjoyer. But actually the Supreme Lord is both the creator and the enjoyer, and the living entity, being part and parcel of the Supreme Lord, is neither the creator nor the enjoyer, but a cooperator. He is the created and the enjoyed. For instance, a part of a machine cooperates with the whole machine; a part of the body cooperates with the whole body. The hands, feet, eyes, legs and so on are all parts of the body, but they are not actually the enjoyers. The stomach is the enjoyer. The legs move, the hands supply food, the teeth chew and all parts of the body are engaged in satisfying the stomach because the stomach is the principal factor that nourishes the bodys organization. Therefore everything is given to the stomach. One nourishes the tree by watering its root, and one nourishes the body by feeding the stomach, for if the body is to be kept in a healthy state, then the parts of the body must cooperate to feed the stomach. Similarly, the Supreme Lord is the enjoyer and the creator, and we, as subordinate living beings, are meant to cooperate to satisfy Him. This cooperation will actually help us, just as food taken by the stomach will help all other parts of the body. If the fingers of the hand think that they should take the food themselves instead of giving it to the stomach, then they will be frustrated. The central figure of creation and of enjoyment is the Supreme Lord, and the living entities are cooperators. By cooperation they enjoy. The relation is also like that of the master and the servant. If the master is fully satisfied, then the servant is satisfied. Similarly, the Supreme Lord should be satisfied, although the tendency to become the creator and the tendency to enjoy the material world are there also in the living entities because these tendencies are there in the Supreme Lord who has created the manifested cosmic world.

We shall find, therefore, in this Bhagavad-gt that the complete whole is comprised of the supreme controller, the controlled living entities, the cosmic manifestation, eternal time, and karma, or activities, and all of these are explained in this text. All of these taken completely form the complete whole, and the complete whole is called the Supreme Absolute Truth. The complete whole and the complete Absolute Truth are the Supreme Personality of Godhead, r Ka. All manifestations are due to His different energies. He is the complete whole.

It is also explained in the Gt that impersonal Brahman is also subordinate to the complete. Brahman is more explicitly explained in the Brahma-stra to be like the rays of the sunshine. The impersonal Brahman is the shining rays of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Impersonal Brahman is incomplete realization of the absolute whole, and so also is the conception of Paramtm in the Twelfth Chapter. There it shall be seen that the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Puruottama, is above both impersonal Brahman and the partial realization of Paramtm. The Supreme Personality of Godhead is called sac-cid-nanda-vigraha. The Brahma-sahit begins in this way: vara parama ka sac-cid-nanda-vigraha/andir dir govinda sarva-kraa-kraam. Ka is the cause of all causes. He is the primal cause, and He is the very form of eternal being, knowledge and bliss. Impersonal Brahman realization is the realization of His sat (being) feature. Paramtm realization is the realization of the cit (eternal knowledge) feature. But realization of the Personality of Godhead, Ka, is realization of all the transcendental features: sat, cit and nanda (being, knowledge, bliss) in complete vigraha (form).

People with less intelligence consider the Supreme Truth to be impersonal, but He is a transcendental person, and this is confirmed in all Vedic literatures. Nityo nitynm cetana cetannm. As we are all individual living beings and have our individuality, the Supreme Absolute Truth is also, in the ultimate issue, a person, and realization of the Personality of Godhead is realization of all of the transcendental features. The complete whole is not formless. If He is formless, or if He is less than any other thing, then He cannot be the complete whole. The complete whole must have everything within our experience and beyond our experience, otherwise it cannot be complete. The complete whole, Personality of Godhead, has immense potencies.

How Ka is acting in different potencies is also explained in Bhagavad-gt. This phenomenal world or material world in which we are placed is also complete in itself because the twenty-four elements of which this material universe is a temporary manifestation, according to Skhya philosophy, are completely adjusted to produce complete resources which are necessary for the maintenance and subsistence of this universe. There is nothing extraneous; nor is there anything needed. This manifestation has its own time fixed by the energy of the supreme whole, and when its time is complete, these temporary manifestations will be annihilated by the complete arrangement of the complete. There is complete facility for the small complete units, namely the living entities, to realize the complete, and all sorts of incompleteness are experienced due to incomplete knowledge of the complete. So Bhagavad-gt contains the complete knowledge of Vedic wisdom.

All Vedic knowledge is infallible, and Hindus accept Vedic knowledge to be complete and infallible. For example, cow dung is the stool of an animal, and according to smti or Vedic injunction, if one touches the stool of an animal he has to take a bath to purify himself. But in the Vedic scriptures cow dung is considered to be a purifying agent. One might consider this to be contradictory, but it is accepted because it is Vedic injunction, and indeed by accepting this, one will not commit a mistake; subsequently it has been proved by modern science that cow dung contains all antiseptic properties. So Vedic knowledge is complete because it is above all doubts and mistakes, and Bhagavad-gt is the essence of all Vedic knowledge.

Vedic knowledge is not a question of research. Our research work is imperfect because we are researching things with imperfect senses. We have to accept perfect knowledge which comes down, as is stated in Bhagavad-gt, by the parampar disciplic succession. We have to receive knowledge from the proper source in disciplic succession beginning with the supreme spiritual master, the Lord Himself, and handed down to a succession of spiritual masters. Arjuna, the student who took lessons from Lord r Ka, accepts everything that He says without contradicting Him. One is not allowed to accept one portion of Bhagavad-gt and not another. No. We must accept Bhagavad-gt without interpretation, without deletion and without our own whimsical participation in the matter. The Gt should he taken as the most perfect presentation of Vedic knowledge. Vedic knowledge is received from transcendental sources, and the first words were spoken by the Lord Himself. The words spoken by the Lord are different from words spoken by a person of the mundane world who is infected with four defects. A mundaner 1) is sure to commit mistakes, 2) is invariably illusioned, 3) has the tendency to cheat others and 4) is limited by imperfect senses. With these four imperfections, one cannot deliver perfect information of all-pervading knowledge.

Vedic knowledge is not imparted by such defective living entities. It was imparted unto the heart of Brahm, the first created living being, and Brahm in his turn disseminated this knowledge to his sons and disciples, as he originally received it from the Lord. The Lord is pram, all-perfect, and there is no possibility of His becoming subjected to the laws of material nature. One should therefore be intelligent enough to know that the Lord is the only proprietor of everything in the universe and that He is the original creator, the creator of Brahm. In the Eleventh Chapter the Lord is addressed as prapitmaha because Brahm is addressed as pitmaha, the grandfather, and He is the creator of the grandfather. So no one should claim to be the proprietor of anything; one should accept only things which are set aside for him by the Lord as his quota for his maintenance.

There are many examples given of how we are to utilize those things which are set aside for us by the Lord. This is also explained in Bhagavad-gt. In the beginning, Arjuna decided that he should not fight in the Battle of Kuruketra. This was his own decision. Arjuna told the Lord that it was not possible for him to enjoy the kingdom after killing his own kinsmen. This decision was based on the body because he was thinking that the body was himself and that his bodily relations or expansions were his brothers, nephews, brothers-in-law, grandfathers and so on. He was thinking in this way to satisfy his bodily demands. Bhagavad-gt was spoken by the Lord just to change this view, and at the end Arjuna decides to fight under the directions of the Lord when he says, kariye vacana tava. I shall act according to Thy word.

In this world man is not meant to toil like hogs. He must be intelligent to realize the importance of human life and refuse to act like an ordinary animal. A human being should realize the aim of his life, and this direction is given in all Vedic literatures, and the essence is given in Bhagavad-gt. Vedic literature is meant for human beings, not for animals. Animals can kill other living animals, and there is no question of sin on their part, but if a man kills an animal for the satisfaction of his uncontrolled taste, he must be responsible for breaking the laws of nature. In the Bhagavad-gt it is clearly explained that there are three kinds of activities according to the different modes of nature: the activities of goodness, of passion and of ignorance. Similarly, there are three kinds of eatables also: eatables in goodness, passion and ignorance. All of this is clearly described, and if we properly utilize the instructions of Bhagavad-gt, then our whole life will become purified, and ultimately we will be able to reach the destination which is beyond this material sky.

That destination is called the santana sky, the eternal spiritual sky. In this material world we find that everything is temporary. It comes into being, stays for some time, produces some by-products, dwindles and then vanishes. That is the law of the material world, whether we use as an example this body, or a piece of fruit or anything. But beyond this temporary world there is another world of which we have information. This world consists of another nature which is santana, eternal. Jva is also described as santana, eternal, and the Lord is also described as santana in the Eleventh Chapter. We have an intimate relationship with the Lord, and because we are all qualitatively onethe santana-dhma, or sky, the santana Supreme Personality and the santana living entitiesthe whole purpose of Bhagavad-gt is to revive our santana occupation, or santana-dharma, which is the eternal occupation of the living entity. We are temporarily engaged in different activities, but all of these activities can be purified when we give up all these temporary activities and take up the activities which are prescribed by the Supreme Lord. That is called our pure life.

The Supreme Lord and His transcendental abode are both santana, as are the living entities, and the combined association of the Supreme Lord and the living entities in the santana abode is the perfection of human life. The Lord is very kind to the living entities because they are His sons. Lord Ka declares in Bhagavad-gt, sarva-yoniuaha bja-prada pit. I am the father of all. Of course there are all types of living entities according to their various karmas, but here the Lord claims that He is the father of all of them. Therefore the Lord descends to reclaim all of these fallen, conditioned souls to call them back to the santana eternal sky so that the santana living entities may regain their eternal santana positions in eternal association with the Lord. The Lord comes Himself in different incarnations, or He sends His confidential servants as sons or His associates or cryas to reclaim the conditioned souls.

Therefore, santana-dharma does not refer to any sectarian process of religion. It is the eternal function of the eternal living entities in relationship with the eternal Supreme Lord. Santana-dharma refers, as stated previously, to the eternal occupation of the living entity. Rmnujcrya has explained the word santana as that which has neither beginning nor end, so when we speak of santana-dharma, we must take it for granted on the authority of r Rmnujcrya that it has neither beginning nor end.

The English word religion is a little different from santana-dharma. Religion conveys the idea of faith, and faith may change. One may have faith in a particular process, and he may change this faith and adopt another, but santana-dharma refers to that activity which cannot be changed. For instance, liquidity cannot be taken from water, nor can heat be taken from fire. Similarly, the eternal function of the eternal living entity cannot be taken from the living entity. Santana-dharma is eternally integral with the living entity. When we speak of santana-dharma, therefore, we must take it for granted on the authority of r Rmnujcrya that it has neither beginning nor end. That which has neither end nor beginning must not be sectarian, for it cannot be limited by any boundaries. Yet those belonging to some sectarian faith will wrongly consider that santana-dharma is also sectarian, but if we go deeply into the matter and consider it in the light of modern science, it is possible for us to see that santana-dharma is the business of all the people of the worldnay, of all the living entities of the universe.

Non-santana religious faith may have some beginning in the annals of human history, but there is no beginning to the history of santana-dharma because it remains eternally with the living entities. Insofar as the living entities are concerned, the authoritative stras state that the living entity has neither birth nor death. In the Gt it is stated that the living entity is never born, and he never dies. He is eternal and indestructible, and he continues to live after the destruction of his temporary material body. In reference to the concept of santana-dharma, we must try to understand the concept of religion from the Sanskrit root meaning of the word. Dharma refers to that which is constantly existing with the particular object. We conclude that there is heat and light along with the fire; without heat and light, there is no meaning to the word fire. Similarly, we must discover the essential part of the living being, that part which is his constant companion. That constant companion is his eternal quality, and that eternal quality is his eternal religion.

When Santana Gosvm asked r Caitanya Mahprabhu about the svarpa of every living being, the Lord replied that the svarpa or constitutional position of the living being is the rendering of service to the Supreme Personality of Godhead. If we analyze this statement of Lord Caitanya, we can easily see that every living being is constantly engaged in rendering service to another living being. A living being serves other living beings in two capacities. By doing so, the living entity enjoys life. The lower animals serve human beings as servants serve their master. A serves B master, B serves C master and C serves D master and so on. Under these circumstances, we can see that one friend serves another friend, the mother serves the son, the wife serves the husband, the husband serves the wife and so on. If we go on searching in this spirit, it will be seen that there is no exception in the society of living beings to the activity of service. The politician presents his manifesto for the public to convince them of his capacity for service. The voters therefore give the politician their valuable votes, thinking that he will render valuable service to society. The shopkeeper serves the customer, and the artisan serves the capitalist. The capitalist serves the family, and the family serves the state in the terms of the eternal capacity of the eternal living being. In this way we can see that no living being is exempt from rendering service to other living beings, and therefore we can safely conclude that service is the constant companion of the living being and that the rendering of service is the eternal religion of the living being.

Yet man professes to belong to a particular type of faith with reference to particular time and circumstance and thus claims to be a Hindu, Muslim, Christian, Buddhist or any other sect. Such designations are non-santana-dharma. A Hindu may change his faith to become a Muslim, or a Muslim may change his faith to become a Hindu, or a Christian may change his faith and so on. But in all circumstances the change of religious faith does not effect the eternal occupation of rendering service to others. The Hindu, Muslim or Christian in all circumstances is servant of someone. Thus, to profess a particular type of sect is not to profess ones santana-dharma. The rendering of service is santana-dharma.

Factually we are related to the Supreme Lord in service. The Supreme Lord is the supreme enjoyer, and we living entities are His servitors. We are created for His enjoyment, and if we participate in that eternal enjoyment with the Supreme Personality of Godhead, we become happy. We cannot become happy otherwise. It is not possible to be happy independantly, just as no one part of the body can be happy without cooperating with the stomach. It is not possible for the living entity to be happy without rendering transcendental loving service unto the Supreme Lord.

In the Bhagavad-gt, worship of different demigods or rendering service to them is not approved. It is stated in the Seventh Chapter, twentieth verse:

kmais tais tair hta-jn prapadyante nya-devat
ta ta niyamam sthya prakty niyat svay

Those whose minds are distorted by material desires surrender unto demigods and follow the particular rules and regulations of worship according to their own natures. (Bg. 7.20) Here it is plainly said that those who are directed by lust worship the demigods and not the Supreme Lord Ka. When we mention the name Ka, we do not refer to any sectarian name. Ka means the highest pleasure, and it is confirmed that the Supreme Lord is the reservoir or storehouse of all pleasure. We are all hankering after pleasure. nandamayo bhyst. (Vs. 1.1.12) The living entities, like the Lord, are full of consciousness, and they are after happiness. The Lord is perpetually happy, and if the living entities associate with the Lord, cooperate with Him and take part in His association, then they also become happy.

The Lord descends to this mortal world to show His pastimes in Vndvana, which are full of happiness. When Lord r Ka was in Vndvana, His activities with His cowherd boy friends, with His damsel friends, with the inhabitants of Vndvana and with the cows were all full of happiness. The total population of Vndvana knew nothing but Ka. But Lord Ka even discouraged His father Nanda Mahrja from worshiping the demigod Indra because He wanted to establish the fact that people need not worship any demigod. They need only worship the Supreme Lord because their ultimate goal is to return to His abode.

The abode of Lord r Ka is described in the Bhagavad-gt, Fifteenth Chapter, sixth verse:

na tad bhsayate sryo na ako na pvaka
yad gatv na nivartante tad dhma parama mama

That abode of Mine is not illumined by the sun or moon, nor by electricity. And anyone who reaches it never comes back to this material world. (Bg. 15.6)

This verse gives a description of that eternal sky. Of course we have a material conception of the sky, and we think of it in relationship to the sun, moon, stars and so on, but in this verse the Lord states that in the eternal sky there is no need for the sun nor for the moon nor fire of any kind because the spiritual sky is already illuminated by the brahmajyoti, the rays emanating from the Supreme Lord. We are trying with difficulty to reach other planets, but it is not difficult to understand the abode of the Supreme Lord. This abode is referred to as Goloka. In the Brahma-sahit it is beautifully described: Goloka eva nivasaty akhiltma-bhta. The Lord resides eternally in His abode Goloka, yet He can be approached from this world, and to this end the Lord comes to manifest His real form, sac-cid-nanda-vigraha. When He manifests this form, there is no need for our imagining what He looks like. To discourage such imaginative speculation, He descends and exhibits Himself as He is, as ymasundara. Unfortunately, the less intelligent deride Him because He comes as one of us and plays with us as a human being. But because of this we should not consider that the Lord is one of us. It is by His potency that He presents Himself in His real form before us and displays His pastimes, which are prototypes of those pastimes found in His abode.

In the effulgent rays of the spiritual sky there are innumerable planets floating. The brahmajyoti emanates from the supreme abode, Kaloka, and the nandamaya-cinmaya planets, which are not material, float in those rays. The Lord says, na tad bhsayate sryo na ako na pvaka yad gatv na nivartante tad dhma parama mama. One who can approach that spiritual sky is not required to descend again to the material sky. In the material sky, even if we approach the highest planet (Brahmaloka), what to speak of the moon, we will find the same conditions of life, namely birth, death, disease and old age. No planet in the material universe is free from these four principles of material existence. Therefore the Lord says in Bhagavad-gt, brahma-bhuvanl lok punar vartino rjuna. The living entities are traveling from one planet to another, not by mechanical arrangement but by a spiritual process. This is also mentioned: ynti deva-vrat devn pitn ynti pit-vrat. No mechanical arrangement is necessary if we want interplanetary travel. The Gt instructs: ynti deva-vrat devn. The moon, the sun and higher planets are called svargaloka. There are three different statuses of planets: higher, middle and lower planetary systems. The earth belongs to the middle planetary system. Bhagavad-gt informs us how to travel to the higher planetary systems (devaloka) with a very simple formula: ynti deva-vrat devn. One need only worship the particular demigod of that particular planet and in that way go to the moon, the sun or any of the higher planetary systems.

Yet Bhagavad-gt does not advise us to go to any of the planets in this material world because even if we go to Brahmaloka, the highest planet, through some sort of mechanical contrivance by maybe traveling for forty thousand years (and who would live that long?), we will still find the material inconveniences of birth, death, disease and old age. But one who wants to approach the supreme planet, Kaloka, or any of the other planets within the spiritual sky, will not meet with these material inconveniences. Amongst all of the planets in the spiritual sky there is one supreme planet called Goloka Vndvana, which is the original planet in the abode of the original Personality of Godhead r Ka. All of this information is given in Bhagavad-gt, and we are given through its instruction information how to leave the material world and begin a truly blissful life in the spiritual sky.

In the Fifteenth Chapter of the Bhagavad-gt, the real picture of the material world is given. It is said there:

rdhva-mlam adha-kham avattha prhur avyayam
chandsi yasya parni yas ta veda sa veda-vit

The Supreme Lord said: There is a banyan tree which has its roots upward and its branches down, and the Vedic hymns are its leaves. One who knows this tree is the knower of the Vedas. (Bg. 15.1) Here the material world is described as a tree whose roots are upwards and branches are below. We have experience of a tree whose roots are upward: if one stands on the bank of a river or any reservoir of water, he can see that the trees reflected in the water are upside down. The branches go downward and the roots upward. Similarly, this material world is a reflection of the spiritual world. The material world is but a shadow of reality. In the shadow there is no reality or substantiality, but from the shadow we can understand that there is substance and reality. In the desert there is no water, but the mirage suggests that there is such a thing as water. In the material world there is no water, there is no happiness, but the real water of actual happiness is there in the spiritual world.

The Lord suggests that we attain the spiritual world in the following manner:

nirmna-moh jita-saga-do
adhytma-nity vinivtta-km
dvandvair vimukt sukha-dukha-sajair
gacchanty amh padam avyaya tat.

That padam avyayam or eternal kingdom can be reached by one who is nirmna-moha. What does this mean? We are after designations. Someone wants to become a son, someone wants to become Lord, someone wants to become the president or a rich man or a king or something else. As long as we are attached to these designations, we are attached to the body because designations belong to the body. But we are not these bodies, and realizing this is the first stage in spiritual realization. We are associated with the three modes of material nature, but we must become detached through devotional service to the Lord. If we are not attached to devotional service to the Lord, then we cannot become detached from the modes of material nature. Designations and attachments are due to our lust and desire, our wanting to lord it over the material nature. As long as we do not give up this propensity of lording it over material nature, there is no possibility of returning to the kingdom of the Supreme, the santana-dhma. That eternal kingdom, which is never destroyed, can be approached by one who is not bewildered by the attractions of false material enjoyments, who is situated in the service of the Supreme Lord. One so situated can easily approach that supreme abode.

Elsewhere in the Gt it is stated:

avyakto kara ity uktas tam hu param gatim
ya prpya na nivartante tad dhma parama mama.

Avyakta means unmanifested. Not even all of the material world is manifested before us. Our senses are so imperfect that we cannot even see all of the stars within this material universe. In Vedic literature we can receive much information about all the planets, and we can believe it or not believe it. All of the important planets are described in Vedic literatures, especially rmad-Bhgavatam, and the spiritual world, which is beyond this material sky, is described as avyakta, unmanifested. One should desire and hanker after that supreme kingdom, for when one attains that kingdom, he does not have to return to this material world.

Next, one may raise the question of how one goes about approaching that abode of the Supreme Lord. Information of this is given in the Eighth Chapter. It is said there:

anta-kle ca mm eva smaran muktv kalevaram
ya prayti sa mad-bhvam yti nsty atra saaya

Anyone who quits his body, at the end of life, remembering Me, attains immediately to My nature; and there is no doubt of this. (Bg. 8.5) One who thinks of Ka at the time of his death goes to Ka. One must remember the form of Ka; if he quits his body thinking of this form, he approaches the spiritual kingdom. Mad-bhva refers to the supreme nature of the Supreme Being. The Supreme Being is sac-cid-nanda-vigrahaeternal, full of knowledge and bliss. Our present body is not sac-cid-nanda. It is asat, not sat. It is not eternal; it is perishable. It is not cit, full of knowledge, but it is full of ignorance. We have no knowledge of the spiritual kingdom, nor do we even have perfect knowledge of this material world where there are so many things unknown to us. The body is also nirnanda; instead of being full of bliss it is full of misery. All of the miseries we experience in the material world arise from the body, but one who leaves this body thinking of the Supreme Personality of Godhead at once attains a sac-cid-nanda body, as is promised in this fifth verse of the Eighth Chapter where Lord Ka says, He attains My nature.

The process of quitting this body and getting another body in the material world is also organized. A man dies after it has been decided what form of body he will have in the next life. Higher authorities, not the living entity himself, make this decision. According to our activities in this life, we either rise or sink. This life is a preparation for the next life. If we can prepare, therefore, in this life to get promotion to the kingdom of God, then surely, after quitting this material body, we will attain a spiritual body just like the Lord.

As explained before, there are different kinds of transcendentalists, the brahmavdi paramtmvdi and the devotee, and, as mentioned, in the brahmajyoti (spiritual sky) there are innumerable spiritual planets. The number of these planets is far, far greater than all of the planets of this material world. This material world has been approximated as only one quarter of the creation. In this material segment there are millions and billions of universes with trillions of planets and suns, stars and moons. But this whole material creation is only a fragment of the total creation. Most of the creation is in the spiritual sky. One who desires to merge into the existence of the Supreme Brahman is at once transferred to the brahmajyoti of the Supreme Lord and thus attains the spiritual sky. The devotee, who wants to enjoy the association of the Lord, enters into the Vaikuha planets, which are innumerable, and the Supreme Lord by His plenary expansions as Nryaa with four hands and with different names like Pradyumna, Aniruddha, Govinda, etc., associates with him there. Therefore at the end of life the transcendentalists either think of the brahmajyoti, the Paramtm or the Supreme Personality of Godhead r Ka. In all cases they enter into the spiritual sky, but only the devotee, or he who is in personal touch with the Supreme Lord, enters into the Vaikuha planets. The Lord further adds that of this there is no doubt. This must be believed firmly. We should not reject that which does not tally with our imagination; our attitude should be that of Arjuna: I believe everything that You have said. Therefore when the Lord says that at the time of death whoever thinks of Him as Brahman or Paramtm or as the Personality of Godhead certainly enters into the spiritual sky, there is no doubt about it. There is no question of disbelieving it.

The information on how to think of the Supreme Being at the time of death is also given in the Gt:

ya ya vpi smaran bhva tyajaty ante kalevaram
ta tam evaiti kaunteya sad tad-bhva-bhvita

In whatever condition one quits his present body, in his next life he will attain to that state of being without fail. (Bg. 8.6) Material nature is a display of one of the energies of the Supreme Lord. In the Viu Pura the total energies of the Supreme Lord as Viu-akti par prokt, etc., are delineated. The Supreme Lord has diverse and innumerable energies which are beyond our conception; however, great learned sages or liberated souls have studied these energies and have analyzed them into three parts. All of the energies are of Viu-akti, that is to say they are different potencies of Lord Viu. That energy is par, transcendental. Living entities also belong to the superior energy, as has already been explained. The other energies, or material energies, are in the mode of ignorance. At the time of death we can either remain in the inferior energy of this material world, or we can transfer to the energy of the spiritual world.

In life we are accustomed to thinking either of the material or the spiritual energy. There are so many literatures which fill our thoughts with the material energynewspapers, novels, etc. Our thinking, which is now absorbed in these literatures, must be transferred to the Vedic literatures. The great sages, therefore, have written so many Vedic literatures such as the Puras, etc. The Puras are not imaginative; they are historical records. In the Caitanya-caritmta there is the following verse:

my mugdha jver nhi svata ka-jna
jvera kpya kail ka veda-pura

(Cc. Madhya 20.122)

The forgetful living entities or conditioned souls have forgotten their relationship with the Supreme Lord, and they are engrossed in thinking of material activities. Just to transfer their thinking power to the spiritual sky, Ka has given a great number of Vedic literatures. First He divided the Vedas into four, then He explained them in the Puras, and for less capable people He wrote the Mahbhrata. In the Mahbhrata there is given the Bhagavad-gt. Then all Vedic literature is summarized in the Vednta-stra, and for future guidance He gave a natural commentation on the Vednta-sutra, called rmad-Bhgavatam. We must always engage our minds in reading these Vedic literatures. Just as materialists engage their minds in reading newspapers, magazines and so many materialistic literatures, we must transfer our reading to these literatures which are given to us by Vysadeva; in that way it will be possible for us to remember the Supreme Lord at the time of death. That is the only way suggested by the Lord, and He guarantees the result: There is no doubt. (Bg. 8.7)

tasmt sarveu kleu mm anusmara yudhya ca
mayy arpita-mano-buddhir mm evaiyasy asaaya

Therefore, Arjuna, you should always think of Me, and at the same time you should continue your prescribed duty and fight. With your mind and activities always fixed on Me, and everything engaged in Me, you will attain to Me without any doubt.

He does not advise Arjuna to simply remember Him and give up his occupation. No, the Lord never suggests anything impractical. In this material world, in order to maintain the body one has to work. Human society is divided, according to work, into four divisions of social orderbrhmaa, katriya, vaiya, dra. The brhmaa class or intelligent class is working in one way, the katriya or administrative class is working in another way, and the mercantile class and the laborers are all tending to their specific duties. In the human society, whether one is a laborer, merchant, warrior, administrator, or farmer, or even if one belongs to the highest class and is a literary man, a scientist or a theologian, he has to work in order to maintain his existence. The Lord therefore tells Arjuna that he need not give up his occupation, but while he is engaged in his occupation he should remember Ka. If he doesnt practice remembering Ka while he is struggling for existence, then it will not be possible for him to remember Ka at the time of death. Lord Caitanya also advises this. He says that one should practice remembering the Lord by chanting the names of the Lord always. The names of the Lord and the Lord are nondifferent. So Lord Kas instruction to Arjuna to remember Me and Lord Caitanyas injunction to always chant the names of Lord Ka are the same instruction. There is no difference, because Ka and Kas name are nondifferent. In the absolute status there is no difference between reference and referent. Therefore we have to practice remembering the Lord always, twenty-four hours a day, by chanting His names and molding our lifes activities in such a way that we can remember Him always.

How is this possible? The cryas give the following example. If a married woman is attached to another man, or if a man has an attachment for a woman other than his wife, then the attachment is to be considered very strong. One with such an attachment is always thinking of the loved one. The wife who is thinking of her lover is always thinking of meeting him, even while she is carrying out her household chores. In fact, she carries out her household work even more carefully so her husband will not suspect her attachment. Similarly, we should always remember the supreme lover, r Ka, and at the same time perform our material duties very nicely. A strong sense of love is required here. If we have a strong sense of love for the Supreme Lord, then we can discharge our duty and at the same time remember Him. But we have to develop that sense of love. Arjuna, for instance, was always thinking of Ka; he was the constant companion of Ka, and at the same time he was a warrior. Ka did not advise him to give up fighting and go to the forest to meditate. When Lord Ka delineates the yoga system to Arjuna, Arjuna says that the practice of this system is not possible for him.

arjuna uvca
yo ya yogas tvay prokta smyena madhusdana
etasyha na paymi cacalatvt sthiti sthirm

Arjuna said, O Madhusdana, the system of yoga which you have summarized appears impractical and unendurable to me, for the mind is restless and unsteady. (Bg. 6.33)

But the Lord says:

yoginm api sarve mad-gatenntartman
raddhvn bhajate yo m sa me yuktatamo mata

Of all yogs, he who always abides in Me with great faith, worshiping Me in transcendental loving service, is most intimately united with Me in yoga, and is the highest of all. (Bg. 6.47) So one who thinks of the Supreme Lord always is the greatest yog, the supermost jn, and the greatest devotee at the same time. The Lord further tells Arjuna that as a katriya he cannot give up his fighting, but if Arjuna fights remembering Ka, then he will be able to remember Him at the time of death. But one must be completely surrendered in the transcendental loving service of the Lord.

We work not with our body, actually, but with our mind and intelligence. So if the intelligence and the mind are always engaged in the thought of the Supreme Lord, then naturally the senses are also engaged in His service. Superficially, at least, the activities of the senses remain the same, but the consciousness is changed. The Bhagavad-gt teaches one how to absorb the mind and intelligence in the thought of the Lord. Such absorption will enable one to transfer himself to the kingdom of the Lord. If the mind is engaged in Kas service, then the senses are automatically engaged in His service. This is the art, and this is also the secret of Bhagavad-gt: total absorption in the thought of r Ka.

Modern man has struggled very hard to reach the moon, but he has not tried very hard to elevate himself spiritually. If one has fifty years of life ahead of him, he should engage that brief time in cultivating this practice of remembering the Supreme Personality of Godhead. This practice is the devotional process of:

ravaa krtana vio smaraa pda-sevanam
arcana vandana dsya sakhyam tma-nivedanam

These nine processes, of which the easiest is ravaa, hearing Bhagavad-gt from the realized person, will turn one to the thought of the Supreme Being. This will lead to nicala, remembering the Supreme Lord, and will enable one, upon leaving the body, to attain a spiritual body which is just fit for association with the Supreme Lord.

The Lord further says:

abhysa-yoga-yuktena cetas nnya-gmin
parama purua divya yti prthnucintayan

By practicing this remembering, without being deviated, thinking ever of the Supreme Godhead, one is sure to achieve the planet of the Divine, the Supreme Personality, O son of Kunt. (Bg. 8.8)

This is not a very difficult process. However, one must learn it from an experienced person, from one who is already in the practice. The mind is always flying to this and that, but one must always practice concentrating the mind on the form of the Supreme Lord r Ka or on the sound of His name. The mind is naturally restless, going hither and thither, but it can rest in the sound vibration of Ka. One must thus meditate on parama purua, the Supreme Person; and thus attain Him. The ways and the means for ultimate realization, ultimate attainment, are stated in the Bhagavad-gt, and the doors of this knowledge are open for everyone. No one is barred out. All classes of men can approach the Lord by thinking of Him, for hearing and thinking of Him is possible for everyone.

The Lord further says:

m hi prtha vyapritya ye pi syu ppa-yonaya
striyo vaiys tath drs te pi ynti par gatim

ki punar brhma puy bhakt rjarayas tath
anityam asukha lokam ima prpya bhajasva mm

O son of Pth, anyone who will take shelter in Me, whether a woman, or a merchant, or one born in a low family, can yet approach the supreme destination. How much greater then are the brhmaas, the righteous, the devotees, and saintly kings! In this miserable world, these are fixed in devotional service to the Lord. (Bg. 9.3233)

Human beings even in the lower statuses of life (a merchant, a woman or a laborer) can attain the Supreme. One does not need highly developed intelligence. The point is that anyone who accepts the principle of bhakti-yoga and accepts the Supreme Lord as the summum bonum of life, as the highest target, the ultimate goal, can approach the Lord in the spiritual sky. If one adopts the principles enunciated in Bhagavad-gt, he can make his life perfect and make a perfect solution to all the problems of life which arise out of the transient nature of material existence. This is the sum and substance of the entire Bhagavad-gt.

In conclusion, Bhagavad-gta is a transcendental literature which one should read very carefully. It is capable of saving one from all fear.

nehbhikrama-no sti pratyavyo na vidyate
svalpam apy asya dharmasya tryate mahato bhayt

In this endeavor there is no loss or diminution, and a little advancement on this path can protect one from the most dangerous type of fear. (Bg. 2.40) If one reads Bhagavad-gt sincerely and seriously, then all of the reactions of his past misdeeds will not react upon him. In the last portion of Bhagavad-gt, Lord r Ka proclaims:

sarva-dharmn parityajya mm eka araa vraja
aha tv sarva-ppebhyo mokayiymi m uca

Give up all varieties of religiousness, and just surrender unto Me; and in return I shall protect you from all sinful reactions. Therefore, you have nothing to fear. (Bg. 18.66) Thus the Lord takes all responsibility for one who surrenders unto Him, and He indemnifies all the reactions of sin.

One cleanses himself daily by taking a bath in water, but one who takes his bath only once in the sacred Ganges water of the Bhagavad-gt cleanses away all the dirt of material life. Because Bhagavad-gt is spoken by the Supreme Personality of Godhead, one need not read any other Vedic literature. One need only attentively and regularly hear and read Bhagavad-gt. In the present age, mankind is so absorbed with mundane activities that it is not possible to read all of the Vedic literatures. But this is not necessary. This one book, Bhagavad-gt, will suffice because it is the essence of all Vedic literatures and because it is spoken by the Supreme Personality of Godhead. It is said that one who drinks the water of the Ganges certainly gets salvation, but what to speak of one who drinks the waters of Bhagavad-gt? Gt is the very nectar of the Mahbhrata spoken by Viu Himself, for Lord Ka is the original Viu. It is nectar emanating from the mouth of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and the Ganges is said to be emanating from the lotus feet of the Lord. Of course there is no difference between the mouth and the feet of the Supreme Lord, but in our position we can appreciate that the Bhagavad-gt is even more important than the Ganges.

The Bhagavad-gt is just like a cow, and Lord Ka, who is a cowherd boy, is milking this cow. The milk is the essence of the Vedas, and Arjuna is just like a calf. The wise men, the great sages and pure devotees, are to drink the nectarean milk of Bhagavad-gt.

In this present day, man is very eager to have one scripture, one God, one religion, and one occupation. So let there be one common scripture for the whole worldBhagavad-gt. And let there be one God only for the whole worldr Ka. And one mantra onlyHare Ka, Hare Ka, Ka Ka, Hare Hare/ Hare Rma, Hare Rma, Rma Rma, Hare Hare. And let there be one work onlythe service of the Supreme Personality of Godhead.


Eva parampar-prptam ima rjarayo vidu. (Bhagavad-gta, 4.2) This Bhagavad-gt As It Is is received through this disciplic succession:

1) Ka, 2) Brahm, 3) Nrada; 4) Vysa, 5) Madhva, 6) Padmanbha, 7) Nhari, 8) Mdhava, 9) Akobhya, 10) Jayatrtha, 11) Jnasindhu, 12) Daynidhi, 13) Vidynidhi, 14) Rjendra, 15) Jayadharma, 16) Puruottama, 17) Brahmayatrtha, 18) Vysatrtha, 19) Lakmpati, 20) Mdhavendra Pur, 21) vara Pur, (Nitynanda, Advaita), 22) Lord Caitanya, 23) Rpa (Svarpa, Santana), 24) Raghuntha, Jva, 25) Kadsa, 26) Narottama, 27) Vivantha, 28) (Baladeva) Jaganntha, 29) Bhaktivinode, 30) Gaurakiora, 31) Bhaktisiddhnta Sarasvat, 32) His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupda.

Bg 1. Observing the Armies on the Battlefield of Kuruketra


Observing the Armies on the
Battlefield of Kuruketra

Bg 1.1



Da*Tara\ ovac
DaMaR+ae}ae ku-+ae}ae SaMaveTaa YauYauTSav" )
MaaMak-a" Paa<@vaEv ik-Maku-vRTa SaYa )) 1 ))

dhtarra uvca

dharma-ketre kuru-ketre

samavet yuyutsava

mmak pav caiva

kim akurvata sajaya

dhtarraKing Dhtarra; uvcasaid; dharma-ketrein the place of pilgrimage; kuru-ketrein the place named Kuruketra; samavetassembled; yuyatsavadesiring to fight; mmakmy party (sons); pavthe sons of Pu; caand; evacertainly; kimwhat; akurvatadid they do; sajayaO Sajaya.


Dhtarra said: O Sajaya, after assembling in the place of pilgrimage at Kuruketra, what did my sons and the sons of Pu do, being desirous to fight?


Bhagavad-gt is the widely read theistic science summarized in the Gt-mhtmya (Glorification of the Gt). There it says that one should read Bhagavad-gt very scrutinizingly with the help of a person who is a devotee of r Ka and try to understand it without personally motivated interpretations. The example of clear understanding is there in the Bhagavad-gt itself, in the way the teaching is understood by Arjuna, who heard the Gt directly from the Lord. If someone is fortunate enough to understand Bhagavad-gt in that line of disciplic succession, without motivated interpretation, then he surpasses all studies of Vedic wisdom, and all scriptures of the world. One will find in the Bhagavad-gt all that is contained in other scriptures, but the reader will also find things which are not to be found elsewhere. That is the specific standard of the Gt. It is the perfect theistic science because it is directly spoken by the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Lord r Ka.

The topics discussed by Dhtarra and Sajaya, as described in the Mahbhrata, form the basic principle for this great philosophy. It is understood that this philosophy evolved on the Battlefield of Kuruketra, which is a sacred place of pilgrimage from the immemorial time of the Vedic age. It was spoken by the Lord when He was present personally on this planet for the guidance of mankind.

The word dharma-ketra (a place where religious rituals are performed) is significant because, on the Battlefield of Kuruketra, the Supreme Personality of Godhead was present on the side of Arjuna. Dhtarra, the father of the Kurus, was highly doubtful about the possibility of his sons ultimate victory. In his doubt, he inquired from his secretary Sajaya, What did my sons and the sons of Pu do? He was confident that both his sons and the sons of his younger brother Pu were assembled in that Field of Kuruketra for a determined engagement of the war. Still, his inquiry is significant. He did not want a compromise between the cousins and brothers, and he wanted to be sure of the fate of his sons on the battlefield. Because the battle was arranged to be fought at Kuruketra, which is mentioned elsewhere in the Vedas as a place of worshipeven for the denizens of heavenDhtarra became very fearful about the influence of the holy place on the outcome of the battle. He knew very well that this would influence Arjuna and the sons of Pu favorably, because by nature they were all virtuous. Sajaya was a student of Vysa, and therefore, by the mercy of Vysa, Sajaya was able to envision the Battlefield of Kuruketra even while he was in the room of Dhtarra. And so, Dhtarra asked him about the situation on the battlefield.

Both the Pavas and the sons of Dhtarra belong to the same family, but Dhtarras mind is disclosed herein. He deliberately claimed only his sons as Kurus, and he separated the sons of Pu from the family heritage. One can thus understand the specific position of Dhtarra in his relationship with his nephews, the sons of Pu. As in the paddy field the unnecessary plants are taken out, so it is expected from the very beginning of these topics that in the religious field of Kuruketra where the father of religion, r Ka, was present, the unwanted plants like Dhtarras son Duryodhana and others would be wiped out and the thoroughly religious persons, headed by Yudhihira, would be established by the Lord. This is the significance of the words dharma-ketre and kuru-ketre, apart from their historical and Vedic importance.

Bg 1.2



SaYa ovac
d*a Tau Paa<@vaNaqk&- VYaU!& duYaaeRDaNaSTada )
AacaYaRMauPaSaMYa raJaa vcNaMab]vqTa( )) 2 ))

sajaya uvca

dv tu pavnka

vyha duryodhanas tad

cryam upasagamya

rj vacanam abravt

sajayaSajaya; uvcasaid; dvafter seeing; tubut; pava-ankamthe soldiers of the Pavas; vyhamarranged in military phalanx; duryodhanaKing Duryodhana; tadat that time; cryamthe teacher; upasagamyaapproaching nearby; rjthe king; vacanamwords; abravtspoke.


Sajaya said: O King, after looking over the army gathered by the sons of Pu, King Duryodhana went to his teacher and began to speak the following words:


Dhtarra was blind from birth. Unfortunately, he was also bereft of spiritual vision. He knew very well that his sons were equally blind in the matter of religion, and he was sure that they could never reach an understanding with the Pavas, who were all pious since birth. Still he was doubtful about the influence of the place of pilgrimage, and Sajaya could understand his motive in asking about the situation on the battlefield. He wanted, therefore, to encourage the despondent King, and thus he warned him that his sons were not going to make any sort of compromise under the influence of the holy place. Sajaya therefore informed the King that his son, Duryodhana, after seeing the military force of the Pavas, at once went to the commander-in-chief, Drocrya, to inform him of the real position. Although Duryodhana is mentioned as the king, he still had to go to the commander on account of the seriousness of the situation. He was therefore quite fit to be a politician. But Duryodhanas diplomatic veneer could not disguise the fear he felt when he saw the military arrangement of the Pavas.

Bg 1.3



PaXYaETaa& Paa<@uPau}aa<aaMaacaYaR MahTaq& cMaUMa( )
VYaU!a& d]uPadPau}ae<a Tav iXaZYae<a DaqMaTaa )) 3 ))

payait pu-putrm

crya mahat camm

vyh drupada-putrea

tava iyea dhmat

payabehold; etmthis; pu-putrmof the sons of Pu; cryaO teacher; mahatmgreat; cammmilitary force; vyuhamarranged; drupada-putreaby the son of Drupada; tavayour; iyeadisciple; dhmatvery intelligent.


O my teacher, behold the great army of the sons of Pu, so expertly arranged by your intelligent disciple, the son of Drupada.


Duryodhana, a great diplomat, wanted to point out the defects of Drocrya, the great brhmaa commander-in-chief. Drocrya had some political quarrel with King Drupada, the father of Draupad, who was Arjunas wife. As a result of this quarrel, Drupada performed a great sacrifice, by which he received the benediction of having a son who would be able to kill Drocrya. Drocrya knew this perfectly well, and yet, as a liberal brhmaa, he did not hesitate to impart all his military secrets when the son of Drupada, Dhadyumna, was entrusted to him for military education. Now, on the Battlefield of Kuruketra, Dhadyumna took the side of the Pavas, and it was he who arranged for their military phalanx, after having learned the art from Drocrya. Duryodhana pointed out this mistake of Drocryas so that he might be alert and uncompromising in the fighting. By this he wanted to point out also that he should not be similarly lenient in battle against the Pavas, who were also Drocryas affectionate students. Arjuna, especially, was his most affectionate and brilliant student. Duryodhana also warned that such leniency in the fight would lead to defeat.

Bg 1.4



A}a Ura MaheZvaSaa >aqMaaJauRNaSaMaa YauiDa )
YauYauDaaNaae ivra$= d]uPad MaharQa" )) 4 ))

atra r mahev-s

bhmrjuna-sam yudhi

yuyudhno vira ca

drupada ca mah-ratha

atrahere; rheroes; mahevsmighty bowmen; bhma-arjunaBhma and Arjuna; samequal; yudhiin the fight; yuyudhnaYuyudhna; viraVira; caalso; drupadaDrupada; caalso; mahrathagreat fighter.


Here in this army there are many heroic bowmen equal in fighting to Bhma and Arjuna; there are also great fighters like Yuyudhna, Vira and Drupada.


Even though Dhadyumna was not a very important obstacle in the face of Drocryas very great power in the military art, there were many others who were the cause of fear. They are mentioned by Duryodhana as great stumbling blocks on the path of victory because each and every one of them was as formidable as Bhma and Arjuna. He knew the strength of Bhma and Arjuna, and thus he compared the others with them.

Bg 1.5



Da*ke-Taueik-TaaNa" k-aiXaraJa vqYaRvaNa( )
PauiJaTku-iNTa>aaeJa XaEBYa NarPauv" )) 5 ))

dhaketu cekitna

kirja ca vryavn

purujit kuntibhoja ca

aibya ca nara-pugava

dhaketuDhaketu; cekitnaCekitna; kirjaKairja; caalso; vryavnvery powerful; purujitPurujit; kuntibhojaKuntibhoja; caand; aibyaaibya; caand; nara-pugavaheroes in human society.


There are also great, heroic, powerful fighters like Dhaketu, Cekitna, Kirja, Purujit, Kuntibhoja and aibya.

Bg 1.6



YauDaaMaNYau iv-aNTa otaMaaEJaa vqYaRvaNa( )
SaaE>ad]ae d]aEPadeYaa SavR Wv MaharQaa" )) 6 ))

yudhmanyu ca vikrnta

uttamauj ca vryavn

saubhadro draupadey ca

sarva eva mah-rath

yudhmanyuYudhmanyu; caand; vikrntamighty; uttamaujUttamauj; caand; vryavnvery powerful; saubhadrathe son of Subhadr; draupadeythe sons of Draupad; caand; sarveall; evacertainly; mah-rathgreat chariot fighters.


There are the mighty Yudhmanyu, the very powerful Uttamauj, the son of Subhadr and the sons of Draupad. All these warriors are great chariot fighters.

Bg 1.7



ASMaak&- Tau iviXaa Yae TaaibaeDa iJaaetaMa )
NaaYak-a MaMa SaENYaSYa Sa&jaQa| TaaNb]vqiMa Tae )) 7 ))

asmka tu vii ye

tn nibodha dvijottama

nyak mama sainyasya

sajrtha tn bravmi te

asmkamour; tubut; viiespecially powerful; yethose; tnthem; nibodhajust take note, be informed; dvijottamathe best of the brhmaas; nyakcaptains; mamamy; sainyasyaof the soldiers; saj-arthamfor information; tnthem; bravmiI am speaking; teyour.


O best of the brhmaas, for your information, let me tell you about the captains who are especially qualified to lead my military force.

Bg 1.8



>avaN>aqZMa k-<aR k*-Pa SaiMaiTa&JaYa" )
ATQaaMaa ivk-<aR SaaEMaditaSTaQaEv c )) 8 ))

bhavn bhma ca kara ca

kpa ca samiti-jaya

avatthm vikara ca

saumadattis tathaiva ca

bhavnyourself; bhmaGrandfather Bhma; caalso; karaKara; caand; kpaKpa; caand; samitijayaalways victorious in battle; avatthmAvatthm; vikaraVikara; caas well as; saumadattithe son of Somadatta; tathand as; evacertainly; caand.


There are personalities like yourself, Bhma, Kara, Kpa, Avatthm, Vikara and the son of Somadatta called Bhurirav, who are always victorious in battle.


Duryodhana mentioned the exceptional heroes in the battle, all of whom are ever-victorious. Vikara is the brother of Duryodhana, Avatthm is the son of Drocrya, and Saumadatti, or Bhrirav, is the son of the King of the Bhlkas. Kara is the half brother of Arjuna, as he was born of Kunt before her marriage with King Pu. Kpcrya married the twin sister of Drocrya.

Bg 1.9



ANYae c bhv" Ura MadQaeR TYa-JaqivTaa" )
NaaNaaXaPa[hr<aa" SaveR YauivXaarda" )) 9 ))

anye ca bahava r

mad-arthe tyakta-jvit


sarve yuddha-virad

anyemany others; caalso; bahavain great numbers; rheroes; mad-arthe-for my sake; tyakta-jvitprepared to risk life; nnmany; astraweapons; praharaequipped with; sarveall of them; yuddhabattle; viradexperienced in military science.


There are many other heroes who are prepared to lay down their lives for my sake. All of them are well equipped with different kinds of weapons, and all are experienced in military science.


As far as the others are concernedlike Jayadratha, Ktavarm, alya, etc.all are determined to lay down their lives for Duryodhanas sake. In other words, it is already concluded that all of them would die in the Battle of Kuruketra for joining the party of the sinful Duryodhana. Duryodhana was, of course, confident of his victory on account of the above-mentioned combined strength of his friends.

Bg 1.10



APaYaaR& TadSMaak&- bl&/ >aqZMaai>ari+aTaMa( )
PaYaaR& iTvdMaeTaeza& bl&/ >aqMaai>ari+aTaMa( )) 10 ))

aparypta tad asmka

bala bhmbhirakitam

parypta tv idam ete

bala bhmbhirakitam

aparyptamimmeasurable; tatthat; asmkamof ours; balamstrength; bhmaby Grandfather Bhma; abhirakitamperfectly protected; paryptamlimited; tubut; idamall these; etemof the Pavas; balamstrength; bhmaby Bhma; abhirakitamcarefully protected.


Our strength is immeasurable, and we are perfectly protected by Grandfather Bhma, whereas the strength of the Pavas, carefully protected by Bhma, is limited.


Herein an estimation of comparative strength is made by Duryodhana. He thinks that the strength of his armed forces is immeasurable, being specifically protected by the most experienced general, Grandfather Bhma. On the other hand, the forces of the Pavas are limited, being protected by a less experienced general, Bhma, who is like a fig in the presence of Bhma. Duryodhana was always envious of Bhma because he knew perfectly well that if he should die at all, he would only be killed by Bhma. But at the same time, he was confident of his victory on account of the presence of Bhma, who was a far superior general. His conclusion that he would come out of the battle victorious was well ascertained.

Bg 1.11



AYaNaezu c SaveRzu YaQaa>aaGaMaviSQaTaa" )
>aqZMaMaevai>ar+aNTau >avNTa" SavR Wv ih )) 11 ))

ayaneu ca sarveu

yath-bhgam avasthit

bhmam evbhirakantu

bhavanta sarva eva hi

ayaneuin the strategic points; caalso; sarveueverywhere; yathbhgamas they are differently arranged; avasthitsituated; bhmamunto Grandfather Bhma; evacertainly; abhirakantusupport may be given; bhavantaall of you; sarverespectively; evacertainly; hiand exactly.


Now all of you must give full support to Grandfather Bhma, standing at your respective strategic points in the phalanx of the army.


Duryodhana, after praising the prowess of Bhma, further considered that others might think that they had been considered less important, so in his usual diplomatic way, he tried to adjust the situation in the above words. He emphasized that Bhmadeva was undoubtedly the greatest hero, but he was an old man, so everyone must especially think of his protection from all sides. He might become engaged in the fight, and the enemy might take advantage of his full engagement on one side. Therefore, it was important that other heroes would not leave their strategic positions and allow the enemy to break the phalanx. Duryodhana clearly felt that the victory of the Kurus depended on the presence of Bhmadeva. He was confident of the full support of Bhmadeva and Drocrya in the battle because he well knew that they did not even speak a word when Arjunas wife Draupad, in her helpless condition, had appealed to them for justice while she was being forced to strip naked in the presence of all the great generals in the assembly. Although he knew that the two generals had some sort of affection for the Pavas, he hoped that all such affection would now be completely given up by them, as was customary during the gambling performances.

Bg 1.12



TaSYa SaNaYaNhz| ku-v*" iPaTaaMah" )
iSa&hNaad& ivNaaeE" Xa& dDMaaE Pa[TaaPavaNa( )) 12 ))

tasya sajanayan hara

kuru-vddha pitmaha

siha-nda vinadyoccai

akha dadhmau pratpavn

tasyahis; sajanayanincreasing; haramcheerfulness; kuru-vddhathe grandsire of the Kuru dynasty (Bhma); pitmahathe grandfather; siha-ndamroaring sound, like a lion; vinadyavibrating; uccaivery loudly; akhamconchshell; dadhmaublew; pratpavnthe valiant.


Then Bhma, the great valiant grandsire of the Kuru dynasty, the grandfather of the fighters, blew his conchshell very loudly like the sound of a lion, giving Duryodhana joy.


The grandsire of the Kuru dynasty could understand the inner meaning of the heart of his grandson Duryodhana, and out of his natural compassion for him he tried to cheer him by blowing his conchshell very loudly, befitting his position as a lion. Indirectly, by the symbolism of the conchshell, he informed his depressed grandson Duryodhana that he had no chance of victory in the battle, because the Supreme Lord Ka was on the other side. But still, it was his duty to conduct the fight, and no pains would be spared in that connection.

Bg 1.13



TaTa" Xaa >aeYaR Pa<avaNak-GaaeMau%a" )
SahSaEva>YahNYaNTa Sa XaBdSTauMaul/ae_>avTa( )) 13 ))

tata akh ca bherya ca



sa abdas tumulo bhavat

tatathereafter; akhconchshells; caalso; bheryabugles; caand; paava-nakatrumpets and drums; go-mukhhorns; sahasall of a sudden; evacertainly; abhyahanyantabeing simultaneously sounded; sathat; abdacombined sound; tumulatumultuous; abhavatbecame.


After that, the conchshells, bugles, trumpets, drums and horns were all suddenly sounded, and the combined sound was tumultuous.

Bg 1.14



TaTa" eTaEhRYaEYauRe- MahiTa SYaNdNae iSQaTaaE )
MaaDav" Paa<@vEv idVYaaE XaaE Pa[dDMaTau" )) 14 ))

tata vetair hayair yukte

mahati syandane sthitau

mdhava pava caiva

divyau akhau pradadhmatu

tatathereafter; vetaiby white; hayaihorses; yuktebeing yoked with; mahatiin the great; syandanechariot; sthitauso situated; mdhavaKa (the husband of the goddess of fortune); pavaArjuna (the son of Pu); caalso; evacertainly; divyautranscendental; akhauconchshells; pradadhmatusounded.


On the other side, both Lord Ka and Arjuna, stationed on a great chariot drawn by white horses, sounded their transcendental conchshells.


In contrast with the conchshell blown by Bhmadeva, the conchshells in the hands of Ka and Arjuna are described as transcendental. The sounding of the transcendental conchshells indicated that there was no hope of victory for the other side because Ka was on the side of the Pavas. Jayas tu pu-putr ye pake janrdana. Victory is always with persons like the sons of Pu because Lord Ka is associated with them. And whenever and wherever the Lord is present, the goddess of fortune is also there because the goddess of fortune never lives alone without her husband. Therefore, victory and fortune were awaiting Arjuna, as indicated by the transcendental sound produced by the conchshell of Viu, or Lord Ka. Besides that, the chariot on which both the friends were seated was donated by Agni (the fire-god) to Arjuna, and this indicated that this chariot was capable of conquering all sides, wherever it was drawn over the three worlds.

Bg 1.15



PaaJaNYa& zqke-Xaae devdta& DaNaYa" )
PaaE<@\& dDMaaE MahaXa& >aqMak-MaaR v*k-aedr" )) 15 ))

pcajanya hkeo

devadatta dhanajaya

paura dadhmau mah-akha

bhma-karm vkodara

pcajanyamthe conchshell named Pcajanya; hkeaHkea (Ka, the Lord who directs the senses of the devotees); devadattamthe conchshell named Devadatta; dhanajayaDhanajaya (Arjuna, the winner of wealth); pauramthe conch named Pauram; dadhmaublew; mah-akhamthe terrific conchshell; bhma-karmone who performs Herculean tasks; vkodarathe voracious eater (Bhma).


Then, Lord Ka blew His conchshell, called Pcajanya; Arjuna blew his, the Devadatta; and Bhma, the voracious eater and performer of Herculean tasks, blew his terrific conchshell called Pauram.


Lord Ka is referred to as Hkea in this verse because He is the owner of all senses The living entities are part and parcel of Him, and, therefore, the senses of the living entities are also part and parcel of His senses. The impersonalists cannot account for the senses of the living entities, and therefore they are always anxious to describe all living entities as sense-less, or impersonal. The Lord, situated in the hearts of all living entities, directs their senses. But, He directs in terms of the surrender of the living entity, and in the case of a pure devotee He directly controls the senses. Here on the Battlefield of Kuruketra the Lord directly controls the transcendental senses of Arjuna, and thus His particular name of Hkea. The Lord has different names according to His different activities. For example, His name is Madhusdana because He killed the demon of the name Madhu; His name is Govinda because He gives pleasure to the cows and to the senses; His name is Vsudeva because He appeared as the son of Vasudeva; His name is Devak-nandana because He accepted Devak as His mother; His name is Yaod-nandana because He awarded His childhood pastimes to Yaod at Vndvana; His name is Prtha-srathi because He worked as charioteer of His friend Arjuna. Similarly, His name is Hkea because He gave direction to Arjuna on the Battlefield of Kuruketra.

Arjuna is referred to as Dhanajaya in this verse because he helped his elder brother in fetching wealth when it was required by the King to make expenditures for different sacrifices. Similarly, Bhma is known as Vkodara because he could eat as voraciously as he could perform Herculean tasks, such as killing the demon Hiimba. So, the particular types of conchshell blown by the different personalities on the side of the Pavas, beginning with the Lords, were all very encouraging to the fighting soldiers. On the other side there were no such credits, nor the presence of Lord Ka, the supreme director, nor that of the goddess of fortune. So, they were predestined to lose the battleand that was the message announced by the sounds of the conchshells.

Bg 1.16, Bg 1.17, Bg 1.18, Bg 1.16-18

TEXTS 1618


ANaNTaivJaYa& raJaa ku-NTaqPau}aae YauiDair" )
Naku-l/" Sahdev SaugaaezMai<aPauZPak-aE )) 16 ))
k-aXYa ParMaeZvaSa" iXa%<@q c MaharQa" )
Da*uManae ivra$= SaaTYaik-aParaiJaTa" )) 17 ))
d]uPadae d]aEPadeYaa SavRXa" Pa*iQavqPaTae )
SaaE>ad] Mahabahu" XaaNdDMau" Pa*QaKPa*Qak(- )) 18 ))

anantavijaya rj

kunt-putro yudhihira

nakula sahadeva ca


kya ca paramev-sa

ikha ca mah-ratha

dhadyumno vira ca

styaki cparjita

drupado draupadey ca

sarvaa pthiv-pate

saubhadra ca mah-bhu

akhn dadhmu pthak pthak


King Yudhihira, the son of Kunt, blew his conchshell, the Anantavijaya, and Nakula and Sahadeva blew the Sughoa and Maipupaka. That great archer the King of K, the great fighter ikha, Dhadyumna, Vira and the unconquerable Styaki, Drupada, the sons of Draupad, and the others, O King, such as the son of Subhadr, greatly armed, all blew their respective conchshells.


Sajaya informed King Dhtarra very tactfully that his unwise policy of deceiving the sons of Pu and endeavoring to enthrone his own sons on the seat of the kingdom was not very laudable. The signs already clearly indicated that the whole Kuru dynasty would be killed in that great battle. Beginning with the grandsire, Bhma, down to the grandsons like Abhimanyu and othersincluding kings from many states of the worldall were present there, and all were doomed. The whole catastrophe was due to King Dhtarra, because he encouraged the policy followed by his sons.

Bg 1.19



Sa gaaezae DaaTaRra\a<aa& dYaaiNa VYadarYaTa( )
Na>a Pa*iQavq& cEv TauMaul/ae_>YaNauNaadYaNa( )) 19 ))

sa ghoo dhrtarr

hdayni vyadrayat

nabha ca pthiv caiva

tumulo bhyanundayan

sathat; ghoavibration; dhrtarrmof the sons of Dhtarra; hdaynihearts; vyadrayatshattered; nabhathe sky; caalso; pthivmthe surface of the earth; caalso; evacertainly; tumulauproarious; abhyanundayanby resounding.


The blowing of these different conchshells became uproarious, and thus, vibrating both in the sky and on the earth, it shattered the hearts of the sons of Dhtarra.


When Bhma and the others on the side of Duryodhana blew their respective conchshells, there was no heart-breaking on the part of the Pavas. Such occurrences are not mentioned, but in this particular verse it is mentioned that the hearts of the sons of Dhtarra were shattered by the sounds vibrated by the Pavas party. This is due to the Pavas and their confidence in Lord Ka. One who takes shelter of the Supreme Lord has nothing to fear, even in the midst of the greatest calamity.

Bg 1.20



AQa VYaviSQaTaaNd*a DaaTaRra\aNk-iPaJa" )
Pa[v*tae XaSaMPaaTae DaNauMYa Paa<@v" )
zqke-Xa& Tada vaKYaiMadMaah MahqPaTae )) 20 ))

atha vyavasthitn dv

dhrtarrn kapi-dhvaja

pravtte astra-sampte

dhanur udyamya pava

hkea tad vkyam

idam ha mah-pate

athathereupon; vyavasthitnsituated; dvlooking on; dhrtarrnthe sons of Dhtarra; kapi-dhvajaone whose flag is marked with Hanumn; pravttewhile about to be engaged; astra-samptethe arrows released; dhanubow; udyamyaafter taking up; pavathe son of Pu (Arjuna); hkeamunto Lord Ka; tadat that time; vkyamwords; idamthese; hasaid; mah-pateO King.


O King, at that time Arjuna, the son of Pu, who was seated in his chariot, his flag marked with Hanumn, took up his bow and prepared to shoot his arrows, looking at the sons of Dhtarra. O King, Arjuna then spoke to Hkea [Ka] these words:


The battle was just about to begin. It is understood from the above statement that the sons of Dhtarra were more or less disheartened by the unexpected arrangement of military force by the Pavas, who were guided by the direct instructions of Lord Ka on the battlefield. The emblem of Hanumn on the flag of Arjuna is another sign of victory because Hanumn cooperated with Lord Rma in the battle between Rma and Rvaa, and Lord Rma emerged victorious. Now both Rma and Hanumn were present on the chariot of Arjuna to help him. Lord Ka is Rma Himself, and wherever Lord Rma is, His eternal servitor Hanumn and His eternal consort St, the goddess of fortune, are present. Therefore, Arjuna had no cause to fear any enemies whatsoever. And above all, the Lord of the senses, Lord Ka, was personally present to give him direction. Thus, all good counsel was available to Arjuna in the matter of executing the battle. In such auspicious conditions, arranged by the Lord for His eternal devotee, lay the signs of assured victory.

Bg 1.21, Bg 1.22, Bg 1.21-22

TEXTS 2122


AJauRNa ovac
SaeNaYaae>aYaaeMaRDYae rQa& SQaaPaYa Mae_CYauTa )
YaavdeTaairq+ae_h& Yaaed(Dauk-aMaaNaviSQaTaaNa( )) 21 ))
kE-MaRYaa Sah YaaeVYaMaiSMaNr<aSaMauMae )) 22 ))

arjuna uvca

senayor ubhayor madhye

ratha sthpaya me cyuta

yvad etn nirke ha

yoddhu-kmn avasthitn

kair may saha yoddhavyam

asmin raa-samudyame

arjunaArjuna; uvcasaid; senayoof the armies; ubhayoof both the parties; madhyein between them; rathamthe chariot; sthpayaplease keep; memy; acyutaO infallible one; yvatas long as; etnall these; nirkemay look; ahamI; yoddhu-kmndesiring to fight; avasthitnarrayed on the battlefield; kaiwith whom; mayby me; sahawith; yoddhavyamto fight with; asminin this; raastrife; samudyamein the attempt.


Arjuna said: O infallible one, please draw my chariot between the two armies so that I may see who is present here, who is desirous of fighting, and with whom I must contend in this great battle attempt.


Although Lord Ka is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, out of His causeless mercy He was engaged in the service of His friend. He never fails in His affection for His devotees, and thus He is addressed herein as infallible. As charioteer, He had to carry out the orders of Arjuna, and since He did not hesitate to do so, He is addressed as infallible. Although He had accepted the position of a charioteer for His devotee, His supreme position was not challenged. In all circumstances, He is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Hkea, the Lord of the total senses. The relationship between the Lord and His servitor is very sweet and transcendental. The servitor is always ready to render a service to the Lord, and, similarly, the Lord is always seeking an opportunity to render some service to the devotee. He takes greater pleasure in His pure devotees assuming the advantageous postion of ordering Him than He does in being the giver of orders. As master, everyone is under His orders, and no one is above Him to order Him. But when he finds that a pure devotee is ordering Him, He obtains transcendental pleasure, although He is the infallible master of all circumstances.

As a pure devotee of the Lord, Arjuna had no desire to fight with his cousins and brothers, but he was forced to come onto the battlefield by the obstinacy of Duryodhana, who was never agreeable to any peaceful negotiation. Therefore, he was very anxious to see who the leading persons present on the battlefield were. Although there was no question of a peacemaking endeavor on the battlefield, he wanted to see them again, and to see how much they were bent upon demanding an unwanted war.

Bg 1.23



YaaeTSYaMaaNaaNave+ae_h& Ya WTae_}a SaMaaGaTaa" )
DaaTaRra\SYa dubuReYauRe iPa[Yaick-IzRv" )) 23 ))

yotsyamnn aveke ha

ya ete tra samgat

dhrtarrasya durbuddher

yuddhe priya-cikrava

yotsyamnnthose who will be fighting; avekelet me see; ahamI; yewho; etethose; atrahere; samgatassembled; dhrtarrasyathe son of Dhtarra; durbuddheevil-minded; yuddhein the fight; priyawell; cikravawishing.


Let me see those who have come here to fight, wishing to please the evil-minded son of Dhtarra.


It was an open secret that Duryodhana wanted to usurp the kingdom of the Pavas by evil plans, in collaboration with his father, Dhtarra. Therefore, all persons who had joined the side of Duryodhana must have been birds of the same feather. Arjuna wanted to see them in the battlefield before the fight was begun, just to learn who they were, but he had no intention of proposing peace negotiations with them. It was also a fact that he wanted to see them to make an estimate of the strength which he had to face, although he was quite confident of victory because Ka was sitting by his side.

Bg 1.24



SaYa ovac
WvMau-ae zqke-Xaae Gau@ake-XaeNa >aarTa )
SaeNaYaae>aYaaeMaRDYae SQaaPaiYaTva rQaaetaMaMa( )) 24 ))

sajaya uvca

evam ukto hkeo

gukeena bhrata

senayor ubhayor madhye

sthpayitv rathottamam

sajayaSajaya; uvcasaid; evamthus; uktaaddressed; hkeaLord Ka; gukeenaby Arjuna; bhrataO descendant of Bharata; senayoof armies; ubhayoof both; madhyein the midst of; sthpayitvby placing; rathottamamthe finest chariot.


Sajaya said: O descendant of Bharata, being thus addressed by Arjuna, Lord Ka drew up the fine chariot in the midst of the armies of both parties.


In this verse Arjuna is referred to as Gukea. Guka means sleep, and one who conquers sleep is called gukea. Sleep also means ignorance. So Arjuna conquered both sleep and ignorance because of his friendship with Ka. As a great devotee of Ka, he could not forget Ka even for a moment, because that is the nature of a devotee. Either in waking or in sleep, a devotee of the Lord can never be free from thinking of Kas name, form, quality and pastimes. Thus a devotee of Ka can conquer both sleep and ignorance simply by thinking of Ka constantly. This is called Ka consciousness, or samdhi. As Hkea, or the director of the senses and mind of every living entity, Ka could understand Arjunas purpose in placing the chariot in the midst of the armies. Thus He did so, and spoke as follows.

Bg 1.25



>aqZMad]ae<aPa[Mau%Ta" SaveRza& c Mahqi+aTaaMa( )
ovac PaaQaR PaXYaETaaNSaMaveTaaNku-iNaiTa )) 25 ))


sarve ca mah-kitm

uvca prtha payaitn

samavetn kurn iti

bhmaGrandfather Bhma; droathe teacher Droa; pramukhatain the front of; sarvemall; caalso; mahkitmchiefs of the world; uvcasaid; prthaO Prtha (son of Pth); payajust behold; etnall of them; samavetnassembled; kurnall the members of the Kuru dynasty; itithus.


In the presence of Bhma, Droa and all other chieftains of the world, Hkea, the Lord, said, Just behold, Prtha, all the Kurus who are assembled here.


As the Supersoul of all living entities, Lord Ka could understand what was going on in the mind of Arjuna. The use of the word Hkea in this connection indicates that He knew everything. And the word Prtha, or the son of Kunt or Pth, is also similarly significant in reference to Arjuna. As a friend, He wanted to inform Arjuna that because Arjuna was the son of Pth, the sister of His own father Vasudeva, He had agreed to be the charioteer of Arjuna. Now what did Ka mean when He told Arjuna to behold the Kurus? Did Arjuna want to stop there and not fight? Ka never expected such things from the son of His aunt Pth. The mind of Arjuna was thus predicated by the Lord in friendly joking.

Bg 1.26



Ta}aaPaXYaiTSQaTaaNPaaQaR" iPaTaNaQa iPaTaaMahaNa( )
AacaYaaRNMaaTaul/aN>a]aTaNPau}aaNPaaE}aaNSa%q&STaQaa )
uraNSaudEv SaeNaYaae>aYaaeriPa )) 26 ))

tatrpayat sthitn prtha

pitn atha pitmahn

cryn mtuln bhrtn

putrn pautrn sakhs tath

vaurn suhda caiva

senayor ubhayor api

tatrathere; apayathe could see; sthitnstanding; prthaArjuna; pitnfathers; athaalso; pitmahngrandfathers; crynteachers; mtulnmaternal uncles; bhrtnbrothers; putrnsons ; pautrngrandsons; sakhnfriends; tathtoo, vaurnfathers-in-law; suhdawellwishers; caalso; evacertainly; senayoof the armies; ubhayoof both parties; apiincluding.


There Arjuna could see, within the midst of the armies of both parties, his fathers, grandfathers, teachers, maternal uncles, brothers, sons, grandsons, friends, and also his father-in-law and well-wishersall present there.


On the battlefield Arjuna could see all kinds of relatives. He could see persons like Bhrirav, who were his fathers contemporaries, grandfathers Bhma and Somadatta, teachers like Drocrya and Kpcrya, maternal uncles like alya and akuni, brothers like Duryodhana, sons like Lakmaa, friends like Avatthm, well-wishers like Ktavarm, etc. He could see also the armies which contained many of his friends.

Bg 1.27



TaaNSaMaq+Ya Sa k-aENTaeYa" SavaRNbNDaUNaviSQaTaaNa( )
k*-PaYaa ParYaaivae ivzqdidMab]vqTa( )) 27 ))

tn samkya sa kaunteya

sarvn bandhn avasthitn

kpay parayvio

vidann idam abravt

tnall of them; samkyaafter seeing; sahe; kaunteyathe son of Kunt; sarvnall kinds of; bandhnrelatives; avasthitnsituated; kpayby compassion; parayof a high grade; viaoverwhelmed by; vidanwhile lamenting; idamthus; abravtspoke.


When the son of Kunt, Arjuna, saw all these different grades of friends and relatives, he became overwhelmed with compassion and spoke thus:

Bg 1.28



AJauRNa ovac
d*eMa& SvJaNa& k*-Z<a YauYauTSau& SaMauPaiSQaTaMa( )
SaqdiNTa MaMa Gaa}aai<a Mau%& c PairuZYaiTa )) 28 ))

arjuna uvca

dvema sva-jana ka

yuyutsu samupasthitam

sdanti mama gtri

mukha ca pariuyati

arjunaArjuna; uvcasaid; dvafter seeing; imamall these; svajanamkinsmen; kaO Ka; yuyutsumall in fighting spirit; samupasthitamall present; sdantiquivering; mamamy; gtrilimbs of the body; mukhammouth; caalso; pariuyatidrying up.


Arjuna said: My dear Ka, seeing my friends and relatives present before me in such a fighting spirit, I feel the limbs of my body quivering and my mouth drying up.


Any man who has genuine devotion to the Lord has all the good qualities which are found in godly persons or in the demigods, whereas the nondevotee, however advanced he may be in material qualifications by education and culture, lacks in godly qualities. As such, Arjuna, just after seeing his kinsmen, friends and relatives on the battlefield, was at once overwhelmed by compassion for them who had so decided to fight amongst themselves. As far as his soldiers were concerned, he was sympathetic from the beginning, but he felt compassion even for the soldiers of the opposite party, foreseeing their imminent death. And so thinking, the limbs of his body began to quiver, and his mouth became dry. He was more or less astonished to see their fighting spirit. Practically the whole community, all blood relatives of Arjuna, had come to fight with him. This overwhelmed a kind devotee like Arjuna. Although it is not mentioned here, still one can easily imagine that not only were Arjunas bodily limbs quivering and his mouth drying up, but that he was also crying out of compassion. Such symptoms in Arjuna were not due to weakness but to his softheartedness, a characteristic of a pure devotee of the Lord. It is said therefore:

yasysti bhaktir bhagavaty akican
sarvair guais tatra samsate sur
harv abhaktasya kuto mahad-gu
mano-rathensati dhvato bahi

One who has unflinching devotion for the Personality of Godhead has all the good qualities of the demigods. But one who is not a devotee of the Lord has only material qualifications that are of little value. This is because he is hovering on the mental plane and is certain to be attracted by the glaring material energy. (Bhg. 5.18.12)

Bg 1.29



vePaQau Xarqre Mae raeMahzR JaaYaTae )
Gaa<@qv& &SaTae hSTaatvKcEv PairdTae )) 29 ))

vepathu ca arre me

roma-hara ca jyate

gva srasate hastt

tvak caiva paridahyate

vepathutrembling of the body; caalso; arreon the body; memy; roma-harastanding of hair on end; caalso; jyateis taking place; gvamthe bow of Arjuna; srasateis slipping; hasttfrom the hands; tvakskin; caalso; evacertainly; paridahyateburning.


My whole body is trembling, and my hair is standing on end. My bow Gva is slipping from my hand, and my skin is burning.


There are two kinds of trembling of the body, and two kinds of standings of the hair on end. Such phenomena occur either in great spiritual ecstasy or out of great fear under material conditions. There is no fear in transcendental realization. Arjunas symptoms in this situation are out of material fearnamely, loss of life. This is evident from other symptoms also; he became so impatient that his famous bow Gva was slipping from his hands, and, because his heart was burning within him, he was feeling a burning sensation of the skin. All these are due to a material conception of life.

Bg 1.30



Na c Xa-aeMYavSQaaTau& >a]MaTaqv c Mae MaNa" )
iNaiMataaiNa c PaXYaaiMa ivParqTaaiNa ke-Xav )) 30 ))

na ca aknomy avasthtu

bhramatva ca me mana

nimittni ca paymi

vipartni keava

nanor; caalso; aknomiam I able; avasthtumto stay; bhramatiforgetting; ivaas; caand; memy; manamind; nimittnicauses; caalso; paymiI foresee; vipartnijust the opposite; keavaO killer of the demon Ke (Ka).


I am now unable to stand here any longer. I am forgetting myself, and my mind is reeling. I foresee only evil, O killer of the Ke demon.


Due to his impatience, Arjuna was unable to stay on the battlefield, and he was forgetting himself on account of the weakness of his mind. Excessive attachment for material things puts a man in a bewildering condition of existence. Bhaya dvitybhiniveata: such fearfulness and loss of mental equilibrium take place in persons who are too affected by material conditions. Arjuna envisioned only unhappiness in the battlefieldhe would not be happy even by gaining victory over the foe. The word nimitta is significant. When a man sees only frustration in his expectations, he thinks, Why am I here? Everyone is interested in himself and his own welfare. No one is interested in the Supreme Self. Arjuna is supposed to show disregard for self-interest by submission to the will of Ka, who is everyones real self-interest. The conditioned soul forgets this, and therefore suffers material pains. Arjuna thought that his victory in the battle would only be a cause of lamentation for him.

Bg 1.31



Na c [eYaae_NauPaXYaaiMa hTva SvJaNaMaahve )
Na k-ae ivJaYa& k*-Z<a Na c raJYa& Sau%aiNa c )) 31 ))

na ca reyo nupaymi

hatv sva-janam have

na kke vijaya ka

na ca rjya sukhni ca

nanor; caalso; reyagood; anupaymido I foresee; hatvby killing; svajanamown kinsmen; havein the fight; nanor; knkedo I desire; vijayamvictory; kaO Ka; nanor; caalso; rjyamkingdom; sukhnihappiness thereof; caalso.


I do not see how any good can come from killing my own kinsmen in this battle, nor can I, my dear Ka, desire any subsequent victory, kingdom, or happiness.


Without knowing that ones self-interest is in Viu (or Ka), conditioned souls are attracted by bodily relationships, hoping to be happy in such situations. Under delusion, they forget that Ka is also the cause of material happiness. Arjuna appears to have even forgotten the moral codes for a katriya. It is said that two kinds of men, namely the katriya who dies directly in front of the battlefield under Kas personal orders and the person in the renounced order of life who is absolutely devoted to spiritual culture, are eligible to enter into the sun-globe, which is so powerful and dazzling. Arjuna is reluctant even to kill his enemies, let alone his relatives. He thought that by killing his kinsmen there would be no happiness in his life, and therefore he was not willing to fight, just as a person who does not feel hunger is not inclined to cook. He has now decided to go into the forest and live a secluded life in frustration. But as a katriya, he requires a kingdom for his subsistence, because the katriyas cannot engage themselves in any other occupation. But Arjuna has had no kingdom. Arjunas sole opportunity for gaining a kingdom lay in fighting with his cousins and brothers and reclaiming the kingdom inherited from his father, which he does not like to do. Therefore he considers himself fit to go to the forest to live a secluded life of frustration.

Bg 1.32, Bg 1.33, Bg 1.34, Bg 1.35, Bg 1.32-35

TEXTS 3235


ik&- Naae raJYaeNa GaaeivNd ik&- >aaeGaEJasivTaeNa va )
YaezaMaQaeR k-ax(i+aTa& Naae raJYa& >aaeGaa" Sau%aiNa c )) 32 ))
Ta wMae_viSQaTaa Yaue Pa[a<aa&STYa-a DaNaaiNa c )
AacaYaaR" iPaTar" Pau}aaSTaQaEv c iPaTaaMaha" )) 33 ))
MaaTaul/a" ura" PaaE}aa" XYaal/a" SaMbiNDaNaSTaQaa )
WTaa hNTauiMaC^aiMa ganTaae_iPa MaDauSaUdNa )) 34 ))
AiPa }aEl/aeKYaraJYaSYa heTaae" ik&- Nau Mahqk*-Tae )
iNahTYa DaaTaRra\a" k-a Pa[qiTa" SYaaNaadRNa )) 35 ))

ki no rjyena govinda

ki bhogair jvitena v

yem arthe kkita no

rjya bhog sukhni ca

ta ime vasthit yuddhe

prs tyaktv dhanni ca

cry pitara putrs

tathaiva ca pitmah

mtul vaur pautr

yl sambandhinas tath

etn na hantum icchmi

ghnato pi madhusdana

api trailokya-rjyasya

heto ki nu mah-kte

nihatya dhrtarrn na

k prti syj janrdana

kimwhat use; nato us; rjyenais the kingdom; govindaO Ka; kimwhat; bhogaienjoyment; jvitenaby living; veither; yemfor whom; arthefor the matter of; kkitamdesired; naour; rjyamkingdom; bhogmaterial enjoyment; sukhniall happiness; caalso; teall of them; imethese; avasthitsituated; yuddhein this battlefield; prnlives; tyaktvgiving up; dhanniriches; caalso; cryteachers; pitarafathers; putrsons; tathas well as; evacertainly; caalso; pitmahgrandfathers; mtulmaternal uncles; vaurfathers-in-law; pautrgrandsons; ylbrothers-in-law; sambandhinarelatives; tathas well as; etnall these; nanever; hantumfor killing; icchmido I wish; ghnatabeing killed; apieven; madhusdanaO killer of the demon Madhu (Ka); apieven if; trailokyaof the three worlds; rjyasyaof the kingdoms; hetoin exchange; kimwhat to speak of; nuonly; mah-ktefor the sake of earth; nihatyaby killing; dhrtarrnthe sons of Dhtarra; naour; kwhat; prtipleasure; sytwill there be; janrdanaO maintainer of all living entities.


O Govinda, of what avail to us are kingdoms, happiness or even life itself when all those for whom we may desire them are now arrayed in this battlefield? O Madhusdana, when teachers, fathers, sons, grandfathers, maternal uncles, fathers-in-law, grandsons, brothers-in-law and all relatives are ready to give up their lives and properties and are standing before me, then why should I wish to kill them, though I may survive? O maintainer of all creatures, I am not prepared to fight with them even in exchange for the three worlds, let alone this earth.


Arjuna has addressed Lord Ka as Govinda because Ka is the object of all pleasures for cows and the senses. By using this significant word, Arjuna indicates what will satisfy his senses. Although Govinda is not meant for satisfying our senses, if we try to satisfy the senses of Govinda then automatically our own senses are satisfied. Materially, everyone wants to satisfy his senses, and he wants God to be the order supplier for such satisfaction. The Lord will satisfy the senses of the living entities as much as they deserve, but not to the extent that they may covet. But when one takes the opposite waynamely, when one tries to satisfy the senses of Govinda without desiring to satisfy ones own sensesthen by the grace of Govinda all desires of the living entity are satisfied. Arjunas deep affection for community and family members is exhibited here partly due to his natural compassion for them. He is therefore not prepared to fight. Everyone wants to show his opulence to friends and relatives, but Arjuna fears that all his relatives and friends will be killed in the battlefield, and he will be unable to share his opulence after victory. This is a typical calculation of material life. The transcendental life is, however, different. Since a devotee wants to satisfy the desires of the Lord, he can, Lord willing, accept all kinds of opulence for the service of the Lord, and if the Lord is not willing, he should not accept a farthing. Arjuna did not want to kill his relatives, and if there were any need to kill them, he desired that Ka kill them personally. At this point he did not know that Ka had already killed them before their coming into the battlefield and that he was only to become an instrument for Ka. This fact is disclosed in following chapters. As a natural devotee of the Lord, Arjuna did not like to retaliate against his miscreant cousins and brothers, but it was the Lords plan that they should all be killed. The devotee of the Lord does not retaliate against the wrongdoer, but the Lord does not tolerate any mischief done to the devotee by the miscreants. The Lord can excuse a person on His own account, but He excuses no one who has done harm to His devotees. Therefore the Lord was determined to kill the miscreants, although Arjuna wanted to excuse them.

Bg 1.36



PaaPaMaeva[YaedSMaaNhTvETaaNaaTaTaaiYaNa" )
TaSMaaahaR vYa& hNTau& DaaTaRra\aNSabaNDavaNa( )
SvJaNa& ih k-Qa& hTva Saui%Na" SYaaMa MaaDav )) 36 ))

ppam evrayed asmn

hatvaitn tatyina

tasmn nrh vaya hantu

dhrtarrn sa-bndhavn

sva-jana hi katha hatv

sukhina syma mdhava

ppamvices; evacertainly; rayetmust take upon; asmnus; hatvby killing; etnall these; tatyinaaggressors; tasmttherefore; nanever; arhdeserving; vayamus; hantumto kill; dhrtarrnthe sons of Dhtarra; svabndhavnalong with friends; svajanamkinsmen; hicertainly; kathamhow; hatvby killing; sukhinahappy; symabecome; mdhavaO Ka, husband of the goddess of fortune.


Sin will overcome us if we slay such aggressors. Therefore it is not proper for us to kill the sons of Dhtarra and our friends. What should we gain, O Ka, husband of the goddess of fortune, and how could we be happy by killing our own kinsmen?


According to Vedic injunctions there are six kinds of aggressors: 1) a poison giver, 2) one who sets fire to the house, 3) one who attacks with deadly weapons, 4) one who plunders riches, 5) one who occupies anothers land, and 6) one who kidnaps a wife. Such aggressors are at once to be killed, and no sin is incurred by killing such aggressors. Such killing of aggressors is quite befitting for any ordinary man, but Arjuna was not an ordinary person. He was saintly by character, and therefore he wanted to deal with them in saintliness. This kind of saintliness, however, is not for a katriya. Although a responsible man in the administration of a state is required to be saintly, he should not be cowardly. For example, Lord Rma was so saintly that people were anxious to live in His kingdom, (Rma-rjya), but Lord Rma never showed any cowardice. Rvaa was an aggressor against Rma because he kidnapped Rmas wife, St, but Lord Rma gave him sufficient lessons, unparalleled in the history of the world. In Arjunas case, however, one should consider the special type of aggressors, namely his own grandfather, own teacher, friends, sons, grandsons, etc. Because of them, Arjuna thought that he should not take the severe steps necessary against ordinary aggressors. Besides that, saintly persons are advised to forgive. Such injunctions for saintly persons are more important than any political emergency. Arjuna considered that rather than kill his own kinsmen for political reasons, it would be better to forgive them on grounds of religion and saintly behavior. He did not, therefore, consider such killing profitable simply for the matter of temporary bodily happiness. After all, kingdoms and pleasures derived therefrom are not permanent, so why should he risk his life and eternal salvation by killing his own kinsmen? Arjunas addressing of Ka as Mdhava, or the husband of the goddess of fortune, is also significant in this connection. He wanted to point out to Ka that, as husband of the goddess of fortune, He should not have to induce Arjuna to take up a matter which would ultimately bring about misfortune. Ka, however, never brings misfortune to anyone, to say nothing of His devotees.

Bg 1.37, Bg 1.38, Bg 1.37-38

TEXTS 3738


YaPYaeTae Na PaXYaiNTa l/ae>aaePahTaceTaSa" )
ku-l/+aYak*-Ta& daez& iMa}ad]aehe c PaaTak-Ma( )) 37 ))
k-Qa& Na jeYaMaSMaai>a" PaaPaadSMaaiviTaRTauMa( )
ku-l/+aYak*-Ta& daez& Pa[PaXYaiJaRNaadRNa )) 38 ))

yady apy ete na payanti


kula-kaya-kta doa

mitra-drohe ca ptakam

katha na jeyam asmbhi

ppd asmn nivartitum

kula-kaya-kta doa

prapayadbhir janrdana

yadiif; apicertainly; etethey; nado not; payantisee; lobhagreed; upahataoverpowered; cetasathe hearts; kula-kayain killing the family; ktamdone; doamfault; mitra-drohequarreling with friends; caalso; ptakamsinful reactions; kathamwhy; nashall not; jeyamknow this; asmbhiby us; pptfrom sins; asmtourselves; nivartitumto cease; kula-kayathe destruction of a dynasty; ktamby so doing; doamcrime; prapayadbhiby those who can see; janrdanaO Ka.


O Janrdana, although these men, overtaken by greed, see no fault in killing ones family or quarreling with friends, why should we, with knowledge of the sin, engage in these acts?


A katriya is not supposed to refuse to battle or gamble when he is so invited by some rival party. Under such obligation, Arjuna could not refuse to fight because he was challenged by the party of Duryodhana. In this connection, Arjuna considered that the other party might be blind to the effects of such a challenge. Arjuna, however, could see the evil consequences and could not accept the challenge. Obligation is actually binding when the effect is good, but when the effect is otherwise, then no one can be bound. Considering all these pros and cons, Arjuna decided not to fight.

Bg 1.39



ku-l/+aYae Pa[<aXYaiNTa ku-l/DaMaaR" SaNaaTaNaa" )
DaMaeR Nae ku-l&/ k*-TMaDaMaaeR_i>a>avTYauTa )) 39 ))

kula-kaye praayanti

kula-dharm santan

dharme nae kula ktsnam

adharmo bhibhavaty uta

kula-kayein destroying the family; praayantibecomes vanquished; kula-dharmthe family traditions; santaneternal; dharmein religion; naebeing destroyed; kulamfamily; ktsnamwholesale; adharmairreligious; abhibhavatitransforms; utait is said.


With the destruction of dynasty, the eternal family tradition is vanquished, and thus the rest of the family becomes involved in irreligious practice.


In the system of the varrama institution there are many principles of religious traditions to help members of the family grow properly and attain spiritual values. The elder members are responsible for such purifying processes in the family, beginning from birth to death. But on the death of the elder members, such family traditions of purification may stop, and the remaining younger family members may develop irreligious habits and thereby lose their chance for spiritual salvation. Therefore, for no purpose should the elder members of the family be slain.

Bg 1.40



ADaMaaRi>a>avaTk*-Z<a Pa[duZYaiNTa ku-l/iYa" )
qzu duaSau vaZ<aeRYa JaaYaTae v<aRSar" )) 40 ))

adharmbhibhavt ka

praduyanti kula-striya

stru dusu vreya

jyate vara-sakara

adharmairreligion; abhibhavthaving been predominant; kaO Ka; praduyantibecome polluted; kula-striyafamily ladies; stru of the womanhood; dusubeing so polluted; vreyaO descendant of Vi; jyateit so becomes; vara-sakaraunwanted progeny.


When irreligion is prominent in the family, O Ka, the women of the family become corrupt, and from the degradation of womanhood, O descendant of Vi, comes unwanted progeny.


Good population in human society is the basic principle for peace, prosperity and spiritual progress in life. The varrama religions principles were so designed that the good population would prevail in society for the general spiritual progress of state and community. Such population depends on the chastity and faithfulness of its womanhood. As children are very prone to be misled, women are similarly very prone to degradation. Therefore, both children and women require protection by the elder members of the family. By being engaged in various religious practices, women will not be misled into adultery. According to Cakya Pait, women are generally not very intelligent and therefore not trustworthy. So, the different family traditions of religious activities should always engage them, and thus their chastity and devotion will give birth to a good population eligible for participating in the varrama system. On the failure of such varrama-dharma, naturally the women become free to act and mix with men, and thus adultery is indulged in at the risk of unwanted population. Irresponsible men also provoke adultery in society, and thus unwanted children flood the human race at the risk of war and pestilence.

Bg 1.41



Sarae Nark-aYaEv ku-l/ganaNaa& ku-l/SYa c )
PaTaiNTa iPaTarae eza& lu/iPa<@aedk-i-Yaa" )) 41 ))

sakaro narakyaiva

kula-ghnn kulasya ca

patanti pitaro hy e


sakarasuch unwanted children; narakyafor hellish life; evacertainly; kula-ghnnmof those who are killers of the family; kulasyaof the family; caalso; patantifall down; pitaraforefathers; hicertainly; emof them; luptastopped; piaofferings; udakawater; kriyperformance.


When there is increase of unwanted population, a hellish situation is created both for the family and for those who destroy the family tradition. In such corrupt families, there is no offering of oblations of food and water to the ancestors.


According to the rules and regulations of fruitive activities, there is a need to offer periodical food and water to the forefathers of the family. This offering is performed by worship of Viu, because eating the remnants of food offered to Viu can deliver one from all kinds of sinful actions. Sometimes the forefathers may be suffering from various types of sinful reactions, and sometimes some of them cannot even acquire a gross material body and are forced to remain in subtle bodies as ghosts. Thus, when remnants of prasdam food are offered to forefathers by descendants, the forefathers are released from ghostly or other kinds of miserable life. Such help rendered to forefathers is a family tradition, and those who are not in devotional life are required to perform such rituals. One who is engaged in the devotional life is not required to perform such actions. Simply by performing devotional service, one can deliver hundreds and thousands of forefathers from all kinds of misery. It is stated in the Bhgavatam:

devari-bhtpta-nn pit
na kikaro nyam ca rjan
sarvtman ya araa araya
gato mukunda parihtya kartam

Anyone who has taken shelter of the lotus feet of Mukunda, the giver of liberation, giving up all kinds of obligation, and has taken to the path in all seriousness, owes neither duties nor obligations to the demigods, sages, general living entities, family members, humankind or forefathers. (Bhg. 11.5.41) Such obligations are automatically fulfilled by performance of devotional service to the Supreme Personality of Godhead.

Bg 1.42



daezEreTaE" ku-l/ganaNaa& v<aRSark-arkE-" )
oTSaaNTae JaaiTaDaMaaR" ku-l/DaMaaR XaaTaa" )) 42 ))

doair etai kula-ghnn


utsdyante jti-dharm

kula-dharm ca vat

doaiby such faults; etaiall these; kula-ghnnmof the destroyer of a family; vara-sakaraunwanted children; krakaiby the doers; utsdyantecauses devastation; jti-dharmcommunity project; kula-dharmfamily tradition; caalso; vateternal.


Due to the evil deeds of the destroyers of family tradition, all kinds of community projects and family welfare activities are devastated.


The four orders of human society, combined with family welfare activities as they are set forth by the institution of the santana-dharma or varrama-dharma, are designed to enable the human being to attain his ultimate salvation. Therefore, the breaking of the santana-dharma tradition by irresponsible leaders of society brings about chaos in that society, and consequently people forget the aim of lifeViu. Such leaders are called blind, and persons who follow such leaders are sure to be led into chaos.

Bg 1.43



oTSaku-l/DaMaaR<aa& MaNauZYaa<aa& JaNaadRNa )
Narke- iNaYaTa& vaSaae >avTaqTYaNauu[uMa )) 43 ))


manuy janrdana

narake niyata vso

bhavatty anuuruma

utsannaspoiled; kula-dharmmof those who have the family traditions; manuymof such men; janrdanaO Ka; narakein hell; niyatamalways; vsaresidence; bhavatiit so becomes; itithus; anuurumaI have heard by disciplic succession.


O Ka, maintainer of the people, I have heard by disciplic succession that those who destroy family traditions dwell always in hell.


Arjuna bases his argument not on his own personal experience, but on what he has heard from the authorities. That is the way of receiving real knowledge. One cannot reach the real point of factual knowledge without being helped by the right person who is already established in that knowledge. There is a system in the varrama institution by which one has to undergo the process of ablution before death for his sinful activities. One who is always engaged in sinful activities must utilize the process of ablution called the pryacitta. Without doing so, one surely will be transferred to hellish planets to undergo miserable lives as the result of sinful activities.

Bg 1.44



Ahae bTa MahTPaaPa& k-Tau| VYaviSaTaa vYaMa( )
Yad]aJYaSau%l/ae>aeNa hNTau& SvJaNaMauTaa" )) 44 ))

aho bata mahat ppa

kartu vyavasit vayam

yad rjya-sukha-lobhena

hantu sva-janam udyat

ahaalas; batahow strange it is; mahatgreat; ppamsins; kartumto perform; vyavasitdecided; vayamwe; yatso that; rjyakingdom; sukha-lobhenadriven by greed for royal happiness; hantumto kill; svajanamkinsmen; udyattrying for.


Alas, how strange it is that we are preparing to commit greatly sinful acts, driven by the desire to enjoy royal happiness.


Driven by selfish motives, one may be inclined to such sinful acts as the killing of ones own brother, father, or mother. There are many such instances in the history of the world. But Arjuna, being a saintly devotee of the Lord, is always conscious of moral principles and therefore takes care to avoid such activities.

Bg 1.45



Yaid MaaMaPa[Taqk-arMaXa& XaPaa<aYa" )
DaaTaRra\a r<ae hNYauSTaNMae +aeMaTar& >aveTa( )) 45 ))

yadi mm apratkram

aastra astra-paya

dhrtarr rae hanyus

tan me kematara bhavet

yadieven if; mmunto me; apratkramwithout being resistant; aastramwithout being fully equipped; astra-payathose with weapons in hand; dhrtarrthe sons of Dhtarra; raein the battlefield; hanyumay kill; tatthat; memine; kematarambetter; bhavetbecome.


I would consider it better for the sons of Dhtarra to kill me unarmed and unresisting, rather than fight with them.


It is the customaccording to katriya fighting principlesthat an unarmed and unwilling foe should not be attacked. Arjuna, however, in such an enigmatic position, decided he would not fight if he were attacked by the enemy. He did not consider how much the other party was bent upon fighting. All these symptoms are due to softheartedness resulting from his being a great devotee of the Lord.

Bg 1.46



SaYa ovac
WvMau-aJauRNa" Sa&:Yae rQaaePaSQa oPaaivXaTa( )
ivSa*JYa SaXar& caPa& Xaaek-Sa&ivGanMaaNaSa" )) 46 ))

sajaya uvca

evam uktvrjuna sakhye

rathopastha upviat

visjya sa-ara cpa


sajayaSajaya; uvcasaid; evamthus; uktvsaying; arjunaArjuna; sakhyein the battlefield; rathachariot; upasthasituated on; upviatsat down again; visjyakeeping aside; sa-aramalong with arrows; cpamthe bow; okalamentation; savignadistressed; mnasawithin the mind.


Sajaya said: Arjuna, having thus spoken on the battlefield, cast aside his bow and arrows and sat down on the chariot, his mind overwhelmed with grief.


While observing the situation of his enemy, Arjuna stood up on the chariot, but he was so afflicted with lamentation that he sat down again, setting aside his bow and arrows. Such a kind and softhearted person, in the devotional service of the Lord, is fit to receive self-knowledge.

Thus end the Bhaktivedanta Purports to the First Chapter of the rmad-Bhagavad-gt in the matter of Observing the Armies on the Battlefield of Kuruketra.

Bg 2. Contents of the Gt Summarized


Contents of the Gt Summarized

Bg 2.1



SaYa ovac
Ta& TaQaa k*-PaYaaivMa[uPaU<aaRku-le/+a<aMa( )
ivzqdNTaiMad& vaKYaMauvac MaDauSaUdNa" )) 1 ))

sajaya uvca

ta tath kpayviam


vidantam ida vkyam

uvca madhusdana

sajaya uvcaSajaya said; tamunto Arjuna; taththus; kpayby compassion; viamoverwhelmed; aru-prafull of tears; kuladepressed; kaameyes; vidantamlamenting; idamthis; vkyamwords; uvcasaid; madhusdanathe killer of Madhu.


Sajaya said: Seeing Arjuna full of compassion and very sorrowful, his eyes brimming with tears, Madhusdana, Ka, spoke the following words.


Material compassion, lamentation and tears are all signs of ignorance of the real self. Compassion for the eternal soul is self-realization. The word Madhusdana is significant in this verse. Lord Ka killed the demon Madhu, and now Arjuna wanted Ka to kill the demon of misunderstanding that had overtaken him in the discharge of his duty. No one knows where compassion should be applied. Compassion for the dress of a drowning man is senseless. A man fallen in the ocean of nescience cannot be saved simply by rescuing his outward dressthe gross material body. One who does not know this and laments for the outward dress is called a dra, or one who laments unnecessarily. Arjuna was a katriya, and this conduct was not expected from him. Lord Ka, however, can dissipate the lamentation of the ignorant man, and for this purpose the Bhagavad-gt was sung by Him. This chapter instructs us in self-realization by an analytical study of the material body and the spirit soul, as explained by the supreme authority, Lord r Ka. This realization is made possible by working with the fruitive being situated in the fixed conception of the real self.

Bg 2.2



ku-TaSTva k-XMal/iMad& ivzMae SaMauPaiSQaTaMa( )
ANaaYaRJauMaSvGYaRMak-IiTaRk-rMaJauRNa )) 2 ))

r-bhagavn uvca

kutas tv kamalam ida

viame samupasthitam

anrya-juam asvargyam

akrti-karam arjuna

r bhagavn uvcathe Supreme Personality of Godhead said; kutawherefrom; tvunto you; kamalamdirtiness; idamthis lamentation; viamethis hour of crisis; samupasthitamarrived; anryapersons who do not know the value of life; juampracticed by; asvargyamthat which does not lead to higher planets; akrtiinfamy; karamthe cause of; arjunaO Arjuna.


The Supreme Person [Bhagavn] said: My dear Arjuna, how have these impurities come upon you? They are not at all befitting a man who knows the progressive values of life. They do not lead to higher planets, but to infamy.


Ka and the Supreme Personality of Godhead are identical. Therefore Lord Ka is referred to as Bhagavn throughout the Gt. Bhagavn is the ultimate in the Absolute Truth. Absolute Truth is realized in three phases of understanding, namely Brahman or the impersonal all-pervasive spirit; Paramtm, or the localized aspect of the Supreme within the heart of all living entities; and Bhagavn, or the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Lord Ka. In the rmad-Bhgavatam this conception of the Absolute Truth is explained thus:

vadanti tat tattva-vidas tattva yaj jnam advayam
brahmeti paramtmeti bhagavn iti abdyate.

The Absolute Truth is realized in three phases of understanding by the knower of the Absolute Truth, and all of them are identical. Such phases of the Absolute Truth are expressed as Brahman, Paramtm, and Bhagavn. (Bhg. 1.2.11) These three divine aspects can be explained by the example of the sun, which also has three different aspects, namely the sunshine, the suns surface and the sun planet itself. One who studies the sunshine only is the preliminary student. One who understands the suns surface is further advanced. And one who can enter into the sun planet is the highest. Ordinary students who are satisfied by simply understanding the sunshineits universal pervasiveness and the glaring effulgence of its impersonal naturemay be compared to those who can realize only the Brahman feature of the Absolute Truth. The student who has advanced still further can know the sun disc, which is compared to knowledge of the Paramtm feature of the Absolute Truth. And the student who can enter into the heart of the sun planet is compared to those who realize the personal features of the Supreme Absolute Truth. Therefore, the bhaktas, or the transcendentalists who have realized the Bhagavn feature of the Absolute Truth, are the topmost transcendentalists, although all students who are engaged in the study of the Absolute Truth are engaged in the same subject matter. The sunshine, the sun disc and the inner affairs of the sun planet cannot be separated from one another, and yet the students of the three different phases are not in the same category.

The Sanskrit word Bhagavn is explained by the great authority, Parara Muni, the father of Vysadeva. The Supreme Personality who possesses all riches, all strength, all fame, all beauty, all knowledge and all renunciation is called Bhagavn. There are many persons who are very rich, very powerful, very beautiful, very famous, very learned, and very much detached, but no one can claim that he possesses all riches, all strength, etc., entirely. Only Ka can claim this because He is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. No living entity, including Brahm, Lord iva, or Nryaa, can possess opulences as fully as Ka. Therefore it is concluded in the Brahma-sahit by Lord Brahm himself that Lord Ka is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. No one is equal to or above Him. He is the primeval Lord, or Bhagavn, known as Govinda, and He is the supreme cause of all causes.

vara parama ka sac-cid-nanda-vigraha
andir dir govinda sarua-kraa-kraam

There are many personalities possessing the qualities of Bhagavn, but Ka is the supreme because none can excel Him. He is the Supreme Person, and His body is eternal, full of knowledge and bliss. He is the primeval Lord Govinda and the cause of all causes. (Brahma-sahit 5.1)

In the Bhgavatam also there is a list of many incarnations of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, but Ka is described as the original Personality of Godhead, from whom many, many incarnations and Personalities of Godhead expand:

ete ca-kal pusa kas tu bhagavn svayam
indrri-vykula loka mayanti yuge yuge

All the lists of the incarnations of Godhead submitted herewith are either plenary expansions or parts of the plenary expansions of the Supreme Godhead, but Ka is the Supreme Personality of Godhead Himself. (Bhag. 1.3.28)

Therefore, Ka is the original Supreme Personality of Godhead, the Absolute Truth, the source of both the Supersoul and the impersonal Brahman.

In the presence of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Arjunas lamentation for his kinsmen is certainly unbecoming, and therefore Ka expressed His surprise with the word kutas, wherefrom. Such unmanly sentiments were never expected from a person belonging to the civilized class of men known as ryans. The word ryan is applicable to persons who know the value of life and have a civilization based on spiritual realization. Persons who are led by the material conception of life do not know that the aim of life is realization of the Absolute Truth, Viu, or Bhagavn, and they are captivated by the external features of the material world, and therefore they do not know what liberation is. Persons who have no knowledge of liberation from material bondage are called non-ryans. Although Arjuna was a katriya, he was deviating from his prescribed duties by declining to fight. This act of cowardice is described as befitting the non-ryans. Such deviation from duty does not help one in the progress of spiritual life, nor does it even give one the opportunity to become famous in this world. Lord Ka did not approve of the so-called compassion of Arjuna for his kinsmen.

Bg 2.3



E-BYa& Maa SMa GaMa" PaaQaR NaETatvYYauPaPaTae )
+aud]& dYadaEbRLYa& TYa-aeita ParNTaPa )) 3 ))

klaibya m sma gama prtha

naitat tvayy upapadyate

kudra hdaya-daurbalya

tyaktvottiha parantapa

klaibyamimpotence; mdo not; smatake it; gamago in; prthaO son of Pth; nanever; etatlike this; tvayiunto you; upapadyateis befitting; kudramvery little; hdayaheart; daurbalyamweakness; tyaktvgiving up; uttihaget up; parantapaO chastiser of the enemies.


O son of Pth, do not yield to this degrading impotence. It does not become you. Give up such petty weakness of heart and arise, O chastiser of the enemy.


Arjuna was addressed as the son of Pth, who happened to be the sister of Kas father Vasudeva. Therefore Arjuna had a blood relationship with Ka. If the son of a ksatriya declines to fight, he is a katriya in name only, and if the son of a brhmaa acts impiously, he is a brhmaa in name only. Such katriyas and brhmaas are unworthy sons of their fathers; therefore, Ka did not want Arjuna to become an unworthy son of a katriya. Arjuna was the most intimate friend of Ka, and Ka was directly guiding him on the chariot; but in spite of all these credits, if Arjuna abandoned the battle, he would be committing an infamous act; therefore Ka said that such an attitude in Arjuna did not fit his personality. Arjuna might argue that he would give up the battle on the grounds of his magnanimous attitude for the most respectable Bhma and his relatives, but Ka considered that sort of magnanimity not approved by authority. Therefore, such magnanimity or so-called nonviolence should be given up by persons like Arjuna under the direct guidance of Ka.

Bg 2.4



AJauRNa ovac
k-Qa& >aqZMaMah& Sa&:Yae d]ae<a& c MaDauSaUdNa )
wzui>a" Pa[iTaYaaeTSYaaiMa PaUJaahaRvirSaUdNa )) 4 ))

arjuna uvca

katha bhmam aha sakhye

droa ca madhusdana

iubhi pratiyotsymi

pjrhv ari-sdana

arjuna uvcaArjuna said; kathamhow; bhmamunto Bhma; ahamI; sakhyein the fight; droamunto Droa; caalso, madhusdanaO killer of Madhu; iubhiwith arrows; pratiyotsymishall counterattack; pj-arhauthose who are worshipable; arisdanaO killer of the enemies.


Arjuna said: O killer of Madhu [Ka], how can I counterattack with arrows in battle men like Bhma and Droa, who are worthy of my worship?


Respectable superiors like Bhma the grandfather and Drocrya the teacher are always worshipable. Even if they attack, they should not be counterattacked. It is general etiquette that superiors are not to be offered even a verbal fight. Even if they are sometimes harsh in behavior, they should not be harshly treated. Then, how is it possible for Arjuna to counterattack them? Would Ka ever attack His own grandfather, Ugrasena, or His teacher, Sndpani Muni? These were some of the arguments by Arjuna to Ka.

Bg 2.5



GauNahTva ih MahaNau>aavaNa(
[eYaae >aaeu-& >aE+YaMaPaqh l/aeke- )
hTvaQaRk-aMaa&STau GauiNahEv
>auqYa >aaeGaaNiDarPa[idGDaaNa( )) 5 ))

gurn ahatv hi mahnubhvn

reyo bhoktu bhaikyam apha loke

hatvrtha-kms tu gurn ihaiva

bhujya bhogn rudhira-pradigdhn

gurnthe superiors; ahatvby killing; hicertainly; mah-anubhvngreat souls; reyait is better; bhoktumto enjoy life; bhaikyambegging; apieven; ihain this life; lokein this world; hatvkilling; arthagain; kmnso desiring; tubut; gurnsuperiors; ihain this world; evacertainly; bhujyahas to enjoy; bhognenjoyable things; rudhirablood; pradigdhntainted with.


It is better to live in this world by begging than to live at the cost of the lives of great souls who are my teachers. Even though they are avaricious, they are nonetheless superiors. If they are killed, our spoils will be tainted with blood.


According to scriptural codes, a teacher who engages in an abominable action and has lost his sense of discrimination is fit to be abandoned. Bhma and Droa were obliged to take the side of Duryodhana because of his financial assistance, although they should not have accepted such a position simply on financial considerations. Under the circumstances, they have lost the respectability of teachers. But Arjuna thinks that nevertheless they remain his superiors, and therefore to enjoy material profits after killing them would mean to enjoy spoils tainted with blood.

Bg 2.6



Na cETai" k-Tarae GarqYaae
Yaa JaYaeMa Yaid va Naae JaYaeYau" )
YaaNaev hTva Na iJaJaqivzaMa
STae_viSQaTaa" Pa[Mau%e DaaTaRra\a" )) 6 ))

na caitad vidma kataran no garyo

yad v jayema yadi v no jayeyu

yn eva hatv na jijvimas

te vasthit pramukhe dhrtarr

nanor; caalso; etatthis; vidmado know; kataratwhich; naus; garyabetter; yatwhat; veither; jayemaconquer us; yadiif; vor; naus; jayeyuconquer; ynthose; evacertainly; hatvby killing; nanever; jijvimawant to live; teall of them; avasthitare situated; pramukhein the front; dhrtarrthe sons of Dhtarra.


Nor do we know which is betterconquering them or being conquered by them. The sons of Dhtarra, whom if we killed we should not care to live, are now standing before us on this battlefield.


Arjuna did not know whether he should fight and risk unnecessary violence, although fighting is the duty of the katriyas, or whether he should refrain and live by begging. If he did not conquer the enemy, begging would be his only means of subsistence. Nor was there certainty of victory, because either side might emerge victorious. Even if victory awaited them (and their cause was justified), still, if the sons of Dhtarra died in battle, it would be very difficult to live in their absence. Under the circumstances, that would be another kind of defeat for them. All these considerations by Arjuna definitely prove that he was not only a great devotee of the Lord but that he was also highly enlightened and had complete control over his mind and senses. His desire to live by begging, although he was born in the royal household, is another sign of detachment. He was truly virtuous, as these qualities, combined with his faith in the words of instruction of r Ka (his spiritual master), indicate. It is concluded that Arjuna was quite fit for liberation. Unless the senses are controlled, there is no chance of elevation to the platform of knowledge, and without knowledge and devotion there is no chance of liberation. Arjuna was competent in all these attributes, over and above his enormous attributes in his material relationships.

Bg 2.7



Pa*C^aiMa Tva& DaMaRSaMMaU!ceTaa" )
YaC^\eYa" SYaaiiTa& b]Uih TaNMae
iXaZYaSTae_h& XaaiDa Maa& Tva& Pa[PaMa( )) 7 ))


pcchmi tv dharma-sammha-cet

yac chreya syn nicita brhi tan me

iyas te ha dhi m tv prapannam

krpayamiserly; doaweakness; upahatabeing inflicted by; svabhvacharacteristics; pcchmiI am asking; tvmunto You; dharmareligion; samhabewildered; cetin heart; yatwhat; reyaall-good; sytmay be; nicitamconfidently; brhitell; tatthat; meunto me; iyadisciple; teYour; ahamI am; dhijust instruct; mmme; tvmunto You; prapannamsurrendered.


Now I am confused about my duty and have lost all composure because of weakness. In this condition I am asking You to tell me clearly what is best for me. Now I am Your disciple, and a soul surrendered unto You. Please instruct me.


By natures own way the complete system of material activities is a source of perplexity for everyone. In every step there is perplexity, and therefore it behooves one to approach a bona fide spiritual master who can give one proper guidance for executing the purpose of life. All Vedic literatures advise us to approach a bona fide spiritual master to get free from the perplexities of life which happen without our desire. They are like a forest fire that somehow blazes without being set by anyone. Similarly, the world situation is such that perplexities of life automatically appear, without our wanting such confusion. No one wants fire, and yet it takes place, and we become perplexed. The Vedic wisdom therefore advises that in order to solve the perplexities of life and to understand the science of the solution, one must approach a spiritual master who is in the disciplic succession. A person with a bona fide spiritual master is supposed to know everything. One should not, therefore, remain in material perplexities but should approach a spiritual master. This is the purport of this verse.

Who is the man in material perplexities? It is he who does not understand the problems of life. In the Garga Upaniad the perplexed man is described as follows:

yo v etad akara grgy aviditvsml lokt praiti sa kpaa

He is a miserly man who does not solve the problems of life as a human and who thus quits this world like the cats and dogs, without understanding the science of self-realization. This human form of life is a most valuable asset for the living entity who can ultilize it for solving the problems of life; therefore, one who does not utilize this opportunity properly is a miser. On the other hand, there is the brhmaa, or he who is intelligent enough to utilize this body to solve all the problems of life.

The kpaas, or miserly persons, waste their time in being overly affectionate for family, society, country, etc., in the material conception of life. One is often attached to family life, namely to wife, children and other members, on the basis of skin disease. The kpaa thinks that he is able to protect his family members from death; or the kpaa thinks that his family or society can save him from the verge of death. Such family attachment can be found even in the lower animals who take care of children also. Being intelligent, Arjuna could understand that his affection for family members and his wish to protect them from death were the causes ot his perplexities. Although he could understand that his duty to fight was awaiting him, still, on account of miserly weakness, he could not discharge the duties. He is therefore asking Lord Ka, the supreme spiritual master, to make a definite solution. He offers himself to Ka as a disciple. He wants to stop friendly talks. Talks between the master and the disciple are serious, and now Arjuna wants to talk very seriously before the recognized spiritual master. Ka is therefore the original spiritual master of the science of Bhagavad-gt, and Arjuna is the first disciple for understanding the Gt. How Arjuna understands the Bhagavad-gt is stated in the Gt itself. And yet foolish mundane scholars explain that one need not submit to Ka as a person, but to the unborn within Ka. There is no difference between Kas within and without. And one who has no sense of this understanding is the greatest fool in trying to understand Bhagavad-gt.

Bg 2.8



Na ih Pa[PaXYaaiMa MaMaaPaNaua
C^aek-MauC^aez<aiMaiNd]Yaa<aaMa( )
AvaPYa >aUMaavSaPaMa*&
raJYa& Saura<aaMaiPa caiDaPaTYaMa( )) 8 ))

na hi prapaymi mampanudyd

yac chokam ucchoaam indriym

avpya bhmv asapatnam ddha

rjya surm api cdhipatyam

nado not; hicertainly; prapaymiI see; mamamy; apanudytthey can drive away; yatthat; okamlamentation; ucchoaamdrying up; indriymof the senses; avpyaachieving; bhmauon the earth; asapatnamwithout rival; ddhamprosperous; rjyamkingdom; surmof the demigods; apieven; caalso; dhipatyamsupremacy.


I can find no means to drive away this grief which is drying up my senses. I will not be able to destroy it even if I win an unrivalled kingdom on the earth with sovereignty like the demigods in heaven.


Although Arjuna was putting forward so many arguments based on knowledge of the principles of religion and moral codes, it appears that he was unable to solve his real problem without the help of the spiritual master, Lord r Ka. He could understand that his so-called knowledge was useless in driving away his problems, which were drying up his whole existence; and it was impossible for him to solve such perplexities without the help of a spiritual master like Lord Ka. Academic knowledge, scholarship, high position, etc., are all useless in solving the problems of life; help can only be given by a spiritual master like Ka. Therefore, the conclusion is that a spiritual master who is one hundred percent Ka conscious is the bona fide spiritual master, for he can solve the problems of life. Lord Caitanya said that one who is master in the science of Ka consciousness, regardless of his social position, is the real spiritual master.

kibvipra, kib nys, dra kene naya
yei ka-tattva-vett, sei guru haya.

(Caitanya-caritmta, Madhya 8.127)

It does not matter whether a person is a vipra [learned scholar in Vedic wisdom] or is born in a lower family, or is in the renounced order of lifeif he is master in the science of Ka, he is the perfect and bona fide spiritual master. So without being a master in the science of Ka consciousness, no one is a bona fide spiritual master. It is also said in Vedic literatures:

a-karma-nipuo vipro mantra-tantra-virada
avaiavo gurur na syd vaiava vapaco guru

A scholarly brhmaa, expert in all subjects of Vedic knowledge, is unfit to become a spiritual master without being a Vaiava, or expert in the science of Ka consciousness. But a person born in a family of a lower caste can become a spiritual master if he is a Vaiava, or Ka conscious.

The problems of material existencebirth, old age, disease and deathcannot be counteracted by accumulation of wealth and economic development. In many parts of the world there are states which are replete with all facilities of life, which are full of wealth, and economically developed, yet the problems of material existence are still present. They are seeking peace in different ways, but they ean achieve real happiness only if they consult Ka, or the Bhagavad-gt and rmad-Bhgavatamwhich constitute the science of Kaor the bona fide representative of Ka, the man in Ka consciousness.

If economic development and material comforts could drive away ones lamentations for family, social, national or international inebrieties, then Arjuna would not have said that even an unrivalled kingdom on earth or supremacy like that of the demigods in the heavenly planets would not be able to drive away his lamentations. He sought, therefore, refuge in Ka consciousness, and that is the right path for peace and harmony. Economic development or supremacy over the world can be finished at any moment by the cataclysms of material nature. Even elevation into a higher planetary situation, as men are now seeking a place on the moon planet, can also be finished at one stroke. The Bhagavad-gt confirms this: ke puye martyaloka vianti When the results of pious activities are finished, one falls down again from the peak of happiness to the lowest status of life. Many politicians of the world have fallen down in that way. Such downfalls only constitute more causes for lamentation.

Therefore, if we want to curb lamentation for good, then we have to take shelter of Ka, as Arjuna is seeking to do. So Arjuna asked Ka to solve his problem definitely, and that is the way of Ka consciousness.

Bg 2.9



SaYa ovac
WvMau-a zqke-Xa& Gau@ake-Xa" ParNTaPa" )
Na YaaeTSYa wiTa GaaeivNdMau-a TaUZ<aq& b>aUv h )) 9 ))

sajaya uvca

evam uktv hkea

gukea parantapa

na yotsya iti govindam

uktv t babhva ha

sajaya uvcaSajaya said; evamthus; uktvspeaking; hkeamunto Ka, the master of the senses; gukeaArjuna, the master at curbing ignorance; parantapathe chastiser of the enemies; na yotsyeI shall not fight; itithus; govindamunto Ka, the giver of pleasure; uktvsaying; tmsilent; babhvabecame; hacertainly.


Sajaya said: Having spoken thus, Arjuna, chastiser of enemies, told Ka, Govinda, I shall not fight, and fell silent.


Dhtarra must have been very glad to understand that Arjuna was not going to fight and was instead leaving the battlefield for the begging profession. But Sajaya disappointed him again in relating that Arjuna was competent to kill his enemies (parantapa). Although Arjuna was for the time being overwhelmed with false grief due to family affection, he surrendered unto Ka, the supreme spiritual master, as a disciple. This indicated that he would soon be free from the false lamentation resulting from family affection and would be enlightened with perfect knowledge of self-realization, or Ka consciousness, and would then surely fight. Thus Dhtarras joy would be frustrated, since Arjuna would be enlightened. by Ka and would fight to the end.

Bg 2.10



TaMauvac zqke-Xa" Pa[hSaiv >aarTa
SaeNaYaae>aYaaeMaRDYae ivzqdNTaiMad& vc" )) 10 ))

tam uvca hkea
prahasann iva bhrata
senayor ubhayor madhye
vidantam ida vaca

tamunto him; uvcasaid; hkeathe master of the senses, Ka; prahasansmiling; ivalike that; bhrataO Dhtarra, descendant of Bharata; senayoof the armies; ubhayoof both parties; madhyebetween; vidantamunto the lamenting one; idamthe following; vacawords.


O descendant of Bharata, at that time Ka, smiling, in the midst of both the armies, spoke the following words to the grief-stricken Arjuna.


The talk was going on between intimate friends, namely the Hkea and the Gukea. As friends, both of them were on the same level, but one of them voluntarily became a student of the other. Ka was smiling because a friend had chosen to become a disciple. As Lord of all, He is always in the superior position as the master of everyone, and yet the Lord accepts one who wishes to be a friend, a son, a lover or a devotee, or who wants Him in such a role. But when He was accepted as the master, He at once assumed the role and talked with the disciple like the masterwith gravity, as it is required. It appears that the talk between the master and the disciple was openly exchanged in the presence of both armies so that all were benefitted. So the talks of Bhagavad-gt are not for any particular person, society, or community, but they are for all, and friends or enemies are equally entitled to hear them.

Bg 2.11



AXaaeCYaaNaNvXaaecSTv& Pa[javada& >aazSae )
GaTaaSaUNaGaTaaSaU& NaaNauXaaeciNTa Pai<@Taa" )) 11 ))

r-bhagavn uvca

aocyn anvaocas tva

praj-vd ca bhase

gatsn agats ca

nnuocanti pait

r bhagavn uvcathe Supreme Personality of Godhead said; aocynthat which is not worthy of lamentation; anvaocayou are lamenting; tvamyou; praj-vdlearned talks; caalso; bhasespeaking; gatalost; asnlife; agatanot past; asnlife; caalso; nanever; anuocantilament; paitthe learned.


The Blessed Lord said: While speaking learned words, you are mourning for what is not worthy of grief. Those who are wise lament neither for the living nor the dead.


The Lord at once took the position of the teacher and chastised the student, calling him, indirectly, a fool. The Lord said, you are talking like a learned man, but you do not know that one who is learnedone who knows what is body and what is souldoes not lament for any stage of the body, neither in the living nor in the dead condition. As it will be explained in later chapters, it will be clear that knowledge means to know matter and spirit and the controller of both. Arjuna argued that religious principles should be given more importance than politics or sociology, but he did not know that knowledge of matter, soul and the Supreme is even more important than religious formularies. And, because he was lacking in that knowledge, he should not have posed himself as a very learned man. As he did not happen to be a very learned man, he was consequently lamenting for something which was unworthy of lamentation. The body is born and is destined to be vanquished today or tomorrow; therefore the body is not as important as the soul. One who knows this is actually learned, and for him there is no cause for lamentation, regardless of the condition of the material body.

Bg 2.12



NaTvevah& JaaTau NaaSa& Na Tv& NaeMae JaNaaiDaPaa" )
Na cEv Na>aivZYaaMa" SaveR vYaMaTa" ParMa( )) 12 ))

na tv evha jtu nsa

na tva neme jandhip

na caiva na bhaviyma

sarve vayam ata param

nanever; tubut; evacertainly; ahamI; jtubecome; nanever; samexisted; nait is not so; tvamyourself; nanot; imeall these; jandhipkings; nanever; caalso; evacertainly; nanot like that; bhaviymashall exist; sarveall of us; vayamwe; ata paramhereafter.


Never was there a time when I did not exist, nor you, nor all these kings; nor in the future shall any of us cease to be.


In the Vedas, in the Kaha Upaniad as well as in the vetvatara Upaniad, it is said that the Supreme Personality of Godhead is the maintainer of innumerable living entities, in terms of their different situations according to individual work and reaction of work. That Supreme Personality of Godhead is also, by His plenary portions, alive in the heart of every living entity. Only saintly persons who can see, within and without, the same Supreme Lord, can actually attain to perfect and eternal peace.

nityo nityn cetana cetannm
eko bahn yo vidadhti kmn
tam tmastha ye nupayanti dhrs
te nti vat netarem.

(Kaha 2.2.13)

The same Vedic truth given to Arjuna is given to all persons in the world who pose themselves as very learned but factually have but a poor fund of knowledge. The Lord says clearly that He Himself, Arjuna, and all the kings who are assembled on the battlefield, are eternally individual beings and that the Lord is eternally the maintainer of the individual living entities both in their conditioned as well as in their liberated situations. The Supreme Personality of Godhead is the supreme individual person, and Arjuna, the Lords eternal associate, and all the kings assembled there are individual, eternal persons. It is not that they did not exist as individuals in the past, and it is not that they will not remain eternal persons. Their individuality existed in the past, and their individuality will continue in the future without interruption. Therefore, there is no cause for lamentation for anyone.

The Myvd theory that after liberation the individual soul, separated by the covering of my or illusion, will merge into the impersonal Brahman and lose its individual existence is not supported herein by Lord Ka, the supreme authority. Nor is the theory that we only think of individuality in the conditioned state supported herein. Ka clearly says herein that in the future also the individuality of the Lord and others, as it is confirmed in the Upaniads, will continue eternally. This statement of Ka is authoritative because Ka cannot be subject to illusion. If individuality is not a fact, then Ka would not have stressed it so mucheven for the future. The Myvd may argue that the individuality spoken of by Ka is not spiritual, but material. Even accepting the argument that the individuality is material, then how can one distinguish Kas individuality? Ka affirms His individuality in the past and confirms His individuality in the future also. He has confirmed His individuality in many ways, and impersonal Brahman has been declared to be subordinate to Him. Ka has maintained spiritual individuality all along; if He is accepted as an ordinary conditioned soul in individual consciousness, then His Bhagavad-gt has no value as authoritative scripture. A common man with all the four defects of human frailty is unable to teach that which is worth hearing. The Gt is above such literature. No mundane book compares with the Bhagavad-gt. When one accepts Ka as an ordinary man, the Gt loses all importance. The Myvd argues that the plurality mentioned in this verse is conventional and that it refers to the body. But previous to this verse such a bodily conception is already condemned. After condemning the bodily conception of the living entities, how was it possible for Ka to place a conventional proposition on the body again? Therefore, individuality is maintained on spiritual grounds and is thus confirmed by great cryas like r Rmnuja and others. It is clearly mentioned in many places in the Gt that this spiritual individuality is understood by those who are devotees of the Lord. Those who are envious of Ka as the Supreme Personality of Godhead have no bona fide access to the great literature. The nondevotees approach to the teachings of the Gta is something like bees licking on a bottle of honey. One cannot have a taste of honey unless one opens the bottle. Similarly, the mysticism of the Bhagavad-gt can be understood only by devotees, and no one else can taste it, as it is stated in the Fourth Chapter of the book. Nor can the Gt be touched by persons who envy the very existence of the Lord. Therefore, the Myvd explanation of the Gt is a most misleading presentation of the whole truth. Lord Caitanya has forbidden us to read commentations made by the Myvds and warns that one who takes to such an understanding of the Myvd philosophy loses all power to understand the real mystery of the Gt. If individuality refers to the empirical universe, then there is no need of teaching by the Lord. The plurality of the individual soul and of the Lord is an eternal fact, and it is confirmed by the Vedas as above mentioned.

Bg 2.13



deihNaae_iSMaNYaQaa dehe k-aEMaar& YaaEvNa& Jara )
TaQaa dehaNTarPa[aiDasrSTa}a Na MauiTa )) 13 ))

dehino smin yath dehe

kaumra yauvana jar

tath dehntara-prptir

dhras tatra na muhyati

dehinaof the embodied; asminin this; yathas; dehein the body; kaumramboyhood; yauvanamyouth; jarold age; tathsimilarly; dehntaratransference of the body; prptiachievement; dhrathe sober; tatrathereupon; nanever; muhyatideluded.


As the embodied soul continually passes, in this body, from boyhood to youth to old age, the soul similarly passes into another body at death. The self-realized soul is not bewildered by such a change.


Since every living entity is an individual soul, each is changing his body every moment, manifesting sometimes as a child, sometimes as a youth, and sometimes as an old man. Yet the same spirit soul is there and does not undergo any change. This individual soul finally changes the body at death and transmigrates to another body; and since it is sure to have another body in the next birtheither material or spiritualthere was no cause for lamentation by Arjuna on account of death, neither for Bhma nor for Droa, for whom he was so much concerned. Rather, he should rejoice for their changing bodies from old to new ones, thereby rejuvenating their energy. Such changes of body account for varieties of enjoyment or suffering, according to ones work in life. So Bhma and Droa, being noble souls, were surely going to have either spiritual bodies in the next life, or at least life in heavenly bodies for superior enjoyment of material existence. So, in either case, there was no cause of lamentation.

Any man who has perfect knowledge of the constitution of the individual soul, the Supersoul, and natureboth material and spiritualis called a dhra or a most sober man. Such a man is never deluded by the change of bodies. The Myvd theory of oneness of the spirit soul cannot be entertained on the ground that spirit soul cannot be cut into pieces as a fragmental portion. Such cutting into different individual souls would make the Supreme cleavable or changeable, against the principle of the Supreme Soul being unchangeable.

As confirmed in the Gt, the fragmental portions of the Supreme exist eternally (santana) and are called kara; that is, they have a tendency to fall down into material nature. These fragmental portions are eternally so, and even after liberation, the individual soul remains the samefragmental. But once liberated, he lives an eternal life in bliss and knowledge with the Personality of Godhead. The theory of reflection can be applied to the Supersoul who is present in each and every individual body and is known as the Paramtm, who is different from the individual living entity. When the sky is reflected in water, the reflections represent both the sun and the moon and the stars also. The stars can be compared to the living entities and the sun or the moon to the Supreme Lord. The individual fragmental spirit soul is represented by Arjuna, and the Supreme Soul is the Personality of Godhead r Ka. They are not on the same level, as it will be apparent in the beginning of the Fourth Chapter. If Arjuna is on the same level with Ka, and Ka is not superior to Arjuna, then their relationship of instructor and instructed becomes meaningless. If both of them are deluded by the illusory energy (my), then there is no need of one being the instructor and the other the instructed. Such instruction would be useless because, in the clutches of my, no one can be an authoritative instructor. Under the circumstances, it is admitted that Lord Ka is the Supreme Lord, superior in position to the living entity, Arjuna, who is a forgotten soul deluded by my.

Bg 2.14



Maa}aaSPaXaaRSTau k-aENTaeYa XaqTaaeZ<aSau%du"%da" )
AaGaMaaPaaiYaNaae_iNaTYaaSTaa&iSTaiTa+aSv >aarTa )) 14 ))

mtr-spars tu kaunteya


gampyino nitys

ts titikasva bhrata

mtrsensuous; sparperception; tuonly; kaunteyaO son of Kunt; tawinter; uasummer; sukhahappiness; dukha-dagiving pain; gamaappearing; apyinadisappearing; anitynonpermanent; tnall of them; titikasvajust try to tolerate; bhrataO descendant of the Bhrata dynasty.


O son of Kunt, the nonpermanent appearance of happiness and distress, and their disappearance in due course, are like the appearance and disappearance of winter and summer seasons. They arise from sense perception, O scion of Bharata, and one must learn to tolerate them without being disturbed.


In the proper discharge of duty, one has to learn to tolerate nonpermanent appearances and disappearances of happiness and distress. According to Vedic injunction, one has to take his bath early in the morning even during the month of Mgha (January-February). It is very cold at that time, but in spite of that a man who abides by the religious principles does not hesitate to take his bath. Similarly, a woman does not hesitate to cook in the kitchen in the months of May and June, the hottest part of the summer season. One has to execute his duty in spite of climatic inconveniences. Similarly, to fight is the religious principle of the katriyas, and although one has to fight with some friend or relative, one should not deviate from his prescribed duty. One has to follow the prescribed rules and regulations of religious principles in order to rise up to the platform of knowledge because by knowledge and devotion only can one liberate himself from the clutches of my (illusion).

The two different names of address given to Arjuna are also significant. To address him as Kaunteya signifies his great blood relations from his mothers side; and to address him as Bhrata signifies his greatness from his fathers side. From both sides he is supposed to have a great heritage. A great heritage brings responsibility in the matter of proper discharge of duties; therefore, he cannot avoid fighting.

Bg 2.15



Ya& ih Na VYaQaYaNTYaeTae Pauz& PauzzR>a )
SaMadu"%Sau%& Daqr& Saae_Ma*TaTvaYa k-LPaTae )) 15 ))

ya hi na vyathayanty ete

purua puruarabha

sama-dukha-sukha dhra

so mtatvya kalpate

yamone who; hicertainly; nanever; vyathayantiare distressing; eteall these; puruamto a person; puruarabhais best among men; samaunaltered; dukhadistress; sukhamhappiness; dhrampatient; sahe; amtatvyafor liberation; kalpateis considered eligible.


O best among men [Arjuna], the person who is not disturbed by happiness and distress and is steady in both is certainly eligible for liberation.


Anyone who is steady in his determination for the advanced stage of spiritual realization and can equally tolerate the onslaughts of distress and happiness is certainly a person eligible for liberation. In the varrama institution, the fourth stage of life, namely the renounced order (sannysa) is a painstaking situation. But one who is serious about making his life perfect surely adopts the sannysa order of life in spite of all difficulties. The difficulties usually arise from having to sever family relationships, to give up the connection of wife and children. But if anyone is able to tolerate such difficulties, surely his path to spiritual realization is complete. Similarly, in Arjunas discharge of duties as a katriya, he is advised to persevere, even if it is difficult to fight with his family members or similarly beloved persons. Lord Caitanya took sannysa at the age of twenty-four, and His dependants, young wife as well as old mother, had no one else to look after them. Yet for a higher cause He took sannysa and was steady in the discharge of higher duties. That is the way of achieving liberation from material bondage.

Bg 2.16



NaaSaTaae ivTae >aavae Naa>aavae ivTae SaTa" )
o>aYaaeriPa d*ae_NTaSTvNaYaaeSTatvdiXaRi>a" )) 16 ))

nsato vidyate bhvo

nbhvo vidyate sata

ubhayor api do ntas

tv anayos tattva-daribhi

nanever; asataof the nonexistent; vidyatethere is; bhvaendurance; nanever; abhvachanging quality; vidyatethere is; sataof the eternal; ubhayoof the two; apiverily; daobserved; antaconclusion; tubut; anayoof them; tattvatruth; daribhiby the seers.


Those who are seers of the truth have concluded that of the nonexistent there is no endurance, and of the existent there is no cessation. This seers have concluded by studying the nature of both.


There is no endurance of the changing body. That the body is changing every moment by the actions and reactions of the different cells is admitted by modern medical science; and thus growth and old age are taking place in the body. But the spirit soul exists permanently, remaining the same despite all changes of the body and the mind. That is the difference between matter and spirit. By nature, the body is ever changing, and the soul is eternal. This conclusion is established by all classes of seers of the truth, both impersonalist and personalist. In the Viu Pura it is stated that Viu and His abodes all have self-illuminated spiritual existence. Jyoti viur bhavanni viu. The words existent and nonexistent refer only to spirit and matter. That is the version of all seers of truth.

This is the beginning of the instruction by the Lord to the living entities who are bewildered by the influence of ignorance. Removal of ignorance involves the reestablishment of the eternal relationship between the worshiper and the worshipable and the consequent understanding of the difference between the part and parcel living entities and the Supreme Personality of Godhead. One can understand the nature of the Supreme by thorough study of oneself, the difference between oneself and the Supreme being understood as the relationship between the part and the whole. In the Vednta-stras, as well as in the rmad-Bhgavatam, the Supreme has been accepted as the origin of all emanations. Such emanations are experienced by superior and inferior natural sequences. The living entities belong to the superior nature, as it will be revealed in the Seventh Chapter. Although there is no difference between the energy and the energetic, the energetic is accepted as the Supreme, and energy or nature is accepted as the subordinate. The living entities, therefore, are always subordinate to the Supreme Lord, as in the case of the master and the servant, or the teacher and the taught. Such clear knowledge is impossible to understand under the spell of ignorance, and to drive away such ignorance the Lord teaches the Bhagavad-gt for the enlightenment of all living entities for all time.

Bg 2.17



AivNaaiXa Tau Taii YaeNa SavRiMad& TaTaMa( )
ivNaaXaMaVYaYaSYaaSYa Na k-iTk-TauRMahRiTa )) 17 ))

avini tu tad viddhi

yena sarvam ida tatam

vinam avyayasysya

na kacit kartum arhati

aviniimperishable; tubut; tatthat; viddhiknow it; yenaby whom; sarvamall of the body; idamthis; tatamwidespread; vinamdestruction; avyayasyaof the imperishable; asyaof it; na kacitno one; kartumto do; arhatiable.


Know that which pervades the entire body is indestructible. No one is able to destroy the imperishable soul.


This verse more clearly explains the real nature of the soul, which is spread all over the body. Anyone can understand what is spread all over the body: it is consciousness. Everyone is conscious of the pains and pleasures of the body in part or as a whole. This spreading of consciousness is limited within ones own body. The pains and pleasures of one body are unknown to another. Therefore, each and every body is the embodiment of an individual soul, and the symptom of the souls presence is perceived as individual consciousness. This soul is described as one ten-thousandth part of the upper portion of the hair point in size. The vetvatara Upaniad confirms this:

blgra-ata-bhgasya atadh kalpitasya ca
bhgo jva sa vijeya sa cnantyya kalpate.

When the upper point of a hair is divided into one hundred parts and again each of such parts is further divided into one hundred parts, each such part is the measurement of the dimension of the spirit soul. (Svet. 5.9) Similarly, in the Bhgavatam the same version is stated:

kegra-ata-bhgasya ata sdtmaka
jva skma-svarupo ya sakhytto hi cit-kaa

There are innumerable particles of spiritual atoms, which are measured as one ten-thousandth of the upper portion of the hair.

Therefore, the individual particle of spirit soul is a spiritual atom smaller than the material atoms, and such atoms are innumerable. This very small spiritual spark is the basic principle of the material body, and the influence of such a spiritual spark is spread all over the body as the influence of the active principle of some medicine spreads throughout the body. This current of the spirit soul is felt all over the body as consciousness, and that is the proof of the presence of the soul. Any layman can understand that the material body minus consciousness is a dead body, and this consciousness cannot be revived in the body by any means of material administration. Therefore, consciousness is not due to any amount of material combination, but to the spirit soul. In the Muaka Upaniad the measurement of the atomic spirit soul is further explained:

eo urtm cetas veditavyo
yasmin pra pacadh savivea
prai citta sarvam otam prajn
yasmin viuddhe vibhavaty ea tm.

The soul is atomic in size and can be perceived by perfect intelligence. This atomic soul is floating in the five kinds of air [pra, apna, vyna, samna and udna], is situated within the heart, and spreads its influence all over the body of the embodied living entities. When the soul is purified from the contamination of the five kinds of material air, its spiritual influence is exhibited. (Mu. 3.1.9)

The haha-yoga system is meant for controlling the five kinds of air encircling the pure soul by different kinds of sitting posturesnot for any material profit, but for liberation of the minute soul from the entanglement of the material atmosphere.

So the constitution of the atomic soul is admitted in all Vedic literatures, and it is also actually felt in the practical experience of any sane man. Only the insane man can think of this atomic soul as all-pervading Viu-tattva.

The influence of the atomic soul can be spread all over a particular body. According to the Muaka Upaniad, this atomic soul is situated in the heart of every living entity, and because the measurement of the atomic soul is beyond the power of appreciation of the material scientists, some of them assert foolishly that there is no soul. The individual atomic soul is definitely there in the heart along with the Supersoul, and thus all the energies of bodily movement are emanating from this part of the body. The corpuscles which carry the oxygen from the lungs gather energy from the soul. When the soul passes away from this position, activity of the blood, generating fusion, ceases. Medical science accepts the importance of the red corpuscles, but it cannot ascertain that the source of the energy is the soul. Medical science, however, does admit that the heart is the seat of all energies of the body.

Such atomic particles of the spirit whole are compared to the sunshine molecules. In the sunshine there are innumerable radiant molecules. Similarly, the fragmental parts of the Supreme Lord are atomic sparks of the rays of the Supreme Lord, called by the name prabh or superior energy. Neither Vedic knowledge nor modern science denies the existence of the spirit soul in the body, and the science of the soul is explicitly described in the Bhagavad-gt by the Personality of Godhead Himself.

Bg 2.18



ANTavNTa wMae deha iNaTYaSYaae-a" Xarqir<a" )
ANaaiXaNaae_Pa[MaeYaSYa TaSMaauDYaSv >aarTa )) 18 ))

antavanta ime deh

nityasyokt arria

anino prameyasya

tasmd yudhyasva bhrata

antavantaperishable; imeall these; dehmaterial bodies; nityasyaeternal in existence; uktit is so said; sarriathe embodied souls; aninanever to be destroyed; aprameyasyaimmeasurable; tasmttherefore; yudhyasvafight; bhrataO descendant of Bharata.


Only the material body of the indestructible, immeasurable and eternal living entity is subject to destruction; therefore, fight, O descendant of Bharata.


The material body is perishable by nature. It may perish immediately, or it may do so after a hundred years. It is a question of time only. There is no chance of maintaining it indefinitely. But the spirit soul is so minute that it cannot even be seen by an enemy, to say nothing of being killed. As mentioned in the previous verse, it is so small that no one can have any idea how to measure its dimension. So from both viewpoints there is no cause of lamentation because the living entity can neither be killed as he is, nor can the material body, which cannot be saved for any length of time, be permanently protected. The minute particle of the whole spirit acquires this material body according to his work, and therefore observance of religious principles should be utilized. In the Vednta-stras the living entity is qualified as light because he is part and parcel of the supreme light. As sunlight maintains the entire universe, so the light of the soul maintains this material body. As soon as the spirit soul is out of this material body, the body begins to decompose; therefore it is the spirit soul which maintains this body. The body itself is unimportant. Arjuna was advised to fight and sacrifice the material body for the cause of religion.

Bg 2.19



Ya WNa& veita hNTaar& YaENa& MaNYaTae hTaMa( )
o>aaE TaaE Na ivJaaNaqTaae NaaYa& hiNTa Na hNYaTae )) 19 ))

ya ena vetti hantra

ya caina manyate hatam

ubhau tau na vijnto

nya hanti na hanyate

yaanyone; enamthis; vettiknows; hantramthe killer; yaanyone; caalso; enamthis; manyatethinks; hatamkilled; ubhauboth of them; tauthey; nanever; vijntain knowledge; nanever; ayamthis; hantikills; nanor; hanyatebe killed.


He who thinks that the living entity is the slayer or that he is slain, does not understand. One who is in knowledge knows that the self slays not nor is slain.


When an embodied living entity is hurt by fatal weapons, it is to be known that the living entity within the body is not killed. The spirit soul is so small that it is impossible to kill him by any material weapon, as is evident from the previous verses. Nor is the living entity killable because of his spiritual constitution. What is killed, or is supposed to be killed, is the body only. This, however, does not at all encourage killing of the body. The Vedic injunction is, mhisyt sarva-bhtni never commit violence to anyone. Nor does understanding that the living entity is not killed encourage animal slaughter. Killing the body of anyone without authority is abominable and is punishable by the law of the state as well as by the law of the Lord. Arjuna, however, is being engaged in killing for the principle of religion, and not whimsically.

Bg 2.20



Na JaaYaTae iMa]YaTae va k-daic
aYa& >aUTva >aivTaa va Na >aUYa" )
AJaae iNaTYa" XaaTaae_Ya& Paura<aae
Na hNYaTae hNYaMaaNae Xarqre )) 20 ))

na jyate mriyate v kadcin

nya bhtv bhavit v na bhya

ajo nitya vato ya puro

na hanyate hanyamne arre

nanever; jyatetakes birth; mriyatenever dies; veither; kadcitat any time (past, present or future); nanever; ayamthis; bhtvcame into being; bhavitwill come to be; vor; nanot; bhyaor has come to be; ajaunborn; nityaeternal; vatapermanent; ayamthis; purathe oldest; nanever; hanyateis killed; hanyamnebeing killed; arreby the body.


For the soul there is never birth nor death. Nor, having once been, does he ever cease to be. He is unborn, eternal, ever-existing, undying and primeval. He is not slain when the body is slain.


Qualitatively, the small atomic fragmental part of the Supreme Spirit is one with the Supreme. He undergoes no changes like the body. Sometimes the soul is called the steady, or kastha. The body is subject to six kinds of transformations. It takes its birth in the womb of the mothers body, remains for some time, grows, produces some effects, gradually dwindles, and at last vanishes into oblivion. The soul, however, does not go through such changes. The soul is not born, but, because he takes on a material body, the body takes its birth. The soul does not take birth there, and the soul does not die. Anything which has birth also has death. And because the soul has no birth, he therefore has no past, present or future. He is eternal, ever-existing, and primevalthat is, there is no trace in history of his coming into being. Under the impression of the body, we seek the history of birth, etc., of the soul. The soul does not at any time become old, as the body does. The so-called old man, therefore, feels himself to be in the same spirit as in his childhood or youth. The changes of the body do not affect the soul. The soul does not deteriorate like a tree, nor anything material. The soul has no by-product either. The by-products of the body, namely children, are also different individual souls; and, owing to the body, they appear as children of a particular man. The body develops because of the souls presence, but the soul has neither offshoots nor change. Therefore, the soul is free from the six changes of the body.

In the Kaha Upaniad also we find a similar passage which reads:

na jyate mriyate v vipacin
nya kutacin na vibhva kacit
ajo nitya vato ya puro
na hanyate hanyamne arre.

(Kaha 1.2.18)

The meaning and purport of this verse is the same as in the Bhagavad-gt, but here in this verse there is one special word, vipacit, which means learned or with knowledge.

The soul is full of knowledge, or full always with consciousness. Therefore, consciousness is the symptom of the soul. Even if one does not find the soul within the heart, where he is situated, one can still understand the presence of the soul simply by the presence of consciousness. Sometimes we do not find the sun in the sky owing to clouds, or for some other reason, but the light of the sun is always there, and we are convinced that it is therefore daytime. As soon as there is a little light in the sky early in the morning, we can understand that the sun is in the sky. Similarly, since there is some consciousness in all bodieswhether man or animalwe can understand the presence of the soul. This consciousness of the soul is, however, different from the consciousness of the Supreme because the supreme consciousness is all-knowledgepast, present and future. The consciousness of the individual soul is prone to be forgetful. When he is forgetful of his real nature, he obtains education and enlightenment from the superior lessons of Ka. But Ka is not like the forgetful soul. If so, Kas teachings of Bhagavad-gt would be useless.

There are two kinds of soulsnamely the minute particle soul (au-tm) and the Supersoul (the vibhu-tm). This is also confirmed in the Kaha Upaniad in this way:

aor ayn mahato mahyn
tmsya jantor nihito guhym
tam akratu payati vta-oko
dhtu prasdn mahimnam tmana

(Kaha 1.2.20)

Both the Supersoul [Paramtm] and the atomic soul [jvtm] are situated on the same tree of the body within the same heart of the living being, and only one who has become free from all material desires as well as lamentations can, by the grace of the Supreme, understand the glories of the soul. Ka is the fountainhead of the Supersoul also, as it will be disclosed in the following chapters, and Arjuna is the atomic soul, forgetful of his real nature; therefore he requires to be enlightened by Ka, or by His bona fide representative (the spiritual master).

Bg 2.21



vedaivNaaiXaNa& iNaTYa& Ya WNaMaJaMaVYaYaMa( )
k-Qa& Sa Pauz" PaaQaR k&- gaaTaYaiTa hiNTa k-Ma( )) 21 ))

vedvinina nitya

ya enam ajam avyayam

katha sa purua prtha

ka ghtayati hanti kam

vedain knowledge; avininamindestructible; nityamalways; yaone who; enamthis (soul); ajamunborn; avyayamimmutable; kathamhow; sahe; puruaperson; prthaO Prtha (Arjuna); kamwhom; ghtayatihurts; hantikills; kamwhom.


O Prtha, how can a person who knows that the soul is indestructible, unborn, eternal and immutable, kill anyone or cause anyone to kill?


Everything has its proper utility, and a man who is situated in complete knowledge knows how and where to apply a thing for its proper utility. Similarly, violence also has its utility, and how to apply violence rests with the person in knowledge. Although the justice of the peace awards capital punishment to a person condemned for murder, the justice of the peace cannot be blamed because he orders violence to another person according to the codes of justice. In Manu-sahit, the lawbook for mankind, it is supported that a murderer should be condemned to death so that in his next life he will not have to suffer for the great sin he has committed. Therefore, the kings punishment of hanging a murderer is actually beneficial. Similarly, when Ka orders fighting, it must be concluded that violence is for supreme justice, and, as such, Arjuna should follow the instruction, knowing well that such violence, committed in the act of fighting for Ka, is not violence at all because, at any rate, the man, or rather the soul, cannot be killed; so for the administration of justice, so-called violence is permitted. A surgical operation is not meant to kill the patient, but to cure him. Therefore the fighting to be executed by Arjuna at the instruction of Ka is with full knowledge, so there is no possibility of sinful reaction.

Bg 2.22



vaSaa&iSa Jaq<aaRiNa YaQaa ivhaYa
NavaiNa Ga*aiTa Narae_Parai<a )
TaQaa Xarqrai<a ivhaYa Jaq<aaR
NYaNYaaiNa Sa&YaaiTa NavaiNa dehq )) 22 ))

vssi jrni yath vihya

navni ghti naro pari

tath arri vihya jrny

anyni sayti navni deh

vssigarments; jrniold and worn out; yathas it is; vihyagiving up; navninew garments; ghtidoes accept; naraa man; apariother; tathin the same way; arribodies; vihyagiving up; jrniold and useless; anynidifferent; saytiverily accepts; navninew sets; dehthe embodied.


As a person puts on new garments, giving up old ones, similarly, the soul accepts new material bodies, giving up the old and useless ones.


Change of body by the atomic individual soul is an accepted fact. Even some of the modern scientists who do not believe in the existence of the soul, but at the same time cannot explain the source of energy from the heart, have to accept continuous changes of body which appear from childhood to boyhood and from boyhood to youth and again from youth to old age. From old age, the change is transferred to another body. This has already been explained in the previous verse.

Transference of the atomic individual soul to another body is made possible by the grace of the Supersoul.The Supersoul fulfills the desire of the atomic soul as one friend fulfills the desire of another. The Vedas, like the Muaka Upaniad, as well as the vetvatara Upanisad, compare the soul and the Supersoul to two friendly birds sitting on the same tree. One of the birds (the individual atomic soul) is eating the fruit of the tree, and the other bird (Ka) is simply watching His friend. Of these two birdsalthough they are the same in qualityone is captivated by the fruits of the material tree, while the other is simply witnessing the activities of His friend. Ka is the witnessing bird, and Arjuna is the eating bird. Although they are friends, one is still the master and the other is the servant. Forgetfulness of this relationship by the atomic soul is the cause of ones changing his position from one tree to another or from one body to another. The jva soul is struggling very hard on the tree of the material body, but as soon as he agrees to accept the other bird as the supreme spiritual masteras Arjuna agreed to do by voluntary surrender unto Ka for instructionthe subordinate bird immediately becomes free from all lamentations. Both the Kaha Upaniad and vetvatara Upaniad confirm this:

samne vke puruo nimagno
nay ocati muhyamna
jua yad payaty anyam am asya
mahimnam iti vta-oka

Although the two birds are in the same tree, the eating bird is fully engrossed with anxiety and moroseness as the enjoyer of the fruits of the tree. But if in some way or other he turns his face to his friend who is the Lord and knows His gloriesat once the suffering bird becomes free from all anxieties. Arjuna has now turned his face towards his eternal friend, Ka, and is understanding the Bhagavad-gt from Him. And thus, hearing from Ka, he can understand the supreme glories of the Lord and be free from lamentation.

Arjuna is advised herewith by the Lord not to lament for the bodily change of his old grandfather and his teacher. He should rather be happy to kill their bodies in the righteous fight so that they may be cleansed at once of all reactions from various bodily activities. One who lays down his life on the sacrificial altar, or in the proper battlefield, is at once cleansed of bodily reactions and promoted to a higher status of life. So there was no cause for Arjunas lamentation.

Bg 2.23



NaENa& i^NdiNTa Xaai<a NaENa& dhiTa Paavk-" )
Na cENa& e-dYaNTYaaPaae Na XaaezYaiTa MaaTa" )) 23 ))

naina chindanti astri

naina dahati pvaka

na caina kledayanty po

na oayati mruta

nanever; enamunto this soul; chindantican cut into pieces; astri all weapons; nanever; enamunto this soul; dahatiburns; pvakafire; nanever; caalso; enamunto this soul; kledayantimoistens; pa water; nanever; oayatidries; mrutawind.


The soul can never be cut into pieces by any weapon, nor can he be burned by fire, nor moistened by water, nor withered by the wind.


All kinds of weapons, swords, flames, rains, tornadoes, etc., are unable to kill the spirit soul. It appears that there were many kinds of weapons made of earth, water, air, ether, etc., in addition to the modern weapons of fire. Even the nuclear weapons of the modern age are classified as fire weapons, but formerly there were other weapons made of all different types of material elements. Firearms were counteracted by water weapons, which are now unknown to modern science. Nor do modern scientists have knowledge of tornado weapons. Nonetheless, the soul can never be cut into pieces, nor annihilated by any number of weapons, regardless of scientific devices.

Nor was it ever possible to cut the individual souls from the original Soul. The Myvd, however, cannot describe how the individual soul evolved from ignorance and consequently became covered by illusory energy. Because they are atomic individual souls (santana) eternally, they are prone to be covered by the illusory energy, and thus they become separated from the association of the Supreme Lord, just as the sparks of the fire, although one in quality with the fire, are prone to be extinguished when out of the fire. In the Varha Pura, the living entities are described as separated parts and parcels of the Supreme. They are eternally so, according to the Bhagavad-gt also. So, even after being liberated from illusion, the living entity remains a separate identity, as is evident from the teachings of the Lord to Arjuna. Arjuna became liberated by the knowledge received from Ka, but he never became one with Ka.

Bg 2.24



AC^eae_YaMadaae_YaMae-ae_XaaeZYa Wv c )
iNaTYa" SavRGaTa" SQaa<aurcl/ae_Ya& SaNaaTaNa" )) 24 ))

acchedyo yam adhyo yam

akledyo oya eva ca

nitya sarva-gata sthur

acalo ya santana

acchedyaunbreakable; ayamthis soul; adhyacannot be burned; ayamthis soul; akledyainsoluble; aoyacannot be dried; evacertainly; caand; nityaeverlasting; sarva-gataall-pervading; sthuunchangeable; acalaimmovable; ayamthis soul; santanaeternally the same.


This individual soul is unbreakable and insoluble, and can be neither burned nor dried. He is everlasting, all-pervading, unchangeable, immovable and eternally the same.


All these qualifications of the atomic soul definitely prove that the individual soul is eternally the atomic particle of the spirit whole, and he remains the same atom eternally, without change. The theory of monism is very difficult to apply in this case, because the individual soul is never expected to become one homogeneously. After liberation from material contamination, the atomic soul may prefer to remain as a spiritual spark in the effulgent rays of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, but the intelligent souls enter into the spiritual planets to associate with the Personality of Godhead.

The word sarva-gata (all-pervading) is significant because there is no doubt that living entities are all over Gods creation. They live on the land, in the water, in the air, within the earth and even within fire. The belief that they are sterilized in fire is not acceptable, because it is clearly stated here that the soul cannot be burned by fire. Therefore, there is no doubt that there are living entities also in the sun planet with suitable bodies to live there. If the sun globe is uninhabited, then the word sarva-gataliving everywherebecomes meaningless.

Bg 2.25



AVYa-ae_YaMaicNTYaae_YaMaivk-aYaaeR_YaMauCYaTae )
TaSMaadev& ividTvENa& NaaNauXaaeicTauMahRiSa )) 25 ))

avyakto yam acintyo yam

avikryo yam ucyate

tasmd eva viditvaina

nnuocitum arhasi

avyaktainvisible; ayamthis soul; acintyainconceivable; ayamthis soul; avikryaunchangeable; ayamthis soul; ucyateis said; tasmttherefore; evamlike this; viditvknowing it well; enamthis soul; nado not; anuocitummay lament over; arhasiyou deserve.


It is said that the soul is invisible, inconceivable, immutable, and unchangeable. Knowing this, you should not grieve for the body.


As described previously, the magnitude of the soul is so small for our material calculation that he cannot be seen even by the most powerful microscope; therefore, he is invisible. As far as the souls existence is concerned, no one can establish his existence experimentally beyond the proof of ruti or Vedic wisdom. We have to accept this truth, because there is no other source of understanding the existence of the soul, although it is a fact by perception. There are many things we have to accept solely on grounds of superior authority. No one can deny the existence of his father, based upon the authority of his mother. There is no other source of understanding the identity of the father except by the authority of the mother. Similarly, there is no other source of understanding the soul except by studying the Vedas. In other words, the soul is inconceivable by human experimental knowledge. The soul is consciousness and consciousthat also is the statement of the Vedas, and we have to accept that. Unlike the bodily changes, there is no change in the soul. As eternally unchangeable, the soul remains atomic in comparison to the infinite Supreme Soul. The Supreme Soul is infinite, and the atomic soul is infinitesimal. Therefore, the infinitesimal soul, being unchangeable, can never become equal to the infinite soul, or the Supreme Personality of Godhead. This concept is repeated in the Vedas in different ways just to confirm the stability of the conception of the soul. Repetition of something is necessary in order that we understand the matter thoroughly without error.

Bg 2.26



AQa cENa& iNaTYaJaaTa& iNaTYa& va MaNYaSae Ma*TaMa( )
TaQaaiPa Tv& Mahabahae NaENa& XaaeicTauMahRiSa )) 26 ))

atha caina nitya-jta

nitya v manyase mtam

tathpi tva mah-bho

naina ocitum arhasi

athaif, however; caalso; enamthis soul; nitya-jtamalways born; nityamforever; veither; manyaseso think; mtamdead; tathpistill; tvamyou; mah-bhoO mighty-armed one; nanever; enamabout the soul; ocitumto lament; arhasideserve.


If, however, you think that the soul is perpetually born and always dies, still you have no reason to lament, O mighty-armed.


There is always a class of philosophers, almost akin to the Buddhists, who do not believe in the separate existence of the soul beyond the body. When Lord Ka spoke the Bhagavad-gt, it appears that such philosophers existed, and they were known as the Lokyatikas and Vaibhikas. These philosophers maintained that life symptoms, or soul, takes place at a certain mature condition of material combination. The modern material scientist and materialist philosophers also think similarly. According to them, the body is a combination of physical elements, and at a certain stage the life symptoms develop by interaction of the physical and chemical elements. The science of anthropology is based on this philosophy. Currently, many pseudo-religionsnow becoming fashionable in Americaare also adhering to this philosophy, as well as to the nihilistic nondevotional Buddhist sects.

Even if Arjuna did not believe in the existence of the soulas in the Vaibhika philosophythere would still have been no cause for lamentation. No one laments the loss of a certain bulk of chemicals and stops discharging his prescribed duty. On the other hand, in modern science and scientific warfare, so many tons of chemicals are wasted for achieving victory over the enemy. According to the Vaibhika philosophy, the so-called soul or tm vanishes along with the deterioration of the body. So, in any case, whether Arjuna accepted the Vedic conclusion that there is an atomic soul, or whether he did not believe in the existence of the soul, he had no reason to lament. According to this theory, since there are so many living entities generating out of matter every moment, and so many of them are being vanquished every moment, there is no need to grieve for such an incidence. However, since he was not risking rebirth of the soul, Arjuna had no reason to be afraid of being affected with sinful reactions due to his killing his grandfather and teacher. But at the same time, Ka sarcastically addressed Arjuna as mah-bhu, mighty-armed, because He, at least, did not accept the theory of the Vaibhikas, which leaves aside the Vedic wisdom. As a katriya, Arjuna belonged to the Vedic culture, and it behooved him to continue to follow its principles.

Bg 2.27



JaaTaSYa ih Da]uvae Ma*TYauDa]uRv& JaNMa Ma*TaSYa c )
TaSMaadPairhaYaeR_QaeR Na Tv& XaaeicTauMahRiSa )) 27 ))

jtasya hi dhruvo mtyur

dhruva janma mtasya ca

tasmd aparihrye rthe

na tva ocitum arhasi

jtasyaone who has taken his birth; hicertainly; dhruvaa fact; mtyudeath; dhruvamit is also a fact; janmabirth; mtasyaof the dead; caalso; tasmttherefore; aparihryefor that which is unavoidable; arthein the matter of; nado not; tvamyou; ocitumto lament; arhasideserve.


For one who has taken his birth, death is certain; and for one who is dead, birth is certain. Therefore, in the unavoidable discharge of your duty, you should not lament.


One has to take birth according to ones activities of life. And, after finishing one term of activities, one has to die to take birth for the next. In this way the cycle of birth and death is revolving, one after the other without liberation. This cycle of birth and death does not, however, support unnecessary murder, slaughter and war. But at the same time, violence and war are inevitable factors in human society for keeping law and order.

The Battle of Kuruketra, being the will of the Supreme, was an inevitable event, and to fight for the right cause is the duty of a katriya. Why should he be afraid of or aggrieved at the death of his relatives since he was discharging his proper duty? He did not deserve to break the law, thereby becoming subjected to the reactions of sinful acts, of which he was so afraid. By avoiding the discharge of his proper duty, he would not be able to stop the death of his relatives, and he would be degraded due to his selection of the wrong path of action.

Bg 2.28



AVYa-adqiNa >aUTaaiNa VYa-MaDYaaiNa >aarTa )
AVYa-iNaDaNaaNYaev Ta}a k-a PairdevNaa )) 28 ))

avyaktdni bhtni

vyakta-madhyni bhrata

avyakta-nidhanny eva

tatra k paridevan

avyaktdniin the beginning unmanifested; bhtniall that are created; vyaktamanifested; madhyniin the middle; bhrataO descendant of Bharata; avyaktanonmanifested; nidhanniall that are vanquished; evait is all like that; tatratherefore; kwhat; paridevanlamentation.


All created beings are unmanifest in their beginning, manifest in their interim state, and unmanifest again when they are annihilated. So what need is there for lamentation?


Accepting that there are two classes of philosophers, one believing in the existence of soul and the other not believing in the existence of the soul, there is no cause for lamentation in either case. Nonbelievers in the existence of the soul are called atheists by followers of Vedic wisdom. Yet even if, for arguments sake, we accept the atheistic theory, there is still no cause for lamentation. Apart from the separate existence of the soul, the material elements remain unmanifested before creation. From this subtle state of unmanifestation comes manifestation, just as from ether, air is generated; from air, fire is generated; from fire, water is generated; and from water, earth becomes manifested. From the earth, many varieties of manifestations take place. Take, for example, a big skyscraper manifested from the earth. When it is dismantled, the manifestation becomes again unmanifested and remains as atoms in the ultimate stage. The law of conservation of energy remains, but in course of time things are manifested and unmanifestedthat is the difference. Then what cause is there for lamentation either in the stage of manifestation or unmanifestation? Somehow or other, even in the unmanifested stage, things are not lost. Both at the beginning and at the end, all elements remain unmanifested, and only in the middle are they manifested, and this does not make any real material difference.

And if we accept the Vedic conclusion as stated in the Bhagavad-gt (antavanta ime deh) that these material bodies are perishable in due course of time (nityasyokt arria) but that soul is eternal, then we must remember always that the body is like a dress; therefore why lament the changing of a dress? The material body has no factual existence in relation to the eternal soul. It is something like a dream. In a dream we may think of flying in the sky, or sitting on a chariot as a king, but when we wake up we can see that we are neither in the sky nor seated on the chariot. The Vedic wisdom encourages self-realization on the basis of the nonexistence of the material body. Therefore, in either case, whether one believes in the existence of the soul, or one does not believe in the existence of the soul, there is no cause for lamentation for loss of the body.

Bg 2.29



AaYaRvTPaXYaiTa k-ideNa
MaaYaRvdiTa TaQaEv caNYa" )
AaYaRvENaMaNYa" *<aaeiTa
[uTvaPYaeNa& ved Na cEv k-iTa( )) 29 ))

carya-vat payati kacid enam

carya-vad vadati tathaiva cnya

carya-vac cainam anya oti

rutvpy ena veda na caiva kacit

caryavatamazing; payatisee; kacitsome; enamthis soul; caryavatamazing; vadatispeak; taththere; evacertainly; caalso; anyaothers; caryavatsimilarly amazing; caalso; enamthis soul; anyaothers; otihear; rutvhaving heard; apieven; enamthis soul; vedado know; nanever; caand; evacertainly; kacitanyone.


Some look on the soul as amazing, some describe him as amazing, and some hear of him as amazing, while others, even after hearing about him, cannot understand him at all.


Since Gtopaniad is largely based on the principles of the Upaniads, it is not surprising to also find this passage in the Kaha Upaniad.

ravaypi bahubhir yo na labhya
vanto pi bahavo ya na vidyu
caryo vakt kualo sya labdh
caryo jt kualnuia.

The fact that the atomic soul is within the body of a gigantic animal, in the body of a gigantic banyan tree, and also in the microbic germs, millions and billions of which occupy only an inch of space, is certainly very amazing. Men with a poor fund of knowledge and men who are not austere cannot understand the wonders of the individual atomic spark of spirit, even though it is explained by the greatest authority of knowledge, who imparted lessons even to Brahm, the first living being in the universe. Owing to a gross material conception of things, most men in this age cannot imagine how such a small particle can become both so great and so small. So men look at the soul proper as wonderful either by constitution or by description. Illusioned by the material energy, people are so engrossed in subject matter for sense gratification that they have very little time to understand the question of self-understanding, even though it is a fact that without this self-understanding all activities result in ultimate defeat in the struggle for existence. Perhaps one has no idea that one must think of the soul, and also make a solution of the material miseries.

Some people who are inclined to hear about the soul may be attending lectures, in good association, but sometimes, owing to ignorance, they are misguided by acceptance of the Supersoul and the atomic soul as one without distinction of magnitude. It is very difficult to find a man who perfectly understands the position of the soul, the Supersoul, the atomic soul, their respective functions, relationships and all other major and minor details. And it is still more difficult to find a man who has actually derived full benefit from knowledge of the soul, and who is able to describe the position of the soul in different aspects. But if, somehow or other, one is able to understand the subject matter of the soul, then ones life is successful. The easiest process for understanding the subject matter of self, however, is to accept the statements of the Bhagavad-gt spoken by the greatest authority, Lord Ka, without being deviated by other theories. But it also requires a great deal of penance and sacrifice, either in this life or in the previous ones, before one is able to accept Ka as the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Ka can, however, be known as such by the causeless mercy of the pure devotee and by no other way.

Bg 2.30



dehq iNaTYaMavDYaae_Ya& dehe SavRSYa >aarTa )
TaSMaaTSavaRi<a >aUTaaiNa Na Tv& XaaeicTauMahRiSa )) 30 ))

deh nityam avadhyo ya

dehe sarvasya bhrata

tasmt sarvi bhtni

na tva ocitum arhasi

dehthe owner of the material body; nityameternally; avadhyacannot be killed; ayamthis soul; dehein the body; sarvasyaof everyone; bhrataO descendant of Bharata; tasmttherefore; sarviall; bhtniliving entities (that are born); nanever; tvamyourself; ocitum to lament; arhasi deserve.


O descendant of Bharata, he who dwells in the body is eternal and can never be slain. Therefore you need not grieve for any creature.


The Lord now concludes the chapter of instruction on the immutable spirit soul. In describing the immortal soul in various ways, Lord Ka establishes that the soul is immortal and the body is temporary. Therefore Arjuna as a katriya should not abandon his duty out of fear that his grandfather and teacherBhma and Droawill die in the battle. On the authority of r Ka, one has to believe that there is a soul different from the material body, not that there is no such thing as soul, or that living symptoms develop at a certain stage of material maturity resulting from the interaction of chemicals. Though the soul is immortal, violence is not encouraged, but at the time of war it is not discouraged when there is actual need for it. That need must be justified in terms of the sanction of the Lord, and not capriciously.

Bg 2.31



SvDaMaRMaiPa cave+Ya Na ivk-iMPaTauMahRiSa )
DaMYaaRi YauaC^\eYaae_NYaT+ai}aYaSYa Na ivTae )) 31 ))

sva-dharmam api cvekya

na vikampitum arhasi

dharmyd dhi yuddhc chreyo nyat

katriyasya na vidyate

svadharmamones own religious principles; apialso; caindeed; avekyaconsidering; nanever; vikampitumto hesitate; arhasiyou deserve; dharmytfrom religious principles; hiindeed; yuddhtof fighting; reyabetter engagements; anyatanything else; katriyasyaof the katriya; nadoes not; vidyateexist.


Considering your specific duty as a katriya, you should know that there is no better engagement for you than fighting on religious principles; and so there is no need for hesitation.


Out of the four orders of social administration, the second order, for the matter of good administration, is called katriya. Kat means hurt. One who gives protection from harm is called katriya (trayateto give protection). The katriyas are trained for killing in the forest. A katriya would go into the forest and challenge a tiger face to face and fight with the tiger with his sword. When the tiger was killed, it would be offered the royal order of cremation. This system is being followed even up to the present day by the katriya kings of Jaipur state. The katriyas are specially trained for challenging and killing because religious violence is sometimes a necessary factor. Therefore, katriyas are never meant for accepting directly the order of sannysa or renunciation. Nonviolence in politics may be a diplomacy, but it is never a factor or principle. In the religious law books it is stated:

haveu mitho nyonya jighsanto mahkita
yuddhamn para akty svarga ynty aparmukh
yajeu paavo brahman hanyante satata dvijai
saskt kila mantrai ca te pi svargam avpnuvan.

In the battlefield, a king or katriya, while fighting another king envious of him, is eligible for achieving heavenly planets after death, as the brhmaas also attain the heavenly planets by sacrificing animals in the sacrificial fire. Therefore, killing on the battle on the religious principle and the killing of animals in the sacrificial fire are not at all considered to be acts of violence, because everyone is benefitted by the religious principles involved. The animal sacrificed gets a human life immediately without undergoing the gradual evolutionary process from one form to another, and the katriyas killed in the battlefield also attain the heavenly planets as do the brhmaas who attain them by offering sacrifice.

There are two kinds of svadharmas, specific duties. As long as one is not liberated, one has to perform the duties of that particular body in accordance with religious principles in order to achieve liberation. When one is liberated, ones svadharmaspecific dutybecomes spiritual and is not in the material bodily concept. In the bodily conception of life there are specific duties for the brhmaas and katriyas respectively, and such duties are unavoidable. Svadharma is ordained by the Lord, and this will be clarified in the Fourth Chapter. On the bodily plane svadharma is called varrama-dharma, or mans steppingstone for spiritual understanding. Human civilization begins from the stage of varrama-dharma, or specific duties in terms of the specific modes of nature of the body obtained. Discharging ones specific duty in any field of action in accordance with varrama-dharma serves to elevate one to a higher status of life.

Bg 2.32



Yad*C^Yaa caePaPa& SvGaRarMaPaav*TaMa( )
Saui%Na" +ai}aYaa" PaaQaR l/>aNTae YauMaqd*XaMa( )) 32 ))

yadcchay copapanna

svarga-dvram apvtam

sukhina katriy prtha

labhante yuddham dam

yadcchayby its own accord; caalso; upapannamarrived at; svargaheavenly planet; dvramdoor; apvtamwide open; sukhinavery happy; katriythe members of the royal order; prthaO son of Pth; labhantedo achieve; yuddhamwar; damlike this.


O Prtha, happy are the katriyas to whom such fighting opportunities come unsought, opening for them the doors of the heavenly planets.


As supreme teacher of the world, Lord Ka condemns the attitude of Arjuna who said, I do not find any good in this fighting. It will cause perpetual habitation in hell. Such statements by Arjuna were due to ignorance only. He wanted to become nonviolent in the discharge of his specific duty. For a katriya to be in the battlefield and to become nonviolent is the philosophy of fools. In the Parara-smti or religious codes made by Parara, the great sage and father of Vysadeva, it is stated:

katriyo hi praj rakan astra-pi pradaayan
nirjitya parasainydi kiti dharmea playet.

The katriyas duty is to protect the citizens from all kinds of difficulties, and for that reason he has to apply violence in suitable cases for law and order. Therefore he has to conquer the soldiers of inimical kings, and thus, with religious principles, he should rule over the world.

Considering all aspects, Arjuna had no reason to refrain from fighting. If he should conquer his enemies, he would enjoy the kingdom; and if he should die in the battle, he would be elevated to the heavenly planets whose doors were wide open to him. Fighting would be for his benefit in either case.

Bg 2.33



AQa cetviMaMa& DaMYa| SaaMa& Na k-irZYaiSa )
TaTa" SvDaMa| k-IiTa| c ihTva PaaPaMavaPSYaiSa )) 33 ))

atha cet tvam ima dharmya

sagrma na kariyasi

tata sva-dharma krti ca

hitv ppam avpsyasi

athatherefore; cetif; tvamyou; imamthis; dharmyamreligious duty; sagrmamfighting; nado not; kariyasiperform; tatathen; svadharmamyour religious duty; krtim-reputation; caalso; hitvlosing; ppamsinful reaction; avpsyasido gain.


If, however, you do not fight this religious war, then you will certainly incur sins for neglecting your duties and thus lose your reputation as a fighter.


Arjuna was a famous fighter, and he attained fame by fighting many great demigods, including even Lord iva. After fighting and defeating Lord iva in the dress of a hunter, Arjuna pleased the Lord and received as a reward a weapon called pupata-astra. Everyone knew that he was a great warrior. Even Drocrya gave him benediction and awarded him the special weapon by which he could kill even his teacher. So he was credited with so many military certificates from many authorities, including his adopted father Indra, the heavenly king. But if he abandoned the battle, he would not only neglect his specific duty as a katriya, but he would lose all his fame and good name and thus prepare his royal road to hell. In other words, he would go to hell, not by fighting, but by withdrawing from battle.

Bg 2.34



Ak-IiTa| caiPa >aUTaaiNa k-QaiYaZYaiNTa Tae_VYaYaaMa( )
SaM>aaivTaSYa cak-IiTaRMaRr<aadiTairCYaTae )) 34 ))

akrti cpi bhtni

kathayiyanti te vyaym

sambhvitasya ckrtir

marad atiricyate

akrtiminfamy; caalso; apiover and above; bhtniall people; kathayiyantiwill speak; teof you; avyaymforever; sambhvitasyafor a respectable man; caalso; akrtiill fame; maratthan death; atiricyatebecomes more than.


People will always speak of your infamy, and for one who has been honored, dishonor is worse than death.


Both as friend and philosopher to Arjuna, Lord Ka now gives His final judgement regarding Arjunas refusal to fight. The Lord says, Arjuna, if you leave the battlefield, people will call you a coward even before your actual flight. And if you think that people may call you bad names but that you will save your life by fleeing the battlefield, then My advice is that youd do better to die in the battle. For a respectable man like you, ill fame is worse than death. So, you should not flee for fear of your life; better to die in the battle. That will save you from the ill fame of misusing My friendship and from losing your prestige in society.

So, the final judgement of the Lord was for Arjuna to die in the battle and not withdraw.

Bg 2.35



>aYaad]<aaduParTa& Ma&SYaNTae Tva& MaharQaa" )
Yaeza& c Tv& bhuMaTaae >aUTva YaaSYaiSa l/agavMa( )) 35 ))

bhayd rad uparata

masyante tv mah-rath

ye ca tva bahu-mato

bhtv ysyasi lghavam

bhaytout of fear; ratfrom the battlefield; uparatamceased; masyantewill consider; tvmunto you; mah-raththe great generals; yemof those who; caalso; tvamyou; bahu-matain great estimation; bhtvwill become; ysyasiwill go; lghavamdecreased in value.


The great generals who have highly esteemed your name and fame will think that you have left the battlefield out of fear only, and thus they will consider you a coward.


Lord Ka continued to give His verdict to Arjuna: Do not think that the great generals like Duryodhana, Kara, and other contemporaries will think that you have left the battlefield out of compassion for your brothers and grandfather. They will think that you have left out of fear for your life. And thus their high estimation of your personality will go to hell.

Bg 2.36



AvaCYavada& bhUNvidZYaiNTa TavaihTaa" )
iNaNdNTaSTav SaaMaQYa| TaTaae du"%Tar& Nau ik-Ma( )) 36 ))

avcya-vd ca bahn

vadiyanti tavhit

nindantas tava smarthya

tato dukhatara nu kim

avcyaunkind; vdnfabricated words; caalso; bahnmany; vadiyantiwill say; tavayour; ahitenemies; nindantawhile vilifying; tavayour; smarthyamability; tatathereafter; dukhatarammore painful; nuof course; kimwhat is there.


Your enemies will describe you in many unkind words and scorn your ability. What could be more painful for you?


Lord Ka was astonished in the beginning at Arjunas uncalled-for plea for compassion, and He described his compassion as befitting the non-Aryans. Now in so many words, He has proved His statements against Arjunas so-called compassion.

Bg 2.37



hTaae va Pa[aPSYaiSa SvGa| iJaTva va >aae+YaSae MahqMa( )
TaSMaaduita k-aENTaeYa YauaYa k*-TaiNaYa" )) 37 ))

hato v prpsyasi svarga

jitv v bhokyase mahm

tasmd uttiha kaunteya

yuddhya kta-nicaya

hatabeing killed; veither; prpsyasiyou gain; svargamthe heavenly kingdom; jitvby conquering; vor; bhokyaseyou enjoy; mahmthe world; tasmttherefore; uttihaget up; kaunteyaO son of Kunt; yuddhyato fight; ktadetermination; nicayauncertainty.


O son of Kunt, either you will be killed on the battlefield and attain the heavenly planets, or you will conquer and enjoy the earthly kingdom. Therefore get up and fight with determination.


Even though there was no certainty of victory for Arjunas side, he still had to fight; for, even being killed there, he could be elevated into the heavenly planets.

Bg 2.38



Sau%du"%e SaMae k*-Tva l/a>aal/a>aaE JaYaaJaYaaE )
TaTaae YauaYa YauJYaSv NaEv& PaaPaMavaPSYaiSa )) 38 ))

sukha-dukhe same ktv

lbhlbhau jayjayau

tato yuddhya yujyasva

naiva ppam avpsyasi

sukhahappiness; dukhein distress; samein equanimity; ktvdoing so; lbhlbhauboth in loss and profit; jayjayauboth in defeat and victory; tatathereafter; yuddhyafor the sake of fighting; yujyasvado fight; nanever; evamin this way; ppamsinful reaction; avpsyasiyou will gain.


Do thou fight for the sake of fighting, without considering happiness or distress, loss or gain, victory or defeatand, by so doing, you shall never incur sin.


Lord Ka now directly says that Arjuna should fight for the sake of fighting because He desires the battle. There is no consideration of happiness or distress, profit or gain, victory or defeat in the activities of Ka consciousness. That everything should be performed for the sake of Ka is transcendental consciousness; so there is no reaction to material activities. He who acts for his own sense gratification, either in goodness or in passion, is subject to the reaction, good or bad. But he who has completely surrendered himself in the activities of Ka consciousness is no longer obliged to anyone, nor is he a debtor to anyone, as one is in the ordinary course of activities. It is said:

devari-bhutpta-n pit
na kikaro nyam ca rjan
sarvtman ya araa araya
gato mukunda parihtya kartam

(Bhag. 11.5.41)

Anyone who has completely surrendered unto Ka, Mukunda, giving up all other duties, is no longer a debtor, nor is he obliged to anyonenot the demigods, nor the sages, nor the people in general, nor kinsmen, nor humanity, nor forefathers. That is the indirect hint given by Ka to Arjuna in this verse, and the matter will be more clearly explained in the following verses.

Bg 2.39



Wza Tae_i>aihTaa Saa&:Yae buiYaaeRGae iTvMaa& *<au )
buya Yau-ae YaYaa PaaQaR k-MaRbNDa& Pa[haSYaiSa )) 39 ))

e te bhihit skhye

buddhir yoge tv im u

buddhy yukto yay prtha

karma-bandha prahsyasi

eall these; teunto you; abhihitdescribed; khyeby analytical study; buddhiintelligence; yogework without fruitive result; tubut; immthis; ujust hear; buddhyby intelligence; yuktadovetailed; yayby which; prthaO son of Pth; karma-bandhambondage of reaction; prahsyasiyou can be released from.


Thus far I have declared to you the analytical knowledge of skhya philosophy. Now listen to the knowledge of yoga whereby one works without fruitive result. O son of Pth, when you act by such intelligence, you can free yourself from the bondage of works.


According to the Nirukti, or the Vedic dictionary, sakhya means that which describes phenomena in detail, and sakhya refers to that philosophy which describes the real nature of the soul. And yoga involves controlling the senses. Arjunas proposal not to fight was based on sense gratification. Forgetting his prime duty, he wanted to cease fighting because he thought that by not killing his relatives and kinsmen he would be happier than by enjoying the kingdom by conquering his cousins and brothers, the sons of Dhtarra. In both ways, the basic principles were for sense gratification. Happiness derived from conquering them and happiness derived by seeing kinsmen alive are both on the basis of persona1 sense gratification, for there is a sacrifice of wisdom and duty. Ka, therefore, wanted to explain to Arjuna that by killing the body of his grandfather he would not be killing the soul proper, and He explained that all individual persons, including the Lord Himself, are eternal individuals; they were individuals in the past, they are individuals in the present, and they will continue to remain individuals in the future, because all of us are individual souls eternally, and we simply change our bodily dress in different manners. But, actually, we keep our individuality even after liberation from the bondage of material dress. An analytical study of the soul and the body has been very graphically explained by Lord Ka. And this descriptive knowledge of the soul and the body from different angles of vision has been described here as skhya, in terms of the Nirukti dictionary. This skhya has nothing to do with the skhya philosophy of the atheist Kapila. Long before the imposter Kapilas skhya, the skhya philosophy was expounded in the rmad-Bhgavatam by the true Lord Kapila, the incarnation of Lord Ka, who explained it to His mother, Devahti. It is clearly explained by Him that the Purua, or the Supreme Lord, is active and that He creates by looking over the prakti. This is accepted in the Vedas and in the Gt. The description in the Vedas indicates that the Lord glanced over the prakti, or nature, and impregnated it with atomic individuals souls. All these individuals are working in the material world for sense gratification, and under the spell of material energy they are thinking of being enjoyers. This mentality is dragged to the last point of liberation when the living entity wants to become one with the Lord. This is the last snare of my or sense gratificatory illusion, and it is only after many, many births of such sense gratificatory activities that a great soul surrenders unto Vsudeva, Lord Ka, thereby fulfilling the search after the ultimate truth.

Arjuna has already accepted Ka as his spiritual master by surrendering himself unto Him: iyas te ha dhi m tv prapannam. Consequently, Ka will now tell him about the working process in buddhi-yoga, or karma-yoga, or in other words, the practice of devotional service only for the sense gratification of the Lord. This buddhi-yoga is clearly explained in Chapter Ten, verse ten, as being direct communion with the Lord, who is sitting as Paramtm in everyones heart. But such communion does not take place without devotional service. One who is therefore situated in devotional or transcendental loving service to the Lord, or, in other words, in Ka consciousness, attains to this stage of buddhi-yoga by the special grace of the Lord. The Lord says, therefore, that only to those who are always engaged in devotional service out of transcendental love does He award the pure knowledge of devotion in love. In that way the devotee can reach Him easily in the ever-blissful kingdom of God.

Thus the buddhi-yoga mentioned in this verse is the devotional service of the Lord, and the word skhya mentioned herein has nothing to do with the atheistic skhya-yoga enunciated by the impostor Kapila. One should not, therefore, misunderstand that the skhya-yoga mentioned herein has any connection with the atheistic skhya. Nor did that philosophy have any influence during that time; nor would Lord Ka care to mention such godless philosophical speculations. Real skhya philosophy is described by Lord Kapila in the rmad-Bhgavatam, but even that skhya has nothing to do with the current topics. Here, skhya means analytical description of the body and the soul. Lord Ka made an analytical description of the soul just to bring Arjuna to the point of buddhi-yoga, or bhakti-yoga. Therefore, Lord Kas skhya and Lord Kapilas skhya, as described in the Bhgavatam; are one and the same. They are all bhakti-yoga. He said, therefore, that only the less intelligent class of men make a distinction between skhya-yoga and bhakti-yoga.

Of course, atheistic skhya-yoga has nothing to do with bhakti-yoga, yet the unintelligent claim that the atheistic skhya-yoga is referred to in the Bhagavad-gt.

One should therefore understand that buddhi-yoga means to work in Ka consciousness, in the full bliss and knowledge of devotional service. One who works for the satisfaction of the Lord only, however difficult such work may be, is working under the principles of buddhi-yoga and finds himself always in transcendental bliss. By such transcendental engagement, one achieves all transcendental qualities automatically, by the grace of the Lord, and thus his liberation is complete in itself, without his making extraneous endeavors to acquire knowledge. There is much difference between work in Ka consciousness and work for fruitive results, especially in the matter of sense gratification for achieving results in terms of family or material happiness. Buddhi-yoga is therefore the transcendental quality of the work that we perform.

Bg 2.40



Naehai>a-MaNaaXaae_iSTa Pa[TYavaYaae Na ivTae )
SvLPaMaPYaSYa DaMaRSYa }aaYaTae MahTaae >aYaaTa( )) 40 ))

nehbhikrama-no sti

pratyavyo na vidyate

sv-alpam apy asya dharmasya

tryate mahato bhayt

nathere is not; ihain this world; abhikramaendeavoring; naloss; astithere is; pratyavyadiminution; nanever; vidyatethere is; svalpamlittle; apialthough; asyaof this; dharmasyaof this occupation; tryatereleases; mahataof very great; bhaytfrom danger.


In this endeavor there is no loss or diminution, and a little advancement on this path can protect one from the most dangerous type of fear.


Activity in Ka consciousness, or acting for the benefit of Ka without expectation of sense gratification, is the highest transcendental quality of work. Even a small beginning of such activity finds no impediment, nor can that small beginning be lost at any stage. Any work begun on the material plane has to be completed, otherwise the whole attempt becomes a failure. But any work begun in Ka consciousness has a permanent effect, even though not finished. The performer of such work is therefore not at a loss even if his work in Ka consciousness is incomplete. One percent done in Ka consciousness bears permanent results, so that the next beginning is from the point of two percent; whereas, in material activity, without a hundred percent success, there is no profit. Ajmila performed his duty in some percentage of Ka consciousness, but the result he enjoyed at the end was a hundred percent, by the grace of the Lord. There is a nice verse in this connection in rmad-Bhgavatam:

tyaktv sva-dharma carambuja harer
bhajan na pakko tha patet tato yadi
yatra kva vbhadram abhd amuya ki
ko vrtha pto bhajat sva-dharmata

If someone gives up self-gratificatory pursuits and works in Ka consciousness and then falls down on account of not completing his work, what loss is there on his part? And, what can one gain if one performs his material activities perfectly? (Bhg. 1.5.17) Or, as the Christians say, What profiteth a man if he gain the whole world yet suffers the loss of his eternal soul?

Material activities and their results end with the body. But work in Ka consciousness carries the person again to Ka consciousness, even after the loss of the body. At least one is sure to have a chance in the next life of being born again as a human being, either in the family of a great cultured brhmaa or in a rich aristocratic family that will give one a further chance for elevation. That is the unique quality of work done in Ka consciousness.

Bg 2.41



VYavSaaYaaiTMak-a buireke-h ku-NaNdNa )
bhuXaa%a NaNTaa buYaae_VYavSaaiYaNaaMa( )) 41 ))

vyavasytmik buddhir

ekeha kuru-nandana

bahu-kh hy anant ca

buddhayo vyavasyinm

vyavasytmikresolute Ka consciousness; buddhiintelligence; ekonly one; ihain this world; kuru-nandanaO beloved child of the Kurus; bahu-khvarious branches; hiindeed; anantunlimited; caalso; buddhayaintelligence; avyavasyinmof those who are not in Ka consciousness.


Those who are on this path are resolute in purpose, and their aim is one. O beloved child of the Kurus, the intelligence of those who are irresolute is many-branched.


A strong faith in Ka consciousness that one should be elevated to the highest perfection of life is called vyavasytmik intelligence. The Caitanya-caritmta states:

raddh-abde vivsa kahe sudha nicaya
ke bhakti kaile sarva-karma kta haya

Faith means unflinching trust in something sublime. When one is engaged in the duties of Ka consciousness, he need not act in relationship to the material world with obligations to family traditions, humanity, or nationality. Fruitive activities are the engagements of ones reactions from past good or bad deeds. When one is awake in Ka consciousness, he need no longer endeavor for good results in his activities. When one is situated in Ka consciousness, all activities are on the absolute plane, for they are no longer subject to dualities like good and bad. The highest perfection of Ka consciousness is renunciation of the material conception of life. This state is automatically achieved by progressive Ka consciousness. The resolute purpose of a person in Ka consciousness is based on knowledge (Vsudeva sarvam iti sa mahtm sudurlabha) by which one comes to know perfectly that Vsudeva, or Ka, is the root of all manifested causes. As water on the root of a tree is automatically distributed to the leaves and branches, in Ka consciousness, one can render the highest service to everyonenamely self, family, society, country, humanity, etc. If Ka is satisfied by ones actions, then everyone will be satisfied.

Service in Ka consciousness is, however, best practiced under the able guidance of a spiritual master who is a bona fide representative of Ka, who knows the nature of the student and who can guide him to act in Ka consciousness. As such, to be well-versed in Ka consciousness one has to act firmly and obey the representative of Ka, and one should accept the instruction of the bona fide spiritual master as ones mission in life. rla Vivantha Cakravart hkur instructs us, in his famous prayers for the spiritual master, as follows:

yasya prasdd bhagavat-prasdo
yasyprasdnna gati kuto pi
dhyya stuvas tasya yaas tri-sandhya
vande guro r-cararavindam.

By satisfaction of the spiritual master, the Supreme Personality of Godhead becomes satisfied. And by not satisfying the spiritual master, there is no chance of being promoted to the plane of Ka consciousness. I should, therefore, meditate and pray for his mercy three times a day, and offer my respectful obeisances unto him, my spiritual master.

The whole process, however, depends on perfect knowledge of the soul beyond the conception of the bodynot theoretically but practically, when there is no longer chance for sense gratification manifested in fruitive activities. One who is not firmly fixed in mind is diverted by various types of fruitive acts.

Bg 2.42, Bg 2.43, Bg 2.42-43

TEXTS 4243


YaaiMaMaa& PauiZPaTaa& vac& Pa[vdNTYaivPaiTa" )
vedvadrTaa" PaaQaR NaaNYadSTaqiTa vaidNa" )) 42 ))
k-aMaaTMaaNa" SvGaRPara JaNMak-MaRf-l/Pa[daMa( )
i-YaaivXaezbhul/a& >aaeGaEYaRGaiTa& Pa[iTa )) 43 ))

ym im pupit vca

pravadanty avipacita

veda-vda-rat prtha

nnyad astti vdina

kmtmna svarga-par



bhogaivarya-gati prati

ym immall these; pupitmflowery; vcamwords; pravadantisay; avipacitamen with a poor fund of knowledge; veda-vda-ratsupposed followers of the Vedas; prthaO son of Pth; nanever; anyatanything else; astithere is; itithis; vdinaadvocates; kma-tmnadesirous of sense gratification; svarga-paraiming to achieve heavenly planets; janma-karma-phala-pradmresulting in fruitive action, good birth, etc.; kriy-vieapompous ceremonies; bahulmvarious; bhogasense enjoyment; aivaryaopulence; gatimprogress; pratitowards.


Men of small knowledge are very much attached to the flowery words of the Vedas, which recommend various fruitive activities for elevation to heavenly planets, resultant good birth, power, and so forth. Being desirous of sense gratification and opulent life, they say that there is nothing more than this.


People in general are not very intelligent, and due to their ignorance they are most attached to the fruitive activities recommended in the karma-ka portions of the Vedas. They do not want anything more than sense gratificatory proposals for enjoying life in heaven, where wine and women are available and material opulence is very common. In the Vedas many sacrifices are recommended for elevation to the heavenly planets, especially the jyotioma sacrifices. In fact, it is stated that anyone desiring elevation to heavenly planets must perform these sacrifices, and men with a poor fund of knowledge think that this is the whole purpose of Vedic wisdom. It is very difficult for such inexperienced persons to be situated in the determined action of Ka consciousness. As fools are attached to the flowers of poisonous trees without knowing the results of such attractions, similarly unenlightened men are attracted by such heavenly opulence and the sense enjoyment thereof.

In the karma-ka section of the Vedas it is said that those who perform the four monthly penances become eligible to drink the somarasa beverages to become immortal and happy forever. Even on this earth some are very eager to have somarasa to become strong and fit to enjoy sense gratifications. Such persons have no faith in liberation from material bondage, and they are very much attached to the pompous ceremonies of Vedic sacrifices. They are generally sensual, and they do not want anything other than the heavenly pleasures of life. It is understood that there are gardens called nandana-knana in which there is good opportunity for association with angelic, beautiful women and having a profuse supply of somarasa wine. Such bodily happiness is certainly sensual; therefore there are those who are purely attached to material, temporary happiness, as lords of the material world.

Bg 2.44



>aaeGaEYaRPa[Sa-aNaa& TaYaaPaTaceTaSaaMa( )
VYavSaaYaaiTMak-a bui" SaMaaDaaE Na ivDaqYaTae )) 44 ))



vyavasytmik buddhi

samdhau na vidhyate

bhogamaterial enjoyment; aivaryaopulence; prasaktnmthose who are so attached; tayby such things; apahta-cetasmbewildered in mind; vyavasytmikfixed determination; buddhidevotional service of the Lord; samdhauin the controlled mind; nanever; vidhyatedoes take place.


In the minds of those who are too attached to sense enjoyment and material opulence, and who are bewildered by such things, the resolute determination of devotional service to the Supreme Lord does not take place.


Samdhi means fixed mind. The Vedic dictionary, the Nirukti, says, samyag dhyate sminn tmatattva-ythtmyam: When the mind is fixed for understanding the self, it is called samdhi. Samdhi is never possible for persons interested in material sense enjoyment, nor for those who are bewildered by such temporary things. They are more or less condemned by the process of material energy.

Bg 2.45



}aEGau<YaivzYaa veda iNaEGau<Yaae >avaJauRNa )
iNaRNae iNaTYaSatvSQaae iNaYaaeRGa+aeMa AaTMavaNa( )) 45 ))

trai-guya-viay ved

nistrai-guyo bhavrjuna

nirdvandvo nitya-sattva-stho

niryoga-kema tmavn

traiguyapertaining to the three modes of material nature; viayon the subject matter; vedVedic literatures; nistraiguyain a pure state of spiritual existence; bhavabe; arjunaO Arjuna; nirdvandvafree from the pains of opposites; nitya-sattva-sthaever remaining in sattva (goodness); niryoga-kemafree from (the thought of) acquisition and preservation; tmavnestablished in the Self.


The Vedas mainly deal with the subject of the three modes of material nature. Rise above these modes, O Arjuna. Be transcendental to all of them. Be free from all dualities and from all anxieties for gain and safety, and be established in the Self.


All material activities involve actions and reactions in the three modes of material nature. They are meant for fruitive results, which cause bondage in the material world. The Vedas deal mostly with fruitive activities to gradually elevate the general public from the field of sense gratification to a position on the transcendental plane. Arjuna, as a student and friend of Lord Ka, is advised to raise himself to the transcendental position of Vednta philosophy where, in the beginning, there is brahma-jijs, or questions on the Supreme Transcendence. All the living entities who are in the material world are struggling very hard for existence. For them the Lord, after creation of the material world, gave the Vedic wisdom advising how to live and get rid of the material entanglement. When the activities for sense gratification, namely the karma-ka chapter, are finished, then the chance for spiritual realization is offered in the form of the Upaniads, which are part of different Vedas, as the Bhagavad-gt is a part of the fifth Veda, namely the Mahbhrata. The Upaniads mark the beginning of transcendental life.

As long as the material body exists, there are actions and reactions in the material modes. One has to learn tolerance in the face of dualities such as happiness and distress, or cold and warmth, and by tolerating such dualities become free from anxieties regarding gain and loss. This transcendental position is achieved in full Ka consciousness when one is fully dependant on the good will of Ka

Bg 2.46



YaavaNaQaR odPaaNae SavRTa" SaMPl/uTaaedke- )
TaavaNSaveRzu vedezu b]a<aSYa ivJaaNaTa" )) 46 ))

yvn artha udapne

sarvata samplutodake

tvn sarveu vedeu

brhmaasya vijnata

yvnall that; arthais meant; udapnein a well of water; sarvatain all respects; sampluta-udakein a great reservoir of water; tvnsimilarly; sarveuin all; vedeuVedic literatures; brhmaasyaof the man who knows the Supreme Brahman; vijnataof one who is in complete knowledge.


All purposes that are served by the small pond can at once be served by the great reservoirs of water. Similarly, all the purposes of the Vedas can be served to one who knows the purpose behind them.


The rituals and sacrifices mentioned in the karma-ka division of the Vedic literature are to encourage gradual development of self-realization. And the purpose of self-realization is clearly stated in the Fifteenth Chapter of the Bhagavad-gt (15.15): the purpose of studying the Vedas is to know Lord Ka, the primeval cause of everything. So, self-realization means understanding Ka and ones eternal relationship with Him. The relationship of the living entities with Ka is also mentioned in the Fifteenth Chapter of Bhagavad-gt. The living entities are parts and parcels of Ka; therefore, revival of Ka consciousness by the individual living entity is the highest perfectional stage of Vedic knowledge. This is confirmed in the rmad-Bhgavatam (3.33.7) as follows:

aho bata vapacoto garyn
yaj-jihvgre vartate nma tubhyam
tepus tapas te juhuvu sasnur ry
brahmncur nma ganti ye te.

O my Lord, a person who is chanting Your holy name, although born of a low family like that of a cla [dog eater], is situated on the highest platform of self-realization. Such a person must have performed all kinds of penances and sacrifices according to Vedic rituals and studied the Vedic literatures many, many times after taking his bath in all the holy places of pilgrimage. Such a person is considered to be the best of the ryan family. So one must be intelligent enough to understand the purpose of the Vedas, without being attached to the rituals only, and must not desire to be elevated to the heavenly kingdoms for a better quality of sense gratification. It is not possible for the common man in this age to follow all the rules and regulations of the Vedic rituals and the injunctions of the Vedntas and the Upaniads. It requires much time, energy, knowledge and resources to execute the purposes of the Vedas. This is hardly possible in this age. The best purpose of Vedic culture is served, however, by chanting the holy name of the Lord, as recommended by Lord Caitanya, the deliverer of all fallen souls. When Lord Caitanya was asked by a great Vedic scholar, Praknanda Sarasvat, why He, the Lord, was chanting the holy name of the Lord like a sentimentalist instead of studying Vednta philosophy, the Lord replied that His spiritual master found Him to be a great fool, and thus he asked Him to chant the holy name of Lord Ka. He did so, and became ecstatic like a madman. In this age of Kali, most of the population is foolish and not adequately educated to understand Vednta philosophy; the best purpose of Vednta philosophy is served by inoffensively chanting the holy name of the Lord. Vednta is the last word in Vedic wisdom, and the author and knower of the Vednta philosophy is Lord Ka; and the highest Vedantist is the great soul who takes pleasure in chanting the holy name of the Lord. That is the ultimate purpose of all Vedic mysticism.

Bg 2.47



k-MaR<YaevaiDak-arSTae Maa f-le/zu k-dacNa )
Maa k-MaRf-l/heTau>aURMaaR Tae Saae_STvk-MaRi<a )) 47 ))

karmay evdhikras te

m phaleu kadcana

m karma-phala-hetur bhr

m te sago stv akarmai

karmaiprescribed duties; evacertainly; adhikraright; teof you; mnever; phaleuin the fruits; kadcanaat any time; mnever; karma-phalain the result of the work; hetucause; bhbecome; mnever; teof you; sagaattachment; astube there; akarmaiin not doing.


You have a right to perform your prescribed duty, but you are not entitled to the fruits of action. Never consider yourself to be the cause of the results of your activities, and never be attached to not doing your duty.


There are three considerations here: prescribed duties, capricious work, and inaction. Prescribed duties refer to activities performed while one is in the modes of material nature. Capricious work means actions without the sanction of authority, and inaction means not performing ones prescribed duties. The Lord advised that Arjuna not be inactive, but that he perform his prescribed duty without being attached to the result. One who is attached to the result of his work is also the cause of the action. Thus he is the enjoyer or sufferer of the result of such actions.

As far as prescribed duties are concerned, they can be fitted into three subdivisions, namely routine work, emergency work and desired activities. Routine work, in terms of the scriptural injunctions, is done without desire for results. As one has to do it, obligatory work is action in the mode of goodness. Work with results becomes the cause of bondage; therefore such work is not auspicious. Everyone has his proprietory right in regard to prescribed duties, but should act without attachment to the result; such disinterested obligatory duties doubtlessly lead one to the path of liberation.

Arjuna was therefore advised by the Lord to fight as a matter of duty without attachment to the result. His nonparticipation in the battle is another side of attachment. Such attachment never leads one to the path of salvation. Any attachment, positive or negative, is cause for bondage. Inaction is sinful. Therefore, fighting as a matter of duty was the only auspicious path of salvation for Arjuna.

Bg 2.48



YaaeGaSQa" ku- k-MaaRi<a Sa& TYa-a DaNaYa )
iSayiSayae" SaMaae >aUTva SaMaTv& YaaeGa oCYaTae )) 48 ))

yoga-stha kuru karmi

saga tyaktv dhanajaya

siddhy-asiddhyo samo bhtv

samatva yoga ucyate

yoga-sthasteadfast in yoga; kuruperform; karmiyour duty; sagamattachment; tyaktvhaving abandoned; dhanajayaO Dhanajaya; siddhi-asiddhyoin success and failure; samathe same; bhtvhaving become; samatvamevenness of mind; yogayoga; ucyateis called.


Be steadfast in yoga, O Arjuna. Perform your duty and abandon all attachment to success or failure. Such evenness of mind is called yoga.


Ka tells Arjuna that he should act in yoga. And what is that yoga? Yoga means to concentrate the mind upon the Supreme by controlling the ever-disturbing senses. And who is the Supreme? The Supreme is the Lord. And because He Himself is telling Arjuna to fight, Arjuna has nothing to do with the results of the fight. Gain or victory are Kas concern; Arjuna is simply advised to act according to the dictation of Ka. The following of Kas dictation is real yoga, and this is practiced in the process called Ka consciousness. By Ka consciousness only can one give up the sense of proprietorship. One has to become the servant of Ka, or the servant of the servant of Ka. That is the right way to discharge duty in Ka consciousness, which alone can help one to act in yoga.

Arjuna is a katriya, and as such he is participating in the varrama-dharma institution. It is said in the Viu Puraa that in the varrama-dharma, the whole aim is to satisfy Viu. No one should satisfy himself, as is the rule in the material world, but one should satisfy Ka. So, unless one satisfies Ka, one cannot correctly observe the principles of varrama-dharma. Indirectly, Arjuna was advised to act as Ka told him.

Bg 2.49



dUre<a vr& k-MaR buiYaaeGaaNaYa )
buaE Xar<aMaiNvC^ k*-Pa<aa" f-l/heTav" )) 49 ))

drea hy avara karma

buddhi-yogd dhanajaya

buddhau araam anviccha

kpa phala-hetava

dreaby discarding it at a long distance; hicertainly; avaramabominable; karmaactivities; buddhi-yogton the strength of Ka consciousness; dhanajayaO conqueror of wealth; buddhauin such consciousness; araamfull surrender; anvicchadesire; kpathe misers; phala-hetavathose desiring fruitive action.


O Dhanajaya, rid yourself of all fruitive activities by devotional service, and surrender fully to that consciousness. Those who want to enjoy the fruits of their work are misers.


One who has actually come to understand ones constitutional position as the eternal servitor of the Lord gives up all engagements save working in Ka consciousness. As already explained, buddhi-yoga means transcendental loving service to the Lord. Such devotional service is the right course of action for the living entity. Only misers desire to enjoy the fruit of their own work just to be further entangled in material bondage. Except for work in Ka consciousness, all activities are abominable because they continually bind the worker to the cycle of birth and death. One should therefore never desire to be the cause of work. Everything should be done in Ka consciousness for the satisfaction of Ka. Misers do not know how to utilize the assets of riches which they acquire by good fortune or by hard labor. One should spend all energies working in Ka consciousness, and that will make ones life successful. Like the misers, unfortunate persons do not employ their human energy in the service of the Lord.

Bg 2.50



buiYau-ae JahaTaqh o>ae Sauk*-TaduZk*-Tae )
TaSMaaaeGaaYa YauJYaSv YaaeGa" k-MaRSau k-aEXal/Ma( )) 50 ))

buddhi-yukto jahtha

ubhe sukta-dukte

tasmd yogya yujyasva

yoga karmasu kaualam

buddhi-yuktaone who is engaged in devotional service; jahtican get rid of; ihain this life; ubhein both; sukta-duktein good and bad results; tasmttherefore; yogyafor the sake of devotional service; yujyasvabe so engaged; yogaKa consciousness; karmasuin all activities; kaualamart.


A man engaged in devotional service rids himself of both good and bad actions even in this life. Therefore strive for yoga, O Arjuna, which is the art of all work.


Since time immemorial each living entity has accumulated the various reactions of his good and bad work, As such, he is continuously ignorant of his real constitutional position. Ones ignorance can be removed by the instruction of the Bhagavad-gt which teaches one to surrender unto Lord r Ka in all respects and become liberated from the chained victimization of action and reaction, birth after birth. Arjuna is therefore advised to act in Ka consciousness, the purifying process of resultant action.

Bg 2.51



k-MaRJa& buiYau-a ih f-l&/ TYa-a MaNaqiz<a" )
JaNMabNDaiviNaMauR-a" Pad& GaC^NTYaNaaMaYaMa( )) 51 ))

karma-ja buddhi-yukt hi

phala tyaktv mania


pada gacchanty anmayam

karma-jambecause of fruitive activities; buddhi-yuktbeing done in devotional service; hicertainly; phalamresults; tyaktvgiving up; maniadevotees who are great sages; janma-bandhathe bondage of birth and death; vinirmuktliberated souls; padamposition; gacchantireach; anmayamwithout miseries.


The wise, engaged in devotional service, take refuge in the Lord, and free themselves from the cycle of birth and death by renouncing the fruits of action in the material world. In this way they can attain that state beyond all miseries.


The liberated living entities seek that place where there are no material miseries. The Bhgavatam says:

samrit ye padapallava-plava
mahat-pada puya-yao murre
bhvambudhir vatsa-pada para pada
para pada yad vipad na tem

(Bhg. 10.14.58)

For one who has accepted the boat of the lotus feet of the Lord, who is the shelter of the cosmic manifestation and is famous as Mukunda or the giver of mukti, the ocean of the material world is like the water contained in a calfs hoofprint. Param padam, or the place where there are no material miseries, or Vaikuha, is his goal, not the place where there is danger in every step of life.

Owing to ignorance, one does not know that this material world is a miserable place where there are dangers at every step. Out of ignorance only, less intelligent persons try to adjust to the situation by fruitive activities, thinking that resultant actions will make them happy. They do not know that no kind of material body anywhere within the universe can give life without miseries. The miseries of life, namely birth, death, old age and diseases, are present everywhere within the material world. But one who understands his real constitutional position as the eternal servitor of the Lord, and thus knows the position of the Personality of Godhead, engages himself in the transcendental loving service of the Lord. Consequently he becomes qualified to enter into the Vaikuha planets, where there is neither material, miserable life, nor the influence of time and death. To know ones constitutional position means to know also the sublime position of the Lord. One who wrongly thinks that the living entitys position and the Lords position are on the same level is to be understood to be in darkness and therefore unable to engage himself in the devotional service of the Lord. He becomes a lord himself and thus paves the way for the repetition of birth and death. But one who, understanding that his position is to serve, transfers himself to the service of the Lord, at once becomes eligible for Vaikuhaloka. Service for the cause of the Lord is called karma-yoga or buddhi-yoga, or in plain words, devotional service to the Lord.

Bg 2.52



Yada Tae Maaehk-il/l&/ buiVYaRiTaTairZYaiTa )
Tada GaNTaaiSa iNaveRd& [aeTaVYaSYa [uTaSYa c )) 52 ))

yad te moha-kalila

buddhir vyatitariyati

tad gantsi nirveda

rotavyasya rutasya ca

yadwhen; teyour; mohaillusory; kalilamdense forest; buddhitranscendental service with intelligence; vyatitariyatisurpasses; tadat that time; gantsiyou shall go; nirvedamcallousness; rotavyasyaall that is to be heard; rutasyaall that is already heard; caalso.


When your intelligence has passed out of the dense forest of delusion, you shall become indifferent to all that has been heard and all that is to be heard.


There are many good examples in the lives of the great devotees of the Lord of those who became indifferent to the rituals of the Vedas simply by devotional service to the Lord. When a person factually understands Ka and his relationship with Ka, he naturally becomes completely indifferent to the rituals of fruitive activities, even though an experienced brhmaa. r Mdhavendra Pur, a great devotee and crya in the line of the devotees, says:

sandhy-vandana bhadram astu bhavato bho snna tubhya namo
bho dev pitara ca tarpaa-vidhau nha kama kamyatm
yatra kvpi niadya ydava-kulottamasya kasa-dvia
smra smram agha harmi tad ala manye kim anyena me.

O Lord, in my prayers three times a day, all glory to You. Bathing, I offer my obeisances unto You. O demigods! O forefathers! Please excuse me for my inability to offer you my respects. Now wherever I sit, I can remember the great descendant of the Yadu dynasty [Ka], the enemy of Kasa, and thereby I can free myself from all sinful bondage. I think this is sufficient for me.

The Vedic rites and rituals are imperative for neophytes: comprehending all kinds of prayer three times a day, taking a bath early in the morning, offering respects to the forefathers, etc. But, when one is fully in Ka consciousness and is engaged in His transcendental loving service, one becomes indifferent to all these regulative principles because he has already attained perfection. If one can reach the platform of understanding by service to the Supreme Lord Ka, he has no longer to execute different types of penances and sacrifices as recommended in revealed scriptures. And, similarly, if one has not understood that the purpose of the Vedas is to reach Ka and simply engages in the rituals, etc., then he is uselessly wasting time in such engagements. Persons in Ka consciousness transcend the limit of abda-brahma, or the range of the Vedas and Upaniads.

Bg 2.53



[uiTaivPa[iTaPaa Tae Yada SQaaSYaiTa iNal/a )
SaMaaDaavcl/a buiSTada YaaeGaMavaPSYaiSa )) 53 ))

ruti-vipratipann te

yad sthsyati nical

samdhv acal buddhis

tad yogam avpsyasi

rutiVedic revelation; vipratipannwithout being influenced by the fruitive results of the Vedas; teyour; yadwhen; sthsyatiremains; nicalunmoved; samdhauin transcendental consciousness, or Ka consciousness; acalunflinching; buddhiintelligence; tadat that time; yogamself-realization; avpsyasiyou will achieve.


When your mind is no longer disturbed by the flowery language of the Vedas, and when it remains fixed in the trance of self-realization, then you will have attained the Divine consciousness.


To say that one is in samdhi is to say that one has fully realized Ka consciousness; that is, one in full samdhi has realized Brahman, Paramtm and Bhagavn. The highest perfection of self-realization is to understand that one is eternally the servitor of Ka and that ones only business is to discharge ones duties in Ka consciousness. A Ka conscious person, or unflinching devotee of the Lord, should not be disturbed by the flowery language of the Vedas nor be engaged in fruitive activities for promotion to the heavenly kingdom. In Ka consciousness, one comes directly into communion with Ka, and thus all directions from Ka may be understood in that transcendental state. One is sure to achieve results by such activities and attain conclusive knowledge. One has only to carry out the orders of Ka or His representative, the spiritual master.

Bg 2.54



AJauRNa ovac
iSQaTaPa[jSYa k-a >aaza SaMaaiDaSQaSYa ke-Xav )
iSQaTaDaq" ik&- Pa[>aazeTa ik-MaaSaqTa v]JaeTa ik-Ma( )) 54 ))

arjuna uvca

sthita-prajasya k bh

samdhi-sthasya keava

sthita-dh ki prabheta

kim sta vrajeta kim

arjuna uvcaArjuna said; sthita-prajasyaof one who is situated in fixed Ka consciousness; kwhat; bhlanguage; samdhi-sthasyaof one situated in trance; keavaO Ka; sthita-dhone fixed in Ka consciousness; kimwhat; prabhetaspeak; kimhow; stadoes remain; vrajetawalk; kimhow.


Arjuna said: What are the symptoms of one whose consciousness is thus merged in Transcendence? How does he speak, and what is his language? How does he sit, and how does he walk?


As there are symptoms for each and every man, in terms of his particular situation, similarly one who is Ka conscious has his particular naturetalking, walking, thinking, feeling, etc. As a rich man has his symptoms by which he is known as a rich man, as a diseased man has his symptoms, by which he is known as diseased, or as a learned man has his symptoms, so a man in transcendental consciousness of Ka has specific symptoms in various dealings. One can know his specific symptoms from the Bhagavad-gt. Most important is how the man in Ka consciousness speaks, for speech is the most important quality of any man. It is said that a fool is undiscovered as long as he does not speak, and certainly a well-dressed fool cannot be identified unless he speaks, but as soon as he speaks, he reveals himself at once. The immediate symptom of a Ka conscious man is that he speaks only of Ka and of matters relating to Him. Other symptoms then automatically follow, as stated below.

Bg 2.55



Pa[JahaiTa Yada k-aMaaNSavaRNPaaQaR MaNaaeGaTaaNa( )
AaTMaNYaevaTMaNaa Tau" iSQaTaPa[jSTadaeCYaTae )) 55 ))

r-bhagavn uvca

prajahti yad kmn

sarvn prtha mano-gatn

tmany evtman tua

sthita-prajas tadocyate

r bhagavn uvcathe Supreme Personality of Godhead said; prajahtigives up; yadwhen; kmndesires for sense gratification; sarvnof all varieties; prthaO son of Pth; mana-gatnof mental concoction; tmaniin the pure state of the soul; evacertainly; tmanby the purified mind; tuasatisfied; sthita-prajatranscendentally situated; tadat that time; ucyateis said.


The Blessed Lord said: O Prtha, when a man gives up all varieties of sense desire which arise from mental concoction, and when his mind finds satisfaction in the self alone, then he is said to be in pure transcendental consciousness.


The Bhgavatam affirms that any person who is fully in Ka consciousness, or devotional service of the Lord, has all the good qualities of the great sages, whereas a person who is not so transcendentally situated has no good qualifications, because he is sure to be taking refuge in his own mental concoctions. Consequently, it is rightly said herein that one has to give up all kinds of sense desire manufactured by mental concoction. Artificially, such sense desires cannot be stopped. But if one is engaged in Ka consciousness, then, automatically, sense desires subside without extraneous efforts. Therefore, one has to engage himself in Ka consciousness without hesitation, for this devotional service will instantly help one on to the platform of transcendental consciousness. The highly developed soul always remains satisfied in himself by realizing himself as the eternal servitor of the Supreme Lord. Such a transcendentally situated person has no sense desires resulting from petty materialism; rather, he remains always happy in his natural position of eternally serving the Supreme Lord.

Bg 2.56



du"%eZvNauiGanMaNaa" Sau%ezu ivGaTaSPa*h" )
vqTaraGa>aYa-aeDa" iSQaTaDaqMauRiNaCYaTae )) 56 ))

dukhev anudvigna-man

sukheu vigata-spha


sthita-dhr munir ucyate

dukheuin the threefold miseries; anudvigna-manwithout being agitated in mind; sukheuin happiness; vigata-sphawithout being too interested; vtafree from; rgaattachment; bhayafear; krodhaanger; sthita-dhone who is steady; munisage; ucyateis called.


One who is not disturbed in spite of the threefold miseries, who is not elated when there is happiness, and who is free from attachment, fear and anger, is called a sage of steady mind.


The word muni means one who can agitate his mind in various ways for mental speculation without coming to a factual conclusion. It is said that every muni has a different angle of vision, and unless a muni differs from other munis, he cannot be called a muni in the strict sense of the term. Nsau munir yasya mata na binnam. But a sthita-dh-muni as mentioned herein by the Lord, is different from an ordinary muni The sthita-dh-muni is always in Ka consciousness, for he has exhausted all his business of creative speculation. He has surpassed the stage of mental speculations and has come to the conclusion that Lord r Ka, or Vsudeva, is everything. He is called a muni fixed in mind. Such a fully Ka conscious person is not at all disturbed by the onslaughts of the threefold miseries, for he accepts all miseries as the mercy of the Lord, thinking himself only worthy of more trouble due to his past misdeeds; and he sees that his miseries, by the grace of the Lord, are minimized to the lowest. Similarly, when he is happy he gives credit to the Lord, thinking himself unworthy of the happiness; he realizes that it is due only to the Lords grace that he is in such a comfortable condition and able to render better service to the Lord. And, for the service of the Lord, he is always daring and active and is not influenced by attachment or aversion. Attachment means accepting things for ones own sense gratification, and detachment is the absence of such sensual attachment. But one fixed in Ka consciousness has neither attachment nor detachment because his life is dedicated in the service of the Lord. Consequently he is not at all angry even when his attempts are unsuccessful. A Ka conscious person is always steady in his determination.

Bg 2.57



Ya" SavR}aaNai>aehSTataTPa[aPYa u>aau>aMa( )
Naai>aNaNdiTa Na ei TaSYa Pa[ja Pa[iTaiTaa )) 57 ))

ya sarvatrnabhisnehas

tat tat prpya ubhubham

nbhinandati na dvei

tasya praj pratihit

yaone who; sarvatraeverywhere; anabhisnehawithout affection; tatthat; tatthat; prpyaachieving; ubhagood; aubhamevil; nanever; abhinandatiprays; nanever; dveienvies; tasyahis; prajperfect knowledge; pratihitafixed.


He who is without attachment, who does not rejoice when he obtains good, nor lament when he obtains evil, is firmly fixed in perfect knowledge.


There is always some upheaval in the material world which may be good or evil. One who is not agitated by such material upheavals, who is unaffected by good and evil, is to be understood to be fixed in Ka consciousness. As long as one is in the material world there is always the possibility of good and evil because this world is full of duality. But one who is fixed in Ka consciousness is not affected by good and evil because he is simply concerned with Ka, who is all good absolute. Such consciousness in Ka situates one in a perfect transcendental position called, technically, samdhi.

Bg 2.58



Yada Sa&hrTae caYa& kU-MaaeR_aNaqv SavRXa" )
wiNd]Yaa<aqiNd]YaaQaeR>YaSTaSYa Pa[ja Pa[iTaiTaa )) 58 ))

yad saharate cya

krmo gnva sarvaa


tasya praj pratihit

yadwhen; saharatewinds up; caalso; ayamall these; krmatortoise; agnilimbs; ivalike; sarvaaaltogether; indriynisenses; indriya-arthebhyafrom the sense objects; tasyahis; prajconsciousness; pratihitfixed up.


One who is able to withdraw his senses from sense objects, as the tortoise draws his limbs within the shell, is to be understood as truly situated in knowledge.


The test of a yog, devotee, or self-realized soul is that he is able to control the senses according to his plan. Most people, however, are servants of the senses and are thus directed by the dictation of the senses. That is the answer to the question as to how the yog is situated. The senses are compared to venomous serpents. They want to act very loosely and without restriction. The yog, or the devotee, must be very strong to control the serpentslike a snake charmer. He never allows them to act independantly. There are many injunctions in the revealed scriptures; some of them are do-nots, and some of them are dos. Unless one is able to follow the dos and the do-nots, restricting oneself from sense enjoyment, it is not possible to be firmly fixed in Ka consciousness. The best example, set herein, is the tortoise. The tortoise can at any moment wind up his senses and exhibit them again at any time for particular purposes. Similarly, the senses of the Ka conscious persons are used only for some particular purpose in the service of the Lord and are withdrawn otherwise. Keeping the senses always in the service of the Lord is the example set by the analogy of the tortoise, who keeps the senses within.

Bg 2.59



ivzYaa iviNavTaRNTae iNaraharSYa deihNa" )
rSavJa| rSaae_PYaSYa Par& d*a iNavTaRTae )) 59 ))

viay vinivartante

nirhrasya dehina

rasa-varja raso py asya

para dv nivartate

viayobjects for sense enjoyment; vinivartanteare practiced to be refrained from; nirhrasyaby negative restrictions; dehinafor the embodied; rasa-varjamgiving up the taste; rasasense of enjoyment; apialthough there is; asyahis; paramfar superior things; dvby experiencing; nivartateceases from.


The embodied soul may be restricted from sense enjoyment, though the taste for sense objects remains. But, ceasing such engagements by experiencing a higher taste, he is fixed in consciousness.


Unless one is transcendentally situated, it is not possible to cease from sense enjoyment. The process of restriction from sense enjoyment by rules and regulations is something like restricting a diseased person from certain types of eatables. The patient, however, neither likes such restrictions, nor loses his taste for eatables. Similarly, sense restriction by some spiritual process like aga-yoga, in the matter of yama, niyama, sana, pryma, pratyhra, dhara, dhyna, etc., is recommended for less intelligent persons who have no better knowledge. But one who has tasted the beauty of the Supreme Lord Ka, in the course of his advancement in Ka consciousness, no longer has a taste for dead material things. Therefore, restrictions are there for the less intelligent neophytes in the spiritual advancement of life, but such restrictions are only good if one actually has a taste for Ka consciousness. When one is actually Ka conscious, he automatically loses his taste for pale things.

Bg 2.60



YaTaTaae iPa k-aENTaeYa PauzSYa ivPaiTa" )
wiNd]Yaai<a Pa[MaaQaqiNa hriNTa Pa[Sa>a& MaNa" )) 60 ))

yatato hy api kaunteya

puruasya vipacita

indriyi pramthni

haranti prasabha mana

yatatawhile endeavoring; hicertainly; apiin spite of; kaunteyaO son of Kunt; puruasyaof the man; vipacitafull of discriminating knowledge; indriyithe senses; pramthnistimulated; harantithrows forcefully; prasabhaby force; manathe mind.


The senses are so strong and impetuous, O Arjuna, that they forcibly carry away the mind even of a man of discrimination who is endeavoring to control them.


There are many learned sages, philosophers and transcendentalists who try to conquer the senses, but in spite of their endeavors, even the greatest of them sometimes fall victim to material sense enjoyment due to the agitated mind. Even Vivmitra, a great sage and perfect yog, was misled by Menak into sex enjoyment, although the yog was endeavoring for sense control with severe types of penance and yoga practice. And,of course, there are so many similar instances in the history of the world. Therefore, it is very difficult to control the mind and the senses without being fully Ka conscious. Without engaging the mind in Ka, one cannot cease such material engagements. A practical example is given by r Ymuncrya, a great saint and devotee, who says: Since my mind has been engaged in the service of the lotus feet of Lord Ka, and I have been enjoying an ever new transcendental humor, whenever I think of sex life with a woman, my face at once turns from it, and I spit at the thought.

Ka consciousness is such a transcendentally nice thing that automatically material enjoyment becomes distasteful. It is as if a hungry man had satisfied his hunger by a sufficient quantity of nutritious eatables. Mahrja Ambara also conquered a great yog, Durvs Muni, simply because his mind was engaged in Ka consciousness.

Bg 2.61



TaaiNa SavaRi<a Sa&YaMYa Yau- AaSaqTa MaTPar" )
vXae ih YaSYaeiNd]Yaai<a TaSYa Pa[ja Pa[iTaiTaa )) 61 ))

tni sarvi sayamya

yukta sta mat-para

vae hi yasyendriyi

tasya praj pratihit

tnithose senses; sarviall; sayamyakeeping under control; yuktabeing engaged; stabeing so situated; mat-parain relationship with Me; vaein full subjugation; hicertainly; yasyaone whose; indriyisenses; tasyahis; prajconsciousness; pratihitfixed.


One who restrains his senses and fixes his consciousness upon Me is known as a man of steady intelligence.


That the highest conception of yoga perfection is Ka consciousness is clearly explained in this verse. And, unless one is Ka conscious, it is not at all possible to control the senses. As cited above, the great sage Durvs Muni picked a quarrel with Mahrja Ambara, and Durvs Muni unnecessarily became angry out of pride and therefore could not check his senses. On the other hand, the King, although not as powerful a yog as the sage, but a devotee of the Lord, silently tolerated all the sages injustices and thereby emerged victorious. The King was able to control his senses because of the following qualifications, as mentioned in the rmad-Bhgavatam:

sa vai mana ka-padravindayor
vacsi vaikuha-gunavarane
karau harer mandira-mrjandiu
ruti cakrcyuta-sat-kathodaye

mukunda-liglaya-darane dau
ghra ca tat-pda-saroja-saurabhe
rmat-tulasy rasan tad-arpite

pdau hare ketra-padnusarpae
iro hkea-padbhivandane
kma ca dsye na tu kma-kmyay
yathottamaloka-janray rati

King Ambara fixed his mind on the lotus feet of Lord Ka, engaged his words in describing the abode of the Lord, his hands in cleansing the temple of the Lord, his ears in hearing the pastimes of the Lord, his eyes in seeing the form of the Lord, his body in touching the body of the devotee, his nostrils in smelling the flavor of the flowers offered to the lotus feet of the Lord, his tongue in tasting the tulas leaves offered to Him, his legs in traveling to the holy place where His temple is situated, his head in offering obeisances unto the Lord, and his desires in fulfilling the desires of the Lord and all these qualifications made him fit to become a mat-para devotee of the Lord. (Bhg. 9.4.18-20)

The word mat-para is most significant in this connection. How one can become a mat-para is described in the life of Mahrja Ambara. rla Baladeva Vidybhaa, a great scholar and crya in the line of the mat-para, remarks: mad-bhakti-prabhvena sarvendriya-vijaya-prvik svtma di sulabheti bhva. The senses can be completely controlled only by the strength of devotional service to Ka. Also the example of fire is sometimes given: As the small flames within burn everything within the room, similarly Lord Viu, situated in the heart of the yog, burns up all kinds of impurities. The Yoga-stra also prescribes meditation on Viu, and not meditation on the void. The so-called yogs who meditate on something which is not the Viu form simply waste their time in a vain search after some phantasmagoria. We have to be Ka consciousdevoted to the Personality of Godhead. This is the aim of the real yoga.

Bg 2.62



DYaaYaTaae ivzYaaNPau&Sa" SaSTaezUPaJaaYaTae )
SaaTSaaYaTae k-aMa" k-aMaaT-aeDaae_i>aJaaYaTae )) 62 ))

dhyyato viayn pusa

sagas tepajyate

sagt sajyate kma

kmt krodho bhijyate

dhyayatawhile contemplating; viaynsense objects; pusaof the person; sagaattachment; teuin the sense objects; upajyatedevelops; sagtattachment; sajyatedevelops; kmadesire; kmtfrom desire; krodhaanger; abhijyatebecomes manifest.


While contemplating the objects of the senses, a person develops attachment for them, and from such attachment lust develops, and from lust anger arises.


One who is not Ka conscious is subjected to material desires while contemplating the objects of senses. The senses require real engagements, and if they are not engaged in the transcendental loving service of the Lord, they will certainly seek engagement in the service of materialism. In the material world everyone, including Lord iva and Lord Brahmto say nothing of other demigods in the heavenly planetsis subjected to the influence of sense objects, and the only method to get out of this puzzle of material existence is to become Ka conscious. Lord iva was deep in meditation, but when Prvat agitated him for sense pleasure, he agreed to the proposal, and as a result Krtikeya was born. When Haridsa hkur was a young devotee of the Lord, he was similarly allured by the incarnation of My Dev, but Haridsa easily passed the test because of his unalloyed devotion to Lord Ka. As illustrated in the above-mentioned verse of r Ymuncrya, a sincere devotee of the Lord shuns all material sense enjoyment due to his higher taste for spiritual enjoyment in the association of the Lord. That is the secret of success. One who is not, therefore, in Ka consciousness, however powerful he may be in controlling the senses by artificial repression, is sure ultimately to fail, for the slightest thought of sense pleasure will agitate him to gratify his desires.

Bg 2.63



-aeDaaviTa SaMMaaeh" SaMMaaehaTSMa*iTaiv>a]Ma" )
SMa*iTa>a]&Xaad(buiNaaXaae buiNaaXaaTPa[<aXYaiTa )) 63 ))

krodhd bhavati sammoha

sammoht smti-vibhrama

smti-bhrad buddhi-no

buddhi-nt praayati

krodhtfrom anger; bhavatitakes place; samohaperfect illusion; samohtfrom illusion; smtiof memory; vibhramabewilderment; smti-bhratafter bewilderment of memory; buddhi-naloss of intelligence; buddhi-ntand from loss of intelligence; praayatifalls down.


From anger, delusion arises, and from delusion bewilderment of memory. When memory is bewildered, intelligence is lost, and when intelligence is lost, one falls down again into the material pool.


By development of Ka consciousness one can know that everything has its use in the service of the Lord. Those who are without knowledge of Ka consciousness artificially try to avoid material objects, and as a result, although they desire liberation from material bondage, they do not attain to the perfect stage of renunciation. On the other hand, a person in Ka consciousness knows how to use everything in the service of the Lord; therefore he does not become a victim of material consciousness. For example, for an impersonalist, the Lord, or the Absolute, being impersonal, cannot eat. Whereas an impersonalist tries to avoid good eatables, a devotee knows that Ka is the supreme enjoyer and that He eats all that is offered to Him in devotion. So, after offering good eatables to the Lord, the devotee takes the remnants, called prasdam. Thus everything becomes spiritualized and there is no danger of a downfall. The devotee takes prasdam in Ka consciousness, whereas the nondevotee rejects it as material. The impersonalist, therefore, cannot enjoy life due to his artificial renunciation; and for this reason, a slight agitation of the mind pulls him down again into the pool of material existence. It is said that such a soul, even though rising up to the point of liberation, falls down again due to his not having support in devotional service.

Bg 2.64



raGaezivMauE-STau ivzYaaiNaiNd]YaErNa( )
AaTMavXYaEivRDaeYaaTMaa Pa[SaadMaiDaGaC^iTa )) 64 ))

rga-dvea-vimuktais tu

viayn indriyai caran

tma-vayair vidheytm

prasdam adhigacchati

rgaattachment; dveadetachment; vimuktaiby one who has been free from such things; tubut; viaynsense objects; indriyaiby the senses; caranacting; tma-vayaione who has control over; vidheytmone who follows regulated freedom; prasdamthe mercy of the Lord; adhigacchatiattains.


One who can control his senses by practicing the regulated principles of freedom can obtain the complete mercy of the Lord and thus become free from all attachment and aversion.


It is already explained that one may externally control the senses by some artificial process, but unless the senses are engaged in the transcendental service of the Lord, there is every chance of a fall. Although the person in full Ka consciousness may apparently be on the sensual plane, because of his being Ka conscious, he has no attachment to sensual activities. The Ka conscious person is concerned only with the satisfaction of Ka, and nothing else. Therefore he is transcendental to all attachment. If Ka wants, the devotee can do anything which is ordinarily undesirable; and if Ka does not want, he shall not do that which he would have ordinarily done for his own satisfaction. Therefore to act or not to act is within his control because he acts only under the direction of Ka. This consciousness is the causeless mercy of the Lord, which the devotee can achieve in spite of his being attached to the sensual platform.

Bg 2.65



Pa[Saade SavRdu"%aNaa& haiNarSYaaePaJaaYaTae )
Pa[SaceTaSaae au bui" PaYaRviTaTae )) 65 ))

prasde sarva-dukhn

hnir asyopajyate

prasanna-cetaso hy u

buddhi paryavatihate

prasdeon achievement of the causeless mercy of the Lord; sarvaall; dukhnmmaterial miseries; hnidestruction; asyahis; upajyatetakes place; prasanna-cetasaof the happy-minded; hicertainly; uvery soon; buddhiintelligence; parisufficiently; avatihateestablished.


For one who is so situated in the Divine consciousness, the threefold miseries of material existence exist no longer; in such a happy state, ones intelligence soon becomes steady.

Bg 2.66



NaaiSTa buirYau-SYa Na caYau-SYa >aavNaa )
Na ca>aavYaTa" XaaiNTarXaaNTaSYa ku-Ta" Sau%Ma( )) 66 ))

nsti buddhir ayuktasya

na cyuktasya bhvan

na cbhvayata ntir

antasya kuta sukham

na astithere cannot be; buddhitranscendental intelligence; ayuktasyaof one who is not connected (with Ka consciousness); naneither; caand; ayuktasyaof one devoid of Ka consciousness; bhvanmind fixed in happiness; naneither; caand; abhvayataone who is not fixed; ntipeace; antasyaof the unpeaceful; kutawhere is; sukhamhappiness.


One who is not in transcendental consciousness can have neither a controlled mind nor steady intelligence, without which there is no possibility of peace. And how can there be any happiness without peace?


Unless one is in Ka consciousness, there is no possibility of peace. So it is confirmed in the Fifth Chapter (5.29) that when one understands that Ka is the only enjoyer of all the good results of sacrifice and penance, and that He is the proprietor of all universal manifestations, that He is the real friend of all living entities, then only can one have real peace. Therefore, if one is not in Ka consciousness, there cannot be a final goal for the mind. Disturbance is due to want of an ultimate goal, and when one is certain that Ka is the enjoyer, proprietor and friend of everyone and everything, then one can, with a steady mind, bring about peace. Therefore, one who is engaged without a relationship with Ka is certainly always in distress and is without peace, however much one may make a show of peace and spiritual advancement in life. Ka consciousness is a self-manifested peaceful condition which can be achieved only in relationship with Ka.

Bg 2.67



wiNd]Yaa<aa& ih crTaa& YaNMaNaae_NauivDaqYaTae )
TadSYa hriTa Pa[ja& vaYauNaaRviMavaM>aiSa )) 67 ))

indriy hi carat

yan mano nuvidhyate

tad asya harati praj

vyur nvam ivmbhasi

indriymof the senses; hicertainly; caratmwhile herding over; yatthat; manamind; anuvidhyatebecomes constantly engaged; tatthat; asyahis; haratitakes away; prajmintelligence; vyuwind; nvama boat; ivalike; ambhasion the water.


As a boat on the water is swept away by a strong wind, even one of the senses on which the mind focuses can carry away a mans intelligence.


Unless all of the senses are engaged in the service of the Lord, even one of them engaged in sense gratification can deviate the devotee from the path of transcendental advancement. As mentioned in the life of Mahrja Ambara, all of the senses must be engaged in Ka consciousness, for that is the correct technique for controlling the mind.

Bg 2.68



TaSMaaSYa Mahabahae iNaGa*hqTaaiNa SavRXa" )
wiNd]Yaa<aqiNd]YaaQaeR>YaSTaSYa Pa[ja Pa[iTaiTaa )) 68 ))

tasmd yasya mah-bho

nightni sarvaa


tasya praj pratihit

tasmttherefore; yasyaof ones; mah-bhoO mighty-armed one; nightniso curbed down; sarvaaall around; indriyithe senses; indriya-arthebhyafor the sake of sense objects; tasyahis; prajintelligence; pratihitfixed.


Therefore, O mighty-armed, one whose senses are restrained from their objects is certainly of steady intelligence.


As enemies are curbed by superior force, similarly, the senses can be curbed not by any human endeavor, but only by keeping them engaged in the service of the Lord. One who has understood thisthat only by Ka consciousness is one really established in intelligence and that one should practice this art under the guidance of a bona fide spiritual masteris called sdhaka, or a suitable candidate for liberation.

Bg 2.69



Yaa iNaXaa SavR>aUTaaNaa& TaSYaa& JaaGaiTaR Sa&YaMaq )
YaSYaa& JaaGa]iTa >aUTaaiNa Saa iNaXaa PaXYaTaae MauNae" )) 69 ))

y ni sarva-bhtn

tasy jgarti sayam

yasy jgrati bhtni

s ni payato mune

ywhat; niis night; sarvaall; bhtnmof living entities; tasymin that; jgartiwakeful; sayamthe self-controlled; yasymin which; jgratiawake; bhtniall beings; sthat is; ninight; payatafor the introspective; munesage.


What is night for all beings is the time of awakening for the self-controlled; and the time of awakening for all beings is night for the introspective sage.


There are two classes of intelligent men. The one is intelligent in material activities for sense gratification, and the other is introspective and awake to the cultivation of self-realization. Activities of the introspective sage, or thoughtful man, are night for persons materially absorbed. Materialistic persons remain asleep in such a night due to their ignorance of self-realization. The introspective sage remains alert in the night of the materialistic men. The sage feels transcendental pleasure in the gradual advancement of spiritual culture, whereas the man in materialistic activities, being asleep to self-realization, dreams of varieties of sense pleasure, feeling sometimes happy and sometimes distressed in his sleeping condition. The introspective man is always indifferent to materialistic happiness and distress. He goes on with his self-realization activities undisturbed by material reaction.

Bg 2.70



SaMaud]MaaPa" Pa[ivXaiNTa YaTa( )
TaTk-aMaa Ya& Pa[ivXaiNTa SaveR
Sa XaaiNTaMaaPanaeiTa Na k-aMak-aMaq )) 70 ))

pryamam acala-pratiha

samudram pa pravianti yadvat

tadvat km ya pravianti sarve

sa ntim pnoti na kma-km

pryamamalways filled; acala-pratihamsteadily situated; samudramthe ocean; pawater; praviantienter; yadvatas; tadvatso; kmdesires; yamunto one; praviantienter; sarveall; sathat person; ntimpeace; pnotiachieves; nanot; kma-kmone who desires to fulfill desires.


A person who is not disturbed by the incessant flow of desiresthat enter like rivers into the ocean which is ever being filled but is always stillcan alone achieve peace, and not the man who strives to satisfy such desires.


Although the vast ocean is always filled with water, it is always, especially during the rainy season, being filled with much more water. But the ocean remains the samesteady; it is not agitated, nor does it cross beyond the limit of its brink. That is also true of a person fixed in Ka consciousness. As long as one has the material body, the demands of the body for sense gratification will continue. The devotee, however, is not disturbed by such desires because of his fullness. A Ka conscious man is not in need of anything because the Lord fulfills all his material necessities. Therefore he is like the oceanalways full in himself. Desires may come to him like the waters of the rivers that flow into the ocean, but he is steady in his activities, and he is not even slightly disturbed by desires for sense gratification. That is the proof of a Ka conscious manone who has lost all inclinations for material sense gratification, although the desires are present. Because he remains satisfied in the transcendental loving service of the Lord, he can remain steady, like the ocean, and therefore enjoy full peace. Others, however, who fulfill desires even up to the limit of liberation, what to speak of material success, never attain peace. The fruitive workers, the salvationists, and also the yogs who are after mystic powers, are all unhappy because of unfulfilled desires. But the person in Ka consciousness is happy in the service of the Lord, and he has no desires to be fulfilled. In fact, he does not even desire liberation from the so-called material bondage. The devotees of Ka have no material desires, and therefore they are in perfect peace.

Bg 2.71



ivhaYa k-aMaaNYa" SavaRNPauMaa&riTa iNa"SPa*h" )
iNaMaRMaae iNarhar" Sa XaaiNTaMaiDaGaC^iTa )) 71 ))

vihya kmn ya sarvn

pum carati nispha

nirmamo nirahakra

sa ntim adhigacchati

vihyaafter giving up; kmnall material desires for sense gratification; yathe person; sarvnall; pumna person; caratilives; nihpha desireless; nirmamawithout a sense of proprietorship; nirahakrawithout false ego; saall; ntimperfect peace; adhigacchatiattains.


A person who has given up all desires for sense gratification, who lives free from desires, who has given up all sense of proprietorship and is devoid of false egohe alone can attain real peace.


To become desireless means not to desire anything for sense gratification. In other words, desire for becoming Ka conscious is actually desirelessness. To understand ones actual position as the eternal servitor of Ka, without falsely claiming this material body to be oneself and without falsely claiming proprietorship over anything in the world, is the perfect stage of Ka consciousness. One who is situated in this perfect stage knows that because Ka is the proprietor of everything, therefore everything must be used for the satisfaction of Ka. Arjuna did not want to fight for his own sense satisfaction, but when he became fully Ka conscious he fought because Ka wanted him to fight. For himself there was no desire to fight, but for Ka the same Arjuna fought to his best ability. Desire for the satisfaction of Ka is really desirelessness; it is not an artificial attempt to abolish desires. The living entity cannot be desireless or senseless, but he does have to change the quality of the desires. A materially desireless person certainly knows that everything belongs to Ka (vsyam ida sarvam), and therefore he does not falsely claim proprietorship over anything. This transcendental knowledge is based on self-realizationnamely, knowing perfectly well that every living entity is the eternal part and parcel of Ka in spiritual identity. and therefore the eternal position of the living entity is never on the level of Ka or greater than Him. This understanding of Ka consciousness is the basic principle of real peace.

Bg 2.72



Wza b]aq iSQaiTa" PaaQaR NaENaa& Pa[aPYa ivMauiTa )
iSQaTvaSYaaMaNTak-ale/_iPa b]iNavaR<aMa*C^iTa )) 72 ))

e brhm sthiti prtha

nain prpya vimuhyati

sthitvsym anta-kle pi

brahma-nirvam cchati

ethis; brhmspiritual; sthitisituation; prthaO son of Pth; nanever; enmthis; prpyaachieving; vimuhyatibewilders; sthitvbeing so situated; asymbeing so; anta-kleat the end of life; apialso; brahma-nirvamspiritual (kingdom of God); cchatiattains.


That is the way of the spiritual and godly life, after attaining which a man is not bewildered. Being so situated, even at the hour of death, one can enter into the kingdom of God.


One can attain Ka consciousness or divine life at once, within a secondor one may not attain such a state of life even after millions of births. It is only a matter of understanding and accepting the fact. Khavga Mahrja attained this state of life just a few minutes before his death, by surrendering unto Ka. Nirva means ending the process of materialistic life. According to Buddhist philosophy, there is only void after the completion of this material life, but Bhagavad-gt teaches differently. Actual life begins after the completion of this material life. For the gross materialist it is sufficient to know that one has to end this materialistic way of life, but for persons who are spiritually advanced, there is another life after this materialistic life. Before ending this life, if one fortunately becomes Ka conscious, he at once attains the stage of Brahma-nirva. There is no difference between the kingdom of God and the devotional service of the Lord. Since both of them are on the absolute plane, to be engaged in the transcendental loving service of the Lord is to have attained the spiritual kingdom. In the material world there are activities of sense gratification, whereas in the spiritual world there are activities of Ka consciousness. Attainment of Ka consciousness even during this life is immediate attainment of Brahman, and one who is situated in Ka consciousness has certainly already entered into the kingdom of God.

Brahman is just the opposite of matter. Therefore brhm sthiti means not on the platform of material activities. Devotional service of the Lord is accepted in the Bhagavad-gt as the liberated stage. Therefore, brhm-sthiti is liberation from material bondage.

rla Bhaktivinode hkur has summarized this Second Chapter of the Bhagavad-gt as being the contents for the whole text. In the Bhagavad-gt, the subject matters are karma-yoga, jna-yoga, and bhakti-yoga. In the Second Chapter karma-yoga and jna-yoga have been clearly discussed, and a glimpse of bhakti-yoga has also been given, as the contents for the complete text.

Thus end the Bhaktivedanta Purports to the Second Chapter of the rmad-Bhagavad-gt in the matter of its Contents.

Bg 3. Karma-yoga



Bg 3.1



AJauRNa ovac
JYaaYaSaq ceTk-MaR<aSTae MaTaa buiJaRNaadRNa )
TaiTk&- k-MaRi<a gaaere Maa& iNaYaaeJaYaiSa ke-Xav )) 1 ))

arjuna uvca

jyyas cet karmaas te

mat buddhir janrdana

tat ki karmai ghore m

niyojayasi keava

arjunaArjuna; uvcasaid; jyyasspeaking very highly; cetalthough; karmaathan fruitive action; teyour; matopinion; buddhiintelligence; janrdanaO Ka; tattherefore; kimwhy; karmaiin action; ghoreghastly; mmme; niyojayasiengaging me; keavaO Ka.


Arjuna said: O Janrdana, O Keava, why do You urge me to engage in this ghastly warfare, if You think that intelligence is better than fruitive work?


The Supreme Personality of Godhead r Ka has very elaborately described the constitution of the soul in the previous chapter, with a view to deliver His intimate friend Arjuna from the ocean of material grief. And the path of realization has been recommended: buddhi-yoga, or Ka consciousness. Sometimes Ka consciousness is misunderstood to be inertia, and one with such a misunderstanding often withdraws to a secluded place to become fully Ka conscious by chanting the holy name of Lord Ka. But without being trained in the philosophy of Ka consciousness, it is not advisable to chant the holy name of Ka in a secluded place where one may acquire only cheap adoration from the innocent public. Arjuna also thought of Ka consciousness or buddhi-yoga, or intelligence in spiritual advancement of knowledge, as something like retirement from active life and the practice of penance and austerity at a secluded place. In other words, he wanted to skillfully avoid the fighting by using Ka consciousness as an excuse. But as a sincere student, he placed the matter before his master and questioned Ka as to his best course of action. In answer, Lord Ka elaborately explained karma-yoga, or work in Ka consciousness, in this Third Chapter.

Bg 3.2



VYaaiMa[e<aev vaKYaeNa bui& MaaehYaSaqv Mae )
Tadek&- vd iNaiTYa YaeNa [eYaae_hMaaPanuYaaMa( )) 2 ))

vymireeva vkyena

buddhi mohayasva me

tad eka vada nicitya

yena reyo ham pnuym

vymireaby equivocal; ivaas; vkyenawords; buddhimintelligence; mohayasibewildering; ivaas; memy; tattherefore; ekamonly one; vadaplease tell; nicityaascertaining; yenaby which; reyareal benefit; ahamI; pnuymmay have it.


My intelligence is bewildered by Your equivocal instructions. Therefore, please tell me decisively what is most beneficial for me.


In the previous chapter, as a prelude to the Bhagavad-gt, many different paths were explained, such as skhya-yoga, buddhi-yoga, control of the senses by intelligence, work without fruitive desire, and the position of the neophyte. This was all presented unsystematically. A more organized outline of the path would be necessary for action and understanding. Arjuna, therefore, wanted to clear up these apparently confusing matters so that any common man could accept them without misinterpretation. Although Ka had no intention of confusing Arjuna by any jugglery of words, Arjuna could not follow the process of Ka consciousnesseither by inertia or active service. In other words, by his questions he is clearing the path of Ka consciousness for all students who seriously want to understand the mystery of the Bhagavad-gt.

Bg 3.3



l/aeke-_iSMaiNivDaa iNaa Paura Pa[ae-a MaYaaNaga )
jaNaYaaeGaeNa Saa&:YaaNaa& k-MaRYaaeGaeNa YaaeiGaNaaMa( )) 3 ))

r-bhagavn uvca

loke smin dvi-vidh nih

pur prokt maynagha

jna-yogena skhyn

karma-yogena yoginm

r bhagavn uvcathe Supreme Personality of Godhead said; lokein the world; asminthis; dvi-vidhtwo kinds of; nihfaith; purformerly; proktwas said; mayby Me; anaghaO sinless one; jna-yogenaby the linking process of knowledge; skhynmof the empiric philosophers; karma-yogenaby the linking process of devotion; yoginmof the devotees.


The Blessed Lord said: O sinless Arjuna, I have already explained that there are two classes of men who realize the Self. Some are inclined to understand Him by empirical, philosophical speculation, and others are inclined to know Him by devotional work.


In the Second Chapter, verse 39, the Lord explained two kinds of proceduresnamely skhya-yoga and karma-yoga, or buddhi-yoga. In this verse, the Lord explains the same more clearly. Skhya-yoga, or the analytical study of the nature of spirit and matter, is the subject matter for persons who are inclined to speculate and understand things by experimental knowledge and philosophy. The other class of men work in Ka consciousness, as it is explained in the 61st verse of the Second Chapter. The Lord has explained, also in the 39th verse, that by working by the principles of buddhi-yoga, or Ka consciousness, one can be relieved from the bonds of action; and, furthermore, there is no flaw in the process. The same principle is more clearly explained in the 61st versethat this buddhi-yoga is to depend entirely on the Supreme (or more specifically, on Ka), and in this way all the senses can be brought under control very easily. Therefore, both the yogas are interdependant, as religion and philosophy. Religion without philosophy is sentiment, or sometimes fanaticism, while philosophy without religion is mental speculation. The ultimate goal is Ka, because the philosophers who are also sincerely searching after the Absolute Truth come in the end to Ka consciousness. This is also stated in the Bhagavad-gt. The whole process is to understand the real position of the self in relation to the Superself. The indirect process is philosophical speculation, by which, gradually, one may come to the point of Ka consciousness; and the other process is directly connecting with everything in Ka consciousness. Of these two, the path of Ka consciousness is better because it does not depend on purifying the senses by a philosophical process. Ka consciousness is itself the purifying process, and by the direct method of devotional service it is simultaneously easy and sublime.

Bg 3.4



Na k-MaR<aaMaNaarM>aaEZk-MYa| Pauzae_nuTae )
Na c SaNNYaSaNaadev iSai& SaMaiDaGaC^iTa )) 4 ))

na karmam anrambhn

naikarmya puruo nute

na ca sannyasand eva

siddhi samadhigacchati

nawithout; karmamof the prescribed duties; anrambhtnon-performance; naikarmyamfreedom from reaction; puruahman; anuteachieve; nanor; caalso; sannyasantby renunciation; evasimply; siddhimsuccess; samadhigacchatiattain.


Not by merely abstaining from work can one achieve freedom from reaction, nor by renunciation alone can one attain perfection.


The renounced order of life can be accepted upon being purified by the discharge of the prescribed form of duties which are laid down just to purify the heart of materialistic men. Without purification, one cannot attain success by abruptly adopting the fourth order of life (sannysa). According to the empirical philosophers, simply by adopting sannysa, or retiring from fruitive activities, one at once becomes as good as Nryaa. But Lord Ka does not approve this principle. Without purification of heart, sannysa is simply a disturbance to the social order. On the other hand, if someone takes to the transcendental service of the Lord, even without discharging his prescribed duties, whatever he may be able to advance in the cause is accepted by the Lord (buddhi-yoga). Svalpam apy asya dharmasya tryate mahato bhayt. Even a slight performance of such a principle enables one to overcome great difficulties.

Bg 3.5



Na ih k-iT+a<aMaiPa JaaTau iTaTYak-MaRk*-Ta( )
k-aYaRTae vXa" k-MaR SavR" Pa[k*-iTaJaEGauR<aE" )) 5 ))

na hi kacit kaam api

jtu tihaty akarma-kt

kryate hy avaa karma

sarva prakti-jair guai


nanor; hicertainly; kacitanyone; kaameven a moment; apialso; jtueven; tihatistands; akarma-ktwithout doing something; kryateis forced to do; hicertainly; avaahelplessly; karmawork; sarvaeverything; prakti-jaiout of the modes of material nature; guaiby the qualities.


All men are forced to act helplessly according to the impulses born of the modes of material nature; therefore no one can refrain from doing something, not even for a moment.


It is not a question of embodied life, but it is the nature of the soul to be always active. Without the presence of the spirit soul, the material body cannot move. The body is only a dead vehicle to be worked by the spirit soul, which is always active and cannot stop even for a moment. As such, the spirit soul has to be engaged in the good work of Ka consciousness, otherwise it will be engaged in occupations dictated by illusory energy. In contact with material energy, the spirit soul acquires material modes, and to purify the soul from such affinities it is necessary to engage in the prescribed duties enjoined in the stras. But if the soul is engaged in his natural function of Ka consciousness, whatever he is able to do is good for him. The rmad-Bhgavatam affirms this:

tyaktv sva-dharma carambuja harer
bhajann apakvo tha patet tato yadi
yatra kva vbhadram abhd amuya ki
ko vrtha pto bhajat sva-dharmata.

If someone takes to Ka consciousness, even though he may not follow the prescribed duties in the stras nor execute the devotional service properly, and even though he may fall down from the standard, there is no loss or evil for him. But if he carries out all the injunctions for purification in the stras, what does it avail him if he is not Ka conscious? (Bhg. 1.5.17) So the purificatory process is necessary for reaching this point of Ka consciousness. Therefore, sannysa, or any purificatory process, is to help reach the ultimate goal of becoming Ka conscious, without which everything is considered a failure.

Bg 3.6



k-MaeRiNd]Yaai<a Sa&YaMYa Ya AaSTae MaNaSaa SMarNa( )
wiNd]YaaQaaRiNvMaU!aTMaa iMaQYaacar" Sa oCYaTae )) 6 ))

karmendriyi sayamya

ya ste manas smaran

indriyrthn vimhtm

mithycra sa ucyate

karma-indriyithe five working sense organs; sayamyacontrolling; yaanyone who; steremains; manasby mind; smaranthinking; indriya-arthnsense objects; vimhafoolish; tmsoul; mithy-crapretender; sahe; ucyateis called.


One who restrains the senses and organs of action, but whose mind dwells on sense objects, certainly deludes himself and is called a pretender.


There are many pretenders who refuse to work in Ka consciousness but make a show of meditation, while actually dwelling within the mind upon sense enjoyment. Such pretenders may also speak on dry philosophy in order to bluff sophisticated followers, but according to this verse these are the greatest cheaters. For sense enjoyment one can act in any capacity of the social order, but if one follows the rules and regulations of his particular status, he can make gradual progress in purifying his existence. But he who makes a show of being a yog, while actually searching for the objects of sense gratification, must be called the greatest cheater, even though he sometimes speaks of philosophy. His knowledge has no value because the effects of such a sinful mans knowledge are taken away by the illusory energy of the Lord. Such a pretenders mind is always impure, and therefore his show of yogic meditation has no value whatsoever.

Bg 3.7



YaiSTviNd]Yaai<a MaNaSaa iNaYaMYaar>aTae_JauRNa )
k-MaeRiNd]YaE" k-MaRYaaeGaMaSa-" Sa iviXaZYaTae )) 7 ))

yas tv indriyi manas

niyamyrabhate rjuna

karmendriyai karma-yogam

asakta sa viiyate

yaone who; tubut; indriyisenses; manasby the mind; niyamyaregulating; rabhatebegins; arjunaO Arjuna; karma-indriyaiby the active sense organs; karma-yogamdevotion; asaktawithout attachment; sahe; viiyateby far the better.


On the other hand, he who controls the senses by the mind and engages his active organs in works of devotion, without attachment, is by far superior.


Instead of becoming a pseudo-transcendentalist for the sake of wanton living and sense enjoyment, it is far better to remain in ones own business and execute the purpose of life, which is to get free from material bondage and enter into the kingdom of God. The prime svrtha-gati, or goal of self-interest, is to reach Viu. The whole institution of vara and rama is designed to help us reach this goal of life. A householder can also reach this destination by regulated service in Ka consciousness. For self-realization, one can live a controlled life, as prescribed in the stras, and continue carrying out his business without attachment, and in that way make progress. Such a sincere person who follows this method is far better situated than the false pretender who adopts show-bottle spiritualism to cheat the innocent public. A sincere sweeper in the street is far better than the charlatan meditator who meditates only for the sake of making a living.

Bg 3.8



iNaYaTa& ku- k-MaR Tv& k-MaR JYaaYaae k-MaR<a" )
XarqrYaa}aaiPa c Tae Na Pa[iSayedk-MaR<a" )) 8 ))

niyata kuru karma tva

karma jyyo hy akarmaa

arra-ytrpi ca te

na prasiddhyed akarmaa

niyatamprescribed; kurudo; karmaduties; tvamyou; karmawork; jyyabetter; hithan; akarmaawithout work; arrabodily; ytrmaintenance; apieven; caalso; teyour; nanever; prasiddhyeteffected; akarmaawithout work.


Perform your prescribed duty, for action is better than inaction. A man cannot even maintain his physical body without work.


There are many pseudo-meditators who misrepresent themselves as belonging to high parentage, and great professional men who falsely pose that they have sacrificed everything for the sake of advancement in spiritual life. Lord Ka did not want Arjuna to become a pretender, but that he perform his prescribed duties as set forth for katriyas. Arjuna was a householder and a military general, and therefore it was better for him to remain as such and perform his religious duties as prescribed for the householder katriya. Such activities gradually cleanse the heart of a mundane man and free him from material contamination. So-called renunciation for the purpose of maintenance is never approved by the Lord, nor by any religious scripture. After all, one has to maintain ones body and soul together by some work. Work should not be given up capriciously, without purification of materialistic propensities. Anyone who is in the material world is certainly possessed of the impure propensity for lording it over material nature, or, in other words, for sense gratification. Such polluted propensities have to be cleared. Without doing so, through prescribed duties, one should never attempt to become a so-called transcendentalist, renouncing work and living at the cost of others.

Bg 3.9



YajaQaaRTk-MaR<aae_NYa}a l/aek-ae_Ya& k-MaRbNDaNa" )
TadQa| k-MaR k-aENTaeYa Mau-Sa" SaMaacr )) 9 ))

yajrtht karmao nyatra

loko ya karma-bandhana

tad-artha karma kaunteya

mukta-saga samcara

yaja-arthtonly for the sake of Yaja, or Viu; karmaawork done; anyatraotherwise; lokathis world; ayamthis; karma-bandhanabondage by work; tatHim; arthamfor the sake of; karmawork; kaunteyaO son of Kunt; mukta-sagaliberated from association; samcarado it perfectly.


Work done as a sacrifice for Viu has to be performed, otherwise work binds one to this material world. Therefore, O son of Kunt, perform your prescribed duties for His satisfaction, and in that way you will always remain unattached and free from bondage.


Since one has to work even for the simple maintenance of the body, the prescribed duties for a particular social position and quality are so made that that purpose can be fulfilled. Yaja means Lord Viu, or sacrificial performances. All sacrificial performances also are meant for the satisfaction of Lord Viu. The Vedas enjoin: yajo vai viu. In other words, the same purpose is served whether one performs prescribed yajas or directly serves Lord Viu. Ka consciousness is therefore performance of yaja as it is prescribed in this verse. The varrama institution also aims at this for satisfying Lord Viu. Varramcra-vat puruea para pumn/viur rdhyate (Viu Pura 3.8.8) Therefore one has to work for the satisfaction of Viu. Any other work done in this material world wilI be a cause of bondage, for both good and evil work have their reactions, and any reaction binds the performer. Therefore, one has to work in Ka consciousness to satisfy Ka (or Viu); and while performing such activities one is in a liberated stage. This is the great art of doing work, and in the beginning this process requires very expert guidance. One should therefore act very diligently, under the expert guidance of a devotee of Lord Ka, or under the direct instruction of Lord Ka Himself (under whom Arjuna had the opportunity to work). Nothing should be performed for sense gratification, but everything should be done for the satisfaction of Ka. This practice will not only save one from the reaction of work, but will also gradually elevate one to transcendental loving service of the Lord, which alone can raise one to the kingdom of God.

Bg 3.10



SahYaja" Pa[Jaa" Sa*a Pauraevac Pa[JaaPaiTa" )
ANaeNa Pa[SaivZYaMaez vae_iSTvk-aMaDauk(- )) 10 ))

saha-yaj praj sv

purovca prajpati

anena prasaviyadhvam

ea vo stv ia-kma-dhuk

sahaalong with; yajsacrifices; prajgenerations; svby creating; puranciently; uvcasaid; praj-patithe Lord of creatures; anenaby this; prasaviyadhvambe more and more prosperous; eacertainly; vayour; astulet it be; iaall desirable; kma-dhukbestower.


In the beginning of creation, the Lord of all creatures sent forth generations of men and demigods, along with sacrifices for Viu, and blessed them by saying, Be thou happy by this yaja [sacrifice] because its performance will bestow upon you all desirable things.


The material creation by the Lord of creatures (Viu) is a chance offered to the conditioned souls to come back homeback to Godhead. All living entities within the material creation are conditioned by material nature because of their forgetfulness of their relationship to Ka, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. The Vedic principles are to help us understand this eternal relation as it is stated in the Bhagavad-gt: vedai ca sarvair aham eva vedya. The Lord says that the purpose of the Vedas is to understand Him. In the Vedic hymns it is said: pati vivasytmevaram. Therefore, the Lord of the living entities is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Viu. In the rmad-Bhgavatam also rla ukadeva Gosvm describes the Lord as pati in so many ways:

riya-patir yaja-pati praj-patir
dhiy patir loka-patir dhar-pati
patir gati cndhaka-vi-stvat
prasdat me bhagavn sat pati

(Bhg. 2.4.20)

The praj-pati is Lord Viu, and He is the Lord of all living creatures, all worlds, and all beauties, and the protector of everyone. The Lord created this material world for the conditioned souls to learn how to perform yajas (sacrifice) for the satisfaction of Viu, so that while in the material world they can live very comfortably without anxiety. Then after finishing the present material body, they can enter into the kingdom of God. That is the whole program for the conditioned soul. By performance of yaja, the conditioned souls gradually become Ka conscious and become godly in all respects. In this age of Kali, the sakrtana-yaja (the chanting of the names of God) is recommended by the Vedic scriptures, and this transcendental system was introduced by Lord Caitanya for the deliverance of all men in this age. Sakrtana-yaja and Ka consciousness go well together. Lord Ka in His devotional form (as Lord Caitanya) is mentioned in the rmad-Bhgavatam as follows, with special reference to the sakrtana-yaja:

ka-vara tvik sgopgstra-pradam
yajai sakrtana-pryair yajanti hi su-medhasa

In this age of Kali, people who are endowed with sufficient intelligence will worship the Lord, who is accompanied by His associates, by performance of sakrtana-yaja. (Bhg. 11.5.29) Other yajas prescribed in the Vedic literatures are not easy to perform in this age of Kali, but the sakrtana-yaja is easy and sublime for all purposes.

Bg 3.11



devaN>aavYaTaaNaeNa Tae deva >aavYaNTau v" )
ParSPar& >aavYaNTa" [eYa" ParMavaPSYaQa )) 11 ))

devn bhvayatnena

te dev bhvayantu va

paraspara bhvayanta

reya param avpsyatha

devndemigods; bhvayatahaving been pleased; anenaby this sacrifice; tethose; devthe demigods; bhvayantuwill please; vayou; parasparammutual; bhvayantapleasing one another; sreyabenediction; paramthe supreme; avpsyathado you achieve.


The demigods, being pleased by sacrifices, will also please you; thus nourishing one another, there will reign general prosperity for all.


The demigods are empowered administrators of material affairs. The supply of air, light, water and all other benedictions for maintaining the body and soul of every living entity are entrusted to the demigods, who are innumerable assistants in different parts of the body of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Their pleasures and displeasures are dependant on the performance of yajas by the human being. Some of the yajas are meant to satisfy particular demigods; but even in so doing, Lord Viu is worshiped in all yajas as the chief beneficiary. It is stated also in the Bhagavad-gt that Ka Himself is the beneficiary of all kinds of yajas: bhoktra yaja-tapasm. Therefore, ultimate satisfaction of the yajapati is the chief purpose of all yajas. When these yajas are perfectly performed, naturally the demigods in charge of the different departments of supply are pleased, and there is no scarcity in the supply of natural products.

Performance of yajas has many side benefits, ultimately leading to liberation from the material bondage. By performance of yajas, all activities become purified, as it is stated in the Vedas:

hra-uddhau sattva-uddhi sattva-uddhau
dhruv smti smti-lambhe sarva-granthn vipra-moka

As it will be explained in the following verse, by performance of yaja, ones eatables become sanctified, and by eating sanctified foodstuffs, ones very existence becomes purified; by the purification of existence, finer tissues in the memory become sanctified, and when memory is sanctified, one can think of the path of liberation, and all these combined together lead to Ka consciousness, the great necessity of present-day society.

Bg 3.12



waN>aaeGaaiNh vae deva daSYaNTae Yaj>aaivTaa" )
TaEdRtaaNaPa[daYaE>Yaae Yaae >aue STaeNa Wv Sa" )) 12 ))

in bhogn hi vo dev

dsyante yaja-bhvit

tair dattn apradyaibhyo

yo bhukte stena eva sa

indesired; bhognnecessities of life; hicertainly; vaunto you; devthe demigods; dsyanteaward; yaja-bhvitbeing satisfied by the performance of sacrifices; taiby them; dattnthings given; apradyawithout offering; ebhyato the demigods; yahe who; bhukteenjoys; stenathief; evacertainly; sais he.


In charge of the various necessities of life, the demigods, being satisfied by the performance of yaja [sacrifice], supply all necessities to man. But he who enjoys these gifts, without offering them to the demigods in return, is certainly a thief.


The demigods are authorized supplying agents on behalf of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Viu. Therefore, they must be satisfied by the performance of prescribed yajas. In the Vedas, there are different kinds of yajas prescribed for different kinds of demigods, but all are ultimately offered to the Supreme Personality of Godhead. For one who cannot understand what the Personality of Godhead is, sacrifice to the demigods is recommended. According to the different material qualities of the persons concerned, different types of yajas are recommended in the Vedas. Worship of different demigods is also on the same basisnamely, according to different qualities. For example, the meat-eaters are recommended to worship the goddess Kl, the ghastly form of material nature, and before the goddess the sacrifice of animals is recommended. But for those who are in the mode of goodness, the transcendental worship of Viu is recommended. But ultimately, all yajas are meant for gradual promotion to the transcendental position. For ordinary men, at least five yajas, known as paca-mahyaja, are necessary.

One should know, however, that all the necessities of life that the human society requires are supplied by the demigod agents of the Lord. No one can manufacture anything. Take, for example, all the eatables of human society. These eatables include grains, fruits, vegetables, milk, sugar, etc., for the persons in the mode of goodness, and also eatables for the nonvegetarians, like meats, etc., none of which can be manufactured by men. Then again, take for example heat, light, water, air, etc., which are also necessities of lifenone of them can be manufactured by the human society. Without the Supreme Lord, there can be no profuse sunlight, moonlight, rainfall, breeze, etc., without which no one can live. Obviously, our life is dependant on supplies from the Lord. Even for our manufacturing enterprises, we require so many raw materials like metal, sulphur, mercury, manganese, and so many essentialsall of which are supplied by the agents of the Lord, with the purpose that we should make proper use of them to keep ourselves fit and healthy for the purpose of self-realization, leading to the ultimate goal of life, namely, liberation from the material struggle for existence. This aim of life is attained by performance of yajas. If we forget the purpose of human life and simply take supplies from the agents of the Lord for sense gratification and become more and more entangled in material existence, which is not the purpose of creation, certainly we become thieves, and therefore we are punished by the laws of material nature. A society of thieves can never be happy because they have no aim in life. The gross materialist thieves have no ultimate goal of life. They are simply directed to sense gratification; nor do they have knowledge of how to perform yajas. Lord Caitanya, however, inaugurated the easiest performance of yaja, namely the sakrtana-yaja, which can be performed by anyone in the world who accepts the principles of Ka consciousness.

Bg 3.13



YajiXaaiXaNa" SaNTaae MauCYaNTae SavRik-iLbzE"
>auTae Tae Tvga& PaaPaa Yae PacNTYaaTMak-ar<aaTa( )) 13 ))

yaja-iina santo

mucyante sarva-kilbiai

bhujate te tv agha pp

ye pacanty tma-krat

yaja-iafood taken after performance of yaja; ainaeaters; santathe devotees; mucyanteget relief from; sarvaall kinds of; kilbiaisins; bhujateenjoy; tethey; tubut; aghamgrievous sins; ppsinners; yethose; pacantiprepare food; tma-kratfor sense enjoyment.


The devotees of the Lord are released from all kinds of sins because they eat food which is offered first for sacrifice. Others, who prepare food for personal sense enjoyment, verily eat only sin.


The devotees of the Supreme Lord, or the persons who are in Ka consciousness, are called santas, and they are always in love with the Lord as it is described in the Brahma-sahit: premjana- cchurita-bhakti-vilocanena santa sadaiva hdayeu vilokayanti. The santas, being always in a compact of love with the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Govinda (the giver of all pleasures), or Mukunda (the giver of liberation), or Ka (the all-attractive person), cannot accept anything without first offering it to the Supreme Person. Therefore, such devotees always perform yajas in different modes of devotional service, such as ravaam, krtanam, smaraam, arcanam, etc., and these performances of yajas keep them always aloof from all kinds of contamination of sinful association in the material world. Others, who prepare food for self or sense gratification, are not only thieves, but are also the eaters of all kinds of sins. How can a person be happy if he is both a thief and sinful? It is not possible. Therefore, in order for people to become happy in all respects, they must be taught to perform the easy process of sakrtana-yaja, in full Ka consciousness. Otherwise, there can be no peace or happiness in the world.

Bg 3.14



AaviNTa >aUTaaiNa PaJaRNYaadSaM>av" )
YajaviTa PaJaRNYaae Yaj" k-MaRSaMauv" )) 14 ))

annd bhavanti bhtni

parjanyd anna-sambhava

yajd bhavati parjanyo

yaja karma-samudbhava

anntfrom grains; bhavantigrow; bhtnithe material bodies; parjanytfrom rains; annafood grains; sambhavaare made possible; yajtfrom the performance of sacrifice; bhavatibecomes possible; parjanyarains; yajaperformance of yaja; karmaprescribed duties; samudbhavaborn of.


All living bodies subsist on food grains, which are produced from rain. Rains are produced by performance of yaja [sacrifice], and yaja is born of prescribed duties.


rla Baladeva Vidybhaa, a great commentator on the Bhagavad-gt, writes as follows: ye indrdy-aga-tayvasthita yaja sarvevara vium abhyarccya taccheam ananti tena taddeha-yntr sampdayanti te santa sarvevarasya bhakt sarva-kilviair andi-kla-vivddhair tmnubhava- pratibandhakair nikhilai ppair vimucyante. The Supreme Lord, who is known as the yaja-purua, or the personal beneficiary of all sacrifices, is the master of all demigods who serve Him as the different limbs of the body serve the whole. Demigods like Indra, Candra, Varua, etc., are appointed officers who manage material affairs, and the Vedas direct sacrifices to satisfy these demigods so that they may be pleased to supply air, light and water sufficiently to produce food grains. When Lord Ka is worshiped, the demigods, who are different limbs of the Lord, are also automatically worshiped; therefore there is no separate need to worship the demigods. For this reason, the devotees of the Lord, who are in Ka consciousness, offer food to Ka and then eata process which nourishes the body spiritually. By such action not only are past sinful reactions in the body vanquished, but the body becomes immunized to all contamination of material nature. When there is an epidemic disease, an antiseptic vaccine protects a person from the attack of such an epidemic. Similarly, food offered to Lord Viu and then taken by us makes us sufficiently resistant to material affection, and one who is accustomed to this practice is called a devotee of the Lord. Therefore, a person in Ka consciousness, who eats only food offered to Ka, can counteract all reactions of past material infections, which are impediments to the progress of self-realization. On the other hand, one who does not do so continues to increase the volume of sinful action, and this prepares the next body to resemble hogs and dogs, to suffer the resultant reactions of all sins. The material world is full of contaminations, and one who is immunized by accepting prasdam of the Lord (food offered to Viu) is saved from the attack, whereas one who does not do so becomes subjected to contamination.

Food grains or vegetables are factually eatables. The human being eats different kinds of food grains, vegetables, fruits, etc., and the animals eat the refuse of the food grains and vegetables, grass, plants, etc. Human beings who are accustomed to eating meat and flesh must also depend on the production of vegetation in order to eat the animals. Therefore, ultimately, we have to depend on the production of the field and not on the production of big factories. The field production is due to sufficient rain from the sky, and such rains are controlled by demigods like Indra, sun, moon, etc., and they are all servants of the Lord. The Lord can be satisfied by sacrifices; therefore, one who cannot perform them will find himself in scarcitythat is the law of nature. Yaja, specifically the sakrtana-yaja prescribed for this age, must therefore be performed to save us at least from scarcity of food supply.

Bg 3.15



k-MaR b]aev& ivi b]a+arSaMauvMa( )
TaSMaaTSavRGaTa& b] iNaTYa& Yaje Pa[iTaiTaMa( )) 15 ))

karma brahmodbhava viddhi


tasmt sarva-gata brahma

nitya yaje pratihitam

karmawork; brahmaVedas; udbhavamproduced from; viddhione should know; brahmathe Vedas; akarathe Supreme Brahman (Personality of Godhead); samudbhavam; directly manifested; tasmttherefore; sarva-gatamall-pervading; brahmaTranscendence; nityameternally; yajein sacrifice; pratihitamsituated.


Regulated activities are prescribed in the Vedas, and the Vedas are directly manifested from the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Consequently the all-pervading Transcendence is eternally situated in acts of sacrifice.


Yajrtha karma, or the necessity of work for the satisfaction of Ka only, is more expressly stated in this verse. If we have to work for the satisfaction of the yaja-purua, Viu, then we must find out the direction of work in Brahman, or the transcendental Vedas. The Vedas are therefore codes of working directions. Anything performed without the direction of the Vedas is called vikarma, or unauthorized or sinful work. Therefore, one should always take direction from the Vedas to be saved from the reaction of work. As one has to work in ordinary life by the direction of the state, similarly, one has to work under direction of the supreme state of the Lord. Such directions in the Vedas are directly manifested from the breathing of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. It is said: asya mahato bhtasya navasitam etad yad g-vedo yajur-veda sma-vedo tharv girasa. The four Vedasnamely the g-veda, Yajur-veda, Sma-veda and Atharva-vedaare all emanations from the breathing of the great Personality of Godhead. The Lord, being omnipotent, can speak by breathing air, as it is confirmed in the Brahma-sahit, for the Lord has the omnipotence to perform through each of His senses the actions of all other senses. In other words, the Lord can speak through His breathing, and He can impregnate by His eyes. In fact, it is said that He glanced over material nature and thus fathered all living entities. After creating or impregnating the conditioned souls into the womb of material nature, He gave His directions in the Vedic wisdom as to how such conditioned souls can return home, back to Godhead. We should always remember that the conditioned souls in material nature are all eager for material enjoyment. But the Vedic directions are so made that one can satisfy ones perverted desires, then return to Godhead, having finished his so-called enjoyment. It is a chance for the conditioned souls to attain liberation; therefore the conditioned souls must try to follow the process of yaja by becoming Ka conscious. Even those who cannot follow the Vedic injunctions may adopt the principles of Ka consciousness, and that will take the place of performance of Vedic yajas, or karmas.

Bg 3.16



Wv& Pa[viTaRTa& c&- NaaNauvTaRYaTaqh Ya" )
AgaaYauiriNd]YaaraMaae Maaega& PaaQaR Sa JaqviTa )) 16 ))

eva pravartita cakra

nnuvartayatha ya

aghyur indriyrmo

mogha prtha sa jvati

evamthus prescribed; pravartitamestablished by the Vedas; cakramcycle; nadoes not; anuvartayatiadopt; ihain this life; yaone who; aghyulife full of sins; indriya-rmasatisfied in sense gratification; moghamuseless; prthaO son of Pth (Arjuna); saone who does so; jvatilives.


My dear Arjuna, a man who does not follow this prescribed Vedic system of sacrifice certainly leads a life of sin, for a person delighting only in the senses lives in vain.


The mammonist philosophy of work very hard and enjoy sense gratification is condemned herein by the Lord. Therefore, for those who want to enjoy this material world, the above-mentioned cycle of performing yajas is absolutely necessary. One who does not follow such regulations is living a very risky life, being condemned more and more. By natures law, this human form of life is specifically meant for self-realization, in either of the three waysnamely karma-yoga, jna-yoga, or bhakti-yoga. There is no necessity of rigidly following the performances of the prescribed yajas for the transcendentalists who are above vice and virtue; but those who are engaged in sense gratification require purification by the above-mentioned cycle of yaja performances. There are different kinds of activities. Those who are not Ka conscious are certainly engaged in sensory consciousness; therefore they need to execute pious work. The yaja system is planned in such a way that sensory conscious persons may satisfy their desires without becoming entangled in the reaction of sense-gratificatory work. The prosperity of the world depends not on our own efforts but on the background arrangement of the Supreme Lord, directly carried out by the demigods. Therefore, the yajas are directly aimed at the particular demigod mentioned in the Vedas. Indirectly, it is the practice of Ka consciousness, because when one masters the performance of yajas, one is sure to become Ka conscious. But if by performing yajas one does not become Ka conscious, such principles are counted as only moral codes. One should not, therefore, limit his progress only to the point of moral codes, but should transcend them, to attain Ka consciousness.

Bg 3.17



YaSTvaTMariTarev SYaadaTMaTa* MaaNav" )
AaTMaNYaev c SaNTauSTaSYa k-aYa| Na ivTae )) 17 ))

yas tv tma-ratir eva syd

tma-tpta ca mnava

tmany eva ca santuas

tasya krya na vidyate

yaone who; tubut; tma-ratitakes pleasure; evacertainly; sytremains; tma-tptaself-illuminated; caand; mnavaa man; tmaniin himself; evaonly; caand; santuaperfectly satiated; tasyahis; kryamduty; nadoes not; vidyateexist.


One who is, however, taking pleasure in the self, who is illumined in the self, who rejoices in and is satisfied with the self only, fully satiatedfor him there is no duty.


A person who is fully Ka conscious, and is fully satisfied by his acts in Ka consciousness, no longer has any duty to perform. Due to his being Ka conscious, all impiety within is instantly cleansed, an effect of many, many thousands of yaja performances. By such clearing of consciousness, one becomes fully confident of his eternal position in relationship with the Supreme. His duty thus becomes self-illuminated by the grace of the Lord, and therefore he no longer has any obligations to the Vedic injunctions. Such a Ka conscious person is no longer interested in material activities and no longer takes pleasure in material arrangements like wine, women and similar infatuations.

Bg 3.18



NaEv TaSYa k*-TaeNaaQaaeR Naak*-TaeNaeh k-Na )
Na caSYa SavR>aUTaezu k-idQaRVYaPaa[Ya" )) 18 ))

naiva tasya ktenrtho

nkteneha kacana

na csya sarva-bhteu

kacid artha-vyapraya

nanever; evacertainly; tasyahis; ktenaby discharge of duty; arthapurpose; nanor; aktenawithout discharge of duty; ihain this world; kacanawhatever; nanever; caand; asyaof him; sarva-bhteu in all living beings; kacitany; arthapurpose; vyapa-rayataking shelter of.


A self-realized man has no purpose to fulfill in the discharge of his prescribed duties, nor has he any reason not to perform such work. Nor has he any need to depend on any other living being.


A self-realized man is no longer obliged to perform any prescribed duty, save and except activities in Ka consciousness. Ka consciousness is not inactivity either, as will be explained in the following verses. A Ka conscious man does not take shelter of any personman or demigod. Whatever he does in Ka consciousness is sufficient in the discharge of his obligation.

Bg 3.19



TaSMaadSa-" SaTaTa& k-aYa| k-MaR SaMaacr )
ASa-ae acrNk-MaR ParMaaPanaeiTa PaUz" )) 19 ))

tasmd asakta satata

krya karma samcara

asakto hy caran karma

param pnoti prua

tasmttherefore; asaktawithout attachment; satatamconstantly; kryamas duty; karmawork; samcaraperform; asaktanonattachment; hicertainly; caranperforming; karmawork; paramthe Supreme; pnotiachieves; pruaa man.


Therefore, without being attached to the fruits of activities, one should act as a matter of duty; for by working without attachment, one attains the Supreme.


The Supreme is the Personality of Godhead for the devotees, and liberation for the impersonalist. A person, therefore, acting for Ka, or in Ka consciousness, under proper guidance and without attachment to the result of the work, is certainly making progress toward the supreme goal of life. Arjuna is told that he should fight in the Battle of Kuruketra for the interest of Ka because Ka wanted him to fight. To be a good man or a nonviolent man is a personal attachment, but to act on behalf of the Supreme is to act without attachment for the result. That is perfect action of the highest degree, recommended by the Supreme Personality of Godhead, r Ka. Vedic rituals, like prescribed sacrifices, are performed for purification of impious activities that were performed in the field of sense gratification. But action in Ka consciousness is transcendental to the reactions of good or evil work. A Ka conscious person has no attachment for the result but acts on behalf of Ka alone. He engages in all kinds of activities, but is completely nonattached.

Bg 3.20



k-MaR<aEv ih Sa&iSaiMaaiSQaTaa JaNak-adYa" )
l/aek-SahMaevaiPa SaMPaXYaNk-TauRMahRiSa )) 20 ))

karmaaiva hi sasiddhim

sthit janakdaya

loka-sagraham evpi

sampayan kartum arhasi

karmaby work; evaeven; hicertainly; sasiddhimperfection; sthitsituated; janaka-dayakings like Janaka and others; loka-sagrahameducating the people in general; evaalso; apifor the sake of; sampayanby considering; kartumto act; arhasideserve.


Even kings like Janaka and others attained the perfectional stage by performance of prescribed duties. Therefore, just for the sake of educating the people in general, you should perform your work.


Kings like Janaka and others were all self-realized souls; consequently they had no obligation to perform the prescribed duties in the Vedas. Nonetheless they performed all prescribed activities just to set examples for the people in general. Janaka was the father of St, and father-in-law of Lord r Rma. Being a great devotee of the Lord, he was transcendentally situated, but because he was the King of Mithila (a subdivision of Behar province in India), he had to teach his subjects how to fight righteously in battle. He and his subjects fought to teach people in general that violence is also necessary in a situation where good arguments fail. Before the Battle of Kuruketra, every effort was made to avoid the war, even by the Supreme Personality of Godhead, but the other party was determined to fight. So for such a right cause, there is a necessity for fighting. Although one who is situated in Ka consciousness may not have any interest in the world, he still works to teach the public how to live and how to act. Experienced persons in Ka consciousness can act in such a way that others will follow, and this is explained in the following verse.

Bg 3.21



YadacriTa [eSTatadeveTarae JaNa" )
Sa YaTPa[Maa<a& ku-Tae l/aek-STadNauvTaRTae )) 21 ))

yad yad carati rehas

tat tad evetaro jana

sa yat prama kurute

lokas tad anuvartate

yatwhatever; yatand whichever; caratidoes he act; reharespectable leader; tatthat; tatand that alone; evacertainly; itaracommon; janaperson; sahe; yatwhichever; pramamevidence; kurutedoes perform; lokaall the world; tatthat; anuvartatefollow in the footsteps.


Whatever action is performed by a great man, common men follow in his footsteps. And whatever standards he sets by exemplary acts, all the world pursues.


People in general always require a leader who can teach the public by practical behavior. A leader cannot teach the public to stop smoking if he himself smokes. Lord Caitanya said that a teacher should behave properly even before he begins teaching. One who teaches in that way is called crya, or the ideal teacher. Therefore, a teacher must follow the principles of tra (scripture) to reach the common man. The teacher cannot manufacture rules against the principles of revealed scriptures. The revealed scriptures, like Manu-sahit and similar others, are considered the standard books to be followed by human society. Thus the leaders teaching should be based on the principles of the standard rules as they are practiced by the great teachers. The rmad-Bhgavatam also affirms that one should follow in the footsteps of great devotees, and that is the way of progress on the path of spiritual realization. The king or the executive head of a state, the father and the school teacher are all considered to be natural leaders of the innocent people in general. All such natural leaders have a great responsibility to their dependants; therefore they must be conversant with standard books of moral and spiritual codes.

Bg 3.22



Na Mae PaaQaaRiSTa k-TaRVYa& i}azu l/aeke-zu ik-Na )
NaaNavaMavaVYa& vTaR Wv c k-MaRi<a )) 22 ))

na me prthsti kartavya

triu lokeu kicana

nnavptam avptavya

varta eva ca karmai

nanone; meMine; prthaO son of Pth; astithere is; kartavyamany prescribed duty; triuin the three; lokeuplanetary systems; kicanaanything; nano; anavptamin want; avptavyamto be gained; varteengaged; evacertainly; caalso; karmaiin ones prescribed duty.


O son of Pth, there is no work prescribed for Me within all the three planetary systems. Nor am I in want of anything, nor have I need to obtain anythingand yet I am engaged in work.


The Supreme Personality of Godhead is described in the Vedic literatures as follows:

tam var parama mahevara
ta devatn parama ca daivatam
pati patn parama parastd
vidma deva bhuvaneam yam

na tasya krya karaa ca vidyate
na tat-sama cbhyadhika ca dyate
parsya aktir vividhaiva ryate
sv-bhvik jna-bala-kriy ca.

The Supreme Lord is the controller of all other controllers, and He is the greatest of all the diverse planetary leaders. Everyone is under His control. All entities are delegated with particular power only by the Supreme Lord; they are not supreme themselves. He is also worshipable by all demigods and is the supreme director of all directors. Therefore, He is transcendental to all kinds of material leaders and controllers and is worshipable by all. There is no one greater than Him, and He is the supreme cause of all causes.

He does not possess bodily form like that of an ordinary living entity. There is no difference between His body and His soul. He is absolute. All His senses are transcendental. Any one of His senses can perform the action of any other sense. Therefore, no one is greater than Him or equal to Him. His potencies are multifarious, and thus His deeds are automatically performed as a natural sequence. (vetvatara Upaniad 6.78)

Since everything is in full opulence in the Personality of Godhead and is existing in full truth, there is no duty for the Supreme Personality of Godhead to perform. One who must receive the results of work has some designated duty, but one who has nothing to achieve within the three planetary systems certainly has no duty. And yet Lord Ka is engaged on the Battlefield of Kuruketra as the leader of the katriyas because the katriyas are duty-bound to give protection to the distressed. Although He is above all the regulations of the revealed scriptures, He does not do anything that violates the revealed scriptures.

Bg 3.23



Yaid h& Na vTaeRYa& JaaTau k-MaR<YaTaiNd]Ta" )
MaMa vTMaaRNauvTaRNTae MaNauZYaa" PaaQaR SavRXa" )) 23 ))

yadi hy aha na varteya

jtu karmay atandrita

mama vartmnuvartante

manuy prtha sarvaa

yadiif; hicertainly; ahamI; nado not; varteyamthus engage; jtuever; karmaiin the performance of prescribed duties; atandritawith great care; mamaMy; vartmapath; anuvartantewould follow; manuyall men; prthaO son of Pth; sarvaain all respects.


For, if I did not engage in work, O Prtha, certainly all men would follow My path.


In order to keep the balance of social tranquility for progress in spiritual life. there are traditional family usages meant for every civilized man. Although such rules and regulations are for the conditioned souls and not Lord Ka, because He descended to establish the principles of religion, He followed the prescribed rules. Otherwise, common men would follow in His footsteps because He is the greatest authority. From the rmad-Bhgavatam it is understood that Lord Ka was performing all the religious duties at home and out of home, as required of a householder.

Bg 3.24



oTSaqdeYauirMae l/aek-a Na ku-Yaa| k-MaR cedhMa( )
SarSYa c k-TaaR SYaaMauPahNYaaiMaMaa" Pa[Jaa" )) 24 ))

utsdeyur ime lok

na kury karma ced aham

sakarasya ca kart sym

upahanym im praj

utsdeyuput into ruin; imeall these; lokworlds; nado not; kurymperform; karmaprescribed duties; cetif; ahamI; sakarasyaof unwanted population; caand; kartcreator; symshall be; upahanymdestroy; imall these; prajliving entities.


If I should cease to work, then all these worlds would be put to ruination. I would also be the cause of creating unwanted population, and I would thereby destroy the peace of all sentient beings.


Vara-sakara is unwanted population which disturbs the peace of the general society. In order to check this social disturbance, there are prescribed rules and regulations by which the population can automatically become peaceful and organized for spiritual progress in life. When Lord Ka descends, naturally He deals with such rules and regulations in order to maintain the prestige and necessity of such important performances. The Lord is the father of all living entities, and if the living entities are misguided, indirectly the responsibility goes to the Lord. Therefore, whenever there is general disregard of regulative principles, the Lord Himself descends and corrects the society. We should, however, note carefully that although we have to follow in the footsteps of the Lord, we still have to remember that we cannot imitate Him. Following and imitating are not on the same level. We cannot imitate the Lord by lifting Govardhana Hill, as the Lord did in His childhood. It is impossible for any human being. We have to follow His instructions, but we may not imitate Him at any time. The rmad-Bhgavatam affirms:

naitat samcarej jtu manaspi hy anvara
vinayaty caran mauhyd yath rudro bdhija viam

var vaca satya tathaivcarita kvacit
te yat sva-vaco yukta buddhims tat samcaret

One should simply follow the instructions of the Lord and His empowered servants. Their instructions are all good for us, and any intelligent person will perform them as instructed. However, one should guard against trying to imitate their actions. One should not try to drink the ocean of poison in imitation of Lord iva. (Bhg. 10.33.30)

We should always consider the position of the varas, or those who can actually control the movements of the sun and moon, as superior. Without such power, one cannot imitate the varas, who are superpowerful. Lord iva drank poison to the extent of swallowing an ocean, but if any common man tries to drink even a fragment of such poison, he will be killed. There are many psuedo-devotees of Lord iva who want to indulge in smoking gj (marijuana) and similar intoxicating drugs, forgetting that by so imitating the acts of Lord iva they are calling death very near. Similarly, there are some psuedo-devotees of Lord Ka who prefer to imitate the Lord in His rsa-ll, or dance of love, forgetting their inability to lift Govardhana Hill. It is best, therefore, that one not try to imitate the powerful, but simply follow their instructions; nor should one try to occupy their posts without qualification. There are so many incarnations of God without the power of the Supreme Godhead.

Bg 3.25



Sa-a" k-MaR<Yaiva&Saae YaQaa ku-vRiNTa >aarTa )
ku-YaaRia&STaQaaSa-ik-IzuRl/aeRk-SahMa( )) 25 ))

sakt karmay avidvso

yath kurvanti bhrata

kuryd vidvs tathsakta

cikrur loka-sagraham

saktbeing attached; karmaiprescribed duties; avidvsathe ignorant; yathas much as; kurvantido it; bhrataO descendant of Bharata; kurytmust do; vidvnthe learned; taththus; asaktawithout attachment; cikrudesiring to; loka-sagrahamleading the people in general.


As the ignorant perform their duties with attachment to results, similarly the learned may also act, but without attachment, for the sake of leading people on the right path.


A person in Ka consciousness and a person not in Ka consciousness are differentiated by different desires. A Ka conscious person does not do anything which is not conducive to development of Ka consciousness. He may even act exactly like the ignorant person, who is too much attached to material activities, but one is engaged in such activities for the satisfaction of his sense gratification, whereas the other is engaged for the satisfaction of Ka. Therefore, the Ka conscious person is required to show the people how to act and how to engage the results of action for the purpose of Ka consciousness.

Bg 3.26



Na bui>aed& JaNaYaedjaNaa& k-MaRSaiNaaMa( )
JaaezYaeTSavRk-MaaRi<a ivaNYau-" SaMaacrNa( )) 26 ))

na buddhi-bheda janayed

ajn karma-saginm

joayet sarva-karmi

vidvn yukta samcaran

nado not; buddhi-bhedamdisrupt the intelligence; janayetdo; ajnmof the foolish; karma-saginmattached to fruitive work; joayetdovetailed; sarvaall; karmiwork; vidvnlearned; yuktaall engaged; samcaranpracticing.


Let not the wise disrupt the minds of the ignorant who are attached to fruitive action. They should not be encouraged to refrain from work, but to engage in work in the spirit of devotion.


Vedai ca sarvair aham eva vedya: that is the end of all Vedic rituals. All rituals, all performances of sacrifices, and everything that is put into the Vedas, including all directions for material activities, are meant for understanding Ka, who is the ultimate goal of life. But because the conditioned souls do not know anything beyond sense gratification, they study the Vedas to that end. Through sense regulations, however, one is gradually elevated to Ka consciousness. Therefore a realized soul in Ka consciousness should not disturb others in their activities or understanding, but he should act by showing how the results of all work can be dedicated to the service of Ka. The learned Ka conscious person may act in such a way that the ignorant person working for sense gratification may learn how to act and how to behave. Although the ignorant man is not to be disturbed in his activities, still, a slightly developed Ka conscious person may directly be engaged in the service of the Lord without waiting for other Vedic formulas. For this fortunate man there is no need to follow the Vedic rituals, because in direct Ka consciousness one can have all the results simply by following the prescribed duties of a particular person.

Bg 3.27



Pa[k*-Tae" i-YaMaa<aaiNa Gau<aE" k-MaaRi<a SavRXa" )
AharivMaU!aTMaa k-TaaRhiMaiTa MaNYaTae )) 27 ))

prakte kriyamni

guai karmi sarvaa


kartham iti manyate

prakteof material nature; kriyamniall being done; guaiby the modes; karmiactivities; sarvaaall kinds of; ahakra-vimhabewildered by false ego; tmthe spirit soul; kartdoer; ahamI; itithus; manyatethinks.


The bewildered spirit soul, under the influence of the three modes of material nature, thinks himself to be the doer of activities, which are in actuality carried out by nature.


Two persons, one in Ka consciousness and the other in material consciousness, working on the same level, may appear to be working on the same platform, but there is a wide gulf of difference in their respective positions. The person in material consciousness is convinced by false ego that he is the doer of everything. He does not know that the mechanism of the body is produced by material nature, which works under the supervision of the Supreme Lord. The materialistic person has no knowledge that ultimately he is under the control of Ka. The person in false ego takes all credit for doing everything independantly, and that is the symptom of his nescience. He does not know that this gross and subtle body is the creation of material nature, under the order of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and as such his bodily and mental activities should be engaged in the service of Ka, in Ka consciousness. The ignorant man forgets that the Supreme Personality of Godhead is known as Hkea, or the master of the senses of the material body, for due to his long misuse of the senses in sense gratification, he is factually bewildered by the false ego, which makes him forget his eternal relationship with Ka.

Bg 3.28



Tatvivtau Mahabahae Gau<ak-MaRiv>aaGaYaae" )
Gau<aa Gau<aezu vTaRNTa wiTa MaTva Na SaTae )) 28 ))

tattva-vit tu mah-bho


gu gueu vartanta

iti matv na sajjate

tattvavitthe knower of the Absolute Truth; tubut; mah-bhoO mighty-armed one; gua-karmaworks under material influence; vibhgayodifferences; gusenses; gueuin sense gratification; vartantebeing engaged; itithus; matvthinking; nanever; sajjatebecomes attached.


One who is in knowledge of the Absolute Truth, O mighty-armed, does not engage himself in the senses and sense gratification, knowing well the differences between work in devotion and work for fruitive results.


The knower of the Absolute Truth is convinced of his awkward position in material association. He knows that he is part and parcel of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Ka, and that his position should not be in the material creation. He knows his real identity as part and parcel of the Supreme, who is eternal bliss and knowledge, and he realizes that somehow or other he is entrapped in the material conception of life. In his pure state of existence he is meant to dovetail his activities in devotional service to the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Ka. He therefore engages himself in the activities of Ka consciousness and becomes naturally unattached to the activities of the material senses, which are all circumstantial and temporary. He knows that his material condition of life is under the supreme control of the Lord; consequently he is not disturbed by all kinds of material reactions, which he considers to be the mercy of the Lord. According to rmad-Bhgavatam, one who knows the Absolute Truth in three different featuresnamely Brahman, Paramtm, and the Supreme Personality of Godheadis called tattvavit, for he knows also his own factual position in relationship with the Supreme.

Bg 3.29



Pa[k*-TaeGauR<aSaMMaU!a" SaNTae Gau<ak-MaRSau )
TaaNak*-Tivdae MaNdaNk*-Tiv ivcal/YaeTa( )) 29 ))

prakter gua-sammh

sajjante gua-karmasu

tn aktsna-vido mandn

ktsna-vin na viclayet

prakteimpelled by the material modes; gua-samhbefooled by material identification; sajjantebecome engaged; gua-karmasuin material activities; tnall those; aktsna-vidapersons with a poor fund of knowledge; mandnlazy to understand self-realization; ktsna-vitone who is in factual knowledge; namay not; viclayettry to agitate.


Bewildered by the modes of material nature, the ignorant fully engage themselves in material activities and become attached. But the wise should not unsettle them, although these duties are inferior due to the performers lack of knowledge.


Persons who are unknowledgeable falsely identify with gross material consciousness and are full of material designations. This body is a gift of the material nature, and one who is too much attached to the bodily consciousness is called mandn, or a lazy person without understanding of spirit soul. Ignorant men think of the body as the self; bodily connections with others are accepted as kinsmanship; the land in which the body is obtained is the object of worship; and the formalities of religious rituals are considered ends in themselves. Social work, nationalism, and altruism are some of the activities for such materially designated persons. Under the spell of such designations, they are always busy in the material field; for them spiritual realization is a myth, and so they are not interested. Such bewildered persons may even be engaged in such primary moral principles of life as nonviolence and similar materially benevolent work. Those who are, however, enlightened in spiritual life, should not try to agitate such materially engrossed persons. Better to prosecute ones own spiritual activities silently.

Men who are ignorant cannot appreciate activities in Ka consciousness, and therefore Lord Ka advises us not to disturb them and simply waste valuable time. But the devotees of the Lord are more kind than the Lord because they understand the purpose of the Lord. Consequently they undertake all kinds of risks, even to the point of approaching ignorant men to try to engage them in the acts of Ka consciousness, which are absolutely necessary for the human being.

Bg 3.30



MaiYa SavaRi<a k-MaaRi<a SaNNYaSYaaDYaaTMaceTaSaa )
iNaraXaqiNaRMaRMaae >aUTva YauDYaSv ivGaTaJvr" )) 30 ))

mayi sarvi karmi


nirr nirmamo bhtv

yudhyasva vigata-jvara

mayiunto Me; sarviall sorts of; karmiactivities; sannyasyagiving up completely; adhytmawith full knowledge of the self; cetasconsciousness; nirwithout desire for profit; nirmamawithout ownership; bhtvso being; yudhyasvafight; vigata-jvarawithout being lethargic.


Therefore, O Arjuna, surrendering all your works unto Me, with mind intent on Me, and without desire for gain and free from egoism and lethargy, fight.


This verse clearly indicates the purpose of the Bhagavad-gt. The Lord instructs that one has to become fully Ka conscious to discharge duties, as if in military discipline. Such an injunction may make things a little difficult; nevertheless duties must be carried out, with dependence on Ka, because that is the constitutional position of the living entity. The living entity cannot be happy independant of the cooperation of the Supreme Lord because the eternal constitutional position of the living entity is to become subordinate to the desires of the Lord. Arjuna was, therefore, ordered by r Ka to fight as if the Lord were his military commander. One has to sacrifice everything for the good will of the Supreme Lord, and at the same time discharge prescribed duties without claiming proprietorship. Arjuna did not have to consider the order of the Lord; he had only to execute His order. The Supreme Lord is the Soul of all souls; therefore, one who depends solely and wholly on the Supreme Soul without personal consideration, or in other words, one who is fully Ka conscious, is called adhytma-cetas. Nir means that one has to act on the order of the master. Nor should one ever expect fruitive results. The cashier may count millions of dollars for his employer, but he does not claim a cent for himself. Similarly, one has to realize that nothing in the world belongs to any individual person, but that everything belongs to the Supreme Lord. That is the real purport of mayi, or unto Me. And when one acts in such Ka consciousness, certainly he does not claim proprietorship over anything. This consciousness is called nirmama, or nothing is mine. And, if there is any reluctance to execute such a stern order which is without consideration of so-called kinsmen in the bodily relationship, that reluctance should be thrown off; in this way one may become vigata-jvara, or without feverish mentality or lethargy. Everyone, according to his quality and position, has a particular type of work to discharge, and all such duties may be discharged in Ka consciousness, as described above. That will lead one to the path of liberation.

Bg 3.31



Yae Mae MaTaiMad& iNaTYaMaNauiTaiNTa MaaNava" )
[avNTaae_NaSaUYaNTaae MauCYaNTae Tae_iPa k-MaRi>a" )) 31 ))

ye me matam ida nityam

anutihanti mnav

raddhvanto nasyanto

mucyante te pi karmabhi

yethose; meMy; mataminjunctions; idamthis; nityameternal function; anutihantiexecute regularly; mnavhumankind; raddhvantawith faith and devotion; anasyantawithout envy; mucyantebecome free; teall of them; apieven; karmabhifrom the bondage of the law of fruitive action.


One who executes his duties according to My injunctions and who follows this teaching faithfully, without envy, becomes free from the bondage of fruitive actions.


The injunction of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Ka, is the essence of all Vedic wisdom, and therefore is eternally true without exception. As the Vedas are eternal, so this truth of Ka consciousness is also eternal. One should have firm faith in this injunction, without envying the Lord. There are many philosophers who write comments on the Bhagavad-gt but have no faith in Ka. They will never be liberated from the bondage of fruitive action. But an ordinary man with firm faith in the eternal injunctions of the Lord, even though unable to execute such orders, becomes liberated from the bondage of the law of karma. In the beginning of Ka consciousness, one may not fully discharge the injunctions of the Lord, but because one is not resentful of this principle and works sincerely without consideration of defeat and hopelessness, he will surely be promoted to the stage of pure Ka consciousness.

Bg 3.32



Yae TveTad>YaSaUYaNTaae NaaNauiTaiNTa Mae MaTaMa( )
SavRjaNaivMaU!a&STaaiNvi NaaNaceTaSa" )) 32 ))

ye tv etad abhyasyanto

nnutihanti me matam

sarva-jna-vimhs tn

viddhi nan acetasa

yethose; tuhowever; etatthis; abhyasyantaout of envy; nado not; anutihantiregularly perform; meMy; mataminjunction; sarva-jnaall sorts of knowledge; vimhnperfectly befooled; tnthey are; viddhiknow it well; nanall ruined; acetasawithout Ka consciousness.


But those who, out of envy, disregard these teachings and do not practice them regularly, are to be considered bereft of all knowledge, befooled, and doomed to ignorance and bondage.


The flaw of not being Ka conscious is clearly stated herein. As there is punishment for disobedience to the order of the supreme executive head, so there is certainly punishment for the disobedience of the order of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. A disobedient person, however great he may be, is ignorant of his own self, of the Supreme Brahman, and Paramtm and the Personality of Godhead, due to a vacant heart. Therefore there is no hope of perfection of life for him.

Bg 3.33



Sad*Xa& ceTae SvSYaa" Pa[k*-TaejaRNavaNaiPa )
Pa[k*-iTa& YaaiNTa >aUTaaiNa iNaGa]h" ik&- k-irZYaiTa )) 33 ))

sada ceate svasy

prakter jnavn api

prakti ynti bhtni

nigraha ki kariyati

sadamaccordingly; ceatetries; svasyin ones own nature; praktemodes; jnavnthe learned; apialthough; praktimnature; yntiundergo; bhtniall living entities; nigrahasuppression; kimwhat; kariyatican do.


Even a man of knowledge acts according to his own nature, for everyone follows his nature. What can repression accomplish?


Unless one is situated on the transcendental platform of Ka consciousness, he cannot get free from the influence of the modes of material nature, as it is confirmed by the Lord in the Seventh Chapter (7.14). Therefore, even for the most highly educated person on the mundane plane, it is impossible to get out of the entanglement of my simply by theoretical knowledge, or by separating the soul from the body. There are many so-called spiritualists who outwardly pose to be advanced in the science, but inwardly or privately are completely under the particular modes of nature which they are unable to surpass. Academically, one may be very learned, but because of his long association with material nature, he is in bondage. Ka consciousness helps one to get out of the material entanglement, even though one may be engaged in his prescribed duties. Therefore, without being fully in Ka consciousness, no one should suddenly give up his prescribed duties and become a so-called yog or transcendentalist artificially. It is better to be situated in ones position and to try to attain Ka consciousness under superior training. Thus one may be freed from the clutches of my.

Bg 3.34



wiNd]YaSYaeiNd]YaSYaaQaeR raGaezaE VYaviSQaTaaE )
TaYaaeNaR vXaMaaGaC^etaaE SYa PairPaiNQaNaaE )) 34 ))


rga-dveau vyavasthitau

tayor na vaam gacchet

tau hy asya paripanthinau

indriyasyaof the senses; indriyasya arthein the sense objects; rgaattachment; dveaualso in detachment; vyavasthitauput under regulations; tayoof them; nanever; vaamcontrol; gacchetone should come; tauthose; hicertainly are; asyahis; paripanthinaustumbling blocks.


Attraction and repulsion for sense objects are felt by embodied beings, but one should not fall under the control of senses and sense objects because they are stumbling blocks on the path of self-realization.


Those who are in Ka consciousness are naturally reluctant to engage in material sense gratifications. But those who are not in such consciousness should follow the rules and regulations of the revealed scriptures. Unrestricted sense enjoyment is the cause of material encagement, but one who follows the rules and regulations of the revealed scriptures does not become entangled by the sense objects. For example, sex enjoyment is a necessity for the conditioned soul, and sex enjoyment is allowed under the license of marriage ties. For example, according to scriptural injunctions, one is forbidden to engage in sex relationships with any women other than ones wife. All other women are to be considered as ones mother. But, in spite of such injunctions, a man is still inclined to have sex relationships with other women. These propensities are to be curbed; otherwise they will be stumbling blocks on the path of self-realization. As long as the material body is there, the necessities of the material body are allowed, but under rules and regulations. And yet, we should not rely upon the control of such allowances. One has to follow those rules and regulations, unattached to them, because practice of sense gratifications under regulations may also lead one to go astrayas much as there is always the chance of an accident, even on the royal roads. Although they may be very carefully maintained, no one can guarantee that there will be no danger even on the safest road. The sense enjoyment spirit has been current a very long, long time, owing to material association. Therefore, in spite of regulated sense enjoyment, there is every chance of falling down; therefore any attachment for regulated sense enjoyment must also be avoided by all means. But action in the loving service of Ka detaches one from all kinds of sensory activities. Therefore, no one should try to be detached from Ka consciousness at any stage of life. The whole purpose of detachment from all kinds of sense attachment is ultimately to become situated on the platform of Ka consciousness.

Bg 3.35



[eYaaNSvDaMaaeR ivGau<a" ParDaMaaRTSvNauiTaaTa( )
SvDaMaeR iNaDaNa& [eYa" ParDaMaaeR >aYaavh" )) 35 ))

reyn sva-dharmo vigua

para-dharmt sv-anuhitt

sva-dharme nidhana reya

para-dharmo bhayvaha

reynfar better; sva-dharmaones prescribed duties; viguaeven faulty; para-dharmtfrom duties mentioned for others; svanuthittthan perfectly done; sva-dharmein ones prescribed duties; nidhanamdestruction; reyabetter; para-dharmaduties prescribed for others; bhaya-vahadangerous.


It is far better to discharge ones prescribed duties, even though they may be faulty, than anothers duties. Destruction in the course of performing ones own duty is better than engaging in anothers duties, for to follow anothers path is dangerous.


One should therefore discharge his prescribed duties in full Ka consciousness rather than those prescribed for others. Prescribed duties complement ones psychophysical condition, under the spell of the modes of material nature. Spiritual duties are as ordered by the spiritual master, for the transcendental service of Ka. But both materially or spiritually, one should stick to his prescribed duties even up to death, rather than imitate anothers prescribed duties. Duties on the spiritual platform and duties on the material platform may be different, but the principle of following the authorized direction is always good for the performer. When one is under the spell of the modes of material nature, one should follow the prescribed rules for particular situations and should not imitate others. For example, a brhmaa, who is in the mode of goodness, is nonviolent, whereas a katriya, who is in the mode of passion, is allowed to be violent. As such, for a katriya it is better to be vanquished following the rules of violence than to imitate a brhmaa who follows the principles of nonviolence. Everyone has to cleanse his heart by a gradual process, not abruptly. However, when one transcends the modes of material nature and is fully situated in Ka consciousness, he can perform anything and everything under the direction of the bona fide spiritual master. In that complete stage of Ka consciousness, the katriya may act as a brhmaa, or a brhmaa may act as a katriya. In the transcendental stage, the distinctions of the material world do not apply. For example, Vivmitra was originally a katriya, but later on he acted as a brhmaa, whereas Paraurma was a brhmaa, but later on he acted as a katriya. Being transcendentally situated, they could do so; but as long as one is on the material platform, he must perform his duties according to the modes of material nature. At the same time, he must have a full sense of Ka consciousness.

Bg 3.36



AJauRNa ovac
AQa ke-Na Pa[Yau-ae_Ya& PaaPa& criTa PaUz" )
AiNaC^iPa vaZ<aeRYa bl/aidv iNaYaaeiJaTa" )) 36 ))

arjuna uvca

atha kena prayukto ya

ppa carati prua

anicchann api vreya

bald iva niyojita

arjuna uvcaArjuna said; athahereafter; kenaby what; prayuktaimpelled; ayamone; ppamsins; caratiacts; pruaa man; anicchanwithout desiring; apialthough; vreyaO descendant of Vi; baltby force; ivaas if; niyojitaengaged.


Arjuna said: O descendant of Vi, by what is one impelled to sinful acts, even unwillingly, as if engaged by force?


A living entity, as part and parcel of the Supreme, is originally spiritual, pure, and free from all material contaminations. Therefore, by nature he is not subjected to the sins of the material world. But when he is in contact with the material nature, he acts in many sinful ways without hesitation, and sometimes even against his will. As such, Arjunas question to Ka is very sanguine, as to the perverted nature of the living entities. Although the living entity sometimes does not want to act in sin, he is still forced to act. Sinful actions are not, however, impelled by the Supersoul within, but are due to another cause, as the Lord explains in the next verse.

Bg 3.37



k-aMa Wz -aeDa Wz rJaaeGau<aSaMauv" )
MahaXaNaae MahaPaaPMaa ivyeNaiMah vEir<aMa( )) 37 ))

r-bhagavn uvca

kma ea krodha ea


mahano mah-ppm

viddhy enam iha vairiam

r bhagavn uvcathe Personality of Godhead said; kmalust; eaall these; krodhawrath; eaall these; rajo-guathe mode of passion; samudbhavaborn of; mah-anaall-devouring; mah-ppmgreatly sinful; viddhiknow; enamthis; ihain the material world; vairiamgreatest enemy.


The Blessed Lord said: It is lust only, Arjuna, which is born of contact with the material modes of passion and later transformed into wrath, and which is the all-devouring, sinful enemy of this world.


When a living entity comes in contact with the material creation, his eternal love for Ka is transformed into lust, in association with the mode of passion. Or, in other words, the sense of love of God becomes transformed into lust, as milk in contact with sour tamarind is transformed into yogurt. Then again, when lust is unsatisfied, it turns into wrath; wrath is transformed into illusion, and illusion continues the material existence. Therefore, lust is the greatest enemy of the living entity, and it is lust only which induces the pure living entity to remain entangled in the material world. Wrath is the manifestation of the mode of ignorance; these modes exhibit themselves as wrath and other corollaries. If, therefore, the modes of passion, instead of being degraded into the modes of ignorance, are elevated to the modes of goodness by the prescribed method of Iiving and acting, then one can be saved from the degradation of wrath by spiritual attachment.

The Supreme Personality of Godhead expanded Himself into many for His ever-increasing spiritual bliss, and the living entities are parts and parcels of this spiritual bliss. They also have partial independence, but by misuse of their independence, when the service attitude is transformed into the propensity for sense enjoyment, they come under the sway of lust. This material creation is created by the Lord to give a facility to the conditioned souls to fulfill these lustful propensities, and when they are completely baffled by prolonged lustful activities, the living entities begin to inquire about their real position.

This inquiry is the beginning of the Vednta-stras, wherein it is said, athto brahma-jijs: one should inquire into the Supreme. And the Supreme is defined in rmad-Bhgavatam as janmdyasya yato nvayd itarata ca, or, "The origin of everything is the Supreme Brahman." Therefore, the origin of lust is also in the Supreme. If, therefore, lust is transformed into love for the Supreme, or transformed into Ka consciousnessor, in other words, desiring everything for Kathen both lust and wrath can be spiritualized. Hanumn, the great servitor of Lord Rama, engaged his wrath upon his enemies for the satisfaction of the Lord. Therefore, lust and wrath, when they are employed in Ka consciousness, become our friends instead of our enemies.

Bg 3.38



DaUMaeNaaiv]YaTae viYaRQaadXaaeR Male/Na c )
YaQaaeLbeNaav*Taae Ga>aRSTaQaa TaeNaedMaav*TaMa( )) 38 ))

dhmenvriyate vahnir

yathdaro malena ca

yatholbenvto garbhas

tath tenedam vtam

dhmenaby smoke; vriyatecovered; vahnifire; yathjust as; daramirror; malenaby dust; caalso; yathjust as; ulbenaby the womb; vtais covered; garbhaembryo; tathso; tenaby that lust; idamthis; vtamis covered.


As fire is covered by smoke, as a mirror is covered by dust, or as the embryo is covered by the womb, similarly, the living entity is covered by different degrees of this lust.


There are three degrees of covering of the living entity by which his pure consciousness is obscured. This covering is but lust under different manifestations like smoke in the fire, dust on the mirror, and the womb about the embryo. When lust is compared to smoke, it is understood that the fire of the living spark can be a little perceived. In other words, when the living entity exhibits his Ka consciousness slightly, he may be likened to the fire covered by smoke. Although fire is necessary where there is smoke, there is no overt manifestation of fire in the early stage. This stage is like the beginning of Ka consciousness. The dust on the mirror refers to a cleansing process of the mirror of the mind by so many spiritual methods. The best process is to chant the holy names of the Lord. The embryo covered by the womb is an analogy illustrating a helpless position, for the child in the womb is so helpless that he cannot even move. This stage of living condition can be compared to that of the trees. The trees are also living entities, but they have been put in such a condition of life by such a great exhibition of lust that they are almost void of all consciousness. The covered mirror is compared to the birds and beasts, and the smoke covered fire is compared to the human being. In the form of a human being, the living entity may revive a little Ka consciousness, and, if he makes further development, the fire of spiritual life can be kindled in the human form of life. By careful handling of the smoke in the fire, the fire can be made to blaze. Therefore the human form of life is a chance for the living entity to escape the entanglement of material existence. In the human form of life, one can conquer the enemy, lust, by cultivation of Ka consciousness under able guidance.

Bg 3.39



Aav*Ta& jaNaMaeTaeNa jaiNaNaae iNaTYavEir<aa )
k-aMaPae<a k-aENTaeYa duZPaUre<aaNale/Na c )) 39 ))

vta jnam etena

jnino nitya-vairi

kma-rpea kaunteya

duprenalena ca

vtamcovered; jnampure consciousness; etenaby this; jninaof the knower; nitya-vairieternal enemy; kma-rpeain the form of lust; kaunteyaO son of Kunt; dupreanever to be satisfied; analenaby the fire; caalso.


Thus, a mans pure consciousness is covered by his eternal enemy in the form of lust, which is never satisfied and which burns like fire.


It is said in the Manu-smti that lust cannot be satisfied by any amount of sense enjoyment, just as fire is never extinguished by a constant supply of fuel. In the material world, the center of all activities is sex, and thus this material world is called maithuya-gra, or the shackles of sex life. In the ordinary prison house, criminals are kept within bars; similarly, the criminals who are disobedient to the laws of the Lord are shackled by sex life. Advancement of material civilization on the basis of sense gratification means increasing the duration of the material existence of a living entity. Therefore, this lust is the symbol of ignorance by which the living entity is kept within the material world. While one enjoys sense gratification, it may be that there is some feeling of happiness, but actually that so-called feeling of happiness is the ultimate enemy of the sense enjoyer.

Bg 3.40



wiNd]Yaai<a MaNaae buirSYaaiDaaNaMauCYaTae )
WTaEivRMaaehYaTYaez jaNaMaav*TYa deihNaMa( )) 40 ))

indriyi mano buddhir

asydhihnam ucyate

etair vimohayaty ea

jnam vtya dehinam

indriyithe senses; manathe mind; buddhithe intelligence; asyaof the lust; adhihnamsitting place; ucyatecalled; etaiby all these; vimohayatibewilders; eaof this; jnamknowledge; vtyacovering; dehinamthe embodied.


The senses, the mind and the intelligence are the sitting places of this lust, which veils the real knowledge of the living entity and bewilders him.


The enemy has captured different strategic positions in the body of the conditioned soul, and therefore Lord Ka is giving hints of those places, so that one who wants to conquer the enemy may know where he can be found. Mind is the center of all the activities of the senses, and thus the mind is the reservoir of all ideas of sense gratification; and, as a result, the mind and the senses become the repositories of lust. Next, the intelligence department becomes the capital of such lustful propensities. Intelligence is the immediate next-door neighbor of the spirit soul. Lusty intelligence influences the spirit soul to acquire the false ego and identify itself with matter, and thus with the mind and senses. The spirit soul becomes addicted to enjoying the material senses and mistakes this as true happiness. This false identification of the spirit soul is very nicely explained in the rmad-Bhgavatam:

yasytma-buddhi kupe tri-dhtuke
sva-dh kalatrdiu bhauma idyadh
yat-trtha-buddhi salite na karhicij
janev abhijeu sa eva gokhara.

"A human being who identifies this body made of three elements with his self, who considers the by-products of the body to be his kinsmen, who considers the land of birth as worshipable, and who goes to the place of pilgrimage simply to take a bath rather than meet men of transcendental knowledge there, is to be considered as an ass or a cow."

Bg 3.41



TaSMaatviMaiNd]Yaa<YaadaE iNaYaMYa >arTazR>a )
PaaPMaaNa& Pa[Jaih eNa& jaNaivjaNaNaaXaNaMa( )) 41 ))

tasmt tvam indriyy dau

niyamya bharatarabha

ppmna prajahi hy ena


tasmttherefore; tvamyou; indriyisenses; dauin the beginning; niyamyaby regulating; bharatarabhaO chief amongst the descendants of Bharata; ppmnamthe great symbol of sin; prajahicurb; hicertainly; enamthis; jnaknowledge; vijnascientific knowledge of the pure soul; nanamdestroyer.


Therefore, O Arjuna, best of the Bhratas, in the very beginning curb this great symbol of sin [lust] by regulating the senses, and slay this destroyer of knowledge and self-realization.


The Lord advised Arjuna to regulate the senses from the very beginning so that he could curb the greatest sinful enemy, lust, which destroys the urge for self-realization, and specifically, knowledge of the self. Jnam refers to knowledge of self as distinguished from non-self, or, in other words, knowledge that the spirit soul is not the body. Vijnam refers to specific knowledge of the spirit soul and knowledge of ones constitutional position and his relationship to the Supreme Soul. It is explained thus in the rmad-Bhgavatam: jna parama-guhya me yad-vijna-samanvitam / sarahasya tad-aga ca ghna gadita may: "The knowledge of the self and the Supreme Self is very confidential and mysterious, being veiled by my, but such knowledge and specific realization can be understood if it is explained by the Lord Himself." Bhagavad-gt gives us that knowledge, specifically knowledge of the self. The living entities are parts and parcels of the Lord, and therefore they are simply meant to serve the Lord. This consciousness is called Ka consciousness. So, from the very beginning of life one has to learn this Ka consciousness, and thereby one may become fully Ka conscious and act accordingly.

Lust is only the perverted reflection of the love of God which is natural for every living entity. But if one is educated in Ka consciousness from the very beginning, that natural love of God cannot deteriorate into lust. When love of God deteriorates into lust, it is very difficult to return to the normal condition. Nonetheless, Ka consciousness is so powerful that even a late beginner can become a lover of God by following the regulative principles of devotional service. So, from any stage of life, or from the time of understanding its urgency, one can begin regulating the senses in Ka consciousness, devotional service of the Lord, and turn the lust into love of Godheadthe highest perfectional stage of human life.

Bg 3.42



wiNd]Yaai<a Para<YaahuiriNd]Yae>Ya" Par& MaNa" )
MaNaSaSTau Para buiYaaeR bue" ParTaSTau Sa" )) 42 ))

indriyi pary hur

indriyebhya para mana

manasas tu par buddhir

yo buddhe paratas tu sa

indriysenses; parisuperior; huis said; indriyebhyamore than the senses; paramsuperior; manathe mind; manasamore than the mind; tualso; parsuperior; buddhiintelligence; yaone which; buddhemore than the intelligence; paratasuperior; tubut; sahe.


The working senses are superior to dull matter; mind is higher than the senses; intelligence is still higher than the mind; and he [the soul] is even higher than the intelligence.


The senses are different outlets for the activities of lust. Lust is reserved within the body, but it is given vent through the senses. Therefore, the senses are superior to the body as a whole. These outlets are not in use when there is superior consciousness, or Ka consciousness. In Ka consciousness the soul makes direct connection with the Supreme Personality of Godhead; therefore the bodily functions, as described here, ultimately end in the Supreme Soul. Bodily action means the functions of the senses, and stopping the senses means stopping all bodily actions. But since the mind is active, then, even though the body may be silent and at rest, the mind will actas it does during dreaming. But, above the mind there is the determination of the intelligence, and above the intelligence is the soul proper. If, therefore, the soul is directly engaged with the Supreme, naturally all other subordinates, namely, the intelligence, mind and the senses, will be automatically engaged. In the Kaha Upaniad there is a passage in which it is said that the objects of sense gratification are superior to the senses, and mind is superior to the sense objects. If, therefore, the mind is directly engaged in the service of the Lord constantly, then there is no chance of the senses becoming engaged in other ways. This mental attitude has already been explained. If the mind is engaged in the transcendental service of the Lord, there is no chance of its being engaged in the lower propensities. In the Kaha Upaniad the soul has been described as mahn, the great. Therefore the soul is above allnamely, the sense objects, the senses, the mind and the intelligence. Therefore, directly understanding the constitutional position of the soul is the solution of the whole problem.

With intelligence one has to seek out the constitutional position of the soul and then engage the mind always in Ka consciousness. That solves the whole problem. A neophyte spiritualist is generally advised to keep aloof from the objects of senses. One has to strengthen the mind by use of intelligence. If by intelligence one engages ones mind in Ka consciousness, by complete surrender unto the Supreme Personality of Godhead, then, automatically, the mind becomes stronger, and even though the senses are very strong, like serpents, they will be no more effective than serpents with broken fangs. But even though the soul is the master of intelligence and mind, and the senses also, still, unless it is strengthened by association with Ka in Ka consciousness, there is every chance of falling down due to the agitated mind.

Bg 3.43



Wv& bue" Par& bud(a Sa&STa>YaaTMaaNaMaaTMaNaa )
Jaih Xa}au& Mahabahae k-aMaPa& duraSadMa( )) 43 ))

eva buddhe para buddhv

sastabhytmnam tman

jahi atru mah-bho

kma-rpa dursadam

evamthus; buddheof intelligence; paramsuperior; buddhvso knowing; sastabhyaby steadying; tmnamthe mind; tmanby deliberate intelligence; jahiconquer; atrumthe enemy; mah-bhoO mighty-armed one; kma-rpamthe form of lust; dursadamformidable.


Thus knowing oneself to be transcendental to material senses, mind and intelligence, one should control the lower self by the higher self and thusby spiritual strengthconquer this insatiable enemy known as lust.


This Third Chapter of the Bhagavad-gt is conclusively directive to Ka consciousness by knowing oneself as the eternal servitor of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, without considering impersonal voidness as the ultimate end. In the material existence of life, one is certainly influenced by propensities for lust and desire for dominating the resources of material nature. Desire for overlording and sense gratification are the greatest enemies of the conditioned soul; but by the strength of Ka consciousness, one can control the material senses, the mind and the intelligence. One may not give up work and prescribed duties all of a sudden; but by gradually developing Ka consciousness, one can be situated in a transcendental position without being influenced by the material senses and the mindby steady intelligence directed toward ones pure identity. This is the sum total of this chapter. In the immature stage of material existence, philosophical speculations and artificial attempts to control the senses by the so-called practice of yogic postures can never help a man toward spiritual life. He must be trained in Ka consciousness by higher intelligence.

Thus end the Bhaktivedanta Purports to the Third Chapter of the rmad-Bhagavad-gt in the matter of Karma-yoga, or the Discharge of Ones Prescribed Duty in Ka Consciousness.

Bg 4. Transcendental Knowledge


Transcendental Knowledge

Bg 4.1



wMa& ivvSvTae YaaeGa& Pa[ae-vaNahMaVYaYaMa( )
ivvSvaNMaNave Pa[ah MaNauir+vak-ve_b]vqTa( )) 1 ))

r-bhagavn uvca

ima vivasvate yoga

proktavn aham avyayam

vivasvn manave prha

manur ikvkave bravt

r bhagavn uvcathe Supreme Personality of Godhead said; imamthis; vivasvateunto the sun-god; yogamthe science of ones relationship to the Supreme; proktavninstructed; ahamI; avyayamimperishable; vivasvnVivasvn (the sun-gods name); manaveunto the father of mankind (of the name Vaivasvata); prhatold; manuthe father of mankind; ikvkaveunto King Ikvku; abravtsaid.


The Blessed Lord said: I instructed this imperishable science of yoga to the sun-god, Vivasvn, and Vivasvn instructed it to Manu, the father of mankind, and Manu in turn instructed it to Ikvku.


Herein we find the history of the Bhagavad-gt traced from a remote time when it was delivered to the royal order, the kings of all planets. This science is especially meant for the protection of the inhabitants and therefore the royal order should understand it in order to be able to rule the citizens and protect them from the material bondage to lust. Human life is meant for cultivation of spiritual knowledge, in eternal relationship with the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and the executive heads of all states and all planets are obliged to impart this lesson to the citizens by education, culture and devotion. In other words, the executive heads of all states are intended to spread the science of Ka consciousness so that the people may take advantage of this great science and pursue a successful path, utilizing the opportunity of the human form of life.

In this millennium, the sun-god is known as Vivasvn, the king of the sun, which is the origin of all planets within the solar system. In the Brahma-sahit it is stated:

yac-cakur ea savit sakala-grah
rj samasta-sura-mrttir aea-tej
yasyjay bhramati sambhta-klacakro
govindam di-purua tam aha bhajmi

"Let me worship," Lord Brahm said, "the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Govinda [Ka], who is the original person and under whose order the sun, which is the king of all planets, is assuming immense power and heat. The sun represents the eye of the Lord and traverses its orbit in obedience to His order."

The sun is the king of the planets, and the sun-god (at present of the name Vivasvn) rules the sun planet, which is controlling all other planets by supplying heat and light. He is rotating under the order of Ka, and Lord Ka originally made Vivasvn His first disciple to understand the science of Bhagavad-gt. The Gt is not, therefore, a speculative treatise for the insignificant mundane scholar but is a standard book of knowledge coming down from time immemorial. In the Mahbhrata (nti-parva 348.5152) we can trace out the history of the Gt as follows:

tret-yugdau ca tato vivasvn manave dadau
manu ca loka-bhty-artha sutyekvkave dadau
ikvku ca kathito vypya lokn avasthit

"In the beginning of the Tret-yuga [millennium] this science of the relationship with the Supreme was delivered by Vivasvn to Manu. Manu, being the father of mankind, gave it to his son Mahrja Ikvku, the King of this earth planet and forefather of the Raghu dynasty in which Lord Rmacandra appeared. Therefore, Bhagavad-gt existed in the human society from the time of Mahrja Ikvku."

At the present moment we have just passed through five thousand years of the Kali-yuga, which lasts 432,000 years. Before this there was Dvpara-yuga (800,000 years), and before that there was Tret-yuga (1,200,000 years). Thus, some 2,005,000 years ago, Manu spoke the Bhagavad-gt to his disciple and son Mahrja lkvku, the King of this planet earth. The age of the current Manu is calculated to last some 305,300,000 years, of which 120,400,000 have passed. Accepting that before the birth of Manu, the Gt was spoken by the Lord to His disciple, the sun-god Vivasvn, a rough estimate is that the Gt was spoken at least 120,400,000 years ago; and in human society it has been extant for two million years. It was respoken by the Lord again to Arjuna about five thousand years ago. That is the rough estimate of the history of the Gta, according to the Gt itself and according to the version of the speaker, Lord r Ka. It was spoken to the sun-god Vivasvn because he is also a katriya and is the father of all katriyas who are descendants of the sun-god, or the srya-vaa katriyas. Because Bhagavad-gt is as good as the Vedas, being spoken by the Supreme Personality of Godhead, this knowledge is apaurueya, superhuman. Since the Vedic instructions are accepted as they are, without human interpretation, the Gt must therefore be accepted without mundane interpretation. The mundane wranglers may speculate on the Gt in their own ways, but that is not Bhagavad-gt as it is. Therefore, Bhagavad-gt has to be accepted as it is, from the disciplic succession, and it is described herein that the Lord spoke to the sun-god, the sun-god spoke to his son Manu, and Manu spoke to his son Ikvku.

Bg 4.2



Wv& ParMParaPa[aiMaMa& raJazRYaae ivdu" )
Sa k-ale/Naeh MahTaa YaaeGaae Na" ParNTaPa )) 2 ))

eva parampar-prptam

ima rjarayo vidu

sa kleneha mahat

yogo naa parantapa

evamthus; parampardisciplic succession; prptamreceived; imamthis science; rjarayathe saintly kings; viduunderstood; sathat knowledge; klenain the course of time; ihain this world; mahatby great; yogathe science of ones relationship with the Supreme; naascattered; parantapaO Arjuna, subduer of the enemies.


This supreme science was thus received through the chain of disciplic succession, and the saintly kings understood it in that way. But in course of time the succession was broken, and therefore the science as it is appears to be lost.


It is clearly stated that the Gt was especially meant for the saintly kings because they were to execute its purpose in ruling over the citizens. Certainly Bhagavad-gt was never meant for the demonic persons, who would dissipate its value for no ones benefit and would devise all types of interpretations according to personal whims. As soon as the original purpose was scattered by the motives of the unscrupulous commentators, there arose the need to reestablish the disciplic succession. Five thousand years ago it was detected by the Lord Himself that the disciplic succession was broken, and therefore He declared that the purpose of the Gt appeared to be lost. In the same way, at the present moment also there are so many editions of the Gt (especially in English), but almost all of them are not according to authorized disciplic succession. There are innumerable interpretations rendered by different mundane scholars, but almost all of them do not accept the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Ka, although they make a good business on the words of r Ka. This spirit is demonic, because demons do not believe in God but simply enjoy the property of the Supreme. Since there is a great need of an edition of the Gt in English, as it is received by the parampar (disciplic succession) system, an attempt is made herewith to fulfill this great want. Bhagavad-gtaccepted as it isis a great boon to humanity; but if it is accepted as a treatise of philosophical speculations, it is simply a waste of time.

Bg 4.3



Sa WvaYa& MaYaa Tae_ YaaeGa" Pa[ae-" PauraTaNa" )
>a-ae_iSa Mae Sa%a ceiTa rhSYa& eTadutaMaMa( )) 3 ))

sa evya may te dya

yoga prokta purtana

bhakto si me sakh ceti

rahasya hy etad uttamam

sathe same ancient; evacertainly; ayamthis; mayby Me; teunto you; adyatoday; yogathe science of yoga; proktaspoken; purtanavery old; bhaktadevotee; asiyou are; meMy; sakhfriend; caalso; ititherefore; rahasyammystery; hicertainly; etatthis; uttamamtranscendental.


That very ancient science of the relationship with the Supreme is today told by Me to you because you are My devotee as well as My friend; therefore you can understand the transcendental mystery of this science.


There are two classes of men, namely the devotee and the demon. The Lord selected Arjuna as the recipient of this great science owing to his becoming the devotee of the Lord, but for the demon it is not possible to understand this great mysterious science. There are a number of editions of this great book of knowledge, and some of them have commentaries by the devotees, and some of them have commentaries by the demons. Commentation by the devotees is real, whereas that of the demons is useless. Arjuna accepts r Ka as the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and any commentary on the Gt following in the footsteps of Arjuna is real devotional service to the cause of this great science. The demonic, however, concoct something about Ka and mislead the public and general readers from the path of Kas instructions. One should try to follow the disciplic succession from Arjuna, and thus be benefitted.

Bg 4.4



AJauRNa ovac
APar& >avTaae JaNMa Par& JaNMa ivvSvTa" )
k-QaMaeTaiJaaNaqYaa& TvMaadaE Pa[ae-vaiNaiTa )) 4 ))

arjuna uvca

apara bhavato janma

para janma vivasvata

katham etad vijny

tvam dau proktavn iti

arjuna uvcaArjuna said; aparamjunior; bhavataYour; janmabirth; paramsuperior; janmabirth; vivasvataof the sun-god; kathamhow; etatthis; vijnymshall I understand; tvamYou; dauin the beginning; proktavninstructed; itithus.


Arjuna said: The sun-god Vivasvn is senior by birth to You. How am I to understand that in the beginning You instructed this science to him?


Arjuna is an accepted devotee of the Lord, so how could he not believe Kas words? The fact is that Arjuna is not inquiring for himself but for those who do not believe in the Supreme Personality of Godhead or for the demons who do not like the idea that Ka should be accepted as the Supreme Personality of Godhead; for them only Arjuna inquires on this point, as if he were himself not aware of the Personality of Godhead, or Ka. As it will be evident from the Tenth Chapter, Arjuna knew perfectly well that Ka is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the fountainhead of everything and the last word in Transcendence. Of course, Ka also appeared as the son of Devak on this earth. How Ka remained the same Supreme Personality of Godhead, the eternal, original person, is very difficult for an ordinary man to understand. Therefore, to clarify this point, Arjuna put this question before Ka so that He Himself could speak authoritatively. That Ka is the supreme authority is accepted by the whole world, not only at present, but from time immemorial, and the demons alone reject Him. Anyway, since Ka is the authority accepted by all, Arjuna put this question before Him in order that Ka would describe Himself without being depicted by the demons who always try to distort Him in a way understandable to the demons and their followers. It is necessary that everyone, for his own interest, know the science of Ka. Therefore, when Ka Himself speaks about Himself, it is auspicious for all the worlds. To the demons, such explanations by Ka Himself may appear to be strange because the demons always study Ka from their own standpoint, but those who are devotees heartily welcome the statements of Ka when they are spoken by Ka Himself. The devotees will always worship such authoritative statements of Ka because they are always eager to know more and more about Him. The atheists, who consider Ka an ordinary man, may in this way come to know that Ka is superhuman, that He is sac-cid-nanda-vigrahathe eternal form of bliss and knowledgethat He is transcendental, and that He is above the domination of the modes of material nature and above the influence of time and space. A devotee of Kas, like Arjuna, is undoubtedly above any misunderstanding of the transcendental position of Ka. Arjunas putting this question before the Lord is simply an attempt by the devotee to defy the atheistic attitude of persons who consider Ka to be an ordinary human being subject to the modes of material nature.

Bg 4.5



bhUiNa Mae VYaTaqTaaiNa JaNMaaiNa Tav caJauRNa )
TaaNYah& ved SavaRi<a Na Tv& veTQa ParNTaPa )) 5 ))

r-bhagavn uvca

bahni me vyattni

janmni tava crjuna

tny aha veda sarvi

na tva vettha parantapa

r bhagavn uvcathe Personality of Godhead said; bahnimany; meof Mine; vyattnihave passed; janmnibirths; tavaof yours; caand also; arjunaO Arjuna; tniall those; ahamI; vedado know; sarviall; nanot; tvamyourself; vetthaknow; parantapaO subduer of the enemy.


The Blessed Lord said: Many, many births both you and I have passed. I can remember all of them, but you cannot, O subduer of the enemy!


In the Brahma-sahit we have information of many, many incarnations of the Lord. lt is stated there:

advaitam acyutam andim ananta-rpam
dya pura-purua nava-yauvana ca
vedeu durllabham adurllabham tma-bhaktau
govindam di-purua tam aha bhajmi.

(Bs. 5.33)

"I worship the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Govinda [Ka], who is the original personabsolute, infallible, without beginning, although expanded into unlimited forms, still the same original, the oldest, and the person always appearing as a fresh youth. Such eternal, blissful, all-knowing forms of the Lord are usually understood by the best Vedic scholars, but they are always manifest to pure, unalloyed devotees." It is also stated in Brahma-sahit:

rmdi mrttiu kal-niyamena tihan
nnvatram akarod bhuvaneu kintu
ka svaya samabhavat parama pumn yo
govindam di-purua tam aha bhajmi

(Bs. 5.39)

"I worship the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Govinda [Ka], who is always situated in various incarnations such as Rma, Nsiha and many sub-incarnations as well, but who is the original Personality of Godhead known as Ka, and who incarnates personally also."

In the Vedas also it is said that the Lord, although one without a second, nevertheless manifests Himself in innumerable forms. He is like the vaidurya stone, which changes color yet still remains one. All those multi-forms are understood by the pure, unalloyed devotees, but not by a simple study of the Vedas: vedeu durllabham adurllabham tma-bhaktau. Devotees like Arjuna are constant companions of the Lord, and whenever the Lord incarnates, the associate devotees also incarnate in order to serve the Lord in different capacities. Arjuna is one of these devotees, and in this verse it is understood that some millions of years ago when Lord Ka spoke the Bhagavad-gt to the sun-god Vivasvn, Arjuna, in a different capacity, was also present. But the difference between the Lord and Arjuna is that the Lord remembered the incidence, whereas Arjuna could not remember. That is the difference between the part and parcel living entity and the Supreme Lord. Although Arjuna is addressed herein as the mighty hero who could subdue the enemies, he is unable to recall what had happened in his various past births. Therefore, a living entity, however great he may be in the material estimation, can never equal the Supreme Lord. Anyone who is a constant companion of the Lord is certainly a liberated person, but he cannot be equal to the Lord. The Lord is described in the Brahma-sahit as infallible (acyuta), which means that He never forgets Himself, even though He is in material contact. Therefore, the Lord and the living entity can never be equal in all respects, even if the living entity is as liberated as Arjuna. Although Arjuna is a devotee of the Lord, he sometimes forgets the nature of the Lord, but by the divine grace a devotee can at once understand the infallible condition of the Lord, whereas a nondevotee or a demon cannot understand this transcendental nature. Consequently these descriptions in the Gt cannot be understood by demonic brains. Ka remembered acts which were performed by Him millions of years before, but Arjuna could not, despite the fact that both Ka and Arjuna are eternal in nature. We may also note herein that a living entity forgets everything due to his change of body, but the Lord remembers because He does not change His sac-cid-nanda body. He is advaita, which means there is no distinction between His body and Himself. Everything in relation to Him is spiritwhereas the conditioned soul is different from his material body. And, because the Lords body and self are identical, His position is always different from the ordinary living entity, even when He descends to the material platform. The demons cannot adjust themselves to this transcendental nature of the Lord, as the Lord explains in the following verse.

Bg 4.6



AJaae_iPa SaVYaYaaTMaa >aUTaaNaaMaqrae_iPa SaNa( )
Pa[k*-iTa& SvaMaiDaaYa SaM>avaMYaaTMaMaaYaYaa )) 6 ))

ajo pi sann avyaytm

bhtnm varo pi san

prakti svm adhihya

sambhavmy tma-myay

ajaunborn; apialthough; sanbeing so; avyayawithout deterioration; tmbody; bhtnmall those who are born; varathe Supreme Lord; apialthough; sanbeing so; praktimtranscendental form; svmof Myself; adhihyabeing so situated; sambhavmiI do incarnate; tma-myayby My internal energy.


Although I am unborn and My transcendental body never deteriorates, and although I am the Lord of all sentient beings, I still appear in every millennium in My original transcendental form.


The Lord has spoken about the peculiarity of His birth: although He may appear like an ordinary person, He remembers everything of His many, many past "births," whereas a common man cannot remember what he has done even a few hours before. If someone is asked what he did exactly at the same time one day earlier, it would be very difficult for a common man to answer immediately. He would surely have to dredge his memory to recall what he was doing exactly at the same time one day before. And yet, men often dare claim to be God, or Ka. One should not be misled by such meaningless claims. Then again, the Lord explains His prakti or His form. Prakti means nature as well as svarpa, or ones own form. The Lord says that He appears in His own body. He does not change His body, as the common living entity changes from one body to another. The conditioned soul may have one kind of body in the present birth, but he has a different body in the next birth. In the material world, the living entity has no fixed body but transmigrates from one body to another. The Lord, however, does not do so. Whenever He appears, He does so in the same original body, by His internal potency. In other words, Ka appears in this material world in His original eternal form, with two hands, holding a flute. He appears exactly in His eternal body, uncontaminated by this material world. Although He appears in the same transcendental body and is Lord of the universe, it still appears that He takes His birth like an ordinary living entity. Despite the fact Lord Ka grows from childhood to boyhood and from boyhood to youth, astonishingly enough He never ages beyond youth. At the time of the Battle of Kuruketra, He had many grandchildren at home; or, in other words, He had sufficiently aged by material calculations. Still He looked just like a young man twenty or twenty-five years old. We never see a picture of Ka in old age because He never grows old like us, although He is the oldest person in the whole creationpast, present, and future. Neither His body nor His intelligence ever deteriorates or changes. Therefore, it is clear that in spite of His being in the material world, He is the same unborn, eternal form of bliss and knowledge, changeless in His transcendental body and intelligence. Factually, His appearance and disappearance is like the suns rising, moving before us, and then disappearing from our eyesight. When the sun is out of sight, we think that the sun is set, and when the sun is before our eyes, we think that the sun is on the horizon. Actually, the sun is always in its fixed position, but owing to our defective, insufficient senses, we calculate the appearance and disappearance of the sun in the sky. And, because His appearance and disappearance are completely different from that of any ordinary, common living entity, it is evident that He is eternal, blissful knowledge by His internal potencyand He is never contaminated by material nature. The Vedas also confirm that the Supreme Personality of Godhead is unborn, yet He still appears to take His birth in multi-manifestations. The Vedic supplementary literatures also confirm that even though the Lord appears to be taking His birth, He is still without change of body. In the Bhgavatam, He appears before His mother as Nryaa, with four hands and the decorations of the six kinds of full opulences. His appearance in His original eternal form is His causeless mercy, according to the Vivakoa dictionary. The Lord is conscious of all of His previous appearances and disappearances, but a common living entity forgets everything about his past body as soon as he gets another body. He is the Lord of all living entities because He performs wonderful and superhuman activities while He is on this earth. Therefore, the Lord is always the same Absolute Truth and is without differentiation between His form and self, or between His quality and body. A question may now be raised as to why the Lord appears and disappears in this world. This is explained in the next verse.

Bg 4.7



Yada Yada ih DaMaRSYa Gl/aiNa>aRviTa >aarTa )
A>YauTQaaNaMaDaMaRSYa TadaTMaaNa& Sa*JaaMYahMa( )) 7 ))

yad yad hi dharmasya

glnir bhavati bhrata

abhyutthnam adharmasya

tadtmna sjmy aham

yadwhenever; yadwherever; hicertainly; dharmasyaof religion; glnidiscrepancies; bhavatimanifested, becomes; bhrataO descendant of Bharata; abhyutthnampredominance; adharmasyaof irreligion; tadat that time; tmnamself; sjmimanifest; ahamI.


Whenever and wherever there is a decline in religious practice, O descendant of Bharata, and a predominant rise of irreligionat that time I descend Myself.


The word sjmi is significant herein. Sjmi cannot be used in the sense of creation. because, according to the previous verse, there is no creation of the Lords form or body, since all of the forms are eternally existent. Therefore sjmi means that the Lord manifests Himself as He is. Although the Lord appears on schedule, namely at the end of Dvpara-yuga of the twenty-eighth millennium of the eighth Manu, in one day of Brahm, still He has no obligation to adhere to such rules and regulations because He is completely free to act in many ways at His will. He therefore appears by His own will whenever there is a predominance of irreligiosity and a disappearance of true religion. Principles of religion are laid down in the Vedas, and any discrepancy in the matter of properly executing the rules of the Vedas makes one irreligious. In the Bhgavatam it is stated that such principles are the laws of the Lord. Only the Lord can manufacture a system of religion. The Vedas are also accepted as originally spoken by the Lord Himself to Brahm, from within his heart. Therefore, the principles of dharma, or religion, are the direct orders of the Supreme Personality of Godhead (dharma tu skt-bhagavat-pratam). These principles are clearly indicated throughout the Bhagavad-gt. The purpose of the Vedas is to establish such principles under the order of the Supreme Lord, and the Lord directly orders, at the end of the Gt, that the highest principle of religion is to surrender unto Him only, and nothing more. The Vedic principles push one towards complete surrender unto Him; and, whenever such principles are disturbed by the demonic, the Lord appears. From the Bhgavatam we understand that Lord Buddha is the incarnation of Ka who appeared when materialism was rampant and materialists were using the pretext of the authority of the Vedas. Although there are certain restrictive rules and regulations regarding animal sacrifice for particular purposes in the Vedas, people of demonic tendency still took to animal sacrifice without reference to the Vedic principles. Lord Buddha appeared to stop this nonsense and to establish the Vedic principles of nonviolence. Therefore each and every avatra, or incarnation of the Lord, has a particular mission, and they are all described in the revealed scriptures. No one should be accepted as an avatra unless he is referred to by scriptures. It is not a fact that the Lord appears only on Indian soil. He can advent Himself anywhere and everywhere, and whenever He desires to appear. In each and every incarnation, He speaks as much about religion as can be understood by the particular people under their particular circumstances. But the mission is the sameto lead people to God consciousness and obedience to the principles of religion. Sometimes He descends personally, and sometimes He sends His bona fide representative in the form of His son, or servant, or Himself in some disguised form.

The principles of the Bhagavad-gt were spoken to Arjuna, and, for that matter, to other highly elevated persons, because he was highly advanced compared to ordinary persons in other parts of the world. Two plus two equals four is a mathematical principle that is true both in the beginners arithmetic class and in the advanced class as well. Still, there are higher and lower mathematics. In all incarnations of the Lord, therefore, the same principles are taught, but they appear to be higher and lower in varied circumstances. The higher principles of religion begin with the acceptance of the four orders and the four statuses of social life, as will be explained later. The whole purpose of the mission of incarnations is to arouse Ka consciousness everywhere. Such consciousness is manifest and nonmanifest only under different circumstances.

Bg 4.8



Pair}aa<aaYa SaaDaUNaa& ivNaaXaaYa c duZk*-TaaMa( )
DaMaRSa&SQaaPaNaaQaaRYa SaM>avaiMa YauGae YauGae )) 8 ))

paritrya sdhn

vinya ca duktm


sambhavmi yuge yuge

paritryafor the deliverance; sdhnmof the devotees; vinyafor the annihilation; caalso; duktmof the miscreants; dharmaprinciples of religion; sasthpana-arthyato reestablish; sambhavmiI do appear; yugemillennium; yugeafter millennium.


In order to deliver the pious and to annihilate the miscreants, as well as to reestablish the principles of religion, I advent Myself millennium after millennium.


According to Bhagavad-gt, a sdhu (holyman) is a man in Ka consciousness. A person may appear to be irreligious, but if he has the qualifications of Ka consciousness wholly and fully, he is to be understood to be a sdhu. And duktam applies to one who doesn't care for Ka consciousness. Such miscreants, or duktam, are described as foolish and the lowest of mankind, even though they may be decorated with mundane education; whereas another person, who is one hundred percent engaged in Ka consciousness, is accepted as sdhu, even though such a person may neither be learned nor well cultured. As far as the atheistic are concerned, it is not necessary for the Supreme Lord to appear as He is to destroy them, as He did with the demons Rvaa and Kasa. The Lord has many agents who are quite competent to vanquish demons. But the Lord especially descends to appease His unalloyed devotees, who are always harassed by the demonic. The demon harasses the devotee, even though the latter may happen to be his kin. Although Prahlda Mahrja was the son of Hirayakaipu, he was nonetheless persecuted by his father; although Devak, the mother of Ka, was the sister of Kasa, she and her husband Vasudeva were persecuted only because Ka was to be born of them. So Lord Ka appeared primarily to deliver Devak, rather than kill Kasa, but both were performed simultaneously. Therefore it is said here that to deliver the devotee and vanquish the demon miscreants, the Lord appears in different incarnations.

In the Caitanya-caritmta of Kadsa Kavirja, the following verses summarize these principles of incarnation:

si-hetu yei mrti prapace avatare
sei vara-mrti avatra nma dhare
mytita paravyome savra avasthna
vive avatri dhare avatra nma.

"The avatra, or incarnation of Godhead, descends from the kingdom of God for material manifestation. And the particular form of the Personality of Godhead who so descends is called an incarnation, or avatra. Such incarnations are situated in the spiritual world, the kingdom of God. When they descend to the material creation, they assume the name avatra."

There are various kinds of avatras, such as puruvatras, guvatras, llvatras, aktyvea avatras, manvantara-avatras and yugvatrasall appearing on schedule all over the universe. But Lord Ka is the primeval Lord, the fountainhead of all avatras. Lord r Ka descends for the specific purposes of mitigating the anxieties of the pure devotees, who are very anxious to see Him in His original Vndvana pastimes. Therefore, the prime purpose of the Ka avatra is to satisfy His unalloyed devotees.

The Lord says that He incarnates Himself in every millennium. This indicates that He incarnates also in the age of Kali. As stated in the rmad-Bhgavatam, the incarnation in the age of Kali is Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu, who spread the worship of Ka by the sakrtana movement (congregational chanting of the holy names), and spread Ka consciousness throughout India. He predicted that this culture of sakrtana would be broadcast all over the world, from town to town and village to village. Lord Caitanya as the incarnation of Ka, the Personality of Godhead, is described secretly but not directly in the confidential parts of the revealed scriptures, such as the Upaniads, Mahbhrata, Bhgavatam, etc. The devotees of Lord Ka are much attracted by the sakrtana movement of Lord Caitanya. This avatra of the Lord does not kill the miscreants, but delivers them by the causeless mercy of the Lord.

Bg 4.9



JaNMa k-MaR c Mae idVYaMaev& Yaae veita TatvTa" )
TYa-a deh& PauNaJaRNMa NaEiTa MaaMaeiTa Saae_JauRNa )) 9 ))

janma karma ca me divyam

eva yo vetti tattvata

tyaktv deha punar janma

naiti mm eti so rjuna

janmabirth; karmawork; caalso; meof Mine; divyamtranscendental; evamlike this; yaanyone who; vettiknows; tattvatain reality; tyaktvleaving aside; dehamthis body; punaagain; janmabirth; nanever; etidoes attain; mmunto Me; etidoes attain; sahe; arjunaO Arjuna.


One who knows the transcendental nature of My appearance and activities does not, upon leaving the body, take his birth again in this material world, but attains My eternal abode, O Arjuna.


The Lords descent from His transcendental abode is already explained in the 6th verse. One who can understand the truth of the appearance of the Personality of Godhead is already liberated from material bondage, and therefore he returns to the kingdom of God immediately after quitting this present material body. Such liberation of the living entity from material bondage is not at all easy. The impersonalists and the yogs attain liberation only after much trouble and many, many births. Even then, the liberation they achievemerging into the impersonal brahmajyoti of the Lordis only partial, and there is the risk of returning again to this material world. But the devotee, simply by understanding the transcendental nature of the body and activities of the Lord, attains the abode of the Lord after ending this body and does not run the risk of returning again to this material world. In the Brahma-sahit it is stated that the Lord has many, many forms and incarnations: advaitam acyutam andim ananta-rpam. Although there are many transcendental forms of the Lord, they are still one and the same Supreme Personality of Godhead. One has to understand this fact with conviction, although it is incomprehensible to mundane scholars and empiric philosophers. As stated in the Vedas:

eko devo nitya-llnurakto bhakta-vyp hdy antartm.

"The one Supreme Personality of Godhead is eternally engaged in many, many transcendental forms in relationships with His unalloyed devotees." This Vedic version is confirmed in this verse of the Gt personally by the Lord. He who accepts this truth on the strength of the authority of the Vedas and of the Supreme Personality of Godhead and who does not waste time in philosophical speculations attains the highest perfectional stage of liberation. Simply by accepting this truth on faith, one can, without a doubt, attain liberation. The Vedic version, "tattvamasi," is actually applied in this case. Anyone who understands Lord Ka to be the Supreme, or who says unto the Lord, "You are the same Supreme Brahman, the Personality of Godhead" is certainly liberated instantly, and consequently his entrance into the transcendental association of the Lord is guaranteed. In other words, such a faithful devotee of the Lord attains perfection, and this is confirmed by the following Vedic assertion:

tam eva viditvtimtyumeti nnya panth vidyate ayanya.

One can attain the perfect stage of liberation from birth and death simply by knowing the Lord, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. There is no alternative because anyone who does not understand Lord Ka as the Supreme Personality of Godhead is surely in the mode of ignorance. Consequently he will not attain salvation, simply, so to speak, by licking the outer surface of the bottle of honey, or by interpreting the Bhagavad-gt according to mundane scholarship. Such empiric philosophers may assume very important roles in the material world, but they are not necessarily eligible for liberation. Such puffed up mundane scholars have to wait for the causeless mercy of the devotee of the Lord. One should therefore cultivate Ka consciousness with faith and knowledge, and in this way attain perfection.

Bg 4.10



vqTaraGa>aYa-aeDaa MaNMaYaa MaaMauPaai[Taa" )
bhvae jaNaTaPaSaa PaUTaa MaavMaaGaTaa" )) 10 ))


man-may mm uprit

bahavo jna-tapas

pt mad-bhvam gat

vtafreed from; rgaattachment; bhayafear; krodhanger; mat-mayfully in Me; mmunto Me; upritbeing fully situated; bahavamany; jnaknowledge; tapasby penance; ptbeing purified; mat-bhvamtranscendental love for Me; gatattained.


Being freed from attachment, fear and anger, being fully absorbed in Me and taking refuge in Me, many, many persons in the past became purifled by knowledge of Meand thus they all attained transcendental love for Me.


As described above, it is very difficult for a person who is too materially affected to understand the personal nature of the Supreme Absolute Truth. Generally, people who are attached to the bodily conception of life are so absorbed in materialism that it is almost impossible for them to understand that there is a transcendental body which is imperishable, full of knowledge and eternally blissful. In the materialistic concept, the body is perishable, full of ignorance and completely miserable. Therefore, people in general keep this same bodily idea in mind when they are informed of the personal form of the Lord. For such materialistic men, the form of the gigantic material manifestation is supreme. Consequently they consider the Supreme to be impersonal. And because they are too materially absorbed, the conception of retaining the personality after liberation from matter frightens them. When they are informed that spiritual life is also individual and personal, they become afraid of becoming persons again, and so they naturally prefer a kind of merging into the impersonal void. Generally, they compare the living entities to the bubbles of the ocean, which merge into the ocean. That is the highest perfection of spiritual existence attainable without individual personality. This is a kind of fearful stage of life, devoid of perfect knowledge of spiritual existence. Furthermore there are many persons who cannot understand spiritual existence at all. Being embarassed by so many theories and by contradictions of various types of philosophical speculation, they become disgusted or angry and foolishly conclude that there is no supreme cause and that everything is ultimately void. Such people are in a diseased condition of life. Some people are too materially attached and therefore do not give attention to spiritual life, some of them want to merge into the supreme spiritual cause, and some of them disbelieve in everything, being angry at all sorts of spiritual speculation out of hopelessness. This last class of men take to the shelter of some kind of intoxication, and their affective hallucinations are sometimes accepted as spiritual vision. One has to get rid of all three stages of attachment to the material world: negligence of spiritual life, fear of a spiritual personal identity, and the conception of void that underlies the frustration of life. To get free from these three stages of the material concept of life, one has to take complete shelter of the Lord, guided by the bona fide spiritual master, and follow the disciplines and regulative principles of devotional life. The last stage of the devotional life is called bhva, or transcendental love of Godhead.

According to Bhakti-rasmta-sindhu, the science of devotional service:

dau raddh tata sdhu-sago tha bhajana-kriy
tato nartha-nivtti syt tato nih rucis tata
athsaktis tato bhvas tata prembhyudacati
sdhaknm aya prema prdurbhve bhavet krama.

"In the beginning one must have a preliminary desire for self-realization. This will bring one to the stage of trying to associate with persons who are spiritually elevated. In next stage one becomes initiated by an elevated spiritual master, and under his instruction the neophyte devotee begins the process of devotional service. By execution of devotional service under the guidance of the spiritual master, one becomes free from all material attachment, attains steadiness in self-realization, and acquires a taste for hearing about the Absolute Personality of Godhead, r Ka. This taste leads one further forward to attachment for Ka consciousness, which is matured in bhva, or the preliminary stage of transcendental love of God. Real love for God is called prem, the highest perfectional stage of life." In the prem stage there is constant engagement in the transcendental loving service of the Lord. So, by the slow process of devotional service, under the guidance of the bona fide spiritual master, one can attain the highest stage, being freed from all material attachment, from the fearfulness of ones individual spiritual personality, and from the frustrations resulting from void philosophy. Then one can ultimately attain to the abode of the Supreme Lord.

Bg 4.11



Yae YaQaa Maa& Pa[PaNTae Taa&STaQaEv >aJaaMYahMa( )
MaMa vTMaaRNauvTaRNTae MaNauZYaa" PaaQaR SavRXa" )) 11 ))

ye yath m prapadyante

ts tathaiva bhajmy aham

mama vartmnuvartante

manuy prtha sarvaa

yeall of them; yathas; mmunto Me; prapadyantesurrender; tnunto them; tathso; evacertainly; bhajmido I reward; ahamI; mamaMy; vartmapath; anuvartantedo follow; manuyall men; prthaO son of Pth; sarvaain all respects.


All of themas they surrender unto MeI reward accordingly. Everyone follows My path in all respects, O son of Pth.


Eveyone is searching for Ka in the different aspects of His manifestations. Ka, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is partially realized in His impersonal brahmajyoti effulgence and as the all-pervading Supersoul dwelling within everything, including the particles of atoms. But Ka is only fully realized by His pure devotees. Consequently, Ka is the object of everyones realization, and thus anyone and everyone is satisfied according to ones desire to have Him. In the transcendental world also, Ka reciprocates with His pure devotees in the transcendental attitude, just as the devotee wants Him. One devotee may want Ka as supreme master, another as his personal friend, another as his son, and still another as his lover. Ka rewards all the devotees equally, according to their different intensities of love for Him. In the material world, the same reciprocations of feelings are there, and they are equally exchanged by the Lord with the different types of worshipers. The pure devotees both here and in the transcendental abode associate with Him in person and are able to render personal service to the Lord and thus derive transcendental bliss in His loving service. As for those who are impersonalists and who want to commit spiritual suicide by annihilating the individual existence of the living entity, Ka helps also by absorbing them into His effulgence. Such impersonalists do not agree to accept the eternal, blissful Personality of Godhead; consequently they cannot relish the bliss of transcendental personal service to the Lord, having extinguished their individuality. Some of them, who are not situated even in the impersonal existence, return to this material field to exhibit their dormant desires for activities. They are not admitted in the spiritual planets, but they are again given a chance to act on the material planets. For those who are fruitive workers, the Lord awards the desired results of their prescribed duties, as the yajevara; and those who are yogs seeking mystic powers are awarded such powers. In other words, everyone is dependant for success upon His mercy alone, and all kinds of spiritual processes are but different degrees of success on the same path. Unless, therefore, one comes to the highest perfection of Ka consciousness, all attempts remain imperfect, as is stated in the rmad Bhgavatam:

akma sarva-kmo v moka-kma udradh
tvrea bhakti-yogena yajeta purua param

"Whether one is without desire [the condition of the devotees], or is desirous of all fruitive results, or is after liberation, one should with all efforts try to worship the Supreme Personality of Godhead for complete perfection, culminating in Ka consciousness." (Bhg. 2.3.10)

Bg 4.12



k-aNTa" k-MaR<aa& iSai& YaJaNTa wh devTaa" )
i+aPa[& ih MaaNauze l/aeke- iSai>aRviTa k-MaRJaa )) 12 ))

kkanta karma siddhi

yajanta iha devat

kipra hi mnue loke

siddhir bhavati karma-j

kkantadesiring; karmamof fruitive activities; siddhimperfection; yajanteworship by sacrifices; ihain the material world; devatthe demigods; kipramvery quickly; hicertainly; mnuein human society; lokewithin this world; siddhi bhavatibecomes successful; karmajthe fruitive worker.


Men in this world desire success in fruitive activities, and therefore they worship the demigods. Quickly, of course, men get results from fruitive work in this world.


There is a great misconception about the gods or demigods of this material world, and men of less intelligence, although passing as great scholars, take these demigods to be various forms of the Supreme Lord. Actually, the demigods are not different forms of God, but they are Gods different parts and parcels. God is one, and the parts and parcels are many. The Vedas say, nityo nitynm: God is one. vara parama ka. The Supreme God is oneKaand the demigods are delegated with powers to manage this material world. These demigods are all living entities (nitynm) with different grades of material power. They cannot be equal to the Supreme GodNryaa, Viu, or Ka. Anyone who thinks that God and the demigods are on the same level is called an atheist, or pa. Even the great demigods like Brahm and iva cannot be compared to the Supreme Lord. In fact, the Lord is worshiped by demigods such as Brahm and iva (iva-virici-nutam). Yet curiously enough there are many human leaders who are worshiped by foolish men under the misunderstanding of anthropomorphism or zoomorphism. Iha devat denotes a powerful man or demigod of this material world. But Nryaa, Viu or Ka, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, does not belong to this world. He is above, or transcendental to, material creation. Even rpda akarcrya, the leader of the impersonalists, maintains that Nryaa, or Ka, is beyond this material creation. However, foolish people (ht-ajana) worship the demigods because they want immediate results. They get the results, but do not know that results so obtained are temporary and are meant for less intelligent persons. The intelligent person is in Ka consciousness, and he has no need to worship the paltry demigods for some immediate, temporary benefit. The demigods of this material world, as well as their worshipers, will vanish with the annihilation of this material world. The boons of the demigods are material and temporary. Both the material worlds and their inhabitants, including the demigods, and their worshipers, are bubbles in the cosmic ocean. In this world, however, human society is mad after temporary things such as the material opulence of possessing land, family and enjoyable paraphernalia. To achieve such temporary things, they worship the demigods or powerful men in human society. If a man gets some ministership in the government by worshiping a political leader, he considers that he has achieved a great boon. All of them are therefore kowtowing to the so-called leaders or "big guns" in order to achieve temporary boons, and they indeed achieve such things. Such foolish men are not interested in Ka consciousness for the permanent solution to the hardships of material existence. They are all after sense enjoyment, and to get a little facility for sense enjoyment they are attracted to worship empowered living entities known as demigods. This verse indicates that people are rarely interested in Ka consciousness. They are mostly interested in material enjoyment, and therefore they worship some powerful living entity.

Bg 4.13



caTauvR<Ya| MaYaa Sa*& Gau<ak-MaRiv>aaGaXa" )
TaSYa k-TaaRrMaiPa Maa& ivyk-TaaRrMaVYaYaMa( )) 13 ))

ctur-varya may sa


tasya kartram api m

viddhy akartram avyayam

ctur-varyamthe four divisions of human society; mayby Me; samcreated; guaquality; karmawork; vibhgaain terms of division; tasyaof that; kartramthe father; apialthough; mmMe; viddhiyou may know; akartramas the non-doer; avyayambeing unchangeable.


According to the three modes of material nature and the work ascribed to them, the four divisions of human society were created by Me. And, although I am the creator of this system, you should know that I am yet the non-doer, being unchangeable.


The Lord is the creator of everything. Everything is born of Him, everything is sustained by Him, and everything, after annihilation, rests in Him. He is therefore the creator of the four divisions of the social order, beginning with the intelligent class of men, technically called brhmaas due to their being situated in the mode of goodness. Next is the administrative class, technically called the katriyas due to their being situated in the mode of passion. The mercantile men, called the vaiyas, are situated in the mixed modes of passion and ignorance, and the dras, or laborer class, are situated in the ignorant mode of material nature. In spite of His creating the four divisions of human society, Lord Ka does not belong to any of these divisions, because He is not one of the conditioned souls, a section of whom form human society. Human society is similar to any other animal society, but to elevate men from the animal status, the abovementioned divisions are created by the Lord for the systematic development of Ka consciousness. The tendency of a particular man toward work is determined by the modes of material nature which he has acquired. Such symptoms of life, according to different modes of material nature, are described in the Eighteenth Chapter of this book. A person in Ka consciousness, however, is above even the brhmaas, because a brhmaa by quality is supposed to know about Brahman, the Supreme Absolute Truth. Most of them approach the impersonal Brahman manifestation of Lord Ka, but only a man who transcends the limited knowledge of a brhmaa and reaches the knowledge of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Lord r Ka, becomes a person in Ka consciousnessor, in other words, a Vaiava. Ka consciousness includes knowledge of all different plenary expansions of Ka, namely Rma, Nsiha, Varha, etc. However, as Ka is transcendental to this system of the four divisions of human society, a person in Ka consciousness is also transcendental to all divisions of human society, whether we consider the divisions of community, nation or species.

Bg 4.14



Na Maa& k-MaaRi<a il/MPaiNTa Na Mae k-MaRf-le/ SPa*ha )
wiTa Maa& Yaae_i>aJaaNaaiTa k-MaRi>aNaR Sa bDYaTae )) 14 ))

na m karmi limpanti

na me karma-phale sph

iti m yo bhijnti

karmabhir na sa badhyate

nanever; mmunto Me; karmiall kinds of work; limpantido affect; nanor; meMy; karma-phalein fruitive action; sphaspiration; itithus; mmunto Me; yaone who; abhijntidoes know; karmabhiby the reaction of such work; nanever does; sahe; badhyatebecome entangled.


There is no work that affects Me; nor do I aspire for the fruits of action. One who understands this truth about Me also does not become entangled in the fruitive reactions of work.


As there are constitutional laws in the material world stating that the king can do no wrong, or that the king is not subject to the state laws, similarly the Lord, although He is the creator of this material world, is not affected by the activities of the material world. He creates and remains aloof from the creation, whereas the living entities are entangled in the fruitive results of material activities because of their propensity for lording it over material resources. The proprietor of an establishment is not responsible for the right and wrong activities of the workers, but the workers are themselves responsible. The living entities are engaged in their respective activities of sense gratification, and these activities are not ordained by the Lord. For advancement of sense gratification, the living entities are engaged in the work of this world, and they aspire to heavenly happiness after death. The Lord, being full in Himself, has no attraction for so-called heavenly happiness. The heavenly demigods are only His engaged servants. The proprietor never desires the low-grade happiness such as the workers may desire. He is aloof from the material actions and reactions. For example, the rains are not responsible for different types of vegetation that appear on the earth, although without such rains there is no possibility of vegetative growth. Vedic smti confirms this fact as follows:

nimitta-mtram evsau sjyn sarga-karmai
pradhna-kra-bht yato vai sjya-aktaya.

In the material creations, the Lord is only the supreme cause. The immediate cause is material nature by which the cosmic manifestation is visible. The created beings are of many varieties, such as the demigods, human beings and lower animals, and all of them are subject to the reactions of their past good or bad activities. The Lord only gives them the proper facilities for such activities and the regulations of the modes of nature, but He is never responsible for their past and present activities. In the Vednta-stras it is confirmed that the Lord is never partial to any living entity. The living entity is responsible for his own acts. The Lord only gives him facilities, through the agency of material nature, the external energy. Anyone who is fully conversant with all the intricacies of this law of karma, or fruitive activities, does not become affected by the results of his activities. In other words, the person who understands this transcendental nature of the Lord is an experienced man in Ka consciousness, and thus he is never subjected to the laws of karma. One who does not know the transcendental nature of the Lord and who thinks that the activities of the Lord are aimed at fruitive results, as are the activities of the ordinary living entities, certainly becomes entangled himself in fruitive reaction. But one who knows the Supreme Truth is a liberated soul fixed in Ka consciousness.

Bg 4.15



Wv& jaTva k*-Ta& k-MaR PaUvriPa MauMau+aui>a" )
ku- k-Mav TaSMaatv& PaUv" PaUvRTar& k*-TaMa( )) 15 ))

eva jtv kta karma

prvair api mumukubhi

kuru karmaiva tasmt tva

prvai prvatara ktam

evamthus; jtvknowing well; ktamperformed; karmawork; prvaiby past authorities; apialthough; mumukubhiwho attained liberation; kurujust perform; karmaprescribed duty; evacertainly; tasmttherefore; tvamyou; prvaiby the predecessors; prvataramancient predecessors; ktamas performed.


All the liberated souls in ancient times acted with this understanding and so attained liberation. Therefore, as the ancients, you should perform your duty in this divine consciousness.


There are two classes of men. Some of them are full of polluted material things within their hearts, and some of them are materially free. Ka consciousness is equally beneficial for both of these persons. Those who are full of dirty things can take to the line of Ka consciousness for a gradual cleansing process, following the regulative principles of devotional service. Those who are already cleansed of the impurities may continue to act in the same Ka consciousness so that others may follow their exemplary activities and thereby be benefitted. Foolish persons or neophytes in Ka consciousness often want to retire from activities without having knowledge of Ka consciousness. Arjunas desire to retire from activities on the battlefield was not approved by the Lord. One need only know how to act. To retire from the activities of Ka consciousness and to sit aloof making a show of Ka consciousness; is less important than actually engaging in the field of activities for the sake of Ka. Arjuna is here advised to act in Ka consciousness, following in the footsteps of the Lords previous disciples, such as the sun-god Vivasvn, as mentioned hereinbefore. The Supreme Lord knows all His past activities, as well as those of persons who acted in Ka consciousness in the past. Therefore He recommends the acts of the sun-god, who learned this art from the Lord some millions of years before. All such students of Lord Ka are mentioned here as past liberated persons, engaged in the discharge of duties allotted by Ka.

Bg 4.16



ik&- k-MaR ik-Mak-MaeRiTa k-vYaae_PYa}a MaaeihTaa" )
Tatae k-MaR Pa[v+YaaiMa YaJjaTva Maae+YaSae_u>aaTa( )) 16 ))

ki karma kim akarmeti

kavayo py atra mohit

tat te karma pravakymi

yaj jtv mokyase ubht

kimwhat is; karmaaction; kimwhat is; akarmainaction; itithus; kavayathe intelligent; apialso; atrain this matter; mohitbewildered; tatthat; teunto you; karmawork; pravakymiI shall explain; yatwhich; jtvknowing; mokyasebe liberated; aubhtfrom ill fortune.


Even the intelligent are bewildered in determining what is action and what is inaction. Now I shall explain to you what action is, knowing which you shall be liberated from all sins.


Action in Ka consciousness has to be executed in accord with the examples of previous bona fide devotees. This is recommended in the 15th verse. Why such action should not be independant will be explained in the text to follow.

To act in Ka consciousness, one has to follow the leadership of authorized persons who are in a line of disciplic succession as explained in the beginning of this chapter. The system of Ka consciousness was first narrated to the sun-god, the sun-god explained it to his son Manu, Manu explained it to his son Ikvku, and the system is current on this earth from that very remote time. Therefore, one has to follow in the footsteps of previous authorities in the line of disciplic succession. Otherwise even the most intelligent men will be bewildered regarding the standard actions of Ka consciousness. For this reason, the Lord decided to instruct Arjuna in Ka consciousness directly. Because of the direct instruction of the Lord to Arjuna, anyone who follows in the footsteps of Arjuna is certainly not bewildered.

It is said that one cannot ascertain the ways of religion simply by imperfect experimental knowledge. Actually, the principles of religion can only be laid down by the Lord Himself. Dharma hi skt-bhagavat-pratam. No one can manufacture a religious principle by imperfect speculation. One must follow in the footsteps of great authorities like Brahm, iva, Nrada, Manu, Kumra, Kapila, Prahlda, Bhma, ukadeva Gosvm, Yamarja, Janaka, etc. By mental speculation one cannot ascertain what is religion or self-realization. Therefore, out of causeless mercy to His devotees, the Lord explains directly to Arjuna what action is and what inaction is. Only action performed in Ka consciousness can deliver a person from the entanglement of material existence.

Bg 4.17



k-MaR<aae iPa baeVYa& baeVYa& c ivk-MaR<a" )
Ak-MaR<a baeVYa& GahNaa k-MaR<aae GaiTa" )) 17 ))

karmao hy api boddhavya

boddhavya ca vikarmaa

akarmaa ca boddhavya

gahan karmao gati

karmaaworking order ; hicertainly; apialso; boddhavyamshould be understood; boddhavyamto be understood; caalso; vikarmaaforbidden work; akarmaainaction; caalso; boddhavyamshould be understood; gahanvery difficult; karmaaworking order; gatito enter into.


The intricacies of action are very hard to understand. Therefore one should know properly what action is, what forbidden action is, and what inaction is.

If one is serious about liberation from material bondage, one has to understand the distinctions between action, inaction and unauthorized actions. One has to apply oneself to such an analysis of action, reaction and perverted actions because it is a very difficult subject matter. To understand Ka consciousness and action according to the modes, one has to learn ones relationship with the Supreme; i.e., one who has learned perfectly knows that every living entity is the eternal servitor of the Lord and that consequently one has to act in Ka consciousness. The entire Bhagavad-gt is directed toward this conclusion. Any other conclusions, against this consciousness and its attendant reactions, are vikarmas, or prohibitive actions. To understand all this one has to associate with authorities in Ka consciousness and learn the secret from them; this is as good as learning from the Lord directly. Otherwise, even the most intelligent person will be bewildered.

Bg 4.18



k-MaR<Yak-MaR Ya" PaXYaedk-MaRi<a c k-MaR Ya" )
Sa buiMaaNMaNauZYaezu Sa Yau-" k*-Tk-MaRk*-Ta( )) 18 ))

karmay akarma ya payed

akarmai ca karma ya

sa buddhimn manuyeu

sa yukta ktsna-karma-kt

karmaiin action; akarmainaction; yaone who; payetobserves; akarmaiin inaction; caalso; karmafruitive action; yaone who; sahe; buddhimnis intelligent; manuyeuin human society; sahe; yuktais in the transcendental position; ktsna-karma-ktalthough engaged in all activities.


One who sees inaction in action, and action in inaction, is intelligent among men, and he is in the tranecendental position, although engaged in all sorts of activities.


A person acting in Ka consciousness is naturally free from the bonds of karma. His activities are all performed for Ka; therefore he does not enjoy or suffer any of the effects of work. Consequently he is intelligent in human society, even though he is engaged in all sorts of activities for Ka. Akarma means without reaction to work. The impersonalist ceases fruitive activities out of fear, so that the resultant action may not be a stumbling block on the path of self-realization, but the personalist knows rightly his position as the eternal servitor of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Therefore he engages himself in the activities of Ka consciousness. Because everything is done for Ka, he enjoys only transcendental happiness in the discharge of this service. Those who are engaged in this process are known to be without desire for personal sense gratification. The sense of eternal servitorship to Ka makes one immune to all sorts of reactionary elements of work.

Bg 4.19



YaSYa SaveR SaMaarM>aa" k-aMaSaLPaviJaRTaa" )
jaNaaiGandGDak-MaaR<a& TaMaahu" Pai<@Ta& buDaa" )) 19 ))

yasya sarve samrambh



tam hu paita budh

yasyaone whose; sarveall sorts of; samrambhin all attempts; kmadesire for sense gratification; sakalpadetermination; varjitare devoid of; jnaof perfect knowledge; gnifire; dagdhabeing burnt by; karmamthe performer; tamhim; hudeclare; paitamlearned; budhthose who know.


One is understood to be in full knowledge whose every act is devoid of desire for sense gratification. He is said by sages to be a worker whose fruitive action is burned up by the fire of perfect knowledge.


Only a person in full knowledge can understand the activities of a person in Ka consciousness. Because the person in Ka consciousness is devoid of all kinds of sense-gratificatory propensities, it is to be understood that he has burned up the reactions of his work by perfect knowledge of his constitutional position as the eternal servitor of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. He is actually learned who has attained to such perfection of knowledge. Development of this knowledge of the eternal servitorship of the Lord is compared to fire. Such a fire, once kindled, can burn up all kinds of reactions to work.

Bg 4.20



TYa-a k-MaRf-l/aSa& iNaTYaTa*ae iNara[Ya" )
k-MaR<Yai>aPa[v*taae_iPa NaEv ik-iTk-raeiTa Sa" )) 20 ))

tyaktv karma-phalsaga

nitya-tpto nirraya

karmay abhipravtto pi

naiva kicit karoti sa

tyaktvhaving given up; karma-phala-sagamattachment for fruitive results; nityaalways; tptabeing satisfied; nirrayawithout any center; karmaiin activity; abhipravttabeing fully engaged; apiin spite of; nadoes not; evacertainly; kicitanything; karotido; sahe.


Abandoning all attachment to the results of his activities, ever satisfied and independant, he performs no fruitive action, although engaged in all kinds of undertakings.


This freedom from the bondage of actions is possible only in Ka consciousness when one is doing everything for Ka. A Ka conscious person acts out of pure love for the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and therefore he has no attraction for the results of the action. He is not even attached to his personal maintenance, for everything is left to Ka. Nor is he anxious to secure things, nor to protect things already in his possession. He does his duty to his best ability and leaves everything to Ka. Such an unattached person is always free from the resultant reactions of good and bad; it is as though he were not doing anything. This is the sign of akarma, or actions without fruitive reactions. Any other action, therefore, devoid of Ka consciousness, is binding upon the worker, and that is the real aspect of vikarma, as explained hereinbefore.

Bg 4.21



iNaraXaqYaRTaictaaTMaa TYa-SavRPairGa]h" )
Xaarqr& ke-vl&/ k-MaR ku-vRaPanaeiTa ik-iLbzMa( )) 21 ))

nirr yata-citttm


rra kevala karma

kurvan npnoti kilbiam

nirwithout desire for the results; yatacontrolled; citta-tmmind and intelligence; tyaktagiving up; sarvaall; parigrahasense of proprietorship over all possessions; rramin keeping body and soul together; kevalamonly; karmawork; kurvandoing so; nanever; pnotidoes not acquire; kilbiamsinful reactions.


Such a man of understanding acts with mind and intelligence perfectly controlled, gives up all sense of proprietorship over his possessions and acts only for the bare necessities of life. Thus working, he is not affected by sinful reactions.


A Ka conscious person does not expect good or bad results in his activities. His mind and intelligence are fully controlled. He knows that he is part and parcel of the Supreme, and therefore the part played by him, as a part and parcel of the whole, is not his by choice but is chosen for him by the Supreme and is done only through His agency. When the hand moves, it does not move out of its own accord, but by the endeavor of the whole body. A Ka conscious person is always dovetailed with the supreme desire, for he has no desire for personal sense gratification. He moves exactly like a part of a machine. As a machine part requires oiling and cleaning for maintenance, similarly, a Ka conscious man maintains himself by his work just to remain fit for action in the transcendental loving service of the Lord. He is therefore immune to all the reactions of his endeavors. Like an animal, he has no proprietorship even over his own body. A cruel proprietor of an animal sometimes kills the animal in his possession, yet the animal does not protest. Nor does it have any real independence. A Ka conscious person, fully engaged in self-realization, has very little time to falsely possess any material object. For maintaining body and soul, he does not require unfair means of accumulating money. He does not, therefore, become contaminated by such material sins. He is free from all reactions to his actions.

Bg 4.22



Yad*C^al/a>aSaNTauae NaTaqTaae ivMaTSar" )
SaMa" iSaaviSaaE c k*-TvaiPa Na iNabDYaTae )) 22 ))


dvandvtto vimatsara

sama siddhv asiddhau ca

ktvpi na nibadhyate

yadcchout of its own accord; lbhagain; santuasatisfied; dvandvaduality; attasurpassed; vimatsarafree from envy; samasteady; siddhauin success; asiddhaufailure; caalso; ktvdoing; apialthough; nanever; nibadhyateis affected.


He who is satisfied with gain which comes of its own accord, who is free from duality and does not envy, who is steady both in success and failure, is never entangled, although performing actions.


A Ka conscious person does not make much endeavor even to maintain his body. He is satisfied with gains which are obtained of their own accord. He neither begs nor borrows, but he labors honestly as far as is in his power, and is satisfied with whatever is obtained by his own honest labor. He is therefore independant in his livelihood. He does not allow anyones service to hamper his own service in Ka consciousness. However, for the service of the Lord he can participate in any kind of action without being disturbed by the duality of the material world. The duality of the material world is felt in terms of heat and cold, or misery and happiness. A Ka conscious person is above duality because he does not hesitate to act in any way for the satisfaction of Ka. Therefore he is steady both in success and in failure. These signs are visible when one is fully in transcendental knowledge.

Bg 4.23



GaTaSaSYa Mau-SYa jaNaaviSQaTaceTaSa" )
YajaYaacrTa" k-MaR SaMaGa]& Pa[ivl/IYaTae )) 23 ))

gata-sagasya muktasya


yajycarata karma

samagra pravilyate

gata-sagasyaunattached to the modes of material nature; muktasyaof the liberated; jna-avasthitasituated in transcendence; cetasaof such wisdom; yajyafor the sake of Yaja (Ka); carataso acting; karmawork; samagramin total; pravilyatemerges entirely.


The work of a man who is unattached to the modes of material nature and who is fully situated in transcendental knowledge merges entirely into transcendence.


Becoming fully Ka conscious, one is freed from all dualities and thus is free from the contaminations of the material modes. He can become liberated because he knows his constitutional position in relationship with Ka; and thus his mind cannot be drawn from Ka consciousness. Consequently, whatever he does, he does for Ka, who is the primeval Viu. Therefore, all his works are technically sacrifices because sacrifice involves satisfying the Supreme Person, Ka. The resultant reactions to all such work certainly merge into transcendence, and one does not suffer material effects.

Bg 4.24



b]aPaR<a& b] hivb]RaGanaE b]<aa huTaMa( )
b]Ev TaeNa GaNTaVYa& b]k-MaRSaMaaiDaNaa )) 24 ))

brahmrpaa brahma havir

brahmgnau brahma hutam

brahmaiva tena gantavya


brahmaspiritual nature; arpaamcontribution; brahmathe Supreme; havibutter; brahmaspiritual; agnauin the fire of consummation; brhmaby the spirit soul; hutamoffered; brahmaspiritual kingdom; evacertainly; tenaby him; gantavyamto be reached; brahmaspiritual; karmaactivities; samdhinby complete absorption.


A person who is fully absorbed in Ka consciousness is sure to attain the spiritual kingdom because of his full contribution to spiritual activities, in which the consummation is absolute and that which is offered is of the same spiritual nature.


How activities in Ka consciousness can lead one ultimately to the spiritual goal is described here. There are various activities in Ka consciousness, and all of them will be described in the following verses. But, for the present, just the principle of Ka consciousness is described. A conditioned soul, entangled in material contamination, is sure to act in the material atmosphere, and yet he has to get out of such an environment. The process by which the conditioned soul can get out of the material atmosphere is Ka consciousness. For example, a patient who is suffering from a disorder of the bowels due to overindulgence in milk products is cured by another milk product, namely curds. The materially absorbed conditioned soul can be cured by Ka consciousness as set forth here in the Gt. This process is generally known as yaja, or activities (sacrifices) simply meant for the satisfaction of Viu or Ka. The more the activities of the material world are performed in Ka consciousness, or for Viu only, the more the atmosphere becomes spiritualized by complete absorption. Brahman means spiritual. The Lord is spiritual, and the rays of His transcendental body are called brahmajyoti, His spiritual effulgence. Everything that exists is situated in that brahmajyoti, but when the jyoti is covered by illusion (my) or sense gratification, it is called material. This material veil can be removed at once by Ka consciousness; thus the offering for the sake of Ka consciousness, the consuming agent of such an offering or contribution; the process of consumption, the contributor, and the result areall combined togetherBrahman, or the Absolute Truth. The Absolute Truth covered by my is called matter. Matter dovetailed for the cause of the Absolute Truth regains its spiritual quality. Ka consciousness is the process of converting the illusory consciousness into Brahman, or the Supreme. When the mind is fully absorbed in Ka consciousness, it is said to be in samdhi, or trance. Anything done in such transcendental consciousness is called yaja, or sacrifice for the Absolute. In that condition of spiritual consciousness, the contributor, the contribution, the consumption, the performer or leader of the performance, and the result or ultimate gaineverythingbecomes one in the Absolute, the Supreme Brahman. That is the method of Ka consciousness.

Bg 4.25



dEvMaevaPare Yaj& YaaeiGaNa" PaYauRPaaSaTae )
b]aGanavPare Yaj& YajeNaEvaePaJauiTa )) 25 ))

daivam evpare yaja

yogina paryupsate

brahmgnv apare yaja


daivamin worshiping the demigods; evalike this; aparesome; yajamsacrifices; yoginathe mystics; paryupsateworship perfectly; brahmathe Absolute Truth; agnauin the fire of; apareothers; yajamsacrifice; yajenaby sacrifice; evathus; upajuhvatiworship.


Some yogs perfectly worship the demigods by offering different sacrifices to them, and some of them offer sacrffices in the fire of the Supreme Brahman.


As described above, a person engaged in discharging duties in Ka consciousness is also called a perfect yog or a first-class mystic. But there are others also, who perform similar sacrifices in the worship of demigods, and still others who sacrifice to the Supreme Brahman, or the impersonal feature of the Supreme Lord. So there are different kinds of sacrifices in terms of different categories. Such different categories of sacrifice by different types of performers only superficially demark varieties of sacrifice. Factual sacrifice means to satisfy the Supreme Lord, Viu, who is also known as Yaja. All the different varieties of sacrifice can be placed within two primary divisions: namely, sacrifice of worldly possessions and sacrifice in pursuit of transcendental knowledge. Those who are in Ka consciousness sacrifice all material possessions for the satisfaction of the Supreme Lord, while others, who want some temporary material happiness, sacrifice their material possessions to satisfy demigods such as Indra, the sun-god, etc. And others, who are impersonalists, sacrifice their identity by merging into the existence of impersonal Brahman. The demigods are powerful living entities appointed by the Supreme Lord for the maintenance and supervision of all material functions like the heating, watering and lighting of the universe. Those who are interested in material benefits worship the demigods by various sacrifices according to the Vedic rituals. They are called bahv-vara-vd, or believers in many gods. But others, who worship the impersonal feature of the Absolute Truth and regard the forms of the demigods as temporary, sacrifice their individual selves in the supreme fire and thus end their individual existences by merging into the existence of the Supreme. Such impersonalists spend their time in philosophical speculation to understand the transcendental nature of the Supreme. In other words, the fruitive workers sacrifice their material possessions for material enjoyment, whereas the impersonalist sacrifices his material designations with a view to merging into the existence of the Supreme. For the impersonalist, the fire altar of sacrifice is the Supreme Brahman, and the offering is the self being consumed by the fire of Brahman. The Ka conscious person, like Arjuna, however, sacrifices everything for the satisfaction of Ka, and thus all his material possessions as well as his own selfeverythingis sacrificed for Ka. Thus, he is the first-class yog; but he does not lose his individual existence.

Bg 4.26



[ae}aadqNaqiNd]Yaa<YaNYae Sa&YaMaaiGanzu JauiTa )
XaBdadqiNvzYaaNaNYa wiNd]YaaiGanzu JauiTa )) 26 ))

rotrdnndriyy anye

sayamgniu juhvati

abddn viayn anya

indriygniu juhvati

rotra dnihearing process; indriyisenses; anyeothers; sayamaof restraint; agniuin the fire; juhvatioffers; abda-dnsound vibration, etc.; viaynobjects of sense gratification; anyeothers: indriyaof sense organs; agniuin the fire; juhvatisacrifice.


Some of them sacrifice the hearing process and the senses in the fire of the controlled mind, and others sacrifice the objects of the senses, such as sound, in the fire of sacrifice.


The four divisions of human life, namely the brahmacr, the ghastha, the vnaprastha, and the sannys, are all meant to help men become perfect yogs or transcendentalists. Since human life is not meant for our enjoying sense gratification like the animals, the four orders of human life are so arranged that one may become perfect in spiritual life. The brahmacrs, or students under the care of a bona fide spiritual master, control the mind by abstaining from sense gratification. They are referred to in this verse as sacrificing the hearing process and the senses in the fire of the controlled mind. A brahmacr hears only words concerning Ka consciousness; hearing is the basic principle for understanding, and therefore the pure brahmacr engages fully in harer nmnukrtanamchanting and hearing the glories of the Lord. He restrains himself from the vibrations of material sounds, and his hearing is engaged in the transcendental sound vibration of Hare Ka, Hare Ka. Similarly, the householders, who have some license for sense gratification, perform such acts with great restraint. Sex life, intoxication and meat eating are general tendencies of human society, but a regulated householder does not indulge in unrestricted sex life and other sense gratifications. Marriage on principles of religious life is therefore current in all civilized human society because that is the way for restricted sex life. This restricted, unattached sex life is also a kind of yaja because the restricted householder sacrifices his general tendency toward sense gratification for higher transcendental life.

Bg 4.27



SavaR<aqiNd]Yak-MaaRi<a Pa[a<ak-MaaRi<a caPare )
AaTMaSa&YaMaYaaeGaaGanaE JauiTa jaNadqiPaTae )) 27 ))


pra-karmi cpare


juhvati jna-dpite

sarviall; indriyasenses; karmifunctions; pra-karmifunctions of the life breath; caalso; apareothers; tma-sayamacontrolling the mind; yogalinking process; agnauin the fire of; juhvatioffers; jna-dpitebecause of the urge for self-realization.


Those who are interested in self-realization, in terms of mind and sense control, offer the functions of all the senses, as well as the vital force [breath], as oblations into the fire of the controlled mind.


The yoga system conceived by Patajali is referred to herein. In the Yoga-stra of Patajali, the soul is called pratyag-tm and parag-tm. As long as the soul is attached to sense enjoyment, it is called parag-tm. The soul is subjected to the functions of ten kinds of air at work within the body, and this is perceived through the breathing system. The Ptajala system of yoga instructs one on how to control the functions of the bodys air in a technical manner so that ultimately all the functions of the air within become favorable for purifying the soul of material attachment. According to this yoga system, pratyag tm is the ultimate goal. This pratyag tm is a withdrawal from activities in matter. The senses interact with the sense objects, like the ear for hearing, eyes for seeing, nose for smelling, tongue for tasting, hand for touching, and all of them are thus engaged in activities outside the self. They are called the functions of the pra-vyu. The apna-vyu goes downwards, vyna-vyu acts to shrink and expand, samna-vyu adjusts equilibrium, udna-vyu goes upwardsand when one is enlightened, one engages all these in searching for self-realization.

Bg 4.28



d]VYaYajaSTaPaaeYaja YaaeGaYajaSTaQaaPare )
SvaDYaaYajaNaYaja YaTaYa" Sa&iXaTav]Taa" )) 28 ))

dravya-yajs tapo-yaj

yoga-yajs tathpare

svdhyya-jna-yaj ca

yataya saita-vrat

dravya-yajsacrificing ones possessions; tapo-yajsacrifice in austerities; yoga-yajsacrifice in eightfold mysticism; taththus; apareothers; svdhyyasacrifice in the study of the Vedas; jna-yajsacrifice in advancement of transcendental knowledge; caalso; yatayaenlightened; saitataken to strict; vratvows.


There are others who, enlightened by sacrificing their material possessions in severe austerities, take strict vows and practice the yoga of eightfold mysticism, and others study the Vedas for the advancement of transcendental knowledge.


These sacrifices may be fitted into various divisions. There are persons who are sacrificing their possessions in the form of various kinds of charities. In India, the rich mercantile community or princely orders open various kinds of charitable institutions like dharmal, anna-ketra, atithi-l, anathalaya, vidypha, etc. In other countries, too, there are many hospitals, old age homes and similar charitable foundations meant for distributing food, education and medical treatment free to the poor. All these charitable activities are called dravyamaya-yaja. There are others who, for higher elevation in life or for promotion to higher planets within the universe, voluntarily accept many kinds of austerities such as candryana and cturmsya. These processes entail severe vows for conducting life under certain rigid rules. For example, under the cturmsya vow the candidate does not shave for four months during the year (July to October), he does not eat certain foods, does not eat twice in a day and does not leave home. Such sacrifice of the comforts of life is called tapomaya-yaja. There are still others who engage themselves in different kinds of mystic yogas like the Patajali system (for merging into the existence of the Absolute), or haha-yoga or aga-yoga (for particular perfections). And some travel to all the sanctified places of pilgrimage. All these practices are called yoga-yaja, sacrifice for a certain type of perfection in the material world. There are others who engage themselves in the studies of different Vedic literatures, specifically the Upaniads and Vednta-stras, or the skhya philosophy. All of these are called svdhyya-yaja, or engagement in the sacrifice of studies. All these yogs are faithfully engaged in different types of sacrifice and are seeking a higher status of life. Ka consciousness, is, however, different from these because it is the direct service of the Supreme Lord. Ka consciousness cannot be attained by any one of the above-mentioned types of sacrifices but can be attained only by the mercy of the Lord and His bona fide devotee. Therefore, Ka consciousness is transcendental.

Bg 4.29



APaaNae JauiTa Pa[a<a& Pa[a<ae_PaaNa& TaQaaPare )
Pa[a<aaPaaNaGaTaq d(a Pa[a<aaYaaMaParaYa<aa" )
APare iNaYaTaahara" Pa[a<aaNPa[a<aezu JauiTa )) 29 ))

apne juhvati pra

pre pna tathpare

prpna-gat ruddhv


apare niyathr

prn preu juhvati

apneair which acts downward; juhvatioffers; pramair which acts outward; prein the air going outward; apnamair going downward; tathas also; apareothers; praair going outward; apnaair going downward; gatmovement; ruddhvchecking; prymatrance induced by stopping all breathing; paryaso inclined; apareothers; niyatacontrolled; hreating; prnoutgoing air; preuin the outgoing air; juhvatisacrifices.


And there are even others who are inclined to the process of breath restraint to remain in trance, and they practice stopping the movement of the outgoing breath into the incoming, and incoming breath into the outgoing, and thus at last remain in trance, stopping all breathing. Some of them, curtailing the eating process, offer the outgoing breath into itself, as a sacrifice.


This system of yoga for controlling the breathing process is called pryma, and in the beginning it is practiced in the haha-yoga system through different sitting postures. All of these processes are recommended for controlling the senses and for advancement in spiritual realization. This practice involves controlling the air within the body to enable simultaneous passage in opposite directions. The apna air goes downward, and the pra air goes up. The pryma yog practices breathing the opposite way until the currents are neutralized into praka, equilibrium. Similarly, when the exhaled breathing is offered to inhaled breathing, it is called recaka. When both air currents are completely stopped, it is called kumbhaka-yoga. By practice of kumbhaka-yoga, the yogs increase the duration of life by many, many years. A Ka conscious person, however, being always situated in the transcendental loving service of the Lord, automatically becomes the controller of the senses. His senses, being always engaged in the service of Ka, have no chance of becoming otherwise engaged. So at the end of life, he is naturally transferred to the transcendental plane of Lord Ka; consequently he makes no attempt to increase his longevity. He is at once raised to the platform of liberation. A Ka conscious person begins from the transcendental stage, and he is constantly in that consciousness. Therefore, there is no falling down, and ultimately he enters into the abode of the Lord without delay. The practice of reduced eating is automatically done when one eats only Ka prasdam, or food which is offered first to the Lord. Reducing the eating process is very helpful in the matter of sense control. And without sense control there is no possibility of getting out of the material entanglement.

Bg 4.30



SaveR_PYaeTae Yajivdae Yaj+aiPaTak-LMaza" )
YajiXaaMa*Ta>auJaae YaaiNTa b] SaNaaTaNaMa( )) 30 ))

sarve py ete yaja-vido



ynti brahma santanam

sarveall; apialthough apparently different; eteall these; yaja-vidaconversant with the purpose of performing; yajasacrifices; kapitabeing cleansed of the result of such performances; kalmasinful reactions; yaja-iaas a result of such performances of yaja; amta-bhujathose who have tasted such nectar; yntido approach; brahmathe supreme; santanameternal atmosphere.


All these performers who know the meaning of sacrifice become cleansed of sinful reaction, and, having tasted the nectar of the remnants of such sacrifice, they go to the supreme eternal atmosphere.


From the foregoing explanation of differents types of sacrifice (namely sacrifice of ones possessions, study of the Vedas or philosophical doctrines, and performance of the yoga system), it is found that the common aim of all is to control the senses. Sense gratification is the root cause of material existence; therefore, unless and until one is situated on a platform apart from sense gratification, there is no chance of being elevated to the eternal platform of full knowledge, full bliss and full life. This platform is in the eternal atmosphere, or Brahman atmosphere. All the above-mentioned sacrifices help one to become cleansed of the sinful reactions of material existence. By this advancement in life, one not only becomes happy and opulent in this life, but also, at the end, he enters into the eternal kingdom of God, either merging into the impersonal Brahman or associating with the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Ka.

Bg 4.31



NaaYa& l/aek-ae_STYaYajSYa ku-Taae_NYa" ku-SataMa )) 31 ))

nya loko sty ayajasya

kuto nya kuru-sattama

nanever; ayamthis; lokaplanet; astithere is; ayajasyaof the foolish; kutawhere is; anyathe other; kuru-sattamaO best amongst the Kurus.


O best of the Kuru dynasty, without sacrifice one can never live happily on this planet or in this life: what then of the next?


Whatever form of material existence one is in, one is invariably ignorant of his real situation. In other words, existence in the material world is due to the multiple reactions to our sinful lives. Ignorance is the cause of sinful life, and sinful life is the cause of ones dragging on in material existence. The human form of life is the only loophole by which one may get out of this entanglement. The Vedas, therefore, give us a chance for escape by pointing out the paths of religion, economic comfort, regulated sense gratification and, at last, the means to get out of the miserable condition entirely. The path of religion, or the different kinds of sacrifice recommended above, automatically solves our economic problems. By performance of yaja we can have enough food, enough milk, etc.even if there is a so-called increase of population. When the body is fully supplied, naturally the next stage is to satisfy the senses. The Vedas prescribe, therefore, sacred marriage for regulated sense gratification. Thereby one is gradually elevated to the platform of release from material bondage, and the highest perfection of liberated life is to associate with the Supreme Lord. Perfection is achieved by performance of yaja (sacrifice), as described above. Now, if a person is not inclined to perform yaja according to the Vedas, how can he expect a happy life? There are different grades of material comforts in different heavenly planets, and in all cases there is immense happiness for persons engaged in different kinds of yaja. But the highest kind of happiness that a man can achieve is to be promoted to the spiritual planets by practice of Ka consciousness. A life of Ka consciousness is therefore the solution to all the problems of material existence.

Bg 4.32



Wv& bhuivDaa Yaja ivTaTaa b]<aae Mau%e )
k-MaRJaaiNvi TaaNSavaRNaev& jaTva ivMaae+YaSae )) 32 ))

eva bahu-vidh yaj

vitat brahmao mukhe

karma-jn viddhi tn sarvn

eva jtv vimokyase

evamthus; bahu-vidhvarious kinds of; yajsacrifices; vitatwidespread; brahmaaof the Vedas; mukhein the face of; karma-jnborn of work; viddhiyou should know; tnthem; sarvnall; evamthus; jtvknowing; vimokyasebe liberated.


All these different types of sacrifice are approved by the Vedas, and all of them are born of different types of work. Knowing them as such, you will become liberated.


Different types of sacrifice, as discussed above, are mentioned in the Vedas to suit the different types of worker. Because men are so deeply absorbed in the bodily concept, these sacrifices are so arranged that one can work either with the body, the mind, or the intelligence. But all of them are recommended for ultimately bringing about liberation from the body. This is confirmed by the Lord herewith from His own mouth.

Bg 4.33



[eYaaNd]VYaMaYaajaJjaNaYaj" ParNTaPa )
Sav| k-MaaRi%l&/ PaaQaR jaNae PairSaMaaPYaTae )) 33 ))

reyn dravya-mayd yajj

jna-yaja parantapa

sarva karmkhila prtha

jne parisampyate

reyngreater; dravyamaytthan the sacrifice of material possessions; yajtknowledge; jna-yajasacrifice in knowledge; parantapaO chastiser of the enemy; sarvamall; karmaactivities; akhilamin totality; prthaO son of Pth; jnein knowledge; parisampyateends in.


O chastiser of the enemy, the sacrifice of knowledge is greater than the sacrifice of material possessions. O son of Pth, after all, the sacrifice of work culminates in transcendental knowledge.


The purpose of all sacrifices is to arrive at the status of complete knowledge, then to gain release from material miseries, and, ultimately, to engage in loving transcendental service to the Supreme Lord (Ka consciousness). Nonetheless, there is a mystery about all these different activities of sacrifice, and one should know this mystery. Sacrifices sometimes take different forms according to the particular faith of the performer. When ones faith reaches the stage of transcendental knowledge, the performer of sacrifices should be considered more advanced than those who simply sacrifice material possessions without such knowledge, for without attainment of knowledge, sacrifices remain on the material platform and bestow no spiritual benefit. Real knowledge culminates in Ka consciousness, the highest stage of transcendental knowledge. Without the elevation of knowledge, sacrifices are simply material activities. When, however, they are elevated to the level of transcendental knowledge, all such activities enter onto the spiritual platform. Depending on differences in consciousness, sacrificial activities are sometimes called karma-ka, fruitive activities, and sometimes jna-ka, knowledge in the pursuit of truth. It is better when the end is knowledge.

Bg 4.34



Taii Pa[i<aPaaTaeNa PairPa[neNa SaevYaa )
oPade+YaiNTa Tae jaNa& jaiNaNaSTatvdiXaRNa" )) 34 ))

tad viddhi praiptena

paripranena sevay

upadekyanti te jna

jninas tattva-darina

tatthat knowledge of different sacrifices; viddhitry to understand; praiptenaby approaching a spiritual master; paripranenaby submissive inquiries; sevayby the rendering of service; upadekyantiinitiate; teunto you; jnamknowledge; jninathe self-realized; tattvatruth; darinathe seers.


Just try to learn the truth by approaching a spiritual master. Inquire from him submissively and render service unto him. The self-realized soul can impart knowledge unto you because he has seen the truth.


The path of spiritual realization is undoubtedly difficult. The Lord therefore advises us to approach a bona fide spiritual master in the line of disciplic succession from the Lord Himself. No one can be a bona fide spiritual master without following this principle of disciplic succession. The Lord is the original spiritual master, and a person in the disciplic succession can convey the message of the Lord as it is to his disciple. No one can be spiritually realized by manufacturing his own process, as is the fashion of the foolish pretenders. The Bhgavatam says: dharma hi skd-bhagavat-pratamthe path of religion is directly enunciated by the Lord. Therefore, mental speculation or dry arguments cannot help one progress in spiritual life. One has to approach a bona fide spiritual master to receive the knowledge. Such a spiritual master should be accepted in full surrender, and one should serve the spiritual master like a menial servant, without false prestige. Satisfaction of the self-realized spiritual master is the secret of advancement in spiritual life. Inquiries and submission constitute the proper combination for spiritual understanding. Unless there is submission and service, inquiries from the learned spiritual master will not be effective. One must be able to pass the test of the spiritual master, and when he sees the genuine desire of the disciple, he automatically blesses the disciple with genuine spiritual understanding. In this verse, both blind following and absurd inquiries are condemned. One should not only hear submissively from the spiritual master; but one must also get a clear understanding from him, in submission and service and inquiries. A bona fide spiritual master is by nature very kind toward the disciple. Therefore when the student is submissive and is always ready to render service, the reciprocation of knowledge and inquiries becomes perfect.

Bg 4.35



YaJjaTva Na PauNaMaaeRhMaev& YaaSYaiSa Paa<@v )
YaeNa >aUTaaNYaXaezai<a d]+YaSYaaTMaNYaQaae MaiYa )) 35 ))

yaj jtv na punar moham

eva ysyasi pava

yena bhtny aei

drakyasy tmany atho mayi

yatwhich; jtvknowing; nanever; punaagain; mohamillusion; evamlike this; ysyasiyou shall go; pavaO son of Pu; yenaby which; bhtniall living entities; aesitotally; drakyasiyou will see; tmaniin the Supreme Soul; athoor in other words; mayiin Me.


And when you have thus learned the truth, you will know that all living beings are but part of Meand that they are in Me, and are Mine.


The result of receiving knowledge from a self-realized soul, or one who knows things as they are, is learning that all living beings are parts and parcels of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Lord r Ka. The sense of a separated existence from Ka is called my (mnot, ythis). Some think that we have nothing to do with Ka, that Ka is only a great historical personality and that the Absolute is the impersonal Brahman. Factually, as it is stated in the Bhagavad-gt, this impersonal Brahman is the personal effulgence of Ka. Ka, as the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is the cause of everything. In the Brahma-sahit it is clearly stated that Ka is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the cause of all causes. Even the millions of incarnations are only His different expansions. Similarly, the living entities are also expansions of Ka. The Myvd philosophers wrongly think that Ka loses His own separate existence in His many expansions. This thought is material in nature. We have experience in the material world that a thing, when fragmentally distributed, loses its own original identity. But the Myvd philosophers fail to understand that Absolute means that one plus one is equal to one, and that one minus one is also equal to one. This is the case in the absolute world.

For want of sufficient knowledge in the absolute science, we are now covered with illusion, and therefore we think that we are separate from Ka. Although we are separated parts of Ka, we are nevertheless not different from Him. The bodily difference of the living entities is my, or not actual fact. We are all meant to satisfy Ka. By my alone Arjuna thought that the temporary bodily relationship with his kinsmen was more important than his eternal spiritual relationship with Ka. The whole teaching of the Gt is targetted toward this end: that a living being, as His eternal servitor, cannot be separated from Ka, and his sense of being an identity apart from Ka is called my. The living entities, as separate parts and parcels of the Supreme, have a purpose to fulfill. Having forgotten that purpose, since time immemorial they are situated in different bodies, as men, animals, demigods, etc. Such bodily differences arise from forgetfulness of the transcendental service of the Lord. But when one is engaged in transcendental service through Ka consciousness, one becomes at once liberated from this illusion. One can acquire such pure knowledge only from the bona fide spiritual master and thereby avoid the delusion that the living entity is equal to Ka. Perfect knowledge is that the Supreme Soul, Ka, is the supreme shelter for all living entities, and giving up such shelter, the living entities are deluded by the material energy, imagining themselves to have a separate identity. Thus, under different standards of material identity, they become forgetful of Ka. When, however, such deluded living entities become situated in Ka consciousness, it is to be understood that they are on the path of liberation, as confirmed in the Bhgavatam: muktir hitvnyath rpa svarpea vyavasthiti. Liberation means to be situated in ones constitutional position as the eternal servitor of Ka (Ka consciousness).

Bg 4.36



AiPa cediSa PaaPae>Ya" SaveR>Ya" PaaPak*-taMa" )
Sav| jaNaveNaEv v*iJaNa& SaNTairZYaiSa )) 36 ))

api ced asi ppebhya

sarvebhya ppa-kt-tama

sarva jna-plavenaiva

vjina santariyasi

apieven; cetif; asiyou are; ppebhyaof sinners; sarvebhyaof all; ppa-kttamathe greatest sinner; sarvamall such sinful actions; jna-plavenaby the boat of transcendental knowledge; evacertainly; vjinamthe ocean of miseries; santariyasiyou will cross completely.


Even if you are considered to be the most sinful of all sinners, when you are situated in the boat of transcendental knowledge, you will be able to cross over the ocean of miseries.


Proper understanding of ones constitutional position in relationship to Ka is so nice that it can at once lift one from the struggle for existence which goes on in the ocean of nescience. This material world is sometimes regarded as an ocean of nescience and sometimes as a blazing forest. In the ocean, however expert a swimmer one may be, the struggle for existence is very severe. If someone comes forward and lifts the struggling swimmer from the ocean, he is the greatest savior. Perfect knowledge, received from the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is the path of liberation. The boat of Ka consciousness is very simple, but at the same time the most sublime.

Bg 4.37



YaQaEDaa&iSa SaiMaae_iGan>aRSMaSaaTku-Tae_JauRNa )
jaNaaiGan" SavRk-MaaRi<a >aSMaSaaTku-Tae TaQaa )) 37 ))

yathaidhsi samiddho gnir

bhasma-st kurute rjuna

jngni sarva-karmi

bhasma-st kurute tath

yathjust as; edhsifirewood; samiddhablazing; agnifire; bhasmastturns into ashes; kuruteso does; arjunaO Arjuna; jna-agnithe fire of knowledge; sarva-karmiall reactions to material activities; bhasmastto ashes; kuruteit so does; tathsimilarly.


As the blazing fire turns firewood to ashes, O Arjuna, so does the fire of knowledge burn to ashes all reactions to material activities.


Perfect knowledge of self and Superself and of their relationship is compared herein to fire. This fire not only burns up all reactions to impious activities, but also all reactions to pious activities, turning them to ashes. There are many stages of reaction: reaction in the making, reaction fructifying, reaction already achieved, and reaction a priori. But knowledge of the constitutional position of the living entity burns everything to ashes. When one is in complete knowledge, all reactious, both a priori and a posteriori, are consumed. In the Vedas it is stated: ubhe uhaivaia ete taraty amta sdhv-asdhn: "One overcomes both the pious and impious interactions of work."

Bg 4.38



Na ih jaNaeNa Sad*Xa& Paiv}aiMah ivTae )
TaTSvYa& YaaeGaSa&iSa" k-ale/NaaTMaiNa ivNdiTa )) 38 ))

na hi jnena sada

pavitram iha vidyate

tat svaya yoga-sasiddha

klentmani vindati

nanever; hicertainly; jnenawith knowledge; sadamin comparison; pavitramsanctified; ihain this world; vidyateexists; tatthat; svayamitself; yogadevotion; sasiddhamatured; klenain course of time; tmaniin himself; vindatienjoys.


In this world, there is nothing so sublime and pure as transcendental knowledge. Such knowledge is the mature fruit of all mysticism. And one who has achieved this enjoys the self within himself in due course of time.


When we speak of transcendental knowledge, we do so in terms of spiritual understanding. As such, there is nothing so sublime and pure as transcendental knowledge. Ignorance is the cause of our bondage, and knowledge is the cause of our liberation. This knowledge is the mature fruit of devotional service, and when one is situated in transcendental knowledge, he need not search for peace elsewhere, for he enjoys peace within himself. In other words, this knowledge and peace are culminated in Ka consciousness. That is the last word in the Bhagavad-gt.

Bg 4.39



[avam>aTae jaNa& TaTPar" Sa&YaTaeiNd]Ya" )
jaNa& l/Ba Para& XaaiNTaMaicre<aaiDaGaC^iTa )) 39 ))

raddhvl labhate jna

tat-para sayatendriya

jna labdhv par ntim


raddhvna faithful man; labhateachieves; jnamknowledge; tat-paravery much attached to it; sayatacontrolled; indriyasenses; janamknowledge; labdhvhaving achieved; parmtranscendental; ntimpeace; acireavery soon; adhigacchatiattains.


A faithful man who is absorbed in transcendental knowledge and who subdues his senses quickly attains the supreme spiritual peace.


Such knowledge in Ka consciousness can be achieved by a faithful person who believes firmly in Ka. One is called a faithful man who thinks that, simply by acting in Ka consciousness, he can attain the highest perfection. This faith is attained by the discharge of devotional service, and by chanting "Hare Ka, Hare Ka, Ka Ka, Hare Hare/ Hare Rma, Hare Rma, Rma Rma, Hare Hare," which cleanses ones heart of all material dirt. Over and above this, one should control the senses. A person who is faithful to Ka and who controls the senses can easily attain perfection in the knowledge of Ka consciousness without delay.

Bg 4.40



Aja[DaaNa Sa&XaYaaTMaa ivNaXYaiTa )
NaaYa& l/aek-ae_iSTa Na Parae Na Sau%& Sa&XaYaaTMaNa" )) 40 ))

aja craddadhna ca

saaytm vinayati

nya loko sti na paro

na sukha saaytmana

ajafools who have no knowledge in standard scriptures; caand; araddadhnawithout faith in revealed scriptures; caalso; saayadoubts; tmperson; vinayatifalls back; nanever; ayamthis; lokaworld; astithere is; naneither; paranext life; nanot; sukhamhappiness; saayadoubtful; tmanaof the person.


But ignorant and faithless persons who doubt the revealed scriptures do not attain God consciousness. For the doubting soul there is happiness neither in this world nor in the next.


Out of many standard and authoritative revealed scriptures, the Bhagavad-gt is the best. Persons who are almost like animals have no faith in, or knowledge of, the standard revealed scriptures; and some, even though they have knowledge of, or can cite passages from, the revealed scriptures, have actually no faith in these words. And even though others may have faith in scriptures like Bhagavad-gt, they do not believe in or worship the Personality of Godhead, r Ka. Such persons cannot have any standing in Ka consciousness. They fall down. Out of all the abovementioned persons, those who have no faith and are always doubtful make no progress at all. Men without faith in God and His revealed word find no good in this world, nor in the next. For them there is no happiness whatsoever. One should therefore follow the principles of revealed scriptures with faith and thereby be raised to the platform of knowledge. Only this knowledge will help one become promoted to the transcendental platform of spiritual understanding. In other words, doubtful persons have no status whatsoever in spiritual emancipation. One should therefore follow in the footsteps of great cryas who are in the disciplic succession and thereby attain success.

Bg 4.41



YaaeGaSaNNYaSTak-MaaR<a& jaNaSaiH^Sa&XaYaMa( )
AaTMavNTa& Na k-MaaRi<a iNabDaniNTa DaNaYa )) 41 ))



tmavanta na karmi

nibadhnanti dhanajaya

yogadevotional service in karma-yoga; sannyastarenounced; karmamof the performers; jnaknowledge; sachinnacut by the advancement of knowledge; saayamdoubts; tma-vantamsituated in the self; nanever; karmiwork; nibadhnantido bind up; dhanajayaO conquerer of riches.


Therefore, one who has renounced the fruits of his action, whose doubts are destroyed by transcendental knowledge, and who is situated firmly in the self, is not bound by works, O conqueror of riches.


One who follows the instruction of the Gt, as it is imparted by the Lord, the Personality of Godhead Himself, becomes free from all doubts by the grace of transcendental knowledge. He, as a part and parcel of the Lord, in full Ka consciousness, is already established in self-knowledge. As such, he is undoubtedly above bondage to action.

Bg 4.42



TaSMaadjaNaSaM>aUTa& TSQa& jaNaaiSaNaaTMaNa" )
i^tvENa& Sa&XaYa& YaaeGaMaaiTaaeita >aarTa )) 42 ))

tasmd ajna-sambhta

ht-stha jnsintmana

chittvaina saaya yogam

tihottiha bhrata

tasmttherefore; ajna-sambhtamoutcome of ignorance; ht-sthamsituated in the heart; jnaknowledge; asinby the weapon of; tmanaof the self; chittvcutting off; enamthis; saayamdoubt; yogamin yoga; tihabe situated; uttihastand up to fight; bhrataO descendant of Bharata.


Therefore the doubts which have arisen in your heart out of ignorance should be slashed by the weapon of knowledge. Armed with yoga, O Bhrata, stand and fight.


The yoga system instructed in this chapter is called santana-yoga, or eternal activities performed by the living entity. This yoga has two divisions of sacrificial actions: one is called sacrifice of ones material possessions, and the other is called knowledge of self, which is pure spiritual activity. If sacrifice of ones material possessions is not dovetailed for spiritual realization, then such sacrifice becomes material. But one who performs such sacrifices with a spiritual objective, or in devotional service, makes a perfect sacrifice. When we come to spiritual activities, we find that these are also divided into two: namely, understanding of ones own self (or ones constitutional position), and the truth regarding the Supreme Personality of Godhead. One who follows the path of the Gt as it is can very easily understand these two important divisions of spiritual knowledge. For him there is no difficulty in obtaining perfect knowledge of the self as part and parcel of the Lord. And such understanding is beneficial for such a person who easily understands the transcendental activities of the Lord. In the beginning of this chapter, the transcendental activities of the Lord were discussed by the Supreme Lord Himself. One who does not understand the instructions of the Gt is faithless, and is to be considered to be misusing the fragmental independence awarded to him by the Lord. In spite of such instructions, one who does not understand the real nature of the Lord as the eternal, blissful, all-knowing Personality of Godhead, is certainly fool number one. Ignorance can be removed by gradual acceptance of the principles of Ka consciousness. Ka consciousness is awakened by different types of sacrifices to the demigods, sacrifice to Brahman, sacrifice in celibacy, in household life, in controlling the senses, in practicing mystic yoga, in penance, in foregoing material possessions, in studying the Vedas, and in partaking of the social institution called varrama-dharma. All of these are known as sacrifice, and all of them are based on regulated action. But within all these activities, the important factor is self-realization. One who seeks that objective is the real student of Bhagavad-gt, but one who doubts the authority of Ka falls back. One is therefore advised to study Bhagavad-gt, or any other scripture, under a bona fide spiritual master, with service and surrender. A bona fide spiritual master is in the disciplic succession from time eternal, and he does not deviate at all from the instructions of the Supreme Lord as they were imparted millions of years ago to the sun-god, from whom the instructions of Bhagavad-gt have come down to the earthly kingdom. One should, therefore, follow the path of Bhagavad-gt as it is expressed in the Gt itself and beware of self-interested people after personal aggrandizement who deviate others from the actual path. The Lord is definitely the supreme person, and His activities are transcendental. One who understands this is a liberated person from the very beginning of his study of the Gt.

Thus end the Bhaktivedanta Purports to the Fourth Chapter of the rmad-Bhagavad-gt in the matter of Transcendental Knowledge.

Bg 5. Karma-yogaAction in Ka Consciousness


Karma-yogaAction in Ka Consciousness

Bg 5.1



AJauRNa ovac
SaNNYaaSa& k-MaR<aa& k*-Z<a PauNaYaaeRGa& c Xa&SaiSa )
YaC^\eYa WTaYaaerek&- TaNMae b]Uih SauiNaiTaMa( )) 1 ))

arjuna uvca

sannysa karma ka

punar yoga ca asasi

yac chreya etayor eka

tan me brhi su-nicitam

arjuna uvcaArjuna said; sannysamrenunciation; karmamof all activities; kaO Ka; punaagain; yogamdevotional service; caalso; asasiYou are praising; yatwhich; reyais beneficial; etayoof these two; ekamone; tatthat; meunto me; brhiplease tell; sunicitamdefinitely.


Arjuna said: O Ka, first of all You ask me to renounce work, and then again You recommend work with devotion. Now will You kindly tell me definitely which of the two is more beneficial?


In this Fifth Chapter of the Bhagavad-gt, the Lord says that work in devotional service is better than dry mental speculation. Devotional service is easier than the latter because, being transcendental in nature, it frees one from reaction. In the Second Chapter, preliminary knowledge of the soul and its entanglement in the material body were explained. How to get out of this material encagement by buddhi-yoga, or devotional service, was also explained therein. In the Third Chapter, it was explained that a person who is situated on the platform of knowledge no longer has any duties to perform. And, in the Fourth Chapter, the Lord told Arjuna that all kinds of sacrificial work culminate in knowledge. However, at the end of the Fourth Chapter, the Lord advised Arjuna to wake up and fight, being situated in perfect knowledge. Therefore, by simultaneously stressing the importance of both work in devotion and inaction in knowledge, Ka has perplexed Arjuna and confused his determination. Arjuna understands that renunciation in knowledge involves cessation of all kinds of work performed as sense activities. But if one performs work in devotional service, then how is work stopped? In other words, he thinks that sannysam, or renunciation in knowledge, should be altogether free from all kinds of activity because work and renunciation appear to him to be incompatible. He appears not to have understood that work in full knowledge is nonreactive and is therefore the same as inaction. He inquires, therefore, whether he should cease work altogether, or work with full knowledge.

Bg 5.2



SaNNYaaSa" k-MaRYaaeGa iNa"[eYaSak-ravu>aaE )
TaYaaeSTau k-MaRSaNNYaaSaaTk-MaRYaaeGaae iviXaZYaTae )) 2 ))

r-bhagavn uvca

sannysa karma-yoga ca

nireyasa-karv ubhau

tayos tu karma-sannyst

karma-yogo viiyate

r bhagavn uvcathe Personality of Godhead said; sannysarenunciation of work; karma-yogawork in devotion; caalso; nireyasa-karauall leading to the path of liberation; ubhauboth; tayoof the two; tubut; karma-sannystin comparison to the renunciation of fruitive work; karma-yogawork in devotion; viiyateis better.


The Blessed Lord said: The renunciation of work and work in devotion are both good for liberation. But, of the two, work in devotional service is better than renunciation of works.


Fruitive activities (seeking sense gratification) are cause for material bondage. As long as one is engaged in activities aimed at improving the standard of bodily comfort, one is sure to transmigrate to different types of bodies, thereby continuing material bondage perpetually. rmad-Bhgavatam confirms this as follows:

nna pramatta kurute vikarma yad indriya-prtaya poti
na sdhu manye yata tmano yam asann api kleada sa deha

parbhavas tvad abodha-jto yvanna jijsata tma-tattvam
yvat kriys tvad ida mano vai karmtmaka yena arra-bandha

eva mana karma-vaa prayukte avidyaytmany upadhyamne
prtir na yvan mayi vsudeve na mucyate deha-yogena tvat

"People are mad after sense gratification, and they do not know that this present body, which is full of miseries, is a result of ones fruitive activities in the past. Although this body is temporary, it is always giving one trouble in many ways. Therefore, to act for sense gratification is not good. One is considered to be a failure in life as long as he makes no inquiry about the nature of work for fruitive results, for as long as one is engrossed in the consciousness of sense gratification, one has to transmigrate from one body to another. Although the mind may be engrossed in fruitive activities and influenced by ignorance, one must develop a love for devotional service to Vsudeva. Only then can one have the opportunity to get out of the bondage of material existence." (Bhg. 5.5.4-6)

Therefore, jna (or knowledge that one is not this material body but spirit soul) is not sufficient for liberation. One has to act in the status of spirit soul, otherwise there is no escape from material bondage. Action in Ka consciousness is not, however, action on the fruitive platform. Activities performed in full knowledge strengthen ones advancement in real knowledge. Without Ka consciousness, mere renunciation of fruitive activities does not actually purify the heart of a conditioned soul. As long as the heart is not purified, one has to work on the fruitive platform. But action in Ka consciousness automatically helps one escape the result of fruitive action so that one need not descend to the material platform. Therefore, action in Ka consciousness is always superior to renunciation, which always entails a risk of falling. Renunciation without Ka consciousness is incomplete, as is confirmed by rla Rpa Gosvm in his Bhak ti-rasmta-sindbu.

prpacikatay buddhy hari-sambandhi-vastuna
mumukubhi paritygo vairgya phalgu kathyate.

"Renunciation by persons eager to achieve liberation of things which are related to the Supreme Personality of Godhead, though they are material, is called incomplete renunciation." Renunciation is compete when it is in the knowledge that everything in existence belongs to the Lord and that no one should claim proprietorship over anything. One should understand that, factually, nothing belongs to anyone. Then where is the question of renunciation? One who knows that everything is Kas property is always situated in renunciation. Since everything belongs to Ka, everything should be employed in the service of Ka. This perfect form of action in Ka consciousness is far better than any amount of artificial renunciation by a sannys of the Myvd school.

Bg 5.3



jeYa" Sa iNaTYaSaNNYaaSaq Yaae Na ei Na k-ax(+aiTa )
iNaRNae ih Mahabahae Sau%& bNDaaTPa[MauCYaTae )) 3 ))

jeya sa nitya-sannys

yo na dvei na kkati

nirdvandvo hi mah-bho

sukha bandht pramucyate

jeyashould be known; sahe; nityaalways; sannysrenouncer; yawho; nanever; dveiabhors; nanor; kkatidesires; nirdvandvafree from all dualities; hicertainly; mah-bhoO mighty-armed one; sukhamhappily; bandhtfrom bondage; pramucyatecompletely liberated.


One who neither hates nor desires the fruits of his activities is known to be always renounced. Such a person, liberated from all dualities, easily overcomes material bondage and is completely liberated, O mighty-armed Arjuna.


One who is fully in Ka consciousness is always a renouncer because he feels neither hatred nor desire for the results of his actions. Such a renouncer, dedicated to the transcendental loving service of the Lord, is fully qualified in knowledge because he knows his constitutional position in his relationship with Ka. He knows fully well that Ka is the whole and that he is part and parcel of Ka. Such knowledge is perfect because it is qualitatively and quantitatively correct. The concept of oneness with Ka is incorrect because the part cannot be equal to the whole. Knowledge that one is one in quality yet different in quantity is correct transcendental knowledge leading one to become full in himself, having nothing to aspire to nor lament over. There is no duality in his mind because whatever he does, he does for Ka. Being thus freed from the platform of dualities, he is liberatedeven in this material world.

Bg 5.4



Saa&:YaYaaeGaaE Pa*QaGbal/a" Pa[vdiNTa Na Pai<@Taa" )
Wk-MaPYaaiSQaTa" SaMYaGau>aYaaeivRNdTae f-l/Ma( )) 4 ))

skhya-yogau pthag bl

pravadanti na pait

ekam apy sthita samyag

ubhayor vindate phalam

skhyaanalytical study of the material world; yogauwork in devotional service; pthakdifferent; blless intelligent; pravadantido talk; nanever; paitthe learned; ekamin one; apieven though; sthitabeing situated; samyakcomplete; ubhayoof both; vindateenjoys; phalamresult.


Only the ignorant speak of karma-yoga and devotional service as being different from the analytical study of the material world [skhya]. Those who are actually learned say that he who applies himself well to one of these paths achieves the results of both.


The aim of the analytical study of the material world is to find the soul of existence. The soul of the material world is Viu, or the Supersoul. Devotional service to the Lord entails service to the Supersoul. One process is to find the root of the tree, and next to water the root. The real student of skhya philosophy finds the root of the material world, Viu, and then, in perfect knowledge, engages himself in the service of the Lord. Therefore, in essence, there is no difference between the two because the aim of both is Viu. Those who do not know the ultimate end say that the purposes of skhya and karma-yoga are not the same, but one who is learned knows the unifying aim in these different processes.

Bg 5.5



YaTSaa&:YaE" Pa[aPYaTae SQaaNa& TaaeGaEriPa GaMYaTae )
Wk&- Saa&:Ya& c YaaeGa& c Ya" PaXYaiTa Sa PaXYaiTa )) 5 ))

yat skhyai prpyate sthna

tad yogair api gamyate

eka skhya ca yoga ca

ya payati sa payati

yatwhat; skhyaiby means of skhya philosophy; prpyateis achieved; sthnamplace; tatthat; yogaiby devotional service; apialso; gamyateone can attain; ekamone; skhyamanalytical study; caand; yogamaction in devotion; caand; yaone who; payatisees; sahe; payatiactually sees.


One who knows that the position reached by means of renunciation can also be attained by works in devotional service and who therefore sees that the path of works and the path of renunciation are one, sees things as they are.


The real purpose of philosophical research is to find the ultimate goal of life. Since the ultimate goal of life is self-realization, there is no difference between the conclusions reached by the two processes. By skhya philosophical research one comes to the conclusion that a living entity is not a part and parcel of the material world, but of the supreme spirit whole. Consequently, the spirit soul has nothing to do with the material world; his actions must be in some relation with the Supreme. When he acts in Ka consciousness, he is actually in his constitutional position. In the first process of skhya, one has to become detached from matter, and in the devotional yoga process one has to attach himself to the work of Ka. Factually, both processes are the same, although superficially one process appears to involve detachment and the other process appears to involve attachment. However, detachment from matter and attachment to Ka are one and the same. One who can see this sees things as they are.

Bg 5.6



SaNNYaaSaSTau Mahabahae du"%MaauMaYaaeGaTa" )
YaaeGaYau-ae MauiNab]R Naicre<aaiDaGaC^iTa )) 6 ))

sannysas tu mah-bho

dukham ptum ayogata

yoga-yukto munir brahma

na ciredhigacchati

sannysathe renounced order of life; tubut; mah-bhoO mighty-armed one; dukhamdistress; ptumto be afflicted with; ayogatawithout devotional service; yoga-yuktaone engaged in devotional service; munithinker; brahmaSupreme; nawithout; cireadelay; adhigacchatiattains.


Unless one is engaged in the devotional service of the Lord, mere renunciation of activities cannot make one happy. The sages, purified by works of devotion, achieve the Supreme without delay.


There are two classes of sannyss, or persons in the renounced order of life. The Myvd sannyss are engaged in the study of skhya philosophy, whereas the Vaisnava sannyss are engaged in the study of Bhgavatam philosophy, which affords the proper commentary on the Vednta-stras. The Myvd sannyss also study the Vednta-stras, but use their own commentary, called rraka-bhya, written by akarcrya. The students of the Bhgavata school are engaged in devotional service of the Lord, according to pcartrik regulations, and therefore the Vaiava sannyss have multiple engagements in the transcendental service of the Lord. The Vaiava sannyss have nothing to do with material activities, and yet they perform various activities in their devotional service to the Lord. But the Myvd sannyss, engaged in the studies of skhya and Vednta and speculation, cannot relish transcendental service of the Lord. Because their studies become very tedious, they sometimes become tired of Brahman speculation, and thus they take shelter of the Bhgavatam without proper understanding. Consequently their study of the rmad-Bhgavatam becomes troublesome. Dry speculations and impersonal interpretations by artificial means are all useless for the Myvd sannyss. The Vaiava sannyss, who are engaged in devotional service, are happy in the discharge of their transcendental duties, and they have the guarantee of ultimate entrance into the kingdom of God. The Myvd sannyss sometimes fall down from the path of self-realization and again enter into material activities of a philanthropic and altruistic nature, which are nothing but material engagements. Therefore, the conclusion is that those who are engaged in Ka consciousness are better situated than the sannyss engaged in simple Brahman speculation, although they too come to Ka consciousness, after many births.

Bg 5.7



YaaeGaYau-ae ivuaTMaa iviJaTaaTMaa iJaTaeiNd]Ya" )
SavR>aUTaaTMa>aUTaaTMaa ku-vRiPa Na il/PYaTae )) 7 ))

yoga-yukto viuddhtm

vijittm jitendriya


kurvann api na lipyate

yoga-yuktaengaged in devotional service; viuddha-tma purified soul; vijita-tmself-controlled; jita-indriyahaving conquered the senses; sarvabhuta-tmabhta-tmcompassionate to all living entities; kurvan apialthough engaged in work; nanever; lipyateis entangled.


One who works in devotion, who is a pure soul, and who controls his mind and senses, is dear to everyone, and everyone is dear to him. Though always working, such a man is never entangled.


One who is on the path of liberation by Ka consciousness is very dear to every living being, and every living being is dear to him. This is due to his Ka consciousness. Such a person cannot think of any living being as separate from Ka, just as the leaves and branches of a tree are not separate from the tree. He knows very well that by pouring water on the root of the tree, the water will be distributed to all the leaves and branches, or by supplying food to the stomach, the energy is automatically distributed throughout the body. Because one who works in Ka consciousness is servant to all, he is very dear to everyone. And, because everyone is satisfied by his work, he is pure in consciousness. Because he is pure in consciousness, his mind is completely controlled. And, because his mind is controlled, his senses are also controlled. Because his mind is always fixed on Ka, there is no chance of his being deviated from Ka. Nor is there a chance that he will engage his senses in matters other than the service of the Lord. He does not like to hear anything except topics relating to Ka; he does not like to eat anything which is not offered to Ka; and he does not wish to go anywhere if Ka is not involved. Therefore, his senses are controlled. A man of controlled senses cannot be offensive to anyone. One may ask, "Why then was Arjuna offensive (in battle) to others? Wasn't he in Ka consciousness?" Arjuna was only superficially offensive because (as has already been explained in the Second Chapter) all the assembled persons on the battlefield would continue to live individually, as the soul cannot be slain. So, spiritually, no one was killed on the Battlefield of Kuruketra. Only their dresses were changed by the order of Ka, who was personally present. Therefore Arjuna, while fighting on the Battlefield of Kuruketra, was not really fighting at all; he was simply carrying out the orders of Ka in full Ka consciousness. Such a person is never entangled in the reactions of work.

Bg 5.8, Bg 5.9, Bg 5.8-9



NaEv ik-iTk-raeMaqiTa Yau-ae MaNYaeTa TatvivTa( )
PaXYaHXa*<vNSPa*Xaiga]nNGaC^NSvPaNSaNa( )) 8 ))
Pa[l/PaiNvSa*JaNGa*uiNMaziiMaziPa )
wiNd]Yaa<aqiNd]YaaQaeRzu vTaRNTa wiTa DaarYaNa( )) 9 ))

naiva kicit karomti

yukto manyeta tattva-vit

paya van spa jighrann

anan gacchan svapan vasan

pralapan visjan ghann

unmian nimiann api


vartanta iti dhrayan

nanever; evacertainly; kicitanything; karomido I do; itithus; yuktaengaged in the divine consciousness; manyetathinks; tattvavitone who knows the truth; payanby seeing; vanby hearing; spanby touching; jighranby smelling; ananby eating; gacchanby going; svapanby dreaming; vasanby breathing; pralapanby talking; visjanby giving up; ghanby accepting; unmianopening; nimianclosing; apiin spite of; indriyithe senses; indriya-artheuin sense gratification; vartantelet them be so engaged; itithus; dhrayanconsidering.


A person in the divine consciousness, although engaged in seeing, hearing, touching, smelling, eating, moving about, sleeping, and breathing, always knows within himself that he actually does nothing at all. Because while speaking, evacuating, receiving, opening or closing his eyes, he always knows that only the material senses are engaged with their objects and that he is aloof from them.


A person in Ka consciousness is pure in his existence, and consequently he has nothing to do with any work which depends upon five immediate and remote causes: the doer, the work, the situation, the endeavor and fortune. This is because he is engaged in the loving transcendental service of Ka. Although he appears to be acting with his body and senses, he is always conscious of his actual position, which is spiritual engagement. In material consciousness, the senses are engaged in sense gratification, but in Ka consciousness the senses are engaged in the satisfaction of Kas senses. Therefore, the Ka conscious person is always free, even though he appears to be engaged in things of the senses. Activities such as seeing, hearing, speaking, evacuating, etc., are actions of the senses meant for work. A Ka consciousness person is never affected by the actions of the senses. He cannot perform any act except in the service of the Lord because he knows that he is the eternal servitor of the Lord.

Bg 5.10



b]<YaaDaaYa k-MaaRi<a Sa& TYa-a k-raeiTa Ya" )
il/PYaTae Na Sa PaaPaeNa PaPa}aiMavaM>aSaa )) 10 ))

brahmay dhya karmi

saga tyaktv karoti ya

lipyate na sa ppena

padma-patram ivmbhas

brahmaithe Supreme Personality of Godhead; dhyaresigning unto; karmiall works; sagamattachment; tyaktvgiving up; karotiperforms; yawho; lipyateis affected; nanever; sahe; ppenaby sin; padma-patramlotus leaf; ivalike; ambhasin the water.


One who performs his duty without attachment, surrendering the results unto the Supreme God, is not affected by sinful action, as the lotus leaf is untouched by water.


Here brahmai means in Ka consciousness. The material world is a sum total manifestation of the three modes of material nature, technically called the pradhna. The Vedic hymns, sarvam etad brahma, tasmd etad brahma nma-rpam anna ca jyate, and, in the Bhagavad-gt, mama yonir mahad brahma, indicate that everything in the material world is the manifestation of Brahman; and, although the effects are differently manifested, they are nondifferent from the cause. In the opaniad it is said that everything is related to the Supreme Brahman or Ka, and thus everything belongs to Him only. One who knows perfectly well that everything belongs to Ka, that He is the proprietor of everything and that, therefore, everything is engaged in the service of the Lord, naturally has nothing to do with the results of his activities, whether virtuous or sinful. Even ones material body, being a gift of the Lord for carrying out a particular type of action, can be engaged in Ka consciousness. It is beyond contamination by sinful reactions, exactly as the lotus leaf, though remaining in the water, is not wet. The Lord also says in the Gt: mayi sarvi karmi sannyasya: "Resign all works unto Me [Ka]." The conclusion is that a person without Ka consciousness acts according to the concept of the material body and senses, but a person in Ka consciousness acts according to the knowledge that the body is the property of Ka and should therefore be engaged in the service of Ka.

Bg 5.11



k-aYaeNa MaNaSaa buya ke-vlE/iriNd]YaEriPa )
YaaeiGaNa" k-MaR ku-vRiNTa Sa& TYa-aTMauYae )) 11 ))

kyena manas buddhy

kevalair indriyair api

yogina karma kurvanti

saga tyaktvtma-uddhaye

kyenawith the body; manaswith the mind; buddhywith the intelligence; kevalaipurified; indriyaiwith the senses; apieven with; yoginathe Ka conscious persons; karmaactions; kurvantithey act; sagamattachment; tyaktvgiving up; tmaself; uddhayefor the purpose of purification.


The yogs, abandoning attachment, act with body, mind, intelligence, and even with the senses, only for the purpose of purification.


By acting in Ka consciousness for the satisfaction of the senses of Ka, any action, whether of the body, mind, intelligence or even of the senses, is purified of material contamination. There are no material reactions resulting from the activities of a Ka conscious person. Therefore, purified activities, which are generally called sadcra, can be easily performed by acting in Ka consciousness. r Rpa Gosvm in his Bhakti-rasmta-sindhu describes this as follows:

h yasya harer dsye karma manas gir
nikhilsv apy avasthsu jvanmukta sa ucyate

A person acting in Ka consciousness (or, in other words, in the service of Ka) with his body, mind, intelligence and words is a liberated person even within the material world, although he may be engaged in many so-called material activities. He has no false ego, nor does he believe that he is this material body, nor that he possesses the body. He knows that he is not this body and that this body does not belong to him. He himself belongs to Ka, and the body too belongs to Ka. When he applies everything produced of the body, mind, intelligence, words, life, wealth, etc.whatever he may have within his possessionto Kas service, he is at once dovetailed with Ka. He is one with Ka and is devoid of the false ego that leads one to believe that he is the body, etc. This is the perfect stage of Ka consciousness.

Bg 5.12



Yau-" k-MaRf-l&/ TYa-a XaaiNTaMaaPanaeiTa NaEik-IMa( )
AYau-" k-aMak-are<a f-le/ Sa-ae iNabDYaTae )) 12 ))

yukta karma-phala tyaktv

ntim pnoti naihikm

ayukta kma-krea

phale sakto nibadhyate

yuktaone who is engaged in devotional service; karma-phalamthe results of all activities; tyaktvgiving up; ntimperfect peace; pnotiachieves; naihikmunflinching; ayuktaone who is not in Ka consciousness; kma-kreafor enjoying the result of work; phalein the result; saktaattached; nibadhyatebecomes entangled.


The steadily devoted soul attains unadulterated peace because he offers the result of all activities to Me; whereas a person who is not in union with the Divine, who is greedy for the fruits of his labor, becomes entangled.


The difference between a person in Ka consciousness and a person in bodily consciousness is that the former is attached to Ka, whereas the latter is attached to the results of his activities. The person who is attached to Ka and works for Him only is certainly a liberated person, and he is not anxious for fruitive rewards. In the Bhgavatam, the cause of anxiety over the result of an activity is explained as being due to ones functioning in the conception of duality, that is, without knowledge of the Absolute Truth. Ka is the Supreme Absolute Truth, the Personality of Godhead. In Ka consciousness, there is no duality. All that exists is a product of Kas energy, and Ka is all good. Therefore, activities in Ka consciousness are on the absolute plane; they are transcendental and have no material effect. One is, therefore, filled with peace in Ka consciousness. One who is, however, entangled in profit calculation for sense gratification cannot have that peace. This is the secret of Ka consciousnessrealization that there is no existence besides Ka is the platform of peace and fearlessness.

Bg 5.13



SavRk-MaaRi<a MaNaSaa SaNNYaSYaaSTae Sau%& vXaq )
Navare Paure dehq NaEv ku-vR k-arYaNa( )) 13 ))

sarva-karmi manas

sannyasyste sukha va

nava-dvre pure deh

naiva kurvan na krayan

sarvaall; karmiactivities; manasby the mind; sannyasyagiving up; steremains; sukhamin happiness; vaone who is controlled; nava-dvrein the place where there are nine gates; purein the city; dehthe embodied soul; nanever; evacertainly; kurvandoing anything; nanot; krayancausing to be done.


When the embodied living being controls his nature and mentally renounces all actions, he resides happily in the city of nine gates [the material body], neither working nor causing work to be done.


The embodied soul lives in the city of nine gates. The activities of the body, or the figurative city of body, are conducted automatically by the particular modes of nature. The soul, although subjecting himself to the conditions of the body, can be beyond those conditions, if he so desires. Owing only to forgetfulness of his superior nature, he identifies with the material body, and therefore suffers. By Ka consciousness, he can revive his real position and thus come out of his embodiment. Therefore, when one takes to Ka consciousness, one at once becomes completely aloof from bodily activities. In such a controlled life, in which his deliberations are changed, he lives happily within the city of nine gates. The nine gates are described as follows:

nava-dvre pure deh haso lelyate bahi
va sarvasya lokasya sthvarasya carasya ca.

"The Supreme Personality of Godhead, who is living within the body of a living entity, is the controller of all living entities all over the universe. The body consists of nine gates: two eyes, two nostrils, two ears, one mouth, the anus and the genital. The living entity in his conditioned stage identifies himself with the body, but when he identifies himself with the Lord within himself, he becomes just as free as the Lord, even while in the body." (vet. 3.18)

Therefore, a Ka conscious person is free from both the outer and inner activities of the material body.

Bg 5.14



Na k-Ta*RTv& Na k-MaaRi<a l/aek-SYa Sa*JaiTa Pa[>au" )
Na k-MaRf-l/Sa&YaaeGa& Sv>aavSTau Pa[vTaRTae )) 14 ))

na karttva na karmi

lokasya sjati prabhu

na karma-phala-sayoga

svabhvas tu pravartate

nanever; karttvamproprietorship; nanor; karmiactivities; lokasyaof the people; sjaticreates; prabhuthe master of the city of the body; nanor; karma-phalaresults of activities; sayogamconnection; svabhvamodes of material nature; tubut; pravartateacts.


The embodied spirit, master of the city of his body, does not create activities, nor does he induce people to act, nor does he create the fruits of action. All this is enacted by the modes of material nature.


The living entity, as will be explained in the Seventh Chapter, is one in nature with the Supreme Lord, distinguished from matter, which is another naturecalled inferiorof the Lord. Somehow, the superior nature, the living entity, has been in contact with material nature since time immemorial. The temporary body or material dwelling place which he obtains is the cause of varieties of activities and their resultant reactions. Living in such a conditional atmosphere, one suffers the results of the activities of the body by identifying himself (in ignorance) with the body. It is ignorance acquired from time immemorial that is the cause of bodily suffering and distress. As soon as the living entity becomes aloof from the activities of the body, he becomes free from the reactions as well. As long as he is in the city of body, he appears to be the master of it, but actually he is neither its proprietor nor controller of its actions and reactions. He is simply in the midst of the material ocean, struggling for existence. The waves of the ocean are tossing him, and he has no control over them. His best solution is to get out of the water by transcendental Ka consciousness. That alone will save him from all turmoil.

Bg 5.15



Naadtae k-SYaicTPaaPa& Na cEv Sauk*-Ta& iv>au" )
AjaNaeNaav*Ta& jaNa& TaeNa MauiNTa JaNTav" )) 15 ))

ndatte kasyacit ppa

na caiva sukta vibhu

ajnenvta jna

tena muhyanti jantava

nanever; datteaccepts; kasyacitanyones; ppamsin; nanor; caalso; evacertainly; suktampious activities; vibhuthe Supreme Lord; ajnenaby ignorance; vtamcovered; jnamknowledge; tenaby that; muhyantibewildered; jantavathe living entities.


Nor does the Supreme Spirit assume anyones sinful or pious activities. Embodied beings, however, are bewildered because of the ignorance which covers their real knowledge.


The Sanskrit word vibhu means the Supreme Lord who is full of unlimited knowledge, riches, strength, fame, beauty and renunciation. He is always satisfied in Himself, undisturbed by sinful or pious activities. He does not create a particular situation for any living entity, but the living entity, bewildered by ignorance, desires to be put into certain conditions of life, and thereby his chain of action and reaction begins. A living entity is, by superior nature, full of knowledge. Nevertheless, he is prone to be influenced by ignorance due to his limited power. The Lord is omnipotent, but the living entity is not. The Lord is vibhu, or omniscient, but the living entity is au, or atomic. Because he is a living soul, he has the capacity to desire by his free will. Such desire is fulfilled only by the omnipotent Lord. And so, when the living entity is bewildered in his desires, the Lord allows him to fulfill those desires, but the Lord is never responsible for the actions and reactions of the particular situation which may be desired. Being in a bewildered condition, therefore, the embodied soul identifies himself with the circumstantial material body and becomes subjected to the temporary misery and happiness of life. The Lord is the constant companion of the living entity as Paramtm, or the Supersoul, and therefore He can understand the desires of the individual soul, as one can smell the flavor of a flower by being near it. Desire is a subtle form of conditioning of the living entity. The Lord fulfills his desire as he deserves: Man proposes and God disposes. The individual is not, therefore, omnipotent in fulfilling his desires. The Lord, however, can fulfill all desires, and the Lord, being neutral to everyone, does not interfere with the desires of the minute independant living entities. However, when one desires Ka, the Lord takes special care and encourages one to desire in such a way that one can attain to Him and be eternally happy. The Vedic hymn therefore declares:

ea u hy eva sdhu karma krayati ta yamebhyo lokebhya unninate
ea u evsdhu karma krayati yamadho ninate.

ajo jantur anso yam tmana sukha-dukhayo
vara-prerito gacchet svarga vvabhram eva ca.

"The Lord engages the living entity in pious activities so he may be elevated. The Lord engages him in impious activities so he may go to hell. The living entity is completely dependant in his distress and happiness. By the will of the Supreme he can go to heaven or hell, as a cloud is driven by the air."

Therefore the embodied soul, by his immemorial desire to avoid Ka consciousness, causes his own bewilderment. Consequently, although he is constitutionally eternal, blissful and cognizant, due to the littleness of his existence he forgets his constitutional position of service to the Lord and is thus entrapped by nescience. And, under the spell of ignorance, the living entity claims that the Lord is responsible for his conditional existence. The Vednta-stras also confirm this:

vaiamya-nairghye na spekatvt tath hi darayati.

"The Lord neither hates nor likes anyone, though He appears to."

Bg 5.16



jaNaeNa Tau TadjaNa& Yaeza& NaaiXaTaMaaTMaNa" )
TaezaMaaidTYavJjaNa& Pa[k-aXaYaiTa TaTParMa( )) 16 ))

jnena tu tad ajna

ye nitam tmana

tem ditya-vaj jna

prakayati tat param

jnenaby knowledge; tubut; tatthat; ajnamnescience; yemof those; nitamis destroyed; tmanaof the living entity; temof their; dityavatlike the rising sun; jnamknowledge; prakayatidiscloses; tat paramin Ka consciousness.


When, however, one is enlightened with the knowledge by which nescience is destroyed, then his knowledge reveals everything, as the sun lights up everything in the daytime.


Those who have forgotten Ka must certainly be bewildered, but those who are in Ka consciousness are not bewildered at all. It is stated in the Bhagavad-gt, "sarva jna-plavena," "jngni sarva-karmi" and "na hi jnena sadam." Knowledge is always highly esteemed. And what is that knowledge? Perfect knowledge is achieved when one surrenders unto Ka, as is said in the Seventh Chapter, 19th verse: bahn janmanm ante jnavn m prapadyate. After passing through many, many births, when one perfect in knowledge surrenders unto Ka, or when one attains Ka consciousness, then everything is revealed to him, as the sun reveals everything in the daytime. The living entity is bewildered in so many ways. For instance, when he thinks himself God, unceremoniously, he actually falls into the last snare of nescience. If a living entity is God, then how can he become bewildered by nescience? Does God become bewildered by nescience? If so, then nescience, or Satan, is greater than God. Real knowledge can be obtained from a person who is in perfect Ka consciousness. Therefore, one has to seek out such a bona fide spiritual master and, under him, learn what Ka consciousness is. The spiritual master can drive away all nescience, as the sun drives away darkness. Even though a person may be in full knowledge that he is not this body but is transcendental to the body, he still may not be able to discriminate between the soul and the Supersoul. However, he can know everything well if he cares to take shelter of the perfect, bona fide Ka conscious spiritual master. One can know God and ones relationship with God only when one actually meets a representative of God. A representative of God never claims that he is God, although he is paid all the respect ordinarily paid to God because he has knowledge of God. One has to learn the distinction between God and the living entity. Lord r Ka therefore stated in the Second Chapter (2.12) that every living being is individual and that the Lord also is individual. They were all individuals in the past, they are individuals at present, and they will continue to be individuals in the future, even after liberation. At night we see everything as one in the darkness, but in day when the sun is up, we see everything in its real identity. Identity with individuality in spiritual life is real knowledge.

Bg 5.17



GaC^NTYaPauNarav*ita& jaNaiNaDaURTak-LMaza" )) 17 ))

tad-buddhayas tad-tmnas

tan-nihs tat-parya

gacchanty apunar-vtti


tad-buddhayaone whose intelligence is always in the Supreme; tad-tmnaone whose mind is always in the Supreme; tat-nihwhose mind is only meant for the Supreme; tat-paryawho has completely taken shelter of Him; gacchantigoes; apuna-vttimliberation; jnaknowledge; nirdhtacleanses; kalmamisgivings.


When ones intelligence, mind, faith and refuge are all fixed in the Supreme, then one becomes fully cleansed of misgivings through complete knowledge and thus proceeds straight on the path of liberation.


The Supreme Transcendental Truth is Lord Ka. The whole Bhagavad-gt centers around the declaration of Ka as the Supreme Personality of Godhead. That is the version of all Vedic literature. Paratattva means the Supreme Reality, who is understood by the knowers of the Supreme as Brahman, Paramtm and Bhagavn. Bhagavn, or the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is the last word in the Absolute. There is nothing more than that.TheLord says, matta paratara nnyat kicit asti dhanajaya. Impersonal Brahman is also supported by Ka: brahmao pratihham. Therefore in all ways Ka is the Supreme Reality. One whose mind, intelligence, faith and refuge are always in Ka, or, in other words, one who is fully in Ka consciousness, is undoubtedly washed clean of all misgivings and is in perfect knowledge in everything concerning transcendence. A Ka conscious person can thoroughly understand that there is duality (simultaneous identity and individuality) in Ka, and, equipped with such transcendental knowledge, one can make steady progress on the path of liberation.

Bg 5.18



ivaivNaYaSaMPae b]a<ae Gaiv hiSTaiNa )
uiNa cEv Paake- c Pai<@Taa" SaMadiXaRNa" )) 18 ))


brhmae gavi hastini

uni caiva va-pke ca

pait sama-darina

vidyeducation; vinayagentleness; sampannefully equipped; brhmaein the brhmaa; gaviin the cow; hastiniin the elephant; uniin the dog; caand; evacertainly; vapkein the dog-eater (the outcaste); carespectively; paitthose who are so wise; sama-darinado see with equal vision.