Sri Swami Sivananda Founder of The Divine Life Society

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Published By THE DIVINE LIFE SOCIETY P.O. SHIVANANDANAGAR—249 192 Distt. Tehri-Garhwal, Uttar Pradesh, Himalayas, India.

advocates and busy people. Then what to speak of him who lives and acts according to the spirit of the teachings of the Gita? He who reads even a quarter of a Sloka is freed from great sins and fear of death. The Gita is your benefactor and constant companion. Here is an abridged edition of the Gita which contains its quintessence for the use of students. or the whole of the Gita. The Gita is your Teacher and Guru. He obtains perfect wisdom. The Gita is your solace. doctors. That man who merely studies daily even a few Slokas is not stained by Karma. support and prop. Drink this nectar daily and attain Immortality. The struggle for existence is very keen. Man finds no time to study big philosophical and religious books. Supreme Peace and eternal Bliss and Immortality. The Gita is an embodiment of nectar. The Gita is your real Father and Mother. May the Gita guide you! THE DIVINE LIFE SOCIETY iii .FOREWORD Life is very complex in these days.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 The Yoga of Renunciation of Action . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 The Yoga of Liberation by Renunciation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 The Yoga of Distinction Between the Field and Knower of the Field . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 The Yoga of the Division of the Three Gunas . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13 The Yoga of Division Between the Divine and the Demoniacal. . . 5 The Yoga of Imperishable Brahman. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 The Yoga of Divine Glories . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 The Yoga of Devotion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 Sankhya Yoga . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 The Yoga of Action . . . . . . . . . . . 6 The Yoga of Kingly Science and Kingly Secret . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16 iv . . 2 The Yoga of Wisdom . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . iii The Despondency of Arjuna . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 The Yoga of Wisdom . . . . . . . 14 The Yoga of the Threefold Faith . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .CONTENTS FOREWORD . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 The Yoga of Supreme Purusha . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 The Yoga of the vision of the Cosmic Form . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 The Yoga of Meditation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

cousins. This Atman is not born nor does It ever die. wind dries It not (23). He has a poised mind at all times and under all conditions. Lord Krishna replies. “A Jivanmukta is free from desires. mine-ness. Perform action. their ancestors will fall. thou shalt cast off the bonds of action (38). He has perfect control over his mind and senses. deprived of rice-balls and oblations (42). Arjuna was overwhelmed with grief. 1 . Evenness of mind is Yoga” (48). I do not wish to kill them even for the sake of the Kingship of the three worlds (35). how does he walk?” (54). my body quivers and my hairs stand on end. He is not elated by getting desirable objects. There is nothing higher for a Kshatriya than a righteous war (31). He is satisfied in his own Self. eternal. Arjuna saw all his kinsmen. “Thy right is to work only but never with its fruits. nor let thy attachment be for inaction (47). nor is It slain. family traditions will perish. Women will become corrupt. teachers (Bhishma. engage thou in battle. None can cause the destruction of That—the Imperishable. He threw away his bow and arrows and sank down on the seat of the chariot (47). Chapter II SANKHYA YOGA This is Jnana Yoga or Vedanta which bespeaks of the Immortality of the Soul. There will be lawlessness (40). It is unborn. Lord Krishna said to Arjuna: “Wake up from the slumber of ignorance. “O Lord Krishna! What is the state of a Sthithaprajna? How does he speak? How does he sit. He is centred in his own Self. so also the embodied Self casts off worn out bodies and enters others which are new (22). He is dead to the sensual world” (55 to 57). Gandiva slips from my hand (29). This Self is unmanifested. The slayer of the families will go to hell for. Develop a balanced mind. Drona and others) standing arrayed in battle and said to Lord Krishna (26): “My limbs fail and my mouth is parched.BHAGAVAD GITA FOR BUSY PEOPLE Chapter I THE DESPONDENCY OF ARJUNA (Arjuna Vishada Yoga) This is the Yoga of the despondency of Arjuna. being steadfast in Yoga abandoning attachment and balanced in success and failure. brothers-in-law. Just as a man casts off worn out clothes and puts on new ones. Caste-customs and family-customs will vanish”(43). He lives in Brahman. It is not killed when the body is killed (20). He is indifferent amidst sensual pleasures. This body and the world are indwelt by the Imperishable Atman. Having made pleasure and pain. It is the duty of a Kshatriya to fight. Brahman or the Soul. Weapons cut It not. ancient and inexhaustible. There will be caste-confusion. “O Arjuna! do your duty. I-ness. It is a great sin to kill my teachers and relatives. attachment and fear. thus thou shalt not incur sin. water wets It not. victory and defeat the same. sons. unthinkable and unchangeable (24). longings. Let not the fruit of action be thy motive. gain and loss. It slays not. Arjuna says. changeless. If I kill them. fire burns It not.

The great man should set an example to the world (21). even while performing all actions (18). Whose undertakings are all destitute of desires and purposes and whose actions have been burnt by the fire of knowledge him the wise have called a Sage (19). who merely controls the organs of action but continually thinks of the objects of senses is called a Mithyachara or hypocrite (6). For the protection of the good. “Do sacrifice to the Devatas. Chapter IV THE YOGA OF WISDOM (Jnana-Vibhaga Yoga) Lord Krishna said. why then O Krishna. Everyone is helplessly driven to action by the qualities born of nature (5). the path of knowledge of the Sankhyas and the path of action of the Yogins (3). Constantly perform your duty without attachment. Do your own duty well. In reality Prakriti does everything (27). “If it be thought by Thee that knowledge is superior to action. he is a Yogi. That fool. Lord Krishna replies. Tell me that one way for certain by which I may attain eternal bliss” (2). for the destruction of evil-doers. does Thou engagest me in this terrible action (1)? Thou confusest my understanding. all greed and envy. He who sees inaction in action and action in inaction. I perform action though there is nothing in the three worlds that should be done by Me (22).BHAGAVAD GITA FOR BUSY PEOPLE Chapter III THE YOGA OF ACTION (Karma Yoga) Arjuna said. with the mind self-controlled. Control desire and anger—the enemies of wisdom. Man cannot remain even for a moment without performing some kind of action. Janaka attained perfection by action (20). free from the 2 . In whatever way men approach Me. “Control Raga-dvesha. he is wise among men. so do I reward them: men follow in every way My path. They will in turn give you plenty of food and cattle (11). Master first the senses. “In this world there is a twofold path. having abandoned attachment to the fruit of actions. for the sake of firmly establishing righteousness I am born from age to age (8). A Jnani who remains as a silent witness and who knows the essence of the division of the quality and functions is not bound (28). O son of Pritha (11). “The egoistic man thinks ‘I am the doer’. always content with whatsoever he obtains without effort. You will attain the Supreme (19). then I Myself come to birth (7). “Without hope. obstructors of the spiritual path. “O Bharata! Whenever righteousness declines and unrighteousness becomes powerful. Kill this enemy-desire by restraining the self by the Self and by knowing Him who is superior to intellect” (37-43).

Tell me conclusively that which is the better of the two” (1). The ignorant. so does the fire of knowledge reduce all actions to ashes (37). nor happiness for the doubting (40). the faithless. with his thoughts established in Brahman. “Renunciation of actions. although doing actions. Arise. austerity. Some again offer hearing and other senses in the fire of restraint. “The man who is full of faith. “Superior is knowledge-sacrifice to the sacrifice of objects. who is devoted to it. residing in the heart and take refuge in Yoga. though acting (20-23). culminate in knowledge (33). while the Jivanmuktas offer the Self in the fire Brahman. That place which is reached by the Sankhyas (Jnanis) is reached by the Yogis (Karma Yogis). Brahman verily shall be reached by him who always sees Brahman in action (24). O Partha. he is not doing anything. speak of Sankhya (knowledge) and Yoga (Yoga of action) as distinct. nor the other. by question and service. O Arjuna. the doubting self goes to destruction. “Some Yogins perform sacrifice to Devas. Thou praisest. “Brahman is the oblation. All actions in their entirety. Children. Others again sacrifice all the functions of the senses and the breath in the fire of Yoga of self-restraint kindled by knowledge. and then also Yoga. study of scriptures and knowledge as sacrifice. yet thou shalt verily cross all sins by the raft of knowledge (39). with the sword of knowledge cut asunder the doubt of the Self born of ignorance. Chapter V THE YOGA OF RENUNCIATION OF ACTION (Karma-Sannyasa Yoga) Arjuna said. O Bharata” (42). the wise who have realised the Truth will instruct thee in that knowledge (34). Others offer as sacrifice the outgoing breath in the incoming and the incoming in the outgoing (25-29). Others again offer wealth. not the wise. Brahman is the clarified butter. and who has subdued the senses and obtains this knowledge and having obtained knowledge he goes at once to the Supreme Peace (39). Just as the blazing fire reduces fuel to ashes. “Therefore. 3 . but out of the two. “Know that by long prostration. by Brahman is the oblation poured into the fire of Brahman. “Renunciation and Yoga of action both lead to the highest bliss.BHAGAVAD GITA FOR BUSY PEOPLE pairs of opposites. The Blessed Lord said. Yoga of action is superior to the renunciation of action (2). He sees. there is neither this world. O Krishna. Even if thou art the most sinful of all sinners. balanced in success and failure. who sees Sankhya and Yoga are one (5). he who is truly established in one obtains the fruits of both (4). he is not bound.

“Thinking of That. and even in a dog and in an outcaste (13). For a Muni or a sage who wishes to attain to Yoga. the wise do not rejoice in them (22). having liberation as his supreme goal. “He who is able. without looking around. for they have a beginning and an end. fear and anger—the sage is verily liberated for ever” (27-28). their sins dispelled by knowledge (17). hearing. Neither agency nor action does the Lord create for the world. nor union with the fruits of actions. free from desire. With the self unattached to external contacts he finds bliss in the Self: with the self engaged in the meditation of Brahman he attains endless bliss (21). firm in 4 . for the Self alone is the friend of oneself and this Self alone is the enemy of oneself (5). established in That. “Having in a clear spot established a firm seat of his own. But it is Nature that acts (14). with senses. seizing. The Self is the friend of the self for him who has conquered himself by the Self. to withstand before the liberation from the body the impulse born out of desire and anger. made of a cloth. they go whence there is no return. inaction or quiescence is said to be the means (3). “He who performs his bounden duty without depending on the fruits of action—he is a Sannyasin and a Yogi. speaking. he is a Yogi. let him firmly hold his body. head and neck erect and still. merged in That. “Sages look with an equal eye in a Brahmin endowed with learning and humility. a skin and Kusa grass one over the other. in a cow. solely devoted to That. action is said to be the means. let him not lower himself. touching. breathing. in an elephant. but to the unconquered self. Chapter VI THE YOGA OF MEDITATION (Adhyatma Yoga) Lord Krishna said. smelling. for the same sage who has attained to Yoga. gazing at the tip of his nose. “Let a man lift himself by his own Self alone. neither too high nor too low. this self stands in the position of an enemy like the external foe (6). going. sleeping. equalising the outgoing and incoming breaths moving within the nostrils. serene-minded fearless. while still in the world. The enjoyments that are born of contacts are only generators of pain. he is a happy man (23). “Shutting out all external contacts and fixing the gaze between the eyebrows. eating.BHAGAVAD GITA FOR BUSY PEOPLE “’I do nothing at all’. thus would the knower of Truth think—seeing. not he who is without fire and without action (1). “Eternal peace lies near to those controlled ascetics who are free from desire and anger. mind and intellect ever controlled. who have controlled their thoughts and who have realised the Self (26). opening and closing the eyes—convinced that the senses move among the sense-objects (8-9). O son of Kunti (O Kaunteya). letting go.

therefore. “The Yogi is thought to be superior to the ascetics and even superior to men of knowledge (obtained through study of Sastras). O son of the Kurus (43). And among all Yogins. he who fell from Yoga is reborn in a house of the pure and wealthy (41). verily a birth like this is very difficult to obtain in this world (42). having failed to attain perfection in Yoga meet. turbulent. Lord Krishna said.BHAGAVAD GITA FOR BUSY PEOPLE the vow of a Brahmachari. O Arjuna! (46). thinking on Me. restless. he never becomes separated from Me. and balanced. having made the mind established in the Self. Then he comes in touch with the knowledge acquired in his former body and strives more than before for perfection. O Kaunteya and by dispassion. it can be restrained” (35). let him sit. he who. having controlled the mind. he sees the same everywhere (29). By that very former practice he is born on in spite of himself. “Having attained to the worlds of the righteous and having dwelt there for everlasting years. who is moderate in sleep and wakefulness (17). abiding in all beings. “The mind verily. what end does he. O mighty-armed. “With the mind harmonised by Yoga he sees the Self. let him not think of anything (25). I deem it quite as difficult to control it as that of the wind” (34). strong and unyielding. whose mind wanders away from Yoga. O Krishna?” (37). “He who is unable to control himself though he is possessed of faith. nor do I become separated from him” (30). “Undoubtedly. be thou a Yogi. He who sees Me everywhere and sees everything in Me. Little by little let him attain quietude by intellect held in firmness. nor for him who sleeps too much nor for him who is always wakeful. 5 . O Arjuna (16). he is deemed by Me to be the most devout (47). Arjuna said. full of faith with his inner self merged in Me. who is moderate in exertion in actions. “Yoga becomes the destroyer of pain for him who is moderate in eating and recreation. having Me as the Supreme Goal (11-14). he is also superior to men of action. The blessed Lord said. From whatever cause the restless and unsteady mind wanders away. worships Me. Arjuna said. but by practice. Even he who merely wishes to know Yoga goes beyond the Brahmic world (44). O Krishna. from that let him restrain it and bring it under the control of the self alone (26). nor for him who does not eat at all. and all beings in the Self. the mind is difficult to control and restless. Or he is born in a family of wise Yogins only. “Verily Yoga is not possible for him who eats too much.

“I am the sapidity in waters. O Parantapa (scorcher of foes) (27). egoism—thus is My Prakriti divided eightfold (4). who are freed from the delusion of the pairs of opposites. such a great soul is very hard to find (19). I am the syllable OM in all the Vedas. My higher Prakriti. fire. whose sin has come to an end. as the Supreme Goal (18). “I shall declare to thee in full this knowledge combined with realisation. “By the delusion of the pairs of opposites. and he is dear to Me (17). “Earth. “Those who know Me in the Adhibhuta (pertaining to the elements) in the Adhidaiva (pertaining to the gods) and in the Adhiyajna (pertaining to the sacrifice). O son of Kunti. realising that all this is Vasudeva. “Four kinds of virtuous men worship Me O Arjuna. arising from desire and aversion (likes and dislikes) O Bharata. water. this divine illusion of Mine. by which this world is upheld (5). I am the light in the moon. know thou. At the end of many births the wise man comes to Me. the seeker of wealth and the wise. all beings are subject to illusion. and they are the distressed. I deem as My very Self. Of these. for. intellect. nothing here remains to be known (2). only one perchance knows Me in essence (3). the innermost Self. “Verily. ether. but different from it. But those men of pure deeds. steadfast in mind he is established in Me alone. which being known. O lord of Bharatas (16). Among thousands of men. steadfast in vows (23). Noble indeed are all these. caused by the qualities is difficult to cross over. the seeker of knowledge. the very life-element.BHAGAVAD GITA FOR BUSY PEOPLE Chapter VII THE YOGA OF WISDOM (Jnana Yoga) The Blessed Lord said. and the sun. those who take refuge in Me alone cross over this illusion (14). mind. one perchance strives for perfection. even among those successful strivers. worship Me. sound in ether and virility in men (8). steadfast in mind” (30). This is the inferior Prakriti. the wise. 6 . O mighty-armed. ever steadfast and devoted to the One excels. know Me even at the time of death. air. for I am exceedingly dear to the wise. but the wise man.

“Whosoever. O Kaunteya (O son of Kunti). goes forth remembering Me alone at the time of death. the dark fortnight also. by Whom all this is pervaded (22). they say is the highest goal (path). having known this. the offering to gods which causes the origin. O Madhusudana (destroyer of Madhu)? And how at the time of death. O best of the embodied (4). he attains My Being. “Fire. he who departs. there is no doubt about this (5). O Purushottama? What is declared to be the knowledge of the elements? And. leaving the body. O Partha. within Whom all beings dwell. art Thou to be known by the self-controlled?” (2). having fixed the life-breath in the head. This is the path of Pitriyana or the path of darkness. the Brahman. existence and manifestation of beings and also sustains them is called action (3). light. His essential nature is called self-knowledge. Whosoever at the end leaves the body. That. This is the path of Devayana or the path of light.BHAGAVAD GITA FOR BUSY PEOPLE Chapter VIII THE YOGA OF IMPERISHABLE BRAHMAN (Akshara Brahma Yoga) Arjuna asked: “What is that Brahman? What is Self-knowledge? What is action. the six months of the northern path of the sun (the northern solstice)—then departing men who know Brahman go to Brahman (24). the performance of sacrifices. not thinking of another (with a single mind) O Partha! (14). The Blessed Lord said: “Brahman is the Imperishable. What is called the unmanifested and Imperishable. “Whatever fruit of merit is declared in the scriptures to accrue from the study of the Vedas. uttering the one-syllabled Om. engaged in the practice of concentration. Who and how is Adhiyajna here in this body. daytime. the Yogi returns (29). attains the Supreme Soul (12-13). Adhibhuta or knowledge of the elements pertains to My perishable nature and the Purusha or the Soul is Adhidaivata. 7 . what is Adhidaiva? (1). is attainable by unswerving devotion to Him alone. They who reach It return not. “Having closed all the gates. daily. “I am easily attainable by that ever-steadfast Yogi who constantly remembers Me. “That Highest Purusha. and attains to the Supreme Primeval or first Abode” (28). leaving the body. having confined mind in the heart. That is My highest abode (place or state) (20). the six months of the southern path of the sun (the southern solstice)—attaining by these to the lunar light. the bright fortnight. and remembering Me. to that being alone he goes. thinking upon any being. night time. because of his constant thought of that being (6). practice of austerities and gift beyond all this goes the Yogi. the Supreme. “Smoke. I alone am the Adhiyajna here in this body.

whatsoever practiseth as austerity. worshipping Me with love. the friend. among luminous objects. The Blessed Lord said. I am the father of this world. Kingly Secret. the shelter. the syllable Om. he too should indeed be regarded as righteous. Out of mere compassion for them. without reserve of Thy divine glories by which Thou existeth pervading all these worlds” (16). imperishable (2). and also the Rik. Whatever thou doest. To them ever steadfast. Soon he becomes righteous and attains eternal peace. enlightening each other and ever speaking of Me. know thou for certain that My devotee is never destroyed” (31). with their life absorbed in Me. “Kingly Science. the treasure-house and the seed imperishable (18). seated in the hearts of all beings. I am Marichi among the forty-nine Maruts. the radiant Sun. to those ever united. very easy to perform. 8 . dissolution. O Gudakesa. thinking of no other. Whoever offers Me with devotion a leaf. I am Vishnu. the wise are satisfied and delighted (9). I. whatsoever givest. for he has rightly resolved (30). whatever thou offerest in sacrifice. the Sama and the Yajus also (17). the Abode. a flower. the foundation. the mother. with devotion to none else. O Kaunteya. do it as an offering unto Me (27). “I am the Self. the Purifier. O Kaunteya. whatever thou eatest. the Supreme Purifier is this realisable by direct intuitional knowledge. the witness. offered with devotion by the pure-minded (26). I give the Yoga of discrimination by which they come to Me (10). Chapter X THE YOGA OF DIVINE GLORIES (Vibhuti Yoga) The Blessed Lord said. the supporter. the middle. Arjuna said. but I do not dwell in them (4). the Lord. the origin. all beings exist in Me. the dispenser of fruits of action. “All this world is pervaded by Me in My unmanifested form (aspect). dwelling within their self. “With their minds wholly in Me.BHAGAVAD GITA FOR BUSY PEOPLE Chapter IX THE YOGA OF KINGLY SCIENCE AND KINGLY SECRET (Raja Vidya Raja Guhya Yoga) Lord Krishna said. water. destroy the darkness born of ignorance by the luminous lamp of knowledge” (11). the one thing to be known. I secure what is not already possessed (Yoga) and preserve what they already possess (Kshema) (22). a fruit. I am the goal. and grandfather. I am the beginning. “O Lord! Thou shouldst indeed tell. “Even if the most sinful worship Me. and also the end of all beings (20). that I accept. according to righteousness. “To those men who worship Me alone. Among the twelve Adityas.

and I am the intelligence among living beings (22). among immovable things. among the Yakshas and Rakshasas. Behold the Adityas. the Rudras. And among the Rudras. Into Thy mouths terrible with teeth and fearful to behold all the sons of Dhritarashtra. I am determination of those who are determined. O Bharata (6). as Thou hast thus described Thyself in that way O Purushottama (Purusha Supreme). I give thee divine eye. Among letters the letter ‘A’ I am. divine. the burning fire Thy mouth heating the whole universe with the radiance (19). I see Thee Without beginning. but this is a brief statement of My divine attributes” (40). Bhishma. Drona. behold My lordly Yoga” (8). “I see all the gods. I wish to see actually Thy divine form” (3). some are found sticking in the gaps between the teeth with their heads crushed to powder” (26-27). among generals I am Skanda. the Lord of wealth (Kubera). among lakes. with numerous divine weapons uplifted (10).BHAGAVAD GITA FOR BUSY PEOPLE among the stars the Moon am I (21). Among the great Rishis I am Bhrigu. middle or end. The Blessed Lord said. “Behold O Partha forms of Me by hundreds and thousands of different sorts. know Me to be the chief. among fishes I am the shark. But thou art not able to behold Me with these thine eyes alone. among the perfected ones the Muni Kapila (26). among words I am the one syllable OM. I am the gambling of cheat. Brahma the Lord seated on the lotus. the sun and the moon being Thy eyes. Brihaspati. Now behold O Gudakesa in this My body the whole universe centred in one—including the moving and the unmoving—and whatever else thou desirest to see (7). infinite in power of endless arms. among the Vasus I am Pavaka (Agni). Among the trees I am the Asvattha. the two Asvins and also the forty-nine Maruts: behold many wonders never seen before. among divine Rishis Narada. I am Sankara. O Parantapa. I am the goodness of the good (36). with numerous divine ornaments. I am the dispenser of fruits of actions having faces in all directions (33). Among the household priests (of kings) O Partha. I am the ocean (24). verily the inexhaustible or everlasting Time. hurriedly enter. and the dual among all compounds. all the Rishis and celestial serpents (15). Arjuna said. I am Vasava (Indra) among the gods. among sacrifices I am the sacrifice of silent repetition (Japa Yajna). among the senses I am the mind. and among the (seven) mountains I am the Meru (23). the Himalayas (25). I am the splendour of the splendid. “Of purifiers I am the wind. O God. Among the Vedas I am the Sama Veda. I am. among Gandharvas Chitraratha. I am victory. Chapter XI THE YOGA OF THE VISION OF THE COSMIC FORM (Visva Rupa Darsana Yoga) Arjuna said. the Vasus. Lord Kdshna showed to Partha His Supreme Form with numerous mouths and eyes with numerous wonderful sights. “Now O Supreme Lord. of various colours and shapes (5). among streams I am the Ganga (31). Rama of warriors am I. etc. in Thy body and also hosts of various classes of beings. 9 . Karna. There is no end of My Divine Glories.

who is friendly and compassionate to all. O Parantapa. possessed of firm conviction. ever-steadfast and endowed with supreme faith. he. O God. even by doing actions for My sake. who bears enmity towards no creature. is dear to Me (13-14). If thou art unable to do even this then taking refuge in union with Me. “Those who. worship Me. Arjuna said. He who is free from envy. But by the single-minded devotion. the unmanifested. who is devoted to Me. Show me that form only with four hands. who is free from wants. who is free from attachment and egoism. having seen what was never seen before and yet my mind is distressed with fear. The Blessed Lord said. renounce the fruits of all actions. the Unmanifested—which of these are better-versed in Yoga?” (1) The Blessed Lord said. the Ancient Purusha. thou shalt attain perfection (10). He who does actions for Me. O God of gods. pure. and those also who worship the Imperishable. Thou art the supreme refuge of this universe. who has renounced all undertakings or 10 . The Blessed Lord assumed His gentle form with four hands and showed this form to Arjuna and consoled him who was terrified (50). the knowable and the supreme abode. “Thou art the Primeval God.BHAGAVAD GITA FOR BUSY PEOPLE The Blessed Lord said. fixing their mind on Me. Chapter XII THE YOGA OF DEVOTION (Bhakti Yoga) Arjuna said. If thou art unable to practise even this Abhyasa Yoga. with the self controlled (11). the Supreme. O Abode of the Universe (45-46). Conquer the enemies and enjoy the unrivalled kingdom. Better indeed is knowledge than practice. By Thee is this universe pervaded. is very hard for the embodied to reach (5). I am delighted. fear and anxiety. nor by sacrifice can I be seen in this form. can I of this form be known and seen in reality and also entered into. for the goal. Verily by Myself they. O Savyasachi (Arjuna)” (33). have mercy. than knowledge meditation is better. untroubled. stand up and obtain fame. nor by gifts. Greater is their trouble whose minds are set on the unmanifested. My devotee. be thou a mere instrument. “He who hates no creature. ever content. in My opinion are the best in Yoga (2). then thou shalt no doubt live in Me alone hereafter (8). be thou intent on doing actions for My sake. unconcerned. as thou hast seen Me so easily. Fix thy mind on Me only. who ever steadfast. thus worship Thee. and forgiving. “Neither by the Vedas nor by austerity. who is free from attachment. then by Yoga of constant practice (Abhyasa Yoga) do thou seek to reach Me. peace immediately follows renunciation (12). “Those devotees. self-controlled. Pandava” (53-55). balanced in pleasure and pain. who looks on Me as. place Thy intellect in Me. than meditation renunciation of the fruits of actions. have been already slain. expert. with mind and intellect dedicated to Me. Thou art the knower. steady in meditation. O Dhananjaya (9). he comes to Me. If thou art not able to fix thy mind steadily on Me. “Therefore. O Being of infinite form (38).

wife. distaste for the society of men. who is the same in cold and heat. pain and pleasure. non-identification of self with son. the aggregate. who is full of devotion. death. devotees. the immovable and also the moveable. the ten senses and the one (mind) and the five objects of the senses. steady-minded. O son of Kunti. without other object. resort to solitary places. neither grieves nor desires. in sickness and pain. service of the teacher. is called the field (Kshetra). who is free from attachment. he is dear to Me (16-17).” The Blessed Lord said: “This body. non-attachment. unswerving devotion to Me by Yoga. O Arjuna. desire. “They verily. Without and within all beings. regarding Me as their supreme goal. knowledge and which ought to be known—these I desire to learn. self-control. with eyes. enveloping all (13). courage—the Kshetra has been thus described briefly with its modifications (5-6). perception of evil in birth. uprightness. and in pleasure and pain. hatred. and also in honour and dishonour. non-injury. and also the unmanifested (Mula-Prakriti or Avyaktam). Knowledge of both the field and the knower of the field is considered by Me to be the knowledge (2). “The great elements. old age. purity. constant application to spiritual knowledge of Truth—this is declared to be knowledge. egoism. “With hands and feet everywhere. heads and mouths everywhere. they are exceedingly dear to Me” (20). forbearance. “He who is the same to a foe and friend. Do thou also know Me as the knower of the field in all fields. with ears everywhere He exists in the world. steadfastness. homeless. full of devotion—that man is dear to Me (18-19). who is balanced in censure and praise. because of His subtlety incomprehensible. O Kesava. who neither rejoices nor hates. and near and far 11 .BHAGAVAD GITA FOR BUSY PEOPLE commencements. who follow this Immortal Dharma (law or doctrine) as described above endowed with faith. home and the like and constant balance of mind in the occurrence of the desirable and the undesirable. intellect. “Humility. indifference to the objects of the senses and also absence of egoism. unpretentiousness. pleasure and pain. he who knows it (body) is called (Kshetrajna) (the knower of the field) by the sages (1). who is silent. Chapter XIII THE YOGA OF DISTINCTION BETWEEN THE FIELD AND KNOWER OF THE FIELD (Kshetra-Kshetrajna-Vibhaga Yoga) Arjuna said: “Prakriti (matter) and Purusha (spirit). content with anything. also the field (Kshetra) and the knower of the field (Kshetrajna). who has renounced good and evil. intelligence. and what is opposed to it is ignorance (7-11).

is Sattvic and pure. That the Light of all lights. “When the wisdom-light shines at every gate (sense) in this body. indolence and sloth (8). But know thou Tamas (inertia) born of ignorance is the deluder of all embodied beings. Know thou Rajas to be of the nature of passion. the source of thirst for life and objects and attachment. restlessness. They who by the eye of wisdom perceive the difference between Kshetra (the field) and the Kshetrajna (the knower of the field) and the liberation of beings from Matter (Prakriti)—they go to the Supreme” (34). he is born among those attached to action. activity. if he dies when Tamas is predominant he is born in the wombs of the senseless (15). now Tamas. is said to be beyond darkness. having overpowered Rajas and Tamas. O best of the Bharatas (12). O son of Kunti. and also delusion—these are born of the increase Of Tamas. bind fast in the body the indestructible embodied one (5). seated in the hearts of all (17). Chapter XIV THE YOGA OF THE DIVISION OF THE THREE GUNAS (Guna-Traya-Vibhaga-Yoga) The Blessed Lord said: “Sattva. and the Tamasic who follow in the course of the lowest Guna. it binds fast. the Rajasic remain in the middle. If he dies when Rajas is predominant. they say. born of Prakriti. then he goes to the spotless worlds of the Highest (14). the goal of knowledge. O mighty-armed. Of these Sattva (purity) which from its stainlessness is luminous and healthy. it binds fast. death. having overpowered Sattva and Tamas. Darkness. now Rajas. verily the fruit of Rajas is pain and the fruit of Tamas is ignorance (16). 12 . “If the embodied one dies when Sattva is predominant. go downwards (18). knowledge. O sinless one! (6). O Bharata. The embodied one. heedlessness. that all actions are performed by Prakriti alone and that the Self is actionless (30). The fruit of good action.BHAGAVAD GITA FOR BUSY PEOPLE away is That (15). who sees. the embodied one by attachment to action (7). “When the seer beholds not an agent other than the Gunas and knows that which is higher than the Gunas. Greed. “He sees. he attains to My being (19). inertness. having overpowered Sattva and Rajas (10). Rajas and Tamas (purity. O Bharata. desire—these are born of increase of Rajas. binds by attachment to happiness and by attachment to knowledge. “Now Sattva (purity) prevails. the undertaking of actions. old age and pain and attains the immortal” (20). having crossed beyond these three Gunas out of which the body is evolved is freed from birth. Those who are seated in Sattva rise upwards. the knowable. by heedlessness. passion and inertia)—these Gunas. O descendant of the Kuru (13). then it should be known that Sattva is increasing (11).

branches below. the Asvattha is said to be indestructible. I seek refuge in that Primeval Purusha whence streamed forth the ancient energy (3-4). constantly abiding in the Self. nourished by the Gunas. the same to friend and foe. Abiding in the body of living beings as the fire Vaisvanara. and its roots grow downwards in the world of men ending in action (2). “There are two Purushas in the world—the perishable and the Imperishable. having cut asunder this firm-rooted Asvattha with the strong axe of non-attachment. As I transcend the perishable and am even higher than the Imperishable. Chapter XV THE YOGA OF SUPREME PURUSHA (Purushottama Yoga) The Blessed Lord said: “With roots above. having gone thither they return not. he who. O Lord? What is his conduct and how does he pass beyond the three Gunas?” (21) The Blessed Lord said: “He. who hates not radiance nor activity. sense-objects are its buds. But there is another. 13 . I indeed am the author of the Vedanta and the knower of the Vedas am I (15). nor the moon. “I am seated in the hearts of all. Below and above spread its branches. from Me are memory. called the Highest Self. all beings are perishable and the Kutastha (immutable. O Pandava. seated as a neutral. liberated from the pairs of opposites known as pleasure and pain. who is firm. who dwells in the Self. who pervading all. the same in honour and disgrace.BHAGAVAD GITA FOR BUSY PEOPLE Arjuna said: “What are the marks of him who has crossed over the three qualities. He to whom pain and pleasure are alike. is firm and moves not (23). sustains the three worlds (17). that goal should be sought for. neither its end nor its origin nor its existence. unchanging) is called the Imperishable (16). that is My Supreme Abode (7). the supreme Purusha. their desires having completely turned away. the indestructible Lord. “There the sun does not shine. stone and gold are alike. the undeluded reach that goal Eternal (5). united with Prana and Apana. its leaves are the hymns. to whom censure and praise are same. who knowing that the Gunas act. nor even delusion when present. with the evil of attachment conquered. Its form is not perceived here. is not moved by Gunas. he who knows this knows the Vedas (1). I am known in the world and in the Veda as ‘Purushottama’ (the Highest Purusha) (18). I am verily that which has to be known by all the Vedas. An eternal portion of My own self having become a living soul in the world of life. I digest the four kinds of food (14). abandoning all undertakings—he is said to have crossed over the qualities” (24-25). going whither none returns again. nor fire. knowledge and their absence. draws to itself the five senses with mind for the sixth abiding in Prakriti (8). to whom the dear and the undear are alike. to whom a lump of earth. “Free from pride and delusion. nor longs for them when absent (22).

O Bharata and all his duties are accomplished” (19-20). this desire I shall obtain. Grieve not. control of the senses (self-restraint) sacrifice. ‘This today has been gained by me. neither purity nor good conduct. therefore. they work with impure resolves (10). purity. these three one should abandon (21). lust.BHAGAVAD GITA FOR BUSY PEOPLE “He who. belong to one who is born. anger and greed. “He who setting aside the ordinances of the scriptures. modesty. harshness and ignorance. nor happiness. brought about by mutual union. given over to lust and anger. renunciation. peacefulness. thou art born with divine properties. and cruel-doers. austerity. alms-giving. “Demoniacal men know not what to do and what to refrain from. anger. without a God. the Highest Purusha. absence of crookedness. arrogance. I am perfect. and others also I shall slay. gentleness. uncovetousness. worst of men in the world. nor the Supreme Goal (23). Bound by a hundred ties of hope. fortitude. full of hypocrisy. “Hypocrisy. O sinless one. “The divine properties are deemed to make for liberation. destructive of the Self. O son of Kunti. straightforwardness. compassion to living beings. this most profound teaching has been taught by Me. he knowing all worships Me with his whole being O Bharata. “Triple is the gate of this hell. this wealth is mine already. Chapter XVI THE YOGA OF DIVISION BETWEEN THE DIVINE AND THE DEMONIACAL (Daivasura-Sampad-Vibhaga Yoga) The Blessed Lord said: “Fearlessness. absence of anger. undeluded thus knows Me. Having known what is said in the ordinances of the scriptures. I enjoy. absence of pride—these belong to one who is born with the divine properties. ‘I have slain this enemy. brought about by lust and nothing else’ (8). steadfastness in the Yoga of wisdom. forgiveness. I am lord. On knowing thus one becomes illumined. They say. absence of hatred. 14 . who else is equal to me? I will sacrifice. ‘I am rich. self-conceit. with demoniacal properties (4). O Bharata (1-3). Filled with insatiable desires. well-born. vigour. does good to the self and thus reaches the Supreme Goal (22). These malicious. Therefore let the scriptures be thy authority in deciding as what ought to be done and what ought not to be done. I will rejoice’ (15). acts under the impulse of desire. without a moral basis. A man who is released from these three gates to darkness. the demoniacal for bondage. study of one’s own scriptures. non-injury. and also this shall be mine in future’ (13). purity of heart. holding evil ideas through delusion. O Pandava (5). they strive to secure by unlawful means hoards of wealth for sensual enjoyments (12). nor truth is found in them (7). pride and arrogance. ‘The universe is without truth. powerful and happy’ (14). I hurl them for ever into the wombs of demons only (19). O Partha. thou shouldst work in this world” (24). attains not to perfection. absence of fickleness. I will give charity.

unstable and transitory (18). That which is offered with a view to obtain fruit and for ostentation. strength. practised by steadfast men with the utmost faith. continence. and non-injury are called the austerity of the body (14). is pure (11). gifts and faith. dry and burning. “Those men who perform terrible austerities not enjoined by the scriptures. is dear to the Tamasic (10). are dear to the Sattvic (8). saline. given to hypocrisy and egoism. impelled by the force of their desires and passions. “This threefold austerity. equanimity. Speech which causes no annoyance and is true. pungent. Rajasic (passionate) and Tamasic (darkness). The faith of each is in accordance with his nature. know it to be a Rajasic Yajna (12). are called the austerity of the speech (15). The man consists of his faith. self-control. the aggregated elements forming the body. which are savoury. or for the purpose of ruining another is declared to be Tamasic (19). O Bharata. with a fixed resolve in the mind that they should do the sacrifice as duty. purity of nature—this is called the mental austerity (16). energy. honour and worship and with ostentation is here (in this world) said to be Rajasic. Serenity of the mind. grief and diseases. torture. health. excessively hot. the Gurus and the wise. That austerity which is practised with the object of gaining good reception. The sacrifice performed contrary to the ordinances in which no food is distributed. refused and impure. the twice-born. That which is stale. as also pleasant and beneficial and also study of the scriptures. 15 . sour. is said to be Tamasic (13). straightforwardness. perform sacrifice with faith—what faith is theirs? Is it Sattva or Rajas or Tamas (Is it purity or passion or darkness)?” (1). which is destitute of Mantras. O best of the Bharatas. senseless as they are. rotten. tasteless. are dear to the Rajasic (9). know thou these to be of demoniac resolves (5-6). which is inherent in their nature—Sattvic (pure). and which cause pain. without desire for fruit is said to be Sattvic (pure) (17).BHAGAVAD GITA FOR BUSY PEOPLE Chapter XVII THE YOGA OF THE THREEFOLD FAITH (Sraddha-Traya-Vibhaga Yoga) Arjuna said: “Those who setting aside the ordinances of the scriptures. “The foods which increase vitality. substantial and agreeable. and Me also. purity. Do thou hear of these (2). so is he (3). That austerity which is practised out of a foolish notion with self-torture. oleaginous. as a man’s faith is. The Blessed Lord said: “Threefold is the faith of the embodied. putrid. joy and cheerfulness. “Worship of the gods. “The sacrifice that is offered by men without desire for fruit as enjoined by ordinance. who dwells in the body within. The foods like foods that are bitter. silence.

to unworthy persons. gift and austerity should not be relinquished. the various organs. O mighty-armed. O partha.’ O Kesinisudana (slayer of Kesi)” (1). that is declared to be Tamasic” (22). The body. The Blessed Lord said: “Sages understand ‘Sannyasa’ to be the renouncing of works with desires. is declared to be Rajasic (24). that is declared to be Rajasic (38). though he kills these people. indolence and heedlessness. what ought to be done and what ought not to be done. That pleasure which arises from the contact of the senses with their objects. the wise declare the abandonment of the fruits of all works as ‘Tyaga’ (2). The action which is undertaken from delusion. that is declared to be Tamasic (39). is Sattvic (30). at first like nectar but in the end like poison. That gift given at a wrong place or time. “These five causes. He who is free from the notion of egoism. as also ‘Tyaga. that intellect. O Partha. loss of wealth. That which enveloped in darkness regards wrong (Adharma) as right (Dharma) and sees all things in a perverted light. “That which is like poison at first but like nectar in the end. the fifth (14). “An action which is ordained. born of the blissful knowledge of the Self (37).BHAGAVAD GITA FOR BUSY PEOPLE “That alms (gift) which is given—knowing it to be a duty to give—to one who does no service in return. the essence of Sannyasa. is Rajasic (31). the actor. O Partha. fear and fearlessness. and also what ought to be done and what ought not to be done. gift. done without love or hatred by one not desirous of the fruit and free from attachment. Chapter XVIII THE YOGA OF LIBERATION BY RENUNCIATION (Moksha Sannyasa Yoga) Arjuna said: “I desire to know severally. That gift which is given with a view to receiving in return or looking for the fruit or again reluctantly that gift is held to be Rajasic (21). he kills not. That by which one wrongly understands right (Dharma) and wrong (Adharma). arising from sleep. that happiness is said to be Sattvic. whose intellect is not affected (by good or evil). that alms is said to be Sattvic (20). is Tamasic (32). That pleasure which both at first and afterwards is delusion of the Self. know thou from Me as declared in the Sankhya system for the accomplishment of all actions (13). but should be performed. O Hrishikesa. that intellect. Acts of sacrifice. that intellect. nor is bound by the action (17). But that action which is done by one longing for desires or again with egoism or with much effort. without respect and with insult. in a fit place and time. bondage and liberation. that is declared to be Tamasic (25). is declared to be Sattvic (21). and also austerity are the purifiers of the wise (5). “That which knows the paths of action and renunciation. to a worthy person. without regarding the consequence. injury (to others) and one’s own ability. the several functions of various sorts and the presiding deities also. 16 . sacrifice. O mighty-armed.

the archer. what and who I am. bow down to Me. covetousness. sacrifice to Me. Arjuna said: “My delusion is destroyed. taking refuge in dispassion (52). truly do I promise unto thee. Take refuge in Him with all thy heart. he neither grieves nor desires the same to all beings. I am firm. there are prosperity. then having known Me in reality. speech. By devotion he knows Me in reality. having abandoned egoism. O Partha. causing all beings. O Bharata. “Has this been heard by thee. thou shalt reach Myself. desire. eating but little. Om Santi! Santi! Santi! 17 . “Fix thy mind in Me. he attains supreme devotion to Me (54). anger. tranquil-minded. O Arjuna. Becoming Brahman. so I think (78). and I have gained knowledge through Thy grace. I will liberate thee from all sins. happiness and sound policy. freed from the notion of ‘mine’ and peaceful. be My devotee. Abandoning all duties take refuge in Me alone. grieve not (66). body and mind controlled. my doubts have vanished. ever engaged in meditation and concentration. “The Lord dwells in the hearts of all beings. he is fit for becoming Brahman (53). the Lord of Yoga. victory. O Achyuta (O Immutable One). by His grace thou shalt attain supreme peace and the eternal abode (62). O Dhananjaya?” (72). he forthwith enters into the Supreme (55). to revolve as if mounted on a machine (61). Wherever is Krishna.BHAGAVAD GITA FOR BUSY PEOPLE “Dwelling in solitude. with an attentive mind? Has thy delusion caused by ignorance been destroyed. for thou art dear to Me (65). I will do according to Thy word” (73). by His Maya. Hari Om Tat Sat. violence. wherever is Partha. arrogance.