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(From The Mahabharata)
Being a Discourse Between Arjuna, Prince of India, and the Supreme Being Under the Form of Krishna Translated from the Sanskrit Text by Sir Edwin Arnold,
M.A., K.C.I.E., C.S.I.
New York Truslove, Hanson & Comba, Ltd.
67 Fifth Avenue
So have I read this wonderful and spirit-thrilling speech, By Krishna and Prince Arjun held, discoursing each with each; So have I writ its wisdom here,--its hidden mystery, For England; O our India! as dear to me as She!
EDWIN ARNOLD PREFACE
This famous and marvellous Sanskrit poem occurs as an episode of the Mahabharata, in the sixth—or “Bhishma”—Parva of the great Hindoo epic. It enjoys immense popularity and authority in India, where it is reckoned as one of the “Five Jewels,”— pancharatnani—of Devanagiri literature. In plain but noble language it unfolds a philosophical system which remains to this day the prevailing Brahmanic belief, blending as it does the doctrines of Kapila, Patanjali, and the Vedas. So lofty are many of its declarations, so sublime its aspirations, so pure and tender its piety, that Schlegel, after his study of the poem, breaks forth into this outburst of delight and praise towards its unknown author: “Magistrorum reverentia a Brachmanis inter sanctissima pietatis officia refertur. Ergo te primum, Vates sanctissime, Numinisque hypopheta! quisquis tandem inter mortales dictus tu fueris, carminis bujus auctor,, cujus oraculis mens ad excelsa quaeque,quaeque,,
aeterna atque divina, cum inenarraoih quddam delectatione rapitur-te primum, inquam, salvere jubeo, et vestigia tua semper adore.” Lassen re-echoes this splendid tribute; and indeed, so striking are some of the moralities here inculcated, and so close the parallelism—ofttimes actually verbal— between its teachings and those of the New Testament, that a controversy has arisen between Pandits and Missionaries on the point whether the author borrowed from Christian sources, or the Evangelists and Apostles from him. This raises the question of its date, which cannot be positively settled. It must have been inlaid into the ancient epic at a period later than that of the original Mahabharata, but Mr Kasinath Telang has offered some fair arguments to prove it anterior to the Christian era. The weight of evidence, however, tends to place its composition at about the third century after Christ; and perhaps there are really echoes in this Brahmanic poem of the lessons of Galilee, and of the Syrian incarnation. Its scene is the level country between the Jumna and the Sarsooti rivers-now Kurnul and Jheend. Its simple plot consists of a dialogue held by Prince Arjuna, the brother of King Yudhisthira, with Krishna, the Supreme Deity, wearing the disguise of a charioteer. A great battle is impending between the armies of the Kauravas and Pandavas, and this conversation is maintained in a war-chariot drawn up between the opposing hosts. The poem has been turned into French by Burnouf, into Latin by Lassen, into Italian by Stanislav Gatti, into Greek by Galanos, and into English by Mr. Thomson and Mr Davies, the prose transcript of the last-named being truly beyond praise for its fidelity and clearness. Mr Telang has also published at Bombay a version in colloquial rhythm, eminently learned and intelligent, but not conveying the dignity or grace of the original. If I venture to offer a translation of the wonderful poem after so many superior scholars, it is in grateful recognition of the help derived from their labours, and because English literature would certainly be incomplete without possessing in popular form a poetical and philosophical work so dear to India. There is little else to say which the “Song Celestial” does not explain for itself. The Sanskrit original is written in the Anushtubh metre, which cannot be successfully reproduced for Western ears. I have therefore cast it into our flexible blank verse, changing into lyrical measures where the text itself similarly breaks. For the most part, I believe the sense to be faithfully preserved in the following pages; but Schlegel himself had to say: “In reconditioribus me semper poetafoster mentem recte divinasse affirmare non ausim.” Those who would read more upon the philosophy of the poem may find an admirable introduction in the volume of Mr Davies, printed by Messrs Trubner & Co.
EDWIN ARNOLD, C.S.I. CONTENTS
I. THE DISTRESS OF ARJUNA
II. THE BOOK OF DOCTRINES
III. VIRTUE IN WORK
IV. THE RELIGION OF KNOWLEDGE V. RELIGION OF RENOUNCING WORKS VI. RELIGION BY SELF-RESTRAINT
VII. RELIGION BY DISCERNMENT
VIII. RELIGION BY SERVICE OF THE SUPREME
IX. RELIGION BY THE KINGLY KNOWLEDGE AND THE
X. RELIGION BY THE HEAVENLY PERFECTIONS XI. THE MANIFESTING OF THE ONE AND MANIFOLD
XII. RELIGION OF FAITH
XIII. RELIGION BY SEPARATION OF MATTER AND SPIRIT XIV. RELIGION BY SEPARATION FROM THE QUALITIES
XV. RELIGION BY ATTAINING THE SUPREME
XVI. THE SEPARATENESS OF THE DIVINE AND UNDIVINE
XVII. RELIGION BY THE THREEFOLD FAITH XVIII. RELIGION BY DELIVERANCE AND RENUNCIATION
Dhritirashtra: Ranged thus for battle on the sacred plain— On Kurukshetra—say, Sanjaya! say What wrought my people, and the Pandavas? Sanjaya: When he beheld the host of Pandavas, Raja Duryodhana to Drona drew, And spake these words: “Ah, Guru! see this line, How vast it is of Pandu fighting-men, Embattled by the son of Drupada, Thy scholar in the war! Therein stand ranked Chiefs like Arjuna, like to Bhima chiefs, Benders of bows; Virata, Yuyudhan, Drupada, eminent upon his car, Dhrishtaket, Chekitan, Kasi’s stout lord, Purujit, Kuntibhoj, and Saivya,
spake this thing To Krishna the Divine.” Thus. cymbals and gongs and horns Burst into sudden clamour.” Arjuna blew Indra’s loud gift. those we must slay To-day. blew his great conch Carved of the “Giant’s bone. with his sons. Kripa fierce in fight. and Uttamauj Subhadra’s child. Kunti’s blameless son. the trumpeter Blew the great Conch. Then Bhishma. all blew loud. whose ensignbadge Was Hanuman the monkey. Krishna the God. Winded a mighty shell. Drupada. for. with full many more Valiant and tried.-all famed! All mounted on their shining chariots! On our side. blowing their battle-shells. Obeying Dhritirashtra’s sinful son. And Bhima. rolling around Like to a lion’s roar. at the noise of it. by Arjuna prayed. upon their car of gold Yoked with white steeds. reining its milk-white steeds Where Bhishma led.” Sahadev on his Called”Gem-bedecked. Weakestmeseems-Our battle shows where Bhishma holds command. So that the clangour shook their foemen’s hearts. fronting him. Then ‘twasBeholding Dhritirashtra’s battle set. next to these Strong Saumadatti. Vikarna. the war Instant to break-Arjun. Dhrishtadyumn. ready this day to die For me their king. I would see more nigh These who will fight with us.” and Kasi’s Prince on his. commanders of my line. as the blasts Of loosened tempest.” And Nakula blew shrill upon his conch Named the “Sweet-sounding. Weapons unsheathing. Karna.and their Lords. Aswatthaman. Sikhandi on his car. something too strong! Have care our captains nigh to Bhishma’s ranks Prepare what help they may! Now. With blare to wake the blood. (O Lord of Earth!) Long-armed Subhadra’s children. Whose names I joy to count: thyself the first. Bhima the terrible— Wolf-bellied Bhima-blew a long reed-conch. Dauntless One! to yonder open ground Betwixt the armies. Satyaki the Unsubdued. at the signal of the aged king. And Yudhisthira. With quaking earth and thundering heav’n.--thou best of Brahmans! see Excellent chiefs. Each skilful in the field. each with his weapon grasped. Trumpets and drums. too. Arjuna at his side: Krishna. . bows drawn forth.and Drona. sure. (O Bharata!) Between the hosts that heavenly Charioteer Drove the bright car. “See!” spake he to Arjuna. and. Virata. such the tumult seemed! Then might be seen.With Yudhamanyu. blow my shell!” Then. On bloodshed all are bent who throng this plain. “Victory’s Voice. in war’s arbitrament. with knotted locks. his charioteer: “Drive. and Drupadi’s.
whence there spring Mad passions. O Madhava? For if indeed. A shudder thrills my body. and sons. and sons-in-law. then. what rule recompense. if we shall slay Those sons of Dhritirashtra. Their sins will light on us. The life within me seems to swim and faint. from my weak hand slips Gandiv. and our kin. we shall grow guilty by their deaths. and the mingling-up of castes. seeing those opposed. And-rites neglected. how much less To seize an earthly kingdom! Killing these Must breed but anguish. O Keshav! nought of good Can spring from mutual slaughter! Lo. yon concourse of our kin. For whose sake life was fair. Krishna! If they be Guilty. How should not we. the goodly bow. a fever burns My skin to parching. uncles and brothers and sons. while he uttered this: Arjuna. or will not see. These cannot see. Nothing do I foresee save woe and wail! It is not good. Govinda! what rich spoils Could profit. And whoso wrought its doom by wicked wrath. O Madhusudan! will I strike to gain The rule of all Three Worlds. bought with such blood? Seeing that these stand here. wealth and ease. hardly may I stand. My members fail. who see. Thy kindred of the Kurus:” and the Prince Marked on each hand the kinsmen of his house. Brothers. piety extinct— Enters impiety upon that home. and fathers-in-law. and pleasure pleased. Cousins and sons-in-law and nephews. some this side. And power grew precious:-grandsires.“where they stand. shun such a crime— We who perceive the guilt and feel the shame— O thou Delight of Men. blinded by lust and wrath. Janardana? By overthrow of houses perisheth Their sweet continuous household piety. Sending a Hell-ward road that family. Some that side ranged: and. come here to shed Their common blood. Krishna! as I behold. I hate Triumph and domination. Grandsires and sires. my tongue dries in my mouth. . mixed With friends and honoured elders. Thus sadly won! Aho! what victory Can bring delight. sires. the sin Of kingly lines o’erthrown and kinsmen slain. and my hair Bristles with horror. Elders and friends! Shall I deal death on these Even though they seek to slay us? Not one blow. Such kith grown enemies-Arjuna’s heart Melted with pity. Its women grow unwomaned. What peace could come of that. ready to die. what span Of life itself seem sweet.
filled with such compassion and such grief. HERE ENDETH CHAPTER I. Him. both honourable men? Better to live on beggar’s bread With those we love alive. Than taste their blood in rich feasts spread. sick at heart. When those confront us angrily Whose death leaves living drear? In pity lost.” CHAPTER II Sanjaya. OF THE BHAGAVAD-GITA.” Or “The Book of the Distress of Arjuna. So speaking. if we slay Kinsfolk and friends for love of earthly power. Madhusudan. thus addressed: Krishna. and the souls of honoured ancestors Fall from their place of peace. My thoughts-distracted-turn To Thee. How can I. than answer blow with blow. That I may counsel learn: . To face them weaponless. in the face of those two hosts. Thus. in stern words The Driver. or on Drona-O thou Chief!-Both worshipful. Scourge of thy Foes! Arjuna. Ahovat! what an evil fault it were! Better I deem it. Arjun! Forbid thyself to feebleness! it mars Thy warrior-name! cast off the coward-fit! Wake! Be thyself! Arise. And guiltily survive! Ah! were it worse-who knows?--to be Victor or vanquished here. if my kinsmen strike. the Guide I reverence most. Barring the path of virtue? Nay.Nay. by doubtings tossed. How hath this weakness taken thee? Whence springs The inglorious trouble. Arjuna sank upon his chariot-seat. shameful to the brave. being bereft Of funeral-cakes and the wan death-water. shoot with shafts On Bhishma. Entitled “Arjun-Vishad.[FN#1] So teach our holy hymns. in the battle. With eyes tear-dimmed. and bare my breast To shaft and spear. despondent. And let fall bow and arrows.
Indestructible. sorrows and joys. To see this truth of both Is theirs who part essence from accident. and fear not. For ever and for ever afterwards. nor those that die. The soul that with a strong and constant calm Takes sorrow and takes joy indifferently. or changed. The soul which is not moved. stayed. Never was time it was not. Death hath not touched it at all. spreading life through all. ‘Tis brief and mutable! Bear with it. “Lo! I have slain a man!” He who shall think. self-sustained. End and Beginning are dreams! Birthless and deathless and changeless remaineth the spirit for ever. dead though the house of it seems! Who knoweth it exhaustless. Nor I. that doth live. To whom. Krishna made answer in divinest verse: Krishna. But for these fleeting frames which it informs With spirit deathless. Be anywise diminished. by any means. All. So come there raisings-up and layings-down Of other and of other life-abodes. Thou grievest where no grief should be! thou speak’st Words lacking wisdom! for the wise in heart Mourn not for those that live. (O Bharata! ) While the Prince wept despairing ‘twixt those hosts. Which the wise know. “I have killed a man. endless. So spake Arjuna to the Lord of Hearts. with tender smile. It cannot anywhere. And sighing. lives always! To man’s frame As there come infancy and youth and age. nor ever will not be. thrilling to the elements— Bringing thee heat and cold. They perish. Life is not slain! Never the spirit was born. Immortal. nor thou.”I will not fight!” held silence then. Let them perish. the spirit shall cease to be never. that which is not Will not exist. Prince! and fight! He who shall say. indestructible. or caused to kill?” Nay. Prince! As the wise bear. Lives in the life undying! That which is Can never cease to be.--shall such Say. This that irks— Thy sense-life. Ever was not. Substance from shadow. infinite. Learn thou! the Life is. If I were earth’s unchallenged chief— A god—and these gone thence! Sanjaya. but as when one layeth . nor any one of these.I know not what would heal the grief Burned into soul and sense. “Lo! I am slain!” those both Know naught! Life cannot slay.
all-arriving. happy the warrior To whom comes joy of battle—comes. the death Comes unperceived. sure. between them. then. the end of death Is birth: this is ordained! and mournest thou. unharmed. Impenetrable. thou bidd’st Duty and task go by—that shall be sin! And those to come shall speak thee infamy From age to age. like the man new-born. to speak upon! Strange and great for tongue to relate. but infamy is worse For men of noble blood to bear than death! . Chief of the stalwart arm! for what befalls Which could not otherwise befall? The birth Of living things comes unperceived. ever all itself. Unentered. knowing thy duty and thy task. Thus is the Soul declared! How wilt thou. When seeing. Invisible. waters cannot o’erwhelm. untouched. what a marvel it is. my Prince! Hides beyond harm. scorn thou to suffer. and saying. beings perceive: What is there sorrowful herein. as now. and hearing are done! This Life within all living things. if thou hearest that the man new-dead Is. Flame burns it not. Do thy part! Be mindful of thy name. stable. And passeth to inherit A residence afresh. But.His worn-out robes away. and tremble not! Nought better can betide a martial soul Than lawful war. doubtful. sayeth. I say to thee weapons reach not the Life. then. wistful. unassailed. “These will I wear to-day!” So putteth by the spirit Lightly its garb of flesh. Immortal.--grieve when thou shouldst not grieve? How. Glorious and fair. existent Spirit—wilt thou weep? The end of birth is death. to contemplate! Difficult. ineffable. still living man— One same. opening for him A gateway unto Heav’n. unsought. And taking new ones. For that which cannot suffer. Nor dry winds wither it. if thou shunn’st This honourable field—a Kshattriya— If.-Knowing it so. by word And thought uncompassed. Mystical hearing for every one! Nor wotteth man this. dear Prince? Wonderful.
” Free of the “pairs of opposites. Albeit. Which holding. but wrongful deem The speech of those ill-taught ones who extol The letter of their Vedas. be free of the “three qualities. thou shalt burst Thy Karmabandh. a little faith— Shall save thee from the anguish of thy dread. want not! ask not! Find full reward Of doing right in right! Let right deeds be Thy motive. no hope marred. gird thee to the fight. while all thine enemies Will scatter bitter speech of thee. nerve thy heart to meet— As things alike to thee—pleasure or pain. casting all self aside. . In various rites abounding. Glory of the Kurus! shines one rule— One steadfast rule—while shifting souls have laws Many and hard. And live in action! Labour! Make thine acts Thy piety. victory or defeat: So minded. for so Thou shalt not sin! Thus far I speak to thee As from the “Sankhya”—unspiritually— Hear now the deeper teaching of the Yog. No loss be feared: faith—yea. what fate could fall More grievously than this? Either— being killed— Thou wilt win Swarga’s safety. so do these Brahmans draw Text for all wants from tank of Holy Writ. Therefore. Here. thou Son of Kunti! brace Thine arm for conflict. concerning the “three qualities. who wealth and power do most desire Least fixity of soul have such. understanding. satisfied![FN#3] Look! like as when a tank pours water forth To suit all needs. Much these teach.”[FN#2] and free From that sad righteousness which calculates. Of those who held thee mighty-souled the scorn Thou must abide. But thou. following whereon Large merit shall accrue towards wealth and power. saying. seekers of Heaven: which comes—they say— As “fruit of good deeds done. not the fruit which comes from them. or need. Profit or ruin. the bondage of wrought deeds. Arjuna! simple. Specious. “This Is all we have. arise. least hold On heavenly meditation. Here shall no end be hindered. Self-ruled. or—alive And victor—thou wilt reign an earthly king. From Veds.” being weak at heart With wants.” promising men Much profit in new births for works of faith.The chiefs upon their battle-chariots Will deem ‘twas fear that drove thee from the fray. to mock The valour which thou hadst.” But thou.
Unto pure devotion Devote thyself: with perfect meditation Comes perfect act. steadfastly bent On meditation. the right act Is less. This way or that way. his five frail senses back Under the spirit’s buckler from the world Which else assails them. in doctrinal writ. takes evil things and good Neither desponding nor exulting. far less. dwelling outside the stress Of passion. and anger. step by step. my Prince! . This is Yog—and Peace! Arjuna. is the Sage. Kesava? Sits he. Troubled no longer by the priestly lore. have there thy heaven! Scorn them that follow virtue for her gifts! The mind of pure devotion—even here— Casts equally aside good deeds and bad. is piety! Yet. and in joys Not overjoyed.--such an one Is Muni. Passing above them. What is his mark who hath that steadfast heart. equable In good or evil: equability Is Yog.Contemning gain and merit. When one. and sure. To highest seats of bliss. Confirmed in holy meditation? How Know we his speech. Seek refuge in thy soul. Safe shall it live. such an one. fixed in calms Of lofty contemplation. fear. then shall it soar To high neglect of what’s denied or said. such Bears wisdom’s plainest mark! He who shall draw As the wise tortoise draws its four feet safe Under its shield. and the right-hearted rise— More certainly because they seek no gain— Forth from the bands of body. When thy firm soul Hath shaken off those tangled oracles Which ignorantly guide. He hath attained the Yog—that man is such! In sorrows not dejected. the true Recluse! He who to none and nowhere overbound By ties of flesh. O Pritha’s Son! Abandoning desires which shake the mind— Finds in his soul full comfort for his soul. moves he Like other men? Krishna. than the right-thinking mind.
like a ship in waves of whirlwind. making them Serve his free soul. from attraction grows desire. Till purpose. what seems as wakeful day Is known for night. Fed by the rivers. . nay. To his true-seeing eyes.Hath wisdom’s mark! Things that solicit sense Hold off from the self-governed. but unswelled by those. wanting that. if one deals with objects of the sense Not loving and not hating. But. and man are all undone. thick night of ignorance. it comes. great Prince! Whose senses are not swayed by things of sense— Only with him who holds his mastery. Nor hath he knowledge of himself. Whence shall he hope for happiness? The mind That gives itself to follow shows of sense Seeth its helm of wisdom rent away. Lo! such a man comes to tranquillity. which lacked. That man alone is wise Who keeps the mastery of himself! If one Ponders on objects of the sense. Yet may it chance.-- So is the perfect one! to his soul’s ocean The world of sense pours streams of witchery. drives To wreck and death. O Son of Kunti! that a governed mind Shall some time feel the sense-storms sweep. And. there springs Attraction. Desire flames to fierce passion. then the memory—all betrayed— Lets noble purpose go. passion breeds Recklessness. Only with him. and not leaving. and saps the mind. What is midnight-gloom To unenlightened souls shines wakeful day To his clear gaze. and sit On Me intent. Since the will governed sets the soul at peace. Let him regain His kingdom! let him conquer this.--aroused no more. Such is the Saint! And like the ocean. and wrest Strong self-control by the roots. The soul of the ungoverned is not his. And out of that tranquillity shall rise The end and healing of his earthly pains. The appetites of him who lives beyond Depart. day by day receiving Floods from all lands. which never overflows Its boundary-line not leaping. which rests serenely lord. How grows serenity? and. Shows wisdom perfect. mind.
at any time. blameless Lord! there be two paths Shown to this world. his nature’s law Compels him. two schools of wisdom. next. First The Sankhya’s. set free From pride. Arjuna! such an one . OF THE BHAGAVAD-GITA. [For thought is act in fancy]. even unwilling. Plays the inept and guilty hypocrite: But he who. Janardana! If meditation be a nobler thing Than action. spiritually: Yet these are one! No man shall ‘scape from act By shunning action. without commotion. I told thee. but remaining sea. the Yog. such passeth from all ‘plaining.” Or “The Book of Doctrines.” Toucheth tranquillity! O Pritha’s Son! That is the state of Brahm! There rests no dread When that last step is reached! Live where he will. Rests any actionless.They leave him as they find. which doth save in way of works Prescribed[FN#4] by reason. attaining. great Kesava! Dost thou impel me to this dreadful fight? Now am I by thy doubtful speech disturbed! Tell me one thing. Nay. from passion. into act. then. nay. of his lusts. HERE ENDETH CHAPTER II. and tell me certainly. Taking their tribute.” CHAPTER III Arjuna. Thou whom all mortals praise. To blest Nirvana. Yet in his idle heart thinking on them. and none shall come By mere renouncements unto perfectness. By what road shall I find the better end? Krishna. with strong body serving mind. Gives up his mortal powers to worthy work. and no jot of time. Not seeking gain. shaking off the yoke of flesh Lives lord. not servant. with the Gods. wherefore. Yea! whoso. from the sin of “Self. Die when he may. which bids Attain by meditation. He who sits Suppressing all the instruments of flesh. Entitled “Sankhya-Yog.
By works alone Janak and ancient saints reached blessedness! Moreover. Do thine allotted task! Work is more excellent than idleness. And sacrifice is paid with tithes of toil.[FN#5] Therefore. which bindeth not The faithful soul. The gods shall yield thee grace. The Only. lives a lost life. no gift remains to gain. no hope Of help for all the living things of earth Depends from him. at all times Present in sacrifice. Look on me. serving self alone. and thou shalt well perform Thy heavenly purpose. the sacrifice—“Do this! Work! sacrifice! Increase and multiply With sacrifice! This shall be Kamaduk. with mankind. when it pays Tithes in the altar-flame. No part hath he in aught. Since in performance of plain duty man Mounts to his highest bliss. lacking work.” Who eat of food after their sacrifice Are quit of fault. Your ‘Cow of Plenty. Unlike world-binding toil. Worship the gods thereby. Yet I act here! and. By food the living live. thy task prescribed With spirit unattached gladly perform. There is a task of holiness to do. who is One. Action thou should’st embrace. food comes of rain. that thief steals from his world. eat sin and drink of sin. Spake Prajapati— In the beginning. But if one eats Fruits of the earth. nothing achieved. Those meats ye crave The gods will grant to Labour. Glutting his idle sense. no height Awaits to scale. when all men were made. if I acted not— . Self-concentrated. Existing for himself.Is honourable. Shameful and vain. He that abstains To help the rolling wheels of this great world. All-pervading. Thus action is of Brahma. such earthly duty do Free from desire. rendering to kindly Heaven No gift of toil. What the wise choose The unwise people take.’ giving back her milk Of all abundance. The body’s life proceeds not. Nought wrought or unwrought toucheth him. Thou Son of Pritha! in the three wide worlds I am not bound to any toil. for the upholding of thy kind. And rain comes by the pious sacrifice. but they that spread a feast All for themselves. And. what best men do The multitude will follow.
Than take tasks not his own. Those make thou not to stumble. Have quittance from all issue of their acts. Mighty of appetite. With meditation centred inwardly. with unyoked soul.Earnest and watchful—those that look to me For guidance. knowing not Nature’s way. the instructed one Doth of his kind. and fall to loss. would decline from good. “This I did” And “That I wrought. but set To bring the world deliverance. Arjuna. though they seem good. Needs must it be The objects of the sense will stir the sense To like and dislike. satisfied. Th’ untaught Live mixed with them. Finally. But those who disregard My ordinance. Heedless of issue—fight! They who shall keep My ordinance thus. following what fits him most: And lower creatures of their kind. ‘Sooth. unwilling. knowing the play Of visible things within the world of sense. the wise and willing hearts. And I should break earth’s order and commit Her offspring unto ruin. this is better. sinking back to sloth again Because I slumbered. So let the enlightened toil. cheated by self. know nought. as if one Pushed him that evil path? Krishna. that one do His own task as he may. Yet tell me. To die performing duty is no ill. The fool. yet th’ enlightened man Yields not to these. busy hearts Seed of despair. even though he fail. slow and dull. Kama it is! Passion it is! born of the Darknesses. Not sowing in those simple. for My sake. serene. Seeking no profit. and its bliss. having the light. Teacher! by what force doth man Go to his ill. Yea! let each play his part In all he finds to do. thinks. and strong is this!--man’s enemy! . in vain Contending ‘gainst the law. Which pusheth him. All things are everywhere by Nature wrought In interaction of the qualities. Thinking they know. Standeth aloof even from his acts. But all thy dues discharging. wedded to sense. thou strong-armed Prince!-A better-lessoned mind. Sinful. Confused and foolish. knowing them enemies. Of highest aims unwitting. “but—ah. sense-freed. Bharata! Even as the unknowing toil. And how the qualities must qualify. But who seeks other roads shall wander still.
beguiling. The wise fall. Thy birth. this mystery supreme— Seeing I find thee votary and friend. OF THE BHAGAVAD-GITA. Entitled “Karma-Yog.” CHAPTER IV Krishna. Therefore. dear Hero! slay What haunts thee in fond shapes. noble Prince! Now once again to thee it is declared— This ancient lore. thou noblest child of Bharata! Govern thy heart! Constrain th’ entangled sense! Resist the false. The truth grew dim and perished. this deep union. The Lord of all things living. O Kunti’s Son! Are booty for it. indestructible. I taught Vivaswata. the unresting foe It is of wisdom. This deathless Yoga. not the less— By Maya. And bright Vivaswata’s preceded time! How shall I comprehend this thing thou sayest. wearing countless forms. O Slayer of thy Foes! Albeit I be Unborn. as the womb surrounds The babe unborn. “From the beginning it was I who taught?” Krishna. Put forth full force of Soul in thy own soul! Fight! vanquish foes and doubts.As smoke blots the white fire. perceiving Him who reigns supreme. by my magic which I stamp On floating Nature-forms. Wherefore. and reason—these. enclosed in this desire of flesh. Then. Arjuna. was in these later days. the primal vast— . Arjuna! and of thy births. he To Ikshwaku. Manifold the renewals of my birth Have been. blinding him. and the mind Strongest.” Or “The Book of Virtue in Work. undying. the world is strong. with years. dear Lord. and would betray! HERE ENDETH CHAPTER III. and thine thou knowest not. too! But mine I know.[FN#6] the Lord of Light. in its play with these It maddens man. caught in it. mind. soft sinfulness which saps Knowledge and judgment! Yea. as clinging rust Mars the bright mirror. so is the world of things Foiled. subtle as a flame. Vivaswata to Manu gave it. Sense. But what discerns it stronger. and high o’er all the ruling Soul. soiled. so passed it down the line Of all my royal Rishis. Fair but deceitful.
Freed In all his works from prickings of desire. dear Prince! Many there be who come! from fear set free. Thou sayst. from desire. action binds not him. so perceiving. Yea. From anger. in the days gone by. It hath been asked before By singers and by sages. and go. “What is act. Such as these Mix with my being. O Bharata! when Wickedness Is strong. Always self-satisfying. and move a man with men. I rise. being works Wrought uninvolved.I come. thrusting the evil back. When Righteousness Declines. And what inaction? “I will teach thee this. the Reposeful. Succouring the good.[FN#7] Who knows me acting thus Unchained by action. if he works. . Burned clean in act by the white fire of truth. seeking for deliverance. I say to thee Here have they their reward. albeit. acting or resting. And. keeping their hearts Fixed upon me—my Faithful—purified By sacred flame of Knowledge. I that live Immortally. thou shalt learn which work doth save Needs must one rightly meditate those three— Doing. when he quits the flesh Puts on its load no more.--not doing. knowing. and take Visible shape. to the lower gods. Them I exalt. rest action—he Is wisest ‘mid his kind. But I am He Made the Four Castes. falls no more down To earthly birth: to Me he comes. And setting Virtue on her seat again. made all those mortal births: For works soil not my essence. those souls Which seek reward for works. thy fathers did. Here Thorny and dark the path is! He who sees How action may be rest. he hath the truth! He doeth well. and come. and portioned them a place After their qualities and gifts. And. always content. but all men everywhere Shall fall into my path. from age to age. make sacrifice Now. all those saints of old Worked. and such an one. I Created. perplexed. The wise call that man wise. Whoso worship me. Who knows the truth touching my births on earth And my divine work. Renouncing fruit of deeds.--and undoing. Work thou As.
meditates on Brahm. Burn on a hidden altar-stone the bliss Of youth and love. making silent sacrifice. Unmoved by joy. Their penance. by grief unmoved. in white flame of continence. Their steadfast reading of the scrolls. How should he share Another. but other some Who. But for him that makes No sacrifice. Which passeth purely into ash and smoke Consumed upon the altar! All’s then God! The sacrifice is Brahm. lighting subtler fires. Some votaries there be who serve the gods With flesh and altar-smoke. Lo! all these keep The rite of offering.Doth nothing that shall stain his separate soul. Whose crave is gone. Lay life itself upon the altar-flame. consume Joys of the sense. as if they slew Victims. Nay. piety. but of such an one. Governing the ventage of each entering air Lest one sigh pass which helpeth not the soul: And they who. and all thereby efface much sin. he hath nor part nor lot Even in the present world. Which—quit of fear and hope—subduing self— Rejecting outward impulse—yielding up To body’s need nothing save body. Forgoing tender speech and sound of song: And they who. . with equal calm Taking what may befall. the ghee and grain Are Brahm. for knowing this. Whose heart is set on truth—of such an one What work he does is work of sacrifice. meditation. whose soul is liberate. in such office. make purer rite With will of worship. the same In good and evil fortunes. and unto Brahm attaineth he Who. delights of eye and ear. Of the which be they Who. the fire is Brahm. dwells Sinless amid all sin. O thou Glory of thy Line? In sight of Brahma all these offerings Are spread and are accepted! Comprehend That all proceed by act. Draw in their breath to feed the flame of thought. To The Unending. day by day denying needs. nowise bound By bond of deeds. to Brahma pass. renouncing happiness: And they who lay for offering there their wealth. Burning the body wan. the flesh it eats Is Brahm. Yea! and who feed on the immortal food Left of such sacrifice. kindling fires with torch of Truth. their lore Painfully gained with long austerities: And they who. And breathe it forth to waft the heart on high. unenvyingly.
Knowing Truth.” Or “The Book of the Religion of Knowledge. Krishna! at the one time thou dost laud Surcease of works. Entitled “Jnana Yog. Son of Bharata! This doubt that binds thy heart-beats! cleave the bond Born of thy ignorance! Be bold and wise! Give thyself to the field with me! Arise! HERE ENDETH CHAPTER IV. By humble heed of those who see the Truth And teach it. and those who fear Are shent. no peace is here or other where. To cease from works Is well. No hope. The uttermost repose. Of these twain plainly tell Which is the better way? Krishna. being self-contained. and he who seeketh it Shall find it—being grown perfect—in himself. Arjuna! unto nought The flame of Knowledge wastes works’ dross away! There is no purifier like thereto In all this world. and cleaves to Truth. As the kindled flame Feeds on the fuel till it sinks to ash. and to do works in holiness . for the Truth shall show All things subdued to thee. at another time. hath vanquished doubt.” CHAPTER V Arjuna. as thou to Me. and. Son of Pandu! wert thou worst Of all wrong-doers. Disparting self from service. And those without full faith. nor happiness for whoso doubts. OF THE BHAGAVAD-GITA. thy heart no more Will ache with error. and comes— Possessing knowledge—to the higher peace. The sacrifice Which Knowledge pays is better than great gifts Offered by wealth. Yet. the will that serves: And these are gained by reverence.Thou shalt be quit of doubt. this fair ship of Truth Should bear thee safe and dry across the sea Of thy transgressions. by strong search. Service through work. Moreover. my Prince! Works fetter him no more! Cut then atwain With sword of wisdom. So unto ash. Enlightened and emancipate. Believing. But those untaught. He that. he receives it when the soul Masters itself. since gifts’ worth— O my Prince! Lies in the mind which gives. soul from works.
such breaks lightly from all deed: ‘Tis the new scholar talks as they were two. nor passion for the work.-nay. Detaching end from act. withdrawn within his soul. the passion-bound. for whom That darkness of the soul is chased by light. At every act sits godlike in “the town Which hath nine gateways. the man’s own self Pushes to these! The Master of this World Takes on himself the good or evil deeds Of no man—dwelling beyond! Mankind errs here By folly. The world of sense can no more stain his soul Than waters mar th’ enamelled lotus-leaf. renouncing fruit of deeds.”[FN#8] O valiant Prince! In doing. Always assured “This is the sense-world plays With senses. Who—seeking nought. with mind. or goes. But. Lost in the common life of all which lives— A “Yogayukt”—he is a Saint who wends Straightway to Brahm. touching. This world’s Lord makes Neither the work. opes his eyes or shuts. But of these twain the better way is his Who working piously refraineth not. slumbers or talks.Is well. Holds fast or loosens. Who sees these twain as one Sees with clear eyes! Yet such abstraction.”[FN#9] neither doing aught Nor causing any deed. Nor lust for fruit of work. darkening knowledge. with the help Of all five senses—letting selfhood go— Yogins toil ever towards their souls’ release. firm and fixed. Pure-hearted. and both conduct to bliss supreme.”He that acts in thought of Brahm. Whoso is fixed in holiness. Seeking a fruit from works. “Nought of myself I do!” Thus will he think-who holds the truth of truths— In seeing. with heart. rejecting nought—dwells proof Against the “opposites. or breathes. Such votaries. Gain endless peace: the unvowed. This Sankhya and this Yoga: wise men know Who husbands one plucks golden fruit of both! The region of high rest which Sankhyans reach Yogins attain. The embodied sage. hearing. are fastened down. That is the true Renouncer. Chief! Is hard to win without much holiness. when He eats. Splendid and clear shines manifest the Truth As if a Sun of Wisdom sprang to shed . smelling. lord of senses and of self. With life. self-ruled. with act content. Such an one is not touched By taint of deeds.
ever and ever freed. His spirit tastes eternal peace. heart. and fear. OF THE BHAGAVAD-GITA. Kunti’s Son! In such as those! But if a man shall learn. the unclean dog. And He who heeds not. And they in Brahma. even now. To master lust and anger. and mind constrained. being Lord of Worlds. The Brahman with his scrolls and sanctities. Obtained deliverance.] To him who wisely sees.--hath. with hearts Governed and calm. Nigh to the peace of God. The world is overcome—aye! even here! By such as fix their faith on Unity. to Brahma joined by piety. The souls illuminated take that road Which hath no turning back—their sins flung off By strength of faith. but. with Him blended. God unrevealed. stayed on Him. knowing the Soul! The Saint who shuts outside his placid soul All touch of sense. Be not over-glad Attaining joy. [Who will may have this Light. still Constant let each abide! The sage whose sou Holds off from outer contacts. within: his life is merged In Brahma’s life. he hath happiness. Entitled “Karmasanyasayog. Whose quiet eyes gaze straight from fixed brows.” . Whose outward breath and inward breath are drawn Equal and slow through nostrils still and close. are all one. The Outcast gorging dog’s meat. That one-with organs. with doubts at end. and all those live Who pass their days exempt from greed and wrath. who dwell With sins effaced. letting no contact through. The cow. The sinless Brahma dwells in Unity. he is blest! He is the Yukta. he doth Nirvana touch! Thus go the Rishis unto rest. Yea! for he knows Me Who am He that heeds The sacrifice and worship. Him meditating still. having put away Passion. The joys Springing from sense-life are but quickening wombs Which breed sure griefs: those joys begin and end! The wise mind takes no pleasure. Subduing self and senses. in himself Finds bliss. stayed on Brahma. Contentment.Its beams of dawn. Even while he lives and bears his body’s chain. and rage. Lover of all that lives. Bent on deliverance. and be not over-sad Encountering grief. the elephant.” Or “The Book of Religion by Renouncing Fruit of Works. Glad in all good they live. God revealed. light. Wherein who will shall find surety and shield! HERE ENDS CHAPTER V. Him seeking. Who hath it sees.
heat. glory and shame. strangers. Restraining heart and senses. cold. holding immovable Body and neck and head. Let him accomplish Yoga. the glistering gold Show all as one. Sequestered should he sit.--not too much raised. his gaze absorbed Upon his nose-end. enemies. free of fear. His thoughts controlled. There. By this sign is he known Being of equal grace to comrades. his passions laid away. silent. solitary.[FN#10] The sovereign soul Of him who lives self-governed and at peace Is centred in itself. taking alike Pleasure and pain. So is that well said: “By works the votary doth rise to faith. Because the perfect Yogin acts—but acts Unmoved by passions and unbound by deeds. Setting result aside. Steadfastly meditating. setting hard his mind upon The One.--let him abide. Let each man raise The Self by Soul. He is the Yogi. lovers. Not seeking gain from work.[FN#11] rapt from all around. he is Yukta. Quit of belongings. that man. for who renounceth not Works not as Yogin. Regard as true Renouncer him that makes Worship by work. who doeth work rightful to do. nor setteth hand to task. O Prince! Is Sanyasi and Yogi—both in one And he is neither who lights not the flame Of sacrifice. intent . Nor yet too low. a deerskin. not trample down his Self. Therefore.CHAPTER VI Krishna. Tranquil in spirit. calm. dwelling apart Upon a peak. Aliens and kinsmen. still spot Having his fixed abode. Since Soul that is Self’s friend may grow Self’s foe. with senses subjugate Whereto the clod. and achieve Pureness of soul. and the Kusa-grass. glad With joy of light and truth. the rock. But Self turns enemy if Soul’s own self Hates Self as not itself. Soul is Self’s friend when Self doth rule o’er Self. Chance-comers. In a fair. his goods A cloth. friends. loving all alike. Evil or good. And saintship is the ceasing from all works.
He who thus vows His soul to the Supreme Soul. it comes To gift of peace assured and heart assuaged. sleeping betimes. soothed with holy wont. Shutting the doorways of the senses close With watchful ward. when it knows the nameless joy Beyond all scope of sense. call that state “peace. cannot be stirred or shook By any gravest grief. nor his who sleeps away An idle mind. Passes unhindered to the endless bliss . wavers not. Shaking off All longings bred by dreams of fame and gain. Arjuna! call That the true piety which most removes Earth-aches and ills. Waking betimes for duty.Upon his Brahmacharya vow.” That happy severance Yoga. where one is moderate In eating and in resting. And thought has passed from thinking. and the soul broods Cumberless. devout. the peace Of high Nirvana! But for earthly needs Religion is not his who too much fasts Or too much feasts. Measured in wish and act. so devoted. See! Steadfast a lamp burns sheltered from the wind. revealed to soul— Only to soul! and. True to the farther Truth. nor his who wears to waste His strength in vigils. But. for perfect bliss Grows only in the bosom tranquillised. Musing on Me. When the man. till efforts end in ease. knowing. Such is the likeness of the Yogi’s mind Shut from sense-storms and burning bright to Heaven. as often as the heart Breaks—wild and wavering—from control. so oft Let him re-curb it. When mind broods placid. But. quitting sin. centres on his soul the thought Straitly restrained—untouched internally By stress of sense—then is he Yukta. purged from offence. call that man The perfect Yogin! Steadfastly the will Must toil thereto. It deems no other treasure comparable. The spirit passionless. So living.--My peace. step by step. so controlled. Vowed to the Infinite. when. Comes to the peace beyond. and in itself Hath comfort. When the mind dwells self-wrapped. harboured there. so. That Yojin. and in sport. let him rein it back To the soul’s governance. When Self contemplates self. lost in the thought of Me. holding this. Nay.
Desiring righteousness. I say. To hold the wayward wind. And what road goeth he who. no rest. derived from equanimity. and wavering. because the heart of men Is unfixed. So blended. One Essence in the Evil and the Good. tumultuous. Wilful and strong. This Peace. cometh at death . Slayer of Madhu! yet again. Who dwell In all which lives. He is not lost. this Yog. Krishna! in the striving. and all in Me. Krishna! none save thou can clear the doubt. falling back From holiness. Hold him a Yogi. Krishna. having faith. nor heaven is forfeit. I never let him go. thou Son of Pritha! No! Nor earth. It were all one. Krishna! rash.Of unity with Brahma. But he who will be master of himself Shall win it. yea! well-perfected! Arjuna. This Yog. nor looseneth he Hold upon Me. Arjuna. He so vowed. Because he knows and worships Me. and all living things In that Life-Soul contained. Yet may it grow restrained by habit. Like the vain cloud. Cometh not lightly to th’ ungoverned ones. Arjuna! if a man sees everywhere— Taught by his own similitude—one Life. Since. hard Man’s heart is to restrain. as tame man’s heart. if he stoutly strive thereto. Made known by thee—I see no fixity Therein. which floats ‘twixt earth and heaven When lightning splits it. and cleaves to Me in all. dwell he where he may. in Me he dwells and lives. sees the Life-Soul resident In all things living. and it vanisheth? Fain would I hear thee answer me herein. Hero long-armed! beyond denial. Because no heart that holds one right desire Treadeth the road of loss! He who should fail. I think. but. missing the perfect rule? Is he not lost. Whate’er his life. even for him. And whoso thus Discerneth Me in all. straying from Brahma’s light. Fails. Prince! By wont of self-command. Krishna.
” CHAPTER VII Krishna. Entitled “Atmasanyamayog. the spoken Ved. perfected by births Following on births. he plants his feet at last Upon the farther path. air. and rise high—one only—here and there— Knoweth Me.” Or “The Book of Religion by Self-Restraint. the very Truth. Striveth for Truth. Beginneth life again in some fair home Amid the mild and happy. and mind. Leaveth no more to know here in this world. dear Prince! how. But. Earth. being Yogi. striving strong and long. but that is rare! Such birth Is hard to be obtained on this earth. And individuality—those eight Make up the showing of Me. if thy soul be set Ever on Me—still exercising Yog. dear Prince! For by the old desire he is drawn on Unwittingly. Of many thousand mortals. and of those few that strive— Nay. and so he strives anew To perfectness. higher than the wise. with better hope. perchance. life. stayed on My Mystery! HERE ENDETH CHAPTER VI. which. Learn now. one. dwells there Measureless years. when thou knowest. Such as one ranks Above ascetics. ether. . as I am. and only to desire The purity of Yog is to pass Beyond the Sabdabrahm. Chief! So hath he back again what heights of heart He did achieve. Truest and best is he who worships Me With inmost soul. Still making Me thy Refuge—thou shalt come Most surely unto perfect hold of Me. flame. Purged from transgressions. I will declare to thee that utmost lore. water. It may chance He doth descend into a Yogin house On Virtue’s breast. OF THE BHAGAVAD-GITA.Unto the Region of the Just. Whole and particular. Manifest. Beyond achievers of vast deeds! Be thou Yogi Arjuna! And of such believe. and being born anew.
Above them all. nearest. Which Nature frames. I am the fire’s red light. Soothfast. intent Upon “The One. the intellect Of the informed. above all. the gold o’ the sun. I am the fresh taste of the water. or ignorant. the thrill That passeth in the ether. enlightened. deduce from me. by its principle of life. Whereby the worlds of visible things are born As from a Yoni. The word of worship in the Veds. The wisdom of the wise. free from passion and desire. Whereby. wise. I am not known To evil-doers. or passionate. nor to those Whose mind is cheated by the show of things. Prince! No other Maker! All these hang on me As hangs a row of pearls upon its string. the devout soul. O Prince of India! highest. Yet am I right desire in all who yearn. yet they who worship Me Pierce it and pass beyond. produced. and he who sits Certain of me. the root Undying. I am the good sweet smell Of the moistened earth. but all Are merged in me—not I in them! The world— Deceived by those three qualities of being— Wotteth not Me Who am outside them all. Nor those that take the way of Asuras. whence hath sprung whatever is. I The silver of the moon. Chief of the Bharatas! for all those moods. the greatness of the great. Of these four. The holiness of hallowed souls. Eternal! Hard it is To pierce that veil divine of various shows Which hideth Me.[FN#12] Four sorts of mortals know me: he who weeps. The vital air moving in all which moves.These be my lower Nature. best That last is. Know! I am that womb: I make and I unmake this Universe: Than me there is no other Master. The splendour of the splendid. am I .” Dear. Nor to the base and churlish. learn the higher. And he who toils to help. nor to foolish ones. Arjuna! and the man who yearns to know. thou Valiant One! this Universe Is. Kunti’s Son! These am I. and the strength Of man’s shed seed.
know Me Soul of Souls. who worship so. And find and hold me in the hour of death. Darkened but ardent. Worship Me well. That man who sayeth. Lord of Life. in faith— ‘Tis I who give them faith! I am content! The heart thus asking favour from its God. . Freed from the “opposites. Prince! All creatures live bewildered. gives them to serve Some lower gods. with various rites.”but I—even I myself! At end of many births to Me they come! Yet hard the wise Mahatma is to find. Unto all such— Worship what shrine they will. and seek me. informed. know KARMA. Who cleave. Not comprehending Me in my true Self! Imperishable. But I. And ADHIDAIVA. “All is Vasudev!”[FN#13] There be those. the faithful—stayed on me. But Mine come unto me! Blind are the eyes Which deem th’ Unmanifested manifest. The true of heart. Go where they worship. Lord of Sacrifice. but mine own. Taking me as their utmost blessedness. too.” By those twain snares of Like and Dislike. quit of sins. and he is dearest unto me! All four are good. what shapes. Cleave unto Me. Hidden behind my magic veil of shows. I am not seen by all. hath the end it craves. The ADHYATMAN. viewless. passing with their gods. Know I am ADHIBHUTA. They are not “mine. undeclared. And ADHIYAJNA. holy in act. And all which are. save some few Who. with hearts of love and faith. who seek in Me Refuge from birth[FN#14] and death. and all which are to be. Arjuna! know all things which were. those have the Truth! Those know Me BRAHMA. constrained By that which mouldeth them. I am not known— Unborn and changeless—to the idle world.To him. my work. Albeit not one among them knoweth Me! By passion for the “pairs of opposites.”and fixed in faith. turned aside By this desire or that. whose knowledge. Lord of all the Gods. The lesser blessing—but ‘tis I who give! Yet soon is withered what small fruit they reap: Those men of little minds.
Boundless. the KARMA? Tell me what it is Thou namest ADHIBHUTA? What again Means ADHIDAIVA? Yea. Kunti’s Son! Because the Soul is fashioned to its like. And ADHIDAIVA. Holiest! Whoso hath known Me. in thy heart always! and fight! Thou too. Ancient of days. And ADHYATMAN is My Being’s name.HERE ENDETH CHAPTER VII. Lord of all the Gods. which passeth mortal knowing. And ADHIYAJNA. Causing all life to live. Have Me. In putting off his flesh. make me know How good men find thee in the hour of death? Krishna. Shalt surely come to Me! All come who cleave With never-wavering will of firmest faith. I am the ADHIBHUTA. at the hour of death. He goes to what he looked for. Owning none other Gods: all come to Me. OF THE BHAGAVAD-GITA. The ADHYATMAN? What. Lord of sage and singer. if he meditated otherwise At hour of death. Thou Best of All! Thy work. then. He that hath meditated Me alone. Entitled “Vijnanayog.--but unto every atom Bringer Of that which quickens it: whoso. Hath known My form. is KARMA called: And. Lord of Sacrifice. who begets. The Uttermost. Purusha. I BRAHMA am! the One Eternal GOD. Lord of Lives. when heart and mind are fixed on Me. thou embodied one! (for all the shrines Flame unto Me!) And. of all the Three Worlds Stay. Manifested in divided forms. I—speaking with thee in this body here— Am. and how it comes Thou canst be ADHIYAJNA in thy flesh? Slayer of Madhu! Further. in putting off the flesh.” CHAPTER VIII Arjuna.” Or “The Book of Religion by Discernment. The Soul of Souls! What goeth forth from Me. comes forth to Me. . Because I am PURUSHA. Who is that BRAHMA? What that Soul of Souls. I say. Enters into My Being—doubt thou not! But.
I. looks Ever to Me. and. the sacred syllable— Emblem of BRAHM—dies. Thither arriving none return. without its will. Arjuna!--even Brahma’s world— Roll back again from Death to Life’s unrest. innermost—abides Another Life. That way—the highest way—goes he who shuts The gates of all his senses. But take the way of utmost blessedness. if ye know The thousand Yugas making Brahma’s Night. which is the place of pain. there is a way to come Thither. If ye know Brahma’s Day Which is a thousand Yugas. They fall not—those Mahatmas—back to birth. at Brahma’s Dawn. But—higher. And. murmuring OM. Taste birth no more. none other Gods regarding. In happy peace that faithful one doth die. The place which they who read the Vedas name AKSHARAM.-In glad peace passeth to Purusha’s heaven. Dispersing darkness. Riseth. That Life Is Mine. deeper. Then know ye Day and Night as He doth know! When that vast Dawn doth break. all which is Fades back again to Him Who sent it forth. not like the life of sense. This endures When all created things have passed away: This is that Life named the Unmanifest. which ends. “Ultimate. locks desire Safe in his heart. th’ Invisible Is brought anew into the Visible. Escaping sight. and. meditating Me. O Kunti’s Son! that reach to Me. When that deep Night doth darken. attaining Me. steadfastly set. easily am I gained By such a Yogi. To life. Yea! this vast company of living things— Again and yet again produced—expires At Brahma’s Nightfall. Drawing still breath beneath calm brows unbending. For who. With mind set fast and trustful piety.” whereto have striven Saints and ascetics—their road is the same. to life new-born. The worlds. Prince! by faith Which wanders not. the PURUSHA. centres the vital airs Upon his parting thought. in the hour when life is ending.Seen my effulgence—which no eye hath seen— Than the sun’s burning gold more brightly glowing. and I am there! And. I Who spread The Universe around me—in Whom dwell . But they. The Infinite! the All! the Uttermost.--unto him hath been Right life! And. unchanging.
. Not I in them! Yet they are not contained.All living Things—may so be reached and seen! . Which but to know shall set thee free from ills. [FN#14] Richer than holy fruit on Vedas growing.-A royal lore! a Kingly mystery! Yea! for the soul such light as purgeth it From every sin. Those visible things! Receive and strive to embrace The mystery majestical! My Being— Creating all. . Such wisdom is! The Yogi. but are not space. this way knowing. reach not Me.” CHAPTER IX Krishna. Comes to the Utmost Perfect Peace at last. the Unmanifest! In Me are all existences contained. sustaining all—still dwells Outside of all! See! as the shoreless airs Move in the measureless space. . . but are not I. deepest-concealed. . . Easy to walk by. [And space were space without the moving airs]. Greater than gifts. better than prayer or fast. inexhaustible! They that receive not this. failing in faith To grasp the greater wisdom.--by Me. . . plain to see. . OF THE BHAGAVAD-GITA. Now will I open unto thee—whose heart Rejects not—that last lore. . . . . a light of holiness With inmost splendour shining. Entitled “Aksharaparabrahmayog. That farthest secret of My Heavens and Earths. . HERE ENDETH CHAPTER VIII. So all things are in Me. Destroyer of thy foes! They sink anew Into the realm of Flesh. where all things change! By Me the whole vast Universe of things Is spread abroad.” Or “The book of Religion by Devotion to the One Supreme God.
moulded by Me. senselessly they seek An evil way. The Witness. the Fountain and the Sea of Life Which sends. and Guard! The end of Learning! That which purifies In lustral water! I am OM! I am Rig-Veda. Heaven’s rain is mine to grant or to withhold. the Refuge-House. fed On vainest knowledge. Bring forth all that which is. though manifold! I am the Sacrifice! I am the Prayer! I am the Funeral-Cake set for the dead! I am the healing herb! I am the ghee. Other. vain deeds doing. The Friend. But My Mahatmas. with changeless faith Adoring Me. Sama-Veda. I make go forth The realms of visible things—without their will— All of them—by the power of Prakriti. and Free. Ancestor. those of noble soul Who tread the path celestial. . the Fosterer. and yet again. Yea. Mother. seek Me. keep their vows Of reverence and love. Yet these great makings. all Issue new-born from Me.At closing of each Kalpa. Th’ Eternal Source. nought Of My hid Nature. the way of brutes and fiends. The Way. Prince! involve Me not Enchain Me not! I sit apart from them. Living or lifeless! Thus the worlds go on! The minds untaught mistake Me. By Energy And help of Prakriti my outer Self. nowise attached! Thus doth the stuff of worlds. offering sacrifice of wakened hearts. and swallows up.--knowing Me the Source. the Lord. Indian Prince! All things which be back to My Being come: At the beginning of each Kalpa. Who. and that which burns! I am-of all this boundless UniverseThe Father. Vain hopes pursuing. worship Me With hearts unwandering. Have sense of one pervading Spirit’s stress. ruling all which lives. and those too adore. One Force in every place. the Abode. and Higher. Unendingly They glorify Me. The Mantra. Yajur-Ved. Whence endless harvests spring! Sun’s heat is mine.-Naught see they of My secret Presence. moving or still. Treasure of Worlds And Treasure-Chamber! Seed and Seed-Sower. veiled in form. the Judge. of Life. and the flame. Again.
when that prodigious joy is o’er. who vow Their souls to Pitris go to Pitris. minds To evil Bhuts given o’er sink to the Bhuts. Whoso shall offer Me in faith and love A leaf. Purge sins. and wage for merits given. giving gifts. Paradise spent. They are in Me. so they fall to earth again! Who follow gods go to their gods. and I in them! . So shalt thou free thyself From Karmabandh. Following the threefold Scripture and its writ. O Kunti’s Son! though they pray wrongfully. as Mine. lovingly made With pious will. with minds set fast.Death am I. I know not favour! What is made is Mine! But them that worship Me with love. And Life Invisible! Yea! those who learn The threefold Veds. Who seeketh such gaineth the fleeting pleasure Of joy which comes and goes! I grant them it! But to those blessed ones who worship Me. who drink the Soma-wine. their prayers arise to me. and of hearts which follow other gods In simple faith. Nay. That offering I accept. and Immortal Life I am. so shalt come Safe unto Me-when thou art quit of flesh— By faith and abdication joined to Me! I am alike for all! I know not hate. Yet they. the chain which holdeth men To good and evil issue. a flower. water poured forth. pay sacrifice—from Me they earn Passage to Swarga. They had their recompense! they stored their treasure. Come to the world of death and change once more. Turning not otherwhere. For I am the Receiver and the Lord Of every sacrifice. I bring assurance of full bliss beyond. I love. which these know not Rightfully. Arjuna! SAT and ASAT. Prince! Eating or sacrificing. a fruit. let it all be done For Me. Whate’er thou doest. And whoso loveth Me cometh to Me. Visible Life. Praying or fasting. where the meats divine Of great gods feed them in high Indra’s heaven.
and grief or joy of soul. and shame. those natures spring from Me! Intellect.[FN#17] and peace which is the same Whate’er befalls. endurance. and tears.” Or “The Book of Religion by the Kingly Knowledge and the Kingly Mystery. and sweet harmlessness. enlightenment. Who seeth Me. Thence did arise. Prince! If one of evil life turn in his thought Straightly to Me. he shall grow Righteous ere long. these too did I beget. HERE ENDS CHAPTER IX.--all cometh of My gift! The Seven Chief Saints.--all Plant foot upon the highest path. the races of mankind. Unto My rest your spirits shall be guided. by Me all creatures wrought. equability. Lord of the Worlds. The wise in spirit cleave to Me. and fearfulness. And wish to give. and mirth. who lovest Me alway— Not the great company of gods nor kingly Rishis know My Nature.” CHAPTER X Krishna. undying. he shall attain that peace Which changes not. and piety. Pitris. thou Long-Armed Lord! these latest words I say— Uttered to bring thee bliss and peace. Entitled “Rajavidyarajaguhyayog. into My Being brought. the Elders Four. all. . Wherefrom who comprehends My Reign of mystic Majesty— That truth of truths—is thenceforth linked in faultless faith to Me: Yea! knowing Me the source of all. Whatever Natures be To mortal men distributed. skill. Who have made the gods and Rishis long ago. and wise. Woman or man. And honour. And Rishis. by one thought of My mind.[FN#l6] Hear farther yet. the Lordly Manus set— Sharing My work—to rule the worlds. with faith-enlightened eyes. self-control. and will to help. He hath the high way chosen. Manus. unbegun.Nay. And birth and death. undivided. Thou Prince of India! Be certain none can perish. to fill this world. Truthfulness. OF THE BHAGAVAD-GITA. and fearlessness. sprung of the Vaisya caste Or lowly disregarded Sudra. trusting Me! O Pritha’s Son! whoso will turn to Me. how then The holy Brahmans and My Royal Saints? Ah! ye who into this ill world are come— Fleeting and false—set your faith fast on Me! Fix heart and thought on Me! Adore Me! Bring Offerings to Me! Make Me prostrations! Make Me your supremest joy! and. He only knoweth-only he is free of sin. Unborn. count him amidst the good. and thrift. Though they be born from the very womb of Sin.
whereby they draw to Me. within their darkened souls I dwell. by Me they live. From Me they come. By Night. those Lords of Light. their ignorance dispel. Hanta! So be it! Kuru Prince! I will to thee unfold Some portions of My Majesty. Supremest Mystery! To know Thee. breaths breathed to Me. thus loving ceaselessly— I give a mind of perfect mood. Vyasa Asita. Without beginning! Lord of Lords and Gods! Declared by all the Saints—by Narada. Divinest! Thou Thyself Thyself alone dost know. Pervading. amid the asterisms I glide. O Kesava! that neither gods nor men Nor demons comprehend Thy mystery Made manifest. Maritchi of the Maruts. Thy great appearances. all for love of them. Thou High Delight of Men! Never enough Can mine ears drink the Amrit[FN#18] of such words! Krishna. the dappled Moon! Of Vedas I am Sama-Ved. with bright rays of wisdom’s lamp. All-creating. Yes! Thou art Parabrahm! The High Abode! The Great Purification! Thou art God Eternal. Vittesh. Maker Supreme! Master of all the living! Lord of Gods! King of the Universe! To Thee alone Belongs to tell the heavenly excellence Of those perfections wherewith Thou dost fill These worlds of Thine. Of Yakshas and of Rakshasas. at My word they depart! Vishnu of the Adityas I am. of . By day I gleam. And. Clear and complete. And here Thyself declaring unto me! What Thou hast said now know I to be truth. The secrets of Thy Majesty and Might. and Pavaka Of Vasus. So have they happiness and peace. though I muse continually? Under what form of Thine unnumbered forms Mayst Thou be grasped? Ah! yet again recount. each to each. and of mountain-peaks Meru. of gods in Indra’s Heaven Vasava. Arjuna. the Kings of Storm and Blight. whose powers are manifold! I am the Spirit seated deep in every creature’s heart. Immanent! How shall I learn. and Devalas. ‘mid Warriors heavenly Skanda. of Rudras Sankara. Vrihaspati Know Me ‘mid planetary Powers. with pious thought and speech.Hearts fixed on Me. praising Me. First. the golden Sun of burning cloudless Noon. And unto these—thus serving well. And. Holy. of the faculties to living beings given The mind which apprehends and thinks.
of cows white Kamadhuk. Of Daityas dread Prahlada. Of months the Margasirsha. of metres Gayatri. deers. And Bhrigu of the holy Saints. Arjuna! nor end of telling come Of these My boundless glories. And bitter Death which seizes all. From whose great milky udder-teats all hearts’ desires are strook. of all the trees that grow. Narada. of birds the vast Garud. the seed of all which springs. Arjuna! Wisdom Supreme of what is wise. sage divine. None of them is in all the worlds. and of waterthings Varuna. abide its separate Lord! . who am all. whereof I teach thee some. and boundless Love. And “A” of written characters. of what metes days and years. and OM of sacred speech. For wheresoe’er is wondrous work. whatever beings be. of those that judge. Of prayers the prayer ye whisper. round Mandara entwined. And of the viewless virtues. The splendour of the splendid. Fame. ‘mid chiefs Rama with blood imbrued. and the greatness of the great. in dicer’s-play the conquering Double-Eight. of all the seasons three The flower-wreathed Spring. for thou art Mine! Of poets Usana. and the gem Of flying steeds. the potency of kings. Words on the uttering lips I am. Which brings to light all beings that are to be on earth. Aryam Of Pitris. and of this Pandu brood Thyself!--Yea. Victory I am. and joyous sudden Birth.[FN#19] of hills Himala’s snow. Makar ‘mid fishes of the sea. whose power sustaineth each. The lore of all the learned. Of weapons Heav’n’s hot thunderbolt. and Patience. Yea! First. and might. Uchchaisravas. and Constancy: Of Vedic hymns the Vrihatsam. Of the Devarshis. and eyesight of the eyes. Fortune. Of elephants Airavata.all the water-floods the Sea which drinketh each. and Craft. Dwandwa[FN#20] of knitted speech. and majesty. From Me hath all proceeded. and Chitrarath of them That sing in Heaven. Vasuki of the serpent-tribes. And Endless Life. from Amrit-wave which burst. Time’s self I am. and made it all. and Last. And Aswattha. and Ganges ‘mid the streams. The great unbroken silence in learning’s secret things. And Memory. and Action! and the goodness of the good. and. of saints Vyasa. the figtree. The whirlwind ‘mid the winds. still or stirred. but it exists by Me! Nor tongue can tell. and Kapila of Munis. of males the Best and First. and bears-The lordly-painted tiger. Living or lifeless. And Vasudev of Vrishni’s race. of woodlandbeasts-buffaloes. my Arjuna! thyself. on whose broad coils reclined Leans Vishnu. Yama the Judge I am. And thousand-fanged Ananta. Song am I. The policy of conquerors. Receive thou this aright! Yet how shouldst thou receive. O Prince! the vastness of this word? I. and Centre of all which is or seems I am.
to Pritha’s Son displaying All the splendour. And whence their death. . Rudras. as thy lips have said. O King! the God. Arjuna! ever mayest! Therefore I give thee sense divine.” CHAPTER XI Arjuna. Fain would I see. Countless mystic forms enfolding In one Form: supremely standing Countless radiant glories wearing.” Or “The Book of Religion by the Heavenly Perfections. See! in this face of mine. O Thou Divinest One! If this can be. As thou Thyself declar’st it. The unfolding of the Mystery Supreme Named Adhyatman. then.HERE ENDETH CHAPTER X. Out of countless mouths commanding. thou Son of Pritha! I manifest for thee Those hundred thousand thousand shapes that clothe my Mystery: I show thee all my semblances. Stood. with human eyes. Aswins. so saying. My changeful hues. for now I know— O Lotus-eyed![FN#21]--whence is the birth of men. comprehending which. Then. look! This is My glory. Lord of all prayers! Show me Thy very self. the Eternal God! Krishna. Sovereign Lord! The likeness of that glory of Thy Form Wholly revealed. Have other eyes. divine. VERY GOD! See Me! see what thou prayest! Thou canst not!--nor. rich. if I may bear the sight. OF THE BHAGAVAD-GITA. On GOD ETERNAL. infinite. and Maruts. Gaze. Out of countless eyes beholding. Indian Prince! revealed to none save thee. My darkness is dispelled. Entitled “Vibhuti Yog. wonder. Behold! this is the Universe!--Look! what is live and dead I gather all in one—in Me! Gaze. Vasus. Countless heavenly weapons bearing. my countless forms. unveiled to mortal sight! Sanjaya. see Wonders unnumbered. for my soul’s peace. This. have I heard from Thee. Make Thyself visible. and what the majesties Of Thine immortal rule. Adityas. dread Of His vast Almighty-head. Crowned with garlands of star-clusters. new light! And.
--on every side Perfect. sore amazed. o’erfilled. And in Thy countenance shine all the features Of Brahma. and the serpent races Ananta. And nowhere end of Thee. the Never-Ending Deity! But. and be Visible. Yea! mightiest Lord! I see Thy thousand thousand arms. And eyes. Vasuki. and blended In one Body—subtle. Nameless—th’ All-comprehending God of Gods. shedding Blinding brilliance. overspreading— Boundless. Then might be that Holy One’s Majesty and radiance dreamed of! So did Pandu’s Son behold All this universe enfold All its huge diversity Into one vast shape. sitting lone Upon His lotus-throne. and hell In Thy Divine form dwell. Thrilled. Yea! I have seen! I see! Lord! all is wrapped in Thee! The gods are in Thy glorious frame! the creatures Of earth. And clasped his palms. and breasts. So He showed! If there should rise Suddenly within the skies Sunburst of a thousand suns Flooding earth with beams undeemed-of. and cried. beautiful—all spaces With His all-regarding faces. diversified. Breathing from His perfect Presence Breaths of every subtle essence Of all heavenly odours. Nowhere a centre! Shifts— Wherever soul’s gaze lifts— . and faces. splendid. and dazed. nowhere beginning.Robed in garb of woven lustres. dazzled. and bowed his head. Arjuna knelt. Of saints and sages. and viewed. and heaven. and said: Arjuna.
flashing. heaven. Ah. past thought. and bow Body. Thee. The Treasure-Palace wrought To hold the wealth of the worlds. And. all-wielding. Thee!--Where Thou art not. glowing. and void place From pole to pole of the Blue. and brow. whispering worship. Look I whichever way. and breast. made known. Unending: Unchanging and Unblending! With might and majesty. the discus. and hell With brilliance blazing. Awful One! At sight of Thee. The Three Worlds quake. and all-winning! Infinite King! I see The anadem on Thee. They fold their palms. the shell. the Undivided. Marvellous Form! is nowhere found! O Mystic. Thy visage. the lower gods draw nigh Thee. turning Darkness to dazzling day. Doth to warm life surprise Thy Universe. Lighting earth. Lord! I worship Thee. The Uttermost of thought.Thy central Self. The Fount whence Life’s stream draws All waters of all rivers of all being: The One Unborn. O Holy. past seeing! Silver of moon and gold Of sun are glories rolled From Thy great eyes. beaming tender Throughout the stars and skies. Hath Thee in every spot. see Thee burning In beams insufferable. The worlds are filled with wonder Of Thy perfections! Space Star-sprinkled. the Shield provided To shelter Virtue’s laws. laud and magnify Thee! Rishis and Siddhas cry “Hail! Highest Majesty!” . The club. from bound to bound.
--seeing Thee with form stupendous. Unnumbered eyes. Ushmapas. lit with sun and star. and those great Twins The heavenly. Sounding the praise of Thee. Tushes of terror. rebuked is mind’s desire! When I behold Thee so. Siddhas. and revere In sudden-stricken fear. O Eyes of God! O Head! My strength of soul is fled. Quake. With faces manifold. who ride the storms. members tremendous. and lips lighted by fire Fierce as those flames which shall Consume. whatever be In all Thy worlds. to witness so much splendour! I mark Thee strike the skies With front. and north and south. rainbow-painted. Rakshasas. as I quake. east. and Asuras. Lord of Lords! I see. Earth. With awful brows a-glow. glittering. Gone is heart’s force. Vasus and Sadhyas. and thy mouth Opened. Maruts. While countless companies take up the story. Viswas. Aswins. vast arms. mouths wrathful and tender. Heaven! Ah me! I see no Earth and Heaven! Thee. Rudras. Yea! the Worlds.-The Three wide Worlds before Thee Adore. Feet planted near and far. west. at close of all. Th’ Adityas’ shining forms. Thee only-only Thee! Now let Thy mercy unto me be given. Gandharvas. in wondrous wise Huge. fair. and orbs which see All things. as I adore Thee. Flanks. With burning glance. With eyes which all behold. Thou Refuge of the World! .From sage and singer breaks the hymn of glory In dulcet harmony.[FN#22]-These see Thee.
feasting thus upon Thy dead? Who? awful Deity! I bow myself to Thee. Bhishma. Great Dhritarashtra’s sons. caught and crushed! The Kings and Chiefs drawn in. With flaming jaws Thou tak’st. which go In headlong furious flow Straight to the gulfing deeps of th’ unfilled ocean. lurid dread! Ah. That gaping gorge within. Drona. One with another. with helpless motion! Like moths which in the night Flutter towards a light. and Karna. burning. Filling life full. I see our noblest ones. Ground into dust and death! Like streams down-driven With helpless haste. with deadly. The best of both these armies torn and riven! Between Thy jaws they lie Mangled full bloodily. dazzled. Drawn to their fiery doom. that hast fashioned men. all those multitudes. in unending streams. Devourest them again. from birth To death. flying and dying. borne along Ceaselessly. and lips white-tushed. Blind. wild flying! Thou.Lo! to the cavern hurled Of Thy wide-opened throat. alike! The creatures whom Thou mak’st. So to that flaming cave Those heroes great and brave Pour. Namostu Te. Lapping them up! Lord God! Thy terrors strike From end to end of earth. great and small. So to their death still throng. Vishnu! make me know Why is Thy visage so? Who art Thou. Devavara! Prasid![FN#23] O Mightiest Lord! rehearse Why hast Thou face so fierce? .
Mightiest? Thou Brahm. at Drona! at Bhishma strike! deal death On Karna. and—praying Grace of Krishna—stood there. Life’s Dwelling-place and Rest! Thou. in dread At sight of Thee. of all souls the Soul! The Comprehending Whole! Of being formed.Whence doth this aspect horrible proceed? Krishna. Lord of Might! The whole world hath delight In Thy surpassing power. are sped To all four quarters. By Me they fall—not thee! the stroke of death is dealt them now. and formless being the Framer. There stands not one shall leave alive the battlefield! Dismayed No longer be! Arise! obtain renown! destroy thy foes! Fight for the kingdom waiting thee when thou hast vanquished those. How should they not proclaim Thy Majesties. victor upon this plain! Sanjaya. The Slayer Time. These words. Excepting thee. Ancient of Days. Jyadratha. saying. strong-armed Prince. and the company Of Siddhas sound Thy name. O Utmost One! O Lord! Older than eld. Even as they show thus gallantly. My instrument art thou! Strike. Divinest. Thou seest Me as Time who kills. Worthily. and art . Who stored The worlds with wealth of life! O Treasure-Claimer. Hearing mighty Keshav’s word. of all these hosts of hostile chiefs arrayed. The Rakshasas. and thou must live. stay all their warlike breath! ‘Tis I who bid them perish! Thou wilt but slay the slain. than Brahma greater! Thou Infinite Creator! Thou God of gods. come hither to consume. timorously spoken: Arjuna. Time who brings all to doom. Who wottest all. Fight! they must fall. With bowed brow and accents broken. obeying Thee. Tremblingly that helmed Lord Clasped his lifted palms.
Moon and starlight Are Thine! Prajapati Art Thou. in my heedlessness. Uttered when Thou dost go. Did. for all from Thee have risen Numberless now I see The aspects are of Thee! Vayu[FN#24] Thou art. now I know. Did call Thee “Krishna. more . The first of mortal men. Speaking with easy speech. For Thou art All! Yea. and He who keeps the prison Of Narak. Do Thee. cried on every side. most Holy! wrong. or in jest. Yama dark. above. Namostu! God adored! Namostu! Nameless Lord! Hail to Thee! Praise to Thee! Thou One in all. and ‘tis to Thee They knelt in worshipping the old world’s far light. Of all above. below.--to Thee Namo. Varuna’s waves are Thy waves. Again. Or when we lay at rest. straying in the grove. or in the throng.” “Prince. the awe of Thee. or in my love. And Agni’s shining spark. Father of all below. The might. Alone. Namaste.” nor comprehend Thy hidden majesty. of all the worlds within Guru of Gurus. Cried here. Thou! Ah! if in anger now Thou shouldst remember I did think Thee Friend.Wisdom Thyself! O Part In all. Uttered where Thou dost come! Namo! we call. On journey. Sitting at council. Thou God! again A thousand thousand times be magnified! Honour and worship be— Glory and praise. and All. As men use each to each. Be Thy grace granted for that witless sin! For Thou art.
which earthly eyes may bear! Be merciful. As friend to friend. nor penance long. For not by Vedas cometh this. turn Thy face In gentleness on me! Good is it I did see This unknown marvel of Thy Form! But fear Mingles with joy! Retake. nor prayers. as one Who loveth to his lover. Let me regard Thee. and serve. because thine eyes have seen My terror with My glory. Arjuna! because I loved thee well. nor sacrifice. Yea! thou hast seen. Thou of the thousand arms and countless eyes! This frightened heart is fain To see restored again My Charioteer. That mortal eyes should bear to view the Immortal Soul unclad. nor chaunted psalms. manifold. Which none save thou in all the years had favour to behold. majestic. revealed by mystic spell. nor alms. As I before have been So will I be again for thee. Dear Lord! for pity’s sake Thine earthly shape. As father to a son. and vast. I praise. and wonderful. in Krishna’s kind disguise. with body bent And reverent intent. Prince of the Kurus! This was kept for thee alone! Be glad! Let no more trouble shake thy heart. With mace and anadem. The secret countenance of Me. Shining. and show The visage that I know. asking grace.To reverence and adore Than all which is adorable and high! How. and seek Thee. Nor works well-done. arrayed With disc and forehead-gem. Krishna. . with lightened heart behold! Once more I am thy Krishna. in the wide worlds three Should any equal be? Should any other share Thy Majesty? Therefore. the form thou knew’st of old! Sanjaya. Thou that sustainest all things! Undismayed Let me once more behold The form I loved of old. as of yore.
hard . Far. Which take the better way of faith and life? Krishna. These blessed souls come unto Me. The Invisible. HERE ENDETH CHAPTER XI. Yea! it was wonderful and terrible To view me as thou didst. nor with prayer Shall any so behold. Uttermost. Peace and joy it did restore When the Prince beheld once more Mighty BRAHMA’s form and face Clothed in Krishna’s gentle grace. dear Prince! The gods Dread and desire continually to view! Yet not by Vedas. Indian Prince! Who doeth all for Me. Janardana! This friendly human frame. All-pervading. And uttermost surrender am I known And seen. Highest. Arjuna. perfect faith. my heart beats still again! Krishna. Of one set mind to all. Sure— Who thus adore Me.” Or “The Book of the Manifesting of the One and Manifold. and entered into. But who serve— Worshipping Me The One. Those hold I very holy. Unbodied. mastering their sense.” CHAPTER XII Arjuna. Yet. and straight did take Back again the semblance dear Of the well-loved charioteer. Arjuna! unto Me doth wend. loveth all Which I have made. Lord! of the men who serve Thee—true in heart— As God revealed. Unthinkable. Nor penance. in full devotion fixed. The Unrevealed. Worshipping Thee Unrevealed. adoreth always. my mind can think Calm thoughts once more.These words to Arjuna spake Vasudev. Whoever serve Me—as I show Myself— Constantly true. nor gift-giving. glad in all good. Entitled “Viswarupadarsanam. for Love’s sole end That man. nor from sacrifice. as thou hast seen! Only by fullest service. and of the men who serve. who findeth Me In all. Unnamed. Now that I see come back. OF THE BHAGAVAD-GITA. and Me.
or fear. night and day Musing on Me—him will I swiftly lift Forth from life’s ocean of distress and death. Work for Me. unchangeable By good or ill. firm In faith. heart and soul. rejoices not. Renouncing hope for Me. bring Me thy failure! find Refuge in Me! let fruits of labour go. Despair not! give Me lower service! seek To reach Me. That man I love! Who. unperplexed. Compassionate. dwelling quieteyed. fixed in faith on Me. well-balanced. if thou canst not worship steadfastly. toil in works pleasing to Me! For he that laboureth right for love of Me Shall finally attain! But. yet worship better is Than knowing. So shalt thou come. if thou be’st weak to set Body and soul upon Me constantly. serene. clear of wrath. But if thy thought Droops from such height. letting good or evil hap Light when it will. Dotes upon none. grief.The travail is for such as bend their minds To reach th’ Unmanifest That viewless path Shall scarce be trod by man bearing the flesh! But whereso any doeth all his deeds Renouncing self for Me. Cling thou to Me! Clasp Me with heart and mind! so shalt thou dwell Surely with Me on high. living himself benign. Seeking Me. for. That man I love! Who. from arrogance exempt. vowed unto Me. Whose soul clings fast to Me.[FN#25] Stainless. true to his word. mastering himself. worshipping with steadfast will. and when it will depart. And. fixed To serve only the Highest. contented. Working with Me. Living too high for gladness. That man I love! Who. Exempt from love of self. with lowliest heart. patient. yet from all works detached. And grieves not. though to know is more Than diligence. if in this Thy faint heart fails.-That man I love! Who troubleth not his kind. Near to renunciation—very near— Dwelleth Eternal Peace! Who hateth nought Of all which lives. full of Me. scorns none. unto friend and foe . And is not troubled by them. and renouncing better still.
And that which views and knows it is the Soul. Contempt of sense-delights. Yea! Son of Kunti! for this flesh ye see Is Kshetra. with equal mind Bears shame and glory. control of self. . What qualities it hath. . reverence for the wise. which sees. .Keeping an equal heart. And what it is we know-or think to know. .” Or”The Book of the Religion of Faith. with an equal peace Takes heat and cold. pleasure and pain. Perception of the certitude of ill . self-sacrifice. and Soul beyond. hears praise or calumny In passionless restraint. O gracious Kesava![FN#26] Of Life which seems. Entitled “Bhaktiyog. and the faculty That wotteth it. unmoved by each. Purity. the conscious life. and harmlessness. . the nine strange gates Of the body. and persistency of being. pleasure and pain. steadfast in Me. constancy. . that “field” of life. and the five domains of sense. Now would I hear. In all “fields.” CHAPTER XIII Arjuna. . abides Quit of desires. Desire. Patience and honour.[FN#28] The elements. Linked by no ties to earth. and thought Deep-woven. dislike. . . The unseen vital force. Drinking the blessed Amrit of my Being! HERE ENDETH CHAPTER XII. I am what surveys! Only that knowledge knows which knows the known By the knower![FN#27] What it is. the mind. These all are wrought on Matter by the Soul! Humbleness. That man I love! But most of all I love Those happy ones to whom ‘tis life to live In single fervid faith and love unseeing. and whence it is. OF THE BHAGAVAD-GITA. And why it changeth. the mightiness of this. And how it wotteth-hear these things from Me! .” thou Indian prince! I am Kshetrajna. . truthfulness. Kshetrajna. . is the field where Life disports. Krishna.
with a will set firm To worship Me—Me only! ceasing not.--this is true Wisdom. and yet subsisting still In all which lives. not discerned For subtlety of instant presence. An ever-tranquil heart in fortunes good And fortunes evil. yet. not Asat. nor the Unformed. and Guide of all the wise. Perceiveth this. sustaining all. Yet dwells He unattached: of forms and modes Master. and the lore To comprehend. The Truth of HIM. adoring Me.In birth.-Whose hands are everywhere. and shunning noise Of foolish crowds. Children. Yet beyond sense He is. lightly holding unto home. yet still moving. yet both. Planted in every heart. yet neither form nor mode hath He. yet measurelessly far! Not manifold. Wisdom He is And Wisdom’s way. Glorified in the senses He hath given. in the heart of the Dark Shining eternally. Whoso. disease. and all His faces everywhere Enlightening and encompassing His worlds. Detachment. at the End of Times. endeavours resolute To reach perception of the Utmost Soul. and wife. shall surely come to Me! Know thou that Nature and the Spirit both . and everywhere His eyes Beholding. He is within all beings—and without— Motionless. age. suffering. Not Form. and sin. And grace to understand what gain it were So to attain. and everywhere Planted His feet. not Sat. to each. and more. The Uncreated. the All. Loving all solitudes. So have I told Of Life’s stuff. Prince! And what is otherwise is ignorance! Now will I speak of knowledge best to knowThat Truth which giveth man Amrit to drink. for ever to be known As the Sustainer. and His ears in every place Hearing. death. the Para-Brahm. The Light of Lights He is. and the moulding.. and all that bindeth men. He maketh all to end—and re-creates. close To all.
Guarding. yet not the agent. and blend again to One: Then hath he BRAHMA. But Spirit doth inform it. who sees that works Are Nature’s wont. entereth into bond With qualities by Nature framed. Living Life. yea! and those—to teaching true— Overpass Death! Wherever. the Soul Supreme. what is there hath grown By bond of Matter and of Spirit: Know He sees indeed who sees in all alike The living. he sees. One Soul with Me. Some few there be By meditation find the Soul in Self Self-schooled. working through the qualities With Nature’s modes. indeed. Seeing. Indian Prince! Life is—of moving things. and. one. or things unmoved. thus Married to matter. That Nature puts to work the acting frame. Whoso thus knows himself. Spirit supreme. Imperishable amid the Perishing: For. lordly Soul. Spirit. the light hath come for him! Whatever flesh he bears. and cleave to it Worshipping.[FN#29] Yet is this Yea! in its bodily prison!--Spirit pure. Ultimate. and seize. he attains! . In every form. for Soul to practise by Acting. Plant or still seed—know. and so cause Feeling of pain and pleasure. in every place. governing. never again Shall he take on its load.Have no beginning! Know that qualities And changes of them are by Nature wrought. hear of light From other lips. linked To moulded matter. sees the mass Of separate living things—each of its kind— Issue from One. surveying. some by works: Some. Doth no more wrongfulness unto himself. breeds the birth again In good or evil yonis. the same. never so attaining. possessing. and knows his soul PURUSHA. whoso thus beholds. But goes the highest road which brings to bliss. and some by long philosophy And holy life reach thither. Lord and Master still PURUSHA.
O Prince! That Ultimate, High Spirit, Uncreate, Unqualified, even when it entereth flesh Taketh no stain of acts, worketh in nought! Like to th” ethereal air, pervading all, Which, for sheer subtlety, avoideth taint, The subtle Soul sits everywhere, unstained: Like to the light of the all-piercing sun [Which is not changed by aught it shines upon,] The Soul’s light shineth pure in every place; And they who, by such eye of wisdom, see How Matter, and what deals with it, divide; And how the Spirit and the flesh have strife, Those wise ones go the way which leads to Life! HERE ENDS CHAPTER XIII. OF THE BHAGAVAD-GITA, Entitled “Kshetrakshetrajnavibhagayog,” Or “The Book of Religion by Separation of Matter and Spirit.” CHAPTER XIV Krishna. Yet farther will I open unto thee This wisdom of all wisdoms, uttermost, The which possessing, all My saints have passed To perfectness. On such high verities Reliant, rising into fellowship With Me, they are not born again at birth Of Kalpas, nor at Pralyas suffer change! This Universe the womb is where I plant Seed of all lives! Thence, Prince of India, comes Birth to all beings! Whoso, Kunti’s Son! Mothers each mortal form, Brahma conceives, And I am He that fathers, sending seed! Sattwan, Rajas, and Tamas, so are named The qualities of Nature, “Soothfastness,” “Passion,” and “Ignorance.” These three bind down The changeless Spirit in the changeful flesh. Whereof sweet “Soothfastness,” by purity Living unsullied and enlightened, binds The sinless Soul to happiness and truth; And Passion, being kin to appetite, And breeding impulse and propensity, Binds the embodied Soul, O Kunti’s Son! By tie of works. But Ignorance, begot Of Darkness, blinding mortal men, binds down Their souls to stupor, sloth, and drowsiness. Yea, Prince of India! Soothfastness binds souls In pleasant wise to flesh; and
Passion binds By toilsome strain; but Ignorance, which blots The beams of wisdom, binds the soul to sloth. Passion and Ignorance, once overcome, Leave Soothfastness, O Bharata! Where this With Ignorance are absent, Passion rules; And Ignorance in hearts not good nor quick. When at all gateways of the Body shines The Lamp of Knowledge, then may one see well Soothfastness settled in that city reigns; Where longing is, and ardour, and unrest, Impulse to strive and gain, and avarice, Those spring from Passion—Prince!--engrained; and where Darkness and dulness, sloth and stupor are, ‘Tis Ignorance hath caused them, Kuru Chief! Moreover, when a soul departeth, fixed In Soothfastness, it goeth to the place— Perfect and pure—of those that know all Truth. If it departeth in set habitude Of Impulse, it shall pass into the world Of spirits tied to works; and, if it dies In hardened Ignorance, that blinded soul Is born anew in some unlighted womb. The fruit of Soothfastness is true and sweet; The fruit of lusts is pain and toil; the fruit Of Ignorance is deeper darkness. Yea! For Light brings light, and Passion ache to have; And gloom, bewilderments, and ignorance Grow forth from Ignorance. Those of the first Rise ever higher; those of the second mode Take a mid place; the darkened souls sink back To lower deeps, loaded with witlessness! When, watching life, the living man perceives The only actors are the Qualities, And knows what rules beyond the Qualities, Then is he come nigh unto Me! The Soul, Thus passing forth from the Three Qualities— Whereby arise all bodies—overcomes Birth, Death, Sorrow, and Age; and drinketh deep The undying wine of Amrit. Arjuna. Oh, my Lord! Which be the signs to know him that hath gone Past the Three Modes? How liveth he? What way Leadeth him safe beyond the threefold Modes? Krishna. He who with equanimity surveys Lustre of goodness, strife of passion, sloth Of ignorance, not angry if they are, Not wishful when they are not: he who sits A sojourner and stranger in their midst Unruffled, standing off, saying—serene—
When troubles break, “These be the Qualities!” He unto whom—self-centred—grief and joy Sound as one word; to whose deep-seeing eyes The clod, the marble, and the gold are one; Whose equal heart holds the same gentleness For lovely and unlovely things, firm-set, Well-pleased in praise and dispraise; satisfied With honour or dishonour; unto friends And unto foes alike in tolerance; Detached from undertakings,--he is named Surmounter of the Qualities! And such— With single, fervent faith adoring Me, Passing beyond the Qualities, conforms To Brahma, and attains Me! For I am That whereof Brahma is the likeness! Mine The Amrit is; and Immortality Is mine; and mine perfect Felicity! HERE ENDS CHAPTER XIV. OF THE BHAGAVAD-GITA Entitled “Gunatrayavibhagayog,” Or “The Book of Religion by Separation from the Qualities.” CHAPTER XV Krishna. Men call the Aswattha,--the Banyan-tree,-Which hath its boughs beneath, its roots above,-The ever-holy tree. Yea! for its leaves Are green and waving hymns which whisper Truth! Who knows the Aswattha, knows Veds, and all. Its branches shoot to heaven and sink to earth,[FN#30] Even as the deeds of men, which take their birth From qualities: its silver sprays and blooms, And all the eager verdure of its girth, Leap to quick life at kiss of sun and air, As men’s lives quicken to the temptings fair Of wooing sense: its hanging rootlets seek The soil beneath, helping to hold it there, As actions wrought amid this world of men Bind them by ever-tightening bonds again. If ye knew well the teaching of the Tree, What its shape saith; and whence it springs; and, then How it must end, and all the ills of it, The axe of sharp Detachment ye would whet,
one. and pass. leaf. The unenlightened ones Mark not that Spirit when he goes or comes. they perceive That Spirit in themselves. and fire fierce loveliness.-Which they who reach shall have no day to die. these it takes.-Senses and intellect. it draweth to itself From Being’s storehouse. and a sentient mind. Becoming vital warmth. With outward and with inward breath.--which containeth all. I penetrate the clay. And. They have attained My rest. Holy souls see Which strive thereto. . Nor fade away. the Highest. Even though they strive. Ear and Eye. I mean. respiring frames.--Him.--linking itself To sense-things so. in this world of manifested life. as the wind gathers scents. and lay This Aswattha of sense-life low. having hearts Unkindled. The undying Spirit. Nor when he takes his pleasure in the form. from Me Shineth the gathered glory of the suns Which lighten all the world: from Me the moons Draw silvery beams.-Yea. or quitting it. too. for to Him come they From passion and from dreams who break away. Who part the bonds constraining them to flesh. to feed The body by all meats. life’s Utmost boon! When. Who made the mystery Of old Creation. but foolish ones. setting forth from Me. Conjoined with qualities. What blast of tempest tears them. nor Noon— Which they who once behold return no more.[FN#31] For in this world Being is twofold: the Divided. Blowing above the flower-beds.--not Dusk. FATHER and FIRST.--to set New growths upspringing to that happier sky. I glide into the plant— Root. but those see plain Who have the eyes to see. bough and stem To the eternal world pass such as these! Another Sun gleams there! another Moon! Another Light. ill-informed! Know. The Sovereign Soul Thus entering the flesh. and lend all shapes Their living force. and bloom—to make the woodlands green With springing sap. and Smelling. nor fall—to Him.And cleave the clinging snaky roots. I glow in glad. nor Dawn. Gathers these up. Taketh on form. Enlightened. discern not. And Touch and Taste. worshipping alway— No longer grow at mercy of what breeze Of summer pleasure stirs the sleeping trees.
-These be the signs. Quickness to anger.” Or “The Book of Religion by attaining the Supreme. whose Name is LORD. O Indian Prince! of him whose feet are set On that fair path which leads to heavenly birth! Deceitfulness. and purity. and pride. knoweth all. with manhood nobly mixed. and tenderness Towards all that suffer. Fluttered by no desires. and arrogance.” Higher still is He. Be thou joyous. The Eternal. So should’st thou know! The birth with Asuras Brings into bondage. opened hand And governed appetites. An unrevengeful spirit.” That which sits apart. Fearlessness. secret Mystery Declared to thee! Who comprehendeth this Hath wisdom! He is quit of works in bliss! HERE ENDS CHAPTER XV. fortitude. My Prince! of him whose birth Is fated for the regions of the vile. First! Who fills all worlds. a contented heart. a bearing mild. and charity Which spieth no man’s faults.--such be the signs. Sovereign. All things that live Are “the Divided. Life Supreme. harsh and evil speech. Now is the sacred. .The Undivided. never given To rate itself too high. Truthfulness. Who knows Me thus. And—dwelling thus beyond Divided Being and Undivided—I Am called of men and Vedas. Modest. singleness of soul. the will Always to strive for wisdom. humbleness. “The Undivided. With mind unclouded. And ignorance. a mind That lightly letteth go what others prize. and grave. The PURUSHOTTAMA. slowness unto wrath. Sustaining them. And love of lonely study. and piety.” CHAPTER XVI Krishna. to its own darkness blind.[FN#32] The Heavenly Birth brings to deliverance. dear Prince! And with his whole soul ever worshippeth Me. The Highest. OF THE BHAGAVAD-GITA Entitled “Purushottamapraptiyog. With patience. And equanimity. Prince! Whose lot is set apart for heavenly Birth. holding all. one. heed to injure nought which lives. Uprightness.
whence—birth by birth— . Thus vowed To self-hood. and yet again. These My blasphemers. And this is ours! and th’ other shall be ours! To-day we slew a foe. insolence. feasting. to-day. Into some devilish womb. How Souls go forth from Me. to glut hot appetites. But is none other than a House of Lust. Stubborn and proud. dead-drunken with the wine Of wealth. “we gained! thereby Such and such wish of heart shall have its fill. “This world Hath not a Law. the Unheavenly. Surrendered to desires insatiable. Conceited. nor Order. evil. Full of deceitfulness. tricked. and reckless. force. lost in lusts— Down to foul Naraka. Hateful and hating. folly. this thing thinking. Nor purity. all those ruined ones— Of little wit. and be merry!” So they speak Darkened by ignorance. Slaves to their passion and their wrath. nor rule of Life. my foemen are. whom I cast down Again. they buy Wealth with base deeds. they trust this lie As it were true—this lie which leads to death— Finding in Pleasure all the good which is. dark-minded—give themselves To evil deeds. then. in the forms they wear And in the forms they breed. and so they fall— Tossed to and fro with projects. and great? Rich are we. Hear from me now of the Unheavenly! They comprehend not. for sacrifice! Cast largesse. Divine and Undivine. And crying “Here it finisheth!” Ensnared In nooses of a hundred idle hopes. and we will slay Our other enemy to-morrow! Look! Are we not lords? Make we not goodly cheer? Is not our fortune famous. the curses of their kind. in perfect purposing. fond. at end of lives. Lowest and least of men. and bound In net of black delusion. brave. cruel.” And. nor how they come Back unto Me: nor is there Truth in these. In blindness cleaving to their errors. caught Into the sinful course.” So say they: “nor hath risen up by Cause Following on Cause. being not made In piety of ancient faith.Two stamps there are marked on all living men. all their offerings Have but a show of reverence. and pride. vile. “Thus much. proudly born! What other men Live like to us? Kill. I spake to thee By what marks thou shouldst know the Heavenly Man. wrath.” they say. nor a Lord.
meet for the lips Of such as love the “Darkness. . cordial. all beguiled. [Such as the shrine. sweet Prince! Tread they that Nether Road. and grief. what shall be the state of those. wendeth straight To find his peace. .” Or “passion-stained. . . .] The “soothfast” souls adore true gods. and joy to live. . And there is foul food—kept from over-night.” . present within the flesh!) Know them to devils devoted. And therefore craved by too strong appetite. which the foul will eat. The “Soothfast” meat. the door Of Avarice. Rajas. the souls Obeying Rajas worship Rakshasas[FN#34] Or Yakshas. proud hypocrisies— Those men. and health.[FN#36] Savourless. not to Heaven! For like as foods are threefold for mankind In nourishing.” as thou shalt hear! The faith of each believer. Tamas? Say! Krishna. .[FN#33] HERE ENDETH CHAPTER XVI. and almsgiving! Hear this of Me! there is a food which brings Force.” or “dark. Being well-seasoned. yet keep faith at heart And worship.[FN#35] Yea. and burning blood. wild. violent.-The door of Lust. Torturing—the witless ones—My elements Shut in fair company within their flesh. so is the votary. . .” Or “The Book of the Separateness of the Divine and Undivine. and the men of Darkness pray To Pretas and to Bhutas. whereby men to ruin pass. And there be foods which bring Aches and unrests. heating. and sharp. Me myself. comforting. (Nay. Threefold the faith is of mankind and springs From those three qualities. not enjoined By rightful rule—penance which hath its root In self-sufficient. strength. . If men forsake the holy ordinance.--becoming “true. the door of Wrath. Being too biting. Let a man shun those three! He who shall turn aside from entering All those three gates of Narak. Heedless of Shastras. And.The devilish wombs re-spawn them. The Doors of Hell Are threefold. and those Who practise bitter penance. filthy. passion-beset. and comes to Swarga’s gate. abstinence. . substance. OF THE BHAGAVAD-GITA. Entitled “Daivasarasaupadwibhagayog. . till they find and worship Me.” CHAPTER XVII Arjuna. A feast of rottenness. that one To what he worships lives assimilate. Great Krishna! Sattwan. Where thou shalt see a worshipper. so is there threefold way Of worship. salt. Indian Prince! Conforms itself to what he truly is.
Thus with rites. with no due dole Of food-giving. Is perfect work of Sattwan. and the Brahmacharya’s vow. words ever true. fair and profitable. rash and vain.-A sacrifice not for rewardment made. nor largesse to the priests. Rectitude. . Such—say I—is of Rajas. Offered for good repute. But sacrifice for gain. worship.-These make a true religiousness of Act. Serenity of soul. Is gift of Sattwan. dark and ill. Teachers. at evil time. The gift churlishly flung. and those ye say In murmured reading of a Sacred Writ. Purity. where to receive Is hoped again. The gift selfishly given. made in due place. This is of Rajas. Words causing no man woe. and true religiousness of Mind. Gentle and pleasing words. call it vile. In wrongful place. when one shall say “Now must I gladly give!” when he who takes Can render nothing back. Or where the gift is proffered with a grudge. Such threefold faith. Religion shown in act of proud display To win good entertainment. when he who vows Sayeth. with heart devout. Offered in rightful wise. with no hope of gain. with no accompaniment Of hallowed hymn. fame. constant stress To sanctify the Nature. lowly reverence Of Twice-borns. Due time. to base recipient. And not to injure any helpless thing. stained with impulse. be sure that this. by hearts devote. and to a meet recipient. or when some end is sought. “This I should do!” Is “Soothfast” rite. Religion followed by a witless will To torture self.” And a sacrifice Offered against the laws.-These make the true religiousness of Speech.--these things make Good rite. true belief. Sway of the silent Spirit. In faithless celebration. Elders. The gift lovingly given. in highest piety Kept. With stamp of “passion. ill. The deed of “Darkness!”—lost! Worship of gods Meriting worship. or come at power to hurt Another. benignity.--‘tis of Tamas. O Best of Bharatas! is Rajas-rite.
and enunciation. Lord! Tyaga. There be among the saints some who have held All action sinful. Penance. The poets rightly teach that Sannyas Is the foregoing of all acts which spring Out of desire. and all fruit Produced by works. “Tis right to do!” that is “true “ act And abstinence! Who doeth duties so. and to be renounced. Saying. Unvexed if his work fail. Thou Glorious One! The very truth—Heart’s Lord!--of Sannyas.Made in disdain or harsh unkindliness.” and Delusion teacheth it. not to be stayed. Nay. it doth not bless![FN#37] HERE ENDETH CHAPTER XVII. This is My judgment. “Nay! the goodly acts— As worship.” CHAPTER XVIII Arjuna. OF THE BHAGAVAD-GITA. And some who answer. in his own heart justified. Abstaining from a work grievous to flesh. being in the body. While yet one doeth it full faithfully. for all those three Are purifying waters for true souls! Yet must be practised even those high works In yielding up attachment. Quit of debates and doubts. if it succeed Unflattered. none may stand . his is “true” act: For. and their wisest say Tyaga is renouncing fruit of acts. Abstention. alms—must be performed!” Hear now My sentence. dark. Prince! This My insuperable and fixed decree! Abstaining from a work by right prescribed Never is meet! So to abstain doth spring From “Darkness.” Or “The Book of Religion by the Threefold Kinds of Faith. Alms. When one saith “’Tisunpleasing!” this is null! Such an one acts from “passion. penance. Abstaining from rewardment in the work. Arjun! Abstaining from attachment to the work. Entitled “Sraddhatrayavibhagayog.” nought of gain Wins his Renunciation! But. Best of Bharatas! ‘Tis well set forth. to be gladly done. O Chaser of thy Foes! Renunciation is of threefold form. Is gift of Tamas. And Worship. and what separates these twain! Krishna. Fain would I better know.
One Inseparable. And. Long-armed Lord! the makings five Which go to every act. are differenced By three dividing qualities. seeking no Cause. not for love. and the mind which knows. and the instrument. And in the Separate. in Sankhya taught As necessary. The act. What work soever any mortal doth Of body. There is false Knowledge: that which blindly clings To one as if ‘twere all. he is not bound thereby! Knowledge. There is “true” Knowledge. But knowledge. the various instruments. These make the threefold total of the deed. Fourth.” There is “right” Action: that which being enjoined— Is wrought without attachment. and “dark. and mixed of both. Deprived of light. narrow. These make the threefold starting-ground of act. with all-absorbing stress: This is of Rajas—passionate and vain. and dull. evil or good. Hear now Which be the qualities dividing them. But no fruit is at all where no work was. heedless if he harm . Is threefold for all men. I say. nor hate. being bid to slay. First the force.--Desirable. heedless of the hurt Or wrong for others. the especial effort. knoweth nought at all And seeth nought. seeth himself As the sole actor. fifth. Hear from me.Wholly aloof from act. the thing known. And Undesirable. nor gain. There is imperfect Knowledge: that which sees The separate existences apart. or speech. There is “vain” Action: that which men pursue Aching to satisfy desires. Learn thou it is this: To see one changeless Life in all the Lives. yet. being separated. For duty. who abstains From profit of his acts is abstinent. By these five doth he that. next. passionlessly. for lack of knowledge. agent. Whoso. There is “dark” Action: when one doth a thing Heedless of issues. He doth not slay. act. if one— Holding aloof from self—with unstained mind Should slay all yonder host. impelled By sense of self. Which being thus. and then The agent. The fruit of labours. the God. in the lives to come. holds them real. the actor. mind. Therefore.
but afterward . What binds and what emancipates the soul: That is of Sattwan. in good or evil hap the same. What must be done. “dark” and desperate! Good is the steadfastness whereby a man Masters his beats of heart. O Pritha’s Son! That is of Tamas. passion-stamped! Sad is the steadfastness wherewith the fool Cleaves to his sloth. stubborn. He that works From impulse. Good Pleasure is the pleasure that endures. slave by turns Of sorrow and of joy: of Rajas he! And there be evil doers. “dark” and miserable! Hear further. wrapped in gloom. his sorrow. There is th’ “impassioned” doer. humble. and his fears. nor as the calm truth is: This is of Rajas. Good is the Intellect which comprehends The coming forth and going back of life. Prince! and “passionate!” Evil is Intellect which. Low-minded. purpose. loose of heart.” Marred is the Intellect which. Content to do aright-he “truly” acts. and what should not be feared. and the love of goods to gain. despondent—children of the “dark. of Intellect and Steadfastness The threefold separation. fixed In never-shaken faith and piety: That is of Sattwan. fraudulent.” Hear. and what must not be done. bitter at first As poison to the soul. Prince! of “soothfastness. effort. His folly and despair. slow. rude and bold To overcome. yet understands Nought with firm mind. What should be feared. end. Banishing pain for aye. Arjuna! ‘tis of Rajas. and sees all things Contrariwise of Truth. too. knowing right And knowing wrong. He who acts Free from self-seeking. Steadfast. black and bad! There is the “rightful”doer. resolute. This—Pritha’s Son!-Is born of Tamas. the action of his senses. remiss. seeking profit. and what is well to do And what must not be done. unchastened. Chief of Bharatas! from Me The threefold kinds of Pleasure which there be. Dull. his very breath Of life. Looks upon wrong as right. Conqueror-Prince! How these are set apart by Qualities. Prince! “soothfast” and fair! Stained is the steadfastness whereby a man Holds to his duty. For life’s sake.His own soul—‘tis of Tamas.
A Kshatriya’s pride. and all the way of life The soul bewildering. purity. venture trade. but its last Bitter as poison. How one. Prince! And foul and “dark” the Pleasure is which springs From sloth and sin and foolishness. The work of Brahmans. the highest height of all! . Than doing others’ work. And open-handedness and noble mien. Born of his nature. attains BRAHM. skilfulness. is to minister. by Nature framed. learning. the supreme. attaining perfect peace. A Sudra’s state. Vaisyas. Prince! though it bear blame! For every work hath blame. He shall not fall in sin who fronts the task Set him by Nature’s hand! Let no man leave His natural duty. is to till the ground.Sweet as the taste of Amrit. religion. lives in valour. O thou Slayer of thy Foes! Is fixed by reason of the Qualities Planted in each: A Brahman’s virtues. and to know The truth of things which be. being so content: He findeth it through worship—wrought by work— Of Him that is the Source of all which lives. Better thine own work is. Constancy. Tend cattle. Drink of that! It springeth in the Spirit’s deep content. but hath its being bound With these three Qualities. Suiting his nature. are serenity. And Sudras. content— The work allotted him. as every flame Is wrapped in smoke! Only that man attains Perfect surcease of work whose work was wrought With mind unfettered. at first And at the last. Of HIM by Whom the universe was stretched. though done with fault. Patience. Desires for ever dead. Prince! Born of his nature. Self-mastery. fire. Whoso performeth—diligent. Son of Kunti! also this. nor ‘midst the gods In utmost heaven. whate’er it be. Prince! For nothing lives on earth. Learn from me. Lays hold of perfectness! Hear how a man Findeth perfection. And painful Pleasure springeth from the bond Between the senses and the sense-world. soul wholly subdued. ‘Tis of Tamas. ‘Tis of Rajas. ev’n excellently. results renounced. A Vaisya’s task. Kshatriyas. As of a lord of men. Born with his nature. spirit in fight. Sweet As Amrit is its first taste. uprightness.
serene. thou wouldst seek Against thy will. Thou can’st but perish! If this day thou say’st. freed from love and hate. by My grace. in diet spare. Prince! So—only so. anger. and take Him for thy succour. trusting to thyself and heeding not. the Mystery more hid Than any secret mystery. as in his refuge—he hath won For ever and for ever by My grace Th’ Eternal Rest! So win thou! In thy thoughts Do all thou dost for Me! Renounce for Me! Sacrifice heart and mind and will to Me! Live in the faith of Me! In faith of Me All dangers thou shalt vanquish. My utmost meaning have! Precious thou art to Me. Meditate! And—as thou wilt—then act! Nay! but once more Take My last word. From passions liberate. “I will not fight!” Vain will the purpose prove! thy qualities Would spur thee to the war. speech.Devoted—with a heart grown pure. quiet. and attains to Me. Such an one. Relying on thyself. lacking nought— Such an one grows to oneness with the BRAHM. Who have made them. restrained In lordly self-control. growing one with BRAHM. Give Me thy heart! adore Me! serve Me! cling In faith and love and reverence to Me! So shalt thou come to Me! I promise true. Equally loving all that lives. Arjuna!--shalt thou gain— By grace of Him—the uttermost repose. But. . By this same love and worship doth he know Me as I am. when the task comes to thee Waking the promptings in thy nature set. forgoing wiles Of song and senses. right well-beloved! Listen! I tell thee for thy comfort this. pride. With body. What thou dost shun. Misled by fair illusions. straightway enters into Me. Dwelling ‘mid solitudes. how high and wonderful. desires no more. Freed from surroundings. And whatsoever deeds he doeth—fixed In Me. his soul. The Eternal Place! Thus hath been opened thee This Truth of Truths. Ever to holy meditation vowed. impatience. quit of the Self. Of arrogance. and will tamed to obey. And knowing. With all thy soul Trust Him. loves well Me. Dance to what tune HE will. by subtle pulling—strings. There lives a Master in the hearts of men Maketh their deeds. Sorrows no more.
Heareth meekly. so will I do! Sanjaya. O Indian Prince! With mind intent? hath all the ignorance— Which bred thy trouble—vanished. and offering Of all honour unto Me— Unto Brahma cometh he! Nay. speech— Teaching in the faith to bring Truth to them. one shall teach This divinest. Surely shall his spirit rise To those regions where the Blest. ‘mid the flock Of My lovers. and nowhere shall ye find Any man of all mankind Doing dearer deed for Me. wisest.] Hath this been heard by thee. Whoso reads this converse o’er.--when he dies. the holy Krishna saith. My Arjun? Arjuna. Free of flesh. . Lord! Now am I fixed! my doubt is fled away! According to Thy word. by Thy favour. Heareth wisely what it saith. wherever. Him that worships not. and whoso. But. Yea. This from him that hath no faith. furthermore. in joyance rest. full of faith. Nor shall any dearer be In My earth. nor seeks Wisdom’s teaching when she speaks: Hide it from all men who mock.For thou art sweet to Me! And let go those— Rites and writ duties! Fly to Me alone! Make Me thy single refuge! I will free Thy soul from all its sins! Be of good cheer! [Hide. Held by Us upon the plain. Pondering piously and fain. He hath paid Me sacrifice! (Krishna speaketh in this wise!) Yea. Trouble and ignorance are gone! the Light Hath come unto me.
O my King! Thus have I told. [FN#6] A name of the sun. being Yoga’s Lord.e. [FN#10] The Sanskrit has this play on the double meaning of Atman. [FN#14] I read here janma. [FN#11] So in original. WITH CHAPTER XVIII. [FN#12] Beings of low and devilish nature. “birth. So is the high truth shown! And aye. [FN#18] [FN#19] [FN#20] [FN#21] [FN#22] [FN#23] [FN#24] [FN#25] [FN#26] The nectar of immortality.Thus gathered I the gracious speech of Krishna. Called “The Jap..” not jara. Of Hari. when I remember. . O Lord my King. [FN#7] Without desire of fruit. God of Gods! Be favourable!” The wind. visible and plain.” THE BHAGAVAD-GITA. and how with God he spake. for Thy most mighty sake. [FN#2] Technical phrases of Vedic religion. [FN#5] I am doubtful of accuracy here. The Calcutta edition of the Mahabharata has these three opening lines. how Krishna’s self made known The Yoga. heat and cold. Lord of Yoga! surely there shall not fail Blessing. passing speech. with heart a-thrill. “Kamalapatraksha” These are all divine or deified orders of the Hindoo Pantheon.” The compound form of Sanskrit words.”&c. [FN#3] The whole of this passage is highly involved and difficult to render. the body. O Archer-Prince! all hail! O Krishna. [FN#8] That is. HERE ENDS. success and failure. and all this holy strain. [FN#1] Some repetitionary lines are here omitted. and power. [FN#4] I feel convinced sankhyanan and yoginan must be transposed here in sense. “Not peering about.”age” [FN#15] I have discarded ten lines of Sanskrit text here as an undoubted interpolation by some Vedantist [FN#16] The Sanskrit poem here rises to an elevation of style and manner which I have endeavoured to mark by change of metre. [FN#17] Ahinsa. again Arjuna and the God in talk. [FN#9] i. Where this song comes of Arjun. Great is my gladness: when I muse that splendour..”joy and sorrow. [FN#13] Krishna. this wise and wondrous thing By great Vyasa’s learning writ. Entitled “Mokshasanyasayog. and victory. there is no tongue to reach My marvel and my love and bliss.” Or “The Book of Religion by Deliverance and Renunciation.”anapeksha. “Hail to Thee.
gifts.” [FN#31] I omit a verse here. same times also of benignity. as of very doubtful authenticity. but a beautiful lyrical episode. [FN#29] Wombs. a new “Parable of the fig-tree. evidently interpolated. [FN#28] I omit two lines of the Sanskrit here.”lit. food which has remained after the watches of the night. and beauty. [FN#34] Rakshasas and Yakshas are unembodied but capricious beings of great power.[FN#27] This is the nearest possible version of Kshetrakshetrajnayojnanan yat tajnan matan mama. translated by Sir Edwin Arnold . [FN#35] These are spirits of evil wandering ghosts. [FN#33] I omit the ten concluding shlokas. In India this would probably “go bad. [FN#36] Yatayaman. with Mr Davis. [FN#30] I do not consider the Sanskrit verses here-which are somewhat freely rendered—“an attack on the authority of the Vedas. evidently interpolated by some Vedantist. [FN#32] “Of the Asuras. End of the Project Gutenberg etext. The Bhagavad-Gita.” [FN#37] I omit the concluding shlokas.” with Mr Davies.
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