rHE BHAGAVAD-GITA

WITH THE COMMENTARY OF

SRI

SANKARACHARYA

TRANSLATED INTO ENGLISH
BY
A.

MAHADEVA

SASTRI,

b. a.,

Curator, Government Oriental Library, Mysore.
> )
)

1

1

J >

9 i

4 J

SECOND EDITION
REVISEP AND IMPROVED, WITH ADDITIONAL NOTES.

MYSORE
igoi.

[All Rights Reserved.

]

VEDIC RELIGION
TMB BMASAITAB-MTA,
A A

CARPENTIER
PRINTED AT

The

G,

T. A.

Printing

Works,

MYSORE.

I

fof

TO THE MEMORY OF
(A
A

A

i.i. Sri BhamarajGndraladayarlahadur, 6i.i.i.,
I'he

Late JVEaharaja of

]VIysops,

WHO TOOK AN ACTIVE INTEREST

IN THE REVIVAL OF

OUR ANCIENT LITERATURE AND RELIGION.

iviSSSOl

PREFACE TO THE FIRST EDITION.
Under the designation "
proposed to publish
of the
in

VEDIC RELIGION

"

it

is

a series English translations of some

most important Ancient Scriptures of the Aryans with such authoritative commentaries as may throw more
light

upon

their

teachings.

The Bhagavad-Gita
in

justly

heads the

series, as

embodying

a most popular form the

essence of the whole Vedic Religion within a short compass.

The

publication of the present volume and the possibility of

prosecuting the work

— to me, of love —further on
liberality of Sir

is

altogether
k.c.

due to the kindness and
s. I.,

K. Seshadri Iyer,
k. c.
i.

the Hon'ble Sir. S.

Subrahmanya Iyer

e.,

Mr. A. Ramachandra Iyer (Judge, Chief Court, Bangalore).
I

***********
have throughout attempted a
literal translation

and

of the
literally

Bhashya, the text of the Bhagavad-Gita being also
translated in the light of the Bhashya.

The Bhashya has
literal

been translated
the
of
it

in full

except where a

translation of

Bhashya

of a

whole verse or even

of a considerable part

would be a mere repetition of the translation of the
;

corresponding portion of the text of the Gita
case
I

in

which

have either altogether omitted the Bhashya or trans-

lated only those portions
of the text than merely

which rather explain the meaning
in

show

what order the words
literal

in the

text should be construed or merely give their

synonymous
of the

equivalents.

Wherever a mere

translation

Bhashya is not likely to bring out its full import or leaves any room for doubt as to its meaning, I have added, in the
form of foot-notes,
explanations mostly extracted from

Anandagiri's Tika, each such extract being marked(A)at the

Vm
end. This Tika
is

PREFACE.

always the clearest and most to the point
of the

and

is

almost indispensable for a proper understanding of

some important portions
disciple of

Bhashya.
is

An immediate

Sri-5ankaracharya as he

reputed to be, he

should also be the safest guide.
It

has always been

my

special

aim

to

make

the

Bhashya
the

in its

English garb as clearly
could,

intelligible to a general reader

as

I

without unnecessarily departing

from

original,

even as regards the structure of sentences.
in

With

have introduced into the translation as few technical terms as possible, whether of the Eastern or
this

end

view,

I

of the

Western philosophy and theology. Where necessary,
have been used along with their
In some cases Sanskrit terms alone
their English equivalents

original Sanskrit terms

English equivalents.

have been used, inasmuch as

are

found not to convey adequately the intended idea.
exact sense of every such Sanskrit term will be found
plained where
it

The
ex-

occurs for the

first

time

in the
it

Bhashya

or

may be

gathered from the context in which

occurs.

Even
itself, I

if

the translation be not quite clear
it

when
to

read

by

have no doubt that

will at least enable those

who

are even slightly acquainted with Sanskrit,
clearly the

understand
given in
as
it

Bhashya

in the original, especially as
to.

my

edition

above referred

The Bhashya,

written

is in

the author's peculiarly terse and archaic style, presents

in several places difificulties

—even as to

the exact

relation

of the different parts
of

which follow one another
Sanskrit

in the course

a discussion— which

students

who

are

not

thoroughly conversant with the author's style and system

PREFACE.
of philosophy can scarcely

ix

overcome without the help

of

Anandagiri's T(ka or some such help as the present translation affords. It is, moreover, always a distinct j,'ain to lie

thus able to study the original and avoid the errors into

which commonplace readers may
themselves to the translation.

fall if

they should confine

,-^

60Nn[iENTS.
INTRODUCTION.

— The purpose of the Divine Incarnation. — The Gita and the Commentary. —Juana-Yogd the means to the Supreme Bliss. — How Karma-Yoga a means to the Supreme Bliss. — The specific subject and
The
twofold Vedic Religion.
is

is

object of the Gita-Sastra.

pp. i-6.

ERRATA.
Page.

GONirENTS.
INTRODUCTION.

— The purpose of the Divine Incarnation. — The Gita and the Commentary. —Jnana-Yoga the means to the Supreme Bliss. — How Karma-Yoga a means to the Supreme Bliss. — The specific subject and
The
twofold Vedic Religion.
is is

object of the Gita-5astra.

pp. i-6.

First Discourse.

The Despondency
addresses Dro«a.

of Arjuna.

Sanjaya narrates the course of the war.
survey of the

— Both enemy. — Arjuna's

— Duryodhana armies ready for battle. — Arjuna's
words of despondency.
pp. 7-13.

Arjuna's grief at the evils of war.

Second Discourse.
Sankhya-Yoga.
Arjuna's weakness condemned by the
seeks instruction
eradicates misery.

Lord.

—Arjuna
alone

from the Lord.

— Self-knowledge

— The doctrine that knowledge should be conjoined with works. — Sankhya and Yoga distinguished Conjunction inconsistent with the sequel. — Some cases of immortal. apparent conjunction explained. — The Self Endurance a condition of wisdom. — The Real and the unconcerned action. — The Self unreal. — The Self immutable. — The enlightened man has to renounce works
is
is
is

in

is

meant for the unenlightened. Knowledge of the Immutable Self is possible. -The enlightened should
are

Works

resort to Jiitina-Yoga.

— How

the Self

is

immutable.

—-No
a

room

for grief.

x\

warrior should fight.

— Yoga. — Yoga,

— —
xii.

CONTENTS.
is

— Wisdom one. — No wisdom possible the the Yogin. — Karma- Yoga. worldly-minded. — Advice The merit of Wisdom. — Results of Karma- Yoga. — The
safe course.
for

to

characteristic attributes of a perfect Sage.
in

(i)

Satisfaction

the Self.

(2)

Equanimity

in

pleasure and pain.

(3)

Absence of attachment, delight and aversion. (4) ComUnrestrained plete withdrawal of senses from objects.

— Devotion to the Lord. — Thought senses work mischief. — the source of — Sense-control leads of sense-objects to peace and happiness. — Sense-restraint conduces to steady The Universe, a mere dream to the Sage. knowledge. — the sage. — Subjugation of Works are not meant — Knowledge leads to Divine desire and personal

(5)

is

evil.

(6)

for

(7)

self.

Felicity.

pp. 14-70,

Third Discourse.

Karma- Yoga.
Arjuna's perplexity.
Action.

— No conjunction
an action.

of

Knowledge and

— Renunciation
effect of

enjoined in the scriptures.

— Moksha
inconsist-

cannot be the
ent with
or Action.

— Conjunction
is better.

is

Arjuna's question.

— The

paths of

Knowledge Knowledge and Action Karma-

— Which

Yoga

leads to

freedom from action.

— The

ignorant

are

swayed by Nature.— The unenlightened should not give up

Karma- Yoga The wheel of the world should be set going. — Karma- Yoga is not meant for the Self-knower. Arjuna qualified for Karma- Yoga. — The wise should set an
example

—The wise man's action as contrasted with that of the ignorant. — How an aspirant for Moksha
to the masses.

should do actions
duct.

Influence of man's nature on his con-

— Scope

for

man's personal exertion.

— Desire

is

the


CONTENTS.

xm.

enemy
desire.

of

man

Desire enshrouds wisdom.

— The

seat of

— How

to kill out desire.

pp. 71-103.

Fourth Discourse.
Jnana-Yoga.
Tradition of

J«ana-Yoga.

purpose of Divine

means
and

to

moksha.

— Divine dispensation of worldly
Caste as a
divinely

— Divine Incarnations. — The the sole Incarnation. — J/;ana-Yoga
is

benefits

salvation.

ordered

institution. soul.

—Action

without attachment does not

human bmd the
is

— The
?

real nature of action

and inaction.
as

— Who

a

Sage

— The Sage's worldly action

an example to the
maintenance.

masses.

— The

Sage's action for

bodily

The
is

Sage's worldly action

does not bind him.

— Wisdomshould

sacrifice.

— Sacrifices effected

by

action.

— Wisdom-sacrifice
and
killer

superior to other sacrifices.

— How and where one

L

Wisdom, a consumer of all sins wisdom actions. — The surest means to wisdom. — Wisdom, the
seek
of doubt.

pp. 104-138.

Fifth

Discourse.

Samnyasa-yoga.

Which
Sa;;myasa

is
?

better

for

the
is

ignorant.

Karma- Yoga

or

— The question not with reference to the enlightened. — Karma-Yoga and Sa;;myasa inapplicable to the enlightened. — Karma- Yoga suits the ignorant better
than Sa;;myasa
goal.

— Sankhya
is

and Yoga lead to the same
to

— Karma- Yoga

a

means

Sawmyasa.

—A

Sage's

actions do not affect him. actions
action.

— Karma- Yogin

—A

Sage's actions are

really

no

is

untainted by the results of his
life

— The blissful embodied of a Sage. — Nature the source of activity. — Wisdom and unwisdom. — The Sage
is

has no more births.— The Sage sees the

One

in all

beings.—

— —

XIV.

CONTENTS.
is

The Sage

liberated while

still

on earth.

— The Sage

is

free

from grief and rejoicing.
path of Nirvana.

— The

Sage's infinite joy

The

— Realisation

of the

Lord by Dhyanapp. 139-162.

Yoga. Sixth Discourse.

Dhyana-Yoga.

Dhyana-Yoga
in action.
is

is

incompatible with works
is

Renunciation

—Action a stepping-stone Who a Yogin — Directions for the
?

to

Dhyana-Yoga.

practice of Yoga.

Consummation Further directions concerning the practice of Yoga. — The effect of Dhyana-Yoga. — Practice and Indifference are the surest means to Yoga. — Failures in Yoga and the after-career. — The best of the Yogins. pp. 163-187.

Seventh Discourse.
VlJNANA-YoGA.
Realisation of the

Lord by meditation. — Evolution

of the

Universe out of Divine Praknti.
penetrating the Universe.
:

— The

Divine Principle
it.

Four
Gods.

classes of

— The root

— Maya How to overcome devotees. — The ignorant worship inferior of ignorance. — Divine worship leads to
pp.

realisation.

188-200.

Eighth Discourse.
Abhyasa-Yoga.

The seven
to

things to be realised by meditation
is

— Constant
in

meditation of the Divine

necessary.

— The

Divine Being Divine
the

be meditated upon.

— Meditation

of the
to the

Pra»ava.

— No re-birth on attaining

Divine Being.

The Day and the Night of Brahma. — The Highest Goal, how reached The Paths of Light and Darkness. — Excel-

lence of Yoga,

pp. 201-214.


CONTENTS.
XV.

Ninth Discourse.
Sovereign Wisdom and Secret.
Brahma-jfiana
the Lord.
is

the best Religion.

— All

beings rest

in

Lord is the source and the end of all beings. — The Lord is not bound by His acts. — The life of All the impious. — The ways of the faithful devotees

— The

worship goes to the Lord.

—The fruits of interested
over

acts of

Vedic

ritual.

—The Supreme watching

His devotee's

— Other devotees do but worship the Supreme in ignorance. — Facility in Devotion to the Supreme. — The impartiality of the Supreme. — Even the low-born attain salvation by Devotion. — The Yoga of Devotion.
interests.

pp. 215-233.

Tenth Discourse.
Divine Manifestations.

The Lord

is

the source of

all

manifestations

— Knowledge
Lord endows

of the Lord's Glory conduces to Yoga.

— The

His devotees with wisdom.
Lord's manifestations
manifestations.

— The

— Arjuna's

question about the

Lord's enumeration of His

— Divine Glory described in brief.
pp. 234-247.

Eleventh Discourse.

The Universal Form.
Arjuna's prayer for a vision of the

Universal
to

Form.
see

Arjuna endowed with heavenly sight wherewith
Universal

the

Form.— The manifestation of the Lord's UniVish;/u is one with the Unconditioned. — The versal Form Universal Form (continued). — The wonderfulness of the Theterribleness of the Universal Form Universal Form Arjuna's vision of the defeat of the enemy. — The splendour of the Universal Form. — The Lord's advent for destruction

— —
XVI.

CONTENTS.
Arjuna's adoration
for

of worlds

of the

Universal

Form

Arjuna's prayer

the

Lord's

forgiveness.

prayer for the Lord's resumption of His usual

— Arjuna's form. —The

Lord resumes His usual form. — Devotion as the sole means to the realization of the Universal Form. The essence of

the whole teaching of the Gita.

pp. 248-264.

Twelfth Discourse.
Bhakti-Yoga.

Who

are

superior,

the
?

worshippers of Isvara, or the

—The worshippers of Isvara. — The worshippers of Akshara. — Salvation by worship of Isvara. Service of the Lord. — Abandonment of Abhyasa-Yoga of the Akshara-upasakas. the fruits of actions. — The
worshippers of Akshara
life

pp. 265-276.

Thirteenth Discourse.

Matter and
The main
evil only

Spirit.

subject of the discourse.

— The body and soul
The
soul
is is

Identity of the soul with the

Lord

subject to

through ignorance.

— Kshetraj;?a

really unaffect-

ed by sa7«sara.
Self.

— Avidya inheres in

the organ,

not

in

the

— Scriptural injunctions apply only to the state of bondage. — Bondage and liberation are not real states of the Self. — Scriptural injunctions concern the unenlightened Learned but deluded. — The relation of the Self to samskra a mere illusion. — The perception of the relation of avidya, due to illusion. — Summary of the Docetc., to the Self forms The Doctrine extolled. — Matter in trine
is
is

all

its

Virtues

conducive

to

Self-knowledge
is

Brahman,
is

the

Knowable

Brahman
is

beyond speech and thought
activity.— Brahman

Brahman

the source of

all

uncondi-

— —
CONTENTS.
tioned.
all

XVll.

illusory — Brahman, the basic Reality in phenomena. — Brahman, theperceiver of the gu«as — Brah-

man is all Brahman
the

Brahman
is

comprehended only by the wise. Brahman is the Cause of the one Self in all.
is

Universe.
is in

— Brahman
o-f

is

the

Illuminator of

all.

— The

— Seek the Light through devotion. — Prakriti and Purusha are eternal. — Prakriti and Purusha as the Cause of sawsara. — Avidya and Kama are the cause of rebirths. — Self-knowledge removes the cause of
Light
the heart

every one.

sawsara

The

four

paths to

Self-knowledge
all.

Nothing

— The one Self in — Knowledge of the one Self leads to moksha. — Prakriti acts, not the the source and the abode of Self. — The Self — The unaffected by the fruits of acts. — The Self illumines Self — The doctrine summed up. pp. 277-338.
exists outside the Self.
is all. is all.

Fourteenth Discourse. The Three Gunas.

The

subject of the discourse.

of the universe is necessary

the Universe from the union
gu;jas

— Knowledge of the origin for salvation. — Evolution of of Spirit and Matter. — The
nature and functions of the
gu;2as.

bind the soul.

— The
is

gunas.

— The mutual action of the
a particular gana.

— How
of

to

know
death

when

predominant.

— Life

after

as governed by the gu/zas.

leads to immortality.
life

— The marks of a liberated soul — The conduct in of a Liberated one. — Devotion to the Lord leads to liberation. — Unity of Atman. pp. 339-354.
Fifteenth Discourse.

summed up

— The functions
of the Self

the gu;zas

Realisation

beyond the gunas

The Supreme
The Tree
of Saw/sara.

Spirit.

— Cut the Tree and seek the Goal.

— —

XVm.

CONTENTS.
to the Goal.
is

The Path
Being.

— The Goal
it.

is

the Lord's Glorious

— Jiva

a ray of the Lord.

— How
is

Jiva dwells in
visible

the body and departs from the eye of knowledge.

— The Self

only to

— No Self-knowledge without Voga.
all-illumining

Immanence

of the Lord, (i) as the

Light of
(3)

Consciousness.

— (2)
all

As

the all-sustaining Life

As the

Digestive Fire in the hearts of
all.

living organisms.

(4)

As

the Self in

— The

Lord beyond the perishable and the

imperishable universe.

— The

Glory

of

Self-knov\ledge.
PP- 355-37^-

Sixteenth Discourse.
Spirituality and Materialism.

— Materialistic disposition. — Results of the two dispositions. — The materialists.— The as guided by materialist's view of the world — Men's materialism. — The materialist's aspirations. — The materialist's sacrificial rites. — The materialist's neglect of Divine The materialist's Commandments — The three Gates of Hell to be avoided. — Let the Law guide thy
Spiritual
disposition.
life
fall. life.

pp. 372-383-

Seventeenth Discourse. The Threefold Faith.

—The three kinds of Faith. Men of Rajasic and Tamsic Faiths. — Threefold Food, Worship and Gift. — The three kinds of Food. — The three kinds of Worship. — Physical Austerity. — Austerity in speech. Mental Austerity. — The three kinds of Austerity according to Gu«as. — The three kinds of Gift. — How to perfect the
The
ignorant, but faithful.
defective
acts.

— Works

without faith

are fruitless.

— The

teaching of the discourse

summed

up.

pp. 334-395.


CONTENTS.
XIX.

Eighteenth Discourse. Conclusion.

'

Sa;;myasa

'

and 'Tyagja' distinguished.
or

— Should

the
is

ignorant perform works

not

?

— The
works

that the ignorant should perform

— The
is

Lord's decree

obligatory

works should be performed without attachment
and Rajasic
renunciations
of

Tamasic
in

works.

— Renunciation
renunciations

works

is

Sattvic.
all

— From

ation of

works

— Renunciation

renunciation in works to renunciof fruits

alone possible
after

for the ignorant.

— Effects of

the two

— Factors in the production of an act. — The agency of the Self an illusion — Realisation of the non-agency of
death.
is

the Self leads to absolution from the effects of

all

works.
threefold

The Impulses
according
to

to

action

The Impulses

are

the guna.s.

— Sattvic

Knowledge.

— Rajasic
Action.

Knowledge.

— Tamasic Action. — Sattvic Agent. Rajasic Agent. — Tamasic Agent. — Intellect and firmness are threefold according to gu«as. — Sattvic Intellect. Rajasic — Tamasic Insellect. —Sattvic Firmness. Rajasic Firmness. — Tamasic Firmness. — Pleasure threefold according to gu«as. — Sattvic Pleasure. — Rajasic Pleasure. — Tamasic Pleasure. — No man or god free from gu»as. — The sequel sums up the whole Doctrine. — Duties of the four castes ordained according to nature. — Devotion to one's own duty leads to perfection. — One ought not to abandon one's own duty. — Is entire renunciation of action
Rajasic Action.
Intellect.
is

— Tamasic

Knowledge.

Sattvic

is

possible?— The Sankhya,
of the Pari/zama-Vada.-

Buddhistic,

and

Vaiseshika

theories.— Refutation of the Vaiseshika theory.

— Refutation
entirely.

The Lord's

theory of illusion
action

The

enlightened

alone

can renounce


XX.

CONTLNTS.

Perfection in

Karma- Yoga
is

leads to absolute

Perfection.
of

Absolute Perfection
ledge.

the

consummation
all?

Self-know-

— Is Self-knowledge possible at
in

— The Self reveals
Cogniser are

Himself

Pure Reason.

— Cognition and the
to

self-revealed.

— The
of

Path

Absolute Perfection.

— The

Knowledge attained by Devotion. Renunciation of all works is necessary for Absolute Perfection. Devotion to the Lard by works enjoined. Devotion to the Lord is the Secret of success in Karma- Yoga. Right Knowledge and Renunciation. What is the means the Highest Bliss, Knowledge or Works ? Selfto Knowledge alone is the means to the Highest Bliss. Knowledge cannot be conjoined with works. Refutation of the theory that salvation is attained by works alone.
consummation

Refutation of the theory that the Nitya- Karma leads
future births.

to

no
are

— The Paths of

Know.ledge and

Works
is

meant

for distinct classes of aspirants.

— Action

a creature

of Avidya.

— The theory of Avidya does not militate against the authority of Karma- Kri»^a. — Refutation of the theory of the Self's agency by mere presence. — The theory of Avidya concluded. — Qualification for instruction in the

Gita Doctrine.
merit of

—The merit of teaching
Doctrine.

the Doctrine.

— The
the

hearing the

— The

Lord assured by
extols

Arjuna

of his grasp of the

Teaching.

— Sanjaya

Lord and His

teaching.

pp. 396-479.

:s:

THE BIIAGAYAD-GITA
WITH
S'RI

A

A

SANKARACHARYA'S COMMENTARY.
INTRODUCTION.

Naraya;/a

is

beyond tbe Avyakta

;

From
And
[

the Avyakta the

Mundane Egg

is

born

;

\Yithin the
the
is

Mundane Egg, Earth made up of

verily, are these

worlds

the seven Dvipas.

This

a paura«ic verse speaking of the Antaryamin,
all souls. It is

the Inner Guide and Regulator of

quoted

here by the commentator in order that he

may

begin his

important work, after the orthodox fashion, with the contemplation of his favorite

God

(Ish/a-Devata), namely, Na-

raya«a, and further with a view to shew that the Pura»a
(archaic
Gitti

history),

the

Itihasa (ancient tradition) and

the

Naraya«a is, in the popular conception, the Creator who was brooding over
the waters just before the beginning of Creation.
I.

teach one and the same doctrine.

Cf.

Manu
is

lo.

According

to a subtler

conception, Na.raya«a
in

the

Antaryamin, the Divine Being

whom

all

embodied souls

have their being.
far

He
It is

is

not a creature of the Avyakta, but

transcends

it.

the Avyakta, the Avyak/ita,

Maya,

the undifferentiated matter,

out of which,

when

in

apparent

union with Isvara,
here spoken

is

evolved the principle of Hira;/yagarbha,
or the

of as A«(fa

Mundane Egg, which

is

2

THE BHAGAVAD-GITA.
of the five simple rudimental elements of matter.

composed

An
the

intermingling of the five rudimental

elements of matter

gives rise to the principle of the Viraj, of which are formed

Earth and

all-

the other lokas or inhabited
or insular

regions.—

{Anandagiri).

The seven Dvipas
Kusa,

continents are

Jambu,

Plaksha,

Krau?;cha,

Saka,

5almala and
these, see

Pushkara.
' '

For further particulars regarding
I,

"^y/ikon'^s yi:sh;mpura»a Vol.
>•
'

p. 109

ff.]

till
• '

.

The- twofold Vedic
'tlie

Religion.

'

J

.rrhrt Iloru created

universe,

and wishmg to secure
Prajapatis" (Lords of
the

'

brdfer' tnerein'

'He

flr'st

created the

creatures)

such as Marichi and caused them to adopt
the

Pravntti-Dharma,

Religion

of

Works.
|

.

He

then

created others such as Sanaka and Sanandana

and caused
Religion
of

them
to

to

adopt

the

Nivntti-Dharma,

the

Renunciation, characterised by knowledge and indifference

worldly objects.

It

is

the twofold Vedic Religion of
that

Works and
universe.

Renunciation

maintains

order

in

the

This Religion which directly leads to liberation
\

and

Avorldly prosperity has long

been practised by

all

castes and religious orders (var»a-asrama)

— from
name

the brah-

nia«as downwards,
* They are ten
J. 34, 35.

—who sought welfare.
Cf.

in

number.
See
pp. loo

Mann

remained

— as
is,

the

of

the
boys,

first,

Authorities diSer as to their

Sanatkumara, implies
miiras, that
;

ever

Ku-

names

and

number.

ol.
'

Wilson's

ever pure and innocent.
'

Vishnupurana,
t

I,

— 102.

The words dirghe«a

kalena' (mean-

They were without

desire or pas-

ing a long time) in the

Com. are

also

inspired with holy wisdom, estranged from the universe and undesirsion,

construed, as an alternative interpretation,

with the next following sentence.
it

ous
Part
as to

of progeny.'
I,

See

VishHupura»a,
difier
;

Ch. VII.
their

The authorities names and number
P.,

the Krita and the Treta Vugas had been over and the Dvapara-Vuga was

Then when

means

'a long time after,' i.e.,

see

approaching

its

end.

Wilson's

V.

Vol.
tq

I,

pp.

77—78.
progeny,

— (A)

These,

tjjeclining

create

INTRODUCTION'.

3

The purpose
When, owing
religion

of the Divine Incarnation.

to the

ascendancy of

lust in its

votaries,

was overpowered by
faculty
it

irreligion

caused by
irreligion

the

vanishing

of

discrimination,

and

was

advancing,
Vish//u,

was then that the original Creator (Adi-kartn), known as Naraya«a, wishing to maintain order in
'''

the universe, incarnated

Himself as Knsh/za, begotten
the preservation of the
(
'

in

Devaki by Vasudeva,
Brahman,'
f

for

earthly

of spiritual

life

Brahma^atva
of spiritual

)

on the earth.
life

For

it

was by the preservation
'

that

the

Vedic Religion could be preserved, since thereon depend
all

distinctions

of caste

and religious order.
is

The Lord,

always possessed as

He

of

(infinite)

knowledge, supre-

macy, power, strength,

might and vigour, controls the
of three

Maya,

— belonging to Him as Vish/m, —the Mulaprakriti, the
composed

First Cause,

Gu«as

^

or energies,

and

He

appears to the world as though
in the

He

is

born and embodi-

The words
to this are

Com. corresponding
ai;isa

'amsena sambabhuva.' As

^^^
.

^OTT
.
,

^
V3
,

means a part, it would mean that Kiish«a was a partial incarnation of God
Vish,.u.

.

,

.

Q^ln*ll?TI*1^\l'^t
..^j^^^

||

But of the several forms of the
Krishna
full
is

^^^

^^.^^^
for

^ady Devaki begat

incarnation of God,

on

all

^y Vasudeva
earthlv

the preservation of the

hands recognised as a
Vish.m.
plains

incarnation of
ex-

Brahman
Adhvaya
,,,g
.)

Accordingly,

.Inandagiri

(Santi-parva. 47th
;?,«/„„fl,r
„,(;„„
.

"Earthly

'amsena'

to

mean 'svechchha-

is

explained by Nilaka«/ha to
brahma».as, and

nirmitena-mayamayena svarupena,' that
is,

tl,g

y^^^^

"in

an illusory form created by His

yaj)ias or sacrifices.'"

own
f

will.'

The Commentator here
:

refers to the

II. and others require the help of the brahma«as, the spiritual class
. ,

u Ksnatnyas
L.

following passage
.

In the
.^^

performance of sacred

rites

and

in

.^

.

^*^^

th^ study of Scriptures.— (.\.)
J,

^ ^^ 2^^'a^I
^

j
,

For a

full

description of the Gu;ias

_

r\

S3e xiv. 5

et

seq.

4

THE BHAGAVAD-GITA.
;

ed and helping the world at large

whereas really

He

is is

unborn and indestructible,

is

the Lord of creatures, and

by nature Eternal, Pure,
[The special
to

Intelligent

and Free.

stress

laid

here on

Maya

as belonging
is

and being under the control of the tsvara

chiefly

intended to impress the idea that
act

Maya

does not exist or

independently of Brahman, the Isvara.

He

is

quite

independent of Maya, unlike the individual souls
subject
to
its

who

are

influence.

The

followers

of the historical

school of the
that

Sankhya-darsana hold, on the other hand,
Spirit,

Matter and

Prakriti and Purusha,

are

two
and

distinct principles, the former being as real as the latter

acting in unison with

it.

— (A.)
of

]

Without any
intention

interest

His own, but with the

sole

of helping

His creatures.

He

taught to Arjuna,

who was

deeply plunged in the ocean of grief and delusion,
Religion, evidently thinking
that the

the twofold Vedic

Religion would widely spread

when accepted and

practised

by men of high character.

The Gita and the Commentary.
It is this

Religion which was taught by the

Lord that

the omniscient and

adorable
in

the Vedas)
Gitas.

embodied

Veda-Vyasa (the arranger of the seven hundred verses called

This famous Gita-5astra
of the
difficult

is

an epitome of the essentials
its

whole Vedic teaching; and
to

meaning

is

very

understand.
it

Though,
import

to

aff'ord

a clear view

of its

teaching,

has been explained word by word and
its

sentence by sentence, and
several commentators,

critically

examined by
laity

still I

have found that to the

:

:

INTRODUCTION.
it

appears to teach diverse and quite contradictory doctI

rines.

propose, therefore,
its

to write

a brief

commentary

with a view to determine

precise meaning.

Jnana-Yoga

is

the means to the Supreme Bliss.

The aim of this famous Gita-Sastra is, briefly, the Supreme Bliss, a complete cessation of sawsiira or transmigratory
life

and of

its

cause.

This accrues from that

Religion (Dharma) which consists in a steady devotion to
the knowledge of the Self,
all

preceded by the renunciation of

-works.

So, with reference to this Religion, the doctrine

of the Gita, the

Lord says

in the Anu-Gita''' as follows
is

:

" That religion, indeed,
the
realisation
of

quite sufficient for
of

the

state

Brahman,

the Absolute."
In the

(Xsv.

Parva

xvi. 12.)

same place
"

it

is

also said

He is without
silent

merit and without sin, without
is

weal and woe,
seat,

— he who

absorbed

in the

one

and thinking nothing."
:

And He

also says

" Knowledge

is

characterised by renunciation."

{Ibid, xliii. 26.)

Here

also at the end

Arjuna
all

is

thus exhorted

"

Abandoning

dharmas, come to 'Me alone

for shelter."

(xviii. 66).

.

This forms part of the Asvaniedhais

had gone out of
sh)ia

parva and

contained

in

chapters 16-51
It

his degenerate mind. Kiithereupon protested that He was not

of that parva or section.

professes to

bj a sort of recapitulation of the teaching
of the Bhagavad-Gita.

equal to a verbatim recapitulation of the Bhagavad-gita, but agreed, in lieu of that,
to in other

the fratricidal

war

Sometime after was over, Arjuna
to

impart to Arjuna the same instruction words through the medium of a
VIII, pp. 197—198.

requested
tion

Knshna"

to repeat the instruc-

certain ancient story."— See Sacred Books

which had been conveyed

him on

0/ the East, Vol.

the holy field of Kurukshetra, but which

6

THE
is

BHAGAVAt)-GitA.

How Karma- Yoga
Though

a

means
is

to the

Supreme
as a

Bliss.

the Rehgion of

Works,— which,

means of

attaining worldly prosperity,

enjoined on the several castes

and religious orders,— leads the devotee to the region of the Devas and the like, still, when practised in a spirit of
complete devotion to the Lord and without regard to the
(immediate) results,
(sattva-5uddhi).
to
it

conduces

to the purity
is

of the
is

mind
comes

The man whose mind
of
(i

pure
to

competent
of

tread

the
;

path

knowledge,
ndirect]}^)

and

him

knowledge

and thus

the

Religion

Works

forms also a means to the Supreme Bliss.
with this very idea
«

Accordingly,

in

mind, the Lord says

:

"

He who does actions, placing them in Brahman,"
" Yogins perform actions, without attachment,
(v, lo, ii).

for the purification of the self."

Tlie specific subject

and object

of the Qita = Sastra.

The Gita ^aslra expounds this twofold Religion, whose aim is the Supreme Bliss. It expounds specially the nature of'the Supreme Being and Reality known as Viisudeva, the Parabrahman, who forms the subject of the discourse. Thus the Gita-5astra treats of a specific subject with a
''''

specific object

and bears a

specific relation (to
its

the subject

and

object).

A

knowledge of

teaching leads to the

realisation of all

human

aspirations.

Hence my attempt

to

explain

it.

*

It

is

considered

incumbent on a

tlie

subject
is

is

the Para-Urahnian
It is

;

the

commentator

to state, before

commentand the

object

Salvation, Moksha.

intend-

ing on a work,

the

subject

ed

for those

who

seek deliverance from
It is

object, as well as the class of personsf or

the turmoil of samsara.

related to

whom
which

it is

intended, and the relation in

the subject as an exposition thereof,
to the object as a

and
it.

it

stands to the three severally.Here

means

of attaining

FIRST DISCOURSE.

THE DESPONDENCY OF ARJUNA.
Sanjaya narrates the course
Dhntarash/ra said
I.
:

of

the war.

What

did

FiVidns sons and mine do when
together on
for battle,

they assembled

the

sacred plain of
?

Kurukshetra eager

O

Sa;«jaya
:

Sa;»jaya said
2.

Having seen the army
in battle-array, prince

of the

Pan^avas

drawn up

approached his

Duryodhana then teacher and spoke (these) words
:

Duryodhana addresses Drona.
V

3.

"

O

teacher, look at this grand

army of the

sons of Pan^u,

marshalled by thy talented pupil,

the son of Drupada.
4.

in

Here are heroes, mighty archers, equal Yuyudhana, battle to Bhima and Arjuna,

"

Virata,

and Drupada, the master of

a great

car

(maharatha), *
5.

" Dhrishfaketu, Chekitana,

king of Kasi,

and the valiant Purujit and Kunti-Bhoja and that
;

eminent

Technically,

man Saibya
'

maharatha' means a
'

who single-handed can
archers,"

fight

a thousand

warrior

proficient

in

military

science

;

THE BHAGAVAD-GITA.
6.

[DiS.

I.

"

The
;

heroic

Yudhamanyu and

the brave

Uttamaujas
Draiipadij
7.

the son of Subhadra and the sons of

all

masters of great cars (maharathas).

" But know,

O
I

best of the twice-born,

who

are the most of

distinguished
these

my army;
8.

among us, the leaders name to thee by way of

example.
" Thyself and Bhlshma, and Karna, and also

Kripa, the victor in war, Asvatthaman and Vikarwa,

and
g.

also Jayadratha, the son of

Somadatta

"

And many
for
all

other heroes
sake,

who have
with

given up
various

their

lives

my

fighting

weapons,
10.
is

well-skilled in battle.

" This

army

of ours protected by

Bhishma
which
is

inadequate, whereas that

army of
is

theirs

under the protection of Bhima
11.

adequate. *

"

And

therefore do ye

all,

occupying your

respective positions in the several divisions of the

army, support Bhishma only."

Both armies ready
12.

for battle.

His mighty

grandsire,
in

(Bhishma), the
him,

oldest of the

Kauravas,
lion's

order to cheer

sounded on high a
13.

roar and blew his conch.

Then,
is

all at

once, conches and kettledrums,
that
his

*
gloss

This sloka

diftercntly interpreted
-4

army,

larger

and led by an
is

by difterent commei'.tators.
suggests various
all

nandagiri's

abler leader than the enemy's,
likely to

more

interpretations

win the

battle,

which

go to

make Duryodhana mean

:

;

6-^22,]

THE DESPONDENCY OF ARJUNA.

cymbols, drums and horns were played upon, and
the sound was a tumultuous uproar.
14.

Then,

too,

Madhava and the son

of Vividu,

seated in a grand chariot yoked to white horses,

blew thair
15.

celestial conches.

Hrlshikesa

blew

the

Panchajanya,

and

Arjuna blew the Devadatta.
terrible deeds,
16.

blew his

Bhima, (the doer) of great conch Paun^ra.
the son of Kanti,

Prince Yudhish/hira,

blew the Anantavijaya, while Nakula and Sahadeva blew the Sughosha and the Manipushpaka.
17.

The king

of Kasi,

an

excellent

archer,

Sikhaniin, the master of a great car,

Dhrish/a-

dyumna and
IS.

Related Interests

ira/a,

and the unconquered Satyaki

Drupada and the sons of Draupadi, O lord of earth, and the son of Subhadra, of mighty arms,
all

together blew their respective conches.
ig.

(the

That tumultuous sound rent the hearts of people) of Dhritarash/ra's party, making both

heaven and earth resound.
Arjuna's survey of the enemy.
20-22.

Then

seeing the people of Dhritarash/ra's

party regularly marshalled, while the discharge of

weapons began, Arjuna, the son of ensign was a monkey, O King of his bow and said thus to K/ishna
"

Pa;/^u,

whose
up

earth, took

O

Achyuta

(Immortal),
I

place

my

chariot

between the two armies, that

may

just see those
2

:

2^

THE BHAGAVAD-GiTA.

[DiS. I

who

stand here desirous to
I

fight,

and know with

whom
23.

must
''

fight in this strife of battle.

I

will

observe those

who

are assembled

here and are about to engage in battle desirous to

do

service

in

war

to

the

evil-minded son

of

Dhritarash/ra,"
Sa/njaya said
24-25.
:

O

descendant
excellent

of

Bharata, Hrishikesa
(Arjuna)

(Krishna)

thus addressed by Guiakesa
car

stationed that

between

the

two

armies

in front of

rulers of earth,
at thes3

Bhishma and Drona and all the and said " O son of Pritha, look
:

assembled Kauravas."

26-27.

Then

the

son of Pritha saw arrayed

there in both the armies fathers and grandfathers,
teachers, maternal uncles, brothers,
sons, grand-

sons and comrades, fathers-in-law and friends.
27-2S.

When

the son

of Kunti

saw

all

the

kinsmen standing, he was overcome with deepest
pity

and said thus

in

sorrow

Arjuna's words of despondency.

Arjuna said
28-29.

:

Seeing

these

kinsmen,
fight,

O

Krishna,

arrayed and desirous to

down, and
on

my mouth is dried up. my body and my hairs stand on

my limbs droop A tremor comes
end,

22—37-]
30.

THE DESPONDENCY OP ARJUNA.

II

The
is

Ga;/^iva slips from
I

skin

intensely burning.

my hand, and my am also unable to
it

stand and
31.
evil.

my mind

is

whirling round, as
I

were.

And,

O

Kesava,
I

see

omens foreboding
killing

Nor do

see

any good from

my

kinsmen
32.
I

in battle.

desire not victory,

O

Krishna, nor kingavail
is

dom, nor pleasures.
to us,

Of what

dominion

O

Govinda

?

Of what

avail are pleasures

and

even

life ?

33-34.

They

for

whose sake dominion, enjoyb}'

ments and pleasures are sought
standing, having staked
teachers,
fathers,

us are here

their

life

and

wealth

:

sons as well as grandfathers
fathers-in-law,

;

maternal uncles,

grandsons, bro-

thers-in-law as also (other) relatives.
35.

These,

O

slayer of
kill

Madhu,

I

do not wish
the sake of
less

to

kill,

though they

me, even
;

for

dominion over the three worlds
for the sake of the earth
!

how much

36.

O

Janardana, what delight shall be ours
the sons of Dhritarash/ra
?

after killing

On

kill-

ing these felons, sin only will take hold of us.
^},

We

had then better not slay our own kins;

men, the sons of Dhritarash/ra
be happy,
people
?

O

Madhava,

after

how can we slaying our own
for,

12

THE BHAGAVAD-GITA.
Arjuna's grief at the evils of war.

[DiS.

I.

whose intelHgence is stricken by greed, perceive no evil in the extinction of families and no sin in treachery to friends, yet, O
38-39.
these,

Though

Janardana, should not we,

who

clearly see evil in

the extinction of a family, learn to refrain from
this sinful

deed

?

40.

On

the extinction
of

of a

famil}',

the

im-

memorial dharmas *

that

family

disappear.

When
41.

the dharmas disappear, impiety

(adharma)

overtakes the whole family, t

the

By the prevalence of impiety, O Krishna, women of the family become corrupt. Women
there will be intermingling of castes

corrupted,

(varna-sa;;zkara),

O

descendant of

Vrish;zis.

42.

Confusion of castes leads the family of these
;

destroyers of families also to hell
fathers
fall

for,

their fore-

(down

to hell), deprived

of the offer-

ings of
43.

p\)idsi (rice-ball)

and water.
deeds of the destroyers of

I
I

By

these

evil

families

which cause the intermingling of castes, the eternal dharmas of castes and families are
subverted.
44.

We

have heard,

O

Janardana, that necess-

ary

is

the dwelling in hell of the

men whose

family

dharmas are subverted.
*

The
th-3

duties

and ceremonies practised
accordance with
the
of

t

Of the destroyed (according
the destroyer

to

some))

by

family in

(accordiny to

some

scriptural

command,

others).

38

— 47']
45.
sin,

'^^^

DESPONDENCY OF ARJUNA.

I3

we have resolved to commit a great inasmuch as we are endeavouring to slay our
Alas
!

kinsmen out of a craving
dominion.

for

the pleasures of

would be better for me, if the sons of Dhritarash^ra, with arms in hand, should slay me unarmed and unresisting in the battle.
46.
It

Sa;«jaya said
47.
in

:

Having

said thus, Arjuna, sorrow-stricken

mind, cast aside his

midst of the battle

bow and arrows in the and sat down in the chariot.

-.|>2^V'4'<»—

:

SECOND DISCOURSE.
SANKHYA YOGA.
Arjunas weakness condemned by the Lord.
1.

To him who was
afflicted,

thus overcome with pity
full

and and

and whose eyes were
the destroyer of

of tears
as

agitated,
:

Madhu spoke
:

follows

The Lord
2.

said

Whence
this

in

(this)

perilous strait has

come

upon thee

weakness cherished by the

ojxwoir-

thy. debarring from heaven

and causing disgrace,

O
It

.\.rjuna
3.

?

Yield not to unmanliness,

O

son of Pritha.
base weakfoes.

does not become thee.

Cast

off this

ness of heart and arise.

O

tormentor of

Arjuna seeks instruction from the Lord.
.\rjuna said

Madhu, how shall I assail in battle with arrows Bhishma and Dro«a, who are worthy of worship, O slayer of enemies. Better indeed in this world to live even upon 5.
4.

O

slayer of

alms than to slay the teachers of high honor. were
world
I

But,

to slay these teachers, I should only in this

enjoy

the

pleasures

of w^ealth,

delights

stained with blood.
6.
*

Which
y

And we know not which * of the two— living upon alms witiiout slaying
our dut7.—h,^)

is

the better
or

otfaers,

fighqpg

tii«

wfaicfa is

^::je¥3?^

I

10.]

Sankhya'Yoca.

15

alternative for us

we know whether we shall conquer them or they will conquer us. Even the sons of Dhritarash/ra, after killing whom we
;

nor do

do not wish to
7

live,

stand arrayed against us.

My
:

heart contaminated by the taint of help-

lessness,

my mind
Tell

confounded about Dharma, *
is

I

ask Thee

me what

absolutely good.

I

am

Thy
8

pupil.

Instruct

me,

who have sought Thy

grace.

do not indeed S22 what can dispel the grief which burns up my senses, even after attaining
I

unrivalled

and prosperous dominion on earth or
Samjaya
said

even lordship over gods.
:

9

Having spoken thus
and
verily

to Hrishikesa, Guiakesa,
'

the tormenter of foes, said to Govinda,
fight,'

I

will not

remained

silent.

10

To him who was

grieving in the midst of

the two armies,
kesa, as
if

O

descendant of Bharata, Hrishi-

smiling, spoke these words:

Self-knowledge alone eradicates misery.

Now
which

the portion from

i.

2 to

ii.

g should be interpreted

as showing

whence
4

arise those evils of grief, delusion, etc.,

in sentient creatures
:

cause the misery of samsara.
.

—To
and

explain

In

ii.

^/

seq

Arjuna

displayed
for,

grief

delusion caused

by

his

attachment

and the sense of
friends, wellrelations,

separation from, dominior,. the elders, sons,
wishers,
arising

kinsmen,

near and remote
I

all

this

from his
<
'

notion that "
here means
'

am
'

theirs

and they are

Pbanna

'

3rahinan

who supports aU—(A)

l6

THE ehagavad-gItA.
It

[DiS. Ilf

mine."
grief

was when discrimination was overpowered by and delusion that Arjuna, who had of himself been
in battle as the

engaged

duty of the warrior caste, abstainlead

ed from fighting and proposed to

a mendicant's

life,

which was the duty

of a different
is

caste^

Accordingly,
grief

all

creatures whose intelligence

swayed by

and delusion

and other evil influences naturally abandon their proper Even if duties and resort to those which are prohibited. they are engaged in their duties, their conduct in speech,
thought and deed
reward.
marit
is

egoistic

and

is

prompted by a longing
to

for

In their case, then,

owing

an accumulation of

and demerit, of dharma and a-dharma, the sawsara,

p

which consists in passing through good and bad births, happiness and misery, becomes incessant. Grief and delusion
are thus the cause of sa;«sara.

And

seeing that their cessa-

tion could not b3 brought about except

by Self-knowledge whole world
ii.

added to renunciation of
to teach that

all

works, Lord Vasudeva wished

knowledge

for the benefit of the

through Arjuna and began His teaching with

ii.

The doctrine that knowledge should be conjoined
with works.
Against the
cannot at
*

foregoing

view some

f

say

:

— Moksha

all

be attained by mere A'tmaj«ana-nish^ha, by
alone are allowed to
of sa/imyasa,
all

The brahmanas

Viitti

on the Gitu was evilently very

enter the fourth .-Israma

voluininous, inasmuch as 5ri Sankaracharya's
in

which consists

in the

renunciation of

bhashya

is

profeisodly very short
it.

formal religion and worldly poss2ssions.
+

compirison with

It

is,

therefore,

According to A'nandigiri, the
is

Vcitti-

n

it

unlikely that the author of th3 Vritti
w..:-

kara
to.

the commentator here referred
V>-ittikira's interpretation of the
I.
i.

on the Gita na who
is

no other than Bodhayaon th? Brahmi-siitras,

A

said to have written a volumin-

Brahma-sutras
to

II

— 19

is

also referred

ous commentary

by Sankaricharya
that section.
It is

in his

commentary

nearly a million slokas in extent, and of

on

very probable that

which tha Sri-bhashya of Sri
charya
is

K amanuja-

one and the same person was the author
of the two Vnttis or gpmm.entaries.

said %q be a

mere

abstract,

The

I


jf

— lOJ
works

SANKhvA YOGA.
to Self-knowledge preceded

I7

mere devotion
tion of all

by the renuncia-

what then ? Absolute freedom can be attained by knowledge conjoined with works, such as the Agnihotra, prescribed in the 6ruti and the smriti. This
is

— By

the conclusive teaching of the whole Gitii.

As supportii.

ing this view

may
It

be cited

—they

say

—the

verses

33,

ii.

47, iv. 15, etc.
ritual is sinful

should not be supposed that the
it

Vedic
?.

because

involves cruelty, etc.

"'

— Why

For, our Lord says that, since fighting which
sion of the warrior caste
it

is

the profes-

is

the proper duty (of the caste),

is

not sinful though

it

involves cruelty to elders, brothers,
therefore very horrible
;

sons and the like and
further says
that, in

is

and

He

the case of a neglect of this duty,
shalt incur sin."

"abandoning thy duty and fame thou
(ii.

33).

This

is

clearly

tantamount

to

asserting

that

those rites which are enjoined as

life-long duties

by the

Vedas are

sinless

though they involve cruelty to animals.
distinguished.

Sankhya and Yoga
This
is

wrong, since the Lord has made a distinction

between J«ana-nishfha and Karma-nish/ha, between the devotion of knowledge and the devotion of works, as based

upon two distinct standpoints The real nature 30 by the Lord of the Self as expounded here in ii. 11 is called Sankhya; an intellectual conviction of the truth produced by a study of that section, that the Self is no doer,
respectively

owing

to the

absence

in

Him

of such

changes as birth

forms the Sankhya standpoint (Sankhya-buddhi); and the enlightened

who

hold this view are called Sankhyas.

Yoga

consists in the performance
*

— before the

rise of the

foregoing

Such as the eating

of uchchhish/a or

What remains of the food

of which another

has already eaten.— (A).

r^

THE BAGAVAD-GITA.
to

[DiS. II.

conviction— of works as a means

moksha, requiring a

knowledge

of virtue

and

sin,

and presupposing that the
is

Self is distinct from the

body and

the doer and the enjoyer.

^

Such conviction forms the Yoga standpoint (Yoga-buddhi), and the performers of works who hold this view are Yogins. Accordingly two distinct standpoints are referred to by the Lord in ii. 39. Of these, He will assign to the Sankhyas
the J»ana-yoga, or devotion to knowledge, based upon the

Siinkhya standpoint

;

and so also

He

will assign

to

the

Yogins the path

of

Karma-yoga, or devotion

to works,

based

upon the Yoga standpoint (iii. 3). Thuswuth reference to the Sankhya and the Yoga standpoints two distinct paths have been shown by the Lord, seeing the impossibility of J«ana and Karma being conjoined in one and the same person simultaneously, the one being based upon the idea of nonagency and unity, and the other on the idea of agency and
multiplicity.

in

the

made here is also referred to 5atapatha-Brahma;;a. — Having enjoined renuncia-

The

distinction

tion

of all

works

in the

words,

"The brahma^as who,
for this region of

having no worldly attachments, wish only
the Self, should give up
all

worldly concerns, " the Brahma:

»a continues thus
^
»'

in

explanation of the said injunction

What have we to do
this
iv. 4, 22).

with progeny,

—we who
we

live

in this region,

Self?" (Bnhadara«yaka-Upa-

nishad,

In the same

Brahma«a

{ibid,

i.

4,

17)

are told that,

before marriage and after completing the investigation into

the nature of the the world
'

Dharma
'

or

Related Interests

edic injunctions, the

man

of

desired

to acquire the

means

of attaining to the

three regions (of

man,

of

Pit/'is,

and

of Devas), namely, a

son and the twofold wealth,— the one kind of

wealth being

'

called

'

humian ^nmanmsha),

'

consisting oi mrn-M
off

and

leadinig

to the

ie^:i(Mi

of Pitris, and the otber kind
(dairal,* nnmsis<t™g in

wealth

bang

caiM^ ' godly

wisdsm (^vidTa, npasana)

and leading to the region of Dsvas. Thus the Vedk; lites are intended fsK him oraly who has deames and has no knowledge of the Sdlf. The renandation of these isenjoined on him who sads cnlj the fcgion of the Sdf and is firee fr ~' Ti^sure. xhis a^!'ag»Tnii[ini«r qc the two fMlrihis to two mstmdt of pe^Ae would be unjustifiable if the Locd had intended a simultaneous conjunctiaa <tf knowledge and
'
.

Vedic

rites.

XeitlM9r could Aijuna's questifan with

whic
:

_:

:

...

t
~

. j^ui:

Discoujrse c^pensbe sattisfeudbcuily explained (on

.:

i
r

:

-^-"^ )•
^
-

How might Aijuna fdbseJy impute to the IjobA—
iiL I

~

allied {by the of^oncjat) been taught be&ure by the L.(iMrd and to have rrc
is

—that which —

:

:

:

r.rt by Aijuna, namdiy, Idae impossibility of and wixrks being idllowed by one and the Sui ; well as the superisioty of knowledge to wtvks ? Meireovo^, if conjunctian of knowiedge and works be intended Cor all, it m^ust have been intended for Arjui!iJ. is
I:

well.

In that case

how

migfat Aijiana adk about onlj

of the two,
"

Tell

me

con<dusively that which is the better of
"

the two
If

(v. i) ?

a {^ysacian £as piresQribed a mixture composed of bo::^ sweet: and cooling articles far a man who wishes to
reduce bilious heat (in the system)
the question,
''

,

thete cannott arise

which one akme of the two ingredients caa

alleviate tnliotts Iieat ?

20

THE BHAGAVAD-GITA.
Arjuna's question,
it

[DiS. II.
side,

might be alleged on the other

was due

to his not

having understood aright the teaching
then, the reply of the

of the Lord.

Even
in

Lord should have
in

been given

accordance with
:

the

question and

the

following form

"I meant

a conjunction of knowledge and
?" It

works;

why

are

you thus mistaken

would

not,

on the
twofold
is

other hand, be proper to answer in the words "

A

path was taught by
in

Me

"

(iii.

3),

— an answer which
is is

not
it.

accordance with the question and
If
it

altogether beside

be held that knowledge

to

be conjoined with

such works only as are enjoined in the smriti, even then
the assigning of the two paths to two distinct classes of

people respectively and other statements in that connection

would be equally inexplicable.
of the

Moreover, Arjuna's blame

Lord

as conveyed
to

by

his

words " why dost Thou
(iii,

command me
inexplicable,

do this horrible deed ?"

i)

would be

since

he knew that fighting was enjoined in

the smriti as a kshatriya's duty.
It is not,

therefore, possible

for

anybody

to

show

that

the Gita-5astra teaches a conjunction of knowledge with

any work whatever, enjoined

in the sruti or in the smriti.

Some

cases of apparent conjunction explained.
a person who, having been
first

Now
owing

engaged

in

works
evil

to ignorance

and worldly attachment and other
austerity,

tendencies, and
sacrificial
rites,

having since attained purity of mind by
gifts,
etc.,

arrives
this
is

at

the

knowledge

of

the grand truth

that "all

one, the

Brahman,
view to
set

the Absolute, the non-agent,"
in the

may
before

continue

performing works

same manner

as

with a

an example to the masses, though neither works

:

I

— lo]
life

SANKHYA YOGA.

21

nor their results attract him any longer.
of active

This semblance

on his part cannot constitute that course of
is

action with \vhich knowledge

sought to be conjoined as a

means

of attaining

moksha, any more than Lord Vasudeva's
of the duty
is

activity in

His discharge
to

of the

military

caste

can constitute the action that

to be

conjoined with

His

knowledge as a means
reward being absent
does not think
'I

moksha, or that conduces

to the

attainment of any specific end of His; egotism and hope of
in
'

both alike.

He who knows the
man

truth

act,

nor does he long for the results.

Or

to take another

example: suppose a

seeking

svarga or other such objects of desire goes through the

ceremony

of the

Agni-adhana as a preliminary

to the per-

formance of

sacrificial rites

such as the Agnihotra whereby

to attain his desire,

and then commences the Agnihotra,

which has thus became a

kamya

(interested) rite;

and
the

suppose further that the desire vanishes when the sacrifice
is

half completed, but that the
:

man

goes on with

it

all

same the Agnihotra can no longer be regarded as an interAccordingly our Lord says " though doing, ested rite.
he
is

not tainted,"
(xiii.

(v. 7),

and "The Self neither acts nor

is

tainted. "

31).

Now
"

as regards the passages,

"Do

thou also perform
(iv. 15),

action as did the ancients in the

olden time"

and
at
in-

By

action alone, indeed, did Janaka and
(iii.

others aim

perfection"

20),

we must

distinguish

two cases and

terpret the passages thus
First,

suppose that Janaka and the rest were engaged
truth.
;

in

works though they knew the
convinced that 'the senses'

Then,

they did so

lest

people at large might go astray

whereas they were sincerely

— but not the Self—were engaged


22
in

THE BHAGAVAD-gIta.
the objects
(iii.

[DiS. II.
perfection

28).

Thus they reached

by

knowledge alone.
Avorks
that

Tliough the stage of renunciation had
they

been reached, they attained perfection without abandoning
;

is

to

say,

did

not

formally

renounce

works.
Secondly, suppose that they had not

known
thus
:

the truth.

Then
of

the passages should be interpreted

— By meons
attained
purity
of
'

works dedicated

perfection,

to Isvara,
'

Janaka and the

rest

'

perfection

meaning here
says
self.

either

mind' or
that the

'

the

dawn
refers

of true knowledge.'

It is to this

doctrine

Lord

when he
'

"

The Yogin performs
)
.

action for the purification of the
after

" (v. 11

Elsewhere,

man attains perfection by worshipping Him with his own dut}'' (xviii. 46) the Lord again recommends the patli of knowledge, to him who has attained perfeclion, in the following words " How he who has
having said that
,
:

attained perfed^ion reaches

Brahman,

that do thou learn from

Me.

"( xviii. 50)

.

The
salvation

conclusion, therefore, of the Bhagavad-gita
is

is

that

attained by knowledge alone, not by knowledge

conjoined with works.

That such

is

the teaching

of

tlie

Gita we shall shew here and there
according to the context.

in the

following sections

The

Self is immortal.

Now
to his duty
grief,

finding

no means other than Self-knowledge
Arjuna who was thus confounded as
in the

for the deliverance of

and was deeply plunged Lord Vasudeva who wished

to

mighty ocean of help him out of it
:

introduced him to Self-knowledge in the following words

II,

The Lord said For those who deserve no grief thou
:

hast grieved,

)

I

12]

SANKHYA YOGA.

^3

and words of wisdom thou speakest.
the living and for the dead the wise not. ^

For

grieve

Such people as Bhishma and Drowa deserve no grief f, for they are men of good condudl and are eternal in their You have grieved for them saying " I am the real nature. cause of then- death; of what avail are pleasures of dominion and other things to me left alone without them ? " And you
also speak the

words

I

of

wise men.

Thus you
and wisdom,

exhibit

inconsistency in yourself,

— foolishness
(

— like a
They
:

maniac.

For

i

,

the wise

pa.ndltcih

)

— those who know the
For,
the
i.

Self— grieve neither
alone are wise
"

for the living

nor for the dead.

who know

the

Self.

sruti says

Having obtained wisdom
its

{pdnditya.,

c,

knowIII.

ledge of the Self) in
5,1-)

entirety..."

(Bri.

Up.

That

is,

you grieve

for those
;

who

are

really

eternal

and

who

really deserve
:

no grief

wherefore you are foolish.

(Question)

{Anszi'cr)

— Why do they deserve no grief? [Ansiver) — For, they are eternal. {Question) — How — The Lord says
:
:

?

:

:

''

to

illusion.

He who knows not the Self is He who is subject to
words

subject
illusion

personalities or their real nature.
nally they are

Perso;

men

of

good condCct

in

will obtain right

knowledge by devoutly
of the Scripture

their real nature

(as

identical with the

listening to the

Absolute) they are eternal,
I

and the

spiritual teacher,

and by

investi-

Referring to

what Arjuna said

in

gating into the nature of things as they
are with a view to
clearly

i.^zetscq.

— (A.)

understand
addressed.

such

teachings.

This shews to what
is

5 The second half of the verse is intended to show that Arjuna's delusion was

class of persons this teaching

due

to his ignorance of the true nature of

(

A.

the Self.— (A.)
their present

+

Whether you regard

:

14
12.

THE BMAGAVAD-GITA.
Never did
I

[DiS. II.

not exist,
;

nor thou,

nor
will

these rulers of

men

and no one of us

ever hereafter cease to exist.

Never did
did exist
I
;

I

cease to exist

;

on the other hand,

I

always

that

is,

through the past bodily births and deaths,

always existed.

So

also,

never did you cease to exist

;

on the other hand, you always did exist. So, never did these
rulers of

men

cease to exist

;

on the other hand, they always

did

exist.

So, neither

shall

we

ever cease to exist

;

on

the other hand,

we

shall all certainly continue to exist

even

after the death of these bodies.

As the

Self, the

Atman, we
present

are eternal

in all the three

periods of time

(past,

and

future).

The
than one

plural

'

us
it

'

is

used with reference to the bodies

that are different
Self.

;

does not

mean

that

there

are

more

{Question)

{Answer)
13.

— Now, how the Self eternal — Here follows an illustration
:

is

?

:

embodied (Self) passes into childhood and youth and old age, so does He pass into another body. There the
Just as in this body the

wise

man

is

not

distressed.
in the

We see how the embodied Self passes unchanged
present body into the three stages (avasthas)

of childhood,

youth or the middle age, and old age or the age of decay,
all distinct

from one another. At the close of the first of these stages the Self is not dead, nor is He born again at the com-

mencement

of the second

;

on the other hand, we see the Self

passing unchanged into the second and third stages. Just so


12—14]
SANKHYA-YO GA.
25

does the Self pass unchanged into another body. Such being
the case, the wise

man

is

not troubled

(in

mind) about

it.

Endurance

is

a condition of wisdom.
:

Now

Arjuna might argue as follows

It is
is

true that

when
the

one knows the Self to be eternal there
distressful delusion that the Self will die.

no room

for

But quite common
that

among

people, as
is

we

see, is the

distressful delusion

the Self

subject to heat and cold, pleasure and pain, as

also to grief

due

to the loss of pleasure or to the suffering of

pain.

As

against the foregoing, the
14.

Lord says
it

:

The

sense-contacts

is,

O

son of Kunti,

which cause heat and
they

cold, pleasure

and pain

;

come and

go, they are

impermanent.

Them
by which
according

endure bravely,

O

descendant of Bharata.*
like,

The

senses are those of hearing and the
It is

sound and other things are perceived.
to another interpretation,
i.

the contacts of

the senses with their objects such as sound
it is

or,

the senses and the contacts

e.,

the sense-objects, such as sound, which are contacted

by the senses,
pain.

—which produce heat and
of

cold, pleasure

and

Cold

is

pleasant at one time and painful at another.

So also heat
*

is

an inconstant nature,

f

But pleasure and
feelings of

of Kunti'

Here Arjuna is addressed as the 'son and again as the 'descendant of

implies that the subjective

harmony and discord
external objects
first

are the immediate

Bharata,' to

show

that he alone

is

fit

to

antecedents of pleasure and pain.

The

receive the teaching

who

is

well descen-

produce subjective

ded on the

father's as

well as on the

changes, such as the sensations of heat

mother's side.
f

— (A.)
of heat

The

separate mention

and

cold which should properly be included

and cold or the feelings of harmony and discord, and then produce pleasure and pain.— (.\.)

under the category of objects (vishayas)


26

THE BHAGAVAD-GITA.

[Dis. II.

pain are constant in their respective natures as pleasure and
pain.

Wherefore heat and cold are mentioned separately
''

from pleasure and pain. Because
are not permanent.

these sense-contacts,

etc.,

have, by nature, a beginning and an

end, therefore they
f

Wherefore do thou bravely endure
;

them, heat and cold &c.
grief on their account.
[Question)
:

i.

e.,

give not thyself up to joy or

—What

good
?

will accrue

to

him who bears

heat and cold and the like
[Answer)
15.
:

— Listen.

not,

O

That wise man whom, verily, these afflict chief of men, to whom pleasure and pain
is fit.

are same, he for immortality

That person
is

to

whom

pleasure and pain are alike,

neither exults in pleasure nor feels

—who dejected in pain, — who
affect in_virtue _of his in his vision of the

a

man

of

wisdom,

whom

heat and cold and other things

such as those mentioned above do not
vision of the eternal Self,

—that man, firm

eternal Self

and bearing calmly the pairs
is

of opposites (such

as heat and cold),

able to attain immortality

(moksha).

|

*

"It

Some MSS. of ths Bhdshya here add: may be objected that it the objects
the wheel of

;

Though by endurance alone one may

not be able to secure the highest

human

of the senses or their contacts give plea-

end,
tion

still,

when coupled with
to

discrimina-

sure and pain,

mundane
the

and indiflercnce

worldy objects

existence will be endless, since those objects

and

their contacts with

senses

and pleasures, it becomes a means to the right knowledge, which leads to deliverance.

are endless.

This objection
these...',

does

not

He who
laid

has

satisfied

all

the

apply here, for
t

conditions
a second condi-

Here

is

laid

down

nature of his
only
is

down can realize own eternal Self, and

the

then

tion of right knowledge, vis.,

calm endu(\).

he

fit

for

the final teaching that

rance in pleasure .and pain.

leads to deliverance.

— (A),

15

— 16]

SANKHYA-YOGA.

27

The Real and the Unreal.
For the following reason also
endure heat and cold,
16.
etc.
it

is

proper that thou

shouldst abandon grief and distressful delusion and calmly

For,
is
;

Of

tiio

unreal no being there
real.

there
is

is

r

no non-being of the

Of both

these

the

truth seen by the ssers of the Essence.

There

is

no bhava

— no

being,

no existence

— of

the

unreal (asat) such as heat and cold as well as their causes.

Heat, cold,

etc.,

and the causes

thereof,

which are (no doubt)

perceived through the organs of perception, are not absolutely real (vastu-sat)
;

for,

they are effects or changes (vikara),

and every change

is

temporary.

For

instance, no objective

form, such as an earthen pot, presented to consciousness

by the eye, proves
apart
is

to be real,

because
effect
its

it

is

not

perceived
it

from clay.

Thus every

is

unreal, because

not

perceived as distinct from
is

cause.
it is

Every
not

effect,

such as a pot,
before
its

unreal, also

because

perceived
likewise

production and after
is

its destruction.""
it is

And

the cause, such as clay,

unreal because

not perceived

apart from
(

its

cause,
:

f
it

Objection
§
:

)

— Then

comes

to

this

:

nothing at

all

exists.

{Ajisiciey)

— No (such objection applies here).
and
§

For, every

fact of

experience involves twofold consciousness (buddhij.
Whatsvei- exists not in the before ths perception of the series of causes
effects

*

Cp.

'

ginning or in the end exists not really In
the present.' (Gaudap.ldakariktts on the

must be

illusory.

— (A).
thinks that
is

The

objector evidently

Miindiikya-upanishad.
+
is

IV, 31).— (A).

there cannot be a thing which
a ca\iso nor an effect,

neither

This implies that the Absolute Reality
not conditioned by causality and there;

28

THE BHAGAVAD-GITA.
(sat)
is
;

[DlS.II.

the consciousness of the real
the unreal
(asat).

Now

that

and the consciousness of (said to be) real, of which and that
to

our consciousness never

fails

be

unvcal,

of

which our consciousness
reality
in
all

' fails.

Thus

the

distinction of

and unreality depends on our consciousness.
our experience,

Now,

twofold consciousness arises with

reference to one and the
as,
'

same substratum (samanadhikarana),
'

a cloth
'

existent,'

a pot existent,'
'

'

an

elephant
'

existent

—not

as

in the expression

a blue lotus

§

—and

so on everywhere.
&c.,
is

Of

the two, *the consciousness of pot,
out,

temporary as was already pointed

but not

the consciousness of existence.

Thus, the object corresbecause
but what corresponds to
is

ponding

to our consciousness of pot, &c., is unreal,
is

the consciousness

temporary

;

our consciousness of existence
consciousness
{Objection)
:

not unreal,

because the

is

unfailing.
is

— When the pot

absent and the consciousfails.

ness of

it fails,

the consciousness of existence also

* There mast be an Absolute Reality which is neither a cause nor an effect. For, what is fleeting must be unreal, and

not two distinct realities, related to each

other as the universal and the particulars,
or as a substance and the pot, &c.,
its

attribute.

If

what

is

constant must be

real.

In the

were as

real as existence

case of our illusory perception of a rope mistaken for a snake, we hold that the

we

should be at a loss to explain why,
to

with reference

one and the same sub-

snake

is
it

unreal because our consciousfails,

stratum, the two

— existence
and a

and the pot

ness of

whereas what corresponds
the perception "this the rope,
is

or the like— should always present themselves togsther to our consciousness any

to "this"

in
viz.,

a

snake,"

is
it

real,
is

because
constant

more than

a pot

cloth.

Illusion,
for

our

consciousness
all
its

of

on the other hand, can account

the

through

illusory

manifestations.

twofold consciousness of existence

and
there

The

reality

and the unreality of things

the pot and so on, arising with reference
jg

are thus to be inferred from our

own

g^g ^^j

jj^j

sa^^o substratum,
Reality

experience.
§

being only ono
lotus

blue

and
'

being two

realities.

which corresponds

— namely, that to existence — and
all

Existence and the pot refer
sentence
this
is

— as

in

the

the rest being unreal, as in the case of a rope mistaken for various other things

tha

man we

saw'

— to
are

only one thing really existing.

They

which are unreal.

(A),

l6]

SANKIIYA-VOGA.

29
liere).

(AnsKier)

:

— No

'•

(such objection applies
still

For the

consciousness of existence
other objects such as cloth.

arises

with

reference to
of existence

The consciousness

corresponds indeed only to the attributive (visesha/^a).
{Ohjecfion) :~L.ike

the

consciousness of existence,

the

consciousness of the pot also arises with reference to another
pot (present).

{Answer)

:

— You
:

cannot say

so,

for

the consciousness of

the pot does not arise with reference to a cloth.
{Objection)

— Neither

does the consciousness of existence

arise in the case of the pot that has disappeared.

w

[AnsK'er)

:

— You cannot say
;

so, for there is

no substantive

(viseshya) present.

The consciousness
that

of existence corres-

ponds

to the attributive

and as there can be no consciousof the

ness of the attributive without
substantive,
arise in the

corresponding

how can

the

consciousness of the attributive
?

absence of the substantive

— Not that

there

is

no objective reality present, corresponding to the consciousness of existence.
{Objection)
:

If the

substantive such as the pot be unreal,

twofold consciousness arising with reference to
the

one and

same substratum
:

is

inexplicable.^

{Ansic'cr)

— No;
is

for,

we

find the

twofold consciousness

arising with reference to one

and the same substratum, even
to the twofold

though one of the two objects corresponding
consciousness
*

unreal, as for instance in
of existence
still
§

the

case of a
In
all

The consciousness

The

objector

means

this:

our

arises in conjunction with the

abssnce of
is

experience,

we

find both

substantive
So, here,

the pot.

When we
is

say

'

here

no

pot,'

and the
the pot

attributive to be real.

existence

signified

by reference

to the

must be as

real as existence.

— (A)

place where the pot

is

said to be absent.


30

THE BHAGAVAD-GITA.

[DiS.II.

mirage, where our consciousness takes the form " this

is

water."
fictitious

Therefore, there

is

no existence of the unreal, the
pairs of opposites
real

— such

as the

body and the
for,

or

of

their

causes.

Neither does the
;

— the

Self

(Atman)

— ever cease to exist

as already pointed out,
fails.

our consciousness of the Self never

This conclusion
unreal
is

— that the real never existent — regarding
minds
of

is

ever existent and the
the

two, the Self and
is

the non-Self,
before the

the real and the vmreal,

always present
the All,

those

who

attend only to truth, to

the real nature
'

of the

Brahman, the Absolute,

That'.

Thou

hadst therefore better follow the view of such
off"

truth-seers, shake

grief

and delusion, and. being assured
are really

that

all

phenomena

(vikaras)

non-existent

and

are, like the mirage,

mere

fagle

appearances, do thou calmly

bear heat and cold and other pairs of opposites, of which

some

are constant

and others inconstant

in their

nature as

productive of pleasure or pain.

What,
17.

then,

is

that

which

is

ever real

?

Listen

:


all

But know that
is

to be imperishable

by which

this

pervaded.

None can cause

the destruction

of That, the Inexhaustible.

Unlike the unreal, That
vanish
;

—you must understand — does not
'Sat',
is

That, the Brahman, the

the Real, by which

all

this world, including the akasa,

pervaded, just as pots and

other objects are pervaded by the iikasa or space.

Brahman
therefore

does not undergo increase or diminution and
inexhaustible.
in Itself
;

is

This Brahman, the
unlike the body
of)
It

'

Sat

',

is

not exhausted

for,

has no parts.
It
;

Nor does
for,

It

diminish by (loss

anything belonging to

nothing

l6

18]

S\NKHYA-YOGA.
Self.
;

31
is

belongs to the
loss of

Devadatta, for instance,

ruined by
that

wealth

but

Brahman does

not suffer loss in

way.

Wherefore, nobody can bring about the disappear-

ance or destruction of the inexhaustible Brahman.

No-

body
act

— not even the Isvara,
For, the Self
oneself.
is

the Self.

Supreme Lord — can destroy Brahman Itself, and one cannot
the

upon

What,
constant
18.

then,
?

is

the unreal (asat),
:

whose existence

is

not

Listen

These bodies of the embodied

(Self)

who

is

eternal, indestructible

and unknowable, are said

to

have an end.
Bharata.
It is

Do

fight^ therefore,

O descendant

of

said

by the enlightened that these bodies of the

Self,

who

is

eternal, indestructible

and unknowable, have an end,
in

like those seen in

dreams or produced by a juggler.
mirage consists
into their nature

of such objects as the

— The end the cessation — as the
by proper
tests

result of investigation

of

truth

— of the idea of reality which has been associated with
So
also these bodies
is

them.

have an end.
'

[No tautology
'

involved in the use of both

eternal

'

and

indestructible

;'

for,

two kinds of eternality and of destrucour experience.

tion are

The physical body, for instance, entirely disappearing when reduced to ashes, is said to have been destroyed. The physical body, while existmet with
in

ing as such,

may
to

be transformed owing to sickness or such
it is

other causes, and
thing)

then said to have ceased to be (someelse).
is

and

have become (something
'

"Eternal"
subject to

and

'

indestructible

here imply that the Self

neither sort of destruction.

Otherwise, the eternality of


3^

THE bhagavad-gItA
Self,

[Dis. II.
like

Atman, the
this

might perhaps be understood to be
It is

that of clay or other material objects.

the denial of

which
Self

is is

conveyed by the two
unknowable,

epithets.]

The

— not determinable by the senses
means
is

(pratyaksha) or any other
[Objection)
:

of knowledge.

— The

Self

determined by the

Agama

or

Revelation, and by perception &c. prior to Revelation,
{Answcy)
:

— The

objection

is

untenable, for the Self

is

self-determind (svatas-siddha).

When

the Self, the
is

knower

(pramatn), has been determined, then only

possible a

search for proper authorities on the part of the knower with
a view to obtain right knowledge.

mining the Self—
nobody.

In fact, without deterseeks
is

'

I

am

I

'

—-none

to

determine the
(aprasiddha)
is

knowable
to

objects. Indeed the Self

unknown

And

the Scripture (Sastra) which
its

the

iinar''

authority obtains

authoritativeness regarding the Self, as

serving only to eliminate the adhyaropa/^a or superimposition (on the Self)

of the attributes

§

alien to

as revealing

what has been altogether
:

Him, but not unknown. The sruti

also describes the Self thus

" That which

is

the Immediate, the Unremote, the
is

Brahman, which
(Bn. Up.
ii.

the Self,

which

is

within

all."

4. i). is

Because the Self
fighting.

thus eternal (nitya) and immutable

(avikriya), therefore,

do thou

fight,

— do

not abstain from

*

i. e.,

the

last.

The

Sruti teaches that

reahsation of this truth taught
sruti.— (A)
§

by the

t he Seh'is the only real thing and that all,

others

are^

illusory

and

non-existent.

Such

as

humanity and agency.

No pramana

or authority can survive the


l8

19]

SANKHYA-YOGA.

33

Here the duty of fighting is not enjoined. Arjuna had But overpowered by already been engaged in lighting. It is only grief and dehision he abstained from fighting.
the removal of obstructive causes (pratibandha,
viz.,

grief

and delusion) that
fore in the

is
'

here attempted by the Lord.
'

Where-

words
'•

do thou fight
;

the

new command (vidhi) known already.

He

only refers

Lord issues here no to what is commonly

The

Self

is

unconcerned

in action.

The Lord now quotes two Vedic
view that the Gita-5astra
sawsara, such
as
grief
is

verses to confirm the

intended to remove the cause of
to

and delusion, but not

enjoin

works.
only a false notion of yours, says the Lord, that you think thus " Bhishma and others will be killed by me
It is
:

in the battle

;

I

will

be their slayer."

— How

?

ig.

Whoever

looks upon

Him

as the slayer,

and whoever looks upon
these
slain.

know

not

aright.

Him as He slays

the slain,
not, nor

both
is

He
speak-

He who
ing

understands the Self

— of whom

we

are

—as the agent in the act of slaying,
want
of discrimination.
'

and he who regards

Him
for
'

as the sufferer in the act of slaying

when
'

the body

is slain,

neither of these two has understood the Self aright,

I

am

slain

Those who think I slay or when the body is slain, and thus identify the
'

Self with the
(ahani),
*

object of the

consciousness of

'I,'

— they do not understand the real nature of the
to say, the
is

the ego
Self.

That

is

Lord does not here
absolutely neces-

mean
sary.

that fighting

in

had no reason to desist from the fightin<: which he had engaged of himself.

He

has simply shewn that Arjuna

34

THE BHAGAVAD-GiTA.
is

[DlS.
neither

II,

Being immutable (avikriya), the Self
nor the object of the action of slaying.

the

agent

The

Self

is

immutable.
?

How
20.

is

the Self immutable
:

— This

is

answered by the

n3xt verse

He

is

not born, nor does

He

ever die
;

;

after
re-

having been,
verse.

He

again ceases not to be

nor the

Unborn,
not slain
not born
;

eternal,

unchangeable and primeval,
is slain.

He
He
last

is

when

the body

is

no such change

of condition

as birth

takes place in the Self.

Nor does He

change of condition called

death. —

die
*

:

this denies
'

the

Ever

should be

construed with the denial of every change, thus
born, never dies, and so on.
isted,

:

He is never

— For, the

Self,

having once ex-

does not afterwards cease to be any more. In ordinary
is

parlance he

said to die
be.

who, having once

existed,

after-

wards ceases to
fore

Neither does the Self

existence, like the body, having not existed

come into before. Wherewho, having
is

He

is

unborn.

For, he
into

is

said to be born

not

existed,

comes
is

existence.

Not

so

the

Self.
die,

Wherefore

He

unborn.

.\nd because

He

does not
first
it

He
last

is

eternal.
all

[Though, by the denial of the
changes have been denied, yet

and the
thought

changes,

is

necessary to .directly deny the intermediate changes, in the

words
all

'

unchangeable,' &c., so as to imply the absence of

such changes of condition as motion, though not specified

here.]

He

is

unchangeable
of condition

:

He

is

constant, not subject
(

to the

change

known

as decline
in

apakshaya

).

Having no

parts,

He

does not diminish

His own sub-

-

ig

— 21

]

SAN'KHYA-VOGA.

35

stance.
loss of

As devoid
a quality.

of qualities,
is

He

does not diminish by

He

primeval, not subject to the change

known

as growth (vrlddhi) as opposed to decline. For, that
in size

which increases

by the accretion

of parts

is

said to

grow and

to

be renewed.

As devoid

of parts, the Self
;

was
i.

as fresh in the past (as

He

is

ever the

same)
is

;

slain

when
is

the body

c. He is now or will be in future He never grows. And He is not slain He is not transformed when
:

the body

transformed.

— To

avoid
:

tautology,
the
Self
is

slaying

is

interpreted to

mean transformation

not subject

to transformation.

This verse teaches the absence
bhava-vikaras,
to

in

the Self of the six *
of condition

— of the six

vikdvas or changes

which

all

hhavas or beings in the world are subject.

The

passage, on the whole,
sorts of change.

means that the Self is devoid of all Hence the words in the previous verse,
not aright." to

" both these

know

The enlightened man has
Having
started (in
ii.

renounce works.
is

19) the

proposition that the Self

neither the agent nor the object of the action of slaying,

and

having stated

in

the next verse the immutability of the Self

as the reason for that statement, the

Lord concludes the

proposition as follows
21.
nal,

;


as indestructible, eter-

Whoso knows Him

unborn and inexhaustible,

— How,

O

son

of

Pritha,

and whom, does such a man cause
does he slay
?

to slay,

and

whom

*

Such as

birth, existence, growth,

transformation, decline, and destruction.


36

THE BHAGAVAD-gItA.

[DiS. II. as

He who knows
indestructible,
i.e.,

the Self (described in the last verse)

devoid of the

final

change called death,

as eternal,

i.e.,

devoid of change called transformation, as
i.e.,

unborn and inexhaustible,

devoid of birth and decline,
of this description

how

does an enlightened

man

do the act
?

of slaying, or

how

does he cause another to slay does he at
is

He

slays

nobody

at all, nor

all

cause another to slay.

— In

both the places, denial

meant, since no question can have
f

been asked."
ing to
all

The

reason

for the denial of slaying apply-

actions alike,

what the Lord means

to

teach in

this section appears to be the denial of all action

whatso-

ever in the case of the enlightened

;

the denial, however, of

the specific act of slaying being only meant as an example.
{Objection)
:

— What

special

reason

for

the

absence of

action in the case of an enlightened

Avhen denying actions in the
slay
"
?

man does the Lord see words " how does such a man

[Ansiver)

:

— The
:

immutability of the Self has already
for the

been given as the reason
[Objection)

absence of
;

all

actions.

— True,

it

has been given

but that cannot

be a sufficient reason, since the enlightened

man

is distinct

from the immutable

Self.

We

cannot indeed say that a
pillar

man who

has known an immovable

can have no

action to do.

{AnswerJ:
enlightened
(vidvattrt)

— This
man
is

objection

does

not

apply.

For, the

identical with the Self.

Enlightenment
etc.

does not pertain to the aggregate of the body,
other
alternative, the
Self,

Therefore, as the only

enlightened
not included

man
*

should be identical with the
Because no reply follows.

who

is

f ij;.,

the immutability of the Self,


2l]
in the aggregate
in the case of

SANKHYA-YOGA.

37
being possible
all

and

is

immutable.

No action
it is

an enlightened man,

but just to deny

action in the

words " how does

sucli a

man

slay ?"

Now,
is,

for instance, the Self,

while remaining immutable,

by

reason
states

His not being distinguished from intellectual (buddhi-vnttis), imagined, through ignorance, to be
of

the percipient of objects, such as sound, perceived by
intellect

the

and other means.

Similarly, the Self

is

imagined
unreal

to

be enlightened, merely because of avidyrt associating
with that intellectual perception

Him

— which

is

which takes the form of discrimination between the Self and the not-Self, while in reality the Self has undergone no
change whatever.
the Lord

From

this assertion of

impossibility

of

action in the case of an enlightened
is

man, the conclusion of evident, that those acts which are enjoined by

the scripture are intended for the unenlightened.

Works
{Objection)
:

are

meant

for the unenlightened.
is

— Even knowledge
it

intended for the unen-

lightened only, as
flour over again

— to

would be useless like grinding the impart knowledge to those who already
it is

possess
that

it.

Wherefore,

hard to explain the distinction
unenlightened, and not for the

works are meant

for the

enlightened.
(Ansji/er)
:

—This

objection

does not

apply.

For, the

distinction can be explained

by the existence or non-exisfor the un-

tence of something to be performed in the two cases respectively.

(To explain)

:

There remains something

enlightened

man

to do,

on understanding the meaning of

the injunctions

regarding the Agnihotra &c.
sacrificial
rites

He

thinks

that the

Agnihotra and other

are to

be

38

THE BHAGAVAD-GITA.

[DiS.

II.

performed, and that the

many

necessary accessories thereto
I

should be acquired.
'

He

thinks further, "

am

the agent,

this is

my

duty."

Nothing, on the contrary, remains to

be performed subsequent to the reahzation of the truth of such teachings as are contained
real nature of the Self.
in
ii.

20

etc.,

regarding the,
arises

No

other conviction

except

that the Self

is

one and non-agent.

Wherefore, the distinc-

tion referred to can bs accounted for.

In the case of

him who thinks

that the Self

is

the

doer

of actions, there will necessarily arise the idea that he
this or that thing to do.

has

A man who
is

possesses this sort of

knowledge
enjoined.

is

qualified for actions,

and on him actions are
it is

Such a man
specified,

unenlightened, for
(ii.

said

that

"both these know not aright"
ed

19).

In

ii.

21, the enlighten-

man

is

and with reference

to

him actions are

denied in the words "
fore the enlightened

how does such a man slay ?" Thereman who has seen the immutable Self
have only
to
'''

and the nian who
renounce
all

is

eager for emancipation

works.

Hence

it

is

that

Lord Naraya»a

distinguishes the enlightened

Sankhyas from the unenlight-

ened followers of works, and teaches to them respectively

two
son,

distinct paths

(iii.

3).

Accordingly, Vyasa said to his

"Now there are two
first,

paths."

(Alokshadharma, xxiv.

6).

In the same connection, Vy^sa said that the path of works
is

the

and that renunciation comes next. and again
in v. 13, &c.)

Our Lord
this

will refer to this distinction again
{vide
iii.

work.

27, 28

;

*

The

latter,

i.

e.,

he

who

is

eager for

the acts enjoined

on him, these acts
to

Moksha, but who does not yet possess
Self-knowledge, has no doubt to perform

being not prejudicial to his de%'Otion

knowledge.

2l]

SANKHYA-YOGA.

39
is

Knowledge
[Objection]
:

of

the Immutable Self

possible.

— In this connection
arise

some conceited pedants
conviction 'I

say:

To no man can
Self, the

the

am

the
six

immutable
are subject

One, the non-agent, devoid of the
all

changes, such as birth, to which
; '

things

in

the

world

which conviction

arising, renunciation of all

works

is

enjoined.

[Ansioci'):

— This objection does not apply
(ii.

here.

For, in

I

vain then would be the Scriptural teaching, such as "the Self
is

not born," &c.

20).

They

(the objectors)

may

be asked
in the

why knowledge

of

the immutability, non-agency, unity,

&c., of the Self cannot be

produced by the Scripture

same way as knowledge of the existence of dhavma and a-dharma and of the doer passing through other births is produced by the teaching of the Scripture ?
[Opponent)
:

— Because the Self
so.

is

inaccessible

to

any of

the senses.
[Answer)
:

— Not

For, the Scripture says "
[Bi'i.

It

can be

seen by the mind alone."
refined

Up.

iv, 4,

19).

The mind,

by Sama and Dama /. e., by the subjugation of and equipped with the the body, the mind and the senses teachings of the Scripture and the Teacher, constitutes the

sense by which the Self

may
•'•

be seen.

Thus, while the
the
that

Scripture and

inference
it is

(anumiina) teach
to hold

immutano such

bility of the Self,

mere temerity

knowledge can arise.

*

The

inference

may be

thus stated

:

more than

Infancy, youth

and old age are

such changes as birth, death, agency and
the like arc not inherent in
tlic

inherent in Him.

Sclf.any

:


THE BHAGAVAD'GiTA.
[DiS. 11.

40

The enlightened should
It

resort to Jnana-Yoga.
arises

must be granted that the knowledge which thus
its

necessarily dispels ignorance,

opposite.
ig.
It

This ignorance
is

has been already indicated
that the notion that the Self

in
is

ii.

there taught
of

the agent or the object

the action of slaying

is

a
is

product of ignorance.

That

the agency, &c., of the Self

a product of ignorance holds

good
table.

in the case of all actions alike, since the Self is
It is

immu-

only the agent, subject to variations of condition,

that causes another person,
to do

who

can be acted on by him,

an action.
all

This agency

— direct

and causative with

respect to

actions alike

in the case of

Vasudeva denies in ii. 21 an enlightened man, with a view to show

— Lord

that the enlightened

man

has nothing to do with any action

whatsoever.
[Question)

[Answer)
the

:

— What, then, has he to do — This has been already answered
:

?

in

iii.

3,

that

Sankhyas should

resort to

J»ana-Yoga or devotion to

knowledge.

works
in the

in

Lord will teach renunciation of all the words, "Renouncing all actions by thought, the So
also, the

self-controlled

man

rests happily in

the nine-gated city,
(v. 13).

body

— neither acting nor causing to act "

[Objection)
is

— Here the word
is

'

thought

'

implies that there

no renunciation of the acts of speech and body.

— No, for there the qualification, actions.' [Objection): — The renunciation of all mental acts only
[Answer):
'all

is

meant.
[Answer)
:

— No.

Since

all

acts of speech

and body are

preceded by mental activity, they cannot exist when the

mind

is

inactive.

*^

2t]

SANKHVA-YOGA.

4I

{Objection)

:

— Then,
for,

let

him renounce

all

other acts of
of speech

mind except such as are necessary for those acts and body which are enjoined by the Scripture.
(Aiisii'ei')
:

— No,

there

is

the qualilication, "neither

acting nor causing to act."

:— Then, the renunciation of all actions, here taught by the Lord, may be meant for the dying man, not for the living man.
{Objection)

{Anszi'ey):—No;

for,

then, the qualilication

'

rests in

the

nine-gated

city

— in

the

body

'

would have no meaning.
all

No man who
Objection
:

is

dying can by giving up

activity be said

to rest in the body.
(
)

— Let
body

us then construe the passage thus

:

Neither acting nor causing another to act, he, the disembodied soul of the enlightened man, deposits
activity in the
(/.

(saw

+

nyas)

all

c.,

knows
and

that all activity belongs to

the body, not to the Sslf)

rests

happily.
'

Let us not,
he rests
in

on the

contrary, construe, as you ha\e done,

the body,' &c.

{Answer)
is

:

— No. Everywhere
iict

(in

thesruti and in the smriti)
is

emphatically asserted that the Self

immutable.

"•'

Moreover, the

of resting presupposes a place to rest in,
it.

whereas the act of renunciation does not presuppose

And
not

the Sanskrit verb
'

'

saw

+

nyas

'

means

'

to renounce,'

to deposit.'

Therefore,

the

Gita-Sastra teaches that

he wlio has

acquired a knowledge of the Self should resort to renuncia-

tion only, not to works. Tiiis
in

w^

shall

show here and

there

the following sections, wherever they treat of the Self.
* Wherefore
the Self cannot be the agent of an action.

42

THE BHAGAVAD-GiTA.

[DiS, II.

How
To
ble
?

the Self

is

immutable.
It
is

return to the immediate subject.
is

has been

stated

that the Self

indestructible.

Like what
:

He

indestructi-

Here follows the answer
22.

Just as a

man

casts off worn-out clothes

"

and puts on others which are new, so the embodied (Self) casts off worn-out bodies and enters
others which are new.
Just
as, in this world, a

man
man

casts off the

clothes

that
in

have been worn-out and puts on others which are new,
the

same manner,

like the

(of

the world), the embodied

Self abandons old bodies, and,

with^-i'*-

undergoing any

change, enters others which are new.

Why
23.

is

the Self quite changeless

?

The Lord
;

says

:

not,

Him, weapons cut not Him, fire burns and Him, water wets not; Him, wind dries not.
i.

Him,
they can

e.,

the embodied Self of

weapons, such as swords, do not
effect

whom we are speaking, cut. As He has no parts,
into parts.

no division of
:

Him
;

So, hre does
to

not burn

Him

even

fire

cannot reduce
for,

Him

ashes.
lies

Neither does water wet

Him

the power of water
is

in disjoining the parts of a thing

which

made up

of parts, partless

by wetting
Self.

it

;

and

this

cannot

take place in the

So, wind destroys
it

an object containing moisture,

by drying

up

;

but even wind cannot dry up the Self.

\Mierefore,
24.

He

cannot be cut, nor burnt, nor wetted,
up.

nor dried

He

is

everlasting, all-pervading,

stable, firm,

and

eternal.

22

— 25]
Because
the
like

SANKIIVA-YOGA.

43
objects

mutually

destructive

— namely,
Because

swords and the
is

— cannot destroy the Self, therefore He
He
He
is

everlasting.

Because everlasting,

all-pervading.

Because all-pervading,
stable, the

He

is

stable like a pillar.
is

Self

is

firm.

Wherefore

eternal, not

produced out of any cause, not new.

Xo
verses

charge of tautology can
(ii.

be brought against the
ii.

21-24) o^ the ground that in

20 the eternality

and the immutability of the Self have been taught and that

what has been
(ii.

said

regarding the Self in these verses

21-24) ^dds nothing to

verse,

what was taught in that one something being repeated verbatim, and something
in idea.

more being repeated
very
difficult

Since the Self

is

a

thing

k

Lord VAsudeva again and again introduces the subject and describes the same thing n other words, so that in some way or other the truth may be grasped by the intellect of the mortals (saw/sarins) and
to

understand,

thus the cessation of their saw/sara

may be

brought about.

No room
Moreover,
25.

for grief.

He,

it is

said, is unraanifest,

unthinkable

and unchangeable.
As the
manifest.

Wherefore, knowing

Him
He

to

be such, thou hadst better grieve not.
Self
is

inaccessible to

any of the senses,

is

not

Wherefore,

He

is

unthinkable.

For, that alone

which

is

perceived by the senses becomes an object of
Verily, the Self
is

thought.

unthinkable, because
is

He

is

inaccessible to the senses.
isquite unlike milk, which,
itiade to

He
He

unchangeable.

The

Self

mixed with buiter-milk, can be
is

change

its

form.

changeless, also because

44

THE BHAGAVAD-GITA.
has no parts
;

[DiS.lI.
is

He
to

for,

whatever has no parts
is

ne\er found

undergo change.

Because the Self

changeless,

He

is

unchangeable.

Therefore, thus

understanding

the

Self,

thou hadst better not grieve, nor think that thou art their slayer and tliat they are slain by thee.
Grariting that the Self
is

not everlasting, the

Lord

pro-

ceeds

.•

But even if thou thinkest of Him as ever being born and ever dying, even then, O mighty26.

armed, thou oughtst not to grieve thus.
Granting that the Self of whom we are speaking is, according to the popular view, again and again born whenever a body comes into existence, and again and again dead

whene^er the body
think,
for,

dies,

— even
what

if

the Self were so, as
to

you
;

O

mighty-armed,
is

you ought not
is

grieve thus
birth
is

death

inevitable to
is

born

;

and

in-

evitable to

what

dead.

Accordingly,
27.

To

that

whicli

is

born, death
is

is

indeed
is

certain;
tain.

and

to that

which

dead, birth

cer-

^^'herefore, about

the

unavoidable thing,

thou oughtst not to grieve.

To

that which

has had birth, death
is

happens without
is

failure,

and birth

sure to happen to that which

dead.

Since birth and death are unavoidable, therefore you ought
not to grieve regarding such an

unavoidable thing.
if

If
is

death

is

natural to that which has had birth, and
is

birth

natural to that which has had death, the thing
able.

unavoid-

Regarding such an unavoidable thing you ought not

to grieve.

25—29]
Neither
is it

SAN KliVA- YOGA.
proper to
f^rieve

.

^5
are

regarding beings which
effects
;

mere combinations of (material) causes and
28.

for,

Beings have their beginning unseen, their

middle seen, and their end unseen again.

Why

any lamentation regarding them

?

The

origin

— prior

to

manifestation

— of
is

beings such as
of

sons and friends,

who

are

mere combinations
effects,

material

elements correlated as causes and
(avyakta).
state
is

non-perception

And having come
to death

into

existence, their middle

— previous
Thus
it

is

perceived.

Again

their

end

non-perception: after
is

death, they

become unperceived

again.

said

:

"

He

has come from non -perception (the unseen) and

has gone back to non-perception (the unseen).
not thine, nor thou
for ?"
his.

He

is

What

is

this vain lamentation

(^lahrtbh, Str/parva. 2-13)
illusions

About these mere
again unseen

first
is

unseen, then seen,

and

— what occasion
is
?

there for any lamentation?
difficult to realise.

The

Self just spoken of

very

Why
is

am I to blame you alone while the cause, viz., illusion, common to all One may ask how is it that the Self
:

is

difficult to realise

?

The Lord

says

:

Him as a wonder and so also another speaks of Him as a wonder; and as a wonder another hears of Him and though hearing, none understands Him at all.
29,

One

sees

;

;

One

sees the Self as a wonder, as a thing
all

unseen, as

something strange, as seen
another speaks of

on a sudden.
;

And

so,

Him

as a

wonder

and another hears

46
of

THE BHAGAVAD-gItA.

[DiS. II.

Him
Or
(as

as a wonder.

Though

seeing

Him, hearing and
the Self

speaking of Him, none reahses

Him
:

at all.

otherwise interpreted)
like
is

He

that sees

is

something
hears of
the Self

a wonder.

He

that speaks

and he that

Him
is

only one

among many thousands.

Thus

hard to understand.

Now
30.

the Lord concludes the subject of this section thus:

He, the embodied
killed,

(Self)

in

every one's

bodv, can ^c^er be
rata.

O

descendant of Bhato grieve

Wherefore thou oughtst not

about

any creature.

Though

the body of any creature whatever
;

is killed,

the

Self cannot bs killed

wherefore, you ought not to grieve

regarding any creature whatever,
else.

Bhishma

or

anybody

A
Here
(in
ii.

warrior should fight.
has been shown that from the standis

30)

it

point of absolute truth there

no occasion

for

grief

and

attachment.

Not only from the standpoint

of

absolute

truth, but also,

31.

Having regard to thine own duty

also,

thou

oughtst not to waver.
is

For, to a Kshatriya, there

nothing more wholesome than a lawful battle.
also to the fact that fighting
to
is

Having regard
ya's duty,
is

a Kshatri-

you ought not

swerve from that duty, which
that

natural to a Kshatriya,
(/.

— from

which

is

natural to

you

c,

becoming the caste and the order
This fighting
it is

to

which you

belong).

is

a supreme duty, not opposed to

Law,

since

conducive, through conquest of dominion,

29

— 34l
of

SAN KHYA- YOGA.

47
;

to the interests

Law
is

and popular well-being

and

to

a

Ksliatriya nothing else
ful battle.

more wholesome than such a law-

And why
says
:

also should the battle be fought

?

The Lord

32.

Happy

Kshatrix'as,
this,

O
of

son of Pritha, find
itself,

such a battle as
to heaven.

come

an open door

Are not those Kshatriyas happy who
this presenting itself

find

a battle like
?

unsought, an open door to heaven

Though found
•ij.

to
if

be your duty,
fight

Now

thou wouldst not

this lawful

battle, then,

having abandoned thine own duty and

fame, thou shalt incur sin.
If,

on the other hand, you
is

will

not

fight

this

battle
is

which

enjoined on you as a duty, and which
will,

not

opposed to Law, you

by neglecting this battle, have abandoned your duty and lost the fame that you acquired by your encounter with such persons as Mahadeva." Thus
you
will only incur sin.
will

Not only
but also,
34.

you have given up your duty and fame,

People, too, will recount
;

thy everlasting

infamy infamv

and,

is

one who has been esteemed, more than death.
to
lost his

* When Vudhish/hira
by gambling.
"i.ige to the

kingdom
pilgrj-

appeared
(

in the guise of a

mountaineer
the true

Arjuna went on a

Kirita

^,

and,

havi.:g found

Himalayas to propitiate the ds and obtain from them celestial wca-

characterof his adversary, he worshipped

Him

ai;d

obtained thu

Paiupatd astra

pocs.

There he fought with 5iva who

a celestial missile.

48

THE BHAGAVAD-GITA

[DiS. II.

People, too, will recount your infamy, which will survive

you

To him who has bsen esteemed as a hero and as a righteous man and as one possessing other such noble
long.
qualities,

death

is

preferable to infamy.

Moreover,
35

The

great car-warriors will think thou hast
fear
;

withdrawn from the battle through
thou wilt incur their contempt.

and,

having been (hitherto) highly esteemed by them,

Duryodhana and others — warriors fighting in great cars will think that you have withdrawn from the battle through
fear of

Kama and others, but
by

not through compassion.

— Who

are they that will think so?

—The very persons, Duryodhana
have been esteemed as possessed
(in their

and
of

others,

whom you

many

noble qualities.

Having been thus esteemed, you
estimation).

will again

grow very small

Moreover,

36
talk

Thy enemies, too, scorning thy power, will many abusive words. What is more painful
?

than that
There
incurred.
is

no pain more unbearable than that of scorn thus

Now, when you
37.

fight with

Kar//a and others,

Killed, thou wilt reach

heaven

;

victorious,

thou wilt enjoy the earth.

Wherefore,

O

son of

Kunti, arise, resolved to fight.
Victorious
:

that

is,

having defeated Kar;;a and other heroes.

In either case you will have an advantage only.
rise,

Wherefore

with the resolution "

I

will

conquer the enemy or die."

34

— 39]
listen to the
it

SANKMYA-VOGA.
advic3
I

49
while you
fight

Now

off^r
:

to yo.i,

the battle regarding
38.

as a duty

Then, treating alike pleasure and pain, gain and loss, success and defeat, prepare for the battle,

and thus

wilt thou not incur sin.
pleas'.iye

Treating alike

and pain:

i.e.,

without liking the

one and disliking the other.
incur sin.

Thus

fighting,
is

you

will

not

[This injunction as to fighting

only incidental.]

Yoga.

^
(ii.

Worldly considerations have been adduced
dispel grief

31

— 38)

to

and attachment

;

but they do not form the main
it is

subject of teaching.
of the

On

the other hand,
that forms the

the realisation

Supreme Reality
(ii.

portion

12, &c.) of

main subject of this the discourse; and this, which has
(ii.

been treated of already

39 with a view to exhibit the division of the whole subject of
For, by making such a division
of

20

ct seq.),

is

concluded

in

ii.

the 5astra.

the

whole

shewn here, that portion of the work which will treat of the two paths later on (iii. 3) will proceed the more smoothly; and the hearers also will
subject of the sastra as has been

understand
subject.

it

the

more

easily for this division of the
:

whole

Hence says the Lord

39.

This, which has been taught

to

thee,

is

wisdom concerning Sankhya. Now, listen to wisdom concerning Yoga, which possessing thou shalt cast off the bond of action.
This, which has been taught to you, constitutes

wisdom
of the

(buddhi)

concerning Sankhya or the true nature

Absolute Reality,— that wisdom by which

may

be brought
7

^O

THE BHAGAVAD-GiTA.
evil "

[DiS.
is

II"

about the cessation of the

which

the cause

of

sa;«sara,— of grief, attachment, and the

like.

Now,

listen

to the teaching (which follows presently) concerning

Yoga,

which

is

the

means

of attaining

wisdom concerning San-

khya

:

this

Yoga, which constitutes the worship of Isvara,

consists in practising

samadhi or

m

performing works withpairs of opposites (such

out attachment, after killing
as heat and cold).

all

Now He
to create

extols the

an interest

wisdom concerning Yoga, in order in it.-—-When possessed of wisdom
son of Pntha, you will cast off the

concerning Yoga,

O

bond of action (karma), of dharma and a-dhavma, of virtue and sin, of merit and demerit, this severance of the bond being effected only on attaining to a knowledge of the Self
through Divine Grace (Isvara-prasrida).

Yoga, a safe course.
Moreo

Related Interests

er,
40.

There

is

no

loss of effort here, there

is

no

harm.

Even

a

little

of this devotion delivers one

from great

fear.
is

Unlike agriculture, nothing that
path to moksha,
in this

attempted here

— in this
of

devotion by works

is

entirely lost.

That

is,

there

is

no uncertainty regarding the result of any
Neither
it

effort in the

path of Yoga.
it,

is

there

any chance
result

harm

resulting from

as

may sometimes
the result?

from
done,

medical treatment.

— \Vhat
in this

is

— Anything

however

little it be,

Path of Yoga, saves one from

great fear, from the fear of sa/z^sara, of birth and death.
*

Th? ignorance

qf the true nature of the

Si^lf,


3'J

— 44]

SANKHVA-YOGA.

5!

Wisdom
described
41.

is

one.
far

The wisdom concerning Sankhya and Yoga thus
is

of the following nature

:

Here,

O

son of Kuru, there

is

one thought

of a resolute nature.

Many-branched and endless

are the thoughts of the irresolute.

Here,

O

son of Kuru, in this path to Bliss, there
it

is

only
all

one thought of a resolute nature, and

is

subversive of
it,

other many-branched thoughts opposed to

— that

thought

having sprung from the right source of knowledge.
other thoughts which are opposed to
acting
it

Those

are

various.

By

up

to

these

many-branched thoughts,

sa;//sara

becomes endless and ever-spreading.
discrimination produced by the right

But when, owing to source of knowledge
cease,

these thoughts of
ceases.

endless
in

variety

sawsara

also

Owing

to variety

each of their branches, the
those

thoughts of the irresolute

— of

who

are not possess-

ed of the discrimination produced by the right source of
knowledcre o^

— are endless.
possible for the worIdIy = minded.
of a resolute

Na wisdom

As regards those who have no conviction
nature,

42-44.

Xo

conviction of a resolute nature

is

mind of those who are attached to pleasures and power, and whose minds are drawn away by that flowery speech which the unwise enamoured of Vedic utterances, declaring there is
formed
in the

nothing

else,

full

of desire, having svarga as their


52

THE BHAGAVAD-GiTA.
goal

[DiS. ll

which promises birth as the reward of actions and which abounds in specific acts for the attainment of pleasure and power,
utter,
(

a speech

)

O

son of Pritha.
;

They are unwise they are wanting in discrimination. They are enamoured of the Vedic passages composed of many a praise (to gods) and unfolding various ends and means. They say that there is nothing else besides works which are the means of attaining svarga, cattle, and other such objects of desire. They are full of desires and are
ever in pursuit of them. Their chief and final goal
is

svarga.

They
hear.

talk words, fine like a flowery tree, very pleasant to

Their speech holds out births as the reward of works,
treats

and

of specific

acts

wherewith

to secure to

svarga,
attain

cattle,

progeny and the
power.

like,

and wherewith

Thus talking these foolish people wander in the sawsara. They regard pleasure and power as necessary they are in love with them and have identified themselves with them. Their intelligence and wisdom are
pleasures and
;

blinded
acts.

(

as

it

were

)

by

this speech

abounding

in

specific

In their

mind

samddhi, the biiddki, the antah-karana,
all

in Avhich are

gathered together

objects of enjoyment for

the pnriisha, the individual soul
nature, no

— no conviction of a resolute
or

wisdom concerning Sankhya

Yoga

will arise.

Advice to the Yogin.

The Lord now speaks of the result accruing to those ful persons who are thus wanting in discrimination
:

lust-

45.

The Vedas
pairs, free

treat of the triad of the

gunas.

Be,
free

O

Arjuna, free from the triad of the gu;zas,

from

from acquisition and preserva-

44

—4^J
tion, ever

SANKHYA-YOGA.

53

remaining

in the

Sattva

(Goodness),

and self-possessed.

The Vedas
their subject.

'''

treat of the triad of the

guwas

;

sa;«sara
free

I

is

You, on the other hand, had better be
/.

from
free

the triad of the gu«as,

c, be without desires.
all

Be

from pairs

(

dvandvas

),

from
of
:

mutually opposed objects

which are the causes

pleasure and pain.
practise purity.,

stand ever in the Sattva

Take your To him who is

'^

anxious to acquire what has not been acquired and to
|

preserve what has been already acquired, practice of virtue
|

is

impossible

;

wherefore be not anxious about

sitions or

about the preservation of the old
.^

new ones. Be

acquialso

1

self-possessed: be guarded.
to follow

This

is

the advice

you haxe

when engaged

in the

performance of duty.

Karma=Yoga.
{Question)
:

If all

those endless advantages which
rituals

are

said to result
after, to

from the Vedic
to

are not to be sought

what end are they
?

be performed and dedicated to

the Isvara
(Ausiyey)

:

— Listen

to

what follows
there
is

:

46,

What

utility

in

a

reservoir (as

compared) with an all-spreading flood of water,
the

same

(utility)

there

is

in

all

Vedas

for

an

enlightened Brahma7;a.

'

1.

c, the Kannaka;i(/a, the ritualistic

brought about by the interaction of the
guiias.

portion of the Vedas.
+

which

is

made up

of virtuous, sinful,
their results, all

;

Do

not yield to thj objects of the

and mixed deeds and

enses.

k


54

THE bhagAvad-gita.
Whatever utility served by a well, a
is

[Dis. li.

— of

bathing, drinking, and

the like

is

tank, and
utility is

many

other small reservoirs

of water &c., all that

only as

much

as the utility
;

which

served by an all-spreading flood of water
is

that

is,

the former utility

comprehended
is in all

in the

latter.
all

So

also,
is.

whatever

utility there

the Vedic ritual,

that

comprehended

in the utility of the right

knowledge possessthe world and has

ed by a Briihma/ia

who has renounced
to

completely realized the truth concerning the Absolute Reality
;

this

knowledge corresponding

flood of water."''
is

The
all

sruti

says

:

— " Whatever good
,

the all-spreading

thing

him who knows what he (Raikva) knew." (Chh. Up. 4-1-4). The same thing
done by people,
that is possessed by
will also be said here (iv. 33).
is

Wherefore!

for

a

man who
fit

qualified for

works

it is

necessary to perform works (which
)

stand in the place of wells and tanks
for the

before he

becomes

path of knowledge.
as for you,

And

47.

Thy concern
let

is

with action alone, never
fruit
b:^

with results.
motive, nor

Let not the

of action be thy
for inaction.
for
let

thy attachmant

You

are qualified for

works alone, not

the path of

knowledge.
desire for

And
If

then, while doing works,

there be no

the results of works under

any circumstances
for the

whatever.
*

you should have a
which

thirst

results of
Thus
in

That

is to

say, all the pleasure
all

hended

in

the

Infinite Bliss.

the

results

from the performance of
is

works
realis-

Path of Karma- Yoga, which
bliss of the Self,

the end

enjoined in the Vedas
in the bliss

comprehended

leads to the attainment of the infinite

which the man who has

cannot be

futile, as

the

ed the Self finSs as the essence of his own Self; and every one must, admit
that alj

questioner has been led to suppose.— (A)
i

Because the Path of Karma-Yoga

is

kinds of limited bliss are compre-

not futile.— (A),

46

— 49]

SANKHYA-YOGA.
fruits.

55

works, you will have to reap those
not your

Therefore

let

motive be the

fruits of

your action.

When

a

person performs works thirsting for the results of those

works, then he
action.

will

bs subject to rebirth as the result of
be attached to inaction, thinking
painful

Neither
avail

may you

"

Of what

are these

works

if

their

fruits

should not be desired ?"
If

a

man

should not perform works urged by a desire for

their

results,
:

how

then are they to be performed

?

The

reply follows 48.

Steadfast

in

devotion do thy works,

O

Dhana;;/jaya,

casting off

attachment, being the

same
Yoga.

in

success and failure.

Evenness

is

called

Steadfast in devotion

fYo:^'a)

psrform works merely for
this,

God's sake, casting

off

even such attachment as
in

"May
of

God

be pleased,"

and being equanimous
(
)

success and

failure.

Success
(

siddhi

)

consists

in

the attainment

knowledge
purity
their fruits

J7/ana

as the result of
are done

mind (Sattva) attaining
for

when works
;

and

failure

by one without longing results from the opposite course.

* What
this
:

is

that devotion (Yoga) to which
in

Arjuna has been
?

exhorted to resort

performing works
in

The

reply
is

is

— Evenness of mind

success and failure

called

devotion (Yoga).
In comparison with action thus performed in the service
of the Isvara with evenness of

mind,
inferior to devotion in

49.

Related Interests

erily action is far

K

-svisdom (buddhi-yogal,

O

Dhana;7g"aya. In

wisdom

i

56

THE BHAGAVAD-GITA.
(buddhi) seek thou
shelter.
fruit.
its

[DiS. II.

Wretched are they
reward

whose motive

is

the

Action done by a seeker of
devotion in wisdom,
of
i.e.,

is

far

inferior to

to action
is

performed with evenness

mind

;

for,

the

former

the cause of birth and death,
in the

O

Dhana/wjaya.

Wherefore, seek shelter
in the

wisdom

of

Yoga, or rather
arises

wisdom

of

Sankhya, which

latter

when Yoga

attains maturity.

That

is,

seek refuge in

the knowledge of the

Supreme

Reality.

For, wretched are
are incited to action

they

who
"

resort to inferior action,

who
:

by

thirst for its fruit.

The
is

sruti says

O

Gargi, wretched

he

who

departs

from this

world without knowing the Akshara, the Imperishable."

(BH. Up. 3-8-13).

The merit

of

Wisdom.
attains

Now, learn as to what result he own duty with evenness of mind
:

who performs

his

50.

He who

is

endued with wisdom casts
In

off

here both good deeds and bad deeds.

Wherefore

apply thyself to devotion.
devotion
is

regard to actions

a power.

The man

that has evenness of

mind

casts off in this world

both merit and sin (suknta and dushknta, pu«ya and papa)

through attaining mental purity and knowledge. Wherefore apply yourself to devotion with equanimity. For devotion is
a power,

— devotion being the equanimity of mind
on the part of him who
is

in

success

and

failure

engaged

in the

performall
|

ance of his
the while.

own
It is

duties, his

mind

resting on the

tsvara

indeed a power, because works which are

49

— 52]

SANKHYA-YOGA.

57

of a binding nature lose that nature

when done with even-

ness of mind.

Wherefore be equanimous.
Results of

Karma- Yoga.
cast off the fruit of
(

51.

For,
;

men

of

wisdom

action

possessed of knowledge

and

)

released

from the bond of birth, they go to the place where
there
For,
is

no

evil.

men

of wisdom, possessing evenness of mind, cast off
i. e.,

the fruit of works,

escape from good and bad births.

They then

attain knowledge.

While

still alive,

they are

released from the

bond

of birth,

and attain the supreme
or liberation

abode of Vish/m
is free

—the

state of

moksha

— which
the

from
the

all

turmoils.
referred to in the three verses

Or,
(ii.

wisdom (buddhi)

49

— 51) may be the Sankhya-(not the Yoga-) wisdom,
by Karma- Yoga
;

knowledge of the Absolute Reality, (corresponding to the wide-spread expanse of water), which arises when the mind

I

is

purified

for,

it

is

said in

ii.

50 that

wisdom
W'hen
tion

directly brings about the destruction of
-

good and

bad deeds.
is

that conviction attained

which

(it is

said)

arises

as soon as the

mind is purified by Karma- Yoga through works ? The answer follows
:

or devo-

52.

When
is

thy mind shall cross beyond the mire
attain to a disgust

of delusion, then wilt thou

of

what

yet to be heard

and what has been heard.
beyond the mire
discrimination between
(anta/i-

W^hen your
of delusion,

intuition (buddhi) shall cross
of

by which the sense
is

the Self and the not-Self

confounded and the mind
8


58
kara«a)
is

THE BHAGAVAD-GITA.

[DiS. II.

turned towards the objects of the senses
attains
is

i. e.,

when your reason
a disgust of what

purity

—then
I

will

you

attain to

yet to

be heard and what has already

been heard

'''

:

they will appear to you to be of no use.
ask
:

You may now
the mire of

"

When

shall

attain the true

Yoga

or conviction of the

Supreme Truth, by crossing beyond delusion and obtaining wisdom by discriminaListen:

tion of the Self ?"

53.

When
heard,

thy mind, perplexed by what thou
shall stand firm

hast
Self,

and steady

in

the

then wilt thou attain Yoga.
your intuition
(buddhi=:antaA-kara;2a)

When

which
the

has been perplexed by what you have heard about
multifarious ends and
ing the
life

means

in all their relations
life

— concern-

of activity

and the

of retirement

— shall stand
the objective

firm, without distraction

(vikshepa^viparyaya) and doubt
i.e,

(vikalpa^^sawsaya), in the Self (Samaidhi,

point of your meditation), then you will attain Yoga, samadhi,
i.e.,

the knowledge which arises from discrimination.

The

characteristic attributes of a perfect Sage.
for

Having found an occasion
asks with a desire to

interrogation,

Arjuna

know

the characteristic marks of one

who

has attained wisdom

in

steady contemplation (sarnadhi-

Arjuna said
54.

:

What,

O

Kesava

!

,

is

the description of
is

one of steady knowledge, who
except,

constant in con-

of course, the teachings of the scripture regarding the .^tiiian, the

Self.— (A)

52—55]
templation
speak,
?

SANKIIYA-YOGA.

59

How
sit,

does one of steady knowledge
?

how
a

how move

has a firm conviction that he is the Supreme Brahman, and who is intent on contemplation
is

How

man who
is

(samadhi),

— how

such a

man spoken
move
?

of

by others

? ?

does the
does he

man
sit ?

of steady

knowledege himself speak

How How
Arjuna

How

does he

— In this verse
are.

asks in order to

know what

the characteristic attributes of

a

man

of steady
ii.

knowledge (sthitaprajwa)

55 to the end of the Discourse (adhyaya), the characteristic attributes of a man of steady knowledge as

From

knowledge are taught to him who, having from the very commencement renounced
well as the

means

of obtaining that

all

works, has entered upon a course of Devotion to
(j«ana-yoga-nish/ha), as
well

ledge

as to

Knowhim who has
(adhyatma-

reached that stage by means of Devotion to works (Karmayoga).

For,

everywhere

in

spiritual science

sastra), the

very characteristic attributes of the successful
(of attaining that stage),
effort.

Yogin are taught as the means
since they

are

to be

attained

by

The Lord now

points out those characteristic attributes which, as attain-

able by effort, constitute the
(i)

means as

well.

Satisfaction in the 5elf.

The Lord
55.

said
in

:

When
is

a man, satisfied

the Self alone by the desires of the

himself,

completely casts

off all

mind, then

he said to be one of steady knowledge.
all

When

a

man

completely abandons
is

the various desires

that enter the heart and

satisfied

with the True Inner-


6o

THE bhagavad-gIta.
in himself,

[Dis.II.

most Self (Pratyagatman)

without longing for

external possessions, averse to everything else because of his
acquisition of the immortal nectar,
i.e,,

his realisation of the

Supreme Truth, then he is said to be a wise man (vidvan), one whose knowledge arising from the discrimination of the
Self

and the not-Self has been steadied.
all desires,

[If,

on his abandonoperates,
that

ing of

nothing should be found to cause satisfacstill
it

tion while the

cause of the embodied state
his

would follow that

behaviour would be

like

of a

mad man

or a maniac.
is

Hence
he

the words

'

satisfied in
all

the

Self &c.] That
has renounced

to say,

who has abandoned

desires

connected with progeny, possessions and the world,
(all

who

works),
is

with the Self,— he
(2)

the

who delights in the Self and plays man whose knowledge is steady.
in

Equanimity

pleasure and pain.

Moreover,

He whose heart is not distressed in calamifrom whom all longing for pleasures has ties, departed, who is free from attachment, fear and wrath, he is called a sage, a man of steady know56.

ledge.

His heart
arise

is

not distressed in calamities such as
in the

may

from disorder

body , (adhyatmika), &c. Unlike

*

Calamities are divided into the threj
classes

Aditidaivika, arising from the action of

following

according

to

their

sources:

cosmic forces such as those which cause rain and storm or such
great, intelligent,

Adhyatmika^ arising from disorder
one's

in

beings as Vaksha, Rakshasa and Pisacha. Pleasures also are divided
into

own

body;
arising

the

Adhibhautika,

from

external

same three

classes,

objects such as a tiger;

I

55

— 5^]
is

SANKHYA-YOGA.
fuel
is

6l
his

fire,

which increases as
said to be a

added,

longing

for

pleasures does not

increase a?

more pleasures are
knowledge.

attained.
is

He

man

of steady

He

called

a sage, a Sannyasin, one
(^)

who

has renounced works.

Absence

of

attachment, delight and aversion.

Moreover,
57.

Whoso, without attachment anywhere, on

meeting with anj^thing good or bad, neither exults
nor hates, his knowledge becomes steady.

The sage has no attachment even

for the life of the
is

body.

He

does not exult
befall

in pleasure,

nor

he averse to pain that

may

him.
his

When

he

is

thus free from delight and

distress,

knowledge arising from discrimination be-

comes steady.
(4)

Complete withdrawal

of senses

from objects.

Moreover,
58.

When

he completely withdraws the senses
as

from sense-objects,
its

the tortoise
his

(withdraws)
is

limbs from
/. e.,

all sides,

knowledge

steady.

He,

the devotee

who

strives in the path of
all

knowobjects

ledge (j/mna-nish/'ha), withdraws his senses from
as the tortoise
of fear.
{Question)
is
:

withdraws

its

limbs from

all

sides

out

— Now, even the senses of a diseased man who
them ceases
not.

not able to partake of sensuous objects withdraw from

sense-objects, but the taste for
that cease
?

How

does

{Aiisiver)

:

— Listen

:

62
59.

THE BHAGAVAD-GITA.

[DiS. II.

Objects withdraw from an abstinent man,
the taste.

but not

On 'seeing
meaning
true,

the Supreme, his

taste, too, ceases.

The
even
in

senses,

'

vishaya//,'
senses,

literally

sense-objects,

here stands for the
the

it is

withdraw from objects
practising
;

case of an ignorant

person who,
all

extremest austerity, abstains

from

sensuous objects

but the taste or inclination (rasa) for those objects ceases
not.

[Rasa

is

used

in
'

the sense of taste or inclination in

such expressions as
*

svarasena pravntta/^,'
that
taste,

'

rasika/z,'

and

rasa- j '/a//. 'J
in

Even

that

subtle

attachment,

vanishes

the case of the devotee who, having seen the

Supreme
that
is

Reality, the

Brahman, thinks
all

'I

am

myself That';

to say, his perception of

sensuous objects becomes
of evil.

seedless (nir-bija), has lost
is

germ

The meaning
;

this

:

In the absence of right knowledge, there can be no
'''

annihilation

of

taste

for

sensuous objects

wherefore,

steadiness of right knowledge

(prajna) should be acquired.

Unrestrained senses work mischief.

He who would

acquire steadiness of right knowledge

(prajwa) should first bring the senses

under control.
So, the

For,
:

if

not controlled, they will do harm.
60.

Lord says

The dangerous senses, O son of Kunti, forcibly carry away the mind of a wise man, even
while striving (to control them).
* It is

no

fallacy of

mutual dependance

For, desire in
at the first

its

grossest form disappears

(anyonyasraya) to
arises

say that

knowledge

dawn
is

of knowledge,

and, as

on the

killing of desires

and

that

knowledge

desires vanish

when knowledge

arises.

steadied and perfected, even the subtlest desires are killed out.

;

^g

—63]

SAN KHVA- YOGA.

63-

The senses are dangerous. They agitate the mind of the man who is incUned to sensuous objects. Having thus agitated the mind, they carry it away by force, while the

man

is

wide awake *

though the mind

is

posessed of

discriminative knowlebge.
(5)

Devotion to the Lord.

Wherefore,
61.

Restraining them

all,

a

man

should remain
is

steadfast, intent

on Me.

His knowledge

steady

whose senses are under control.

He
and
i. e.,

should bring the senses under control and

sit

calm
all

intent

on Me, Vasudeva, the Innermost Self of
sit

he should

thinking

'

I

am

no other than He.'

The knowledge

of that devotee

is

steady who, thus seated,

has by practice brought the senses under his

own

control.

Thought

of

sense -objects
to

is

the source of

evil.
all

Now
evil in

the

Lord proceeds

point out the
:

source of

the case of the unsuccessful

62.
for

When

a

them

arises.

man thinks of objects, attachment From attachment arises desire

;

from desire arises wrath.
Attachment
specifically J
for objects arises

— Wrath
or other,

arises

when a man thinks of them when desire is frustrated by

some cause
63.
failure
*

From wrath arises delusion; from delusion, of memory from failure of memory, loss
;

j.t^.

while repeatedly thinking of the

§

i.

e.,

thinks of -their beauty etc.

evil nature of

sensuous objects.

64
of conscience
;

tHe bMaGavad-gIta
from
loss of

[Dis. II.

conscience he

is

utterly

ruined.

From

v/rath arises delusion, a lack of discrimination be-

tween right and wrong. Verily, when a wrathful man gets From inmfatuated, he is led to insult even the Guru.
fatuation follows failure of
of favourable conditions,

memory.

Despite the presence

no reminiscences arise of things

already impressed upon the
sastras

mind by the teachings

of the

and

of the teacher (acharya).

From

failure of

memory
of the
right

follows loss

of conscience

(buddhi)

— the

inability

inner sense

(anta/i-kara»a) to

discriminate between

and wrong (karya and a-karya).
is

By

loss of conscience

he

utterly
is

ruined.

Man
is

is

man

only so long as his anta/i-

kara»a

competent
it

to discriminate

between
the

right
is

and

wrong.
ruined.

When
Thus,
is

unable to do
loss

so,

man

utterly

by

of

conscience

(anta/j-kara?ia,

buddhi) he
aspirations.

ruined, he is debarred from attainnig

human

Sense-control leads to peace and happiness.

The contemplation
the

of sense-objects has been described as

source of
is

all

evil.

Now
peace,

the
:

means

of deliverance

(moksha)
64.

described as follows

He

attains

who,

self-controlled,

,

approaches objects with senses devoid of love and hatred and brought under his own control.

The

natural activity of the

senses

is

characterised by

love and hatred.

He who

longs for deliverance resorts only

to unavoidable objects with

senses— hearing,

etc.,

— devoid of

love and hatred and brought

under his own control, his

;

63—66]
inner sense (atman
his

SANKIIYA-YOGA.

65

= antaA-kara72a) being made obedient to
attains

own

will.

Such a man

peace, tranfiuillity,

self-

possession.
(Question)

{Answer)
65.
for,

:

— What — Listen
:

will
:

happen when peace

is

attained

?

In peace there

is

an end of all his miseries

;

the reason of the tranquil-minded soon be-

comes steady.

On
mind.

the

attainment of peace there
pertain
to

is

an end of

all

the
the

devotee's miseries such as

the body and

For, the reason (buddhi) of the
all

pure-minded

man

soon becomes steady, pervading on
i.

sides like the akasa
Self.

c,

it

remains steadfast,

in the
is

form of the
:

The
is

sense of the passage
is

this

—-The man whose heart

pure and whose mind

steady has achieved his object.

Wherefore the devout man should resort only to those sense-objects which are indispensable and not forbidden
by the
sastras, with the senses devoid of
is

love and

hatred.

Tranquillity
66.

thus extolled
is

:

There

no wisdom to the unsteady, and

no meditation to the unsteady, and to the unmeditative no peace to the peaceless, how can
;
•'

there be happiness

?

To' the unsteady (ayukta

asamahita), to the

man who
be no

cannot

fix

the mind in contemplation, there can

wisdom
Self.

(buddhi), no knowledge of the true nature of the

To

the unsteady, there can be no meditation, no
So, to

intense devotion to Self-knowledge.

him who

is

not

devoted to Self-knowledge there can be no peace, no trany

:

66
quillity.

THE BHAGAVAD-GlTA.

[DiS. II.
there be happi-

To

the peaceless man,

how can
in

ness

?

Verily, happiness

consists

the freedom of the
in

senses from thirst for sensual
(tnsh«a)
for

enjoyment, not
last
is

the thirst

objects.
is

This

mere misery indeed.
;

While there

thirst, there

can be no trace of happiness
it.

we cannot

so

much

as smell

5ense = restraint conduces to steady knowledge.
{Qncstiou)
{Ansit'cy)
:

— Why

is

there no knowledge for the unsteady

?

— Listen
For, the

:

67.

senses carries
(carries
P^or,

mind which yields to the roving away his knowledge, as the wind
yields to the
/.

away) a ship on water.
mind which
in

the

senses engaged
is

in

their respective objects,

e.,

the

mind which

altogether

engrossed

the thought of the various objects of the

senses, destroys the devotee's discriminative

knowledge of

the Self and the not-Self.

— How? — As the wind carries away
away
the devotee's consciousit

a ship from the intended course of the sailors and drives
her astray, so the

mind

carries

ness from the Self and turns

towards sense-objects.

Having explained
ciated in
ii.

in

several

ways the proposition enun-

60

— 61, the Lord
:

concludes by reaffirming the

same proposition
68.
is

Therefore,

O

mighty-armed, his knowledge

steady whose senses have been entirely restrain-

ed from sense-objects.
It

has been shown that

evil arises

from the senses pursuis

ing sense-objects.

Wherefore, that devotee's knowledge

66

— 69]
all

SANKHYA-YOGA.

67

Steady whose senses have been restrained from sense-oUjects
(such as sound) in

forms, subjective and objective.

(6)

The Universe, a mere dream
of the

to the Sajfe.

In

the case

man who

possesses discriminative
his

knowledge and whose knowledge has become steady,
experience of
all

matters, temporal and spiritual (laukika

and vaidika, sensuous and supersensuous), ceases on the
cessation
of nescience
;

(avidya)

;

for,

it

is
it

the
is

effect

of
to

nescience

and nescience ceases because

opposed
:

knowledge.
6g.

To make
is

this clear, the
all

Lord proceeds

What

night to
is

beings, therein the

self-controlled one

awake.

Where
is

all

beings
sees.
is

are aw'ake, that

is

the night of the sage

who

To
The

all

beings the

Supreme Reality

night.

Night

by nature tamasic, and, as such, causes confusion of things.
Reality
is

accessible only to a
is

man

of steady

know-

ledge. Just

as what

day

night-wanderers, so, to

all

becomes night to beings who are ignorant and who
to

others

correspond to the night-wanderers, the Supreme Reality
dark,
is like

is

night

;

for

it is

not accessible

to

those

whose

minds are not
lity,

in It.

With
off the

reference to that

Supreme Reais
f.,

the self-restrained Yogin

who

has subdued the senses,

and who has shaken
fully

sleep of

Avidya (nescience),
awake,
the
/.

awake.
all

When

all

beings are said to be
in

when

beings,

who

reality

sleep

in

night of

ignorance, imbued with the distinct notions of perceiver and
things perceived, are as
night,
it

were mere dreamers
nescience
itself.

in

sleep at

— that

state

is

night in the eye of the sage wl o
;

knows

the

Supreme Reality

for,

it is


68

THE bhagavad-gIta.

[DlS. II.

Works
the wise.

are not

meant

of the sage.

Wherefore works are enjoined on the ignorant, not on

Wisdom

(Vidya) arising, nescience (Avidya) disat

appears as does

the darkness of the night

sunrise.
itself in

Before the dawn of wisdom, nescience presents
various forms

—as actions,
engages
is

ed as authoritative,

means and results, and becomes the source of
it

is

regardaction.

all

When
action.

it is

regarded as of no authority,
in action

cannot induce
it

A man

regarding

as his duty

regarding that action
the

Related Interests

eda,

enjoined by such an authority as
all

— but not
though
all this

looking upon
it

this duality as

mere

illusion, as

were night.

When

he has learnt to
duty

look upon
it

dual world as a mere illusion, as though
Self, his

were night, when he has realised the

consists not in the performance of action, but in the renunciation of all action.

Our Lord

will

accordingly show
in

(v.

ly

cf seq.)

that such a

man's duty consists

devotion to

wisdom,

in j/nxna-nish/ha.
:

[Objection)

— In the absence of an

injunction (pravartaka

prama»a
either.

-^=

vidhi)

one cannot have recourse to that course

(Aiisicey):

— This

objection

does not apply;

for,

the

knowledge of Atman means the knowledge of one's own There is indeed no need of an injunction impelling Self.
one
that
to

devote oneself to one's Atman, for the very reason
is

Atman

one's

own

very Self.

And

all

organs of

knowledge (prama/^as) are so called because they ultimately
lead to a knowledge of the Self.

\'hen the knowledge of

the true nature of the Self has been attained, neither organs
of

knowledge nor objects of knowledge present themselves

6g
to

— 70]

SANKHYA-YOGA.
the
is in

69
final

consciousness any longer.^ For,
the Veda), teaches that the Self

authority,

(viz.,

reality

no perci-

pient of objects, and while so denying,

{i. e.,

as a result of

that teaching), the

Related Interests