atha tṛtīyo ‘dhyāyaḥ – karma-yogaḥ

Now the third chapter: “The Yoga of Action”

Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

The two aspects of wisdom – relating respectively to Pravṛtti and Nivṛtti, i.e., to the Path of Works and the Path of Renunciation – with which the Gita-śastra is concerned have been pointed out by the Lord in the Second Discourse, speaking of them as wisdom concerning Sankhya and wisdom concerning Yoga.

śāstrasya pravṛtti-nivṛtti-viṣaya-bhūte dve buddhī bhagavatā nirdiṣṭe, sāṅkhye buddhir yoge buddhir iti ca |

From 2.55 to the end of the Discourse, He has recommended renunciation of action to those who hold to the Sankhya-buddhi (Sankhya aspect of wisdom) and has added in 2.72 that their end can be achieved by being devoted to that alone.

tatra prajahāti yadā kāmān (BhG 2.55) ity ārabhya ā-adhyāya-parisamāpteḥ sāṅkhya-buddhy-āśritānāṃ saṃnyāsaṃ kartavyam uktvā teṣāṃ tan-niṣṭhatayaiva ca kṛtārthatā uktā eṣā brāhmī sthitiḥ (BhG 2.72) iti |

And as to Arjuna, He has declared in 2. 47 that he should resort to works (karma) alone as based on Yoga-buddhi (the Yoga aspect of wisdom), while it has not been said that the Highest Good can be attained by that alone.

arjunāya ca karmaṇy evādhikāras te, mā saṅgo ’stv akarmaṇi (BhG 2.47) iti karma eva kartavyam uktavān yoga-buddhim āśritya, na tata eva śreyaḥ-prāptim uktavān |

Seeing this, Arjuna is troubled in mind and therefore puts a question to the Lord. (3.1-2). This perplexity in Arjuna’s mind is quite explicable. He thinks, „how might the Lord first describe to me – a devout seeker of Bliss – the direct means of attaining Bliss, namely adherence to the Sankhya aspect of wisdom, and then command me to do action which is fraught with many a tangible evil and which is but an indirect and uncertain means of attaining Bliss?

tad etad ālakṣya paryākulībhūta-buddhir arjuna uvāca – kathaṃ bhaktāya śreyo’rthine yat sākṣāt śreyaḥ-sādhanaṃ sāṅkhya-buddhi-niṣṭhāṃ śrāvayitvā māṃ karmaṇi dṛṣṭānekānartha-yukte pāramparyeṇāpi anaikāntika-śreyaḥ-prāpti-phale niyuñjyād iti yuktaḥ paryākulībhāvo’rjunasya |

Arjuna’s question, too points to this state of mind; and the Lord’s words in reply to the question are explicable only when the śastra makes such a distinction (between Sankhya and Yoga) as has been described above.

tad-anurūpa-praśnaḥ jyāyasī cet ity ādiḥ | praśnāpākaraṇa-vākyaṃ ca bhagavatā uktaṃ yathokta-vibhāga-viṣaye śāstre |

No conjunction of Knowledge and Action.
A certain commentator interprets the meaning of Arjuna’s question differently and explains the Lord’s reply as opposed (to the question) in meaning. So also, he sums up the teaching of the Gita-śastra in one way in the introductory portion of his commentary, while he interprets the question and answer in this connection in a different way.

kecit tu arjunasya praśnārtham anyathā kalpayitvā tat-pratikūlaṃ bhagavataḥ prativacanaṃ varṇayanti | yathā ca ātmanā sambandha-granthe gītārtho nirūpitas tat-pratikūlaṃ ceha punaḥ praśna-prativacanayor arthaṃ nirūpayanti |

How ? It is stated in the introduction that a simultaneous conjunction of knowledge and action for men in all stages of religious life is inculcated ‚in the Gita-śastra; and moreover a specific statement is made amounting to an emphatic denial of the doctrine that moksha can be attained by knowledge alone, i.e., without those works which are enjoined by the scriptures as obligatory throughout life.

kathaṃ? tatra sambandha-granthe tāvat sarveṣām āśramiṇāṃ jñāna-karmaṇoḥ samuccayo gītā-śāstre nirūpito ’rtha ity uktam | punaḥ viśeṣitaṃ ca yāvaj-jīva-śruti-coditāni karmāṇi parityajya kevalād eva jñānān mokṣaḥ prāpyata ity etad ekāntenaiva pratiṣiddham iti |

But here, in the Third Discourse, he makes out that devotion to only one of the two paths is taught. This is tantamount to saying that the very works which are enjoined by the scriptures as obligatory throughout life have to be renounced.

iha tv āśrama-vikalpaṃ darśayatā yāvaj-jīva-śruti-coditānām eva karmaṇāṃ parityāga uktaḥ |

How is it possible either for the Lord to teach such contradictions or for the disciple to accept them?

tat katham īdṛśaṃ viruddham artham arjunāya brūyād bhagavān, śrotā vā kathaṃ viruddham artham avadhārayet |

That commentator may perhaps explain away the contradiction thus : It is only to the gṛhasthas (to the order of married house-holders) – but not to other orders – that salvation by mere knowledge, preceded by the renunciation of works enjoined in the sruti and in the smṛti, is denied. This, too, involves a self-contradiction. For, after declaring (in the introduction) that a simultaneous conjunction of knowledge and action is meant for all religious orders by the Gīta-śastra, how could he, in contradiction thereto, say here (in 3. Discourse) that salvation by mere knowledge is meant for some religious orders?

tatraitat syād gṛhasthānām eva śrauta-karma-parityāgena kevalād eva jñānān mokṣaḥ pratiṣidhyate na tv āśramāntarāṇām iti | etad api pūrvottara-viruddham eva | kathaṃ, sarvāśramiṇāṃ jñāna-karmaṇoḥ samuccayo gītā-śāstre niścito ’rtha iti pratijñāya iha kathaṃ tad-viruddhaṃ kevalād eva jñānān mokṣaṃ brūyād āśramāntarāṇām |

Then the commentator may explain away the contradiction thus: It is with reference to the srauta-karma (action enjoined in the sruti) that the assertion is made that salvation by mere – i.e., unconjoined with the śrautakarma – knowledge is denied to the gṛihasthas. The smarta-karma (action enjoined in tlie smriti) that is meant for a gṛhastha is ignored as if it were absent. It is in this sense that salvation by mere knowledge is denied in the case of gṛhasthas.

atha mataṃ śrauta-karmāpekṣayaitad-vacanaṃ kevalād eva jñānāt śrauta-karma-rahitād gṛhasthānāṃ mokṣaḥ pratiṣidhyate iti | tatra gṛhasthānāṃ vidyamānam api smārtaṃ karmāvidyamānavad upekṣya jñānād eva kevalān na mokṣa ity ucyata iti |

This also involves an absurdity. For, how is it possible for any intelligent man to believe that salvation by knowledge conjoined only with the smarta-karma is denied to a gṛhastha alone, but not to other orders?

etad api viruddham | kathaṃ? gṛhasthasyaiva smārta-karmaṇā samuccitād jñānān mokṣaḥ pratiṣidhyate na tu āśramāntarāṇām iti kathaṃ vivekibhiḥ śakyam avadhārayitum |

On the other hand, if, as a means of obtaining salvation, the smarta-karma should be conjoined with knowledge in the case of the sanyasins – the fourth religious order – then it follows that, for the gnhasthas also, knowledge should be conjoined only with the smarta-karma, not with the śrauta-karma.

kiṃ ca, yadi mokṣa-sādhanatvena smārtāni karmāṇi ūrdhva-retasāṃ samuccīyante tathā gṛhasthasyāpi iṣyatāṃ smārtair eva samuccayo na śrautaiḥ |

Then, he may explain away the contradiction thus: it is only in the case of a grihastha that a conjunction (of knowledge) with both the śrauta-karma and, the smarta-karma – both being of equal importance to him – is necessary for salvation, whereas the samnyasins can attain moksha by knowledge conjoined with the smarta-karma only. If so, too much exertion in the shape of both the śrauta-karma and the smarta-karma, very painful in themselves, falls to the lot of the gṛhastha.

atha śrautaiḥ smārtaiś ca gṛhasthasyaiva samuccayo mokṣāya ūrdhva-retasāṃ tu smārta-karma-mātra-samuccitāj jñānān mokṣa iti | tatraivaṃ sati gṛhasthasyāyāsa-bāhulyaṃ śrautaṃ smārtaṃ ca bahu-duḥkha-rūpaṃ karma śirasi aropitaṃ syāt |

Renunciation enjoined in the scriptures.
The commentator in question may now say : Because of this multiplicity of exertion, salvation is attained only by a gṛhastha, but not by other religious orders who have not to do the nitya or obligatory śrauta-karma. This, too, is wrong; for, in all the Upanishads, in the Itihasas, in the Purtvia, and in the Yoga-śastra, renunciation of all karma is enjoined on the seeker of moksha as an accessory to knowledge. Both in the śruti and in the smnti, a gradual passage (through the three orders to the fourth order) is enjoined, as well as a sudden jump (from any one of the three to the fourth order).

atha gṛhasthasyaivāyāsa-bāhulya-kāraṇān mokṣaḥ syān nāśramāntarāṇāṃ śrauta-nitya-karma-rahitatvād iti | tad apy asat | sarvopaniṣatsu itihāsa-purāṇa-yoga-śāstre ca jñānāṅgatvena mumukṣoḥ sarva-karma-saṃnyāsa-vidhānād āśrama-vikalpa-samuccaya-vidhānāc ca śruti-smṛtyoḥ |

If so – the commentator in question may retort – it follows that a conjunction of knowledge with action is necessary for all religious orders. No, (we reply). For, renunciation of all action is enjoined on the seeker of moksha, as the following passages from the śruti sho:
Having given up all desire for progeny, for wealth, and for the world, they lead a mendicant life.”(Bri. 3-5-I-),
Wherefore, of these austerities, renunciation, they say, is excellent.” „Renunciation alone excelled.” (Taittiriya-Up. 4-79,78).
Not by action, not by progeny, not by wealth, but by renunciation, some attained immortality.” (Ibid.2-12).
One may renounce the world when yet a student.” ( Jabala-Upanishad, 4).

siddhas tarhi sarvāśramiṇāṃ jñāna-karmaṇoḥ samuccayaḥ | na, mumukṣoḥ sarva-karma-saṃnyāsa-vidhānāt |
vyutthāyātha bhikṣācaryaṃ caranti (Bṛh-up 3.5.1),
tasmāt saṃnyāsam eṣāṃ tapasām atiriktam āhuḥ
(Nār-up 2.79),
nyāsa evātyarecayet
(Nār-up 2.78), iti |
na karmaṇā na prajayā dhanena tyāgenaike ’mṛtatvam ānaśuḥ (Nār-up 2.12) iti ca |
brahmacaryād eva pravrajet (Jāb-up 4) ity ādyāḥ śrutayaḥ |

The following passages from the smriti may also be quoted : – „Give up religion, give up irreligion. Give up truth, give up untruth. Having given up both truth and untruth, give up that § by which you give them up.” „Finding the samsara (mundane existence) worthless and wishing to get at the essence, the unmarried grow quite weary of life and renounce the world. ” – (Brihaspati).

tyaja dharmam adharmaṃ ca ubhe satyānṛte tyaja |
ubhe satyānṛte tyaktvā yena tyajasi tat tyaja ||
saṃsāram eva niḥsāraṃ dṛṣṭvā sāra-didṛkṣayā |
pravrajanty akṛtodvāhāḥ paraṃ vairāgyam āśritāḥ ||
iti bṛhaspatir api kacaṃ prati |

Suka’s teaching runs as follows :
By action a person is bound, and by wisdom he is released. Therefore, the sages who see the goal do no action.” (MBh 12.233.7)
Here (in the Bhagavad-gitu) also we have, „Renouncing all actions by thought.” (5.12).

karmaṇā badhyate jantur vidyayā ca vimucyate |
tasmāt karma na kurvanti yatayaḥ pāra-darśinaḥ || (MBh 12.233.7)
iti śukānuśāsanam |
ihāpi sarva-karmāṇi manasā saṃnyasya (BhG 5.12) ity ādi |

Moksha cannot be the effect of an action.
Moksha, too, being no effect of an act, no action will avail a mumukshu, a seeker of moksha. {Objection):The performance of obligatory duties is intended for the mere avoidance of the sin (of their omission).

mokṣasya cākāryatvān mumukṣoḥ karmānarthakyam | nityāni pratyavāya-parihārārtham anuṣṭheyāni iti cet, na |

(Answer): No. For, the sin arises only in the case of one who has not formally entered the fourth order, the order of samnyasins. It is certainly (as the opponent must admit) not possible to imagine that a samnyasin will incur sin by omitting the agni-karya – worship of the sacred fire – as students (Bralimacharins) do thereby incur when they are not yet samnyasins, i.e., when they have not formally renounced works.

asaṃnyāsi-viṣayatvāt pratyavāya-prāpteḥ | na hi agni-kāryādy-akaraṇāt saṃnyāsinaḥ pratyavāyaḥ kalpayituṃ śakyo yathā brahmacāriṇām asaṃnyāsinām api karmiṇām |

Neither is it, indeed, possible to imagine the generation of sin – which is a bhava or positive effect – out of the omission of the obligatory duties – which is an abhava or mere negation; for, that the generation of existence out of non-existence is impossible is taught by the sruti in the words „How can existence arise out of non-existence?” [Chhdndogya-Upanishad , 6-2).

na tavan nityānāṃ karmaṇām abhāvād eva bhāva-rūpasya pratyavāyasya utpattiḥ kalpayituṃ śakyā katham asataḥ sajjāyate (Chān-up 6.2.2) iti asataḥ sajjanmāsambhava-śruteḥ |

If the Veda should teach what is inconceivable to us, viz., that evil arises from the omission of prescribed duties, it is tantamount to saying that the Veda conduces to no good and is therefore no authority; for, performance and non-performance alike would only produce pain.

yadi vihitākaraṇād asambhāvyam api pratyavāyaṃ brūyād vedas tadā anartha-karo vedaḥ apramāṇam ity uktaṃ syāt |

This would further lead to the absurd conclusion that śastra or revelation is creative, not indicative, a conclusion which is acceptable to none. Hence no karma for samnyasins; and hence also the absurdity of a conjunction of knowledge and action.

tathā ca kārakaṃ śāstraṃ na jñāpakam iti anupapannārthaṃ kalpitaṃ syāt | na caitad iṣṭam |

Conjunction is inconsistent with Arjuna’s question.
Arjuna’s question (in 3.1) would also be inexplicable. If, in the Second Discourse, it was said by the Lord that both knowledge and action should be simultaneously conjoined in Arjuna himself, then his question in 3.1 cannot be explained.

tasmān na saṃnyāsināṃ karmāṇi ato jñāna-karmaṇoḥ samuccayānupapattiḥ | jyāyasī cet karmaṇas te matā buddhir (BhG 3.1) iti | arjunasya praśnānupapatteś ca |

If it was taught to Arjuna that both knowledge and action should be conjoined in him, knowledge which is superior to action must certainly have been meant for him. Then there could be no occasion for the question, or the blame, which is implied in Arjuna’s words „then why dost Thou, O Keśava, direct me to this terrible action? ” (3.1)

yadi hi bhagavatā dvitīye adhyāye jñānaṃ karma ca samuccayena tvayānuṣṭheyam ity uktaṃ syāt tato ’rjunasya praśno ’nupapanno jyāyasī cet karmaṇas te matā buddhir janārdana (BhG 3.1) iti |

It can by no means be supposed that knowledge, the superior of the two, was forbidden to Arjuna alone by the Lord in His previous teaching, – in which case the question on the part of Arjuna distinguishing (one path from the other might arise).

arjunāya ced buddhi-karmaṇī tvayānuṣṭheye iti ukte yā karmaṇo jyāyasī buddhiḥ sā apy uktā eveti tat kiṃ karmaṇi ghore māṃ niyojayasi keśava (BhG 3.1) iti praśno na kathaṃcana upapadyate |

If, on the other hand, it has been previously taught by the Lord that knowledge and action are intended for two distinct classes of men respectively, on the ground that a simultaneous devotion – on the part of one man – to knowledge and action was impossible owing to their mutual opposition, then the question (in 3.1) becomes explicable.

na cārjunasyaiva jyāyasī buddhir nānuṣṭheyeti bhagavatoktaṃ pūrvam iti kalpayituṃ yuktam, yena jyāyasī ced iti praśnaḥ syāt | yadi punar ekasya puruṣasya jñāna-karmaṇor virodhād yugapad anuṣṭhānaṃ na sambhavatīti bhinna-puruṣānuṣṭheyatvaṃ bhagavatā pūrvam uktaṃ syāt tato ’yaṃ praśna upapannaḥ jyāyasī ced ity ādiḥ |

Even supposing that the question was asked from ignorance, the Lord’s answer that devotion to knowledge and devotion to action are assigned to two distinct classes of men cannot be explained. Neither can the reply of the Lord be attributed to His ignorance.

avivekataḥ praśna-kalpanāyām api bhinna-puruṣānuṣṭheyatvena bhagavataḥ prativacanaṃ nopapadyate | na cājñāna-nimittaṃ bhagavat-prativacanaṃ kalpyam |

From this very answer of the Lord – that devotion to knowledge and devotion to action are assigned to distinct classes of persons – follows the impossibility of a conjunction of knowledge and action.

asmāc ca bhinna-puruṣānuṣṭheyatvena jñāna-karma-niṣṭhayor bhagavataḥ prativacana-darśanāt, jñāna-karmaṇoḥ samuccayānupapattiḥ |

Wherefore the conclusion of the Gita and of all the Upanishads is this, that moksha can be obtained by knowledge alone, unaided (by action).

tasmāt kevalād eva jñānān mokṣa ity eṣo ’rtho niścito gītāsu sarvopaniṣatsu ca |

If a conjunction of the two were possible (for one man), Arjuna’s request to the Lord to teach him only one of the two, jñāna or karma, would be unaccountable.

jñāna-karmaṇor ekaṃ vada niścitya (BhG 3.2) iti ca eka-viṣayaiva prārthanānupapannobhayoḥ samuccaya-sambhave |

 

Rāmānuja


tad evaṃ mumukṣubhiḥ prāpyatayā vedāntoditanirastanikhilāvidyādidoṣagandhānavadhikātiśayāsaṃkhyeyakalyāṇaguṇagaṇaparabrahmapuruṣottama-prāptyupāyabhūtavedanopāsanadhyānādiśabdavācyatadaikāntikātyantikabhaktiṃ vaktuṃ tadaṅgabhūtaṃ „ya ātmāpahatapāpmā” ityādiprajāpativākyoditaṃ prāptur ātmano yāthātmyadarśanaṃ tannityatājñānapūrvakāsaṅgakarmaniṣpādyajñānayogasādhyam uktam /
prajāpativākye hi daharavākyoditaparavidyāśeṣatayā prāptur ātmanas svarūpadarśanam, „yas tam ātmānam anuvidya vijānāti” ity uktvā jāgaritasvapnasuṣuptyatītaṃ pratyagātmasvarūpam aśarīraṃ pratipādya, „evam evaiṣa saṃprasādo ‚smāc charīrāt samutthāya paraṃ jyotir upasaṃpadya svena rūpeṇābhiniṣpadyate” iti daharavidyāphalenopasaṃhṛtam / anyatrāpi, „adhyātmayogādhigamena devaṃ matvā dhīro harṣaśokau jahāti” ity evam ādiṣu, devaṃ matveti vidhīyamānaparavidyāṅgatayā adhyātmayogādhigameneti pratyagātmajñānam api vidhāya, „na jāyate mriyate vā vipaścit” ityādinā pratyagātmasvarūpaṃ

viśodhya, „aṇor aṇīyān”, ity ārabhya, „mahāntaṃ vibhum ātmānaṃ matvā dhīro na śocati”, „nāyam ātmā pravacanena labhyo na medhayā na bahunā śrutena / yam evaiṣa vṛṇute tena labhyas tasyaiṣa ātmā vivṛṇute tanūṃ svām.” ityādibhiḥ parasvarūpaṃ tadupāsanam upāsanasya ca bhaktirūpatāṃ pratipādya, „vijñānasārathir yas tu manaḥpragrahavān naraḥ / so ‚dhvanaḥ pāram āpnoti tadviṣṇoḥ paramaṃ padam.” iti paravidyāphalenopasaṃhṛtam /
ataḥ param adhyāyacatuṣṭayena idam eva prāptuḥ pratyagātmano darśanaṃ sasādhanaṃ prapañcayati

 

Śrīdhara

commentary under the verse BhG 3.1

 

Madhusūdana


evaṃ tāvat prathamenādhyāyenopodghātito dvitīyenādhyāyena kṛtsnaḥ śāstrārthaḥ sūtritaḥ | tathā hi-ādau niṣkāma-karma-niṣṭhā | tato ‚ntaḥkaraṇa-śuddhiḥ | tataḥ śama-damādi-sādhana-puraḥsaraḥ sarva-karma-saṃnyāsaḥ | tato vedānta-vākya-vicāra-sahitā bhagavad-bhakti-niṣṭhā | tatas tattva-jñāna-niṣṭhā tasyāḥ phalaṃ ca triguṇātmakāvidyā-nivṛttyā jīvan-muktiḥ prārabdha-karma-phala-bhoga-paryantaṃ tad-ante ca videha-muktiḥ | jīvan-mukti-daśāyāṃ ca parama-puruṣārthālambanena para-vairāgya-prāptir daiva-sampad-ākhyā ca śubha-vāsanā tad-upakāriṇy-ādeyā | āsura-sampadas tu rājasī tāmasī ceti heyopādeya-vibhāgena kṛtsna-śāstrārtha-parisamāptiḥ |

tatra yogasthaḥ kuru karmāṇi [Gītā 2.48] ityādinā sūtritā sattva-śuddhi-sādhana-bhūtā niṣkāma-karma-niṣṭhā sāmānya-viśeṣa-rūpeṇa tṛtīya-caturthābhyāṃ prapañcyate | tataḥ śuddhāntaḥkaraṇasya śama-damādi-sādhana-sampatti-puraḥsarā vihāya kāmān yaḥ sarvān [Gītā 2.71] ity ādinā sūtritā sarva-karma-saṃnyāsa-niṣṭhā saṅkṣepa-vistara-rūpeṇa pañcama-ṣaṣṭhābhyām | etāvatā ca tvaṃ-padārtho ‚pi nirūpitaḥ | tato vedānta-vākya-vicāra-sahitā yukta āsīta mat-paraḥ [Gītā 2.61] ity ādinā sūtritāneka-prakārā bhagavad-bhakti-niṣṭhādhyāya-ṣaṭkena pratipādyate | tāvatā ca tat-padārtho ‚pi nirūpitaḥ | praty adhyāyaṃ cāvāntara-saṅgatim avāntara-prayojana-bhedaṃ ca tatra tatra pradarśayiṣyāmaḥ | tatas tattvaṃ-padārthaikya-jñāna-rūpā vedāvināśinaṃ nityaṃ [Gītā 2.21] ity ādinā sūtritā tattva-jñāna-niṣṭhā trayodaśe prakṛti-puruṣa-viveka-dvārā prapañcitā | jñāna-niṣṭhāyāṃ ca phalaṃ traiguṇya-viṣayā vedā nistraiguṇyo bhavārjuna [Gītā 2.45] ity ādinā sūtritā traiguṇya-nivṛttiś caturdaśe saiva jīvan-muktir iti guṇātīta-lakṣaṇa-kathanena prapañcitā | tadā gantāsi nirvedaṃ [Gītā 2.52] ity ādinā sūtritā para-vairāgya-niṣṭhā saṃsāra-vṛkṣa-ccheda-dvāreṇa pañca-daśe | duḥkheṣv anudvigna-manāḥ [Gītā 2.56] ity ādinā sthita-prajña-lakṣaṇena sūtritā para-vairāgyopakāriṇī daivī sampad ādeyā yām imāṃ puṣpitāṃ vācaṃ [Gītā 2.42] ity ādinā sūtritā tad-virodhiny āsurī sampac ca heyā ṣoḍaśe | daiva-sampado ‚sādhāraṇaṃ kāraṇaṃ ca sāttvikī śraddhā nirdvandvo nitya-sattva-stho [Gītā 2.45] ity ādinā sūtritā tad-virodhi-parihāreṇa saptadaśe | evaṃ saphalā jñāna-niṣṭhādhyāya-pañcakena pratipāditā | aṣṭādaśena ca pūrvokta-sarvopasaṃhāra iti kṛtsna-gītārtha-saṅgatiḥ |

tatra pūrvādhyāye sāṅkhya-buddhim āśritya jñāna-niṣṭhā bhagavatoktā eṣā te ‚bhihitā sāṅkhye buddhiḥ [Gītā 2.39] iti | tathā yoga-buddhim āśritya karma-niṣṭhoktā yoge tv imāṃ śṛṇu ity ārabhya karmaṇy evādhikāras te … mā te saṅgo ‚stv akarmaṇi [Gītā 2.47] ity antena | na cānayor niṣṭhayor adhikāri-bhedaḥ spaṣṭam upadiṣṭo bhagavatā | na caikādhikārikatvam evobhayoḥ samuccayasya vivakṣitatvād iti vācyam | dūreṇa hy avaraṃ karam buddhi-yogād dhanañjaya [Gītā 2.49] iti karma-niṣṭhāyā buddhi-niṣṭhāpekṣayā nikṛṣṭatvābhidhānāt | yāvān artha udapāne [Gītā 2.46] ity atra ca jñāna-phale sarva-karma-phalāntarbhāvasya darśitatvāt | sthita-prajña-lakṣaṇam uktvā ca eṣā brāhmī sthitiḥ pārtha [Gītā 2.72] iti sapraśaṃsam jñāna-phalopasaṃhārāt | yā niśā sarva-bhūtānāṃ [Gītā 2.69] ity ādau jñānino dvaita-darśanābhāvena karmānuṣṭhānāsambhavasya coktatvāt | avidyā-nivṛtti-lakṣaṇe mokṣa-phale jñāna-mātrasyaiva lokānusāreṇa sādhanatva-kalpanāt | tam eva viditvātimṛtyum eti nānyaḥ panthā vidyate ‚nayanāya [ŚvetU 3.8] iti śruteś ca |

nanu tarhi tejas-timirayor iva virodhinor jñāna-karmaṇoḥ samuccayāsambhavād bhinnādhikārikatvam evāstu | satyam | naivaṃ sambhavati ekam arjunaṃ prati tūbhayopadeśo na yuktaḥ | nahi karmādhikāriṇaṃ prati jñāna-niṣṭhopadeṣṭum ucitā na vā jñānādhikāriṇaṃ prati karma-niṣṭhā | ekam eva prati vikalpenobhayopadeśa iti cet, na | utkṛṣṭa-nikṛṣṭayor vikalpānupapatteḥ | avidyā-nivṛtty-upalakṣitātma-svarūpe mokṣe tāratamyāsambhavāc ca | tasmāj jñāna-karma-niṣṭhayor bhinnādhikārikatve ekaṃ pratyupadeśāyogād ekādhikārikatve ca viruddhayoḥ samuccayāsambhavāt karmāpekṣayā jñāna-praśastyānupapatteś ca vikalpābhyupagame cotkṛṣṭam anāyāsa-sādhyaṃ jñānaṃ vihāya nikṛṣṭam anekāyāsa-bahulaṃ karmānuṣṭhātum ayogyam iti matvā paryākulībhūta-buddhir arjuna uvāca jyāyasī ced iti |

 

Viśvanātha

commentary under the verse BhG 3.1

 

Baladeva

commentary under the verse BhG 3.1

 
 

BhG 3.1

arjuna uvāca
jyāyasī cet karmaṇas te matā buddhir janārdana
tat kiṃ karmaṇi ghore māṃ niyojayasi keśava

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arjunaḥ (Arjuna) uvāca (he spoke):
he janārdana (O Janārdana!), he keśava (O Keśava!),
karmaṇaḥ (than activity) buddhiḥ (intelligence) jyāyasī (better) te (by you) matā (considered) cet (if),
tat kiṁ (then why?) ghore (in ghastly) karmaṇi (in activity) māṁ (me) niyojayasi (you engage).

 

grammar

arjunaḥ arjuna 1n.1 m.white, clear, Arjuna;
uvāca vac (to speak) [Perf.] P 1v.1he spoke;
jyāyasī jyāyasī 1n.1 f.better, higher (comparative of ji – to conquer, jaya – victory, succcess: jyāyas – better, jyeṣṭha – the best, the oldest);
cet av.if;
karmaṇaḥ karman 5n.1 n.than activity (from: kṛ – to do);
te yuṣmat sn. 6n.1your (shortened form of: tava);
matā matā (from: man – to think, to believe) [PP] 1n.1 f.thought, considered;
buddhiḥ buddhi 1n.1 f.intelligence, thought, understanding, knowledge, idea, opinion (from: budh – to wake, to perceive, to understand);
janārdana jana-ardana 8n.1 m.exciting / agitating people, O Janārdana (from: jan – to be born, to produce, jana – man, people, creature; ard – to torment, to hurt, ardana – tormenting, destroying);
or BV: yo janānām abhadram ardati saone who destroys inauspiciousness of people;
tat tat sn. 1n.1 n.that
kim av.whether? how? why? wherefrom? (from: kim – what?);
karmaṇi karman 7n.1 n.in activity (from: kṛ – to do);
ghore ghora 7n.1 n.in terrible, ghastly (from: ghur – to cry frightfully);
mām asmat sn. 2n.1me;
niyojayasi ni-yuj (to join, to engage) Praes. caus. P 2v.1you engage;
keśava keśa-va 8n.1 m.who has [beautiful] hair (from: keśa – hair; -va = -vant – owner);
or ka-īśa-vathe lord of Brahmā and Śiva(from: ka – Brahmā; xīś – to own, to reign, īśa – ruler, lord, Śiva; -va = -vant – owner);

 

textual variants


matā buddhir → mato-buddhir (intelligence of the mind);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

The Lord, moreover, emphatically teaches the impossibility of devotion to jñāna in the case of Arjuna, in the words „do thou therefore perform action only.” (4.15).
Which is better, Knowledge or Action.

kuru karmaiva tasmāt tvam (BhG 4.15) iti ca jñāna-niṣṭhāsambhavam arjunasyāvadhāraṇena darśayiṣyati |

Arjuna said :
If it be thought by Thee that knowledge is superior to action,
O Janardana, why then dost Thou, O Kesava, direct me to this terrible action?

arjuna uvāca
jyāyasī cet karmaṇas te matā buddhir janārdana
|
tat kiṃ karmaṇi ghore māṃ niyojayasi keśava ||3.1||

If it bad been meant that knowledge and action should be conjoined, then the means of salvation would be one only; and, in that case, a groundless separation of knowledge from action would have been made by Arjuna declaring knowledge to be superior to action.

jyāyasī śreyasī cet yadi karmaṇaḥ sakāśāt te tava matā abhipretā buddhir jñānam | he janārdana !

If the two be regarded as constituting together a single means to a single end, they cannot at the same time be regarded to be distinct as producing distinct effects.

yadi buddhi-karmaṇī samuccite iṣṭe tadaikaṃ śreyaḥ-sādhanam iti karmaṇo jyāyasī buddhir iti karmaṇo ’tirikta-karaṇaṃ buddher anupapannam arjunena kṛtaṃ syāt | na hi tad eva tasmāt phalato ’tiriktaṃ syāt |

Neither could we account for what Arjuna said – „Why then dost Thou direct me to this terrible action?” – as if meaning to censure the Lord, on finding that He – for what reason Arjuna could not see clearly – had exhorted him to follow the unwholesome course of action after declaring that knowledge was superior to action.

tathā ca, karmaṇaḥ śreyas-karī bhagavatoktā buddhiḥ | aśreyas-karaṃ ca karma kurv iti māṃ pratipādayati, tat kiṃ nu kāraṇam iti bhagavata upālambham iva kurvan tat kiṃ kasmāt karmaṇi ghore krūre hiṃsā-lakṣaṇe māṃ niyojayasi keśava iti ca yad āha, tac ca nopapadyate |

Now, if a conjunction of knowledge with the smartakarma only were intended for all by the Lord and understood by Arjuna as so intended, how could we then justify the words of Arjuna: „why dost Thou direct me to this terrible action?

atha smārtenaiva karmaṇā samuccayaḥ sarveṣāṃ bhagavatokto ’rjunena cāvadhārita cet, tat kiṃ karmaṇi ghore māṃ niyojayasi ity ādi kathaṃ yuktaṃ vacanam ||3.1||

 

Rāmānuja

commentary under the verse BhG 3.2

 

Śrīdhara

sāṅkhye yoge ca vaiṣamyaṃ matvā mugdhāya jiṣṇave |
tayor bheda-nirāsāya karma-yoge udīryate ||

evaṃ tāvad aśocyān anvaśocas tvam [Gītā 2.11] ity ādinā prathamaṃ mokṣa-sādhanatvena dehātma-viveka-buddhir uktā | tad-anantaram eṣā te ‚bhihitā sāṅkhye buddhir yoge tv imāṃ śṛṇu [Gītā 2.39] ity ādinā karma coktam | na ca tayor guṇa-pradhāna-bhāvaḥ spaṣṭaṃ darśitaḥ | tatra buddhi-yuktasya sthita-prajñasya niṣkāmatva-niyatendriyatva-nirahaṅkāratvādy-abhidhānād eṣā brāhmī sthitiḥ pārtha [Gītā 2.72] iti sapraśaṃsam upasaṃhārāc ca buddhi-karmaṇor madhye buddheḥ śreṣṭhatvaṃ bhagavato ‚bhipretaṃ manvāno ‚rjuna uvāca jyāyasī ced iti | karmaṇaḥ sakāśāt mokṣāntaraṅgatvena buddhir jyāyasī adhikatarā śreṣṭhā cet tava saṃmatā tarhi kim arthaṃ tasmād yudhyasveti tasmād uttiṣṭeti ca vāraṃ vāraṃ vadan ghore hiṃsātmake karmaṇi māṃ niyojayasi pravartayasi

 

Madhusūdana

he janārdana ! sarvair janair ardyate yācyate svābhilaṣita-siddhaya iti tvaṃ tathābhūto mayāpi śreyo ‚niścayārthaṃ yācyasa iti naivānucitam iti sambodhanābhiprāyaḥ | karmaṇo niṣkāmād api buddhir ātma-tattva-viṣayā jyāyasī praśastatarā ced yadi te tava matā tat tadā kiṃ karmaṇi ghore hiṃsādy-anekāyāsa-bahule mām atibhaktaṃ niyojayasi karmaṇy evādhikāras ta ity ādinā viśeṣeṇa prerayasi | he keśava sarveśvara | sarveśvarasya sarveṣṭa-dāyinas tava māṃ bhaktaṃ śiṣyas te ‚haṃ śādhi mām ity ādinā tvad-eka-śaraṇatayopasannaṃ prati pratāraṇā noicitety abhiprāyaḥ

 

Viśvanātha

niṣkāmam arpitaṃ karma tṛtīye tu prapañcyate |
kāma-krodha-jigīṣāyāṃ viveko ‚pi pradarśyate ||

pūrva-vākyeṣu jñāna-yogān niṣkāma-karma-yogāc ca nistraiguṇya-prāpakasya guṇātīta-bhakti-yogasya utkarṣam ākalayya tatraiva svautsukyam abhivyañjan sva-dharme saṃgrāme pravartakaṃ bhagavantaṃ sakhya-bhāvenopālabhate | jyāyasī śreṣṭhā buddhir vyavasāyātmikā guṇātītā bhaktir ity arthaḥ | ghore yuddha-rūpe karmaṇi kiṃ niyojayasi pravartayasi | he janārdana janān svajanān svājñayā pīḍayasīty arthaḥ | na ca tavājñā kenāpi anyathā kartuṃ śakyata ity āha | he keśava ko brahmā īśo mahādevaḥ | tāv api vayase vaśīkaroṣi

 

Baladeva

tṛtīye karma-niṣkāmaṃ vistareṇopavarṇitam |
kāmāder vijayopāyo durjayasyāpi darśitaḥ ||

pūrvatra kṛpāluḥ pārthasārathir ajñāna-kardama-nimagnaṃ jagat svātma-jñānopāsanopadeśena samuddidhīrṣus tad-aṅga-bhūtāṃ jīvātma-yāthātmya-buddhim upadiśya tad-upāyatayā niṣkāmakam abuddhim upadiṣṭavān | ayam evārtho viniścayāya caturbhir adhyāyair vidhāntarair varṇyate | tatra karma-buddhi-niṣpādyatvāj jīvātma-buddheḥ śreṣṭhaṃ sthitam | tatrārjunaḥ pṛcchati jyāyasīti | karmaṇā niṣkāmād api cet tava tat-sādhyatvāt jīvātma-buddhir jyāyasī śreṣṭhā matā | tarhi tat-siddhaye māṃ ghore hiṃsādy-anekāyāse karmaṇi kiṃ niyojayasi tasmād yuddhasvety ādinā kathaṃ prerayasi | ātmānubhava-hetu-bhūtā khalu sā buddhir nikhilendriya-vyāpāra-virati-sādhyā tad-arthaṃ tat-svajātīyāḥ śamādaya eva yujyeran na tu sarvendriya-vyāpāra-rūpāṇi tad-vijātīyāni karmāṇīti bhāvaḥ | he janārdana śreyo ‚rthi-jana-yācanīya, he keśava vidhi-rudra-vaśa-kārin |

ka iti brahmaṇo nāma īśo ‚haṃ sarva-dehinām |
āvāṃ tavāṅga-sambhūtau tasmāt keśava-nāma-bhāg ||

iti hari-vaṃśe kṛṣṇaṃ prati rudroktiḥ | durlaṅghyājñas tvaṃ śreyo ‚rthinā mayābhyarthito mama śreyo niścitya brūhīti bhāvaḥ

 
 

BhG 3.2

vyāmiśreṇaiva vākyena buddhiṃ mohayasīva me
tad ekaṃ vada niścitya yena śreyo ham āpnuyām

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vyāmiśreṇa eva (indeed by equivocal) vākyena (by speech) me (my) buddhiṁ (intelligence) mohayasi iva (as if you bewilder).
[ataḥ] (therefore) yena (by which) ahaṁ (I) śreyaḥ (welfare) āpnuyām (I would obtain),
tat ekaṁ (that alone) niścitya (after ascertaining) vada (speak).

 

grammar

vyāmiśreṇa vi-ā-miśra 3n.1 n.by mixed, equivocal  (from: vi-ā-miśr – to mix);
eva av.certainly, just, merely;
vākyena vākya (vac – to speak) PF 3n.1 n.by speech;
buddhim buddhi 2n.1 f.intelligence, thought, understanding, knowledge, idea, opinion (from: budh – to wake, to perceive, to understand);
mohayasi muh (to become confused, bewildered, stupefied) Praes. caus. P 2v.1you bewilder;
iva av.like, in the same manner as, almost, exactly;
me asmat sn. 6n.1my (shortened form of: mama);
tat tat sn. 2n.1 n.that;
ekam eka sn. 2n.1 n.one, alone;
vada vad (to speak) Imperat. P 2v.1speak;
niścitya niḥ-ci (to ascertain, to determine) absol.after ascertaining;
yena yat sn. 3n.1 n.that by which, wherefore;
śreyaḥ śreyas 2n.1 n. better, higher, perfect, the auspiciousness, the welfare (comparative of: śrī – śreyas, śreṣṭha);
aham asmat sn. 1n.1I;
āpnuyām āp (to obtain) Pot. P 3v.1I would obtain;

 

textual variants

vyāmiśreṇaiva → vyāmiśreṇeva (as if equivocal);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

Moreover,

kiṃ ca –

With an apparently perplexing speech, Thou confusest as it were my understanding.
Tell me with certainty that one (way) by which I may attain bliss.

vyāmiśreṇeva vākyena buddhiṃ mohayasīva me
tad ekaṃ vada niścitya yena śreyo ’ham āpnuyām ||3.2||

No doubt the Lord speaks clearly; still, to me of dull understanding the speech of the Lord appears to be perplexing. Thereby „Thou confusest as it were my understanding.

vyāmiśreṇeva, yadyapi vivaktābhidhāyī bhagavān, tathāpi mama manda-buddher vyāmiśram iva bhagavad-vākyaṃ pratibhāti | tena mama buddhiṃ mohayasīva |

Arjuna means – ” It is not possible that Thou wouldst confuse me, Thou who hast undertaken to remove my confusion? Hence I say ‚Thou confuses as it were my understanding.”

mama buddhi-vyāmohāpanayāya hi pravṛttas tvaṃ tu kathaṃ mohayasi ? ataḥ bravīmi | buddhiṃ mohayasi iva me mama iti |

He goes on: If Thou thinkest that knowledge and action, which are intended for two distinct classes of aspirants, cannot both be followed by one and the same person, then teach me one of the two, knowledge or action, after determining (within Thyself) that ” this one alone is suited to Arjuna, and is in accordance with the state and powers of his understanding;” teach me that one of the two, knowledge or action, by which I may attain bliss.

tvaṃ tu bhinna-kartṛkayoḥ jñāna-karmaṇor eka-puruṣānuṣṭhānāsaṃbhavaṃ yadi manyase, tatraivaṃ sati tat tayor ekaṃ buddhiṃ karma vā idam evārjunasya yogyaṃ buddhi-śakty-avasthānurūpam iti niścitya vada brūhi, yena jñānena karmaṇā vā anyatareṇa śreyo ’ham āpnuyāṃ prāpnuyām |

If knowledge had been intended by the Lord to be at least an accessory to devotion to action, why then should Arjuna wish to know about only one of them.

yadi hi karma-niṣṭhāyāṃ guṇa-bhūtam api jñānaṃ bhagavatoktaṃ syāt tat kathaṃ tayor ekaṃ vada ity eka-viṣayaivārjunasya śuśrūṣā syāt |

It had not indeed been said by the Lord that He would teach him one only of the two, knowledge or action, but not both, – in which case alone Arjuna might ask for one only, seeing that both would not be taught to him.

na hi bhagavatā pūrvam uktam anyatarad eva jñāna-karmaṇoḥ vakṣyāmi, naiva dvayam iti, yena ubhaya-prāpty-asaṃbhavam ātmano manyamāna ekam eva prārthayet ||3.2||

 

Rāmānuja


yadi karmaṇo buddhir eva jyāyasīti te matā, kim arthaṃ tarhi ghore karmaṇi māṃ niyojayasi / etad uktaṃ bhavati jñānaniṣṭhaivātmāvalokanasādhanam; karmaniṣṭhā tu tasyāḥ niṣpādikā; ātmāvalokanasādhanabhūtā ca jñānaniṣṭhā sakalendriyamanasāṃ śabdādiviṣayavyāpāroparatiniṣpādyety abhihitā / indriyavyāpāroparatiniṣpādyam ātmāvalokanaṃ cet siṣādhayiṣitam, sakalakarmanivṛttipūrvakajñānaniṣṭhāyām evāhaṃ niyojayitavyaḥ / kim arthaṃ ghore karmaṇi sarvendriyavyāpārarūpe ātmāvalokanavirodhini karmaṇi māṃ niyojayasīti // ato miśravākyena māṃ mohayasīva pratibhāti / tathā hy ātmāvalokanasādhanabhūtāyāḥ sarvendriyavyāpāroparatirūpāyāḥ jñānaniṣṭhāyāḥ tadviparyayarūpaṃ karma sādhanam, tad eva kurv iti vākyaṃ viruddhaṃ vyāmiśram eva / tasmād ekam amiśrarūpaṃ vākyaṃ vada, yena vākyenāham anuṣṭheyarūpaṃ niścitya śreyaḥ prāpnuyām

 

Śrīdhara

nanu dharmyād dhi yuddhāc chreyo ‚nyat kṣatriyasya na vidyata ity ādinā karmaṇo ‚pi śreṣṭhatvm uktam eva ity āśaṅkyāha vyāmiśreṇeti | kvacit karma-praśaṃsā kvacit jñāna-praśaṃsā ity evaṃ vyāmiśraṃ sandeho ‚pādakam iva yad vākyaṃ tena me mama buddhiṃ matim ubhayatra dolāyitāṃ kurvan mohayasīva | ata ubhayor madhye yad bhadraṃ tad ekaṃ niścitya vadeti | yad vā, idam eva śreyaḥ-sādhanam iti niścitya yenānuṣṭhitena śreyo mokṣam aham āpnuyāṃ prāpsyāmi tad evaikaṃ niścitya vadety arthaḥ

 

Madhusūdana


nanu nāhaṃ kaṃcid api pratārayāmi kiṃ punas tvām atipriyam | tvaṃ tu kiṃ me pratāraṇā-cihnaṃ paśyasīti cet tatrāha vyāmiśreṇeti | tava vacanaṃ vyāmiśraṃ na bhavaty eva mama tv ekādhikārikatva-bhinnādhikārikatva-sandehād vyāmiśraṃ saṅkīrṇārtham iva te yad vākyaṃ māṃ prati jñāna-karma-niṣṭhā-dvaya-pratipādakaṃ tvaṃ me mama manda-buddher vākya-tātparyāparijñānād buddhim antaḥkaraṇaṃ mohayasīva bhrāntyā yojayasīva | parama-kāruṇikatvāt tvaṃ na mohayasy eva mama tu svāśaya-doṣān moho bhavatītīvaśa-śabdārthaḥ | ekādhikāritve viruddhayoḥ samuccayānupapatter ekārthatvābhāvena ca vikalpānupapatteḥ prāg-ukter yady adhikāri-bhedaṃ manyase tadaikaṃ māṃ prati viruddhayor niṣṭhayor upadeśaāyogāt taj jñānaṃ vā karma vaikam evādhikāraṃ me niścitya vada | yenādhikāra-niścaya-puraḥsaram uktena tvayā mayā cānuṣṭhitena jñānena karmaṇā vaikena śreyo mokṣam aham āpnuyāṃ prāptuṃ yogyaḥ syām |

evaṃ jñāna-karma-niṣṭhayor ekādhikāritve vikalpa-samuccayayor asambhavād adhikāri-bheda-jñānāyārjunasya praśna iti sthitam |

ihetareṣāṃ kumataṃ samastaṃ
śruti-smṛti-nyāya-balān nirastam |
punaḥ punar bhāṣya-kṛtātiyatnād
ato na tat kartum ahaṃ pravṛttaḥ ||

bhāṣya-kāra-mata-sāra-darśinā
grantha-mātram iha yojyate mayā |
āśayo bhagavataḥ prakāśyate
kevalaṃ sva-vacaso viśuddhaye

 

Viśvanātha


bho vayasya arjuna ! satyaṃ guṇātītā bhaktiḥ sarvotkṛṣṭaiva | kintu sā yādṛcchika-mad-aikāntaika-mahā-bhakta-kṛpaika-labhyatvāt purusodyama-sādhyā na bhavati | ataeva nistraiguṇyo bhava guṇātītayā mad-bhaktyā tvaṃ nistraiguṇyo bhūyā ity āśīrvāda eva dattaḥ | sa ca yadā phaliṣyati tadā tādṛśa-yādṛcchikaikāntika-bhakta-kṛpayā prāptām api lapsyase | sāmprataṃ tu karmaṇy evādhikāras te iti mayoktaṃ cet, satyam | tarhi karmaiva niścitya kathaṃ na brūṣe | kim iti sandeha-sindhau māṃ kṣipasīty āha vyāmiśreṇeti | viśeṣataḥ ā samyaktayā miśraṇaṃ nānā-vidhārtha-milanaṃ yatra tena vākyena me buddhiṃ mohayasi | tathā hi karmaṇy evādhikāras te [Gītā 2.47], siddhyasiddhyoḥ samo bhūtvā samatvaṃ yoga ucyate [Gītā 2.48],

buddhi-yukto jahātīha ubhe sukṛta-duṣkṛte |
tasmād yogāya yujyasva yogaḥ karmasu kauśalam || [Gītā 2.50]

iti yoga-śabda-vācyaṃ jñānam api bravīṣi | yadā te moha-kalilaṃ [Gītā 2.52] ity anena jñānaṃ kevalam api bravīṣi | kiṃ cātra iva-śabdena tvad-vākyasya vastuto nāsti nānārtha-miśritatvam | nāpi kṛpālos tava man-mohanecchā | nāpi mama tat-tad-arthānabhijñatvam iti bhāvaḥ | ayaṃ gūḍho ‚bhiprāyaḥ rājasāt karmaṇaḥ sakāśāt sāttvikaṃ karma śreṣṭhaṃ, tac ca sāttvikam eva | nirguṇa-bhaktiś ca tasmādn atiśreṣṭhaiva | tatra sā yadi mayi na sambhaved iti brūṣe, tadā sāttvikaṃ jñānam evaikaṃ mām upadiśa | tata eva duḥkha-mayāt saṃsāra-bandhanān mukto bhaveyam iti

 

Baladeva


vyāmiśreṇeti | sāṅkhya-buddhi-yoga-buddhyor indriya-nivṛtti-rūpayoḥ sādhya-sādhakatvāvarodhi yad vākyaṃ tad vyāmiśram ucyate | tena me buddhiṃ mohayasīva | vastutas tu sarveśvarasya mat-sakhasya ca me man-mohakatā nāsty eva | mad-buddhi-doṣād evaṃ prayemy aham atīvaśabdārthaḥ | tat tasmād ekam avyāmiśraṃ vākyaṃ vada | na karmaṇā na prajayā dhanena tyāgenaikenāmṛtatvam ānaśur nāsty akṛtaḥ kṛtena iti śrutivat | yenāham anuṣṭheyaṃ niścityātmanaḥ śreyaḥ prāpnuyām

 
 

BhG 3.3

śrī-bhagavān uvāca
loke smin dvividhā niṣṭhā purā proktā mayānagha
jñāna-yogena sāṃkhyānāṃ karma-yogena yoginām

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syntax


śrī-bhagavān (the glorious Lord) uvāca (he spoke):
he anagha (O sinless one!),
asmin loke (in this world) mayā (by me) purā (formerly) proktā (declared) dvi-vidhā (twofold) niṣṭhā (faith) [bhavati] (it is).
sāṅkhyānāṁ (of the followers of sāṁkhya philosophy) jñāna-yogena (by the yoga of knowledge) [niṣṭhā bhavati] (it is faith),
yoginām (of the yogis) karma-yogena (by the yoga of activity) [niṣṭhā bhavati] (it is faith).

 

grammar

śrī-bhagavān śrī-bhagavant 1n.1 m.; [TP]: śriyā yukto bhagavān itithe Lord united with majesty (from: śrī – lustre, majesty, fortune; bhaj – to share, to love, to rejoice, to worship, bhaga – a share, good fortune, opulence; -mant / -vant – suffix denoting one who possesses, bhagavant – who possesses opulence);
uvāca vac (to speak) [Perf.] P 1v.1he spoke;
loke loka 7n.1 m.in the world;
asmin idam sn. 7n.1 m.in this;
dvi-vidhā dvi-vidhā 1n.1 f.twofold (from: dvi – two; vi-dhā – to divide, vidhā – division, part);
niṣṭhā ni-ṣṭhā 1n.1 f. – state, firmness, devotion, faith, perfection, conclusion, death (from: sthā – to stay, to exist);
purā av.formerly, anciently, in the beginning (from: pur – to precede);
proktā proktā (pra-vac – to declare, to speak) [PP] 1n.1 f.announced, declared;
mayā asmat sn. 3n.1by me;
anagha an-agha 8n.1 m.O sinless one (from: agha – evil, sin, suffering);
jñāna-yogena jñāna-yoga 3n.1 m.; [TP]: jñānasya yogenetiby yoga of knowledge (from: jñā – to know, to understand, jñāna – knowledge, wisdom, intelligence; yuj – to yoke, to join, to engage, yoga – yoga, yoking, application, a means, one of the schools of Hindu philosophy);
sāṁkhyānām sāṁkhya 6n.3 m.of the followers of sāṁkhya philosophy (from: sam-khyā – to count, sāmkhya – relating to number, rational, one of the schools of Hindu philosophy);
karma-yogena karma-yoga 3n.1 m.; [TP]: karmaṇo yogenetiby yoga of activity (from: kṛ – to do, karman – activity and its result; yuj – to yoke, to join, to engage, yoga – yoga, yoking, application, a means, one of the schools of Hindu philosophy);
yoginām yogin 6n.3 m.of the yogīs (from: yuj – to yoke, to join, to engage, yoga – yoga, yoking, application, a means, one of the schools of Hindu philosophy);

 

textual variants


śrī-bhagavānbhagavān (the Lord);
dvividhāvividhā (manifold);
purā proktā mayānagha mayā proktā purānagha (O sinless one, by me formerly declared);
sāṁkhyānāṁsaṁkhyānāṁ (of the followers of sāṁkhya philosophy);
yoginām → karmiṇām (of those engaged in activity);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

The Paths of Knowledge and Action.
The Blessed Lord gives the following reply, which is in conformity with the question:

praśnānurūpam eva prativacanaṃ –

The Blessed Lord said:
In this world a twofold path was taught by Me at first, O sinless one;
that of the Sankhyas by devotion to knowledge,
and that of the Yogins by devotion to action.

śrī-bhagavān uvāca
loke’smin dvividhā niṣṭhā purā proktā mayānagha
|
jñāna-yogena sāṃkhyānāṃ karma-yogena yoginām ||3.3||

In this world – with reference to the people of the three castes, for whom alone are intended the teachings of the sastra (the Scripture), – a twofold niṣthā or path of devotion was taught by Me, the Omniscient Lord, when at first, at the beginning of creation, I created people and revived the tradition of the Vedic doctrine for teaching them the means of attaining worldly prosperity and Bliss.

loke ’smin śāstrārthānuṣṭhānādhikṛtānāṃ traivarṇikānāṃ dvi-vidhā dvi-prakārā niṣṭhā sthitiḥ anuṣṭheya-tātparyaṃ purā pūrvaṃ sargādau prajāḥ sṛṣṭvā tāsām abhyudaya-niḥśreyasa-prāpti-sādhanaṃ vedārtha-saṃpradāyam āviṣkurvatā proktā mayā sarvajñena īśvareṇa he anaghāpāpa |

What was that twofold path of devotion? – One of them was jñāna-yoga, the devotion of knowledge – knowledge itself being yoga – suited to the Sankhyas, to those who possessed a clear knowledge of the Self and the not-Self, who renounced the world from the Brahmacharya (the first holy order or asrama), who determined the nature of things in the light of the Vedantic wisdom, who belonged to the highest class of samnyasins known as the Paramahawsas, whose thoughts ever dwelt on Brahman only.

tatra kā sā dvividhā niṣṭhā ity āha – tatra jñāna-yogena jñānam eva yogas tena sāṃkhyānām ātmānātma-viṣaya-viveka-vijñānavatāṃ brahmacaryāśramād eva kṛta-saṃnyāsānāṃ vedānta-vijñāna-suniścitārthānāṃ paramahaṃsa-parivrājakānāṃ brahmaṇy evāvasthitānāṃ niṣṭhā proktā |

The other was karma-yoga, the devotion of action, – action itself being Yoga or devotion, – suited to yogins, to karmins, to those who were inclined to action.

karma-yogena karma eva yogaḥ karma-yogas tena karma-yogena yogināṃ karmiṇāṃ niṣṭhā proktā ity arthaḥ |

If it had already been taught or is going to be taught by the Lord in the Gita – and if it had been taught in the Vedas as well – that both knowledge and action should be conjoined in one and the same person as a means to one and the same end, how might the Lord teach Arjuna, who approached Him as a beloved pupil, that the two paths of knowledge and action were respectively intended for two distinct classes of aspirants?

yadi caikena puruṣeṇa ekasmai puruṣārthāya jñānaṃ karma ca samuccityānuṣṭheyaṃ bhagavatā iṣṭam uktaṃ vakṣyamāṇaṃ vā gītāsu vedeṣu coktam, katham ihārjunāya upasannāya priyāya viśiṣṭābhinna-puruṣa-kartṛke eva jñāna-karma-niṣṭhe brūyāt?

If, on the other hand, we suppose, that the Lord meant that Arjuna, after hearing Him teach knowledge and action, would devote himself, of his own accord, to both of them simultaneously conjoined, but that to others He would teach that the two paths were intended for two distinct classes of aspirants, then it would be tantamount to saying that the Lord is subject to love and hatred and that therefore He is no authority (in such matters): which is absurd. Wherefore by no argument can a conjunction of knowledge and action be proved.

yadi punar arjuno jñānaṃ karma ca dvayaṃ śrutvā svayam evānuṣṭhāsyati anyeṣāṃ tu bhinna-puruṣānuṣṭheyatāṃ vakṣyāmi iti mataṃ bhagavataḥ kalpyeta, tadā rāga-dveṣavān apramāṇa-bhūto bhagavān kalpitaḥ syāt | tac cāyuktam | tasmāt kayāpi yuktyā na samuccayo jñāna-karmaṇoḥ |

Karma-Yoga leads to freedom from action. The superiority of knowledge to action, referred to by Arjuna (3.1), must be true, because there is no denial of it. And it must also be true that the path of knowledge is intended for samnyasins only. Since it has been stated that the two paths are intended for two distinct classes of aspirants, such is evidently the opinion of the Lord.

yad arjunenoktaṃ karmaṇo jyāyastvaṃ buddhes tac ca sthitam anirākaraṇāt | tasyāś ca jñāna-niṣṭhāyāḥ saṃnyāsinām evānuṣṭheyatvaṃ, bhinna-puruṣānuṣṭheyatva-vacanāt | bhagavata evam evānumatam iti gamyate ||3.3||

 

Rāmānuja


pūrvoktaṃ na samyagavadhṛtaṃ tvayā / purā hy asmin loke vicitrādhikāripūrṇe, dvividhā niṣṭhā jñānakarmaviṣayā yathādhikāram asaṅkīrṇaiva mayoktā / na hi sarvo laukikaḥ puruṣaḥ saṃjātamokṣābhilāṣas tadānīm eva jñānayogādhikāre prabhavati, api tv anabhisaṃhitaphalena kevalaparamapuruṣārādhanaveṣeṇānuṣṭhitena karmaṇā vidhvastasvāntamalaḥ, avyākulendriyo jñānaniṣṭhāyām adhikaroti / „yataḥ pravṛttir bhūtānāṃ yena sarvam idaṃ tatam / svakarmaṇā tam abhyarcya siddhiṃ vindati mānavaḥ” iti paramapuruṣārādhanaikaveṣatā karmaṇāṃ vakṣyate / ihāpi, „karmaṇy evādhikāras te” ityādinā anabhisaṃhitaphalaṃ karma anuṣṭheyaṃ vidhāya, tena viṣayavyākulatārūpamohād uttīrṇabuddheḥ „prajahāti yadā kāmān” ityādinā jñānayoga uditaḥ / ataḥ sāṅkhyānām eva jñānayogena sthitir uktā / yogināṃ tu karmayogena / saṅkhyā buddhiḥ tadyuktāḥ sāṅkhyāḥ ātmaikaviṣayayā buddhyā saṃbandhinaḥ sāṅkhyāḥ; atadarhāḥ karmayogādhikāriṇo yoginaḥ / viṣayavyākulabuddhiyuktānāṃ karmayoge ‚dhikāraḥ; avyākulabuddhīnāṃ tu jñānayoge ‚dhikāra ukta iti na kiṃcid iha viruddhaṃ vyāmiśram abhihitam

 

Śrīdhara


atrottaraṃ śrī-bhagavān uvāca loke ‚sminn iti | ayam arthaḥ | yadi mayā paraspara-nirapekṣaṃ mokṣa-sādhanatvena karma-jñāna-yoga-rūpaṃ niṣṭhā-dvayam uktaṃ syāt tarhi dvayor madhye yad bhadraṃ syāt tad ekaṃ vada iti tvadīya-praśnaḥ saṃgacchate | na tu mayā tathoktam | dvābhyām ekaiva brahma-niṣṭhā uktā | guṇa-pradhāna-bhūtayos tayoḥ svātantryānupapatteḥ ekasyā eva tu prakāra-bheda-mātram adhikāri-bhedenoktam iti | asmin śuddhāśuddhāntaḥ karaṇatayā dvividhe loke adhikāri-jane dve vidhe prakārau yasyāḥ sā | dvi-vidhā niṣṭhā mokṣa-paratā pūrvādhyāye mayā sārvajñena proktā spaṣṭam evoktā | prakāra-dvayam eva nirdiśati jñāna-yogenety ādi | sāṅkhyānāṃ śuddhāntaḥkaraṇānāṃ jñāna-bhūmikām ārūḍhānāṃ jñāna-paripākārthaṃ jñāna-yogena dhyānādinā niṣṭhā brahma-paratoktā | tāni sarvāṇi saṃyamya yukta āsīta mat-para ity ādinā | sāṅkhya-bhūmikām ārurukṣūṇāṃ tv antaḥkaraṇa-śuddhi-dvārā tad-ārohaṇārthaṃ tad-upāya-bhūta-karma-yogādhikāriṇāṃ yogināṃ karma-yogena niṣṭhoktā dharmyād dhi yuddhāc chreyo ‚nyat kṣatriyasya na vidyata ity ādinā | ataeva tava citta-śuddhi-rūpāvasthā-bhedena dvi-vidhāpi niṣṭhoktā | eṣā te ‚bhihitā sāṅkhye buddhir yoge tv imāṃ śṛṇv iti

 

Madhusūdana


evam adhikāri-bhede ‚rjunena pṛṣṭe tad-anurūpaṃ prativacanaṃ śrī-bhagavān uvāca loke ‚sminn iti | asminn adhikāritvābhimate loke śuddhāśuddhāntaḥkaraṇa-bhedena dvividhe jane dvividhā dviprakārā niṣṭhā sthitar jñāna-paratā karma-paratā ca purā pūrvādhyāye mayā tavātyanta-hita-kāriṇā proktā prakarṣeṇa spaṣṭatva-lakṣaṇenoktā | tathā cādhikāry-aikya-śaṅkayā mā glāsīr iti bhāvaḥ | he ‚naghāpāpeti sambodhayann upadeśayogyatām arjunasya sūcayati | ekaiva niṣṭhā sādhya-sādhanāvasthā-bhedena dvi-prakārā na tu dve eva svatantre niṣṭhe iti kathayituṃ niṣṭhety eka-vacanam | tathā ca vakṣyati – ekaṃ sāṃkhyaṃ ca yogaṃ ca yaḥ paśyati sa paśyati [Gītā 5.5] iti |

tām eva niṣṭhāṃ dvaividhyena darśayati sāṅkhyeti | saṅkhyā samyag-ātma-buddhis tāṃ prāptavatāṃ brahmacaryād eva kṛta-saṃnyāsānāṃ vedānta-vijñāna-suniścitārthānāṃ jñāna-bhūmim ārūḍhānāṃ śuddhāntaḥkaraṇānāṃ sāṅkhyānāṃ jñāna-yogena jñānam eva yujyate brahmaṇāneneti vyutpattyā yogas tena niṣṭhoktā tāni sarvāṇi saṃyamya yukta āsīta mat-paraḥ [Gītā 2.61] ity ādinā | aśuddhāntaḥ-karaṇānāṃ tu jñāna-bhūmim anārūḍhānāṃ yogināṃ karmādhikāra-yogināṃ karma-yogena karmaiva yujyate ‚ntaḥ-karaṇa-śuddhyāneneti vyutpattyā yogas tena niṣṭhoktāntaḥ-karaṇa-śuddhi-dvārā jñāna-bhūmikārohaṇārthaṃ dharmyād dhi yuddhāc chreyo ‚nyat kṣatriyasya na vidyate [Gītā 2.31] ity ādinā |

ataeva na jñāna-karmaṇoḥ samuccayo vikalpo vā | kintu niṣkāma-karmaṇā śuddhāntaḥ-karaṇānāṃ sarva-karma-saṃnyāsenaiva jñānam iti citta-śuddhy-aśuddhi-rūpāvasthā-bhedenaikam eva tvāṃ prati dvividhā niṣṭhoktā | eṣā te ‚bhihitā sāṃkhye buddhir yoge tv imāṃ śṛṇu [Gītā 2.39] iti | ato bhūmikā-bhedenaikam eva praty ubhayopayogān nādhikāra-bhede ‚py upadeśa-vaiyarthyam ity abhiprāyaḥ | etad eva darśayitum aśuddha-cittasya citta-śuddhi-paryantaṃ karmānuṣṭhānaṃ na karmaṇām anārambhāt [Gītā 3.4] ity ādibhir moghaṃ prātha sa jīvati [Gītā 3.16] ity antais trayodaśabhir darśayati | śuddha-cittasya tu jñānino na kiṃcid api karmāpekṣitam iti darśayati yas tv ātma-ratir [Gītā 3.17] iti dvābhyām | tasmād asaktaḥ ity ārabhya tu bandha-hetor api karmaeo mokṣa-hetutvaṃ sattva-śuddhi-jñānotpatti-dvāreṇa sambhavati phalābhisandhi-rāhitya-rūpa-kauśaleneti darśayiṣyati | tataḥ paraṃ tv atha keneti praśnam utthāpya kāma-doṣeṇaiva kārya-karmaṇaḥ śuddhi-hetutvaṃ nāsti | ataḥ kāma-rāhityenaiva karmāṇi kurvann antaḥ-karaṇa-śuddhyā jñānādhikārī bhaviṣyasīti yāvad-adhyāya-samāpti vadiṣyati bhagavān

 

Viśvanātha


atrottaram | yadi mayā paraspara-nirapekṣāv eva mokṣa-sādhanatvena karma-yoga-jñāna-yogāv uktau syātām | tadā tad ekaṃ vada niścityeti tvat-praśno ghaṭate | mayā tu karmānuṣṭhā-jñāna-niṣṭhāvattvena yad dvaividhyam uktam, tat khalu pūrvottara-daśā-bhedād eva, na tu vastuto mokṣaṃ praty adhikāri-dvaidham ity āha loke iti dvābhyām | dvividhā dvi-prakārā niṣṭhā nitarāṃ sthiti-maryādety arthaḥ | purā proktā pūrvādhyāye kathitā | tām evāha sāṅkhyānāṃ sāṅkhaṃ jñānaṃ tad-vatām | teṣāṃ śuddhāntaḥ-karaṇatvena jñāna-bhūmikām adhirūḍhānāṃ jñāna-yogenaiva niṣṭhā tenaiva maryādā sthāpitā | atra loke tu jñānitvenaiva khyāpitā ity arthaḥ – tāni sarvāṇi saṃyamya yukta āsīta mat-paraḥ [Gītā 2.61] ity ādinā | tathā śuddhāntaḥkaraṇatvābhāvena jñāna-bhūmikām adhiroḍhum asamarthānāṃ yogināṃ tad-ārohaṇārtham upāyavatāṃ karma-yogena mad-arpita-niṣkāma-karmaṇā niṣṭhā maryādā sthāpitā | te khalu karmitvenaiva khyāpitety arthaḥ – dharmyād dhi yuddhāc chreyo ‚nyat kṣatriyasya na vidyate [Gītā 2.31] ity ādinā | tena karmiṇaḥ jñāninaḥ iti nāma-mātreṇaiva dvaividhyam | vastgutas tu karmiṇa eva karmibhiḥ śuddha-cittā jñānino bhavanti | jñānina eva bhaktyā mucyanta iti mad-vākya-samudāyārtha iti bhāvaḥ

 

Baladeva


evaṃ pṛṣṭo bhagavān uvāca loke ‚sminn iti | he anagha nirmala-buddhe pārtha jyāyasī ced iti karma-buddhi-sāṅkhya-buddhyor guṇa-pradhāna-bhāvaṃ jānann api tamas-tejasor iva viruddhayos tayoḥ katham ekādhikāritvam iti śaṅkayā preritaḥ pṛcchasīti bhāvaḥ | asmin mumukṣutayābhimate śuddhāśuddha-cittatayā dvividhe loke jane dvividhā niṣṭhā sthitir mayā sarveśvareṇa purā pūrvādhyāye proktā | niṣṭhety eka-vacanena ekātmoddeśyatvād ekaiva niṣṭhā sādhya-sādhana-daśā-dvaya-bhedena dvi-prakārā na tu dve niṣṭhe iti sūcyate | evam evāgre vakṣyati ekaṃ sāṅkhyaṃ ca yogaṃ ca [Gītā 5.5] iti | tāṃ niṣṭhāṃ dvaividhyena darśayati jñāneti | sāṅkhya-jñāna arha ādyac | tad-vatāṃ jñānināṃ jñāna-yogena niṣṭhā-sthitir uktā prajahāti yadā kāmān [Gītā 2.55] ity ādinā | jñānam eva yogo yujyate ātmanāneneti-vyutpatteḥ | yogināṃ niṣkāma-karmavatāṃ karma-yogena niṣṭhā sthitir uktā karmaṇy evādhikāras te [Gītā 2.47] ity ādinā | karmaiva yogo yujyate jñāna-garbhayā citta-śuddhayāneneti vyutpatteḥ | etad uktaṃ bhavati – na khalu mumukṣur janas tadaiva śamādy-aṅgikāṃ jñāna-niṣṭhāṃ labhate | kintu sācāreṇa karma-yogena citta-mālinyaṃ nirdhūyaivety etad eva mayā prāg abhāṇi eṣā te ‚bhihitā sāṅkhye [Gītā 2.39] ity ādinā |

 
 

BhG 3.4

na karmaṇām anārambhān naiṣkarmyaṃ puruṣo śnute
na ca saṃnyasanād eva siddhiṃ samadhigacchati

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puruṣaḥ (a person) karmaṇāṁ (of activities) anārambhāt (from not beginning) naiṣkarmyaṁ (freedom from activity and its results) na aśnute (he does not attain),
sannyasanāt ca eva (and certainly from renunciation) siddhiṁ (perfection) na samadhigacchati (he does not attain).

 

grammar

na av.not;
karmaṇām karman 6n.3 n.of activities (from: kṛ – to do);
anārambhāt an-ārambha 5n.1 m.from not beginning (from: ā-rabh – to reach, to undertake, to begin);
naiṣkarmyam naiṣ-karmya 2n.1 n.freedom from activity and its results (from: niḥ – out of, away from, without; kṛ – to do, karman – activity and its result; niṣ-karman – freedom from activity and its results);
puruṣaḥ puruṣa 1n.1 m.a person (from: pur – to precede, to lead or pṝ – to fill, to nourish, puru – abundance, pūru – people);
aśnute (to reach, to eat, to enjoy) Praes. Ā 1v.1he attains;
na av.not;
ca av.and;
saṁnyasanād saṁnyasana 5n.1 n.from giving up, from renunciation  (from: sam-ni-as – to lay aside, to renounce, to give up);
eva av.certainly, just, merely;
siddhim siddhi 2n.1 f.accomplishment, fulfilment, perfection, success (from: sidh – to succeed, to become perfect);
sam-adhi-gacchati sam-adhi-gam  (to go together, to attain) Praes. P 1v.1he attains, he goes;

 

textual variants


na ca → naiva (indeed not);
siddhiṁ samadhigacchati → saṁsiddhi-adhigacchati (complete perfection he obtains);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

Now seeing that Arjuna, afflicted as he was at heart on the ground that the Lord had urged him to action which caused bondage, was resolved not to perform action, the Lord proceeds with 3.4.

māṃ ca bandha-kāraṇe karmaṇy eva niyojayasi iti viṣaṇṇa-manasam arjunaṃ karma nārabhe ity evaṃ manvānam ālakṣya āha bhagavān – na karmaṇāman ārambhād iti |

Or, the connection of what has gone before with the sequel may be thus stated: As devotion to knowledge and devotion to action are mutually opposed, it is impossible for one man to resort to both of them at one and the same time. From this it may follow that each leads to the goal quite independently of the other. But the truth is this: Devotion to action is a means to the end, not directly, but only as leading to devotion to knowledge; whereas the latter, which is attained by means of devotion to action, leads to the goal directly, without extraneous help. To show this, the Lord says:

athavā – jñāna-karma-niṣṭhayoḥ paraspara-virodhād ekena puruṣeṇa yugapad anuṣṭhātum aśakyatve sati itaretarānapekṣayor eva puruṣārtha-hetutve prāpte karma-niṣṭhāyā jñāna-niṣṭhā-prāpti-hetutvena puruṣārtha-hetutvam, na svātantryeṇa | jñāna-niṣṭhā tu karma-niṣṭhopāya-labdhātmikā satī svātantryeṇa puruṣārtha-hetuḥ anyānapekṣā, ity etam arthaṃ pradarśayiṣyan āha bhagavān –

Not by abstaining from action does man win actionlessness,
nor by mere renunciation does he attain perfection.

na karmaṇām anārambhān naiṣkarmyaṃ puruṣo ’śnute |
na ca saṃnyasanād eva siddhiṃ samadhigacchati || 3.4 ||

Action refers to the acts of worship (Yajña) which, performed in this or a previous birth, conduce to the destruction of sins committed in the past and cause purity of mind (sattva, antah-karaṇa); and by thus purifying mind, they cause knowledge to spring up and lead to the path of devotion to knowledge. It is said in the Mahabharata:

na karmaṇāṁ anārambhād aprārambhāt karmaṇāṁ kriyāṇāṃ yajñādīnām iha janmani janmāntare vā anuṣṭhitānām upātta-durita-kṣaya-hetutvena sattva-śuddhi-kāraṇānāṃ tat-kāraṇatvena ca jñānotpatti-dvāreṇa jñāna-niṣṭhā-hetūnām,

Knowledge springs in men on the destruction of sinful karma,
when the Self is seen in self as in a clean mirror.” (MBh 12.197.8)

jñānam utpadyate puṃsāṃ kṣayāt pāpasya karmaṇaḥ |
yathādarśatala-prakhye paśyaty ātmānam ātmani || (MBh 12.197.8)
ity ādi smaraṇāt |

By abstaining from action man cannot attain to actionlessness (naishkarmya), freedom from activity, i.e., devotion in the path of knowledge, the condition of the actionless Self.

anārambhād ananuṣṭhānāt naiṣkarmyaṃ niṣkarma-bhāvaṃ karma-śūnyatāṃ jñāna-yogena niṣṭhāṃ niṣkriyātma-svarūpeṇaivāvasthānam iti yāvat | puruṣo nāśnute na prāpnotīty arthaḥ |

From the statement that man wins not freedom from activity by abstaining from action, it is understood that by the opposite course, i.e., by performing action, man attains freedom from activity. For what reason, then, does he not attain freedom from activity by abstaining from action?

karmaṇām anārambhān naiṣkarmyaṃ nāśnuta iti vacanāt tad-viparyayāt teṣām ārambhān naiṣkarmyam aśnuta iti gamyate | kasmāt punaḥ kāraṇāt karmaṇām anārambhān naiṣkarmyaṃ nāśnute iti?

The answer follows: For, performance of action is a means of attaining freedom from activity. Certainly there is no attaining of an end except by proper means. Devotion to action is the means of attaining freedom from activity, i.e., devotion to knowledge, – as taught in the sruti as well as here.

ucyate, karmārambhasyaiva naiṣkarmyopāyatvāt | na hy upāyam antareṇa upeya-prāptir asti | karma-yogopāyatvaṃ ca naiṣkarmya-lakṣaṇasya jñāna-yogasya, śrutau iha ca pratipādanāt |

In the śruti, for instance, karma-yoga is declared to be a means to jñāna-yoga in the following passage:
The Brahmanas seek to know this (the Self) by the study of the Vedas, by yajña or worship.” (Bṛh-up 4.4.22) – In this passage, karma-yoga is pointed out as a means of realizing the Self that is sought after.

śrutau tāvat prakṛtasyātma-lokasya vedyasya vedanopāyatvena tam etaṃ vedānuvacanena brāhmaṇā vividiṣanti yajñena (Bṛh-up 4.4.22) ity ādinā karma-yogasya jñāna-yogopāyatvaṃ pratipāditam |

Here (in the Bhagavad-Gita) the following passages point to the same view:
But without Yoga, O mighty-armed, renunciation is hard to attain.” (BhG 5.6)
Having abandoned attachment, Yogins perform action for the purification of the Self.” (BhG 5.11)
Sacrifice, gift and also austerity are the purifiers of the wise.” (BhG 18.5)

ihāpi ca –
saṃnyāsas tu mahābāho duḥkham āptum ayogataḥ
(BhG 5.6),
yoginaḥ karma kurvanti saṅgaṃ tyaktvātmaśuddhaye (BhG 5.11),
yajño dānaṃ tapaś caiva pāvanāni manīṣiṇāṃ (BhG 18.5), ity ādi pratipādayiṣyati |

Now, the following objection may be raised: A passagein the smṛti, „Having promised immunity from fear to all beings, one should resort to freedom from activity (naishkarmya),” shows that actionlessness can be attained by renouncing the prescribed duties. Our experience also favours the idea that freedom from activity can be attained by abstaining from action.

nanu cābhayaṃ sarva-bhūtebhyo dattvā naiṣkarmyam ācaret ity ādau kartavya-karma-saṃnyāsād api naiṣkarmya-prāptiṃ darśayati | loke ca karmaṇām anārambhān naiṣkarmyam iti prasiddhataram |

Of what use then is the performance of action to one who seeks for freedom from action? In reply the Lord says: Nobody can attain perfection, – i.e., freedom from activity, or devotion in the path of knowledge – by mere renunciation, by merely abandoning action, without possessing knowledge.

ataś ca naiṣkarmyārthinaḥ kiṃ karmārambheṇa? iti prāptam | ata āha – na ca saṃnyasanād eveti | nāpi saṃnyasanād eva kevalāt karma-parityāga-mātrād eva jñāna-rahitāt siddhiṃ naiṣkarmya-lakṣaṇāṃ jñāna-yogena niṣṭhāṃ samadhigacchati na prāpnoti ||3.4||

 

Rāmānuja


sarvasya laukikasya puruṣasya mokṣecchāyāṃ jātāyāṃ sahasaiva jñānayogo duṣkara ity āha

na śāstrīyāṇāṃ karmaṇām anārambhād eva, puruṣo naiṣkarmyaṃ jñānaniṣṭhāṃ prāpnoti / na cārabdhasya śāstrīyasya tyāgāt; yato ‚nabhisaṃhitaphalasya paramapuruṣārādhanaveṣasya karmaṇaḥ siddhiḥ sā / atas tena vinā tāṃ na prāpnoti / anabhisaṃhitaphalaiḥ karmabhir anārādhitagovindair avinaṣṭānādikālapravṛttānantapāpasañcayair avyākulendriyatāpūrvikā ātmaniṣṭhā dussaṃpādā

 

Śrīdhara


ataḥ samyak-citta-śuddhyā jñānotpatti-paryantaṃ varṇāśramocitāni karmāṇi kartavyāni | anyathā citta-śuddhy-abhāvena jñānānutpatter ity āha na karmaṇām iti | karmaṇām anārambhād ananuṣṭhānān naiṣkarmyaṃ jñānaṃ nāśnute na prāpnoti | nanu caitam eva pravrājino lokam icchantaḥ pravrajantīti śrutyā saṃnyāsasya mokṣād aṅgatva-śruteḥ saṃnyasanād eva mokṣo bhaviṣyati | kiṃ karmabhiḥ ? ity āśaṅkyoktaṃ na ceti | citta-śuddhiṃ vinā kṛtāt saṃnyasanād eva jñāna-śūnyāt siddhiṃ mokṣaṃ na samadhigacchati na prāpnoti

 

Madhusūdana


tatra kāraṇābhāve kāryānupapatter āha na karmaṇām iti | karmaṇā tam etaṃ vedānuvacanena brāhmaṇā vividiṣanti yajñena dānena tapasānāśakena iti śrutyātma-jñāne viniyuktānām anārambhād ananuṣṭhānāc citta-śuddhy-abhāvena jñānāyogyo bahirmukhaḥ puruṣo naiṣkarmyaṃ sarva-karma-śūnyatvaṃ jñāna-yogena niṣṭhām iti yāvat nāśnute na prāpnoti |

nanu etam eva pravrājino lokam icchantaḥ pravrajanti iti śruteḥ sarva-karma-saṃnyāsād eva jñāna-niṣṭhopapatteḥ kṛtaṃ karmabhir ity ata āha na ca saṃnyasanād eva citta-śuddhiṃ vinā kṛtāt siddhiṃ jñāna-niṣṭhā-lakṣaṇāṃ samyak-phala-paryavasāyitvenādhigacchati naiva prāpnotīty arthaḥ | karma-janyāṃ citta-śuddhim antareṇa saṃnyāsa eva na sambhavati | yathā-kathaṃcid autsukya-mātreṇa kṛto ‚pi na phala-paryavasāyīti bhāvaḥ

 

Viśvanātha


citta-śuddhy-abhāve jñānānutpattim āha neti | śāstrīya-karmaṇām anārambhād ananuṣṭhānān naiṣkarmyaṃ jñānaṃ na prāpnoti na cāśuddha-cittaḥ | saṃnyasanāc chāstrīya-karma-tyāgāt

 

Baladeva


ato ‚śuddha-cittena citta-śuddheḥ sva-vihitāni karmāṇy evānuṣṭheyānīty āha na karmaṇām ity ādibhis trayodaśabhiḥ | karmaṇāṃ tam etam iti vākyena jñānāṅgatayā vihitānām anārambhād ananuṣṭhānād aviśuddha-cittaḥ puruṣo naiṣkarmyaṃ nikhilendriya-vyāpāra-rūpa-karma-viratiṃ jñāna-niṣṭhām iti yāvat nāśnute na labhate | na ca sa teṣāṃ karmaṇāṃ saṃnyāsāt parityāgāt siddhiṃ muktiṃ samadhigacchati

 
 

BhG 3.5

na hi kaś-cit kṣaṇam api jātu tiṣṭhaty akarma-kṛt
kāryate hy avaśaḥ karma sarvaḥ prakṛti-jair guṇaiḥ

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jātu (ever) kaścit [janaḥ] (whichever person) akarma-kṛt (who is not acting) kṣaṇam api (even for a moment) na hi tiṣṭhati (surely he does not remain).
prakṛti-jaiḥ (by these born from nature) guṇaiḥ (by the guṇas) sarvaḥ hi (everyone indeed) avaśaḥ (helplessly) karma (activity) kāryate (he is caused to act).

 

grammar

na av.not;
hi av.because, just, indeed, surely;
kaś-cit kim-cit sn. 1n.1 m.someone (from: kim – what?; -cit – indefinitive particle);
kṣaṇam kṣaṇa 2n.1 n.a moment, twinkling of an eye (from: kṣan – to hurt, to break);
api av.although, moreover, besides, even;
jātu av.at all, ever, once, some day;
tiṣṭhati sthā (to stand) Praes P 1v.1he stays, he remains;
akarma-kṛt a-karma-kṛt 1n.1 m.; yaḥ karma na karoti saḥ who is not acting (from: kṛ – to do, karman – activity and its result; -kṛt – suffix indicates a doer);
kāryate kṛ (to do) Praes. caus. pass. 1v.1he is caused to act;
hi av.because, just, indeed, surely;
avaśaḥ avaśa 1n.1 m. not being under control, helplessly (from: vaś – to desire, to subjugate, to command, vaśa – wish, power, control, dominion);
karma karman 2n.1 n.activity (from: kṛ – to do);
sarvaḥ sarva sn. 1n.1 m.all;
prakṛti-jaiḥ prakṛti-ja 3n.3 m.by these born from nature (from: pra-kṛ – to produce, prakṛti – nature, primary substance, original cause; jan – to be born, –ja – suffix: born);
guṇaiḥ guṇa 3n.3 m.by qualities, virtues, threads (from: grah – to take);

 

textual variants


avaśaḥsvavaśaḥ (fully helplessly);
sarvaḥ prakṛti-jair → sarvaiḥ prakṛti-jair /sarva-prakṛti-jair (by all these born from nature);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

The ignorant are swayed by Nature.
For what reason, then, does a person not attain perfection, i.e., freedom from activity, by mere renunciation unaccompanied with knowledge ? The reason thus asked for is given as follows:

kasmāt punaḥ kāraṇāt karma-saṃnyāsa-mātrād eva kevalāt jñāna-rahitāt siddhiṃ naiṣkarmya-lakṣaṇāṃ puruṣo nādhigacchati iti hetv-ākāṅkṣāyām āha –

None, verily, even for an instant, ever remains doing no action;
for every one is driven helpless to action by the energies born of Nature

na hi kaścit kṣaṇam api jātu tiṣṭhaty akarmakṛt |
kāryate hy avaśaḥ karma sarvaḥ prakṛtijair guṇaiḥ ||3.5||

The energies (guṇas) are three, Sattva, Rajas and Tamas.

na hi yasmāt kṣaṇam api kālaṃ jātu kadācit kaścit tiṣṭhaty akarma-kṛt san | kasmāt? kāryate pravartyate hi yasmād avaśa evāsvatantra eva karma sarvaḥ prāṇī prakṛti-jaiḥ prakṛtito jātaiḥ sattva-rajas-tamobhiḥ guṇaiḥ |

Every one‚ means every living being that is ignorant, (ajña), who knows not (the Self); for, it is said (of a wise man ” that he is one) „who is unshaken by the energies” (BhG14.23). Since the Sankhyas have been distinguished from the Yogins (BhG 3.3), the Karma-yoga, devotion to action, is indeed meant for the ignorant only, not for the wise.

ajña iti vākya-śeṣaḥ, yato vakṣyati guṇair yo na vicālyate (BhG 14.23) iti | sāṃkhyānāṃ pṛthak-karaṇāt ajñānām eva hi karma-yogaḥ, na jñāninām |

As for the wise who are unshaken by the guṇas, and who in themselves are devoid of any change whatever, the Karma-yoga is out of place. And this was explained at length in our comments on 2.21.

jñānināṃ tu guṇair acālyamānānāṃ svataś calanābhāvāt karma-yogo nopapadyate | tathā ca vyākhyātaṃ vedāvināśinaṃ (BhG 2.21) ity atra ||3.5||

 

Rāmānuja


etad evopapādayati

na hy asmin loke vartamānaḥ puruṣaḥ kaścit kadācid api karmākurvāṇas tiṣṭhati; na kiṃcit karomīti vyavasito ‚pi sarvaḥ puruṣaḥ prakṛtisaṃbhavaiḥ sattvarajastamobhiḥ prācīnakarmānuguṇaṃ pravṛddhair guṇaiḥ svocitaṃ karma prati avaśaḥ kāryate pravartyate / ata uktalakṣaṇena karmayogena prācīnaṃ pāpasaṃcayaṃ nāśayitvā guṇāṃś ca sattvādīn vaśe kṛtvā nirmalāntaḥkaraṇena saṃpādyo jñānayogaḥ

 

Śrīdhara


karmaṇāṃ ca saṃnyāsas teṣv anāsakti-mātram | na tu svarūpeṇa | aśakyatvād iti | āha na hi kaścid iti | jātu kasyāṃcid apy avasthāyāṃ kṣaṇa-mātram api kaścid api jñāny-ajñāno vā akarma-kṛt karmāṇy akurvāṇo na tiṣṭhati | atra hetuḥ — prakṛtijair svabhāva-prabhavai rāga-dveṣādibhir guṇaiḥ sarvo ‚pi janaḥ karma kāryate | karmaṇi pravartyate | avaśo ‚svatantraḥ san

 

Madhusūdana


tatra karma-janya-śuddhy-abhāve bahirmukhaḥ | hi yasmāt kṣaṇam api kālaṃ jātu kadācit kaścid apy ajitendriyo ‚karma-kṛt san na tiṣṭhati | api tu laukika-vaidikakarmānuṣṭhāna-vyagra eva tiṣṭhati tasmād aśuddha-cittasya saṃnyāso na sambhavatīty arthaḥ |

kasmāt punar avidvān karmāṇy akurvāṇo na tiṣṭhati | hi yasmāt | sarvaḥ prāṇī citta-śuddhi-rahito ‚vaśo ‚svatantra eva san prakṛtijaiḥ prakṛtito jātair abhivyaktaiḥ kāryākāreṇa sattva-rajas-tamobhiḥ svabhāva-prabhavair vā rāga-dveṣādibhir guṇaiḥ karma laukikaṃ vaidikaṃ vā kāryate | ataḥ karmāṇy akurvāṇo na kaścid api tiṣṭhatīty arthaḥ | yataḥ svābhāvikā guṇāś cālakā ataḥ para-vaśatayā sarvadā karmāṇi kurvato ‚śuddha-buddheḥ sarva-karma-saṃnyāso na sambhavatīti na saṃnyāsa-nibandhanā jñāna-niṣṭhā sambhavatīty arthaḥ

 

Viśvanātha


kintv aśuddha-cittaḥ kṛta-saṃnyāsaḥ śāstrīyaṃ karma parityajya vyavahārike karmaṇi nimajjatīty āha na hīti | nanu saṃnyāsa eva tasya vaidika-laukika-karma-pravṛttir-virodhī ? tatrāha kāryata iti | avaśo ‚svatantraḥ

 

Baladeva


aviśuddha-cittaḥ kṛta-vaidika-karma-saṃnyāso laukike ‚pi karmaṇi nimajjatīty āha nahīti | nanu saṃnyāsa eva tasya sarva-karma-virodhīti cet tatrāha kāryata iti | prakṛtijaiḥ svabhāvodbhavair guṇai rāga-dveṣādibhiḥ, kāryate pravartyate avaśaḥ parādhīnaḥ syā

 
 

BhG 3.6

karmendriyāṇi saṃyamya ya āste manasā smaran
indriyārthān vimūḍhātmā mithyācāraḥ sa ucyate

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syntax


yaḥ (he who) karmendriyāṇi (the senses of activities) saṁyamya (after restraining)
manasā (by the mind) indriyārthān (objects of the senses) smaran (remembering) āste (he remains),
saḥ (he) vimūḍhātmā (whose self is bewildered) mithyācāraḥ (a hypocrite) ucyate (he is called).

 

grammar

karmendriyāṇi karma-indriya 2n.3 n.; [TP]: karmaṇām indriyāni iti senses of activities (from: kṛ – to do, karman – activity and its result; ind – to be powerful, indriya – the senses; vāk-pāṇi-pāda-pāyūpastha-saṁjñakāni – they are named: organ of speech, hand, foot, anus, genital);
saṁyamya sam-yam (to restrain) absol.after restraining;
yaḥ yat sn. 1n.1 m.he who;
āste ās (to sit, to exist) Praes Ā 1v.1he sits, he remains;
manasā manas 3n.1 n.by the mind (from: man – to think);
smaran smarant (smṛ to think, to remember) PPr 1n.1 m.[while] remembering;
indriyārthān indriya-artha 2n.3 m.; [TP]: indriyāṇām arthān iti objects of the senses (from: ind – to be powerful, indriya – the senses; arth – to strive to obtain, to desire, to request, artha – purpose, advantage, concern, object, wealth);
vimūḍhātmā vi-mūḍha-ātman 1n.1 m.; BV: yasyātmā vimūḍho ‘sti saḥwhose self is bewildered (from: vi-muh – to become confused, bewildered, stupefied, [PP] vimūḍha – bewildered; ātman – self);
mithyācāraḥ mithyā-ācāra 1n.1 m.; yo mithyācārati saḥ who behaves falsely, hypocrite (from: av. mithyā – incorrectly, falsely, deceitfully; ā-car – to come near to; ācāra – custom, good conduct);
saḥ tat sn. 1n.1 m.he;
ucyate vac (to speak) Praes. pass. 1v.1he is called;

 

textual variants


ya āsteāste ca / tathāste (and he remains / thus he remains);
mithyācāraḥ → mūḍhācāraḥ (whose conduct is bewildered);

 
 

Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

The unenlightened should not give up Karma-Yoga.
Now, for him who knows not the Self, it is not right to neglect the duty enjoined on him. So, the Lord says:

yat tv anātmajñaḥ coditaṃ karma nārabhate iti tad asad evety āha –

He who, restraining the organs of action,
sits thinking in his mind of the objects of the senses, self-deluded,
he is said to be one of false conduct.

karmendriyāṇi saṃyamya ya āste manasā smaran |
indriyārthān vimūḍhātmā mithyācāraḥ sa ucyate ||3.6||

The organs of action are the hand, &c. The self-deluded man, the man whose antah-karaṇa is thus deluded, is called a hypocrite, a man of sinful conduct.

karmendriyāṇi hastādīni saṃyamya saṃhṛtya ya āste tiṣṭhati manasā smaran cintayan indriyārthān viṣayān vimūḍhātmā vimūḍhāntaḥ-karaṇo mithyācāro mṛṣācāraḥ pāpācāraḥ sa ucyate ||3.6||

 

Rāmānuja


anyathā jñānayogāya pravṛtto mithyācāro bhavatīty āha

avinaṣṭapāpatayā ajitāntaḥkaraṇaḥ ātmajñānāya pravṛtto viṣayapravaṇatayā ātmani vimukhīkṛtamanāḥ viṣayān eva smaran ya āste, anyathā saṃkalpya anyathā caratīti sa mithyācāra ucyate / ātmajñānāyodyukto viparīto vinaṣṭo bhavatītyarthaḥ

 

Śrīdhara


ato ‚jñaṃ karma-tyāginaṃ nindati karmendriyāṇīti | vāk-pāṇy-ādīni karmendriyāṇi | saṃyamya bhagavad-dhyāna-cchalena indriyārthān viṣayān smarann āste aviśuddhatayā manasā ātmani sthairyābhāvāt, sa mithyācāraḥ kapaṭācāro dāmbhika ucyata ity arthaḥ

 

Madhusūdana


yathā-kathaṃcid autsukya-mātreṇa kṛta-saṃnyāsas tv aśuddha-cittas tat-phala-bhāṅ na bhavati yataḥ | yo vimūḍhātmā rāga-dveṣādi-dūṣitāntaḥ-karaṇa autsukya-mātreṇa karmendriyāṇi vāk-pāṇy-ādīni saṃyamya nigṛhya bahir-indriyaiḥ karmāṇy akurvann iti yāvat | manasā rāgādi-preritendriyārthān śabdādīn na tv ātma-tattvaṃ smarann āste kṛta-saṃnyāso ‚ham ity abhimānena karma-śūnyas tiṣṭhati sa mithyācāraḥ sattva-śuddhy-abhāvena phalāyogyatvāt pāpācāra ucyate |

tvaṃ-padārtha-vivekāya saṃnyāsaḥ sarva-karmaṇām |
śrutyeha vihito yasmāt tat-tyāgī patito bhavet ||

ity ādi-dharma-śāstreṇa | ata upapannaṃ na ca saṃnyasanād evāśuddhāntaḥ-karaṇaḥ siddhiṃ samadhigacchatīti

 

Viśvanātha


nanu tādṛśo ‚pi sannyāsī kaścit | kaścid indriya-vyāpāra-śūnyo mudritākṣo dṛśyate ? tatrāha karmendriyāṇi, vāk-pāṇy-ādīni nigṛhya yo manasā dhyāna-cchalena viṣayān smarann āste, sa mithyācāro dāmbhikaḥ

 

Baladeva


nanu rāga-divyāpāra-śūnyo mudrita-śrotrādiḥ kaścit kaścid yadi dṛśyate tatrāha karmendriyāṇīti | yo yatiḥ karmendriyāṇi vāg-ādīni saṃyamya manasā dhyāna-chadmanā indriyārthān śabda-sparśādīn smarann āste sa vimūḍhātmā mūrkho mithyācāraḥ kathyate | sa ca niruddha-rāgāder ajñasya niṣkāma-karmānuṣṭhānena manaḥ-śuddher anudayāt śrotrādy-aprasāre ‚py aśuddhatvān manasā tad-viṣayāṇāṃ sma raṇāj jñānāyodyatasyāpi tasya jñāna-lābhāt mithyācāro vyartha-vāg-ādi-niyama-kriyo dāmbhika ity arthaḥ

 
 

BhG 3.7

yas tv indriyāṇi manasā niyamyārabhate rjuna
karmendriyaiḥ karma-yogam asaktaḥ sa viśiṣyate

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syntax


he arjuna (O Arjuna!),
yaḥ tu (but he who) manasā (by the mind) indriyāṇi (the senses) niyamya (after restraining)
asaktaḥ [san] (being unattached) karmendriyaiḥ (by the senses of activities) karma-yogam (yoga of activity) ārabhate (he begins),
saḥ
(he) viśiṣyate (he is distinguished).

 

grammar

yaḥ yat sn. 1n.1 m.he who;
tu av.but, then, or, and;
indriyāṇi indriya 2n.3 n.the senses (from: ind – to be powerful);
manasā manas 3n.1 n.by the mind (from: man – to think);
niyamya ni-yam (to restrain) absol.after restraining;
ārabhate ā-rabh (to reach, to undertake, to begin) Praes Ā 1v.1he begins;
arjuna arjuna 8n.1 m.white, clear, Arjuna;
karmendriyaiḥ karma-indriya 3n.3 n.; [TP]: karmaṇām indriyair iti by the senses of activities (from: kṛ – to do, karman – activity and its result; ind – to be powerful, indriya – the senses; vāk-pāṇi-pāda-pāyūpastha-saṁjñakāni – they are named: organ of speech, hand, foot, anus, genital);
karma-yogam karma-yoga 2n.1 m.; [TP]: karmaṇo yogam iti yoga of activity (from: kṛ – to do, karman – activity and its result; yuj – to yoke, to join, to engage, yoga – yoga, yoking, application, a means, one of the schools of Hindu philosophy);
asaktaḥ a-sakta (sañj – to attach, to stick, to embrace) [PP] 1n.1 m.unattached;
saḥ tat sn. 1n.1 m.he;
viśiṣyate vi-śiṣ (to distinguish) Praes. pass. 1v.1he is distinguished, the best;

 

textual variants


niyamya → samyamya (after restraining);
rjuna → naraḥ (a person);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

But whoso, restraining the senses by mind, O Arjuna,
engages in Karma-Yoga, unattached, with organs of action, he is esteemed.

yas tv indriyāṇi manasā niyamyārabhate ’rjuna |
karmendriyaiḥ karma-yogam asaktaḥ sa viśiṣyate ||3.7||

If the ignorant man, who is only qualified for action, performs action with the hand, with the organ of speech, &c., restraining the organs of knowledge by mind and unmindful of the result, he is more worthy than the other, who is a hypocrite.

yas tu punaḥ karmaṇy adhikṛto ’jñaḥ buddhīndriyāṇi manasā niyamya ārabhate arjuna karmendriyaiḥ vāk-pāṇy-ādibhiḥ |kim ārabhate ity āha – karma-yogam asaktaḥ san phalābhisandhi-varjitaḥ sa viśiṣyate itarasmāt mithyācārāt ||3.7||

 

Rāmānuja


ataḥ pūrvābhyastaviṣayasajātīye śāstrīye karmaṇi indriyāṇy ātmāvalokanapravṛttena manasā niyamya taiḥ svata eva karmapravaṇair indriyair asaṅgapūrvakaṃ yaḥ karmayogam ārabhate, so ‚saṃbhāvyamānapramādatvena jñānaniṣṭhād api puruṣād viśiṣyate

 

Śrīdhara


etad-viparītaḥ karma-kartā tu śreṣṭha ity āha yas tv indriyāṇīti | yas tv indriyāṇi manasā niyamya īśvara-parāṇi kṛtvā karmendriyaiḥ karma-rūpaṃ yogam upāyam ārabhate ‚nutiṣṭhati | asaktaḥ phalābhilāṣa-rahitaḥ san | sa viśiṣyate viśiṣṭo bhavati citta-śuddhyā jñānavān bhavatīty arthaḥ

 

Madhusūdana


autsukya-mātreṇa sarva-karmāṇy asaṃnyasya citta-śuddhaye niṣkāma-karmāṇy eva yathā-śāstraṃ kuryāt | tasmāt yas tv iti | tu-śabdo ‚śuddhāntaḥ-karaṇa-saṃnyāsi-vyatirekārthaḥ | indriyāṇi jñānendriyāei śrotrādīni manasā saha niyamya pāpa-hetu-śabdādi-viṣayāsakter nivartya manasā viveka-yuktena niyamyeti vā | karmendriyair vāk-pāṇy-ādibhiḥ karma-yogaṃ śuddhi-hetutayā vihitaṃ karmārabhate karoty asaktaḥ phalābhilāṣa-śūnyaḥ san yo vivekī sa itarasmān mithyācārād viśiṣyate | pariśrama-sāmye ‚pi phalātiśaya-bhāktvena śreṣṭho bhavati | he ‚rjunāścaryam idaṃ paśya yad ekaḥ karmendriyāṇi nigṛhṇan jñānendriyāṇi vyāpārayan puruṣārtha-śūnyo ‚paras tu jñānendriyāṇi nigṛhya karmendriyāṇi vyāpārayan parama-puruṣārtha-bhāg bhavatīti

 

Viśvanātha


etad-viparītaḥ śāstrīya-karma-kartā gṛhasthas tu śreṣṭha ity āha yas tv iti | karma-yogaṃ śāstra-vihitam | asakto ‚phalākāṅkṣī viśiṣyate | asambhāvita-prasāditvena jñāna-niṣṭhād api puruṣād viśiṣṭaḥ iti śrī-rāmānujācārya-caraṇāḥ

 

Baladeva


etad-vaiparītyena sva-vihita-karma-kartā gṛhastho ‚pi śreṣṭha ity āha yas tv iti | ātmānubhava-pravṛttena manasendriyāṇi śrotrādīni niyamyāsaktaḥ phalābhilāṣa-śūnyaḥ san yaḥ karmendriyaiḥ karma-rūpaṃ yogam upāyam ārabhate ‚nutiṣṭhati sa viśiṣyate | sambhāvyamāna-jñānatvāt pūrvataḥ śreṣṭho bhavatīty arthaḥ

 
 

BhG 3.8

niyataṃ kuru karma tvaṃ karma jyāyo hy akarmaṇaḥ
śarīra-yātrāpi ca te na prasidhyed akarmaṇaḥ

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syntax


tvam (you) niyatam (regular) karma (activity) kuru (do),
akarmaṇaḥ hi (than inactivity) karma (activity) jyāyaḥ (better),
akarmaṇaḥ ca (and from inactivity) te (your) śarīra-yātrā api (even the journey of the body) na prasidhyet (it would not succeed).

 

grammar

niyatam niyata (ni-yam – to hold back, to regulate) [PP] 2n.1 n.regular, steady;
or av.constantly, decidedly;
kuru kṛ (to do) Imperat. P 2v.1do;
karma karman 2n.1 n.activity (from: kṛ – to do);
tvam yuṣmat sn. 1n.1you;
karma karman 1n.1 n.activity (from: kṛ – to do);
jyāyaḥ jyāyaḥ 1n.1 n.better, higher (comparative of ji – to conquer, jaya : jyāyas, jyeṣṭha);
hi av.because, just, indeed, surely;
akarmaṇaḥ a-karman 5n.1 n.than inactivity (from: kṛ – to do);
śarīra-yātrā śarīra-yātrā 1n.1 f.; [TP]: śarīrasya / śarīre yātrājourney of the body / in the body (from: śṝ – to break, to crush, śarīra – easy to be destroyed, the body; – to go, yātrā – journey, way, maintenance);
api av.although, moreover, besides, even;
ca av.and;
te yuṣmat sn. 6n.1your (shortened form of: tava);
na av.not;
prasidhyet pra-sidh (to succeed) Pot. P 1v.1it would succeed;
akarmaṇaḥ a-karman 5n.1 n.than inactivity (from: kṛ – to do);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

Wherefore:

yataḥ evam ataḥ –

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

niyataṃ kuru karma tvaṃ karma jyāyo hy akarmaṇaḥ |
śarīrayātrāpi ca te na prasidhyed akarmaṇaḥ ||3.8||

Thy bounden duty is the obligatory (nitya) act, that which one is bound to perform, and which is not prescribed (in the scriptures) as a means to a specific end. Action is superior to inaction in point of result.

niyataṃ nityaṃ śāstropadiṣṭam | yo yasmin karmaṇy adhikṛtaḥ phalāya cāśrutaṃ tan niyataṃ karma, tat kuru tvaṃ he arjuna ! yataḥ karma jyāyo ’dhikataraṃ phalataḥ | hi yasmād akarmaṇo ’karaṇāt anārambhāt |

By inaction you cannot attain success in the life’s journey. The distinction between action and inaction is thus seen in our own experience.

kathaṃ? śarīra-yātrā śarīra-sthitir api ca te tava na prasidhyet prasiddhiṃ na gacchet akarmaṇo ’karaṇāt | ato dṛṣṭaḥ karmākarmaṇor viśeṣo loke ||3.8||

 

Rāmānuja


niyataṃ vyāptam; prakṛtisaṃsṛṣṭena hi vyāptaṃ karma, anādivāsanayā prakṛtisaṃsṛṣṭas tvaṃ niyatatvena suśakatvād asaṃbhāvitapramādatvāc ca karmaṇaḥ, karmaiva kuru; akarmaṇaḥ jñānaniṣṭhāyā api karmaiva jyāyaḥ / „naiṣkarmyaṃ puruṣo ‚śunute” iti prakramād akarmaśabdena jñānaniṣṭhaivocyate / jñānaniṣṭhādhikāriṇo ‚py anabhyastapūrvatayā hy aniyatatvena duḥśakatvāt sapramādatvāc ca jñānaniṣṭhāyāḥ, karmaniṣṭhaiva jyāyasī; karmaṇi kriyamāṇe ca ātmayāthātmyajñānenātmano ‚kartṛtvānusandhānam anantaram eva vakṣyate / ata ātmajñānasyāpi karmayogāntargatatvāt sa eva jyāyān ityarthaḥ / karmaṇo jñānaniṣṭhāyā jyāyastvavacanaṃ jñānaniṣṭhāyām adhikāre saty evopapadyate /
yadi sarvaṃ karma parityajya kevalaṃ jñānaniṣṭhāyām adhikāro ‚pi, tarhi akarmaṇaḥ jñānaniṣṭhasya jñānaniṣṭhopakāriṇī śarīrayātrāpi na setsyati / yāvat sādhanasamāpti śarīradhāraṇaṃ cāvaśyaṃ kāryam / nyāyārjitadhanena mahāyajñādikaṃ kṛtvā tacchiṣṭāśanenaiva śarīradhāraṇaṃ kāryam, „āhāraśuddhau sattvaśuddhiḥ sattvaśuddhau dhrutvā smṛtiḥ” ityādiśruteḥ / „te tv aghaṃ bhuñjate pāpā ye pacanty ātmakāraṇāt” iti vakṣyate / ato jñānaniṣṭhasyāpi karmākurvato dehayātrāpi na setsyati / yato jñānaniṣṭhasyāpi dhriyamāṇaśarīrasya yāvatsādhanasamāpti mahāyajñādi nityanaimittikaṃ karma avaśyaṃ kartavyam, yataś ca karmayoge ‚py ātmano ‚kartṛtvabhāvanayātmayāthātmyānusandhānam antarbhūtam, yataś ca prakṛtisaṃsṛṣṭasya karmayogaḥ suśako ‚pramādaś ca, ato jñānaniṣṭhāyogyasyāpi jñānayogāt karmayogo jyāyān / tasmāt tvaṃ karmayogam eva kurv ityabhiprāya

 

Śrīdhara


niyatam iti | yasmād evaṃ tasmān niyataṃ nityaṃ karma sandhyopāsanādi kuru | hi yasmāt | sarva-karmaṇo ‚karaṇāt sakāśāt karma-karaṇaṃ jyāyo ‚dhikataram | anyathākarmaṇaḥ sarva-karma-śūnyasya tava śarīra-yātrā śarīra-nirvāho ‚pi na prasidhyen na bhavet

 

Madhusūdana


yasmād evaṃ tasmān manasā jñānendriyāṇi nigṛhya karmendriyais tvaṃ prāg ananuṣṭhita-śuddhi-hetu-karmā niyataṃ vidhy-uddeśe phala-sambandha-śūnyatayā niyata-nimittena vihitaṃ karma śrautaṃ smārtaṃ ca nityam iti prasiddhaṃ kuru | kurv iti madhyama-puruṣa-prayogeṇaiva tvam iti labdhe tvam iti padam arthāntare saṃkramitam |

kasmād aśuddhāntaḥ-karaṇena karmaiva kartavyaṃ hi yasmād akarmaṇo ‚karaṇāt karmaiva jyāyaḥ praśasyataram | na kevalaṃ karmābhāve tavāntaḥ-karaṇa-śuddhir eva na sidhyet | kintu akarmaṇo yuddhādi-karma-rahitasya te tava śarīra-yātrā śarīra-sthitir api na prakarṣeṇa kṣātra-vṛtti-kṛtatva-lakṣaṇena sidhyet | tathā ca prāg uktam | api cety antaḥ-karaṇa-śuddhi-samuccayārthaḥ

 

Viśvanātha


tasmāt tvaṃ niyataṃ nityaṃ sandhyopāsanādi# akarmaṇaḥ karma-sannyāsāt sakāśāj jyāyaḥ śreṣṭham | sannyāsa-sarva-karmaṇas tava śarīra-nirvāho ‚pi na sidhyet

 

Baladeva


niyatam iti tasmāt tvam aviśuddha-citto niyatam āvaśyaka-karam kuru citta-viśuddhaye niṣkāmatayā sva-vihitaṃ karmācarety arthaḥ | akarmaṇam autsukya-mātreṇa sarva-karma-saṃnyāsa-sakāśāt karmaiva jyāyaḥ praśastataraṃ krama-sopāna-nyāyena jñānotpādakatvāt | autsukya-mātreṇa karma tyajator maline hṛdi jñāna-prakāśāt | kiṃ cākarmaṇaḥ saṃnyasta-sarva-karmaṇas tava śarīra-yātrā deha-nirvāho ‚pi na sidhyet | yāvat sādhana-pūrti-deha-dhāraṇasyāvaśyakatvāt tad-arthaṃ jñānī bhikṣāṭanādi-karmānutiṣṭhati | tac ca kṣatriyasya tavānucitam | tasmāt sva-vihitena yuddha-prajā-pālanādi-karmaṇā śulkāni vittāny upārjya tair nirvyūha-deha-yātraḥ svātmānam anusandhehīti

 
 

BhG 3.9

yajñārthāt karmaṇo nyatra loko yaṃ karma-bandhanaḥ
tad-arthaṃ karma kaunteya mukta-saṅgaḥ samācara

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he kaunteya (O son of Kuntī),
yajñārthāt (than that whose object is sacrifice) karmaṇaḥ (than activity) anyatra (except),
ayaṁ lokaḥ (this world) karma-bandhanaḥ (bound by work) [asti] (it is),
[tasmāt] (therefore) tad-arthaṁ (for the sake of that) mukta-saṅgaḥ (free form attachment) karma (activity) samācara (perform).

 

grammar

yajñārthāt yajña-artha 5n.1 n.; BV: yasya yajñasyārthaḥ asti tasmāt than that whose object is sacrifice / than that which is done for the sake of Viṣṇu (from: yaj – to consecrate, to sacrifice, to worship, yajña – sacrifice, worship, name of Viṣṇu; arth – to strive to obtain, to desire, to request, artha – purpose, advantage, concern, object, wealth, use, with the meaning ‘for the sake’ requires genitive – whose?);
karmaṇaḥ karman 5n.1 n.than activity (from: kṛ – to do);
anyatra av.elsewhere, otherwise;
lokaḥ loka 1n.1 m.world;
ayam idam sn. 1n.1 m.this;
karma-bandhanaḥ karma-bandhana 1n.1 m.; BV: yasya karmaṇo bandhanam asti saḥ which is bound by work (from: kṛ – to do, karman – activity and its result; bandh – to bind, to fetter, bandhana – bondage, bonds, prison);
tad-artham av.tasyārthamfor the sake of that (from: tat – that; arth – to strive to obtain, to desire, to request, artha – purpose, advantage, concern, object, wealth, use, suffix: for the sake of, on account of);
karma karman 1n.1 n.activity (from: kṛ – to do);
kaunteya kaunteya 8n.1 m.O son of Kuntī (from: kunti – the people of Kunti, kuntī – Kuntī, mother of the sons of Pāṇḍu);
mukta-saṅgaḥ mukta-saṅga 1n.1m.; BV: yena saṅgo mukto ‘sti saḥwhose attachment is gone (from: muc – to liberate, to release, [PP] mukta – liberated, gone; sam-gam – come together or sañj – to attach, to stick, to embrace, saṅga – clinging, contact, relation, desire, attachment);
samācara sam-ā-car (to behave, to perform) Imperat. P 2v.1perform;

 

textual variants


‘nyatra → hyanyatra (indeed elsewhere);
karma → dharma (the law);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

It is also wrong to suppose that actions lead to bondage and that they should not therefore be performed. – Why ?

yac ca manyase bandhārthatvāt karma na kartavyam iti tad apy asat | kathaṃ?

Except in the case of action for Sacrifice’s sake, this world is action-bound.
Action for the sake Thereof, do thou, O son of Kunti, perform, free from attachment.

yajñārthāt karmaṇo ’nyatra loko ’yaṃ karma-bandhanaḥ |
tad arthaṃ karma kaunteya muktasaṅgaḥ samācara ||3.9||

Sacrifice (Yajña) here means Īśvara, the Supreme Lord. So, the śruti says “Yajña, verily, is Vishṇu.” ‘This world’ means those persons who, as qualified for action only, are bound to do it and who accordingly perform it.

yajño vai viṣṇuḥ (Taitirīya saṁhitā 1.7.4)iti śruter yajña īśvaraḥ | tad-arthaṃ yat kriyate tat yajñārthaṃ karma | tasmāt karmaṇo ’nyatrānyena karmaṇā loko ’yam adhikṛtaḥ karma-kṛt karma-bandhanaḥ karma bandhanaṃ yasya so ’yaṃ karma-bandhano lokaḥ, na tu yajñārthāt |

The world is not bound by action done for the Lord’s sake. Perform action without attachment.

atas tad-arthaṃ yajñārthaṃ karma kaunteya, mukta-saṅgaḥ karma-phala-saṅga-varjitaḥ san samācāra nirvartaya ||3.9||

 

Rāmānuja


evaṃ tarhi dravyārjanādeḥ karmaṇo ‚haṅkāramamakārādisarvendriyavyakulatāgarbhatvenāsya puruṣasya karmavāsanayā bandhanaṃ bhaviṣyatīty atrāha

yajñādiśāstrīyakarmaśeṣabhūtād dravyārjanādeḥ karmaṇo ‚nyatra ātmīyaprayojanaśeṣabhūte karmaṇi kriyamāṇe ayaṃ lokaḥ karmabandhano bhavati / atas tvaṃ yajñārthaṃ dravyārjanādikaṃ karma samācara / tatrātmaprayojanasādhanatayā yaḥ saṅgaḥ tasmāt saṅgān muktas tam samācara / evaṃ muktasaṅgena yajñādyarthatayā karmaṇi kriyamāṇe yajñādibhiḥ karmabhir ārādhitaḥ paramapuruṣo ‚syānādikālapravṛttakarmavāsanām ucchidya avyākulātmāvalokanaṃ dadātītyarthaḥ

 

Śrīdhara


sāṅkhyās tu sarvam api karma-bandhaktavān na kāryam ity āhuḥ | tannirākurvann āha yajñārthād iti | yajño ‚tra viṣṇuḥ | yajño vai viṣṇur iti śruteḥ | tad-ārādhanārthāt karmaṇo |nyatra tad ekaṃ loko ‚yaṃ karma-bandhanaḥ karmabhir vadhyate | na tu īśvarārādhanārthena karmaṇā | atas tad-arthaṃ viṣṇu-prīty-arthaṃ mukta-saṅgo niṣkāmaḥ san karma samyag ācara

 

Madhusūdana


karmaṇā badhyate jantuḥ [Mbh 12.241.7] iti smṛteḥ sarvaṃ karma bandhātmakatvān mumukṣuṇā na kartavyam iti matvā tasyottaram āha
yajñārthād iti | yajñaḥ parameśvaraḥ yajño vai viṣṇur [TaittS 1.7.4] iti śruteḥ | tad-ārādhanārthaṃ yat kriyate karma tad-yajñārthaṃ tasmāt karmaṇo ‚nyatra karmaṇi pravṛtto ‚yaṃ lokaḥ karmādhikārī karma-bandhanaḥ karmaṇā badhyate na tv īśvarārādhnārthena | atas tad-arthaṃ yajñārthaṃ karma he kaunteya ! tvaṃ karmaṇy adhikṛto mukta-saṅgaḥ san samācara samyak-śraddhādi-puraḥsaram ācara

 

Viśvanātha


nanu tarhi karmaṇā badhyate jantuḥ iti smṛteḥ | karmaṇi kṛte bandhaḥ syād iti cen na | parameśvarārpitaṃ karma na bandhakam ity āha yajñārthād iti | viṣṇv-arpito niṣkāmo dharma eva yajña ucyate | yad-arthaṃ yat karma tato ‚nyatraivāyaṃ lokaḥ karma-bandhanaḥ karmaṇā badhyamāno bhavati | tasmāt tvaṃ tad-arthaṃ tādṛśa-dharma-siddhy-arthaṃ karma samācara |

nanu viṣṇv-arpito ‚pi dharmaḥ kāmanām uddiśya kṛtaś ced bandhako bhavaty evety āha mukta-saṅgaḥ phalākāṅkṣā-rahitaḥ | evam evoddhavaṃ praty api śrī-bhagavatoktam –

sva-dharma-stho yajan yajñair
anāśīḥ-kāma uddhava |
na yāti svarga-narakau
yady anyan na samācaret ||

asmin loke vartamānaḥ
sva-dharma-stho ‚naghaḥ śuciḥ |
jñānaṃ viśuddham āpnoti
mad-bhaktiṃ vā yadṛcchayā || [BhP 11.20.10-1] iti

 

Baladeva


nanu karmaṇi kṛte bandho bhavet | karmaṇā badhyate jantur ity ādi-smaraṇāc ceti tatrāha yajñārthād iti | yajñaḥ parameśvaraḥ yajño vai viṣṇur iti śruteḥ | tad-arthāt tat-toṣa-phalāt karmaṇo ‚nyatra svasukha-phalaka-karmaṇi kriyamāṇe ‚yaṃ lokaḥ prāṇī karma-bandhanaḥ karmaṇā badhyate | tasmāt tad-arthaṃ viṣṇu-toṣārthaṃ karma samācara | he kaunteya mukta-saṅgas tyakta-sukhābhilāṣaḥ san nyāyopārjita-dravya-siddhena yajñādinā viṣṇur ārādhya tac-cheṣeṇa deha-yātrāṃ kurvan na badhyata ity arthaḥ

 
 

BhG 3.10

saha-yajñāḥ prajāḥ sṛṣṭvā purovāca prajā-patiḥ
anena prasaviṣyadhvam eṣa vo stv iṣṭa-kāma-dhuk

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purā (formerly) prajāpatiḥ (the lord of creatures) saha-yajñāḥ (along with sacrifice) prajāḥ (offspring) sṛṣṭvā (after emitting) uvāca (he spoke):
anena [yajñena] (by this sacrifice) prasaviṣyadhvam (you should bring forth),
eṣaḥ [yajñaḥ] (this sacrifice) vaḥ (your) iṣṭa-kāma-dhuk (wish-fulfilling cow) astu (it should be).

 

grammar

saha-yajñāḥ saha-yajña 2n.3 f.; BV: ye yajñena saha vartante tānthose who exist along with the sacrifice (from: saha – together with, in the company of; yaj – to consecrate, to sacrifice, to worship, yajña – sacrifice, worship, name of Viṣṇu);
prajāḥ pra-jā 2n.3 f.offspring, creatures, mankind (from: pra-jan – to be born, be produced, to bring forth);
sṛṣṭvā sṛj (to let go, to emit) absol.after emitting;
purā av.formerly, anciently, in the beginning (from: pur – to precede);
uvāca vac (to speak) [Perf.] P 1v.1he spoke;
prajā-patiḥ prajā-pati 1n.1 m.the lord of creatures (from: pra-jan – to be born, be produced, to bring forth, pra-jā – offspring, creatures, mankind; pati – husband, lord);
anena idam sn. 3n.1 m.by this;
prasaviṣyadhvam pra- (to beget) Vedic form (Cond. without prefix ‘a’) meaning Fut. Imperat. Ā 2v.3you should bring forth;
eṣaḥ etad sn. 1n.1 m.that;
vaḥ yuṣmat sn. 6n.3your (shortened form of: yuṣmākam);
astu as (to be) Imperat. P 1v.1it should be;
iṣṭa-kāma-dhuk iṣṭa-kāma-duḥ 1n.1 m.; ya iṣṭān kāmān dogdhi saḥthat bestows desired objects / wish-fulfilling cow (from: iṣ – to desire or yaj – to consecrate, to sacrifice, to worship, [PP] iṣṭa – desired or worshipped; kam – to wish, to love, to long for, kāma – wish, desire, pleasure; duḥ – to milk, duḥ – milking, granting; kāma-duhā – wish-fulfilling cow);

 

textual variants


eṣa vo stv iṣṭa-kāma-dhuk → eṣa vottiṣṭha karma-kṛt (stand up, that is performer of work for you);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

For the following reason also, action should be done by him who is qualified for it:

itaś cādhikṛtena karma kartavyaṃ –

Having first created mankind together with sacrifices, the Prajapati said,
„By this shall ye propagate; let this be to you the cow of plenty.

saha-yajñāḥ prajāḥ sṛṣṭvā purovāca prajāpatiḥ |
anena prasaviṣyadhvam eṣa vo’stv iṣṭa-kāma-dhuk ||3.10||

Mankind: composed of three castes. First: at the beginning of creation.

saha-yajñāḥ yajña-sahitāḥ prajās trayo varṇās tāḥ sṛṣṭvotpādya purā pūrvaṃ sargādāv uvāca uktavān prajāpatiḥ prajānāṃ srāṣṭā | anena yajñena prasaviṣyadhvaṃ prasavo vṛddhir utpattis tāṃ kurudhvam |

The cow of plenty: the cow which yields all desires.

eṣa yajño vo yuṣmākam astu bhavatu iṣṭa-kāma-dhuk | iṣṭān abhipretān kāmān phala-viśeṣān dogdhīti iṣṭa-kāma-dhuk ||3.10||

 

Rāmānuja


yajñaśiṣṭenaiva sarvapuruṣārthasādhananiṣṭhānāṃ śarīradhāraṇakartavyatām, ayajñaśiṣṭena śarīradhāraṇaṃ kurvatāṃ doṣaṃ cāha

„patiṃ viśvasya” ityādiśruter nirupādhikaḥ prajāpatiśabdaḥ sarveśvaraṃ viśvasya sraṣṭāraṃ viśvātmānaṃ parāyaṇaṃ nārāyaṇam āha / purā sargakāle sa bhagavān prajāpatir anādikālapravṛttācitsaṃsargavivaśāḥ upasaṃhṛtanāmarūpavibhāgāḥ svasmin pralīnāḥ sakalapuruṣārthānarhāḥ cetanetarakalpāḥ prajāḥ samīkṣya paramakāruṇikas tadujjīvayiṣayā svārādhanabhūtayajñanirvṛttaye yajñaiḥ saha tāḥ sṛṣṭvaivam uvāca anena yajñena prasaviṣyadhvam, ātmano vṛddhiṃ kurudhvam; eṣa vo yajñaḥ paramapuruṣārthalakṣaṇamokṣākhyasya kāmasya tadanuguṇānāaṃ ca kāmānāṃ prapūrayitā bhavatu

 

Śrīdhara


prajāpati-vacanād api karma-kartaiva śreṣṭha ity āha sahayajñā iti | yañena saha vartanta iti sahayajñāḥ yajñādhikṛtā brāhmaṇādi-prajāḥ purā sargādau sṛṣṭvā idam uvāca brahmā anena yajñena prasaviṣyadhvam | prasavo hi vṛddhiḥ | uttarottarābhivṛddhiṃ labhadhvam ity arthaḥ | tatra hetuḥ | eṣa yajño vo yuṣmākam iṣṭa-kāma-dhuk | iṣṭān dogdhīti tathā | abhīṣṭa-bhoga-prado ‚stu ity arthaḥ | atra ca yajña-grahaṇam āvaśyaka-karmopalakṣaṇārtham | kāmya-karma-praśaṃsā tu prakaraṇe ‚saṅgatāpi sāmānyato ‚karmaṇaḥ karma śreṣṭham ity etad artham ity adoṣaḥ

 

Madhusūdana


prajāpati-vacanād apy adhikṛtena karma kartavyam ity āha sahayajñā ity-ādi-caturbhiḥ | saha yajñena vihita-karma-kalāpena vartanta iti sahayajñā samādhikṛtā iti yāvat | vopasarjanasya [Pāṇ 6.3.82] iti pakṣe sādeśābhāvaḥ | prajās trīn varṇān purā kalpādau sṛṣṭvovāca prajānāṃ patiḥ sraṣṭā | kim uvācety āha — anena yajñena svāśramocita-dharmeṇa prasaviṣyadhvam prasūyadhvam | prasavo vṛddhiḥ | uttarottarām abhivṛddhiṃ labhadhvam ity arthaḥ | katham anena vṛddhiḥ syād ity āha eṣa yajñākhyo dharmo vo yuṣmākam iṣṭa-kāma-dhuk | iṣṭān abhimatān kāmān kāmyāni phalāni dogdhi prāpayatīti tathā | abhīṣṭa-bhoga-prado ‚stv ity arthaḥ |

atra yadyapi yajña-grahaṇam āvaśyaka-karmopalakṣaṇārtham akaraṇe pratyavāyasyāgre kathanāt | kāmya-karmaṇāṃ ca prakṛte prastāvo nāsty eva mā karma-phala-hetur bhūr ity anena nirākṛtatvāt | tathāi nitya-karmaṇām ānuṣaṅgika-phala-sadbhāvāt | eṣa vo ‚stv iṣṭa-kāma-dhuk ity upapadyate | tathā ca āpastambaḥ smarati tad yathāmre phalārthe nimitte chāyā-gandhāv anūtpadyete evaṃ dharmaṃ caryamāṇam arthā anūtpadyante no ced anūtpadyante na dharma-hānir bhavati iti | phala-sad-bhāve ‚pi tad-abhisandhy-anabhisandhibhyāṃ kāmya-nityayor viśeṣaḥ | anabhisaṃhitasyāpi vastu-svabhāvād utpattau na viśeṣaḥ | vistareṇa cāgre pratipādayiṣyate

 

Viśvanātha


tad evāśuddha-cittau niṣkāmaṃ karmaiva kuryān na tu sannyāsam ity uktam | idānīṃ yadi ca niṣkāmo ‚pi bhavituṃ na śaknuyāt tadā sakāmam api dharmaṃ viṣṇv-arpitaṃ kuryān na tu karma-tyāgam ity āha saheti saptabhiḥ | yajñena sahitāḥ saha-yajñāḥ vopasarjanasya iti sahasyādeśābhāvaḥ | purā viṣṇv-arpita-dharma-kāriṇīḥ prajāḥ sṛṣṭvā brahmovāca anena dharmeṇa prasaviṣyadhvaṃ prasavo vṛddhir uttarottaram ativṛddhiṃ labhadhvam ity arthaḥ | tāsāṃ sa-kāmatvam abhilakṣyāha eṣa yajño va iṣṭa-kāma-dhug-abhīṣṭa-bhoga-prado ‚stv ity arthaḥ

 

Baladeva


ayajñeśeṣeṇa deha-yātrāṃ kurvato doṣam āha saheti | prajāpatiḥ sarveśvaro viṣṇuḥ patiṃ viśvasyātmeśvaram ity ādi-śruteḥ | brahma prajānāṃ patir acyuto ‚sāv ity ādi-smaraṇāc ca | purā ādi-sarge saha-yajñā yajñaiḥ sahitā deva-mānavādi-rūpāḥ prajāḥ sṛṣṭvā nāma-rūpa-vibhāga-śūnyāḥ prakṛti-śaktike svasmin vilīnāḥ puruṣārthāyogyās tās tat-sampādaka-nāma-rūpa-bhājo vidhāya yajñaṃ tan-nirūpakaṃ vedaṃ ca prakāśyety arthaḥ | tāḥ pratīdam uvāca kāruṇikaḥ | anena vedoktena mad-arpitena yajñena yūyaṃ prasaviṣyadhvam | prasavo vṛddhiḥ sva-vṛddhiṃ bhajadhvam ity arthaḥ | eṣa mad-arpito yajño vo yuṣmākam iṣṭa-kāma-dhuk hṛd-viśuddhy-ātma-jñāna-deha-yātrā-sampādana-dvārā vāñchita-mokṣa-prado ‚stu

 
 

BhG 3.11

devān bhāvayatānena te devā bhāvayantu vaḥ
paras-paraṃ bhāvayantaḥ śreyaḥ param avāpsyatha

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anena (by this) [yajñena] (by sacrifice) [yūyam] (you) devān (the gods) bhāvayata (you must maintain).
te (they) devāḥ (the gods) vaḥ (you) bhāvayantu (they must maintain).
[evam] (thus) parasparam (each other) bhāvayantaḥ (while maintaining)
param (the supreme) śreyaḥ (welfare) avāpsyatha (you will obtain).

 

grammar

devān deva 2n.3 m.the gods, divinities (from: div – to shine, to play);
bhāvayata bhū (to be) Imperat. caus. P 2v.3 you should cause to exist, you must maintain;
anena idam sn. 3n.1 m.by this;
te tat sn. 1n.3 m.they;
devāḥ deva 1n.3 m.the gods, divinities (from: div – to shine, to play);
bhāvayantu bhū (to be) Imperat. caus. P 1v.3they should cause to exist, they must maintain;
vaḥ yuṣmat sn. 2n.3you (shortened form of: yuṣmān);
paras-param av.each other (from: para – another, strange);
bhāvayantaḥ bhāvayant (bhū – to be) PPr 1n.3 m.[while] maintaining;
śreyaḥ śreyas 2n.1 n. better, higher, perfect, the auspiciousness, the welfare (comparative of: śrī – śreyas, śreṣṭha);
param para 2n.1 n.distant, final, the best;
avāpsyatha ava-āp (to obtain) Fut. Ā 2v.3you will obtain;

 

textual variants


śreyaḥ → śreyāt (than welfare);
avāpsyatha → avīpsyasi (you will desire to obtain);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

How can this be achieved by sacrifice?

kathaṃ?

With this do ye nourish the Gods, and the Gods shall nourish you:
thus nourishing one another, ye shall attain the supreme good.

devān bhāvayatānena te devā bhāvayantu vaḥ |
parasparaṃ bhāvayantaḥ śreyaḥ param avāpsyatha ||3.11||

By this sacrifice ye nourish the Gods such as Indra. The Gods shall nourish you with rain, &c.” ‚The supreme good‚ is the attainment of the knowledge of Brahman in due course.

devān indrādīn bhāvayata vardhayatānena yajñena | te devā bhāvayantu āpyāyayantu vṛṣṭy-ādinā vo yuṣmān | evaṃ parasparam anyonyaṃ bhāvayantaḥ śreyaḥ paraṃ mokṣa-lakṣaṇaṃ vijñāna-prāpti-krameṇāvāpsyatha |

 

Rāmānuja


katham?

anena devatārādhanabhūtena devān maccharīrabhūtān madātmakān ārādhayata / „ahaṃ hi sarvayajñānāṃ bhoktā ca prabhur eva ca” iti hi vakṣyate / yajñenārādhitās te devā madātmakāḥ svārādhanāpekṣitānnapānādikair yuṣmān puṣṇantu / evaṃ parasparaṃ bhāvayantaḥ paraṃ śreyo mokṣākhyam avāpsyatha

 

Śrīdhara


katham iṣṭa-kāma-dogdhā yajño bhaved iti ? tatrāha devān iti | anena yajñena devān bhāvayata | havir bhāgaiḥ saṃvardhayata te ca devā vo yuṣmān saṃvardhayantu vṛṣṭy-ādinā annotpatti-dvāreṇa | evam anyonyaṃ saṃvardhayanto devāś ca yūyaṃ ca parasparaṃ śreyo ‚bhīṣṇam artham avāpsyatha prāpsyatha

 

Madhusūdana


katham iṣṭa-kāma-dogdhṛtvaṃ yajñasyeti tad āha devān iti | anena yajñena yūyaṃ yajamānā devān indrādīn bhāvayata havir-bhogaiḥ saṃvardhayata tarpayatety arthaḥ | te devā yuṣmābhir bhāvitāḥ santo vo yuṣmān bhāvayantu vṛṣṭy-ādinānnotpatti-dvāreṇa saṃvardhayantu | evam anyonyaṃ saṃvardhayanto devāś ca yūyaṃ ca varaṃ śreyo ‚bhimatam arthaṃ prāpsyatha devās tṛptiṃ prāpsyanti yūyaṃ ca svargākhyaṃ paraṃ śreyaḥ prāpsyathety arthaḥ

 

Viśvanātha


katham iṣṭa-kāma-prado yajño bhavet tatrāha devān iti | anena yajñena devān bhāvayata | bhāvavataḥ kuruta | bhāvaḥ prītis tad-yuktān kuruta prīṇayan ity arthaḥ | te devā api vaḥ prīṇayatu

 

Baladeva


idaṃ ca prajāḥ prayuktāḥ anena yajñena mad-aṅga-bhūtā-nindādīn bhāvayata tat-tad-dhavir-dānena prītān yūyaṃ kuruta | te devā vo yuṣmāṃs tad-vara-dānena bhāvayantu prītān kurvantu | itthaṃ śuddhāhāreṇa mitho bhāvatās te yūyaṃ paraṃ mokṣa-lakṣaṇaṃ śreyaḥ prāpsyathaḥ tatrāhāra-śuddhir hi jñāna-nisṭhāṅgaṃ, tatrāhāra-śuddhau sattva-śuddhiḥ sattva-śuddhau dhruvā smṛtiḥ smṛti-labdhe sarva-granthīnāṃ vipramokṣaḥ iti śruteḥ

 
 

BhG 3.12

iṣṭān bhogān hi vo devā dāsyante yajña-bhāvitāḥ
tair dattān apradāyaibhyo yo bhuṅkte stena eva saḥ

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yajña-bhāvitāḥ (who are maintained by the sacrifice) devāḥ (the gods) vaḥ (to you) iṣṭān (desired) bhogān (enjoyments) dāsyante (they will give).
taiḥ [devaiḥ] hi (indeed by these gods) dattān (given) [bhogān] (enjoyments)
ebhyaḥ [devebhyaḥ] (to those gods) apradāya (after not offering) yaḥ (he who) bhuṅkte (he enjoys),
saḥ (he) stenaḥ eva (indeed a thief) [asti] (he is).

 

grammar

iṣṭān iṣṭa (from: iṣ – to desire or yaj – to consecrate, to sacrifice, to worship) [PP] 2n.3 m.desired, worshipped;
bhogān bhoga 2n.3 m.enjoyment, luxuries, wealth (from: bhuj – to eat, to enjoy);
hi av.because, just, indeed, surely;
vaḥ yuṣmat sn. 4i.3x – for you (shortened form of: yuṣmabhyam);
devāḥ deva 1n.3 m.the gods, divinities (from: div – to shine, to play);
dāsyante (to give) Fut. Ā 1v.3they will give;
yajña-bhāvitāḥ yajña-bhāvita 1n.3 m.; yajñena bhavitā itiwho are maintained by the sacrifice (from: yaj – to consecrate, to sacrifice, to worship, yajña – sacrifice, worship, name of Viṣṇu; bhū – to be, Caus.x [PP] bhāvita – created, maintained);
taiḥ tat sn. 3n.3 m.by them;
dattān datta ( – to give) [PP] 2n.3 m.given;
apradāya  na pra- (to give away, to offer) absol.after not offering;
ebhyaḥ idam sn. 4i.3x m.to them;
yaḥ yat sn. 1n.1 m.he who;
bhuṅkte bhuj (to eat, to enjoy) Praes. Ā 1v.1he eats, he enjoys;
stenaḥ stena 1n.1 m.a thief;
eva av.certainly, just, merely;
saḥ tat sn. 1n.1 m.he;

 

textual variants


bhogān → kāmān (enjoyments);
apradāyaibhyo → apradāyebhyo (not to be given);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

Moreover,

kiṃ ca –

Nourished by the sacrifice, the Gods shall indeed bestow on you the enjoyments ye desire.”
Whoso enjoys – without offering to Them – Their gifts, he is verily a thief.

iṣṭān bhogān hi vo devā dāsyante yajña-bhāvitāḥ |
tair dattān apradāyaibhyo yo bhuṅkte stena eva saḥ ||3.12||

Pleased with your sacrifices, the Gods shall bestow on you all enjoyments, including women, cattle, children, &c.

iṣṭān abhipretān bhogān hi vo yuṣmabhyaṃ devā dāsyante vitariṣyanti strī-paśu-putrādīn yajña-bhāvitā yajñair vardhitās toṣitā ity arthaḥ |

He who enjoys what is given by Gods, i.e., he who gratifies the cravings of his own body and senses without discharging the debt due to the Gods, is a thief indeed, a robber of the property of the Gods, &c.

tair devair dattān bhogān apradāyādattvā, ānṛṇyam akṛtvety arthaḥ ebhyo devebhyaḥ yo bhuṅkte sva-dehendriyāṇy eva tarpayati stena eva taskara eva sa devādi-svāpahārī ||3.12||

 

Rāmānuja


yajñabhāvitāḥ yajñenārādhitāḥ madātmakā devāḥ iṣṭān vo dāsyante uttamapuruṣārthalakṣaṇaṃ mokṣaṃ sādhayatāṃ ye iṣṭā bhogās tān pūrvapūrvayajñabhāvitā devā dāsyante uttarottarārādhanopekṣitān sarvān bhogān vo dāsyante ityarthaḥ / svārādhanārthatayā tair dattān bhogān tebhyo ‚pradāya yo bhuṅkte cora eva saḥ / couryaṃ hi nāma anyadīye tatprayojanāyaiva parikḷpte vastuni svakīyatābuddhiṃ kṛtvā tena svātmapoṣaṇam / ato ‚sya na paramapuruṣārthānarhatāmātram; api tu nirayagāmitvaṃ ca bhaviṣyatītyabhiprāyaḥ

 

Śrīdhara


etad eva spaṣṭīkurvan karmākaraṇe doṣam āha iṣṭān iti | yajñair bhāvitāḥ santo devā vṛṣṭy-ādi-dvāreṇa vo yuṣmabhyaṃ bhogān dāsyante hi | ato devair dattān annādīn ebhyo devebhyaḥ pañca-yajñādibhir adattvā yo bhuṅkte, sa stenaś caura eva jñeyaḥ

 

Madhusūdana


na kevalaṃ pāratrikam eva phalaṃ yajñāt, kintv aihikam apīty āha iṣṭān iti | abhilaṣitān bhogān paśv-anna-hiraṇyādīn vo yuṣmabhyaṃ devā dāsyante vitariṣyanti | hi yasmād yajñair bhāvitās toṣitās te | yasmāt tair ṛṇavad bhavadbhyo dattā bhogās tasmāt tair devair dattān bhogān ebhyo devebhyo ‚pradāya yajñeṣu devodeśenāhutīrasampādya yo bhuṅkte dehendriyāṇy eva tarpayati stena eva taskara eva sa deva-svāpahārī devārṇapākaraṇāt

 

Viśvanātha


etad eva spaṣṭīkurvan karmākaraṇe doṣam āha iṣṭān iti | tair dattān vṛṣṭy-ādi-dvāreṇānnādīn nādīn utpādety arthaḥ | ebhyo devebhyaḥ pañca-mahā-yajñādibhir adattvā yo bhuṅkte, sa tu caura eva

 

Baladeva


etad eva viśadayan karmānuṣṭhānena doṣam āha iṣṭān iti | pūrva-bhāvita-mad-aṅga-bhūtā devā vo yuṣmabhyam iṣṭān mumukṣu-kāmyān uttarottara-yajñāpekṣān bhogān dāsyanti vṛṣṭy-ādi-dvārā vrīhy-ādīn utpādyety arthaḥ | svārcanārthaṃ tair devair dattāṃs tān bhogān ebhyaḥ pañca-yajñādibhir apradāya kevalātma-tṛpti-karo yo bhuṅkte sa stenaś caura eva | devas tāny apahṛtya tair ātmanaḥ poṣāt | cauro bhūpād iva sa yamād daṇḍam arhati pumarthānarhaḥ

 
 

BhG 3.13

yajña-śiṣṭāśinaḥ santo mucyante sarva-kilbiṣaiḥ
bhuñjate te tv aghaṃ pāpā ye pacanty ātma-kāraṇāt

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yajña-siṣṭāśinaḥ (those who eat the remnants of sacrifice) santaḥ (saints) sarva-kilbiṣaiḥ (from all sins) mucyante (they are released),
ye tu (but those who) ātma-kāraṇāt (for the own sake) pacanti (they cook),
te (these) pāpāḥ (sinners) agham (evil) bhuñjate (they eat).

 

grammar

yajña-śiṣṭāśinaḥ yajña-śiṣṭa-āśin 1n.3 m.; [TP]: yajñasya śiṣṭāni āsina itithose who eat the remnants of sacrifice (from: yaj – to consecrate, to sacrifice, to worship, yajña – sacrifice, worship, name of Viṣṇu; śiṣ – to leave, [PP] śiṣṭa – left, remnants; – to reach, to eat, to enjoy, āśin – one who eats, enjoys; -in, -min, -vin – sufixes meaning one who possesses);
santaḥ sant (as – to be) PPr 1n.3 m.being, true, existing, saints;
mucyante muc (to liberate, to release) Praes. pass. 1v.3they are released (from what? – pass. requires instrumental or ablative);
sarva-kilbiṣaiḥ sarva-kilbiṣa 3n.3 n.; sarvair kilbiṣaiṛ itifrom all sins (from: sarva – all, whole; kilbiṣa – fault, offence, sin);
bhuñjate bhuj (to eat, to enjoy) Praes. Ā 1v.3they eat;
te tat sn. 1n.3 m.they;
tu av.but, then, or, and;
agham agha 2n.1 n.evil, sin, suffering;
pāpāḥ pāpa 1n.3 m.sinners, wicked people;
ye yat sn. 1n.3 m.those who;
pacanti pac (to cook, to digest) Praes. P 1v.3they cook;
ātma-kāraṇāt ātma-kāraṇa 5n.1 n.; [TP]: ātmanaḥ kāranāt itifrom the cause of one’s self, for the own sake (from: ātman – self; kṛ – to do, karaṇa – deed, direct cause, instrument, helper, kāraṇa – cause, motive, principle, the means);

 

textual variants


yajña-siṣṭāśinaḥ → yajña-siṣṭāśanaḥ (those who have as food the remnants of the sacrifice);
sarva-kilbiṣaiḥte ‘pi kilbiṣaiḥ (they even from sins);
bhuñjate te tv aghaṁ pāpā → te tv aghaṁ bhuṁjate pāpā (but those sinners eat sin);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

On the other hand,

ye punaḥ –

The righteous, who eat the remnant of the sacrifice, are freed from all sins;
but sin do the impious eat who cook for their own sakes.

yajña-śiṣṭāśinaḥ santo mucyante sarva-kilbiṣaiḥ |
bhuñjate te tv aghaṃ pāpā ye pacanty ātma-kāraṇāt ||3.13||

Those who, after performing sacrifices to the Gods, &c., eat the remains of the food – which is called amṛta, ambrosia – are freed from all sins committed at the five places of animal-slaughter (such as the fire-place), as well as from those sins which result from involuntary acts of injury and other causes.

deva-yajñādīn nirvartya tac-chiṣṭam aśanam amṛtākhyam aśituṃ śīlaṃ yeṣāṃ te yajña-śiṣṭāśinaḥ santo mucyante sarva-kilbiṣaiḥ sarva-pāpaiś culiy-ādi-pañca-sūnā-kṛtaiḥ pramāda-kṛta-hiṃsādi-janitaiś cānyaiḥ |

But as to the others, who are selfish and cook food for their own sakes, what they eat is sin itself, while they themselves are sinners.

ye tv ātmaṃbharayo bhuñjate te tv aghaṃ pāpaṃ svayam api pāpā ye pacanti pākaṃ nirvartayanti ātma-kāraṇāt ātma-hetoḥ ||3.13||

 

Rāmānuja


tad eva vivṛṇoti

indrādyātmanāvasthitaparamapuruṣārādhanārthatayaiva dravyāṇy upādāya vipacya tair yathāvasthitaṃ paramapuruṣam ārādhya tacchiṣṭāśanena ye śarīrayātrāṃ kurvate, te tv anādikālopārjitaiḥ kilbiṣaiḥ ātmayāthātmyāvalokanavirodhibhiḥ sarvair mucyante / ye tu paramapuruṣeṇendrādyātmanā svārādhanāya dattāni ātmārthatyopādāya vipacyāśnanti, te pāpātmano ‚gham eva bhuñjate / aghapariṇāmitvād agham ity ucyate / ātmāvalokanavimukhāḥ narakāyaiva pacante

 

Śrīdhara


ataś ca yajanta eva śreṣṭhāḥ | netara ity āha yajña-śiṣṭāśina iti | vaiśva-devādi-yajñāvaśiṣṭaṃ ye ‚śnanti te pañcasūnākṛtaiḥ sarvaiḥ kilbiṣair mucyante | pañca-sūnāś ca smṛtāv uktāḥ –

kaṇḍanī peṣaṇī cullī udakumbhī ca mārjanī |
pañca-sūnā gṛhasthasya tābhiḥ svargaṃ na vindati || iti ||

ye ātmano bhojanārtham eva pacanti, na tu vaiśvadevādy-arthaṃ te pāpā durācārā agham eva bhuñjate

 

Madhusūdana


ye tu vaiśvadevādi-yajñāvaśiṣṭam amṛtaṃ ye ‚śnanti te santaḥ śiṣṭā vedokta-kāritvena devādy-ṛṇāpākaraṇāt atas te mucyante sarvair vihitākaraṇa-nimittaiḥ pūrva-kṛtaiś ca pañca-sūnā-nimittaiḥ kilbiṣaiḥ | bhūta-bhāvi-pātakā-saṃsargiṇas te bhavantīty arthaḥ |

evam anvaye bhūta-bhāvi-pāpābhāvām uktvā vyatireke doṣam āha bhuñjate te vaiśvadevādy-akāriṇo ‚ghaṃ pāpam eva | tu-śabdo ‚vadhāraṇe | ye pāpāḥ pañca-sūnā-nimittaṃ pramāda-kṛta-hiṃsā-nimittaṃ ca kṛta-pāpāḥ santa ātma-kāraṇād eva pacanti na tu vaiśvadevādy-artham | tathā ca pāñca-sūnādi-kṛta-pāpe vidyamāna eva vaiśvadevādi-nitya-karmākaraṇa-nimittam aparaṃ pāpam āpnuvantīti bhuñjate te tv aghaṃ pāpā ity uktam | tathā ca smṛtiḥ –

kaṇḍanī peṣaṇī cullī udakumbhī ca mārjanī |
pañca-sūnā gṛhasthasya tābhiḥ svargaṃ na vindati ||iti |

pañca-sūnākṛtaṃ pāpaṃ pañca-yajñair vyapohati iti ca | śrutiś ca idam evāsya tat-sādhāraṇam annaṃ yad idam adyate | sa ya etad upāste na sa pāpnamo vyāvartate miśraṃ hy etat iti | mantra-varṇo ‚pi –

mogham annaṃ vindate agra-cetāḥ
satyaṃ bravīmi vadha itsa tasya |
nāryamāṇaṃ puṣyati no sakhāyaṃ
kevalādho bhavati kevalādī ||iti |

idaṃ copalakṣaṇaṃ pañca-mahā-yajñānāṃ smārtānāṃ śrautānāṃ ca nitya-karmaṇām | adhikṛtena nityāni karmāṇy avaśyam anuṣṭheyānīti prajāpati-vacanārthaḥ

 

Viśvanātha


vaiśvadevādi-yajñāvaśiṣṭam annaṃ ye ‚śnanti te pañca-sūnākṛtaiḥ sarvaiḥ pāpair mucyante | pañca-sūnāś ca smṛty-uktāḥ –

kaṇḍanī peṣaṇī cullī udakumbhī ca mārjanī |
pañca-sūnā gṛhasthasya tābhiḥ svargaṃ na vindati || iti

 

Baladeva


ye indrādy-aṅgatayāvasthitaṃ yajñaṃ sarveśvaraṃ viṣṇum abhyarcya tac-cheṣam aśnanti tena tad-deha-yātrāṃ sampādayanti te santaḥ sarveśvarasya yajña-puruṣasya bhaktāḥ sarva-kilbiṣair anādi-kāla-vivṛddhair ātmānubhava-pratibandhakair nikhilaiḥ pāpair vimucyante | te tu pāpāḥ pāpa-grastāḥ agham eva bhuñjate | ye tat-tad-devatāṅgatayāvasthitena yajña-puruṣeṇa svārcanāya dattaṃ vrīhy-ādy-ātma-kāraṇāt pacanti tad vipacyātma-poṣaṇaṃ kurvantīty arthaḥ | pakvasya vrīhy-āder agha-rūpeṇa pariṇāmād aghatvam uktam

 
 

BhG 3.14

annād bhavanti bhūtāni parjanyād anna-saṃbhavaḥ
yajñād bhavati parjanyo yajñaḥ karma-samudbhavaḥ

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bhūtāni (creatures) annāt (from food) bhavanti (they exist),
parjanyāt (from rain) anna-sambhavaḥ (production of food) [asti] (it is),
parjanyaḥ (rain) yajñāt (from sacrifice) bhavati (it exists),
yajñaḥ (sacrifice) karma-samudbhavaḥ (that which comes from activity) [asti] (it is).

 

grammar

annāt anna (ad – to eat) [PP] 5n.1 n.from food;
bhavanti bhū (to be) Praes. P 1v.3they exist;
bhūtāni bhūta (bhū – to be) [PP] 1n.3 n.beings, creatures;
parjanyāt parjanya 5n.1 m.from raincloud, from rain, from the god of rain (from: pṛc – to mix);
anna-saṁbhavaḥ anna-saṁbhava 1n.1 m.; [TP]: annasya saṁbhava itiproduction of food (from: ad – to eat, [PP] anna – food; sam-bhū – to come together, to be born, saṁbhava – production);
yajñāt yajña 5n.1 m.from sacrifice, from worship (from: yaj – to consecrate, to sacrifice, to worship);
bhavati bhū (to be) Praes. P 1v.1it exists;
parjanyaḥ parjanya 1n.1 m.raincloud, rain, the god of rain (from: pṛc – to mix);
yajñaḥ yajña 1n.1 m. sacrifice, worship (from: yaj – to consecrate, to sacrifice, to worship);
karma-samudbhavaḥ karma-samudbhava 1n.1 m.; BV: yasya karmaṇaḥ samudbhavo ‘sti saḥ that which comes from activity (from: kṛ – to do, karman – activity and its result; sam-ud-bhū – to spring up from, to produce, samudbhava – springing from, production);

 

textual variants


yajñād → dharmād (from the law);
yajñaḥ karma-samudbhavaḥ → yajña-karma-samudbhavaḥ (that which comes from sacrificial activity);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

The wheel of the world should be set going. For the following reason also should action be performed by him who is qualified for action. For, it is action that sets the wheel of the world going. – How ? – The answer follows:

itaś cādhikṛtena karma kartavyam | jagac-cakra-pravṛtti-hetur hi karma | kathaṃ? ity ucyate –

From food creatures come forth; the production of food is from rain;
rain comes forth from sacrifice; sacrifice is born of action;

annād bhavanti bhūtāni parjanyād anna-saṃbhavaḥ |
yajñād bhavati parjanyo yajñaḥ karma-samudbhavaḥ ||3.14||

All living creatures, it is evident, are born from food, which, when eaten, is converted into blood and semen. Rain proceeds from sacrifice as taught in the following text from the smṛti:

annād bhuktāl lohita-retaḥ-pariṇatāt pratyakṣaṃ bhavanti jāyante bhūtāni | parjanyād vṛṣṭer annasya saṃbhavo ’nna-saṃbhavaḥ | yajñād bhavati parjanyaḥ |

The offering thrown into the fire reaches the sun; from the sun comes rain; from rain food; and from this (food) all creatures.” (Manu 3.76).

agnau prāstāhutiḥ samyag ādityam upatiṣṭhate |
ādityāj jāyate vṛṣṭir vṛṣṭer annaṃ tataḥ prajāḥ || (Manu 3.76) iti smṛteḥ |

Yajña or sacrifice here spoken of refers to what is called apurva; and this apurva is the result of the activities of the sacrificer and his priests (ritviks) engaged in a sacrifice.

yajño ’pūrvam | sa ca yajñaḥ karma-samudbhavaḥ | ṛtvig-yajamānayoś ca vyāpāraḥ karma, tad-samudbhavo yasya yajñasyāpūrvasya sa yajñaḥ karma-samudbhavaḥ ||3.14||

 

Rāmānuja

commentary under the verse BhG 3.16

 

Śrīdhara


jagac-cakra-pravṛtti-hetutvād api karma kartavyam ity āha annād iti tribhiḥ | annāt śukra-śoṇita-rūpeṇa pariṇatād bhūtāny utpadyante | annasya ca sambhavaḥ parjanyād vṛṣṭeḥ | sa ca parjanyo yajñād bhavati | sa ca yajñaḥ karma-samudbhavaḥ | karmaṇā yajamānādi-vyāpāreṇa samyak sampadyata ity arthaḥ |

agnau prāstāhutiḥ samyag ādityam upatiṣṭhate |
ādityāj jāyate vṛṣṭir vṛṣṭer annaṃ tataḥ prajāḥ

 

Madhusūdana


na kevalaṃ prajāpati-vacanād eva karma kartavyam api tu jagac-cakra-pravṛtti-hetutvād apīty āha annād iti tribhiḥ | annād bhuktād reto-lohita-rūpeṇa pariṇatād bhūtāni prāṇi-śarīrāṇi bhavanti jāyante | annasya sambhavo janmānna-sambhavaḥ parjanyād vṛṣṭeḥ | pratyakṣa-siddham evaitat | atra karmopayogam āha yajñāt kārīr yāder agnihotrādeś cāpūrvākhyād dharmād bhavati parjanyaḥ | yathā cāgnihotrāhuter vṛṣṭi-janakatvaṃ tathā vyākhyātam aṣṭādhyāyī-kāṇḍe janaka-yājñavalkya-saṃvāda-rūpāyāṃ ṣaṭ-praśnyām | manunā coktam –

agnau prāstāhutiḥ samyag ādityam upatiṣṭhate |
ādityāj jāyate vṛṣtir vṛṣter annaṃ tataḥ prajāḥ ||[Manu 3.76] iti |

sa ca yajño dharmākhyaḥ sūkṣmaḥ karma-samudbhava ṛtvig-yajamāna-vyāpāra-sādhyaḥ | yajñasya hi apūrvasya vihitaṃ karma kāraṇam

 

Viśvanātha


jagac-cakra-pravṛtti-hetutvād api yajñaṃ kuryād evety āha annād bhūtāni prāṇino bhavantīti bhūtānāṃ hetur annam | annād eva śukra-śoṇita-rūpeṇa pariṇatāt prāṇi-śarīra-siddhes tasyānnasya hetuḥ parjanyaḥ | vṛṣṭibhir evānna-siddhes tasya parjanyasya hetur yajñaḥ | lokaiḥ kṛtena yajñenaiva samucita-vṛṣṭi-prada-megha-siddhes tasya yajñasya hetuḥ karma-ṛtvig-yajamāna-vyāpārātmakatvāt karmaṇa eva yajña-siddheḥ

 

Baladeva


prajāpatinā pareśena prajāḥ sṛṣṭvā tad-upajīvanāya tadaiva yajñaḥ sṛṣṭas tataḥ pareśānubartināvaśyaṃ sakārya ity āha annād iti dvābhyām | bhūtāni prāṇino ‚nnād vrīhy-āder bhavanti | śukra-śoṇita-rūpeṇa pariṇatās tasmāt tad-dehānāṃ siddheḥ | tasyānnasya sambhavaḥ parjanyād vṛṣṭer bhavati | parjanyaś ca yajñād bhavati sidhyatīty arthaḥ |

agnau prāstāhutiḥ samyag ādityam upatiṣṭhate |
ādityāj jāyate vṛṣṭir vṛṣṭer annaṃ tataḥ prajāḥ || iti manu-smṛteḥ

 
 

BhG 3.15

karma brahmodbhavaṃ viddhi brahmākṣara-samudbhavam
tasmāt sarva-gataṃ brahma nityaṃ yajñe pratiṣṭhitam

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karma (activity) brahmodbhavam (that which comes from brahman / the Vedas) viddhi (you must know),
brahma (brahman) akṣara-samudbhavam (that which comes form the imperishable / the syllable) [vidhi] (you must know).
tasmāt (therefore) sarva-gatam (all-pervading) brahma (brahman) nityam (always) yajñe (in sacrifice) pratiṣṭhitam (steady) [asti] (it is).

 

grammar

karma karman 2n.1 n.activity (from: kṛ – to do);
brahmodbhavam brahma-udbhava 2n.1 n.; yasya brahmaṇa udbhavam asti tatthat which comes from brahman (from: bṛh – to increase, brahman – spirit, the Vedas; ud-bhū – to spring up from, to produce, udbhava – springing from, production);
viddhi vid (to know, to understand) Imperat. P 2v.1you must know;
brahma brahman 2n.1 n.spirit, the Vedas (from: bṛh – to increase);
akṣara-samudbhavam a-kṣara-samudbhava 2n.1 m.; BV: yasya akṣarāt samudbhavam asti tat that which comes form the imperishable / the syllable (from: kṣar – to flow, to perish, a-kṣara – imperishable, a syllable; sam-ud-bhū – to spring up from, to produce, samudbhava – springing from, production);
tasmāt av.therefore (from: tat sn. 5n.1 m. – from that);
sarva-gatam sarva-gata 1n.1 n.; [TP]: sarvatra gatam itieverywhere gone, all-pervading (from: sarva – all, whole; gam – to go, [PP] gata – gone);
brahma brahman 1n.1 n.spirit, the Vedas (from: bṛh – to increase);
nityam av.constantly, eternally (from: nitya – continual, eternal);
yajñe yajña 7n.1 m. in sacrifice, in worship (from: yaj – to consecrate, to sacrifice, to worship);
pratiṣṭhitam pratiṣṭhita (prati-sthā – to stand firmly) [PP] 1n.1 f.fixed, firm, steady;

 

textual variants

karma brahmodbhavaṃ viddhi → brahma karmodbhavaṃ viddhi (you must know that brahman comes from activity);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

tac caivaṃ vidhaṃ karma kuto jātam ity āha –

know thou that action comes from Brahman
and that Brahman comes from the Imperishable.
Therefore, the all-pervading Brahman ever rests in sacrifice.

karma brahmodbhavaṃ viddhi brahmākṣara-samudbhavam |
tasmāt sarva-gataṃ brahma nityaṃ yajñe pratiṣṭhitam ||3.15||

These activities are enjoined in the Veda (Brahman), and the Veda comes from the Imperishable, the Paramatman, the Highest Self.

karma brahmodbhavam | brahma vedaḥ | sa udbhavaḥ kāraṇaṃ prakāśako yasya tat karma brahmodbhavaṃ viddhi vijānīhi | brahma punaḥ vedākhyam akṣara-samudbhavam akṣaraṃ brahma paramātmā samudbhavo yasya tat akṣara-samudbhavam | brahma veda ity arthaḥ |

Because the Veda has arisen from the Highest Self – the Akshara, the Imperishable, as the breath comes out of a man, therefore, the Veda, though all-comprehending as revealing all things, ever rests in sacrifice, i. e., it treats mainly of sacrifices and the mode of their performance.

yasmāt sākṣāt paramātmākhyād akṣarāt puruṣa-niḥśvāsavat samudbhūtaṃ brahma tasmāt sarvārtha-prakāśakatvāt sarva-gatam | sarva-gatam api sat nityaṃ sadā yajña-vidhi-pradhānatvāt yajñe pratiṣṭhitam ||3.15||

 

Rāmānuja


commentary under the verse BhG 3.16

 

Śrīdhara


tathā karmeti | tac ca yajamānādi-vyāpāra-rūpaṃ karma brahmodbhavaṃ viddhi | brahma vedaḥ | tasmāt pravṛttaṃ jānīhi | asya mahato bhūtasya niḥśvasitam etad ṛg-vedo yajur-veaḥ sāma-vedo |thāṅgīrasaḥ iti śruteḥ | yata evam akṣarād eva yajña-pravṛtter atyantam abhipreto yajñaḥ, tasmāt sarva-gatam apy akṣaraṃ brahma nityaṃ sarvadā yajñe pratiṣṭhitam | yajñenopāya-bhūtena prāpyata iti yajñe pratiṣṭhitam ucyata iti | udyama-sthā sadā lakṣmīr itivat | yad vā, jagac-cakrasya mūlaṃ karma tasmāt sarva-gataṃ mantrārtha-vādaiḥ sarveṣu siddhārtha-pratipādakeṣu bhūtārthākhyānādiṣu gataṃ sthitam api vedākhyaṃ brahma sarvadā yajñe tātparya-rūpeṇa pratiṣṭhitam | ato yajñādi karma kartavyam ity arthaḥ

 

Madhusūdana


tac cāpūrvotpādakam | brahmodbhavaṃ brahma vedaḥ sa evodbhavaḥ pramāṇaṃ yasya tat tathā | veda-vihitam eva karmāpūrva-sādhanaṃ jānīhi | na tv anyat-pāṣaṇḍa-pratipāditam ity arthaḥ | nanu pāṣaṇḍa-śāstrāpekṣayā vedasya kiṃ vailakṣaṇyaṃ yato veda-pratipādita eva dharmo nānya ity ata āha brahma vedākhyam akṣara-samudbhavam akṣarāt paramātmano nirdoṣāt puruṣa-niḥśvāsa-nyāyenābuddhi-pūrvaṃ samudbhava āvirbhāvo yasya tad-akṣara-samudbhavam | tathā cāpauruṣeyatvena nirasta-samasta-doṣāśaṅkaṃ veda-vākyaṃ pramiti-janakam iti bhāvaḥ | tathā ca śrutiḥ — asya mahato bhūtasya niḥśvasitam etad ṛg-vedo yajur-veaḥ sāma-vedo ‚thāṅgīrasa itihāsaḥ purāṇaṃ vidyā upaniṣadaḥ ślokāḥ sūtrāṇy anuvyākhānāni vyākhyānāny asyaivaitāni niḥśvasitāni [BAU 2.4.10] iti |

tasmāt sākṣāt paramātma-samudbhavatayā sarva-gataṃ sarva-prakāśakaṃ nityam avināśi ca brahma vedākhyaṃ yajñe dharmākhye ‚tīndriye pratiṣṭhitaṃ tātparyeṇa | ataḥ pāṣaṇḍa-pratipāditopadharma-parityāgena veda-bodhita eva dharmo ‚nuṣṭheya ity arthaḥ

 

Viśvanātha


tasya karmaṇo hetur brahma vedaḥ | vedokta-vidhi-vākya-śravaṇād eva yajñaṃ prati vyāpārotpattes tasya vedasya hetur akṣaraṃ brahma | brahmata eva vedotpatteḥ | tathā ca śrutiḥ – asya mahato bhūtasya niḥśvasitam etad ṛg-vedo yajur-veaḥ sāma-vedo |thāṅgīrasaḥ iti | tasmāt sarva-gataṃ brahma yajñe pratiṣṭhitam iti yajñena brahmāpi prāpyata iti bhāvaḥ | atra yadyapi kārya-kāraṇa-bhāvenānnādyā brahma-paryantāḥ padārtho uktās tad api teṣu madhye yajña eta vidheyatvena śāstreṇocyata iti | sa eva prastutaḥ –

agnau prāstāhutiḥ samyag ādityam upatiṣṭhate |
ādityāj jāyate vṛṣṭir vṛṣṭer annaṃ tataḥ prajāḥ || iti smṛteḥ

 

Baladeva


tac ca ṛtvig-ādi-vyāpāra-rūpa-karma-brahmodbhavaṃ viddhi | brahma-vedas tasmāt tat pravṛttiṃ jānīhīty arthaḥ | tac ca veda-rūpaṃ brahma akṣarāt pareśāt samudbhavaṃ prakaṭaṃ viddhi | asya mahato bhūtasya niḥśvasitam etad ṛg-vedo yajur-veaḥ sāma-vedo |thāṅgīrasaḥ ity ādi-śravaṇāt | yasmāt sva-sṛṣṭa-prajopajīvanāti-priyo yajñas tasmāt sarva-gataṃ nikhila-vyāpakam api brahma nityaṃ sarvadā yajñe pratiṣṭhitaṃ tenaiva tat prāpyata ity arthaḥ

 
 

BhG 3.16

evaṃ pravartitaṃ cakraṃ nānuvartayatīha yaḥ
aghāyur indriyārāmo moghaṃ pārtha sa jīvati

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he pārtha (O son of Pṛthā!),
iha (here) yaḥ (he who) evam (thus) pravartitam (which is set in motion) cakram (wheel) na anuvartayati (he does not cause it to move on),
saḥ (he) aghāyuḥ (sinner) indriyārāmaḥ (whose delight is in the senses) mogham (in vain) jīvati (he lives).

 

grammar

evam av.thus;
pravartitam pravartita (pra-vṛt  – to start to act, to surpass) caus. [PP] 2n.1 n.which is set in motion;
cakram cakra 2n.1 n.wheel, cycle, discus (from: car – to move or from: kṛ – to do);
na av.not;
anuvartayati anu-vṛt (to follow, to obey) Praes. caus. P 1v.1he causes sth to move on;
iha av.here (often meaning: in this world);
yaḥ yat sn. 1n.1 m.he who;
aghāyuḥ agha-āyuḥ 1n.1 m.; BV: yasyāyur agham asti saḥwhose life is sinful (from: agha – evil, sin, suffering; āyuḥ – life, vitality, health);
indriyārāmaḥ indriya-ārāma 1n.1 m.; BV: yasyārāma indriyeṣv asti saḥwhose delight is in the senses (from: ind – to be powerful, indriya – the senses; ā-ram – to desist, to delight, ā-rāma – delight, pleasure);
mogham av.in vain, uselessly (from: mogha – vain, useless);
pārtha pārtha 8n.1 m.O son of Pṛthā (from: pṛth – to extend, pṛthā – Kuntī, mother of the sons of Pāṇḍu);
saḥ tat sn. 1n.1 m.he;
jīvati jīv (to live) Praes P 1v.1he lives;

 

textual variants


cakraṁ → karma (activity);
nānuvartayatīhanānuvartayate ha / nānuvartayatīca (indeed he does not support/ and he does not support);
aghāyuḥ → alpāyuḥ (whose life is short);
moghaṁ → mohaṁ (in bewilderment);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

He who follows not here the wheel thus set in motion,
who is of sinful life, indulging in senses, he lives in vain, O son of Pritha.

evaṃ pravartitaṃ cakraṃ nānuvartayatīha yaḥ |
aghāyur indriyārāmo moghaṃ pārtha sa jīvati ||3.16||

He who ought to perform action, but who, indulging in sensual pleasures, does not follow the wheel of the world thus set revolving by Īśvara, on the basis of the Veda and sacrifices, he lives in vain.

evam ittham īśvareṇa veda-yajña-pūrvakaṃ jagac-cakraṃ pravartitaṃ nānuvartayatīha loke yaḥ karmaṇy adhikṛtaḥ sann aghāyur aghaṃ pāpam āyur jīvanaṃ yasya so ’ghāyuḥ pāpa-jīvana iti yāvat | indriyārāmaḥ indriyair ārāmaḥ āramaṇam ākrīḍā viṣayeṣu yasya sa indriyārāmo moghaṃ vṛthā he pārtha, sa jīvati |

The main drift, therefore, of this section (3.4-16) is that action should be performed by the ignorant man, for whom it is intended. In 3.4-8, it was taught that till he attains the qualification for Devotion to the knowledge of the Self, the man who knows not the Self and is therefore qualified (for action only) should resort to Devotion to action as a means of attaining Devotion to knowledge;

tasmād ajñenādhikṛtena kartavyam eva karmeti prakaraṇārthaḥ | prāg ātma-jñāna-niṣṭhā-yogyatā-prāptes tādarthyena karma-yogānuṣṭhānam adhikṛtenānātmajñena kartavyam evety etan
na karmaṇām anārambhād
(BhG 3.4) ity ata ārabhya
śarīra-yātrāpi ca te na prasidhyed akarmaṇa (BhG 3.8) ity evam antena pratipādya,

and, further, there were incidentally propounded (in 3.9-16) many reasons why the man who knows not the Self and is (therefore) qualified for action should perform it. Mention, too, has been made of evils arising from a neglect of action.

yajñārthāt karmaṇo ’nyatra (BhG 3.9) ity ādinā moghaṃ pārtha sa jīvati (BhG 3.16) ity evam antenāpi granthena prāsaṅgikam adhikṛtasyānātmavidaḥ karmānuṣṭhāne bahu kāraṇam uktam | tad-akaraṇe ca doṣa-saṃkīrtanaṃ kṛtam ||3.16||

 

Rāmānuja


punar api lokadṛṣṭyā śāstradṛṣṭyā ca sarvasya yajñamūlatvaṃ darśayitvā yajñānuvartanasyāvaśyakāryatām ananuvartane doṣaṃ cāha

„annāt sarvāṇi bhūtāni bhavanti parjanyāc cānnasaṃbhavaḥ” iti sarvalokasākṣikam / yajñāt parjanyo bhavatīti ca śāstreṇāvagamyate, „agnau prāstāhutiḥ samyagādityam upatiṣṭhate / ādityāj jāyate vṛṣṭiḥ” ityādinā / yajñaś ca dravyārjanādikartṛvyāpārarūpakarmasamudbhavaḥ, karma ca brahmodbhavam / atra ca brahmaśabdanirdiṣṭaṃ prakṛtipariṇāmarūpaṃ śarīram / „tasmād etad brahma nāma rūpam annaṃ ca jāyate” iti hi brahmaśabdena prakṛtinirdiṣṭā / ihāpi „mama yonir mahad brahma” iti vakṣyate / ataḥ karma brahmodbhavam iti prakṛtipariṇāmarūpaśarīrodbhavaṃ karmetyuktaṃ bhavati / brahmākṣarasamudbhavam ity atrākṣaraśabdanirdiṣṭo jīvātmā, annapānādinā tṛptākṣarādhiṣṭhitaṃ śarīraṃ karmaṇe prabhavatīti karmasādhanabhūtaṃ śarīram akṣarasamudbhavam; tasmāt sarvagataṃ brahma sarvādhikārigataṃ śarīraṃ nityaṃ yajñe pratiṣṭhitaṃ yajñamūlam ityarthaḥ / evaṃ paramapuruṣeṇa pravartitam idaṃ cakram annād bhūtaśabdanirdiṣṭāni sajīvāni śarīrāṇi, paryjanyād annam, yajñāt parjanyaḥ, yajñaś ca kartṛvyāpārarūpāt karmaṇaḥ, karma ca sajīvāc charīrāt, sajīvaṃ śarīraṃ punar apy annād ity anyonyakāryakāraṇabhāvena cakravat parivartamānam iha sādhane vartamāno yaḥ karmayogādhikārī jñānayogādhikārī vā nānuvartayati na pravartayati, yajñaśiṣṭena dehadhāraṇam akurvan so ‚ghāyur bhavati / aghārambhāyaiva yasyāyuḥ, aghapariṇataṃ vā, ubhayarūpaṃ vā so ‚ghāyuḥ / ata evendriyārāmo bhavati, nātmārāmaḥ; indriyāṇy evāsyodyānāni bhavanti; ayajñaśiṣṭavardhitadehamanastvenodriktarajastamaskaḥ ātmāvalokanavimukhatayā viṣayabhogaikaratir bhavati / ato jñānayogādau yatamāno ‚pi niṣphalaprayatnatayā moghaṃ pārtha sa jīvati

 

Śrīdhara


yasmād evaṃ parameśvareṇaiva bhūtānāṃ puruṣārtha-siddhaye karmādi-cakraṃ pravartitaṃ tasmāt tad akurvato vṛthaiva jīvitam ity āha evam iti | parameśvara-vākya-bhūtād vedākhyād brahmaṇaḥ puruṣāṇāṃ karmaṇi pravṛttiḥ | tataḥ karma-niṣpattiḥ | tataḥ parjanyaḥ | tato ‚nnam | tato bhūtāni | bhūtānāṃ punas tathaiva karma-pravṛttir iti | evaṃ pravartitaṃ cakraṃ yo nānuvartayati nānutiṣṭhati so ‚ghāyuḥ | aghaṃ pāpa-rūpam āyur yasya saḥ | yata indriyair viṣayeṣv evāramati, na tu īśvarārādhanārthe karmaṇi | ato moghaṃ vyarthaṃ sa jīvati

 

Madhusūdana


bhavaty evaṃ tataḥ kiṃ phalitam ity āha evam iti | parameśvarāt sarvāvabhāsaka-nitya-nirdoṣa-vedāvirbhāvaḥ | tataḥ karma-parijñānaṃ tato ‚nuṣṭhānād dharmotpādaḥ | tataḥ parjanyas tato ‚nnaṃ tato bhūtāni punas tathaiva bhūtānāṃ karma-pravṛttir ity evaṃ parameśvareṇa pravartitaṃ cakraṃ sarva-jagan-nirvāhakaṃ yo nānuvartayati nānutiṣṭhati so ‚ghāyuḥ pāpa-jīvano moghaṃ vyartham eva jīvati he pārtha tasya jīvanān maraṇam eva varaṃ janmāntare dharmānuṣṭhāna-sambhavād ity arthaḥ | tathā ca śrutiḥ – atho ayaṃ vā ātmā sarveṣāṃ bhūtānāṃ lokaḥ sa yaj juhoti yad yajate tena devānāṃ loko ‚tha yad anubrūte tena ṛṣīṇām atha yat-pitṛbhyo nipṛṇāti yat prajām icchate tena pitṝṇām atha yan manuṣyān vāsayate yad ebhyo ‚śanaṃ dadāti tena manuṣyāṇām atha yat paśubhyas tṛṇodakaṃ vindati tena paśūnāṃ yad asya gṛheṣu śvāpadā vayāṃsyāpipīlikābhya upajīvanti tena teṣāṃ lokaḥ [BAU 1.4.16] iti |

brahma-vidaṃ vyāvartayati indriyārāma iti | yata indriyair viṣayeṣv āramati ataḥ karmādhikārī saṃs tad-akaraṇāt pāpam evācinvan vyartham eva jīvatīty abhiprāyaḥ

 

Viśvanātha


etad-anuṣṭhāne pratyavāyam āha evam iti | cakraṃ pūrva-paścād-bhāgena pravartitam | yajñān parjanyaḥ | parjanyād annam | annāt puruṣaḥ | puruṣāt punar yajñaḥ | yajñāt parjanya ity evaṃ cakraṃ yo nānuvartayati yajñānuṣṭhānena na parivartayati, sa aghāyuḥ pāpa-vyāptāyuḥ | ko narake na maṅkṣyatīti bhāvaḥ

 

Baladeva


yajñākaraṇe doṣam āhaivam iti | parasmād brahmaṇo vedāvirbhāvas tasmād brahma-pratibodhakāt yajñas tataḥ parjanyas tato ‚nnaṃ tato bhūtāni punas tathaiva bhūtānāṃ karma-pravṛttir ity evaṃ nikhila-jagan-nirvāhakaṃ pareśena prajāpatinā pravartitaṃ cakraṃ yo nānuvartayati sa janaḥ pareśa-vimukho ‚ghāyuḥ pāpa-jīvano moghaṃ vyartham eva jīvati | he pārtha yad asāv indriyair viṣayeṣv eva ramate na tu para-brahmābhimate yajñe tac-cheṣāśane ca

 
 

BhG 3.17

yas tv ātma-ratir eva syād ātma-tṛptaś ca mānavaḥ
ātmany eva ca saṃtuṣṭas tasya kāryaṃ na vidyate

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syntax


yaḥ (he who) tu (but) mānavaḥ (a man) ātma-ratiḥ eva (whose delight is in the self only), ātma-tṛptaḥ ca (and satisfied by the self), ātmani eva ca (and in the self only) santuṣṭaḥ (completely satisfied) syād (it would be),
tasya (his) kāryaṁ (duty) na vidyate (it does not exist).

 

grammar

yaḥ yat sn. 1n.1 m.he who;
tu av.but, then, or, and;
ātma-ratiḥ ātma-rati 1n.1 m.; BV: yasyātmani ratir asti saḥ whose delight is in the self (from: ātman – self; ram – to play, to rejoice, rati – pleasure, delight);
eva av.certainly, just, merely;
syāt as (to be) Pot. P 1v.1it would be;
ātma-tṛptaḥ ātma-tṛpta 1n.1 m.; [TP]: ātmanā / ātmani tṛpta iti satisfied by the self / satisfied in the self (from: ātman – self; tṛp – to be satisfied, [PP] tṛpta – satisfied);
ca av.and;
mānavaḥ mānava 1n.1 m.a man (from: man – to think, manu – a man, a person);
ātmani ātman 7n.1 m.in the self;
eva av.certainly, just, merely;
ca av.and;
saṁtuṣṭaḥ saṁtuṣṭa (sam-tuṣ – to rejoice) [PP] 1n.1 m.completely satisfied;
tasya tat sn. 6n.1 m.his;
kāryam kārya (kṛ to do) PF 1n.1 n.to be done, work, duty, especially religious one;
na av.not;
vidyate vid (to be, to exist) Praes. Ā 1v.1it exists;

 

textual variants


yas tv ātma-ratiryaścātma-ratir (and he whose delight is in the self);
ātmany eva ca → ātmanaiva ca (and by the self only);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

Karma-Yoga is not meant for the Self-knower.
Now, the Lord Himself supposes Arjuna to ask the following question: Is the wheel, thus set in motion, to be followed by all, or by him only who has not yet attained to devotion in the path of knowledge which the Sankhyas or Self-knowers tread and which is attainable by the ignorant by means of devotion in the path of action already described? In answer to this question, or with a view to afford, of his own accord, a clear understanding of the teaching of the śastra, He proceeds to show that what is intended to be taught in the Gita-śastra is the same truth that is embodied in the following passage of the śruti:

evaṃ sthite kim evaṃ pravartitaṃ caktraṃ sarveṇānuvartanīyaṃ āho-svit pūrvokta-karma-yogānuṣṭhānopāya-prāpyām anātma-vidā jñāna-yogenaiva niṣṭhām ātma-vidbhiḥ sāṃkhyair anuṣṭheyām aprāptenaiva? ity evam artham arjunasya praśnam āśaṅkaya svayam eva vā śāstrārthasya viveka-pratipatty-artham

The brahmaṇas (the devotees of the Brahman, the Self), knowing this, the Self, and free from illusory knowledge, shake off all desires of progeny, &c., cherished, of necessity, by those who are still subject to illusion; and they lead a mendicant life for the barest necessaries of life. They have nothing else to do than resort to devotion to Self-knowledge.” (Bri. Up. 3-5-1).

etaṃ vai tam ātmānaṃ viditvā nivṛtta-mithyā-jñānāḥ santo brāhmaṇā mithyā-jñānavadbhyo ’vaśyaṃ kartavyebhyaḥ putraiṣaṇādibhyo vyutthāyātha bhikṣā-caryaṃ śarīra-sthiti-mātra-prayuktaṃ caranti | na teṣām ātma-jñāna-niṣṭhā-vyatirekeṇānyat kāryam asti (Bṛh-up 3.5.1)
ity evaṃ śruty-artham iha gītā-śāstre pratipipādayiṣitam āviṣkurvann āha bhagavān –

That man, verily, who rejoices only in the Self, who is satisfied with the Self,
who is content in the Self alone, – for him there is nothing to do
.

yas tv ātma-ratir eva syād ātma-tṛptaś ca mānavaḥ |
ātmany eva ca saṃtuṣṭas tasya kāryaṃ na vidyate ||3.17||

But that man – a samnyasin, the Sankhya, one devoted to Self-knowledge – whose joy is in the Self, not in the objects of the senses; who is satisfied only with the Self, not with food-essence, &c.; who is contented in the Self;

yas tu sāṃkhya ātma-jñāna-niṣṭha ātma-ratiḥ ātmany eva ratir na viṣayeṣu yasya sa ātma-ratir eva syād bhaved ātma-tṛptaś tmanaiva tṛpto nānna-rasādinā sa mānavo manuṣyaḥ saṃnyāsī ātmany eva ca santuṣṭaḥ |

– all others derive contentment from possession of external things, whereas, disregarding these, he is content in the Self only and has no desire for anything; – for such a man, for the man who knows the Self, there is nothing to do.

santoṣo hi bāhyārtha-lābhe sarvasya bhavati, tam anapekṣya ātmany eva ca santuṣṭaḥ sarvato vīta-tṛṣṇa ity etat | ya īdṛśaḥ ātma-vit tasya kāryaṃ karaṇīyaṃ na vidyate nāstīty arthaḥ ||3.17||

 

Rāmānuja


commentary under the verse BhG 3.18

 

Śrīdhara


tad evaṃ na karmaṇām ārambhād ity-ādinā ajñasya antaḥ-karaṇa-śuddhy-arthaṃ karma-yogam uktvā jñāninaḥ karmānupayogam āha yas tv iti dvābhyām | ātmany eva ratiḥ prītir yasya saḥ | tataś cātmany eva tṛptaḥ svānandānubhavena nirvṛtaḥ | ataeva ātmany eva santuṣṭo bhogāpekṣā-rahito yas tasya kartavyaṃ karma nāstīti

 

Madhusūdana


yas tv indriyārāmo na bhavati paramārtha-darśī sa evaṃ jagac-cakra-prabhṛti-hetu-bhūtaṃ karmānanutiṣṭhann api na pratyavaiti kṛtakṛtyatvād ity āha dvābhyām yas tv iti | indriyārāmo hi srak-candana-vanitādiṣu ratim anubhavati manojñānna-pānādiṣu tṛptiṃ paśu-putra-hiraṇyādi-lābhena rogādy-abhāvena ca tuṣṭim | ukta-viṣayābhāve rāgiṇām araty-atṛpty-atuṣṭi-darśanād rati-tṛpti-tuṣṭyau mano-vṛtti-viśeṣāḥ sākṣi-siddhāḥ | labdha-paramātmānanas tu dvaita-darśanābhāvād atiphalgutvāc ca viṣaya-sukhaṃ na kāmayata ity uktaṃ yāvān artha udapāne ity atra | ato ‚nātma-viṣayaka-rati-tṛpti-tuṣṭy-abhāvād ātmānaṃ paramānandam advayaṃ sākṣātkurvann upacārād evam ucyate – ātma-ratir ātma-tṛpta ātma-santuṣṭa iti | tathā ca śrutiḥ – ātma-krīḍa ātma-ratiḥ kriyāvān eva brahma-vidāṃ variṣṭhaḥ iti | ātma-tṛptaś ceti cakāra eva-kārānukarṣaṇārthaḥ | mānava iti yaḥ kaścid api manuṣya evambhūtaḥ sa eva kṛtakṛtyo na tu brāhmaṇatvādi-prakarṣeṇeti kathayitum | ātmany eva ca santuṣṭa ity atra ca-kāraḥ samuccayārthaḥ | ya evambhūtasyādhikāra-hetv-abhāvāt kim api kāryaṃ vaidikaṃ laukikaṃ vā na vidyate

 

Viśvanātha


tad evaṃ niṣkāmatvāsāmarthye sa-kāmo ‚pi karma kuryād evety uktam | yas tu śuddhāntaḥ-karaṇatvāt jñāna-bhūmikām ārūḍhaḥ sa tu nityaṃ kāmyaṃ ca na karotīty āha yas tv iti dvābhyām | ātma-ratir ātmārāmo yata ātma-tṛptaḥ ātmānandānubhavena nirvṛtaḥ | na svātmani nirvṛto bahir-viṣaya-bhoge ‚pi kiñcin nirvṛto bhavatu | atra naivety āhaātmany eva na tu bahir-viṣaya-bhoge tasya kāryaṃ kartavyatvena karma nāsti

 

Baladeva


yas tu mad-uktena niṣkāma-karmaṇā mad-upāsanena ca vimṛṣṭe citta-darpaṇe sañjātena dharma-bhūta-jñānenātmānam adarśat tasya na kiñcit karma kartavyam ity āha yas tv iti dvābhyām | ātmany apahata-pāpmatvādi-guṇāṣṭaka-viśiṣṭe sva-svarūpe avalokite ratir yasya saḥ | ātmanā sva-prakāśānandenāvalokitena tṛpto na tv anna-pānādinā | ātmany eva ca tādṛśe santuṣṭo na tu nṛtya-gītādau | tasyaivambhūtasya tad-avalokānāya kiñcit karma kartavyaṃ na vidyate sarvadāvalokitātma-svarūpatvāt

 
 

BhG 3.18

naiva tasya kṛtenārtho nākṛteneha kaś-cana
na cāsya sarva-bhūteṣu kaś-cid artha-vyapāśrayaḥ

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syntax


iha (here) kṛtena (by work) tasya (his) [ātma-rateḥ] (whose delight is in the self) arthaḥ (purpose) na eva [asti] (certainly there is not),
akṛtena (by no work) kaś-cana (any) [arthaḥ] (purpose) na [asti] (there is not),
sarva-bhūteṣu ca (and among all beings) asya (his) kaś-cit (any) artha-vyapāśrayaḥ (shelter in purpose) na [asti] (there is not).

 

grammar

na av.not;
eva av.certainly, just, merely;
tasya tat sn. 6n.1 m.his;
kṛtena kṛta (kṛ – to do) [PP] 3n.1 n.by what is done, by work;
arthaḥ artha 1n.1 m.purpose, advantage, concern, object, wealth (from: arth – to strive to obtain, to desire, to request);
na av.not;
akṛtena a-kṛta (kṛ – to do) [PP] 3n.1 n.by what is not done, by no work;
iha av.here (often meaning: in this world);
kaś-cana kim-cana sn. 1n.1 m.any (from: kim – what?; -cana – indefinitive particle);
na av.not;
ca av.and;
asya idam sn. 6n.1 n.his;
sarva-bhūteṣu sarva-bhūta 7n.3 m.; sarveṣu bhūteṣu itiamong all beings (from: sarva – all, whole; bhū – to be, [PP] bhūta – been, real, world);
kaś-cit kim-cit sn. 1n.1 m.any (from: kim – what?; -cit – indefinitive particle);
artha-vyapāśrayaḥ artha-vyapāśraya 1n.1 m.; arthe vyapāśrayaḥ itishelter in the purpose (from: arth – to strive to obtain, to desire, to request, artha – purpose, advantage, concern, object, wealth; vi-apa-ā-śri – to go to for refuge, to have recourse to, vyapāśraya – place of refuge, shelter);

 

textual variants

kaś-cana kiṃ-cana (in no way);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

Moreover,

kiṃ ca —

For him, there is here no interest whatever in what is done or what is not done.
Nor is there in all beings any one he should resort to for any object.

naiva tasya kṛtenārtho nākṛteneha kaścana |
na cāsya sarva-bhūteṣu kaścid artha-vyapāśrayaḥ ||3.18||

For the man thus rejoicing in the Self, no purpose is served by action.

naiva tasya paramātma-rateḥ kṛtena karmaṇārthaḥ prayojanam asti |

– Does, then, any evil called sin (pratyavaya) arise from inaction ? – No evil whatever, either by way of incurring sin, or by way of losing the Self, arises in this world from inaction.

astu tarhy akṛtenākaraṇena pratyavāyākhyo ’narthaḥ | nākṛteneha loke kaścana kaścid api pratyavāya-prāpti-rūpaḥ ātma-hāni-lakṣaṇo vā naivāsti |

Nor is there, in all beings from Brahma (Prajapati) down to the sthavara or immovable objects, any whose support he has to gain by action.

na cāsya sarva-bhūteṣu brahmādi-sthāvarānteṣu bhūteṣu kaścid artha-vyapāśrayaḥ |

He has no object whatever to gain, for which he has to depend upon any particular being: if he were to have any object in view, then he would have to exert himself to gain that object.

prayojana-nimitta-kriyā-sādhyo vyapāśrayaḥ | vyapāśrayaṇam ālambanaṃ kaṃcit bhūta-viśeṣam āśritya na sādhyaḥ kaścid artho ’sti, yena tad-arthā kriyā anuṣṭheyā syāt |

Arjuna qualified for Karma yoga. You have not attained to the right knowledge, which corresponds to the all-spreading flood of water (2.46).

na tvam etasmin sarvataḥ saṃplutodaka-sthānīye (BhG 2.46) samyag-darśane vartase ||3.18||

 

Rāmānuja


asādhanāyattātmadarśanasya muktasyeva mahāyajñādivarṇāśramocitakarmānārambha ity āha

yas tu jñānayogakarmayogasādhananirapekṣaḥ svata evātmaratiḥ ātmābhimukhaḥ, ātmanaiva tṛptaḥ nānnapānādibhir ātmavyatiriktaiḥ, ātmany eva ca santuṣṭaḥ, nodyānasrakcandanagītavāditranṛttādau, dhāraṇapoṣaṇabhogyādikaṃ sarvam atmaiva yasya, tasyātmadarśanāya kartavyaṃ na vidyate, svata eva sarvadā dṛṣṭātmasvarūpatvāt / ata eva tasyātmadarśanāya kṛtena tatsādhanena nārthaḥ na kiṃcit prayojanam; akṛtenātmadarśanasādhanena na kaścid anarthaḥ; asādhanāyattātmadarśanatvāt / svata evātmavyatiriktasakalācidvastuvimukhasyāsya sarveṣu prakṛtipariṇāmaviśeṣeṣv ākāśādiṣu sakāryeṣu na kaścit prayojanatayā sādhanatayā vā vyapāśrayaḥ; yatas tadvimukhīkaraṇāya sādhanārambhaḥ; sa hi mukta eva

 

Śrīdhara


tatra hetum āha naiveti | kṛtena karmaṇā tasya arthaḥ puṇyaṃ naivāsti | na cākṛtena kaścana ko ‚pi pratyavāyo ‚sti | nirahaṅkāratvena vidhi-niṣedhātītatvāt | tathāpi tasmāt tad eṣāṃ devānāṃ na priyaṃ yad etan manuṣā vidur iti śrtuer mokṣe deva-kṛta-vighna-sambhavāt tat-parihārārthaṃ karmabhir devāḥ sevyā ity āśaṅkyoktaṃ sarva-bhūteṣu brahmādi-sthāvarānteṣu kaścid artha-vyapāśrayaḥ āśraya eva vyapāśrayaḥ | artho mokṣa āśrayaṇīyo ‚sya nāstīty arthaḥ | vighnābhāvasya śrutyaivoktatvāt | tathā ca śrutiḥ — tasya ha na devāś ca nābhūtyā īśate ātmā hy eṣāṃ sa bhavati iti śravaṇāt | hanety avyayam apy-arthe | devā api tasyātma-tattva-jñasya abhūtyai brahma-bhāva-pratibandhāya neśate na śaknuvantīti śruter arthaḥ | deva-kṛtās tu vighnāḥ samyag-jñānotpatteḥ prāg eva | yad etad brahma manuṣyā vidus tad eṣāṃ devānāṃ na priyam iti brahma-jñānasyaiva apriyatvoktyā tatraiva vighna-kartṛtvasya sūcitatvāt

 

Madhusūdana


nanv ātmavido ‚pi abhyudayārthaṃ niḥśreyasārthaṃ pratyavāya-parihārārthaṃ vā karma syād ity ata āha naiveti | tasyātma-rateḥ kṛtena karmaṇābhyudaya-lakṣaṇo niḥśreyasa-lakṣaṇo vārthaṃ prayojanaṃ naivāsti tasya svargādy-abhyudayānarthitvāt | niḥśreyasasya ca karmāsādhyatvāt | tathā ca śrutiḥ – parīkṣya lokān karma-cittān brāhmaṇo nirvedam āyān nāsty akṛtaḥ kṛtena iti | akṛto nityo mokṣaḥ kṛtena karmaṇā nāstīty arthaḥ | jñāna-sādhyasyāpi vyāvṛttir eva-kāreṇa sūcitā | ātma-rūpasya hi niḥśreyasya nitya-prāptasyājñāna-mātram aprāptiḥ | tac ca tattva-jñāna-mātrāpanodyam | tasmiṃs tattva-jñānenāpanunne tasyātma-vido na kiṃcit karma-sādhyaṃ jñāna-sādhyaṃ vā prayojanam astīty arthaḥ |

evaṃbhūtenāpi pratyavāya-parihārārthaṃ karmāṇy anuṣṭheyāny evety ata āha nākṛteneti | bhāve niṣṭhā | nitya-karmākaraṇeneha loke garhitatva-rūpaḥ pratyavāya-prāpti-rūpo vā kaścanārtho nāsti | sarvatropapattim āhottarārdhena | co hetau | yasmād asyātma-vidaḥ sarva-bhūteṣu brahmādi-sthāvarānteṣu ko ‚pi artha-vyapāśrayaḥ prayojana-sambandho nāsti | kaṃcid bhūta-viśeṣam āśritya ko ‚pi kriyā-sādhyo ‚rtho nāstīti vākyārthaḥ | ato ‚sya kṛtākṛte niṣprayojanaṃ naiva kṛtākṛte tapataḥ iti śruteḥ | tasya ha na devāś canābhūtyā īśata ātmā hy eṣāṃ na bhavati iti śruter devā api tasya mokṣābhavanāya na samarthā ity ukter na vighnābhāvārtham api devārādhana-rūpa-karmānuṣṭhānam ity abhiprāyaḥ |

etādṛśo brahma-vid-bhūmikā-saptaka-bhedena nirūpito vasiṣṭhena –

jñāna-bhūmiḥ śubhecchākhyā prathamā parikīrtitā |
vicāraṇā dvitīyā syāt tṛtīyā tanu-mānasā ||
sattvāpattiś caturthī syāt tato ‚saṃsakti-nāsikā |
padārthābhāvanī ṣaṣṭhī saptamī turyagā smṛtā || iti |

tatra nityānitya-vastu-vivekādi-puraḥsarā phala-paryavasāyinī mokṣecchā prathamā | tato gurum upasṛtya vedānta-vākya-vicāraḥ śravaṇa-mananātmako dvitīyā | tato nididhyāsanābhyāsena manasa ekāgratayā sūkṣma-vastu-grahaṇa-yogyatvaṃ tṛtīyā | etad bhūmikā-trayaṃ sādhana-rūpaṃ jāgrad-avasthocyate yogibhiḥ | bhedena jagato bhānāt | tad uktam –

bhūmikā-tritayaḥ tv etad rāma jāgrad iti sthitam |
yathāvad bheda-buddhyedaṃ jagaj jāgrati dṛśyate || iti |

tato vedānta-vākyān nirvikalpako brahmātmaikya-sākṣātkāraś caturthī bhūmikā phala-rūpā sattvāpattiḥ svapnāvasthocyate | sarvasyāpi jagato mithyātvena sphuraṇāt | tad uktam –

advaite sthairyam āyāte dvaite praśamam āgate |
paśyanti svapnaval lokaṃ caturthīṃ bhūmikām itāḥ || iti |

so ‚yaṃ caturtha-bhūmiṃ prāpto yogī brahmavid ity ucyate | pañcamī-ṣaṣṭhī-saptamyas tu bhūmikā jīvanmukter evāvāntara-bhedāḥ | tatra savikalpaka-samādhy-abhyāsena niruddhe manasi yā nirvikalpaka-samādhy-avasthā sāsaṃsaktir iti suṣuptir iti cocyate | tataḥ svayam eva vyutthānāt | so ‚yaṃ yogī brahma-vid-varaḥ | tatas tad-abhyāsa-paripākeṇa cira-kālāvasthāyinī sā padārthābhāvanīti gāḍha-suṣuptir iti cocyate | tataḥ svayam anusthitasya yoginaḥ para-prayatnenaiva vyutthānāt | so ‚yaṃ brahmavid varīyān | uktaṃ hi –

pañcamīṃ bhūmikām etya suṣupti-padanāmikām |
ṣaṣṭhīṃ gāḍha-suṣupty-ākhyāṃ kramāt patati bhūmikām || iti |

yasyās tu samādhy-avasthāyā na svato na vā parato vyutthito bhavati sarvathā bheda-darśanābhāvāt | kintu sarvadā tanmaya eva sva-prayatnam antareṇaiva parameśvara-prerita-prāṇa-vāyu-vaśād anyair nirvāhyamāṇa-daihika-vyavahāraḥ paripūrṇa-paramānanda-ghana eva sarvatas tiṣṭhati | sā saptamī turīyāvasthā | tāṃ prāpto brahmavid variṣṭha ity ucyate | uktaṃ hi –

ṣaṣṭhyāṃ bhūmām asau sthitvā saptamīṃ bhūmikām āpnuyāt |
kiṃcid evaiṣa sampannas tv athavaiṣa na kiṃcana ||
videha-muktatā tūktā saptamī yoga-bhūmikā |
agamyā vacasāṃ śāntā sā sīmā yoga-bhūmiṣu || iti |

yām adhikṛtya śrīmad-bhāgavate smaryate –

dehaṃ ca naśvaram avasthitam utthitaṃ vā
siddho na paśyati yato ‚dhyagamat svarūpam |
daivād apetam atha daiva-vaśād upetaṃ
vāso yathā parikṛtaṃ madirā-madāndhaḥ ||

deho ‚pi daiva-vaśa-gaḥ khalu karma yāvat
svārambhakaṃ pratisamīkṣata eva sāsuḥ |
taṃ sa-prapañcam adhirūṭha-samādhi-yogaḥ
svāpnaṃ punar na bhajate pratibuddha-vastuḥ ||[BhP 11.13.36-37]

śrutiś ca – tad yathā ‚hinirlvyayanī valmīke mṛtā pratyastā śayītaivam evedaṃ śarīraṃ śete ‚thāyam aśarīro ‚mṛtaḥ prāṇo brahmaiva teja eva iti |

tatrāyaṃ saṅgrahaḥ –

caturthī bhūmikā jñānaṃ tisraḥ syuḥ sādhanaṃ purā |
jīvan-mukter avasthāstu parās tisraḥ prakīrtitāḥ ||

atra prathama-bhūmi-trayam ārūḍho ‚jño ‚pi na karmādhikārī kiṃ punas tattva-jñānī tad-viśiṣṭo jīvan-mukto vety abhiprāyaḥ

 

Viśvanātha


kṛtenānuṣṭhitena karmaṇā nārtho na phalam | akṛtena kañcana pratavāyo ‚pi na, yasmād asya sarva-bhūteṣu brahmāṇḍa-sthāvarādiṣu madhye kaścid apy arthāya sva-prayojanārthaṃ vyapāśraya āśrayaṇīyo na bhavati | purāṇādiṣu vyapāśraya-śabdena tathaivocyate, yathā –

vāsudeve bhagavati bhaktim udvahatāṃ nṛṇām |
jñāna-vairāgya-vīryāṇāṃ neha kaścid vyapāśrayaḥ || [BhP 6.17.31] iti |

tathā-yad-upāśrayāśrayāḥ śuddhyanti [BhP 2.7.46] iti | saṃsthā-hetur upāśrayaḥ ity ādāv apy apety upasargasyānadhikārthaṃ dṛṣṭam

 

Baladeva


kṛtena tad-avalokanāyānuṣṭhitena karmaṇārthaḥ phalaṃ naivāsti | akṛtena tad-avalokanāsādhanena karmaṇā kaścanānarthaś ca tad-avalokana-kṣati-lakṣaṇa iha na bhavati | svābhāvikātmāvalokanāt | na tv īdṛśo ‚pi deva-kṛtād vighnād bibhyat tat-toṣāya tat-pūjātmakaṃ karma kuryāt | śrutiś ca devān jñāna-dviṣaḥ prāha-tasmāt tad eṣāṃ devānāṃ na priyaṃ yad etan manuṣā vidur iti | tatrāha na ceti | asya labdhātmāvalokasya viduṣaḥ sarva-bhūteṣu deveṣu mānaveṣu ca madhye kaścid apy arthāyātma-ratir nairvighnāya vyapāśrayaḥ karmabhiḥ sevyo na bhavati | jñānodayāt pūrvam eva deva-kṛtā vighnāḥ tenātma-ratau satyāṃ tu na tat-kṛtās te tat-prabhāveṇa sambhavanti | tasya ha na devāś ca nābhūtyā īśate ātmā hy eṣāṃ sambhavati iti śravaṇāt | hanety apy-arthe nipātaḥ | devā api tasyātmānubhavino |bhūtyai ātma-rati-kṣataye neśate | hi yasmād eṣāṃ sa ātmā tadvat preṣṭho bhavatīty arthaḥ

 
 

BhG 3.19

tasmād asaktaḥ satataṃ kāryaṃ karma samācara
asakto hy ācaran karma param āpnoti pūruṣaḥ

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tasmāt (therefore) asaktaḥ (unattached) [san] (being) satatam (constantly) kāryam (what is to be done) karma (activity) samācara (perform).
asaktaḥ hi (indeed unattached) karma (activity) ācaran (while performing) pūruṣaḥ (a person) param (the supreme) āpnoti (he obtains).

 

grammar

tasmāt av.therefore (from: tat sn. 5n.1 m. – from that);
asaktaḥ a-sakta (sañj – to attach, to stick, to embrace) [PP] 1n.1 m.unattached;
satatam av.constantly (from: sa-tata – constant, uninterrupted);
kāryam kārya (kṛ to do) PF 2n.1 n.to be done, work, duty, especially religious one;
karma karman 1n.1 n.activity (from: kṛ – to do);
samācara sam-ā-car (to behave, to perform) Imperat. P 2v.1you must perform;
asaktaḥ a-sakta (sañj – to attach, to stick, to embrace) [PP] 1n.1 m.unattached;
hi av.because, just, indeed, surely;
ācaran ācarant (ā-car – to behave, to perform) PPr 1n.1 m.[while] performing;
karma karman 2n.1 n.activity (from: kṛ – to do);
param para 2n.1 n.beyond, ancient, final, the best, the supreme;
āpnoti āp (to obtain) Praes. P 1v.1he obtains, he achieves;
pūruṣaḥ pūruṣa 1n.1 m.a person (from: pur – to precede, to lead or pṝ – to fill, to nourish, puru – abundance, pūru – people, puruṣa – a person);

 

textual variants


samācara → samācaraḥ / samācaret (performing / he would perform);
param āpnoti paraṁ prāpnoti (the supreme he obtains);
pūruṣaḥ → pūruṣam (Pūruṣa);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

Wherefore:

yataḥ evaṃ —

Therefore, without attachment, constantly perform the action which should be done;
for, performing action without attachment, man reaches the Supreme.

tasmād asaktaḥ satataṃ kāryaṃ karma samācara |
asakto hy ācaran karma param āpnoti pūruṣaḥ ||3.19||

Performing action, without attachment, for the sake of the Īśvara, man attains moksha, through attaining purity of mind (sattva-śuddhi).

tasmāt asaktaḥ saṅgavarjitaḥ satataṃ sarvadā kāryaṃ kartavyaṃ nityaṃ karma samācara nirvartaya |
asakto hi yasmāt samācaran īśvarārthaṃ karma kurvan paraṃ mokṣam āpnoti pūruṣaḥ sattva-śuddhi-dvāreṇa ity arthaḥ ||3.19||

 

Rāmānuja


yasmād asādhanāyattātmadarśanasyaiva sādhanāpravṛttiḥ, yasmāc ca sādhane pravṛttasyāpi suśakatvāc ca apramādatvād antargatātmayāthātmyānusandhānatvāc ca jñānayogino ‚pi mātrayā karmānuvṛttyapekṣatvāc ca karmayoga evātmadarśananirvṛttau śreyān, tasmād asaṅgapūrvakaṃ kāryam ity eva satataṃ yāvadātmaprāpti karmaiva samācara / asaktaḥ, kāryam iti vakṣyamāṇākartṛtvānusandhānapūrvakaṃ ca karmācaran puruṣaḥ karmayogenaiva param āpnoti ātmānaṃ prāpnotītyarthaḥ

 

Śrīdhara


yasmād evambhūtasya jñānina eva karmānupayogo nānyasya tasmāt tvaṃ karma kurv ity āha tasmād iti | asaktaḥ phala-saṅga-rahitaḥ san kāryam avaśya-kartavyatayā vihitaṃ nityaṃ naimittikaṃ karma samyag ācara | hi yasmād asaktaḥ karmācaran puruṣaḥ paraṃ mokṣaṃ citta-śuddhi-jñāna-dvārā prāpnoti

 

Madhusūdana


yasmān na tvam evaṃbhūto jñānī kintu karmādhikṛta eva mumukṣuḥ | asaktaḥ phala-kāmanā-rahitaḥ satataṃ sarvadā na tu kadācit kāryam avaśya-kartavyaṃ yāvaj-jīvādi-śruti-coditaṃ tam etaṃ vedānuvacanena brāhmaṇā vividiṣanti yajñena dānena tapasānāśakena iti śrutyā jñāne viniyuktaṃ karma nitya-naimittika-lakṣaṇaṃ samyag ācara yathā-śāstraṃ nirvartaya | asakto hi yasmād ācarann īśvarārthaṃ karma kurvan sattva-śuddhi-jñāna-prāpti-dvāreṇa paraṃ mokṣam āpnoti pūruṣaḥ puruṣaḥ sa eva sat-puruṣo nānya ity abhiprāyaḥ

 

Viśvanātha


tasmāt tava jñāna-bhūmikārohaṇe nāsti yogyatā | kāmya-karmaṇi tu sad-vivekavatas tava naivādhikāraḥ | tasmāt niṣkāma-karmaiva kurv ity āha tasmād iti | kāryam avaśya-kartavyatvena vihitaṃ paraṃ mokṣam

 

Baladeva


yasmāl labdhātmāvalokanasyaiva karmānupayogas tasmād etādṛktvaṃ kāryaṃ kartavyatvena vihitaṃ karma samācara | asaktaḥ phalecchā-śūnyaḥ san | paraṃ dehādi-bhinnam ātmānam āpnoty avalokate yāthātmyena

 
 

BhG 3.20

karmaṇaiva hi saṃsiddhim āsthitā janakādayaḥ
loka-saṃgraham evāpi saṃpaśyan kartum arhasi

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janakādayaḥ (Janaka and others) karmaṇā eva hi (merely by activity) saṁsiddhim (perfection) āsthitāḥ (those who attained).
[tvaṁ] (you) loka-saṅgraham eva api (even the welfare of the world) saṁpaśyan (considering) [karma] (activity) kartum (to do) arhasi (you should).

 

grammar

karmaṇā karman 3n.1 n.by activity (from: kṛ – to do);
eva av.certainly, just, merely;
hi av.because, just, indeed, surely;
saṁsiddhim sam-siddhi 2n.1 f.accomplishment, fulfilment, perfection, success (from: sidh – to succeed, to become perfect);
āsthitāḥ āsthita (ā-sthā – to resort, to go towards) [PP] 1n.3 m.those who resorted to, who attained;
janakādayaḥ janaka-ādi 1n.3 m.Janaka and others (from: jan – to be born, to produce, jana – creature, race, janaka – progenitor, the king of Videha, Sītā’s father; ādi – suffix: beginning with, etc.);
loka-saṁgraham loka-saṁgraha 2n.1 m.; lokānāṁ saṅgraham itiprotection of the world (from: loka – world; sam-grah – to hold together, to support, saṁ-graha – holding together, collection, protection);
eva av.certainly, just, merely;
api av.although, moreover, besides, even;
saṁpaśyan saṁpaśyant (sam-dṛś – to see completely, to consider) PPr 1n.1 m.[while] considering;
kartum kṛ (to do) [inf.] – to do;
arhasi arh (to deserve, to be able to) Praes. P 2v.1 you deserve;

 

textual variants


karmaṇaiva → karmaṇeva (as if by activity);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

The wise should set an example to the masses.
For the following reason also (shouldst thou perform action):

yasmāc ca —

By action only, indeed, did Janaka and others try to attain perfection.
Even with a view to the protection of the masses thou shouldst perform (action).

karmaṇaiva hi saṃsiddhim āsthitā janakādayaḥ |
loka-saṃgraham evāpi saṃpaśyan kartum arhasi ||3.20||

The wise kshatriyas of old, such as Janaka and Aśvapati tried by action alone to attain moksha (samsiddhi).

karmaṇaiva hi yasmāt pūrve kṣatriyāḥ vidvāṃsaḥ saṃsiddhiṃ mokṣaṃ gantum āsthitāḥ pravṛttāḥ | ke? janakādayaḥ janakāśvapati-prabhṛtayaḥ |

If they were persons possessed of right knowledge, then we should understand that, since they had been engaged in works they tried to reach moksha with action, i. e., without abandoning action, with a view to set an example to the world. If, on the other hand, such men as Janaka were persons who had not attained right knowledge, then, (we should understand), they tried to attain moksha through action which is the means of attaining purity of mind (sattva-suddhi).

yadi te prāpta-samyag-darśanāḥ, tataḥ loka-saṃgrahārthaṃ prārabdha-karmatvāt karmaṇā sahaivāsaṃnyasyaiva karma saṃsiddhim āsthitā ity arthaḥ | athāprāpta-samyag-adarśanāḥ janakādayaḥ, tadā karmaṇā sattva-śuddhi-sādhana-bhūtena krameṇa saṃsiddhim āsthitā iti vyākhyeyaḥ ślokaḥ |

If you think that obligatory works were performed by the ancients such as Janaka because they were ignorant, and that it does not follow from that fact alone that action should be performed by another who possesses right knowledge and has done all his duties, – even then, as subject to your prarabdha-karma (the karma which has led you to this birth as a kshatriya), and having regard also to the purpose of preventing the masses from resorting to a wrong path, you ought to perform action.

atha manyase pūrvair api janakādibhiḥ ajānadbhir eva kartavyaṃ karma kṛtam | tāvatā nāvaśyam anyena kartavyaṃ samyag-darśanavatā kṛtārtheneti | tathāpi prārabdha-karmāyattaḥ tvaṃ loka-saṃgraham evāpi lokasya unmārga-pravṛtti-nivāraṇaṃ loka-saṃgrahaḥ, tam evāpi prayojanaṃ saṃpaśyan kartum arhasi ||3.20||

 

Rāmānuja


commentary under the verse BhG 3.21

 

Śrīdhara


atra sadācāraṃ pramāṇayati karmaṇaiveti | karmaṇaiva śuddha-sattvāḥ santaḥ saṃsiddhiṃ samyag-jñānaṃ prāptā ity arthaḥ | yadyapi tvaṃ samyag-jñāninam evātmānaṃ manyase, tathāpi karmācaraṇaṃ bhadram evety āha loka-saṅgraham ity ādi | lokasya saṅgrahaṃ sva-dharme pravartanam | mayā karmaṇi kṛte janaḥ sarvo ‚pi kariṣyati | anyathā jñāni-dṛṣṭāntenājño nija-dharmaṃ nityaṃ karma tyajan patet | ity evaṃ loka-rakṣaṇam api tāvat prayojanaṃ saṃpaśyan kathaṃ kartum evārhasi | na tyaktum ity arthaḥ

 

Madhusūdana


nanu vividiṣor api jñāna-niṣṭhā-prāpty-arthaṃ śravaṇa-manana-nididhyāsanānuṣṭhānāya sarva-karma-tyāga-lakṣaṇaḥ saṃnyāso vihitaḥ | tathā ca na kevalaṃ jñānina eva karmānadhikāraḥ kintu jñānārthino ‚pi viraktasya | tathā ca mayāpi viraktena jñānārthinā karmāṇi heyāny evety arjunāśaṅkāṃ kṣatriyasya saṃnyāsānadhikāra-pratipādanenāpanudati bhagavān karmaṇaiveti |

janakādayo janakā-jāta-śatru-prabhṛtayaḥ śruti-smṛti-prasiddhāḥ kṣatriyā vidvāṃso ‚pi karmaṇaiva saha na tu karma-tyāgena sa saṃsiddhiṃ śravaṇādi-sādhyāṃ jñāna-niṣṭhām āsthitāḥ prāptāḥ | hi yasmād evaṃ tasmāt tvam api kṣatriyo vividiṣur vidvān vā karma kartum arhasīty anuṣaṅgaḥ | brāhmaṇaḥ putraiṣaṇāyāś ca vittaṣaṇāyāś ca lokaiṣaṇāyāś ca vyutthāyātha bhikṣācaryaṃ caranti iti saṃnyāsa-vidhāyake vākye brāhmaṇatvasya vivakṣitatvāt | svārājya-kāmo rājā rāja-sūyena yajeta ity atra kṣatriyatvāvat | catvāra āśramā brāhmaṇasya trayo rājan yasya dvau vaiśyasya iti ca smṛteḥ | purāṇe ‚pi –

mukhajānāmayaṃ dharmo yad viṣṇor liṅga-dhāraṇam |
bāhu-jātoru-jātānām nāyaṃ dharmaḥ praśasyate ||

iti kṣatriya-vaiśyayoḥ saṃnyāsābhāva uktaḥ | tasmād yuktam evoktaṃ bhagavatā karmaṇaiva hi saṃsiddhim āsthitā janakādayaḥ |

sarve rājāśritā dharmā rājā dharmasya dhārakaḥ ity ādi smṛter varṇāśrama-pravartakatvenāpi kṣatriyo ‚vaśyaṃ karma kuryād ity āha loketi | lokānāṃ sve sve dharme pravartanam unmārgān nivartanaṃ ca loka-saṅgrahas taṃ paśyann api-śabdāj janakādi-śiṣṭācāram api paśyan karma kartum arhasy evety anvayaḥ | kṣatriya-janma-prāpakeṇa karmaṇārabdha-śarīras tvaṃ vidvān api janakādivat prārabdha-karma-phalena loka-saṅgrahārthaṃ karma kartuṃ yogyo bhavasi na tu tyaktuṃ brāhmaṇa-janmālābhād ity abhiprāyaḥ | etādṛśa-bhagavad-abhiprāya-vidā bhagavatā bhāṣya-kṛtā brāhmaṇasyaiva saṃnyāso nānyasyeti nirṇītam | vārtika-kṛtā tu prauḍhi-vāda-mātreṇa kṣatriya-vaiśyayor api saṃnyāso ‚stīty uktam iti draṣṭavyam

 

Viśvanātha


atra sadācāraṃ pramāṇayati karmaṇeti | yadi vā tvam ātmānaṃ jñānā̆dhikāriṇaṃ manyase, tad api loke śikṣā grahaṇārthaṃ karmaiva kurv ity āha loketi

 

Baladeva


sadācāram atra pramāṇayati karmaṇaiveti | karmaṇaivopāyena viśuddha-cittāḥ santaḥ saṃsiddhiṃ svātmāvalokana-lakṣaṇām āsthitāḥ prāpuḥ | karmaṇaiveti viśeṣaṇa-sambandha eva-kāras tasyāyogaṃ vyavacchinnatti śaṅkha-pāṇḍura evetivat | tena śravaṇāder na vyudāsaḥ | karmaṇā yajñādinā sahaiva śravaṇādineti kecit |

nanu saniṣṭhasyātmāvalokane karmānuṣṭhānaṃ nāstīty uktam | mama pariniṣṭhitasyāvalokita-sva-parātmanaḥ karmopadeśaḥ kuta iti cet tatrāha loketi | satyaṃ tvam īdṛśa eva tathāpi loka-saṅgrahāya karma kurv iti arjune mayi karma kurvāṇe sarva-lokaḥ karma kariṣyati | itarathā mad-dṛṣṭāntenājño ‚pi lokaḥ karma tyajan patiṣyatīti loka-saṃrakṣaṇaṃ tat phalam

 
 

BhG 3.21

yad yad ācarati śreṣṭhas tat tad evetaro janaḥ
sa yat pramāṇaṃ kurute lokas tad anuvartate

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syntax


śreṣṭhaḥ (the best) yat yat (something) ācarati (he performs),
itaraḥ (the other) janaḥ (man) tat tat (that) eva [ācarati] (certainly he performs).
saḥ [śreṣṭhaḥ] (he the best) yat (that which) pramāṇam (standard) kurute (he does),
lokaḥ (world) tat (that) anuvartate (it follows).

 

grammar

yat yat yat sn. 2n.1 n.that which, something (distributive use);
ācarati ā-car (to behave, to perform) Praes. P 1v.1he performs;
śreṣṭhaḥ śreṣṭha 1n.1 m. the best, perfect (superlative of: śrī – śreyas, śreṣṭha);
tat tat tat sn. 2n.1 n.to and to, each respectively (distributive use);
eva av.certainly, just, merely;
itaraḥ i-tara sn. 1n.1 m.the other, the rest;
janaḥ jana 1n.1 m.man, people, creature, race (from: jan – to be born, to produce);
saḥ tat sn. 1n.1 m.he;
yat yat sn. 2n.1 n. that which;
pramāṇam pramāṇa 2n.1 n.measure, standard, principle (from: pra- – to measure, to make ready);
kurute kṛ (to do) Praes. Ā 1v.1he does;
lokaḥ loka 1n.1 m. world, people;
tat tat sn. 2n.1 n.that;
anuvartate anu-vṛt (to follow, to obey) Praes. Ā 1v.1it follows, it obeys;

 

textual variants


ācarati → ācarate (he performs);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

Who should secure the welfare of the world? And how? The answer follows:

loka-saṃgrahaḥ kim arthaṃ kartavya ity ucyate —

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

yad yad ācarati śreṣṭhas tat tad evetaro janaḥ |
sa yat pramāṇaṃ kurute lokas tad anuvartate ||3.21||

Whatever authority the chief among men follows, whether in relation to the spiritual or temporal matters, the same is regarded as the authority by his followers.

yad yat karma ācarati karoti śreṣṭhaḥ pradhānaḥ tat tad eva karma ācarati itaro ’nyaḥ janaḥ tad-anugataḥ | kiṃ ca saḥ śreṣṭhaḥ yat pramāṇaṃ kurute laukikaṃ vaidikaṃ vā lokas tat anuvartate tad eva pramāṇī karoti ity arthaḥ ||3.21||

 

Rāmānuja


yato jñānayogādhikāriṇo ‚pi karmayoga evātmadarśane śreyān; ata eva hi janakādayo rājarṣayo jñāninām agresarāḥ karmayogenaiva saṃsiddhim āsthitāḥ ātmānaṃ prāptavantaḥ // evaṃ prathamaṃ mumukṣor jñānayogānarhatayā karmayogādhikāriṇaḥ karmayoga eva kārya ity uktvā jñānayogādhikāriṇo ‚pi jñānayogāt karmayoga eva śreyān iti sahetukam uktam / idānīṃ śiṣṭatayā vyapadeśyasya sarvathā karmayoga eva kārya ity ucyate

lokasaṃgrahaṃ paśyann api karmaiva kartum arhasi / śreṣṭhaḥ kṛtsnaśāstrajñātayānuṣṭhātṛtayā ca prathito yad yad ācarati, tat tad evākṛtsnavij jano ‚py ācarati; anuṣṭhīyamānam api karma śreṣṭho yat pramāṇaṃ yadaṅgayuktam anutiṣṭhati tadaṅgayuktam evākṛtsnavilloko ‚py anutiṣṭhati /
ato lokarakṣārthaṃ śiṣṭatayā prathitena śreṣṭhena svavarṇāśramocitaṃ karma sakalaṃ sarvadā anuṣṭheyam; anyathā lokanāśajanitaṃ pāpaṃ jñānayogād apy enaṃ pracyāvayet

 

Śrīdhara


karma-karaṇe loka-saṅgraho yathā syāt tad āha yad iti | itaraḥ prākṛto ‚pi janas tat tad evācarati | sa śreṣṭho janaḥ karma-śāstraṃ tan-nivṛtti-śāstraṃ vā yat pramāṇaṃ manyate, tad eva loko ‚py anusarati

 

Madhusūdana


nanu mayā karmaṇi kriyamāṇe ‚pi lokaḥ kim iti tat-saṅgṛhṇīyād ity āśaṅkya śreṣṭhācārānuvidhāyitvād ity āha yad yad iti | śreṣṭhaḥ pradhāna-bhūto rājādir yad yat karmācarati śubham aśubhaṃ vā tat tad evācaratītaraḥ prākṛtas tad-anugato janaḥ | na tv anyat svātantryeṇety arthaḥ |

nanu śāstram avalokyāśāstrīyaṃ śreṣṭhācāraṃ parityajya śāstrīyam eva kuto nācarati loka ity āśaṅkyācāravat pratipattāv api śreṣṭhānusāritām itarasya darśayati sa yad iti | sa śreṣṭho yal laukikaṃ vaidikaṃ vā pramāṇaṃ kurute pramāṇatvena manyate tad eva loko ‚py anuvartate pramāṇaṃ kurute na tu svātantryeṇa kiṃcid ity arthaḥ | tathā ca pradhāna-bhūtena tvayā rājñā loka-saṃrakṣaṇārthaṃ karma kartavyam eva pradhānānuyāyino jana-vyavahārā bhavantīti nyāyād ity abhiprāyaḥ

 

Viśvanātha


loka-saṅgraha-prakāram evāha yad yad iti

 

Baladeva


loka-saṅgraha-prakāram evāha yad yad iti | śreṣṭho mahattamo yat karma yathācarati tat karma tathaivetaraḥ kaniṣṭho ‚py ācarati | sa śresṭhas tasmin karmaṇi yac chāstraṃ pramāṇaṃ kurute manyate lokaḥ kaniṣṭho ‚pi tad-anuyāyī tad evānuvartate ‚nasarati | śāstropetaṃ śreṣṭhācaraṇaṃ kalyāṇa-lipsunā kaniṣṭhenānuṣṭheyam ity arthaḥ | itthaṃ ca tejasvinaḥ śreṣṭhasya ca yat kvacit svairācaraṇaṃ tad-vyāvṛtam | tasya śreṣṭha-kṛtatve ‚pi śāstropetatvābhāvāt

 
 

BhG 3.22

na me pārthāsti kartavyaṃ triṣu lokeṣu kiṃ-cana
nānavāptam avāptavyaṃ varta eva ca karmaṇi

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syntax


he pārtha (O son of Pṛthā!),
me (for me) kartavyam (to be done) na asti (there is not),
triṣu (in three) lokeṣu (in the worlds) [mama] (my) anavāptam (unobtained) [va] avāptavyam (or to be obtained) kiṁ-cana (anything) na [asti] (there is not).
[tathā api aham] ca (and therefore I) karmaṇi eva (in work only) varte (I engage).

 

grammar

na av.not;
me asmat sn. 6n.1my (shortened form of: mama);
pārtha pārtha 8n.1 m.O son of Pṛthā (from: pṛth – to extend, pṛthā – Kuntī, mother of the sons of Pāṇḍu);
asti as (to be) Praes. P 1v.1it is;
kartavyam kartavya (kṛ to do) PF 1n.1 n.to be done, work, duty;
triṣu tri 7n.3 m.in three;
lokeṣu loka 7n.3 m.in the worlds;
kiṁ-cana kim-cana sn. 1n.1 m.anything (from: kim – what?; -cana – indefinitive particle);
na av.not;
anavāptam an-avāpta (ava-āp – to obtain, to reach) [PP] 1n.1 n.unobtained;
avāptavyam avāptavya (ava-āp – to obtain, to reach) PF 1n.1 n.to be obtained;
varte vṛt (to move, to happen, to act) Praes. P 3v.1I engage;
eva av.certainly, just, merely;
ca av.and;
karmaṇi karman 7n.1 n.in activity (from: kṛ – to do);

 

textual variants


nānavāptam avāptavyaṁnānuvāptam avāptavyaṁ / nānāvāptam avāptavyaṁ / nānavāptam avāptaṁ(not obtained and to be obtained / various not obtained and to be obtained / not unobtained or obtained);
varta eva → pravarte ‘tha / kartur eva / vartāmy eva (moreover I act / indeed the doer / I just act);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

If you have a doubt even as regards the necessity there is for the protection of the masses, why do you not observe Me?

yady atra te loka-saṃgraha-kartavyatāyāṃ vipratipattis tarhi māṃ kiṃ na paśyasi?

I have nothing whatsoever to achieve in the three worlds, O son of Pritha,
nor is there anything unattained that should be attained; yet I engage in action.

na me pārthāsti kartavyaṃ triṣu lokeṣu kiṃcana |
nānavāptam avāptavyaṃ vartaiva ca karmaṇi ||3.22||

I have nothing to achieve, for, there is nothing unattained.

na me mama pārtha nāsti na vidyate kartavyaṃ triṣv api lokeṣu kiṃcana kiṃcid api | kasmāt? nānavāptam aprāptam avāptavyaṃ prāpaṇīyam | tathāpi vartaiva ca karmaṇy aham ||3.22||

 

Rāmānuja


na me sarveśvarasyāptakāmasya sarvajñasya satyasaṅkalpasya triṣu lokeṣu devamanuṣyādirūpeṇa svacchandato vartamānasya kiṃcid api kartavyam asti, yato ‚navāptaṃ karmaṇāvāptavyaṃ na kiṃcid apy asti/ athāpi lokarakṣāyai karmaṇy eva varte

 

Śrīdhara


atra cāhameva dṛṣṭānta ity āha na ma iti tribhiḥ | he pārtha ! me kartavyaṃ nāsti | yatas triṣv api lokeṣu anavāptam aprāptaṃ sadāvaptavyaṃ prāpyaṃ nāsti | tathāpi karmaṇy ahaṃ varta eva karma karomy evety arthaḥ

 

Madhusūdana


atra cāham eva dṛṣṭānta ity āha na ma iti tribhiḥ | he pārtha na me mama triṣv api lokeṣu kim api kartavyaṃ nāsti | yato ‚navāptaṃ phalaṃ kiṃcin mamāvāptavyaṃ nāsti | tathāpi varta eva karmaṇy ahaṃ karma karomy evety arthaḥ | pārtheti sambodhayan viśuddha-kṣatriya-vaṃśodbhavas tvaṃ śūrāpatyāpatyatvena cātyantaṃ mat-samo ‚ham iva vartitum arhasīti darśayati

 

Viśvanātha


atrāham eva dṛṣṭānta ity āha tribhiḥ

 

Baladeva


śreṣṭhaḥ karma-phala-nirapekṣo ‚pi loka-saṅgrahāya śāstroditāni karmāṇy ācared ity arthe svaṃ dṛṣṭāntam āha na me pārtheti tribhiḥ | sarveśasya satya-saṅkalpasya satya-kāmasya me kartavyaṃ nāsti | phalārthinā khalu karmānuṣṭheyam | na ca nikhila-phalāśrayasya svayaṃ parama-phalātmano me karmāpekṣyam ity arthaḥ | etad darśayati triṣv iti | yataḥ sarveṣu lokeṣu karmaṇā yat phalam avāptavyaṃ tad-anavāptam alabdhaṃ mama nāsti sarvaṃ tan madīyam evety arthaḥ | tathāpi śāstroktaṃ karmāhaṃ karomy evety āha varta iti

 
 

BhG 3.23

yadi hy ahaṃ na varteyaṃ jātu karmaṇy atandritaḥ
mama vartmānuvartante manuṣyāḥ pārtha sarvaśaḥ

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he pārtha (O son of Pṛthā!),
yadi (if) aham (I) jātu (once) atandritaḥ [san] (being free from laziness) karmaṇi (in activity) na varteyam (I would not engage).
manuṣyāḥ hi (indeed people) sarvaśaḥ (completely) mama (my) vartma (path) anuvartante (they follow).

 

grammar

yadi av. if (correlative of: tarhi);
hi av.because, just, indeed, surely;
aham asmat sn. 1n.1I;
na av.not;
varteyam vṛt (to move, to happen, to act) Pot. Ā 3v.1I would engage;
jātu av.at all, ever, once, some day;
karmaṇi karman 7n.1 n.in activity (from: kṛ – to do);
atandritaḥ a-tandrita 1n.1 m.free from laziness (tandrā – exhaustion, laziness);
mama asmat sn. 6n.1my;
vartma vartman 2n.1 n.track of a wheel, path, way, course (from: vṛt – to move, to happen, to act);
anuvartante anu-vṛt (to follow, to obey) Praes. Ā 1v.3they follow;
manuṣyāḥ manuṣya 1n.3 m.people (from: man – to think, manu – a man, a person);
pārtha pārtha 8n.1 m.O son of Pṛthā (from: pṛth – to extend, pṛthā – Kuntī, mother of the sons of Pāṇḍu);
sarvaśaḥ av.completely, entirely, altogether, on all sides (from: sarva – all, whole);

 

textual variants


yadi hy ahaṃ na varteyaṃyadi hy ahaṃ na varteya / yady ahaṃ na pravarteyaṃ / yady ahaṃ na pravarteya / yad ahaṃ na ca varteyaṃ (indeed if I would not engage);
vartmānuvartante → vartmānuvarteran (they would follow the path);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

For, should I not ever engage in action, unwearied,
men would in all matters follow My path, O son of Pritha.

yadi hy ahaṃ na varteyaṃ jātu karmaṇy atandritaḥ |
mama vartmānuvartante manuṣyāḥ pārtha sarvaśaḥ ||3.23||

My: I being the chief among men.

yadi hi punar ahaṃ na varteyaṁ jātu kadācit karmaṇy atandrito ’nalasaḥ san mama śreṣṭhasya sato vatrma mārgam anuvartante manuṣyāḥ | he pārtha! sarvaśaḥ sarva-prakāraiḥ ||3.23||

 

Rāmānuja


commentary under the verse BhG 3.24

 

Śrīdhara


akaraṇe lokasya nāśaṃ darśayati yadi hy aham iti | jātu kadācit | atandrito ‚nalasaḥ san yadi karmaṇi na varteya karma nānutiṣṭheyam, tarhi mamaiva vartma mārgaṃ manuṣyā anuvartante anuverterann ity arthaḥ

 

Madhusūdana


loka-saṅgraho ‚pi na te kartavyo viphalatvād ity āśaṅkyāha yadi hy aham iti | yadi punar aham atandrito ‚nalasaḥ san karmaṇi jātu kadācin na varteya nānutiṣṭheyaṃ karmāṇi tadā mama śreṣṭhasya sato vartma mārgaṃ he pārtha manuṣyāḥ karmādhikāriṇaḥ santo ‚nuvartante ‚nuvarteran sarvaśaḥ sarva-prakāraiḥ

 

Viśvanātha


anuvartate ‚nuvarterann ity arthaḥ

 

Baladeva


yadīti | ahaṃ sarveśvaraḥ siddha-sarvārtho ‚pi yadu-kulāvatīrṇo jātu kadācit tat-kulocite śāstrokte karmaṇi na varteya tan na kuryām atandritaḥ sāvadhānaḥ san tarhi māṃ dṛṣṭāntaṃ kṛtvā manuṣyāḥ śreṣṭhasya mama vartma kula-vihitācāra-tyāga-rūpam anuvarteran tato bhraṃśerann ity arthaḥ

 
 

BhG 3.24

utsīdeyur ime lokā na kuryāṃ karma ced aham
saṃkarasya ca kartā syām upahanyām imāḥ prajāḥ

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aham (I) cet (if) karma (work) na kuryām (I would not do),
[tarhi] (then) ime lokāḥ (these worlds) utsīdeyuḥ (they would decline),
[aham] ca (and I) saṅkarasya (of confusion) kartā (the cause) syām (I would be),
[tathā aham] (thus I) imāḥ (these) prajāḥ (creatures) upahanyām (I would harm).

 

grammar

utsīdeyuḥ ut-sad (to destroy, to decline) Pot. P 1v.3they would decline;
ime idam sn. 1n.3 m.these;
lokāḥ loka 1n.3 m. worlds;
na av.not;
kuryām kṛ (to do) Pot. P 3v.1I would do;
karma karman 2n.1 n.activity (from: kṛ – to do);
cet av.if;
aham asmat sn. 1n.1I;
saṁkarasya saṁkara 6n.1 m.of confusion [of social classes] (from: sam-kṝ – to mix);
ca av.and;
kartā kartṛ 1n.1 m.the doer, the cause (from: kṛ – to do);
syām as (to be) Pot. P 3v.1I would be;
upahanyām upa-han (to strike, to beat, to afflict) Pot. P 3v.1I would harm;
imāḥ idam sn. 2n.3 f.these;
prajāḥ prajā 2n.3 f.offspring, creatures, mankind (from: pra-jan – to be born, be produced, to bring forth);

 

textual variants


ime → amī (those);
ced ahamced iha (if here);
ca → tu (but);
upahanyām → apahanyām (I would destroy);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

And what harm is there in that? – The Lord says:

tathā ca ko doṣa ity āha

These worlds would be ruined if I should not perform action;
I should be the cause of confusion of castes, and should destroy these creatures.

utsīdeyur ime lokā na kuryāṃ karma ced aham |
saṃkarasya ca kartā syām upahanyām imāḥ prajāḥ ||3.24||

If I should not perform action, then there would be no action conducive to the continuance of the universe, and all these worlds would fall into ruin.

utsīdeyur vinaśyeyur ime sarve lokāḥ loka-sthiti-nimittasya karmaṇo ’bhāvāt na kuryāṃ karma ced aham |

Moreover, I would be the author of confusion of castes, and thereby destroy these creatures. Thus, though working for the welfare of the creatures, I would bring about their ruin, – which would be unbecoming of Me, their lord.

kiṃ ca, saṃkarasya ca kartā syām | tena kāraṇena upahanyām imāḥ prajāḥ | prajānām anugrahāya pravṛtta tad-upahatim upahananaṃ kuryām ity arthaḥ | mama īśvarasyānanurūpam āpadyate ||3.24||

 

Rāmānuja


ahaṃ sarveśvaraḥ satyasaṅkalpaḥ svasaṅkalpakṛtajagadudayavibhavalayalīlaḥ chandato jagadupakṛtimartyo jāto ‚pi manuṣyeṣu śiṣṭajanāgresaravasudevagṛhe ‚vatīrṇas tatkulocite karmaṇy atandritas sarvadā yadi na varteya, mama śiṣṭajanāgresaravasudevasūnor vartma akṛtsnavidaḥ śiṣṭāḥ sarvaprakāreṇāyam eva dharma ity anuvartante; te ca svakartavyānanuṣṭhānena akaraṇe pratyavāyena ca ātmānam alabdhvā nirayagāmino bhaveyuḥ / ahaṃ kulocitaṃ karma na cet kuryām, evam eva sarve śiṣṭalokā madācarāyattadharmaniścayāḥ akaraṇād evotsīdeyuḥ naṣṭā bhaveyuḥ / śāstrīyācārānanupālanāt sarveṣāṃ śiṣṭakulānāṃ saṃkarasya ca kartā syām / ata evemāḥ prajāḥ upahanyām / evam eva tvam api śiṣṭajanāgresarapāṇḍutanayo yudhiṣṭhirānujo ‚rjunas san yadi jñānaniṣṭhāyām adhikaroṣi; tatas tvadācārānuvartino ‚kṛtsnavidaḥ śiṣṭā mumukṣavaḥ svādhikāram ajānantaḥ karmaniṣṭhāyāṃ nādhikurvanto vinaśyeyuḥ / ato vyapadeśyena viduṣā karmaiva kartavyam

 

Śrīdhara


tataḥ kiṃ ? ata āha utsīdeyur iti | utsīdeyur dharma-lopena naśyeyuḥ | tataś ca yo varṇa-saṅkaro bhavet tasyāpy aham eva kartā syāṃ bhaveyam | evam aham eva prajā upahanyāṃ malinīkuryām iti

 

Madhusūdana


śreṣṭhasya tava mārgānuvartitvaṃ manuṣyāṇām ucitam eva anuvartitve ko doṣa ity ata āha utsīdeyur iti | aham īśvaraś ced yadi karma na kuryāṃ tadā mad-anuvartināṃ manv-ādīnām api karmānupapatter loka-sthiti-hetoḥ karmaṇo lopeneme sarve lokā utsīdeyur vinaśyeyuḥ | tataś ca varṇa-saṃkarasya ca kartāham eva syām | tena cemāḥ sarvāḥ prajā aham evopahanyāṃ dharma-lopena vināśayeyam | kathaṃ ca prajānām anugrahārthaṃ pravṛtta īśvaro ‚haṃ tāḥ sarvā vināśayeyam ity abhiprāyaḥ |

yad yad ācaratīty āder aparā yojanā | na kevalaṃ loka-saṃgrahaṃ sampaśyan kartum arhasy api tu śreṣṭhācāratvād apīty āha yad yad iti | tathā ca mama śreṣṭhasya yādṛśa eva ācāras tādṛśa eva mad-anuvartinā tvayānuṣṭheyo na svātantryeṇānya ity arthaḥ | kīdṛśas tavācāro yo mayānuvartanīya ity ākāṅkṣāyāṃ na me pārthety ādibhis tribhiḥ ślokais tat-pradarśanam iti

 

Viśvanātha


utsīdeyur māṃ dṛṣṭāntīkṛtya dharmam akurvāṇā bhraṃśeyuḥ | tataś ca varṇa-saṅkaro bhavet tasyāpy aham eva kartā syām evam aham eva prajā hanyām | malināḥ kuryām

 

Baladeva


tataḥ kiṃ syād ity āha utsīdeyur iti | ahaṃ sarva-śreṣṭhaś cet śāstroktaṃ karma na kuryāṃ tarhīme lokā utsīdeyur vibhraṣṭa-maryādāḥ syuḥ | tad-vibhraṃśe sati yaḥ saṅkaraḥ syāt tasyāpy aham eva kartā syām | evaṃ ca prajāpatir aham imāḥ prajāḥ sāṅkarya-doṣeṇopahanyāṃ malināḥ kuryām | tathā ca – eṣa setur vidharaṇa eṣāṃ lokānām asaṃbhedāya iti śrutyā loka-maryādā-vidhārakatvena parigītasya me tan-maryādā-bhedakatvaṃ syād iti | evaṃ upadiśato ‚pi harer yat kiṃcit sva-bhakta-sukhecchoḥ svairācaritaṃ dṛṣṭaṃ, tat khalu vidhāyakena tad-vacasānupetatvād īśvarīyatvāc cāvarair naivācaraṇīyam | yad uktaṃ śrīmatā śukena –

īśvarāṇāṃ vacaḥ satyaṃ
tathaivācaritaṃ kvacit |
teṣāṃ yat sva-vaco-yuktaṃ
buddhimāṃs tat samācaret ||

naitat samācarej jātu
manasāpi hy anīśvaraḥ |
vinaśyaty ācaran mauḍhyād
yathārudro |bdhi-jaṃ viṣam || [BhP 10.33.31-2] iti

 
 

BhG 3.25

saktāḥ karmaṇy avidvāṃso yathā kurvanti bhārata
kuryād vidvāṃs tathāsaktaś cikīrṣur loka-saṃgraham

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he bhārata (O descendant of Bhārata!),
yathā (as) karmaṇi (to the work) saktāḥ (attached) avidvāṁsaḥ (ignorant men) karmāṇi (activities) kurvanti (they do),
tathā (so) vidvān (wise man) asaktaḥ [san] (being unattached) loka-saṅgraham (protection of the world) cikīrṣuḥ (desiring to do) kuryāt (he would do).

 

grammar

saktāḥ sakta (sañj – to attach, to stick, to embrace) [PP] 1n.3 m. attached;
karmaṇi karman 7n.1 n.in activity (from: kṛ – to do);
avidvāṁsaḥ a-vidvas 1n.3 m.ignorant men;
yathā av.as (correlative of: tathā);
kurvanti kṛ (to do) Praes. P 1v.3they do;
bhārata bhārata 8n.1 m.O descendant of Bhārata;
kuryāt kṛ (to do) Pot. P 1v.1he would do;
vidvān vidvas 1n.1 m.wise man, learned;
tathā av.in that manner, so, in like manner;
asaktaḥ a-sakta (sañj – to attach, to stick, to embrace) [PP] 1n.1 m.unattached;
cikīrṣuḥ cikīrṣu (kṛ – to do) des. 1n.1 m.; kartum icchandesiring to do;
loka-saṁgraham loka-saṁgraha 2n.1 m.; lokānāṁ saṅgraham itiprotection of the world (from: loka – world; sam-grah – to hold together, to support, saṁ-graha – holding together, collection, protection);

 

textual variants


yathā kurvanti → yathā kurvaṃta (as they do);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

The wise man’s action as contrasted with that of the ignorant.
Suppose, on the other hand, you – or suppose (for that matter) any other man thinks that he has achieved his ends and has realised the Self, even he should work i for the welfare of others, though for himself he may have nothing to do.

yadi punar aham iva tvaṃ kṛtārtha-buddhiḥ, ātmavid anyo vā, tasyāpi ātmanaḥ kartavyābhāve ’pi parānugraha eva kartavya ity āha

As ignorant men act attached to work, O Bharata,
so should the wise man act, unattached,
from a wish to protect the masses.

saktāḥ karmaṇy avidvāṃso yathā kurvanti bhārata |
kuryād vidvāṃs tathāsaktaś cikīrṣur loka-saṃgraham ||3.25||

The ignorant expect the result of their action thus: „The result of this action shall accrue to me.” The wise man: he who knows the Self.

saktāḥ karmaṇy asya karmaṇaḥ phalaṃ mama bhaviṣyatīti kecid avidvāṃso yathā kurvanti bhārata, kuryād vidvān ātmavit tathāsaktaḥ san | tadvat kim arthaṃ karoti? tat sṛṇu cikīrṣuḥ kartum icchuḥ loka-saṃgraham ||3.25||

 

Rāmānuja


commentary under the verse BhG 3.26

 

Śrīdhara


tasmād ātmavidāpi loka-saṅgrahārtha tat-kṛpayā karma kāryam evety upasaṃharati saktā iti | karmaṇi saktā abhiniviṣṭāḥ santo yathājñāḥ karmāṇi kurvanti, asaktaḥ san vidvān api kuryāt loka-saṃgraham kartum icchuḥ

 

Madhusūdana


nanu taveśvarasya loka-saṃgrahārthaṃ karmāṇi kurvāṇasyāpi kartṛtvābhimānābhāvān na kāpi kṣatiḥ | mama tu jīvasya loka-saṃgrahārthaṃ karmāṇi kurvāṇasya kartṛtvābhimānena jñānābhibhavaḥ syād ity ata āha saktā iti | saktāḥ kartṛtvābhimānena phalābhisandhinā ca karmaṇy abhiniviṣṭā avidvāṃso ‚jñā yathā kurvanti karma loka-saṃgrahaṃ kartum icchur vidvān ātmavid api tathaiva kuryāt | kintu asaktaḥ san kartṛtvābhimānaṃ phalābhisandhiṃ cākurvann ity arthaḥ | bhārateti bharata-vaṃśodbhavatvenabhā jñānaṃ tasyāṃ ratatvena vā tvaṃ yathokta-śāstrārtha-bodha-yogyo ‚sīti darśayati

 

Viśvanātha


tasmāt pratiṣṭhitena jñānināpi karma kartavyam ity upasaṃharati saktā iti

 

Baladeva


tasmāt pratiṣṭhite ‚pi tvaṃ loka-hitāya vedoktaṃ sva-karma prakurv ity āśayenāha saktā iti | ajñā yathā karmaṇi saktāḥ phala-lipsayābhiniviṣṭās tata kurvanty evaṃ vidvān api kuryāt | kintv asaktaḥ phala-lipsā-śūnyaḥ san | sphuṭam anyat

 
 

BhG 3.26

na buddhi-bhedaṃ janayed ajñānāṃ karma-saṅginām
joṣayet sarva-karmāṇi vidvān yuktaḥ samācaran

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ajñānām (of the ignorant men) karma-saṅginām (of those attached to work) buddhi-bhedam (splitting of intelligence) na janayet (he should not generate).
vidvān (wise man) yuktaḥ (engaged) samācaran (performing) sarva-karmāṇi (to all activities) [ajñān] (ignorant men) joṣayet (he should cause [them] to enjoy).

 

grammar

na av.not;
buddhi-bhedam buddhi-bheda 2n.1 m.; [TP]: buddhyāḥ bhedam itisplitting of intelligence (from: budh – to wake, to perceive, to understand, buddhi – intelligence, thought, understanding, knowledge, idea, opinion; bhid – to split, bheda – splitting, breaking, separation, division);
janayet jan (to be born) Pot. caus. P 1v.1he would generate;
ajñānām a-jña 6n.3 m.of ignorant men (from: jñā – to know, to understand);
karma-saṅginām karma-saṅgin 6n.3m.; [TP]: karmaṇi saṅginām itiof those attached to work (from: kṛ – to do, karman – activity and its result; sam-gam – come together or sañj – to attach, to stick, to embrace, saṅga – clinging, contact, relation, desire, attachment, saṅgin – attached);
joṣayet juṣ (to be satisfied, to like) Pot. caus. P 1v.1he should cause [them] to enjoy;
sarva-karmāṇi sarva-karman 2n.3 n.; [TP]: sarvāṇi karmāṇi itiall activities (from: sarva – all, whole; kṛ – to do, karman – activity and its result);
vidvān vidvas 1n.1 m. wise man, learned;
yuktaḥ yukta (yuj – to yoke, to join, to engage) [PP] 1n.1 m.yoked, endowed with, engaged, suitable, attentive;
samācaran samācarant (sam-ā-car – to behave, to perform) PPr 1n.1 m.[while] performing;

 

textual variants


joṣayet → yojayet (he should yoke them);
yuktaḥ → muktaḥ (liberated);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

For me, or for any other person who, knowing the Self, thus seeks the welfare of the world, there is nothing to do except it be with a view to that welfare of the world at large. To such a man who knows the Self, the following advice is offered:

evaṃ loka-saṃgrahaṃ cikīrṣer na mamātma-vidaḥ kartavyam asti anyasya vā loka-saṃgrahaṃ muktvā | tatas tasya ātma-vidaḥ idam upadiśyate —

Let no wise man cause unsettlement in the minds of the ignorant who are attached to action;
he should make them do all actions, himself fulfilling them with devotion.

na buddhi-bhedaṃ janayed ajñānāṃ karma-saṅginām |
joṣayet sarva-karmāṇi vidvān yuktaḥ samācaran ||3.26||

An ignorant man who is attached to action believes „I should do this action and enjoy its result.” No wise man should unsettle that firm belief.

buddheḥ bhedo buddhi-bhedo mayā idaṃ kartavyaṃ bhoktavyaṃ cāsya karmaṇaḥ phalam iti niścaya-rūpāyā buddher bhedanaṃ cālanaṃ buddhi-bhedas taṃ na janayen notpādayed ajñānām avivekināṃ karma-saṅgināṃ karmaṇy āsaktānām āsaṅgavatām |

– What then should he do ? – Himself doing deligently and well the actions which the ignorant have to do, he should make them do those actions.

kiṃ nu kuryāt? joṣayet kārayet sarva-karmāṇi vidvān svayaṃ tad evāviduṣāṃ karma yukto ’bhiyuktaḥ samācaran ||3.26||

 

Rāmānuja


avidvāṃsaḥ ātmany akṛtsnavidaḥ, karmaṇi saktāḥ karmaṇy avarjanīyasaṃbandhāḥ ātmany akṛtsnavittayā tadabhyāsarūpajñānayoge ‚nadhikṛtāḥ karmayogādhikāriṇaḥ karmayogam eva yathā ātmadarśanāya kurvate, tathā ātmani kṛtsnavittayā karmaṇy asaktaḥ jñānayogādhikārayogyo ‚pi vyapadeśyaḥ śiṣṭo lokarakṣārthaṃ svācāreṇa śiṣṭalokānāṃ dharmaniścayaṃ cikīrṣuḥ karmayogam eva kuryāt / ajñānām ātmany akṛtsnavittayā jñānayogopādānāśaktānāṃ mumukṣūṇāṃ karmasaṅginām anādikarmavāsanayā karmaṇy eva niyatatvena karmayogādhikāriṇāṃ karmayogād anyad ātmāvalokanasādhanam astīti na buddhibhedaṃ janayet / kiṃ tarhi? ātmani kṛtsnavittayā jñānayogaśakto ‚pi pūrvoktarītyā, „karmayoga eva jñānayoganirapekṣaḥ ātmāvalokanasādhanam” iti buddhyā yuktaḥ karmaivācaran

sakalakarmasu akṛtsnavidāṃ prītiṃ janayet

 

Śrīdhara


nanu kṛpayā tattva-jñānam evopadeṣṭuṃ yuktam | nety āha na buddhi-bhedam iti ajñānām ataeva karma-saṅgināṃ karmāsaktānām akartātmeopadeśena buddher bhedam anyathātvaṃ na janayet | karmaṇaḥ sakāśād buddhi-vicālanaṃ na kuryāt | api tu joṣayet sevayet | ajñān karmāṇi kārayed ity arthaḥ | katham ? yukto ‚vahito bhūtvā svayam ācaran san | buddhi-vicālane kṛte sati karmasu śraddhā-nivṛtter jñānasya cānutpattes tesām ubhaya-bhraṃśaḥ syād iti bhāvaḥ

 

Madhusūdana


nanu karmānuṣṭhānenaiva loka-saṃgrahaḥ kartavyo na tu tattva-jñānopadeśeneti ko hetur ata āha na buddhīti | ajñānām avivekināṃ kartṛtvābhimānena phalābhisandhinā ca karma-saṅgināṃ karmaṇy abhiniviṣṭānāṃ yā buddhir aham etat karma kariṣya etat-phalaṃ ca bhokṣya iti tasyā bhedaṃ vicālanam akartrātmopadeśena na kuryāt | kintu yukto ‚vahitaḥ san vidvān loka-saṃgrahaṃ cikīrṣur avidvad-adhikārikāṇi sarva-karmaṇi samācaraṃs teṣāṃ śraddhām utpādya joṣayet prītyā sevayet | anadhikāriṇām upadeśena buddhi-vicālane kṛte karmasu śraddhā-nivṛttir jñānasya cānutpatter ubhaya-bhraṣṭatvaṃ syāt | tathā coktaṃ-

ajñasyārdha-prabuddhasya sarvaṃ brahmeti yo vadet |
mahā-niraya-jāleṣu sa tena viniyojitaḥ || iti

 

Viśvanātha


alaṃ karma-jaḍimnā | tvaṃ karma-sannyāsaṃ kṛtvā jñānābhyāsenāham iva kṛtārthībhavaiti buddhi-bhedaṃ na janayet karma-saṅginaṃ aśuddhāntaḥkaraṇatvena karmasv evāsaktimatām | kintu tvaṃ kṛtārthībhaviṣyan niṣkāma-karmaiva kru iti karmāṇy eva yojayet kārayet | atra karmāṇi samācaran svayam eva dṛṣṭāntībhavet |

nanu,
svayaṃ niḥśreyasaṃ vidvān na vakty ajñāya karma hi |
na rāti rogiṇo ‚pathyaṃ vāñchato ‚pi bhiṣaktamaḥ || [BhP 6.9.5]

ity ajita-vākyenaitad virudhyate | satyam | tat khalu bhakty-upadeṣṭṛka-viṣayam idaṃ tu jñānopadeṣṭṛka-viṣayam ity avirodhaḥ | jñānasyāntaḥkaraṇa-śuddhy-adhīnatvāt | tac chuddhes tu niṣkāma-karmādhīnatvāt, bhaktes tu svataḥ prābalyād antaḥkaraṇa-śuddhi-paryantānapekṣatvāt | yadi bhaktau śraddhām utpādayituṃ śaknuyāt, tadā karmiṇāṃ buddhi-bhedam api janayet, bhaktau śraddhāvatāṃ karmānadhikārāt –

tāvat karmāṇi kurvīta na nirvidyeta yāvatā |
mat-kathā-śravaṇādau vā śraddhā yāvan na jāyate || [BhP 11.20.9] iti |

dharmān santyajya yaḥ sarvān māṃ bhajet sa tu sattamaḥ [BhP 11.11.32]iti,

sarva-dharmān parityajya mām ekaṃ śaraṇaṃ vraja [Gītā 18.66] iti,

tyaktvā sva-dharmaṃ caraṇāmbujaṃ harer
bhajann apakvo |tha patet tato yadi [BhP 1.5.17]

ity-ādi-vacanebhya iti vivecanīyam

 

Baladeva


kiṃ ca loka-hitecchur jñānī sāvahitaḥ syād ity āha na buddhīti | vidvān pariniṣṭhito ‚pi karma-saṅgināṃ karma-śraddhā-jāḍya-bhājām ajñānāṃ buddhi-bhedaṃ na janayet | kiṃ karmab hir aham iva jñānenaiva kṛtārtho bhaveti karma-niṣṭhātas tad-buddhiṃ nāpanayed ity arthaḥ | kintu svayaṃ karmasu yuktaḥ sāvadhānas tāni samyak sarvāṅgopasaṃhāreṇācaran sarvāṇi vihitāni karmāṇi yoṣayet prītyā sevayet ajñān karmāṇi kārayed ity arthaḥ | buddhi-bhede sati karmasu śraddhā-nivṛtte jñānasya cānudayād ubhaya-vibhraṣṭās te syur iti bhāvaḥ |

svayaṃ niḥśreyasaṃ vidvān na vakty ajñāya karma hi |
na rāti rogiṇo ‚pathyaṃ vāñchato ‚pi bhiṣaktamaḥ || [BhP 6.9.5]

ity ajitoktis tu karma-saṅgītara-paratayā neyā

 
 

BhG 3.27

prakṛteḥ kriyamāṇāni guṇaiḥ karmāṇi sarvaśaḥ
ahaṃkāra-vimūḍhātmā kartāham iti manyate

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prakṛteḥ (of the nature) guṇaiḥ (by the guṇas) sarvaśaḥ (completely) karmāṇi (activities) kriyamāṇāni ([while] being done) [santi] (they are).
[kiṁtu] (but) ahaṅkāra-vimūḍhātmā (whose self is bewildered by egotism) [janaḥ] (a person) manyate (he thinks):
ahaṁ (I) kartā (the doer) [asti] iti (I am).

 

grammar

prakṛteḥ prakṛti 6n.1 f.of the nature, primary substance, original cause (from: pra-kṛ – to produce);
kriyamāṇāni kriyamāṇa (kṛ to do) pass. PPr 1n.3 n.[while] these being done;
guṇaiḥ guṇa 3n.3 m.by qualities, virtues, threads (from: grah – to take);
karmāṇi karman 1n.3 n. activities (from: kṛ – to do);
sarvaśaḥ av.completely, entirely, altogether, on all sides (from: sarva – all, whole);
ahaṁkāra-vimūḍhātmā ahaṁkāra-vimūḍhātman 1n.1 m.; BV: yasyātmāhaṁkārena vimūḍho ‘sti saḥwhose self is bewildered by egotism (from: aham – I; kṛ – to do, kāra – a doer; ahaṁ-kāra – ego, egotism, pride; vi-muh – to become confused, bewildered, stupefied, [PP] vimūḍha –bewildered; ātman – self);
kartā kartṛ 1n.1 m.the doer (from: kṛ – to do);
aham asmat sn. 1n.1I;
iti av.thus (used to close the quotation);
manyate man (to think) Praes. Ā 1v.1he thinks;

 

textual variants


sarvaśaḥbhāgaśaḥ (part by part);
kartāham → karmāham (I am the act);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

In what way is an ignorant man attached to actions?

avidvān ajñaḥ kathaṃ karmasu sajjate? ity āha —

Actions are wrought in all cases by the energies of Nature.
He whose mind is deluded by egoism thinks ‚I am the doer.’

prakṛteḥ kriyamāṇāni guṇaiḥ karmāṇi sarvaśaḥ |
ahaṃkāra-vimūḍhātmā kartāham iti manyate ||3.27||

Nature (Prakṛti, Pradhana) is the equipoised state of the three guṇas or energies, viz., sattva (goodness), rajas (activity), tamas (darkness). It is by the guṇas or the modifications of Nature, manifesting themselves as the body and the senses, that all our actions, conducive to temporal and spiritual ends, are done.

prakṛteḥ prakṛtiḥ pradhānaṃ sattva-rajas-tamasāṃ guṇānāṃ sāmyāvasthā | tasyāḥ prakṛteḥ guṇaiḥ vikāraiḥ kārya-karaṇa-rūpaiḥ kriyamāṇāni karmāṇi laukikāni śāstrīyāṇi ca sarvaśaḥ sarva-prakārair |

The man whose mind (antaḥ-karaṇa) is variously deluded by ahaṁkara, by egoism identifying the aggregate of the body and the senses with the Self, i.e.,

ahaṃkāra-vimūḍhātmā kārya-karaṇa-saṃghātātma-pratyayo ’haṃkāras tena vividhaṃ nānāvidhaṃ mūḍha ātmā antaḥ-karaṇaṃ yasya so ’yaṃ |

who ascribes to himself all the attributes of the body and the senses and thus thoroughly identifies himself with them – he, by nescience, sees actions in himself: as regards every action, he thinks „I am the doer.”

kārya-karaṇa-dharmā kārya-karaṇābhimānī avidyayā karmāṇi ātmani manyamānaḥ tat-tat-karmaṇām ahaṃ karteti manyate ||3.27||

 

Rāmānuja


commentary under the verse BhG 3.28

 

Śrīdhara


nanu viduṣo ‚pi cet karma kartavyaṃ tarhi vidvad-aviduṣoḥ ko viśeṣaḥ ? ity āśaṅkyobhayor viśeṣaṃ darśayati prakṛter iti dvābhyām | prakṛter guṇaiḥ prakṛti-kāryair indriyaiḥ sarva-prakāreṇa kriyamāṇāni karmāṇi | tāny aham eva kartā karomīti manyate | atra hetuḥ – ahaṃkāreṇa indriyādiṣv ātmādhyāsena vimūḍha-buddhiḥ san

 

Madhusūdana


vidvad-aviduṣoḥ karmānuṣṣṭhāna-sāmye ‚pi kartṛtvābhimāna-tad-abhāvābhyāṃ viśeṣaṃ darśayan saktāḥ karmaṇīti-ślokārthaṃ vivṛṇoti dvābhyāṃ prakṛter iti | prakṛtir māyā sattva-rajas-tamo-guṇa-mayī mithyā-jñānātmikā pārameśvarī śaktiḥ māyāṃ tu prakṛtiṃ vidyān māyinaṃ tu maheśvaraṃ iti śruteḥ | tasyāḥ prakṛter guṇair vikāraiḥ kārya-kāraṇa-rūpaiḥ kriyamāṇāni laukikāni vaidikāni ca karmāṇi sarvaśaḥ sarva-prakārair ahaṅkāreṇa kārya-kāraṇa-saṃghātātma-pratyayena vimūḍhaḥ svarūpa-vivekāsamartha ātmāntaḥkaraṇaṃ yasya so ‚haṅkāra-vimūḍhātmānātmany ātmābhimānī tāni karmāṇi kartāham iti karomy aham iti manyate kartṛtvādhyāsena | kartāham iti tṛn-pratyayaḥ | tena na lokāvyaya-niṣṭhā-khal-artha-tṛṇām [Pāṇ 2.3.69] iti ṣaṣṭhī-pratiṣedhaḥ

 

Viśvanātha


nanu yadi vidvān api karma kuryāt, tarhi vidvad-aviduṣoḥ ko viśeṣaḥ ? ity āśaṅkya tayor viśeṣaṃ darśayati prakṛter iti dvābhyām | prakṛter guṇaiḥ kāryair indriyaiḥ sarvaśaḥ sarva-prakāreṇa kriyamāṇāni yāni karmāṇi tāny aham eva kartā karomīty avidvān manyate

 

Baladeva


karmitva-sāmye ‚pi vijñājñayor viśeṣam āha prakṛter iti dvābhyām | ahaṃkāra-vimūḍhātmā jano ‚haṃ karmāṇi karteti manyate | na lokāvyaya-niṣṭhā iti sūtrāt ṣaṣṭhī-niṣedhaḥ | karmāṇi laukikāni vaidikāni ca | tāni kīdṛśānīty āha prakṛter īśa-māyāyā guṇais tat-kāryair śarīrendriya-prāṇair īśvara-pravartitaiḥ kriyamāṇānīti | idam eva veditavyam – upakrama-vinirṇayāt saṃvid-vapur-jīvātmāsmad-arthaḥ kartā cānādi-kāla-viṣaya-bhoga-vāsanākrāntas tad-bhogārthikāṃ sva-sannihitāṃ prakṛtim āśliṣṭas tat-kāryeṇāhaṅkāreṇa vimūḍhātmā tādṛśa-sva-vijñāna-śūnyaḥ śarīrādy-ahaṃ-bhāvavān prākṛtaiḥ śarīrādibhir īśena ca siddhāni karmāṇi mayaivaikena kṛtānīti manyate | kartur ātmano yat kartṛtvaṃ tat kila dehādibhis tribhiḥ paramātmanā ca sarva-pravartakena ca siddhyati | na tv ekena jīvenaiva | tac ca mayaiva siddhyatīti jīvo yan manyate tad ahaṅkāra-vimauḍhyād eva – adhiṣṭhānaṃ tathā karthā [Gītā 18.14] ity ādikāc caramādhyāya-vākya-trayāt | kārya-kāraṇa-kartṛtve hetuḥ prakṛtir ucyate [Gītā 13.18] ity atra śarīrendriyādi-kartṛtvaṃ prakṛter iti yad varṇayiṣyate, tatrāpi kevalāyās tasyās tan na śakyaṃ mantum | puruṣa-saṃsargeṇaiva tat-pravṛtter aṅgīkārāt | tataś ca puruṣasya kartṛtvam avarjanīyam iti vyākhyāsyate

 
 

BhG 3.28

tattva-vit tu mahā-bāho guṇa-karma-vibhāgayoḥ
guṇā guṇeṣu vartanta iti matvā na sajjate

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he mahā-bāho (O mighty-armed one!),
tu (but) guṇa-karma-vibhāgayoḥ (of guṇa division and of activity division) tattva-vit (who knows the truth) matvā (after thinking):
guṇāḥ (guṇas) guṇeṣu (in guṇas) vartante iti (they act)
[saḥ] (he) na sajjate (he is not attached).

 

grammar

tattva-vit tattva-vit 1n.1 m.; yaḥ tattvaṁ vetti saḥwho knows the truth (from: tat – that, abst. tat-tva – truth, reality; vid – to know, to understand, -vit – suffix: who knows);
tu av.but, then, or, and;
mahā-bāho mahā-bāhu 8n.1 m.; BV: yasya bāhū mahāntau staḥ saḥO you who have mighty arms (from: mah – to magnify, mahant – great; baṁh – to grow, to increase, bāhu – the arm);
guṇa-karma-vibhāgayoḥ guṇa-karma-vibhāga 6n.2 m.; [TP]: guṇānāṁ ca karmaṇāṁ ca vibhāgayor itiof two divisions: guṇa and ctivity (from: grah – to take, guṇa – quality, virtue, thread; kṛ – to do, karman – activity and its result; vi-bhāj – to divide, to separate; vi-bhāga – share, portion, division);
guṇāḥ guṇa 1n.3 m.qualities, virtues, threads (from: grah – to take);
guṇeṣu guṇa 7n.3 m.in qualities, virtues, threads (from: grah – to take);
vartante vṛt (to move, to happen, to act) Praes. Ā 1v.3they act;
iti av.thus (used to close the quotation);
matvā man (to think) absol.after thinking;
na av.not;
sajjate sañj (to attach, to stick, to embrace) Praes Ā 1v.1he is attached;

 

textual variants


guṇa-karma-vibhāgayoḥguṇa-karma-vibhāgaśaḥ (according to the division of guṇa and activity);
guṇeṣuguṇārthe (in the objects of the guṇas);
sajjate → majjate / saṁjate / sajyate (he sinks / he moves / he clings);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

But as regards the wise man:

yaḥ punar vidvān —

But he who knows the truth, O mightyarmed,
about the divisions of the energies and (their) functions, is not attached,
thinking that the energies act upon the energies.

tattvavit tu mahābāho guṇa-karma-vibhāgayoḥ |
guṇā guṇeṣu vartanta iti matvā na sajjate ||3.28||

He who is versed in the classification of the energies (guṇas) and their respective functions holds that the energies as sense-organs move amid the energies as sense objects, but not the Self. Thus holding, he forms no attachment (for actions).

tattvavit tu mahābāho | kasya tattvavit? guṇa-karma-vibhāgayoḥ guṇavibhāgasya karmavibhāgasya ca tattvavit ity arthaḥ | guṇāḥ karaṇātmakāḥ guṇeṣu viṣayātmakeṣu vartante na ātmā iti matvā na sajjate saktiṃ na karoti ||3.28||

 

Rāmānuja


prakṛter guṇaiḥ sattvādibhiḥ svānurūpaṃ kriyamāṇāni karmāṇi prati ahaṅkāravimūḍhātmā, ahaṃ karteti manyate; ahaṅkāreṇa vimūḍha ātmā yasyāsāv ahaṅkāravimūḍhātmā; ahaṅkāro nāma anahamarthe prakṛtāv ahamabhimānaḥ; tena ajñātasvarūpo guṇakarmasu ahaṃ karteti manyata ityarthaḥ / guṇakarmavibhāgayoḥ sattvādiguṇavibhāge tattatkarmavibhāge ca tattvavit, guṇās sattvādayaḥ guṇeṣu sveṣu kāryeṣu vartanta iti matvā guṇakarmasu ahaṃ karteti na sajjate

 

Śrīdhara


vidvāṃs tu na tathā manyate ity āha tattvavid iti | nāhaṃ guṇātmaka iti guṇebhya ātmano vibhāgaḥ | na me karmāṇīti karmabhyo ‚py ātmano vibhāgaḥ | tayor guṇa-karma-vibhāgayor yas tattvaṃ vetti sa tu na kartṛtvābhiniveśaṃ na karoti | tatra hetuḥ – guṇā iti | guṇā indriyāṇi guṇeṣu viṣayeṣu vartante nāham iti matvā

 

Madhusūdana


vidvāṃs tu tathā na manyata ity āha tattvavid iti | tattvaṃ yāthātmyaṃ vettīti tattvavit | tu-śabdena tasyājñād vaiśiṣṭyam āha | kasya tattvam ity ata āha guṇa-karma-vibhāgayoḥ | guṇā dehendriyāntaḥ-karaṇāny ahaṅkārāspadāni karmāṇi ca teṣāṃ vyāpāra-bhūtāni mama-kārāspadānīti guṇa-karmeti dvandvaikavad bhāvaḥ | vibhajyate sarveṣāṃ jaḍānāṃ vikāriṇāṃ bhāsakatvena pṛthag bhavatīti vibhāgaḥ sva-prakāśa-jñāna-rūpo ‚saṅga ātmā | guṇa-karma ca vibhāgaś ceti dvandvaḥ | tayor guṇa-karma-vibhāgayor bhāsya-bhāsakayor jaḍa-caitanyayor vikāri-nirvikārayos tattvaṃ yāthātmyaṃ yo vetti sa guṇāḥ karaṇātmakā guṇeṣu viṣayeṣu pravartante vikāritvān na tu nirvikāra ātmeti matvā na sajjate saktiṃ kartṛtvābhiniveśam atattvavid iva na karoti | he mahābāho ! iti sambodhayan sāmudrikokta-sat-puruṣa-lakṣaṇa-yogitvān na pṛthag-jana-sādhāraṇyena tvam avivekī bhavitum arhasīti sūcayati |

guṇa-vibhāgasya karma-vibhāgasya ca tattvavid iti vā | asmin pakṣe guṇa-karmaṇor ity etāvataiva nirvāhe vibhāga-padasya prayojanaṃ cintyam

 

Viśvanātha


guṇa-karmaṇor yau vibhāgau tayos tattvaṃ vettīti saḥ | tatra guṇa-vibhāgaḥ sattva-rajas-tamāṃsi | karma-vibhāgaḥ sattvādi-kārya-bhedā devatendriya-viṣayāḥ | tayos tattvaṃ svarūpaṃ | taj-jñas tu tattva-vit | guṇā devatāḥ prayojyānīndriyāṇi cakṣur-ādīni guṇeṣu rūpādiṣu viṣayeṣu vartante | ahaṃ tu na guṇaḥ, nāpi guṇa-kāryaḥ ko ‚pi, nāpi guṇeṣu guṇa-kāryeṣu teṣu me ko ‚pi sambandha iti matvā vidvāṃs tu na sajjate

 

Baladeva


vijñas tu na tathety āha tattva-vit tv iti | guṇa-vibhāgasya karma-vibhāgasya ca tattva-vit | guṇebhya indriyebhyaḥ karmabhyaś ca tat-kṛtebhyo yaḥ svayasa vibhāgo bhedas tasya tattvaṃ svarūpaṃ tat-tad-vaidharmya-paryālocanayā yo nāhaṃ guṇa-karma-vapuḥ iti vettīty arthaḥ | sa hi guṇā indriyāṇi guṇeṣu śabdādiṣu viṣayeṣu tat-tad-devatā-preritāni pravartante tān prakāśayanti | ahaṃ tv asaṅga-vijñānānandatvāt tad-bhinno, na teṣu tādrūpyeṇa varte, na tān prakāśayāmīti matvā teṣu na sajjante | kintv ātmany eva sajjate | atrāpi matvety anena kartṛtvaṃ jīvasyoktaṃ bodhyam

 
 

BhG 3.29

prakṛteḥ guṇa-saṃmūḍhāḥ sajjante guṇa-karmasu
tān akṛtsna-vido mandān kṛtsna-vin na vicālayet

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prakṛteḥ (of the nature) guṇa-sammūḍhāḥ (those bewildered by the guṇas) guṇa-karmasu (to activities of the guṇas) sajjante (they are attached).
kṛtsna-vit (one who has complete knowledge) tān (them) akṛtsna-vidaḥ (those who have incomplete knowledge) mandān (fools) na cālayet (he should not unsettle).

 

grammar

prakṛteḥ prakṛti 6n.1 f.of the nature, primary substance, original cause (from: pra-kṛ – to produce);
guṇa-saṁmūḍhāḥ guṇa-saṁmūḍhāḥ 1n.3 m.; [TP]: guṇaiḥ saṁmūḍhā iti those bewildered by the guṇas (from: grah – to take, guṇa – quality, virtue, thread; sam-muh – to become confused, bewildered, stupefied, [PP] saṁmūḍha – bewildered);
sajjante sañj (to attach, to stick, to embrace) Praes Ā 1v.3they are attached;
guṇa-karmasu guṇa-karma 7n.3 m.; [TP]: guṇānāṁ karmasu itiin the activities of the guṇas (from: grah – to take, guṇa – quality, virtue, thread; kṛ – to do, karman – activity and its result);
tān tat sn. 2n.3 m.them;
akṛtsna-vidaḥ akṛtsna-vit 2n.3 m.; ye ‘kṛtsnaṁ viduḥ tānthose who have incomplete knowledge (from: kṛtsna – whole; vid – to know, to understand, -vit – suffix: who knows);
mandān manda 2n.3 m.slow, apathic, fools (from: mand – to tarry, to pause or mand – to rejoice, to be drunk);
kṛtsna-vit kṛtsna-vit 1n.1 m.; yaḥ kṛtsnaṁ vetti saḥone who has complete knowledge (from: kṛtsna – whole; vid – to know, to understand, -vit – suffix: who knows);
na av.not;
vicālayet vi-cal (to move, to shake) Pot. caus. P 1v.1he should cause to waver, he should unsettle;

 

textual variants


sajjante → majjaṃte / sajjaṃti / sajyaṃte (they sink / they move / they cling);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

Now:

ye punaḥ —

Those deluded by the energies of Nature are attached to the functions of the energies.
He who knows the All should not unsettle the unwise who know not the All.

prakṛter guṇa-saṃmūḍhāḥ sajjante guṇa-karmasu |
tān akṛtsna-vido mandān kṛtsnavin na vicālayet ||3.29||

The foolish believe „we do action for the sake of its result.”

prakṛteḥ guṇaiḥ samyak mūḍhāḥ saṃmohitāḥ santaḥ sajjante guṇānāṃ karmasu guṇa-karmasu vayaṃ karma kurmaḥ phalāya iti |

These men who are attached to action look only to the results of their actions. The man who knows the All – the man who knows the Self – should not of himself unsettle such men, i.e., he should not disturb their conviction.

tān karma-saṅgino ’kṛtsna-vidaḥ karma-phala-mātra-darśino mandān manda-prajñān kṛtsna-vit ātma-vit svayaṃ na vicālayet buddhi-bheda-karaṇam eva cālanaṃ tan na kuryāt ity arthaḥ ||3.29||

 

Rāmānuja


akṛtsnavidaḥ svātmadarśanāya pravṛttāḥ prakṛtisaṃsṛṣṭatayā prakṛter guṇair yathāvasthitātmani saṃmūḍhāḥ guṇakarmasu kriyāsv eva sajjante, na tadviviktātmasvarūpe / atas te jñānayogāya na prabhavantīti karmayoga eva teṣām adhikāraḥ / evaṃbhūtāṃs tān mandān akṛtsnavidaḥ kṛtsnavit svayaṃ jñānayogāvasthānena na vicālayet / te kila mandāḥ śreṣṭhajanācārānuvartinaḥ karmayogād utthitam enaṃ dṛṣṭvā karmayogāt pracalitamanaso bhaveyuḥ / ataḥ śreṣṭhaḥ svayam api karmayoge tiṣṭhan ātmayāthātmyajñānenātmano ‚kartṛtvam anusandhānaḥ, karmayoga evātmāvalokane nirapekṣasādhanam iti darśayitvā tān akṛtsnavido joṣayed ityarthaḥ / jñānayogādhikāriṇo ‚pi jñānayogād asyaiva jyāyastvaṃ pūrvam evoktam / ato vyapadeśyo lokasaṃgrahāyaitam eva kuryāt

 

Śrīdhara


na buddhi-bhedam ity upasaṃharati prakṛter iti | ye prakṛter guṇaiḥ sattvādibhiḥ saṃmūḍhāḥ santaḥ guṇeṣv indriyeṣu tat-karmasu ca sajjante | tān akṛtsna-vido mandān manda-matīn kṛtsna-vit sarvajño na vicālayet

 

Madhusūdana


tad evaṃ vidvad-aviduṣoḥ karmānuṣṭhāna-sāmyena vidvān aviduṣo buddhi-bhedaṃ na kuryād ity uktam upasaṃharati | prakṛteḥ pūrvoktāyā māyāyā guṇaiḥ kāryatayā dharmair dehādibhir vikāraiḥ samyaṅ mūḍhāḥ svarūpāsphuraṇena tān evātmatvena manyamānās teṣām eva guṇānāṃ dehendriyāntaḥ-karaṇānāṃ karmasu vyāpāreṣu sajjante saktiṃ vayaṃ kurmas tat-phalāyeti dṛḍhatarām ātmīya-buddhiṃ kurvanti ye tān karma-saṅgino ‚kṛtsna-vido ‚nātmābhimānino madnān aśuddha-cittatvena jñā̆nādhikāram aprāptān kṛtsna-vit paripūrṇātmavit svayaṃ na vicālayet karma-śraddhāto na pracyāvayed ity arthaḥ | ye tv amandāḥ śuddhāntaḥ-karaṇās te svayam eva vivekodayena vicalanti jñānādhikāraṃ prāptā ity abhiprāyaḥ |

kṛtsnākṛtsna-śabdāv ātmānātma-paratayā śruty-arthānusāreṇa vārtika-kṛdbhir vyākhyātau –

sad evety ādi-vākyebhyaḥ kṛtsnaṃ vastu yato ‚dvayam |
sambhavas tad-viruddhasya kuto ‚kṛtsnasya vastunaḥ ||
yasmin dṛṣṭe ‚py adṛṣṭo ‚rthaḥ sa tad anyaś ca śiṣyate |
tathādṛṣṭe ‚pi dṛṣṭaḥ syād akṛtsnas tādṛg ucyate || iti |

anātmanaḥ sāvayavatvād aneka-dharmavattāc ca kenacid dharmeṇa kenacid avayavena vā viśiṣṭe tasminn ekasmin ghaṭādau jñāte ‚pi dharmāntareṇa avayavāntareṇa vā viśiṣṭaḥ sa evājñāto ‚vaśiṣyate | tad anyaś ca paṭādir ajñāto ‚ vaśiṣyata eva | tathā tasmin ghaṭādāv ajñāte ‚pi paṭādir jñātaḥ syād iti taj-jñāne ‚pi tasyānyasya cājñānāt tad-ajñāne æpy anya-jñānāc ca so ‚kṛtsna ucyate | kṛtsnas tv advaya ātmaiva taj-jñāne kasyacid avaśeṣasyābhāvād iti śloka-dvayārthaḥ

 

Viśvanātha


nanu yadi jīvā guṇebhyo guṇa-kāryebhyaś ca pṛthag-bhūtās tad-asambandhās tarhi kathaṃ te viṣayeṣu sajjanto dṛśyante ? tatrāha prakṛter guṇa-saṃmūḍhās tad-āveśāt prāpta-saṃmohā yathā bhūtāviṣṭo manuṣya ātmānaṃ bhūtam eva manyate, tathaiva prakṛti-guṇāviṣṭā jīvāḥ svān guṇān eva manyante | tato guṇa-karmasu guṇa-kāryeṣu viṣayeṣu sajjante | tān akṛtsna-vido manda-matīn kṛtsna-vit sarvajño na vicālayet | tvaṃ guṇebhyaḥ pṛthag-bhūto jīvo na tu guṇaḥ iti vicāraṃ prāpayituṃ na yatate, kintu guṇāveśa-nivartakaṃ niṣkāma-karmaiva kārayet | na hi bhūtāviṣṭo manuṣyaḥ na tvaṃ bhūtaḥ kintu manuṣya eva iti śata-kṛtve ‚py upadeśena na svāsthyam āpadyate, kintu tan-nivartakauṣudha-maṇi-mantrādi-prayogenaiveti bhāvaḥ

 

Baladeva


na buddhi-bhedaṃ janayed ity etad upasaṃharati prakṛter iti | prakṛter guṇena tat-kāryeṇāhaṅkāreṇa mūḍhā bhūtāveśa-nyāyena dehādikam evātmānaṃ manyamānā janā guṇānāṃ dehendriyāṇāṃ karmasu vyāpāreṣu sajjante | tān akṛtsna-vido ‚lpa-jñān mandān ātma-tattva-grahaṇālasān kṛtsna-vit pūrṇātma-jñāno na vicālayet guṇa-karmānyo viśuddha-caitanyānandas tvam iti tattvaṃ grāhayituṃ necchet, kintu tad-rucim anusṛtya vaidika-karmāṇi śreṇyākramād ātma-tattva-pravaṇaṃ cikīrsed iti bhāvaḥ

 
 

BhG 3.30

mayi sarvāṇi karmāṇi saṃnyasyādhy-ātma-cetasā
nirāśīr nirmamo bhūtvā yudhyasva vigata-jvaraḥ

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syntax


[ataḥ tvam] (therefore you) mayi (in me) sarvāṇi (all) karmāṇi (activities) saṁnyasya (after laying aside),
adhy-ātma-cetasā (with the mind absorbed in the Supreme spirit) nirāśīḥ (who has no desires) nirmamaḥ (without [the notion of] ‘mine’) vigata-jvaraḥ (whose grief is gone) bhūtvā (after being), yudhyasva (fight).

 

grammar

mayi asmat sn. 7n.1in me;
sarvāṇi sarva sn. 2n.3 n.all;
karmāṇi karman 2n.3 n.activities (from: kṛ – to do);
saṁnyasya sam-ni-as (to lay aside, to renounce, to give up) absol.after giving up, after renouncing;
adhy-ātma-cetasā adhi-ātma-cetas 3n.1 n.; [TP]: adhy-ātmani cetasetiby te mind absorbed in the Supreme Self (from: adhi – over, above; ātman – self; adhy-ātma – governing the self, the Supreme Spirit; cit – to perceive, to think, cetas – mind, thought, heart, consciousness);
nir-āśīḥ nir-ā-śis 1n.1 m.who has no desires (from: niḥ – out of, away from, without; ā-śās – to desire, āśis – desire, blessing);
nir-mamaḥ nir-mama 1n.1 m.without [the notion of] ‘mine’, unselfish, uninterested (from: niḥ – out of, away from, without; mama – my);
bhūtvā bhū (to be) absol. after being;
yudhyasva yudh Imperat. Ā 2v.1fight;
vigata-jvaraḥ vigata-jvara 1n.1 m.; BV: yasya jvaro vigato ‘sti saḥwhose fever is gone (from: jval – to burn, to glow, jvara – fever, pain, grief; vi-gam – to go away, [PP] vigata – gone);

 

textual variants


saṃnyasyādhy-ātma-cetasā → vinyasyādhy-ātma-cetasā (after renouncing by means of the mind absorbed in the Supreme Spirit);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

How an aspirant for Moksha should do actions.
How then should action be performed by the ignorant man who seeks moksha and who is qualified for action only? The answer follows:

kathaṃ punaḥ karmaṇy adhikṛtenājñena mumukṣuṇā karma kartavyam iti, ucyate —

Renouncing all actions in Me, with thy thought resting on the Self,
being free from hope, free from selfishness, devoid of fever, do thou fight.

mayi sarvāṇi karmāṇi saṃnyasyādhyātma-cetasā |
nirāśīr nirmamo bhūtvā yudhyasva vigata-jvaraḥ ||3.30||

To me, Vasudeva, the Divine Being, the Supreme Lord, the Omniscient, the Self of all, surrender all actions, with the wise thought that „I, the agent, do this for the Īśvara’s sake as His liege.” Fever: anguish, grief.

mayi vāsudeve parameśvare sarvajñe sarvātmani sarvāṇi karmāṇi saṃnyasya nikṣipyādhyātma-cetasā viveka-buddhyā, ahaṃ kartā īśvarāya bhṛtyavat karomi ity anayā buddhyā |

kiṃ ca, nirāśīs tyaktāśīḥ nirmamo mama-bhāvaś ca nirgato yasya tava sa tvaṃ nirmamo bhūtvā yudhyasva vigata-jvaro vigata-santāpo vigata-śokaḥ sann ity arthaḥ ||3.30||

 

Rāmānuja


prakṛtiviviktātmasvabhāvanirūpaṇena guṇeṣu kartṛtvam āropya karmānuṣṭhānaprakāra uktaḥ guṇeṣu kartṛtvānusandhānaṃ cedam eva ātmano na svarūpaprayuktam idaṃ kartṛtvam, api tu guṇasamparkakṛtam iti prāptāprāptavivekena guṇakṛtam ity anusandhānam idānīm ātmanāṃ paramapuruṣaśarīratayā tanniyāmyatvasvarūpanirūpaṇena bhagavati puruṣottame sarvātmabhūte guṇakṛtaṃ ca kartṛtvam āropya karmakartavyatocyate

mayi sarveśvare sarvabhūtāntarātmabhūte sarvāṇi karmāṇy adhyātmacetasā saṃnyasya, nirāśīr nirmamaś ca vigatajvaro yuddhādikaṃ sarvaṃ coditaṃ karma kuruṣva / ātmani yac cetaḥ tad adhyātmacetaḥ / ātmasvarūpaviṣayeṇa śrutiśatasiddhena jñānenetyarthaḥ / „antaḥ praviṣṭaḥ śāstā janānāṃ sarvātmā ….. antaḥ praviṣṭaṃ kartāram etam” „ātmani tiṣṭhan ātmano ‚ntaro yam ātmā na veda yasyātmā śarīraṃ ya ātmānam antaro yamayati, sa ta ātmāntaryāmyamṛtaḥ” ity evam ādyāḥ śrutayaḥ paramapuruṣapravartyaṃ taccharīrabhūtam enam ātmānam, paramapuruṣaṃ ca pravartayitāram ācakṣate / smṛtayaś ca „praśāsitāraṃ sarveṣām” ityādyāḥ / „sarvasya cāhaṃ hṛdi sanniviṣṭo mattaḥ smṛtir jñānam apohanaṃ ca”, „īśvaras sarvabhūtānāṃ hṛddeśe ‚rjuna tiṣṭhati / bhrāmayan sarvabhūtāni yantrārūḍhāni māyayā // BhGR_3.” iti vakṣyate / ato maccharīratayā matpravartyātmasvarūpānusandhānena sarvāṇi karmāṇi mayaiva kriyamāṇānīti mayi paramapuruṣe saṃnyasya, tāni ca kevalaṃ madārādhanānīti kṛtvā tatphale nirāśīḥ, tata eva tatra karmaṇi mamatārahito bhūtvā vigatajvaro yuddhādikaṃ kuruṣva svakīyenātmanā kartrā svakīyaiś copakaraṇaiḥ svārādhanaikaprayojanāya paramapuruṣaḥ sarvaśeṣī sarveśvaraḥ svayam eva svakarmāṇi kārayatīty anusandhāya, karmas mamatārahitaḥ, prācīnenānādikālapravṛttānantapāpasañcayena katham ahaṃ bhaviṣyāmīty evaṃbhūtāntarjvaravinirmuktaḥ, paramapuruṣa eva karmabhir ārādhito bandhān mocayiṣyatīti sukhena karmayogam eva kuruṣv ityarthaḥ / „tam īśvarāṇāṃ paramaṃ maheśvaraṃ taṃ daivatānāṃ paramaṃ ca daivatam”, „patiṃ viśvasya” , „patiṃ patīnām” ityādiśrutisiddhiṃ hi sarveśvaratvaṃ sarvaśeṣitvaṃ ca / īśvaratvam niyantṛtvam, śeṣitvaṃ patitvam

 

Śrīdhara


tad evaṃ tattva-vido ‚pi karma kartavyam | tvaṃ tu nādyāpi tattvavit | ataḥ karmaiva kurv ity āha mayīti | sarvāṇi karmāṇi mayi saṃnyasya samarpya | adhyātma-cetasā antaryāmy-adhīno ‚haṃ karma karomīti dṛṣṭyā | nirāśī niṣkāmaḥ | ataeva mat-phala-sādhanaṃ mad-artham idaṃ karmety evaṃ mamatā-śūnyaś ca bhūtvā | vigata-jvaras tyakta-śokaś ca bhūtvā

 

Madhusūdana


evaṃ karmānuṣṭhāna-sāmye ‚py ajña-vijñeyoḥ kartṛtvābhiniveśa-tad-abhāvābhyāṃ viśeṣa uktaḥ | idānīm ajñasyāpi mumukṣor amumukṣv-apekṣayā bhagavad-arpaṇaṃ phalābhisandhy-abhāvaṃ ca viśeṣaṃ vadann ajñatayārjunasya karmādhikāraṃ draḍhayati mayīti | mayi bhagavati vāsudeve parameśvare sarvajñe sarva-niyantari sarvātmani sarvāṇi karmāṇi laukikāni vaidikāni ca sarva-prakārāṇi adhyātma-cetasāhaṃ kartāntaryāmy-adhīnas tasmā eveśvarāya rājña iva bhṛtyaḥ karmāṇi karomīty anayā buddhyā saṃnyasya samarpya nirāśīr niṣkāmo nirmamo deha-putra-bhrātrādiṣu svīyeṣu mamatā-śūnyo vigata-jvaraḥ | santāpa-hetutvāc choka eva jvara-śabdenoktaḥ | aihika-pāratrika-duryaśo-naraka-pātādi-nimitta-śoka-rahitaś ca bhūtvā tvaṃ mumukṣur yudhyasva vihitāni karmāṇi kurv ity abhiprāyaḥ | atra bhagavad-arpaṇaṃ niṣkāmatvaṃ ca sarva-karma-sādhāraṇaṃ mumukṣoḥ | nirmamatvaṃ tyakta-śokatvaṃ ca yuddha-mātre prakṛta iti draṣṭavyam anyatra mamatāśokayor aprasaktatvāt

 

Viśvanātha


tasmāt tvaṃ mayy adhyātma-cetasātmanīty arthaḥ | evam adhyātmam avyayībhāva-samāsāt | tataś ca ātmani yac cetas tad-adhyātma-cetas tenātma-niṣṭhenaiva cetasā, na tu viṣaya-niṣṭhenety arthaḥ | mayi karmāṇi saṃnyasya samarpya nirāśīr niṣkāmo nirmamaḥ sarvatra mamatā-śūnyo yudhyasva

 

Baladeva


mayīti | yasmād evaṃ tasmāt pariniṣṭhitas tvam adhyātma-cetaḥ svātma-tattva-viṣayaka-jñānena sarvāṇi karmāṇi rājñi bhṛtya iva mayi pareśe saṃnyasya samarpayitvā yudhyasva | kartṛtvābhiniveśa-śūnyaḥ | yathā rāja-tantro bhṛtyas tad-ājñayā karmāṇi karoti, tathā mat-tantras tvaṃ mad-ājñayā tāni kuru lokān saṃjighṛkṣuḥ | ātmani yac cetas tad adhyātma-cetas tena | vibhakty-arthe ‚vyayībhāvaḥ | nirāśīḥ svāmy-ājñayā karomīti tat-phalecchā-śūnyaḥ | ataeva mat-phala-sādhanāni mad-artham amūni karmāṇīty evaṃ mamatva-varjjitaḥ | vigata-jvaras tyakta-bandhu-vadha-nimittaka-santāpaś ca bhūtveti | arjunasya kṣatriyatvād yudhyasvety uktam | svāśrama-vihitāni karmāṇi mumukṣubhiḥ kāryāṇīti vākyārthaḥ

 
 

BhG 3.31

ye me matam idaṃ nityam anutiṣṭhanti mānavāḥ
śraddhā-vanto nasūyanto mucyante te pi karmabhiḥ

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ye (those who) mānavāḥ (people) śraddhā-vantaḥ (who have faith) anasūyantaḥ (who are free from spite) me (my) idam (this) matam (view) nityam (constantly) anutiṣṭhanti (they follow),
te api (they indeed) karmabhiḥ (from activities) mucyante (they are released).

 

grammar

ye yat sn. 1n.3 m.those who;
me asmat sn. 6n.1my (shortened form of: mama);
matam mata (man – to think) [PP] 2n.1 n.regarded, esteemed; thought, opinion, view;
idam idam 2n.1 n.this;
nityam av.constantly, eternally (from: nitya – continual, eternal);
or: nitya 2n.1 n.continual, eternal;
anutiṣṭhanti anu-sthā (to follow, to practise) Praes. P 1v.3they follow;
mānavāḥ mānava 1n.3 m.people (from: man – to think, manu – a man, a person);
śraddhā-vantaḥ śraddhā-vant 1n.3 m.who have faith (from: śrat – in compounds: faith; dhā – to put [faith]; śraddhā – faith, confidence; -mant / -vant – suffix denoting one who possesses);
anasūyantaḥ an-asūyant (asūya – to be displeased) PPr 1n.3 m.who are free from spite, envy, ill-will;
mucyante muc (to liberate, to release) Praes. pass. 1v.3they are released (from what? – pass. requires instrumental or ablative);
te tat sn. 1n.3 m.they;
api av.although, moreover, besides, even;
karmabhiḥ karman 3n.3 n.by activities (from: kṛ – to do);

 

warianty tekstu


ye me → yo me / ye ye (those who my / those who);
idaṁ → imaṁ (this);
anutiṣṭhanti → anuvartaṁti (they follow);
mucyante te pi karmabhiḥ → mucyaṁte sarva-karmabhiḥ / mucyaṁte sarva-kilbiṣaiḥ / mucyante te hi karmabhiḥ (they are released from all work / they are released from all faults / indeed they are released from all work);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

yad etan mama mataṃ karma kartavyam iti sa-pramāṇam uktaṃ tat tathā —

Men who constantly practise this teaching of Mine
with faith and without cavilling, they too are liberated from actions.

ye me matam idaṃ nityam anutiṣṭhanti mānavāḥ |
śraddhāvanto ’nasūyanto mucyante te’pi karmabhiḥ ||3.31||

Men who always follow this teaching of Mine without cavilling, i.e., without cherishing any feeling of envy towards Me, Vasudeva, the Supreme Master (Parama-Guru) – they too are released from actions, i.e., from dharma and a-dharma, from the merit and demerit of actions.

ye me madīyam idaṃ mataṃ nityam anutiṣṭhanti anuvartante mānavā manuṣyāḥ śraddhāvantaḥ śraddadhānā anasūyanto ’sūyāṃ ca mayi parama-gurau vāsudeve ’kurvanto, mucyante te’py evaṃ bhūtāḥ karmabhir dharmādharmākhyaiḥ ||3.31||

 

Rāmānuja


ayam eva sākṣād upaniṣatsārabhūto ‚rtha ityāha

ye mānavāḥ śāstrādhikāriṇaḥ ayam eva śāstrārtha iti etan me mataṃ niścitya tathānutiṣṭhanti, ye cānanutiṣṭhanto ‚py asmin śāstrārthe śraddadhānā bhavanti, ye cāśraddadhānā api evaṃ śāstrārtho na saṃbhavatīti nābhyasūyanti asmin mahāguṇe śāstrārthe doṣam anāviṣkurvanto bhavantītyarthaḥ te sarve bandhahetubhir anādikālārabdhais sarvaiḥ karmabhir mucyante; te ‚pi ity apiśabdād eṣāṃ pṛthakkaraṇam / idānīm ananutiṣṭhanto ‚py asmin śāstrārthe śraddadhānā anabhyasūyavaś ca śraddhayā cānasūyayā ca kṣīṇapāpāḥ acireṇemam eva śāstrārtham anuṣṭhāya mucyanta ityarthaḥ

 

Śrīdhara


evaṃ karmānuṣṭhāne guṇam āha ye ma iti | mad-vākye śraddhāvanto |nasūyanto duḥkhātmake karmaṇi pravartayatīti doṣa-dṛṣṭim akurvantaś ca me madīyam idaṃ matam anutiṣṭhanti te ‚pi śanaiḥ karma kurvāṇāḥ samyag jñānivat karmabhir mucyante

 

Madhusūdana


phalābhisandhi-rāhityena bhagavad-arpaṇa-buddhyā bhagavad-arpaṇa-buddhyā vihita-karmānuṣṭhānaṃ sattva-śuddhi-jñāna-prāpti-dvāreṇa mukti-phalam ity āha ye ma iti | idaṃ phalābhisandhi-rāhityena vihita-karmācaraṇa-rūpaṃ mama matam nityam nitya-veda-bodhitatvenānādi-paramparā-gatam āvaśyakam iti vā sarvadeti vā | mānavāḥ manuṣyā ye kecin manuṣyādhikāritvāt karmaṇāṃ śraddhāvantaḥ śāstrācāryopadiṣṭe ‚rthe ‚nanubhūte ‚py evam evaitad iti viśvāsaḥ śraddhā tadvantaḥ | anasūyanto guṇeṣu doṣāviṣkaraṇam asūyā | sā ca duḥkhātmake karmaṇi māṃ pravartayann akāruṇiko ‚yam ity evaṃrūpā prakṛte prasaktā tām asūyāṃ mayi gurau vāsudeve sarva-suhṛdy akurvanto ye ‚nutiṣṭhanti te ‚pi sattva-śuddhi-jñāna-prāpti-dvāreṇa samyag-jñānivan tmucyante karmabhir dharmādharmākhyaiḥ

 

Viśvanātha


sva-kṛtopadeśe pravartayitum āha ye ma iti

 

Baladeva


śruti-rahasye svamate ‚nuvartināṃ phalaṃ vadan tasya śraiṣṭhyaṃ vyañjayati ye ma iti | nityaṃ sarvadā śruti-bodhitatvenānādi-prāptaṃ vā | śraddhāvanto dṛḍha-viśvastāḥ | anasūyanto mocakatva-guṇavati tasmin kim amunā śrama-bahulena niṣphalena karmaṇety evaṃ doṣāropa-śūnyāḥ | te ‚pīty apir avadhāraṇe | yad vā, ye mamedaṃ matam anutiṣṭhanti ye cānuṣṭhātum aśaknuvanto ‚pi tatra śraddhālavaḥ, ye ca śraddhālavo ‚pi tan nāsūyante te ‚pīty arthaḥ | sāmpratānuṣṭhānābhāve ‚pi tasmin śraddhayānasūyayā ca kṣīṇa-doṣās te kiṃcit prānte tad anuṣṭhāya mucyante iti bhāvaḥ

 
 

BhG 3.32

ye tv etad abhyasūyanto nānutiṣṭhanti me matam
sarva-jñāna-vimūḍhāṃs tān viddhi naṣṭān acetasaḥ

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tu (but) ye (those who) abhyasūyantaḥ (spiteful) me (my) etat (this) matam (view) na anutiṣṭhanti (they do not follow),
tān (them) acetasaḥ (mindless) sarva-jñāna-vimūḍhān (who are bewildered in all knowledge) naṣṭān (who are ruined) viddhi (you must know).

 

grammar

ye yat sn. 1n.3 m.those who;
tu av.but, then, or, and;
etat etat sn. 2n.1 n.this;
abhyasūyantaḥ abhi-asūyant (asūya – to be displeased) PPr 1n.3 m.who are full of spite, envy, ill-will;
na av.not;
anutiṣṭhanti anu-sthā (to follow, to practise) Praes. P 1v.3they follow;
me asmat sn. 6n.1my (shortened form of: mama);
matam mata (man – to think) [PP] 2n.1 n.regarded, esteemed; thought, opinion, view;
sarva-jñāna-vimūḍhān sarva-jñāna-vimūḍha 2n.3 m.; [TP]: sarvasmin jñāne vimūdhān itiwho are bewildered in all knowledge (from: sarva – all, whole; jñā – to know, to understand, jñāna – knowledge, wisdom, intelligence; vi-muh – to become confused, bewildered, stupefied, [PP] vimūḍha – bewildered);
tān tat sn. 2n.3 m.them;
viddhi vid (to know, to understand) Imperat. P 2v.1you must know;
naṣṭān naṣṭa (naś – to disappear, to be lost, to perish) [PP] 2n.3 m.who are ruined, perished;
acetasaḥ a-cetas 2n.3 m.unconscious, mindless, fools (from: cit – to perceive, to think; cetas – mind, thought, heart, consciousness);

 

textual variants


nānutiṣṭhanti nānuvartaṁti (they do not follow);
acetasaḥ → acetanaḥ / vicetasaḥ (without consciousness/ fools);
viddhi naṣṭān acetasaḥ → vinaṣṭān viddhy acetasaḥ (fools you must know as ruined);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

But those who, carping at this, My teaching, practise it not, –
know them as deluded in all knowledge, as senseless men doomed to destruction.

ye tv etad abhyasūyanto nānutiṣṭhanti me matam |
sarva-jñāna-vimūḍhāṃs tān viddhi naṣṭān acetasaḥ ||3.32||

ye tu tad-viparītā etan mama matam abhyasūyanto nindanto nānutiṣṭhanti nānuvartante me matam | sarveṣu jñāneṣu vividhaṃ mūḍhās te | sarva-jñāna-vimūḍhāṃs tān viddhi jānīhi naṣṭān nāśaṃ gatān acetaso ’vivekinaḥ ||3.32||

 

Rāmānuja


bhagavadabhimatam aupaniṣadam artham ananutiṣṭhatām aśraddadhānānām abhyasūyatāṃ ca doṣam āha

ye tv etat sarvam ātmavastu maccharīratayā madādhāraṃ maccheṣabhūtaṃ madekapravartyam iti me mataṃ nānutiṣṭhanti naivam anusandhāya sarvāṇi karmāṇi kurvate, ye ca na śraddadhate, ye cābhyasūyanto vartante tān sarveṣu jñāneṣu viśeṣeṇa mūḍhān tata eva naṣṭān, acetaso viddhi; cetaḥkāryaṃ hi vastuyāthātmyaniścayaḥ; tadabhāvād acetasaḥ; viparītajñānāḥ sarvatra vimūḍhāś ca

 

Śrīdhara


vipakṣe doṣam āha ye tv etad iti | ye tu nānutiṣṭhanti tān acetaso viveka-śūnyān ataeva sarvasmin karmaṇi brahma-viṣaye ca yaj jñānaṃ tatra vimūḍhān naṣṭān viddhi

 

Madhusūdana


evam anvaye guṇam uktvā vyatireke doṣam āha ye tv iti | tu-śabdaḥ śraddāvad-vaidharymyam aśraddhāṃ sūcayati | tena ye nāstikyād aśraddadhānā abhyasūyanto doṣam udbhāvayanta etan mama mataṃ nānuvartante tān acetaso duṣṭa-cittān ataeva sarva-jñāna-vimūḍhān sarvatra karmaṇi brahmaṇi sa-guṇe nirguṇe ca yaj jñānaṃ tatra vividhaṃ pramāṇataḥ prameyataḥ prayojanataś ca mūḍhān sarva-prakāreṇāyogyān naṣṭān sarva-puruṣārtha-bhraṣṭān viddhi jānīhi

 

Viśvanātha


vipakṣe doṣam āha ye tv iti

 

Baladeva


vipakṣe doṣam āha ye tv etad iti | ye tu nānutiṣṭhanti tān acetaso viveka-śūnyān ataeva sarvasmin karmaṇi brahma-viṣaye ca yaj jñānaṃ tatra vimūḍhān naṣṭān viddhi

 
 

BhG 3.33

sadṛśaṃ ceṣṭate svasyāḥ prakṛter jñānavān api
prakṛtiṃ yānti bhūtāni nigrahaḥ kiṃ kariṣyati

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syntax


jñānavān api (even one has knowledge) svasyāḥ (of own’s own) prakṛteḥ (of the  nature) sadṛśam (accordingly) ceṣṭate (he acts),
[tasmād] (therefore) bhūtāni (creatures) prakṛtiṁ (the nature) yānti (they attain).
nigrahaḥ (suppression) kiṁ (what?) kariṣyati (it will do).

 

grammar

sadṛśam av.accordingly (from: sadṛśa – like, resembling, suitably: requires genitive);
ceṣṭate ceṣṭ (to move, to endeavour, to act) Praes. Ā 1v.1he acts, he endeavours;
svasyāḥ sva sn. 6n.1 f.of one’s own;
prakṛteḥ prakṛti 6n.1 f.of nature, primary substance, original cause (from: pra-kṛ – to produce);
jñāna-vān jñāna-vant 1n.1 m.who has knowledge (from: jñā – to know, to understand, jñāna – knowledge, wisdom, intelligence; -mant / -vant – suffix denoting one who possesses);
api av.although, moreover, besides, even;
prakṛtim prakṛti 2n.1 f.nature, primary substance, original cause (from: pra-kṛ – to produce);
yānti (to go, to attain) Praes. P 1v.3they go, they attain;
bhūtāni bhūta (bhū – to be) [PP] 1n.3 n.beings, creatures;
nigrahaḥ nigraha 1n.1 m.suppression, control (from: ni-grah – to hold back, to control);
kim kim sn. 2n.1 n.what?
kariṣyati kṛ (to do) Fut. P 1v.1it will do;

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

Influence of man’s nature on his conduct.
Then, why do they, not following Thy doctrine, perform others duties and neglect their own? Thus opposed to Thee, why are they not afraid of the sin of transgressing Thy command?

kasmāt punaḥ kāraṇāt tvadīyaṃ mataṃ nānutiṣṭhantaḥ para-dharmān anutiṣṭhanti? sva-dharmaṃ ca nānuvartante? tvat-pratikūlāḥ kathaṃ na bibhyati tvac-chāsanātikrama-doṣāt ? tatrāha —

Even the man of knowledge acts in conformity with his own nature;
(all) beings follow (their) nature; what shall coercion avail?

sadṛśaṃ ceṣṭate svasyāḥ prakṛter jñānavān api |
prakṛtiṃ yānti bhūtāni nigrahaḥ kiṃ kariṣyati ||3.33||

Nature (prakṛti) is the samskara (the latent self-reproductive impression of the past acts of dharma and a-dharma) manifesting itself at the commencement of the present birth.

sadṛśam anurūpaṃ ceṣṭate ceṣṭāṃ karoti | kasyāḥ? svasyāḥ svakīyāyāḥ prakṛteḥ | prakṛtir nāma pūrva-kṛta-dharmādharmādi-saṃskārā vartamāna-janmādāv abhivyaktāḥ | sā prakṛtiḥ | tasyāḥ sadṛśam eva sarvo jantur jñānavān api ceṣṭate, kiṃ punar mūrkhaḥ?

Even the man of knowledge acts according to his own nature; it needs no saying that an ignorant man acts according to his own nature. Thus all living beings follow their own nature. What shall coercion in the shape of prohibition avail? That is to say, to Me or to anybody else, nature is irresistible.

tasmāt prakṛtiṃ yānty anugacchanti bhūtāni prāṇinaḥ | nigraho niṣedha-rūpaḥ kiṃ kariṣyati mama vānyasya vā? durnigrahā prakṛtir iti vākya-śeṣaḥ ||3.33||

 

Rāmānuja


evaṃ prakṛtisaṃsargiṇas tadguṇodrekakṛtaṃ kartṛtvam, tac ca paramapuruṣāyattam ity anusandhāya karmayogayogyena jñānayogayogyena ca karmayogasya suśakatvād apramādatvād antargatātmajñānatayā nirapekṣatvāt, itarasya duśśakatvāt sapramādatvāc śarīradhāraṇādyarthatayā karmāpekṣatvāt karmayoga eva kartavyaḥ; vyapadeśyasya tu viśeṣataḥ sa eva kartavyaḥ iti coktam / ataḥ param adhyāyaśeṣeṇa jñānayogasya duśśakatayā sapramādatocyate

prakṛtiviviktam īdṛśam ātmasvarūpam, tad eva sarvadānusandheyam iti ca śāstrāṇi pratipādayantīti jñānavān api svasyāḥ prakṛteḥ prācīnavāsanāyās sadṛśaṃ prākṛtaviṣayeṣv eva ceṣṭate; kutaḥ? prakṛtiṃ yānti bhūtāni acitsaṃsṛṣṭā jantavo ‚nādikālapravṛttavāsanām evānuyānti; tāni vāsanānuyāyīni bhūtāni śāstrakṛto nigrahaḥ kiṃ kariṣyati

 

Śrīdhara


nanu tarhi mahā-phalatvād indriyāṇi nigṛhya niṣkāmāḥ santaḥ sarve ‚pi svadharmam eva kiṃ nānutiṣṭhanti ? tatrāha sadṛśam iti | prakṛtiḥ prācīna-karma-saṃskārādhīnaḥ svabhāvaḥ | svasyāḥ svakīyāyāḥ prakṛteḥ svabhāvasya sadṛśam anurūpam eva guṇa-doṣa-jñānavān api ceṣṭate | kiṃ punar vaktavyam ajñaś ceṣṭata iti | yasmād bhūtāni sarve ‚pi prāṇinaḥ prakṛtiṃ yānty anuvartante | evaṃ ca sati indriya-nigrahaḥ kiṃ kariṣyati ? prakṛter balīyastvād ity arthaḥ

 

Madhusūdana


nanu rājña iva tava śāsanātikrame bhayaṃ paśyantaḥ katham asūyantas tava mataṃ nānuvartante kathaṃ vā sarva-puruṣārtha-sādhane pratikūlā bhavantīty ata āha sadṛśam iti | prakṛtir nāma prāg-janma-kṛta-dharmādharma-jñānecchādi-saṃskāro vartamāna-janmany abhivyaktaḥ sarvato balavān taṃ vidyā-karmaṇī samanvārabhete pūrva-prajñā ca iti śruti-pramāṇakaḥ | tasyāḥ svakīyāyāḥ prakṛteḥ sadṛśam anurūpam eva sarvo jantur jñānavān brahmavid api paśv-ādibhiś cāviśeṣāt iti nyāyāt | guṇa-doṣa-jñānavān vā ceṣṭate kiṃ punar mūrkhaḥ | tasmād bhūtāni sarve prāṇinaḥ prakṛtiṃ yānty anuvartante puruṣārtha-bhraṃśa-hetu-bhūtām api | tatra mama vā rājño vā nigrahaḥ kiṃ kariṣyati | rāgautkaṭyena duritān nivartayituṃ na śaknotīty arthaḥ | mahā-naraka-sādhanatvaṃ jñātvāpi durvāsanā-prābalyāt pāpeṣu pravartamānā na mac-chvāsanātikrama-doṣād bibhyatīti bhāvaḥ

 

Viśvanātha


nanu rājña iva tava parameśvarasya matam ananutiṣṭhanto rāja-kṛtād iva tva-kṛtān nigrahāt kiṃ na vibhāti ? satyam | ye khalu indriyāṇi cārayanto vartante, te vivvekino ‚pi rājñaḥ parameśvarasya ca śāsanaṃ mantuṃ na śaknuvanti | tathaiva teṣāṃ svabhāvo ‚bhūd ity āha sadṛśam iti | jñānavān api evaṃ pāpe kṛte saty evaṃ narako bhaviṣyaty evaṃ rāja-daṇḍo bhaviṣyati | evaṃ duryaśaś ca bhaviṣyatīti vivekavān api svasyāḥ prakṛteḥ cirantana-pāpābhyāsottha-duḥkha-bhārasya sadṛśam anurūpam eva ceṣṭate | tasmāt prakṛtiṃ svabhāvaṃ yānty anusaranti | tatra nigrahas tac-chāstra-dvārā mat-kṛto rāja-kṛto vā tenāśuddha-cittān ukta-lakṣaṇo niṣkāma-karma-yogaḥ śuddha-cittān jñāna-yogaś ca saṃskartuṃ prabodhayituṃ ca śaknoti, na tv atyantāśuddha-cittān, kintu tān api pāpiṣṭha-svabhāvān yādṛcchika-mat-kṛpottha-bhakti-yoga eva uddhartuṃ prabhavet | yad uktaṃ skānde –

aho dhanyo ‚si devarṣe kṛpayā yasya te kṣaṇāt |
nīco ‚py utpulako lebhe lubdhako ratim ucyate

 

Baladeva


nanu sarveśvarasya te matam atikramatāṃ daṇḍaḥ śāstreṇocyate tasmāt te kim u na bibhyati ity āha sadṛśam iti | prakṛtir anādi-kāla-pravṛttyā sva-durvāsanā tasyāḥ svīyāyāḥ sadṛśam anurūpam eva jñānavān śāstroktaṃ daṇḍaṃ jānann api janaś ceṣṭate pravartate kim utājñaḥ | tato bhūtāni sarve janāḥ prakṛtiṃ puruṣārtha-vibhraṃśa-hetu-bhūtām api tāṃ yānty anusaranti | tatra nigrahaḥ śāstra-jñāno ‚pi daṇḍaḥ sat-prasaṅga-śūnyasya kiṃ kariṣyati ? durvāsanāyāḥ prābalyatāṃ nivartayituṃ na śakṣyatīty arthaḥ | sat-prasaṅga-sahitasya tu tāṃ prabalām api nihanti – santa evāsya chindanti mano-vyasanam uktibhiḥ [BhP 11.26.26] ity ādi smṛtibhyaḥ

 
 

BhG 3.34

indriyasyendriyasyārthe rāga-dveṣau vyavasthitau
tayor na vaśam āgacchet tau hy asya paripanthinau

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syntax


indriyasya indriyasya (of each and every sense) arthe (towards the object) rāga-dveṣau (passion and hatred) vyavasthitau (they two are fixed) [staḥ] (they are).
[puruṣaḥ] (a person) tayoḥ [rāga-dveṣayoḥ] (of those two – passion and hatred) vaśaṁ (under control) na gacchet (he should not come).
tau [rāga-dveṣau] hi (they two indeed – passion and hatred) asya [puruṣasya] (of his person) paripanthinau (two obstacles) [staḥ] (they are).

 

grammar

indriyasya indriyasya indriya 6n.1 n.of each and every sense (from: ind – to be powerful; distributive use);
arthe artha 7n.1 m.in aim, in advantage, in concern, in object (from: arth – to strive to obtain, to desire, to request);
rāga-dveṣau rāga-dveṣa 1n.2 m.; DV: rāgaś ca dveṣaś cetipassion and hatred (from: rañj – to be dyed, be excited, be delighted, rāga – colour, passion, affection, love, beauty; dviṣ – to hate, dveṣa – hatred, enmity);
vyavasthitau vi-ava-sthita (vi-ava-sthā – to arrange, to settle) [PP] 1n.2 m.they two are settled, fixed;
tayoḥ tat sn. 6n.2 m.of those two;
na av.not;
vaśam vaśa 2n.1 m. control (from: vaś – to desire, to subjugate, to command);
āgacchet ā-gam (to come) Pot. P 1v.1he should come;
tau tat sn. 1n.2 m.them two;
hi av.because, just, indeed, surely;
asya idam sn. 6n.1 n.his;
paripanthinau pari-panthin 1n.2 m.two obstacles (pari-path – to go against);

 

textual variants


indriyasyendriyasyārtheindriyasyendriyārthe ha (indeed of the sense in the sense object);
paripanthinau → paribaṁdhinau (the two binding);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

Scope for man’s personal exertion.
(Objection): – If every being acts according to its own nature only, – and there is none that has no nature of its own, – then, there being possibly no scope for personal exertion, (purushakara), the Teaching (sastra) would be quite purposeless.
(Answer): – The Lord replies as follows:

yadi sarvo jantur ātmanaḥ prakṛti-sadṛśam eva ceṣṭate, na ca prakṛti-śūnyaḥ kaścid asti, tataḥ puruṣa-kārasya viṣayānupapatteḥ śāstrānarthakya-prāptāv idam ucyate —

Love and hate lie towards the object of each sense;
let none become subject to these two; for, they are his enemies.

indriyasyendriyasyārthe rāga-dveṣau vyavasthitau |
tayor na vaśam āgacchet tau hy asya paripanthinau ||3.34||

As regards all sense-objects, such as sounds, there necessarily arises in each sense love for an agreeable object, and aversion for a disagreeable object.

indriyasyendriyasyārthe sarvendriyāṇām arthe śabdādi-viṣaye iṣṭe rāgo ’niṣṭe dveṣa ity evaṃ pratīndriyārthaṃ rāgadveṣāv avaśyaṃ bhāvinau |

Now I shall tell you where lies the scope for personal exertion and for the Teaching (śastra). He who would follow the Teaching should at the very commencement rise above the sway of affection and aversion.

tatrāyaṃ puruṣakārasya śāstrārthasya ca viṣaya ucyate | śāstrārthe pravṛttaḥ pūrvam eva rāga-dveṣayor vaśaṃ nāgacchet |

For, what we speak of as the nature (prakriti) of a person draws him to its course only through love and aversion. He then neglects his own duties and sets about doing those of others.

yā hi puruṣasya prakṛtiḥ sā rāga-dveṣa-puraḥsaraiva sva-kārye puruṣaṃ pravartayati | tadā svadharma-parityāgaḥ para-dharmānuṣṭhānaṃ ca bhavati |

When, on the other hand, a person restrains these feelings by means of their enemy, then he will become mindful of the Teaching only, no longer subject to his own nature.

yadā punā rāga-dveṣau tat-pratipakṣeṇa niyamayati tadā śāstra-dṛṣṭir eva puruṣo bhavati, na prakṛti-vaśaḥ |

Wherefore, let none come under the sway of these two; for, they are his adversaries, obstacles to his progress in the right path, like thieves on the road.

tasmāt tayo rāga-dveṣayor vaśaṃ nāgacchet | yatas tau hy asya puruṣasya paripanthinau śreyo-mārgasya vighna-kartārau taskarāv iva pathīty arthaḥ ||3.34||

 

Rāmānuja


prakṛtyanuyāyitvaprakāram āha

śrotrādijñānendriyasyārthe śabdādau vāgādikarmendriyasya cārthe vacanādau prācīnavāsanājanitatadanububhūṣārūpo yo rāgo ‚varjanīyo vyavasthitaḥ; tadanubhave pratihate cāvarjanīyo yo dveṣo vyavasthitaḥ, tāv evaṃ jñānayogāya yatamānaṃ niyamitasarvendriyaṃ svavaśe kṛtvā prasahya svakāryeṣu saṃyojayataḥ / tataś cāyam ātmasvarūpānubhavavimukho vinaṣṭo bhavati / jñānayogārambheṇa rāgadveṣavaśam āgamya na vinaśyet / tau hi rāgadveṣau asya durjayau śatrū jñānābhyāsaṃ vārayataḥ

 

Śrīdhara


nanv evaṃ prakṛty-adhīneva cet puruṣasya pravṛttis tarhi vidhi-niṣedha-śāstrasya vaiyarthyaṃ prāptam ity āśaṅkyāha indriyasyeti | indriyasyendriyasyeti-vīpsayā sarveṣām indriyāṇāṃ praty ekam ity uktam | arthe sva-sva-viṣaye ‚nukūle rāgaḥ pratikūle dveṣa ity evaṃ rāga-dveṣau vyavasthitāv avaśyaṃ bhāvinau | tataś ca tad-anurūpā pravṛttir iti bhūtānāṃ prakṛtiḥ | tathāpi tayor vaśavartī na bhaved iti śāstreṇa niyamyate | hi yasmād | asya mumukṣos tau parinpanthinau pratipakṣau | ayaṃ bhāvaḥ – viṣaya-smaraṇādinā rāga-dveṣaāv utpādyānavahitaṃ puruṣam anarthe ‚tigambhīre srotasīva prakṛtir balā pravartayati | śāstraṃ tu tataḥ prāg eva viṣayeṣu rāga-dveṣa-pratibandhake parameśvara-bhajanādau taṃ pravartayati | tataś ca gambhīra-srotaḥ-pātāt pūrvam eva nāvam āśrita iva nānarthaṃ prāpnoti | tad evaṃ svābhāvikī paśv-ādi-sadṛśīṃ pravṛttiṃ tyaktvā dharme pravartitavyam ity uktam

 

Madhusūdana


nanu sarvasya prāṇi-vargasya prakṛti-vaśa-vartitve laukika-vaidika-puruṣakāra-viṣayābhāvād vidhi-niṣedhārthakyaṃ prāptaṃ, na ca prakṛti-śūnyaḥ kaścid asti yaṃ prati tad-arthavattvaṃ syād ity ata āha indriyasyendriyasyārthe iti | indriyasyendriyasyeti vīpsayā sarveṣām indriyāṇām arthe viṣaye śabde sparśe rūpe gandhe ca | evaṃ karmendriya-viṣaye ‚pi vacanādāv anukūle śāstra-niṣiddhe ‚pi rāgaḥ pratikūle śāstra-vihite ‚pi dveṣa ity evaṃ pratīndriyārthaṃ rāga-dveṣau vyavasthitāv ānukūlya-prātikūlya-vyavasthayā sthitau na tv aniyamena sarvatra tau bhavataḥ | tatra puruṣakārasya śāstrasya cāyaṃ viṣayo yat tayor vaśaṃ nāgacched iti | kathaṃ yā hi puruṣasya prakṛtiḥ sā balavad aniṣṭānubandhitva-jñānābhāva-sahakṛteṣṭa-sādhanatva-jñāna-nibandhanaṃ rāgaṃ puraskṛtyaiva śāstra-niṣiddhe kalañja-bhakṣaṇādau pravartayati | tathā balavad-aniṣṭānubandhitva-jñānābhāva-sahakṛteṣṭa-sādhanatva-jñāna-nibandhanaṃ rāgaṃ puraskṛtyaiva śāstra-niṣiddhe kalañja-bhakṣaṇādau pravartayati | tatra śāstreṇa pratiṣiddhasya balavad aniṣṭānubandhitve jñāpite sahakārya-bhāvāt kevalaṃ dṛṣṭeṣṭa-sādhanatājñānaṃ madhu-viṣa-saṃpṛktānna-bhojana iva tatra na rāgaṃ janayituṃ śaknoti | evaṃ vihitasya śāstreṇa balavad iṣṭānubandhitve bodhite sahakārya-bhāvāt kevalam aniṣṭa-sādhanatva-jñānaṃ bhojanādāv iva tatra na dveṣaṃ janayituṃ śaknoti | tataś cāpratibaddhaṃ śāstraṃ vihite puruṣaṃ pravartayati niṣiddhāc ca nivartayatīti śāstrīya-viveka-vijñāna-prābalyena svābhāvika-rāga-dveṣayoḥ kāraṇopamardenopamardān na prakṛtir viparīta-mārge puruṣaṃ śāstra-dṛṣṭiṃ pravartayituṃ śaknotīti na śāstrasya puruṣakārasya ca vaiyarthya-porasaṅgaḥ |

tayo rāga-dveṣayor vaśaṃ nāgacchet tad-adhīno na pravarteta nivarteta vā kintu śāstrīya-tad-vipakṣa-jñānena tat-kāraṇa-vighaṭana-dvārā tau nāśayet | hi yasmāt tau rāga-dveṣau svābhāvika-doṣa-prayuktāv asya puruṣasya śreyo ‚rhtinaḥ paripanthinau śatrū śreyo-mārgasya vighna-kartārau dasyū iva pathikasya | idaṃ ca dvayā ha prājāpatyā devāś cāsurāś ca tataḥ kānīyasā eva devā jyāyasā asurās ta eṣu lokeṣv aspardhanta ity ādi-śrutau svābhāvika-rāga-dveṣa-nimitta-śāstra-viparīta-pravṛttim asuratvena śāstrīya-pravṛttiṃ ca devatvena nirūpya vyākhyātam ativistareṇety uparamyate

 

Viśvanātha


yasmād duḥsvabhāveṣu lokeṣu vidhi-niṣedha-śāstraṃ na prabhavati, tasmād yāvat pāpābhyāsottha-duḥsvabhāvo nābhūt tāvad yatheṣṭam indriyāṇi na cārayed ity āha indriyasendriyasyeti vīpsā pratyekam | sarvendriyāṇām arthe sva-sva-viṣaye para-strī-mātra-gātra-darśana-sparśana-tat-sampradānaka-dravya-dānādau śāstra-niṣiddhe ‚pi rāgas tathā guru-vipra-tīrthātithi-darśana-sparśana-paricaraṇa-tat-sampradānaka-dhana-vitaraṇādau śāstra-vihite ‚pi dveṣa ity etau viśeṣaṇāvasthitau vartete | tayor vaśam adhīnatvaṃ na prāpnuyāt | yad vā, indriyārthe strī-darśanādau rāgas tat-pratighāte kenacit kṛte sati dveṣa ity asya puruṣārtha-sādhakasya kvacit tu mano ‚nukūle ‚rthe surasa-snigdhānnādau rāgo manaḥ pratikūle ‚rthe virasa-rukṣānnādau dveṣas tathā sva-putrādi-darśana-śravaṇādau rāgo vairi-putrādi-darśana-śravaṇādau dveṣaḥ | tayor vaśaṃ na gacched ity vyācakṣate

 

Baladeva


nanu prakṛty-adhīnā cet puṃsāṃ pravṛttis tarhi vidhi-niṣedha-śāstre vyartha iti cet tatrhā indriyasyendriyasyeti | vīpsayā sarveṣām ity uktam | tataś ca jñānendriyāṇāṃ śrotrādīnām arthe viṣaye śabdādau, karmendriyāṇām ca vāg-ādīnām arthe vacanādau rāgaḥ, pratikūle śāstra-vihite ‚pi sat-sambhāṣaṇa-sat-sevana-sat-tīrthāgamanādau dveṣa ity evaṃ rāga-dveṣau vyavasthitau cānukūlya-prātikūlye vyavasthayā sthitau bhavato na tv aniyamenety arthaḥ | yadyapi tad-anuguṇā prāṇināṃ pravṛttis tathāpi śreyo-lipsur janas tayo rāga-dveṣayor vaśaṃ nāgacchet | hi yasmāt tāv asya paripanthinau vighna-kartārau bhavataḥ pānthasyeva dasyū | etad uktaṃ bhavati – anādi-kāla-pravṛttā hi vāsanā niṣṭhānubandhitva-jñānābhāva-sahakṛteneṣṭa-sādhanatva-jñānena niṣiddhe ‚pi para-dāra-sambhāṣaṇādau rāgam utpādya puṃsaḥ pravartayati | tatheṣṭa-sādhanatva-jñānābhāva-sahakṛtenāniṣṭa-sādhanatva-jñānena vihite ‚pi sat-sambhāṣaṇādau dveṣam utpādya tatas tān nivartayati | śāstraṃ kila sat-prasaṅga-śrutam aniṣṭānubhandhitva-bodhanena niṣiddhān mano ‚nukūlād api nivartayati dveṣam utpādya | iṣṭānubandhitva-bodhanena vihite manaḥ-pratikūle ‚pi rāgam utpādya pravartayatīti na vidhi-niṣedha-śāstrayor vaiyarthyam iti

 
 

BhG 3.35

śreyān sva-dharmo viguṇaḥ para-dharmāt svanuṣṭhitāt
sva-dharme nidhanaṃ śreyaḥ para-dharmo bhayāvahaḥ

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sv-anuṣṭhitāt (than well performed) para-dharmāt (than another’s duty) viguṇaḥ (defective) sva-dharmaḥ (own’s own duty) śreyān (better) [asti] (it is).
sva-dharme (in one’s own duty) nidhanam (death) śreyaḥ (better) [asti] (it is).
para-dharmaḥ (another’s duty) bhayāvahaḥ (bringing fear) [asti] (it is).

 

grammar

śreyān śreyas 1n.1 m. better, higher, perfect, the auspiciousness, the welfare (comparative of: śrī – śreyas, śreṣṭha);
sva-dharmaḥ sva-dharma 1n.1 m.; [TP]: svasya dharma itiown duties (from: sva – own; dhṛ – to hold);
viguṇaḥ vi-guṇa 1n.1 m.defective, bad, faulty (from: vi – prefix: apart, off, without; grah – to take, guṇa – quality, virtue, thread);
para-dharmāt para-dharma 5n.1 m.; [TP]: parasya dharmād itithan another’s duty (from: para – another, strange; dhṛ – to hold);
svanuṣṭhitāt su-anu-ṣṭhita (anu-sthā – to follow, to practise) [PP] 5n.1 m.than well performed;
sva-dharme sva-dharma 7n.1 m.; [TP]: svasya dharma itiin own duties (from: sva – own; dhṛ – to hold);
nidhanam nidhana 1n.1 n.end, death;
śreyaḥ śreyas 1n.1 n. better, higher, perfect, the auspiciousness, the welfare (comparative of: śrī – śreyas, śreṣṭha);
para-dharmaḥ para-dharma 1n.1 m.; [TP]: parasya dharma itianother’s duty (from: para – another, strange; dhṛ – to hold);
bhayāvahaḥ bhaya-āvaha 1n.1 m.; ya bhayam āvahati saḥ bringing fear, dangerous (from: bhī – to scare, bhaya – fear; ā-vah – to bring, āvaha – bringing, inviting);

 

textual variants


para-dharmo bhayāvahaḥ → para-dharmodayād api (even than elevation in another’s duty);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

Now, the man who is led by love and aversion may misunderstand the Teaching; he may think that one man may follow the duty (dharma) of another because the latter is also a duty. But it is not right to think so:

tatra rāga-dveṣa-prayukto manyate śāsrārtham apy anyathā para-dharmo ’pi dharmatvād anuṣṭheya eva iti, tad asat —

Better one’s own duty, though devoid of merit, than the duty of another well discharged.
Better is death in one’s own duty; the duty of another is productive of danger.

śreyān sva-dharmo viguṇaḥ para-dharmāt svanuṣṭhitāt |
sva-dharme nidhanaṃ śreyaḥ para-dharmo bhayāvahaḥ ||3.35||

For a man to die doing his own duty though devoid of merit is better than for him to live doing the duty of another though perfectly performed. For, the duty of another leads to danger, such as hell (naraka).

śreyān praśasyataraḥ svo dharmaḥ sva-dharmo viguṇo ’pi vigata-guṇo ’pi anuṣṭhīyamānaḥ para-dharmāt svanuṣṭhitāt sādguṇyena saṃpāditād api |

sva-dharme sthitasya nidhanaṃ maraṇam api śreyaḥ para-dharme sthitasya jīvitāt | kasmāt? para-dharmaḥ bhayāvahaḥ narakādi-lakṣaṇaṃ bhayam āvahatīti yataḥ ||3.35||

 

Rāmānuja


ataḥ suśakatayā svadharmabhūtaḥ karmayogo viguṇo ‚py apramādagarbhaḥ prakṛtisaṃsṛṣṭasya duśśakatayā paradharmabhūtāj jñānayogāt saguṇād api kiṃcit kālam anuṣṭhitāt sapramādāc chreyān; svenaivopādātuṃ yogyatayā svadharmabhūte karmayoge vartamānasyaikasmin janmany aprāptaphalatayā nidhanam api śreyaḥ, anantarāyahatatayānantarajanmany api avyākulakarmayogārambhasaṃbhavāt / prakṛtisaṃsṛṣṭasya svenaivopādātum aśakyatayā paradharmabhūto jñānayogaḥ pramādagarbhatayā bhayāvahaḥ

 

Śrīdhara


tarhi sva-dharmasya yuddhāder duḥkha-rūpasya yathāvat kartum aśakyatvāt para-dharmasya cāhiṃsādeḥ sukaratvād dharmatvāviśeṣāc ca tatra pravartitum icchantaḥ praty āha śreyān iti | kiṃcid aṅga-hīno ‚pi sva-dharmaḥ śreyān praśasyataraḥ | svanuṣṭhitāt sakalāṅga-sampūrtyā kṛtād api para-dharmāt sakāśāt | tatra hetuḥ – sva-dharme yuddhādau pravartamānasya nidhanaṃ maraṇam api śreṣṭhaṃ svargādi-prāpakatvāt | para-dharmas tu bhayāvaho niṣiddhatvena naraka-prāpakatvāt

 

Madhusūdana


nanu svābhāvika-rāga-dveṣa-prayukta-paśv-ādi-sādhāraṇa-pravṛtti-prahāṇena śāstrīyam eva karma kartavyaṃ cet tarhi yat sukaraṃ bhikṣāśanādi tad eva kriyatāṃ kim ati-duḥkhāvahena yuddhenety ata āha śreyān iti | śreyān praśasyataraḥ sva-dharmo yaṃ varṇāśramaṃ vā prati yo vihitaḥ sa tasya sva-dharmo viguṇo ‚pi sarvāṅgopasaṃhāram antareṇa kṛto ‚pi para-dharmāt svaṃ praty avihitāt svanuṣṭhitāt sarvāṅgopasaṃhāreṇa sampāditād api | na hi vedātirikta-māna-gamyo dharmaḥ, yena para-dharme ‚py anuṣṭheyo dharmatvāt sva-dharmavad ity anumānaṃ tatra mānaṃ syāt | codana-lakṣaṇo ‚rtho dharmaḥ iti nyāyāt | ataḥ sva-dharme kiṃcid aṅga-hīne ‚pi sthitasya nidhanaṃ maraṇam api śreyaḥ praśasyataraṃ para-dharma-sthasya jīvitād api | sva-dharma-sthasya nidhanaṃ hīha-loke kīrtyāvahaṃ para-loke ca svargādi-prāpakam | para-dharmas tu ihākīrti-karatvena paratra naraka-pradatvena ca bhayāvaho yato ‚to rāga-dveṣādi-prayukta-svābhāvika-pravṛttivat para-dharmo ‚pi heya evety arthaḥ |

evaṃ tāvad bhagavan-matāṅgīkāriṇāṃ śreyaḥ-prāptis tad-anaṅgīkāriṇāṃ ca śreyo-mārga-bhraṣṭatvam uktam | śreyo-mārga-bhraṃśena phalābhisandhi-pūrvaka-kāmya-karmācaraṇe ca kevala-pāpa-mātrācaraṇe ca bahūni kāraṇāni kathitāni ye tv etad abhyasūyanta ity ādinā | tatrāyaṃ saṅgraha-ślokaḥ –

śraddhā-hānis tathāsūyā duṣṭa-cittatvam ūḍhate |
prakṛter vaśa-vartitvaṃ rāga-dveṣau ca puṣkalau |
para-dharma-rucitvaṃ cety uktā durmārga-vāhakāḥ |

 

Viśvanātha


tataś ca yuddha-rūpasya yathāvad rāga-dveṣādi-rāhityena kartum aśakyatvāt para-dharmasya cāhiṃsādeḥ sukaratvād dharmatvāviśeṣāc ca tatra pravartitum icchantaṃ praty āha śreyān iti | viguṇaḥ kiṃcid doṣa-viśiṣṭo ‚pi samyag anuṣṭhātum aśakyo ‚pi para-dharmāt svanuṣṭhitāt sādhv evānuṣṭhātuṃ śakyād api sarva-guṇa-pūrṇād api sakāśāt śreyān | tatra hetuḥ – svadharma ity ādi |

vidharmaḥ para-dharmaś ca
ābhāsa upamā chalaḥ |
adharma-śākhāḥ pañcemā
dharma-jño ‚dharmavat tyajet || [BhP 7.15.12] iti saptamokteḥ

 

Baladeva


nanu sva-prakṛti-nirmitāṃ rāga-dveṣa-mayīṃ paśv-ādi-sādhāraṇīṃ pravṛttiṃ vihāya śāstrokteṣu dharmeṣu vartitavyam ity uktam | dharma-hṛd-viśuddhau tādṛśa-pravṛttir nivartena, dharmāś ca yuddhādivad ahiṃsādayo ‚pi śāstreṇoktāḥ | tasmād rāga-dveṣa-rāhityena kartum aśakyād yuddhāder ahiṃsā-śiloñcha-vṛtti-lakṣaṇo dharma uttama iti cet tatrāha śreyān iti |

yasya varṇasyāśramasya ca yo dharmo vedena vihitaḥ, sa ca viguṇaḥ kiṃcid aṅga-vikalo ‚pi svanuṣṭhitā sarvāṅgopasaṃhāreṇācaritād api para-dharmāt śreyān | yathā brāhmaṇasyāhiṃsādiḥ sva-dharmaḥ kṣatriyasya ca yuddhādiḥ | na hi dharmo vedātiriktena pramāṇena gamyate | cakṣur bhinnendriyeṇeva rūpam | yathāha jaiminiḥ – codanā-lakṣaṇo dharmaḥ iti | tatra hetuḥ – svadharme nidhanaṃ maraṇaṃ śreyaḥ pratyavāyābhāvāt para-janmani dharmācaraṇa-sambhavāc ceṣṭa-sādhakam ity arthaḥ | para-dharmas tu bhayāvaho ‚niṣṭa-janakaḥ | taṃ praty avihitatvena pratyavāya-sambhavāt | na ca paraśurāme viśvāmitre cavyabhicāraḥ | tayos tat-tat-kulotpannāv api tat tac-coru-mahimnā tat-karmodayāt | tathāpi vigānaṃ kaṣṭaṃ ca tayoḥ smaryate | ataeva droṇādeḥ kṣātra-dharmo ‚sakṛd vigītaḥ |

nanu daivarātyādeḥ kṣatriyasya pārivrājyaṃ śrūyate tataḥ katham ahiṃsādeḥ para-dharmatvam iti cet satyaṃ, pūrva-pūrvāśrama-dharmaiḥ kṣīṇa-vāsanayā pārivrājyādhikāre sati taṃ praty ahiṃsādeḥ sva-dharmatvena vihitatvāt | ataeva sva-dharme sthitasyeti yojyate

 
 

BhG 3.36

arjuna uvāca
atha kena prayukto yaṃ pāpaṃ carati pūruṣaḥ
anicchann api vārṣṇeya balād iva niyojitaḥ

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syntax


arjuna (Arjuna) uvāca (he spoke):
he vārṣṇeya (O descendant of Vṛṣṇis!),
atha (now) kena (why?) anicchan api (even not desiring) prayuktaḥ [san] (being engaged) ayam puruṣaḥ (such a person) balāt (by force) niyojitaḥ iva (as if engaged) pāpam (to sin) carati (he moves).

 

grammar

arjunaḥ arjuna 1n.1 m.white, clear, Arjuna;
uvāca vac (to speak) [Perf.] P 1v.1he spoke;
atha av.then, now, moreover, certainly, rather;
kena kim sn. 3n.1 m.by what?, why?;
prayuktaḥ pra-yukta (pra-yuj – to yoke, to join, to engage) [PP] 1n.1 m.yoked, endowed with, engaged, suitable;
ayam idam sn. 1n.1 m.this;
pāpam pāpa 2n.1 n.evil, sin;
carati car (to move, to go) Praes. P 1v.1 he moves, he lives;
pūruṣaḥ pūruṣa 1n.1 m.a person (from: pur – to precede, to lead or pṝ – to fill, to nourish, puru – abundance, pūru – people, puruṣa – a person);
anicchan an-icchant (iṣ – to desire) PPr 1n.1 m. [while] not desiring, unwillingly;
api av.although, moreover, besides, even;
vārṣṇeya vārṣṇeya 8n.1 m.O descendant of Vṛṣṇis;
balāt av.by force (from: bala – strength, force; ablative);
iva av.like, in the same manner as, almost, exactly;
niyojitaḥ ni-yojita (ni-yuj – to join, to engage) caus. [PP] 1n.1 m.joined, engaged;

 

textual variants


api → iva / nāpi (as if / even not);
anicchann api vārṣṇeya anicchamānopi balād (even not desiring by force);
balād iva → balād api / ākramyeva (even by force / as if after coming);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

Desire is the enemy of man. Though the source of evil has been pointed out in 2.62, &c., and in 3.34, yet with a view to elicit a concise and clear statement of what was but desultorily and vaguely expressed, – for, the exact cause being known, he might exert himself to exterminate it, – Arjuna asks:

yadyapi anartha-mūlaṃ dhyāyato viṣayān puṃsa (BhG 2.62) iti rāga-dveṣau hy asya paripanthinau (BhG 3.34) iti coktam | vikṣiptam anavadhāritaṃ ca tad uktam | tat saṃkṣiptaṃ niścitaṃ ca idam eveti jñātum icchan arjuna uvāca jñāte hi tasmin tad-ucchedāya yatnaṃ kuryām iti

Arjuna said:
But by what dragged on, O Vārshṇeya, does a man, though reluctant,
commit sin, as if constrained by force?

arjuna uvāca
atha kena prayukto ’yaṃ pāpaṃ carati pūruṣaḥ
|anicchann api vārṣṇeya balād iva niyojitaḥ ||3.36||

Dragged on and constrained: as a servant by the king. Vārshṇeya: one born in the family of the Vṛṣṇis.

atha kena hetu-bhūtena prayuktaḥ san rājñeva bhṛtyo ’yaṃ pāpaṃ karma carati ācarati pūruṣaḥ puruṣaḥ svayam anicchann api he vārṣṇeya vṛṣṇi-kula-prasūta balād iva niyojito rājñevety ukto dṛṣṭāntaḥ ||3.36||

 

Rāmānuja


athāyaṃ jñānayogāya pravṛttaḥ puruṣaḥ svayaṃ viṣayān anubhavitum anicchann api kena prayukto viṣayānubhavarūpaṃ pāpaṃ balān niyojita iva carati

 

Śrīdhara


tayor na vaśam āgacchet [Gītā 3.34] ity uktam | tad etad aśakyaṃ manvāno ‚rjuna uvāca atheti | vṛṣṇer vaṃśe avatīrṇo vārṣṇeyaḥ | he vārṣṇeya ! anartha-rūpaṃ pāpaṃ kartum icchann api kena prayuktaḥ prerito ‚yaṃ puruṣaḥ pāpaṃ carati ? kāma-krodhau viveka-balena niruddhato ‚pi puruṣasya punaḥ pāpe pravṛtti-darśanāt | anyo ‚pi tayor mūlabhūtaḥ kaścit pravartako bhaved iti sambhāvanayā praśnaḥ

 

Madhusūdana


tatra kāmya-pratiṣiddha-karma-pravṛtti-kāraṇam apanudya bhagavan-matam anuvartituṃ tat-kāraṇāvadhāraṇāya arjuna uvāca atheti | dhyāyato viṣayān puṃsaḥ ity ādinā pūrvam anartha-mūlam uktam | sāmprataṃ ca prakṛter guṇa-saṃmūḍhā ity ādinā bahu-vistaraṃ kathitam | tatra kiṃ sarvāṇy api sama-prādhānyena kāraṇāni | athavaikam eva mukhyaṃ kāraṇam itarāṇi tu tat-sahakārīṇi kevalam | tatrādye sarveṣāṃ pṛthak pṛthaṅ nivāraṇe mahān prayāsaḥ syāt | antye tv ekasminn eva nirākṛte kṛta-kṛtyatā syād ity ato brūhi me kena hetunā prayuktaḥ prerito ‚yaṃ tvan-matānanuvartī sarva-jñāna-vimūḍhaḥ puruṣaḥ pāpam anarthānubandhi sarvaṃ phalābhisandhi-puraḥ-saraṃ kāmyaṃ citrādi śatru-vadha-sādhanaṃ ca śyanādi pratiṣiddhaṃ ca kalañja-bhakṣaṇādi bahu-vidhaṃ karmācarati svayaṃ kartum anicchann api na tu nivṛtti-lakṣaṇaṃ parama-puruṣārthānubandhi tvad-upadiṣṭaṃ karmecchann api karoti | na ca pāratantryaṃ vinetthaṃ sambhavati | ato yena balād iva niyojito rājñeva bhṛtyas tvan-mata-viruddhaṃ sarvānarthānubandhitvaṃ jānann api tādṛśaṃ karmācarati tam anartha-mārga-pravartakaṃ māṃ prati brūhi jñātvā samucchedāyety arthaḥ | he vārṣṇeya vṛṣṇi-vaṃśe man-mātāmaha-kule kṛpayāvatīrṇeti sambodhanena vārṣṇeyī-suto ‚haṃ tvayā nipekṣaṇīya iti sūcayati

 

Viśvanātha


yad uktaṃ rāga-dveṣau vyavasthitāv [Gītā 3.34] ity atra śāstra-niṣiddhe |pīndriyārthe para-strī-sambhāṣaṇādau rāga ity atra pṛcchati atheti | kena prayojaka-kartrānicchann api vidhi-niṣedha-śāstrārtha-jñānavattvāt pāpe pravartitum icchā-rahito ‚pi balād iveti prayojaka-preraṇa-vaśāt prayojyasyāpīcchā samyag utpadyate iti bhāvaḥ

 

Baladeva


indriyasya ity ādau śāstra-niṣiddhe ‚pi para-dāra-sambhāṣaṇādau rāgo vyavasthita iti yad uktaṃ tatrārjunaḥ pṛcchati atha keneti | he vārṣṇeya vṛṣṇi-vaṃśodbhava ! śubhādibhyaś ceti prayuktaḥ preritaḥ pāpaṃ carati niṣedha-śāstrārtha-jñānāt tac-caritam anicchann api balād iveti | prayojakecchāpannatayā prayojye ‚pīcchā prajāyate | sa kim īśvaraḥ, pūrva-saṃskāro vā ? tatrādyaḥ sākṣitvāt kāruṇikatvāc ca na pāpe prerakaḥ | na ca paro jaḍatvād iti praśnārthaḥ

 
 

BhG 3.37

śrī-bhagavān uvāca
kāma eṣa krodha eṣa rajo-guṇa-samudbhavaḥ
mahāśano mahā-pāpmā
viddhy enam iha vairiṇam

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syntax


śrī-bhagavān (the glorious Lord) uvāca (he spoke):
rajo-guṇa-samudbhavaḥ (whose origin is from rajo-guṇa) mahāśanaḥ (voracious) mahā-pāpmā (very sinful)
eṣaḥ kāmaḥ (this desire) [asti] (it is).
eṣaḥ krodhaḥ (this anger) [asti] (it is).
iha (here) enaṁ (this) vairiṇaṁ (enemy) viddhi (you must know).

 

grammar

śrī-bhagavān śrī-bhagavant 1n.1 m.; [TP]: śriyā yukto bhagavān itithe Lord united with majesty (from: śrī – lustre, majesty, fortune; bhaj – to share, to love, to rejoice, to worship, bhaga – a share, good fortune, opulence; -mant / -vant – suffix denoting one who possesses, bhagavant – who possesses opulence);
uvāca vac (to speak) [Perf.] P 1v.1he spoke;
kāmaḥ kāma 1n.1 m.wish, desire, pleasure (from: kam – to wish, to love, to long for);
eṣaḥ etad sn. 1n.1 m.this;
krodhaḥ krodha 1n.1 m.anger, wrath (from: krudh – to be angry);
eṣaḥ etad sn. 1n.1 m.this;
rajo-guṇa-samudbhavaḥ rajo-guṇa-samudbhava 1n.1 m.; BV: yasya rajo-guṇāt samudbhavo ‘sti saḥ whose origin is from rajo-guṇa (from: rañj – to be dyed, be excited, be delighted, rajas – coloured, dust, passion; grah – to take, guṇa – quality, virtue, thread; sam-ud-bhū – to spring up from, to produce, samudbhava – springing from, production);
mahāśanaḥ mahā-aśana 1n.1 m.; yasyāśanaṁ mahad asti saḥwho eats a lot, voracious (from: mah – to magnify, mahant – great; – to reach, to eat, to enjoy, aśana – reaching, eating, consuming);
mahā-pāpmā mahā-pāpman 1n.1 m.; yasya pāpmā mahān asti saḥwhich is very sinful (from: mah – to magnify, mahant – great; pāpman – evil, misfortune, sin);
viddhi vid (to know, to understand) Imperat. P 2v.1you must know;
enam etat sn. 2n.1 m.this;
iha av.here (often meaning: in this world);
vairiṇam vairin 2n.1 m.enemy (from: vira – brave, a hero);

 

textual variants


śrī-bhagavān → bhagavān (the Lord);
kāma eṣakāma eva (desire only);

… → verses, not found in critical edition, after verse 3.37:
arjuna uvāca
bhavaty eṣa kathaṁ kṛṣṇa kathaṁ caiva vivardhate
kim ātmakaḥ kim ācāras tan mamācakṣva pṛcchataḥ
Arjuna spoke:
O Kṛṣṇa, how it exists and how to cut [it]?
What is [its] nature and conduct? Explain it to me, who am asking.

śrī-bhagavān uvāca
eṣa sūkṣmaḥ paraḥ śatrur dehinām indriyaiḥ saha
sukha-tantra ivāsīno mohayan pārtha tiṣṭhati
The glorious Lord spoke:
That along with the senses is the subtle and biggest enemy of the embodied.
O son of Pṛthā, it acts as if the warp of pleasure and bewilders.

kāma-krodha-mayo ghoraḥ stambha-harṣa-samudbhavaḥ
ahaṁ-kāro
bhimānātmā dustaraḥ pāpa-karmabhiḥ
Egotism of the nature of desire and anger, ghastly,
originted from torpor and excitement, and pride is its self.
It is difficult to overcome for those whose acts are sinful.

harṣam asya nivartyaiṣa śokam asya dadāti ca
bhayaṁ cāsya karoty eṣa mohayaṁs tu muhur muhuḥ

When that bewilderer turns back the excitement [of a person],
drives him to despair and fills with fear at every moment.

sa eṣa kaluṣaḥ kṣudraś chidra-prekṣī dhanaṁjaya
rajaḥ-pravṛtto mohātmā manuṣyāṇām upadravaḥ

O winner of wealth, it is that impure, mean, looking for defects,
acting in rajas, whose self i bewiderment and stands as the calamity f people.

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

The Lord says: Listen, I shall tell you who that enemy is, of whom you ask, – who the source of all evil is:
[Vāsudeva is here called the Lord (Bhagavat ), because He is one in whom the six attributes of unimpeded dominion, &c., ever abide collectively and in perfection, and who possesses a complete knowledge of the origin of the universe &c. Says the Viṣṇu-Puraṇa:
‚Bhaga’ means the six attributes – perfect dominion, might, glory, splendour, dispassion and salvation.” 6.5-74).

He is called the Lord (Bhagavat), who knows the origin and the end, the coming and going of beings, what is wisdom and what is ignorance.” (6.5-78.)]

śṛṇu tvaṃ taṃ vairiṇaṃ sarvānartha-karaṃ yaṃ tvaṃ pṛcchasīti bhagavān uvāca —
aiśvaryasya samagrasya dharmasya yaśasaḥ śriyaḥ
|
vairāgyasyātha mokṣasya ṣaṇṇāṃ bhaga itīṅganā || (VP 6.5.74)
ity aiśvaryādi-ṣaṭkaṃ yasmin vāsudeve nityam apratibaddhatvena sāmastyena ca vartate,
utpattiṃ pralayaṃ caiva bhūtānām āgatiṃ gatim
|
vetti vidyām avidyāṃ ca sa vācyo bhagavān iti || (VP 6.5.78)

utpatty-ādi-viṣayaṃ ca vijñānaṃ yasya sa vāsudevo vācyo bhagavān iti |

The Blessed Lord said:
It is Desire, it is Wrath, born of the energy of Rajas, all-devouring, all-sinful;
that, know thou, is the foe here.

kāma eṣa krodha eṣa rajo-guṇa-samudbhavaḥ |
mahāśano mahā-pāpmā viddhy enam iha vairiṇam ||3.37||

The enemy of the whole world is desire, from which all the evil comes to living beings. When obstructed by some cause, desire is transformed into wrath. Whence wrath is desire itself.

kāma eṣa sarva-loka-śatrur yan-nimittā sarvānartha-prāptiḥ prāṇinām | sa eṣa kāmaḥ pratihataḥ kenacit krodhatvena pariṇamate | ataḥ krodho ’py eṣa eva |

It is born of the energy of Rajas. – Or, desire itself is the cause of the energy of Rajas; for, when desire arises, it rouses the Rajas and urges the person to action.

rajo-guṇa-samudbhavo rajo-guṇāt samudbhavo yasya[1] sa kāmo rajo-guṇa-samudbhavaḥ | rajo-guṇasya vā samudbhavaḥ | kāmo hy udbhūto rajaḥ pravartayan puruṣaṃ pravartayati |

We often hear the cry of miserable person – who are engaged in servitude, &c., under the impulse of the Rajas, – saying ‚I have been led to act so by desire.’

tṛṣṇayā hy ahaṃ-kārita iti duḥkhināṃ[2] rajaḥ-kārye sevādau pravṛttānāṃ pralāpaḥ śrūyate |

It is very sinful; for it is only when urged by desire that a man commits sin. Wherefore, know that this desire is man’s foe here in samsara. Desire enshrouds wisdom.

mahāśano mahad aśanam asyeti mahāśanaḥ | ata eva mahā-pāpmā | kāmena hi prerito jantuḥ pāpaṃ karoti | ato viddhy enaṃ kāmam iha saṃsāre vairiṇam ||3.37||


[1] rajo-guṇāt samudbhavo yasya = rajaś ca tad-guṇaś ca rajo-guṇaḥ sa samudbhavo yasya

[2] duḥkhināṃ = duḥkhitānām

 

 

Rāmānuja


asyodbhavābhibhavarūpeṇa vartamānaguṇamayaprakṛtisaṃsṛṣṭasya jñānāyārabdhasya rajoguṇasamudbhavaḥ prācīnavāsanājanitaḥ śabdādiviṣayaḥ kāmo mahāśanaḥ śatruḥ viṣayeṣv enam ākarṣati / eṣa eva pratihatagatiḥ pratihatihetubhūtacetanān prati krodharūpeṇa pariṇato mahāpāpmā parahiṃsādiṣu pravartayati / enaṃ rajoguṇasamudbhavaṃ sahajaṃ jñānayogavirodhinaṃ vairiṇaṃ viddhi

 

Śrīdhara


atrottaraṃ śrī-bhagavān uvāca kāma eṣa krodha eṣa iti | yas tvayā pṛṣṭo hetur eva kāma eva | nanu krodho ‚pi pūrvaṃ tvayoktam indriyasyendriyasyārtha ity atra | satyam | nāsau tataḥ pṛthak | kintu krodho ‚py eṣaḥ | kāma eva hi kenacit pratihataḥ krodhātmanā pariṇamate | pūrvaṃ pṛthaktvenokto ‚pi krodha-kāmaja evety abhiprāyeṇa ekīkṛtyocyate | rajo-guṇāt samudbhavatīti tathā | anena sattva-vṛddhyā rajasi kṣayaṃ nīte sati kāmo na jāyata iti sūcitam | enaṃ kāmam iha mokṣa-mārge vairiṇaṃ viddhi | ayaṃ ca vakṣyamāṇa-krameṇa hantavya eva | yato nāsau dānena sandhātuṃ śakya ity āha mahāśanaḥ | mahad-aśanaṃ yasya saḥ | duṣpūra ity arthaḥ | na ca sāmnā sandhātuṃ śakyaḥ | yato mahā-pāpmā ‚tyugraḥ

 

Madhusūdana


evam arjunena pṛṣṭe atho khalv āhuḥ kāma-maya evāyaṃ puruṣa iti, ātmaivedam agra āsīd eka eva so ‚kāmayata jāyā me syād atha prajāyeyātha vittaṃ me syād atha karma kurvīya ity ādi-śruti-siddham uttaram śrī-bhagavān uvāca kāma iti | yas tvayā pṛṣṭo hetur balād anartha-mārge pravartakaḥ sa eṣa kāma eva mahān śatruḥ | yan-nimittā sarvānartha-prāptiḥ prāṇinām |

nanu krodho ‚py abhicārādau pravartako dṛṣṭa ity ata āha krodha eṣaḥ | kāma eva kenacid dhetunā pratihataḥ krodhatvena pariṇamate ‚taḥ krodho ‚py eṣa kāma eva | etasminn eva mahā-vairiṇi nivārite sarva-puruṣārtha-prāptir ity arthaḥ | tan-nivāraṇopāya-jñānāya tat-kāraṇam āha rajo-guṇa-samudbhavaḥ | duḥkha-pravṛtti-balātmako rajo-guṇa eva samudbhavaḥ kāraṇaṃ yasya | ataḥ kāraṇānuvidhāyitvāt kāryasya so ‚pi tathā | yadyapi tamo-guṇo ‚pi tasya kāraṇaṃ tathāpi duḥkhe pravṛttau ca rajasa eva prādhānyāt tasyaiva nirdeśaḥ | etena sāttvikyā vṛttyā rajasi kṣīṇe so ‚pi kṣīyata ity uktam |

athavā tasya katham anartha-mārge pravartakatvam ity ata āha rajo-guṇasya pravṛttyādi-lakṣaṇasya samudbhavo yasmāt | kāmo hi viṣayābhilāṣātmakaḥ svayam udbhūto rajaḥ pravartayan puruṣaṃ duḥkhātmake karmaṇi pravartayati | tenāyam avaśyaṃ hantavya ity abhiprāyaḥ |

nanu sāma-dāna-bheda-daṇḍāś catvāra upāyās tatra prathama-trikasyāsambhave caturtho daṇḍaḥ prayoktavyo na tu haṭhād evety āśaṅkya trayāṇām asambhavaṃ vaktuṃ viśinaṣṭi mahāśano mahā-pāpmeti | mahad aśanam asyeti mahāśanaḥ |

yat pṛthivyāṃ vrīhi-yavaṃ hiraṇyaṃ paśavaḥ striyaḥ |
nālam ekasya tat sarvam iti matvā śamaṃ vrajet || iti smṛteḥ |

ato na dānena sandhātuṃ śakyaḥ | nāpi sāma-bhedābhyāṃ yato mahā-pāpmātyugraḥ | tena hi balāt prerito ‚niṣṭa-phalam api jānan pāpaṃ karoti | ato viddhi jānīhi enaṃ kāmam iha saṃsāre vairiṇam |

tad etat sarvaṃ vivṛtaṃ vārtika-kāraiḥ ātmaivedam agra āsīt iti śruti-vyākhyāne –

pravṛttau ca nivṛttau ca yathoktasyādhikāriṇaḥ |
svātantrye sati saṃsāra-sṛtau kasmāt pravartate ||
na tu niḥśeṣa-vidhvasta-saṃsārānartha-vartmani |
nivṛtti-lakṣaṇe vācyaṃ kenāyaṃ preryate ‚vaśaḥ ||
anartha-paripākatvam api jānan pravartate |
pāratantryam ṛte dṛṣṭā pravṛttir nedṛśī kvacit ||
tasmāc chreyorthinaḥ puṃsaḥ prerako ‚niṣṭa-karmaṇi |
vaktavyas tan-nirāsārtham ity arthā syāt parā śrutiḥ ||
anāpta-puruṣārtho ‚yaṃ niḥśeṣānartha-saṅkulaḥ |
ity akāmayatānāptān pumarthān sādhanair jaḍaḥ ||
jihāsati tathānarthān avidvān ātmani śritān |
avidyodbhūta-kāmaḥ sann atho khalv iti ca śrutiḥ ||
akāmataḥ kriyāḥ kāścid dṛśyante neha kasyacit |
yad yad dhi kurute jantus tat-tat-kāmasya ceṣṭitam ||
kāma eṣa krodha eṣa ity ādi-vacanaṃ smṛteḥ |
pravartako nāparo ‚taḥ kāmād anyaḥ pratīyate || iti |

akāmata iti manu-vacanam | anyat spaṣṭam

 

Viśvanātha


eṣa kāma eva viṣayābhilāṣātmakaḥ puruṣaṃ pāpe pravartayati tenaiva prayuktaḥ puruṣaḥ pāpaṃ caratīty arthaḥ | eṣa kāma eva pṛthaktvena dṛśyamāna eṣa pratyakṣaḥ krodho bhavati | kāma eva kenacit pratihato bhūtvā krodhākāreṇa pariṇamatīty arthaḥ | kāmo rajo-guṇa-samudbhava iti rājasāt kāmād eva tāmasaḥ krodho jāyate ity arthaḥ | kāmasya apekṣita-pūraṇena nivṛttiḥ syād iti cen nety āha mahāśano mahad aśanaṃ yasya saḥ |

yat pṛthivyāṃ vrīhi-yavaṃ hiraṇyaṃ paśavaḥ striyaḥ |
nālam ekasya tat sarvam iti matvā śamaṃ vrajet || iti smṛteḥ |

kāmasyāpekṣitaṃ pūrayitum aśakyam eva | nanu dānena sandhātum aśakyaś cet sāma-bhedābhyāṃ sa sva-vaśīkartavyaḥ | tatrāha mahā-pāpmātyugraḥ

 

Baladeva


tatrāha bhagavān kāma iti | kāmaḥ prāktana-vāsanā-hetukaḥ śabdādi-viṣayako ‚bhilāṣaḥ puruṣaṃ pāpe prerayati tad anicchum api so ‚sya preraka ity arthaḥ | nanv abhicārādau krodho ‚pi prerako dṛṣṭaḥ sa cendriyasyety ādaubhavatāpi pṛthag ukta iti cet, satyam | na sa tasmāt pṛthak, kintv eṣa kāma eva kenacic cetanena pratihataḥ krodho bhavati | dugdham ivāmlena yuktaṃ dadhi | kāma-jaya eva krodha-jaya iti bhāvaḥ | kīdṛśaḥ kāma ity āha rajo-guṇeti | sattva-vṛddhyā rajasi nirjite kāmo nirjitaḥ syād ity arthaḥ | na cāpekṣita-pradānena kāmasya nivṛttir ity āha mahāśana iti |

yat pṛthivyāṃ vrīhi-yavaṃ hiraṇyaṃ paśavaḥ striyaḥ |
nālam ekasya tat sarvam iti matvā śamaṃ vrajet || iti smaraṇāt |

na ca sāmnā bhedena vā sa vaśībhaved ity āha mahāpāpmeti | yo ‚tyugro viveka-jñāna-vilopena niṣiddhe ‚pi pravartayati tasmād iha dāna-yoge enaṃ vairiṇaṃ viddhi tathā ca jñānādibhis tribhir upāyaiḥ sandhātum aśakyatvād vakṣyamāṇena daṇḍena sa hantavya iti bhāvaḥ | īśvaraḥ karmāntaritaḥ parjanyavat sarvatra prerakaḥ | kāmas tu svayam eva pāpmāgre iti tathoktam

 
 

BhG 3.38

dhūmenāvriyate vahnir yathādarśo malena ca
yatholbenāvṛto garbhas tathā tenedam āvṛtam

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yathā (as) dhūmena (by smoke) vahniḥ (fire) āvriyate (is covered),
[yathā] ca (and as) malena (by dust) ādarśaḥ (mirror) [āvriyate] (is covered),
yathā (as) ulbena (by the womb) garbhaḥ (embryo) āvṛtaḥ (covered) [asti] (it is),
tathā (so) tena (by that) idam (this) āvṛtam (covered) [asti] (it is).

 

grammar

dhūmena dhūma 3n.1 m.by smoke (from: dhū – to shake, to kindle);
āvriyate ā-vṛ (to cover) Praes. pass. 1v.1it is covered;
vahniḥ vahni 1n.1 m.fire (from: vah – to carry);
yathā av.as (correlative of: tathā);
ādarśaḥ ā-darśa 1n.1 m.mirror (from: ā-dṛś – to show, to be seen);
malena mala 3n.1 n.by impurity, by dust, by dirt;
ca av.and;
yathā av.as (correlative of: tathā);
ulbena ulba 3n.1 n.by cover, cave, the womb;
āvṛtaḥ ā-vṛta (ā-vṛ – to cover) [PP] 1n.1 m.covered;
garbhaḥ garbha 1n.1 n.embryo, interior (from: grah – to take or gṝ – to call, to emit);
tathā av.in that manner, so, in like manner;
tena tat sn. 3n.1 m.by that;
idam idam 1n.1 n.this;
āvṛtam ā-vṛta (ā-vṛ – to cover) [PP] 1n.1 n.covered;

 

textual variants


dhūmenāvriyatedhūmenāvrīyate / vidhūmenāyate / dhūmenādriyate / dhūmenāpi hito (by smoke covered / by smoke come / by smoke it is attended / even by fire stroke);
tathā tenedam āvṛtam → tathā tenāyam āvṛtaḥ (so by that this covered);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

He now illustrates how it is our foe:

kathaṃ vairī? iti dṛṣṭāntaiḥ pratyāyayati —

As fire is surrounded by smoke, as a mirror by rust,
as the fetus is enclosed in the womb, so is this covered by it.

dhūmenāvriyate vahnir yathādarśo malena ca |
yatholbenāvṛto garbhas tathā tenedam āvṛtam ||3.38||

As a bright fire is surrounded by dark smoke co-existent with it so this is covered with desire.

dhūmena sahajenāvriyate vahniḥ prakāśātmako ’prakāśātmakena, yathā ādarśo malena ca, yatholbena ca jarāyuṇā garbha-veṣṭanena cāvṛta ācchādito garbhas tathā tenedam āvṛtam ||3.38||

 

Rāmānuja


yathā dhūmena vahnir āvriyate, yathā ādarśo malena, yathā ca ulbenāvṛto garbhaḥ, tathā tena kāmena idaṃ jantujātam āvṛtam

 

Śrīdhara


kāmasya vairitvaṃ darśayati dhūmeneti | dhūmena sahajena yathā vahnir āvriyata ācchādyate | yathā cādarśo malenāgantukena | yathā colbena garbhaveṣṭana-carmaṇā garbhaḥ sarvato niruddha āvṛtaḥ | tathāprakāra-trayeṇāpi tena kāmenāvṛtam idam

 

Madhusūdana


tasya mahā-pāpmatvena vairtvam eva dṛṣṭāntaiḥ spaṣṭayati dhūmeneti | tatra śarīrārambhāt prāg-antaḥ-karaṇa-sthālabdha-vṛttikatvāt sūkṣmaḥ kāmaḥ śarīrārambhakeṇa karmaṇā sthūla-śarīrāvacchinne labdha-vṛttike ‚ntaḥkaraṇe kṛtābhivyaktiḥ san sthūlo bhavati | sa eva viṣayasya cintyamānatāvasthāyāṃ punaḥ punar udricyamānaḥ sthūlataro bhavati | sa eva punar viṣayasya bhujyamānatāvasthāyām atyantodrekaṃ prāptaḥ sthūlatamo bhavati | tatra prathamāvasthāyāṃ dṛṣṭāntaḥ — yathā dhūmena sahajenāprakāśātmakena prakāśātmako vahnir āvriyate | dvitīyāvasthāyāṃ dṛṣṭāntaḥ – yathādarśo malenāsahajenādarśotpatty-anantaram udriktena | ca-kāro ‚vāntara-vaidharmya-sūcanārtha āvriyata iti kriyānukarṣaṇārthaś ca | tṛtīyāvasthāyāṃ dṛṣṭāntaḥ – yatholbena jarāyuṇā garbha-veṣṭana-carmaṇātisthūlena sarvato nirudhyāvṛtas tathā prakāra-trayeṇāpi tena kāmenedam āvṛtam |

atra dhūmenāvṛto ‚pi vahnir dāhādi-lakṣaṇaṃ sva-kāryaṃ karoti | malenāvṛtas tv ādarśaḥ pratibimba-grahaṇa-lakṣaṇaṃ svakāryaṃ na karoti | svacchatā-dharma-mātra-tirodhānāt svarūpatas tūpalabhyata eva | ulbenāvṛtas tu garbho na hasta-pādādi-prasāraṇa-rūpaṃ sva-kāryaṃ karoti na vā svarūpata upalabhyata iti viśeṣaḥ

 

Viśvanātha


na ca kasyacid evāyaṃ vairy api tu sarvasyaiveti sa-dṛṣṭāntam āha dhūmeneti | kāmasyāgāḍhatve gāḍhatve ‚tigāḍhatve ca krameṇa dṛṣṭāntāḥ | dhūmenāvṛto ‚pi malino vahnir dāhādi-lakṣaṇaṃ sva-kāryaṃ tu karoti | malenāvṛto darpaṇaṃ tu svacchatā-dharma-tirodhānād bimba-grahaṇaṃ sva-kāryaṃ na karoti svarūpatas tūpalabhyate | ulbena jarāyūṇāvṛto garbhas tu sva-kāryaṃ kara-caraṇādi-prasāraṇaṃ na karoti, na vā svarūpata upalabhyata iti | evaṃ kāmasyāgāḍhatve paramārtha-smaraṇaṃ kartuṃ śaknoti | gāḍhatve na śaknotīti gāḍhatve tv acetanam eva syād idaṃ jagad eva

 

Baladeva


mṛdu-madhya-tīvra-bhāvena trividhasya kāmasya dhūma-malolbaneti krameṇa dṛṣṭāntān āha dhūmenet | yathā dhūmenāvṛto ‚nujjvalo ‚pi vahnir auṣṇādikaṃ kiṃcit karoti malenāvṛto darpaṇaḥ svacchatā-tirodhānāt pratibimbaṃ na śaknoti grahītum ulbena jarā-guṇāvṛto garbhas tu pādādi-prasārarṃ na śaknoti kartuṃ na copalabhyate | tathā mṛdunā kāmenāvṛtaṃ jñānaṃ kathaṃcit tattvārthaṃ grahītuṃ śaknoti madhyenāvṛtaṃ na śaknoti | tīvreṇāvṛtaṃ tu prasartum api na śaknoti, na ca pratīyata ity arthaḥ

 
 

BhG 3.39

āvṛtaṃ jñānam etena jñānino nitya-vairiṇā
kāma-rūpeṇa kaunteya duṣpūreṇānalena ca

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he kaunteya (O son of Kuntī!),
etena (by this) nitya-vairiṇā (by eternal enemy) kāma-rūpeṇa (in the form of desire) duṣpūreṇa (by unsatiable) analena ca (and by fire) jñāninaḥ (of a wise man) jñānam (knowledge) āvṛtam (covered) [asti] (it is).

 

grammar

āvṛtam ā-vṛta (ā-vṛ – to cover) [PP] 1n.1 n.covered;
jñānam jñāna 1n.1 n.knowledge, wisdom, intelligence (from: jñā – to know, to understand);
etena etat sn. 3n.1 m.by this;
jñāninaḥ jñānin 6n.1 m.of a wise man (from: jñā – to know, to understand);
nitya-vairiṇā nitya-vairin 3n.1 m.; nityena vairiṇetiby eternal enemy (from: nitya – continual, eternal; vira – brave, a hero, vairin – enemy);
kāma-rūpeṇa kāma-rūpa 3n.1 m.; BV: yasya rūpaṁ kāmo ‘sti tenaby that whose form is desire (from: kam –to wish, to love, to long for, kāma – wish, desire; rūp – to form, rūpa – shape, figure, beauty);
kaunteya kaunteya 8n.1 m.O son of Kuntī (from: kunti – the people of Kunti, kuntī – Kuntī, mother of the sons of Pāṇḍu);
duṣpūreṇa duṣ-pūra 3n.1 m.by that which is difficult to satisfy, unsatiable (from: dur / dus – prefix: difficult, bad, hard; pṝ – to fill, to nourish, puru – abundance, pūra – filling, satisfying);
analena anala 3n.1 m.by fire (an – to breath, to live);
ca av.and;

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

What is the thing referred to by ‚this’ and which is covered with desire? – The answer follows:

kiṃ punas tad idaṃ-śabda-vācyaṃ yat kāmenāvṛtam ity ucyate —

Covered, O son of Kunti, is wisdom by this constant enemy of the wise,
in the form of desire, which is greedy and insatiable.

āvṛtaṃ jñānam etena jñānino nitya-vairiṇā |
kāma-rūpeṇa kaunteya duṣpūreṇānalena ca ||3.39||

The wise man knows even before suffering the consequence, that he has been led by desire to evil ways, and therefore he feels ever miserable.

āvṛtam etena jñānaṃ jñānino nitya-vairiṇā, jñānī hi jānāty anenāham anarthe prayuktaḥ pūrvam eveti | duḥkhī ca bhavati nityam eva |

Whence desire is a constant enemy of the wise, not of the ignorant. For, the latter regards desire as a friend at the time he thirsts for objects, and it is only when suffering results from it, – but not before, – that he learns the truth that he has been rendered miserable by desire.

ato’sau jñānino nitya-vairī, na tu mūrkhasya | sa hi kāmaṃ tṛṣṇā-kāle mitram iva paśyan tat-kārye duḥkhe prāpte jānāti tṛṣṇayāhaṃ duḥkhitvam āpādita iti, na pūrvam eva | ato jñānina eva nitya-vairī |

Wherefore it is a constant enemy of the wise alone It is insatiable and greedy; it never has enough, i.e., it finds nothing enough for itself, i.e., there is no limit to its consuming power.

kiṃ-rūpeṇa? kāma-rūpeṇa kāma icchaiva rūpam asyeti kāmarūpas tena duṣpūreṇa duḥkhena pūraṇam asyeti duṣpūras tenānalena nāsyālaṃ paryāptir vidyata ity analas tena ca ||3.39||

 

Rāmānuja


āvaraṇaprakāram āha

asya jantoḥ jñāninaḥ jñānasvabhāvasyātmaviṣayaṃ jñānam etena kāmakāreṇa viṣayavyāmohajananena nityavairiṇā āvṛtam; duṣpūreṇa prāptyanarhaviṣayeṇa, analena ca paryāptirahitena

 

Śrīdhara


idaṃ śabda-nirdiṣṭaṃ darśayan vairitvaṃ sphuṭayati āvṛtam iti | idaṃ viveka-jñānam etena āvṛtam | ajñasya khalu bhoga-samaye kāmaḥ sukha-hetur eva | pariṇāme tu vairitvaṃ pratipadyate | jñāninaḥ punas tat-kālam apy anarthānusandhānād duḥkha-hetur eveti nitgya-vairiṇety uktam | kiṃ ca viṣayaiḥ pūryamāṇo ‚pi yo duṣpūraḥ | āpūryamāṇaṃ tu śoka-santāpa-hetutvād anala-tulyaḥ | anena sarvān prati nitya-vairitvam uktam

 

Madhusūdana


tathā tenedam āvṛtam iti saṅgraha-vākyaṃ vivṛṇoty āvṛtam iti | jñāyate ‚neneti jñānam antaḥkaraṇaṃ viveka-vijñānaṃ veda-śabda-nirdiṣṭam etena kāmenāvṛtam | tathāpy āpātataḥ sukha-hetutvād upādeyaḥ syād ity ata āha jñānino nitya-vairiṇā | ajño hi viṣaya-bhoga-kāle kāmaṃ mitram iva paśyaṃs tat-kārye duḥkhe prāpte vairitvaṃ jānāti kāmenāhaṃ duḥkhitvam āpādita iti | jñānī tu bhoga-kāle ‚pi jānāty anenāham anarthe praveśita iti | ato vivekī duḥkhī bhavati bhoga-kāle ca tat-pariṇāme cāneneti jñānino ‚sau nitya-vairīti sarvathā tena hantavya evety arthaḥ |

tarhi kiṃ svarūo ‚sāv ity ata āha kāma-rūpeṇa | kāma icchā tṛṣṇā saiva rūpaṃ yasya tena | he kaunteyeti sambandhāviṣkāreṇa premāṇaṃ sūcayati | nanu vivekino hantavyo ‚py avivekina upādeyaḥ syād ity ata āha duṣpūreṇānalena ca | ca-kāra upamārthaḥ | na vidyate ‚laṃ paryāptir yasyety analo vahniḥ | sa yathā haviṣā pūrayitum aśakyas tathāyam api bhogenety arthaḥ | ato nirantaraṃ santāpa-hetutvād vivekina ivāvivekino ‚pi heya evāsau | tathā ca smṛtiḥ –

na jātu kāmaḥ kāmānām upabhogena śāṃyati |
haviṣā kṛṣṇa-vartmeva bhūya evābhivardhate || [BhP 9.19.14] iti |

athavecchāyā viṣaya-siddhi-nivartyatvād icchā-rūpaḥ kāmo viṣaya-bhogena svayam eva nivartiṣyate kiṃ tatrāti-nirbandhenety ata uktaṃ duṣpūreṇānalena ceti | viṣaya-siddhyā tat-kālam icchātirodhāne ‚pi punaḥ prādurbhāvān na viṣaya-siddhir icchā-nivartikā | kintu viṣaya-doṣa-dṛṣṭir evatatheti bhāvaḥ

 

Viśvanātha


kāma eva hi jīvasyāvidyety āha āvṛtam iti | nitya-vairiṇy ato ‚sau sarva-prakāreṇa hantavya iti bhāvaḥ | kāma-rūpeṇa kāmākāreṇājñānenety arthaḥ | ca-kāra ivārthe | analo yathā haviṣā pūrayitum acakyas tathā kāmo ‚pi bhogenety arthaḥ | yad uktam –

na jātu kāmaḥ kāmānām upabhogena śāṃyati |
haviṣā kṛṣṇa-vartmeva bhūya evābhivardhate || [BhP 9.19.14] iti

 

Baladeva


uktam arthaṃ sphuṭayati āvṛtam iti | anena kāma-rūpeṇa nitya-vairiṇā jñānino jīvasya jñānam āvṛtam iti sambandhaḥ | ajñasya viṣaya-bhoga-samaye sukhatvāt suhṛd api kāmas tat-kārye duḥkhe sati vairḥ syād vijñasya tu tat-samaye ‚pi duḥkhānusandhānād duḥkha-hetur eveti nitya-vairiṇety uktiḥ | tasmāt sarvathā hantavya iti bhāvaḥ | kiṃ ca duṣpūreṇeti | ca-śabda ivārthaḥ | tatrānalo yathā haviṣā pūrayitum aśakyas tathā bhogena kāma ity arthaḥ | smṛtiś caivam āha-

na jātu kāmaḥ kāmānām upabhogena śāṃyati |
haviṣā kṛṣṇa-vartmeva bhūya evābhivardhate || [BhP 9.19.14] iti |

tasmāt sarveṣāṃ sa nitya-vairīti

 
 

BhG 3.40

indriyāṇi mano buddhir asyādhiṣṭhānam ucyate
etair vimohayaty eṣa jñānam āvṛtya dehinam

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indriyāṇi (the senses), manaḥ (the mind), buddhiḥ (intelligence) asya (its) adhiṣṭhānam (seat) ucyate (it is said).
eṣaḥ (this) etaiḥ (by these) jñānam (knowledge) āvṛtya (after covering)
dehinam (the embodied) vimohayati (it bewilders).

 

grammar

indriyāṇi indriya 1n.3 n.the senses (from: ind – to be powerful);
manaḥ manas 1n.1 n.the mind (from: man – to think);
buddhiḥ buddhi 1n.1 f.intelligence, thought, understanding, knowledge, idea, opinion (from: budh – to wake, to perceive, to understand);
asya idam sn. 6n.1 n.its;
adhiṣṭhānam adhiṣṭhāna 1n.1 n.base, position, abode, seat (from: adhi-sthā – to stand upon, to superintend);
ucyate vac (to speak) Praes. pass. 1v.1it is said;
etaiḥ etat sn. 3n.3 m.by these;
vimohayati vi-muh (to become confused, bewildered, stupefied) Praes. caus. P 1v.3it bewilders;
eṣaḥ etat sn. 1n.1 m.this;
jñānam jñāna 2n.1 n.knowledge, wisdom, intelligence (from: jñā – to know, to understand);
āvṛtya ā-vṛ (to cover) absol.after covering;
dehinam dehin 2n.1 m.the embodied one (from: dih – to anoint, to smear, deha – a form, shape, body; dehin = dehavant = dehābhimānin – who possesses a body, thinking about oneself as a body);

 

textual variants


vimohayaty eṣavimohayaty eṣu (it bewilders, in them);
dehinam → dehināṁ / dehinaḥ (of the embodied, the embodied);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

The seat of desire.
He now tells us where is seated desire which, by enveloping wisdom, forms the enemy of the whole world. The seat of the enemy being known, it is easy to kill it.

kim adhiṣṭhānaḥ punaḥ kāmo jñānasyāvaraṇatvena vairī sarvasya lokasya? ity apekṣāyām āha, jñāte hi śatror adhiṣṭhāne sukhena nibarhaṇaṃ kartuṃ śakyata iti —

The senses, mind, and reason air said to be its seat;
veiling wisdom through these, it deludes the embodied.

indriyāṇi mano buddhir asyādhiṣṭhānam ucyate |
etair vimohayaty eṣa jñānam āvṛtya dehinam ||3.40||

Its seat: the seat of desire. These: the senses, mind (manas), and reason (buddhi).

indriyāṇi mano buddhiś cāsya kāmasyādhiṣṭhānam āśraya ucyate | etair indriyādibhir āśrayair vimohayati vividhaṃ mohayaty eṣa kāmo jñānam āvṛtya ācchādya dehinaṃ śarīriṇam ||3.40||

 

Rāmānuja


kair upakaraṇair ayaṃ kāma ātmānam adhiṣṭhitīty atrāha

adhitiṣṭhaty ebhir ayaṃ kāma ātmānam itīndriyāṇi mano buddhir asyādhiṣṭhānam; etair indriyamanobuddhibhiḥ kāmo ‚dhiṣṭhānabhūtair viṣayapravaṇair dehinaṃ prakṛtisaṃsṛṣṭaṃ jñānam āvṛtya vimohayati vividhaṃ mohayati, ātmajñānavimukhaṃ viṣayānubhavaparaṃ karotītyarthaḥ

 

Śrīdhara


idānīṃ tasyādhiṣṭhānaṃ kathayan jayopāyam āha indriyāṇīti dvābhyām | viṣaya-darśana-śravaṇādibhiḥ saṃkalpenādhyavasāyena ca kāmasya āvirbhāvād indriyāṇi ca manaś ca buddhiś cāsyādhiṣṭhānam ucyate | etair indriyādibhir darśanādi-vyāpāravadbhir āśraya-bhūtair viveka-jñānam āvṛtya dehinaṃ vimohayati

 

Madhusūdana


jñāte hi śatror adhiṣṭhāne sukhena sa jetuṃ śakyata iti tad-adhiṣṭhānam āha indriyāṇīti | indriyāṇi śabda-sparśa-rūpa-rasa-gandha-grāhakāṇi śrotrādīni vacanādāna-gamana-visargānanda-janakāni vāg-ādīni ca | manaḥ saṅkalpātmakaṃ buddhir adhyavasāyātmikā ca | asya kāmasyādhiṣṭhānam āśraya ucyate | yata etair indriyādibhiḥ sva-sva-vyāpāravadbhir āśrayair vimohayati vividhaṃ mohayati eṣa kāmo jñānam viveka-jñānam āvṛtyācchādya dehinaṃ dehābhimāninam

 

Viśvanātha


kvāsau tiṣṭhaty ata āha indriyāṇīti | asya vairiṇaḥ kāmasyādhiṣṭhānaṃ mahā-durga-rājadhānyaḥ | śabdādayo viṣayās tu tasya rājño deśā iti bhāvaḥ | etair indriyādibhir dehinaṃ jīvam

 

Baladeva


vairiṇaḥ kāmasya durgeṣu nirjiteṣu tasya jayaḥ sukara iti tāny āha indriyāṇīti | viṣaya-śravaṇādinā saṅkalpenādhyavasāyena ca kāmasyābhivyakteḥ śrotrādīni ca manaś ca buddhiś ca tasyādhiṣṭhānaṃ mahā-durga-rājadhānī-rūpaṃ bhavati viṣayās tu tasya tasya janapadā bodhyāḥ | etair viṣaya-saṃcāribhir indriyādibhir dehinaṃ prakṛti-sṛṣṭa-dehavantaṃ jīvam ātma-jñānodyatam eṣa kāmo vimohayati ātma-jñāna-vimukhaṃ viṣaya-rasa-pravaṇaṃ ca karotīty arthaḥ

 
 

BhG 3.41

tasmāt tvam indriyāṇy ādau niyamya bharata-rṣabha
pāpmānaṃ prajahi hy enaṃ jñāna-vijñāna-nāśanam

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he bharatarṣabha (O best of the Bharatas!),
tasmāt (therefore) tvam (you) ādau (in the beginning) indriyāṇi (the senses) niyamya (after restraining),
enam (this) jñāna-vijñāna-nāśanam (destroyer of knowledge and wisdom) pāpmānam (the evil) hi prajahi (indeed you must kill).

 

grammar

tasmāt av.therefore (from: tat sn. 5n.1 m. – from that);
tvam yuṣmat sn. 1n.1you;
indriyāṇi indriya 2n.3 n.the senses (from: ind – to be powerful);
ādau av.in the beginning (from: ādi – beginning; locative);
niyamya ni-yam (to restrain) absol.after restraining;
bharata-rṣabha bharata-rṣabha 8n.1 m.; [TP]: bharatāṇām ṛṣabha itiO best of the Bharatas (from: bhṛ – to hold or bharata – king Bharata, maintained, actor, in plural – the descendants of Bharata; ṛṣabha – bull, the best of any kind);
pāpmānam pāpman 2n.1 m.evil, misfortune, sin;
prajahi pra-han (to strike, to beat, to kill) Imperat. P 2v.1you must kill;
or: prajahihi → pra- (to leave, to abandon) Imperat. P 2v.1you must leave;
hi av.because, just, indeed, surely;
enam etat sn. 2n.1 m.this;
jñāna-vijñāna-nāśanam jñāna-vijñāna-nāśana 2n.1 m.; BV: yena jñānasya vijñānasya ca nāśanam asti tamby which there is a destruction of knowledge and wisdom (from: jñā – to know, to understand, jñāna – knowledge, wisdom, intelligence; vi-jñāna – comprehension, understanding, wisdom; naś – to destroy, to vanish, nāśa – destruction, loss, nāśana – destruction, removal);

 

textual variants

niyamya → niyatya (after endeavouring);
prajahi hy enaṃ → prajahī hy enaṃ;

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

How to kill out desire.
Wherefore:

yata evaṃ —

Therefore, O Lord of the Bharatas, restrain the senses first,
do thou cast off this sinful thing which is destructive of knowledge and wisdom.

tasmāt tvam indriyāṇy ādau niyamya bharatarṣabha |
pāpmānaṃ prajahi hy enaṃ jñāna-vijñāna-nāśanam ||3.41||

tasmāt tvam indriyāṇy ādau pūrvam eva niyamya vaśīkṛtya bharatarṣabha pāpmānaṃ pāpācāraṃ kāmaṃ prajahi hi parityaja enaṃ prakṛtaṃ vairiṇaṃ jñāna-vijñāna-nāśanaṃ |

Jñāna is the knowledge of the Self and other things acquired from the śastra (scripture) and from a teacher (acharya). Vijñāna is the personal experience of the things so taught. Do thou cast off from you the destroyer of jñāna and vijñāna which lead to the highest good.

jñānaṃ śāstrata ācāryataś cātmādīnām avabodhaḥ | vijñānaṃ viśeṣatas tad-anubhavas tayor jñāna-vijñānayoḥ śreyaḥ-prāpti-hetvor nāśanaṃ nāśa-karaṃ prajahihi ātmanaḥ parityajety arthaḥ ||3.41||

 

Rāmānuja


yasmāt sarvendriyavyāpāroparatirūpe jñānayoge pravṛttasyāyaṃ kāmarūpaḥ śatruḥ viṣayābhimukhyakaraṇena ātmani vaimukhyaṃ karoti, tasmāt prakṛtisaṃsṛṣṭatayendriyavyāpārapravaṇastvam ādau mokṣopāyārambhasamaya eva, indriyavyāpārarūpe karmayoge indriyāṇi niyamya, enaṃ jñānavijñānanāśanam ātmasvarūpaviṣayasya jñānasya tadvivekaviṣayasya ca nāśanaṃ pāpmānaṃ kāmarūpaṃ vairiṇaṃ prajahi nāśaya

 

Śrīdhara


yasmād evaṃ tasmād iti | tasmād ādau vimohāt pūrvam evendriyāṇi mano buddhiṃ ca niyamya pāpmānaṃ pāpa-rūpam enaṃ kāmaṃ hi sphuṭaṃ prajahi ghātaya | yad vā prajahihi parityaja | jñānam ātma-viṣayaṃ | vijñānaṃ nididhyāsanajam | tam eva dhīro vijñāya prajñāṃ kurvīta iti śruteḥ

 

Madhusūdana


yasmād evam | yasmād indriyādhiṣṭhānaḥ kāmo dehinaṃ mohayati tasmāt tvam ādau mohanāt pūrvaṃ kāma-nirodhāt pūrvam iti vā | indriyāṇi śrotrādīni niyamya vaśīkṛtya | teṣu hi vaśīkṛteṣu mano-buddhyor api vaśīkaraṇaṃ sidhyati saṅkalpādhyavasāyayor bāhyendriya-pravṛtti-dvāraivānartha-hetutvāt | ata indriyāṇi mano buddhir iti pūrvaṃ pṛthaṅ-nirdiśyāpīhendriyāṇīty etāvad uktam | indriyatvena tayor api saṅgraho vā | he bharatarṣabha mahā-vaṃśa-prabhūtatvena samartho ‚si | pāpmānaṃ sarva-pāpa-mūla-bhūtam enaṃ kāmaṃ vairiṇaṃ prajahihi parityaja hi sphuṭaṃ prajahi prakarṣeṇa mārayeti vā | jahi śatrum ity upasaṃhārāc ca | jñānaṃ śāstrācāryopadeśa-jaṃ parokṣaṃ vijñānam aparokṣaṃ tat-phalaṃ tayor jñāna-vijñānayoḥ śreyaḥ-prāpti-hetvor nāśanam

 

Viśvanātha


vairiṇaḥ khalv āśraye jite sati vairī jīyata iti nītir ataḥ kāmasyāśrayeṣv indriyādiṣu yathottaraṃ durjayatvādhikyam | ataḥ prathama-prāptānīndriyāṇi durjayāny apy uttarāpekṣayā sujayāni | prathamaṃ te jīyantām ity āha tasmād iti | indriyāṇi niyamyena yadyapi para-strī-para-dravyādy-apaharaṇe durnivāraṃ mano gacchaty eva | tad api tatra tatra netra-śrotra-kara-caraṇādīndriya-vyāpāra-stha-gaṇanād indriyāṇi na gamayety arthaḥ | pāpmānam atyugraṃ kāmaṃ jahītīndriya-vyāpārastha-gaṇanam atikālena mano ‚pi kāmād vicyutaṃ bhavatīti bhāvaḥ

 

Baladeva


yasmād ayaṃ kāma-rūpo vairī nikhilendriya-vyāpāra-virati-rūpāyātma-jñānāyodyatasya viṣaya-rasa-pravaṇair indriyair jñānam āvṛṇoti tasmāt prakṛti-sṛṣṭa-dehādimāṃs tvam ādāv ātma-jñānodayāyārambha-kāla evendriyāṇi sarvāṇi tad-vyāpāra-rūpe niṣkāme karma-yoge niyamya pravaṇāni kṛtvā enaṃ pāpmānaṃ kāmaṃ śatruṃ prajahi vināśaya | hi yasmāj jñānasya śāstrīyasya dehādi-viviktātma-viṣayakasya vijñānasya ca tādṛg-ātmānubhavasya nāśanam āvarakam

 
 

BhG 3.42

indriyāṇi parāṇy āhur indriyebhyaḥ paraṃ manaḥ
manasas tu parā buddhir yo buddheḥ paratas tu saḥ

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indriyāṇi (the senses) parāṇi (superior) [santi iti] (they are) [te] (they) āhuḥ (they spoke),
indriyebhyaḥ (than the senses) manaḥ (the mind) param (superior) [asti] (it is),
manasaḥ tu (but than the mind) buddhiḥ (intelligence) parā (superior) [asti] (it is),
yaḥ tu (but he who) buddheḥ (than intelligence) parataḥ (far superior) saḥ (he) [asti] (is).

 

grammar

indriyāṇi indriya 1n.3 n.the senses (from: ind – to be powerful);
parāṇi para 1n.3 n.beyond, ancient, final, the best, the supreme;
āhuḥ ah (to speak – inflected only in [Perf.], other forms from: brū) [Perf.] P 1v.3they spoke;
indriyebhyaḥ indriya 5n.3 n.than the senses (from: ind – to be powerful);
param para 1n.1 n.beyond, ancient, final, the best, the supreme;
manaḥ manas 1n.1 n.the mind (from: man – to think);
manasaḥ manas 5n.1 n.than the mind (from: man – to think)
tu av.but, then, or, and;
parā para 1n.1 f.beyond, ancient, final, the best, the supreme;
buddhiḥ buddhi 1n.1 f.intelligence, thought, understanding, knowledge, idea, opinion (from: budh – to wake, to perceive, to understand);
yaḥ yat sn. 1n.1 m.he who;
buddheḥ buddhi 5n.1 f.than intelligence, thought, understanding, knowledge, idea, opinion (from: budh – to wake, to perceive, to understand);
parataḥ av.farther, beyond, above (from: para – distant, beyond, out; indeclinable ablative with an ending: -tas);
tu av.but, then, or, and;
saḥ tat sn. 1n.1 m.he;

 

textual variants

yo buddheḥ → buddher yaḥ (than intelligence, he who);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

It has been taught, “first master the senses, and cast off desire, thy enemy.” Now it may be asked, – Where should one take one’s stand and cast off desire? The answer follows:

indriyāṇy ādau niyamya kāmaṃ śatruṃ jahihi ity uktam | tatra kim āśrayaḥ kāmaṃ jahyāt ity ucyate —

They say that the senses are superior: superior to the senses is mind:
superior to mind is reason; one who is even superior to reason is He.

indriyāṇi parāṇy āhur indriyebhyaḥ paraṃ manaḥ |
manasas tu parā buddhir yo buddheḥ paratas tu saḥ ||3.42||

The senses are five, the sense of hearing, etc. When compared with the physical body, which is gross, external, and limited, the senses are superior as they are comparatively more subtle and internal, and have a more extensive sphere of action. So say the wise. Superior to the senses is mind (manas, the impulsive nature) which is composed of thoughts and desires, of errors and doubts, (saṁkalpa and vikalpa). Superior to mind is reason (buddhi) characterized by determination (nischaya).

indriyāṇi śrotrādīni pañca | dehaṃ sthūlaṃ bāhyaṃ paricchinnaṃ cāpekṣya saukṣmyāntaratva-vyāpitvādy-apekṣayā parāṇi prakṛṣṭāny āhuḥ paṇḍitāḥ | tathā indriyebhyaḥ paraṃ manaḥ saṃkalpa-vikalpātmakam | tathā manasas tu parā buddhir niścayātmikā |

So, He who is behind all things visible, inclusive of reason, the Dweller in the body, whom – it has been said – desire, seated in the senses and other quarters, bewilders by enveloping wisdom, – He, the Self, the witness of reason, is superior to reason.

tathā yaḥ sarva-dṛśyebhyo buddhy-antebhyo ’bhyantaro yaṃ dehinam indriyādibhir āśrayair yuktaḥ kāmo jñānāvaraṇa-dvāreṇa mohayatīty uktam | buddheḥ paratas tu sa | sa buddher draṣṭā | para ātmā ||3.42||

 

Rāmānuja


jñānavirodhiṣu pradhānam āha

jñānavirodhe pradhānānīndriyāṇy āhuḥ, yata indriyeṣu viṣayavyāpṛteṣu ātmani jñānaṃ na pravartate / indriyebhyaḥ paraṃ manaḥ indriyeṣu uparateṣv api manasi viṣayapravaṇe ātmajñānaṃ na saṃbhavati / manasas tu parā buddhiḥ manasi vṛttyantaravimukhe ‚pi viparītādhyavasāyapravṛttau satyāṃ jñānaṃ na pravartate / sarveṣu buddhiparyanteṣu uparateṣv apīcchāparyāyaḥ kāmo rajassamudbhavo vartate cet, sa evaitānīndriyādīny api svaviṣaye vartayitvā ātmajñānaṃ niruṇaddhi / tad idam ucyate, yo buddheḥ paras tu saḥ iti / buddher api yaḥ paras sa kāma ityarthaḥ

 

Śrīdhara


yatra citta-praṇidhānena indriyāṇi niyantuṃ śakyante, tad ātma-svarūpaṃ dehādibhyo vivicya darśayati indriyāṇīti | indriyāṇi dehādibhyo grāhyebhyaḥ parāṇi śreṣṭhāny āhuḥ sūkṣmatvāt prakāśakatvāc ca | ataeva tad-vyatiriktatvam apy arthād uktaṃ bhavati | indriyebhyaś ca saṅkalpātmakaṃ manaḥ param tat-pravartakatvāt | manasas tu niścayātmikā buddhiḥ parā | niścaya-pūrvakatvāt saṅkalpasya | yas tu buddheḥ paratas tat-sākṣitvenāvasthitaḥ sarvāntaraḥ sa ātmā | taṃ vimohayati dehinam iti dehi-śabdokta ātmā sa iti parāmṛśyate

 

Madhusūdana


nanu yathā kathaṃcid bāhyendriya-niyama-sambhave ‚py āntara-tṛṣṇā-tyāgo ‚tiduṣkara iti cen, na | raso ‚py asya paraṃ dṛṣṭvā nivartate [Gītā 2.59] ity atra para-darśanasya rasābhidhānīyaka-tṛṣṇā-tyāga-sādhanasya prāg-ukteḥ | tarhi ko ‚sau paro yad-darśanāt tṛṣṇā-nivṛttir ity āśaṅkya śuddham ātmānaṃ para-śabda-vācyaṃ dehādibhyo vivicya darśayati indriyāṇīti | śrotrādīni jñānendriyāṇi pañca sthūlaṃ jaḍaṃ paricchinnaṃ bāhyaṃ ca deham apekṣya parāṇi sūkṣmatvāt prakāśakatvād vyāpakatvād antaḥsthatvāc ca prakṛṣṭāny āhuḥ paṇḍitāḥ śrutayo vā | tathendriyebhyaḥ paraṃ manaḥ saṅkalpa-vikalpātmakaṃ tat-pravartakatvāt | tathā manasas tu parā buddhir adhyavasāyātmikā | adhyavasāyo hi niścayas tat-pūrvaka eva saṅkalpādir mano-dharmaḥ | yas tu buddheḥ paratas tad-bhāsakatvenāvasthito yaṃ dehinam indriyādibhir āśrayair yuktaḥ kāmo jñānāvaraṇa-dvāreṇa mohayatīty uktaṃ sa buddher draṣṭā para ātmā | sa eṣa iha praviṣṭaḥ itivad dvyavahitasyāpi dehinas tadā parāmarśaḥ | atrārthe śrutiḥ –

indriyebhyaḥ parā hy arthā arthebhyaś ca paraṃ manaḥ |
manasas tu parā buddhir buddher ātmā mahān paraḥ ||
mahataḥ parama-vyaktam avyaktāt puruṣaḥ paraḥ |
puruṣān na paraṃ kiṃcit sā kāṣṭhā sā parā gatiḥ || [KaṭhU 1.3.10-11] iti |

atrātmanaḥ paratvasyaiva vākya-tātparya-viṣayatvād indriyādi-paratvasyāvivakṣitatvād indriyebhyaḥ parā arthā iti sthāne ‚rthebhyaḥ parāṇīndriyāṇīti vivakṣābhedena bhagavad-uktaṃ na virudhyate | buddher asmad-ādi-vyaṣṭi-buddheḥ sakāśān mahān ātmā samaṣṭi-buddhi-rūpaḥ paraḥ mano mahān matir brahma pūr buddhiḥ khyātir īśvaraḥ iti vāyu-purāṇa-vacanāt | mahato hairaṇyagarbhyā buddheḥ param avyaktam avyākṛtaṃ sarva-jagad-bījaṃ māyākhyaṃ māyāṃ tu prakṛtiṃ vidyād iti śruteḥ | tad dhedaṃ tarhy avyākṛtam āsīt iti ca | avyaktāt sakāśāt sakala-jaḍa-varga-prakāśakaḥ puruṣaḥ pūrṇa ātmā paraḥ | tasmād api kaścid anyaḥ paraḥ syād ity ata āha puruṣān na paraṃ kiṃcid iti | kuta evaṃ yasmāt sā kāṣṭhā samāptiḥ sarvādhiṣṭhānatvāt | sā parā gatiḥ | so ‚dhvanaḥ pāram āpnoti tad viṣṇoḥ paramaṃ padam ity ādi-śruti-prasiddhā parā gatir api saivety arthaḥ | tad etat sarvaṃ yo buddheḥ paratas tu sa ity anenoktam

 

Viśvanātha


na ca prathamam eva mano-buddhi-jaye yatanīyam aśakyatvād ity āha indriyāṇi parāṇīti | daśa-dig-vijayibhir api vīrair durjayatvād atibalatvena śreṣṭhānīty arthaḥ | indriyebhyaḥ sakāśād api prabalatvān manaḥ paraṃ | svapne khalv indriyeṣv api naṣṭeṣv anaśvaratvād iti bhāvaḥ | manasaḥ sakāśād api parā prabalā buddhir vijñāna-rūpā | suṣuptau manasy api naṣṭe tasyāḥ sāmānyākārāyā anaśvarātvād iti bhāvaḥ | tasya buddheḥ sakāśād api parato balādhikyena yo vartate, tawsyām api jñānābhyāsena naṣṭāyāṃ satyāṃ yo virājata ity arthaḥ | sa tu prasiddho jīvātmā kāmasya jetā | tena vastutaḥ sarvato ‚py atiprabalena jīvātmanā indriyādīn vijitya kāmo vijetuṃ śakya eveti nātrāsambhāvanā kāryeti bhāvaḥ

 

Baladeva


nanu mudrita-yantrāmbu-nyāyena niṣkāma-karma-pravaṇatayendriya-niyamane kāma-kṣatir iti tvayā pradarśitam | atha daihika-karma-kāle mukta-yantrāmbu-nyāyenendriya-vṛtti-prasāre kāmasya punar ujjīvatāpattiḥ syād iti tatra raso ‚py asya paraṃ dṛṣṭvā [Gītā 2.59] iti pūrvopadiṣṭena viviktātmānubhavena niḥśeṣā tasya kṣatiḥ syād iti darśayati indriyāṇīti dvābhyām |

pāñcabhautikād dehād indriyāṇi parāṇy āhur paṇḍitāḥ | tac cālīkatvāt tato ’tisūkṣmatvāt tad-vināśe ‚vināśāc ca | indriyebhyaḥ manaḥ paraṃ jāgare teṣāṃ pravartakatvāt svapne teṣu svasmin vilīneṣu rājya-kartṛtvena sthitatvāc ca | manasas tu buddhiḥ parā, niścayātmaka-buddhi-vṛttyaiva saṅkalpātmaka-mano-vṛtteḥ prasarāt | yas tu buddher api parato ‚sti, sa dehī jīvātmā cit-svarūpo dehādi-buddhy-antar-viviktayānubhūtaḥ san niḥśeṣa-kāma-kṣati-hetur bhavatīti | kaṭhāś caivaṃ paṭhanti –

indriyebhyaḥ parā hy arthā arthebhyaś ca paraṃ manaḥ |
manasas tu parā buddhir buddher ātmā mahān paraḥ || ity ādi |

asyārthaḥ – indriyebhyo ‚rthā viṣayās tad-ākarsiktatvāt parāḥ pradhāna-bhūtāḥ | viṣayendriya-vyavahārasya mano-mūlatvād arthebhyo manaḥ paraṃ viṣaya-bhogasya niścaya-pūrvakatvāt saṃśayātmakān manaso manaḥ paraṃ viṣaya-bhogasya niścaya-pūrvakatvāt saṃśayātmakān manaso niścayātmikā buddhiḥ parā buddher bhogopakaraṇatvāt tasyāḥ sakāśād bhoktātmā jīvaḥ paraḥ sa cātmā mahān dehendriyāntaḥkaraṇa-svāmīti daihikaṃ karma tu pūrvābhyāsa-vaśāc cakra-bhramitvat setsyati

 
 

BhG 3.43

evaṃ buddheḥ paraṃ buddhvā saṃstabhyātmānam ātmanā
jahi śatruṃ mahā-bāho kāma-rūpaṃ durāsadam

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he mahā-bāho (O mighty-armed one!),
evam (thus) buddheḥ (than intelligence) param (superior) buddhvā (after knowing),
ātmanā (by the self) ātmānam (the self) saṁstabhya (after steadying)
durāsadam (difficult to conquer) kāma-rūpam (in the form of desire) jahi (you must kill).

 

grammar

evam av.thus;
buddheḥ buddhi 5n.1 f.than intelligence, thought, understanding, knowledge, idea, opinion (from: budh – to wake, to perceive, to understand);
param para 2n.1 n.beyond, ancient, final, the best, the supreme;
buddhvā budh (to wake, to perceive, to understand) absol.after knowing;
saṁstabhya sam-stambh (to support, to steady) absol.after steadying, after restraining;
ātmānam ātman 2n.1 m.self;
ātmanā ātman 3n.1 m.by the self;
jahi han (to strike, to beat, to kill) Imperat. P 2v.1you must kill;
śatrum śatru 2n.1 m.enemy, rival (from: śad – to fall, to disperse, to kill);
mahā-bāho mahā-bāhu 8n.1 m.; BV: yasya bāhū mahāntau staḥ saḥO you who have mighty arms (from: mah – to magnify, mahant – great; baṁh – to grow, to increase, bāhu – the arm);
kāma-rūpam kāma-rūpa 2n.1 m.; BV: yasya rūpaṁ kāmo ‘sti tam that whose form is desire (from: kam –to wish, to love, to long for, kāma – wish, desire; rūp – to form, rūpa – shape, figure, beauty);
durāsadam dur-ā-sada 2n.1 m.difficul to meet, to conquer (from: dur / dus – prefix: difficult, bad, hard; ā-sad – to sit near, to approach, ā-sada – meeting);

 

textual variants


buddhvā → matvā / buddhaḥ (after thinking / knower);
saṁstabhyātmānam → sastaṁbhyātmānam / saṁstutyātmānam / saṁyamyātmānam (after steadying the self / after praising the self / after restraining the self);

 
 


Śāṃkara

The key:
an excerpt from the commented verse
quotes from the scriptures
starting polemic

tataḥ kiṃ —

Thus knowing Him who is superior to reason, subduing the self by the self,
slay thou, O mighty-armed, the enemy in the form of desire, hard to conquer.

evaṃ buddheḥ paraṃ buddhvā saṃstabhyātmānam ātmanā |
jahi śatruṃ mahābāho kāma-rūpaṃ durāsadam ||3.43||

Thus understanding the Self who is superior to reason and subduing the self by the self, i. e., steadily composing the self by means of the self,

evaṃ buddheḥ param ātmānaṃ buddhvā jñātvā saṃstabhya samyak stambhanaṃ kṛtvātmānaṃ svenaivātmanā saṃskṛtena manasā samyak samādhāyety arthaḥ |

do thou slay desire. It is difficult to conquer desire, on account of its complex and incomprehensible nature.

jahy enaṃ śatruṃ he mahābāho! kāma-rūpaṃ durāsadaṃ duḥkhenāsada āsādanaṃ prāptir yasya taṃ durāsadaṃ durvijñeyāneka-viśeṣam iti ||3.43||

 

Rāmānuja


evaṃ buddher api paraṃ kāmaṃ jñānayogavirodhinaṃ vairiṇaṃ buddhvā ātmānaṃ manaḥ ātmanā buddhyā karmayoge ‚vasthāpya enaṃ kāmarūpaṃ durāsadaṃ śatruṃ jahi nāśayeti

 

Śrīdhara


upasaṃharati evam iti | buddher eva viṣayendriyādi-janyāḥ kāmādi-vikriyāḥ | ātmā tu nirvikāras tat-sākṣīty evaṃ buddheḥ paramātmānaṃ buddhvātmanaivaṃ tṛtayā niściyātmikayā buddhyātmānaṃ manaḥ saṃstabhya niścalaṃ kṛtvā kāma-rūpiṇaṃ śatruṃ jahi māraya | durāsadaṃ duḥkhenāsādanīyaṃ durvijñeyam ity arthaḥ

 

Madhusūdana


phalitam āha evam iti | raso ‚py asya paraṃ dṛṣṭvā nivartate ity atra yaḥ para-śabdenoktas tam evambhūtaṃ pūrṇam ātmānaṃ buddheḥ paraṃ buddhvā sākṣātkṛtya saṃstabhya sthirītkṛtyātmānaṃ mana ātmanaitādṛśa-niścayātmkiayā buddhyā jahi māraya śatruṃ sarva-puruṣārtha-śātanaṃ he mahābāho mahā-bāhor hi śatru-māraṇaṃ sukaram iti yogyaṃ sambodhanam | kāma-rūpaṃ tṛṣṇā-rūpaṃ durāsadaṃ duḥkhenāsādanīyaṃ durvijñeyāneka-viśeṣam iti yatnādhikyāya viśeṣaṇam

 

Viśvanātha


upasaṃharati evam iti | buddheḥ paraṃ jīvātmānaṃ buddhvā sarvopādhibhyaḥ pṛthak-bhūtaṃ jñātvā ātmanā svenaivāmānaṃ svaṃ saṃstabhya niścalaṃ kṛtvā durāsadaṃ durjayam api kāmaṃ jahi nāśaya

 

Baladeva


evam iti | evaṃ mad-upadeśa-vidhayā buddheś ca paraṃ dehādi-nikhila-jaḍa-varga-pravartakatvād viviktaṃ sukha-cid-ghanaṃ jīvātmānaṃ buddhvānubhūyety arthaḥ | ātmanā īdṛśa-niścayātmikayā buddhyātmānaṃ manaḥ saṃstabhya tādṛśy ātmani sthiraṃ kṛtvā kāma-rūpaṃ śatruṃ jahi nāśaya | durāsadaṃ durdharṣam api | mahā-bāho iti prāgvat

 
 

BhG 3.colophon

 iti śrī-mahābhārate bhiṣma-parvaṇi pañca-viṃśo ‘dhyāyaḥ

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translation

Thus [ends] the twenty-fifth chapter in Bhīṣma-parvan in the venerable Mahābhārata.

 

textual variants

iti śrī-mahābhārate śata-sāhasryāṃ saṃhitāyāṃ vaiyāsakyāṃ bhīṣma-parvaṇi*

In the venerable Mahābhārata, [which is] Vyāsa’s saṁhitā [composed] of one hundred thousand [verses], in Bhīṣma-parvan

śrīmad-bhagavad-gītāsu upaniṣatsu brahma-vidyāyāṃ yoga-śāstre śrī-kṛṣṇārjuna-saṃvāde karma-pratiṣṭhā-yogo / karma-yogo / karma-nirūpaṇa-yogo / karma-saṃnyāsa-yogo / jñāna-yogo / karma-brahma-yogo / karma-praśaṃsā-yogo nāma tṛtīyo ‘dhyāyaḥ

in glorious songs of the Lord, in the upaniṣads, in the knowledge of brahman, in the science of yoga, in the dialogue of Śrī Kṛṣṇa and Arjuna thus [ends] the third chapter entitled: The Yoga of Establishing Work / The Yoga of Work / The Yoga of Defining Work / The Yoga of Renouncing Work / The Yoga of Knolwedge / The Yoga of Brahman in Work / The Yoga of Praise for Work.

* This part of a colophon comes from: Śrīmad-Bhagavad-gītā (Bengali script), commentary of: Śrīdhara Svāmipāda “Subodhinī”, Bengali translation: Nārāyaṇa-dāsa Bhakti-sudhā-kara, Gaudīya mission Kalkuta 1996r.

 
 

Śrīdhara


sva-dharmeṇa yam ārādhya bhaktyā muktim itā budhāḥ |
tat kṛṣṇaṃ paramānandaṃ toṣayet sarva-karmabhiḥ ||

iti śrīdhara-svāmi-kṛtāyāṃ bhagavad-gītā-ṭīkāyāṃ subodhinyāṃ
karma-yogo nāma tṛtīyo ‚dhyāyaḥ

 

Viśvanātha


adhyāye ‚smin sādhanasya niṣkāmasyaiva karmaṇaḥ |
prādhānyam ūce tat-sādhya-jñānasya guṇatāṃ vadan ||
iti sārārtha-darśinyāṃ harṣiṇyāṃ bhakta-cetasām |
tṛtīyaḥ khalu gītāsu saṅgataḥ saṅgataḥ satām ||

 

Baladeva


niṣkāmaṃ karma mukhyaṃ syād gauṇaṃ jñānaṃ tad-udbhavam |
jīvātma-dṛṣṭāv ity eṣa tṛtīyo ‚dhyāya-nirṇayaḥ ||