A Song of Fortune
- A Classical Gîtâ -
Written by: Vyâsadeva
Translated by: Anand Aadhar Prabhu
Also available in epub-format
"The word is the weapon of the wise."
Jñāna is the spiritual knowledge of self-realization, the gnosis that not only connects all Hindus, but also all others who have faith in the spirit of the Absolute. In this faith also being devoted to the original or ideal person inside one’s heart, as figured by Lord Kṛṣṇa (Krishna) in this book, this constitutes a basic duality, in fact a conundrum, of the science of yoga therewhith assuming the basic forms of bhakti and jñāna. Therefore is, concerning this true mystery, in this classical version of the Bhagavad Gītā wherein this duality is resolved, the knowledge of finding liberation in the spirit called ātmatattva. The term refers to the principle and reality of the true self, the original person or supreme soul, standing for the knowledge of self-realization, of being connected, of finding stability and being happy in one’s spirituality. It is simply so that we without this ātmatattva are not human, because we essentially are homo sapiens, or more precisely stated: man by the personal love of our spiritual wisdom and connectedness. Even though this book contains some words and names found in the dictionary of Sanskrit, this will to those readers, who are interested in the classical sphere and culture of ancient India, not be an obstacle. In the notes in the back the essential concepts used are one by one explained, and thus is this translation, faithfully following the original text and purport, comprehensible to the lay. The rather liberal phrasing is of a modern style though and is thus, also because of this, easy to follow. The result is a ‘Song of Fortune’ accessible to any traditionally oriented person contending with the modern burden of the illusion and loneliness of philosophical impersonalism.
The translator Anand Aadhar Prabhu, meaning ‘master of the foundation of happiness’, is the spiritual name of René P.B.A. Meijer, originally a clinical psychologist, born in the Netherlands in 1954, who, having turned to the philosophy of yoga after he became independent in 1982, was initiated in India in 1989.
Despair about the battle
Getting the mind together
A grip on the matter
To act - a master of intelligence
To unite one's consciousness in sacrifice and âtmatattva
To unite in labor and detachment
Being there and having been there before
To know oneself and make it, unified in âtmatattva
To find salvation in being united in the eternal spirit
To unite in confidential knowledge
To be one in respect of the opulence
Facing the complete of His reality
Focussing on the perfect
The knower, the known and the knowledge of âtmatattva
The three basic qualities of nature
The nature of the supreme person
About the enlightened and the unenlightened ones
The three qualities relating to one's austerity, sacrifice and food intake
Renunciation according to the qualities and the causes of karma
Individual duties and the one way of liberation
Once in a great union of states, about 5000 years ago, there was a family called the Kaurava family descending from a great dynasty of nobles ruling the world: the Kuru dynasty. They had worked hard for their rule and wealth, and had achieved the dominion over the entire planet. The world was the playground where they set the rules of the game in which they held sway over all. But a conflict of justice had risen between the haves and the have-nots of the family.
The Kaurava family of the Kuru dynasty had split up in these two opposing factions in society. The have-nots of the Kauravas, befriended with the Yadu clan, became destitute being cheated by their nephews in a gambling game and had lost their possessions, stature and positions. The Yadu clan was another branch of the Moon dynasty to which the Kuru dynasty belonged, but it had ages before fallen in disgrace with a founding father of the Moon dynasty called Yayâti, who wanted his sons to take his burden of old age. The Kauravas were the descendants of the son who had complied to the wishes of the founding father. The Yadu clan had descended from the eldest son and original heir to the throne who had refused to take the burden. The have-not Kauravas being unemployed, were, to their shame and downfall - with the foul play as was arranged by the Kauravas in function -, not admitted to any authority, considerable position or proprietorship in whatever field. They were simply denied an equal position in society and were always turned down with whatever they tried, so that they had to live degraded as second-rank citizens with the minimal rights of mere slaves.
But the Yadu clan, which still had maintained its wealth by honestly serving as a kind of police force fighting the bad elements in society, helped out the have-nots who were also called the Pândavas, because of their father Pându who, after dying untimely, had left them behind with their mother Prithâ, or also called Kuntî, who was a daughter of the Yadu family. A younger nephew of hers, the master of the Yadu clan, was called Krishna1, because of his dark complexion; he was a divine type, an ardent defender of the philosophy of yoga, very beautiful to behold, who dressed up finely with good taste. He was highly intelligent and of great renown for his heroic, virtuous and beneficial acts and was most benevolent in his piety of taking the lead in wisdom and defending the order of the honorable culture of the Moon dynasty.
Krishna, basically living with eight beautiful women next to the 16100 women he as good as all had freed from the hands of scoundrels, was befriended with Arjuna2, one of the five Pându brothers who, had assembled in a great association, that brought together all the repressed ones of the time, in order to contest the Kaurava rule. So the Pândavas came to fight their own family members, the Kauravas, with whom they had grown up under the care of their blind father Dhritarâshthra, their uncle, who, as the brother of their early deceased father Pându, had taken them into custody next to the care for his own sons. It was a hundred half brothers, who were lead by the difficult, arrogant and treacherous character of the eldest son named Duryodhana. But uncle Dhritarâshthra was too attached to his own sons to defend and help out his Pându nephews when they lost their wealth, after in their weakness of gambling having wasted their right to the inheritance.
The Pândava nephews were five brothers with Arjuna as the second one, who was great in archery and accomplished in intellectual matters. Bhîma was big, voracious, and very strong. Yudhishthhira was the eldest and the dominant one always taking the lead. Then there were the twin-brothers called Sahadeva and Nakula. So they constituted a unique union of volunteers, because voluntarism was the only type of work they were permitted to do. Tired of all insults and repression, injustice and denial from the side of their Kaurava nephews, they decided to build an association of lovers of a comprehensive spiritual jñãna, the âtmatattva knowledge as defended by Krishna. They were determined to fight their position back in society and retrieve an equal stature and responsibility. But that would, of course, result in a serious confrontation and turnover of power in the family. Being curbed in that desire by the Kaurava rule, they thus suffered many repressive measures designed to prevent them to get that far. Fighting that repression they planned for a military campaign which would bring them the victory as also the popular support, but for that purpose they had to take position against the doubtful quality and character of their own nephews, the honor of their own family clan of the Kuru dynasty, that had ruled the world for millennia.
For Arjuna, the most docile and friendly of the brothers, that was a thing hard to handle. And so he, ready for the battle, consulted with Krishna, his best friend as he faced the forces of the repressive and forbidding Kaurava nephews. Krishna then sung a song of wisdom to him he would never forget, for it made him aware of Krishna's supreme nature as Bhagavãn, the Supreme Personality of Godhead and incarnation, or avatâra, of Vishnu, and gave him back his confidence and also brought him the final victory over the rule of the Kaurava nephews. Our story begins with the blind uncle Dhritarâshthra hearing from his secretary Sañjaya what took place during the showdown between the Pândavas and the Kauravas.
Despair about the battle
(1) The blind uncle and head of the family Dhritarâshthra said: "At Kurukshetra, the place of pilgrimage, my family members and my nephews the Pândavas assembled to fight for justice, what exactly took place there, my dearest Sañjaya?"
(2) Sañjaya said: "Duryodhana, that noble and distinguished son of yours, being faced with the forces of the assembled army in support of your nephews the Pândavas, at that time consulted his former martial teacher Dronâcarya, and said to him: (3) 'Dear master Drona, now consider this mighty army of the sons of Pându assembled here by your so very intelligent disciple the son of Drupada (Dhrishthadyumna)! (4) They managed to get together some people of stature as there are Arjuna's father-in-law Drupada as also some other great warriors like Yuyudhâna and Virâtha who are just as skilled in the art of war as Bhîma and Arjuna. (5) And we may also fear their support group of fighters consisting of Dhrishthaketu, Cekitâna, Kâs'irâja, the very powerful Purujit, Kuntibhoja and the eminent man S'aibya. (6) Yudhâmanyu, the mighty Uttamaujâ, the very powerful son of the sister of Krishna, Subhadrâ, and the sons of Draupadî: they are all truly great chariot fighters. (7) But rest assured, we are no less directly and faithfully supported by the qualities of the warriors at our side. (8) To the support of your goodness there are grandfather Bhîshma as also Karna, Kripa and As'vatthâmâ, Vikarna and the son of Somadatta who all, most certainly, are always victorious in battle as well. (9) And there are many other heroes experienced in combat who, equipped with all kinds of weapons, are prepared to risk their lives for my sake. (10) Under the care of our gray eminence, grandpa Bhîshma we have, unlimited in our opulence and influence, nothing to fear from the but limited power and control of Bhîma and his Pândava brothers. (11) Surely none of our allies will, from the undisputed sovereignty of our position, ever let you down!'
(12) Duryodhana was glad to hear a lion's roar on the conchshell delivered by grandfather Bhîshma to the commencement of the battle. (13) Directly thereafter suddenly from all sides of the Kaurava array the sound was heard of their conches, horns and drums, which combined grew into a tumultuous uproar. (14) In response the husband of the goddess of fortune and the son of Pându sounded together their divine conches. (15-18) Krishna, the lord of the senses, blew the Pâñcajanya, Arjuna the Devadatta and the herculean Bhîma, the voracious eater, blew the great conch named the Paundra. King Yudhishthhira, the eldest Pândava, blew Ananta-vijaya while Nakula and Sahadeva blew the Sughosha and Manipushpaka. So also the conchshells were blown by the king of Kâs'î, the great archer S'ikhandî and the great warrior Dhrishthadyumna, Virâta, Sâtyaki who was never defeated and, oh King, Drupada together with all the men of Drupadî and the skillful Abhimanyu. (19) The response of their opponents, which just as tumultuous as theirs resounded in the sky and the earth, tore the hearts of the terrified Kauravas. (20) When the son of Pându, Arjuna, ready with his bow and arrows, saw how the opposition of the repressive forces of Dhritarâshthra's sons prepared to fight them in battle, he addressed the sense master, his divine friend Krishna standing at the reigns in his chariot that was marked with the flag of Hanumân.
(21-22) Arjuna said: 'Please Perfect-aim, as he also called Krishna, drive the chariot to the middle of the battlefield to face the warriors who, to my support and the support of our opponents, are arrayed there for a final showdown. (23) Let me on this battlefield face my Kaurava opponents who are so convinced of their acquired privileges in pleasing that crooked Dhritarâshthra who's supposed to be our uncle.' "
(24) Sañjaya said: "O descendant of Bharata, thus requested Krishna drove the chariot to the middle of Kurukshetra, and stopped right in between the warriors positioned there on both sides. (25) With before his eyes grandfather Bhîshma, Drona and all the leaders of the world gathered there for the unique event of the final battle, said the fortunate one. 'O son of aunt Kuntî, see how all the members of the Kaurava family are gathered here.' (26) And there at Kurukshetra, the original place of pilgrimage of the Kuru dynasty, Arjuna saw indeed standing both the parties of his fathers, grandfathers, uncles, nephews, friends, well-wishers and alike. (27) Right in the middle of them faced with the huge gathering of his family, the son of aunt Prithâ was overwhelmed by an avalanche of conflicting feelings and he stood perplexed, unable to move one more step.
(28) Arjuna said: 'The sight of all these kinsmen, oh Krishna, my dear friend, ready to fight each other to the bone, gives me the jitters and frightens me terribly. (29) My sweat turns cold and my body refuses to obey, I don't know what to say anymore and I feel a fever burning inside. (30) The world is spinning before my eyes, I have to sit down, I'm losing it completely and see nothing in all of this, oh great beauty! (31) What's the use of killing these opposing family members! I'm not after a victory at all, Krishna, what kind of world would that lead to? (32-35) Oh friend of the women, what does world dominion mean to us? What happiness can we find in desiring a rule of our own design to hold sway over those friends and family members who have now all taken opposing positions to rule each other out to the point of extinction? They are our fathers, teachers, sons, uncles and grandfathers for God's sake! I do not wish to kill any of them, nor that they would kill any of us, oh devil's despair! Never ever I would wish such a thing, not even in my dreams! I'm not interested in a battle to defeat the sons of uncle Dhritarâshthra oh keeper of the world! (36) Such a thing of fighting your own kind wouldn't be anything less than madness! How can one become happy ending the lives of others, oh sweetest of them all? Isn't that sheer suicide? Doesn't that give bad karma?
(37-38) And even if they are as blind as uncle Dhritarâshthra in denying and defying in their greed, in fighting and quarreling with friends whatever the consequences that might have; why would we, who see how sinful this all is, not turn away from such a stupendous self-betrayal oh winner of the wealth? (39) Destroying the family this way, all its traditions and hard won respect will vanish and the entirety of the remaining family will lose its sense of duty, so each and everyone will confirm. (40) With such an irresponsible attitude, dear Krishna, the women of the family will lose their respect for us. Thus fallen out of grace, no man will know who he is anymore. (41) Also the chance for a good life of our offspring will thus be spoiled because they, with us having fallen in mutual disrespect, will also fail to know how to exercise respect for or confide in any reciprocally healthy and cultured humanity any longer. (42) From these faults made by all who ruined the family, and because of which confusion rose in society, thus the righteousness of all classes and age groups will be lost. Also every good habit with the ether we had in the community will be lost. (43) As they always say: those who spoiled the traditions, oh spur of man, always turn out to land in hell. (44) Greedy for the supreme rule and its privileges we've oddly enough decided to act against our better knowledge. (45) I'd rather give up our resistance right now and grant them the victory of the battle.' "
(46) Sañjaya said: "And so, there, right in between the armies ready on both sides, Arjuna sat down in the chariot, forgetting about the fight with a mind full of doubts and sadness."
Getting the mind together
(1) Sañjaya said: "Seeing his friend in pain and moved to desperation, the devil's despair spoke the following words:
(2) The great soul said: 'This is really not the time to give it up Arjuna. This doesn't befit you at all. This is the way of losers who never make for a better world, it's a disgrace really! Arjuna, get yourself together! (3) Do not give in to such a weakness of heart, it leads to nothing but madness, so stand and engage in the battle, get over your fear of death!'
(4) Arjuna retorted: 'How can I launch an attack on Bhîshma and master Drona, they are honorable men of great standing! What would I then be oh devil's despair? (5) Wouldn't it be better to live for the rest of my life on charity than to bring those high and respectable gentlemen down, even though they, as leaders and teachers, want the kingdom of heaven on earth? I'm not going to get my hands dirty on matters like these, that's way beyond anything honorable! (6) And what if - their defeating us is as good as our defeating them. I wouldn't want to live to the victory of either of us, no way, in whatever position we would end up in relation to uncle Dhritarâshthra. (7) With my fear and fright, I ask you, confused within on what to do, what would be the ideal compromise to all of us? Confide it to me, instruct me on this and accept me as your pupil so to say. (8) I'm at a loss in figuring out what to do, on how to proceed from here; how can I not be desperate and lame, wishing for an undisputed position on earth or even the supreme of a set of angel wings?' "
(9) Secretary Sañjaya said: "Thus addressing the sense master, he who had proven himself stronger than sleep and used to be the terror of his opponents said: ' I give up, I won't engage', and next fell silent. (10) Oh descendant of Bharata, then, right there between opposing armies of the family gathered for the battle, the sense master with a smile spoke the following words.
(11) The master of happiness said: 'Don't be sad over that what doesn't deserve such an emotional commitment; with all your words so educated you should, whether you win or lose the battle, being a wise man, not be moved in any such way. (12) Listen, yesterday I existed and so I will tomorrow, and so it is with you, and with all these important people here. (13) In your lifetime you change from a child into a youngster and from a youngster into a grown man; but, honestly, did that make you a different person? (14) What the senses tell you, oh son of aunt Kuntî, in the sense of pain and happiness, comes and goes like summer and winter. Such things don't last, just take it like a man, oh son of the Kurus. (15) He who's not upset in this, oh best of them all, he who is equal and steady in distress and happiness, is the man fit for the job.
(16) So don't expect anything durable from outer appearances, nor think that the person you stay within will ever come to an end; and this is what the greatest scholars confirm in their studies on the subject. (17) Just keep in mind that what there is in all states of your physical existence as a constant factor, that that self, cannot perish or be defeated by anybody. (18) All these material bodies are perishable, while the indestructible and immeasurable one that is embodied is called eternal; and therefore fight, oh descendant Bharata. (19) Anyone who says that that self of yours can kill any essential self of someone else or can be killed by others, is in either position out of his wits; you can't really kill anyone, nor can anyone kill you really. (20) So, to be clear: actually you never began living nor will you ever stop living; you never took birth, nor will you ever really die. Just the same you don't reincarnate either in that sense; the soul as it is, is never born, is eternal and constant. It's in existence from the first day of creation and it never ends when the body ends. (21) Once you realize that that soul we talk about is indestructible and everlasting, without any change or birth, how then, oh son of Prithâ, could you cause anyone's death or be killed yourself? (22) Wearing your body and the ego along with it like a garment, you can change them just as easily, and thus you can end a life and pick up a new one as you like. (23) That what you really are cannot drop apart, fry, drown or wither away. (24) You are unbreakable, you can't burn up or dissolve; you're everlasting, you reach wherever you want, you'll stay your same self always, nobody can touch you as such and you've always been that way, and that's that.
(25) Considering this real self of yours that can't be seen really, that can't even be conceived really, nor undergo any change really, you should know that it thus is nothing for you to worry or despair about. (26) And even if you'd reincarnate and die again, oh man of power, never worry about it. (27) He who dies will certainly be born again, just as the one born will die again of course; such irrevocable facts do not deserve any worry, that you should know. (28) Each and every one is, oh descendant of Bharata, to begin with a nobody, then he or she is known and then he or she is forgotten again, so why worry when it's all like this? (29) This soul is by some seen as amazing, some speak about it as amazing, and some know it as amazing, while still others never come to understand what this real self all means. (30) This soul, this owner of each his body, never perishes, oh son of the dynasty, and thus you shouldn't be troubled about anybody.
(31) And, concerning your duties in the battle, I must say that you must always stand your ground to serve God, your actual quality, virtue and righteousness, in the first place, that is the very best thing a ruler can do. (32) Oh son of aunt Prithâ, praise yourself as a ruler happy to find opposition in battle, for that offers you the opportunity to excel and make yourself known. (33) So defend your interest as if it concerned God Himself, for if you fail to serve your own nature with Him you'll be nothing but a profiteer without any self-respect. (34) Not engaging you'll lose your reputation and to an honorable man that is something far worse than death. (35) Your comrades in the battlefield, all thinking highly of you, will write you off as a looser, if you back-off now out of fear. (36) They'll gossip and deride your ability, and you know how painful that is. (37) Consider it this way; you either lose with honor, or you win the battle adding to your repute; so, stand and be sure in this choice, oh son of Kuntî! (38) Whether the outcome is to be happy or unhappy, whether it is to your advantage or disadvantage, whether you win or lose, you'll never be making a wrong move if you engage in this fight being equanimous with this in mind!'
A grip on the matter
(39) 'Thus far about being intelligent in analyzing matters, now listen how in association with this intelligence, oh son of Prithâ, you may be freed from being bound to your karma. (40) In this spirit then, you won't corrupt, nor be lost, and just serving this a little you'll avert the greatest danger. (41) Because of being mindful about the soul one is unified in intelligence, oh child of the Kurus, but if one, on the other hand, is not of such a conscience, one has a mind that is constantly diverted. (42) People faithful to the Vedas also say things like this oh son of Prithâ, but they are quite ignorant in thinking that there's nothing else to it. (43) With their shiny ceremonies they hope to go to heaven and have a better life, but their hearts are full of desire to please their senses and to be rich. (44) That way all too attached to material pleasures and luxuries, their minds are fuzzy of a poor logic and they never get a real grip on matters. (45) The Vedic literature dealing with the material affair and the way we're affected by its threefold nature in the sense of 1 - having passions, 2 - being dull-witted and 3 - lusting in goodness, tells us to transcend these modes of nature, because outside of the opposites they form, absorbed in what is really good and pure, the soul is found which is unconcerned about possessing and acquiring possessions. (46) In a sip of water one finds the same as in a lake, similarly in the soul of a single man of spiritual virtue the entirety of classical wisdom is found.
(47) It is your perfect right to serve the cause, but you must never claim the results of that service for yourself. Do not consider yourself the cause; so never develop any attachment in holy matters like these. (48) Keep in touch, stay connected, in forsaking such conceit and desire, oh winner of the wealth, and be equal-minded in the face of success and failure, for that equanimity is the secret of staying united in consciousness. (49) Thus being united in full surrender to the intelligence, don't give in to the feeblemindedness; know that it are the miserly ones who want to win and acquire. (50) Aligned with this intelligence you can, in this life, escape from the consequences of which you unjustly thought they were good, as also the ones you had to suffer. So, for the sake of this science, engage undaunted in your being connected with the soul that endures and is happy in the wisdom. That's the art of the matter with all you do! (51) To be immersed in serving this purpose, to be in line with the intelligence of not desiring any advantage, that is what freed the wise as also the devoted from the misery of repeated failure and the need to start all over time and again. (52) Once you, free from any desire, respect it the way it is with the soul, you will, at that time, no longer worry about all this you now heard about nor about that what you'll be hearing more. (53) With a mind clear about the advantage of your actions the way I disclosed it to you, you will, unmoved risen above matters with a fixed intelligence, be able to find the happy life you wish yourself and others.'
(54) Arjuna said: 'What characterizes the one who is on top of matters, who is fixed in a consciousness of being connected? And what kind of things does such a person all say, how does he keep his distance and what are his moves?'
(55) Krishna, as the master, said: 'The moment one forsakes the desires and the worries belonging to them, oh son of Prithâ, one will, to the good of that mindfulness, become steady in one's consciousness, so confirm also other authorities. (56) They who free from worries face miseries, free from desire face happiness and, not being of any attachment, are free from fear and anger, are considered sages steady in their meditation. (57) He who, whether things turn out good or bad in this, stays unaffected in whatever situation and hates nor praises, is fixed in knowing it perfectly. (58) Like a tortoise withdrawing its legs and head, he who fixes himself in consciousness withdraws his senses from the sense objects. (59) Anyone not of this mindfulness, may refrain just the same, but such a one then keeps the material taste, the taste which only ends with the stronger experience of the higher taste one has when one is of transcendence. (60) Irrespective one's intelligence, when one endeavors, the senses draw the attention away and the mind is stirred. (61) To keep the busy senses under control is something which is achieved by positively relating to the position of meditation one has in the beyond, and thus having mastered them, one is then established in wisdom. (62) The wrong way it works like this: first you get attached to what the senses perceive, from that the lust develops to enjoy it whenever you want and what follows is the anger upon the inevitable frustration of realizing that that is not possible. (63) From that anger of one's predilection one no longer sees things in proportion, and thus one is, with that being illusioned, not mindful of what should be remembered. Consequently the intelligence fails and from no longer understanding matters one loses control: one falls down. (64) But not being of any aversion or attachment one is, having the busy senses under control, thus regulated, of a clear mind. (65) In that peace all miseries find their end, and with such an open mind soon the intuition is sufficiently established. (66) Not being aligned this way the intelligence has no chance and there is, missing the connectedness in the soul, no steadiness of one's respect; how can one, discontented not being of any peace, find happiness then? (67) The mind in following the senses is of an intelligence as fickle as a boat drifting away on the wind. (68) And so, as you'll understand, the intelligence is steady when the senses are drawn away from their objects. (69) What the common people attend to is as night for the man of wisdom, and to what to the common man is as dark as the night the wise are wakeful. (70) Contrary to a man of desire, a man of peace is just as steady with what his senses perceive as the ocean that is never filled by all the water of the rivers ending in it. (71) A person attains peace when he - free from longing - has forsaken his desires, when he's not striving for possessions, and, instead of identifying himself with the body, identifies himself with the soul. (72) Therefore, don't be afraid that this position in the beyond will bewilder you oh son of Prithâ, you rather attain heaven with it, even if you deferred this mindfulness until the moment you die.'
To act - a master of intelligence
(1) Arjuna said: 'You say that it's better to go for the intelligence than to desire the result of a victory, oh spur of man. With that being so, why do you encourage me to engage in this ghastly confrontation, oh paragon of beauty? (2) Isn't speaking that equivocally not confusing the issue? Tell me which position to take, so that I can really benefit from what you're saying!'
(3) Krishna said: 'Indeed, there are two positions one may take in this world, as I told you before oh faultless one. On the one hand, you may spiritually connect in the analytic mind, and on the other hand you may connect in being devoted to some kind of action. (4) A man will not attain the perfection when he, as a devoted person, simply tries to escape from the rest of his material duties, nor will he be free from actions and reactions when he, turning away from the world, connects for the insight only. (5) No one, not even for a moment, can exist without doing something. Whether one likes it or not, one is, depending the passion, the dullness or goodness one is in, always forced to act because of one's karma. (6) Sure enough you're faking it when you, restraining the senses, foster a sense-oriented mind. (7) But Arjuna, when you, regulating the senses mindfully, make a beginning with connecting the operating senses in detaching from the results of your labor, you are far better off. (8) In sum: even if it's just for the sake of your body, there's always work to do; so engage in your duty, for to engage is better than to do nothing. (9) But remember to do it as a sacrifice, otherwise you'll dance to the tune of the world; and so you will, thus proceeding oh son of Kuntî, get over all attachment.
(10) Starting the universe with the generations and the sacrifices they have to make, the Creator, Lord Brahmâ, said to mankind: 'Prosper more and more, may this sacrifice bring you all you desire.' (11) If you please the people of God with your sacrifices, they will please you on their turn, and thus pleasing one another you'll attain the highest grace. (12) To please the representatives of God with sacrifices will bring you all you need, but he who enjoys life without being of sacrifice is surely a thief. (13) The ones devoted find relief eating from their sacrifices, but those impure profiteers who eat only to please their senses run into all kinds of trouble. (14) Our bodies grow on grains, grains are there from rains, and rains one finds in areas where one is conscientiously of sacrifice for producing the crops. (15) That duty is realized in the culture of knowledge, and the knowledge finds its regulation and order with religious austerities; and so, for that reason, you will always find the spirit that connects each and all in sacrifices.
(16) Therefore it is so that he, who in his life fails to adopt the cyclic order of sacrifice as one finds in nature, in his catering to his senses is of a life full of trouble which is quite meaningless. (17) On the other hand the one who takes pleasure in the true and natural self, is someone who finds himself enlightened in self-realization; and such a one, who seeks the perfect of satisfaction within himself alone, knows no further obligations. (18) What he does or not does in the world as a matter of duty, he will never do in service of the world, nor he will think it useful to hide behind the back of other living beings in that. (19) And so a man rises above matters when he unattached, but constantly, is motivated to do his job as a matter of duty.
(20) There are great examples of rulers in our family who managed perfectly, strictly keeping to their duty, and so you should as well consider it the proper way to be an example to others. (21) Whatever a respectable man does, will also by other people be done; what he does will be used by the whole world as an example to follow in his footsteps. (22) I myself, having no obligations in regard of the heavenly, the earth-bound or the underworld, am as well engaged, even though there's nothing in it for me. (23) You see, all the world would run into chaos when people like me would refrain from doing their job, oh descendant of Kuru, it would lead to great confusion, and all the people in the world would come to naught. (24) Surely the path that I followed in failing to be engaged with care, woud be followed by everyone in every respect. (25) Since the ignoramus does his work in attachment, oh Kuru man, the man of learning must do so without attachment, with the wish to set the example for the common man. (26) At the same time, he shouldn't upset the man of ignorance who is attached to his karma; a man of learning should, attending to his duty, try to involve all in his work.
(27) The individual soul bewildered by false ego - his identification with the body -, engages in all kinds of activities under the influence of the threefold of the modes of nature, and thus he considers himself the doer. (28) But as a knower of the supreme truth, oh man of grip, mindful of the difference between the two types of being engaged in the work of the senses and in the work for the senses, he is never that fixed. (29) Those who, bewildered by the modes of matter, are bent on serving those qualities have no clue being lax in self-realization; they shouldn't be agitated by the ones who know. (30) Instead, better do it in your forsaking the world all with me in mind, in the full knowledge of the soul that is being fed by a consciousness free from desire and greed; and thus being free from the material fever, engage in the fight. (31) All those who, faithful to these instructions, are ever of a practice as regular as nature, are human beings of belief and sharing who free from envy become free, even free from the bond of profit-minded work. (32) Those, however, who covetous after what others have, being envious, are not of such a regular practice to my instruction, are confused in every type of logic one may adhere to; know them to be lost without natural consciousness. (33) Even though a man of knowledge endeavors on his own, he is still subjected to material nature; so what's the point of turning away from it? (34) The senses, fixed in being directed to their objects, are of attachment and aversion; and these are emotions one should never be controlled by because they no doubt are one's stumbling blocks. (35) Dealing with these matters, it is far better to follow one's own course making mistakes than to be perfect in an estranged way; it is no doubt better to suffer loss following one's own nature than to run into danger following a strange course.'
(36) Arjuna said: 'What then is it that impels man to be wicked, even unwillingly, oh strength of a bull, as if he's forced to it?'
(37) The fortunate one said: 'The lust and anger you have from your passion is the all-time wicked evil destroying the whole world; know that emotionality to be your greatest enemy out here. (38) One is covered by it like a fire is by smoke, a mirror by dust and an embryo by a womb. (39) Just like fire the knowing of the knower who is covered by this eternal enemy in the form of unregulated desires, is never satisfied, oh son of Kuntî. (40) This lust rules the senses, the mind and the intelligence, and thus is the real knowledge concealed and is the one embodied bewildered. (41) Therefore, to begin with, tie the senses down by proper regulation, oh best of the Kuru dynasty, and thus curb this drive of evil which is the destroyer of all knowledge and wisdom. (42) One says that the senses rank higher than their objects, that the mind is on top of them, and that the intelligence rules the mind, but you are the master of the intelligence. (43) Superior to the intelligence, knowing it all from steadying the mind deliberately oh man of grip, thus rule and conquer that so difficult to defeat enemy found in the form of lust.'
To unite one's consciousness
in sacrifice and the âtmatattva
(1) The fortunate one said: 'This oldest science of uniting within is my original instruction to the divinity of the sun, an instruction which has inspired the very lead of creation, called the Creator, who on his turn inspired the first among the rulers to the order of the sun. (2) The rulers of virtue in the past all in succession understanding it learned to manage, but in the long run this great way of connecting oneself got divided in so many branches of knowledge, oh winner of them all. (3) This very old science of uniting consciousness, also called yoga, I now explain to you today because you are devoted to the cause and my friend, and thus you may know about the mystery of the decisive top position, the position in the beyond, the transcendence.'
(4) Arjuna said: 'If I get you right your instruction was there before you were there, you were born after that ancient rule and instruction, how can that be?'
(5) The fortunate one said: 'There were many births of my character before, just as there are of you, dear Arjuna, I know and identify myself with all of them, but you apparently do not, oh victor of the battle! (6) I may be transcendent, of an unborn nature, an imperishable soul who is the Lord over all, nevertheless I appear, from my top position, in the flesh as a covering of my own self. (7) Whenever and wherever there is a decline of righteousness and a predominance of injustice, oh son of Bharata, I manifest myself. (8) To give the ones aching for the truth a life, and to put an end to the miscreants, I appear, generation after generation, in order to reestablish the way of the human principles of truth, purity, penance and nonviolent compassion.3 (9) Anyone who knows of this taking birth of mine and what I stand for, will, turning away from the body as being the true self, not get entangled again, but rejoice in my love, dear Arjuna.
(10) Fully aware of what I am, many have attained my loving nature who freed from attachment and anger found purification in the knowledge of penance. (11) All who are of this surrender to me, I award the basis, the foundation on which everyone is building, oh son of Prithâ, in every possible way. (12) Anxious for the perfect profit one is in this world of sacrifice for different types of divinity. That is a karmic desire which soon brings success in the human world. (13) The four classes or divisions of labor, together with the four age-groups that I settle for in relation to the three material qualities, is the way the cookie crumbles with me, but don't see me, the imperishable soul, as the one who did the crumbling. (14) On me as the soul all this karma has no effect, nor am I part of its ambitions; and thus no aware person, as far as I am concerned, will ever be entangled because of his karma. (15) Following in the footsteps of your ancestors you should , in the same way of keeping to your duty as they did, find liberation.
(16) Many wonder what this karma and the contrary actually would be. Let me explain it to you, so that you'll be freed from all bad luck. (17) Weighing it carefully I must say there is work, crime and voluntarism, and it's difficult to understand what it all leads to. (18) If you consider working for the money as unemployment and voluntarism as employment, you may consider yourself intelligent in human affairs; it is then that you, with all the sorts of activities you're engaged in, are connected. (19) The learned who know this declare that he who is free from any intention to endeavor unregulated in lust, is someone whose profit-minded labor, his karma, burned up in the fire of spiritual knowledge. (20) Having given up the attachment to the fruits of labor as also to the comfort and control of a fixed residence - one's private kingdom - there is a lasting satisfaction; even though fully engaged in activities one is not really doing anything then. (21) Free from ulterior motives with his mind and intelligence under control, he does his job to which no guilt accrues then; for all he does actually is maintain the body in forsaking all acquisition. (22) Satisfied with whatever comes his way he has, free from envy, surpassed the material duality and he is, steady in success and failure, never troubled, whatever he does. (23) With his mind firmly established in spiritual wisdom, and with the attachment gone acting for the sake of sacrifice, there remains nothing of his motivation for results, of his karma thus.
(24) Offering for the spirit the spirit becomes the offering and the offerer belongs to the spiritual fire; most certainly he will attain the spirit of the absolute who is fully dedicated to serving that spirit. (25) Some dedicate themselves to the representatives of this or that divine interest, while others, wishing to unify in consciousness, are of sacrifice for being perfectly connected in the fire of the spirit of the Absolute. (26) Some relate to this fire by means of mantras with which they dedicate their ears and such senses, while others sacrifice that what their senses are after in the fire. (27) Still others, who illumined in spiritual knowledge concentrate their minds in yoga, offer their breathing to all the activity of their senses in the fire. (28) Some, being austere, so give up their possessions in the uniting, while even others, ascetically taking to vows, devote all their talents of understanding to the study of the scriptures. (29) Others furthermore, who try to become silent inside with their essence, do so by following their in- and outgoing breath in which they connect the inward with the outward going air, while even others give up on the entire endeavor of breathing it all out by restricting their food intake. (30) Whatever the practice, all who know to sacrifice, find relief that way of the inner turmoil of being stained by the material affair, and reach, having acquired the taste of that nectar of sacrifice, the eternal spirit. (31) How can we ever have a better world, if we're not of sacrifice in this world, oh best of the Kuru rule? (32) This is how the different types of sacrifice are defended in relation to the Vedas. They're all the result of being dutifully engaged; and loving the knowledge of this, being of the âtmatattva4 in this, you'll find liberation.
(33) If you, oh son of Prithâ, are determined to dedicate your knowledge to the âtmatattva of this, that is a greater sacrifice than offering your possessions, oh defeat of your opponents, because your duty will be perfectly served and fully heartened by it. (34) Remember that when you are of respect for those who know this, and you, with the wish to serve them, ask them questions, that these âtmatattva people of self-realization will initiate you into the truth of the seers. (35) Being of the âtmatattva you'll never fall victim to illusion again, oh son of aunt Prithâ, because you, with this love of knowledge, will regard all living beings as being part of the soul - or differently stated, that all are in me. (36) Even being the most wretched and lowest of all, you will, with this boat of spiritual knowledge, cross the ocean of all materialistic misery. (37) Just like a blazing fire turning firewood to ashes, dear Arjuna, the fire of this higher knowing will turn all your karma to ashes. (38) Nothing that you know of in this world compares to this purification, and he who is truly experienced in this unification will conclude to this himself. (39) He who believes this will, keeping close to the âtmatattva, manage to subdue his senses, because from this faithfulness to the principles one, very quickly reaching the transcendental abode, finds peace. (40) An ignoramus of doubt without any faith has no taste for it, there will never in this world, nor in the next, be happiness for such a soul full of doubts. (41) The man who, unified in consciousness, gave up the profit-minded type of labor, and, with the âtmatattva of faithfully knowing the absolute, broke with the doubts, lives in the soul and will never be bound in whatever he does, oh winner of the wealth. (42) And so, oh descendant of Bharata, by means of the weapon of the knowledge of the soul cutting with the doubt that out of ignorance rose in your heart, be of the unification and rise to your feet!'
To unite in labor and detachment
(1) Arjuna said: 'Krishna, you praise a turn to the better of uniting in consciousness as also a turn to the renunciation of productive labor; but what would be the best, please be definitive on this.'
(2) The man of fortune said: 'Both the work done for the uniting as the all together forsaking of profit-minded work lead to liberation, but the way you put it I'd say that compared to the forsaking of profit-minded work, the action in service of the unification is the better. (3) Always consider him a renouncer who hates nor desires; free from the duality he, oh man of grip, is happy to be completely free from being materially bound. (4) Ignorantly one says that the intellectual consideration of the world differs from the uniting in consciousness, but the learned don't see it like that. From either of the two positions one arrives logically at the complete of the both of them. (5) That what is achieved by intellectual endeavor you also achieve in service of the uniting, and thus he who considers study and selfless action as one sees things as they are.
(6) But the forsaking, oh man of grip, will result in distress if there's no uniting to it in consciousness, while a thinker connected in the uniting attains the supreme spirit without delay. (7) Connected in the uniting a pure soul, who self-controlled has subdued the senses, will be compassionate with all living entities and never be affected, irrespective the work he does. (8-9) To the smelling, hearing, seeing, touching, walking, dreaming and breathing of the body the man of truth says: 'Most certainly I am, in my being connected, not doing a thing'; he considers all the talking, forsaking, accepting, opening and closing of his eyes, merely an engagement of the senses. (10) Like a lotus leaf in the water he, who resigns all his activities to the spiritual in forsaking his attachments, proceeding thus, is never affected by any misfortune and trouble. (11) In giving up the attachment of the self they who are united within as being one, are with their body, mind and intelligence, and even with their senses, in their activities engaged for the sake of purification. (12) Connected forsaking the profit in their work they undaunted achieve peace, while they who are not connected get entangled in their attachment to enjoy the fruits of labor.
(13) In this mind of forsaking all activities the embodied one who is of control, lives happily in the city with the nine gates, the body; never is he the one who does anything, nor does he lead to anything. (14) He is never the owner, nor the doer, nor does he make other people act, nor does he create the results; it is all enacted by nature itself. (15) Never is the Almighty in His control assuming of anyone that he would be bad or good; no, He is rather concerned with the bewilderment of the living entities whose knowledge is covered by ignorance.
(16) To that soul, however, of whom the ignorance has been destroyed by âtmatattva, the supreme reality of spiritual knowledge is disclosed like a rising sun. (17) And for that reason you will not return to the physical concept of life once you've fixed your intelligence on that, once you've set your life to that, are faithful to that and seek your refuge in that; with that being so, by that âtmatattva, you will shake off all your misgivings. (18) Whether it concerns a brahmin of virtue and achievement, a cow, an elephant, a dog or a drop-out, the one of wisdom regards them all equal-minded. (19) They who with a mind fixed in such a sameness are flawless in spiritual equanimity, are situated in the beyond; they have defeated birth and death. (20) Not too cheerful with successes, nor really being moved by the unpleasant, he who, not bewildered knowing the spiritual, relies on his own intelligence, is situated in transcendence. (21) He who, not attached to superficial pleasures, manages to concentrate on the spiritual of being connected in the soul, will within himself enjoy an unlimited happiness. (22) The intelligent never take delight in that what in association with the senses brings the misery, for such things are always temporary with a beginning and an end, oh son of aunt Kuntî. (23) He who, living with the body, before he forsakes his physical frame, is able to tolerate the lust and the anger that rise from its urges, is a person of integrity and happiness. (24) Anyone who, being happy from within, dwells on the inner light, is a united âtmatattva person who, liberated in the spirit, is capable of following his own course with God. (25) They who free from self-righteousness, living the inner life, reach that spiritual liberation, are, beyond the duality being situated in self-realization, actually engaged in serving the welfare of all living beings. (26) They who in their renunciation were liberated from the lust and anger, have subdued their mind, so that they, with what they learned from the soul, soon are certain of the supreme its beatitude. (27-28) Not looking for the unnecessary in the outer world the person has innerly risen above the things of the world, and is, in his practice of concentrating between the eyebrows, suspending the in- and outgoing breath, keeping the air in the nose, and with the senses, mind and intelligence thus set to liberation, someone who, having discarded all desires, fears and anger, most certainly is always of that liberation. (29) Considering me and what I stand for as the purpose of the sacrifices, penances and austerities, as the one fortunate in all the worlds who is the blessing of all living beings, one will thus find peace.'
and having been there before
(1) The fortunate one said: 'Not expecting anything from working for the profit, he, who does his job as a matter of duty, belongs to the department of the detached. He as a person is united and connected within, but not so the one who is of no sacrifice and of no sense of duty. (2) It is this department of the detached by which one is linked up, oh son of Pându; not forsaking the selfish motive there's no question of unifying consciousness, no question of being an âtmatattva person. (3) Of a beginner in this practice of wisdom one says that it is work that connects and unites, but of those who attained one says it is the equanimity that does the job. (4) As soon as the person no longer serves the sensual and has forsaken the profit motive, he is at that time a renouncer of all material desire who is elevated in this yoga science of uniting consciousness. (5) One must care to be mindful and attentive and not to freak out in flippancy, thereto keeping in mind that that mindfulness is just the same one's enemy as one's friend. (6) To the one who has conquered himself the mind is the best friend, but to those who forgot about the soul the mind stays an enemy. (7) As a champion of mindfulness having found the peace, one is wholly of the greater Soul ruling the individual souls, which is the same in cold and heat, happiness and distress, honor and dishonor. (8) Satisfied with the âtmatattva and its wisdom a person can depend upon himself once he has the sensual in his grip, and because of that one is united famed for being unconcerned about the difference between a clod of dirt, a stone and a piece of gold. (9) Most advanced is he who is equal-minded towards friends and well-wishers as also to enemies, to relatives who hate as also to relatives who favor, to those who bend the rules as also to those who are devout and faithful.
(10) In order to be unified in yoga a person must always remember himself from a secluded position in solitude, in which he is fully attentive, not diverted and unconcerned about possessions. (11-12) In a safe place he should arrange for a comfortable seat not too high nor too low with a pillow with a soft covering, and thus do his yoga postures, so that he, one-pointed of attention, is able to clear his heart in controlling his busy mind, senses and muscles. (13-14) Not moving with his body and with his neck and head straight, the practitioner of yoga must gaze at the tip of his nose and not look elsewhere. With a calm self, free from fear and vowed to the celibate, he must, fully self-controlled, concentrate on the ultimate goal of me, on that what I stand for. (15) He, who with the practice as mentioned, liberated in the beyond thus restraining the mind unites consciousness, will with that soulfulness attain the peace of the spiritual realm. (16) But, Arjuna, there's no real unification when one eats too much, or when one excessively fasts, and the same is true for sleeping too much or staying awake too long. (17) But, when one, with doing yoga, manages to regulate one's sleep and wakefulness, one's eating and entertainment, one's personal endeavors as also one's working hours, all the trouble will cease to be. (18) When one, free from desiring with all kinds of lusty motives, with the mind disciplined this way, becomes situated in transcendence, one is at that time said to be connected. (19) You may compare the person of unification, whose mind is controlled by the regular and constant meditation of the soul, to an oil lamp not wavering out of the wind. (20) In the state in which the mind, turned away from material concerns, calms in practicing the unification, one becomes satisfied when one, in the purity of such a mind, realizes that one's place is found in the soul. (21) The supreme happiness, of which one knows that it by intelligence can be reached in the position of transcendence, will never remove the one who reached it from the truth. (22) And whatever else you might realize in that position, can never be considered more valuable than that, because you're never obscured from within that bliss, however difficult the trouble might be. (23) Know that in the yogic trance all the miseries dissolve of being in touch with the material world. (24) Thus make sure to practice that unification diligently in not losing yourself in guesswork that rose from your propensity for unregulated actions; you'll be sure of the total retreat of the mind once you've managed to settle this for the entirety of your sensory apparatus.
(25) Not thinking of making it any other way, one should, with an intelligence that is carried by conviction, step by step train the mind to retreat to the stability of the soul. (26) From wherever the mind, so easily agitated, flickering and unsteady, may wander, one must bring it back under the control of this self-regulation. (27) The one connected attains the highest virtue, when he, freed in the spirit of the absolute, with his mind in peace and his passion quieted, is free from impurities. (28) Always being of the soul is so the never ending happiness found by the one unified who, piously in touch with the transcendental spirit, is free from all material darkness. (29) The one connected in the united self looks upon all with a neutral vision: he sees the soul in all beings and all beings in the soul. (30) To the one who, as such, recognizes me in everything and looks upon everything as residing in me, I never perish, nor will he ever be lost to me. (31) If one is devoted to me as residing in each his heart, one is situated in oneness, and being of that vision such a one will, unified in consciousness, always have a life with me, whatever the circumstance. (32) That transcendentalist who, at ease or in trouble with it, manages to match his own self with the self that is of an equal vision everywhere, is considered to be perfect.'
(33) Arjuna said: 'Moved as I am at the moment, I have no clue as to how this system of unification, you described to me in general, oh demon-slayer, would offer me any firm ground. (34) The mind, Krishna, is so wayward, agitating, strong and obstinate, that I think that doing what you say is as difficult as taming the wind.'
(35) The one of fortune said: 'It suffers no doubt, oh man of grip, that it is difficult to curb the wayward mind, but, oh son of Kuntî, with persistence and detachment it can be done. (36) With a fickle mind one has a hard time to find one's way; to my opinion the appropriate means to achieve it is found in committing the mind to a practical approach: do something!'
(37) Arjuna said: 'But what is then the fate of him, oh Krishna, who fallen from his belief, with a mind missing the perfection, strays from the path of unification? (38) Doesn't such a one, oh mighty commander, missing the path as also the belief, not perish like a riven cloud, finding no hold then? (39) This is my doubt Krishna, I beg you, drive it away completely, for there's no one else to remove it.'
(40) The fortunate one said: 'Dear son of Prithâ, neither in this world nor in the hereafter it is so that he who is of a sound conduct will ever find himself going down, how can such a one end up bad? (41) For many years having lived a life of achievement and good deeds, the one who fell from the path of inner unification, willreawaken in the house of the one who is understanding and honest. (42) Or else he may find a life in an association of transcendentalists of great wisdom, but of course such a new life is very rare in this world. (43) Picking up the intelligence where he left it in his previous manifestation, oh son of Pându, he will thereupon again endeavor for perfection. (44) Innerly drawn to his previous practice he will be inquisitive about the unification in consciousness and he will manage to reach beyond the scripturally fixed routines. (45) Systematic in his approach such a spiritual person will, life after life gradually achieving the perfection, see all the impurities washed away from his soul and thus he will attain the position on top of the duality. (46) The ones unified in consciousness rank higher than the ones who are merely of a philosophy, as also higher than the ones working for the fruit of labor only; therefore, Arjuna, be of the former. (47) And of all the ones unified within I consider those who faithfully know to remember and serve me as the integrity of it all, to be the greatest.'
To know oneself and make it,
unified in the âtmatattva
(1) The fortunate one said: 'Now listen how you, oh son of Prithâ, with your mind fixed on me in the unification that I care about, may move beyond doubt concerning this completeness of me. (2) Let me tell you in detail how, once you get the hang of this knowledge growing wise with it, that to you would be all you need to know in this world. (3) Among the thousands is but a single one interested in the perfection and of those is but a single one really aware of this integrity of mine.
(4) What I consist of in a material sense are the energies of the earth, the water, the air, the ether, the mind, the intelligence and the ego. (5) Try to understand, oh man of grip, that besides this lower energy of mine there is a superior one which, supporting all the world, is the self of me in which every living soul is situated. (6) All that is created roots in these two energies and as such you should know me to be the eternal source of the manifestation as also the fragmentation you find in the world.
(7) Beyond this superior energy of mine, which is like the thread that connects all the pearls on a string, there is nothing else to be found, oh winner of the wealth. (8) In that I am the taste of water, oh son of Kuntî, the light of the sun and the moon, the primal mantra AUM in all the holy books, the sound one finds in the ether and the prowess in man. (9) I am the original smell of the earth, the heat of the fire, the life in all living beings and the penance of the repentant I am. (10) Know, oh son of Prithâ, that I am the seed of all living beings, the original intelligence of the intelligent, and the command of the ones in power. (11) I am of the strong the strength that is free from desire and attachment, and, oh master of the dynasty, of the sex-life of the living being I am the consistency with nature.
(12) And remember of all the states of goodness, passion and darkness one may be in, that they are more a part of me, than that I am a part of them. (13) The whole world is under the influence of these states and is deluded by them not knowing me, the one who is situated above them as the inexhaustible supreme. (14) The divinity of this setup of mine in the sense of the natural modes, is a most difficult thing, but those who have accepted me as the integrity, are very well able to overcome this illusory energy. (15) The corrupted ones and the foolish5 whose âtmatattva is clouded by the bewildering effect of the modes, do, because of their unenlightened state, not respect me.
(16) Arjuna, of the pious who respect me there are four types: the ones in trouble, the ones curious, the ones desiring my opulence, and the ones of âtmatattva. (17) Of these the one in devotion always connected in âtmatattva is most dear to me, because the one loving the knowledge who holds me high, is held high by me. (18) All âtmatattva persons are most certainly magnanimous souls, and I dare say that they, in their being connected in the soul, are equal to me, for in me that highest destination is found. (19) After so Kuru trials of life accepts the one of âtmatattva, he who loves to know equal-minded, me as the original divinity of all success, and such a one, you know, one rarely encounters.
(20) In their desires the ones who lost the sight of the âtmatattva, according to their own nature, abide by lesser gods and lesser regulations. (21) They who according to their own desire faithfully adhere to whatever divinity, are by me confirmed in their faith though. (22) Inspired by such a form of connectedness they achieve what they aspire, for that is how I, and no one else, arranged the connectedness for them. (23) But, because it concerns a lesser intelligence6, those fruits are but temporary; they who want the gods go to them and they who want me come to me. (24) Not knowing the supreme integrity of the duality of my invincible lower and imperishable higher existence, the less intelligent assume that I acquired a form from the unapparent. (25) I, in the sense of being that unborn and inexhaustible reality, am not that evident to everyone because the foolish, covered by illusory concepts of union, have no clue about my integrity. (26) The past, the present and the future of all living beings is clear to me, Arjuna, but I am not that clear to them. (27) Oh scion of Bharata, all the living beings who took their birth have to suffer under the illusion brought about by the deluding duality of likes and dislikes. (28) This illusory duality dissolves with persons who, pious in their activities, reached the end of their ulterior motives; they are the ones who, free from delusion and with determination to serve my cause, engage with devotion. (29) All the ones who take to my shelter to be freed from the burden of old age and death are actually God-conscious people; they know everything about what to do in favor of the transcendence. (30) Connected in the spirit they, even when they are about to die, know me as the one sovereign over all of the material manifestation, all divinity and all sacrifices.'
To find salvation in being
united in the eternal spirit
(1) Arjuna said: 'What about God, this soul for oneself and fruitful activities; what oh greatest personality, about the material manifestation and what to say about, what one calls, the lesser gods in this? (2) Who is that lord of sacrifice, how does he live within the body, and, demon slayer, how can the ones of self-control know you at the time of their death?'
(3) The one of all opulence7 said: 'God is the imperishable One in the beyond called the soul or true self that is eternal, and from which the living beings become visible in a creative activity which one calls karma, the workload or the working for a result. (4) The lesser gods are the universal integrities, or divine personalities, of the different manifestations of nature that are constantly on the move - like the sun and the moon -, and the lord of the sacrifices I am, the one present within the embodied beings, my best. (5) He who at the time of his death quitting the physical body remembers me, will beyond any doubt reach my nature. (6) The nature of whatever one all remembers, giving up this body in the end, will, oh son of Prithâ, always lead to a state similar to the one that was remembered. (7) Keep therefore at all times, even when you're in the fray, to the remembrance of me, so that you, free from doubt with your mind and intelligence of acceptance for me, are sure to attain me. (8) When one persistent in the uniting is connected with the unwavering of one's mind and intelligence, one reaches the supreme and divine, personal integrity which was kept in mind, oh son of Prithâ.
(9) He, the Supreme One, is the One knowing everything, the oldest, the controller, He's smaller than an atom, the One always thinking of everything, the Inconceivable Maintainer transcendental to all darkness with a form as luminous as the sun. (10) That person reaches the divine who, when his time has come, fixes his life force between his eyebrows, and, connected by the power of his yoga, in the full of his devotion has a mind that doesn't wander off, but keeps to the integrity of the universe, the Original Person in the beyond.
(11) Let me now explain to you in short what it means to be a celibate. It is a practice desired by those, belonging to the renounced order of life, who as great scholars conversant with the culture of knowledge exercise the mantra AUM. (12) One is in the position of uniting consciousness when one, self-controlled into relation to the sensory input and fixing the life force in the head, confines the mind to the heart. (13) Anyone may achieve that supreme state who, leaving the body for what it is, in the remembrance of me vibrates AUM, the one syllable of the spirit.
(14) For any yoga practitioner, who on a regular basis repeatedly, with a mind not going elsewhere, remembers me, oh son of Prithâ, I am, because of that constancy, easy to reach. (15) The great souls who reached me never start a new life in the temporary world which is so full of miseries, because they achieved the ultimate of perfection. (16) Arjuna, even from the highest worlds of the spirit one returns, but having reached me, oh son of Kuntî, one will never start a new life again. (17) Like it is with the common man who thinks in terms of days and nights, one day of God consists of a thousand cycles of creation8, while His night, so is understood, similarly takes a thousand cycles. (18) All living entities become manifest at the beginning of the day and with the fall of the night they are all annihilated, or drawn back into the unapparent, so one says. (19) Oh son of Prithâ, the complete of all living beings manifesting itself upon the arrival of every day and their automatically being annihilated when the night arrives, means that they repeatedly take birth. (20) But transcendental to that nature, which can be unapparent, there is another nature, eternal and unseen, which is never annihilated when all the manifest is annihilated. (21) That unseen nature is said to be infallible and is described as the ultimate destination from which one, having reached there, never returns: that is my supreme abode. (22) He, the Supreme and Original Person, oh son of Prithâ, within whom all of manifestation exists and by whom everything that is visible is pervaded, can only be reached by means of a service which is of a single-minded devotion.
(23) Oh best of the Pândavas, let me now describe to you the times of leaving this world at which the ones successful in uniting consciousness return or else do not return. (24) Those persons who, knowing of the Absolute, leave to the light of the fire, the light of the day, the light of the fortnight of a waxing moon, or the light of the six months when the sun runs high in the sky, all leave for God. (25) The one unified in consciousness though who leaves to the darkness of the night, the darkness of smoke, the darkness of the dark half of the lunar month, or the darkness of the six months when the sun runs low in the sky, will turn back to this world because he didn't reach beyond the order of the moonlight. (26) These are according to the scriptures the two ways of leaving the world; leaving to the light one does not return while one having departed to the darkness turns back. (27) The one who, unified in consciousness, knows of these different paths, isn't bewildered by any of them; therefore, Arjuna, be always connected in the âtmatattva of uniting consciousness. (28) All the yoga practitioners aware of this, reach beyond the results of pious work as derived from scriptural study, sacrifices, austerities and charity, and attain the original, supreme abode.'
To unite in confidential knowledge
(1) The one of fortune said: 'What I'm going to tell you now is the most confidential type of wisdom and knowledge and is reserved for those who are free from envy; your knowing about it will free you from all worldly miseries. (2) It is the absolute ruler of all knowledge and confidence, it is the purest and utter intelligence of practical experience, it defines the religiousness, it is everlasting and brings happiness once it is put into practice.
(3) Persons without faith in this way of connecting oneself, oh conqueror of your foes, will on the path of a material existence altogether missing me, return after they have died. (4) By my unseen form this entire cosmic manifestation is pervaded; all beings are thus found in me while on the other hand the complete of me cannot be found in them. (5) Nor will anything of what separately exists remain in me; understand my majestic union: as the original self being the source of all creation I am, as the maintainer of all that is created, never completely within whatever that is created. (6) Think of it this way: just as it is with the mighty wind blowing everywhere in the sky, it is with all the beings living everywhere within me. (7) Oh son of aunt Kuntî, at the end of a day of creation all living beings merge with the totality of my material nature and at the beginning of such a day they are all created, or conditioned, anew. (8) Entering into this material nature of mine I, over and over, create all of the cosmic manifestation, the complete of which is delivered to my compelling, ethereal force. (9) And to those actions I am never bound, oh winner of the wealth, for I am of a neutral position in not being attracted to the fruit-bearing action. (10) Under my supervision material nature is manifesting both the moving and the non-moving entities, and this supervision is for the living being, oh son of Kuntî, the reason, the motive, to exist.
(11) Fools, not knowing my transcendental nature, my supreme lordship over all, deride me for my having assumed a human form. (12) Disappointed in their expectations, profit motives and their knowledge the bewildered ones take to atheistic and demoniac, delusional views of a materialistic nature. (13) But, oh son of Prithâ, the great souls who take to the shelter of my divine nature, know about the inexhaustible source of creation and are of devotion with a mind that doesn't wander off. (14) Full of devotion endeavoring with determination, they are always singing about me and offer me, constantly engaged in worship, their obeisance. (15) Others are of sacrifice with the knowledge they offer in the worship of me as the oneness in the rich diversity of the universal form. (16) I am the ritual, the sacrifice and the flavor; I am the curative herb and I am the mantra; I am the oblation, the fire and the offering. (17) I am of the living being the father, the mother, the supporter and the ancestor; I am that what's to be known, that what purifies, the syllable AUM and the Rig-, the Yajur- and Sâmaveda as well. (18) I am the goal, the sustainer and the master; the witness, the abode and the refuge; I am the best friend, the creation and the dissolution; I am the foundation, the seed that doesn't perish and the resting place. (19) I give heat, bring and withhold the rain; I am immortality, death and the being as also the not being oh Arjuna.
(20) Those who know the three Vedas, they who freed from their sins, drink from the soma and, worshiping with sacrifices, pray for their passage to heaven, reach the world of Indra and enjoy the celestial pleasures of the gods. (21) After they, having enjoyed that vast heaven, reached the end of their pious deeds, they enter the world of the mortals. They, who are so faithful with the doctrine of the three Vedas, thus arrive at the life and loss of desiring in lust. (22) But they who concentrate with no one but me as their object of reverence, those persons, who always fixed in devotion are of proper worship, I protect and provide what they need. (23) Even though the ones devoted to lesser gods are also of an exclusive faith and worship in relation to me, they are not of worship according to the regulative principles3 oh son of Kuntî. (24) Since I am the enjoyer and master of all sacrifices, they who do not know me to the principle fall away from the divine. (25) Those who observe the lesser gods, find the lesser gods; those who respect the ancestors, go to them; those who worship ghosts and spirits reach those entities; but my devotees reach me. (26) Anyone faithful to the principles who, devoted to me, offers me a leaf, a flower, a fruit and water9, is making an offering acceptable to me. (27) Do whatever you eat, give away in charity, or sacrifice in your renunciation, as an offering to me, oh son of aunt Prithâ. (28) Thus free from the bright as also the dark side of being bound to profit-minded labor you will, liberated, with your mind connected in yogic renunciation, reach me.
(29) I'm equal-minded in my respect for all living beings, I hate nor cherish anyone, but those who in their devotion are of service with me, are in me as good as I am in them. (30) Even having been of the worst conduct, the one who unwavering is devoted to me, is to be considered a saint because of the full of his determination. (31) Such a one, oh son of Kuntî, quickly becomes righteous and attains lasting peace; do defend that my devotee is never lost! (32) Oh son of Prithâ, even if the ones resorting to me are from sin born women, traders or laborers, they will still reach the supreme destination. (33) And how much more wouldn't this be true for righteous brahmins, devotees and pious civil servants; therefore, with you having made it to this temporary world full of miseries, be engaged in my loving service! (34) Think of me always, become a devotee, a worshiper, an offerer of mine, so that you, devoted to me, will be a fully aligned soul.'
To be one in respect of the opulence11
(1) The fortunate one said: 'Listen again, oh man of grip, to my supreme instruction imparted to your benefit, for you're very dear to me. (2) My origin is not even known to the greatest wise or gods of enlightenment; in every respect I am the source of the great sages and the God-conscious ones. (3) He who knows me as the unborn one to whom there's no beginning, and the great controller of the world, sees it as it is; such a one not deluded among the mortals is delivered from all reactions to his sin. (4-5) The different aspects I arrange in the living being are intelligence, knowledge, composure, forgiveness, truthfulness, control over the senses and the mind; happiness, grief, birth, death, fear and fearlessness as well, as also nonviolence, equilibrium, contentment, austerity, charity, fame and infamy. (6) Every human being taking birth in the world, originated from the ancient, seven great sages and the four primal fathers who also stem from my mind.10 (7) They, who realize that all this opulence and unification of consciousness originated from me, will undivided be of service in their yoga, that suffers no doubt. (8) I am the source from which all in existence generated, from me everything emanated and therefore the intelligent ones who know this, connected by their love, will be devoted to me. (9) With their minds set on me and their lives devoted to me, they enlighten one another, constantly talking about me, and they find thus their satisfaction and contentment. (10) Those who are constantly connected in the joy so fundamental to devotional service, I grant the intelligence of a unified consciousness by which they come to me. (11) With the wealth of my compassion I, situated in their hearts, with the shining light of knowledge dispel all the darkness of ignorance.'
(12-13) Arjuna said: 'This of you, that you're now discussing with me, concerns the One about whom all the great sages among the godly like Nârada, Asita, Devala and Vyâsa speak: it concerns you in the form of the supreme spirit, the supreme abode, the purity of transcendence, the original personality, the controller in the beyond, the one unborn and the greatest. (14) All this you now confide to me I take for real, oh paragon of beauty, surely has no man of God or any ignorant soul either, knowledge of this revelation of you as the Original One of all Opulence! (15) You, personally knowing yourself as the Soul of all souls, are thus the greatest of all persons, the source of all living beings, the Lord of all creatures, the God of the gods and the master of the universe. (16) As such it is up to you to tell in detail everything about your divine opulence, those means to all the human visions by which you stand your ground throughout all the worlds.11 (17) How can I know you oh man of unity; how can I keep you in mind; in what form, or being of what kind of nature, should I remember you, oh man of the opulence? (18) Oh excitement of man, again I implore you, to tell me all about your powers of unifying consciousness, for my ears never have enough of the nectar of those descriptions!'
(19) The fortunate one said: 'Okay, I'll discuss with you the most important of my divine, personal powers, oh best of the Kurus, for there is really no end to my extent. (20) Oh conqueror of sleep, I as that soul situated within, am the beginning, the life in between, as also the end station of all living beings. (21) Among all the sons who took birth from the sages I am Vishnu, of all the luminaries I am the radiant sun, among the brightest minds I am Marîci, and to the order of time in relation to the stars I am the moon.12 (22) Of the religious books I am the book of chants, the Sâma Veda; among the gods I am Indra the king of heaven13; of all the senses I am the sixth one, the mind, and of all the living beings I am the life force. (23) Of the ones posing a threat I am S'iva; and among the ones possessed and wicked I am Kuvera, the treasurer; of the deities of nature I am the fire, and of all mountains I am mount Meru in the middle of the universe.14 (24) Of all priests I am the priest of heaven, Brihaspati, oh son of Prithâ; of all military commanders I am Skanda the god of war, and of all reservoirs of water I am the ocean. (25) Among the wise I am Bhrigu, the counselor of the first man alive; of all words spoken I am the word AUM resonating with the breath, of all the sacrifices I am japa, the repeated prayer performed with prayer beads, and of all the things immovable I am the Himalayas. (26) Among the trees I am the tree of life, the as'vattha; among the seers of the divine I am sage Nârada, among the heavenly creatures I am Cittaratha, the singer of the divine song, and among the ones of perfect attainment I am the analyst Kapila who distinguishes between spirit and matter. (27) Among the horses I am Uccaihs'ravâ who carries the solar order and originated from the political fugue between the enlightened and the unenlightened, and among the elephants I am Airâvata who carries Indra. (28) Of all weapons I am the thunderbolt, of the cows I am the cow of plenty, the surabhi; of the causes of begetting children I am Cupid, the god of love, and of all the serpents I am Vâsuki, the ego which sets in motion the debate between the ones of strength and the ones of morality. (29) Among the self-satisfied I am Ananta upon whom Vishnu rests, among all the water entities of the unconscious I am Varuna, the one of insight who defeats the transgression; among all the ancestors I am Aryâma, the one in the beyond remembered for his civility; and of all that controls I am Yama, the lord of death. (30) Among the atheists I am Prahlâda, the one who found the grace; among all the subduers I am the time; of all animals I am the lion and of everything winged I am Garuda, the integrity of the mantras. (31) Of everything that purifies I am the wind; of all who carry a weapon I am Lord Râma, the one self-satisfied; of all creatures of the sea I am the shark and of all the streams flowing on earth I am the Ganges flowing from the highest peak. (32) Of all the created I am, as said, the beginning, the life in between and the end; I am, oh Arjuna, of all education the education concerning the âtmatattva, and of all argumentation I am the dialogue. (33) Of the letters of the alphabet I am the A, of the compound words I am the dual one, of what is eternal I am the time15, and of those who are creative I am Lord Brahmâ, the godhead looking in all directions. (34) Of one's fate and future I am the end of life as also the beginning of life, and among women I am the fame, the beauty, the intelligence, the speech, the memory, the steadfastness and the patience. (35) Of the Sâma Veda hymns I am the metrical Brihat-sâma, of all verses I am the three-footed Gâyatri, of the months I am the one in the astronomical sign of Sagittarius, and of the seasons I am the spring season. (36) Of all trickery I am the game, of everything splendid I am the splendor, of all victory I am the enterprise and of the strong I am the strength. (37) Among the Yadus I am Krishna, among the Pândavas I am Arjuna; among the sages I am Vyâsadeva16 and among the thinkers I am Us'anâ, the teacher of the atheists. (38) Of the means of suppression I am the clout of the legal rule17, of those who seek the victory I am the morality, of all secrets I am the silence. (39) I am the source of whatever living being you can think of Arjuna; there is no creature alive, moving or non-moving, which exists outside of me. (40) There is no limit to my divine opulence, oh winner of the battle, and all this I told you is but an example of the expanse of my grandeur. (41) Oh conqueror of your opponents, whatever of power that may exist endowed with glory and beauty, found its existence as a part of my splendor. (42) You may also wonder of what use it would be for you to know of all this diversity Arjuna, when I, with a single part of myself, permeate the entirety of the living being that is the universe.'
Facing the complete of His reality
(1) Arjuna said: 'By the words of what you said with the purpose of favoring me concerning the confidentiality of the spiritual supreme, my illusion has been removed. (2) I heard from you in detail about the appearance and disappearance of the living beings, oh lotus-eyed one, and you also spoke about your inexhaustible glories. (3) After all your words concerning yourself, oh best of all persons, I cherish the wish to see your divine form the way it is, oh controller in the beyond. (4) So if you deem it possible for me to have that vision, oh master and controller of the unification within, then show me your imperishable self!'
(5) The fortunate one said: 'Behold, oh son of Prithâ, the hundreds and thousands of my different, divine forms in all shapes and colors. (6) See the personalities of wisdom, the personalities of wealth, the destroyers in the service of God, the healthcare agents, the gods and much more of the wonders you've never seen before, oh best one of the Kuru dynasty. (7) See here and now the completeness of the universe, with all that moves and not moves, rolled into one, within this one body of mine, oh conqueror of sleep, as also whatever more you wish to see. (8) But of course you will not be able to see me as such with your own eyes, so I'll grant you the divine vision. Now witness the supreme union of my control!' "
(9) Sañjaya said: "Oh King, having spoken thus, the great lord in the unification of consciousness showed Prithâ's son the beyond of his form of control. (10-11) Many mouths, eyes and many diverse wonderful sights, many divine ornaments, and a variety of weapons ready for battle; heavenly flowers worn, all kinds of dresses and suits, and even divine, fragrant ointments, all wonderful and splendrous, could be seen extending to all sides. (12) The effulgence that He, the greatness of the soul, had, resembled the light of thousands of suns, all at the same time present in the sky. (13) Right there Arjuna could see, in the one universal form of the God of gods, all the diversity of the complete universe in one. (14) Thereupon, with his hair standing on end, the conqueror of wealth began, overwhelmed by wonder, to pray, meanwhile with folded hands offering the godhead his respect.
(15) Arjuna said: 'I see, oh God, all the gods assembled in Your body, as also all other living entities; I see Lord Brahmâ with the many faces and Lord S'iva sitting in the lotus position, as also all the seers and the serpent egos of divinity. (16) In Your universal form, oh Lord of the creation, I see a multitude of faces, trunks, mouths and eyes on all sides, as part of an unlimited form which, indeed, has no beginning, no end nor a middle. (17) I see headdresses, weapons, and jewelry, and find it difficult to keep that vision in check which is glowing on all sides with an effulgence as immeasurable as the blazing fire of the radiating sun. (18) You must be understood as the infallible supreme of this universe, the transcendental foundation, You are the inexhaustible maintainer of the path of righteousness, of dharma; You are the eternal original personality, that is what You are in my opinion! (19) With You being of an unlimited glory, sourceless, endless and with no middle; with countless arms and with the sun and moon for Your eyes, I see, emanating from Your mouth, a blazing fire which torments the universe. (20) Sure enough everything between heaven and earth is pervaded by You, only You; and all the three worlds18 are perturbed at the sight of this wonderful and terrible form! (21) Rows of believers enter You, to which some of them with folded hands are offering prayers to ward off the fear. The great sages exclaim 'All hail!' to this and the ones who attained perfection pray and sing many a hymn to Your honor. (22) The intimidating Rudras, the god-conscious Âdityas, the Vasus ruling the material, all those, as also the refined Sâdhyas, the all-divine Vis'vadevas and the healing As'vins; the famous Maruts, the forefathers and the Gandharva angels; the Yaksha spirits, the godless Asuras, and the whole Siddha gathering of accomplished devotees, have all turned their faces to You in awe and wonder. (23) With the sight of this unimaginably great form of Yours with all its faces and eyes, oh man of the mightiest grip; its many arms, thighs and feet; its many bellies and its many dreadful teeth, I am as upset as all the worlds. (24) Seeing You this way touching the sky with all Your colors, open mouths and wide open, shining eyes, I am, in a state of shock, unable to keep myself together and have a peaceful mind, oh God and maintainer. (25) With before my eyes these terrifying teeth and faces of Yours, which appear like the fire at the end of time, I have, nailed to the ground, lost my sense of direction; please have mercy, oh Lord of the lords and refuge of the worlds!
(26-27) In the middle of this I see uncle Dhritarâshthra with all his sons and the ranks of rulers ready for the debate, as well as grandpa Bhîshma, Drona and our half brother Karna, who together with also our commanders hurry into Your mouth, where I see how some of them by their head are caught between the frightening, dreadful teeth. (28) Like the streams of water which in waves, inevitably, flow into the ocean, similarly all these human authorities are full of fire entering Your mouths. (29) Like moths that head in full full speed for their destruction into a blazing fire, all people entering Your mouths find themselves destroyed the same way. (30) Covering the entire universe with Your flaming mouths, You, licking on all sides, devour the people You scorch with Your terrible radiation, oh all-pervading Lordship. (31) Please tell me who You, in this frightening form, are, oh Godhead, I offer You my obeisances; please be good to me, I would like to know Your original nature, for I'm missing the point of Your mission.'
(32) The Fortunate One said: 'I am Time, the great destroyer of the world, who puts an end to the lives of all the people here; except for you and your brothers, everybody who gathered on both sides, will come to naught. (33) For that reason you must rise to your feet and go for the glory by defeating your opponents, so that you, flourishing by my grace, may enjoy the kingdom; the fact that all these would perish was written in the stars, just be the instrument of that providence, oh left-handed one. (34) Drona, Bhîshma and Jayadratha, Karna and the other great warlords, you may reckon, are destroyed by me already, so put an end to their existence without a blink of an eye, just fight and in the battle you'll be the victor over your opponents.' "
(35) Sañjaya said: "The next ruler in line who, with folded hands and trembling, thus heard the man of beauty speak, again offered prayers and addressed full of awe Krishna with a faltering voice.
(36) Arjuna said: 'Right so, oh master of the senses, the entire world rejoices by, and is attached to, Your glories; while the ones of perfection gather to offer their respects, the evil ones frightened flee in all directions. (37) And why shouldn't they, oh greatest soul better than Brahmâ, isn't it because You as the original doer, oh infinite one, oh God of the gods and refuge of the universe, can't perish in the beyond of all the true and untrue? (38) You are the original godhead, the oldest person, You are the transcendental refuge of this universe, You are the knower and the known, the beyond and the abode; You who in Your unlimited form pervades the entire cosmos. (39) You, the rein, are the air, the fire and the water, the moon, the founding father and the great-grandfather. Again and again I offer You my respects, a thousand times over and over I offer You my obeisance. (40) From the front and from behind, I offer You my respects; indeed from all sides I do so because You are everything, the infinite power and the boundless might; by You everything is covered and therefore You are everything. (41-42) Taking You for my friend, I importunely said things like 'hi Krishna', 'hi Yadu nephew', 'hi friend'. But I had no idea of Your glories, with all I did out of foolishness or out of love. For whatever I said in making fun of You, or ridiculing You, when we relaxed sitting together, laid down or when we were taking meals; or for whatever I've said being alone or in the company of others, oh infallible one, I beg Your immeasurable pardon! (43) The father of all the moving and non-moving, the father of all the worlds You are; You are the venerable one and the teacher of this, and so glorious that no one compares to You; how, oh immeasurable power, can there be anyone greater than You in the three worlds? (44) I therefore, offering my humble respect, prostrate my body before You oh Lord, to beg Your mercy, oh venerable one; to pray, oh God, that You may tolerate me like a father tolerating his son, like a friend good to his friend and like a lover with his sweetheart. (45) I'm glad to have seen what no one saw before, but afraid of what I saw, I am also upset; therefore, please oh God, show me Your personal form, oh Lord of lords and refuge of the living being. (46) The one with the helmet, holding the club of His power of rule, the discus of His vital order, the conch of His mission and the lotus flower of His opulence, that is the form of You I'd like to see; please, oh thousand-handed universal form, show me the form of You with these four hands!'
(47) The fortunate said: 'From my grace for you Arjuna, I showed this transcendental form of the oneness of my self; besides You there is no one who saw this unlimited, original form to the full of its radiating glory in the universe before. (48) Oh best of the Kuru warriors, nor by Vedic sacrifice, by study, by charity, pious deeds or by severe penances anyone in the material world managed to have this vision. Only you did. (49) Don't be troubled by it, let your mind not be overtaken by the sight of this terrible form of mine as it is, just see, free from fear and with a happy mind, this personal form of me again.' "
(50) Sañjaya said: "The god of all opulence and well-being talking like this to Arjuna, showed him again his own four-handed form and assumed thereafter, to reassure the fearful Arjuna, again his beautiful, normal physique as the great one.
(51) Arjuna said: 'Seeing this beautiful, human form of yours, oh chastiser of the enemy, my mind has calmed down and I am myself again.'
(52) The man of the opulence said: 'The vision of this form of mine as you saw it and which even by the gods is constantly aspired, is most difficult to acquire. (53) Nor by the books of prayer, by penances, by charity, or by worship it is possible to see me the way you did. (54) Only by devotional service free from ulterior motives it is possible Arjuna, to know and see me like this, to access the reality from within, oh man of grip. (55) He who, with my devotion and with me as the transcendence, does my type of work, and free from enmity with all living beings has forsaken his attachments, is the one, oh son of Pându, who reaches me.'
Focussing on the perfect
(1) Arjuna said: 'Those devotees who are always connected with you in proper worship, compared to those who go beyond the senses for the unapparent, who of them knows the unification of consciousness, the yoga, the best?'
(2) The fortunate one said: 'Those who, in fixing their mind on me, and always transcendentally endowed with faith by me, are engaged in devotional activities, are the ones most perfect in the knowledge of yoga. (3-4) But those who in sacrifice for the welfare of all, fully attend to the indefinite and unapparent, being fixed upon the inconceivable, unchanging and immovable, and who in control of all the senses in every situation are of an equal-minded intelligence, actually reach me. (5) The trouble for those who, free from attachments, are of the unapparent is very great; for those embodied ones, who turned their minds to the unseen, progress is something difficult. (6-7) But, to those who dedicate all their actions to me and who, attached to me, forsake the world and, undivided in the unification of their consciousness, are of meditation and worship with me, to those who fixed their minds thus upon me, I become, after not too long a time, the one who delivers them from dying in the ocean of material existence, oh son of Prithâ. (8) Therefore, be sure to fix your mind upon me, so that you, with your intelligence thus engaged, will live in me and as a consequence will never suffer any doubt. (9) If you can't fix your mind upon me, be then, relentless in your yoga practice, steady in your desire to get to me, oh conqueror of wealth. (10) If you're not even capable of that fortitude, then try to develop dedication in working for my sake, because you will achieve the perfection even when you're engaged in labor. (11) And if even that doesn't work for you, then take to the renunciation of the profit motive with the work you do, and remain with yourself. (12) To actually renounce the profit motive is better than just to meditate it, because peace follows the renunciation. Meditation is considered to be better than just knowing about the spiritual, and to be of spiritual knowledge is better than to practice without.
(13-14) The one dedicated to me who, friendly and kind, is not averse to anyone, who is not possessive and not identified, who is equal in distress and happiness, who is forgiving, peaceful and ever devoted, who is self-controlled and of a determined mind and who has an intelligence always fixed on me, I like the most. (15) The one by whom the people are never disturbed, the one who is never disturbed by the people; the one who is free from ups and downs and the one who is free from fears and anxieties is my favorite. (16) The one devoted to me who is impartial and pure, capable and unconcerned, not troubled and free from mundane endeavoring, I like better. (17) The one devoted to me who rejoices nor hates, grieves nor craves and remains detached for better or for worse, is the one I prefer. (18-19) A devotee of mine who is equal to foe and friend, equal in honor and dishonor, equal in heat and cold, equal in happiness and distress and the same in being together as in the absence of company; a devotee of mine not different in fame and infamy, who is quiet and satisfied with anything, and free from his home and fixed in his determination, is a human being most dear to me. (20) Those devoted to me who but cherish the nectar of this nature and, as I said, fully engage themselves with faith in the sublime of me, are the ones I cherish most.'
The knower, the known
and the knowledge of the âtmatattva
(1) Arjuna said: 'I'd like to know everything about the object of knowledge and the knowledge itself, about the material world and the person, about the field of knowledge and the knower of the field, oh man of harmony.'
(2) The fortunate one said: 'Oh son of Kuntî, by the ones who know reality this physical body that we have is called the field and the witness within this body is called the knower of the field. (3) Oh descendant of Bharata, you are correct if you consider me the knower of the field in all the fields; the way I see it, spiritual knowledge is that knowledge which is concerned with the field as also with the knower of the field. (4) Let me now explain in short to you what that field of action actually is, what forms it assumed and where they belong to, as also about the knower within and what his dignity is.
(5) By the seers it is described in many ways in the scriptures, in the various hymns and in the form of comments put in verses that are explicit about the matter of cause and effect. (6-7) There are the external fields of 1 - one's material business, 2 - one's private interest of intelligence, 3 - one's club-interest of association to the so-called non-apparent, and 4 - the social interest of the identified ego or I-awareness19. Furthermore there are the internal fields, which are the departments of the brain, of 1 - the active and receptive functions of the senses, 2 - the cognition of the cortical versus the emotions one has with the objects of the senses of like and dislike, happiness and distress, and 3 - the combination of the lateral functions of a - the awareness of space and the active force thereof, and b - the linear function of planning things in time with one's determination and language20. Thus the states, or forms the original nature changed into, are summed up. (8-12) The dignity of a human being in relation to these fields in the sense of being humble, modest and nonviolent; peaceful, simple and faithful to the teacher of example; clean, steadfast, and self-controlled; detached and unidentified with the sensory in being aware of the defects and miseries of birth, death, old age and disease; not fostering any prejudice and the not being entangled with a child, a wife and a home, as also one's being constant and equal-minded in the realization of what and when something is wanted and not wanted; being of an unalloyed, unbroken devotion unto me, the integrity of all the fields, as also of retreat in secluded places without being attached to people in general; to be of self-knowledge and stability in the realization of the truth for the sake of finding association to the divine - is all declared to be of âtmatattva4, true knowledge, or, as belonging to the internal as also the external fields; and that what deviates from this is nescience.
(13) Let me tell you about the knowable over which I hold sway: it is the beginningless supreme Brahman of the Absolute Truth21 which tastes like nectar and which is neither a thing happening, nor a thing not existing. (14) Existing with hands, legs, eyes, heads, faces and ears extending everywhere, it encompasses everything in the world. (15) As reflected with all the senses and their qualities it is yet without all those senses the unattached maintainer of all; being itself independent of the qualities it is also the ruler of the qualities. (16) It is inside as also outside of the living entities that move or not move; it is the reality known which is not known because of being so subtle; it is far away and yet as near as that. (17) Undivided within all living beings it seems to be divided, and in the position of the maintainer of all the Absolute of God is also understood as evolving and devouring all. (18) As the light in all luminous objects it is the source of light as well, and as the knowledge beyond the darkness it is just as well the âtmatattva, the love of knowledge, in the heart of everyone. (19) And thus the field, the âtmatattva as also the known itself have been described by me; it is my devotee who, attaining my nature, understands all this. (20) The combination of the person and material nature22 you must know as being sourceless, and also you should know the three modes23, together with their transformations, as being the time-bound effect that was produced by that material nature. (21) Material nature is mentioned as the reason of why we have cause and effect in the sense of having a doer or causer - in the form of time, the natural force or the modes24 -, while the person is said to be the cause of having experiences of happiness and distress. (22) The person situated in a material position enjoys the three qualities produced by material nature, and as a consequence the person, who is attached that way, is of either a good or a bad channel of rebirth.
(23) One speaks of yet another, transcendental person situated within this body who is the supervisor and permitter, the master and Supersoul, the Supreme Lord and enjoyer25. (24) He who, in this twofold sense, understands how material nature, the three qualities and the person are related, will, regardless the situation, never have to start a new life again. (25) Some see that Supersoul of the qualities within themselves by means of meditation, others see it by weighing things in yogic analysis, and still others arrive at the insight by means of uniting consciousness in selfless service. (26) Other people not that proficient in spirituality, try to be of worship by simply listening to what others say; they also, devoted to the hearing process, transcend the notion of death. (27) Oh leader of the Kuru dynasty, whatever comes into being you must see, whether it exists animate or inanimate, as a result of the marriage between the field and the knower of the field. (28) He who truly sees, is the one who sees the imperishable Lord in the beyond of all the perishable living entities. (29) He, sure to see the Lord as equally situated everywhere, will, with the soul, never lose his self-respect and will consequently reach the goal of transcendence. (30) Anyone realizing that all that is done, in every way is the result of being conditioned by material nature, and that one, as the soul, is not the doer at all, sees it perfectly. (31) When one next sees that life, the way it expanded everywhere into different identities, rests in oneness, one attains that very moment the Absolute of the Spirit. (32) This inexhaustible self, even though dwelling in the body, never does anything nor gets entangled ever, oh son of Kuntî, because it is eternal and transcendentally positioned on top of the modes of nature. (33) The way the all-pervading ether26 never mixes with anything, also this embodied soul never mixes. (34) Like the one sun that illuminates all the world, this one soul within this body illumines all and everything, oh descendant of Bharata. (35) Those who, gifted with the âtmatattva vision, thus know of the difference between the field and the knower of the field, and know about the possibility for the living being to find liberation from the material world, are the ones who reach the supreme.'
The three basic qualities of nature
(1) The supreme personality of the opulence said: 'Let me again tell you about that âtmatattva ruling over all knowledge, which is the first and best, and by the power of which the sages attained all the transcendental perfection there is to attain. (2) Taking shelter of this spiritual knowledge, having attained the same as what I all am, one is not even born again at the time of creation, nor disturbed when annihilation takes place.
(3) My channel of birth is the greater of nature and from the supreme spirit in it, I create everywhere the conditions for the living beings to exist, oh descendant of Bharata. (4) Oh son of Kuntî, of all the species of life, of all the forms that manifested, I am the grand primal source, the absolute spirit, the father who gives the seed. (5) Goodness, passion and ignorance are the qualities resulting from this material nature which conditions, oh man of grip, the body of the one embodied. (6) Goodness is the purest of these qualities, it inspires to bloom free from reactions, and links the âtmatattva, the love of knowledge for the completeness, to the condition of happiness, oh sinless one. (7) You should know that the quality of passion is marked by desires resulting from attachment and longing; it is from them that the one embodied gets entangled in the consequences of what he did in the past, oh son of Kuntî. (8) The quality of ignorance deluding all living beings is that what follows a lack of knowledge: the negligence, indolence and sleepiness which tie one down, oh son of the Kuru dynasty.
(9) Goodness binds to knowledge, passion binds to profit-minded labor, but by the ignorance which covers the knowledge one is bound to errors, oh descendant of Bharata. (10) With the modes of goodness, passion and ignorance it is so that, oh descendant of Bharata, at one time goodness prevails defeating passion and ignorance, then passion overrules goodness and ignorance, and then again ignorance is most prominent relative to the goodness and the passion. (11) The goodness is strongest when in relation to all of the, what one calls, gates of the body - or to all the senses and their organs - the light of knowledge develops.27 (12) Oh best of the Kuru line, when passion dominates, all kinds of symptoms develop like greed, overexertion, unsolicited action and uncontrollable desire. (13) When the quality of ignorance is prominent it is murkiness, passivity, carelessness and even madness that manifests, oh son of the Kaurava family.
(14) Finding destruction the one embodied who gained in strength to the mode of goodness, attains the world of those great in wisdom and purity. (15) When one finds destruction in passion, life is resumed among those motivated for the profit; likewise the one who ended in ignorance is of a new life among the ignorant. (16) Of virtuous deeds in the mode of goodness one finds the result of purification, so one says, but the result of passion is misery, while the result of ignorance consists of illusion. (17) From goodness one finds the development of knowledge, from passion greed develops and from ignorance a lot of nonsense is found. (18) Situated in goodness one rises up, in passion one stays in between and in ignorance being of an abominable quality one goes down. (19) A seer who knows of the supreme in relation to the qualities, and as well correctly sees that the doer is no other than these three qualities to the modes of nature, is promoted to my spiritual nature. (20) Going beyond these qualities the one embodied will enjoy the nectar of being freed from the distressing physical consequences of starting a new life, of being old and of finding one's end.'
(21) Arjuna said: 'Oh master of wisdom, by which symptoms is the one rising above these three qualities recognized, how does he behave and how does this going beyond the three modes take place?'
(22-25) The fortunate one said: 'He who doesn't hate the developing or not developing of enlightenment, of material progress and of the confusion to the modes, oh son of Pându; he who from the neutral never desires nor is agitated when the modes are acting upon him; he who, unwavering remembering himself, thus keeps his position being equal in distress and happiness and is indifferent whether it concerns a clod, a stone or a lump of gold; he who is the same towards what is popular and what is unpopular, and is steady and equal in being praised or defamed; he who is equal in honor and dishonor and is equal towards both the sides of friends and enemies and manages to renounce with whatever he does, he is said to be transcendental to the modes. (26) And he who, relating to me, never fails to be united in devotion and voluntarism; he, transcending all of the modes, will rise to the spirit of the absolute. (27) For I am the spiritual foundation of the imperishable, immortal, eternal and original nature as also the ultimate happiness.'
The nature of the supreme person
(1) The fortunate one said: 'He who knows that the tree of life is an eternal tree with its roots upwards, its branches downwards and of which the leaves are the âtmatattva songs28, is someone who knows the culture of knowledge of the Vedas. (2) This tree extending downwards and upwards, developed to its twigs downward the domain of the senses and to its roots the karma which binds one to the human world. (3-4) The form of this tree has no beginning or end, nor a foundation that can be perceived out here; persevering with the weapon of detachment one must be of cessation with this deeply rooted tree. After having renounced with that tree of life, one must figure out where that place is one is heading for and from where one never returns, and surrender to Him, the original personal integrity and animating principle29, from whom, and from which, everything extended since the earliest days of the universe. (5) That everlasting refuge is attained when one, not being bewildered, is free from self-importance and illusion, has defeated bad association, understands what lasts forever, and when one has dissociated oneself from the lust and has freed oneself from the dualities under the heading of happiness and distress. (6) Going for that superior place of mine, which is not lit by the sun, the moon or by lamps, one never returns. (7) Living a conditioned life, with the mind as the sixth sense, the individual living being, struggling hard in its material position, is an eternal part of me. (8) It is as the controller of the body it obtained and also has to give up, in all of that carried along like a fragrance by the wind from its source. (9) With its hearing, seeing, touching, tasting, smelling and also minding it is ruled by the objects of the senses. (10) The notion of having a body, quitting a body and, under the spell of the modes, enjoying a body is something that the foolish don't understand, but those who share the âtmatattva vision do understand this. (11) Those who endeavor and unify in consciousness, realize it from within their soul, but those endeavoring who do not act in favor of the soul, do not have this vision, however developed their minds are.
(12) The splendor you see in the light of the sun which illuminates the entire world, as also in the light of the moon and the fire, you should understand as all originating from me. (13) With my ethereal energy I permeate this earth and sustain these living beings, and as their life-juice I, by my appearance in the form of the moon, nourish all the plants. (14) As the fire of digestion within the bodies of all living beings, I maintain the balance between the in- and outgoing breath, while I digest the four types of foodstuff.30 (15) Residing in the heart of all beings they have from me their remembrance, knowledge and reason. It is by the sacred scriptures that I am known; I'm their doctrine and the knowledge of their meaning.
(16) There are these integrities of service in this world: the perishable and the imperishable one; the service of all the living beings is perishable but the service of the stationary and constant integrity of the multitude of the natural order is known to be imperishable. (17) The highest integrity of service is another service, viz. the service of the supreme self of the Lord of whom one says that He, pervading the three departments of the world18, is the inexhaustible maintainer. (18) Because I am, relative to the perishable, transcendental and, relative to the imperishable, the best, I am in the world and in the sacred literatures celebrated as the Supreme Personality. (19) Anyone who, free from doubt, knows about me as being that Supreme Personality, knows all there is to know, and will serve me any way he can, oh descendant of Bharata. (20) Understanding this most confidential part of the revealed scripture I now disclosed, oh sinless one, one will become intelligent and find perfection in one's line of work, oh son of the Kuru line.'
About the enlightened
and the unenlightened ones
(1-3) The fortunate one said: 'When one is fearless, good of heart, persevering in the knowledge of unifying consciousness, compassionate, of restraint, charitable, studious, austere and simple; when one is nonviolent, truthful, free from anger, renounced, peaceful, benevolent, merciful to all, non-possessive, gentle, modest and determined; when one is arduous, forgiving, steadfast, clean, non-envious and not striving for honor, one has the qualities of someone who found his life in the divine. (4) Deceit, conceit, insidiousness, anger and certainly violence and ignorance too, are the qualities of the one who found his life in the unenlightened state, oh son of Prithâ. (5) The divine characteristics are meant to liberate from bondage, while the qualities of the unenlightened on the contrary are the result of being bound. But do not worry, oh son of Pându, for you have found a life in the divine.
(6) There are two types of conditioned beings in this world: the divine ones and the unenlightened. About the divine I spoke at great length; just hear from me about the ones possessed by the material interest, oh son of Prithâ. (7) The ones of darkness do not know how to progress, nor where to stop; they miss the integrity and purity, do not know how to behave and are full of lies. (8) Missing the point they say that the universal manifestation has no controller or foundation, that it rose without any cause and that there is no other cause than the cause of lust. (9) Adhering to this outlook having lost themselves, with the unintelligent the less beneficial activities flourish that lead to the destruction of the world. (10) Confiding in lusts that are insatiable and fooling themselves with boasting and prestige, they, led by illusion, take to the impermanent of material things and thrive in dedication to the impure. (11-12) There's no end to their fears and anxieties, and to the point of death they confide in sense-gratification as the supreme goal to settle for in life. Bound in a network of countless expectations they, being lusty and angry to satisfy their senses and sexual appetites, wish to accumulate wealth by unfair means with that mentality. (13-15) 'Today I won this and that I'll get as well; this is what I want, that is mine and tomorrow I'll even have more of it. That enemy I defeated now and the other ones I'll also destroy. I am the master and controller. I'm the one to enjoy, I'm perfect as I am and the lucky one to be in power. I'm the wealthy one of good company, I'm the one and only, who compares to me? I'll sacrifice and donate, I'm the one to be happy'; this is how they are deluded in their ignorance. (16) Thus perplexed by innumerable worries they are caught in a pool of illusions and land, addicted to sense gratification, in a hell of sorrow. (17) Arrogant and rigid about their wealth and status, they engage, in the full of their delusion, in so-called sacrifices which they perform with vanity, with disregard for the rules and regulations. (18) Materially identified, vainglorious, manipulative, frantic and lusty, they fell enviously into mocking me, I who reside in their hearts as also in the hearts of others. (19) The lowest of mankind, being that envious and deceptive, are time and again cast by me into the material ocean to find an unfavorable new life in the wombs of doubtful mothers. (20) The ones being that unintelligent will, birth after birth achieving lives of darkness, in that way never reach me oh son of aunt Kunti, and be heading for the worst destinations. (21) Lust, anger and greed are in this self-destruction the three gates of hell, and thus one must give up on these three. (22) Freed from these gates of hell a person is of respect for the soul, oh son of Kuntî, and heads thus being blessed, for the supreme destination.
(23) Anyone who forsakes the regulative principles3 as laid down in the scriptures, will be acting according to his own whims and never attain the perfection, the happiness or the goal of transcendence. (24) Thus seen it are the scriptures which set the standard for you to determine what and what not would be your duty; with the regulations explained in the scriptures you should know what type of work must be performed in this world.'
The three qualities relating to one's
austerity, sacrifice and food intake
(1) Arjuna said: 'He who abandons the scriptural regulations but, endowed with faith, is of worship, is he, oh Krishna, in goodness or else in passion or ignorance?'
(2) The fortunate one said: 'The faith of the one embodied manifests, depending on each his birth, in the three forms of goodness, passion and ignorance; hear about this as well from me. (3) The evolution of one's faith is a matter of consciousness31 oh son of the Kuru dynasty, the person is the completeness of that faith. and is, with such a faith endowed, thus certain of himself. (4) Those who are of goodness keep the godly ones in mind, in passion one bows to the demons, and people in ignorance are devoted to the spirits of the deceased and ghosts and such. (5-6) Those persons who, impelled by the force of lust, egotistically and conceited are engaged in penances executed with violence and not prescribed in the scriptures, are surely of an obscure resolve; they doing harm to the body its material integrity are mistaken about me who, next to themselves, is also situated within that body.
(7) The way the food one prefers is also of three kinds, there are as well three kinds of charity, sacrifices and austerities; hear now about these differences.
(8) Food which increases the duration of life, which purifies one's being, gives strength, health, happiness and satisfaction and which is juicy, rich, wholesome and a pleasure to the heart, is food preferred by the ones in goodness. (9) Bitter, sour, salty, very hot, smelly, dried out and burned is the food of those in the mode of passion; it makes unhappy, miserable and brings disease. (10) That what is cooked too long, lacks taste, smells bad, is decomposed, a leftover from a previous meal and has impurities in it, is food dear to the ignorant.
(11) A sacrifice which according to the scriptural regulations is conducted by souls who, free from profit motives, therewith performed with an absorbed mind, is of goodness. (12) But that sacrifice which is performed out of vanity and with the desire for a certain advantage, oh leader of the Kuru line, know that sacrifice to be of the mode of passion. (13) Any sacrifice in defiance of the regulative principles, with no food distributed, with no hymns sung, without any gifts and performed without faith, must be considered a sacrifice in the mode of ignorance.
(14) When one in cleanliness, sincerity, celibacy and nonviolence is of respect for the divinity, the twice-born ones, the spiritual teacher and the wise, one speaks of austerity in the sense of physical actions. (15) To the voice austerity is said to be of truthful, pleasing and beneficial, inoffensive words derived from studying the books of spiritual wisdom in a persistent practice. (16) Austerity of the mind pertains to a mind trained in serenity, good faith, gravity, self-control and self-correction32. (17) This threefold austerity33 which, free from desiring a certain advantage, is performed by men with faith in the transcendence, is said to be of goodness. (18) Austerity which in this world is performed for the sake of respect, honor and veneration and thus is vain, is, unstable and temporary as it is, said to be of the mode of passion. (19) Austerity foolishly performed with the intent to torture oneself or bring down others, is said to be of the mode of ignorance.
(20) That what is given in charity as a gift without expecting anything in return, at the right place, at the right time, and to the right person is a form of charity which is considered to be of goodness. (21) But that which is given with some return in mind, and is given desiring a result, or is given with a grudge, is charity understood to be of passion. (22) Charity is said to be of ignorance when it, without respect and proper attention, is given at the wrong place, the wrong time and to persons not deserving. (23) With om tat sat34, the threefold of the spiritual supreme is indicated; these words were since time immemorial used by the twice-born ones with their sacrifices as also with the holy books of prayers and hymns. (24) For that reason the syllable om always marks the beginning of the performances of the sacrifices, the charity and the penance of the transcendentalists proceeding according to the regulations. (25) The word tat in this is used by the ones desiring liberation to refer to the fact that one is not after any result in the various activities of sacrifice, penance and charity. (26-27) The word sat is used to express the nature of the supreme as also the devotion to the supreme in the activities one agreed upon, oh son of Prithâ. Thus in case of sacrifice, penance and charity the word sat is uttered to indicate activities in question as also the absolute of the truth. (28) If one makes some sort of offering, donates this or that way, or when one is of some kind of penance, one is completely false if one proceeds without any belief, oh son of Prithâ; to act this way in disbelief is of no use here, nor in the hereafter.'
Renunciation according to the qualities
and the causes of karma
(1) Arjuna said: 'Oh man of grip and master of the senses, I'd like to know what the truth of the renounced order is and what I, apart from that order, should understand of renunciation, oh devil slayer.'
(2) The fortunate one said: 'What the learned know as the renounced order, entails that one gives up to lust for the karma; men of wisdom speak of renunciation when the profit motive in all endeavors is forsaken. (3) One group of thinkers says that karma is an evil thing and that it therefore must be given up, while others stress that, in this matter, the works of sacrifice, charity and penance never should be given up. (4) To be clear about this matter of renunciation, oh best of the Kuru dynasty, one in fact speaks of three kinds, oh tiger among men. (5) Indeed acts of sacrifice, charity and penance must never be given up, for even the greatest souls find purification in that sacrifice, charity and penance. (6) But no doubt with all these actions one performs out of duty, the association with their results must be given up; that, oh son of Prithâ, is my final and best statement about it.
(7) To renounce in karmic matters never implies that one forsakes prescribed duties; such a renunciation led by illusion, is declared to be of ignorance. (8) He who gives up out of fear, or because a certain workload might be too troublesome or maybe a discomfort to the body, is most certainly a renouncer in the grip of passion, someone who never gets the point of renunciation. (9) When one for a fixed period of time works for a result and combines that with a forsaking of the profit motive at other times, such a renunciation Arjuna, is to my opinion, of goodness. (10) He who, intelligent enough, cutting with the doubts, is of the forsaking, but never hates it to suffer some stress in working for a result, nor gets attached to the pleasure of exercising his skills in it, is absorbed in goodness. (11) Surely it is for the one embodied impossible to be completely renounced in all his activities, but one is said to be a renouncer when one is a renouncer of the fruit of one's labor. (12) When one turns away from the world there are, for the ones who were not of renunciation, the three kinds of karmic consequences of finding things going to hell, reaching to heaven or having a mixture of these, but this is never the case for those belonging to the renounced order.35
(13) Take it from me that, as the analytic conclusion, there are these five causes, oh man of grip, which are said to serve the perfection of all activities: (14) The locality, the person, the material means, the avenues taken and that what fate arranges.36 (15) Whatever work a person engages in physically, in speech or in mind, doing the right or the wrong thing, is of these five causes. (16) So, anyone who thinks that the individual soul at work would be the only agent, is, foolishly not using his intelligence, not seeing matters as they are. (17) Someone who is not led by the ego nor is looking for someone else never gets entangled and is, even if he out here killed someone, never the one who can be designated as the cause thereof.
(18) What impels to action are the three factors of the knower, the knowledge and the known, while the worker, the working and the senses at work are the three agents to which the karma adds up. (19) One says that concerning the knowledge, the work and the performer there are three different qualities in terms of the different modes as well; also hear what they all are.
(20) That knowledge by which one of the living beings, despite of their being divided in countless numbers, sees their imperishable ground as one and undivided, you should know to be of goodness. (21) But that knowledge by which one perceives the living being, because of its being divided over different conditions, as being different in all these life forms, must be considered as being of passion. (22) And when one is fixed on one thing as if that would be all, that type of knowing, being all too easy, unfounded and unrealistic, is said to be of darkness.
(23) That work which is scheduled, and which, free from attachment, like or dislike, is performed without a desire for some result, is said to be of goodness. (24) But proceeding with ego in great effort to achieve results, one's work is said to be of the mode of passion. (25) One's work is said to be of the mode of ignorance when one, motivated for attachments, self-willed, in disregard of possible consequences, destructive and distressful to others, engages with illusion.
(26) A worker, free from attachment and conceit of ego, who qualified, with resolve, and unwavering in accomplishment and failure, does the best he can, is said to be of the mode of goodness. (27) A worker who, insisting on results, is led by joy and sorrow and who, impure in his motives, is avaricious and of a violent nature, is declared to be of passion. (28) Of the worker in the mode of ignorance one says that he, being materialistic, obstinate and deceitful, is not connected and that he, in his anti-social attitude, is lazy, morose and procrastinating.
(29) Oh winner of the wealth, now hear me describing in detail how, according to the different modes, the individual types of intelligence and conviction differ as well in three respects.
(30) Oh son of Prithâ, that understanding is of goodness which knows of progress as also of arrest, which knows what should and what should not be done, what is to be feared and not to be feared, and what is of bondage and what of liberation. (31) That intelligence, oh son of aunt Prithâ, which does not precisely know what belongs to the original nature and what goes against that nature, nor what would be right or what would be wrong, is an intelligence in the mode of passion which is not seeing things clearly. (32) Oh son of Prithâ, that intelligence in which, covered by illusion, everything goes awry and one takes that what is unrighteous for something righteous, is of ignorance.
(33) Oh son of Prithâ, that conviction which, constant in the practice of yoga, has the activity of the mind, the breath and the senses under control, is a resolve that is of goodness. (34) But that conviction, Arjuna, by which one, holding on to one's religiousness, sensuality and material business37, insists on one's advantage, is a determination, oh son of Prithâ, in the mode of passion. (35) That determination in which one unintelligently never gives up the sleeping, fearing, lamenting, drooping as also the presuming, is of the mode of ignorance, oh son of Prithâ.
(36) But now hear from me about the three kinds of happiness that one enjoys in fortitude, oh best of the Bharata descendants, and from which being steadfast the end of one's sorrow is found. (37) That happiness which in the beginning is like poison but in the end compares to nectar, is, having sprouted in the soul by the grace of intelligence, of the mode of goodness so one says. (38) That happiness which results from the contact one has by the senses with the sense objects, and which in the beginning is just like nectar but in the end is like poison, is a form of happiness known to belong to the mode of passion. (39) That happiness which from the beginning to the end is founded on self-deception, sloth, laziness and misunderstanding, is said to be of ignorance.
(40) Nor on earth, nor among the gods in the higher spheres, there is anyone who is free from the influence of these three qualities inherent to material nature.'
and the one way of liberation
(41) 'Oh conqueror of your opponents, originating from the natural qualities there are the professional activities divided into the individual natures of the four societal classes of the intellectuals and priests, the rulers and the military, the traders and farmers and the servants and laborers38. (42) The intellectual actions of wisdom, knowledge and belief in God are of the nature of peace, self-control and austerity, as also of purity, tolerance and honesty. (43) The ways of the ruler are characterized by valor, vigor, determination, resourcefulness in conflict situations, steadfastness, generosity and leadership. (44) To the nature of a trader one finds plowing, tending cows and trade as the duty, while the laborer's duty consists of delivering service.
(45) When each human being answers to his duty, perfection will be the result. Now listen how that perfection can be achieved. (46) Doing one's job with that39 by which all living entities found their existence and by which all this is pervaded, a human being achieves the perfection. (47) It is better to be imperfect in doing one's own duty40, than to be perfect following an estranged course of action, because one will never be in conflict with oneself when one proceeds according to one's own nature. (48) Even though faults are bound to happen when one works for a result, oh son of Kuntî, one should never forsake one's duty, because all one endeavors is no doubt accompanied by error, the way fire is covered by smoke. (49) When one has an intelligence which is free from attachments and when one, no longer fostering desires, in every respect is in control of oneself, one attains, by the renounced order, the perfection of freedom from reactions.
(50) Understand from me how, in conclusion, oh son of Prithâ, without fail the spiritual perfection is achieved, the stage of the supreme knowledge of the âtmatattva. (51-53) With one's intelligence fully straigtened out, being connected in one's determination and also of regulation with things as sounds; having given up on the objects of the senses, having refrained from passion and a negative attitude; living secluded, eating little, and having one's speech, mind and body under control; having taken to the shelter of detachment, all day residing in the beyond of meditation, and not being of false ego, physical power, false pride, lust, anger and material accumulation, one qualifies, freed from possessiveness living the peace, for spiritual realization. (54) One attains my transcendental, devotional service when one, existing spiritually, is pleasing the soul and, never lamenting or desiring, is of an equal mind for all living beings. (55) I am known in devotional service, for that is what I am in reality; as soon as one knows me that way, one has accessed me. (56) By whatever one, to the mercy of my protection, is all engaged in, one achieves the imperishable, eternal abode. (57) Take care to be aware of me all day by giving up all possible profit motives consciously - that is to say, to my lead taking to the shelter of an in yoga unified intelligence. (58) Conscious of me you will by my mercy overcome all impediments, but if you, on the other hand, on an ego trip, fail to answer to this, you will be lost. (59) If you, as an escapist, try to hide in egoism and refuse to engage in the fight, your resolve is all wrong; according to your position in the material world, you have no choice factually. (60) Bound to your own activities according to the birth you took, you, in illusion, prefer not to engage in that, oh son of Prithâ, in which you even involuntarily will engage. (61) Arjuna, God resides in the heart of all living entities, where He gives directions to each creature subjected to the mechanical of the outer illusion. (62) Surrender yourself to Him in every respect, oh descendant of Bharata, by His grace you'll reach the supreme abode of eternal peace. (63) Thus far my explanations about the greater secret of confidential knowledge; now think carefully about this and then do that what you wish to do.
(64) It is because you're so dear to me that I, for your own good, restate this most confidential part of all my supreme instruction: (65) Think of me, become my devotee, be my worshiper, prove me your respects, and I promise you, since you're dear to me, that you'll attain me without fail. (66) When you go for me as the only one to surrender to, and abandon all other ways of proceeding righteously, I will deliver you from all the trouble heaping upon you, don't you worry! (67) But never tell this to anyone who is not of penance, who is not a devotee, nor to someone not willing to listen, or to someone who turned against me. (68) He who explains this most confidential secret of mine to people of devotion, is unto me engaged in transcendental, devotional service and will no doubt reach me. (69) There is no one I like more among men, nor will there on earth anyone become more dear to me than such a one. (70) By the sacrifice for the sake of knowledge made by the person who studies this sacred conversation of ours, I will be worshiped. That's how I see it. (71) That human being who with faith, free from envy, listens to it, will, apart from being liberated, attain the auspicious worlds of the pious as well. (72) Oh son of aunt Prithâ, could you follow all this I've been telling you? Has the delusion brought about by your lack of knowledge now been dispelled, oh winner of the wealth?'
(73) Arjuna said: 'The illusion is dispelled and I regained my memory. Your mercy removed my doubts, oh infallible one, I'm back on my feet now. I'll do what you told me to.' "
(74) Sañjaya said: 'This is what I've heard of the wonderful and astounding discussion between the great souls Krishna and Arjuna. (75) Thanks to Vyâsadeva16, I could firsthand from the mouth of Krishna, the master of uniting consciousness in person, hear this secret being spoken concerning the supreme of yoga. (76) Oh master of politics, repeatedly remembering this beautiful and pious conversation between the man of beauty and Arjuna, fills my heart with joy time and again. (77) And also I am each time I remember that tremendously wonderful form of Krishna, oh ruler of man, to my greater joy, again and again struck with wonder. (78) I am convinced that wherever there is the master of yoga Krishna, and the son of Prithâ with his speeches and one-liners, that there opulence, victory, great power and morality are assured."
Thus A Song of Fortune ends, a classical Gîtâ, during the month of May 2760 AUC12, translated to the mind of his time by Anand Aadhar Prabhu41, the âtmatattva master who in that function is named 'the foundation of happiness'. He did this in service of the divine association of the great souls of his time and the many preceding him in this task.
After Krishna and Arjuna had finished their conversation, they engaged spirited and energetic in the battle with their nephews. Arjuna therein took, together with his four brothers, up his arms against also de army of the Yadus of Krishna himself which fought at the side of the Kauravas. Before the battle began Krishna in a diplomatic meeting had offered the Pândavas and the Kauravas a fair choice with the words: "You either fight against me or against my army".
The battle between the family members lasted for eighteen days. In these days, one after the other, all their opponents were defeated. While as good as every Kaurava found his demise in the fray because of the karma which, exposed with it, had led to a corruption of skills and concrete support, doubtful presentations, bad association, envy, anger and a poor spirituality, this was not so with the well trained Arjuna and his army of insurgents who were constantly advised and protected to the perfection by Krishna's spiritual power, control and personal presence on the battlefield as a charioteer. Together with him no enemy was spared, and even, some time after the battle, the Yadu clan of Krishna himself found its demise in a collective fight against itself, exactly the way Krishna had planned it for all the ruling powers of the time.
Duryodhana, Arjuna's archenemy, fell, hit on the battlefield by Bhîma's club, with a broken spine and thus had to pay for all the foul tricks and schemes he with his brothers had employed in his repressive campaigns in the past. The blind uncle Dhritarâshthra lost his credibility and authority as a founding father and man of wisdom and withdrew to the Himalayas where he literally burnt up in the flames of penance. Thus his life ended together with his destructive family attachment. Yudhishthhira, the eldest Pândava, became, with the support of Krishna, the new king. But never was the honor of the family was definitely restored. The closed ranks they had always formed, had collapsed and so had the public morality associated with it. Kali-yuga, the age of quarrel had commenced. Whereas in the old days of the yugas before, there had been an undisputed rule of emperors and great kings representing the four legs of the bull of dharma, the four values of truthfulness, faithfulness, sacrifice and compassion, these values were ever since found in decay.
The break the traditional family rule had suffered was so severe, that the close association of the dynastic religiousness of sacrifices, welfare activities, charity and public ceremonies on the one hand and the secular rule of the state on the other hand, definitely had alienated into two separate societal worlds. The righteous rule and the brahmin intellect had separated. The righteous rule and the brahmin intellect had separated. Arjuna's grandson Parîkchit, who, born with a fine intelligence and character, had a keen eye for everyone and everything, and personally never missed an opportunity to defend the dharma, had followed in greatuncle Yudhishthhira's footsteps in his acceptance of the by his greatuncles arranged transference of the throne when he was still a boy. That rule of his was also the last rule representative of the old age. Because of a conflict which had risen between his person and a representative of the class of the wise men, withdrew also he, the last great ruler of the family, fallen from public grace. He stood back after having been cursed by the son of a meditating sage, who was insulted by Parîkchit because he hadn't properly welcomed him at his hermitage.
Parîkchit in his insult had maintained that the alienated intellectuals and the priesthood were all too lax and uncommitted escapists, locked up in their own self-righteous ivory towers. But later on could he no longer maintain this offensive position. In the end he turned out to be a staunch and dedicated brahmin himself, after he, because of the curse, had given up his rule. He sat himself down at the feet of S'ukadeva, the son of Vyâsadeva, who in the week of fasting which he according to the curse had to fulfill until his death, enlightened him on the entire history of the Vedic culture including the story about the life of Krishna, the Fortunate One, which later on was handed down in disciplic succession as the Bhâgavata Purâna, the most important collection of stories or bible of the Hindus (there are eighteen big ones and small ones). The integrity of the dynasty had definitely died along with him and could in its full glory only be retraced in the closed circles of the religious communities of the priests, sages and scholars who today are called the teachers, the gurus, of example, or the âcâryas, who traditionally are divided in different schools of learning or sampradâyas. Because the classical rule of the dynasty of Bhâratavarsha, or India, was never again restored to its original glory, and, in that sense, the world order it stood for definitely had fallen apart, the common man worldwide, without much honor and decency, continued quarreling in the political age of Kali-yuga until that ego struggle had reached the end of its synergy, and a new era for the planet earth had dawned.
1) In this text were the original sanskrit names presented as found in the Bhagavad Gîtâ. The classical situation of warriors ready for the battle at Kurukshetra can, in a Modern parallel, be compared with the situation of a political debate between politicians of a conservative and progressive stance. This parallel is elaborated in the Modern version of this book. Krishna would then to the standards of today belong to the progressive side of the political spectrum, even though he is primarily there as the neutral witness, while the power of his rule, his culture, would belong to the conservative side of society. The name of Krishna literally translated means dark, and refers to his dark skin. In Modern English he would be called Dwayne. Other honorary titles used in this book were all translated so that the western mind could have a better understanding of the atmosphere of the ongoing conversation.
2) Arjuna, literally translated with 'the clear one', or 'the white one' would in English receive the name of Aylen, the mapuche indian name for clarity or happiness in N. America.
3) The original term used here is dharma. Traditionally is in this context the so-called vidhi mentioned as a reference to the dharmic principles. These are satya, s'auca, tapas and dayâ - truth, purity, penance and compassion; or also âtmatattva-wise (see next note) expressed as being truthful, faithful, charitable and peaceful to the basic, Modern derived, âtmatattva prayer concerning these regulative principles: 'May peace with the natural order, rule the world in respect of the truth, sharing all with each in moderation, faithful to the cause of unity'. These values are in the Vedic literatures also called the legs of the bull of dharma. In our Modern time have these legs, hurt by Kali ('Quarrel'), decayed, so that one speaks of the four sinful activities of gambling, drinking, prostitution and animal slaughter (dyûtam, pânam, striyah, sûnâ), typical for the godless person of the Kali era. That person of Kali, of classical sin and human weakness, was tolerated, but restricted to the places typical for these sins, by the first emperor to rule after Krishna left the planet about five thousand years ago: Parîkchit (the 'Investigator', see also Bhâgavata Purâna 1.16 & 17).
4) The term âtmatattva stands for the principle or reality of the soul, entailing love for knowledge, and is here here presented as true knowledge. It has an equivalent Sanskrit term: jñâna, spiritual knowledge. To the Western Greek tradition is it best translated with filognosy. The term represents the comprehensive logic of spiritually covering all the six basic visions (darshanas) of the human, cultural respect concerning the factual (philosophy and science), the principle (analysis and spirituality) and the personal (in the religious and political sense). Oneness and harmony of consciousness is the objective of this naturalistic/idealistic love in which one, in order to counter the troubles of not knowing, is of physical exercise, meditation, study, contemplation, discourse, song and service to God and one's fellow man, according to the natural order of time in association with the ether. It is a syncretic approach properly assigning each form of materialism, political association or scientific paradigm, its distinct place and mission in society. An âtmatattva-person, or filognostic, derives, in being faithful to the basic principles of nonviolent compassion, penance, cleanliness and truthfulness, partly from religious approaches as diverse as Hinduism, gnosticism in all its cultural diversity, Buddhism, Taoism/Confucianism, Universal Sufism and Vaishnavism (see further theorderoftime. org).
5) The foolish and the corrupted applies in âtmatattva to a category of people caught in the dilemma of the materialist: directed at the vision he is a fool (mudha), directed at the means he is corrupt (papa). Both ways he is wrong because with him there is no proper matching of the specific means of a specific opulence (bhaga) with the logical end of the vision (darshana) belonging to that opulence (see also note 6 & 11). The bhaga e.g. is thus of penance the means to arrive in yoga at transcendence, but with a political aim is it form of material foolishness which, as a state-wise negativity, is called isolationism; one isolates oneself with those measures from the rest of the world. The âtmatattva person though finds the proper match and thus also the pious balance of this or that religious respect between the means employed and the vision which is the purpose, and then aligns to the âtmatattva integrity of the different types of balance between the means and the ends. For themselves are these balanced types superego, but with each of them finding and knowing their place in the world culture are they truly of the supersoul.
6) The lesser intelligence of this or that idealist religiousness is determined by the one-sidedness of its logic. To each proper match of an opulence with a certain vision there is a form of religiousness which, even though perfectly valid, on itself is a lesser intelligence than the comprehensive intelligence of âtmatattva assigning each of these forms of logic its proper place in its epistemology. Thus have we e.g. Hinduism which, as a form of diversified demigod worship, works as a proper match between the opulence of being intelligent with the knowledge and the vision of being methodical in philosophy. But on itself is it only a religion of philosophy when it fails in the scientific paradigm, the artistic analysis, the gnostic order, the syncretic personality and the communal, political commitment of respectively Buddhism, Taoism, gnosticism, Universal Sufism and Vaishnavism. Hinduism is, just as the latter ones mentioned may be, in its existence for itself defying the multicultural world order of âtmatattva, more of the superego than of the supersoul (see also note 4 and 11).
7) His opulence, His fulness is known in six types of fortune or six opulences: intelligence (or knowledge), power, beauty, renunciation, fame and riches (gnostically called pleroma). They constitute the manifest and the non-manifest aspects of space, matter and time, the basic elements of the universe. The sanskrit word for opulence is bhaga, and the title in Sanskrit used here of Bhagavân thus means the fortunate one, or the one of the opulences. In classical Vaishnava rhetoric the name is often translated with the Supreme Personality of Godhead or simply the Lord (see also note 11 and the previous two).
8) One day of God, consisting of 1000 cycles of creation or mahâyugas, is called a kalpa in Sanskrit. There are 360 days in such a year and 100 years in a life of the Creator who is called Brahmâ in the Vedic culture of which Krishna as a master of yoga, or Krishna as Yogîs'vara, speaks.
9) While this verse states: 'a leaf, a flower, a fruit and water', entails the bhakti practice of offering food a vegetarian wholesome diet consisting of beans, cereal, fruits and vegetables, and cheese and milk.
10) The seven great sages, also called the sons of the creator, Brahmâ, the original sanskrit names referred to here are: Marîci, Atri, Angirâ, Pulastya, Pulaha, Kratu and Vasishthha, and the four Manus are the progenitors Svâyambhuva, Svârocisha, Raivata and Uttama.
11) The six characteristics of the fullness or the opulence we speak of in the âtmatattva are, as stated in note 7. derived from the three basic elements of creation: time (kâla), space (âkâs'a) and matter (prakriti). To the manifest and non-manifest of these basic elements we arrive at the full of His opulence: intelligence and knowledge as the manifestation of space, as the reflection of spacial awareness, while the power of the ether is the invisible mover in the beyond. While beauty and harmony constitute the manifest of God in the material world, is penance the unapparent lead of the witness of transcendence that is not seen. To the manifest of time we have the fame of the Lord manifesting in every age and worshiped in all religions as the avatâra, the prophet, the son or the master of meditation and such, while the non-manifest of time is the richness of having the time or the money that time has been converted into. With the opulences of intelligence, power, beauty, renunciation, fame and riches, as the means of God, are the six âtmatattva visions (the darshanas) the purpose. The perfection of intelligence is found in the vision of philosophy (nyâya), the perfection of power is found in the paradigm of science (vais'eshika), the perfection of harmony is found in the analysis (sânkhya), the perfection of renunciation is found in the gnosis of unification in consciousness (yoga), the perfection of fame is found in the religious ceremony (karma- or pûrva-mîmâmsâ), while the perfection of the riches is found in the politics of confronting with comments (vedanta or uttara-mîmâmsâ). A mismatch of the two characterizes the imbalance of the materialist who is either corrupt in heading for the means of the bhaga in stead of for the vision, or foolish in heading for the wrong darshana as the purpose. A proper match of the two leads, consequently practiced, to one of the six respective basic religions or spiritual disciplines in âtmatattva: Hinduism, Buddhism, Taoism-Confucia-nism, gnosticism, Universal Sufism and Vaishnavism. The Âtmatattva is the integrity superseding, incorporating, embracing and integrating even the superegos of these -isms which, even though they are balanced, nevertheless are not cross-culturally comprehensive in their spiritual commitment. Filognosy simply states in its epistemology that each of these religions or disciplines is a particular type of valid logic (see also the notes 4, 5 and 6).
12) The order of time in relation to the moon is also called the cakra order in âtmatattva. It implies, next to a scale of time divided in twelve or twenty-four hours, a division of the solar year in twenty-four parts as well, which, much like the reformed roman calendar of Julius Caesar, offers 15-day (pañca-das'a) fortnights or a leaped week order starting at the shortest day of the 21/22th of December. Thus there are 48 weeks in a cakra year. The so-called legal days of work (roman called dies fasti) and rest (dies nefasti) are in this calendar system fixed on the phases of the moon. Thus one has a kind of saturday or sabbath reserved for religious ceremonies and such, which runs right through the cakra week with the tempo of the moon. This way one is of a natural consciousness in this aligning with the different tempos of the sun and moon. There is also a regular intercalation to the month, which makes for six two-month seasons of 61 days (missing one with 60 midsummer). This in contrast with the regular lunisolar Hindu 12/13 month calendar which leaps to the hour-angle and thus is irregular in its monthly order. There is with the cakra order even the leaping of the day, the clock thus practically speaking, every week with a couple of minutes the most, according to the equation of time, as also a moving (20 min. per year later) galactic new year's day (starting from 2000 AD at the 6-7 July midnight) for the day the planet earth is closest to the galaxy center of Sagittarius A, according to the precession of the equinox. In principle is the year dynamically leaped with a day whenever that is needed and not on a fixed day end of February, so that the calendar is always within the range of a single day of deviance. But practically one may conform to the leaping of the gregorian calendar, which as yet (2009) is gradually running out with a day in about 3300 years. Thus is in âtmatattva the cakra order complete in its astronomical respect for the natural dynamics of cyclic time (see further theorderoftime.org) and constitutes it so the perfection of matching with the original Vedic truth of this Song of Fortune (see also Bhâgavata Purâna 3.11: 10). The cakra calendar offers an historical year-count in AUC, ab urbe condita, from the foundation of the city of Rome, to be free from religious preferences in legal matters. The year 2000 AD equals the year 2753 AUC, offering the exact number of years defining the age of, our originally roman but now Vedically reformed, âtmatattva cakra calendar.
13) The king of heaven: is usually interpreted here as being Indra, but to the original word of vâsava, may it also be recognized as the celestial sky which is Vedically considered the representation of Vâsudeva, Lord Krishna, visible in the sky as a matter of fact (see Bhâgavata Purâna 5.23: 4 & 8). He thus rules over the demigods of the sun and the moon as their integration, the way a clock rules with its plate over the small and the big hand. One traditionally meditates this with the mantra namah jyotih-lokâya kâlâyanâya animishâm pataye mahâ-purushâya abhidhîmahi, which means: 'Our obeisances unto this resting place of all the luminous worlds, unto the master of the demigods, the great Personality in the form of time, upon whom we meditate'. But in âtmatattva we simply reset the clock to the sun every cakra week with the so-called tempometer, a solar astrarium clock.
14) The mountain Krishna identifies himself with and which is called Meru in Sanskrit, is visible through the telescope as the mountain of stars in the middle of the galaxy. In a metaphorical sense is it a mountain of transcendence in the center of one's consciousness which is to be climbed by the devotee in bhâgavata dharma, or emancipation in devotion, in order to reach the creator Brahmâ, the personification of the Absolute Truth sitting on top.
15) Being the time the Lord is also threefold (trikâla): not just in the sense of past, present and future or one's meditating in the morning, the evening and the night, but also in the sense of the three Vishnus of the relative ether (see note 26): the time of space time or the time of the expansion of the cosmos which is linear, the time of attraction or contraction in the universe which is of a cyclic nature, and the local time experienced which is psychological or relative. As the threefold of time the Lord may also be recognized in the time of the sun, the moon and the celestial sky, who taken together present what one could call the clock of God.
16) The name of Vyâsadeva is in Western terms best translated with the hebrew name Asaph. It is the same person mentioned as the author of this song of God, this song of Fortune, this Bhagavad Gîtâ, who is âtmatattva-wise named Godcollect, or better described: 'he who collected of the verses of God'. Some doubt this name because any sage gathering the wisdom can be called Vyâsa. But in Vaishnavism one is convinced of his identity as being Krishna Dvaipâyana Vyâsadeva or Bâdarâyana - he who resides in Badarikâ, a meditation resort in the Himalayas named after the jujube trees growing there. He was the sage who was a grandfather of the Kuru dynasty, the family which five thousand years ago opposed on the battlefield of Kurukshetra, where this conversation originally between Krishna and Arjuna took place. That thus happened just before the great battle as is described in the Mahâbhârata, the greatest epic verse in the world which was also written by Vyâsadeva. He was the son of the sage Parâs'ara and Satyavatî, and a half-brother of Vicitravîrya and grandfather Bhîshma.
17) What is called the 'legal rule', reads in Sanskrit as clout: the so-called danda.
18) The three worlds: heaven, the earthly purgatory and hell. Vedic term for world: loka.
19) The formulation of this part of the verse was originally a more simple enumeration of these fields: 'the basic elements, the false ego, the intelligence and the unapparent as surely also the eleven of the senses'. For purposes of clarity they were more elaborately translated here. These external fields of the material elements, the intelligence, the non-manifest and the false ego are directly associated with the basic division of the dimensions of the quality and quantity, as also with the different civil virtues which are called the purushârthas. The tradition says we are qualitatively equal to God, but different as for the quantity. Quality gives the dimension of the concrete versus the abstract interest and quantity offers the dimension of the individual versus the social interest. Thus one has the four fields of the material elements (individual/concrete), the intelligence (individual/abstract), the unapparent (abstract/social) and the ego (concrete/social). The virtue of regulating the lust (kâma) is settled in the ego field. The virtue of regulating the money (artha) is settled in the business field of the material elements, the virtue of regulating the religion (dharma) is settled in the field of intelligence, and the virtue of finding liberation (moksha) is settled in the club field of associating to the unapparent God, or god, ruling over the sportive or the religious gathering.
20) The translation of this part of the verse was originally of a more simple enumeration: 'the eleven of the senses, the five sense objects, like and dislike, happiness and distress, the combinations of them, consciousness and the determination, form the field of action with its transformations'. For purposes of clarity again have they been more elaborately described in this translation in respect of Modern research findings concerning the brain its functions. The different areas of the brain, the internal fields, are the frontal and occipital parts of the brain representing respectively the outgoing personality and perceptive powers, the upper cortical part of mental constructs and the lower emotional parts of basic physical functions, and the lateral parts of the left hemisphere which is predominantly linear and time-oriented and the right hemisphere which is specialized in spacial duties or parallel functions.
21) This is in Sanskrit also called the Brahman. It stands for God, the spirit and the Absolute Truth, it is inside and outside, it is the complete of knower, the known and the knowledge (see also the next note).
22) The personal and the impersonal of material nature are as real and eternal as the category they belong to. It can be compared to the laws of nature presented in mathematical terms and the reality they refer to: both are as real as the category of physics they belong to. The impersonal of material nature, prakriti, and the personal of the male principle, the person, purusha, cannot be separated, just as one cannot separate light and darkness. The both constitute the fundamental duality of the reality that is called the greater soul or the universal self of Brahman, God or the Absolute, that contains all the elements of matter and spirit which are the visible and knowable of everything in existence.
23) The three modes of ignorance, goodness and passion, tamas, sattva and rajas, mentioned earlier in the Song, are supported by the three disciplines of divinity of respectively destruction (person: S'iva, reality: Paramâtmâ - Supersoul), maintenance (person: Vishnu, reality: Bhagavân - the Fortunate One) and creation (person: Brahmâ, reality: Brahman - the Absolute Truth) which each again respectively carry the three characteristics of slowness, knowledge and movement.
24) These examples of time as the conditioning order (10.30 & 11.32), the ether as a causal force field determining the spin of planets (9.8), and the modes of nature as a mover of natural action (14.19), are derived from verses in the Song speaking about a doer that is not the individual person; they do not belong to the original Sanskrit of this verse. The Lord identifies with them as belonging to the impersonal aspect of His nature. He Himself is the integrity binding them all as the ether condensed into a material form and as the time enlivening with a specific calendar of local preferences.
25) The two-person story concerns the individual soul and the Supersoul residing within the same body like two birds sitting in a tree: one bird enjoys the fruits of labor while the other one is watching.
26) The term ether (âkâs'a) here must be remembered in its most Modern sense as relativistic, viz. as the gravitational and causal forcefield which in its operation differs depending on the space it defines, that is to say a local, elemental or planetary space, a universal or galactic space and the cosmic or space-time determined primal expansion of our material reality. It is the doer as also the non-doer in the sense of a non-involved sameness. This is Vedically remembered as the three types of Vishnu: Mahâ-vishnu of Kâranodakas'âyî-vishnu, Garbodakas'âyî-vishnu and Ksîrodakas'âyî-vishnu. Vishnu should be considered the representation of the element of the ether, just as the ether should be considered a manifestation of His reality as the original integrity of God from whom all the others are found, so confirms the Bhâgavata Purâna (2.5: 25 and 11.5: 19).
27) In the Bhâgavata Purâna there is a story of a man named Purañjana who lives in a city of nine gates. This city stands for the body with its nine openings. The story is a metaphor for a sense-oriented life, a materialistic life of an individual soul who like a dog follows his impulses as also his wife who rules over his senses. The gosvâmî, the spiritual master in Vaishnavism is described as a master of the senses. Another name of Krishna is also Sensemaster: Hrishîkes'a.
28) Filognostic songs are the into one's own language translated and according to one's own musical culture arranged devotional songs of the originally in Sanskrit and Bengali written mantras, bhajans, prayers and other hymns of the disciplic succession of the Vaishnav teachers of example, the teachers of instruction, who handed down this knowledge through history. These songs are meant to be sung together in association when one assembles to read this book and /or other holy books of the Vedic culture like The Story of the Fortunate One (the Bhâgavata Purâna), but may also serve as mantras for aligning in solitude.
29) In this context it is important to realize that, as in note 22, the personal and impersonal of God collected in the term purusha, as used here, cannot be separated since the term God covers the complete of all dualities as its unifying category. Thus is God as well a person or integrity of material life, a lordship (Îs'vara), as also impersonally the aggregate of the material universe, understood as His gigantic body called the virâth rûpa in Sanskrit, animated by the - masculine - principle of time (kâla) and the causal forcefield of the relative ether (âkâs'a).
30) The four types of food refer in the original Vedic culture to the way food is consumed: carvya, that what is chewed; lehya, that what one licks; cûshya, that what is sucked up; and peya, that what is drunk. But âtmatattva-wise one may also consider it a reference to the four basic types of foodstuff essential to the vegetarian: fruits and vegetables, beans, cereal, and dairy.
31) In this text is the term consciousness âtmatattva-wise defined as a state of being; a form or integrity of awareness of a certain difference in time. One is, seen from a Modern perspective, at a certain frequency, time mode or paradigm aware with a way of differentiating, which builds on the knowledge of the self (identifications), the body (relations) and the culture (discourse). Thus one speaks of a cultural and natural consciousness (asat and sat): culturally a relative and unstable materialistic form of consciousness which, based on material motives, manipulates the time; and naturally a more absolute consciousness based on the respect of the order of the sun, the moon and the stars as seen in the sky. Krishna presents himself in this book as the integrity of a natural, absolute consciousness which liberates the seeker when he submits to the discipline of yoga.
32) A mind trained for self-correction is aware of the four weaknesses inherent to being a conditioned human being, viz. to make mistakes, to have illusions with them, to deceive oneself and others thus, and next to end up with a wrong notion: bhrâma, pramâda, vipralipsâ, karanâpâtava.
33) The order forsaking the world of the spiritual teachers of Vaishnavism, the vishnu-monks, the sannyâsîs, carries a so-called tridanda: a staff consisting of three rods representing the three austerities in terms of deeds, the voice and the mind. The impersonal sannyâsîs carry a one-rod staff or ekadanda.
34) 'Aum that eternal' refers to the standard prayer of om tat sat expressed by brahmins in the performance of classical Hindu sacrifices. Apart from the meaning given in the text, means it: 'Oh Aum, that blessed, true and original name of God, oh Pranava!' The word sat means true and real, and the word tat means literally 'that' and refers to as well the original reality as the principle, like in the context of the word tattva, which literally means 'that state of being'. It is also found in the expression tat tvam asi, meaning 'that thou art', a mantra indicating the oneness of the witness and the witnessing when one in meditation faces reality as it is. In western terms we say things like 'that's it' and 'that's that', meaning about the same: be happy with the way things are. The latin word amen, 'so be it', used in Christianity, translates in Sanskrit best as astu, the word for 'let it be'.
35) The renounced order here refers in the strict sense to the order of monks and nuns, monasteries, spiritual communities and convents, where one with a strict time regime full-time is engaged, or liberated, in devotional service without desiring any profit or appreciation of ego. In a broader sense is this being liberated in egolessness also true, in a lesser degree, for the other half of humanity that, not working for a salary, serves the fellow man with nothing but love, gratitude and voluntarism.
36) The five causes are in the âtmatattva of the western philosophy with Aristotle also called the substantive cause concerning the person (purusha), the normative cause of the local interest managed in the spiritual (dharma) and the formative cause concerning the impersonal of material elements and a created manifest universe together with a culture of wisdom, sages and incarnations (avatâra). The fourth cause in Aristotelian logic is the constructive or evolutionary cause (kâla) which here by sage Vyâsa (Godcollect) is separated in a concern about the effect of the past, the roads traveled, and the future of what would lie ahead as one's fate. These five can also be considered the five basic objects or forms of meditation, with each cause working for itself leading to a meditation on either the person, the facts of creation, the principles, the past or the future.
37) See, concerning these three interests of one's sensuality, religiosity and material business, also what was said about the purushârthas under note 19.
38) The four classes in society, the varnas (lit. colors), are in Vedic terms the brâhmanas or intellectuals, the kshatriyas or rulers, the vais'yas, the traders and farmers, and the s'ûdras, the servants and laborers. They are the bookworms, the meddlers, the peddlers and the followers in society. To the modes are the intellectuals supposed to be of goodness, the rulers are supposed to be of a mixture of passion and goodness, the traders are supposed to be of passion and the laborers are supposed to be of ignorance. Together with the four âs'ramas, or statuses closely associated with one's age - brahmacârîs, the celibate students, the grihastas, the young adults married, the vanaprasthas, the middle aged withdrawn types and the elderly or the renounced order of the sannyâsîs - they constitute the varnâs'rama identity or caste, which is called the status-orientation âtmatattva-wise. That identity constantly needs the reform to the equality of the soul that is found in the transcendence of enlightenment with the emancipation in yoga - kaivalya - in order not to run into any falsehood of ego.
39) The author is at this point ambiguous. 'That' what is referred to can as well be the personal presence of God, the Lord in the beyond, as the impersonal of that what He stands for: the force field of the ether which rules all material nature.
40) Dharma is the central concept used here in this discourse on yoga. The term refers to the duty, the virtue, the religion as also to the nature or character of something. It implies piety, righteousness, naturalness and devotional action or service. One discriminates two types: pravritti and nivritti dharma, respectively the conservative type and the progressive type. The conservative type of pravritti dharma is more the traditional religion, which as an institution defies the progress by setting in clear terms the boundaries of what would belong to the liberation in service of the institute which must be preserved, while the progressive type of nivritti dharma is more spiritual and of enlightenment, and constitutes the road of renouncing worldly actions, to be of contemplation and self-realization. Vyâsa uses the two words in verse 30 of chapter 18a. Varnâs'rama dharma refers to the classical societal duties according to one's profession and status. Sanâtana dharma refers to one's faithfulness with the regulative principles, to which one speaks of the bull of dharma with his four legs (see also note 3). Bhâgavata dharma is the duty relating to the Lord, and the association of devotees: the nine stages of emancipation in devotional yoga or bhakti yoga. There are also five forms of adharma or godlessness: opposing, vidharma; deviating, paradharma; blaspheming, upadharma; distorting, chaladharma; deceiving of sophism, âbhâsa (see Bhâgavata Purâna 7.5: 23-24; 7.15: 12-13).
41) The translator Anand Aadhar Prabhu, or in âtmatattva terms Master Foundationbliss, was before he became independent in 1982 a clinical psychologist called René P.B.A Meijer, who studied at the State University of Groningen in the Netherlands. After his graduation he practiced for a couple of years in a clinical setting as also privately for a few years, but then gave up his practice as a psychotherapist, in order to devote himself to the science of yoga and the love of knowledge, the âtmatattva, or the filognosy which resulted from the unification of his consciousness.
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