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Bhagavadgītā (Бхагавад-гита): Глава III - Karmayoga (Карма-йога)

Йога кармы или действия


Arjuna continues to hesitate because he still sees no wisdom in fighting in this terrible war despite the previous teachings dealing with Sāṅkhyayoga, which were imparted to him by Kṛṣṇa. Therefore, now Lord Kṛṣṇa teaches him Karmayoga or Yoga of Action in order to dissipate at least some of his doubts and fears. Listen to His words...

Important: All that is in brackets and italicized within the translation has been added by me in order to complete the sense of a particular phrase or sentence. In turn, all that is between double hyphen (--...--) constitutes clarifying further information also added by me. Besides, although I have not written any commentary on each stanza, I have added my own notes when a more detailed explanation is needed. In addition, note that I will use inverted commas to delimit text only when the person speaking is not Sañjaya himself (the narrator). Therefore, the words spoken by Sañjaya will not be delimited by inverted commas or quotation marks.


 Chapter 3: Karmayoga (Yoga of Karma or Action)

अर्जुन उवाच
ज्यायसी चेत्कर्मणस्ते मता बुद्धिर्जनार्दन।
तत्किं कर्मणि घोरे मां नियोजयसि केशव॥१॥

Arjuna uvāca
Jyāyasī cetkarmaṇaste matā buddhirjanārdana|
Tatkiṁ karmaṇi ghore māṁ niyojayasi keśava||1||

Arjuna (arjunaḥ) said (uvāca):
"Oh You who agitates (ardana) men (jana)1, if (ced) buddhi or intelligence (buddhiḥ)2 is considered (matā) by You (te) as superior (jyāyasī) to karma or action (karmaṇas); therefore (tad), why (kim) (do) You compel (niyojayasi) me (mām) to a terrible (ghore) action (karmaṇi), oh long-haired One (keśava)3?"||1||

1 Epithet for Kṛṣṇa.
2 Buddhi is also synonymous with "prajñā" (wisdom) in this context.
3 Epithet for Kṛṣṇa. It is to be noted that this word might also mean alternatively: "slayer of the demon Keśī".

व्यामिश्रेणेव वाक्येन बुद्धिं मोहयसीव मे।
तदेकं वद निश्चित्य येन श्रेयोऽहमाप्नुयाम्॥२॥

Vyāmiśreṇeva vākyena buddhiṁ mohayasīva me|
Tadekaṁ vada niścitya yena śreyo'hamāpnuyām||2||

"You bewilder (mohayasi) my (me) intellect (buddhi), as it were (iva), (with Your), in a certain manner (iva), ambiguous (vyāmiśreṇa) assertion (vākyena). Tell (me) (vada) definitely (niścitya) that (tad) only (means) (ekam) by which (yena) I (aham) (can) obtain (āpnuyām) what is most auspicious (śreyas)1"||2||

1 The word "śreyas" is synonymous with "mokṣa" or liberation in this context.

लोकेऽस्मिन् द्विविधा निष्ठा पुरा प्रोक्ता मयानघ।
ज्ञानयोगेन साङ्ख्यानां कर्मयोगेन योगिनाम्॥३॥

Loke'smin dvividhā niṣṭhā purā proktā mayānagha|
Jñānayogena sāṅkhyānāṁ karmayogena yoginām||3||

Venerable (śrī) Bhagavān (bhagavān)1 said (uvāca):
"In this (asmin) world (loke), a twofold (dvividhā) steadiness (niṣṭhā) (was) formerly (purā) described (proktā) by Me (mayā), oh faultless one (anagha)2!: (1) in the form of Yoga (yogena) of knowledge (jñāne) for the ones who tread the path of knowledge and discrimination (sāṅkhyānām)3, (2) in the form of Yoga (yogena) of action (karma) for the yogī-s (yoginām)"||3||

1 Lit. "The Divine or Adorable One", or also "The Fortunate One", i.e. Lord Kṛṣṇa.
2 Epithet for Arjuna.
3 According to Śrīdhara are the ones who have attained the stage of knowledge and whose antaḥkarana-s or inner psychic organs are pure and practice meditation, etc.

न कर्मणामनारम्भान्नैष्कर्म्यं पुरुषोऽश्नुते।
न च सन्न्यसनादेव सिद्धिं समधिगच्छति॥४॥

Na karmaṇāmanārambhānnaiṣkarmyaṁ puruṣo'śnute|
na ca sannyasanādeva siddhiṁ samadhigacchati||4||

"A person (puruṣaḥ) does not (na) attains (aśnute) freedom from action and its influence (naiṣkarmyam) by not undertaking (anārambhāt) actions (karmaṇām), nor does (na ca) he attain (samadhigacchati) Perfection --i.e. Mokṣa or Liberation-- (siddhim) by renunciation (sannyasanāt) alone (eva)"||4||

न हि कश्चित्क्षणमपि जातु तिष्ठत्यकर्मकृत्।
कार्यते ह्यवशः कर्म सर्वः प्रकृतिजैर्गुणैः॥५॥

Na hi kaścitkṣaṇamapi jātu tiṣṭhatyakarmakṛt|
Kāryate hyavaśaḥ karma sarvaḥ prakṛtijairguṇaiḥ||5||

"Nobody (na... kaścid) ever (jātu) remains (tiṣṭhati) without doing (a... kṛt) actions (karma), even (api) for a moment (kṣaṇam) indeed (hi), because (hi) every (being) (sarvaḥ) (who) has no free will (avaśaḥ)1 is made to do (kāryate) action(s) (karma) by the qualities (guṇaiḥ) born (jaiḥ) of Prakṛti (prakṛti)2"||5||

1 In other words, every creature lacking free will is forced to do actions by those qualities.
2 Prakṛti is the source from which all matter is produced. It has three qualities: Sattva, Rajas and Tamas.

कर्मेन्द्रियाणि संयम्य य आस्ते मनसा स्मरन्।
इन्द्रियार्थान्विमूढात्मा मिथ्याचारः स उच्यते॥६॥

Karmendriyāṇi saṁyamya ya āste manasā smaran|
Indriyārthānvimūḍhātmā mithyācāraḥ sa ucyate||6||

"He is said to be (ucyate) a bewildered (vimūḍha-ātmā)1 hypocrite (mithyā-ācāraḥ) who (yaḥ), having controlled (saṁyamya) (his) Karmendriya-s or Powers of action (karma-indriyāṇi)2, continues (āste) mentally (manasā) recollecting (smaran) the objects (arthān) of the senses (indriya)"||6||

1 Another possible translation is "foolish-minded".
2 Karmendriya-s are the five Powers of action, viz. Vāk (power of speaking), Pāṇi (power of handling), Pāda (power of locomotion), Pāyu (power of excreting) and Upastha (power of sexual activity and restfulness).

यस्त्विन्द्रियाणि मनसा नियम्यारभतेऽर्जुन।
कर्मेन्द्रियैः कर्मयोगमसक्तः स विशिष्यते॥७॥

Yastvindriyāṇi manasā niyamyārabhate'rjuna|
Karmendriyaiḥ karmayogamasaktaḥ sa viśiṣyate||7||

"However (tu), oh Arjuna (arjuna), he (saḥ) excels (viśiṣyate) who (yaḥ), having controlled (niyamya) the senses (indriyāṇi) by (his) mind (manasā), undertakes (ārabhate), with no attachment (asaktaḥ), Karmayoga or Yoga of action (karma-yogam) through the Karmendriya-s or Powers of action (karma-indriyaiḥ)"||7||

नियतं कुरु कर्म त्वं कर्म ज्यायो ह्यकर्मणः।
शरीरयात्रापि च ते न प्रसिद्ध्येदकर्मणः॥८॥

Niyataṁ kuru karma tvaṁ karma jyāyo hyakarmaṇaḥ|
Śarīrayātrāpi ca te na prasiddhyedakarmaṇaḥ||8||

"Perform (kuru... tvam) (your) prescribed (niyatam) duty (karma) because (hi) action (karma) is superior (jyāyas) to inaction (akarmaṇaḥ). Even (api ca) the maintenance (yātrā) of your (te) body (śarīra) cannot be accomplished (na prasiddhyet) through inaction (akarmaṇaḥ)"||8||

 यज्ञार्थात्कर्मणोऽन्यत्र लोकोऽयं कर्मबन्धनः।
तदर्थं कर्म कौन्तेय मुक्तसङ्गः समाचर॥९॥

Yajñārthātkarmaṇo'nyatra loko'yaṁ karmabandhanaḥ|
Tadarthaṁ karma kaunteya muktasaṅgaḥ samācara||9||

"This (ayam) living being --also, 'world'-- (lokaḥ) is bound (bandhanaḥ) by actions (karma) with the exception (anyatra) of the action (karmaṇaḥ) (which is performed) for the sake (arthāt) of Yajña (yajña)1. (Thus,) oh son of Kuntī (kaunteya)2, free from attachment (mukta-saṅgaḥ), perform (samācara) action(s) (karma) for (artham) Him (tad)"||9||

1 Epithet for Lord Viṣṇu in this context.
2 Epithet for Arjuna.

सहयज्ञाः प्रजाः सृष्ट्वा पुरोवाच प्रजापतिः।
अनेन प्रसविष्यध्वमेष वोऽस्त्विष्टकामधुक्॥१०॥

Sahayajñāḥ prajāḥ sṛṣṭvā purovāca prajāpatiḥ|
Anena prasaviṣyadhvameṣa vo'stviṣṭakāmadhuk||10||

"Formerly (purā), after having created (sṛṣṭvā) the living beings (prajāḥ) along with (saha) the yajña-s --sacrifices-- (yajña), the lord of creatures (prajāpatiḥ) said (uvāca): 'Procreate (prasaviṣyadhvam) by this (yajña) (anena). Let this (yajña) be (eṣaḥ... astu) for you (vas) (like Iṣṭakāmadhuk or the cow of plenty) who grants (dhuk) (all) desires (iṣṭa-kāma)1!'"||10||

1 Lit. "wished desires", which is redundant, of course.

देवान्भावयतानेन ते देवा भावयन्तु वः।
परस्परं भावयन्तः श्रेयः परमवाप्स्यथ॥११॥

Devānbhāvayatānena te devā bhāvayantu vaḥ|
Parasparaṁ bhāvayantaḥ śreyaḥ paramavāpsyatha||11||

"'Foster (bhāvayata) the gods (devān) with this (yajña or sacrifice) (anena), (and let) those (te) gods (devāḥ) foster (bhāvayantu) you (all) (vas)! By fostering (bhāvayantaḥ) one another (parasparam), you will get (avāpsyatha) the highest (param) good and welfare (śreyas)'"||11||

इष्टान्भोगान्हि वो देवा दास्यन्ते यज्ञभाविताः।
तैर्दत्तानप्रदायैभ्यो यो भुङ्क्ते स्तेन एव सः॥१२॥

Iṣṭānbhogānhi vo devā dāsyante yajñabhāvitāḥ|
Tairdattānapradāyaibhyo yo bhuṅkte stena eva saḥ||12||

"'(And) the gods (devāḥ), fostered (bhāvitāḥ) by (such) yajña-s or sacrifices (yajña), will give (dāsyante) you (vas) the desired (iṣṭa) enjoyments (bhogān) indeed (hi). He (saḥ) (is) just (eva) a thief (stenaḥ) who (yaḥ) enjoys (bhuṅkte) what have been granted (dattān) by them --i.e. by the gods-- (taiḥ) without giving (apradāya) (the same thing) to these (gods) (ebhyaḥ) (in return)'"||12||

यज्ञशिष्टाशिनः सन्तो मुच्यन्ते सर्वकिल्बिषैः।
भुञ्जते ते त्वघं पापा ये पचन्त्यात्मकारणात्॥१३॥

Yajñaśiṣṭāśinaḥ santo mucyante sarvakilbiṣaiḥ|
Bhuñjate te tvaghaṁ pāpā ye pacantyātmakāraṇāt||13||

"The good people (santaḥ) enjoy (aśinaḥ) what is left (śiṣṭa) from the yajña-s or sacrifices (yajña) (and thus) they are liberated (mucyante) from all (sarva) (their) faults (kilbiṣaiḥ). Nevertheless (tu), those (te) wicked (people) (pāpāḥ) eat (bhuñjate) sin (agham) who (ye) cook (pacanti) (only) for their own sake (ātma-kāraṇāt)"||13||

अन्नाद्भवन्ति भूतानि पर्जन्यादन्नसंभवः।
यज्ञाद्भवति पर्जन्यो यज्ञः कर्मसमुद्भवः॥१४॥

Annādbhavanti bhūtāni parjanyādannasaṁbhavaḥ|
Yajñādbhavati parjanyo yajñaḥ karmasamudbhavaḥ||14||

"From food (annāt) the living beings (bhūtāni) come into being (bhavanti); from rain (parjanyāt) (there is) production (sambhavaḥ) of food (anna); from yajña or sacrifice (yajñāt) rain (parjanyaḥ) comes into being (bhavati); (and) yajña (yajñaḥ) springs (samudbhavaḥ) from action (karma)"||14||

कर्म ब्रह्मोद्भवं विद्धि ब्रह्माक्षरसमुद्भवम्।
तस्मात्सर्वगतं ब्रह्म नित्यं यज्ञे प्रतिष्ठितम्॥१५॥

Karma brahmodbhavaṁ viddhi brahmākṣarasamudbhavam|
Tasmātsarvagataṁ brahma nityaṁ yajñe pratiṣṭhitam||15||

"Know (viddhi) (that) action (karma) comes (udbhavam) from Brahma --viz. Veda-- (brahma)1; Brahma (brahma) arises (samudbhavam) from the Imperishable One (akṣara). Therefore (tasmāt), all-pervading (sarva-gatam) Brahma or Veda (brahma) always (nityam) abides (pratiṣṭhitam) in yajña or sacrifice (yajñe)"||15||

1 Brahma generally means the impersonal aspect of God, but here (i.e. in this stanza) it is to be understood as "the Veda-s". This is corroborated by the Śrīdhara's commentary: "Brahma vedaḥ" - "Brahma (means) Veda (here)".

एवं प्रवर्तितं चक्रं नानुवर्तयतीह यः।
अघायुरिन्द्रियारामो मोघं पार्थ स जीवति॥१६॥

Evaṁ pravartitaṁ cakraṁ nānuvartayatīha yaḥ|
Aghāyurindriyārāmo moghaṁ pārtha sa jīvati||16||

"Oh son of Pṛthā (pārtha)1, he (saḥ) lives (jīvati) in vain (mogham) who delights (ārāmaḥ) in the senses (indriya), whose life (āyus) (is) sinful (agha), (and) who (yaḥ) does not (na)follow (anuvartayati) here --i.e. in this world-- (iha) the wheel (cakram) thus (evam) set in motion (pravartitam)"||16||

1 Epithet for Arjuna.

 यस्त्वात्मरतिरेव स्यादात्मतृप्तश्च मानवः।
आत्मन्येव च सन्तुष्टस्तस्य कार्यं न विद्यते॥१७॥

Yastvātmaratireva syādātmatṛptaśca mānavaḥ|
Ātmanyeva ca santuṣṭastasya kāryaṁ na vidyate||17||

"Nonetheless (tu), there is no (na vidyate) duty (kāryam) for that (tasya) human being (mānavaḥ) who (yaḥ) rejoices (ratiḥ) only (eva) in (his own) Self (ātma), (who) is (syāt) satisfied (tṛptaḥ) with (his own) Self (ātma), and (ca... ca) (who) feels quite contented (santuṣṭaḥ) in (his own) Self (ātmani) alone (eva)"||17||

नैव तस्य कृतेनार्थो नाकृतेनेह कश्चन।
न चास्य सर्वभूतेषु कश्चिदर्थव्यपाश्रयः॥१८॥

Naiva tasya kṛtenārtho nākṛteneha kaścana|
Na cāsya sarvabhūteṣu kaścidarthavyapāśrayaḥ||18||

"For him --i.e. for the human being mentioned in the previous stanza-- (tasya) there is no (na eva... na... kaścana) concern (arthaḥ) with (either) action --viz. what has been done-- (kṛtena) (or) the opposite --viz. what has not been done-- (akṛtena) here --in this world-- (iha). Also (ca), as for him (asya), there is no (na... kaścid) support or dependence (vyapāśrayaḥ) upon all (sarva) beings (bhūteṣu) for any purpose (artha)"||18||

तस्मादसक्तः सततं कार्यं कर्म समाचर।
असक्तो ह्याचरन्कर्म परमाप्नोति पूरुषः॥१९॥

Tasmādasaktaḥ satataṁ kāryaṁ karma samācara|
Asakto hyācarankarma paramāpnoti pūruṣaḥ||19||

"For that reason (tasmāt), remaining detached (asaktaḥ), constantly (satatam) perform (samācara) action(s) (karma) as a duty (kāryam), because (hi) a person (pūruṣaḥ) who performs (ācaran) action(s) (karma) with no attachment (asaktaḥ) attains (āpnoti) the Highest --i.e. Mokṣa or final Liberation-- (param)"||19||

कर्मणैव हि संसिद्धिमास्थिता जनकादयः।
लोकसङ्ग्रहमेवापि सम्पश्यन्कर्तुमर्हसि॥२०॥

Karmaṇaiva hi saṁsiddhimāsthitā janakādayaḥ|
Lokasaṅgrahamevāpi sampaśyankartumarhasi||20||

"(The celebrated king) Janaka (janaka) and others (ādayaḥ) have truly attained (eva hi... āsthitāḥ) complete perfection (saṁsiddhim) through action(s) (karmaṇā). (So,) please, do (actions) (kartum arhasi) as well (api) with a view (sampaśyan) to the welfare (saṅgraham) of the world (loka) alone (eva)"||20||

यद्यदाचरति श्रेष्ठस्तत्तदेवेतरो जनः।
स यत्प्रमाणं कुरुते लोकस्तदनुवर्तते॥२१॥

Yadyadācarati śreṣṭhastattadevetaro janaḥ|
Sa yatpramāṇaṁ kurute lokastadanuvartate||21||

"Whatsoever (yad yad) a superior being (śreṣṭhaḥ) performs (ācarati), that very thing (tad tad eva) an ordinary person (itaraḥ janaḥ) (does too)! Whatsoever (yad) he (saḥ) sets up (kurute) as an authority (pramāṇam), the world (lokaḥ) follows (anuvartate) that (tad)"||21||

न मे पार्थास्ति कर्तव्यं त्रिषु लोकेषु किञ्चन।
नानवाप्तमवाप्तव्यं वर्त एव च कर्मणि॥२२॥

Na me pārthāsti kartavyaṁ triṣu lokeṣu kiñcana|
Nānavāptamavāptavyaṁ varta eva ca karmaṇi||22||

"Oh son of Pṛthā (pārtha)1, there is nothing (na... asti... kiñcana) in the three (triṣu) worlds (lokeṣu) that must be done (kartavyam) by Me (me), nor (na) (there is anything) unattained (anavāptam) which must be obtained (by Me) (avāptavyam)... (anyway, I am) engaged (vartaḥ) in action(s) (karmaṇi) certainly (eva ca)"||22||

1 Epithet for Arjuna.

यदि ह्यहं न वर्तेयं जातु कर्मण्यतन्द्रितः।
मम वर्त्मानुवर्तन्ते मनुष्याः पार्थ सर्वशः॥२३॥

Yadi hyahaṁ na varteyaṁ jātu karmaṇyatandritaḥ|
Mama vartmānuvartante manuṣyāḥ pārtha sarvaśaḥ||23||

"Because (hi) if (yadi) I (aham) ever (jātu) would not (na) be engaged (varteyam) vigilantly (atandritaḥ) in action(s) (karmaṇi), oh son of Pṛthā (pārtha)1, the human beings (manuṣyāḥ) (would) follow (anuvartante) My (mama) path (vartma) in every way (sarvaśas) --i.e. they will not be engaged in actions either--"||23||

1 Epithet for Arjuna.

उत्सीदेयुरिमे लोका न कुर्यां कर्म चेदहम्।
सङ्करस्य च कर्ता स्यामुपहन्यामिमाः प्रजाः॥२४॥

Utsīdeyurime lokā na kuryāṁ karma cedaham|
Saṅkarasya ca kartā syāmupahanyāmimāḥ prajāḥ||24||

"These (ime) worlds (lokāḥ) would fall into ruin (utsīdeyuḥ) if (ced) I (aham) would not do (na kuryām) action(s) (karma). Also (ca), I would be (syām) an agent (kartā) of confusion --specially of castes-- (saṅkarasya), (and consequently) would damage (upahanyām) these (imāḥ) creatures (prajāḥ)"||24||

 सक्ताः कर्मण्यविद्वांसो यथा कुर्वन्ति भारत।

Saktāḥ karmaṇyavidvāṁso yathā kurvanti bhārata|

"Oh descendant of Bharata (bhārata)1, just as (yathā) the ignorant (avidvāṁsaḥ) act --i.e. they do actions-- (kurvanti) attached (saktāḥ) to the action (karmaṇi), so (tathā) the knower (of the Self) (vidvān)2 should act (kuryāt), (but) detached (asaktaḥ) (and) desirous to do (so) (cikīrṣuḥ) for the welfare (saṅgraham) of the world (loka)"||25||

1 Epithet for Arjuna.
2 According to Śrīdhara, "vidvān" is synonymous with "ātmavit" or "knower of the Self". In other words, the Lord is not referring to a person with mere ordinary education but to one endowed with knowledge of his own Self. This is the sense. The same thing is true regarding "the ignorant", i.e. the Lord is not referring to the ones who are not educated from an ordinary viewpoint, but to the people who do not know their own Self.

न बुद्धिभेदं जनयेदज्ञानां कर्मसङ्गिनाम्।
जोषयेत्सर्वकर्माणि विद्वान्युक्तः समाचरन्॥२६॥

Na buddhibhedaṁ janayedajñānāṁ karmasaṅginām|
Joṣayetsarvakarmāṇi vidvānyuktaḥ samācaran||26||

"(Such) a knower (of the Self) (vidvān) should not bring about (na... janayet) disturbance of mind (buddhi-bhedam) in the ignorant (ajñānām) who are attached (saṅginām) to actions (karma), (but) he should make (those ignorant) be devoted (joṣayet) to all (kind) (sarva) of actions (karmāṇi) (by remaining himself) occupied (yuktaḥ) (in) performing (actions) (samācaran)"||26||

प्रकृतेः क्रियमाणानि गुणैः कर्माणि सर्वशः।
अहङ्कारविमूढात्मा कर्ताहमिति मन्यते॥२७॥

Prakṛteḥ kriyamāṇāni guṇaiḥ karmāṇi sarvaśaḥ|
Ahaṅkāravimūḍhātmā kartāhamiti manyate||27||

"The actions (karmāṇi) are performed (kriyamāṇāni) completely (sarvaśas) by the qualities (guṇaiḥ) of Prakṛti (prakṛteḥ)1. One who is deluded and bewildered (vimūḍha-ātmā) by (his) ego (ahaṅkāra) thinks (manyate): 'I (aham) (am) the doer (kartā... iti)'"||27||

1 Prakṛti is the source from which all matter is produced. It has three qualities: Sattva, Rajas and Tamas.

तत्त्ववित्तु महाबाहो गुणकर्मविभागयोः।
गुणा गुणेषु वर्तन्त इति मत्वा न सज्जते॥२८॥

Tattvavittu mahābāho guṇakarmavibhāgayoḥ|
Guṇā guṇeṣu vartanta iti matvā na sajjate||28||

"However (tu), one who knows (vit) the truth (tattva) about the two distinctions or differences (vibhāgayoḥ) (with reference to) actions (karma) (and) qualities (of Prakṛti) (guṇa), by thinking (matvā) 'the senses (guṇāḥ) are occupied (vartante) with the objects (guṇeṣu... iti)'1, does not get attached (na sajjate), oh big-armed one (mahā-bāho)2!"||28||

1 The word "Guṇa" may mean "quality of Prakṛti", "sense", or even it may be considered as a synonymous with "viṣaya" or "object", according to the contexts... a long topic for a mere explanatory note. So, I have translated that term by following the viewpoint of eminent commentators of the Gītā such as Śrīdhara, Baladeva, etc.
2 Epithet for Arjuna.

प्रकृतेर्गुणसम्मूढाः सज्जन्ते गुणकर्मसु।
तानकृत्स्नविदो मन्दान्कृत्स्नविन्न विचालयेत्॥२९॥

Prakṛterguṇasammūḍhāḥ sajjante guṇakarmasu|
Tānakṛtsnavido mandānkṛtsnavinna vicālayet||29||

"The ones who are thoroughly deluded (sammūḍhāḥ) by the qualities (guṇa) of Prakṛti (prakṛteḥ)1 are attached (sajjante) to the actions (karmasu) (performed by such) qualities (guṇa). The omniscient one (kṛtsna-vit) should not agitate or disturb (na vicālayet) those (tān) dull-witted (mandān) who are not omniscient (a-kṛtsna-vidaḥ)"||29||

1 Prakṛti is the source from which all matter is produced. It has three qualities: Sattva, Rajas and Tamas.

मयि सर्वाणि कर्माणि सन्न्यस्याध्यात्मचेतसा।
निराशीर्निर्ममो भूत्वा युध्यस्व विगतज्वरः॥३०॥

Mayi sarvāṇi karmāṇi sannyasyādhyātmacetasā|
Nirāśīrnirmamo bhūtvā yudhyasva vigatajvaraḥ||30||

"By entrusting (sannyasya) all (sarvāṇi) actions (karmāṇi) to Me (mayi) with (your) mind (cetasā) (fixed) on the Supreme Self (adhi-ātma), by becoming (bhūtvā) free from desire (nis-āśīḥ), devoid of the notion of 'mine' (nis-mamaḥ) (and) delivered from grief (vigata-jvaraḥ), fight (yudhyasva)!"||30||

ये मे मतमिदं नित्यमनुतिष्ठन्ति मानवाः।
श्रद्धावन्तोऽनसूयन्तो मुच्यन्ते तेऽपि कर्मभिः॥३१॥

Ye me matamidaṁ nityamanutiṣṭhanti mānavāḥ|
Śraddhāvanto'nasūyanto mucyante te'pi karmabhiḥ||31||

"Those (te) human beings (mānavāḥ) who (ye) always (nityam) follow out (anutiṣṭhanti) this (idam) view --in the sense of 'opinion or viewpoint'-- (matam) of Mine (me), with faith (śraddhāvantaḥ) (and) without cavil or displeasure (anasūyantaḥ), are also freed (mucyante... api) from actions (karmabhiḥ)"||31||

ये त्वेतदभ्यसूयन्तो नानुतिष्ठन्ति मे मतम्।
सर्वज्ञानविमूढांस्तान्विद्धि नष्टानचेतसः॥३२॥

Ye tvetadabhyasūyanto nānutiṣṭhanti me matam|
Sarvajñānavimūḍhāṁstānviddhi naṣṭānacetasaḥ||32||

"Nevertheless (tu), (regarding) the ones who (ye) decry (abhyasūyantaḥ) this (etad) view --in the sense of 'opinion or viewpoint'-- (matam) of Mine (me) (and) do not (na) follow (it) out (anutiṣṭhanti)... know (viddhi) them (tān) to be deluded and confounded (vimūḍhān) about all (sarva) knowledge (jñāna), devoid of discernment (acetasaḥ) (and) lost (naṣṭān)"||32||

 सदृशं चेष्टते स्वस्याः प्रकृतेर्ज्ञानवानपि।
प्रकृतिं यान्ति भूतानि निग्रहः किं करिष्यति॥३३॥

Sadṛśaṁ ceṣṭate svasyāḥ prakṛterjñānavānapi|
Prakṛtiṁ yānti bhūtāni nigrahaḥ kiṁ kariṣyati||33||

"Even (api) one who is endowed with knowledge (jñānavān) acts (ceṣṭate) according (sadṛśam) to his own (svasyāḥ) nature (prakṛteḥ). The living beings (bhūtāni) follow (yānti) (their own) nature (prakṛtim). (So,) what (kim) will (mere) restraint accomplish (nigrahaḥ... kariṣyati)?"||33||

इन्द्रियस्येन्द्रियस्यार्थे रागद्वेषौ व्यवस्थितौ।
तयोर्न वशमागच्छेत्तौ ह्यस्य परिपन्थिनौ॥३४॥

Indriyasyendriyasyārthe rāgadveṣau vyavasthitau|
Tayorna vaśamāgacchettau hyasya paripanthinau||34||

"Attachment and aversion (rāga-dveṣau) as regards the (respective) object(s) (arthe) of each of the senses (indriyasya indriyasya) are exactly determined and distinguished (vyavasthitau). One should not fall into power (na vaśam āgacchet) of those two (tayos) because (hi) they (tau) (are) his (asya) adversaries or enemies (paripanthinau)"||34||

श्रेयान्स्वधर्मो विगुणः परधर्मात्स्वनुष्ठितात्।
स्वधर्मे निधनं श्रेयः परधर्मो भयावहः॥३५॥

Śreyānsvadharmo viguṇaḥ paradharmātsvanuṣṭhitāt|
Svadharme nidhanaṁ śreyaḥ paradharmo bhayāvahaḥ||35||

"One's own (sva) duty (dharmaḥ), (though) imperfect or defficient (viguṇaḥ), (is) better (śreyān) than another's duty (para-dharmāt) duly observed and performed (su-anuṣṭhitāt). Death (nidhanam) (is) better (śreyas) when (one is doing) his own duty (sva-dharme). (Anyway,) another's (para) duty (dharmaḥ) brings (āvahaḥ) fear and danger (bhaya)"||35||

अर्जुन उवाच।
अथ केन प्रयुक्तोऽयं पापं चरति पूरुषः।
अनिच्छन्नपि वार्ष्णेय बलादिव नियोजितः॥३६॥

Arjuna uvāca
Atha kena prayukto'yaṁ pāpaṁ carati pūruṣaḥ|
Anicchannapi vārṣṇeya balādiva niyojitaḥ||36||

Arjuna (arjunaḥ) said (uvāca):
"But then (atha), by what (kena) (does) this (ayam) urged (prayuktaḥ) person (pūruṣaḥ) commit (carati) sin(s) (pāpam), even (api) without wishing (to do so) (anicchan), (and) impelled (niyojitaḥ) as if (iva) by force (balāt), oh descendant of Vṛṣṇi (vārṣṇeya)1?"||36||

1 Epithet for Kṛṣṇa.

काम एष क्रोध एष रजोगुणसमुद्भवः।
महाशनो महापाप्मा विद्ध्येनमिह वैरिणम्॥३७॥

Kāma eṣa krodha eṣa rajoguṇasamudbhavaḥ|
Mahāśano mahāpāpmā viddhyenamiha vairiṇam||37||

Venerable (śrī) Bhagavān (bhagavān)1 said (uvāca):
"This (eṣaḥ) desire (kāmaḥ)... this (eṣaḥ) (subsequent) wrath (krodhaḥ) arising (samudbhavaḥ) from the quality (guṇa) (called) Rajas (rajas)2 (is) voracious (mahā-aśanaḥ) (and) extremely sinful (mahā-pāpmā)... know (viddhi) it --i.e. the desire which is transformed into wrath when not fulfilled-- (enam) to be the enemy (vairiṇam) here --i.e. in this world-- (iha)"||37||

1 Lit. "The Divine or Adorable One", or also "The Fortunate One", i.e. Lord Kṛṣṇa.
2 Rajas is one of the three qualities of Prakṛti (the source of all matter in this universe). Rajas is commonly known as the quality of passion.

धूमेनाव्रियते वह्निर्यथादर्शो मलेन च।
यथोल्बेनावृतो गर्भस्तथा तेनेदमावृतम्॥३८॥

Dhūmenāvriyate vahniryathādarśo malena ca|
Yatholbenāvṛto garbhastathā tenedamāvṛtam||38||

"Just as (yathā) fire (vahniḥ) is covered (āvriyate) by smoke (dhūmena), a mirror (ādarśaḥ) by dirt (malena), and (ca) just as (yathā) an embryo (garbhaḥ) is surrounded (āvṛtaḥ) by a membrane (ulbena), so (tathā) (is) this (idam)1 enclosed (āvṛtam) by that (tena)2"||38||

1 The meaning of "this" is made clear from reading the next stanza... so, keep reading, please.
1 Śrīdhara and other authors indicate that "tena" means "kāmena" or "by desire" (read the previous stanza), which is of three kinds. Fortunately, all commentaries I could read seem to have come to an agreement regarding the meaning of "tena".

आवृतं ज्ञानमेतेन ज्ञानिनो नित्यवैरिणा।
कामरूपेण कौन्तेय दुष्पूरेणानलेन च॥३९॥

Āvṛtaṁ jñānametena jñānino nityavairiṇā|
Kāmarūpeṇa kaunteya duṣpūreṇānalena ca||39||

"Oh son of Kuntī (kaunteya)1, knowledge --i.e. discriminative knowledge-- (jñānam) is covered (āvṛtam) by this (anena) whose form (rūpeṇa) (is) kāma or desire (kāma), which is the eternal (nitya) enemy (vairiṇā) of the ones who have (such a) knowledge (jñāninaḥ) and (ca) (looks like) an insatiable (duspūreṇa) fire (analena)"||39||

1 Epithet for Arjuna.

इन्द्रियाणि मनो बुद्धिरस्याधिष्ठानमुच्यते।
एतैर्विमोहयत्येष ज्ञानमावृत्य देहिनम्॥४०॥

Indriyāṇi mano buddhirasyādhiṣṭhānamucyate|
Etairvimohayatyeṣa jñānamāvṛtya dehinam||40||

"It is said (ucyate) that the (group of) senses (indriyāṇi), mind (manas) (and) intellect (buddhiḥ) (is) its --i.e. of kāma or desire-- (asya) abode or seat (adhiṣṭhānam). This (kāma or desire) (eṣaḥ) confounds and bewilders (vimohayati) the embodied soul (dehinam) by covering (āvṛtya) knowledge --i.e. discriminative knowledge-- (jñānam) by means of these, (viz. senses, mind and intellect) (etaiḥ)"||40||

 तस्मात्त्वमिन्द्रियाण्यादौ नियम्य भरतर्षभ।
पाप्मानं प्रजहि ह्येनं ज्ञानविज्ञाननाशनम्॥४१॥

Tasmāttvamindriyāṇyādau niyamya bharatarṣabha|
Pāpmānaṁ prajahi hyenaṁ jñānavijñānanāśanam||41||

"Therefore (tasmāt), you (tvam), oh best of the Bharata's descendants (bharata-ṛṣabha)1, by firstly controlling (ādau niyamya) the senses (indriyāṇi), slay (prajahi) that (kāma or desire) (enam) indeed (hi), which is sinful (pāpmānam) (and) a destroyer (nāśanam) of knowledge (jñāna) (and) wisdom (vijñāna)"||41||

1 Epithet for Arjuna.

इन्द्रियाणि पराण्याहुरिन्द्रियेभ्यः परं मनः।
मनसस्तु परा बुद्धिर्यो बुद्धेः परतस्तु सः॥४२॥

Indriyāṇi parāṇyāhurindriyebhyaḥ paraṁ manaḥ|
Manasastu parā buddhiryo buddheḥ paratastu saḥ||42||

"(The sages) say (āhuḥ) that the senses (indriyāṇi) (are) superior (parāṇi) (to knowables such as body, etc.). (In turn,) the mind (manas) (is) superior (param) to the senses (indriyebhyaḥ). However (tu), the intellect (buddhiḥ) is superior (parā) to the mind (manasaḥ). But (tu) He --viz. the Self-- (saḥ) (is) the one who (yaḥ) (is) higher (paratas) than the intellect (buddheḥ)"||42||

एवं बुद्धेः परं बुद्ध्वा संस्तभ्यात्मानमात्मना।
जहि शत्रुं महाबाहो कामरूपं दुरासदम्॥४३॥

Evaṁ buddheḥ paraṁ buddhvā saṁstabhyātmānamātmanā|
Jahi śatruṁ mahābāho kāmarūpaṁ durāsadam||43||

"Thus (evam), knowing (buddhvā) by the Self (ātmanā) that the Self (ātmānam) is superior (param) to the intellect (buddheḥ) (and) stopping (saṁstabhya) the mind (ātmānam)1 through a resolute intellect (ātmanā)2, oh big-armed one (mahā-bāho)3, kill (jahi) the enemy (śatrum) whose form (rūpeṇa) (is) kāma or desire (kāma), which is difficult to be approached (dus-āsadam)"||43||

1 When "ātmānam" is used with "saṁstabhya" is to be interpreted as "the mind" instead of "the Self" in this context. This is in accordance with the Śrīdhara's opinion, and I also consider it as the right way to translate the sentence, in my humble opinion.
2 When "ātmanā" is used with "saṁstabhya" is to be understood as "through a resolute intellect" instead of "through the Self" in this context. This follows the Śrīdhara's view too.
3 Epithet for Arjuna.


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