Chapter 5 Panchamo Adhyaya Path of Renunciation
Lord Krishna has advised Arjuna to seek knowledge from the enlightened persons who had attained the transcendental enlightenment by way of performing sanyasa -yoga (principle of renunciation) and had renounced and devoted every object and every action of theirs in favor of serving the Lord and who had become free from the bindings of karma (the principle of selfless action for universal welfare) by doing so. At the same time God sermons Arjuna, to act like a Kshatriya and follow the karamyoga (the principle of selfless action for universal welfare) without attachment into it and meet his dharma of being a Kshatriya by fighting out action for universal war of truth against the evil forces. The lord has in a way told Arjuna that both the principles though followed differently ultimately lead to the deliverance of the soul from the bindings of the mundane world. But the lord specifically mentions to Arjuna that karamyoga (the principle of selfless action for universal welfare) in a way is superior to the sanyasa yoga ((principle of renunciation), and hence he should follow the same to meet his obligation towards the supreme truth. The eulogizing of both the principles by the lord naturally had perplexed Arjuna and he was not in a position to decide for himself as to which path should be adopted by him and what will be the best option for him to do so i.e., whether he should renounce everything, every relationship and devote himself to the service of the God or he should pick up the bow and arrows that he had abandoned and thrown away and fight it out with the perpetrators of heinous plots against him and his brothers . In order to look for help of lord Krishna in reaching the decision, Arjuna seeks answer to this question from lord Krishna,
“Sanyaasam karamanaam Krishna punayorgam cha shansasi
Yachachheya etyorekam tanme broohi sunishachitam” (1)
“O lord Krishna you have been advising me about the renunciation of all kinds of action with complete devotion to the Supreme Being and at the same time you have been asking me to follow the superior path of karam yoga (the principle of selfless action for universal welfare) and fight this war. Please guide me towards the one decision that you consider is most appropriate and for my welfare”.
The lord Krishna said,
“Sanyaasi karamyogayashch ni shreyasakaraavubhau
Tayostu karamsanyaasaatakaramyogo vishishasyate” (2)
“The path of Self-enlightenment (by way of the renunciation of all kinds of action with complete devotion to the Supreme Being) and the path of karam yoga (the principle of selfless action for universal welfare) both lead to the supreme goal. But, of the two, the path of the path of karam yoga (the principle of selfless action for universal welfare) is superior to path of Self-enlightenment (by way of the renunciation of all kinds of action with complete devotion to the Supreme Being), because it is easier to put into practice”.
“Gyeya sa nityasanyaasi yo na dweshti na kaankshati
Nirdwando hi mahabaaho sukham bandhatapramuchayate” (3)
“Hey Arjuna, a person who has neither an aversion for anyone nor does he have attachment with anyone should be considered a true person who has renounced everything. Because a person who has renounced all attachments and all aversions becomes free from the attachment of the world and attains deliverance from the consequences of the worldly actions”.
Even though the deliverance comes easily from the path of the sanyasa yoga to a sanyaasi but lord tells Arjuna that it is not that the deliverance does not come from the karam yoga. Infact He avers that both the paths adopted lead to the attainment of the supreme truth and by their ignorance mankind has been looking at both the routes to attainment of supreme truth as different from each other.
Says lord Krishna,
“Sadkhayayogo prathakgbala pravdanti na pandita
Ekampyaasathita samaygubhayoarvindate falam” (4)
“the unlearned persons out of their ignorance look at the sanyasa (path of Self-enlightenment, by way of the renunciation of all kinds of action with complete devotion to the Supreme Being) and the path of karam yoga (the principle of selfless action for universal welfare) as the paths leading to different attainments but the learned know that both of the means adopted lead to the supreme goal of attaining deliverance and attaining the supreme truth , and the person who has mastered one will be blessed with the benefits of both and assimilate himself into the God”
Yatyaadakhayai praapayate sathaanam tadyogairapi gamayate
Ekam sadkhayam cha yogam cha ya pashayato sa payashachati” (5)
“Whatever is attained by the (path of Self-enlightenment, by way of the renunciation of all kinds of action with complete devotion to the Supreme Being) by way of transcendental knowledge the same attainment is also attained by the follower of the path of karam yoga (the principle of selfless action for universal welfare). A person who looks at both the paths i.e., the path of renunciation and the path of the selfless service for the greater universal welfare is the actual person who is looking at the complete supreme truth”.
“Sanyaasatu mahabaaho dukhamaapatumyogata
Yogyukato munibrahama nachirenaadhigachhati” (6)
“But hey Arjuna! True renunciation does not happen by way of renunciation because even a sanyaasi cannot get the benefit of having offered to supreme lord that entire he had been possessing because he does not get the experience of the performer of selfless action for the universal welfare without attachment. On the other hand a doer who believes in the service of the God and offers his selfless action without attachment ,and follows the path of karam yoga attains deliverance much early and gets assimilated into the supreme truth “.
The lord continues,
“Yogayukato vishudhaatmaa vijitaatmaa jitendriya
Saravbhootaambhootatmaa kuravannapi na lipayate” (7)
“such a karamyogi (the doer) who has complete control over his mind and who has won over his senses and has a pure internal person who perceives the supreme lord in every soul as the guiding force of his own soul, such a person does not have attachment to any action even though he is engaged in all action”.
The lord says so because a karamyogi looks at the lord as the doer of all things and does not consider himself of the one who is initiating and performing the action. In such a situation even though the karamyogi engages himself or herself into all actions, attributes the happenings and the events of the action taking place to the doing of the God . such a person believes that a supreme soul and it’s eternal bliss guides in doing whatever he does and that the achievement or the non achievement will also be attributed to the supreme power and hence the attachment of the person cannot be defined physically.
“Naiva kinchitakaromeeti yukto tatvavita
Pashay sharannavan sparashnjighrannshanna gachhanswapatra shavasan”(8)
Indriyaani indiriyaartheshu vartanta Iti dhaarayan” (9)
Such an enlightened person who is aware of the divine consciousness assumes that, “none of what happens is done by me. These are the respective senses that are utilizing their materialistic powers in the acts of seeing, hearing, touching, smelling, eating, walking, sleeping, breathing; and speaking, forgoing , consuming , as well as opening and closing of the eyes”.
Brahamanyaadhaaya karmaani sangada Tayakatavaa karoti ya
Lipayate na sa paapen padhayampatramivaambhasaa” (10)
The lord says, “An enlightened person who undertakes all action as an offering to the lord the almighty by abandoning attachment remains unaffected by any kind of transgressions of the action just as a lotus leaf never gets wet even though it grows in the midst of the water”.
Kaayen mansaa budhdhyaa kevalairindiriyairapi
Yogina karma kurvanti sangada tayaktavaatamshuddhye” (11)
“ a karamyogi performs the action without self attachment only involving his body, mind , intellect and the senses only to attain the purification of the internal soul and attain enlightenment thereof “.
Yukata karamphalam Tayakatavaa shaantimaapanoti naishthikeem
Ayukta kaamkaaren phale sakto nibadhayate’ (12)
“A person who aspires for the fruit of the action undertaken by him gets involved into the result of the action. Whereas the karamyogi by renouncing his attachment to the action performed attains emancipation and the supreme blessings”.
It is obvious that the aspirations and the attachments to the profits arising out of any kind of activity undertaken by the ordinary person obviate the higher truth and blocks the possibility of gaining insight into the path to the supreme bliss. The supreme attainment and the eternal bliss can come by undertaking all kind of action as it is being performed by the lord himself and hence leave the outcome of the action to him only.
Further lord says,
“Saravakarmaani mansaa sanyasyaasate sukham vashi
Navadwaare poore dehi naiva kuravan kaarayan” (13)
“A person, who has exercised complete control over his internal nature, has abandoned attachments to all fruits of action, and practices Sankhya yoga, such a person dwells happily in the human body of nine different exits and entry points, forever focused into the supreme bliss of the lord”.
“Naa karatartavam naa karmaani lokasaya sarajati prabhu
Naa karamphal sanyogam savabhaavastu parvaratate” (14)
“The lord almighty neither creates activities, nor does he persuade people to act. He is neither the creator of the fruits of action. All this i.e., the action and the fruit thereof are inherent in the materialistic nature”.
Naadatte kasayachitapaapam naa chaiv sukratam vibhu
Agyaanenaavratam gyaanam tain muhayanti janatava “(15)
“The omnipresent God takes on neither the transgression nor the good performance of any human. It is the ordinary creatures whose knowledge gets deluded on account of their lack of enlightenment about the supreme truth and they get bewildered’.
“Gyaanen tu tadhgayaanam yeshaam naashitmaatamana
Teshaamaadityavajgyaanam praakashayati tatparam” (16)
“But those persons whose ignorance has been removed by the enlightenment of the transcendental and the Supreme Being, they have attained the knowledge of the God in the manner in which sun lights up the skies and reveals the life beyond darkness”.
Tadabudhasayasa tadaatamaanasa tannishthaa satatatpraayanaa
Gachchhantyapunraavaratim gyaannirdhoortkalmashaa’ (17)
The lord says that,
“Such persons whose mind and intellect are completely devoted to and are completely focused steadfastly into the Supreme God do not come back to the earth for another birth in the human form as such people are absolved of all their sins and they attain eternal freedom from the cycle of birth and death and they do not take birth again into the form of human on the earth “.
The lord Krishna after he has described the route to attaining deliverance from the human birth now speaks of the equanimity and the balance reached by the people who have been able to reach the supreme truth in their lives. Says lord Krishna to Arjuna,
“Vidyaavinaysampanne brahamano gavi hastini
Shuni chaiva shavapaake cha pandita samdarshinaa” (18)
“Those learned and enlightened are always humble, and they are always the same and they exhibit equability with the brahaman, the holy cow, the elephant, the dog and the low caste”.
The lord avers that the learned and the enlightened that have been able to understand the universal supreme truth about the supreme make no differentiation amongst the low and the high, in the professions and the status of other men. So much so that they treat even the other living beings on this planet with the same respect and the regards and that they bear neither love nor hatred towards any one and they look at every one as the manifestation of the supreme truth. Indeed an emotion that speaks of the presence of the pious and the everlasting soul in the humans and the animals alike, in the works and in the all kinds professions adopted by everyone as to them the element of God And His Goodness becomes visible everywhere and they can perceive the presence of the supreme being in all .
“Eihaiva taijarita sargo yeshaam saamaye stitham mana
Nirdosham hi samam braham tasmaad brahamaani Te satithaa” (19)
“Those who have attained equanimity of the mind by realization of the supreme truth have been able to conquer the vagaries of the human life and they have attained the purity and the innocence of the supreme lord who always reside in the virtue of the pure hearts “.
“Naa prahashayetipriyam prapay nodwijaitpraapay chaapariyam
Sthirbuddhirsammooddho brahamvida brahamaani sthita”(20)
That person who does not feel delighted by achieving the object so dear to him, nor lose his peace of mind by obtaining that he does not like is a true person with a steady mind and such a person is said to have achieved the deliverance and such a person has been able to assimilate self into the supreme God, the universal supreme truth”.
The lord continues,
“Brahamsparshe shavasaktaamaa vindatyaatamani yatasukham
Sa brahamyogayukatamaa sukhmakashyamashanute” (21)
“Such a person as has assimilated himself into the supreme truth bears no attachment to the outside sensual world and is focused on the internal transcendental pleasure of being one with the God, derives the eternal bliss ‘.
The lord obviously avers that the eternal bliss does not lie outside into the materialistic pleasures of life which are but temporary and fleeting in nature and that the real truth can be derived by focusing on the internal transcendental truth about the universal truth of their being one with the God.
“Ye hi sansaparasharjaa bhoga dukhayonaya aiv Te
Aadhayanatanta kaunteya Na teshu ramate Buddha” (22)
“An enlightened person does not get attached to the earthly pleasure and materialistic sensual pleasure which are but the sources of misery, and such pleasures are but transitory in nature sand hence o son of Kunti, the person who has the intellect will never take delight in them”.
Lord Krishna however does not let the issue of fighting a just war from out his mind and discussion for even a fraction of the second so that a perpetual discussion with his favorite disciple should ultimately help him make up his mind and remove all kinds of illusions and apprehensions from his mind. Says the lord Krishna
“Shaknotihaiv ya sodhum praakshareervimokshnaat
Kaama krodhobhadavam vegam sa yukata sa sukhi nara” (23)
“The person who by remaining within this human body, is able to endure and sustain a complete control over his anger that arises from the lust is an ascetic and he is a happy person “.
The lord advises that the focus on the bodily pleasures by a person can result into an aggression and an inbuilt anger which needs to be controlled within this birth so that the deliverance can be attained within this life time and not necessarily by being subjected to another birth in another life”.
The lord says,
“Yo anta sukho antaraaraamasthanta yortijayortiraiv ya
Sa yogi braham nirvaanam brahambhooto adhigachagati” (24)
“A person who remains happy within his own self and is always busy rejoicing the supreme within his own self and the one who is enlightened within by his self knowledge about the supreme truth he is able to attain the deliverance and he is able to get assimilated himself into the Brahma”.
“Labhante braham nirmaanmarashaya ksheenkalmashaa
Chhinnadawaidha yataatamaan saravabhootahite rataa” (25)
“Those whose all misgivings have been resolved and whose apprehensions have been solved by way of self enlightenment and those who are completely devoted in to the universal welfare of all other living beings and whose unwavering heart is fixed into the Supreme Being selflessly have attained the deliverance and eventually the supreme truth”.
“Kaama krodha viyukataanam yateenam yatachetasaam
Abhito braham nirvaanam varatate viditaatamannaam” (26)
“Those who have won over their own mind and are free from the lust and anger and those who have witnessed the supreme truth such enlightened persons enjoy happiness and peace as they have become the persons who have the supreme truth present within their souls “.
The lord is discussing about the awakening that can be obtained by following the path of the karama yoga and the philosophy of the Sankhya yoga, to derive home the attainment of the supreme truth by those who follow either of the path to the assimilation of their total self into the supreme truth.
As per lord’s advice for both the followers of karam yoga as well as the followers of Sankhya yoga, it is their control over their mind and the matter and to follow the path of renunciation that will get them closer to the desired revelation of the supreme truth that they seek.
The lord says,
“Saparashaankratvaa bahibrahamyaamasch kshushchaivaantare bharuvo
Praanpaano samo kratavaa naasaabhayaanatara chaarino (27)
Yatindraiya manobudhdhimurni morkshaya paraayana
Vigataiichhabhayakrodho ya sadaa mukta aiv sa” (28)
“The enlightened one who does not dwell upon the sensory pleasures but reflects on his inner mind and meditates his mind on the enlightenment dot that exists between the eyes on the forehead and balances his breathing process by controlling the breaths in his nostrils and the one who has won over all his mind, senses and intellect , such a person who is the self willed, has been emancipated from the fear and anger and such a protagonist has been liberated forever and he has been able to assimilate his self into the supreme self of the Supreme Truth”.
“Bhokataaram yagayatapasaam saravlok maheshavaram
Suhardayam saravabhutaanaam gyaatvaa mam shaantimrachhati”29)
“My devotee looks at me as the Supreme Being that consumes all sacrifices and austerities, and the God Of All The Gods Of The World and he looks at me as the one who happens to be dear to all the apparitions and the ghosts of the world, the one who is selfless, kind and the lover .And my devotee finds peace after getting enlightened of these facts that can hold his faith in me”.