The Bhagavad Gita

Text, Word-to-word Meaning, Translation and Commentary

by Swami Sivananda

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Paperback: xl+576 pages
ISBN: 81-7052-000-2
Book Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.5 x 1.25 inches
Shipping Weight: 690 grams

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Table of Contents

About This Book (Back Cover)  
Dedication iii
Swami Sivananda’s Letter iv
Preface v
Universal Prayer vii
Prayer to Bhagavan Vyasa viii

Prayer to the Guru

Prayer to Lord Sri Krishna ix
Introduction xi
     Glory of the Gita xi
     Guide for Study xiv
     Harmony in the Gita xv
     The Two Ways xvii
     Reconciliation of the Paths xviii
     Essence of the Gita xix
     In Defence xxii
     Solution for Conflicting Verses xxv
     Epilogue xxvii
श्रीगीतामाहात्म्यम् xxxi
श्रीगीताकरादिन्यासः xxxvi
श्रीगीताध्यानम् xxxvii
I The Yoga of the Despondency of Arjuna 3
II Sankhya Yoga 19
III The Yoga of Action 57
IV The Yoga of the Division of Wisdom 80
V The Yoga of Renunciation of Action 104
VI The Yoga of Meditation 122
VII The Yoga of Wisdom and Realisation 156
VIII The Yoga of the Imperishable Brahman 176
IX The Yoga of the Kingly Science and the Kingly Secret 200
X The Yoga of the Divine Glories 232
XI The Yoga of the Vision of the Cosmic Form 260
XII The Yoga of Devotion 295
XIII The Yoga of the Distinction between the Field and the Knower of the Field 313
XIV The Yoga of the Division of the Three Gunas 355
XV The Yoga of the Supreme Spirit 379
XVI The Yoga of the Division between the Divine and the Demoniacal 406
XVII The Yoga of the Division of the Threefold Faith 433
XVIII The Yoga of Liberation by Renunciation 460


1. The Lord’s Commandments in the Gita 525
2. To Aid Remembrance 530
3. Saptasloki Gita 533
4. Ekasloki Gita 533
5. Pratijna Gita 533
6. Gita Anushthana 535
          List of Mantras for Japa 537
          List of Samputa Slokas 539


1. Index to Slokas 542
2. Index to Subjects 572
Aarati 576

About This Book

The Bhagavadgita is one phase of the Tripod of Indian philosophy and culture, the other two phases being the Upanishads and the Brahmasutras. While the Upanishads lay the foundation of the loftiest reach possible for humanity and the Brahmasutras logically elucidate the intricate issues involved in the Upanishads, the Bhagavadgita blends together the Transcendent and the Immanent features of the Ultimate Reality, bringing together into an integrated whole knowledge and action, the inner and the outer, the individual and the society, man and God, all which are portrayed as facets of a Universal Operation, presenting entire life and all life as a perfectly complete organic wholeness, leaving nothing unsaid and attempting to solve every problem of life.

The Bhagavad Gita has been acclaimed to be a gospel of life. It has been translated into almost all the languages and has drawn the attention of scholars, saints and mystics, the world over. The importance of the Bhagavad Gita is in its offering satisfactory solutions to the problems that beset mankind of all times. His Holiness Sri Swami Sivanandaji Maharaj is one of the great exponents of the philosophy, religion and the technique of the Bhagavad Gita system, and his commentary is regarded as one of the most authoritative expositions available.


Dedicated to
Bhagavan Vyasa
Lord Krishna
Avatara of Lord Vishnu
Flute-Bearer of Vrindavana
Joy of Devaki, Beloved of Radha
Redeemer of the Fallen
Friend of Arjuna
The Ideal of the Devotees

1st January 1946


Gita embodies in itself a solution to the immediately pressing problems of man and carries a wonderful message of encouragement, hope, cheer and consolation. It is a direct appeal to divinise the entire nature of man.

This little book of 700 verses is a constant companion for every man. It finds a place in the pocket of every man.

It gives man a positive promise of salvation and makes him fearless. Therein lies the supreme value of Gita.



The Bhagavad Gita has been acclaimed to be a gospel of life. It has been translated into almost all the languages and has drawn the attention of scholars, saints and mystics, the world over. The importance of the Bhagavad Gita is in its offering satisfactory solutions to the problems that beset mankind of all times. His Holiness Sri Swami Sivanandaji Maharaj is one of the great exponents of the philosophy, religion and the technique of the Bhagavad Gita system, and his commentary is regarded as one of the most authoritative expositions available.

This work originally appeared, in the early days of the Divine Life Society, as a series in six parts, published separately, which, later on, was combined into a single volume and released for the benefit of the students of Yoga. Having passed through several editions, it is now once again being made available to the public, after it ran out of print some time ago. It has been our endeavour to bring out this edition in as neat a form as possible, which, we are confident, will meet the demands of students as well as the public in general, in an appreciable manner.

13th July, 2003


The Universal Prayer

O Adorable Lord of Mercy and Love!
Salutations and prostrations unto Thee.
Thou art Satchidananda.
Thou art Omnipresent, Omnipotent and Omniscient.
Thou art the Indweller of all beings.

Grant us an understanding heart,
Equal vision, balanced mind,
Faith, devotion and wisdom.
Grant us inner spiritual strength
To resist temptations and to control the mind.
Free us from egoism, lust, greed, hatred, anger and jealousy.
Fill our hearts with divine virtues.

Let us behold Thee in all these names and forms.
Let us serve Thee in all these names and forms.
Let us ever remember Thee.
Let us ever sing Thy glories.
Let Thy Name be ever on our lips.
Let us abide in Thee for ever and ever.

                                            Swami Sivananda



तेव्यास विशालबुद्धे फुल्लारविन्दायतपत्रनेत्र।
येन त्वयाभारततैलर्पूःप्रज्वालितोज्ञानमयः प्रदीपः॥

Salutations to Thee, O Vyasa, of broad intellect, with eyes large like the petals of full-blown lotus, by whom the lamp of knowledge, filled with the oil of the Mahabharata, has been lighted.


गुरुर्ब्रह्मा गुरुर्विष्णुर्गुरुर्देवो महेश्वरः।
गुरुः साक्षात्‌ परं ब्रह्म तस्मै श्रीगुरवे नमः॥

Guru is the Creator (Brahma); Guru is the Preserver (Vishnu); Guru is the Destroyer (Mahesvara); Guru is verily the Supreme Absolute. Prostration to That Guru.

ध्यनमूलं गुरोर्मूर्तिः पूजामूलं गुरोः पदम्‌।
मन्त्रमूलं गुरोर्वाक्यं मोक्षमूलं गुरोः कृपा॥

The Guru’s Form is the root of meditation; the Guru’s Feet are the root of worship; the Guru’s Word is the root of Mantra; the Guru’s Grace is the root of Liberation.


कृष्णाय वासुदेवाय देवकीनन्दनाय च।
नन्दगोपकुमाराय गोविन्दाय नमो नमः॥

Prostration, again and again, to Lord Sri Krishna, the son of Vasudeva, the delighter of Devaki, the darling of Nandagopa, the protector of the cows.

Krishna! Thou art my sweet companion now. Thou hast a soft corner for me in Thy heart. Teach me now the mysteries of Thy divine play (Lilas) and the secrets of Vedanta. Thou sayest in the Gita: “I am the Vedantakrit and the Vedavit (the author of Vedanta and the knower of the Vedas).” Thou art my best teacher. Explain to me the intricate problems of Vedanta. Give me easy lessons. Kindly explain: why did Sukadeva, a Brahma Jnani who was absorbed in Brahman (established in Advaita-Samadhi or the highest non-dual state), teach the Bhagavata to Parikshit? What are the differences in the experiences of a Bhakta who enjoys Sayujya state (of union with his God), of a Yogi who is established in Asamprajnata-Samadhi (the highest superconscious state) and of a Jnani who has Advaita-Avastharupa-Samadhi (a state in which he is firmly established in Oneness or Brahman)? What is the real difference between Jivanmukti (liberation while living) and Videhamukti (disembodied liberation), Turiya (transcendent state) and Turiyatita (beyond the Turiya), Kshara-Purusha (mutable Person), Akshara-Purusha (imperishable Person), and Purushottama (Supreme Person)?

Let me be frank with Thee, O Krishna, because Thou art the indweller of my heart, the witness of my mind, and the Lord of my Prana (life-breath). I cannot hide anything from Thee, because Thou directly witnessest all the thoughts that emanate from my mind. I have no fear of Thee. Thou art my friend now. Treat me as Thou didst treat Arjuna. I shall sing and dance. You can play on the flute. Let us eat butter and sugar-candy together. Let us sing. Teach me the Gita. Let me hear it directly from Thy lips once more.

O Thou invisible One! O adorable and supreme One! Thou permeatest and penetratest this vast universe from the unlimited space down to the tiny blade of grass at my feet. Thou art the basis of all these names and forms. Thou art the apple of my eye, and the Prema (divine love) of my heart, the very life of my life, the very soul of my soul, the illuminator of my intellect and senses, the sweet Anahata (mystic) music of my heart, and the substance of my physical, mental and causal frames.

I recognise Thee alone as the mighty ruler of this universe and the inner controller of my three bodies. I prostrate myself again and again before Thee, my Lord! Thou art my sole refuge. I trust Thee alone, O ocean of mercy and love! Elevate! Enlighten! Guide! Protect! Remove the obstacles from my spiritual path. Remove Avidya or the veil of ignorance. O Thou Jagadguru! I cannot bear any longer, even for a second, the miseries of this body, this life and this Samsara. Meet me quickly. O Prabho! I am pining, I am melting. Listen, listen, listen to my fervent, Antarika (innermost) prayer. Do not be cruel, my Lord. Thou art Dinabandhu (friend of the afflicted). Thou art Adhama-Uddharaka (one who raises the down-trodden). Thou art Patitapavana (purifier of the fallen).

O Magnificent Lord of love and compassion! O fountainhead of bliss and knowledge! Thou art the eye of our eyes, the ear of our ears, the Prana of our Pranas, the mind of our minds, and the soul of our souls. Thou art the unseen seer, the unheard hearer, the unthought thinker and the unknown knower. Pray, deliver us from all temptations. Give us light, purity and knowledge.

O Prabho, Prananatha (Lord of my Prana), Vibhu-Visvanatha (all-pervading Lord of the universe)! Accept our prayer. Guide us. Lift us from the mire of Samsara. Enlighten us. Protect us. Thee alone we adore, Thee alone we worship, on Thee alone we meditate, in Thee alone we have taken refuge.



The Bhagavad Gita is a dialogue between Lord Krishna and Arjuna, narrated in the Bhishma-Parva of the Mahabharata. It comprises eighteen chapters of a total of 700 Sanskrit verses.

Considerable matter has been condensed and compressed within these verses. On the battlefield of Kurukshetra, Lord Krishna, during the course of His most interesting and instructive talk with Arjuna, revealed the profound, sublime and soul-stirring spiritual truths, and expounded to him the rare secrets of Yoga, Vedanta, Bhakti and Karma. All the teachings of Lord Krishna were subsequently recorded as the Song Celestial or the Bhagavad Gita by Sri Bhagavan Vyasa for the benefit of humanity at large. The world is under a great debt of gratitude to Sri Vyasa who has presented this Celestial Song to humanity for their daily conduct in life, spiritual uplift and Self-realisation. Only those who are self-controlled and are endowed with faith can reap the full benefit of the Gita, which is the Science of the Soul.

The Gita Jayanti day or the birthday of the Bhagavad Gita is celebrated throughout India by all the admirers and lovers of this unique book on the 11th day (Ekadasi) of the bright half of the Margasirsha month according to the Hindu almanac. It was the day on which this scripture was revealed to the world by Sanjaya.

In the whole world-literature there is no book so elevating and so inspiring as the Gita. The Gita expounds very lucidly the cardinal principles or the fundamentals of the Hindu religion and the Hindu Dharma. It is the source of all wisdom. It is your great guide. It is your supreme teacher. It is an inexhaustible spiritual treasure. It is a fountain of bliss. It is an ocean of knowledge. It is full of divine splendour and grandeur.

The Gita is the cream of the Vedas. It is the essence of the Upanishads. It is the universal scripture for all people of all temperaments and for all times. It is a wonderful book with sublime thoughts and practical instructions on Yoga, devotion, Vedanta and action. It is a marvellous book, profound in thoughts and sublime in heights of vision. It gives peace and solace to the souls who are afflicted by the three fires (Taapas) of this mortal world (Samsara), viz., Adhyatmika (afflictions caused by one’s own body), Adhibhautika (those caused by beings around one), and Adhidaivika (those caused by the gods).

The Bhagavad Gita contains the divine nectar. It is the Chintamani, Kalpataru and Kamadhenu (wish-fulfilling gem, tree and cow respectively). You can milk out anything from it. It is a book of eternity. It is not a catch-penny book which has a life like that of a mushroom. The Gita has been my constant companion of life. It is a vade mecum for all. Peace, Bliss, Ananda, Happiness, Wisdom, Atman, Brahman, Purusha, Dharma, Nirvana, Param Padam, Gita are all only synonymous terms.

The Gita is a boundless ocean of nectar. It is an immortal celestial fruit of the tree of the Upanishads. In this unique book, you will find an unbiased exposition of the philosophy of action, devotion and knowledge, and a wonderful synthesis. The Bhagavad Gita is a rare and splendid flower that wafts its sweet aroma throughout the world. All the Upanishads represent the cows. Sri Krishna is the milker of the Upanishad-cows; Partha (Arjuna) is the calf who first tasted that milk of wisdom of the Self, which was milked by the Divine Cowherd, Sri Krishna, for the benefit of Arjuna and all humanity, as the Bhagavad Gita. It helps to solve not only Arjuna’s problems and doubts, but also the world problems and the problems and doubts of every individual. Glory to Lord Krishna, the friend of the cowherds of Gokula, the Joy of Devaki! He who drinks the nectar of the Gita through purification of the heart and meditation, attains immortality, eternal bliss, everlasting peace and perennial joy.

Just as the dark, unfathomed depths of the ocean contain most precious pearls, so also the Gita contains spiritual gems of incalculable value. You will have to dive deep into the depths of the ocean of the Gita with sincere attitude of reverence and faith. Only then will you be able to collect the spiritual pearls of the Gita. Only then will you be able to comprehend the profound and subtle teachings of the Gita.

The Gita is a unique book for all ages. It is a book that comes under the category of Prasthanatraya, the authoritative books of the Hindu religion. The Gita is the Immortal Song of the Soul, which bespeaks of the glory of life. The instructions that are inculcated by Lord Krishna are for the whole world. It is a standard book on Yoga for all. The language is as simple as it could be. Even a man who has an elementary knowledge of Sanskrit can go through the book. It deals with the four Yogas, viz., Karma Yoga, Bhakti Yoga, Raja Yoga and Jnana Yoga.

There are countless commentaries on the Gita at the present day. A volume can be written on each verse. A busy man with Karmic tendencies will be benefited by the commentary of Sri Bala Gangadhara Tilak (Gita Rahasya), a man of devotion by studying Sridhara’s commentary, and a man of reason by Sri Sankara’s commentary.

There are now hundreds of commentaries on this wonderful book. The Gita is like an ocean. Sri Sankara, Sri Ramanuja and Sri Madhva have given their own interpretations of the Gita and established their own philosophy. Anyone can dive deep into this ocean of the Gita, bring out the most precious pearls of divine knowledge and give his own interpretation. Glory to the Gita! Glory to the Lord of the Gita!

The teachings of the Gita are broad, universal and sublime. Its teachings do not belong to any cult, sect, creed, particular age, place or country. They are meant for the people of the whole world at large. The teachings are based on the Upanishads, the ancient wisdom of the seers (Rishis) and sages. It teaches a method which is within the reach of all. It has a message for the solace, peace, freedom, salvation and perfection of all human beings.

The Gita is like the lake Manasasarovara for the Paramahamsas (monks and renunciates) and thirsting aspirants to sport in. It is the ocean of bliss in which the seekers of Truth swim with joy and ecstasy. If the philosopher’s stone touches a piece of iron even at one point, the whole of it is transformed into gold. Even so, if you live in the spirit of even one verse, you will doubtless be transmuted into divinity.

Study of the Gita alone is sufficient for the purpose of daily Svadhyaya (scriptural study). You will find a solution here for all your doubts. The more you study with devotion and faith, the more you will get deeper knowledge, penetrative insight and clear right thinking. Even if you live in the spirit of one verse of the Gita, all your miseries will come to an end and you will attain the goal of life—Immortality and Eternal Peace.

The Gita is a gospel for the whole world. It is meant for the generality of mankind. It was given over five thousand years ago on the battlefield of Kurukshetra, by Lord Krishna to Arjuna.

None but the Lord can bring out such an unprecedented and marvellous book which gives peace to the readers, which helps and guides them in the attainment of Supreme Bliss, which has survived up to this time. This itself proves clearly that God exists, that God is an embodiment of knowledge and that one can attain perfection or liberation by realising God alone.

The whole world is a big battlefield. The real Kurukshetra is within you. The battle of Mahabharata is still raging within you. Ignorance (Avidya) is Dhritarashtra. The individual soul is Arjuna. The Indweller Who dwells in your heart is Lord Krishna, the charioteer. The body is your chariot. The senses (Indriyas) are the horses. The mind, egoism, senses, Samskaras (mental impressions), Vasanas (latent tendencies), cravings, Raga-Dvesha (likes and dislikes), lust, jealousy, greed, pride and hypocrisy are your dire enemies.


As the Gita contains subtle and profound teachings, you should study the Gita under a qualified teacher—a Brahma-Nishtha Guru (a preceptor who is established in the Absolute), with great and intense faith, single-minded devotion and purity. Only then will the truths of the Gita be revealed unto you like the fruit on the palm of your hand. Good commentaries like those of Swami Madhusudana Sarasvati, Swami Sankarananda, and Sri Sankara, written by sages of Self-realisation, will be of immense help to you.

Worldly-minded people, however intellectual they may be, cannot grasp the essential teachings of the Gita. They will enter into unnecessary discussions and useless debates. They will cavil and carp at the teachings. Ignorant people only say: “There is no intimate connection between the verses. They are thrown together in a disorderly manner. There is a great deal of repetition.” If they study the Gita with reverence and faith under a qualified teacher, all their doubts will vanish. They will realise that there is a close connection between the verses in all the chapters. Repetitions in the Gita and the Upanishads are useful repetitions. They are calculated to create a deep and indelible impression on the minds of the aspirants.

Lord Krishna speaks from different levels of consciousness. In the Gita, the term “Avyakta” sometimes refers to Mulaprakriti (primordial Nature), sometimes also to Para Brahman (the Absolute). Therefore, the help of a teacher is necessary if you wish to know the right significance of the verses. In the Kathopanishad, the term ‘brick’ is used to denote the Devata (god). In Hatha Yoga it is said: “At the junction of the rivers Ganga and Yamuna, there is a young virgin.” The esoteric meaning is: “There is the Sushumna-Nadi between the Ida and the Pingala.” You cannot understand the real meaning of these terms without the help of a Master. Even so, you cannot rightly comprehend the meaning of the verses of the Gita without the help of a teacher. Otherwise, you will be like the man who brought a horse before one who asked for “Saindhava”, when he was taking his food. “Saindhava” means “salt” as well as “horse”!


Man is a composite of three fundamental factors, viz., cognition, feeling and will. There are people with three kinds of temperaments, viz., the active temperament, the emotional temperament and the rational temperament. So, there are the three Yogas, viz., Jnana Yoga for the man of enquiry and self-analysis or rational temperament, Bhakti Yoga for the man of emotional temperament, and Karma Yoga for the man of active temperament. One Yoga is as efficacious as the other.

The Gita formulates the theory of the three Margas (paths), viz., the Jnana Marga, the Bhakti Marga and the Karma Marga. According to the teaching of the Gita, there is no conflict among the three. The Gita harmonises wonderfully the philosophy of action, devotion and knowledge. All the three must be harmoniously blended if you wish to attain perfection. You should have the head of Sri Sankara, the heart of Lord Buddha and the hand of Raja Janaka. The three horses of this body-chariot—action, emotion and intellect—should work in perfect harmony. Only then will this body-chariot move smoothly and you can reach the destination safely and quickly. Only then can you rejoice in the Self within. Only then can you sing the song of Soham (I am He). Only then can you be in tune with the Infinite. Only then can you hear the soundless voice of the soul and enjoy the sweet internal music of the Self.

The central teaching of the Gita is the attainment of the final beatitude of life or perfection or freedom (Moksha) by doing the duties of life or one’s Svadharma. The Lord says to Arjuna: “Therefore without attachment, do thou always perform action which should be done; for by performing action without attachment man reaches the Supreme.”

The Gita is divided into three sections, illustrative of the three terms of the Mahavakya or the Great Sentence of the Sama Veda, Tat-Tvam-Asi, (That thou art). In accordance with this view, the first six chapters deal with the path of action or Karma Yoga and the nature of “thou” or the Tvam-Pada. The next six chapters explain the path of devotion or Bhakti Yoga and the nature of “That”, Tat-Pada. The last six chapters treat of the path of knowledge or Jnana Yoga and the nature of the term “art” or Asi-Pada which establishes the identity of the individual and the Supreme Soul, Jiva-Brahma-Aikya.

The eighteen chapters of the Gita are not woven in a disconnected or discordant manner. There is an intimate relationship or vital connection between one chapter and another. Arjuna became very despondent and the teachings of the second chapter which bespeak of the immortality of the Soul, opened his eyes and gave him strength and courage. Arjuna then understood the technique of Karma Yoga and renunciation of the fruits of actions. Then he learnt the methods to control the senses and the mind and to practise concentration and meditation. Then Lord Krishna gave a description of His various Vibhutis (manifestations) in order to prepare him for the vision of the Cosmic Form or Visvarupa-Darsana. Then Arjuna experienced the magnificent Cosmic Vision. Then he understood the nature of a Jivanmukta or Bhagavata. Then he had knowledge of the field and the knower of the three Gunas and the Purushottama. Then he had knowledge of the divine attributes and the three kinds of faith, and the essence of Sannyasa Yoga in the end. Just as a student is coached up in the university, so also Arjuna was coached up by Lord Krishna for the attainment of knowledge of the Self in the Adhyatmic (spiritual) University. Arjuna had various kinds of doubts. Lord Krishna cleared his doubts one by one. He pushed Arjuna up the ladder of Yoga from one rung to another. Ultimately Arjuna placed his foot on the highest rung of the ladder, attained knowledge of the Self, and then exclaimed in joy: “O my Lord! My delusion has been destroyed. I have attained knowledge through Thy Grace. I am firm now. My doubts have now vanished in toto. I will act according to Thy word.”

You can become a Jivanmukta by annihilating the ego, and the two currents of Raga (likes) and Dvesha (dislikes). You can become a liberated sage by annihilating the desires and cravings and by destroying the residual potencies (Samskaras) and Sankalpas (desireful thoughts). You can thus rest in your own Satchidananda-Svarupa (essential nature as Existence-Knowledge-Bliss Absolute) and still you can be active in the affairs of the world like Raja Janaka. You will not be bound by Karmas. You will not be tainted by the actions, because the idea of doership has been destroyed by the attainment of knowledge of the Self or Brahma-Jnana. This is the keynote of the Gita.


The seers of the Upanishads emphatically declare that the real man is the all-pervading, immortal Soul which is the substratum of this body, mind and world, which is behind the five sheaths, viz., the food sheath, the vital sheath, the mental sheath, the intellectual sheath and the blissful sheath.

The goal of life is the direct cognition or realisation of this self-luminous Self which is hidden in this body like fire in wood, and butter in milk. This Self (Atman) is the inner ruler or Antaryamin. He is the unseen governor or hidden proprietor of this house, the body.

Real religion is the attainment of this transcendental, supreme, undying, undecaying Tattva or principle through constant and profound meditation. Real life is life in the eternal Atman or Soul. True life is identification with this Supreme Soul which exists in the past, present and future, which has neither beginning, middle nor end, which has neither parts nor limbs, which is neither subtle nor gross.

The Rishis of yore attained this mysterious and marvellous Atman through the eye of intuition or the divine inner third eye (Jnanachakshus) and then explained things of this world in the light of their knowledge of the Self. This is the direct method of Self-realisation.

You can ascend the summit of the hill of knowledge of the Self through science, art, Nature, music, etc. This is the indirect method. From the effect you go to the cause and ultimately reach the causeless Cause or Para Brahman or the ultimate, transcendental Truth. Our Western scientists will be groping in utter darkness if their purpose is only to invent some things for our physical comforts or convenient living. The goal of science is to find out the one ultimate Truth which is the substratum of the atoms, molecules, electrons, energy, motion and all physical and mental phenomena and all the laws of Nature through enquiry, observation, analysis, investigation and study of the laws of Nature. A real scientist is only a Vedantin. His mode of approach to the Truth only is different. The scientist who was saying previously: “There is nothing beyond this world”, proclaims now: “The more I know of the phenomena, the more I am puzzled. Intellect is finite and cold. Behind these changing phenomena, there is the unchanging Noumenon. Behind the rotating dynamic electrons, there is the static, motionless something: or something beyond the intellect and the world.” The Brahman of the Upanishads is the Atman of the Vedantins, Who is the Lord of these laws of Nature. “My method of approach is a posteriori method, from the effect to the cause. The Vedantins’ method is the a priorimethod, from the cause to the effect. The goal is the same.”


In the Vishnu Purana, Bhagavan Vishnu is highly eulogised and a secondary place is given to Lord Siva. In the Siva Purana, Lord Siva is immensely praised and a secondary place is given to Lord Hari. In Devi Bhagavatam, Devi is highly praised and a secondary place is given to Lord Siva and Lord Hari. This is done in order to create intense and unswerving faith in the aspirant for his Ishta Devata or favourite deity. Siva, Hari and Devi are one. They are different aspects of the Lord. It is simply absurd if you believe that Siva is inferior to Hari or Hari is inferior to Siva.

Even so, in one place Lord Krishna praises Karma Yoga. “Karmasannyasat karmayogo visishyate—Yoga of action is verily better than renunciation of action.” (Chapter V. 2). In another place He praises Yoga. “The Yogi is greater than the ascetic; he is thought to be even greater than the wise; the Yogi is greater than the man of action; therefore, become thou a Yogi, O Arjuna.” (Chapter VI. 46). In another place, the Lord praises Bhakti Yoga. “He, the Highest Spirit, O Partha, may be reached by unswerving devotion to Him alone.” (Chapter VIII. 22). In another place, He praises Jnana Yoga. “Noble are all these, but I hold the wise as verily Myself; he, self-united, is fixed on Me, the highest path.” (Chapter VII. 18)

A neophyte will be confused when he comes across these verses. But there is no room for any confusion if you think deeply. Lord Krishna has praised each Yoga in order to create interest in the aspirant in his particular Marga or path. You must remember that the Gita is a book for the people of the world at large. It was not meant for Arjuna alone. Each Yoga is as efficacious and potent as the other.


The Gita emphasises again and again that one should cultivate an attitude of non-attachment or detachment. It urges repeatedly that one should live in the world like the lotus-leaf, which is unaffected by water. He who acts placing all actions in the Eternal, abandoning attachment, is as unaffected by sin as a lotus-leaf by water—Padmapatramivambhasa. (Chapter V. 10)

Attachment is due to Moha. Attachment is the offspring of the quality of Rajas. Non-attachment is born of Sattva. Attachment is an Asuri-Sampat, demoniacal quality. Non-attachment is a Daivi-Sampat, divine attribute. Attachment is born of ignorance, selfishness and passion. Attachment brings death. Non-attachment is wisdom. Non-attachment brings freedom. Practice of detachment is a rigorous discipline indeed. You will have to practise it again and again. You may tumble down like a baby who is just learning to walk, but you will have to rise up again with a smile and a cheerful heart. Failures are not stumbling blocks, but steppingstones to success. Try to dwell always in your own Self. Abide in your own Self. Abide in your centre. Think of the Self constantly. All attachments will die automatically. Attachment to God or Atman is a potent antidote to annihilate all worldly attachments. He who has no attachment can really love others. He has pure love or divine Prema. Therefore, without attachment, constantly perform action which is duty, for, by performing actions without attachment, man verily reacheth the Supreme. (Chapter III. 19)

The thirteenth, fourteenth and fifteenth discourses deal with Jnana Yoga. He who has knowledge of Prakriti and Purusha (Nature and God), the three Gunas (qualities of Nature) and their operation, and of the wonderful tree of Maya (illusory power) or the Samsara-Vriksha, can transcend the Prakriti and the Gunas, and cut this marvellous, deep-rooted tree with the sword of wisdom of the Self or the axe of dispassion, and attain Atma-Sakshatkara or direct Self-realisation which releases him from the round of births and deaths. The fifteenth discourse is a soul-elevating one. It contains the essence of Vedanta. He who rightly understands this discourse will soon attain Moksha or the imperishable Seat of Brahman. Get by heart the twenty verses and repeat them before you take your food. All Sannyasins repeat them before they take food.

The eighteenth chapter must be studied again and again. It contains the quintessence of the whole Gita Sastra. It is the supreme pinnacle on the magnificent hill of the knowledge of the Gita. It is the crowning jewel in the priceless necklace and in it is condensed the substance of those teachings found in the first seventeen chapters.

Constant remembrance and practice of the teachings of verses 19, 20, 23, and 24 of chapter II will confer on you Immortality and will remove fear and Dehadhyasa (identification of the Self with the body).

Constant remembrance and practice of the teachings of verse 22 of chapter V:Ye hi samsparsaja bhogah…….., verse 8 of chapter XIII: Indriyartheshu vairagyam…… and verse 38 of chapter XVIII: Vishayendriya samyogat…… will induce dispassion (Vairagya).

Life in the spirit of verses II. 71, and IV. 39, will give you supreme peace. Verses V. 27, 28, VI. 11 to 14, and 26, VIII. 8, 12, 13 and 14, IX. 34, XII. 8 to 10, XVIII. 51 to 53, deal with Yoga Sadhana or spiritual practice for Self-realisation. The philosophy of the Gita begins from verse II. 11. Verse XVIII. 66 is the most important one in the Gita: “Abandoning all duties, come unto Me alone for shelter; sorrow not; I will liberate thee from all sins.” Arjuna asks Lord Krishna: “My heart is overpowered by the taint of pity; my mind is confused as to duty. I ask Thee: tell me decisively what is good for me. I am Thy disciple. Instruct me who has taken refuge in Thee.” (Chapter II. 17) Lord Krishna gives His answer to this question of Arjuna in verse XVIII. 66. The essence of the whole Gita is contained in verses 65 and 66 of chapter XVIII.

Verse 65 of chapter XVIII contains the essence of Navavidha-Bhakti or the nine modes of devotion. Here is the Sadhana for perfect control of thoughts. By fixing the mind again and again on the Lord, all worldly thoughts die by themselves. Bhakti Yoga can hardly be separated from Raja Yoga. There is a blending of these two Yogas. Patanjali Maharshi says that Samadhi can be attained through devotion unto the Lord: Isvarapranidhanadva, or by self-surrender to the Lord. Self-surrender to the Lord is an important item in the Kriya Yoga and Niyama of Raja Yoga. Manmana Bhava is merging the mind. It is a Raja Yoga Sadhana. It is difficult to say where Bhakti Yoga ends and where Raja Yoga begins. Raja Yoga is the fulfilment of Bhakti Yoga. There is no hard and fast rule or line of demarcation between Bhakti Yoga and Raja Yoga. A Raja Yogi is also a Bhakta. A devotee is also a Raja Yogi. There is difference only in name. Lord Krishna gives His word of assurance to Arjuna to encourage him as he is in a despondent and confused state of mind by saying: “Thou shalt come even to Me. I pledge thee My Truth (word); thou art dear to Me.” Follow these instructions. He who has practised these four vital instructions will be able to effect unconditioned, unreserved self-surrender.

The next verse contains the essence of self-surrender. The Advaita Vedantin explains the verse thus: “Give up the notion that you are an individual soul. You will attain liberation. You will become a Jivanmukta (a sage liberated while living).” An Acharya (teacher) of the Bhakti cult explains it thus: “Surrender the fruits of all actions and the actions themselves at the Feet of the Lord. The Lord will give you liberation.” Dharma here cannot signify the Dharma of the senses, because even a Jivanmukta sees, hears, tastes, and so forth; but, he stands as a witness; he does not identify himself with the actions of the senses. In this verse, Lord Krishna gives His definite answer to the query of Arjuna contained in the verse: “My heart is overpowered by the taint of pity; my mind is confused as to duty. I ask Thee: tell me decisively what is good for me. I am Thy disciple. Instruct me who has taken refuge in Thee.”

You need not study many books on Yoga and Vedanta. If you can live in the true spirit of those two verses, you will attain the summum bonum of existence, i.e., immortality, eternal bliss and knowledge of the Self.

“Work without egoism, without expectation of fruits. Surrender the actions and their fruits as offerings unto the Lord. Divinise your life by melting the mind and the ego in the Lord. Spiritualise your life by dedicating your mind and intellect to the Lord (Macchitta, Yukta, Matparah). Fix the mind on the Lord. Be devoted to Him. Be intent on the welfare of all beings, sarvabhutahite ratah. Sacrifice everything unto the Lord. Then, you will enter into His Being.” This is the note ringing throughout the Gita.

Sadhana in the Gita is explained in the following verses:

Karma Yoga: II. 48, IV. 20 to 22 and 24.
Bhakti Yoga: IX. 27, 34, XII. 8, XVIII. 52 to 54.
Japa Yoga: VIII. 14.
Abhyasa Yoga: XII. 9.
Hatha Yoga: VIII. 10, 12.
Raja Yoga: VI. 25, 26.
Jnana Yoga: III. 28, V 8, 9.


Some people study the Gita in order to find out loopholes in it and criticise the teachings contained in it. The teachings of the Gita can only be understood if you approach it with a reverential attitude of mind and with intense faith.

Someone in a newspaper gave vent to the criticism thus: “The Gita is not a sacred book at all. It teaches violence. Lord Krishna has asked Arjuna to kill even his dear relations and preceptors.” It seems that this critic has obviously no real knowledge of the Gita. He is like Virochana who received spiritual instructions from Prajapati and took the body for the Self on account of his perverted intellect. He is obviously a follower of the philosophy of the flesh.

He cannot comprehend the depths of the Gita philosophy as his mind is callous and impervious to the reception of Truth. He has read the Gita not for gaining spiritual knowledge, but for attacking it! If he really understood the right significance of the three verses, viz., “He who regardeth this as a slayer, and he who thinketh he is slain, both of them are ignorant. He slayeth not, nor is He slain.” (Chapter II. 19). “Therefore, stand up. By Me they have already been overcome. Be thou the outward cause.” (Chapter XI. 33). “He who is free from the egoistic notion, whose intellect is not affected, though he slays these people, he slayeth not, nor is he bound.” (Chapter XVIII. 17)—he would not have made this vain criticism. The Universal Being transcends all parochial values.

Just as coloured water penetrates a piece of cloth freely and nicely when it is pure white, so also the instructions of a sage can penetrate and settle down in the hearts of aspirants only when their minds are calm, when there are no desires for enjoyments and when the impurities of their minds are destroyed. That is the reason why an aspirant is expected to possess the qualifications of Viveka (discrimination), Vairagya (dispassion), Sama (control of the mind), Dama (control of the senses), Uparati (turning away from worldly attractions), before he could practise the threefold Sadhana of hearing of the scriptures, reflection, and meditation on them. Discipline and purification of the mind and the senses are the prerequisites in the aspirants on the path of Truth and God-realisation.

Even when the nature of God is explained, those who have not been purged of their faults and impurities, either disbelieve or misbelieve it, as was the case with Indra and Virochana. Therefore, knowledge as inculcated arises only in him who has purified himself by Tapas (austerity), etc., performed either in this or in a previous birth. The Sruti (Upanishad) says: “To that high-souled man whose devotion to his preceptor is as great as that to the Lord, these secrets explained here become illumined.”

Some people catch fish in the river Ganga for satisfying their palate and quote the Gita to support their evil action: “Weapons cleave him not, nor fire burneth him.” (Chap. 11. 23). Wonderful philosophy indeed! Devils also can quote scriptures. These people are also followers of the Virochana school. They are the evil-doing, the deluded and the vilest of men. They cannot understand the teachings of the Gita as their wisdom has been destroyed by illusion and as they have embraced the nature of demons. May the Lord grant them subtle and pure intellect, inner spiritual strength and right understanding to comprehend the teachings of the Gita in their proper light and live in the spirit of the teachings.

Some ignorant people say: “Krishna is not God. He is not an Avatara (incarnation). He was a passionate cow-herd who lustfully played with the Gopis.” What was the age of Lord Krishna at that time? Was He not a boy of seven? Could there have been a tinge of passion in Him? Who can understand the secret of Rasa Lila and Madhurya Bhava (the lover-beloved relationship between the devotee and God), the culmination of highest Bhakti, Atmanivedana or total surrender to the Lord. It is only Narada, Suka Deva, Chaitanya, Mira, Hafiz, Ramananda, the Sakhis or the Gopis that could understand the secret of Rasa Lila. The Sakhis only are qualified for this. Did He not perform miracles when He was a boy? Did He not show that He was the Avatara of Lord Hari? Did He not show His Cosmic Form to His mother when He was a baby? Did He not subdue the Kaliya-serpent by standing on its hood? Did He not multiply Himself as countless Krishnas? Who were the Gopis? Were they not God-intoxicated beings who saw Krishna alone everywhere, who saw themselves also as Krishna? The sound of the Murali could throw them in a state of divine ecstasy or holy communion. They were above body-consciousness.

What is the fate of such people who cavil and carp against the Lord? Just listen. “Those devoid of reason think of Me, the unmanifested, as having manifestation, knowing not My supreme nature, imperishable, most excellent.” (Chapter VII. 24) “The foolish disregard Me, when clad in human semblance, ignorant of My supreme nature, the great Lord of beings. Empty of hope, empty of deeds, empty of wisdom, senseless, partaking of the deceitful, brutal and demoniacal nature (chapter IX. 11, 12), they, enwrapped in darkness, think wrong to be right, and see things in a perverted light. These demoniacal men know neither action nor renunciation, neither purity nor right conduct, neither truth nor uprightness. They do not know what ought to be done and what ought not to be done. I ever throw them into demoniacal wombs. Deluded birth after birth, not attaining Me, they sink into the lowest depths.” (Chapter XVI. 19, 20)

Some thoughtless people begin to entertain a doubt and say: “How could the Gita have been taught to Arjuna on the battlefield in such a short time? It could not.” This is wrong. It was all a revelation to Arjuna. Lord Krishna gave Arjuna the divine eye of intuition. The omniscient, omnipotent Lord can do anything. His Grace can make the dumb man eloquent and the cripple a climber of mountains.


An opponent writes: “In the Gita, chapter III. 33, it is said, ‘Even the man of knowledge behaves in conformity with his own nature; beings follow Nature; what shall restraint do?’ What is the use of our attempt at controlling the senses and the mind when Nature is all in all? When Nature is all-powerful and overwhelming, how can Sadhana overcome it?”

In the next verse, Lord Krishna distinctly advises us to control Raga-Dvesha (likes and dislikes). Nature can be subdued by Sadhana. In the study of the Gita, you should not try to confine the meaning to one verse alone. You will have to connect it with the previous and succeeding verses of the same chapter and the verses of the previous chapters. You will also have to make cross-references. Only then will you get the right answer.

Those who disregard the Lord’s commandment in III. 30: “Renouncing all actions in Me, with the mind centred in the Self, free from hope and egoism, free from mental fever, do thou fight,” and sit quiet renouncing their own duty will not derive any benefit by such renunciation. This Maya is invincible by even wise men: then how much more difficult will it be for worldly men to conquer it! For them, renunciation of work without attainment of knowledge is not desirable. They will be caught in the clutches of Maya. Of what avail is their effort to control the senses or what can restraint do in their case? These worldly men cannot escape the clutches of Raga-Dvesha.

Even the residual Sattvic Vasanas (good tendencies) in Jnanis which keep the body, work in accordance with the qualities of Nature, viz., Sattva, Rajas and Tamas. Even the wise men are affected by the three Gunas when they are not actually in Samadhi. They have no attachment to the body and other objects of enjoyment and, therefore, they will not be affected mentally. They will be self-contented and self-satisfied. They will not long for objects not attained, nor weep over things lost.

The objector says: “In the Gita, chapter XVIII. 61, Lord Krishna says: ‘The Lord dwelleth in the hearts of all beings, O Arjuna, by His illusive power, causing all beings to revolve, as though mounted on a potter’s wheel.’ Is man then a perfect slave? Is he like straw tossed about here and there? Has he not got free will to act?”

Lord Krishna tries His level best to persuade Arjuna to do his duty. He wants to extract work from Arjuna. So He speaks of his utter helplessness. In chapter VI. 5, Lord Krishna preaches about Purushartha or right exertion: “Uddharedatmanatmanam natmanamavasadayet—Let him raise the self by the Self and let not the self become depressed.”

Being under the sway of Nature, the natural Karmas or duties can never be forsaken. One’s duty should in no case be ignored. The Lord, the inner ruler, is the director of the individual soul. So long as he is not free from ignorance, he is bound to his own Dharma. Lord Krishna wants to make Arjuna fight as he is a Kshatriya. Elsewhere, the Lord has said: “Sreyan svadharmah—one’s own duty is good.” (XVIII. 47)

The opponent says: “In chapter XV. 7, Lord Krishna says: ‘A portion of Mine own Self, transformed in the world of life into an immortal spirit, draweth round itself the five senses with the mind as the sixth, veiled in matter.’ It is quite clear that the Jiva (individual soul) is an Amsa or part of Brahman, the Absolute. How can we say that the Jiva is identical with Brahman? The doctrine of Advaita (non-dualism) is wrong.”

In chapter VII. 17, the Lord says: “I hold the wise as verily Myself.” Here He speaks of identity. The doctrine of non-dualism is quite correct. Non-dualism is the highest realisation. The Lord gives instructions according to the type of the Adhikari (qualified aspirant). Advaita philosophy can be grasped only by the microscopic few. So, He speaks of other kinds of philosophical doctrines in other places, to suit different kinds of aspirants. There is neither Jiva nor Self-realisation from the Absolute viewpoint. Brahman alone exists in reality. Dvaita (dualism), Visishtadvaita (qualified monism), Suddha Advaita (pure monism) are different rungs in the ladder of realisation. The truth is that the Jiva and Brahman are One in essence. The Dvaitin and the Visishtadvaitin eventually reach the Advaitic goal or Vedantic realisation of Oneness. Do not be confused. Clarify your ideas and understand things in their proper light.


India is held in high esteem by the Westerners on account of the Gita. Mahatma Gandhi once visited one of the biggest libraries in London and asked the librarian: “What spiritual book is most often issued?” The librarian replied: “It is the Gita.” The Gita is very popular throughout the world. All aspirants should try to get the whole 18 chapters by heart. This can be done through daily Svadhyaya (scriptural study) in about two years, by getting by heart two verses daily.

Study of the Gita must be made compulsory in all schools and colleges of India: nay, of the whole world. It must become a textbook for students of schools and colleges. It must be introduced in their curriculum. It should find a very important place in every scheme of education. Only that system of education wherein moral and spiritual training is imparted along with secular knowledge, can be deemed sound, practical, sensible and perfect.

Everyone of you should study very carefully the Gita, a sublime and soul-stirring book that can bestow on you supreme peace, immortality and eternal bliss.

Hold the magnificent torch of faith. Let float high the unique banner of peace. Carry the magnificent shield of dispassion. Wear the marvellous armour of discrimination. Sing the immortal song of Soham or Sivoham or Radhesyam or Sitaram. March boldly with the band of Pranava, Om, Om. Blow the wonderful conch of courage. Kill the enemies: doubt, ignorance, passion and egoism, and enter the illimitable kingdom of Atman. Taste the divine immortal essence. Drink the nectar of immortality.

My silent adorations to Lord Ganesa, Lord Subrahmanya, Lord Rama, Sita Devi, Sri Sarasvati, Sri Bhagavan Vyasa, Sri Adi Sankaracharya, Padmapadacharya, Hastamalakacharya, Trotakacharya, Suresvaracharya, Sri Jnanadeva, Sri Swami Vishvananda, Sri Swami Vishnudevananda, all the Brahma Vidya Gurus, Saints, Acharyas, all commentators on the Bhagavad Gita, through whose grace and blessings alone I was able to write a commentary on the Bhagavad Gita. May their blessings be upon you all.

Glory, glory to the Gita. Glory to Lord Krishna Who has placed the Gita before men of this world for attaining Sreyas or Moksha. May His blessings be upon you all! May the Gita be your centre, ideal and goal! Blessed is the man who studies the Gita daily. Twice blessed is he who lives in the spirit of the Gita. Thrice blessed is he who has realised the knowledge of the Gita, Atmajnana or Self-knowledge!

Om Tat Sat
Om Santih, Santih, Santih




(To be read at the end of the day’s Gita-study)

श्री गणेशाय नमः॥ श्री गोपालकृष्णाय नमः॥


भगवन् परमेशान भक्तिरव्यभिचारिणी ।
प्रारब्धं भुज्यमानस्य कथं भवति हे प्रभो ॥१॥

Mother Earth said:

1. O Bhagavan! The Supreme Lord! How can unflinching devotion arise in him who is immersed in his Prarabdha Karmas (worldly life), O Lord?


प्रारब्धं भुज्यमानो हि गीताभ्यासरतः सदा ।
स मुक्तः स सुखी लोके कर्मणा नोपलिप्यते ॥२॥

The Lord Vishnu said:

2. Though engaged in the performance of worldly duties, one who is regular in the study of the Gita, becomes free. He is the happy man in this world. He is not bound by Karma.

महापापादिपापानि गीताध्यानं करोति चेत् ।
क्वचित्स्पर्शं न कुर्वन्ति नलिनीदलमम्बुवत् ॥३॥

3. Just as the water stains not the lotus-leaf, even so, sins do not taint him who is regular in the recitation of the Gita.

गीतायाः पुस्तकं यत्र यत्र पाठः प्रवर्तते ।
तत्र सर्वाणि तीर्थानि प्रयागादीनि तत्र चै ॥४॥

4. All the sacred places of pilgrimage like Prayaga and others, dwell in that place where the book, the Gita, is kept, and where the Gita is read.

सर्वे देवाश्च ऋषयो योगिनः पन्नगाश्च ये ।
गोपाला गोपिका वापि नारदोद्धवपार्षदैः ॥५॥

5. All the gods, sages, Yogins, divine serpents, Gopalas, Gopikas (friends and devotees of Lord Krishna), Narada, Uddhava and others (dwell here).

सहयो जायते शीघ्रं यत्र गीता प्रवर्तते ।
यत्र गीताविचारश्च पठनं पाठनं श्रुतम् ।
यत्राहं निश्चितं पृथ्वि निवसामि सदैव हि ॥६॥

6. Help comes quickly where the Gita is recited and, O Earth, I dwell at all times where the Gita is read, heard, taught and contemplated upon.

गीताश्रयेऽहं तिष्ठामि गीता मे चोत्तमं गृहम् ।
गीताज्ञानमुपाश्रित्य त्रींल्लोकान्पालयाम्यहम् ॥७॥

7. I reside in the Gita and the Gita is My best abode. I protect the three worlds with the knowledge of the Gita.

गीता मे परमा विद्या ब्रह्मरूपा न संशयः ।
अर्धमात्राक्षरा नित्या स्वानिर्वाच्यपदात्मिका ॥८॥

8. The Gita is My highest science, which is, without doubt, of the form of Brahman, the eternal, the Ardhamatra (of the Pranava Om), the ineffable splendour of the Self.

चिदानन्देन कृष्णेन प्रोक्ता स्वमुखतोऽर्जुनम् ।
वेदत्रयी परानन्दा तत्त्वार्थज्ञानसंयुता॥९॥

9. It was spoken by the blessed Krishna, the all-knowing, with His own mouth to Arjuna. It contains the essence of the three Vedas, the knowledge of the Reality. It is full of supreme bliss.

योऽष्टादश जपेन्नित्यं नरो निश्चलमानसः ।
ज्ञानसिद्धिं स लभते ततो याति परं पदम् ॥१०॥

10. He who recites the eighteen chapters of the Gita daily, with a pure, unshaken mind, attains perfection in knowledge and reaches the highest state or supreme goal.

पाठेऽसमर्थः संपूर्णे ततोऽर्द्धं पाठमाचरेत्।
तदा गोदानजं पुण्यं लभते नात्र संशयः ॥११॥

11. If a complete reading is not possible, even if only half of it is read, he attains the benefit of giving a cow as a gift. There is no doubt about this.

त्रिभागं पठमानस्तु गङ्गास्नानफलं लभेत् ।
षडंशं जपमानस्तु सोमयागफलं लभेत् ॥१२॥

12. He who recites one-third part of it achieves the merit of a bath in the sacred Ganga, and who recites one-sixth of it attains the merit of performing a Soma-sacrifice (a ritual).

एकाध्यायं तु यो नित्यं पठते भक्तिसंयुतः ।
रुद्रलोकमवाप्नोति जणो भूत्वा वसेच्चिरम् ॥१३॥

13. That person who reads one chapter with great devotion attains the world of Rudra and, having become a Gana (attendant of Lord Siva), lives there for many years.

अध्यायं श्लोकपादं वा नित्यं यः पठते नरः ।
स याति नरतां यावन्मन्वन्तरं वसुन्धरे ॥१४॥

14. If one reads a chapter or even a part of a verse daily, he, O Earth, retains a human body till the end of a Manvantara (71 Mahayugas or 308,448,000 years).

गीतायाः श्लोकदशकं सप्त पञ्च चतुष्टयम् ।
द्वौ त्रीनेकं तदर्धं वा श्लोकानां यः पठेन्नरः ॥१५॥
चन्द्रलोकमवाप्नोति वर्षणामयुतं धुवम् ।
गीतापाठसमायुक्तो मृतो मानुषतां व्रजेत् ॥१६॥

15, 16. He who repeats ten, seven, five, four, three, two verses or even one or half of a verse, attains the region of the moon and lives there for 10,000 years. Accustomed to the daily study of the Gita, a person, after death, is born again as a human being.

गीताभ्यासं पुनः कृत्वा लभते मुक्तिमुत्तमाम् ।
गीतेत्युच्चारसंयुक्तो म्रियमाणो गतिं लभेत् ॥१७॥

17. By repeated study of the Gita, one attains the highest liberation. Uttering “Gita” at the time of death, he attains the Goal (of life).

गीतार्थश्रवणासक्तो महापापयुतोऽपि वा ।
वैकुण्ठं समवाप्नोति विष्णुना सह मोदते ॥१८॥

18. Though full of sins, one who is ever intent on hearing the meaning of the Gita, goes to the kingdom of God and rejoices with Lord Vishnu.

गीतार्थं ध्यायते नित्यं कृत्वा कर्मणि भूरिशः ।
जीवन्मुक्तः स विज्ञेयो देहन्ते परमं पदम् ॥१९॥

19. He who meditates on the meaning of the Gita, having performed a great number of good actions, attains the supreme Goal after death. Such a man should be known as a Jivanmukta (a person liberated while living).

मलनिर्मोचनं पुंसां जलस्नानं दिने दिने ।
सकृद्‌गीताम्भसि स्नानं संसारमलनाशनम् ॥२०॥

20. A daily bath in water cleanses people of their bodily dirt; a bath taken once in the waters of the Gita cleanses them of the dirt of Samsara.

गीतामाश्रित्य बहवो भूभुजो जनकादयः ।
निर्धूतकल्मषा लोके गीता याताः परं पदम् ॥२१॥

21. In this world, taking refuge in the Gita many kings like Janaka and others have reached the highest state or goal, purified of all sins. It is so sung.

ये शृण्वन्ति पठन्त्येव गीताशास्त्रमहर्निशम् ।
न ते वै मानुषा ज्ञेया देवा एव न संशयः ॥२२॥

22. Those who hear or read day and night the scripture Gita should not be regarded as human beings; they are verily gods.

ज्ञानाज्ञानकृतं नित्यमिन्द्रियैर्जनितं च यत् ।
तत्सर्वं नाशमायाति गीतापाठेन तक्षणम् ॥२३॥

23. All sins whether committed knowingly or unknowingly, through senses or otherwise, get destroyed instantaneously by a constant study of the Gita.

धिक् तस्य ज्ञानमाचारं व्रतं चेष्टां तपो यशः ।
गीतार्थपठनं नास्ति नाधमस्तत्परो जनः ॥२४॥

24. Fie on the learning, conduct, observances, activity, austerity and renown of that person who has not studied the Gita; he is lowly indeed.

संसारसागरं घोरं तर्तुमिच्छति यो जनः ।
गीतानावं समारुह्य पारं याति सुखेन सः ॥२५॥

25. He who wishes to cross the fearful ocean of Samsara reaches its other shore easily by mounting on the boat of the Gita.

गीतायाः पठनं कृत्वा माहात्प्यं नैव यः पठेत् ।
वृथा पाठो भवेत्तस्य श्रम एव ह्युदाहृतः॥२६॥

26. He who fails to read this Glory of the Gita (the Gita Mahatmyam), after having read the Gita, loses the benefit thereby, and the effort alone remains.

This is to test and confirm the faith of the reader in the Gita. It is not a mere book but the Word of God and should therefore be studied with great faith and devotion which this Mahatmyam generates in one’s heart.

एतन्माहात्म्यसंयुक्तं गीताभ्यासं करोति यः ।
स तत्फलमवाप्नोति दुर्लभां गतिमाप्नुयात् ॥२७॥

27. One who studies the Gita, together with this Glory of the Gita, attains the fruit mentioned above and reaches the state which is otherwise very difficult to be attained.

सूत उवाच

माहात्म्यमेतद्‌गीतायाः मया प्रोक्तं सनातनम् ।
गीतान्ते च पठेद्यस्तु यदुक्तं तत्फलं लभेत् ॥२८॥

Suta said:

28. This greatness or Glory of the Gita which is eternal, as narrated by me, should be read at the end of the study of the Gita and the fruits mentioned therein will be obtained.

Thus ends the Glory of the Gita, contained in the Varaha Purana.

Om Santih, Santih, Santih.


श्रीगणेशाय नमः ॥ श्रीगोपालकृष्णाय नमः ॥

ॐ अस्य श्रीमद्भगवद्‌गीतामालामन्त्रस्य भगवान्वेदव्यास ऋषिः ।

अनुष्टुप्छन्दः । श्रीकृष्णः परमात्मा देवता ॥ अशोच्यानन्वशोचस्त्वं

प्रज्ञावादांश्च भाशसे इति बीचम् । सर्वधर्मान् परित्यज्य मामेकं शरणं व्रज

इति शक्तिः अहं त्वा सर्वपापेभ्यो मोक्षयिष्यामि मा शुचः इति

कीलकम् । नैनं छिन्दन्ति शस्त्राणि नैनं दहति पावक इत्यंगुष्ठाभ्यां नमः ॥

न चैनं क्लेदयन्त्यायो न शोषयति मारुत इति तर्जनीभ्यां नमः ॥

अच्छेद्योऽयमदाह्योऽयमक्लेद्योऽशोष्य एव च इति मध्यमाभ्यां नमः ॥

नित्यः सर्वगतः स्थाणुरचलोऽयं सनातन इत्यनामिकाभ्यां नमः ॥ पश्य मे

पार्थ रूपाणि शतशोऽथ सहस्रश इति कनिष्ठिकाभ्यां नमः ॥ नानाविधानि

दिव्यानि नानावर्णाकृतीनि च इति करतलकरपृष्ठाभ्यां नमः ॥ इति

करन्यासः ॥ अथ हृदयादिन्यासः ॥ नैनं छिन्दन्ति शस्त्राणि नैनं दहति

पावक इति हृदयाय नमः ॥ न चैनं क्लेदयन्त्यापो न शोषयति मारुत इति

शिरसे स्वाह ॥ अच्छेद्योऽयमदाह्योऽयमक्लेद्योऽशोष्य एव च इति

शिखायै वषट् ॥ नित्यः सर्वगतः स्थाणुरचलोऽयं सनातन इति कवचाय

हुम् । पश्य मे पार्थ रुपाणि शतशोऽथ सहस्रश इति नेत्रत्रयाय वौषट् ॥

नानाविधानि दिव्यानि नानावर्णाकृतीनि च इति अस्राय फट् ॥

श्रीकृष्णप्रीत्यर्थे पाठे विनियोगः ॥



ॐ पार्थाय प्रतिबोधितां भगवता नारायणेन स्वयम्
व्यासेन ग्रथितां पुराणमुनिना मध्येमहाभारतम् ।
अद्वैतामृतवर्षिणीं भगवतीमष्टादशाध्यायिनी-
मम्ब त्वामनुसन्दधामि भगवद्‌गीते भवद्वेषिणीम् ॥१॥

Om (the monosyllable indicative of the Supreme Brahman), पार्थाय प्रतिबोधिताम् with which Partha (Arjuna) was illumined, भगवता by the Lord,नारायणेनby Narayana, स्वयम् Himself,व्यासेनby Vyasa, ग्रथिताम्composed, पुराणमुनिनाby the ancient Muni, मध्येमहाभारतम्in the midst of Mahabharata, अद्वैतामृतवर्षिणीम्the showerer of the nectar of Advaita,भगवतीम्the Divine Mother, अष्टादशाध्यायिनीम् in the form of eighteen chapters, अम्ब affectionate Mother, त्वाम्Thee, I meditate, O Bhagavad Gita,भवद्वेषिणीम्destroyer of rebirth.

1. Om, O Bhagavad Gita, with which Partha (Arjuna) was illumined by Lord Narayana Himself and which was composed in the middle of the Mahabharata by the ancient sage Vyasa, O Divine Mother, the destroyer of rebirth, the showerer of the nectar of Advaita (teaching on the Oneness of all things) and consisting of eighteen chapters—upon Thee, O Bhagavad Gita! O affectionate mother! I meditate.

नमोऽस्तु ते व्यास विशालबुद्धे फुल्लारविन्दायतपत्रनेत्र ।
येन त्वया भारततैलपूर्णः प्रज्वालितो ज्ञानमयः प्रदीपः ॥२॥


salutation, अस्तु be, ते unto thee,व्यास (O) Vyasa, विशालबुद्धे of broad intellect, फुल्लारविन्दायतपत्रनेत्र with eyes like the petals of a full-blown lotus, येन by which, त्वया by thee, भारततैलपूर्णः full of the oil of the Mahabharata, प्रज्वालितः lighted, ज्ञानमयः consisting of wisdom, प्रदीपः lamp.

2. Salutations unto thee, O Vyasa of broad intellect and with eyes like the petals of full-blown lotus, by whom the lamp of knowledge, filled with the oil of the Mahabharata, has been lighted.

प्रपन्नपारिजाताय तोत्रवेत्रैकपाणये ।
ज्ञनमुद्राय कृष्णाय गीतामृतदुहे नमः ॥३॥


the Parijata, or the Kalpataru, the bestower of all desires, for those who take refuge in Him, तोत्रवेत्रैकपाणये who holds a whip in one hand, ज्ञनमुद्राय the holder of knowledge-symbol, कृष्णाय to Krishna, गीतामृतदुहे the milker of the Gita Nectar, नमः salutation.

3. Salutations to Krishna, the Parijata tree or the Kalpataru or the bestower of all desires for those who take refuge in Him, the holder of the whip in one hand, the wielder of the symbol of knowledge, and the milker of the nectar of the Bhagavad Gita.

सर्वोपनिषदो गावो दोग्धा गोपालनन्दनः ।
पार्थो वत्सः सुधीर्भोक्ता दुग्धं गीतामृतं महत् ॥४॥


all the Upanishads, गावः the cows,दोग्धा the milker, गोपालनन्दनः Krishna, the cowherd boy, पार्थः Arjuna,वत्सः the calf, सुधीः (man) of purified intellect, र्भोक्ता the drinker, दुग्धम् the milk, गीता Gita,अमृतम्nectar, महत् the great.

4. All the Upanishads are the cows; the Milker is Krishna, the cowherd-boy; Partha (Arjuna) is the calf; men of purified intellect are the drinkers, the milk is the great nectar of the Gita.

वसुदेवसुतं देवं कंसचाणूरमर्दनम् ।
देवकीपरमानन्दं कृष्णं वन्दे जगद्‌गुरुम् ॥५॥


the son of Vasudeva,देवम् God, कंसचाणूरमर्दनम् the destroyer of Kamsa and Chanura,देवकीपरमानन्दम् the Supreme bliss of Devaki (mother of Krishna), कृष्णम् to Krishna, वन्दे I salute, जगद्‌गुरुम् the world-teacher.

5. I salute Lord Krishna, the world-teacher, the son of Vasudeva, the destroyer of Kamsa and Chanura, the supreme bliss of Devaki.

भीष्मद्रोणतटा जयद्रथजला गान्धारनीलोत्पला
शल्यग्राहवती कृपेण वहनी कर्णेन वेलाकुला ।
अश्वत्थामविकर्णघोरमकरा दुर्योधनावर्तिनी
सोत्तीर्णा खलु पाण्डवै रणनदी कैवर्तकः केशवः ॥६॥


with Bhishma and Drona as the banks,जयद्रथजला with Jayadratha as the water, गान्धारनीलोत्पला with the king of Gandhara as the blue water-lily, शल्यग्राहवती with Salya as the crocodile, कृपेण वहनी with Kripa as the current, कर्णेन वेलाकुलाwith Karna as the billow, अश्वत्थामविकर्णघोरमकरा with Asvatthama and Vikarna as terrible alligators, दुर्योधनावर्तिनी with Duryodhana as the whirlpool, सःthat, उत्तीर्णा crossed over, खलु indeed, पाण्डवैby Pandavas, रणनदीthe battle-river, कैवर्तकः the helmsman, केशवः Kesava (Krishna).

6. With Kesava as the helmsman, verily was crossed by the Pandavas, the battle-river whose banks were Bhishma and Drona, whose water was Jayadratha, whose blue lotus was the king of Gandhara, whose crocodile was Salya, whose current was Kripa, whose billow was Karna, whose terrible alligators were Asvatthama and Vikarna, whose whirlpool was Duryodhana.

पाराशर्यवचःसरोजममलं गीतार्थगन्धोत्कटं
नानाख्यानककेसरं हरिकथासम्बोधनाबोधितम्।
लोके सज्जनषट्‌पदैरहरहः पेपीयमानं मुदा
भूयाद्भारतपङ्कजं कलिमलप्रध्वंसिनः श्रेयमे ॥७॥


born in the lake of the words of the son of Parasara (Vyasa), अमलम्spotless, गीतार्थगन्धोत्कटम् sweet with the fragrance of the meaning of the Gita, नानाख्यानककेसरम्with many stories as its stamens, हरिकथासम्बोधनाबोधितम् fully opened by the discourses on Hari, लोके in the world,सज्जनषट्‌पदैः by the bees of good men, आहरहःday by day, पेपीयमानम् drunk,मुदा joyously, भूयात्may be, भारतपङ्कजम् the lotus of the Mahabharata, कलिमलप्रध्वंसि the destroyer of the dirt of Kali age, नःto us, श्रेयमे for the supreme good.

7. May this lotus of the Mahabharata, born in the lake of the words of Vyasa, sweet with the fragrance of the meaning of the Gita, with many stories as its stamens, fully opened by the discourses on Hari, the destroyer of the sins of the Kali age, and drunk joyously by the bees of good men in the world, day by day, become the bestower of good to us.

मुकं करोति वाचालं पङ्गुं लङ्घयते गिरिम्।
यत्कृपा तमहं वन्दे परमानन्दमाधवम्॥८॥


the dumb, करोति makes,वाचालम् eloquent, पङ्गुम् the cripple, लङ्घयते enables to climb, गिरिम् mountain,यत्कृपा whose grace, तम् that, अहम् I, वन्दे salute, परमानन्दमाधवम् Madhava, the source of supreme Bliss.

8. I salute that Madhava, the source of supreme bliss, whose grace makes the dumb man eloquent and the cripple cross mountains.

यं ब्रह्मावरुणेन्द्रमरुतः स्तुन्वन्ति दिव्यैः स्तवै-
र्वेदैः सांगपदक्रमोपनिषदैर्गायन्ति यं सामगाः।
ध्यानावस्थिततद्‌गतेन मनसा पश्यन्ति यं योगिनो
यस्यान्तं न विदुः सुरासुरगणा देवाय तस्मै नमः॥९॥


whom, ब्रह्मावरुणेन्द्रमरुतःBrahma, Varuna, Indra, Rudra and Maruts, स्तुन्वन्ति praise, दिव्यैः divine, स्तवैः with hymns, र्वेदैः with the Vedas, सांगपदक्रमोपनिषदैः with their Angas in the Pada and Krama methods and by the Upanishads, गायन्ति sing, यम् whom, सामगाः the Sama-chanters, ध्यानावस्थिततद्‌गतेन मनसा with the mind absorbed in Him through meditation,पश्यन्ति see, यम् whom, योगिनोः the Yogins, यस्य whose, अन्तम्end, नnot, विदुःknow, सुरासुरगणाःthe hosts of Devas and Asuras, देवाय to God,तस्मै that,नमः salutation.

9. Salutations to that God Whom Brahma, Varuna, Indra, Rudra and the Maruts praise with divine hymns, of Whom the Sama-chanters sing by the Vedas and their Angas, in the Pada and the Krama methods, and by the Upanishads, Whom the Yogins see with their minds absorbed in Him through meditation, and Whose end the hosts of Devas and Asuras know not.

Selected Verses From Chapter 18

सर्वगुह्यतमं भूयः शृणु मे परमं वचः।
इष्टोऽसि मे दृढमिति ततो वक्ष्यामि ते हितम्॥६४॥


the most secret of all, भूयः again, शृणु hear, मे My, परमम् supreme,वचः word,इष्टः beloved, असि (thou) art, मेof Me, दृढम् dearly, इति thus, ततः therefore,वक्ष्यामि (I) will speak, ते thy, हितम् what is good.

64. Hear thou again My supreme word, most secret of all; because thou art dearly beloved of Me, I will tell thee what is good.

Commentary: Now listen once more with rapt attention to My words. Thou art very dear to Me. Thou art a sincere aspirant. Therefore I am telling thee this most mysterious truth. Hear from Me this mystery of all mysteries. I shall tell it to you again to make a deep impression on your mind, although it has been declared more than once. I do not hope to get any reward from thee. Thou art My most beloved friend and disciple. Therefore I will speak what is good for thee, the means of attaining Self-realisation. This is the supreme good or the highest of all kinds of good for thee.

मन्मना भव मद्भक्तो मद्याजी मां नमस्कुरु।
मामेवैष्यसि सत्यं ते प्रतिजाने प्रियोऽसि मे॥६५॥


with mind fixed on Me, भव be, मद्भक्तः devoted to Me, मद्याजी sacrifice to Me, माम् to Me, नमस्कुरु bow down,माम् to Me,एव even,एष्यसि (thou) shalt come, सत्यम् truth, ते to thee, प्रतिजाने(I) promise, प्रियः dear,असि(thou) art, मे of Me.

65. Fix thy mind on Me, be devoted to Me, sacrifice to Me, bow down to Me. Thou shalt come even to Me; truly do I promise unto thee, (for) thou art dear to Me.

Commentary: Develop one-pointedness of mind. Fix thy thought on Me. If the mind wanders bring it again and again to the centre or point or object of meditation, through constant practice. Offer all thy actions to Me. Let thy tongue utter My name. Let thy hands work for Me. Let thy feet move for Me. Let all thy actions be for Me. Give up hatred towards any living creature. Bow down to Me. Then thou wilt attain Me.

The Lord gives Arjuna His definite word of promise or solemn declaration. Having received My grace thou wilt gain complete knowledge of Me and that in itself will indeed lead to thy absorption into My Being.

O Arjuna, looking up to Me alone as thy aim and the sole refuge, thou shalt assuredly come to Me.

Have faith in the words of the Lord and make a solemn promise. Take the Lord as your sole refuge. You will attain final emancipation.

The secret of devotion is to take the Lord as your sole refuge. In the next verse the Lord proceeds to speak of the gist of self-surrender. (Cf. IX. 34; XII. 8)

सर्वधर्मान्परित्यज्य मामेकं शरणं व्रज।
अहं त्वा सर्वपापेभ्यो मोक्षयिष्यामि मा शुचः॥६६॥


all duties, परित्यज्य having abandoned, माम् to Me, एकम् alone, शरणम्refuge, व्रज take, अहम् I, त्वा thee, सर्वपापेभ्यः from all sins, मोक्षयिष्यामि will liberate, मा don’t, शुचः grieve.

66. Abandoning all duties, take refuge in Me alone: I will liberate thee from all sins; grieve not.

Commentary: This is the answer given by the Lord to the question put by Arjuna in chapter II, verse 7: “I ask Thee which may be the better; tell me that decidedly. I am Thy disciple, suppliant to Thee; teach me.”

All Dharmas: Righteous deeds, including Adharma; all actions, righteous or unrighteous, as absolute freedom from all actions is intended to be taught here.

Taking refuge in Me alone implies the knowledge of unity without any thought of duality; knowing that there is nothing else except Me, the Self of all, dwelling the same in all. If thou art established in this faith, I shall liberate thee from all sins, from all bonds of Dharma and Adharma by manifesting Myself as thy own Self.

To behold forms is the Dharma of the eye. The support or substratum of all forms is Brahman. When you look at an object behold Brahman Which is the one essence and abandon the form as it is illusory and unreal. Have the same attitude towards the other objects which pertain to the other senses.

Give up the Jiva-Dharma (the notions: “I am the doer of actions. I enjoy. I am a Brahmana. I am a Brahmachari. I am endowed with a little knowledge and power, etc.” and get yourself established in Brahma-Bhavana (the understanding or knowledge “I am Brahman”). This is what is meant by taking refuge in Lord Krishna, according to the Vedantins.

Work ceaselessly for the Lord but surrender the fruits of all actions to the Lord. Take the Lord as your sole refuge. Live for Him. Work for Him. Serve Him in all forms. Think of Him only. Meditate on Him alone. See Him everywhere. Worship Him in your heart. Consecrate your life, all actions, feelings and thoughts to the Lord. You will rest in Him. You will attain union with Him. You will attain immortal supreme peace and eternal bliss. This is the view of another school of thought.

Sri Sankara very strongly refutes the idea that knowledge in conjunction with Karma (action) produces or leads to liberation. He says that Karma and knowledge may not go together in the same man, that karma helps the man to get purification of the heart, and that right knowledge of the Self alone will give him absolute freedom from Samsara. He says that work and knowledge are like darkness and light, that action is possible only in this universe of illusory phenomena which is the projection of ignorance; and knowledge dispels this ignorance. (Cf. III. 30; IX. 22)

इदं ते नातपस्काय नाभक्ताय कदाचन।
न चाशुश्रूषवे वाच्यं न च मां योऽभ्यसूयति॥६७॥


this, ते by thee, न not, अतपस्काय to one who is devoid of austerity, न not, अभक्तायto one who is not devoted, कदाचन never,न not,च and,अशुश्रूषवे to one who does not render service or who does not desire to listen, वाच्यम् to be spoken, न not, च and,माम् Me,यः who,अभ्यसूयति cavils at.

67. This is never to be spoken by thee to one who is devoid of austerities or devotion, nor to one who does not render service or who does not desire to listen, nor to one who cavils at Me.

Commentary: This: The scripture which has been taught to you.

Service: To the Guru.

The scripture can be taught to him who does not speak ill of the Lord, who is a man of austerities, who is devoted, who is thirsting to hear and who renders service to his Guru.

One who cavils at Me: He who disregards Me taking Me for an ordinary man, who does not like to be told that I am the Lord.

य इमं परमं गुह्यं मद्भक्तेष्वभिधास्यति।
भक्तिं मयि परां कृत्वा मामेवैष्यत्यसंशयः॥६८॥


who, इमम् this, परमम् supreme, गुह्यम् secret,मद्भक्तेषु in My devotees, अभिधास्यति shall declare, भक्तिम् devotion, मयिin Me, पराम् supreme, कृत्वा having done, माम् to Me, एव even, एष्यति shall come, असंशयः doubtless.

68. He who with supreme devotion to Me will teach this supreme secret to My devotees, shall doubtlessly come to Me.

Commentary: This supreme secret: The teachings of the Gita as taught above in the form of a dialogue between Lord Krishna and Arjuna. Why is it called a supreme secret? Because it helps one to attain immortality or freedom from the wheel of birth and death.

He alone, who has devotion, is qualified to receive the teachings of the Gita.

Teach with the faith that he is thus doing service to the Lord, the Supreme Teacher.

Doubtless may also mean ‘freedom from doubts’.

न च तस्मान्मनुष्येषु कश्चिन्मे प्रियकृत्तमः।
भविता न च मे तस्मादन्यः प्रियतरो भुवि॥६९॥

not, चand, तस्मात् than he, मनुष्येषु among men, कश्चित् any, मे of Me, प्रियकृत्तमः one who does dearer service, भविता shall be,न not,च and,मे of Me,तस्मात् than he, अन्यः another, प्रियतरःdearer, भुवि on the earth.

69. Nor is there any among men who does dearer service to Me, nor shall there be another on earth dearer to Me than he.

Commentary: He who hands down this Gita to My devotees does immense service to Me. He is very dear to Me. There is none in the present generation who does dearer service to Me, nor shall there be in future also in this world.

Bhuvi: On earth; in this world.

अध्येष्यते च य इमं धर्म्यं संवादमावयोः।
ज्ञानयज्ञेन तेनाहमिष्टः स्यामिति मे मतिः॥७०॥


shall study, च and, यः who, इमम् this, धर्म्यम् sacred,संवादम् dialogue, आवयोः of ours, ज्ञानयज्ञेन by the sacrifice of wisdom, तेन by him, अहम् I, इष्टः worshipped,स्याम् (I) shall have been, इति thus, मे My, मतिः conviction.

70. And he who will study this sacred dialogue of ours, by him I shall have been worshipped by the sacrifice of wisdom,—such is My conviction.

Commentary: There are four kinds of sacrifice—Vidhi, Japa, Upamsu and Manasa. Vidhi is ritual. Japa is recitation of a Mantra. Upamsu is Japa done in a whisper. Of the four kinds, Jnana-Yajna or the wisdom-sacrifice comes under Manasa and is, therefore, the highest. The Gita is eulogised as a Jnana-Yajna. He who studies this scripture with faith and devotion will attain the fruit that is equal to that of performing Jnana-Yajna or meditation on a deity and the like.

श्रद्धावाननसूयश्च शृणुयादपि यो नरः।
सोऽपि मुक्तः शुभाँल्लोकान्प्राप्नुयात्पुण्यकर्मणाम्॥७१॥


full of faith, अनसूयः free from malice, च and, शृणुयात् may hear, अपिalso, यःwho, नरः man, सः he,अपि also,मुक्तः liberated, शुभान् happy, लोकान्worlds, प्राप्नुयात् shall attain, पुण्यकर्मणाम् of those of righteous deeds.

71. Also the man who hears this, full of faith and free from malice, he, too, liberated, shall attain to the happy worlds of those of righteous deeds.

Commentary: Liberated from sin.

Punyakarmanam: Of those who have done Agnihotra and such other sacrifices.

He too: Much more so who understands the teachings of the Gita, who lives in its spirit and who practises the most valuable spiritual instructions contained in it.

कच्चिदेतच्छ्रुतं पार्थ त्वयैकाग्रेण चेतसा।
कच्चिदज्ञानसंमोहः प्रनष्टस्ते धनञ्जय॥७२॥


whether, एतत् this, श्रुतम् heard,पार्थ O son of Kunti (Arjuna), त्वया by thee, एकाग्रेणone-pointed, चेतसा by mind,कच्चित् whether, अज्ञानसंमोहः the delusion of ignorance, प्रनष्टः has been destroyed, ते thy, धनञ्जय O Dhananjaya.

72. Has this been heard, O Arjuna, with one-pointed mind? Has the delusion of thy ignorance been destroyed, O Dhananjaya?

Commentary: It is the duty of the spiritual teacher or preceptor to make the aspirant understand the teaching of the scripture and to enable him to attain the goal of life (Moksha). If the student has not grasped the subject he will have to explain it in some other way with similes, analogies and illustrations. That is the reason why Lord Krishna asks Arjuna: “Has the delusion of thy ignorance been destroyed?”

This: What I have told thee.

Have you heard it, O Arjuna, with one-pointed mind? Have you grasped My teaching?

Delusion of ignorance: The absence of discrimination which is caused by ignorance and which is natural. The destruction of delusion is the aim of all this endeavour on your part to hear the scripture and the exertion on My part as the teacher.

अर्जुन उवाच

नष्तो मोहः स्मृतिर्लब्धा त्वत्प्रसादान्मयाच्युत।
स्थितोऽस्मि गतसन्देहः करिष्ये वचनं तव॥७३॥


is destroyed, मोहः delusion,स्मृतिः memory (knowledge), लब्धा has been gained, त्वत्प्रसादात् through Thy grace, मया by me, अच्युत O Krishna,स्थितः अस्मि I remain, गतसन्देहः freed from doubts, करिष्ये (I) will do, वचनम् word, तव Thy.

Arjuna said:

73. Destroyed is my delusion as I have gained my knowledge (memory) through Thy grace, O Krishna. I remain freed from doubts. I will act according to Thy word.

Commentary: Moha: Delusion: This is the strongest weapon of Maya to take the Jivas in Her clutch. It is born of ignorance. It is the cause of the whole evil of Samsara. It is as hard to cross as the ocean.

Smritih: I have attained knowledge of the true nature of the Self. The whole aim of Sadhana or spiritual practice and the study of scriptures is the annihilation of delusion and the attainment of the knowledge of the Self. When one gets it, the three knots or ties of ignorance, viz., ignorance, delusion (desire) and action are destroyed, all the doubts are cleared, and all the Karmas are destroyed.

“To him who beholds the Self in all beings, what delusion is there, what grief?” (Isavasya Upanishad, 7)

I shall do Thy word: Arjuna means to say, “I am firm in Thy command. Through Thy grace I have achieved the end of life. I have nothing more to do.”

सञ्जय उवाच

इत्यहं वासुदेवस्य पार्थस्य च महात्मनः।
संवादमिममश्रौषमद्भुतं रोमहर्षणम्॥७४॥


thus, अहम् I, वासुदेवस्य of Krishna, पार्थस्य of Arjuna, चand, महात्मनः high-souled, संवादम् dialogue,इमम् this,अश्रौषम् (I) have heard, अद्भुतम् wonderful, रोमहर्षणम् which causes the hair to stand on end.

Sanjaya said:

74. Thus I have heard this wonderful dialogue between Krishna and the high-souled Arjuna, which causes the hair to stand on end.

Commentary: Wonderful because it deals with Yoga and transcendental spiritual matters that pertain to the mysterious immortal Self.

Whenever good, higher emotions manifest themselves in the heart the hair stands on end. Devotees often experience this horripilation.

व्यासप्रसादाच्छ्रुतवानेतद्‌गुह्यमहं परम्।
योगं योगेश्वरात्कृष्णात्साक्षात्कथयतः स्वयम्॥७५॥


through the grace of Vyasa, श्रुतवान् have heard, एतत् this, गुह्यम्secret, अहम् I,परम् supreme, योगम् Yoga, योगेश्वरात्from the Lord of Yoga, कृष्णात् from Krishna, साक्षात् directly, कथयतःdeclaring, स्वयम् Himself.

75. Through the grace of Vyasa I have heard this supreme and most secret Yoga direct from Krishna, the Lord of Yoga, Himself declaring it.

Commentary: Through the grace of Vyasa: By obtaining the divine eye from him.

Yoga: This dialogue between Krishna and Arjuna, I have heard it direct from Him. This dialogue is called Yoga because it treats of Yoga and it leads to the attainment of union with the Lord.

राजन्संस्मृत्य संस्मृत्य संवादमिममद्भुतम्।
केशवार्जुनयोः पुण्यं हृष्यामि च मुहुर्मुहुः॥७६॥


O King, संस्मृत्य having remembered, संस्मृत्य having remembered, संवादम् the dialogue, इमम् this, अद्भुतम् wonderful, केशवार्जुनयोः between Kesava and Arjuna, पुण्यम् holy,हृष्यामि rejoice, च and, मुहुः again, मुहुः again.

76. O King, remembering this wonderful and holy dialogue between Krishna and Arjuna, I rejoice again and again.

Commentary: Rajan: King Dhritarashtra to whom the Gita is narrated by Sanjaya.

Punyam: Holy because the mere hearing of the dialogue destroys a multitude of sins and makes the hearer pious and God-fearing and turns his mind towards God.

तच्च संस्मृत्य संस्मृत्य रूपमत्यद्भुतं हरेः।
विस्मयो मे महान् राजन्‌ हृष्यामि च पुनः पुनः॥७७॥


that, च and, संस्मृत्य having remembered, संस्मृत्य having remembered, रूपम् the form,अत्यद्भुतम् the most wonderful, हरेः of Hari,विस्मयः wonder, मे my, महान् great, राजन् O King, हृष्यामिrejoice, चand, पुनःagain, पुनः again.

77. And, remembering again and again, also that most wonderful form of Hari, great is my wonder, O King; and I rejoice again and again.

Commentary: Form: The Cosmic Form. (Cf. XI)

यत्र योगेश्वरः कृष्णो यत्र पार्थो धनुर्धरः।
तत्र श्रीर्विजयो भूतिर्ध्रुवा नीतिर्मतिर्मम॥७८॥


wherever, योगेश्वरः the Lord of Yoga, कृष्णः Krishna, यत्रwherever, पार्थः Arjuna, धनुर्धरः the archer, तत्र there, श्री prosperity, विजयःvictory, भूतिः happiness, ध्रुवा firm,नीतिः policy, मतिः conviction, मम my.

78. Wherever is Krishna, the Lord of Yoga; wherever is Arjuna, the wielder of the bow; there are prosperity, victory, happiness and firm policy; such is my conviction.

Commentary: This verse is called the Ekasloki Gita, i.e., Bhagavad Gita in one verse. Repetition of even this one verse bestows the benefits of reading the whole of the scripture.

Wherever. On that side on which.

Yogesvarah: The Lord of Yoga. Krishna is called the Lord of Yogas as the seed of all Yogas comes forth from Him.

Dhanurdharah: The wielder of the bow called the Gandiva.

There: On the side of the Pandavas.

ॐ तत्सत् इति श्रीमद्भगवद्‌गीतासूपनिषत्सु
ब्रह्मनिद्यायां योगशास्त्रे श्रीकृष्णार्जुनसंवादे
मोक्षसंन्यासयोगो नाम अष्टादशोऽध्यायः॥

Thus in the Upanishads of the glorious Bhagavad Gita, the science of the Eternal, the scripture of Yoga, the dialogue between Sri Krishna and Arjuna, ends the eighteenth discourse entitled:

The Yoga of Liberation by Renunciation.





क्लैब्यं मा स्म गमः पार्थ नैतत्त्वय्युपपद्य्ते।
क्षुद्रं हृदयदौर्बल्यं त्यक्त्वोत्तिष्ठ परन्तप॥

l. Yield not to impotence, O Partha! It does not befit thee. Cast off this mean weakness of heart! Stand up, O Parantapa! (II. 3)

मात्रास्पर्शास्तु कौन्तेय शीतोष्णसुखदुः खदाः।
आगमापायिनोऽनित्यास्तांस्तितिक्षस्व भारत॥

2. The contacts of senses with objects, O son of Kunti, which cause heat and cold, pleasure and pain, have a beginning and an end; they are impermanent; bear them bravely, O Bharata. (II. 14)

अन्तवन्त इमे देह नित्यस्योक्ताः शरीरिणः।
अनाशिनोऽप्रमेयस्य तस्माद्युध्यस्व भारत॥

3. These bodies of the embodied Self, Which is Eternal, Indestructible, Immeasurable, are said to have an end. Therefore fight, O Bharata. (II. 18)

हतो वा प्राप्यसि स्वर्गं जित्वा वा भोक्ष्यसे महीम्।
तस्मादुत्तिष्ठ कौन्तेय युद्धाय कृतनिश्चयः॥

4. Slain, thou wilt obtain heaven; victorious, thou wilt enjoy the earth; therefore, stand up, O son of Kunti, resolved to fight. (II. 37)

सुखदुःखे ममे कृत्वा लाभालाभौ जयाजयौ।
ततो युद्धाय युज्यस्व नैवं पापमवाप्स्यसि॥

5. Having made pleasure and pain, gain and loss, victory and defeat the same, engage thou in battle for the sake of battle; thus thou shalt not incur sin. (II. 38)

कर्मण्येवाधिकारस्ते मा फलेषु कदाचन।
मा कर्मफलहेतुर्भूर्मा ते सङ्गोऽस्त्वकर्मणि॥

6. Thy right is to work only; but never with its fruits; let not the fruit of action be thy motive, nor let thy attachment be to inaction. (II. 47)

योगस्थः कुरु कर्माणि सङ्गं त्यक्त्वा धनञ्जय।
सिद्ध्यसिद्ध्योः समो भूत्वा समत्वं योग उच्यते॥

7. Perform action, O Dhananjaya, being steadfast in Yoga, abandoning attachment and balanced in success and failure. Evenness of mind is called Yoga. (II. 48)

बुद्धियुक्तो जहातीह उभे सुकृतदुष्कृते।
तस्माद्योगाय युज्यस्व योगः कर्मसु कौशलम्॥

8. Endowed with wisdom (evenness of mind), one casts off in this life both good deeds and evil deeds; therefore, devote thyself to Yoga; Yoga is skill in action. (II. 50)

तस्मादसक्तः सततं कार्यं कर्म समाचार।
असक्तो ह्याचरन्कर्म परमाप्नोति पूरुषः॥

9. Therefore, do thou always without attachment, perform action which should be done; for, by performing action without attachment, man reaches the Supreme. (III. 19)

मयि सर्वाणि कर्माणि संन्यस्याध्यात्मचेतसा।
निराशीर्निर्ममो भूत्वा युध्यस्व विगतज्वरः॥

10. Renouncing all actions in Me, with the mind centred on the Self, free from hope and egoism, free from (mental) fever, do thou fight. (III. 30)

तस्मात्त्वमिन्द्रियाण्यादौ नियम्य भरतर्षभ।
पाप्मानं प्रजहि ह्येनं ज्ञानविज्ञाननाशनम्॥

11. Therefore, O best of the Bharatas, controlling the senses first, do thou kill this sinful (desire), the destroyer of knowledge and realisation. (III. 41)

एवं बुद्धेः परं बुद्‌क्ष्वा संस्तभ्यात्मानमात्मना।
जहि शत्रुं महाबाहो कामरूपं दुरासदम्॥

12. Thus knowing Him Who is superior to intellect and restraining the self by the Self, slay thou O mighty-armed, the enemy in the form of desire, hard to conquer. (III. 43)

तस्मादज्ञानसंभूतं हृत्स्थं ज्ञानासिनाऽऽत्मनः।
छित्त्वैनं संशयं योगमातिष्ठोत्तिष्ठ भारत॥

13. Therefore, with the sword of knowledge, cut asunder the doubt of the self born of ignorance, residing in thy heart, take refuge in Yoga. Arise, O Bharata! (IV 42)

यतो यतो निश्चरति मनश्चञ्चलमस्थिरम्।
ततस्ततो नियम्यैतदात्मन्येव वशं नयेत्‌॥

14. From whatever cause the restless and unsteady mind wanders away, from that (the Object of Meditation), let him restrain it and bring it under the control of the Self alone. (VI. 26)

तपस्विभ्योऽधिको योगी ज्ञनिभ्योऽपि मतोऽधिकः।
कर्मिभ्यश्चाधिको योगी तस्माद्योगी भवार्जुन॥

15. The Yogi is thought to be superior to the ascetics, and even superior to men of knowledge (obtained through the study of Shastras); he is also superior to men of action; therefore, be thou a Yogi, O Arjuna. (VI. 46)

तस्मात्सर्वेषु कालेषु मामनुस्मर युध्य च।

16. Therefore, at all times remember Me only and fight. With mind and intellect fixed (or absorbed) in Me, thou shalt doubtless come to Me alone. (VIII. 7)

नैते सृती पार्थ जानन् योगी मुह्यति क्श्चन।
तस्मात्सर्वेषु कालेषु योगयुक्तो भवर्जुन॥

17. Knowing these paths, O Partha, no Yogi is deluded; therefore, at all times be steadfast in Yoga, O Arjuna. (VIII. 27)

पत्रं पुष्पं फलं तोयं यो मे भक्त्या प्रयच्छति।
तदहं भक्त्युपहृतमश्नामि प्रयतात्मनः॥

18. Whoever offers Me with devotion a leaf, a flower, a fruit, water, that I accept offered by the pure-minded, with devotion. (IX. 26)

किं पुनर्बाहणाः पुण्या भक्ता राजर्षयस्तथा।
अनित्यमसुखं लोकमिमं प्राप्य भजस्व माम्॥

19. How much more easily then the holy Brahmanas devoted royal saints (attain the goal)! Having obtained this impermanent and unhappy world, do thou worship Me. (IX. 33)

मन्मना भव मद्भक्तो मह्याजी मां नमस्कुरु।
मामेवैष्यसि युक्त्वैवमात्मानं मत्परायणः॥

20. Fix thy mind on Me; be devoted to Me; sacrifice to Me; bow down to Me; having thus united thy (whole) self to Me; taking Me as the Supreme Goal, thou shalt come unto Me. (IX. 34)

न तु मां शक्यसे द्रष्तुमनेनैव स्वचक्षुषा।
दिव्यं ददामि ते चक्षुः पश्य मे योगमैश्वरम्॥

21. But thou art not able to behold Me with these thine eyes alone; I give thee divine eye: behold My Lordly Yoga. (XI. 8)

तस्मात्त्वमुत्तिष्ठ यशो लभस्व
जित्वा शत्रून् भुङ्‌क्ष्व राज्यं समृद्धम्।
मयैवेते निहताः पुर्वमेव
निमित्तमात्रं भव सव्यसाचिन्॥

22. Therefore, stand up! and obtain fame. Conquer the enemies and enjoy the unrivalled kingdom. Verily by Myself they have been already slain; be thou a mere instrument, O Arjuna! (XI. 33.)

द्रोणं च भीष्मं च जयद्रथं च
कर्णं तथान्यानपि योधवीरान्।
मया हतांस्त्वं जहि मा व्यथिष्ठा
युद्ध्यस्व जेतासि रणे सपत्नान्॥

23. Drona, Bhishma, Jayadratha, Karna and other brave warriors who are already slain by Me do thou kill; be not distressed with sorrow; fight and thou shalt conquer the enemies in battle, (XI. 34)

मय्येव मन आक्षत्स्व मयि बुद्धिं निवेशय।
निवसिष्यसि मय्येव अत ऊर्ध्वं न संशयः॥

24. Fix thy mind on Me only; place thy intellect in Me; (then) thou shalt no doubt live in Me alone hereafter. (XII. 8)

तस्माच्छास्त्रं प्रमाणं ते कार्याकार्यव्यवस्थितौ।
ज्ञात्वा शास्त्रविधानोक्तं कर्म कर्तुमिहार्हसि॥

25. Therefore, let the scriptures be thy authority, in determining what ought to be done, or what ought not to be. done. Having known what is said in the ordinance of the scriptures, thou shouldst act here (in this world). (XVI. 24)

चेतसा सर्वकर्माणि मयि संन्यस्य मत्परः।
बुद्धियोगमुपाश्रित्य मच्चित्तः सततं भव॥

26. Mentally renouncing all actions in Me, having Me as the highest goal, resorting to the Yoga of Discrimination, do thou ever fix thy mind in Me. (XVIII. 57)

तमेव शरणं गच्छ सर्वभावेन भारत।
तत्प्रसादात्परां शान्तिं स्थानं प्राप्स्यसि शाश्वतम्॥

27. Fly unto Him for refuge with all thy being, O Bharata; by His Grace thou shalt obtain supreme peace and the eternal abode. (XVIII. 62)

मन्मना भव मद्भक्तो मद्याजी मां नमस्कुरु।
मामेवैष्यसि सत्यं ते प्रतिजाने प्रियोऽसि मे॥

28. Fix thy mind on Me, be devoted to Me, sacrifice to Me, bow down to Me. Thou shalt come even to Me; truly do I promise unto thee, for thou art dear to Me. (XVIII. 65)

सर्वधर्मान्परित्यज्य मामेकं शरणं व्रज।
अहं त्वा सर्वपापेभ्यो मोक्षयिष्यामि मा शुचः॥

29. Abandoning all duties, take refuge in Me alone; I will liberate thee from all sins, grieve not. (XVIII. 66)



Lord Krishna has introduced the following similes in His Discourse:

1. Just as a man casts off worn-out clothes and puts on new ones, so also the embodied Self casts off worn-out bodies and enters others which are new. (II. 22)

2. To the Brahmana who has known the Self, all the Vedas are of so much use as is a reservoir of water in a place where there is flood everywhere. (II. 46)

3. When like the tortoise which withdraws on all sides its limbs, he withdraws his senses from the sense-objects; then his wisdom becomes steady. (II. 58)

4. He attains Peace into whom all desires enter as waters enter the ocean which, filled from all sides, remains unmoved; but not the desirer of desires. (II. 70)

5. As the ignorant men act from attachment to action, O Bharata, so should the wise act without attachment, wishing the welfare of the world. (III. 25)

6. As fire is enveloped by smoke, as a mirror by dust, as embryo by an amnion, so this (knowledge) is enveloped by that (desire). (III. 38)

7. Having known this, the ancient seekers after freedom also performed action; therefore do thou also perform action as did the ancients in the olden time. (IV. 15)

8. As the blazing fire reduces fuel to ashes, O Arjuna, so does the fire of knowledge reduce all actions to ashes. (IV. 37)

9. He who does actions, offering them to Brahman, and abandoning attachment, is not tainted by sin as a lotus-leaf by water. (V. 10)

10. As a lamp placed in a windless place does not flicker—to such is compared the Yogi of controlled mind, practising Yoga in the Self (absorbed in the Yoga of the Self). (VI. 19)

11. The mind verily is, O Krishna, restless, turbulent, strong and unyielding: I deem it quite as difficult to control it as it is to control the wind. (VI. 34)

12. Fallen from both, does he not perish like a rent cloud, supportless, O Mighty-Armed (Krishna), deluded in the Path of Brahman? (VI. 38)

13. There is nothing whatsoever higher than Me, O Dhananjaya. All this is strung on Me, as clusters of gems on a string. (VII. 7)

14. As the mighty wind, moving everywhere, rests always in the Akasa, even so, know thou, do all beings rest in Me. (IX. 6)

15. If the splendour of a thousand suns were to blaze out at once (simultaneously) in the sky, that would be like the splendour of that Mighty Being. (XI. 12)

16. Verily as many torrents of rivers flow towards the ocean, so these heroes in the world of men enter Thy flaming mouths. (XI. 28)

17. As moths hurriedly rush into a blazing fire for destruction, so also these creatures hurriedly rush into Thy mouths for destruction. (XI. 29)

18. This body, O Kaunteya, is called the Field: he who knows it is called Kshetrajna by those who know of them (Kshetra and Kshetrajna), i.e., by the Sages. (XIII. 1)

19. As the all-pervading ether is not tainted because of its subtlety, so the Self seated everywhere in the body is not tainted. (XIII. 32)

20. Just as the one sun illumines the whole world, so also the Lord of the Field illumines the whole Field, O Bharata. (XIII. 33)

21. They speak of the indestructible Asvattha having its root above and branches below, whose leaves are the metres or hymns; he who knows it is a Veda-knower. (XV. 1)

22. Below and above spread its branches nourished by the Gunas; sense-objects are its buds; and below in the world of men stretch forth the roots, originating in action. (XV. 2)

23. When the Lord obtains a body and when He leaves it, He takes these and goes with them as the wind takes the scents from their seats, the flowers. (XV. 8)

24. One should not abandon, O Kaunteya, the duty to which one is born, though faulty; for, all undertakings are enveloped by evil, as fire by smoke. (XVIII. 48)

25. The Lord dwells in the hearts of all beings, O Arjuna, causing all beings, by His illusive power, to revolve as if mounted on a machine. (XVIII. 61)

NOTE: Items 11, 12, 16 and 17 are the words of Arjuna to Lord Krishna.


॥ सप्तश्लोकी गीता॥

१. ओमित्येकाक्षरं ब्रह्म व्याहरन्मामनुस्मरन्।
यः प्रयाति त्यजन्देहं स याति परमां गतिम्॥८ – १३॥

२. स्थाने हृषीकेश तव प्रकीर्त्या जगत्प्रहृष्यत्यनुरज्यते च।
रक्षांसि भीतानि दिशो द्रवन्ति सर्वे नमस्यन्ति च सिद्धसङ्घाः॥११ – ३६॥

३. सर्वतः पाणिपादं तत्सर्वतोऽक्षिशिरोमुखम्।
सर्वतः श्रुतिमल्लोके सर्वमावृत्य तिष्ठति॥१३ – १३॥

४. कविं पुराणमनुशासितारमणोरणीयांसमनुस्मरेद्यः।
सर्वस्य धातारमचिन्त्यरूपमादित्यवर्णं तमसः परस्तात्॥८ – ९॥

५. ऊर्ध्वमूलमधः शाखमश्वत्थं प्राहुरव्ययम्।
छन्दांसि यस्य पर्णानि यस्तं वेद स वेदवित्॥१५ – १॥

६. सर्वस्य चाहं हृदि सन्निविष्टो मत्तः स्मृतिर्ज्ञानमपोहनं च।
वेदैश्च सर्वैरहमेव वेद्यो वेदान्तकृद्वेदविदेव चाहम्॥१५ – १५॥

७. मन्मना भव मद्भक्तो मद्याजी मां नमस्कुरु।
मामेवैष्यसि युक्त्वैवमात्मानं मत्परायणः॥१ – ३४॥


॥ एकश्लोकी गीता॥

यत्र योगेश्वरः कृष्णो यत्र पार्थो धनुर्धरः
यत्र श्रीर्विजयो भूतिर्ध्रुवा नीतिर्मतिर्मम॥




The Bhagavad Gita brings to humanity the message of happiness, peace, freedom, fullness and prosperity. The Gita is the only book which gives help to the Sadhaka at every stage and offers protection from all fears. In the Gita the Lord gives the following assurances:

नेहाभिक्रमनाशोऽस्ति प्रत्यवायो न विद्यते।
स्वल्पमप्यस्य धर्मस्य त्रायते महतो भयात्॥

In this there is no loss of effort, nor is there any harm (production of contrary results or transgression). Even a little of this knowledge (even a little practice of this Yoga) protects one from great fear. (II. 40)

पार्थ नैवेह नामुत्र विनाशस्तस्य विद्यते।
न हि कल्याणकृत्कश्चिद्‌दुर्गतिं तात गच्छति॥

O Partha! Neither in this world, nor in the next world, is there destruction for him; none, verily, who does good, O my son, ever comes to grief. (VI. 40)

क्षिप्रं भवति धर्मात्मा शश्वच्छान्तिं निगच्छति।
कौन्तेय प्रतिजानीहि न मे भक्तः प्रणश्यति॥

Soon he becomes righteous and attains eternal peace; O Kaunteya, know thou for certain that My devotee never perishes. (IX. 31)

अनन्याश्चिन्तयन्तो मां ये जनाः पर्युपासते।
तेषां नित्याभियुक्तानां योगक्षेमं वहाम्यहम्॥

To those men who worship Me alone, thinking of no other, to those ever-united, I secure that which is not already possessed (Yoga) and preserve what they already possess (Kshema). (IX. 22)

अपि चेदसि पापेभ्यः सर्वेभ्यः पापकृत्तमः।
सर्वं ज्ञानप्लवेनैव वृजिनं संतरिष्यसि॥

Even if thou art the most sinful of all sinners, yet thou shalt verily cross all sins by the raft of knowledge. (IV. 36)

मन्मना भव मद्भक्तो मद्याजी मां नमस्कुरु।
मामेवैष्यसि सत्यं ते प्रतिजाने प्रियोऽसि मे॥

Fix thy mind on Me, be devoted to Me, sacrifice to Me, bow down to Me. Thou shalt come even to Me; truly do I promise unto thee, (for) thou art dear to Me. (XVIII. 65)

तेषामहं समुद्धर्ता मृत्युसंसारसागरात्।
भवामि नचिरात्पार्थ मय्यावेशितचेतसाम्॥

For them whose minds are set on Me, verily I become ere long, O Partha, the saviour out of the ocean of the mortal Samsara. (XII. 7)

सर्वधर्मान्परित्यज्य मामेकं शरणं व्रज।
अहं त्वा सर्वपापेभ्यो मोक्षयिष्यामि मा शुचः॥

Abandoning all duties, take refuge in Me alone; I will liberate thee from all sins; grieve not. (XVIII. 66)



Those who do Gita Anushthana should, during that period, observe the following discipline.

1. Getting up daily at Brahmamuhurta, 4 a.m.

2. Taking pure and light Sattvic diet once only at noon.

3. Abstaining from coition.

4. Mauna or at least observing Mitabhashana and speaking Truth.

5. Constant mental Japa of the Mantra “Om Namo Bhagavate Vasudevaya.”

After daily Saucha, take bath, wear pure cloth, sit on a Kushasana in a clean and pure place, facing the East or the North. Finish the daily (Nitya-Karma) Sandhyavandana, Japa, Dhyana, etc. first. Repeat the 108 or 12 Names of Sri Krishna. Then meditate on Sri Krishna. Then do Sankalpa (the purpose for which the Anushthana is done). Then do Karanyasa and Anganyasa* with the same Mantra the Japa of which you wish to do (The method of performing these Nyasas will be found in the Introductory pages). Or the Nyasas may be done with the Mantra “Om Namo Bhagavate Vasudevaya.”

After this, worship Bhagavan Sri Krishna, Vyasa, and the Gita with 16 Upacharas. The Japa must be done with unruffled and concentrated mind and with full faith and devotion. No speaking or making sounds or signs is allowed in the middle of the Japa. Without shaking the body, and sitting in one Asana, the Japa must be done without turning the head or body and without looking here and there. Only the thought of the Lord should be in the mind. If the desired effect is not seen after the performance of the Anushthana, faith should not be lost, but the Anushthana should be continued thrice or seven times for the sake of getting the Grace of the Lord.

At the end of the Japa, Homa should be performed with oblations equal to one-tenth of the Japa. And after this, Tarpana should be given with libations equal to one-tenth of the Ahutis. Brahmanas or saints equal to one-tenth of the number of the Tarpana, or at least as many as can be possible, should be fed in the end. The Ahutis in the Homa should be offered with ghee and with a mixture of seasamum, flour, Jav, sugar and ghee. Sweet gruel of wheat should be offered to the Lord in worship with the Mantra, “Esha balih Srikrishnaya namah” with great humility and faith. That gruel should be offered to the cow the next morning.

After finishing the daily Japa and worship, forgiveness should be asked from the Lord for any commission of mistake in the process of the Anushthana with these Mantras:

आवाहनं न जानामि नैव जानामि पूजनम्।
विसर्जनं न जानामि क्षमस्व परमेश्वर॥
अन्यथा शरणं नास्ति त्वमेव शरणं मम।
तस्मात्कारुण्यभावेन रक्ष रक्ष महेश्वर॥
मन्त्रहीनं क्रियाहीनं भक्तिहीनं जनार्दन।
यत्पूजितं मया देव परिपूर्णं तदस्तु ते॥

Then with the Mantra “Anaya yathopacharapujaya bhagavan Srikrishnah priyatam” Sashtanga Pranama should be done to the Lord. After this, uttering the following Mantra the Charanamrita of the Lord should be taken and worn on the head.

अकालमृत्युहरणं सर्वव्याधिविनाशनम्।
सर्वदुःखोपशमनं विष्णुपादोदकं शुभम्॥

With this the full benefit of the Anushthana shall be gained. The Anushthana should be continued for at least 41 days repeating the Mantra at least 10×108 times daily.


Mantra Effect of Japa
कार्पण्यदोषोपहत Fitness for self-surrender.
एवं बुद्धेः परं Destruction of enemies like desire, etc.
बहूनि मे व्यतीतानि Steadfastness in devotion.
भोक्तारं यज्ञतपसां Destruction of obstacles in Sadhana.
शनैः शनैरुपरमेत् Victory over mind.
यतो यतो निश्चरति Fitness for meditation.
यो मां पश्यति सर्वत्र Ripening of devotion.
सर्वभूतस्थितं यो मां Ripening of wisdom.
मत्तः परतरं नान्यत् Fitness for beholding God everywhere.
अभ्यासयोगयुक्तेन Destruction of enemies like desire, etc.
अनन्याश्चिन्तयन्तो मां Attainment of Yoga-Kshema.
पत्रं पुष्पं फलं Fitness for the vision of God.
यत्करोषि यदश्नासि Acquirement of Divine Grace.
मां हि पार्थ व्यपाश्रित्य Fitness for self-surrender.
मन्मना भव मद्भक्तो Fitness for self-surrender.
तेषां सततयुक्तानां Becoming Yoga-Yukta.


Attainment of Viveka.
त्वमादिदेवः पुरुषः Growth of devotion.


Control of mind.

नमः पुरस्तात्

Destruction of delusion.
पितासि लोकस्य Ability to please the Lord.
तेषामहं समुद्धर्ता Fitness for God-realisation.
ज्ञेयं यत्तत्प्रवक्ष्यामि Devotion to God.

सर्वतः पाणिपादं

Purification of the Antahkarana.
अहं वैश्वानरो भूत्वा Knowledge born of Viveka.
सर्वस्य चाहं हृदि Cessation of anger.
यो मामेवमसंमूढो Devotion.
मच्चित्तः सर्वदुर्गाणि Destruction of obstacles.
सर्वधर्मान् परित्यज्य Fitness for God-realisation
यत्र योगेश्वरः The Grace of the Lord.

NOTE: The full Mantras should be seen from the Gita. The above are the words with which each Mantra begins.

During Japa meditation should be done on the Lord Sri Krishna. Just as the different Slokas of the Gita are done Anushthana of, even so the Anushthana of the whole Gita also can be done. For different purposes in view, different Slokas can be used as the Samputa Slokas during the Anushthana of the whole Gita. There are two kinds of Samputas. One is to repeat the Samputa Sloka after repeating every Gita Sloka and then repeat the next Gita Sloka. This is called Samputa Japa or Samputa Patha. The other method is to insert the Samputa Sloka “before” and also “after” every Gita Sloka, so that after repeating one Gita Sloka the Samputa Sloka has to be repeated twice before repeating the next Gita Sloka. This is called “Samputavalli” and is more powerful and effective than mere Samputa.

Practically every Sloka of the Gita is a Mantra, and can be used as a Samputa Sloka. It is heard that one saint used each of the Gita Slokas as a Samputa Sloka and thus completed seven hundred Purascharanas of the Gita Anushthana and got the full Grace of the Lord. Yet, some important Slokas are given here which can be used as Samputa Slokas.


Sloka Effect of using it as Samputa
कार्पण्यदोषोपहत Fitness for self-surrender.
मत्तः परतरं नान्यत् Realisation of God everywhere.
पत्रं पुष्पं फलं Fitness for the vision of God.
ज्ञेयं यत्तत्प्रवक्ष्यामि Devotion to God.
अहं वैश्वानरो भूत्वा Knowledge born of Viveka.
सर्वधर्मान् परित्यज्य Fitness for self-surrender.
यत्र योगेश्वरः Attainment of all wishes.

In addition to these, many other Slokas also may be used as Samputa Slokas. Before starting and after finishing each Gita Patha 12 Malas or at least one Mala of Dvadashakshara Mantra Japa should be done with Karanyasa and Anganyasa with the same Mantra. The Dhyana for this Japa is:

विष्णुं शारदचन्द्रकोटिसदृशं शङ्खं रथाङ्गं गदा –
मंभोजं दधतं सिताब्जनिलयं कान्तया जगन्मोहनम्।
आबद्धाङ्गदहारकुण्डलमहामौलिं स्फुरत्कङ्कणं
श्रीवत्साङ्कमुदारकौस्तुभधरं वन्दे मुनीन्द्रैः स्तुतम्॥

After this, the Rishi, Chhandas, Devata, Bija, Sakti, Kilaka, Sankalpa, Viniyoga, Karanyasa, Anganyasa and Dhyana of the Gita should be repeated. It is better if the whole Gita is read daily. Otherwise it can be read in two days, 9 chapters per day. Or it can be read in three days 6 chapters per day. In seven days also it can be read in the following order: (i) Chs. 1, 2. (ii) Chs. 3-5. (iii). Chs. 6-8. (iv) Chs. 9, 10. (v) Chs. 11-13. (vi) Chs. 14-16. (vii) Chs. 17, 18. Else it can be read in 9 days at the rate of 2 chapters per day. If even this is not possible, it can be read in 18 days at the rate of one chapter per day.

If the whole Gita is read daily and continuously without break for one full year, every blessed thing will accrue to that person. All the readings should be done with Nyasa, etc.

If the Gita-Patna is done for forty days in the Samhara Krama, i.e., starting from the 18th chapter and reversely reading upto the 1st chapter, daily thrice, there will accrue to that person liberation from bondage.

If the Gita is read daily for 40 days in the Sthiti Krama, i.e., reading chapters 6 to 18 and again from 5 to 1 reversely, that person will acquire abundant wealth.

The Samhara Krama is meant for the Sannyasin and the Sthiti Krama for the Grihastha.

Anushthana should be done with faith and sincerity and not for the sake of curiosity, testing, or with a fault-finding attitude. If due to some internal impurity or obstruction brought about by past Karma no effect is seen even after seven Anushthanas, the faith should not be lessened. If the inner obstacles are too many, the effect may not be manifested very soon. Even if the effect is not materially manifested, there is no doubt as to the great purification that is done by the Anushthana. Further, if the Anushthana is done with Nishkama Bhava there is no doubt of self-purification and descent of Divine Grace. There is no action which does not produce an effect. What, then, is to be said about the effect of an action like the Gita Anushthana which is done with faith and concentration of mind? The effect is indubitable. It is advisable, according to the words of the Lord Himself, to abandon all motives, and do the Anushthana for the sake of God-realisation alone and nothing else. Hence, the Adhyayana, Pathana, Japa and Manana of the Gita should always be done with pure Nishkama Bhavana.

In the end of Patha of the Gita, its Mahatmya should be read as given in the Varaha-Purana or at least as given in the Mahabharata immediately after the Gita.



Abode: the Supreme, described: VIII. 21; XV. 6.

Arjuna: expresses grief: I. 28-36; II. 4-8; exhorted to stand up bold: II. 2, 3; prays to the Lord: XI. 15-31, 36-46.

Atma: nature of the: II. 11-30; its own friend and enemy: VI. 5,6.

Bondage: cause of XIV. 5.

Brahman: (the object of Knowledge), description of: XIII. 12-17.

Creator: the region of the, is perishable: VIII. 16-19.

Death: thought at the time of: II. 72; VII. 30; VIII. 5, 6, 10, 12, 13.

Delusion: (ignorance, illusion), cause of: V. 15; VII. 13; how to cross: VII. 14; power of: VII. 25, 27; XV. 10, 11; XVIII. 16.

Demoniacal: nature described: VII. 15; IX. 11, 12, 24; XVI. 4, 5, 7-20; XVII. 5, 6.

Devotees: division of: VII. 16-18; who are fit to become: VII. 28; characteristics of the: XII. 13-20.

Devotion: the method of: IV. 11; VI. 47; IX. 22, 26-30, 34; XVIII. 55, 65, 66; utility of alien form of: IX. 23; power of: IX. 30-32; to the Formless Being described: XII. 3-5.

Dispassion: the conditions of: II. 52.

Divine: nature described: IX. 13-15; X. 8, 9; XVI. 1-3, 5.

Doubt: cause of misery and fall: IV. 40; IX. 3; to be rent through knowledge: IV. 42.

Enjoyment: womb of pain: V. 22.

Evil forms of: III. 37-40.

Evolution: and involution, the process of: VIII. 18, 19; IX. 7, 8, 10; XIV. 3, 4.

Faithlessness: condemned: XVII. 28.

Gita: Ekasloki: XVIII. 78.

Gunatita: (one who has liberated himself from the clutches of the Gunas), characteristics of: XIV. 22-25.

Hell: three gates to: XVI. 21.

Ignorant: the, not to be disturbed: III. 26, 29; fate of: VII. 20-24; XVI. 23.

Jiva: nature and functions of: XV. 7-9.

Karma: analysis of: III. 27-29; inscrutable nature of: IV. 16-18; five causes of: XVIII. 14; impulse and basis of: XVIII. 18.

Karma-Yoga: main principles of: II. 38, 47, 48; III. 30; V. 8, 9; VI. 2; XVI. 24; XVIII. 6, 11, 17, 49, 56, 57; glory of and necessity for: II. 40; III. 4-9, 16, 19-25; IV. 15,18; V. 2, 6, 11-13; VI. l; XVIII. 58-60; advantage of: II. 51; IV. 32; as sacrifice to gods: III. 10-15; does not bind: IV. 20-25, 41; V. 3,10.

Knowledge: no duty for the man of: III. 17, 18; the glory of: III. 42, 43; IV. 9, 10, 19, 33, 35-39; V. 17, 29; X. 3, 7; XIII. 28, 29, 34; XIV. 1, 2; XV. 19; how to acquire: IV. 34, 39; V. 16; VII. 29; X. 10, 11; when it is possible to acquire: IV. 38; XIII. 30; definition of: XIII. 2, 7-11, 27; XV. 1.

Kshetra: description of: XIII. 5, 6.

Lord: the, (God), glory of the teachings of: III. 31; XV. 20; XVIII. 67-71; is all-in-all, absolute and supreme: VII. 6, 7; IX. 4-6; XI. 32, 33; XV. 17, 18; XVIII. 61; the fate of the haters of: III. 32; XVI. 16, 19; is omniscient: IV. 5; VII. 26; takes incarnations: IV. 6-8; is non-doer and unattached: IV 13, 14; V. 14, 15; IX. 9; XVIII. 31, 32; Vibhutis or Glories of: VII. 8-12; IX. 16-19, 24; X. 2, 4-6, 20-42; XIV. 27; XV. 12-15; is impartial: IX. 29; shows His Cosmic Form: XI. 5-13.

Mind: equilibrium of: V. 18-20; VI. 7-9; abstraction of: V. 21; method of controlling: VI. 35, 36.

Moksha: Immortality, Freedom, Liberation: See Perfection.

Nirvana: attainment of: II. 72; V. 24-26; VI. 15, 27, 28; who is fit for: XVIII. 51-53; glory of: XVIII. 54.

Objects: effects of thought of: II. 62, 63.

Om Tat Sat: glory of: XVII. 23-27.

Path: (Ayana), twofold: VIII. 23-27.

Peace: effect of inner: II. 65; who is fit to attain: II. 70, 71.

Perfection: difficulty of attaining: VII. 3, 19; XI. 47, 48, 52, 53; how to attain: VIII. 7-10, 14, 22; XI. 54, 55; XIII. 18, 23; XIV 26; XVI. 22; need for: XIII. 15; is freedom from the Gunas: XIV. 19, 20; who is fit for: XV. 5,11.

Prakriti: supremacy of: III. 33; XVIII. 40; twofold nature of: VII. 4, 5.

Prakriti-Purusha: nature and function of: XIII. 19-22, 26.

Purushas: the two: XV 16, 17.

Rajas: characteristics of: XIV. 7, 9, 10, 12, 15-18; XVII. 4, 9, 12, 18, 21; XVIII. 8, 21, 24, 27, 31, 34, 38.

Renunciation: characteristics of: XVIII. 2, 5, 9-11.

Retribution: the law of: IV. 11; VII. 21; IX. 25.

Samadhi: description of the state of: VI. 19-22; transcends sensual desire: II. 59.

Samsara: description of the tree of: XV. 2, 3; how to be free from: XV. 3, 4.

Sattva: characteristics of: XIV. 6, 9, 10, 11, 14, 16-18; XVII. 4, 8, 11, 17, 20; XVIII. 9, 20, 23, 26, 30, 33, 37.

Senses: and mind, control of: II. 60, 61, 67; III. 34, 41, 43; V. 23.

Sthitaprajna: characteristics of: II. 55-58, 61, 64, 68.

Svadharma: extolled: II. 31-37; III. 35; XVIII. 45-48; of Brahmanas: XVIII. 42; of Kshatriyas: XVIII. 43; of Vaisyas: XVIII. 44; of Sudras: XVIII. 44.

Tamas: characteristics of XIV. 8, 9, 10, 13, 15, 18; XVII. 4, 10, 13, 19, 22; XVIII. 7, 22, 25, 28, 32, 35, 39.

Tapas: threefold: XVII. 14-16.

Veda: Karmakanda of the, condemned: II. 42-44; IX. 20, 21; subordinated to Yoga: II. 45, 46.

Vision: oneness of: VI. 29-32.

Yajna: varieties of: IV. 25-30; need for the performance of. IV. 31.

Yoga: definition of: II. 48, 50; condition of: II. 53; Buddhi, extolled: II. 49, 50; need for the practice of: II. 66; VI. 23. 46; VIII. 27, 28; of wisdom and action are not contradictory but equally good: V. 2, 4, 5; explained in a nutshell: V. 27, 28; VI. 4, 18; main principle of: VI. 2; two means of: VI. 3; process of, described in detail: VI. 10-14, 24-26; who is fit to practise: VI. 16, 17; degrees in the practice of: XII. 9-12; varieties of: XIII. 24, 25.

Yogabhrashta: fate of the: VI. 40-45.

Yogi: contrasted with the worldly: II. 69.


जय भगवद्‌गीते, जय भगवद्‌गीते।
हरि-हिय-कमल-विहारिणि, सुन्दर सुपुनीते॥
कर्म-सुमर्म-प्रकाशिनि, कामासक्तिहरा।
तत्त्वज्ञान-विकाशिनि, विद्या ब्रह्म परा॥ जय°
निश्चल-भक्ति-विधायिनि, निर्मल मलहारी।
शरण-रहस्य-प्रदायिनि, सब विधि सुखकारी॥ जय°
रागा-द्वेष-विदारिणि, कारिणि मोद सदा।
भव-भय-हारिणि तारिणि, परमानन्दप्रदा॥ जय°
आसुरभाव-विनाशिनि, नाशिनि तम रजनी।
दैवी सद्‌गुणदायिनि, हरि-रसिका सजनी॥ जय°
समता-त्याग सिखावनि, हरि-मुखकी बानी।
सकल शास्त्रकी स्वामिनि, शृतियों की रानी॥ जय°
दया-सुधा बरसावनि, मातु! कृपा कीजै।
हरि-पद-प्रेम दान कर, अपनो कर लीजै॥ जय°

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