Monasticism and Liberation – Chapter 18 – Slokas 18.46 – 18.50

The Blessed Lord said, “yatah pravrttir bhutanam
yena sarvam idam tatam
sva-karmana tam abhyarcya
siddhim vindati manavah
– A human being – mānavah achieves – vindati success – siddhim by adoring – abhyarcya through his own duties –  svakarmanā Him – tam from whom – yatah is the origin – pravrttih of creatures – bhutānām by whom is all this pervaded.


sreyan sva-dharmo vigunah
para-dharmat sv-anusthitat
svabhava-niyatam karma
kurvan napnoti kilbisam
– One’s own duty – svadharmah though defective –  vigunah, is superior – sreyān to another’s duty – paradharmāt well performed – su-anusthitāt. By performing – kurvan a duty – karma as dictated by one’s own nature – svabhāvaniyatam, one does not incur sin.


saha-jam karma kaunteya
sa-dosam api na tyajet
sarvarambha hi dosena
dhumenagnir ivavrtah
– O son of Kunti, one should not give up – na tyajet the duty – karma to which one is born –  sahajam, even though – api it be faulty – sadosam. For all undertakings –  sarva-ārambhāh are surrounded – āvrtāh with evil – dosena, as fire – agnih is with smoke – dhumena.


asakta-buddhih sarvatra
jitatma vigata-sprhah
naiskarmya-siddhim paramam
– He whose intellect remains unattached – asakta-buddhih to everything –  sarvatra, who has conquered his internal organs –  jitātmā and is desireless –  vigata-sprhah, attains – adhigacchati through monasticism –  sannyāsena the supreme – paramām perfection consisting in the state of one free from duties – naiskarmya-siddhim.


siddhim prapto yatha brahma
tathapnoti nibodha me
samasenaiva kaunteya
nistha jnanasya ya para
– Understand for certain – nibodha from Me, in brief – samāsena indeed, O son of Kunti, that process by which one who has achieved success attains Brahman, which is the supreme consummation of Knowledge.


[Chapter 18, Slokas 18.46 – 18.50]

Author’s thoughts:

Lord Krishna in the above verses reveals the state of a jeevamukta, one who is liberated and has realized the Self with the physical body and continues to exist in the bliss of the Self with no duty to perform till such time as the physical body falls down.

Lord Krishna also reiterates the importance of one’s duty and engaging in rightful duty and action but renouncing the fruits of actions and duties while being steadfast on the Supreme Goal at all times.

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