Bhagavad Gita ( Karma Yoga Adhaya -3 )

Karma Yoga

arjuna uvaca
jyayasi cet karmanas te
mata buddhir janardana
tat kim karmani ghore mam
niyojayasi keshava

"Arjuna said: O Janardana, O Keshava, why do You want to engage me in this ghastly warfare, if You think that intelligence is better than fruitive work?"
 

vyamisreneva vakyena
buddhim mohayashiva me
tad ekam vada niscitya
yena sreyo ’ham apnuyam

"My intelligence is bewildered by Your equivocal instructions. Therefore, please tell me decisively which will be most beneficial for me."

sri-bhagavan uvaca
loke ’smin dvi-vidha nistha
pura prokta mayanagha
jnana-yogena sankhyanam
karma-yogena yoginam

"The Supreme Personality of Godhead said: O sinless Arjuna, I have already explained that there are two classes of men who try to realize the self. Some are inclined to understand it by empirical, philosophical speculation, and others by devotional service."

na karmanam anarambhan
naishkarmyam purusho ’snute
na ca sannyasanad eva
siddhim samadhigacchati

"Not by merely abstaining from work can one achieve freedom from reaction, nor by renunciation alone can one attain perfection."

na hi kascit ksanam api
jatu tisthaty akarma-krt
karyate hy avasah karma
sarvah prakriti-jair gunaih

"Everyone is forced to act helplessly according to the qualities he has acquired from the modes of material nature; therefore no one can refrain from doing something, not even for a moment."

karmendriyani samyamya
ya aste manasa smaran
indriyarthan vimudhatma
mithyacarah sa ucyate

"One who restrains the senses of action but whose mind dwells on sense objects certainly deludes himself and is called a pretender."

yas tv indriyani manasa
niyamyarabhate ’rjuna
karmendriyaih karma-yogam
asaktah sa visisyate

"On the other hand, if a sincere person tries to control the active senses by the mind and begins karma-yoga [in Krishna consciousness] without attachment, he is by far superior."

niyatam kuru karma tvam
karma jyayo hy akarmanah
sarira-yatrapi ca te
na prasiddhyed akarmanah

"Perform your prescribed duty, for doing so is better than not working. One cannot even maintain one’s physical body without work."

yajnarthat karmano ’nyatra
loko ’yam karma-bandhanah
tad-artham karma kaunteya
mukta-sangah samacara

"Work done as a sacrifice for Vishnu has to be performed, otherwise work causes bondage in this material world. Therefore, O son of Kunti, perform your prescribed duties for His satisfaction, and in that way you will always remain free from bondage."

saha-yajnah prajah srstva
purovaca prajapatih
anena prasavisyadhvam
esa vo ’stv ista-kama-dhuk

"In the beginning of creation, the Lord of all creatures sent forth generations of men and demigods, along with sacrifices for Vishnu, and blessed them by saying, “Be thou happy by this yajna [sacrifice] because its performance will bestow upon you everything desirable for living happily and achieving liberation.”"

devan bhavayatanena
te deva bhavayantu vah
parasparam bhavayantah
sreyah param avapsyatha

"The demigods, being pleased by sacrifices, will also please you, and thus, by cooperation between men and demigods, prosperity will reign for all."

istan bhogan hi vo deva
dasyante yajna-bhavitah
tair dattan apradayaibhyo
yo bhunkte stena eva sah

"In charge of the various necessities of life, the demigods, being satisfied by the performance of yajna [sacrifice], will supply all necessities to you. But he who enjoys such gifts without offering them to the demigods in return is certainly a thief."

yajna-sistasinah santo
mucyante sarva-kilbisaih
bhunjate te tv agham papa
ye pacanty atma-karanat

"The devotees of the Lord are released from all kinds of sins because they eat food which is offered first for sacrifice. Others, who prepare food for personal sense enjoyment, verily eat only sin."

annad bhavanti bhutani
parjanyad anna-sambhavah
yajnad bhavati parjanyo
yajnah karma-samudbhavah

"All living bodies subsist on food grains, which are produced from rains. Rains are produced by performance of yajna [sacrifice], and yajna is born of prescribed duties."

karma brahmodbhavam viddhi
brahmakshara-samudbhavam
tasmat sarva-gatam brahma
nityam yajne pratisthitam

"Regulated activities are prescribed in the Vedas, and the Vedas are directly manifested from the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Consequently the all-pervading Transcendence is eternally situated in acts of sacrifice."

evam pravartitam cakram
nanuvartayatiha yah
aghayur indriyaramo
mogham partha sa jivati

"My dear Arjuna, one who does not follow in human life the cycle of sacrifice thus established by the Vedas certainly leads a life full of sin. Living only for the satisfaction of the senses, such a person lives in vain."

yas tv atma-ratir eva syad
atma-trptas ca manavah
atmany eva ca santustas
tasya karyam na vidyate

"But for one who takes pleasure in the self, whose human life is one of self-realization, and who is satisfied in the self only, fully satiated—for him there is no duty."

naiva tasya krtenartho
nakrteneha kascana
na casya sarva-bhutesu
kascid artha-vyapasrayah

"A self-realized man has no purpose to fulfill in the discharge of his prescribed duties, nor has he any reason not to perform such work. Nor has he any need to depend on any other living being."

tasmad asaktah satatam
karyam karma samacara
asakto hy acaran karma
param apnoti purushah

"Therefore, without being attached to the fruits of activities, one should act as a matter of duty, for by working without attachment one attains the Supreme."

karmanaiva hi samsiddhim
asthita janakadayah
loka-sangraham evapi
sampasyan kartum arhasi

"Kings such as Janaka attained perfection solely by performance of prescribed duties. Therefore, just for the sake of educating the people in general, you should perform your work."

yad yad acarati sresthas
tat tad evetaro janah
sa yat pramanam kurute
lokas tad anuvartate

"Whatever action a great man performs, common men follow. And whatever standards he sets by exemplary acts, all the world pursues."

na me parthasti kartavyam
trisu lokesu kincana
nanavaptam avaptavyam
varta eva ca karma ni

"O son of Pritha, there is no work prescribed for Me within all the three planetary systems. Nor am I in want of anything, nor have I a need to obtain anything—and yet I am engaged in prescribed duties."

yadi hy aham na varteyam
jatu karmany atandritah
mama vartmanuvartante
manushyah partha sarvasah

"For if I ever failed to engage in carefully performing prescribed duties, O Partha, certainly all men would follow My path."

utsideyur ime loka
na kuryam karma ced aham
sankarasya ca karta syam
upahanyam imah prajah  

"If I did not perform prescribed duties, all these worlds would be put to ruination. I would be the cause of creating unwanted population, and I would thereby destroy the peace of all living beings."

saktah karmany avidvamso
yatha kurvanti bharata
kuryad vidvams tathasaktas
cikirsur loka-sangraham

"As the ignorant perform their duties with attachment to results, the learned may similarly act, but without attachment, for the sake of leading people on the right path."

na buddhi-bhedam janayed
ajnanam karma-sanginam
josayet sarva-karmani
vidvan yuktah samacaran

"So as not to disrupt the minds of ignorant men attached to the fruitive results of prescribed duties, a learned person should not induce them to stop work. Rather, by working in the spirit of devotion, he should engage them in all sorts of activities [for the gradual development of Krishna consciousness]."

prakriteh kriyamanani
gunaih karmani sarvasah
ahankara-vimudhatma
kartaham iti manyate

"The spirit soul bewildered by the influence of false ego thinks himself the doer of activities that are in actuality carried out by the three modes of material nature."

tattva-vit tu maha-baho
guna-karma-vibhagayoh
guna gunesu vartanta
iti matva na sajjate

"One who is in knowledge of the Absolute Truth, O mighty-armed, does not engage himself in the senses and sense gratification, knowing well the differences between work in devotion and work for fruitive results."

prakriter guna-sammudhah
sajjante guna-karmasu
tan akrtsna-vido mandan
krtsna-vin na vicalayet

"Bewildered by the modes of material nature, the ignorant fully engage themselves in material activities and become attached. But the wise should not unsettle them, although these duties are inferior due to the performers’ lack of knowledge."

mayi sarvani karmani
sannyasyadhyatma-cetasa
nirasir nirmamo bhutva
yudhyasva vigata-jvarah

"Therefore, O Arjuna, surrendering all your works unto Me, with full knowledge of Me, without desires for profit, with no claims to proprietorship, and free from lethargy, fight."

ye me matam idam nityam
anutishthanti manavah
shraddhavanto ’nasuyanto
mucyante te ’pi karmabhih

"Those persons who execute their duties according to My injunctions and who follow this teaching faithfully, without envy, become free from the bondage of fruitive actions."

ye tv etad abhyasuyanto
nanutishthanti me matam
sarva-jnana-vimudhams tan
viddhi nastan acetasah

"But those who, out of envy, disregard these teachings and do not follow them are to be considered bereft of all knowledge, befooled, and ruined in their endeavors for perfection."

sadrsam cestate svasyah
prakriter jnanavan api
prakritim yanti bhutani
nigrahah kim karishyati

"Even a man of knowledge acts according to his own nature, for everyone follows the nature he has acquired from the three modes. What can repression accomplish?"

indriyasyendriyasyarthe
raga-dvesau vyavasthitau
tayor na vasam agacchet
tau hy asya paripanthinau

"There are principles to regulate attachment and aversion pertaining to the senses and their objects. One should not come under the control of such attachment and aversion, because they are stumbling blocks on the path of self-realization."

sreyan sva-dharmo vigunah
para-dharmat sv-anusthitat
sva-dharme nidhanam sreyah
para-dharmo bhayavahah

"It is far better to discharge one’s prescribed duties, even though faultily, than another’s duties perfectly. Destruction in the course of performing one’s own duty is better than engaging in another’s duties, for to follow another’s path is dangerous."

arjuna uvaca
atha kena prayukto ’yam
papam carati purushah
anicchann api varsneya
balad iva niyojitah

"Arjuna said: O descendant of Vrishni, by what is one impelled to sinful acts, even unwillingly, as if engaged by force?"

sri-bhagavan uvaca
kama esa krodha esa
rajo-guna-samudbhavah
mahasano maha-papma
viddhy enam iha vairinam

"The Supreme Personality of Godhead said: It is lust only, Arjuna, which is born of contact with the material mode of passion and later transformed into wrath, and which is the all-devouring sinful enemy of this world."

dhumenavriyate vahnir
yathadarso malena ca
yatholbenavrto garbhas
tatha tenedam avrtam

"As fire is covered by smoke, as a mirror is covered by dust, or as the embryo is covered by the womb, the living entity is similarly covered by different degrees of this lust."

avrtam jnanam etena
jnanino nitya-vairina
kama-rupena kaunteya
duspurenanalena ca

"Thus the wise living entity’s pure consciousness becomes covered by his eternal enemy in the form of lust, which is never satisfied and which burns like fire."

indriyani mano buddhir
asyadhisthanam ucyate
etair vimohayaty esa
jnanam avrtya dehinam

"The senses, the mind and the intelligence are the sitting places of this lust. Through them lust covers the real knowledge of the living entity and bewilders him."

tasmat tvam indriyany adau
niyamya bharatarsabha
papmanam prajahi hy enam
jnana-vijnana-nasanam

"Therefore, O Arjuna, best of the Bharatas, in the very beginning curb this great symbol of sin [lust] by regulating the senses, and slay this destroyer of knowledge and self-realization."

indriyani parany ahur
indriyebhyah param manah
manasas tu para buddhir
yo buddheh paratas tu sah

"The working senses are superior to dull matter; mind is higher than the senses; intelligence is still higher than the mind; and he [the soul] is even higher than the intelligence."

evam buddheh param buddhva
samstabhyatmanam atmana
jahi satrum maha-baho
kama-rupam durasadam

"Thus knowing oneself to be transcendental to the material senses, mind and intelligence, O mighty-armed Arjuna, one should steady the mind by deliberate spiritual intelligence [Krishna consciousness] and thus—by spiritual strength—conquer this insatiable enemy known as lust."

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