Concepts and Issues
Sri Krishna details various forms of sacrifices all of which requires action of body, mind and intellect with the expectation of the fruit. But He emphasizes that knowledge-sacrifice is far superior to other sacrifices done with material objects. The Lord extols spiritual wisdom and tells Arjuna that this knowledge can be obtained through sincerity, purity of heart, service to God-realized Guru with devotion, prolonged practice of Karma Yoga and sense-control.
The Real Knowledge is the awareness of the Self or Pure Consciousness within. This Pure Consciousness is experienced by the seeker only after a protracted period of practice in deep meditation.
For this one must have immense faith in God, belief in the preceptor, patience and devotion accompanied with a withdrawal of the senses from the objects of the world. Then alone one can have supreme peace.
The ignorant one, due to lack of these qualifications, entertains doubts in himself as well as in others and suffers here as well as hereafter. But nothing in the world can bind him who works with this understanding of Knowledge.
Live as the Gita Teaches You to Live
It is only egoistic activities, motivated by egocentric desires that leave gross impressions in the inner personalities of men and bind them to reap their reactions. When an individual learns to renounce his attachments to the fruits of his actions through Yoga and works in perfect detachment and when all his doubts about the goal of life have been removed through Self-Knowledge, the ego comes to realize that it is none other than Atman, the Self. When such a person works, his actions do not bind him. Every form of self-control, where we surrender the egoistic enjoyment for the higher delight, where we give up lower impulses, is said to be a sacrifice. The mutual relationship of true work, wisdom and self-discipline is the key note of this Chapter. The goal is the life-giving wisdom, which gives us freedom of action and liberation from the bondage of work. It is the goal which everybody should attempt to reach.
Points to Ponder
Explain the different kinds of sacrifices and their ultimate aim.
How is the `knowledge sacrifice' superior to the sacrifices for expected results?
Who is the best person fit to receive this `Knowledge' and how does he receive it?
Write short notes on
Action, Inaction and Forbidden Action
Action in Inaction, Inaction in Action
A person of doubting disposition
Performing actions with knowledge
Result of Knowledge
Obstacles to attain knowledge
Next time we shall take up Chapter 5