Bhagavad Gita – Chapter 5, sloka 17, part 2

Newsletter on Bhagavadgita by Dr. P.V. Nath

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Sloka 17


Intellect absorbed in “That”, Self being “That”, established in “That”, “That”
being the supreme goal, they go whence there is no return, their sins dispelled
by knowledge.


*** continued from last week ***

Tat Parayanaha: That being the Supreme goal.

This refers to the practice of “Meditation”.
The sastras advice that “God realisation” should be the goal in life. “God
realisation” means realising the presence of God in all and respecting the God
in all.

Gachyanti Apanaravruttim: They go whence there is no return.

In the material world we live in, absorbed in acquiring material gains we spend
our time fulfilling our wishes and dreams. We have examples of businessmen,
industrialists, politicians who have succeeded in their efforts by being totally
absorbed in that and established in that objective. The success gained in the
material world is related to time, space and causation. The happiness of
achieving this success is not permanent.

On the contrary, the “Peace, Bliss” experienced on uniting with the Parabrahman
is the end of spiritual journey. It is union with the “Supreme”. When there are
no more vasanas stored in the mind and the mind does not register any new
vasanas it is said to be the ideal condition to merge with Brahman.

This can happen only when their sins are dispelled by knowledge. The “sins”
referred to here are the “vasanas.” Clearing the stored vasanas in the mind and
not letting new vasanas get registered in the mind comes from “Knowledge”.
Highest knowledge the sastras would like us to develop is understanding the
Mahavakya “Tat Tvam Asi.”

Let us all stop in our path for a moment,
contemplate on what progress we have made and on our future actions in relation
to the goal of life,
make a critical self-analysis of our actions in relation to our life,
and we are sure to succeed and experience “Sat Chit Ananda.”

This takes us on beautifully to the next sloka, which is:

Sloka 18


The sage look with equal eye on a Brahmana endowed with knowledge and humility,
a cow, an elephant, a dog and an outcaste who feeds on dog’s flesh.

*** commentary follows next week ***

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