Understanding Gita – 49

Chapter 3 – Karma Yoga

Shloka 5 – 6


na hi kaścit kaam api
jātu tiṣṭhaty akarma-kt
kāryate hy avaśa karma
sarva prakti-jair guai


na—nor; hi—certainly; kaścit—anyone; kaam—even a moment; api—also; jātu—even; tiṣṭhati—stands; akarmakt—without doing something; kāryate—is forced to do; hi—certainly; avaśa—helplessly; karma—work; sarva—everything; praktijai—out of the modes of material nature; guai—by the qualities.

Text Source – “http://prabhupadabooks.com/bg

One cannot even for a moment, stand without doing something. He is helplessly forced to work by the qualities of the material nature.

Lord Krishna is saying that one can never not do anything. He is forced to be doing something because of the gunas of the prakriti he is born with.

It is the nature of human being to act. Even if one is sitting idle, they could still be thinking something. 



karmendriyāi sayamya
ya āste manasā smaran
indriyārthān vimūhātmā
mithyācāra sa ucyate


karmaindriyāithe five working sense organs; sayamyacontrolling; yaanyone who; āsteremains; manasāby mind; smaranthinking; indriyaarthānsense objects; vimūhafoolish; ātmāsoul; mithyāācārapretender; sahe; ucyateis called.

Text Source – “http://prabhupadabooks.com/bg

If one is controlling senses, but still thinking about those sense objects in the mind, he is called a vimudatma(foolish soul) and mitya-acharah(pretender).

From the previous verse, one cannot stay without doing anything. But if one is pretending to be refraining from doing something but thinking about it all the time, then he is called a pretender and a foolish person. When somebody’s mind is preoccupied with something, it’s only a matter of time before they give in to their cravings. Such a pretense is foolish. One should strive to take cravings out from their mind rather from their actions..

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