Understanding Gita – 65

Chapter 3 – Karma Yoga

Shloka 37 – 39

TEXT 37

śrī-bhagavān uvāca
kāma ea krodha ea
rajo-gua-samudbhava
mahāśano mahā-pāpmā
viddhy enam iha vairiam

SYNONYMS

śrī bhagavān uvācathe Personality of Godhead said; kāmalust; ea—all these; krodhawrath; eaall these; rajoguathe mode of passion; samudbhavaborn of; mahāśanaall-devouring; mahāpāpmāgreatly sinful; viddhiknow; enamthis; ihain the material world; vairiamgreatest enemy.

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

SriKrishna said –
All this is Lust(desire), all this is Anger, these are born out of Rajo-guna. This has lot of hunger, this is a great sinner, know that this is an enemy in this world.

In the previous verses, Lord said all men are propelled to act according to their nature(a mix of satwa, rajas, tamas). To control that(to increase satwa), one should control their Indriyas. Arjuna asks why does one act  in a way he shouldn’t be acting, even though he doesn’t want to, as if he is forced.

To that Lord replies – it’s because of kama(extreme desire – lust) and krodha(anger/wrath). These are born out of rajo guna – the mode of passion. When you desire something and work towards it, that’s the mode of passion. When you don’t get it and get angry, that’s also mode of passion. It is extremely hungry, in the sense it is insatiable. If you think you can curb your desires by feeding it, know that it can never be satisfied. It is a bottomless pit. It is a great-sinner – If you fall into its trap, unknowingly you act in a way you wouldn’t act otherwise.

Know that this kama and krodha is your enemy.

So from the previous verses, controlling your Indriyas(not swaying according to your desires) is very necessary.

*********

TEXT 38

dhūmenāvriyate vahnir
yathādarśo malena ca
yatholbenāvto garbhas
tathā tenedam āvtam

SYNONYMS

dhūmenaby smoke; āvriyatecovered; vahnifire; yathājust as; ādarśamirror; malenaby dust; caalso; yathājust as; ulbenaby the womb; āvtais covered; garbhaembryo; tathā-so; tenaby that lust; idamthis; āvtamis covered.

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

Like how smoke covers the fire, just as how dust covers the mirror, just as how an embryo is covered by the womb, that way the lust covers this. 

There are 3 ways in which lust covers “this”(“this” here is knowledge).

  1. Smoke covering the fire – light cover
  2. Dust covering the mirror – little bit thicker cover
  3. Womb covering the embryo – strong cover

The intensity with which lust covers knowledge is different in different people. In some it is with a light layer, in some with a little bit thicker layer and for some a very thick layer. For the ones with a thin layer, overcoming lust and attaining knowledge is relatively easy compared to the ones for who lust covers the knowledge like a thick womb protecting an embryo.

*********

TEXT 39

āvta jñānam etena
jñānino nitya-vairiā
kāma-rūpea kaunteya
dupūreānalena ca

SYNONYMS

āvtamcovered; jñānampure consciousness; etenaby this; jñāninaof the knower; nityavairiāeternal enemy; kāmarūpeain the form of lust; kaunteyaO son of Kuntī; dupūreanever to be satisfied; analenaby the fire; caalso.

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

O Kaunteya! this eternal enemy for a jnani, in the form of lust, which can never be satisfied, and which burns like fire, covers his knowledge.

“This” in the previous verse is indeed knowledge. Lust covers the knowledge even of the wise, it is an eternal enemy of the wise.

This Lust can never be satisfied – if you indulge in it, know that it can never be satisfied.

This burns like a fire – A fire can never extinguish when you supply it fuel. Lust is just like that – you cannot get rid of it by constantly feeding it. 

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