Home » Bhagavad Gītā Lesson 7

Bhagavad Gītā Lesson 7

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Lesson VII

(Sanskrit terms and names can be clicked for explanation)


The Holy One said:

“With mind fixed through me, o son of Prithā, practising yoga, with me as thy resting-place, hear now thou certainly shall know me fully. (1)

“I shall explain unto thee completely both knowledge and discernment. Knowing these, it is recognized that there is nothing in this world to be known of greater value. (2)

“Among thousands of human beings, what one strives for perfection? Of those who are striving and who are perfect what one knows me accurately ? (3)

“Earth, water, fire, wind, space [kham: ākāśa], mind [manas], understanding [buddhi], and egoity [ahankāra]: thus is this my nature [prakriti, expansion, primal substance] divided into eight parts. (4)

“This is my lower nature [prakriti] here; but know, O thou of mighty arms ! my higher nature [prakriti], animate, by which this world is upheld. (5)

“Bear in mind that all beings have this as a womb. I am the prabhava [production] and the pralaya [dissolution] of the whole world. (6)

“Than there is naught else superior whatsoever, O Dhanañjaya ! All this [world] is woven [protam] into me like multitudes of jewels on a string. (7)

“I am the essence [raso: sap, juice] in the waters, O son of Kuntī; I am the refulgence of both moon and sun; the pranava [praise sound; also the mystic syllable Om] in all the Vedas; the sound in space [or in ākāśa: khe]; the human nature in men; (8)

“The pure effluvia in matter. I am the brilliance in fire; the life in beings; and I am the yearning in those who practise religious observances. (9)

“Know me, O son of Prithā, to be the primeval seed in all beings; I am the understanding of those who have understanding. I am the light [tejas] of those possessing light [luster, glory, energy]. (10)

“In the mighty I am the might which is free from desire and longing; I am in all beings, O Bull of the Bharatas !, the desire compatible with duty [dharma: right religion]. (11)

“Then again whatever innate dispositions of the nature of sattva [truth, goodness, reality], rajas [longing, passion], and tamas [darkness, illusion, ignorance] exist, know them to be verily from me. But I am not in them; they are in me. (12)

“All this world, bewildered by the innate dispositions of the nature of these three qualities, does not recognize me to be beyond them and undecaying. (13)

“For this my divine māyā [illusion, magic], of the nature of the qualities, is difficult to transcend. It is they who betake themselves to me, who surmount this māyā. (14)

“The lowest men, who are evil-doers and bewildered, do not betake themselves to me, nor those bereft of knowledge by māyā, nor they who follow a demoniacal disposition. (15)

“Four classes of men who act rightly, O Arjuna, partake of me: the afflicted, he who is desirous of knowledge, he who strives to gain his objects, and the wise, O Bull of the Bharatas ! (16)

“Of these the wise man, who is constantly devoted, and of single soul, is the best. For I am greatly loved by the wise man, and he is loved by me. (17)

“All these are upright; but the wise man is considered to be my own self. For he, with self devoted, follows the highest path, which is myself. (18)

“At the end of many births, the spiritually wise man attains unto me, [thinking] ‘Vāsudeva [the indwelling god] is all ! He [such a one] is a man of great soul [mahātmā] difficult to find. (19)

“They follow after other divinities, who are deprived of knowledge of whatsoever desires. Having had recourse to that very discipline, they are disciplined by their own natures. (20)

“Whatever form [of divinity] any worshipper desires to praise with faith he has I render firm. (21)

“Occupied in this faith, he longs for [divine] favor from it; and he acquires thence worthy desires, really bestowed by me. (22)

“But temporary is the fruit [reward] of those men of small minds. The worshipers of the gods go to the gods; and those who yearn for me go to me. (23)

“Unmanifest [as I am], yet those of no understanding think of me as having become manifest, not knowing my highest nature, transcendent and imperishable. (24)

“I am not manifest to all [since] I am enveloped by the māyā of yoga [yogamāyāsamāvritah] [i.e., I am not seen in the eternal works and manifestations of nature, shrouded as I am by the māyā – illusion –produced by my yoga]. This bewildered world does not recognise me as unborn, imperishable. (25)

“I know all beings [or things: bhūtani] past, present, and to be, O Arjuna. But me no one knows. (26)

“By delusion through the pairs of opposites arising from yearning and aversion, O son of Bharata ! all creatures in the universe enter into delusion, O Harasser of Foes ! (27)

“But those men of righteous deed whose sins have reached their end, they [indeed], freed from the illusion of the pairs of opposites, and fixed in resolve, obtain me. (28)

“They who strive for release from age and death, having betaken themselves to me, know Brahman to be the entire Over-Self [Adyātman] and all action [karman]. (29)

“They who know me as [one] with the primeval being [sādhibhūtam], and one with the primal divine [sādhidaivam], and as one with the primal sacrifice [sādhiyajñam], know me with intent thought even unto the time of death.” (30)


Thus in the Holy

Bhagavad-Gītā. The seventh

Address, by name —


(Union by Discernment).