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Gitaartha Sangraham-3

From: V. Sadagopan (75041.3037_at_compuserve.com)
Date: Sun Nov 12 1995 - 07:42:14 PST

CHAPTER 3--FIRST SIX CHAPTERS OF GITA (FIRST SHATKAM)
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Aalavandaar summarizes the entire Gita and its three subdivisions  through the
four  following verses:

SARVA DHARMA JNANA VAIRAAGYA SAADHYABHAKTYEKA GOCHARA: I
NAARAAYANA: PARAM BRAHMA GITAASASTREH SAMEERITHAH: II
------------------- (1) 
 
JNANA KARMAATMIKE NISHTEH YOGALAKSHYEH SUSAMSKRUTHEH I
AATMAANUBHUTI SIDDHAYARTEH POORVA  SHATKENAH CHODHITHEH II   ----------------(2)

MADHYAMEH BHAGAVAT TATVAYAATAATMYAAVAPTISIDDHAYEH I
JNANA KARMAABHI NIRVATYOH BHAKTI YOGA: PRAKEERTHITA: II
--------------------------(3)

PRADHAANA PURUSHA VYAKTA SARVESWARA VIVECHANAM I
KARMA DHEERBAKTHIRITYATI PURVASESHONTIMODITHA :    II
---------------------------(4)

Swami Desikan summarized the four verses of Alavandaar in the First verse of his
Tamil work on GS. that verse is as follows:

karumamum jnanamum kondu yezhum kaadalukku ohr ilakku
Enru arumarai ucchiyuL aadharitthu odhum arum Biramam 
ThirumagaLodu varum Thirumaal enru Taan uraitthann
Darumum uhanda Dhananjayanukku Avan Saarathiyeh

The message of Krishna to Arjuna is summarized here. He revealed to Arjuna that
he has to observe Karma Yoga first and control his mind and then qualify himself
for the observance of the subsequent step of practising Jnanai Yoga,which in
turn would lead to self revelation(Aatma Sakshatkaaram). That accomplishment
will pave  the way to the  practise of  Bhakti Yoga. 

          All the Vedanthas point out that the target of  such a Bhakti Yoga is
the Parabrhamam 
revered as Sriman Narayana. Krishna revealed to Arjuna  intent on practising
righteousness
(Dharma) that He is that Parabrahmam.

          Alavandar and Swami Desikan condensed the above thoughts in their
first verses.
Alavandaar uses the next three verses to state that  the 18 chapters of Gita
fall into a natural subdivision of three, with each of the subdivision
accounting for six chapters, known                         as the first
Shatkam(Chapters1-6), Second Shatkam(Chapters 7-12) and the third
Shatkam(Chapters 13-18). 
Alavandaar names these Shatkams as Poorva, Madhyama and Antima Shatkams.
The Anthima Shatkam has two parts to it. 

        The first shatkam covers Karma  and Jnana Yogas; the second shatkam
covers                    Bhakti Yoga entirely. The first part of the third
Shatkam deals with the animate(Chetanam) , Inanimate(Achetanam) and the
attributes  and the forms of  the  world (Prapancham)
born out of the union of the Chetanam and the Achetanam. The second part of the
third                  shatkam describes the way to practise Karma, Jnana and
Bhakti Yogas , the indebtedness                  of one to the Shastraas and the
Prapatti Dharma as a easier way to attain Moksha Siddhi.. 

        Swami Desikan uses the Words "karumamum jnanamum" to refer to the Karma
and         Jnana Yogas, which are the subject of the First shatkam; he refers
to the meaning of the                second shatkam through the use of the word
"Kaatalukku". His choice of the  word                            "Arum Biramam "
indicates the Lord , who is distinct from the chetanam and the Achetanam
and with that use of "Arum Biramam",Swami summarizess the meaning of the first
half of the third Shatkam. Arjuna"s bond or deep link to Righteousness is
indicated by the choice of "Dharmam Uhanda", which in turn connects to the
meaning of the second half of the third Shatkam , which culminates in  the
Lord"s revelation of Prapatti route for Arjuna, when he despaired of his
inability to practise the difficult routes of Karma,Jnana and Bhakti Yogas...

THE ESSENCE OF THE FIRST ADHYAAYAM OF GITA : THE GREIF OF ARJUNA
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    Alavandaar"s summary is as follows:

ASTHAANA SNEHA KAARUNYA DHARMAADHARMA DHIYAA AAKULAM I
PAARTHAM PRAPANNAM UDDHISYA SAASTRAAVATARANAM KRUTHAM  II

     Arjuna finds close relatives like Bhismar  and dear  Acharyas like Dronar
assembled in front of him to engage in the battle against him and his family.
Arjuna"s mind is overcome with compassion and affection for his relatives and
Acharyas  on the opposite  side and he does not want to kill them in battle. His
mind is confused about the purpose of engaging in a battle with his relatives
and teachers and he questions , whether it is worth the while to win  such a
battle. He is overcome  with fear and throws his bow and arrows and is stricken
with despair. At that time, he turned to his Charioteer, Krishna and begged Him
to point the right way. Krishna with  a smile in His face instructed Arjuna on
the nature of  Jeevatma, Paramatma and the means to reach the Paramatma .Krishna
revealed to Arjuna in the battle field the secret, inner meanings of the Vedas
and Upanishads in an elegant, freindly and easy to understand manner.

      Swami Desikan uses some choice words to echo the sentiments of Alavandaar
and elaborates 
on them in the following verse:

UHAVAI ADAINTHA  URAVUDAYAAR PORALURRA ANNALL 
THAHAVUDAN ANBU KARAI PURALA DHARUMATTHU ALAVIL
MIHA ULAM ANJI VIZHUNDHU ADI SERNTHA VISAYANUKKU OHR
NAHAIUDAN UNMAI URAIKKA AMAINDANAN NAARANANEH 

The disturbed state of Arjuna arising  from his inappropriate freindship and
affection for his kith
and kin assembled to battle him  and  his recourse to  Krishna as a Prapanna
seeking help is 
brilliantly portrayed by Swami Desikan thru the  use of the passage in the
Verse" DharumatthaLavin
MihavuLamanji vizhundu adi serntha visayanukku" , The  true knowledge revealed
by Krishna is described as Unmai  by Swami Desiakn to correlate to the word
"Saastraavataranam " used by 
Alavandaar.
     
THE ESSENCE OF SECOND ADHYAYAA OF GITA: THE WAY OF KNOWLEDGE
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Alavandaar succinctly summarizes the second chapter in this manner:

NITYAATMAASANGAKARMEHAAGOCHARAA SANKYAYOGADHEE : I
DWITHEEYEH STHITADHEELAKSHA PROKTHAA TANMOHASAANTHAYEH II   
        
 Here, according to Alavandaar, the Gitaacharyan instructs Arjuna about the
indestructability of the Jivan and advises him not to worry about the body made
of Pancha Bhoothams( five elements) that 
houses the imperishable Jivan. Krishna explains to Arjuna  that there is no
reason for sorrow over 
the destruction of the body ,since it is only a temporary house for the eternal
Jivan. once 
the Karmas are exhausted, Jivan is blessed with Moksham (freedom from Rebirths)
and as 
a result, there is no justification for the continuation of the body through
rebirth; therefore, there is no reason to feel sad over the destruction of the
body, after it has served its  cause. 

      Swami Desiakn salutes Krishna as "Vitthahan" to suggest the Lord of heroic
deeds and 
surprising acts. Our Lord asks Arjuna to shake of his delusion  and points out
to him that "Udalam 
Azhindhidum,uL uyir onru ennai pol Azhiyaadhu."  He reveals that the Jivan is
eternal like Him and 
can not be destroyed. He adds that the prescribed duties by the Sastraas have to
be performed 
and they have to be carried out without thought about their fruits so that he,
Arjuna can hasten to the step of Jnana Yoga. Lord asks  Arjuna to understand the
truth of Jivan's imperishable nature and the need  to do one "s duties in a
spirit of  dispassion  and instructs  him to shake off his delusion.
Swami Desikan"s words expressing these thoughts are: "Vidumathu Parru Vidaatha
Tadaittha Kirisaigaleh".  He asks Arjuna to hasten to "uyir kaattum ninaivu" or
the Jnana Yogam , which will reveal the true  nature of the Jivan and its
relation to Paramatman.
   .
THE ESSENCE  OF THE THIRD CHAPTER:tHE WAY OF ACTION
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Alavandaar's summary of the 43 verses of the third chapter is as follows:

ASAKTYAA LOKARAKSHAAYAI  GUNESHVAAROPYA KARTRUTHAM I
SARVESWAREH VAA NYASYOKTHAA TRITHIYEH KARMAKAARYATAA II

Here Krishna prods Arjuna to do his Kshatriya duties in the form of engaging in
the  war as one of the leaders of the righteous Pandavaas. Bhagavan states that
Karma Yogam should be practised first before  attempting Jnana Yogam.H epoints
out that Karma Yogam is a prerequisite to Jnana Yogam. He says that it is
imposiible to sit still, while action is being induced by one or more of the
three Gunas(Sattvam ,Rajas and Tamas). If one abandons Karma Yoga, one can not
even carry 
out bodily functions on this earth. He instructs Arjuna that he should perform
Karma Yoga to please HIM and not for obtaining other  results such as reaching
Swargam(Heavenly world) etc.Krishna states furthe rthat the human beings such a
sArjuna are deluded by thinking that the Jeevan(Atman) and the body are one and
the same. As a result , the human beings think that it is the Jivan that does
all the Karmas . Krishna explains that the three Gunas thru their graded
interactionsss with the eternal Jivan are behind the Karmas and that it is very
natural for to be involved with the performance of  different Karmas.Krishna
explains further that it is HE as the supreme Lord , who does all the Karmas
through the Jivan for HIS own pleasure and by dedicating the fruits of the
Karmas to HIM , all the delusions will disappear.  Krishna presses Arjuna to
engage  therefore in the fight in accordanc ewith the dharma as a soldier.

      Two of the key slokas of this chapter  are:

TASMAADASAKTHA: SATATAM KAARYAM KARMA SAMAACHARA I
ASAKTHO HYAACHARAN KARMA PARAMAPNOTHI PURUSHA: II   ----------- GITA  III.19

HENCE PERFORM ACTIONS, SINCE THEY ARE OBLIGATORY ,BUT PERFORM THEM WITHOUT
ATTACHMENT IN A DISPASSIONATE FRAME OF MIND .oNE ATTAINS THE HIGHEST OF BOONS
(MOKSHAM) BY PERFORMING ACTIONS WITHOUT ATTACHMENT TO THEM.

MAYI SARVAANI KARMAANI SAMNYASYAADHYAATMACHETASA I
NIRAASI NIRMAMO BHOOTHVA YUDYASVA VIGATAJWARA: II    ------------- GITA III.30

Renounce all actions to me; with your mind centered on the  self (Adhyaatma
Chetasa) and getting rid of hope and selfishness , fight free from mental
agitation( Vigata Jwqara: ).

Alavandaar"s words conveying the essence of the third chapter  are "Sarveswareh
vaa nyasyokthaa --kartrutaam". 

Swami Desikan brilliantly elaborates on the  summary of Alavandaar  as follows:

SANGAM TAVIRNDHU SAKAM SATIR PERRA DHANANJAYANEH
PONGUM GUNANGAL PUNARPU ANAITTHUM PUHA VITTU AVARRUL
NANKAN URAITTHA KIRISAI ELAM ENAVUM NAVINRAAR
ENGUM ARIVARGALEH ENRU NATHAN EIYAMBINANEH 

Here,  Swami refers to krishna"s instruction that Jnana Yogam will not become
fruitful without the observance of Karma Yoga first. One should perfom Karma
Yoga with dispassion and thereby obtain the Lord"s blessings. Desire, anger
will leave one after the proper practise of Karma Yoga and offering the fruits
of Karma to the Lord. It will then qualify the practioner to succeed with the
practise of Jnana Yogam.The three gunas(Pongum Gunangal)  are the attributes of
Prakriti. They are manifest in the chetana's body in different proportions.
These  gunas make the chetana do the Karmas (Punarppu anaitthum) . When one
confuses the Jivan with the body, the chetana forgets that all the Karmas are
done by the Lord himself and is deluded to think that he is the one , who is
behind the performance of the Karmas and forgets to dedicate them to the Lord in
a spirit of 
sacrifice of the fruits. Krishna (Nathan)  gave such instructions (eIyambinaneh)
to  Arjuna perform 
his duties as a Kshatriya in a dispassionate  manner.

THE ESSENCE OF THE FOURTH CHAPTER: THE WAY OF  RENUNCIATION OF ACTION IN
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KNOWLEDGE
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Alavandaar"s summary of the fourth chapter is as follows:

PRASANGAATH SVASVAABHAAVOKTHIHI KARMANOHAKARMATAASYA CHA I
BHEDA JNAANASYA  MAHATMYAM CHATURDHAADHYAAYA  UCHYATHEH II

Here Alavandaar refer to  the state of Adhikari ,who understands the true nature
of Atman(Jivan)      and who ,thereafter performs the Karmas by recognizing the
Jnana content in them.                            Such an Adhikari recognizes
that Karma Yogam contains inside it Atma Jnanam
and therefore it blossoms forth into Jnana Yogam. Further , the Adhikari of that
describtion ,who wishes to obtain Moksham performs all his Karmas believing that
he is doing them in his capacity as a part of Parabrahma Swaroopam and thereby
gains more Atma Jnanam. Such an Adhikari uses Atma Jnanam as a boat to cross the
ocean of sins accumulated over many births. His Atma Jnanam burns away the
admixture of Papams and Punyams and thereby makes him free of Karmas and
prepares him for the boon of moksham.

     The five  Gita Slokas , which  Alavandaar and  Swami Desikan might have
used  as a key part of their  summaries  of this chapter  are: IV--22
(Yadhrrucchaa Labha Santhushto),              23 (Brahmaarpanam ), 35(Api
Chetasi paapepyoh), 36 (Yathaidhaamsi Samiddhogni) 38(Sraddhaavaan labhate
Jnanam).

There are other famous slokams  also here , which strengthen the message
summarized  by the two Acharyas. They are: IV-7(Paritthraanaaya Sadhunaam), 9
(Veetha raga Bhaya), 10 (Yeh Yata maam Prapatyanthe),32 (Evam Bahuvidha  Yagna),
34 (Tadviddhi Pranipaaatena) and 40 (Ajynasccha asraddhadhanasccha). 
     
    Swami Desikan hints here at the six  Secrets (Rahasyams) behind the Lord"s
incarnations(Avataarams) here thru the choice of words " Thaaneh pirakkum
Perumaigalum) in 
 his Verse. He also states thru the words"Turavaakkirisaigal thumati tannaal
tulanguhaiyum", the 
Karmas that  are unabandonable and shining BY  doing them with the knowledge
ABOUT  the 
difference between the Jivan and the Body that houses it .

THE ESSENCE OF THE FIFTH CHAPTER : THE WAY OF RENUNCIATION
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THE FIFTH CHAPTER IS SUMMARIZED IN  A TERSE  VERSE BY ALAVANDAAR AS FOLLOWS:

KARMAYOGASYA SOWKARYAM SAIGRYAM KAASCHANA TADHVIDHAA: I
BRAHMAJNANA PRAKAARASCCHA PANCHAMAADHYAAYA  UCHYATE II

The essence of this chapter is distilled by the Alavandaar from the following
four verses of Gita that focus on the relationship between Karma and Jnana Yogas
and the purification of mind  resulting from the understanding of the true
nature of Atman and the equanimity that results  from such  an 
understanding( V-2,7,17 and 24).

the meaning of the key verses are:" A constant sanyasi is one, who neither hates
pain and the 
object  causing the pain; he is one, who neither desires pleasure and the
objects causing the  pleasure, although he is engaged in action causin gpain and
pleasure. He is free from   the pairs of opposites such as happiness and sorrow.
He may not have taken Sanyasa Asrama formally, but he is a constant Sanyasi.
(V-2). .......... " With his mind purified by devotion to the performance of
action, and with his senses  conquered , he , who realizes one's self ,as the
self resident in all living beings ,he is not tainted by his Karmas (V-7)..... "
The knower of the self looks with an equal eye on the Brahmin full of Vedic
knowledge and humility, a Cow, an Elephant ,a Dog and a
Paraiaha(Chandaala).(V-17)..... " The seers of right vision and renunciation
obtain absolute freedom because of their imperfections are exhausted ,their
doubts are dispelled ,their senses are controlled and they become engaged in the
good of all beings of this Universe(V-24).

Swami Desiakn echoes the thoughts of Alavandaar , when he says " Kandu eLithaam
karumam Uyir kaatti ". It is easy to practise Karma Yoga that leads to Jnana
Yoga AFTER  understanding the rules of Karma Yoga revealed by Krishna based on
the statements in the Sastraas. Alavandaar refers to the Sowkaryam and Saigryam
of Karma Yoga in this context.

 The access to Jnana Yoga and its fruits of knowledge about Atmaswaroopam is
indicated by  Swami Desika thru the passage in his verse:  " Uyir Katti
Kaduhathalum (Saigrayam) athan padiyil   mandi uyirai kaanalurra  ninaivugalum".
He says that Karma Yoga is easier to observe than Jnana Yoga.It also yields the
fruits quickly. He,who  controlls and conquers  the Senses  possesses a tranquil
mind.At that stage of the Saadhana, he recognizes the true form of Jivan  and
sees the identity of Jivans in all forms of life such as a Learned Brahmin , a
dog, a cow  or an "outcaste".
The equanimity of view or Sama Dharsanam is pointed out as the fruit of this
sadhana.

THE ESSENCE OF THE SIXTH CHAPTER: THE WAY OF MEDITATION
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the  summary of Alavandaar is as follows :

YOGAABHAYSA VIDHIRYOGI CHATURTHA YOGA  SAADHANAM I
YOGASIDDHI: SVAYOGYASYA PAARAMYAM SHASHTA UCHYATHEH II

Here, according to Alavandaar, krishna teaches the practise of Yoga to Arjuna
and instructs him on the benefits of such a practise. The Lord praises the Yogi
as being superior to those ,who obtained 
wisdom thru a study of sastras or those, who practise asceticism. Krishna says
that  the Yogis are superior ot Mimamsakas ,who conduct sacrifices prescribed in
the Karma Khanda of the Vedas. By Yoga, Krishna  means the steadfast meditation
on  HIM by the Sadhaka.He states that such a Yogi ,who concentrates on HIM with
undiminishing faith is very dear to HIM.

YOGINAAMAPI SARVESHAAM MADGATENAANTARAATMANAA I
SRADDHAAVAAN BHAJATHEH YOH MAM SA MEH YUKTATAMOH MATA: II  ..........VI-46

THE  Three other slokas of this chapter deal with the  ATTAINMENTS OF THE YOGI,
AND HIS SPECIAL STATUS WITH THE LORD(VI- 18, 27 AND 29). The gist of these three
Slokas are as follows:

VI-18: Yataa Dhipo --- with a completely controlled mind , practise of self
concentration by the Yogi results in stillness of mind like  a lamp free from
flickers, when it is placed in a spot sheltered from winds.........vi-27:
Prasaantha Manasam-- Truly, the supreme bliss comes to that Yogi of perfectly
tranquil mind, with passions subdued . He realizes Brahman and becomes free of
Taint (good and evil).... VI-29: Yoh  maam pasyati sarvatra--- Such a Yogi with
the equanimity of vision(Sama dharsina:) sees the ME  in ALL things .Such a Yogi
is never separated from ME and I am not separated from him.

Swami Desiakan"s summary is as follows:

YOGA MUYARCHIYUM YOGIRSAMANILAI NAALVAHAYUM
YOGINUPAYAMUM YOGUTANAAL VARUM PERUGALUM
YOGUTANIL TANTIRAMUDAI  YOGUTAN MUKKIYAMUM
NAGANAI YOGI NAVINRANAN MUDI VEERANUKKUHE 

Swami Desikan says that  Lord Krishna resting on the bed of Adi Sesha in the
milky ocean in Yoga Nidra revealed to Arjuna the crowned Hero (Mudi Veeranukkhe)
in the battle field of Kuru kshetra , the methods of performing Dhyana Yoga,
and the  four fruits arising from the practise of  looking at every thing in a
way of equanimity, and  the other  fruits of practising  Dhyana Yoga and sets
the stage  for the discussion on the Bjakthi Yoga (Chapters 7-12of the second
Shatkam).   . 

Conclusion of the First Shatkam of Bhagavad Gita according to Gitaartha
Sangraham of Alavandaar and Swami Desikan.

Namoh Namoh Yaamunaaya namoh namoh Yamunaaya
Namoh namoh Yaamunaaya namoh namoh yaamunaaya

Srimate Vedhanta Gurave Nama:.

V.Sadagopan
Yuva Year,Tula Masam, Krishna Panchami, Aarudra Nakshatram.