13.16 avibhaktham cha bhUthEshu

SrI:  SrImathE SatakOpAya nama:  SrImathE rAmAnujAya nama:  SrImath varavaramunayE nama:

Chapter 13

<< Chapter 13 verse 15

SlOkam – Original

avibhaktham cha bhUthEshu vibhaktham iva cha sthitham |
bhUthabharthru cha thath gyEyam grasishNu prabhavishNu cha ||

word-by-word meaning (based on puththUr krishNamAchArya swAmy’s thamizh translation)

thath – that AthmA
bhUthEshu cha – (though present) in all bodies (such as dhEva (celestial), manushya (human), thiryak (animal), sthAvara (plant))
avibhaktham – remains undivided;

(still)
vibhaktham iva cha sthitham – (for the ignorant) appears to be in divided (as dhEva etc);
bhUtha bharthru cha – as the supporter of creatures (such as dhEva etc)
grasishNu (cha) – as the devourer (of food prepared by creatures)
prabhavishNu cha – as the cause (in the form of semen, foetus etc) for changes
gyEyam – is to be known (as different from the creatures)

Simple Translation (based on puththUr krishNamAchArya swAmy’s thamizh translation)

That AthmA, (though present) in all bodies (such as dhEva (celestial), manushya (human), thiryak (animal), sthAvara (plant)) remains undivided; still, (for the ignorant) appears to be in divided (as dhEva etc); due to the AthmA being the supporter of creatures (such as dhEva etc), the devourer (of food prepared by creatures) and the cause (in the form of semen, foetus etc) for changes, it is to be known (as different from the creatures).

Rendering based on ALkoNdavilli gOvindhAchArya swAmy’s English translation of gIthA bhAshyam

‘Undivided among beings, it abides as divided.’

By its intrinsic property of ‘knower,’ it is void of divisions, abiding everywhere among creatures, deva, man etc. But to (spiritually) unwise people, it appears divided as: ‘This is deva’; ‘This is man’ etc.

From what is said in the Stanza: ‘He who knows this etc.,’ (Gi: XIII-1), it is understood that the soul being ‘knower,’ it is possible to comprehend it as an entity separate from the body, though in expressions like: ‘I am deva,’ ‘I am man’ etc., it (soul = I) is always comprehended with reference to the body (its cloak). And now it will be shown how to comprehend it as a distinct entity, in other ways:

‘And as supporter of elements it is to be known; as devourer and as causer.’

Inasmuch as it supports or holds together the combination of the elements, earth etc., known as body, it is to be known or is capable of being known as the ‘supporter,’ as contradistinguished from the ‘supported (body).’

Similarly, it is grasishṇu=devourer of material elements such as food. And therefore it is capable of being comprehended as the ‘devourer,’ as contradistinguished from the ‘devoured articles.’

And prabhavishnu=causer or cause of transformations such as devoured food undergoes, and hence ‘causer’ of transformations may be inferred from the transformations of food effected.

Inasmuch as no such properties are discovered in a dead body, it is concluded that mere matter-combined Kshetra is incapable of being the ‘supporter,’ the ‘devourer or ‘causer.’ (Hence soul is to be inferred as such).

>> Chapter 13 verse 17

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