SrI: SrImathE SatakOpAya nama: SrImathE rAmAnujAya nama: SrImath varavaramunayE nama:
na karmaṇām anārambhān
naiṣkarmyaṁ puruṣo ’śnute
na ca sannyasanād eva
‘None can attain the actionless (naishkarmya) state by cessation from action; not by cessation merely doth he attain perfection.’
Neither by not performing the Śāstra-ordained works, nor by abandoning them after once begun, does one attain to the actionless state, i.e., the state of jñāna (naishkarmya=jñāna), in as much as action (karma) alone, when interpreted as the mode of worshipping the Supreme Spirit (Parama-Purusha), and performed with no expectation of reward, brings perfection, and without this course jñāna-fitness is not attainable.
Thus ātma-nishṭhā (or the bestowal of exclusive attention to the concerns of atma-the psychological training) -which is practicable only after the annulment of all sense-distractions- is impracticable by those who are deep in the untold sins of the long past, and who have not worshipped Govinda1, by acts, with no reward anticipated therefor.
Further exposition of this question is made:-
archived in http://githa.koyil.org
- The 189th and 543rd name of God. Its one etymology is ‘Nashṭāñca dharaṇīm pūrvam avindañca guhām gatam, Govinda iti ten-āham, etc.’ ↩