9.30 api chEth sudhurAchArO

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

Chapter 9

<< Chapter 9 verse 29

SlOkam – Original

api chEth sudhurAchArO bhajathE mAm ananyabhAk |
sAdhur Eva sa manthavya: samyag vyavasithO hi sa: ||

word-by-word meaning

su dhurAchAra api – even if he has very lowly characteristics/conduct
mAm – in me
ananyabhAk – without desire for any other benefit
bhajathE chEth – if he worships me
sa: – he
sAdhu Eva – as good as the best among gyAnis;
manthavya: – he deserves to be praised.

(This is because,)
sa: – He
samyak – very
vyavasitha hi – has firm faith and attachment (in me).

Simple Translation

Even if one has very lowly characteristics/conduct, if he worships me without desire for any other benefit, he is as good as the best among gyAnis; he deserves to be praised. This is because, he has very firm faith and attachment (in me).

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

‘Even if one were of flagitiously wicked ways, if he but pay Me exclusive worship, he is to be esteemed as virtuous; for he has verily steered aright.'[1. Vide Bhāg: III-33-7: ‘Ahobata śvapacho etc.’ Cp: Bh: Gi: IV-36; and IX-32.]

People are born of several castes, each caste having its own rules of conduct, whether of the mandatory or the prohibitory kind. Even if they should transgress those laws, they are deserving of being accounted as righteous men, if, in the manner aforesaid, they do but worship Me, with a worship exclusively devoted to Me. Such a person is to be esteemed or honored as a sādhu or the most staunchly eminent Vaishṇava; or to be classed as equal to those of My worshippers already mentioned.

But how is this possible? Because His (present) conduct or resolution is definitely settled in the right direction (viz., of unswervingly worshipping Me). His firm attitude of mind consists in his implicit belief, —which all cannot get— that “the Lord alone is the Cause of the infinite Kosmos, the Para-brahma, Nārāyaṇa, the Ruler of movable and immovable things, ‘My own’ Sovereign Lord, ‘My’ Teacher, ‘My’ friend, and ‘My’ Object of supreme delight.” Such a man is hence a good or righteous man.

He is also to be honored, or, in other words, he is not an object to be lightly regarded, on account of any slight derelictions from the institutes of his caste, inasmuch as all his attention and effort are co-centred on the kind of worship aforesaid. He is thus to be more honored.

But if it be objected, that transgression of customary laws (of caste), must impede the further and further development of the flow of God-devotion, as in the manner declared in the Śruti:— ‘He shall not attain Him, who has not ceased from wickedness, who is not free from passions, whose mind is distracted, and engrossed with manifold occupation, even though he may possess knowledge (of Brahm)’[1. Kath: Up: II-24 ‘Nāvirato duścharitan nāśānto nāsamāhitaḥ, nāśānta-mānaso vā`pi prajñāne-nainam āpnuyāt.’], the answer is:—

>> Chapter 9 verse 31

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