Essence of SrI bhagavath gIthA – Chapter 8 (akshara parabrahma yOga)

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

Essence of SrI bhagavath gIthA

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In the twelfth SlOkam of gIthArtha sangraham, ALavandhAr explains the summary of eighth chapter saying “ In the eighth chapter, the different types of principles which are to be understood and practiced by the three types of devotees namely aiSwaryArthi who desires for material wealth, kaivalyArthi who desires to enjoy himself after being freed completely from material body, and gyAni who desires to attain the lotus feet of bhagavAn are spoken.”.

Important SlOkams/Verses

SlOkam/Verse 1

arjuna uvAcha
kim thadh brahma kim adhyAthmam kim karma purushOththama |
adhibhUtham cha kim prOktham adhidhaivam kim uchyathE ||

Oh purushOththama! What is known as brahmam? What is known as adhyAthmam? What is known as karma? What is that which is called as adhibhUtham? And, what is known as adhidhaivam?

Note: arjuna asks krishNa about the important principles to be known by devotees.

In the next SlOkam, he asks about adhiyagyam which is to be known by all three types of devotees (aiSvaryArthis, kaivalyArthis and bhagavath kainkaryArthis).

SlOkam/Verse 3

SrI bhagavAn uvAcha
aksharam brahma paramam svabhAvO’dhyAthmam uchyathE |
bhUthabhAvOdhbhavakarO visarga: karmasamgyitha: ||

“brahma” is the AthmA which is relieved from any connection to matter; “adhyAthmam” is  nothing but matter; the act of emission (of male sperm into female ovary) for procreation is called “karma”.

SlOkam/Verse 4

adhibhUtham ksharO bhAva: purushaS chAdhidhaivatham |
adhiyagyO’ham evAthra dhEhE dhEhabhruthAm vara ||

Oh best among those who have a body! adhibhUtham (which is to be known for aiSwaryArthi (those who seek worldly wealth)) is (the best) Sabdham etc [worldly pleasures] which are naturally subject to change; adhidhaivatham (which is to be known by them again) is the purusha (deity) who is greater than celestial beings such as indhra et al. adhiyagyam (which is to be known by all three categories viz seekers of worldly wealth, self-enjoyment and service to bhagavAn) is me who is worshipped by yagyams (sacrifices) by being the antharyAmi (in-dwelling super soul) of celestial beings such as indhra et al, who are my body.

SlOkam/Verse 5

anthakAlE cha mAm Eva smaran mukthvA kaLEbaram |
ya: prayAthi sa madhbhAvam yAthi nAsthyathra samSaya: ||

Whosover sheds his body meditating upon me (along with his desired results) even during the last moments (while attaining the desired results), attains my state; no doubt in this.

Note: In this SlOkam and the next two SlOkams, krishNa explains about anthima smruthi (final thoughts before leaving the body).

SlOkam/Verse 6

yam yam vA’pi smaran bhAvam thyajathyanthE kaLEbaram |
tham tham Evaithi kaunthEya sadhA thadhbhAvabhAvitha: ||

Oh arjuna! When one leaves the body, meditating upon whichever state in the last moments, he attains that state; (because) did he not always focus on that?

SlOkam/Verse 7

thasmAth sarvEshu kAlEshu mAm anusmara yudhya cha |
mayyarpithamanobudhdhir mAm EvaishyasyasamSaya: ||

Thus, you shall think about me only, at all times (until death); engage in the battle as well; (in this manner) with mind and intellect focussed on me, you will attain me (as you desired); there is no doubt in this.

Note: In this SlOkam, continuous meditation on krishNa is suggested as a means to attain anthima smruthi.

In the next seven SlOkams, he explains the differences in upAsansA (devotional practice) for different types of devotees (aiSvaryArthi, kaivalyArthi and bhagavath kainkaryArthi), and the process which leads to anthima smruthi, for the ultimate goal.

In the remaining SlOkams, starting from 15th SlOkam, krishNa explains the nature of the results attained by aiSvaryArthi, kaivalyArthi and bhagavath kainkaryArthi.

SlOkam/Verse 15

mAm upEthya punar janma dhu:khAlayam aSASvatham |
nApnuvanthi mahAthmAna: samsiddhim paramAm gathA: ||

Those gyAnis, the great souls, who attained me, the ultimate goal,  after attaining me, do not again acquire a [material] body which is the abode of all sufferings and is temporary.

Note: Here he establishes that the result attained by gyAnis is permanent and the best.

SlOkam/Verse 16

AbrahmabhuvanAllOkA: punarAvarthinO’rjuna |
mAm upEthya thu kaunthEya punar janma na vidhyathE ||

Oh arjuna! all worlds upto brahma lOkam (which are inside the brahmANdam [an oval shaped universe of 14 layers, having brahma lOkam at the top]) are subject to destruction; Oh son of kunthI! But after attaining me, there is no rebirth.

Note: Here the reason for gyAni’s result being permanent is established.

In the 17th SlOkam, brahmA’s day being thousand 4-yuga cycles long and his night being the same length is explained. In the next two SlOkams, the temporary nature of all the entities which are part of brahmA’s fourteen layered universe, is explained.

In the 20th and 21st SlOkam, krishNa explains that the result attained by kaivalyArthi is also permanent.

SlOkam/Verse 22

purusha: sa para: pArtha bhakthyA labhyas thvananyayA |
yasyAnthassthAni bhUthAni yEna sarvam idham thatham ||

Oh son of kunthI! In which paramapurusha (supreme lord) all entities are present inside, by whom all these [entities] are pervaded, that paramapurusha is attainable through exclusive devotion.

Note: Here, krishNa explains the greatness of bhakthi yOga and the result of eternal kainkaryam to bhagavAn which is attained through that.

In the 23rd and 24th SlOkams, the path of light, archirAdhi gathi, which leads to mOksham is explained.

In the 25th SlOkam, the path of smoke, dhUmAdhi gathi, which leads to svargam (heaven) for those who had puNyam is explained. After enjoying svargam, one needs to come back to bhUlOkam (earth) to resume from where they left.

In the 26th SlOkam, the nature of the results of those who travel in archirAdhi gathi and dhUmAdhi gathi, being permanent and temporary respectively, is explained.

In the 27th SlOkam, krishNa instructs arjuna to meditate upon archirAdhi gathi.

SlOkam/Verse 28

vEdhEshu yagyEshu thapassu chaiva dhAnEshu yath puNyapalam pradhishtam |
athyEthi thath sarvam idham vidhithvA yOgI param sthAnam upaithi chAdhyam ||

Whatever results of that puNya (virtuous deed) explained in SAsthram for reciting vEdhas, engaging in yagyas, different types of thapas and charities, one who practices bhakthi yOgam (becoming a gyAni) knows the glories of mine, the paramapurusha (supreme lord), which are explained in these two chapters (7th and 8th), and by that knowledge transcends all those results and attains the ancient, beginning-less supreme SrIvaikuNta lOka (the divine abode of SrIman nArAyaNa).

adiyen sarathy ramanuja dasan

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