Bhagavad Gita Chapter IV - Verse 37 & Verse 38 Print E-mail

Verse 37



This verse speaks of the result of wisdom on vasanas. Vasanas means ignorance. This ignorance goes with knowledge as darkness is dispelled by light.


There are two stages of growth:


1. Vasanas get charred. This is indicated by Hanuman charring Lanka with his tail. When you gain higher knowledge the world loses its fascination. You are no longer tempted or lured by worldly attractions. No fresh vasanas are generated. You are strong enough to withstand the enticements of the world. Just as a seed loses its capacity to germinate when it is roasted.


2. Vasanas get burnt to ashes. You attain Realisation. Once you wake up the dream ceases to affect you. The role of an alcoholic has no impact on the actor. It is a state of total objectivity.


When Sudama was sent to Krsna on a mission to ask for help he took a handful of beaten, roasted rice to Krsna. The roasted rice signified his last few vasanas. Krsna ate it. Sudama forgot to ask for help and returned home only to find that his humble hut had transformed into a magnificent mansion. When you develop the attitude of giving and divest your personality of vasanas prosperity is showered on you. You neither need it nor are you dependent on it. Sudama walked away from it all to gain Realisation.


The fire of knowledge burns all unwelcome experiences, leaves no trauma behind. You become stable. Your pain threshold increases. Stress gradually decreases.


Just as wood is an incredible combination of fuel and fire rolled into one, the human being is an impossible amalgam of Spirit and matter, knowledge and ignorance.


Verse 38



Knowledge of Self alone purifies you of vasanas and desires. Mental agitation that arises from unfulfilled desire reduces gradually. Knowledge is gained through the three practices of Karma Yoga, Bhakti Yoga and Jnana Yoga. The paths of action, devotion and knowledge. In the beginning you act for atmashuddhi self purification. Once you gain Enlightenment you act for lokasangraha welfare of the world.


Everyone goes through stress, agitation, misery. This has nothing to do with the world. The most endowed are often most troubled. A little knowledge removes a few desires and gives a little relief. Thus you keep going till you reach Realisation which is the state of zero desires, no agitation, absolute Bliss.


It is important to make constant effort at perfecting the three yogas. Then you will find it in the Self in due course of time. This depends on your spiritual level and the effort you put in.


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