Shrimad Bhagavad-gita

by Narayana Gosvami | 2013 | 327,105 words

The Bhagavad-gita Verse 10.3, English translation, including the Vaishnava commentaries Sarartha-varsini-tika, Prakashika-vritti and Rasika-ranjana (excerpts). This is verse Verse 10.3 from the chapter 10 called “Vibhuti-yoga (appreciating the opulences of the Supreme Lord)”

Sanskrit text, Unicode transliteration, Word-for-word and English translation of verse 10.3:

यो माम् अजम् अनादिं च वेत्ति लोक-महेश्वरम् ।
असम्मूढः स मर्त्येषु सर्व-पापैः प्रमुच्यते ॥ ३ ॥

yo mām ajam anādiṃ ca vetti loka-maheśvaram |
asammūḍhaḥ sa martyeṣu sarva-pāpaiḥ pramucyate
|| 3 ||

yaḥ–who; mām–Me; ajam–as the unborn; anādim–without beginning; ca–and; vetti–knows; loka–of the worlds; mahā-īśvaram–the great controller;asammūḍhaḥ–unbewildered; saḥ–he; martyeṣu–among mortals; sarva-pāpaiḥ–from all sins; pramucyate–he is fully freed.

Only he who knows Me as unborn, beginningless and the Supreme Controller of all the worlds is free from illusion, among mortals, and fully freed from all sins.

Commentary: Sārārtha-Varṣiṇī Ṭīkā

(By Śrīla Viśvanātha Cakravartī Ṭhākura; the innermost intention of the commentary named ‘the shower of essential meanings’)

The following question may be raised. “Do the demigods and saintly personalities know the facts about the birth of Your body, which is para-brahma, beyond the bounds of all time and space?”

Touching His chest with His forefinger, Śrī Kṛṣṇa responds by speaking this verse beginning with yo mām. “Only he who knows Me to be unborn knows Me in truth.”

“Does this mean that only You are the beginningless truth and that the great Grandsire Lord Brahmā is not? If Lord Brahmā is without beginning, then he must know You to be Paramātmā, without birth or cause.”

In response, Śrī Bhagavān says, yo mām vetti, etc. “Only he who knows Me to be without beginning or cause and to be unborn and yet born from Vasudeva, is the actual knower of the Truth.” Here, the word mām refers to Śrī Bhagavān, who is born from Vasudeva. “According to My statement (in Gītā 4.9), My birth and activities are divine. Because I am Paramātmā, My taking birth and remaining unborn are performed by My inconceivable potency and are absolutely true.” It is said in the Gītā (4.6), “Though I am unborn, I, who am eternal and unchanging, take birth.”

Uddhava has also said:

karmāṇy anīhasya bhavo’bhavasya te durgāśrayo’thāri-bhayāt palāyanam
kālātmano yat pramadā-yutāśramaḥ svātman-rateḥ khidyati dhīr vidām iha

Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (3.4.16)

O Prabhu, although You are desireless, You engage in action; although unborn, You take birth; although You are death personified, You run in fear of the enemy and hide in the fort of Dvārakā; and although You are self-satisfied, You enjoy with sixteen thousand women. Seeing these wonderful activities, the intelligence of even great scholars becomes bewildered.

In this regard, there is a verse by Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī‚ the author of Śrī Laghu-bhāgavatāmṛta: “Even though the scholars’ bewilderment in this case is not factual, it would still be better if it were absent. Therefore, the acintya-śakti is the cause of My variegated, or contradictory, nature which causes their bewilderment. In My dāmodara-līlā, I appeared to be limited, My belly bound by a small thread of jingling bells. And simultaneously, I appeared to be unlimited, because My belly could not be bound by the long ropes of Mother Yaśodā. This is beyond reasoning. In the same way, My taking birth and simultaneously not being born is also beyond reasoning.”

By use of the word loka-maheśvaram, which means the “Supreme Lord of the universe”, Bhagavān explains His aiśvarya, which is very difficult to understand. “O Arjuna, among human beings, only those who know your chariot driver to be the Supreme Lord of the universe (loka-maheśvara) are asammūḍhāḥ, freed from all sins or obstacles to bhakti. Those who think that I am unborn, without beginning, and that I have the nature of the Supreme Controller, etc., but who think that I only pretend to take birth, are sammūḍhāḥ (bewildered) and are not liberated from sin.”

Commentary: Sārārtha-Varṣiṇī Prakāśikā-vṛtti

(By Śrīla Bhaktivedānta Nārāyaṇa Gosvāmī Mahārāja; the explanation that illuminates the commentary named Sārārtha-varṣiṇī)

Here it is stated that Śrī Bhagavān is unborn, ajaḥ. In the Second Chapter, the jīvas are also described as unborn. Although they are unborn, they are vibhinnāṃśa, separated parts of Bhagavān (Gītā 15.7, mamaivāṃśo jīva-loke). The jīva is an atomic conscious entity, aṇucit, but Bhagavān is the complete conscious entity, pūrṇacit. The jīvas are under the control of Bhagavān’s māyā, whereas Bhagavān is the master of māyā. The shackled jīvas’ gross body is mutable, but Kṛṣṇa’s body is sac-cid-ānanda, immutable and eternal. When He descends into the material world, He comes in His own eternal svarūpa through the medium of His yogamāyā-śakti. He existed before the creation, He exists now, and He will continue to exist in the future. The following mantras from the Vedas substantiate this conclusion: “aham evāsam evāgre–only I was existing before creation, when there was nothing but Me” (Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 2.9.33); “bhagavān eka āsedam–Śrī Bhagavān existed prior to the creation as one without a second” (Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam 3.5.23); “anādir ādir govindaḥ–that Original Person is Lord Govinda, who is without beginning” (Brahma-saṃhitā 5.1); “eko ha vai nārāyaṇa āsī–in the beginning, only Nārāyaṇa existed” (Mahā Upaniṣad 1).

The present verse describes that although Bhagavān is unborn, by the influence of His acintya-śakti He is simultaneously the eternal son of Vasudeva and Devakī, and of Nanda and Yaśodā. His svarūpa can only be understood by exclusive, one-pointed devotion and not by any other sādhana, or practice.

One should not consider Śrī Kṛṣṇa to be an ordinary person, but if it is said that He is famous as the son of Devakī or Yaśodā, then how can He be without birth? The answer to this is given in scriptures such as the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam: “Śrī Kṛṣṇa did not take birth like an ordinary baby. In the prison house of Kaṃsa, He appeared before Vasudeva and Devakī in His youthful form, carrying a conch, disc, club and lotus flower, decorated with various types of ornaments, and with beautiful hair on His head. Later, at the request of Vasudeva and Devakī, He became a small baby.” Śrī Kṛṣṇa did not openly exhibit His pastime of being born in His two-armed form as Yaśodā-nandana from the womb of Mother Yaśodā in Gokula. Still, while only an infant, He killed very fearsome and powerful demons such as Pūtanā and Śakaṭāsura and thus liberated them. He displayed the whole universe within His child-like mouth and performed many other amazing activities not possible for an ordinary baby. Therefore, Śrī Kṛṣṇa is Svayam Bhagavān, the controller of all other controllers, the source of everyone and without cause.

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