by Kashinath Trimbak Telang | 1882 | 125,859 words

Volume 8, The Sacred Books of the East. This part Contains the english translation of the Bhagavad-gita....

Yet again, O you of mighty arms! listen to my excellent[1] words, which, out of a wish for your welfare, I speak to you who are delighted (with them). Not the multitudes of gods, nor the great sages know my source; for I am in every way[2] the origin of the gods and great sages. Of (all) mortals, he who knows me to be unborn, without beginning, the great lord of the world, being free from delusion, is released from all sins. Intelligence, knowledge, freedom from delusion, forgiveness, truth, restraint of the senses, tranquillity, pleasure, pain, birth, death, fear, and also security, harmlessness, equability, contentment, penance, (making) gifts, glory, disgrace, all these different tempers[3] of living beings are from me alone. The seven great sages, and likewise the four ancient Manus[4], whose descendants are (all) these people in the world, were all born from my mind[5], (partaking) of my powers. Whoever correctly knows these powers and emanations of mine, becomes possessed of devotion free from indecision; of this (there is) no doubt. The wise, full of love[6], worship me, believing that I am the origin of all, and that all moves on through me. (Placing their) minds on me, offering (their) lives to me, instructing each other, and speaking about me, they are always contented and happy. To these, who are constantly devoted, and who worship with love,, I give that knowledge by which they attain to me. And remaining in their hearts, I destroy, with the brilliant lamp of knowledge, the darkness born of ignorance in such (men) only, out of compassion for them.

Arjuna said:

You are the supreme Brahman, the supreme goal, the holiest of the holy. All sages, as well as the divine sage Nārada, Asita[7], Devala, and Vyāsa, call you the eternal being, divine, the first god, the unborn, the all-pervading. And so, too, you tell me yourself, O Kesava! I believe all this that you tell me (to be) true; for, O lord! neither the gods nor demons understand your manifestation[8]. You only know your self by your self. O best of beings! creator of all things! lord of all things! god of gods! lord of the universe! be pleased to declare without, exception your divine emanations, by which emanations you stand pervading all these worlds. How shall I know you, O you of mystic power! always meditating on you? And in what various entities[9], O lord! should I meditate on you? Again, O Ganārdana! do you yourself declare your powers and emanations; because hearing this nectar, I (still) feel no satiety.

The Deity said:

Well then, O best of Kauravas! I will state to you my own divine emanations; but (only) the chief (ones), for there is no end to the extent of my (emanations). I am the self, O Guḍākesa! seated in the hearts of all beings[10]. I am the beginning and the middle and the end also of all beings. I am Viṣṇu among the Ādityas[11], the beaming sun among the shining (bodies); I am Marīci among the Maruts[12], and the moon among the lunar mansions[13]. Among the Vedas, I am the Sāma-veda[14]. I am Indra among the gods. And I am mind among the senses[15]. I am consciousness in (living) beings. And I am Śaṅkara[16] among the Rudras, the lord of wealth[17] among Yakṣas and Rakṣases. And I am fire among the Vasus, and Meru[18] among the high-topped (mountains). And know me, O Arjuna! to be Bṛhaspati, the chief among domestic priests. I am Skanda among generals. I am the ocean among reservoirs of water[19]. I am Bhṛgu among the great sages. I am the single syllable (Om[20]) among words. Among sacrifices I am the Japa sacrifice[21]; the Himālaya among the firmly-fixed (mountains); the Aśvattha[22] among all trees, and Nārada among divine sages; Citraratha among the heavenly choristers, the sage Kapila among the Siddhas[23]. Among horses know me to be Uccaiśśravas[24], brought forth by (the labours for) the nectar; and Airāvata among the great elephants, and the ruler. of men among men[25]. I am the thunderbolt among weapons, the wish-giving (cow) among cows. And I am love which generates[26]. Among serpents I am Vāsuki. Among Nāga[27] snakes I am Ananta; I am Varuṇa among aquatic beings. And I am Aryaman among the manes, and Yama[28] among rulers. Among demons, too, I am Pralhāda. I am the king of death (Kāla, time) among those that count[29]. Among beasts I am the lord of beasts, and the son of Vinatā[30] among birds. I am the wind among those that blow[31]. I am Rāma[32] among those that wield weapons. Among fishes I am Makara[33], and among streams the Jāhnavī[34]. Of created things I am the beginning and the end and the middle also, O Arjuna! Among sciences, I am the science of the Adhyātma, and I am the argument of controversialists. Among letters I am the letter A[35], and among the group of compounds the copulative[36] compound. I myself am time inexhaustible, and I the creator whose faces are in all directions. I am death who seizes all, and the source of what is to be. And among females, fame[37], fortune, speech, memory, intellect, courage. forgiveness. Likewise among Sāman hymns, I am the Bṛhat-sāman[38], and I the Gāyatrī[39] among metres. I am Mārgaśīrṣa among the months, the spring among the seasons[40]; of cheats, I am the game of dice; I am the glory of the glorious, I am victory, I am industry, I am the goodness of the good. I am Vāsudeva among the descendants of Vṛṣṇi[41], and Arjuna among the Pāṇḍavas. Among sages also, I am Vyāsa[42]; and among the discerning ones, I am the discerning Uśanas[43]. I am the rod of those that restrain, and the policy[44] of those that desire victory. I am silence respecting secrets. I am the knowledge of those that have knowledge And, O Arjuna! I am also that which is the seed of all things. There is nothing movable or immovable which can exist without me. O terror of your foes! there is no end to my divine emanations. Here I have declared the extent of (those) emanations only in part. Whatever thing (there is) of power, or glorious, or splendid, know all that to be produced from portions of my energy. Or rather, O Arjuna! what have you to do, knowing all this at large? I stand supporting all this by (but) a single portion (of myself)[45].

Footnotes and references:


As referring to the supreme soul.


As creator, as moving agent in workings of the intellect, &c.


The names are not always names of 'tempers,' but the corresponding 'temper' must be understood.


The words are also otherwise construed, 'The four ancients (Sanaka, Sanandana, Sanātana, Sanatkumāra) and the Manus.' According to the later mythology the Manus are fourteen.


By the mere operation of my thought. As to ancients, cf. Aitareya-āraṇyaka, p. 136.


Śaṅkara renders the word here by perseverance in pursuit of truth.


Ānandagiri calls Asita father of Devala. See also Davids' Buddhism, p. 185; Müller's Anc. Sansk. Lit., p. 463.


Scil. in human form for the good of the gods and the destruction of demons.


To know you fully being impossible, what special manifestation of you should we resort to for our meditations?


P. 129 infra.


'Āditya is used in the Veda chiefly as a general epithet for a number of solar deities.' Max Müller, Hibbert Lectures, p. 264.


The storm-gods, as Max Müller calls them.


Cf. Sutta Nipāta, p. 121.


As being, probably, full of music.


Cf. Chāndogya, p. 121, where Śaṅkara says, 'Mind is the chief of man's inner activities.'


Now the third member of our Trinity.




The Golden Mount.


Cf. Sutta Nipāta, p. 121.


Vide p. 79 supra.


Japa is the silent meditation. Madhusūdana says it is superior owing to its not involving the slaughter of any animal, &c.


The fig tree. It is the symbol of 'life' in chapter XV infra.


Those who even from birth are possessed of piety, knowledge, indifference to the world, and superhuman power. Cf. Śvetāśvatara-upaniṣad, p. 357.


This is Indra's horse, brought out at the churning of the ocean. Airāvata is Indra's elephant.


Cf. Sutta Nipāta, p. 121.


I. e. not the merely carnal passion. Cf. p. 74 supra.


Nāgas are without poison, says Śrīdhara. Varuna is the sea-god.


Yama is death, and Pralhāda the virtuous demon for whom Viṣṇu became incarnate as the man-lion. As to manes, see Goldstücker's Remains, I, 133.


'Counts the number of men's sins,' Rāmānuja; Śrīdhara says p. 90 this refers to 'time, with its divisions into years, months,' &c.; while a little further on it means 'time eternal.'


I. e. the Garuḍa or eagle, who is the vehicle of Viṣṇu in Hindu mythology.


'Those who have the capacity of motion,' says Rāmānuja.


The hero of the Hindu epos, Rāmāyana, translated into verse by Mr. R. T. H. Griffith.


The dolphin.


The Ganges.


That letter is supposed to comprehend all language. Cf. Aitareya-āraṇyaka, p. 346, and. another text there cited by Mādhava in his commentary (p. 348).


This is said to be the best, because all its members are co-ordinate with one another, not one depending on another.


I. e. the deities of fame, &c.


See, as to this, Muir, Sanskrit Texts, vol. i, p. 16. Śaṅkara says this hymn relates to final emancipation.


Cf. Chāndogya-upaniṣad, p. 181, where Śaṅkara says, 'Gāyatrī is the chief metre, because it is the means to a knowledge of the Brahman.' It is the metre of the celebrated verse 'Om Tatsavitur,' &c.


Cf. Chāndogya-upaniṣad, p. 126. Mārgaśīrṣa is November-December. Madhusūdana says this is the best month, as being neither too hot nor too cold; but see Schlegel's Bhagavadgītā, ed. Lassen, p. 276.


One of Kṛṣṇa's ancestors.


The compiler of the Vedas.


The preceptor of the Daityas or demons. A work on politics is ascribed to him.


Making peace, bribing, &c.


Cf. Puruṣa-sūkta (Muir, Sanskrit Texts, vol. i, p, 9).

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