“If you really want to withdraw from this battle on the clear understanding that you want to attain to the indestructible Reality, then that is certainly a right thing to do, but be clear that you are going out of this war for that, not because of the question of Dharma–Adharma and the consequences. On that ground if you are leaving then, you are not on the right premises.”
Sri Krishna says that, “That is the path by which you withdraw and go to the indestructible Reality. But by the same Buddhiyoga I will tell you that even if you act you will be free from grief. That is a path of going out of the grief if you go to the indestructible Reality by withdrawal. But I shall tell you another aspect of the Truth, that even it you act you will be free from grief.”
And that is the starting point of the real teaching of the Gita. Because ultimately Sri Krishna’s teaching is that ‘You should act’, that even if it is possible to come out of action He says, “It is not to be preferred”. Sri Krishna’s final answer in the whole of the Gita is that, “Although you can come out of the grief by attaining to the inactive indestructible Reality that is not preferable. What is preferable is to find a solution where there will be no grief even when you act.”
And this is the new argument from II, 39 it starts.
eṣā te ’bhihitā sāṅkhye buddhir yoge tv imāṁ śṛṇu |
buddhyā yukto yayā pārtha karmabandhaṁ prahāsyasi ||39|| (II)
“O Son of Pritha! This is the wisdom of the Sankhya which I have given you. Now listen to the wisdom of Yoga endowed with which, you will be free from the bondage of Karma.”
And then He says that, ‘I am giving you that path, even small effort in that path will reverse you from fear’.
“In this endeavour no effort is ever rendered void and no obstacle ever prevails. Even a small measure of this Dharma (righteousness) protects a person from a great fear (of the world cycle).” (II, 40)
He expounds this new path: ‘so that, even if you are in action, you will not have grief, you will be mukta’. From here to the end is one argument basically. There are again certain sub–paths in the argument, but basically from here to the end, is a one straight argument, and the whole burden of the argument is that ‘If you can make you buddhi sthira, then even if you act, but if your buddhi is sthira, then there will be no grief, whatever action. Here, there is no question of Dharma–Adharma, ‘whatever action’, but if you can keep your buddhi sthira, in other words, if you become equal minded under every circumstances, if you see oneness everywhere, then whatever action you do, you will be free, there will be no grief.’
This is the secret. Combine two elements: perception of oneness and keeping the equilibrium, complete equality, samatvaṁ, and act! And that is better than not acting. Act, but with these two propositions put forward. Now this ‘perception of oneness’ and ‘maintenance of equality’ are interdependent. You cannot have real equality unless you have the perception of oneness; this perception of oneness is connected with the earlier proposition of the Indestructible: oneness is indestructible. That perception of oneness is the basis of equality, of samatvaṁ.
Action which is based upon the perception of oneness and the maintenance of equality: ‘If you do this, if you achieve this then there will be no grief: you were grief stricken and you wanted to come out of the grief?’ Sri Krishna answers immediately that, ‘If you want no grief at all, then attain to the perception that there is the indestructible Reality, which is One, as the result of which everything is equal; if you can keep equal in your consciousness, and act! Then, there will be no grief in your consciousness.’ What is the cause of the grief? The cause of the grief is: unsteadiness of buddhi. If buddhi becomes fixed, steady, on oneness, on equality, then there is no grief; all grief is because of unsteadiness.