nirāśīr yata–cittātmā tyakta–sarva–parigrahaḥ |
śārīraṁ kevalaṁ karma kurvan nāpnoti kilviṣam ||21|| (IV)
He is nirāśīr; he is no ‘all hopes’, all expectations are all drowned; yata–cittātmā, his consciousness is completely united with the Supreme; tyakta–sarva–parigrahaḥ, all possessions, all sense of possession, all idea of storing something for the future, all that is tyakta, all given up; śārīraṁ kevalaṁ karma kurvan, he does action only bodily, inwardly there is an ocean of tranquillity, so there is no action inwardly and yet there is a manifestation of action only physically, outwardly; nāpnoti kilviṣam, therefore there is no sin that attaches to him.
yadṛcchālābhasantuṣṭo dvandvātīto vimatsaraḥ |
samaḥ siddhāv asiddhau ca kṛtvāpi na nibadhyate ||22|| (IV)
He is dvandvātīto, he has gone beyond all dualities, right or wrong, pleasure or pain, praise or insult; dvandvātīto, whether I should do this or should do that, there is no dvandvā in his consciousness; vimatsaraḥ, there is no envy, no jealousy in him; yadṛcchā–lābha–santuṣṭo, whatever is given to him, santuṣṭo, he is satisfied; samaḥ siddhāv asiddhau, he is equal in his mind whether there is success or failure; even then, kṛtvāpi na nibadhyate, he does actions and even when he does actions, he does not get bound.
gatasaṅgasya muktasya jñānāvasthitacetasaḥ |
yajñāyācarataḥ karma samagraṁ pravilīyate ||23|| (IV)
All attachment is gone gata–saṅgasya; muktasya, he is liberated; jñānāvasthita–cetasaḥ, his consciousness is seated in Knowledge; yajñāyācarataḥ karma, all actions he does as a sacrifice; karma samagraṁ pravilīyate, therefore his action is all burnt away.
A new argument begins from verse n°24. The link between 23&24 is the word: yajñā. In the last sentence of verse n°23, you have: yajñāyācarataḥ karma, sacrifice. This sacrifice has been explained in the 3rd chapter. This is now further explained in the 4th chapter, and that explanation comes here. If you read only the 3rd chapter and the description of yajñā, an impression will be created that yajñā in the 3rd chapter is the ritualistic yajñā: it is the havan, it is the lighting of the fire and throwing into it the samidh, and then giving the oblations of ghṛta. The kind of ritualistic yajñā that is being proposed in the tradition; that impression is now completely wiped out when the explanation of yajñā is given here. What is the real yajñā? The whole meaning of yajñā, and the Karma, which is done as a yajñā, is now transformed in the subsequent verses. What is it that you say: this action is done for the sake of sacrifice? You will see here, there is no reference to the ritualistic sacrifice, and yet the symbols are of ritualism:
brahmārpaṇaṁ brahma havir brahmāgnau brahmaṇā hutam |
brahmaiva tena gantavyaṁ brahmakarmasamādhinā ||24|| (IV)
The oblation is the yajñā, is the brahmaṇ; the fire itself is the brahma; brahma Himself is the sacrificer into the brahmaṇ. When you realise that whole world is nothing but brahmaṇ, and all actions are done as if an offering to the Supreme omnipresent Divine who is Himself brahma, who is immobile consciousness. The immobile consciousness that manifest itself in the world, and whatever action you do is by itself a sacrifice, is all given to Him: brahma sacrificing to brahmaṇ, by brahmaṇ, for brahmaṇ, into brahmaṇ, that is the meaning of yajñā. There is no ritualistic yajñā: all action, even breathing, eating, everything is nothing but yajñā; all actions. For him the act of offering is brahmaṇ; the oblation is brahmaṇ; by brahmaṇ is it offered into the fire of brahmaṇ; brahmaṇ is that which is to be attained by him who realises brahmaṇ in his actions.