It is the 29th January today, 2000?
I think we had left last time at a very important point. Perhaps, it was necessary to give a lot of time because it was a very difficult portion of the Bhagavad Gita that we were dealing last time. We shall just revise a little before we proceed further.
In the first place we had said that the first 6 chapters of the Bhagavad Gita give us a synthesis of Action and Knowledge: Karmayoga and Jnanayoga. The chapters 7 to 12 give us a synthesis of Knowledge and Devotion, along with the synthesis which was achieved already in the first 6 chapters, so by the time we come to chapter n°12; we have a complete synthesis of Action, Knowledge and Devotion. The 7th chapter gives us a promise that it will gives us knowledge and detailed knowledge: jñānaṁ vijñāna-sahitaṁ, knowledge along with detailed knowledge, so that nothing remains afterwards to be known: everything that is to be known will be known. That is the promise in the 7th chapter. And in every chapter there after, we are getting into detailed knowledge, and chapter n°9 in which we are now at present located is in a sense the central chapter of the Gita. It may be regarded as the chapter of the synthesis “par excellence”. It is one of the most difficult chapters, although many of the verses of this chapter are very easy to follow.
In the 7th chapter, we are told that the Divine has two natures, two Prakritis: the Para Prakriti and the Apara Prakriti. In the 8th chapter, we have difficult concepts defined: what is Brahma? What is Karma? What is adhidaivataṁ? What is adhibhūtaṁ? And what is adhiyajña? Five difficult concepts which are being first of all raised in the end of the 7th chapter and answered in the 8th chapter, very briefly and we had dealt with this concept at length. Now, in the 9th chapter Sri Krishna repeats again and says that He is now going to give us the secret most knowledge, secret of secrets. And this chapter at the very beginning in the paragraph verses 4&5, if you open verse n°4, the statement which is made is:
mayā tatam idaṁ sarvaṁ jagad avyaktamūrtinā |
matsthāni sarvabhūtāni na cāhaṁ teṣv avasthitaḥ ||4|| (IX)
We had already started with this statement and also we had completed this statement by reading the 5th verse, which says:
na ca matsthāni bhūtāni paśya me yogam aiśvaram |
bhūtabhṛn na ca bhūtastho mamātmā bhūtabhāvanaḥ ||5|| (IX)
These two verses are perhaps the most difficult verses of the whole of the Gita. And therefore we had stayed on with these two verses for quite some time and we shall revise what we had said last time with some additional statements which are relevant.
We must remember the crisis through which Arjuna was passing. We recall the argument that Arjuna had made at the time of at the starting of the war, having seen all the warriors around and having seen particularly his brethrens and his grand sires and the teachers arrayed against him. He puts down his gāṇḍīva, and says ‘I will not fight’. And the arguments that he had given which seem formidable and when one read those arguments, one feel very sympathetic to Arjuna’s stand point, are laughed at by Sri Krishna. And Sri Krishna said that “you speak the words of the wise, but the wise do not worry about things you are worried about”. And then when he is asked by Arjuna to help him, then Sri Krishna begins the whole statement by stating the Reality of ‘That’ which is immortal. Arjuna’s argument was based upon mortality and Sri Krishna says that the one thing which is missing in your whole argument is the reference to the immortality and you must begin you argument actually with the first statement which is immortal. As long as the ‘immortal’ is not a part of your thought, your conclusion will be invalid. So, in the very first statement that Sri Krishna makes is regarding ‘that which is eternal’, ‘that which can never perish’ and ‘that which is the most important’ and in reference to what all our life should be directed. Now, it is that immortal which is expounded in fullness in these two verses. That immortal has been expounded to some extent in the previous chapters, but in these two verses, we get the fullest exposition of ‘that immortal’, ‘that reality’ which is eternal, the reality which is infinite that which gives you the full basis, the full content, the full direction of our existence.