In the fourth verse we are told:
tataḥ padaṁ tat parimārgitavyaṁ yasmin gatā na nivartanti bhūyaḥ |
tam eva cādyaṁ puruṣaṁ prapadye yataḥ pravṛttiḥ prasṛtā purāṇi ||4|| (XV)
“tataḥ padaṁ tat parimārgitavyaṁ: having used the weapon of non-attachment, you make your path, tataḥ padaṁ, from there you make your path to that padaṁ, to that state of consciousness; yasmin gatā: having enter into which; na nivartanti bhūyaḥ: from where there is no return.”
You attain to that state of realisation, which is permanent: this is the definition of realisation actually. When somebody is ‘realised’, he enters into a state permanently, which is divine in nature and from which it is impossible to return. It is different from ‘experiences’ of the Divine: when we experience the Divine, it is for a short time, you enter into a new state, but again as we all do from time to time, we return back.
But one who is realised, he seats permanently, it is impossible for him to see the world as we see it now. All the relationships of the world are seen differently now by one who is realised: he is then liberated; till that time there is no liberation. Mere experiencing of the Divine is not liberation, it only gives you a state, a kind of a foretaste, but it does not give you the realisation. He again fall down, only memory remains. That memory, of course, can become again a path, therefore repeated experiences prepare you for the realisation, having entered into which yasmin gatā na nivartanti bhūyaḥ, you do not return from there.
And how do you attain to it? tam eva cādyaṁ puruṣaṁ prapadye, always say to yourself that ‘I am surrendering myself’: prapadye; tam eva cādyaṁ puruṣaṁ, the supreme Purusha, cādyaṁ puruṣaṁ, the original Purusha, it is to that supreme Lord that I am surrendering myself; yataḥ pravṛttiḥ prasṛtā purāṇi, it is that Purusha from which this ancient Prakriti, the power of the Divine has spread out Herself.
When you do this, then what will be the character of your nature? This is described in the remaining verses. The nature of the individual who has liberated himself, there has been many descriptions of the ‘liberated ones’ in the Bhagavad Gita starting from the 2nd chapter in fact, where we have the description of the one who is settled in the consciousness ‘brāhmi sthiti’. Then we have description in the 6th chapter. Then we have the description in the 7th chapter, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th chapter, in every chapter you have a description of this nature of the liberated ones.
If you examine all of them, one common quality that you will find everywhere is ‘equality’. The one who is liberated is equal-minded: there is a complete equilibrium. Right from the 2nd chapter to the present chapter this is one common feature. There are other differences: somewhere the experience of Jnana is emphasised; somewhere the emphasis is upon Karma; somewhere the emphasis is upon Bhakti, but among all these descriptions, the one common thing that is, is ‘equality’…and something more, equality and something more. Now here, in the 15th chapter, equality is again described but there is still something more, something more because of the fact that as we have seen in the 14th chapter, there was a demand to go beyond the three Gunas.
Let us refer to the 14th chapter for a minute, so that in our mind it is fixed quite well, 14th chapter, 19th verse:
guṇebhyaś ca paraṁ vetti mad-bhāvaṁ so ’dhigacchati ||,
“guṇebhyaś ca paraṁ one who goes beyond all the Gunas, Sattwa, Rajas and Tamas, all of them are transcended; mad-bhāvaṁ so ’dhigacchati, and one who is My own nature, no only My being…there is a difference between the divine being and the divine nature.
Question: Is it turiya?
turiya, is both at the same time: divine being and divine nature, but normally it is only referred to ‘divine being’.
What the Bhagavad Gita points out is the nature which is beyond the three Gunas. It is not only the being but also nature: there is a nature of the Divine, which goes beyond the three Gunas. And beyond the three Gunas is not only the being of the Divine, but also the divine nature, so mad-bhāvaṁ is given. The word ‘mad-bhāvaṁ’ means not only My being: mad-bhāvaṁ, what I become, My nature. So, if you go beyond the three Gunas you arrive at the mad-bhāvaṁ, the supreme nature of the Divine.
And therefore the next one in the 20th verse of the same chapter:
guṇān etān atītya trīn, atītya means: having transcended; trīn means three guṇān etān, having transcended these three Gunas, dehī, the one who is in the body now, the soul… dehī deha-samudbhavān |
janma-mṛtyu-jarā-duḥkhair vimukto ’mṛtam aśnute ||20|| (XIV)
He becomes free from birth, death, old age, from all sorrow, and amṛtam aśnute, he enjoys the amṛta, he becomes immortal.
It is this immortality which has been described here. Now, having described it here and now when you have gone to the supreme, with this transcendence of your nature, the description is not only of equality but also the description of divine nature.