What is this point? Why is this, the answer to what question? Arjuna says that, (on the 10th verse of this chapter II,) “O Bharata! Hrishikesh smilingly spoke these words to grief stricken Arjuna…” grief stricken, he was now stricken with grief. Even if you have to do this or that, what was troubling Arjuna was the grief, he wanted to do something niścitaṁ, in which whatever he does there should be no grief at all. Sri Krishna says that, “There is a state in which there is no grief at all: that comes about only when you know the Reality, which is indestructible.” This is the basic statement of the Bhagavad Gita: that you can be free from all grief only if you attain to a Reality, which is amṛtam, which is indestructible. This is the concept of Moksha, which is starting point in the whole of the Gita; we shall come back again and again to this concept of Moksha.
“There is no existence for the unreal, and the Real never cease to be.”
nāsato vidyate bhāvo nābhāvo vidyate sataḥ |
ubhayorapi dṛṣṭo ’ntas tv anayos tattvadarśibhiḥ ||16|| (II)
“There is no existence for the unreal, and the Real never cease to be. Thus, the knowers of Reality have ascertained the nature of what is Real and what is unreal.”
Sri Krishna again elucidates the nature of this indestructible Reality.
“That alone by which all this is pervaded is imperishable…” this ‘imperishable’ is not something over there, all that is pervading this world, everything in the world.
“That alone by which all this is pervaded is imperishable, because no one can destroy that immutable Reality.” (II, 17)
“O Bharata! That indestructible Reality is imperishable, immeasurable, but the bodies which are inhabited by the Self are perishable. Therefore, prepare to fight! ” (II, 18)
‘You want Imperishable, and Imperishable will never be destroyed, and you are afraid that you are going to destroy! Fight, destroy, Reality will remain indestructible! This is all that you are caring for, you want indestructibility. Fight, destroy, destroy these bodies! These bodies are going to be destroyed in any case, if not today tomorrow, they are transient. You are caring for the indestructible, fine! Be sure, it is not being destroyed, you are not going to destroy anybody, anything really that which is to be, the Reality.’
“Those who consider the Self as the killer, and those who think that it is killed, both are ignorant, for the Self neither kills, nor is killed.”
ya enaṁ vetti hantāraṁ yaścainaṁ manyate hatam |
ubhau tau na vijānīto nāyaṁ hanti na nanyate ||19|| (II)
āyaṁ na hanti, he does not kill, na nanyate, he is not killed either.
“The Self is never born, nor does it ever die; having once born before, will It not be born in the future. The Self is unborn, eternal, imperishable and ageless. Though the body is slain, the Self is not killed.” (II, 20)
“O Son of Pritha! If one knows that the Self is indestructible, immutable, unborn, eternal, how can a person kill anyone or cause any one to be killed?” (II, 21)
“Just as a person discards old clothes to put on the new ones, in the same way the embodied Self having discard ed the worn out bodies, goes into new ones.”
This is one of the most famous sentences of the Bhagavad Gita.
vāsāṁsi jīrṇāni yathā vihāya navāni gṛhṇāti naro ’parāṇi |
tathā śarīrāṇi vihāya jīrṇāny anyāni saṁyāti navāni dehī ||22|| (II)
“Just as the old clothes are discarded by man, and wears the new ones, even so the old bodies are given up and the soul which is indestructible wears the new bodies.”