Bhagavagd Gita - Session 21- Track 2102

What is true at a certain stage of exposition gets qualified by what comes later on. It is even when we explain to other students, very often we make a whole statement, and then afterwards we qualified it. Even in economics we say that “all prices are determined by forces of demand and supply”; then you can qualify that even the forces of demand and supply can be manipulated: so, it is not only true that only demand and supply determine the price level. On what will depend the demand? On what will depend the supply? Even that you can change. If the state government wants to increase the demand for something, the state government can come into the picture and begin to buy certain things. The state government, the central government sometimes enters into the market, and begins to buy up bills of exchange, and does create a demand and then the prices go up. So, although it is true that demand and supply are determinant factors, the demand itself may be changed; supply itself can be changed. If you stop the supply of a given good, like recently onions prices went up, that is because there was a holding: it is not purely a movement of demand and supply because there is demand there will be supply or vice versa. There is a human will which enters into it and the law, although it is true in a larger way, it is not entirely binding. So, in an exposition, in the beginning you make a statement, which is not false, which is not untrue, but which needs to be qualified at a later stage.

Now, it is true that in general, as human beings are, we must understand that human beings at present are under a great sway of Prakriti. In other words, the whole evolutionary movement is so designed that it begins with a heavy hand of Prakriti. Why it is so? It is because originally, there is an intention to create a building of matter in which the spirit has to be installed later on. So, unless you build the building first, how will you install the spirit in it? Therefore in the beginning, Prakriti has been given a greater hand in the evolutionary movement. So, if you look at the evolutionary movement up to a certain stage of development, you can easily say that in that field, Prakriti is supreme: prakṛtiṁ yānti bhūtāni. You can say very clearly that everything that happens in human beings is done by Prakriti; and even if you want to control, you cannot control it; it will be of no avail.

Now, that is true at a certain stage, up to a certain stage of development. When you deal with a child, you very often say that the same action on the adult, you will judge differently, but as a child you say: “he is only a child, what can it be done, it is natural for the child to do what he has done; the child cannot control; the child, if you offer something, the child will pick it up; it depends upon you what you are giving before the child”. As long as the psychology of children is described, this statement will be fully relevant, and fully true; when you describe the psychology of the adult, it may not be true.

Now, from the point of view of the universal evolution, most of us are children: we have not gone beyond the infancy in our evolution. Even the so-called very developed people are merely children still. In evolution, we are at a lower level, and therefore, it is largely true to even Jnanis: even so-called Jnanis are quite subject to Prakriti. And therefore, it is quite true to say that prakṛtiṁ yānti bhūtāni: all the things are subject to the movement of Prakriti. But if that statement is alone true and nothing else, then Yoga has no place: the entire teaching of the Bhagavad Gita can be left aside and we can say: what can Arjuna do? He was overpowered by this moha, or that delusion, or this bewilderment, or this problem; he can do nothing else. So, you can do nothing about him, you allow him to do what he likes, is that the conclusion? It is true that Prakriti is acting, and he acted as the Prakriti did.

But then Sri Krishna is now giving or introducing in him certain elements, which make all the difference, and ultimately Arjuna changes his point of view; he rises above. Now, this rising above is the essence of Yoga. If anybody asks the question: why should you teach anybody to do something other than what he is naturally inclined to do? In fact this is the whole question of education; the entire question of Yoga; the whole question of ethics; the whole question of spirituality. If it is said that all things in the world are determined, then the argument could be: if you tell somebody, ‘you ought to do this’, is irrelevant. All things are being done according to the circumstances of the world, according to the past tendencies, according to the past actions, according to the preplanning. So, where is the place there for introducing something saying ‘no, he ought to do this’? The ‘ought’ means: introducing an element, which is not the result of the calculation of all that is there in the present situation; ‘ought’ is the introduction of a new element, and you say: ‘he ought to do this’, that which is not normal, that which is not natural, that which is not a resultant of all the past energies.