Bhagavad-Gita Summary, Chapter XIII

[For the Disciple—A Guide]


"Devotion by means of the Discrimination of the Kshetra from Kshetrajna."

Krishna states that the field or Kshetra, is to be known by the owner of the field, the Kshetrajna. And, he adds: "Know also that I am the Knower in every mortal body, O son of Bharata; that knowledge which through the soul is a realization of both the known and the knower is alone esteemed by me as wisdom." (Gita, p. 93)

He says:

"This body, then, is made up of the great elements, Ahankara—egotism, Buddhi—intellect or judgment, the unmanifest, invisible spirit; the ten centers of action, the mind and the five objects of sense: desire, aversion, pleasure and pain, persistency of life, and firmness, the power of cohesion. Thus I have made known unto thee what the Kshetra or body is with its component parts."

"True wisdom of a spiritual kind is freedom from self-esteem, hypocrisy, and injury to others; it is patience, sincerity, respect for spiritual instructors, purity, firmness, self-restraint, dispassion for objects of sense, freedom from pride, and a meditation upon birth, death, decay, sickness, and error; it is an exemption from self-identifying attachment for children, wife, and household, and a constant unwavering of heart upon the arrival of every event whether favorable or unfavorable; it is a never-ceasing love for me alone, the self being effaced, and worship paid in a solitary spot, and a want of pleasure in congregations of men; it is a resolute continuance in the study of Adhyatma, the Superior Spirit, and a meditation upon the end of the acquirement of a knowledge of truth;—this is called wisdom or spiritual knowledge; its opposite is ignorance." (Gita, pp. 93-4)

Krishna states, then, that the Spirit, as wisdom, ever is; that it is beginningless and endless; and, it is neither being or non-being:

"...unattached, yet supporting all; without qualities, yet the witness of them all. It is within and without all creatures animate or inanimate...and although near it is afar off. Although undivided it appeareth as divided among creatures, and while it sustains existing things, it is also to be known as their destroyer and creator. It is the light of all lights, and is declared to be beyond all darkness; and it is wisdom itself, the object of wisdom, and that which is to be obtained by wisdom; in the hearts of all it ever presideth." (Gita, p. 95)

Prakriti (matter or form) and Purusha (spirit) are co-existent, and they are beginningless and endless. Nature, or prakriti, operates to produce cause and effect from actions [Karma]. Individual spirit or purusha is the cause of experiencing pleasure and pain in the body. When the spirit is embodied it experiences the sensations that proceed from matter and this, through attachment, is the cause of its rebirth in good or evil circumstances. (Gita, p. 96)

"The spirit in the body is called Maheshwara, the Great Lord, the spectator, the admonisher, the sustainer, the enjoyer, and also the Paramatma, the highest soul." (Gita, p. 96)

By various methods: meditation contemplation, philosophical study and, works, men attempt to view the spirit within. But, Krishna states:

"He who seeth the Supreme Being existing alike imperishable in all perishable things, sees indeed." (Gita, p. 97)

Once a man perceives:

"...the same Lord present in everything and everywhere, he does not by the lower self destroy his own soul, but goeth to the supreme end." (Gita, p. 97)

He sees indeed, who perceives that all actions are performed by nature (prakriti) only, and that the Higher Self within is not the actor:

"And when he realizes perfectly that all things whatsoever in nature are comprehended in the ONE, he attains to the Supreme Spirit. This Supreme Spirit, even when it is in the body, neither acteth nor is it affected by action, because, being without beginning and devoid of attributes, it is changeless." (Gita, p. 98)

"As the all-moving Akasa, by reason of its subtlety passeth everywhere unaffected, so the Spirit, though present in every kind of body, is not attached to action nor affected. As a single sun illuminateth the whole world, even so doth the One Spirit illumine every body. Those who with the eye of wisdom thus perceive what is the difference between the body and Spirit and the destruction of the illusion of objects, go to the Supreme." (Gita, p. 98)





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