[Advaita-l] GITA - 2.15

Amuthan Arunkumar R aparyap at yahoo.co.in
Wed Dec 14 11:43:11 CST 2005

namo nArAyaNAya!

kR^iShNa taught arjuna how to endure the various
modifications of the mind in the previous verse. now,
kR^iShNa teaches the fruit of such a patient
indifference to the mind,

yaM hi na vyathayantyete puruShaM puruSharShabha.
samaduHkhasukhaM dhIraM so.amR^ItatvAyakalpate.. 2.15

O best of men, the wise man who is indifferent to
pleasure and pain and whom these do no affect is
indeed fit for immortality.

he who does not get elated when happiness arrives or
dejected when sadness looms over the mind, that wise
man who bears patiently all these while constantly
seeking for the self, is indeed fit for mokSha. BP's
bhAShyam here is quite beautiful, '... saH
nityAtmasvarUpadarshananiShThaH dvandvasahiShNuH
amR^itatvAya amR^itabhAvAya mokShAya kalpate samarthaH
bhavati'. it summarizes the essence of both this and
the previous shloka in a form that is directly
relevant to us. 

here, the word puruSha refers to the one who, being
omnipresent, resides in the body [...purNatvena puri
shayAnaM sa vA ayaM puruShaH... GD 2.15.]. the
reference to dukha and sukha includes all other
modifications of the mind also. though the self is
ever liberated, due to avidyA, it associates itself
with upAdhi-s like mind, intellect etc. and
experiences happiness and sadness. when one becomes
indifferent to these, the hold of avidyA slackens and
one gets closer to the real self. by addressing arjuna
as puruSha-R^iShaba, kR^iShNa is teaching him his real
nature as being distinct from the various upAdhi-s
like the intellect etc. 

in this verse, kR^iShNa clearly shows that the purpose
of the indifference to the various chitta vR^itti-s
taught in the previous verses is to make one fit for
realizing the true self. thus, this shows the mental
maturity that we must develop in order to entertain
any thought of realizing the self. this indifference
is a sine qua non as far as liberation is concerned. 

(MS's bhAShyam on this verse is quite long and
involves a refutation of views of various schools of
thought. the essence of the argument is that the self,
being the 'revealer/illuminator' of objects like the
intellect, mind and the world etc. (the
'revealed/illumined'), is different from and
independent of that which it reveals and hence is not
affected by various qualities of the

vAsudevaH sarvaM,

P.S.: due to some bad time management on my part, the
frequency of gItA posts has been very low in the past
few weeks. i'll try my best to post more regularly
from now on.  

Amuthan Arunkumar R,
Final year, B.Tech/M.Tech Dual Degree,
Dept. of Aerospace Engg., IIT Madras.

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