Bhagvad-Gita: Treatise of self-help
by BS Murthy
to Chapter 16
Science of Devotion
This chapter of 28 slokas, known as
sraddhaa traya vibhaaga yoga, Threefold Devotion, deals with the
spiritual and temporal aptitudes of man. S11-s13 that deal with the
virtuous, the passionate and the deluded in ritualistic sense and s 23 -28
concerning Om, Tat, Sat and Asat of the Vedic hymns are
clear interpolations for reasons the reader is familiar with.
s7-s10 that deal with the food habits of the virtuous, the passionate and
the deluded would pose a problem in determining whether or not they are
interpolations. Can eating habits be linked to the innate nature of man in
an infallible manner? Perhaps, some future research and analysis might
resolve the universality or otherwise of this averment, and till then, it is
appropriate to reserve the judgment on these.
Thus spoke Arjuna:
None the regard for scriptures
Who tend to manage life their well
What Thou say of such of beings
Virtuous, passionate or merely deluded.
Thus spoke the Lord:
Itís oneís nature that tends him
To be virtuous, passionate, or delued.
Beings all have faith in some
It's one's nature that shapes it.
Virtuous seek gods in worship
Opt passionate to humour ghosts
Turn all deluded towards the Hades.
Hoping for there all to gain
Indulge vain in austerities
Though not endorsed by scriptures.
Itís in delusion they all fast
Emaciating frames of theirs,
Thus in foolishness they all
Famish Mine own Self in them.
As with habits so with palates
Come to tend all in three ways.
Opt virtuous all recipes fine
Sustain health ín enhance strength.
Hot ín spicy, and pungent,
Prefer food passionate that ill-suits.
Food of deluded is all stale
Long in storage, and impure.
Rings with truth ín laced with warmth
austere thatís well-meaning.
Simple ín stoic
Kind and candid
Itís mind austere
Never in turn,
Done in concern
Deed itís austere.
Itís in pretension passionate live
Eye they have on name ín fame.
With troubled mind all deluded live
Hurt themselves ín others as well.
Virtuous deed is that extends
Helping hand to one in need
Guided by the zeal to serve.
Deed passionate is quid pro quo
Ever done with some end in mind.
Aiding dubious with disdain
Itís deed deluded that lacks goal.
Science of Devotion,
The Seventeenth Chapter
Treatise of self-help.
to Chapter 16