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Chapter 3: Karma-yoga

Bg 3.1
arjuna uvaca
jyayasi cet karmanas te
mata buddhir janardana
tat kim karmani ghore mam
niyojayasi kesava
arjunaù—Arjuna; uväca—said; jyäyasé—speaking very highly; cet—although; karmaëaù—than fruitive action; te—your; matä—opinion; buddhiù—intelligence; janärdana—O Kåñëa; tat—therefore; kim—why; karmaëi—in action; ghore—ghastly; mäm—me; niyojayasi—engaging me; keçava—O Kåñëa.
Arjuna said: O Janärdana, O Keçava, why do You urge me to engage in this ghastly warfare, if You think that intelligence is better than fruitive work?
The Supreme Personality of Godhead Çré Kåñëa has very elaborately described the constitution of the soul in the previous chapter, with a view to deliver His intimate friend Arjuna from the ocean of material grief. And the path of realization has been recommended: buddhi-yoga, or Kåñëa consciousness. Sometimes Kåñëa consciousness is misunderstood to be inertia, and one with such a misunderstanding often withdraws to a secluded place to become fully Kåñëa conscious by chanting the holy name of Lord Kåñëa. But without being trained in the philosophy of Kåñëa consciousness, it is not advisable to chant the holy name of Kåñëa in a secluded place where one may acquire only cheap adoration from the innocent public. Arjuna also thought of Kåñëa consciousness or buddhi-yoga, or intelligence in spiritual advancement of knowledge, as something like retirement from active life and the practice of penance and austerity at a secluded place. In other words, he wanted to skillfully avoid the fighting by using Kåñëa consciousness as an excuse. But as a sincere student, he placed the matter before his master and questioned Kåñëa as to his best course of action. In answer, Lord Kåñëa elaborately explained karma-yoga, or work in Kåñëa consciousness, in this Third Chapter.


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Copyright (c) 1972 by His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada