Gita Madhurya -Swami Ramsukhdas
The Lord in the thirty-ninth verse of the second chapter said to Arjuna. 'This is the wisdom of Slinkhya given to thee, 0 Arjuna. Now listen to the wisdom of Yoga (Action) i.e., the Discipline of Action in which a person by performing action for the welfare of others without any selfish motive attains equanimity." Then according to the context. in response to Arjuna's question Lord Krsna having described the marks of the man of steady wisdom. completes this topic. At the beginning of the third chapter Arjuna asked Lord Krsna, "If you think that knowledge is superior to action, why do you urge me to do this savage deed (war)?" In response to his question the Lord from the fourth to the twenty-ninth verses lays emphasis on the performance of actions by which a man attains equanimity. In the thirtieth verse He says that surrendering all actions to him, with the mind concentrated in the self, free from desire and egoism he should perform actions, relieved from the mental agitation. In the thirty-first and thirty-second verses Ile declares the sweet fruit of following His preaching (explained in the previous verse) and the harm in not following it. In the thirty-fifth verse He declares, "Better is death in one's own duty." In the thirty-sixth verse Arjuna asks, "By what is a man impelled to commit sin'?" The Lord replies, "It is desire, all devouring and most sinful, which is the enemy". and ordered Arjuna to slay this enemy.
Though the Lord's teaching continues from thethirty-seventh verse, yet in the forty-third verse when the answer to Arjuna's question is over, Sage Vedavyasa concludes the third chapter and begins the fourth chapter. It shows that the Lord having answered Arjuna's question, gives a pause and then begins again the Discipline of Action which was being described in the forty-seventh and forty-eighth verses of the second chapter by the term 'Imam' (This) in the first verse of the fourth chapter. There are two important factors pertaining to the Discipline of Action—
(1) Performance of actions and
(2) Special knowledge about actions.
Arjuna wants to renounce the performance of actions. So he says to Lord Krsna, "Why do you ask me to he engaged in this savage deed?" Therefore, the Lord lays special emphasis on the performance of duty, specially in the third chapter. while in the fourth chapter He imparts knowledge about actions. e declares, "I shall teach thee such action (the nature of action and inaction), after knowing which thou shalt be liberated from evil (the wheel of birth and death) .
This Karmayoga in spite of being beginningless was lost to the world through long lapse of time because of the absence of such scholarly teachers (sages) who could impart it. The Lord in the first three verses describing how Karmayoga was handed down from ancient times, proves how it existed from times immemorial.
References and Context