Links:-In the preceding verse, Lord Krsna declared that without performing action we cannot keep body and soul together. It proves that performance of action is essential. But actions lead to attachment and bondage. So how can a man be free from this bondage? The Lord, answers the question in the next verse.
yajnarthatkarmano'nyalra loko'yam karmabandhanah
tadartham karma kaunteya muktasangah samacara
The mankind is bound by actions other than those done for the sake of sacrifice. Therefore, 0 son of Kunti (Arjuna), perform action for that (yajna) sake, and without attachment. 9
Yajnarthatkarmano'nyatra:-According to the Gita, every duty is 'Yajna' (sacrifice). The term 'Yajna includes sacrifice, charity, penance, oblation, pilgrimage, fast, study of the Vedas and all physical, mundane and spiritual actions. Professions such as business, service and teaching etc., sanctioned by the scriptures, are also included in 'Yajna'. Other actions, which are performed in order to comfort others and for the welfare of others, are also included in the term 'Yajna. Attachment perishes very quickly by performing actions for the sake of sacrifice and all actions of a Karmayogi are dissolved (Gita 4/23) i.e., they instead of leading the person to bondage, reduce the stock of his past actions also to nothing.
In fact, a man's inclination is judged by his aim, rather than by his actions. As a businessman's aim while having a transaction is to ea money, and he thinks of money, as soon as he shut his shop, similarly, a striver who performs action for the sake of sacrifice, has the aim of God-realization and as soon as the action is over, he is inclined towards God.
The people of different Varnas (castes) have their allotted duties and actions. A Brahman (a member of the priest class) can depend on charity which is a source of his living, while it is not allowed for a Ksatriya (a member of the warrior class). Similarly, performance of actions without having any desire for fruit, is a man's own duty while performance of actions expecting their fruit is not his own duty. Similarly, forbidden actions are also not included in one's own duty, and so is the case, with actions which are performed in order to gain pleasure, honour, praise and comfort etc. Therefore, a striver should take precaution lest the action should be performed with a selfish motive. In fact a striver is he, who is ever on the alert in this regard.
If a person receives a visitor with open arms, in order to create a good impression of his gentleness upon him, it means that the action has been performed, with a selfish motive. Therefore, such an action cannot be called a sacrifice. Similarly, if a person puts a question to an orator in a meeting or in a discourse in order to impress the orator and the audience, his action is not performed for the sake of sacrifice (Yajna). It means that a striver should perform action by renouncing his selfish motive and desire.