पुरुष: प्रकृतिस्थो हि भुङक्ते प्रकृतिजान्गुणान् |
कारणं गुणसङ्गोऽस्य सदसद्योनिजन्मसु || 22||
puruṣhaḥ prakṛiti-stho hi bhuṅkte prakṛiti-jān guṇān
kāraṇaṁ guṇa-saṅgo ’sya sad-asad-yoni-janmasu
puruṣhaḥ—the individual soul; prakṛiti-sthaḥ—seated in the material energy; hi—indeed; bhuṅkte—desires to enjoy; prakṛiti-jān—produced by the material energy; guṇān—the three modes of nature; kāraṇam—the cause; guṇa-saṅgaḥ—the attachment (to three guṇas); asya—of its; sat-asat-yoni—in superior and inferior wombs; janmasu—of birth
Purusha, embodied in Prakriti, experiences the gunas born of Prakriti. It is attachment to these gunas that is the cause of His birth in good and evil wombs.
This verse explains the cause for the birth of the Jiva in good and evil wombs. The cause for it is the attachment of the Jiva with qualities (sattva, rajas and tamas) and the various objects of the material world. This is the cause of bondage though the Jiva (Purusha) is really the Drik (seer), yet he is deluded into thinking that he is the objective body, and by the delusion, he attaches himself to the objective world through a sense of ‘I’ and ‘mine’, through ‘raga’ and ‘dvesha’. Thus he becomes bound and takes birth after birth in the world. He becomes a ‘samsari’ by binding himself to ‘samsara’. Therefore the wise man should know that attachment to the Gunas is the cause of birth and all the evils arising from it. He should cut off all contact with the Gunas, and the vehicle of the body; and he should not have any feeling of ‘myness’, regarding the body and its modifications. He should positively contemplate that He is ever free, pure consciousness, till by such contemplation, he releases himself from the shackles of the body and the Gunas relating to it. He then knows what he really is the eternally pure and perfect Purusha. This is the only way to go beyond the ocean of samsara, the series of births and deaths which one suffers. Attahment is bondage, detachment is freedom.
In a huge factory, several small wheels rotate by the power of the fly-wheel. If the belt of the fly-wheel is snapped, the other smaller wheels stop rotating automatically. If the mainspring of a watch is cut off, all the other wheels stop moving. Thus if the contact with the body and the Gunas of Prakriti is given up completely, the whole series of births and deaths come to end, and that very moment man attains freedom and perfection.
Question: What is the cause of birth?
Answer: The attachment of the ‘Jiva’ with the vehicle of the body, and the ‘Gunas’ caused by ‘Prakriti’ is the cause of birth.
Question: What then is the way to escape from birth and death?
Answer: By discrimination, man should give up attachment to the body, to the ‘Gunas’ and the whole of the objective world.