अमानित्वमदम्भित्वमहिंसा क्षान्तिरार्जवम् |
आचार्योपासनं शौचं स्थैर्यमात्मविनिग्रह: || 8||
इन्द्रियार्थेषु वैराग्यमनहङ्कार एव च |
जन्ममृत्युजराव्याधिदु:खदोषानुदर्शनम् || 9||
असक्तिरनभिष्वङ्ग: पुत्रदारगृहादिषु |
नित्यं च समचित्तत्वमिष्टानिष्टोपपत्तिषु || 10||
मयि चानन्ययोगेन भक्तिरव्यभिचारिणी |
विविक्तदेशसेवित्वमरतिर्जनसंसदि || 11||
अध्यात्मज्ञाननित्यत्वं तत्वज्ञानार्थदर्शनम् |
एतज्ज्ञानमिति प्रोक्तमज्ञानं यदतोऽन्यथा || 12||
amānitvam adambhitvam ahinsā kṣhāntir ārjavam
āchāryopāsanaṁ śhauchaṁ sthairyam ātma-vinigrahaḥ
indriyārtheṣhu vairāgyam anahankāra eva cha
asaktir anabhiṣhvaṅgaḥ putra-dāra-gṛihādiṣhu
nityaṁ cha sama-chittatvam iṣhṭāniṣhṭopapattiṣhu
mayi chānanya-yogena bhaktir avyabhichāriṇī
vivikta-deśha-sevitvam aratir jana-sansadi
etaj jñānam iti proktam ajñānaṁ yad ato ’nyathā
amānitvam—humbleness; adambhitvam—freedom from hypocrisy; ahinsā—non-violence; kṣhāntiḥ—forgiveness; ārjavam—simplicity; āchārya-upāsanam—service of the Guru; śhaucham—cleanliness of body and mind; sthairyam—steadfastness; ātma-vinigrahaḥ—self-control; indriya-artheṣhu—toward objects of the senses; vairāgyam—dispassion; anahankāraḥ—absence of egotism; eva cha—and also; janma—of birth; mṛityu—death; jarā—old age; vyādhi—disease; duḥkha—evils; doṣha—faults; anudarśhanam—perception; asaktiḥ—non-attachment; anabhiṣhvaṅgaḥ—absence of craving; putra—children; dāra—spouse; gṛiha-ādiṣhu—home, etc; nityam—constant; cha—and; sama-chittatvam—even-mindedness; iṣhṭa—the desirable; aniṣhṭa—undesirable; upapattiṣhu—having obtained; mayi—toward Me; cha—also; ananya-yogena—exclusively united; bhaktiḥ—devotion; avyabhichāriṇī—constant; vivikta—solitary; deśha—places; sevitvam—inclination for; aratiḥ—aversion; jana-sansadi—for mundane society; adhyātma—spiritual; jñāna—knowledge; nityatvam—constancy; tattva-jñāna—knowledge of spiritual principles; artha—for; darśhanam—philosophy; etat—all this; jñānam—knowledge; iti—thus; proktam—declared; ajñānam—ignorance; yat—what; ataḥ—to this; anyathā—contrary
Humbleness; freedom from hypocrisy; non-violence; forgiveness; simplicity; service of the Guru; cleanliness of body and mind; steadfastness; and self-control; dispassion toward the objects of the senses; absence of egotism; keeping in mind the evils of birth, disease, old age, and death; non-attachment; absence of clinging to spouse, children, home, and so on; even-mindedness amidst desired and undesired events in life; constant and exclusive devotion toward Me; an inclination for solitary places and an aversion for mundane society; constancy in spiritual knowledge; and philosophical pursuit of the Absolute Truth—all these I declare to be knowledge, and what is contrary to it, I call ignorance.
In this Discourse, both knowledge and the object of Knowledge are explained. The moral and spiritual qualities needed for Self-realisation are stated as Knowledge (Jnanam) here. Without perfect command of these qualities, no one can attain Paramatma. When the mirror is pure, the reflection is clear, not otherwise. Thus when the mind is purified by spiritual qualities, the Self is clearly reflected in it. So the seeker has to cultivate these qualities of jnanam first, and the self-existent Paramatman is revealed spontaneously without any effort on the part of man. All effort, all practice, all ‘sadhana’ is needed to purify the mind by the acquisition of these moral and spiritual qualities. There ends all effort. The Realisation of Paramatman occurs by itself. No effort is needed. Twenty spiritual qualities are mentioned here. The seeker has to understand each one of them and make them all part of his own personality.
acharyopasanam: Service to the Guru is an essential factor in spiritual life. Without the benediction of God and Guru, no advancement is possible. Knowledge of Atma is attained by their grace. (4.34)
saucham: Purity both internal and external is another essential factor of spiritual life. The mind and body should be washed clean of all their dirt and foul passions.
sthairyam: The seeker should be firm, determined and resolute. His decision should be unalterable. The views and opinions of worldly men should not be allowed to loosen the firmness of one’s own conviction about spiritual truth.
atmavinigrahah: Here the word Atman stands for senses and mind. They should be thoroughly brought under control, without any fear of rebellion from them at any time. The power of Maya can easily trap up a man, if his self-control is partial or inadequate.
indriyartheshu vairagyam: Dispassion for sense-objects is the test of a jnani. The man of knowledge is never tempted by the attractions of the sense-world. If the mind runs after sense pleasures, it cannot be brought to rest in the Self. Meditation is not possible. The seeker has to develop ‘vairagya’ as the very life element of spiritual progress. He should turn the mind inwards to look into the Self by withdrawing it from its usual wanderings in the objective world.
janmamrityu jaravyadhi dukha doshanudarsanam: Generally people are able to understand the evils of old age, disease and death. But they do not understand the evils of birth. When a child is born people feel happy. But the Lord here says that birth itself is evil and sorrowful. Because all the ensuing ills and miseries of life come after birth. When there is no birth, there is no body; when there is no body there is no old age or disease or death. That is why both birth and death are said to form the cycle of ‘samsara’. The man who desires to escape death, should also avoid birth. One cannot be had without the other. The true aspirant thinks deeply and sees clearly (anudarsanam) all the evils arising from material life. By such contemplation, he develops a deep inspiration to transcend these evils by every means possible. He finds ultimately that he is not the body, but Atma, the unborn and deathless, free from all the modifications of body and mind. Thus he transcends death. This habit of the mind to see the evils of life and death is of utmost importance in the path of knowledge.
asaktir anabhishvangah putradaragrihadishu: The house-holders should think of this aspect of jnana. He should understand that these things like wife and children, positions and possessions, do not really belong to him. It does not mean that he should abandon them. The idea is that there should not be any mental attachment for them. He should realise that he has nothing to do with them, though externally he discharges all the duties of a house-holder.
samachittatvam: Equanimity of mind under all circumstances is again the essence of jnana. The wise man is constant and steady whatever may happen, because he knows that he is not the kshetra, but the kshetrajna. So he is indifferent to joy or sorrow, good fortune or ill-fate.
bhaktiravyabhicharini: The Lord mentions devotion to Him as one of the qualities of Knowledge. This devotion should be constant and continuous, and it should not be diverted toward any other object in the world. Though in the beginning, such single-minded devotion is not possible, yet by resolute practice he should attain that state when the mind rests steadfast in the Lord and does not move away from Him.
viviktadesa sevitvam: In the early stages the company of worldly-minded people causes great distraction (vikshepa), and so the seeker is required to resort to solitary places for silent thinking and meditation. It is quite possible to create such silence and solitude in one’s own house by keeping a room separately for purposes of study and meditation. As the seeker advances, he takes to silence and solitude naturally.
aratirjanasamsadi: The company of indifferent people should be avoided. ‘Satsang‘ is always desirable.
adhyatmajnana nityatvam: Constancy of Divine contemplation and knowledge is taught here. The light of knowledge should be steady and bright in the heart always. If the light is extinguished, darkness immediately envelops the heart of man. When jnana is lost, ajnana enters at once. When ajnana is put off, jnana dawns at once. They are like light and darkness. When the one is, the other is not. The seekers should remember the Lord’s instruction and try to be aware of the truth at all times. Such awareness keeps off ‘avidya’ from possessing the heart of man.
tatvajnanartha darsanam: Direct experience of the truth is one of the important qualities of a jnani. It is not speculation or logic or argument, but actual perception of Atma, which is Brahmajnana.
ajnanam yadatonyatha: What is igorance? What is not jnana is ignorance. The Lord need not explain what ignorance is. Everybody knows it already. Pride and arrogance, selfishness, envy and jealousy, ill-will, hatred and a host of evil passions, desires, hopes and fears which beset the mind constitue ignorance.
Question: What are the qualities of a Jnani and how many are they?
Answer: They are twenty – 1. Absence of self-glorification, 2. absence of pretention, 3. non injury, 4. fortitude, 5. uprightness, 6. service to teacher 7. purity, 8. firmness, 9. self control, 10. dispassion towards sense-objects 11. absence of egoism, 12. remembrance of the evils and sorrows of birth, death, old age and pain, 13. non-attachment, 14. non-identification with sons, wife, house etc., 15. constant equal-mindedness during desirable and undesirable occurrences, 16. unswerving devotion to the Lord by the yoga of non-separation, 17. resorting to solitary places, 18. distaste for the society of men, 19. constancy of Self-knowledge. 20. perception of the true end of knowledge. These are the qualities of a jnani.