तत्त्ववित्तु महाबाहो गुणकर्मविभागयो: |
गुणा गुणेषु वर्तन्त इति मत्वा न सज्जते || 28||
tattva-vit tu mahā-bāho guṇa-karma-vibhāgayoḥ
guṇā guṇeṣhu vartanta iti matvā na sajjate
tattva-vit—the knower of the Truth; tu—but; mahā-bāho—mighty-armed one; guṇa-karma—from guṇas and karma; vibhāgayoḥ—distinguish; guṇāḥ—modes of material nature in the shape of the senses, mind, etc; guṇeṣhu—modes of material nature in the shape of objects of perception; vartante—are engaged; iti—thus; matvā—knowing; na—never; sajjate—becomes attached
O mighty-armed Arjuna! But the knower of Truth understands the divisions of qualities and functions. He knows that the qualities in the form of senses function amidst the objects of the senses, and he, as the Supreme Self, is not affected by them. Thus knowing, he remains unattached.
In this verse, the Lord explains how the knower of Truth understands man’s actions in the world.
In the human body and the universe around, the Self and the non-Self, the Drik and Drisya, are intermingled. They should be separated. He who knows how to separate them is the knower of Truth.
As the holy grass is separated from the blades, as grain is separated from the chaff, the Self should be separated from the non-Self, and the spirit should be separated from matter. Having thus separated the two by the power of his discriminative understanding, the man of knowledge looks upon all modifications in himself and the universe as only the functions of nature with which he is not concerned. So he remains completely detached from his own senses and mind and the world around him. He is uncontaminated by anything physical and material. He is like the water-drop on the lotus-leaf.
How can the self-realised man have any attraction for the world which is insentient and unreal as a dream? As churned butter will not mix with butter-milk but floats on it, so also the knower of truth, who lives the Self, is not burdened with the tremendous weight of the objective world. He has thus no concern at all with the pleasures and pains caused and suffered by Nature. Detachment from the modifications of Nature is emancipation. Patanjali says –
“The intermingling of the seer And the seen should be given up.” The ignorant man who has not purified his discriminative understanding is plunged into `Samsara’ because he thinks that he is the body, that he is undergoing all the changes of the body, mind, and senses, and that he is acting and reacting. So the seeker should gradually develop his contact with Atma, leaving off his former attachment for the body.
Question: How does the knower of Truth act?
Answer: He knows that he is the Self, and considers that all changes, functions, and actions, are merely the qualities of Nature acting in the sense-objects. So he remains unattached.