वेदेषु यज्ञेषु तप:सु चैव
दानेषु यत्पुण्यफलं प्रदिष्टम् |
अत्येति तत्सर्वमिदं विदित्वा
योगी परं स्थानमुपैति चाद्यम् || 28||
vedeṣhu yajñeṣhu tapaḥsu chaiva
dāneṣhu yat puṇya-phalaṁ pradiṣhṭam
atyeti tat sarvam idaṁ viditvā
yogī paraṁ sthānam upaiti chādyam
vedeṣhu—in the study of the Vedas; yajñeṣhu—in performance of sacrifices; tapaḥsu—in austerities; cha—and; eva—certainly; dāneṣhu—in giving charities; yat—which; puṇya-phalam—fruit of merit; pradiṣhṭam—is gained; atyeti—surpasses; tat sarvam—all; idam—this; viditvā—having known; yogī—a yogi; param—Supreme; sthānam—Abode; upaiti—achieves; cha—and; ādyam—original
The yogi who knows this transcends all the rewards laid down for the study of the Vedas, for sacrifices, for austerities, for making gifts: he reaches the Supreme, Primal Abode.
This— The answers to the seven questions of Arjuna, given in the eighth chapter of the Gītā. One must not merely understand, but also follow, the teachings implied in the answers.
The excellence of Brahmajnana is declared here. The knower of the Imperishable Brahman attains the highest state, far beyond any of the meritorious rewards springing from the study of the Vedas, the performance of sacrifices and austerities, and the offering of gifts. Brahman is the only Truth, and having reached it, man attains the Supreme state. tams the Supreme st
It is true that several meritorious rewards come to man through the performance of sacrifices etc. But they are all in the realm of Maya; they have an end; they are not eternal. Therefore the yogi aspires to attain that state in which all the rewards of all the good works are comprehended and fulfilled. And that state is the realisation of Brahman, the only Reality.
Brahmajnana transcends all the merits derived from the study of the Vedas, or sacrifices or other good works. Fifty is included in the hundred. So the person who attains the hundred includes the fifty and transcends it also. Brahmajnana is ‘mahapunya’. The lesser fruits of other meritorious deeds are included in it. Whereas all other rewards end in time, the yogi of brahmajnana lives in eternal bliss.
There are many illiterate people who cannot study the Vedas. There are many people who are physically weak and so cannot perform austerities. There are poor people who cannot offer meritorious gifts. What shall be the fate of all these people? Is there no way of liberation for them? The Lord here declares that by the contemplation and understanding of Brahman, they shall attain the highest state, and obtain all the rewards of all the meritorious acts done by others. Purity of mind and heart, and purity in devotion are the only things needed. The study of the Vedas, tapas, and dhyana, if they are performed without attachment, purifies the heart of man enabling him to attain Brahmajnana.
Brahmajnana is the highest state. The seekers, in the beginning, may undertake all the good works enjoined in the Sastras. But let them not stop there, for, the goal is Self-relisation, and no one should stop at any intermediate stage. With Brahmajnana the quest for the Supreme stops, and man is eternally satisfied.
Question: What is his merit who understands the imperishable Brahman?
Answer: He attains all the rewards of (1) Vedic study, (2) Sacrifices, (3) Austerities, and (4) Dana and transcends all these.
Question: What is the nature of Brahman?
Answer: It is the primeval cause of all and the highest state (Param sthanam).
Question: What is the highest state?
Question: What should a person do who aspires to attain the Highest?
Answer: With a pure heart, he should take refuge in Paramatma. As by watering the roots of a tree, all the branches, fruits and flowers are watered, so also the man who attains Brahman, derives all the merits of all the good works done in the world.