Daily Readings from the Works of Swami Venkatesananda

Song of God (Bhagavad Gita) Daily Readings Chapter 2: 64-65

February 23, 2021

ᾱgadveṣaviyuktais tu viṣayᾱn indriyaiś caran
ᾱtmavaśyair vidheyᾱtmᾱ prasᾱdam adhigacchatin (II-64)
™prasāde sarvaduḥkhānᾱṁ hᾱnir asyo ’pajᾱyate
prasannacetaso hy ᾱśu buddhiḥ paryavatiṣṭhate (II-65)

II/64. But the self-controlled man, moving among the objects
with the senses under restraint and free from attraction and
repulsion, attains to peace.

II/65. In that peace all pains are destroyed: for the intellect
of the tranquil- minded soon becomes steady.

Swamiji's Commentary

     This is the technique of yoga in essence. The mind and senses are controlled by the yogi. Control is not suppression, repression, ignoring evil and thinking of the opposite, or resorting to a routine method – all of which, though initially helpful and desirable, will inevitably fail. It is inner alertness. As life flows on, the yogi watches the mind and the senses constantly; the enlightened buddhi which is in constant contact with the self within watches over the mind and the senses. Desires and the latent psychological impressions which give rise to them are thus effectively monitored.

     It is difficult to decide where the world is! The objects outside have no value for you if you are not conscious of them. When the mind alights on an object either directly or through resurrection of past experiences stored as memory, the object is reproduced in the mind. This causes a desire to arise, because the mind selects particular objects on account of its past tendencies or conditioning. Desire in turn gives rise to anger and one loses his temper; losing one’s temper means losing the temper (keenness) of the intelligence within. When thus one’s discrimination is lost, the ego identifies itself with the mind (and therefore the object in it) and forgets its substratum, the atman. This was described in verses 62-63 above.

     The wise man’s buddhi treats both the mental image and the external object, as objects of perception. He develops the witness-consciousness. Even as a spectator is unaffected by the events in the ring, the yogi is the blissful, peaceful and silent witness of this world-play.

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