Bhagavad Gita: Chapter 3

Bhagavad Gita 3.1


arjuna uvāca
jyāyasī cet karmaṇas te
matā buddhir janārdana
tat kiḿ karmaṇi ghore māḿ
niyojayasi keśava

Translation of Bhagavad Gita 3.1

Arjuna said: O Janardana, O Keshava, why do You want to engage me in this ghastly warfare, if You think that intelligence is better than fruitive work?

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Bhagavad Gita 3.2


vyāmiśreṇeva vākyena
buddhiḿ mohayasīva me
tad ekaḿ vada niścitya
yena śreyo ‘ham āpnuyām

Translation of Bhagavad Gita 3.2

My intelligence is bewildered by Your equivocal instructions. Therefore, please tell me decisively which will be most beneficial for me.

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Bhagavad Gita 3.3


śrī-bhagavān uvāca
loke ‘smin dvi-vidhā niṣṭhā
purā proktā mayānagha
jñāna-yogena sāńkhyānāḿ
karma-yogena yoginām

Translation of Bhagavad Gita 3.3

The Supreme Personality of Godhead said: O sinless Arjuna, I have already explained that there are two classes of men who try to realize the self. Some are inclined to understand it by empirical, philosophical speculation, and others by devotional service.

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Bhagavad Gita 3.4


na karmaṇām anārambhān
naiṣkarmyaḿ puruṣo ‘śnute
na ca sannyasanād eva
siddhiḿ samadhigacchati

Translation of Bhagavad Gita 3.4

Not by merely abstaining from work can one achieve freedom from reaction, nor by renunciation alone can one attain perfection.

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Bhagavad Gita 3.5


na hi kaścit kṣaṇam api
jātu tiṣṭhaty akarma-kṛt
kāryate hy avaśaḥ karma
sarvaḥ prakṛti-jair guṇaiḥ

Translation of Bhagavad Gita 3.5

Everyone is forced to act helplessly according to the qualities he has acquired from the modes of material nature; therefore no one can refrain from doing something, not even for a moment.

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Bhagavad Gita 3.6


karmendriyāṇi saḿyamya
ya āste manasā smaran
indriyārthān vimūḍhātmā
mithyācāraḥ sa ucyate

Translation of Bhagavad Gita 3.6

One who restrains the senses of action but whose mind dwells on sense objects certainly deludes himself and is called a pretender.

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Bhagavad Gita 3.7


karmendriyāṇi saḿyamya
ya āste manasā smaran
indriyārthān vimūḍhātmā
mithyācāraḥ sa ucyate

Translation of Bhagavad Gita 3.7

On the other hand, if a sincere person tries to control the active senses by the mind and begins karma-yoga [in Krishna consciousness] without attachment, he is by far superior.

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Bhagavad Gita 3.8


yas tv indriyāṇi manasā
niyamyārabhate ‘rjuna
karmendriyaiḥ karma-yogam
asaktaḥ sa viśiṣyate

Translation of Bhagavad Gita 3.8

Perform your prescribed duty, for doing so is better than not working. One cannot even maintain one’s physical body without work.

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Bhagavad Gita 3.9


yajñārthāt karmaṇo ‘nyatra
loko ‘yaḿ karma-bandhanaḥ
tad-arthaḿ karma kaunteya
mukta-sańgaḥ samācara

Translation of Bhagavad Gita 3.9

Work done as a sacrifice for Vishnu has to be performed, otherwise work causes bondage in this material world. Therefore, O son of Kunti, perform your prescribed duties for His satisfaction, and in that way you will always remain free from bondage.

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Bhagavad Gita 3.10


saha-yajñāḥ prajāḥ sṛṣṭvā
purovāca prajāpatiḥ
anena prasaviṣyadhvam
eṣa vo ‘stv iṣṭa-kāma-dhuk

Translation of Bhagavad Gita 3.10

In the beginning of creation, the Lord of all creatures sent forth generations of men and demigods, along with sacrifices for Vishnu, and blessed them by saying, “Be thou happy by this yajna [sacrifice] because its performance will bestow upon you everything desirable for living happily and achieving liberation.”

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