aprakaso ’pravrttis ca
pramado moha eva ca
tamasy etani jayante
vivrddhe kuru-nandana

Translation of Bhagavad Gita 14.13

When there is an increase in the mode of ignorance, O son of Kuru, darkness, inertia, madness and illusion are manifested.

Commentary by Sri A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada of Gaudiya Sampradaya:

When there is no illumination, knowledge is absent. One in the mode of ignorance does not work by a regulative principle; he wants to act whimsically, for no purpose. Even though he has the capacity to work, he makes no endeavor. This is called illusion. Although consciousness is going on, life is inactive. These are the symptoms of one in the mode of ignorance.

Commentary by Sri Vishvanatha Chakravarthi Thakur of Gaudiya Sampradaya:

Absence of discrimination, accepting sound and other sense objects not approved by the scriptures (aprakasahe); absence of all effort (apravrttih); inattention, for example, conviction that one does not have anything when holding it in ones hands (pramadah); and absorption in the wrong or false (mohah) appear with the increase of tamas.

Commentary by Sri Ramanuja of Sri Sampradaya:

14.13 ‘Non-illumination’ is the absence of knowledge. ‘Inactivity’ is immovableness. ‘Negligence’ is inadvertence resulting in works that should not be done. ‘Delusion’ is wrong knowledge. These arise when Tamas waxes strong. By these, one should know that the Tamas has increased very much.

Commentary by Sri Sridhara Swami of Rudra Sampradaya:

Lord Krishna confirms that tama guna or mode of ignorance is darkness of knowledge, absence of discrimination, indolence, listlessness, forgetfulness, delusion, erroneous conclusions. Where such characteristics are seen it is clear that tama guna is predominant within a jiva or embodied being.

Commentary by Sri Madhvacharya of Brahma Sampradaya:

Sri Madhvacharya did not comment on this sloka.

Commentary by Sri Keshava Kashmiri of Kumara Sampradaya:

Here Lord Krishna speaks of the indications of tama guna or the mode of ignorance with the presence of inertia, indolence and delusion in the mind and in the senses.. The word moha means absorbed in illusion; hence neglectfulnesss of the teachings of the spiritual master, carelessness in obligatory duties such as fasting from all grains on ekadasi which is the 11th day leading to the new moon and full moon. Listlessness, inactivity and subject to the illusion of perverting reality with distorted impressions giving a false view of life. By all these things one can be seen to be controlled by tama guna.

Commentary by Sri Adi Shankaracharya of Advaita Sampradaya:

14.13 Kuru-nandana, O descendant of the Kuru dynasty; when the quality of tamas vivrddhe, predominates; etani, these indications; eva, surely; jayante, come into being; extreme aprakasah, non-discrimination; and apravrttih, inactivity; its [i.e. of non-discrimination.] effects, pramadah, in-advertence; and mohah, delusion, i.e. stupidity, which is a from of non-discrimination. Whatever result is achieved even after death, that is also owing to attachment and desire; every-thing is certainly caused by the qualities. By way of showing this the Lord says:

Commentary by Sri Abhinavagupta of Kaula Tantra Sampradaya:

14.11-13 Sarva-etc. upto kurunandana. In all the gates : in all the sense-organs. Greed etc., are born in succession when the Rajas dominates. Similarly, absence of mental illumination and so on arise in succession only at the time of the increase of the Tamas.

Sanskrit Shloka Without Transliteration Marks:

aprakaso ’pravrttis ca
pramado moha eva ca
tamasy etani jayante
vivrddhe kuru-nandana

Sanskrit to English Word for Word Meanings:

aprakāśaḥ — darkness; apravṛttiḥ — inactivity; ca — and; pramādaḥ — madness; mohaḥ — illusion; eva — certainly; ca — also; tamasi — the mode of ignorance; etāni — these; jāyante — are manifested; vivṛddhe — when developed; kuru-nandana — O son of Kuru.