etad guhyam ahaḿ param
yogaḿ yogeśvarāt kṛṣṇāt
sākṣāt kathayataḥ svayam
Translation of Bhagavad Gita 18.75
By the mercy of Vyasa, I have heard these most confidential talks directly from the master of all mysticism, Krishna, who was speaking personally to Arjuna.
Commentary by Sri A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada of Gaudiya Sampradaya:
Vyasa was the spiritual master of Sanjaya, and Sanjaya admits that it was by Vyasa’s mercy that he could understand the Supreme Personality of Godhead. This means that one has to understand Krishna not directly but through the medium of the spiritual master. The spiritual master is the transparent medium, although it is true that the experience is still direct. This is the mystery of the disciplic succession. When the spiritual master is bona fide, then one can hear Bhagavad-gita directly, as Arjuna heard it. There are many mystics and yogis all over the world, but Krishna is the master of all yoga systems.
Krishna’s instruction is explicitly stated in Bhagavad-gita—surrender unto Krishna. One who does so is the topmost yogi. This is confirmed in the last verse of the Sixth Chapter. Yoginam api sarvesam.
Narada is the direct disciple of Krishna and the spiritual master of Vyasa. Therefore Vyasa is as bona fide as Arjuna because he comes in the disciplic succession, and Sanjaya is the direct disciple of Vyasa. Therefore by the grace of Vyasa, Sanjaya’s senses were purified, and he could see and hear Krishna directly. One who directly hears Krishna can understand this confidential knowledge. If one does not come to the disciplic succession, he cannot hear Krishna; therefore his knowledge is always imperfect, at least as far as understanding Bhagavad-gita is concerned.
In Bhagavad-gita, all the yoga systems—karma-yoga, jnana-yoga and bhakti-yoga—are explained. Krishna is the master of all such mysticism. It is to be understood, however, that as Arjuna was fortunate enough to understand Krishna directly, so, by the grace of Vyasa, Sanjaya was also able to hear Krishna directly. Actually there is no difference between hearing directly from Krishna and hearing directly from Krishna via a bona fide spiritual master like Vyasa. The spiritual master is the representative of Vyasadeva also. Therefore, according to the Vedic system, on the birthday of the spiritual master the disciples conduct the ceremony called Vyasa-puja.
Commentary by Sri Vishvanatha Chakravarthi Thakur of Gaudiya Sampradaya:
No commentary by Sri Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakur.
Commentary by Sri Ramanuja of Sri Sampradaya:
18.74 Sanjaya said — Thus, in this way have I been hearing, this wondrous and thrilling dialogue, as it took place between Vasudeva, the son of Vasudeva, and His paternal aunt’s son Arjuna, who is a Mahatman, one possessed of a great intelligence, and who has resorted to the feet of Sri Krsna.18.75 By the grace of Vyasa i.e., by the benefit of the divine sense of perception, granted by him, I have heard this supreme mystery called Yoga from Sri Krsna himself — Sri Krsna who is the treasure-house of knowledge, strength, sovereignty, valour, power and brilliance.
Commentary by Sri Sridhara Swami of Rudra Sampradaya:
Now Sanjaya describes how he was able to describe the events on the battlefield many miles away. Vedavyasa gave him inner vision to see the whole battle in detail internally. By this inner vision which Vyasadeva bestowed, Sanjaya was able to see and hear Lord Krishna and every word He spoke in this divine discourse, this supreme doctrine, this ultra confidential treatise. As well Sanjaya could see by his inner vision all the events that transpired everywhere on the battlefield simultaneously. Sanjaya heard Srimad Bhagavad-Gita directly from the holy mouth of the Supreme Lord Krishna.
Commentary by Sri Madhvacharya of Brahma Sampradaya:
Sri Madhvacharya did not comment on this sloka.
Commentary by Sri Keshava Kashmiri of Kumara Sampradaya:
Sanjaya explains that he received the mercy of clairaudience and celestial vision from Vedavyasa, the author of Vedanta Sutras, Mahabharata, the Puranas, etc. Sanjaya considers himself most blessed by hearing Lord Krishna speak the divine discourse of Srimad Bhagavad-Gita.
Commentary by Sri Adi Shankaracharya of Advaita Sampradaya:
18.75 And vyasa-prasadat, through the favour of Vyasa, by having received divine vision from him; aham, I; srutvan, heard; etat [The Commentator uses etam in the masculine gender, in place of etat in the text, because it refers to the masculine word samvada.] (should rather be etam), this; guhyam, secret dialogue, such as it is; concerning the param, supreme; Yogam, Yoga-or, this dialogue itself is the Yoga because it is meant for it-; krsnat, from Krsna; yogeswarat, from the Lord of yogas; kathayatah, while He was speaking; svayam, Himself; saksat, actually; not indirectly through others.
Commentary by Sri Abhinavagupta of Kaula Tantra Sampradaya:
18.74-78 Ityaham etc. upto matir mama While concluding the [Krsna-Arjuna] dialogue with Sanjaya’s speech, the [sage Vyasa] teaches this : What leads to the Absolute Brahman is nothing but the recollection of the purport of the dialogue–a recollection that is led finally to the status of the highly vivid, direct cognition admitting no differentiation [between its subject and object], resulting from the continuity helped by the series of incessant contemplations [on the purport of the dialogue] according to the method of firmly fixing. Thus, only through the recollection of the dialogue of the Bhagavat and Arjuna, the Reality could be reached and due to that come fortunes, voctories and prosperity.
Sanskrit Shloka Without Transliteration Marks:
etad guhyam aham param
yogam yogesvarat krsnat
saksat kathayatah svayam
Sanskrit to English Word for Word Meanings:
vyāsa-prasādāt — by the mercy of Vyāsadeva; śrutavān — have heard; etat — this; guhyam — conﬁdential; aham — I; param — the supreme; yogam — mysticism; yoga-īśvarāt — from the master of all mysticism; kṛṣṇāt — from Kṛṣṇa; sākṣāt — directly; kathayataḥ — speaking; svayam — personally.