ya āste manasā smaran
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.
Commentary by Sri A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada of Gaudiya Sampradaya:
There are many pretenders who refuse to work in Krishna consciousness but make a show of meditation, while actually dwelling within the mind upon sense enjoyment. Such pretenders may also speak on dry philosophy in order to bluff sophisticated followers, but according to this verse these are the greatest cheaters. For sense enjoyment one can act in any capacity of the social order, but if one follows the rules and regulations of his particular status, he can make gradual progress in purifying his existence. But he who makes a show of being a yogi while actually searching for the objects of sense gratification must be called the greatest cheater, even though he sometimes speaks of philosophy. His knowledge has no value, because the effects of such a sinful man’s knowledge are taken away by the illusory energy of the Lord. Such a pretender’s mind is always impure, and therefore his show of yogic meditation has no value whatsoever.
Commentary by Sri Vishvanatha Chakravarthi Thakur of Gaudiya Sampradaya:
But we see some such sannyasis, devoid of actions of the senses, with closed eyes.” This verse answers.
He who controls the senses of action such as speech or hands (karmendriyani) but remains remembering the objects of the senses, under the pretense of meditating, is a cheater (mithyacarah).
Commentary by Sri Ramanuja of Sri Sampradaya:
3.6 He whose inner and outer organs of senses are not conquered because of his sins not being annulled but is none the less struggling for winning knowledge of the self, whose mind is forced to turn away from the self by reason of it being attached to sense objects, and who consequently lets his minds dwell on them — he is called a hypocrite, because his actions are at variance with his professions. The meaning is that by practising the knowledge of the self in this way, he becomes perverted and lost.
Commentary by Sri Sridhara Swami of Rudra Sampradaya:
The unqualified renunciate who in ignorance attempts to perform jnana yoga the cultivation of spiritual knowledge is being censored now. In a strong sense Lord Krishna states: that fool who by forcefully restraining the senses under the pretext of meditation but is inwardly reflecting on the objects of the senses is a cheat and a charlatan. Being impure the mind of such an impostor lacks the tranquillity and lucidity to practice such meditation.
Commentary by Sri Madhvacharya of Brahma Sampradaya:
Sri Madhvacharya did not comment on this sloka.
Commentary by Sri Keshava Kashmiri of Kumara Sampradaya:
If actions themselves are dependent upon the organs of the senses such as eyes, nose, ears etc., then how can one practice to control them. One who is able to restrain their body from sense objects still may find their mind attached to sense objects. This is due to impurities caused by passion and desires from past lifetimes. Such a person is called a charlatan. The sense is that the mind cannot be free from attachment to sense objects because of an absence of perfection in karma yoga by performing actions without desire thereby destroying the myriads of sins collected from time immemorial. Until and unless this has been achieved knowers of the Vedic scriptures call such a one a hypocrite or charlatan and all the efforts of such a charlatan although appearing as a renouncer is of no use for moksa or liberation.
Commentary by Sri Adi Shankaracharya of Advaita Sampradaya:
3.6 Yah, one who; samyamya, after withdrawing; karma-indriyani, the organs of action-hands etc.; aste, sits; manasa, mentally; smaran, recollecting, thinking; indriya-arthan, the objects of the senses; sah, that one; vimudha-atma, of deluded mind; ucyate, is called; mithya-acarah, a hypocrite, a sinful person.
Commentary by Sri Abhinavagupta of Kaula Tantra Sampradaya:
3.6 Karmendriyani etc. If he does not act with his organs of action, then he necessarily acts with his mind. At the same time he is the man of deluded action; For, the mental actions can never be avoided totally.
Sanskrit Shloka Without Transliteration Marks:
ya aste manasa smaran
mithyacarah sa ucyate
Sanskrit to English Word for Word Meanings:
karma-indriyāṇi — the five working sense organs; saḿyamya — controlling; yaḥ — anyone who; āste — remains; manasā — by the mind; smaran — thinking of; indriya-arthān — sense objects; vimūḍha — foolish; ātmā — soul; mithyā-ācāraḥ — pretender; saḥ — he; ucyate — is called.