6. METHOD OF PERFORMING ACTIONS
भवतु निश्चयदार्ढ्यादूर्ध्वं शास्त्ररक्षणम् ।। 12 ।।
12. After the determination (regarding devotion ) has become firm (one) should protect the scripture.
37. The doubts that are already clarified by us don’t have any place and that is cleared in the forth-coming three aphorisms.
As the result of establishing only in God, the devotee, himself, has attained the Form of God. The secondary devotees (गौणभक्ताः) imagine that they are different from God; He should fulfill their desires and remove their difficulties; and, they perform worldly and Vedic activities to please God. But, the Supreme Devotee is not like that; the Lord Himself praise him – ज्ञानी त्वात्मैव मे मतम् । आस्तितः स हि युक्तात्मा मामेवानुत्तमां गतिम् ।। गी. 7-18.
The Supreme Devotee has the determination : ‘I am वासुदेव , the Lord Himself, I am not least different from Him’. The Devotee has brought this determination firmly into his experience.
बहूनां जन्मनामन्ते ज्ञानवान् मां प्रपद्यते । वासुदेवः सर्वमिति स महात्मा सुदुर्लभः ।। गी. 7-19
As the one develops refinement (संस्कार ) of the devotion in God from many births, at last he determines that everything is वासुदेव the Lord Himself and nothing exists apart from Him. Such a magnanimous person doesn’t have any object of life (पुरुषार्थ) to be achieved by performing actions declared in the scriptures.
न बुद्धिभेदं जनयेदज्ञानां कर्मसङ्गिनाम् । जोषयेत् सर्वकर्माणि विद्वान् युक्तः समाचरन् ।। गी. 3-26.
The ignorant who are theists as well associated with action – naturally have the intelligence that they must conduct action; though the wise has no action that to be performed, still, the wise people conduct their religious duties methodically as instructed in the scriptures; thus, they encourage the ignorant also to perform their religious duties. If the Supreme Devotees perform actions, there is no overrule of the Law; they give up all worldly and Vedic activities.
अन्यथा पातित्यशङ्कया ।। 13 ।।
13. For, if not, there would be a doubt that he has fallen down.
PURPOSE OF DEVOTEES BRINGING PEOPLE TO THE RIGHT WAY
38. The Devotees don’t have any personal benefit if they bring people to the right way; and, they don’t have a desire of fame that the world would praise them. Still, as they see everywhere only God who is of the Form of Bliss; they naturally seek welfare of all; and, they aspire that everyone should see God as they do. When the Lord had various incarnations He performed good activities wishing that people would follow the right way. Similarly, the Devotees also wish the welfare of people. There is a benefit to the one if he brings to his mind what the Lord श्रीकृष्ण has told in this regard :-
न मे पार्थास्ति कर्तव्यं त्रिषु लोकेषु किञ्चन । नानवाप्तवमाप्तव्यं वर्त एव च कर्मणि ।।
यदि ह्यहं न वर्तेय जातु कर्मण्यतन्द्रितः । मम वर्त्मानुवर्तन्ते मनुष्याः पार्थ सर्वशः ।।
उत्सीदेयुरिमे लोका न कुर्यां कर्म चेदहम् । सङ्करस्य च स्यामुपहन्यामिमाः प्रजाः ।।
सक्ताः कर्मण्यविद्वांसो यथा कुर्वन्ति भारत । कुर्याद् विद्वांस्तथा सक्तश्चिकीर्षुर्लोकसङ्ग्रहम् ।।
गी. 3-22 तः 25
‘O पार्थ, I don’t have any work that ought to be done even in three worlds; for, even in – the world of man (मनुष्यलोक), that of manes (पितृलोक) and that of gods (heaven) - all the three worlds, I don’t have to obtain anything. Thus, though I have obtained all desires (आप्तकाम), I am incessantly working. Without indolence, if I don’t engage in actions, by that alone, people following that path of Mine may be ruined; though I have incarnated to bless them, contrary to that I would have spoiled them ! Therefore, the wise people who wish the welfare of the world should perform good actions without contact (संग), whereas, the ignorant people work with attachment.’
In this regard, the Devotees follow God alone. By performing action, they gain nothing; still, if they don’t perform any action, theists may consider that they have fallen; they would not come to the Devotees and they would not try to know the Principle of essential expedients in the Spiritual Path; the ignorant see the Devotees not doing work, they think that there would be no benefit in doing work; they would give up the work and they would be ruined. In order to avoid this, the Devotees should perform actions methodically without association and they must encourage people to follow the Path of Faith.
शान्ता महान्तो निवसन्ति सन्तो वसन्तवल्लोकहितं चरन्तः ।
तीर्णाः स्वयं भीमभवार्णवं जना-नहेतुनान्यपि तारयन्तः ।। वि. चू. 57.
Good people(सज्जनाः) who are eminent personages (महापुरुषाः) naturally, similar to the spring season, perform welfare activities for the sake of people. They, themselves, cross the terrible ocean of worldly life; and, without seeking anything in return, they help others to cross it.
THE DEVOTEES DON’T FALL DOWN BY THE DECLINE OF ACTION
39. Some have interpreted this aphorism as follows : There is a fear of fall to the one, transgressing the command of the scripture, if he gives up the prescribed action. The interpretation is not suitable one. For, the Devotees have reached the Abode of God where there is no rise and fall. They don’t have the fear of ruining by indulging in wicked acts; and, they don’t have the desire of obtaining a good refuge (उत्तमागतिः ) by performing good actions. They don’t have even a craving of uplifting others and of obtaining some benefit. Their nature is explained in the 12th chapter of भगवद्गीत. श्री सुरेश्वराचार्य writes in his work named नैष्कर्म्यसिद्धिः
उत्पन्नात्मप्रबोधस्य ह्यद्वेष्टृत्वादयो गुणाः । अयत्नतो भवन्त्यस्य न तु साधनरूपिणः ।। नै. सि. 4-61.
The Devotees who have the Self Knowledge without any effort obtain the qualities like non-hating (अद्वेष), etc ; and, in order to have them, they need not conduct any practice.
Those who are exclusively devoted to the performance of religious rites (कर्मठाः ) desire to enjoy heaven, etc. -
ते तं भुक्त्वा स्वर्गलोकं विशालं क्षीणे पुण्ये मर्त्यलोकं विशन्ति ।
एवं त्रयीधर्ममनुप्रपन्ना गतागतं कामकामा लभन्ते ।। गी. 9-21.
They, obtaining the heaven, etc. the fruit of action (कर्मफल), return to the earth after declining of religious merit (पुण्य ). Therefore, the people who have desires (कामिनः) have the fear of fall. But, the Devotion is of the form of restraint of desires; therefore, the Devotees don’t have even the doubt of falling down. It is quite improbable to say that they have either the fear of sinfulness (प्रत्यवाय) by the defect of transgressing the command of the scripture, or the fear of falling in to the hell due to the conduct of misdeeds. For, it is already told that the Devotees obtain only the Form of God which is free from doer-ship and enjoyer-ship. They have the vision of the Abode : तद्विष्णोः परमं पदं सदा पश्यन्ति सूरयः ।। (ऋ. मं. 1-5-22-20). According to this श्रुति, they always see only the Abode of विष्णु everywhere; therefore, from where they have to fall ? They don’t have egoism, hence, they never obtain any fruit from an action.
In the scripture, it is praised that the wise people don’t have an impediment to find the blessing (सद्गति) even from the prohibited action. As an example in the कौषीतकी उपनिषत् , इन्द्र tells to प्रतर्दन -
स यो मां विजानीयान्नास्य केन च कर्मणा लोको मीयते ।
न मातृवधेन न पितृवधेन न स्तेयेन न भ्रूणहत्यया .....।। कौ. 3-1.
“The one who knowing Me worships, obtains his desired world; and his misdeeds like – assassination of either mother or father, stealing, procuring abortion, etc – don’t become a hindrance for the attainment of the fruit.” In the भगवद्गीता this is told –
यस्य नाहङ्कृतो भावो बुद्धिर्यस्य न लिप्यते । हत्वापि स इमाल्लोकान्न हन्ति न निबध्यते ।। गी. 18-17.
“The one who obtaining the refinement of the inner-organ (mind) becomes free from egoism that he is the doer through his own experience and the preaching of the scripture and the teacher; and, he doesn’t have least doubt that he has conducted the misdeed; even if he massacres all living beings, he has not killed them; and, he is not bound as the result of that deed.” The Lord Himself has told this statement. This episode is only to extol the glory of the Knowledge of Reality that the Devotee has; and, it is not intended there that the Devotee really does such barbarous deeds. The real Devotee doesn’t even perform scriptural actions for his sake; this being the case, where is the question of conducting misdeeds ?
Therefore, the Devotee certainly follows the rules : proper and improper actions of the scriptures. Therefore, though the Devotee doesn’t need any fruit, his observing of rules guides ignorant people and that causes the benefit of the world. This itself is the meaning of these 12th and 13th aphorisms. The doubt of falling (पातित्यशङ्का) means as follows : The people of the world may doubt a Devotee that he has fallen because he has given up the actions and they would miss the benefit of his preaching; and, an axiom says : By any reason the real falling does not come near the Devotee.