|| Shree Hari ||
|| 2-50 ||
Link: — In this verse, Lord Krishna explains the result of equanimity of mind.
buddhiyukto jahatiha ubhe sukrtaduskrte
tasmaadyogaya yujyasva yogah karmasu kausalam
Endowed with equanimity, one frees the self in this life from good (virtue) and evil (vice) alike; therefore, devote yourself to this Yoga of equanimity; skill in action lies in (the practice of this) Yoga. || 50 ||
‘Buddhiyukto jahatiha ubhe sukrtaduskrte’ — A person, endowed with equanimity, becomes free of sins and virtue. Just like many sins and virtues are taking place in the world, but the Omnipresent Paramatma is unaffected by them, similarly one who is ever established in equanimity, the sins and virtues do not affect him (Gita 2/38).
Equanimity is such an artful skill whereby while living in the world man can become entirely untainted and detached, just as a lotus leaf comes from the water, grows and lives in water, yet remains untainted by the water. Similarly, a man established in equanimity, lives in this world yet remains untainted.
Sins and virtues do not touch him, in other words, he becomes detached from sins and virtues. In reality, he the Self, (being Consciousness itself) is free from sins and virtue. It is only due to affinity with perishable objects – body, that sins and virtues accrue. If he does not identify himself with the unreal, he will remain untouched by sins and virtues, and unconnected with them like the sky.
‘Tasmaadhyogaaya yujyasva’—Therefore, devote your self to the Yoga, i.e. remain established in equanimity at all times. In reality, equanimity is your very nature (swaroop). You already remain at all times, established in equanimity. It is only due to attachment and aversion that you are unable to experience this equanimity. If you were not already established in equanimity, then how would you have the knowledge of pain and pleasure? The two are different. You are the knower of both pleasure and pain and aware of their coming and going. You are the one that remains even-minded in their coming and going. Realize this equanimity.
‘Yogah karmasu kausalam’—Skill in action lies in the practice of this Yoga. In other words, equanimity in success and failure, or remaining even-minded in attainment or non-attainment of fruit of action is skill in action. There is nothing of significance in that action which has a beginning and an end, besides Yoga.
In this verse, Lord Krsna has not defined Yoga, but He has explained the glories of Yoga (equanimity). If we interpret it as, ‘skill in action is Yoga’, then what is the objection? If it is understood to be such then the act of robbing, undertaken by a thief that is carried out skillfully and very cautiously, that very act in the form of stealing will also be considered as Yoga. Such an interpretation is not proper. Some may say that we only consider ‘skill in action approved by the scriptures,’ as yoga. But, by this belief, he will be bound by the fruits of action and will not be able to attain equanimity. Therefore over here, it is better to interpret, “equanimity in action as skill”. Because he who remains even-minded within, while performing actions is not bound by such actions and their fruit. Therefore remaining even-minded while performing actions that have a beginning and an end is skill in action; it is wisdom.
Secondly, in the first part of this verse, as well as in the previous two verses there is the reference of Yoga (Equanimity). Skill is not referred at all. Therefore in accordance to the topic being discussed as well, the interpretation that “equanimity in action is skill” seems more reasonable.
(Addendum “Parishishth bhaav” not included.)
From “The Bhagavadgita – Sadhak Sanjivani” in English, page 189-190 by Swami