Shrimad Bhagwat Gita : : 2.20
न जायते म्रियते वा कदाचि
नायं भूत्वा भविता वा न भूय: |
अजो नित्य: शाश्वतोऽयं पुराणो
न हन्यते हन्यमाने शरीरे || 20||
na jāyate mriyate vā kadāchin
nāyaṁ bhūtvā bhavitā vā na bhūyaḥ
ajo nityaḥ śhāśhvato ’yaṁ purāṇo
na hanyate hanyamāne śharīre
na jāyate—is not born; mriyate—dies; vā—or; kadāchit—at any time; na—not; ayam—this; bhūtvā—having once existed; bhavitā—will be; vā—or; na—not; bhūyaḥ—further; ajaḥ—unborn; nityaḥ—eternal; śhāśhvataḥ—immortal; ayam—this; purāṇaḥ—the ancient; na hanyate—is not destroyed; hanyamāne—is destroyed; śharīre—when the body
2.20: The soul is neither born, nor does it ever die; nor having once existed, does it ever cease to be. The soul is unborn, eternal, immortal, and primeval. It is not destroyed when the body ceases to exist.
That which ceases to exist, or is annihilated, after coming into being is said to die. All life forms go through the six stages of existence – they first take form in the womb, they are born, they grow, then procreate, age, and finally die. This cycle is inevitable for all living beings. But since the soul is never born, it never dies. The soul is ageless – it never diminishes and it never decays. What we call death is the destruction of a body. The soul that resides within, moves on to take another form, and is neither destroyed nor ever dies.
The eternal nature of the soul is stressed upon here, accentuating the fact that the existence of the soul is beyond the cycle of life and death. The soul is immortal and thus lives forever.
The Gita’s philosophy and teachings have helped me understand much of what otherwise lay in the realm of the unexplained. More importantly, it has helped me come to terms with the finite nature of life on this earth, and simultaneously draw solace from accepting the infinite existence of the soul. It is reassuring to understand the significance of following one’s dharma (duty), performing good karma (deeds), while being engaged in the quest for gyan (knowledge) as one walks on in the hope of attaining moksha (salvation).
Shared here is a brief documentation of what this shloka of the Gita says to me.
Vandana R Singh
New Delhi, June 2020