Shrimad Bhagwat Gita : : 3.3.26
लोकेऽस्मिन्द्विविधा निष्ठा पुरा प्रोक्ता मयानघ |
ज्ञानयोगेन साङ्ख्यानां कर्मयोगेन योगिनाम् || 3||
śhrī bhagavān uvācha
loke ’smin dvi-vidhā niṣhṭhā purā proktā mayānagha
jñāna-yogena sāṅkhyānāṁ karma-yogena yoginām
śhrī-bhagavān uvācha—the Supreme Lord said; loke—in the world; asmin—this; dvi-vidhā—two kinds of; niṣhṭhā—faith; purā—previously; proktā—explained; mayā—by me (Shree Krishna); anagha—sinless; jñāna-yogena—through the path of knowledge; sānkhyānām—for those inclined toward contemplation; karma-yogena—through the path of action; yoginām—of the devotees
3.3: The Supreme Lord said: O sinless Arjun, I have already explained the two paths leading to enlightenment: the path of knowledge, for those inclined toward contemplation, and the path of work for those inclined toward action.
In verse 2.39, Shri Krishna explained the two paths leading to spiritual perfection, namely sankhya yog and karm yog. Now this is explained in more detail.
Sankhya yog is the acquisition of knowledge through analytical study of the nature of the soul and its distinction from the body. Those with a philosophic bent of mind are inclined towards this path of knowing the self through intellectual discourse and analysis.
Karm yog is the spirit of devotion to God through constructive work. Shri Krishna also calls this buddhi yog. Work done in this manner purifies the mind, enabling acquisition of knowledge which in turn leads to enlightenment.
Of all the people interested in walking on the spiritual path, there are those who are inclined towards philosophy and contemplation, and on the other hand, there are those inclined to action and a work oriented lifestyle. Both these paths have coexisted ever since the beginning of time. Shri Krishna upholds both of them since his message of enlightenment is meant for people of all dispositions and individual mental makeup.
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