I have taught you now theory and knowledge, go practice
These with no expectation and be free from bondages fearless 2.39
In this practice with no attachment there is no loss or pain
Even a little travel in this path leads to great gain 2.40
Walk this path, Arjuna, firm and focused
To gain intelligence vast and broadest 2.41
Little knowledge binds you to scriptures and its words
Telling you do this and that for moving upwards 2.42
Believing in rites and rituals for name and fame
As if that is all there is to life’s aim 2.43
When attached to joys of wealth, name and fame
Intelligence does not remain within its frame 2.44
Scriptures are bound to material nature; go beyond these three
Center within in the Self and of desires and fears be free 2.45
Water in a large lake can do better than that in a small well
One who knows the Self knows the scriptures as well 2.46
In these verses, Master Coach Krishna mocks those who quote scriptures for their own benefit.
Krishna uses Arjuna as the example and says that little knowledge binds him to scriptures. leading him here and there with no purpose. Earlier on Arjuna had laid down his arms in profound depression, quoting scriptures. Killing his kinsmen and elders , Arjuna said would lead to destruction of future generations.
When tribes are destroyed, tradition disappears
When traditions are destroyed, law of nature disappears 1.40
Arjuna quoted scriptures saying that with deterioration in the law of nature, women become corrupt , leading the entire ecosystem to fail.
Krishna says that scriptures are part of material nature. They are not eternal.
These words are profound. Vedic culture differentiates between Sruti, the eternal laws and Smruti, man made laws, both being considered as scriptures. Sruti leads to self actualization, where as Smruti governs day to day life. All that Arjuna quoted pertain not to the realm of the eternal wisdom of the Srutis, but were from the rules and regulations of Smrutis that governed material life.
Go beyond these rules and regulations to which you seem to be bound, says Krishna. Go beyond the limitations of wealth, name and fame, says Krishna, and center yourself within your Self. When you know the Self, there is no need to follow the scriptures since the rules are embedded within. Whatever you then do, arising from this wisdom, will always be right.
Krishna advice is that of the Master Coach. All that we need to know is within us. Yet, anxious with lack of self confidence, we look for external support. It is this lack of confidence that spiritual fraudsters latch on to. All cults and fraudulent gurus operate from this principle and like Arjuna, many of us become prey.
We have a powerful inner compass. This compass is always right. All we need to do is to look within to find the direction we need to take. How many people who talk about the scriptures know the scriptures? How many of them talk of the scriptures and from them with a genuine desire to help us?
If we really analyze, all those who quote scriptures reflect their fear and greed. The eternal scriptures say: One who knows the Truth never speaks. One who speaks does not know the Truth.
Beware, says Krishna, and be wary of all those who pretend to guide you and lead you from darkness to light. They too are in darkness. Your own compass, your guru, is within you. He will lead you into light.
Look for him within. Don’t search elsewhere.
I acknowledge the lovely picture from the internet.