Gita saar, Chapter – 14
In Chapter 14, the Supreme Personality, summarizes that knowledge, which when understood leads to Moksha /liberation.
God explains that those people who come to understand and internalize this knowledge are not only liberated from the wheel of karma but they also are not disturbed at the time of the great cosmic dissolution-Pralaya.
God then describes how this world was created. He explains to Arjuna that He-God, is Himself the great Brahma – the Creator of everything that exists.
God says that the truth is that He is the very womb from which everything emerges.
God goes on to explain how He created the many from His single being.
He explains that although He Himself is the primordial womb and the only thing that exists, yet to create the world, He first divided Himself to bring to life the first creation – duality. This first division is called Purush and Prakriti or the male and the female principle. Once the eternal Lord created duality, He then as Purush placed the seed of all life into the womb of Prakriti and creation started multiplying thereafter. In this manner the Nirguna form of God takes on the Saguna form of Purush and Prakriti and the journey of creation starts.
Prakriti is the original creative field which contains all the objects and tools necessary to create. All Prakriti needs is the seed from the Purush to start the creative process. The primary tool Prakriti uses are the three modes of action-Rajas, Sattva and Tamas. These modes activates the spirit of action in the sub fields that have been created by Prakriti and impregnated by the Purush. Once these sub fields have been created they interact with all the other fields to create multitudes of creation as per the laws of creation (The law of karma). This way the cycles of creation go on and on.
The three modes of action are the primary tools that acting through the kshetras (fields) create the world and God explains the nature and mechanism by which the three modes of action operate. Sattva is described as the motive of goodness/joy, Rajas is described as the motive of passion/desire and Tamas is described as the motive of ignorance/delusion/sloth.
Sattva activates the deluded soul through joy, Rajas attracts the deluded soul to action through desire for worldly things and Tamas attracts the deluded soul through the desire to rest and sleep.
Whatever action a person takes, it happens when one of the attributes overpowers the other two. When Sattva dominates, the person acts out of joy; when rajas dominates the person acts out of desire and when tamas dominates the person acts out of delusion.
Each of these states have their readily recognizable symptoms in the individual. When Sattva dominates, the person will feel light and his powers of discernment/ wisdom are strong. When one feels greedy and restless the person should know that Rajas predominates and when Tamas prevails that the person feels lazy and indulges in frivolous, familiar, mechanical/ mindless and restful actions.
It must be noted that all the three modes are binding us to the wheel of karma. None of these can lead to liberation and it is only by rising above them can we realize the vastness of our eternal nature.
The important question for any seeker is-How do I rise above the three Gunaas?
The answer that God gives in chapter 14 is that a soul can transcend these modes through the understanding of the ephemeral nature of this world, in realizing that only God is real /eternal and as a consequence of this realization, come to love only God. When a soul reaches this stage of realization, it cannot be tempted by the three modes of action and thereby it rises above these modes and is liberated.
By knowing the secrets of chapter 14 and by accepting these truths from the heart, seekers will automatically get liberation /Moksha .
God explains further that not only our present life but even our next life is dependent on which mode of action we are in at the time of death. Our next birth is determined in large part by our predominant mental state at the time of death. A sattvic state leads a jeeva to be born into a family of knowledge/ wisdom and that improves its chance of liberation in the next life. A rajasic state at time of death leads to a materialistic and action oriented family in the next life. A tamasic state leads a jeeva to take birth in an animal or plant species.
When one acts in Sattva the reward / karma accrued is joy, wisdom and dispassion. When we act in Rajas, the reward is sorrow and when we act in tamas, ignorance, insensitivity and coarseness is the result.
Those predominantly in Sattva wend their way upward, those in tamas fall further away from realization while those in Rajas generally remain firmly tied to the wheel of prakriti.
Arjuna asks the obvious next question – what are signs of a person who has transcended the three gunas?
Shri Krishna replies that the one who has risen above is is not impacted/ affected or attached to any of the gunas. Such a person views the entire universe, including his body, as gunas acting upon gunas.
She Krishna further explains that such a person shows complete and utter equanimity towards objects, situations and people at all times. For such a person a clod of earth is as valuable as a piece of Gold since both are useless in getting Moksha. The only thing that such a person cares for is the love of God.
God also explains the practical methods of transcending the gunas. It can be done only through single pointed devotion to God, since God is the abode of nirguna Brahman, the unconditioned and pure eternal essence.
The individual soul has to climb back the same ladder through which creation was done. From the One, to the dual and then to the multitude is how we have come. We need to climb back in reverse-from the multitude to the dual and then to One beyond all creation. We need to detach from Prakriti and attach ourselves to God. That is the way back.
To succeed we have to be detached from the indulgences of Prakriti and be equanimous in the face of any kind of situation whether painful or pleasurable, or whether honorable or humiliating When such a calm state is achieved naturally and without coercion, the seeker moves beyond the Gunaas effortlessly and quickly find liberation. Such a person treats all-whether friend or foe, whether useful or useless with equality and such a person also renounces the sense of doer ship in his actions. Such a person does only what is his duty and not for his own sensory gratification. And the work he does to live in this world is only for the purpose of paying his dues and not be a burden on others.
Once a person moves beyond the Gunaas, he is able to discern that only the gunas are acting through his body, not God and that God-the Originator stands far beyond the purview of the Gunaas.
Since such a person loves only God and is devoted only to God, that person is no longer interested in the modes of actions or in the games of Prakriti.
God says that such a person is quickly realized/ liberated and merges back into the formless Brahma-Nirguna.