The Lord says, nāyaṁ loko 'sty ayajñasya: "Those who are not performing, for them, there is no happiness even in this world, even in this life." And kuto anyaḥ kuru-sattama: "My dear Arjuna, then what to speak of the next life. Oh, next life is still more miserable."
- evaṁ bahu-vidhā yajñā
- vitatā brahmaṇo mukhe
- karma-jān viddhi tān sarvān
- evaṁ jñātvā vimokṣyase
- śreyān dravyamayād yajñāj
- jñāna-yajñaḥ parantapa
- sarvaṁ karmākhilaṁ pārtha
- jñāne parisamāpyate
Now, Kṛṣṇa is concluding these different types of yajña. He says that śreyān dravyamayād yajñāj jñāna-yajñaḥ parantapa. Jñāna-yajña, jñāna-yajña means... This is jñāna-yajña, which we are doing here. We are discussing Bhagavad-gītā very scrutinizingly and trying to understand every verse with reference to the Vedic reference and as far as our logic and argument goes. So this is called jñāna-yajña.
And dravyamaya-yajña means, just like yesterday, day before yesterdays, discussed that in the altar of fire we have to sacrifice clarified butter, grains, or sometimes animal sacrifice. They are called dravyamaya-yajña. So Kṛṣṇa says, śreyān dravyamayād yajñāt. That dravyamaya, that sacrificing goods or other things in the yajña, from that type of yajña, śreyān dravyamayād yajñāj jñāna-yajñaḥ parantapa. Jñāna-yajña, this philosophical discussion, logical discussion of the aim of life from authorized books like Bhagavad-gītā, Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, if we have discussion, this is called jñānamaya-yajña, with knowledge, jñānamaya-yajña.
So why jñānamaya-yajña is preferred? Sarvaṁ karmākhilaṁ pārtha jñāne parisamāpyate. Because after all, we have to acquire that knowledge which will make me a surrendered soul to the Supreme. That's it. Bahūnāṁ janmanām ante jñānavān māṁ prapadyate (BG 7.19). So jñāna also means that to understand our position, to understand what is God, to understand what is our relationship with God, to understand why we are in this material world and what is our next life, wherefrom we have come, where we have the right knowledge, you can understand all these things. And when you understand everything, the path is clear, you can clearly understand that "I am the part and parcel of the Supreme; therefore my duty is to render transcendental service to the Supreme." That is the highest yajña, highest jñāna, knowledge, knowledge, yajña. So Kṛṣṇa advises that jñānamaya-yajña, sacrifice... Sacrifice.
Now, to understand these things you have to sacrifice some time, you have to sacrifice some labor, some attention. So these sacrifices are counted more than when we offer sacrificial goods in the fire. That is clearly stated here.
Now what is the process of this knowledge? That is also stated by the Lord.
- tad viddhi praṇipātena
- paripraśnena sevayā
- upadekṣyanti te jñānaṁ
- jñāninas tattva-darśinaḥ
- (BG 4.34)
Now, if you have to acquire knowledge, then first of all, you have to find out a person who has already seen the light. Tattva-darśinaḥ. Tattva... Tattva means... In the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, tattva is described, the English translation is "Absolute Truth." That is called tattva. Now,
- vadanti tat tattva-vidas
- tattvaṁ yaj jñānam advayam
- brahmeti paramātmeti
- bhagavān iti śabdyate
- (SB 1.2.11)
"Now, that Absolute Truth is known in three different phases." What is that? "Brahman, Paramātmā and Bhagavān." So a person, we have to... If we really seeking knowledge, then we have to find out a person who is tattva-darśī, who has understood the Absolute Truth. Now, the Absolute Truth is realized in three phases: Brahman, Paramātmā and Bhagavān.
There are certain tattva-vit, or the knower of the Absolute Truth, who understands that Absolute Truth as impersonal Brahman. And there are others, knower of the Absolute Truth, who understands the Absolute Truth as the localized Supersoul. These are called yogis. And the first-mentioned persons, they are called jñānīs. And there are other tattva-vit, or knower of the Absolute Truth, who knows the Absolute Truth as Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. So either Brahman or Paramātmā or Kṛṣṇa the Supreme Personality of, there is no difference. The same thing, but according to the capacity of the knower, they are manifested into different phases.
We have several times discussed this point. Just like to understand the sun, somebody is studying the sun rays. He is also studying the sun and somebody is studying what is the sun disc. So he is also studying sun and somebody is trying to enter into the sun planet to see who is there. Everything is the sun. But the persons who are studying the sunshine, their grade is lower than the person who is trying to understand the sun disc. And their position is lower grade than the person who wants to enter into the sun. So the bhaktas, they are trying to see the sun-god within the sun. Just like they want to see Kṛṣṇa. In the Upaniṣad we'll find... There is a prayer that the Brahman is said, "Will You kindly push off Your glaring, dazzling glare so that I can really see You." So within the Brahmajyoti there is Kṛṣṇa. So we have to see that.