This article contains the verses from Shrimad Bhagavad Gita Chapter 8.
Links to remaining chapters can be found at the end of the article.
Shrimad Bhagavad Gita Chapter 8
O Krishna, please explain what we mean when we talk about Brahman, and what the nature of the action is. What exactly are the adhibhuta, the adhidaiva, and the adhyatma?
What exactly is the adhiyajna, also known as the supreme sacrifice, and how should it be performed? In what way are those who have self-control united with you when it comes time to die?
My highest nature, the unchanging Brahman, is what gives every living thing its existence, and it is this unchanging Brahman that serves as the adhyatma in every living thing. My work consists of the production of living beings as well as the act of creation itself.
The adhibhuta is the body, which is subject to decay, and the adhidaiva is the Purusha, which is the immortal spirit. The adhiyajna, also known as the supreme sacrifice, is performed for me in my capacity as the Lord that resides within you.
Those who think of me in their final moments will find their way to me hereafter. There is no room for doubt here.
The destination of the dying is determined by whatever is going through a person’s mind at the moment of their passing; they will always gravitate toward that state of being.
Because of this, keep a constant remembrance of me and keep fighting. When your thoughts and feelings are focused on me, you will undoubtedly find your way to me.
You will find the supreme glory of the Lord when you make your mind one-pointed through the regular practise of meditation, and this will lead you to salvation.
The Lord is the highest poet, the first cause, the sovereign ruler, subtler than the tiniest particle, the support of all, inconceivable, bright as the sun, and beyond darkness. He is also incomprehensibly bright and as brilliant as the sun.
If you remember him in this manner at the time of your death, through devotion and the power of meditation, with your mind completely stilled and your concentration fixed in the centre of spiritual awareness between your eyebrows, you will become one with the supreme Lord.
I will give you a brief description of the eternal state that is mentioned in all the scriptures. This state is only accessible to people who have complete mastery over themselves and are unencumbered by egocentric desires. Those who live their lives in complete devotion to Brahman are able to reach this ultimate goal.
When you come to die, remember me, and shut the doors of your senses as you bring your mind into your heart. The next step is to direct all of one’s energy upward toward the crown of one’s head while meditating.
If, while in this state, you recite the divine name, which is the syllable ‘Om’ and refers to the unchanging Brahman, you will eventually leave the body and arrive at the ultimate destination.
I am not difficult to attain for the person who never forgets me and is not attached to anything else in the world. Arjuna, a person like that, can be considered a true yogi.
Great souls make their lives perfect and discover me; in doing so, they are liberated from the limitations of mortality and the anguish of this existence as a separate entity.
Every living thing in the universe is destined to experience rebirth, Arjuna; the only exception to this rule is the individual who is one with me.
Those who are knowledgeable about the laws that govern the cosmos are aware that the Day of Brahma will come to an end after a thousand Yugas, just as the Night of Brahma will also come to an end after a thousand Yugas.
When the day of Brahma begins, forms are drawn from the realm of the unmanifest; when the night of Brahma arrives, these forms return to their original state, which is the realm of the formless.
Over the course of Brahma’s successive days and nights, a vast number of beings are brought into existence before being utterly annihilated.
However, beyond this state without form, there exists an additional reality that is not manifested and does not end even if the universe is destroyed. This reality is eternal.
Those who have attained the highest purpose of their lives are aware that I am unmanifested and unchanging. After finding a place in my heart, they can never go back to living their lives apart again.
It is possible to realise this supreme Lord who permeates all of existence, who is the true Self of all living things, through love that is undivided.
Arjuna, at the time of death, the soul has the option of going either one of two different directions. The first path can lead one to rebirth, while the second can lead one to freedom.
Knowers of Brahman are guided to the ultimate destination by the six months that comprise the northern path of the sun, also known as the path of light, of fire, of day, and of the bright fortnight.
Other souls are guided to the light of the moon and to rebirth during the six months that make up the southern path of the sun. This path is also known as the path of smoke, of night, and of the dark fortnight.
It is said that these two ways, the light and the dark, have existed since the beginning of time. Some believe that they lead to liberation, while others believe that they lead to rebirth.
Arjuna, once you have gained knowledge of these two ways, you will never again be misled in your life. Through consistent practise of yoga, you can acquire this knowledge.
There is merit in studying the scriptures, in rendering service to others without expecting anything in return, in living a life of austerity, and in giving, but the practise of meditation will carry you beyond all of these things to the supreme abode of the highest Lord.