Chapter 17The Threefold Divisions of Material ExistanceVerse 22


Sanskrit Vocal





Commentaries of the Four Authorized Vaisnava Sampradayas

as confirmed in the Garga Samhita Canto 10, Chapter 61, Verses 23, 24, 25, 26
Rudra Vaisnava Sampradaya:


Sridhara Swami's Commentary

Concluding this theme Lord Krishna states that the danam or charity in tama guna or the mode of ignorance is that which is given at the wrong place meaning that which is not revealed as holy or sacred in the Vedic scriptures. Danam given at the wrong time is like at sunset which is the time when ghosts and demons become active or when the astrological calculations are not favourable. Danam given to unworthy persons such as those masquerading as spiritual teachers who are not even conscious enough to be vegetarian and other charlatans who pretend they are spiritual but in reality they have no knowledge of the atma the immortal soul, they have no knowledge of how to even get themselves out of samsara the perpetual cycle of birth and death and have no knowledge of the Vedic scriptures or devotion to Lord Krishna. Even if accidently they are in a proper place and by chance give danam at a proper time to a worthy recipient. Those in tama guna give it without proper regard and do so without observing the proper etiquette warranted one so worthy. They will not be hospitable. They will act haughty and not bow down and offer respects. If they are rich they will disdainfully give a large amount of wealth but in a contemptuous way like they are doing the holy saint a favour. All this is danam situated in tama guna

Brahma Vaisnava Sampradaya:


Madhvacarya's Commentary

Sri Vaisnava Sampradaya:


Ramanuja's Commentary

Now Lord Krishna states that danam or charity given at an inauspicious location such as in cities where cows are slaughtered, at inauspicious times such as dark of night and to inauspicious persons such as meat eaters are situated in tama guna the mode of darkness. Also showing disrespect by failing to properly welcome a worthy recipient such as a Vaisnava brahmana who knows atma tattva or knowledge of the immortal soul. As also showing disdain by failing to wash his feet and drink the water, showing dishonour by failing to offer ceremonial etiquette by performing arati of waving lamps, incense and flowers, etc. are all considered to be in tama guna the mode of ignorance even if accompanied with opulent gifts.

Kumara Vaisnava Sampradaya:


Kesava Kasmiri's Commentary

Here Lord Krishna speaks of the danam or charity characterised by tama guna the mode of ignorance. The danam which is given at an improper place such as a city where cows are slaughtered and inhabited by degraded and unrighteous people like mlecchas or meat eaters. The danam that is given at an improper time such as the 48 minutes of twilight or during the astrological influence of the nakshatras or stars Ashlesha, Jyeshtha and Mool. The danam that is given to unworthy recipients such as charlatans, fools, pretenders, entertainers, etc. The danam given in an insulting, complacent or pretentious manner even if given to a worthy recipient at a proper time and place is spoiled due to a lack of respect and regard along with the absence of etiquette in honouring such a one and lack of faith in the absolute authority of the Vedic scriptures and so must languish in the mire of tama guna along with the aforementioned improprieties.

Thus ends commentaries of chapter 17, verse 22 of the Srimad Bhagavad-Gita.

Verse 22

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