Chapter 18Final Revelations of the Ultimate TruthVerse 66


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

Now the Supreme Lord Krishna reveals the conclusion to the essence of all knowledge. That which is the most confidential of all that is confidential is being revealed. Relinquishing all conceptions of religiosity by indomitable faith that complete salvation and redemption will come naturally through bhakti or exclusive loving devotion unto the Supreme Lord Krishna or any of His incarnations and expansions as authorised in Vedic scriptures. By this determined conviction that nothing else is required or necessary other then surrendering totally to Him the Supreme Lord Himself personally promises moksa or liberation to such devotees.

Brahma Vaisnava Sampradaya:


Madhvacarya's Commentary

Here Lord Krishna reveals the conclusion to the essence of all knowledge. The most confidential of all knowledge that is confidential. Sarva-dharma parityagya means renouncing all conceptions of what one thinks or imagines religiosity to be. This does not mean to renounce righteousness for righteousness to all jivas or embodied beings is always attuned and in harmony with the Supreme Lord. The ultimate goal of all religious and spiritual conceptions is communion with the Supreme Lord Krishna. To achieve this one must first have realisation of their atma or immortal soul within the etheric heart. After surrendering and taking exclusive refuge in Him alone one is blessed by the Supreme Lord and by His grace, He, Himself will accomplish this for His devotee.

Now begins the summation.

Knowing the absolute paramount position of the Supreme Lord Krishna as the creator, maintainer, protector and sustainer of all creation; one who is spiritually intelligent should incessantly attune themselves to adoring Him by bhakti or exclusive loving devotion. Then with such commitment of mind, speech and actions which is more precious and excellent than any other, one should surrender themselves completely unto Him thru the bonafide Vaisnava spiritual master in one of the four authorised sampradayas or channels of disciplic succession as revealed in Vedic scriptures. Awareness like knowing one is under the express care of the Supreme Lord and that He will always protect one in all situations, arises on its own like flowers in spring. Such awareness is known to be the result of saranagati or complete surrender.

Sri Vaisnava Sampradaya:


Ramanuja's Commentary

The phrase sarva-dharmam parityajya means renouncing all conceptions and methods of religiosity completely. Whatever is authorised in Vedic scriptures as righteous may be utilised in worship and propitiation to the Supreme Lord by karma yoga or facilitating communion with the Supreme Lord by prescribed Vedic actions, by bhakti yoga or facilitating communion with the Supreme Lord by exclusive loving devotion or by jnana yoga facilitating communion with the Supreme Lord by spiritual knowledge. But all other methods and conceptions must be renounced and relinquished along with phala tyaga or expectation of rewards, karma tyaga or identifying oneself as the owner of the result and kartritva or believing oneself to be the author of the act. The phrase mam ekam saranam vraja means to take exclusive shelter in the Supreme Lord Krishna understanding that He is the most worthy, most desirable and most worshipable of all that exists. That this is the quality of renunciation warranted in the Vedic scriptures that is required was evidenced by the Supreme Lord in the beginning of this chapter. In verse 4 He stated: Hear the truth about renunciation which is threefold. In verse 9 He stated: Actions are deemed as renunciation in sattva guna the mode of goodness when desire for rewards are abandoned. In verse 11 He stated: One is known as renounced who renounces the rewards for actions. Lord Krishna is promising His devotees that He will personally redeem and deliver from all sins His devotee who lives their life in the manner just explained. This includes sins of commission and sins of omission that accumulated over uncountable lifetimes from time immemorial. Past sins are immense burdens and obstacles in achieving moksa or liberation from material existence. Then to assure that what He has stated is a surety He states ma sucah meaning there is no need to despair.

Another interpretation is that Lord Krishna consoles His devotees who may be stricken with grief by the thought of so many sins committed and omitted in countless past lives. For karma yoga and jnana yoga there is no restrictions in performing actions and acquiring knowledge respectively; but for bhakti yoga which is exclusive, personal loving devotion unto Lord Krishna or any of His authorised avatars or incarnations and expansions such as Rama, Vamana, Narasingha, etc. to be performed all ones sins must be entirely dissolved and one must have great love for the Supreme Lord as well. A devotee may have great love for the Supreme Lord but eradicating all one's sins is another matter. There are only two ways to eradicate all sins. Either by the acceptance of the Vaisnava spiritual master in authorised disciplic succession who takes all one's sins and transfers them upwards to his guru who transfers them upwards to his guru and so forth and so on all the way back to Lord Krishna who personally dissolves them all immediately is one way. The other way is by personal effort. Reflecting on all the sins one has accumulated since the beginning of time and then not even the committed sins but only just the omitted sins like not fasting from grains on Ekadasi when all sins of the world enter grains on the 11th day of the new and full moons is enough for a devotee to become quite dismayed. In a human lifetime of Earth it is not possible to exhaust by expiatory rituals and austerities all the sins hoarded over innumerable lifetimes. There is not enough time so contemplating their lack of qualification a sincere devotee would despair. To console His devotees Lord Krishna omnisciently understands that to eradicate all the myriad of sins accumulated over unlimited lives by expiatory ceremonies would be futile in the short span of life a human being has. Such ceremonies are difficult to conduct successfully, are costly and time consuming and so any chance of successfully eradicating all one's sins in this way is out of the question. To alleviate this difficulty Lord Krishna reveals the solution which grants success in order to be able to embark upon bhakti yoga is to exclusively take complete refuge in Him. There is no cost whatsoever for admission. The Supreme Lord who is the creator, maintainer, protector and sustainer of the total creation, most magnanimously and compassionately gives exclusive shelter to those who seek Him exclusively and irrevocably promises to eradicate all one's sins which are the awesome barriers prohibiting one from communion with the Supreme Lord and the ambrosial bliss of bhakti.

Kumara Vaisnava Sampradaya:


Kesava Kasmiri's Commentary

The essence of this instruction by Lord Krishna is to surrender all prescribed Vedic actions and duties to Him without considering merits or demerits. Actual devotion is full faith and loving devotion in the Supreme Lord. Dedicating oneself completely and all that one has unto the Supreme Lord in a continuous flow like the perpetual and powerful flow of the river Ganga fully satisfies and please the Supreme Lord. This is the most natural and effacious duty for all living entities to simply surrender all that they are, all that they have to their creator, the Supreme Lord Krishna. All actions that follow the injunctions and ordinances of the Vedic scriptures are propitiation and worship of the Supreme Lord; but to follow His direct instruction which is the conclusion of all the Vedic scriptures is the highest and most exalted form of devotion. As is confirmed in Katha Upanisad I.II.XXII beginning nayam atma pravacanena meaning: Communion with the Supreme Lord is obtained only by those who the Supreme Lord Himself chooses out of His own perogative. It is without question that such an exalted one can only be a devotee of the Supreme Lord for none other then His devotees are dearer to Him in the worlds as given in Skanda Purana, Reva-khanda. So it is adequately established with evidence thoughout Srimad Bhagavad-Gita from a multitude of Vedic scriptures that bhakti or exclusive loving devotion unto the Supreme Lord Krishna is the highest attainment and prime goal for all living entities.

Thus ends commentaries of chapter 18, verse 66 of the Srimad Bhagavad-Gita.

Verse 66

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