Wednesday, February 9, 2011

IV: 13

Chapter 4, Verse 13

"I founded the four-fold caste system
With the Gunas appropriate to each.
Although I did this,
Know that I am eternally inactive."

Sri Aurobindo:

"Krishna is not addressing the four-fold order in the narrow sense in which it is commonly understood, nor is it to be regarded as an eternal and universal social order. The four-fold order of society is in actuality the concrete form of a spiritual truth which is itself independent of the form. The truth rests on the principle of right action as a harmoniously ordered expression of the nature of individual beings through whom the action is accomplished. That nature, when intuitively integrated, maps their paths in life according to their inborn qualities and self-expressive functioning."

Sri Eknath Easwaran:

"Applying the Gunas to human evolution, the Gita says that the least evolved are the apathetic [Tamas Guna predominant] who hardly act at all. Higher are those who act, though selfishly [Rajas Guna predominant]. Higher still are those who act selflessly [Sattva Guna predominant]. The highest are those who have experienced the indivisible unity of all life, who have felt the higher power in the universe at work within everything, and who have made that realization steady [called Turiya in Sanskrit, 'the fourth state,' which is really no independent state at all, but rather the unbroken awareness of the substratum or divine foundation of pure consciousness upon which all of manifestation arises and into which it subsides].

This spiritual evolution is the original basis of what is called the caste system in India. In ancient times, a person could move from one caste to another depending upon personal merit. Over time, the system became rigid, so that a person's caste was determined by birth and not by merit. Today the system is dying out in the cruel form it gradually acquired over the centuries.

Every country has its own caste system wherever there is exploitation or discrimination, whether because of nationality, class, religion, property, race, color, education or gender. Everywhere there are caste systems as long as we do not treat all those around us with love and respect, knowing the the Lord is present in everyone."

[Krishna as the personification of the Supreme Purusha or Atman does nothing, while the Para Prakriti, the original, creative energy and power of all the worlds and universes carry out his will. At the same time, Krishna never stops working. This is a paradox which is resolved when it is understood, not just with the mind but in the heart as well, that the Supreme Purusha is one with the Para Prakriti, and simultaneously more. This truth has to be felt.]

No comments:

Related Posts with Thumbnails