Chapter 3 Verse 11

Verse 8 to 10 Krishna summarizes the topics of action, remaining actionlessness and the importance of doing karma. In Verse 11, Krishna picks up another topic which we shall see now.

देवान्भावयतानेन ते देवा भावयन्तु वः ।
परस्परं भावयन्तः श्रेयः परमवाप्स्यथ ॥

devan bhavayatanena te deva bhavayantu vah

parasparam bhavayantah sreyah param avapsyatha

anena – with this
devan – the deities
bhavayata – propitiate
te – those
devah – deities
vah – you
bhavayantu – may propitiate
parasparam – one another
bhavayantah – propitiating
param sreyah – highest good
avapsyatha – you shall gain

Propitiating and acknowledging the cosmic forces as devatas gives the highest good.

In this verse Krishna says that by performing rituals as prescribed , the person benefits and are rewarded by the propitiating deity. E.g. let’s say we worship the sun god, it is a blessing as the sun nourishes all the things on earth. The sun is a devata and we recognize that it is not separate from Ishwara. Does the sun need another light to display that it is sun? No. The sun itself is light and like this our atma is also does not require another light to illumine the universe.

So too with the other deities whom we worship e.g. agni, varuna, vayuhu, prithvi, akasa. All these are devatas and we depend upon each of these for our daily life. Can we cook anything without fire? Can we breathe without the vayu being present? So we should perform our daily prayers and the deities will bless us for that. May you not disturb the cosmic ecology by not offering prayers. Even if you don’t pray, the deities are still there to protect you. But it is our way of thanksgiving to the Ishwara.

A few weeks back, we saw that in our daily life there are several prayers right from the morning till we retire to bed. Our full life is full of prayers as we ask ishwara for something or other. It is OK to ask but what to ask is a question. Our parents or elders would have said that early to bed and early to rise. What is the meaning of this?

It means that we need to wake up before the sun rises to greet the sun. What if I don’t wake up and what is the sun going to do to me? The sun will not do anything to you, but it is a way of showing our respect to the presiding deity that the sun is a superior force than us and we should not be sleeping and should be wide-awake. It is just recognition and we must try and follow it as closely as possible so that it becomes a habit.

There is a story of a person who was meditating on the lord for 20 years and he fell asleep for a minute. At that minute the lord appeared and he could not see as he had fallen asleep. So he thought that he needed to do more meditation. Ecology is only for the person who understands the cosmic power. It is not lying outside but within us. If we don’t see it, then it’s not there.

If we die while pursuing knowledge, without having gained it, it is said that at the very least, you will gain heavenly enjoyments i.e. svarga for some time. Therefore, there is no loss. Svarga also stands for better births as the person in the next birth continues from where he left and goes further towards moksha. This is without doubt as the Gita is moksha shastram and not svarga shastram.