Chapter 3 Verse 7

यस्त्विन्द्रियाणि मनसा नियम्यारभतेऽर्जुन ।
कर्मेन्द्रियैः कर्मयोगमसक्तः स विशिष्यते ॥

yastvindriyani manasa niyamyarabhate arjuna

karmendriyaih karmayogam asktah sa visisyate

yah – one
tu – whereas
indriyani – sense organs
manasa – with the mind
niyamya – controlling
asaktah – unattached
karmendriyaih – with the organs of action
karmayogam – the yoga of action
arabhate –takes to
sah – that one
visisyate – is far superior

Whereas, O Arjuna, the one who controlling the senses organs with the mind, remaining unattached, takes to karma yoga of action (i.e. action performed with yoga buddhi) with the organs of action is superior.

In verse 6 above we saw that a person who is not in control of his mind, but just by withdrawing or abstaining from something using his sense organs he tries to practice karma yoga. Such a person Krishna termed as deluded and not correct. E.g. he sits in Samadhi, meditates, does not eat , does not do certain things, does not indulge in pleasures etc. but his mind is still revolving around it and when the opportune time presents, it will not take time to forget and break the abstinence.

Here he says that the person who does the action with his sense organs but with a un-attachment and by the control of his mind such a person is superior. To control your mind or direct them where required is a mastery or skill whereas if we let the mind wander as it goes, then it is not control. The person described in this verse by Krishna is a person who does the action with the proper attitude.

Thus in this verse, asaktah refers to the person who enjoys a certain control. Otherwise, the raga dvesas alone will decide what one should do. Whatever fancies a person desires, the person will simply join them and do whatever he or she thinks is right without understanding why it is right or wrong. Convenience instead of what is right becomes the rule here though the action may be against dharma. The word certain is important as even though the karma yogi has control over something he still agyani, one who is ignorant with reference to the self.

Laziness and idleness are 2 different things. A lazy person is one who does nothing outwardly, but does everything mentally or inwardly. E.g. he or she even writes letters, chants slokas mentally, also gets annoyed mentally but does not express it. Whereas, an idle person is the one who is always busy, without ever accomplishing anything. He or she makes a mess of everything and then clears them up. This is a view of the Vedanta as we indulge in activities that are not inward looking but outward looking i.e. go after material aspects and do many actions, get results and then to counter do further actions etc. e.g. you might see a sannyasi sitting lazily or just relaxing, but he or she is contemplating all the time, thinking of the brahman, and some japaha is going on mentally or some chanting, understanding the meaning etc. You might call this person aloof or boring, but it is different from a person who is always running around doing things, but does not have a single second to sit quiet and contemplate or think about the real self.

The mahavakyam ‘tat tvam asi’ or ‘I am that’ and not this body mind sense complex is called as atma vichara and the two people mentioned here i.e. karma yogi with the right attitude and the karma yogi without the right attitude is clearly evident.