Beans, Bullets, and Bhagavad-gitas
Please read text2 22-24 of chapter three along with the purport, and then read the following commentary. Afterwards, each participant should offer a thought or comment on this passage. As you do, please consider this study question:
Why is it necessary that Krsna act and be seen to act?
na me parthasti kartavyam
trisu lokesu kincana
varta eva ca karmani
yadi hy aham na varteyam
jatu karmany atandritah
manusyah partha sarvasah
utsideyur ime loka
na kuryam karma ced aham
sankarasya ca karta syam
upahanyam imah prajah
Even though Sri Krsna is the Absolute Truth and Supreme Perfection who has no need or want for anything, and therefore, has no prescribed duties to perform; nonetheless, He is always engaged in the act of performing prescribed duties. Since everything emerges from and is part and parcel of the Supreme Lord, it follows that He is the controller of the Universe—in fact, of all universes. It is Sri Krsna who is the first cause of all activity. As we have seen before, only the deluded soul believes himself to be the doer of things. In reality, Krsna is the only true doer. Despite His absolute perfection, Krsna still acts continuously, not only to keep all things in motion, but also to serve as role model. If Krsna ceased to act, then all others would also cease to act. By performing prescribed duties even though unneeded, Krsna demonstrates the importance that each of us perform our prescribed duties as the appendages of the Lord.
Verse 24 warns that if Krsna stopped performing prescribed duties, then all the worlds would be put to ruination. There would be a massive surplus population which would destroy the peace of all. Without Krsna as a guide, humans would run amuck acting only to please their own sense gratification and prop up their own egos. The regulative principles, which are taught by the Lord, are there to keep humans in line and acting correctly. Of course, as Srila Prabhupada reminds us, we are part and parcel of the Lord, we are not identical to the Lord. Therefore, we should never try to imitate the Lord, but rather to be guided and instructed by Him. Srimad-Bhagavatam
(10:33.30-31) puts it this way: “One should simply follow the instructions of the Lord and His empowered servants. Their instructions are all good for us, and any intelligent person will perform them as instructed. However, one should guard against trying to imitate their actions. One should not try to drink the ocean of poison in imitation of Lord Siva” (p. 162).
Remarkable art work, glorious!
I am reminded that its a free-for-all down here, where every living entity tries to maximize their personal enjoyment. Sometimes they do not even care how their actions effect others, and so they accumulate karma-debts that must be paid in due course, equal at least to the discomfort caused to others in our personal agendas. Thus, the suffering multiplies and builds upon previous foolishness, until the whole thing is such a mess of greed and debt that it cannot be untangled.
Duty is one coordinating idea that is passed along from father to son, and so the basics for social cohesion are given. But on a higher level, it is bhakti that motivates the spirit self, not mere internalized values based upon the need for food, social cohesion, sex life, and defense. Unless one has a clear understanding of the purposes of life, of the nature of spirit, one cannot reach a bonafide conlusion as to what course of action is best for all concerned here and now. Meanwhile, those who do know, nowadays are often at the bottom of the totem pole, sitting in the back seats of the social automobile, and those with the largest appettites for self aggrandizement are at the top and the wheel, seeing nothing yet leading fools deeper into hell. yad yad acareti sresthas
On a side note, devotees are warned against over-endeavor, lest they become exhausted and unable to carry on with the standards. Srila Prabhupada jokingly said to hunt the rhinoceros, yet still service must be done with a view to continue, not to be a show-bottle will-o-the-wisp.
As Editor online, I have seen good times and bad, sometimes they love you sometimes they laugh or despise you, but one has to continue on nicely, as these things come and go like winter and summer seasons. But one must be sure one is following God's leads, and not making up stuff which is not approved by the spiritual masters. Regular review of scripture, humble prayer, taking Krsna prasadam, avoiding demonic activities, and associating with other devotees, all help one stay the true course.
Rasa Manjari ; According to Vedic injunctions there are six kinds of aggressors: 1) a poison giver, 2) one who sets fire to the house, 3) one who attacks with deadly weapons, 4) one who plunders riches, 5) one who occupies another's land, and 6) one who kidnaps a wife.
Such aggressors are at once to be killed, and no sin is incurred by killing such aggressors.
Without Krsna's intervention, sooner or later some big demons would corral enough innocent jivas to enslave them and create permanent hell. Maya does a great job in that regards, but fortunately she is Krsna's servant, His Shakti, and She and Lord Shiva are great devotees, and famous Mahajanas, and very kind whenever it is possible, so eventually, there is mercy. Otherwise, we would all be matzoh balls by now.
Srila Prabhupada said that "when we the jivas kill, we kill one after another, but when Krsna kills, He kills wholesale."
We are not the temporary karma-body that we currently inhabit, but are made of other-worldy stuff not subject to time and death as we know them. A non-devotee may be very elevated, thinking in terms of fine morality and truth, but when Godhead says do something, even if he says go stand on your head and chiri like a rooster, then that is perfect morality. So, fact is, some persons need to be killed; it is not just morally right, it is not right if it is not done as directed. Fortunately Sri Krsna is never ever involved in any sins or immoral actions, nor unnecessary and lawful killing.
There should never be unlawful aggression nor forced conversions nor anything of the sort. The military should NEVER come into contact with the citizens. The chivalrous Vedic military fights against other military men, not women and children. The Lord sometimes appears in order to help us remove big demons that the jivas are incapable of handling. Parasurama was such an avatara, who with an axe, personally took out countless burdensome ksatriya terrorists and banksters, masquerading as righteous ksatriyas, so much so that they uprooted their families and moved to Europe.
The importance of action (work, karma) is given specific importance here.
The body is the tool given to us by Krishna to work with the world for purification of the soul.
The mind is the tool to us by Krishna to perform all actions in remembrance of Him.
Bhagavad Gita was spoken at a time when disparate philosophies were prevalent, where some people were renouncing their worldly duties and taking to the forest for personal salvation. Others were doing their duties for personal desires and gains.
Krishna came to marry (synthesize) both philosophies into one. Krishna teaches us to work within the world but with the spirit of renunciation (mind surrendered) to Krishna.
Krishna appears in this apparently human form to show that even though He is the Supreme Being, but when we He appears on earth, He has to work like any other being according to nature. If He does not demonstrate this, common people may observe and follow what the great man practice in their own lives and so the society will go to ruination.
He is teaching us that children don't listen to their parents but observe their actions and follow in their footsteps.
So we must work in the world but with our mind, intelligence and ego rested at the feet of the Lord.
Krishna here is being our Good Devotional Role Model :)