Gita - Chapter 9
CHAPTER 9 - The Most Confidential Knowledge
Lord Krishna, describes in this Ninth Chapter, the matters which deal with
unalloyed, pure devotion. Therefore this is called the most confidential.
This chapter also delineates the glories of the Lord. Lord Krishna is the
Supreme Godhead and the supreme object of worship. The soul is eternally
related to Him through transcendental devotional service (bhakti). By reviving
one's pure devotion one returns to Krishna in the spiritual realm.
Lord Krishna prefaces this chapter by stating that the knowledge that He'll
reveal is the most confidential, for it is about His actual position, which
only the non-envious and faithful can understand. This knowledge is the king
of education, the most secret of all secrets. It is the purest knowledge, and
because it gives direct perception of the self by realisation, it is the
perfection of religion. It is everlasting, and it is joyfully performed.
Those who are not faithful in this devotional service are forced to return to
the path of birth and death in this material world. Unfortunate people, even
after hearing all the evidence of Vedic literature from great personalities,
still have no faith in God. Such people find the path very difficult, even if
they are supposedly engaged in devotional service. For them there is very
little hope of gaining perfection. Thus faith is very important in the
discharge of devotional service. Svetasvatara Upanishad (6.23) says, "Only
unto those great souls who have implicit faith in both the Lord and the
spiritual master are all the imports of Vedic knowledge revealed."
The Supreme Personality of Godhead cannot be understood by material senses.
Only to one who is engaged in pure devotional service under proper guidance is
He revealed. But actually, although we cannot see Him, everything is resting
in Him. Yet, He is aloof. For the ordinary person it is almost inconceivable
to understand this. But the Lord is giving an example which may help us to
understand. The wind is mighty and its movement influences the movement of
everything. But although the wind is great, it is still situated within the
sky and the sky is always aloof from the activities of the wind. Thus although
Krishna is the maintainer and sustainer of the entire material manifestation,
He does not touch this material manifestation. Simply by His supreme will,
everything is created, everything is sustained, everything is maintained, and
everything is annihilated. At the end of the millennium all material
manifestations enter into His nature, and at the beginning of another
millennium, by His potency, He creates them again. The whole cosmic order is
under Him. Under His will it is automatically manifested again and again, and
under His will it is annihilated at the end. But all this work cannot bind
Him. He is ever detached from all these material activities, seated as though
neutral, although He has control over every minute detail of material
activities. Nor is He attached to the creation and annihilation of this
material world. The living entities take their different forms in the various
species of life according to their past deeds, and the Lord doesn't interfere
with them. It is clearly stated here that the Supreme Lord, although aloof
from all the activities of the material world, remains the supreme director.
The Supreme Lord is the supreme will and the background of this material
manifestation, but the management is being conducted by material nature.
The foolish consider Krishna an ordinary human being because they do not know
the confidential activities of the Supreme Lord and His different energies.
Although the foolish cannot imagine how Krishna, who appears just like a human
being, can control the infinite and the finite, those who are pure devotees
accept this,for they know that Krishna is the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
Therefore they completely surrender unto Him and engage in the devotional
service of the Lord. The foolish become atheists and their hopes for
liberation, their fruitive activities, and their culture of knowledge are all
defeated. It is a great offence, therefore, to consider Krishna, the Supreme
Personality of Godhead, to be an ordinary man. On the other hand, mahatmas
who know Krishna as the Supreme Personality of Godhead take shelter of His
divine nature and perpetually chant His glories, bow down to Him and serve
It is Krishna who is the ritual, the sacrifice, the offering to the ancestors,
the healing herb and the mantras chanted in connection with the sacrifice. He
is the butter, the fire and the offering in the sacrifice. He is the father of
this universe, the mother, the support and the grandsire. He is the object of
knowledge, the purifier and the syllable om. He is also the Rg, the Sama and
the Yajur Vedas. He is the goal, the sustainer, the master, the witness, the
abode, the refuge, and the most dear friend. He is the creation and the
annihilation, the basis of everything,the resting place and the eternal seed.
He is the heat and the rain. He is immortality, and He is also death
personified. Both spirit and matter are in Him. Krishna is therefore the
eternal cause of all causes.
Those who study the Vedas and drink the soma juice, seeking the heavenly
planets, worship Him indirectly. Purified of sinful reactions, they take
birth on the pious, heavenly planet of Indra,where they enjoy godly delights.
When they have thus enjoyed vast heavenly sense pleasure and the results of
their pious activities are exhausted,they return to this mortal planet again.
Thus those who seek sense enjoyment by adhering to the principles of the three
Vedas achieve only repeated birth and death. But those who always worship Him
with exclusive devotion, meditating on His transcendental form are superior
and to them He carries what they lack, and preserves what they have. Those
who are devotees of other gods and who worship them with faith actually
worship only Krishna, but they do so in a wrong way. He is the only enjoyer
and master of all sacrifices. Therefore, those who do not recognise His true
transcendental nature fall down. Those who worship the demigods will take
birth among the demigods; those who worship the ancestors go to the ancestors;
those who worship ghosts and spirits will take birth among such beings; and
those who worship Krishna will live with Him.
Krishna says that if one offers Him with love and devotion a leaf, a flower, a
fruit, some water, as well as the austerities and charities one performs, he
would accept it. He is not in need of anything from anyone, because He is
self-sufficient, and yet He accepts the offering of His devotee in an exchange
of love and affection. One who loves Krishna will give Him whatever He wants,
and he avoids offering anything which is undesirable or unasked. Thus meat,
fish, eggs, onion and garlic should not be offered to Krishna. In the Third
Chapter, Sri Krishna explains that those who do not make an offering of their
food, are eating only sin. Therefore, whatever action one performs, one
should do it as an offering to Him. Thus freed from reaction, with mind fixed
on Him, one goes back to Him.
A devotee, even if committing the most abominable action, is to be considered
saintly because he is properly situated in his determination. On the other
hand, one should not misunderstand that a devotee in transcendental devotional
service can act in all kinds of abominable ways. Therefore, one should chant
Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare/ Hare Rama, Hare Rama,
Rama Rama, Hare Hare without stoppage. This will protect him from all
accidental fall downs. Krishna requests Arjuna to boldly declare that His
devotees are never vanquished.
It is clearly declared here by the Supreme Lord that in devotional service
there is no distinction between the lower and higher classes of people.
Everyone is eligible for the supreme destination. By thinking of Krishna,
offering Him obeisances and becoming absorbed in Him, one, regardless of his
position, goes back to Godhead. Therefore it is obvious that Krishna
consciousness is the only means of being delivered from the clutches of this
contaminated material world. Hence, the intelligent person should take
directly to the process of Krishna consciousness and happily live in this
This summary is taken from the book, "Bhagavad Gita As It Is", By His Divine
Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupad. If you need clarifications or
detailed explanation of any point please do not hesitate to post yr questions