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Bhagavad Gita Chapter 13 Verse 2

भगवद् गीता अध्याय 13 श्लोक 2

श्री भगवानुवाच
इदं शरीरं कौन्तेय क्षेत्रमित्यभिधीयते।
एतद्यो वेत्ति तं प्राहुः क्षेत्रज्ञ इति तद्विदः।।13.2।।

English Translation - Swami Gambirananda

13.2 The Blessed Lord said O son of Kunti, this body is referred to as the field. Those who are versed in this call him who is conscious of it as the knower of the field.

English Translation - Swami Sivananda

13.2 The Blessed Lord said This body, O Arjuna, is called the field; he who knows it is called the knower of the field, by those who know of them.

English Translation - Dr. S. Sankaranarayan

13.2. The Bhagavat said O son of Kunti ! This [physical] hody is called Field [and decayer-cum-protector]; He, who sensitiezes it - His knowers call Him properly as Field-sensitizer.

English Commentary - Swami Sivananda

13.2 इदम् this? शरीरम् body? कौन्तेय O son of Kunti (Arjuna)? क्षेत्रम् the field? इति thus? अभिधीयते is called? एतत् this? यः who? वेत्ति knows? तम् him? प्राहुः (they) call? क्षेत्रज्ञः the knower of the field? इति thus? तद्विदः the knowers of that.Commentary Kshetra literally means field. The body is so called because the fruits (harvest) of actions in the form of pleasure and pain are reaped in it as in a field. The physical? the mental and the causal bodies go to constitute the totality of the field. It is not the physical body alone that forms the field.He who knows the field and he who beholds it as distinct from himself through knowledge is the knower of the field or matter.Those who know them The sages.

English Translation of Sanskrit Commentary By Sri Shankaracharya's

13.2 The Lord specifies the body as the object referred to by the pronoun idam (this). O son of Kunti, (this body) abhidhiyate, is referred to; ksetram iti, as the field-because it is protected (tra) against injury (ksata), or because it perishes (ksi), wastes away (ksar), or because the results of actions get fulfilled in the body as in a field (ksetra). The word iti is used in the sense of as. They-who?-tadvidah, who are versed in this, who know the field and the knower of the field; ahuh, call; tam, him, the knower; yah, who; vetti etat, is concious of, knows, it, the body, the field-makes it, from head to foot, an abject of his knowledge; makes it an object of perception as a separate entity, through knowledg which is spontaneous or is acired through instruction; ksetrajna iti, as the knower of the field. As before, the word iti is used in the sense of as. They call him as the knower of the field. Is it that the field and the knower of the field thus mentioned are to be understood through this much knowledge only? The answer is, no.

English Translation of Commentary - Dr. S. Sankaranarayan

13.2 See Comment under 13.3

English Translation of Ramanuja's Sanskrit Commentary

13.2 The body which is cognised in identity with the experiencing self by co-ordinate predication (Samanadhikaranya) in the propositions, I am a god, I am a man, I am fat, I am slender etc., is described by those who know the real nature of the body as only the Field (Ksetra) of experience for the experiencing self, who is distinct from the body. Those who know this, namely, those who know the exact nature of the self, call It the Field-knower (Ksetrajna). That knower who knows the body, as divided into its different members and as their collectivity, can say I know it, the body, as an object. The person with this perception is the one who is called the Ksetrajna or the Field-knower, who must necessarily be different from the Field (Ksetra), which is the object of this knowledge. It is true that at the time of perceiving an object like a pot which is different from ones body, the seer who thinks I am a god who sees it or I am a man who sees it etc., is putting himself as identical with the body through co-ordinate predication. In the same way he experiences the body as an object of knowledge when he says I know this body. Thus if the body is an object of knowledge, it must be different from the knowing self. Therefore, the Field-knower (Ksetrajna). The knower, is other than the body which is an object of knowledge like a jar, etc. But this knowledge which arises by way of co-ordinate predication is justified on the ground that the body is inseparable from oneself; for it constitutes an attribute of the self like cow-ness of the cow etc. The knowing self is however unie in being an eternal and subtle form of knowledge. But this is inaccessible to the ordinary mans organs of vision; it is accessible only to a mind refined by Yoga. The ignorant see the knower only in the form of Prakrti because of close proximity to or union with Prakrti. Sri Krsna thus declares later on: When in identiciation with the Gunas he departs or stays or experiences, the deluded perceive him not. They, who have the eye of knowledge, see (15.10).

Commentary - Chakravarthi Ji

“You have described the paramatma as knower of the field, but speaking of the jiva who is also the knower of the field, how does the jiva come in contact with maya and when did it start?” Know that maya (prakrti), and the jiva (purusa) are both without an origin (anadi), having no first cause. This is because they are saktis of me, the Lord who is also without origin (anadi). In verses 4 and 5 of chapter 7 it was said: bhumir apo ‘nalo vayuh kham mano buddhir eva ca ahankara itiyam me bhinna prakrtir astadha apareyam itas tv anyam prakrtim viddhi me param jiva-bhutam mahabaho yayedam dharyate jagat From this it is understood that, because matter and jiva are both without origin, being my saktis, their connection is also without origin (anadi). But there is a real difference between them, even though they are mutually connected. Know that the body, senses and other elements (gunan) and the transformations of the gunas such as happiness, distress, lamentation and illusion (vikaran), all arise from prakrti. Know that the jiva is very different from that prakrti which has transformed into the field.

Rudra Vaishnava Sampradaya - Commentary

In verse seven of the previous chapter Lord Krishna declares sammuddharta mrtyu-samsara sagarat meaning saves them from the perpetual cycle of birth and the death which is like an ocean because in a day of Brahma every human being has approximately 43,000 separate births and life cycles. So the figure is astronomical if one calculates how many human lifetimes transpire in a only year of Brahmas lifetime. So in this present chapter the truth about redemption from this transmigration from the cycle of birth and death is being revealed for this fulfilment. As it is not even remotely possible to achieve the fulfilment of redemption without atma-tattva or realisation of the eternal soul within. So in order to inoculate this knowledge of truth this chapter will delineate the relationship between prakriti or the material substratum pervading physical existence and the Pususa or the Supreme Consciousness pervading spiritual existence that is the source of all existence. It is the lack of discrimination and discernment between the prakriti and Purusa which causes delusion and binds the atma or eternal soul which is an infinitesimal spark of the Purusa within the etheric heart of the jiva or embodied being, keeping them in bondage locked by samsara or the perpetual cycle of transmigratory existence birth after birth, life after life. It is by the power of first Purusa and then prakriti that the Supreme Lord Krishna manifests all creation and they are distinctly different from each other. Prakriti is related to the ksetra or the field and the Purusa is related to ksetrajnam or knower of the field. The ksetra is the material body which is the basis for all physical enjoyment and the sprouting ground for endless transmigration. The ksetrajnam is that which is conscious of itself and thinks in terms of I and mine and is called the jiva by those who have factual discriminative knowledge of both. This is because the jiva is the beneficiary of the results of the actions performed by the body like the farmer who reaps the harvest of his field.

Brahma Vaishnava Sampradaya - Commentary

Hari OM! In this chapter whatever has been previously stated about knowledge, the object of knowledge, prakriti or the material substratum pervading physical existence and the Purusa or the Supreme eternal consciousness is herein being categorically collated and elucidated by Lord Krishna. The means of developing spiritual intelligence through karma or activities was given by Lord Krishna in the first six chapters known as the Karma Yoga section and the means of achieving bhakti or exclusive loving devotion to Lord Krishna was revealed in the subsequent six chapters known as the Bhakti Yoga section along with the different manifestations of the Supreme Lord have all been arranged here together in summation. The jiva or embodied being is by itself eternal because it possesses an atma or eternal soul bestowed by the Lord Krishna which is an infinitesimal spark from Him; but the physical body although energized by the Supreme Lord is not eternal and disintegrates with time. Therefore the physical body is called sharira because it appears to die and since the Supreme Lord resides within all jivas as the atma He is known as ksetrajna or the consciousness within the ksetra or field of activity. This consciousness envelopes the physical body and is the source of the material senses which display their perceptions of duality in the ksetra of the physical body with emotions of like and dislike, happiness and misery, pleasant and unpleasant, love and hate etc. Now begins the summation. One who is freed from the modulations of desires and the bewilderment of attractions is able to unite with pure thoughts of spiritual consciousness. Such a jiva or embodied being is considered to have achieved moksa or liberation from material existence. The Narayana Scripture states that there are two manifestations of moksa. The superior form of moksa is known as suddha or pure liberation and its consciousness is always attuned and in harmony with dharma or eternal righteousness and the Supreme Lord Krishna or any of His authorized avatars or incarnations and expansions as revealed in Vedic scriptures. This consciousness has an all comprehensive knowledge about the atma or eternal soul and following the injunctions and ordinances of the Vedic scriptures is always engaged in performing different levels of bhakti or devotion to the Supreme Lord which eventually results in direct communion with the Supreme Lord eternal association with Him. The inferior form of moksa is known as asuric or demoniac liberation and its consciousness is antagonistic to dharma or eternal righteousness, it is addicted to perverse pleasures of the physical body, it has a distorted conceptions of the atma and is always desiring to perform degraded and prohibited activities. Its mentality is adverse to engaging in any service of the Supreme Lord and eventually without fail end up in the most fallen of species in the lowest hellish realms due to offenses made against the devotees of the Supreme Lord Krishna.

Shri Vaishnava Sampradaya - Commentary

The first division of Srimad Bhagavad-Gita known as the Karma Yoga section comprises the first six chapters describing two paths: the path of spiritual actions and the path of spiritual knowledge by which an aspirant may achieve atma tattva or realisation of the eternal soul. It has also been explained that the achievement of atma tattva is essential for attaining moksa or liberation from material existence. The middle division of Srimad Bhagavad-Gita known as the Bhakti Yoga section comprises the second six chapters which reveals that bhakti or exclusive loving devotion which is preceded by factual spiritual knowledge of the Supreme Lord Krishna as revealed in the Vedic scriptures is the paramount attainment. Such spiritual knowledge about Lord Krishna is prerequisite and essential to bhakti and subsequent attainment of communion with the Supreme Lord and eternal association which is the ultimate goal and most exalted destination. It is also elucidated herein that bhakti constitutes the means by which those aspirants ambitious of acquiring opulence and those aspirants ambitious for atma-tattva or soul realisation can both have their respective desires fulfilled as well. Now in the final division of Srimad Bhagavad-Gita known as the Jnana Yoga section comprising the last six chapters, the topics propounded in the first 12 chapters will be further illuminated by Lord Krishna. Two categories will be examined: prakriti or the spiritual substratum pervading physical existence and Purusa or the Supreme eternal consciousness. Their combined union constitutes the complete cosmic creation. The nature of Isvara or the Supreme Lord, the means of salvation, the paths of karma or spiritual activities for the Supreme Lord, jnana or spiritual knowledge of the Supreme Lord and bhakti or loving devotion to the Supreme Lord will be further delineated along with instructions on how to practice and perform each path. Beginning this Jnana Yoga section, this chapter explains the nature of matter and the soul, the way to realise the soul as distinctly different from matter, the reason why the atma is associated with matter and the way the atma may be meditated upon. Lord Krishna explains that while in a physical body the jiva or embodied being believes they are that body, thinking I am a man, I am a demigod, I am a female, I am famous, I am powerful, etc. all of which are distinctly different form the atma or eternal soul. The physical body is that which the spiritually intelligent assert as the ksetra or field of enjoyment. One who has the realisation of the jiva being part of an aggregate whole composed of divisible parts being the physical body, the subtle body and the atma. One who has the understanding that I know this body and instead of the mentality that I am this body. One who is cognisant of these things and realises what the atma actually is factually asserted as being ksetrajna or the knower of the field. It can be said that when cognition of objects external to the physical body arises the conception of I am my human body who sees for example this house before me, implying that the one who sees thinks the atma is inseparable from the physical body and not that the atma is totally independent of the physical and subtle bodies. Subsequently when one has achieved atma tattva or realisation of the soul and experienced its spiritual existence then one will be cognisant of their physical body merely as a house within which the atma inhabits. To perceive a house as external from the physical body is the same as perceiving the atma as external from the physical body for one who is realised. One who is cognisant of this reality sees the atma as a distinct entity separate from the physical and subtle bodies. To assert the indisputably modifiable and perishable physical body and its qualitative characteristics to the immortal atma in accordance with the law of coexistence of subject and attribute is as unreasonable as asserting that the milk of cattle is an inseparable attribute of every type of cow, bull or heifer falling under that generic term. Due to the fact that the phenomenally unique and sublime nature of the atma precludes any perceptibility by the senses of sight, sound, taste, touch and smell to experience it and is only perceptible by the consciousness of a clarified mind purified by introspection amd meditation derived from the process of yoga or the science of the individual consciousness perfecting communion with the ultimate consciousness. The spiritually deficient are beguiled and bewildered by the mere propensity of matter and deluded misconstrue the perishable physical body and the eternal, immortal atma. This will be further clarified in chapter 15, verses 10 and 11 where Lord Krishna explains that those bereft of wisdom with impure thoughts cannot perceive the atma.

Kumara Vaishnava Sampradaya - Commentary

The first division of Srimad Bhagavad-Gita known as the Karma Yoga section comprises the first six chapters describing two paths: the path of spiritual actions and the path of spiritual knowledge by which an aspirant may achieve atma tattva or realisation of the eternal soul. It has also been explained that the achievement of atma tattva is essential for attaining moksa or liberation from material existence. The middle division of Srimad Bhagavad-Gita known as the Bhakti Yoga section comprises the second six chapters which reveals that bhakti or exclusive loving devotion which is preceded by factual spiritual knowledge of the Supreme Lord Krishna as revealed in the Vedic scriptures is the paramount attainment. Such spiritual knowledge about Lord Krishna is prerequisite and essential to bhakti and subsequent attainment of communion with the Supreme Lord and eternal association which is the ultimate goal and most exalted destination. It is also elucidated herein that bhakti constitutes the means by which those aspirants ambitious of acquiring opulence and those aspirants ambitious for atma-tattva or soul realisation can both have their respective desires fulfilled as well. Now in the final division of Srimad Bhagavad-Gita known as the Jnana Yoga section comprising the last six chapters, the topics propounded in the first 12 chapters will be further illuminated by Lord Krishna. Two categories will be examined: prakriti or the spiritual substratum pervading physical existence and Purusa or the Supreme eternal consciousness. Their combined union constitutes the complete cosmic creation. The nature of Isvara or the Supreme Lord, the means of salvation, the paths of karma or spiritual activities for the Supreme Lord, jnana or spiritual knowledge of the Supreme Lord and bhakti or loving devotion to the Supreme Lord will be further delineated along with instructions on how to practice and perform each path. Beginning this Jnana Yoga section, this chapter explains the nature of matter and the soul, the way to realise the soul as distinctly different from matter, the reason why the atma is associated with matter and the way the atma may be meditated upon. Lord Krishna explains that while in a physical body the jiva or embodied being believes they are that body, thinking I am a man, I am a demigod, I am a female, I am famous, I am powerful, etc. all of which are distinctly different form the atma or eternal soul. The physical body is that which the spiritually intelligent assert as the ksetra or field of enjoyment. One who has the realisation of the jiva being part of an aggregate whole composed of divisible parts being the physical body, the subtle body and the atma. One who has the understanding that I know this body and instead of the mentality that I am this body. One who is cognisant of these things and realises what the atma actually is factually asserted as being ksetrajna or the knower of the field. It can be said that when cognition of objects external to the physical body arises the conception of I am my human body who sees for example this house before me, implying that the one who sees thinks the atma is inseparable from the physical body and not that the atma is totally independent of the physical and subtle bodies. Subsequently when one has achieved atma tattva or realisation of the soul and experienced its spiritual existence then one will be cognisant of their physical body merely as a house within which the atma inhabits. To perceive a house as external from the physical body is the same as perceiving the atma as external from the physical body for one who is realised. One who is cognisant of this reality sees the atma as a distinct entity separate from the physical and subtle bodies. To assert the indisputably modifiable and perishable physical body and its qualitative characteristics to the immortal atma in accordance with the law of coexistence of subject and attribute is as unreasonable as asserting that the milk of cattle is an inseparable attribute of every type of cow, bull or heifer falling under that generic term. Due to the fact that the phenomenally unique and sublime nature of the atma precludes any perceptibility by the senses of sight, sound, taste, touch and smell to experience it and is only perceptible by the consciousness of a clarified mind purified by introspection amd meditation derived from the process of yoga or the science of the individual consciousness perfecting communion with the ultimate consciousness. The spiritually deficient are beguiled and bewildered by the mere propensity of matter and deluded misconstrue the perishable physical body and the eternal, immortal atma. This will be further clarified in chapter 15, verses 10 and 11 where Lord Krishna explains that those bereft of wisdom with impure thoughts cannot perceive the atma.

Transliteration Bhagavad Gita 13.2

Sri Bhagavaan Uvaacha: Idam shareeram kaunteya kshetramityabhidheeyate; Etadyo vetti tam praahuh kshetrajna iti tadvidah.

Word Meanings Bhagavad Gita 13.2

śhrī-bhagavān uvācha—the Supreme Divine Lord said; idam—this; śharīram—body; kaunteya—Arjun, the son of Kunti; kṣhetram—the field of activities; iti—thus; abhidhīyate—is termed as; etat—this; yaḥ—one who; vetti—knows; tam—that person; prāhuḥ—is called; kṣhetra-jñaḥ—the knower of the field; iti—thus; tat-vidaḥ—those who discern the truth