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Bhagavad Gita Chapter 18 Verse 16

भगवद् गीता अध्याय 18 श्लोक 16

तत्रैवं सति कर्तारमात्मानं केवलं तु यः।
पश्यत्यकृतबुद्धित्वान्न स पश्यति दुर्मतिः।।18.16।।

English Translation - Swami Gambirananda

18.16 This being the case, anyone, who, owing to the imperfection of his intellect, perceives the absolute Self as the agent, that man does not perceive (properly), and has a perverted intellect.

English Translation - Swami Sivananda

18.16 Now, such being the case, verily he who owing to untrained understanding looks upon his Self, which is isolated, as the agent, he of perverted intelligence, sees not.

English Translation - Dr. S. Sankaranarayan

18.16. But this being the case, whosoever views himself as the sole agent (cause of actions) due to his imperfect intellect - he, the defective-minded one, does not view [things rightly].

English Commentary - Swami Sivananda

18.16 तत्र there (the case)? एवम् thus? सति being? कर्तारम् as the agent? आत्मानम् the Self? केवलम् alone? तु verily? यः who? पश्यति sees? अकृतबुद्धित्वात् owing to untrained understanding? न not? सः he? पश्यति sees? दुर्मतिः of perverted intelligence.Commentary The Self is always actionless. He is unattached like ether. He is always the silent witness. He is the spectator of activity. The egoistic man of little understanding only thinks that he is the real agent? and so he is bound by actions. He takes birth again and again to reap the fruits of his actions. For him who considers the body as consciousness? God or the Self? it naturally follows that the Self is the agent or the doer. He who identifies himself with the body? who has taken the body as the pure Self? has cast a net over himself? and he leads a deluded life of utter ignorance. He is bound by the fetters or bonds of Karma. He is ever shut up in the prisonhouse of this body.He who has not united himself with the Buddhi? who has got an impure or untrained understanding? who regards the Self as the actor or the agent is certainly a man of perverted intelligence. He is deluded. He is really a blind man. He sees not though he has eyes. He does not behold the essence of things. He has no idea of the supreme Principle (the Self) Which is Itself actionless? Which ever stands as a silent witness of the activities of all minds and all organs of all beings? Which moves the minds? organs and the lifeforce and the bodies to action? just as the magnet makes the iron pieces move. He does not behold the truth about the Self and action.Durmati Evilminded person A man of perverted intellect or undeveloped reason. He thinks that he alone is the doer or agent. He does not understand anything. He has no knowledge of the,actionless? pure? selfluminous Self.The ignorant man of untrained understanding identifies himself with the five causes and regards the pure actionless Self as the agent or doer of the actions which are really done by these five causes. What is the reason for this Why does he regard them so Because he is not endowed with a pure and subtle intellect his understanding (Buddhi) has not been trained in the practice of Vedanta he is not eipped with the four means of salvation his intellect has not been trained by the teachings of the preceptor or the spiritual teacher in the methods of logical reasoning.He who considers that the pure actionless Self is the agent or the doer is certainly a man of untrained understanding. He has no knowledge of the actionless Self and action. Therefore? he is a man of perverted intelligence. His intellect works or moves in the wrong direction. His intellect moves in the sensual grooves or avenues. It runs like the vicious horse and leads to birth and death. The technie of Buddhi Yoga taught in the Gita enables one effectively to prevent this.He does not perceive or cognise the Truth though he has eyes. Though he sees? he sees the external? gross? illusory? everchanging? perishable objects only. He does not behold the one immortal? unchanging? allblissful essence? which is the basis or substratum of everything. He is like the man with jaundiced eyes? who sees all objects tinged with yellow colur? or like the man suffering from diplopia who beholds many moons? or like the man who thinks that the moon moves when the clouds move? or like the man who? seated in a train? imagines that the trees are moving when it is the train that is really moving. (Cf.V.15XIII.30)

English Translation of Sanskrit Commentary By Sri Shankaracharya's

18.16 Tatra is used for connecting with the topic under discussion. Tatra evam sati, this being the case, when actions are thus accomplished by the five causes mentioned above;-this portion has to be connected with perverted intellect by way of causality [Actions are done by the body etc., but since a person thinks that the Self is the agent, therefore he is said to have a perverted intellect.]-yah, tu, anyone, an unenlightened person, who; pasyati, perceives; kevalam, the absolute, pure; atmanam, Self; as the kartaram, agent-thinking, I myself am the agent of the actions being done by them, as a conseence of imagining the Self as identified with them; why?-akrta-buddhitvat, owing to the imperfection of his intellect, owing to his intellect not having been refined by the instructions of Vedanta and the teachers, and by reasoning-. Even the person who, believing in the Self as distinct from the body etc., looks upon the distinct [Ast. omits anyam (distinct).-Tr.], absolute Self as the agent, he, too, is surely of imperfect intellect. Hence, owing to his having an imperfect intellect, sah, that man; na, does not; pasyati, perceive (properly) either the truth about the Self or about actions. This is the meaning. Therefore he is a durmatih, man of perverted intellect, in the sense that his intellect is contemptible, perverse, corrupted, and the cause of repeatedly undergoing births and deaths. He does not perceive even while seeing-like the man suffering from Timira seeing many moons, or like one thinking the moon to be moving when (actually) the clouds are moving, or like the one seated on some conveyance (e.g. palanin), thinking oneself to be moving when others (the bearers) are moving. Who, again, is the man of right intellect who perceives correctly? This is being answered:

English Translation of Commentary - Dr. S. Sankaranarayan

18.16 See Comment under 18.17

English Translation of Ramanuja's Sanskrit Commentary

18.16 In fact, the agency of the individual self is subject to the consent of Supreme Self; such being the case, if the individual self regards Itself as the agent, It is of wicked or perverse mind. For, It does not perceive the agent as It really is, since It possesses an uncultivated understanding, namely, an understanding which does not reveal the real state of affairs.

Commentary - Chakravarthi Ji

Then what happens? Though these five are causes of action (tatra evam), one who sees only the self, the jiva, as the doer, without association of anything else, does not see, being a fool (durmatih), because of impure intelligence (akrta buddhitvat). One may say that such a foolish person is blind.

Rudra Vaishnava Sampradaya - Commentary

So what then is to be concluded? Lord Krishna states that the five previously mentioned causes are responsible for all actions and one who due to ignorance from lack of knowledge from the spiritual master regarding the Vedic scriptures and in their folly regard themselves as the perpetrator of action instead of attributing all actions to the supreme absolute reality which is completely spiritual and free from all limiting adjuncts and not subject to material considerations are fools and deluded.

Brahma Vaishnava Sampradaya - Commentary

Here the word kevalam means solely. Those who in ignorance are unaware that all actions are enacted collectively by the five previously mentioned causes and erroneously thinks that the individual is the sole performer of any action are merely misguided fools of miniscule intelligence.

Shri Vaishnava Sampradaya - Commentary

So because verily the jiva or embodied being is subject to the sanction of paramatma the Supreme Soul, one should never consider themselves as independent nor think of themselves as the doer of anything. Lord Krishna states that one who erroneously does so will be durmati one whose intelligence is perverted and deluded and thus bewildered is oblivious that other elements are the essential factors in manifesting all activities.

Kumara Vaishnava Sampradaya - Commentary

So because verily the jiva or embodied being is subject to the sanction of paramatma the Supreme Soul, one should never consider themselves as independent nor think of themselves as the doer of anything. Lord Krishna states that one who erroneously does so will be durmati one whose intelligence is perverted and deluded and thus bewildered is oblivious that other elements are the essential factors in manifesting all activities.

Transliteration Bhagavad Gita 18.16

Tatraivam sati kartaaram aatmaanam kevalam tu yah; Pashyatyakritabuddhitwaan na sa pashyati durmatih.

Word Meanings Bhagavad Gita 18.16

śharīra-vāk-manobhiḥ—with body, speech, or mind; yat—which; karma—action; prārabhate—performs; naraḥ—a person; nyāyyam—proper; vā—or; viparītam—improper; vā—or; pañcha—five; ete—these; tasya—their; hetavaḥ—factors; tatra—there; evam sati—in spite of this; kartāram—the doer; ātmānam—the soul; kevalam—only; tu—but; yaḥ—who; paśhyati—see; akṛita-buddhitvāt—with impure intellect; na—not; saḥ—they; paśhyati—see; durmatiḥ—foolish