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Bhagavad Gita Chapter 4 Verse 38

भगवद् गीता अध्याय 4 श्लोक 38

न हि ज्ञानेन सदृशं पवित्रमिह विद्यते।
तत्स्वयं योगसंसिद्धः कालेनात्मनि विन्दति।।4.38।।

English Translation - Swami Gambirananda

4.38 Indeed, there is nothing purifying here comparable to Knowledge. One who has become perfected after a (long) time through yoga, realizes That by himself in his own heart.

English Translation - Swami Sivananda

4.38 Verily, there is no purifier in this world like knowledge. He who is perfected in Yoga finds it in the Self in time.

English Translation - Dr. S. Sankaranarayan

4.38. In this world there exists no purifier comparabel to knowledge. One who becomes perfect in Yoga finds this, on his own accord, in his Self in course of time.

English Commentary - Swami Sivananda

4.38 न not? हि verily? ज्ञानेन to wisdom? सदृशम् like? पवित्रम् pure? इह here (in this world)? विद्यते is? तत् that? स्वयम् oneself? योगसंसिद्धः perfected in Yoga? कालेन in time? आत्मनि in the Self? विन्दति finds.Commentary There exists no purifier eal to knowledge of the Self. He who has attained perfection by the constant practice of Karma Yoga and Dhyana Yoga (the Yoga of meditation) will? after a time? find the knowledge of the Self in himself.

English Translation of Sanskrit Commentary By Sri Shankaracharya's

4.38 Hi, indeed; na vidyate, there is nothing; pavitram, purifying, sanctifying; iha, here; sadrsam, comparable; jnanena, to Knowledge. Yoga-samsiddhah, one who has become perfected, who as attained fitness through yoga-the seeker after Liberation who has become samsiddhah, purified, qualified; yogena, through the yoga of Karma and the yoga of concentration-; kalena, after a long time; vindati, realizes, i.e. attains; tat, That, Knowledge; verily svayam, by himself; atmani, in his own heart. That means by which Knowledge is invariably attained is being taught:

English Translation of Commentary - Dr. S. Sankaranarayan

4.38 Na hi etc. There exists no purifier similar to the knowledge. The purity of other things is due to the touch of Consciousness and is not intrinsic. This point is not elaborated here for fear of a lengthy discussion. This purifying nature of the knowledge, one would understand for himself on reaching the stage of being perfectly enlightened.

English Translation of Ramanuja's Sanskrit Commentary

4.38 Nothing here in this world purifies like this knowledge; for the knowledge of the self destroys all evil. He who has reached perfection by practising Karma Yoga in its form of knowledge daily in the manner taught, in due time, of his own accord, attaints it, i.e., knowledge concerning his own self. Sri Krsna expounds the same lucidly thus:

Commentary - Chakravarthi Ji

In this world, among those who engage in austerities, yoga other processes, there is nothing to compare to knowledge. That knowledge is not easily attained by everyone, but is fully attained (sam siddhah) by practicing niskama karma yoga. lt is not unobtainable, but is attained in time, not immediately. That knowledge is attained spontaneously within the self (atmani), not by accepting external sannyasa.

Rudra Vaishnava Sampradaya - Commentary

The reason for this conclusion is being given by Lord Krishna and that is amongst all penances and austerities and various types of yagnas or offerings of worship there is indeed nothing so purifying that compares with spiritual knowledge. If this is so then why is not everyone striving for the attainment of atma tattva or soul realisation. This will be answered in the next verse. Spiritual knowledge manifests automatically without effort after continuous practice of karma yoga or the following of prescribed Vedic activities has been perfected and not before will one become qualified.

Brahma Vaishnava Sampradaya - Commentary

Lord Krishna praises the value of spiritual wisdom in this verse and the next two. In this process what is the role of the Supreme Lord? Is He simply monitoring every activity from His position as paramatma or the supersoul within all living entities. To the contrary, it is the Supreme Lord who illuminates the consciousness of the living entities over and over again and gives them the opportunity to learn about the ultimate truth.

Shri Vaishnava Sampradaya - Commentary

As in this world and all over the material creation there is nothing more purifying and sanctifying then the spiritual knowledge of atma tattva or soul realisation it is the destructive of all sin. Perfecting oneself by the easy practice of karma yoga or the following of prescribed Vedic activities in the manner instructed by the self-realised spiritual master one will naturally attain atma tattva as well in due course of time.

Kumara Vaishnava Sampradaya - Commentary

As in this world and all over the material creation there is nothing more purifying and sanctifying then the spiritual knowledge of atma tattva or soul realisation it is the destructive of all sin. Perfecting oneself by the easy practice of karma yoga or the following of prescribed Vedic activities in the manner instructed by the self-realised spiritual master one will naturally attain atma tattva as well in due course of time.

Transliteration Bhagavad Gita 4.38

Na hi jnaanena sadrisham pavitram iha vidyate; Tat swayam yogasamsiddhah kaalenaatmani vindati.

Word Meanings Bhagavad Gita 4.38

na—not; hi—certainly; jñānena—with divine knowledge; sadṛiśham—like; pavitram—pure; iha—in this world; vidyate—exists; tat—that; svayam—oneself; yoga—practice of yog; sansiddhaḥ—he who has attained perfection; kālena—in course of time; ātmani—wihtin the heart; vindati—finds