BG 17.2

श्री भगवानुवाचत्रिविधा भवति श्रद्धा देहिनां सा स्वभावजा।सात्त्विकी राजसी चैव तामसी चेति तां श्रृणु।।17.2।।

śhrī-bhagavān uvācha tri-vidhā bhavati śhraddhā dehināṁ sā svabhāva-jā sāttvikī rājasī chaiva tāmasī cheti tāṁ śhṛiṇu

śhrī-bhagavān uvācha—the Supreme Personality said; tri-vidhā—of three kinds; bhavati—is; śhraddhā—faith; dehinām—embodied beings; sā—which; sva-bhāva-jā—born of one’s innate nature; sāttvikī—of the mode of goodness; rājasī—of the mode of passion; cha—and; eva—certainly; tāmasī—of the mode of ignorance; cha—and; iti—thus; tām—about this; śhṛiṇu—hear


The Blessed Lord said, "There are threefold faiths inherent in the nature of the embodied: the sattvic (pure), the rajasic (passionate), and the tamasic (dark). Hear of them."


17.2 त्रिविधा threefold? भवति is? श्रद्धा faith? देहिनाम् of the embodied? सा that (faith)? स्वभावजा (is) inherent in (their) nature? सात्त्विकी Sattvic (pure)? राजसी Rajasic (passionate)? च and? एव even? तामसी Tamasic (dark)? च and? इति thus? ताम् it? श्रृणु hear (thou).Commentary The whole world is made up? as if were? of faith. Faith assumes a threefold aspect under the influence of the three alities.

When Sattva is strongly developed? when there is a preponderance of Sattva or purity in a man? it is easy for him to attain Selfrealisation or the knowledge of the Self. If Rajas is predominant? the faith becomes the handmaid of activity. If Tamas or inertia prevails? faith is annihilated.Those who are endowed with Sattvic faith aim at the attainment of liberation. Those who are endowed with Rajasic

faith run after inferior duties or worldly activities. Those whose faith is Tamasic are cruel. They kill animals for sacrifice. They invoke the spirits and talk with ghosts. When faith is joined to Sattva? it leads to salvation. When Rajas preponderates? it colours the faith and leads to various activities. When Tamas predominates? the faith results in darkness.Faith acires different alities when

it is in company with the mind of man. Mind is a thing of many colours. Just as the water of the Ganga is contaminated by being put in a vessel where lior had been kept? so also a virtuous person is spoiled by bad company or constant association with evil persons. The three Gunas or attributes colour the faith of a man. The mind of a man is governed by the preponderating attribute or ality which manifests

itself when the other two alities are suppressed. Faith takes a threefold aspect in accordance with the inherent nature or tendencies of the man. The inclinations of men are moulded according to their ality or inherent nature born of their past Samskaras.As is the tendency? so is the desire as is the desire? so is the action as is the action? so is the birth into another being after death. The body

is like the seed of the tree? a perpetual chain. Seed perishes in developing into a tree and the tree again produces the seed. This process or cycle continues eternally. Even so man takes a body? does actions? develops tendencies? dies and puts,on a new body in accordance with the nature or tendencies. This continues till he gets knowledge of the Self by transcending the three Gunas? when ignorance?

the root cause of birth and death? is destroyed.Faith is born of the individual nature? i.e.? the Samskaras or the latent impressions of virtuous and vicious actions which were performed in the past births and which manifested themselves at the time of death. In the subconscious mind or the Chitta there is a reservoir of past impressions which are revived through the operation of memory.Sattvic Faith

in the worship of gods? which is an effect of Sattva.Rajasic Faith in the worship of the Yakshas and Rakshasas? which is an effect of Rajas.Tamasic Faith in the worship of the disembodied spirits and ghosts? which is an effect of Tamas.Faith is the main support of life. It is not mere intellectual belief or blind acceptance of pet dogmas or doctrines. You must understand clearly its characteristics?

just as you recognise a tree from the fruits? the mind of a man from his speech? and the actions of previous birth from worldly pleasures and pains.Svabhavaja Inherent in their nature born of past Samskaras.Tam Of it? referring to the threefold faith.