Chapter 3, Verse 23



यदि ह्यहं न वर्तेयं जातु कर्मण्यतन्द्रितः । मम वर्त्मानुवर्तन्ते मनुष्याः पार्थ सर्वशः ॥२३॥

Transliteration

yadi hy ahaḿ na varteyaḿ jātu karmaṇy atandritaḥ mama vartmānuvartante manuṣyāḥ pārtha sarvaśaḥ

Word Meanings

yadi — if; hi — certainly; aham — I; na — do not; varteyam — thus engage; jātu — ever; karmaṇi — in the performance of prescribed duties; atandritaḥ — with great care; mama — My; vartma — path; anuvartante — would follow; manuṣyāḥ — all men; pārtha — O son of Pṛthā; sarvaśaḥ — in all respects.

Translation

For if I did not carefully perform the prescribed duties, O Parth, all men would follow my path in all respects.

Purport

In order to keep the balance of social tranquillity for progress in spiritual life, there are traditional family usages meant for every civilized man. Although such rules and regulations are for the conditioned souls and not Lord Kṛṣṇa, because He descended to establish the principles of religion He followed the prescribed rules. Otherwise, common men would follow in His footsteps, because He is the greatest authority. From the Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam it is understood that Lord Kṛṣṇa was performing all the religious duties at home and out of home, as required of a householder.