BG 8.3

श्री भगवानुवाच अक्षरं ब्रह्म परमं स्वभावोऽध्यात्ममुच्यते। भूतभावोद्भवकरो विसर्गः कर्मसंज्ञितः।।8.3।।

śhrī bhagavān uvācha akṣharaṁ brahma paramaṁ svabhāvo ’dhyātmam uchyate bhūta-bhāvodbhava-karo visargaḥ karma-sanjñitaḥ

śhrī-bhagavān uvācha—the Blessed Lord said; akṣharam—indestructible; brahma—Brahman; paramam—the Supreme; svabhāvaḥ—nature; adhyātmam—one’s own self; uchyate—is called; bhūta-bhāva-udbhava-karaḥ—Actions pertaining to the material personality of living beings, and its development; visargaḥ—creation; karma—fruitive activities; sanjñitaḥ—are called


The Blessed Lord said, "Brahman is the Imperishable, the Supreme; its essential nature is called Self-knowledge; the offering (to the gods) that causes the existence and manifestation of beings and sustains them is called action."


8.3 अक्षरम् imperishable? ब्रह्म Brahman? परमम् Supreme? स्वभावः (His) Nature? अध्यात्मम् Selfknowledge? उच्यते is called? भूतभावोद्भवकरः that which causes the origin and growth of beings? विसर्गः offering (to gods)? कर्मसंज्ञितः is called action.Commentary Brahman is imperishable? immutable? eternal? selfexistent? selfluminous? unchanging and allpervading. It is the source? root and womb of everything.

In It all beings that are manifested live? move and have their very being. Hence? It is Paramam? the Supreme and Akshara.Its essential nature or Svabhava is Adhyatma. Brahmans dwelling in each individual body as the innermost Self (the Pratyagatma) is called Adhyatma. Yajnavalkya (a great sage of the Upanishadic period) said O Gargi Heaven and earth stand upheld in their places. The Brahmanas call

this (Brahman) the Akshara (the imperishable). It is neither red nor white It is not shadow? not darkness? nor air? not ehter? without adhesion? without smell? without eyes? without ears? without speech? without mind? without light? without breath? without a mouth or door? without measures? having nothing within and nothing outside It. It does not consume anything? nor does anyone consume It. Akshara

is the Supreme Brahman only.Akshara here does not mean the holy word Om? or the Avyakta (the unmanifested source of all that is in Nature). There is Laya (absorption) for Om. There is destruction for the unmanifested Nature also. Therefore Brahman is the Akshara? the Imperishable? the Supreme Being.Offering All virtuous work.The sacrificial act which consists of offering cooked rice? cakes? etc.?

to the gods and which causes the genesis and support of beings is called Karma. The oblations in the sacrifice assume a subtle form and reach the sphere of the sun. Through the sun there is rain? and various sorts of grains? vegetables and fruits crop up. The living beings (Bhutas) live and develop on account of rice and other foodstuffs. Therefore Yajnas are the cause of the genesis and support of all beings.