Bhagavad Gita Chapter 16

Bhagavad Gita Chapter 16 | Introduction

Bhagavad Gita Chapter 16 contains 24 Verses. In summary

  • Bhagavad Gita Chapter 16 gives description of individuals with Divine nature.
  • It describes the characterisitcs of people with Demoniac disposition.
  • It clarifies that those indulged in evil habits cannot do bhakti or worship.
  • It also states that if someone does worship opposite to what is mentioned in our holy scriptures i.e. the Vedas and Bhagavad Gita, then that worship is futile and the effort is in vain as it will not cause salvation of a worshipper.
  • It professes that scriptures are the only evidence for the religious practices which should be done and which should not be done in the path of Worship.

Description of Individuals with Divine and Demoniac nature | Bhagavad Gita Chapter 16

Important: In The Bhagavad Gita Chapter 16 from Verse no 1 to 3, the characteristics of those pious souls have been mentioned who, in previous births, used to do Brahm sadhna (Worship of Brahm or Kaal) by reciting "Om" mantra according to the Vedas, or used to do worship of Supreme God after obtaining it from a Tatvadarshi saint but could not attain liberation. When those individuals again obtain a human birth, then they possess the following characteristics.

Bhagavad Gita Chapter 16 | Verse 1 to 3 | Characteristics of Noble Souls

In The Bhagavad Gita Chapter 16 Verse 1 to 3, God Brahm (Kaal) describes the divine nature of noble souls. They are fearless, unhostile, observe religious practices, are soft-spoken, do not criticise anyone, they are not lascivious, angry, greedy and arrogant. They do not ask to get honoured by anyone. They are modest. Because they are doing bhakti since their previous births, that is why their nature is like that of godly men i.e. saints.

Bhagavad Gita Chapter 16 | Verse 4 | Characteristics of Demoniac Souls

In The Bhagavad Gita Chapter 16 Verse 4, it is described that those men who have hypocrisy, arrogance, anger, harshness and ignorance, they are of demoniac nature who have born with demoniac instincts i.e. those souls did not get the company of saints in their previous births. They, abandoning the ordinances of the scriptures, kept behaving arbitrarily i.e. kept worshipping other gods (Rajogun - Brahma, Satogun - Vishnu, Tamogun - Shiv, ghosts-pitras, Goddess and bhairavon etc). Even when they attain a human birth, then also they keep doing worship based on their previous temperament. As a result of which, they did not possess high opinions.

Bhagavad Gita Chapter 16 | Verse 5

In The Bhagavad Gita Chapter 16 Verse 5, it is stated that those people who have saintly nature, they are born for attaining liberation by doing bhakti (worship).

  • If one gets a Complete Saint (Guru), then liberation is possible. 
  • If one does not get a Complete Guru (who gives Satnaam and Saarnaam) then by following incorrect way of worship, their life will go in vain.

Verse 5 further states that those who are of demoniac nature have following attributes -

  • They do not do bhakti.
  • Even when they do bhakti, it is opposite to the ordinances of the scriptures and is fraudulent based on lokved (hearsay).
  • Along with this they continue to indulge in evil habits (consumption of tobacco, meat and alcohol). 
  • If they do not indulge in evil habits, then also they remain firm in worship of other (lower) gods. If someone tries to guide them, then they become angry. They become bound in the bondage of inauspicious actions i.e. are entangled in the bondage of 84 lakh births.

Shri Krishna in Gita Chapter 16 verse 5 says to Arjun! that you are born with saintly nature. Therefore, do not worry.

Bhagavad Gita Chapter 16 | Verse 6 - 16 | Characteristics of People with Demoniac Nature

In The Bhagavad Gita Chapter 16 Verse 6, it is stated that in this world there are groups of two types of people. One of saintly nature and other of demoniac. The characteristics of those with saintly nature have been described above (in Verses 1, 2 and 3) in detail. Now hear about the characteristics of those with demoniac nature.

In The Bhagavad Gita Chapter 16 Verse 7,Shri Krishna has said that demoniac people do not even know what to do and what to refrain from. Neither do they have purity in them, nor have good conduct, and also do not know the truth.

In The Bhagavad Gita Chapter 16 Verse 8, it is explained that they, with demoniac nature, say that the world is baseless, unreal and without God, and that it is self-generated (by union of male-female). Only procreation is its cause.

In The Bhagavad Gita Chapter 16 Verse 9, it is said that the people with demoniac nature, who follow this false and baseless knowledge, the disgraceful souls, are dim-witted, they harm others, perform cruel deeds, and are born for destruction of the world.

The Bhagavad Gita Chapter 16 Verse 10: Those with demoniac nature, filled with hypocrisy, pride, arrogance, driven by insatiable desires, out of delusion acquire false principles, and wander about adopting corrupt behaviour.

In The Bhagavad Gita Chapter 16 Verse 11, it has been explained that this nature of those individuals with demoniac temperament does not even end after death. Obsessed with innumerable anxieties, who remain engrossed in worldly enjoyments, who are convinced that only this is happiness.

In The Bhagavad Gita Chapter 16 Verse 12, it is said that those with demoniac nature, whether they are called saints, whether their disciples or people who themselves perform baseless worship, are bound by hundreds of shackles of desires, overpowered by lust and anger strive to collect wealth by unjust means for indulging in sensual pleasures, and also do bhakti opposite to the ordinances of the scriptures.

The purport of The Bhagavad Gita Chapter 16 Verse 13 is that those with demoniac nature say, “Today I have acquired more money. I will do this, I will attain that, I have so much wealth, and in future I will have even more.”

The meaning of The Bhagavad Gita Chapter 16 Verse 14 is that those men with demoniac disposition say, “Those enemies have been killed by me. I will also kill those other enemies. I am God. I am the Doer. I am perfect, powerful and happy.”

Bhagavad Gita Chapter 16 Verse 15 - 16: Those with demoniac nature say that I am very wealthy and of a noble / great family. Who else is equal to me. I will perform yagya, will do charity, and will rejoice. Thus, deluded by ignorance, with perplexed mind, entangles in the snare of delusion, excessively addicted to sensual enjoyments (the demoniac people) fall into deep impure hell.

Bhagavad Gita Chapter 16 | Verse 17 - 20

The meaning of Bhagavad Gita Chapter 16 Verse 17 to 20 is that those who follow arbitrary way of worship which is opposite to the ordinances of scriptures {to worship the three gunas; Rajgun-Brahma, Satgun-Vishnu, Tamgun-Shiv, and other lower gods, to worship Pitras (to carry out shraadhs), ghosts (to offer pind, to perform terahveen-satarhveen [the thirteenth day and the seventeenth day after a death – when the last funeral rites are performed]), to collect ‘phool’, ashes of a cremated person, and to take to Ganga for scattering and performing last rites etc are religious practices opposite to the scriptures. Evidence is in holy The Bhagavad Gita Chapter 7 Verse 12 to 18 and 20 to 23, and The Bhagavad Gita Chapter 9 Verse 22 to 25.}, the sinners, self-conceited, who criticize each other, who violate my orders, who perform cruel deeds, the most degraded among men, I hurl them repeatedly into the wombs (births) of demons. Those fools, instead of attaining me i.e. instead of going into my great heaven (which is built in Brahm-lok), after enjoying the short-lived happiness in heaven etc. go to a further lower state i.e. fall into deep hell. Related to this it is mentioned in The Bhagavad Gita chapter 16 Verse 23-24 that he who, abandoning the ordinances of the scriptures, acts whimsically i.e. performs arbitrary way of worship, neither attains happiness, nor is their any task accomplished, and nor do they attain supreme salvation. Therefore, Arjun, scriptures are the only evidence for the religious practices which should be done and which should not be done in the path of bhakti. One should not accept the path of bhakti, which is against the scriptures, directed by any other particular type of person or saint-sage.

Those Indulging in Evil Habits cannot do Bhakti | Bhagavad Gita Chapter 16

The purport of The Bhagavad Gita Chapter 16 Verse 21, 22 is that lust, anger and greed – lead a living being to the gate of hell. Only those who are free from these can attain supreme salvation (complete liberation); otherwise not.

Kabir Sahib also gives evidence –

Kabir, kaami krodhi laalchi, in se bhakti na hoye |
Bhakti kare koii soorma, jaati varan kul khoye ||

Way of Worship Opposed to Scriptures leads to Hell | Bhagavad Gita Chapter 16

In The Bhagavad Gita Chapter 16 Verse 23, 24, it is stated that those who abandoning the ordinances of scriptures follow way of worship according to their whimsical desires {worship of the three gunas, Rajgun-Brahma, Satgun-Vishnu, Tamgun-Shiv, and other gods-goddesses, idol-worship, Pitra-worship, ghost-worship – to carry out shraadhs – offer pinds, worship of place of pilgrimage, circumambulation of Govardhan, to visit places of pilgrimage, to practice austerity, worship of peepal-jaanti, tulsi, jaap of naam without a guru, yagya, to give charity, goddess of Gurgaon, of Beri, of Calcutta, worship of Mata of Seenk Paathri, worship of tomb, Guga peer, baba of Johad (small lake), worship of a date (to keep fast of any type), worship of Baba Shyaam Ji and worship of Hanuman etc is known as ‘opposed to scriptures’.} neither can they become happy, nor attain liberation. Therefore Arjun, perform those actions which should be done according to the ordinances of the scriptures. For you, the scriptures are the only evidence. A wrong way of worship, instead of being beneficial, is harmful. Search for the Tatvadarshi Saint who instructs the true way which is in accordance with the injunctions of the scriptues. By worshipping only the Supreme God, you will attain eternal peace, all the happiness and supreme salvation. (There is special evidence in The Bhagavad Gita Chapter 18 Verse 62, The Bhagavad Gita Chapter 15 Verse 1 to 4, and The Bhagavad Gita Chapter 4 Verse 5.)

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