शमो दमस्तपः शौचं क्षान्तिरार्जवमेव च |
ज्ञानं विज्ञानमास्तिक्यं ब्रह्मकर्म स्वभावजम् ||१८-४२||


śamo damastapaḥ śaucaṃ kṣāntirārjavameva ca .
jñānaṃ vijñānamāstikyaṃ brahmakarma svabhāvajam ||18-42||



18.42. Quietude, self-control, as well as purity, for-bearance, and also straightforwardness, knowledge, wisdom, and faith in another world are the duties of the Brahmanas, born of their nature.

Shri Purohit Swami

18.42 Serenity, self-restraint, austerity, purity, forgiveness, as well as uprightness, knowledge, wisdom and faith in God - these constitute the duty of a spiritual Teacher.

Sri Abhinav Gupta

18.42 See Comment under 18.60

Sri Ramanuja

18.42 ‘Sama’ is the control of the external sense-organs. ‘Dama’ is the control of the mind. ‘Tapas’ is the chastisement of the body by controlling enjoyments, as enjoined by the Sastras. ‘Sauca’ is fitness for performing acts as enjoined by the Sastras. ‘Ksanti’ is preserving the composure of the mind, though injured by others. ‘Arjava’ is straightforwardness expressing itself in correct outward manifestation to others in consonance with one’s own mind. ‘Jnana’ is knowledge about the real nature of the higher and lower truths. ‘Vijnana’ is the knowledge pertaining to exceptional attributes belonging to the Supreme Reality. ‘Astikya’ or faith is firm conviction in the truth of all things enjoined in the Vedas. The meaning is that it is unshakable by any reason whatever.

‘Astikya’ is positive conviction in the truth to the following effect: (1) The Lord Vasudeva, the Supreme Person, is signified by the term, Supreme Brahman. (2) He is devoid of even the slightest trace or evil. (3) He possesses countless hosts of auspicious and excellent attributes such as knowledge, strength etc., boundless and natural. (4) To reveal His nature is the sole purpose of the whole of Vedas and the Vedanta and He can be known only through them. (5) He is the sole cause of the universe (6) He is the foundation of the entire universe. (7) He is the actuator of all. (8) All actions taught in the Vedas form His worship. (9) When worshipped through them, He confers fruits known as Dharma, Artha, Kama and Moksa.

That such is the meaning has been declared in the following text: ‘Indeed I am to be known from all the Vedas’ (15.15); ‘I am the origin of all; from Me proced everything’ (10.8), ‘All this is strung on Me’ (7.7), ‘Knowing me as the enjoyer of all sacrifices and austerities ৷৷. he attains peace’ (10.29), There is nothing greater than myself, Arjuna (7.7) ‘He from whom proceeds the activity of all beings and by whom all this is pervaded - by worshipping Him with his duty, will a man reach perfection’ (18.46); and ‘He who knows Me as unborn, without a beginning and the great Lord of the worlds ৷৷.’ (10.3)

Such are the duties of the Brahmana arising from his inherent nature.

Sri Shankaracharya

18.42 Svabhavajam brahma-karma, the natural duties of the Brhamanas, of the Brahmana caste; are samah, control of the internal organs; damah, control of the external organs-these bear the meanings as explained earlier (see 6.3, 10.4, 16.1); tapah, austerity-bodily austerity, as explained before (17.14); saucam, purity, as already explained (in 13.7, 16.3); ksantih, forgiveness; arjavam, straightforwardness, simplicity; jnanam, knowledge; eva ca, as also vijnanam, wisdom; astikyam, faith, the idea of truth [Truth of the scritpures, existence of God, etc. In place of asti-bhavah Ast reads astika-bhavah, the feeling of conviction with regard to the existence of God and the other world. Tr.] respect for the teaching of the scriptures. By svabhavajam (natural) is conveyed the very same idea as was expressed in ‘classified according to the gunas born from Nature’ (41).

Swami Adidevananda

18.42 Control of the senses and the mind, austerity, purity, forbearance, uprightness, knowledge, special knowledge, and faith - all these constitute the duty of Brahmana born of his inherent nature.

Swami Gambirananda

18.42 The natural duties of the Brahmanas are the control of the internal and external organs, austerity, purity, forgiveness, straightforwardness, knowledge as also wisdom [Knowledge refers to the understanding of subjects presented by the scriptures; wisdom means making them matters of one’s own experience.] and faith.

Swami Sivananda

18.42 Serenity, self-restraint, austerity, purity, forgiveness and also uprightness, knowledge, realisation and belief in God are the duties of the Brahmanas, born of (their own) nature.


Swami Sivananda

18.42 शमः serenity? दमः selfrestraint? तपः austerity? शौचम् purity? क्षान्तिः forgiveness? आर्जवम् uprightness? एव even? च and? ज्ञानम् knowledge? विज्ञानम् realisation? आस्तिक्यम् belief in God? ब्रह्मकर्म (are) the duties of Brahmanas? स्वभावजम् born of nature.Commentary Sama is control of the mind. Dama is control of the senses. Serenity and selfrestraint have already been explained in XVII.2. Austerity of the three kinds has also been explained in XVII.14 to 16.Astikyam Faith in the words of the Guru? in the teachings of the scriptures? in the existence of God? in the life beyond or hereafter and in ones own Self.The mind is absorbed in the Self. This gives peace. Selfrestraint is the helpmate of peace. In obeying the inunctions of the scriptures alone you will attain peace and spiritual progress. You must not argue too much. You must have reverence for and faith in the teaching.As the sandalwood tree is fragrant with its own sweet scent? as a Champaka tree is adorned by its lovely flowers? so also a Brahmana is adorned by these nine virtues which are inseparable from him.Now? O Arjuna? listen to the duties of a Kshatriya.