सदृशं चेष्टते स्वस्याः प्रकृतेर्ज्ञानवानपि |
प्रकृतिं यान्ति भूतानि निग्रहः किं करिष्यति ||३-३३||


sadṛśaṃ ceṣṭate svasyāḥ prakṛterjñānavānapi .
prakṛtiṃ yānti bhūtāni nigrahaḥ kiṃ kariṣyati ||3-33||



3.33. Even a man of knowledge acts in conformity to his own Prakrti, the elements go [back] to the Prakrti; [and] what will the restraint avail ?

Shri Purohit Swami

3.33 Even the wise man acts in character with his nature; indeed, all creatures act according to their natures. What is the use of compulsion then?

Sri Abhinav Gupta

3.33 Sadrsam etc. There is hardly any difference in the wordly activities like eating etc., of him who is a man of wisdom. But he too acts only in conformity to the Sattva, etc., just knowing in this manner : ‘Because the elements like the Earth etc. get absorbed into the prakrti; and the Self is also a non-doer and ever-freed; therefore the erradication of birth etc., are for whose sake ?’ Then how can there be bondage at all [for a man of worldly life] ? That is as follows, it is said :

Sri Ramanuja

3.33 Such and such is the nature of the self, which is different from the Prakrti - this has to be always contemplated upon: thus declare the Sastras. Even a person who knows this, acts in relation to material objects only according to his own nature, i.e., guided by his old subtle impressions. How is this? ‘All beings follow their nature.’ Beings in conjunction with non-conscient matter, all follow only subtle impressions which have continued to come from time immemorial. What can the control enjoined by Sastras, do to these beings who follow their subtle impressions?

Sri Krsna expounds the way by which individuals are overpowered to follow their respective natures:

Sri Shankaracharya

3.33 Api, even; jnanavan, a man of wisdom-what to speak of a fool!; cestate, behaves; Sadrsam, according to;-what? svasyah, his own; prakrteh, nature. Nature means the impressions of virtue, vice, etc. [Also, knowledge, desires, and so on.] acired in the past (lives) and which become manifest at the commencement of the present life. All creatures (behave) according to that only. Therefore, bhutani, beings; yanti, follow; (their) prakrtim, nature. Nigrahah kim karisyati, what can restraint do, be it from Me or anybody else? If all beings behave only according to their own nature-and there is none without his nature-, then, since there arises the contingency of the scriptures becoming purposeless owing to the absence of any scope for personal effort, therefore the following is being stated:

Swami Adidevananda

3.33 Even the man of knowledge acts according to his nature; all beings follow their nature. What will repression do?

Swami Gambirananda

3.33 Even a man of wisdom behaves according to his own nature. Being follow (their) nature. What can restraint do?

Swami Sivananda

3.33 Even a wise man acts in accordance with his own nature; beings will follow Nature; what can restraint do?


Swami Sivananda

3.33 सदृशम् in accordance? चेष्टते acts? स्वस्याः of his own? प्रकृतेः of nature? ज्ञानवान् a wise man? अपि even? प्रकृतिम् to nature? यान्ति follow? भूतानि beings? निग्रहः restraint? किम् what? करिष्यति will do.Commentary He who reads this verse will come to the conclusion that there is no scope for mans personal exertion. It is not so. Read the following verse. It clearly indicates that man can coner Nature if he rises above the sway of RagaDvesha (love and hatred).The passionate and ignorant man only comes under the sway of his natural propensities? and his lower nature. He cannot have any restraint over the senses and the two currents of likes and dislikes. The seeker after Truth who is endowed with the four means? and who is constantly practising meditation can easily control Nature. (Cf.II.60V.14XVIII.59).