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Quotes from Chapter 18 of Bhagavad Gita – The Spirit of Renunciation – Translated by Purohit Swami

Quotes from chapter 18 of Bhagavad Gita by Purohit Swami with emphasis on the spirit of renunciation.

Arjuna asked: O Mighty One! I desire to know how relinquishing is distinguished from renunciation. (18.01)

The sages say that renunciation means forgoing an action which springs from desire; and relinquishing means the surrender of its fruit. (18.02)

Arjuna - Some philosophers say that all action is evil and should be abandoned. Others that acts of sacrifice, benevolence and austerity should not be given up. (18.03)

O best of Indians! Listen to My judgment as regards this problem. It has a threefold aspect. (18.04)

Acts of sacrifice, benevolence and austerity should not be given up but should be performed, for they purify the aspiring soul. (18.05)

But they should be done with detachment and without thought of recompense. This is My final judgment. (18.06)

It is not right to give up actions which are obligatory; and if they are misunderstood and ignored, it is the result of sheer ignorance. (18.07)

To avoid an action through fear of physical suffering, because it is likely to be painful, is to act from passion, and the benefit of renunciation will not follow. (18.08)

He who performs an obligatory action, because he believes it to be a duty which ought to be done, without any personal desire either to do the act or to receive any return - such renunciation is Pure. (18.09)

The wise man who has attained purity, whose doubts are solved, who is filled with the spirit of self-abnegation, does not shrink from action because it brings pain, nor does he desire it because it brings pleasure. (18.10)

But since those still in the body cannot entirely avoid action, in their case abandonment of the fruit of action is considered as complete renunciation. (18.11)

For those who cannot renounce all desire, the fruit of action hereafter is threefold - good, evil, and partly good and partly evil. But for him who has renounced, there is none. (18.12)

Translator: Shri Purohit Swami (1882 – 19??)
Source: A translation of the Bhagavad Gita (1935)