(1882 - 1946)

• Chapter Sixteen •

“Divine and Demonic Civilisation”


1.  “Lord Shri Krishna continued:  Fearlessness, clean living, unceasing concentration on wisdom, readiness to give, self-control, a spirit of sacrifice, regular study of the scriptures, austerities, candour,

2.  Harmlessness, truth, absence of wrath, renunciation, contentment, straightforwardness, compassion towards all, uncovetousness, courtesy, modesty, constancy,

3.  Valour, forgiveness, fortitude, purity, freedom from hate and vanity; these are his who possesses the Godly Qualities, O Arjuna!

4.  Hypocrisy, pride, insolence, cruelty, ignorance belong to him who is born of the godless qualities.

5.  Godly Qualities lead to liberation; godless to bondage.  Do not be anxious, Prince!  Thou hast the Godly Qualities.

6.  All beings are of two classes: Godly and godless.  The Godly I have described; I will now describe the other.

7.  The godless do not know how to act or how to renounce.  They have neither purity nor truth.  They do not understand the right principles of conduct.

8.  They say that the universe is an accident with no purpose and no God.  Life is created by sexual union, a product of lust and nothing else.

9.  Thinking thus, these degraded souls, these enemies of mankind - whose intelligence is negligible and whose deeds are monstrous - come into the world only to destroy.

10.  Giving themselves up to insatiable passions, hypocritical, self-sufficient and arrogant, cherishing false conceptions founded on delusion, they work only to carry out their own unholy purposes.

11.  Poring anxiously over evil resolutions, which only end in death; seeking only the gratification of desire as the highest goal; seeing nothing beyond;

12.  Caught in the toils of a hundred vain hopes, the slaves of passion and of wrath, they accumulate hoards of unjust wealth, only to pander to their sensual desire.

13.  This have I gained today; tomorrow I will gratify another desire; this wealth is mine now, the rest shall be mine ere long;

14.  I have slain one enemy, I will slay the others also; I am worthy to enjoy, I am the Almighty, I am perfect, powerful and happy;

15.  I am rich, I am well-bred; who is there to compare with me?  I will sacrifice, I will give, I will pay - and I will enjoy.  Thus blinded by ignorance,

16.  Perplexed by discordant thoughts, entangled in the snares of desire, infatuated by passion, they sink into the horrors of hell.

17.  Self-conceited, stubborn, rich, proud and insolent, they make a display of their patronage, disregarding the rules of decency.

18.  Puffed up by power and inordinate conceit, swayed by lust and wrath, these wicked people hate Me Who am within them, as I am within all.

19.  Those who thus hate Me, who are cruel, the dregs of mankind, I condemn them to a continuous, miserable and godless rebirth.

20.  So reborn, they spend life after life, enveloped in delusion.  And they never reach Me, O Prince, but degenerate into still lower forms of life.

21.  The gates of hell are three: lust, wrath and avarice.  They destroy the Self.  Avoid them.

22.  These are the gates which lead to darkness; if a man avoids them he will ensure his own welfare, and in the end will attain his liberation.

23.  But he who neglects the commands of the scriptures, and follows the promptings of passion, he does not attain perfection, happiness or the final goal.

24.  Therefore whenever there is a doubt whether thou shouldst do a thing or not, let the scriptures guide thy conduct.  In the light of the scriptures shouldst thou labour the whole of thy life".


Thus, in the Holy Book the Bhagavad Gita, one of the Upanishads, in the Science of the Supreme Spirit, in the Art of Self-Knowledge, in the colloquy between the Divine Lord Shri Krishna and the Prince Arjuna, stands the sixteenth chapter, entitled:

"Divine and Demonic Civilisation"


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