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Bhagavad-Gita Chapter 2, Verse 42

Chapter 2: Contents of the Gita Summarized
Verse: 42
Verses 42-43
yam imam pushpitam vacam
pravadanty avipascitah
veda-vada-ratah partha
nanyad astiti vadinah
kamatmanah svarga-para
janma-karma-phala-pradam
kriya-visesha-bahulam
bhogaisvarya-gatim prati

Translation:
Men of small knowledge are very much attached to the flowery words of the Vedas, which recommend various fruitive activities for elevation to heavenly planets, resultant good birth, power, and so forth. Being desirous of sense gratification and opulent life, they say that there is nothing more than this.

Explanation:
The purpose of the Vedas is to attract all kind of people to the process of devotional service. Therefore it has the karma-kanda which attracts the gross materialist to pious sense gratification. There is the jnana-kanda which attracts the intellectuals who are given to mental speculation. There is the upasna kanda which prescribes the worship of demigods (devas) for material benefits. Srila Prabhupada comments, "Such bodily happiness is certainly sensual; therefore there are those who are purely attached to such material, temporary happiness, as lords of the material world."

The contradictory varigatedness of the Vedas is to attract each and every one, depending on their mentality and thus develop a natural faith and inclination to follow the Vedic instructions. Thus purified, these people are gradually elevated to the highest path propounded in the Vedas which is bhakti-yoga or the process of devotional service to Sri Krishna. While this process works, it may take several life times before a person is purified enough to approach the path of bhakti.

In this verse, Krishna for the first time uses the term Vedas, though He has indirectly referred to them when talking about prescribed and religious duties. Earlier Krishna had recommended adherence to Vedas to defeat's Arjuna's objection based on compassion and sinful activities. However, now Krishna is asking Arjuna to reject the same Vedas. The reason is that earlier Krishna was instructing Arjuna at the platform of karma-kanda (fruitive activities). Now He speaks on a higher level, that of buddhi yoga (devotional service).

Please read the Sanskrit Verse and the Prabhupada's Purport.

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