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Bhagavad-Gita Chapter 3, Verse 7

Chapter 3: Karma-yoga
Verse: 7
yas tv indriyani manasa
niyamyarabhate 'rjuna
karmendriyaih karma-yogam
asaktah sa visishyate

Translation:
On the other hand, if a sincere person tries to control the active senses by the mind and begins karma-yoga [in Krishna consciousness] without attachment, he is by far superior.

Explanation:
Here Krishna compares an "attracted renunciant" to a "detached householder." Sripada Ramanucarya comments on this verse that a person performing his prescribed duties as given in the varnashrama is superior to the gyani – since there is no possibility of him going astray. An example in this context is that of the powerful sex desires in an individual. In the varnashrama system, such a person is recommend to become a grahastha or householder, where in there is scope to enjoy sex in a controlled and religious manner. However if such a person without sufficient purity becomes a sannyasi – then if he is not able to fully control his sex desires he would be forced to fall down from his position and thus lead a sinful life.

The purpose of the varnashrama is to allow for controlled enjoyment of the senses with the view of becoming gradually and naturally detached from them. For instance the householder is allowed to accrue wealth and enjoy sex. With these permissions come injunctions – it is mandatory for householders to give in charity, support community projects and serve the other three ashrams. These injunctions will purify the desires to earn wealth or enjoy to the point that they can be given up naturally and effortlessly.

People often take the first part of the varnashrama – the allowances, but neglect the second part – the injunctions. Some people become sannyasi and stop working because the Vedas say that a sannyasi is not supposed to earn. But a sannyasi is also supposed to be in full control of the senses and dedicate his life to spiritually enlighten others, even at the risk of his own life.

Srila Prabhupada comments, "Instead of becoming a pseudo transcendentalist for the sake of wanton living and sense enjoyment, it is far better to remain in one's own business and execute the purpose of life, which is to get free from material bondage and enter into the kingdom of God."

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

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