Bhagavad Gita Chapter 2 Verse 22

वासांसि जीर्णानि यथा विहाय नवानि गृह्णाति नरोऽपराणि ।
तथा शरीराणि विहाय जीर्णा न्यन्यानि संयाति नवानि देही ॥२-२२॥

vasansi jirnani yatha vihaya navani grihnati naro parani
tatha sharirani vihaya jirnani anyani samyati navani dehi  ॥ 2-22 ॥



In Bhagavad Gita chapter 2 verse 22 Krishna explains to Arjuna the gradual process of transmigration of soul from one body to another. The term transmigration is a flawed concept. No soul atman moves from one body to another. The soul atman remaining the same, it only changes its form, moves from one phase of life to another.


The delicate relationship between the body and soul atman is explained here. Just as human beings changed their clothing… every soul atman, the spirit within also changed its body. The change of body was not necessitated only at the time of decay of body. It could even be earlier. This explains the reason why some human beings, some mortals die early.


The change of body by a soul atman, the spirit within could be for many reasons! Every soul atman had a goal of life. If the body was a hurdle to soul atman reaching its goal of life, then the possibility of soul atman changing body mid-term, midway always existed. As a human being if I ordered a new blazer which was not according to specifications, then possibility of my discarding it always existed. Similarly, a soul atman also discards bodies that were not helpful in its cosmic journey. In cosmic system our soul atman was all the time governing and not the manifest physical human form.


Bhagavad Gita chapter 2 verse 22 also explains the relative insignificance of human body (the manifest form) compared to our soul atman, the spirit within! In such circumstances, Arjuna laying more stress on body than true inner self… soul atman, the spirit within was the cause of grief. As per Lord Krishna… lamenting loss of physical manifest life was expressing ignorance! In the battle of Mahabharata, even if death of maternal grandfather Bhishma Pitamah and guru Dronacharya occurred at hand of Pandavas… Arjuna was not to grieve for the same!


The Explanation:

Bhagavad Gita chapter 2 verse 22 details a very important aspect of spiritual life. It explains the delicate phenomenon of migration of soul atman, the spirit within from one phase of life to another! In the world of souls’ atmans… no death occurs! Similar as human beings changed clothes, souls’ atmans also discarded old bodies to manifest new. This manifestation from old to new was gradual similar as changing of guards at Buckingham Palace!


Whenever a soul atman feels the use of a body was over, it manifested a new body based on residual balance of karma at the time of death of body! Everything in spiritual domain was governed by inscrutable laws of karma… as we sow, so shall we reap… nothing less or more! Does this mean that changing of garment by a soul atman the spirit within, was directly based on karma indulged by physical manifest self… yes, the cosmic truth is so!


To manifest a great life, a great future, Lord Krishna suggests human beings indulging in good karma, positive karma all the time. We just could not expect mangoes to grow on a guava tree. If the residual balance of karma at the time of death of body mandates our soul atman, the spirit within manifesting form of a laborer in next life… one just could not be born a Prince! At all stages of cosmic life… doctrine of karma was governing in totality.


Bhagavad Gita chapter 2 verse 22 also clarifies that change of manifest form by a soul atman, the spirit within was an ongoing process. At no stage of life… our soul atman died. At the opportune moment it only changed form, the outer garment! The total lifespan of 8.4 million manifestations in the life of a soul atman was one single span of life… totally unhindered, uninterrupted! Death was a feature of mortal world. It carried no significance in world of souls’ atmans. Human beings grieving for death of one carried no spiritual value.


After death of body on mother earth… every soul atman manifested a new life form based on residual balance of karma at the time of death of body. Only if matching parents were not available on mother earth… souls’ atmans hibernated in heaven or hell. In heaven (swarga) if the residual balance of karma was positive and hell (naraka) if negative! Both heaven and hell (swarga and naraka) exist in sun. Heaven in the core of sun where temperatures exceed millions of degrees centigrade! It was in such high temperatures our soul atman felt comfortable.


On the contrary hell existed in periphery of sun where temperatures were considerably less. It was in such low temperatures our soul atman suffered for eternity. Sooner matching parents become available on mother earth… the hibernating soul atman immediately manifests a new body to start a new cycle of life on mother earth. As per Lord Krishna… both heaven and hell (Swarga and Naraka) were places in cosmic system where none could go bodily. They were only a hibernating place for souls’ atmans, the spirit within!


Spiritual analogy as detailed in sermon of Bhagavad Gita by Lord Krishna was not difficult to understand. We only had to be truthful in life to understand intricacies of spiritual path. The moment we realize we were a soul atman, a spirit manifesting human form… death carried no meaning for us! Such human beings finally overcame fear of death forever. All enlightened ones in their lifetime never feared death. An enlightened one… a bodhi, a Jina finally gains absolute purity forever to liberate self from cycle of birth and death forever.


In bhagavad gita chapter 2 verse 22, Lord Krishna sums up following four important factors of life… 1. We were primarily a spiritual being manifesting a human body. 2. Human beings undertaking spiritual journey must not fear death at any stage of life. 3. Our indulgence in good karma, positive karma all the time was necessitated for our soul atman to manifest a higher form in next manifestation. 4. The absolute master and controller at every stage of life was our soul atman, the spirit within and not the manifest physical human form!


Commentary by: Vijay Kumar “Atma Jnani”… The Man who Realized God in 1993 – Sep 9, 2014

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More on geeta chapter 2 verse 22 – bhagavad gita 2 22 can be found at : Bhagavad Gita Chapter 2 … Vijay Kumar – Sep 9, 2014

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