शमो दमस्तप: शौचं क्षान्तिरार्जवमेव च |
ज्ञानं विज्ञानमास्तिक्यं ब्रह्मकर्म स्वभावजम् || 42||
śhamo damas tapaḥ śhauchaṁ kṣhāntir ārjavam eva cha
jñānaṁ vijñānam āstikyaṁ brahma-karma svabhāva-jam
śhamaḥ—tranquility; damaḥ—restraint; tapaḥ—austerity; śhaucham—purity; kṣhāntiḥ—patience; ārjavam—integrity; eva—certainly; cha—and; jñānam—knowledge; vijñānam—wisdom; āstikyam—belief in a hereafter; brahma—of the priestly class; karma—work; svabhāva-jam—born of one’s intrinsic qualities
Control of the internal and external organs, austerity, purity, forgiveness, integrity, knowledge of the Sastras, direct experience of the truth, faith in God, Guru and the Scriptures are the duties of the Brahmins born of their own nature.
Anyone who is able to conform to the above nine prescribed duties is a Brahmana. The austerity (tapah) mentioned here refers to the three types of penance mentioned in the 17th Discourse. (14th, 15th and 16th verses).
Apart from knowledge of the Sastras, direct experience of Truth is emphasised by the Lord on several occasions. Mere knowledge of the Sastras is not enough. Realisation is absolutely necessary.
Question: What are the duties of the Brahmanas born of their nature? (Or what are the qualities which determine the nature of Brahmanas ?)
Answer: 1. Serenity; 2. control of the external and internal organs; 3. austerity; 4. purity; 5. forgiveness; 6. uprightness; 7. knowledge; 8. realisation; 9. faith in God, Guru, and Scriptures. These nine qualities are natural to the Brahmanas, or those who possess these qualities are Brahmanas.
Bhagavad Gita: Chapter 18 🔻 (78 Verses)