ब्रह्मभूत: प्रसन्नात्मा न शोचति न काङ् क्षति |
सम: सर्वेषु भूतेषु मद्भक्तिं लभते पराम् || 54||
brahma-bhūtaḥ prasannātmā na śhochati na kāṅkṣhati
samaḥ sarveṣhu bhūteṣhu mad-bhaktiṁ labhate parām
brahma-bhūtaḥ—one situated in Brahman; prasanna-ātmā—mentally serene; na—neither; śhochati—grieving; na—nor; kāṅkṣhati—desiring; samaḥ—equitably disposed; sarveṣhu—toward all; bhūteṣhu—living beings; mat-bhaktim—devotion to me; labhate—attains; parām—supreme
Becoming Brahman, serene-minded, neither grieving nor desiring, the same to all beings, (he) obtain supreme devotion to Me.
The serene-minded man of knowledge has nothing to seek nor grieve for. He is the same to all beings, (i.e.) he does not see any distinction between high and low among the beings of the universe. Angels, men, animals, the creeping and crawling beings, all have the same significance from the standpoint of the highest.
Na sochati na kamkshati: When it is known that the phenomenal universe is created in Atma by the power of Maya, when the whole universe is seen as only one infinitesimal part of Atma, what can any man desire, and for what does he grieve.
Yasmin sarvani bhūtāni
tatra ko mohah kah sokah
ekatva manupasyataḥ (isavāsya upaniṣad)
Samah sarveshu bhuteshu: Love for all beings is the mark of a sage or a knower of Brahman. He is equal-minded towards all beings because he sees the Self everywhere without any exception whatsoever. Therefore Self-realisation and universal love go together. When one is acquired the other is there spontaneously. That is why the Lord declares that the noble soul of Self-realisation acts with deep compassion for all beings.
Madbhaktim labhate param: This is the basic truth regarding Jnana and Bhakti. The ultimate realisation through the Bhakti-marga and Jnana-marga is the same. That is why the Lord here states that the knower of Brahman attains supreme devotion to Him.
Bhakti is of two kinds according to the degree of its intensity- 1. Ordinary (Samanya) Bhakti; 2. supreme (Para) bhakti. The second is the same as the highest state of Brahma-jnana.
Sankara defines Bhakti in the following terms.
Svaswarupanu sandhanam bhaktirityabhidhiyate.
According to this definition, the ceaseless contemplation of Atma is devotion. Therefore no real difference can be maintained between devotion and knowledge. Moreover it is said here that the man of highest self-realisation is full of the deepest devotion to the Lord. In Prahlada we find the embodiment of Jnana and Bhakti harmonised in the highest state.
Question: What is the nature of Brahma-jnani?
Answer: He is pure and serene-minded. He neither grieves nor desires. He has the same outlook towards himself and all beings.
Question: What does that sage obtain?
Answer: He obtains single-minded devotion to the Lord.
Bhagavad Gita: Chapter 18 🔻 (78 Verses)