na hi jnyaanena sadrisham pavitramiha vidyate |
tatsvayam yogasamsiddhaha kaalenaatmani vindati || 38 ||
Certainly, there is nothing in this world as purifying as knowledge. He who is proficient in yoga, himself discovers that knowledge in his own self, in due course.
na : nothing
hi : certainly
jnyaanena : knowledge
sadrisham : like
pavitram : purifying
iha : in this world
vidyate : exists
tat : that knowledge
svayam : himself
yogasamsiddhaha : one proficient in yoga
kaalena : in due course
aatmani : in oneself
vindati : discover
Shri Krishna again praises knowledge as the most superior means of self realization, as compared to other means. He also says that this knowledge is ultimately discovered by the seeker in himself through his own efforts. The two key points to note here that the seeker finds it (a) by his own efforts, and (b) in himself.
Many seekers run to teacher after teacher in hopes of self realization. They “try” a teacher for a while, then go to another one if it doesn’t work out. Shri Krishna reminds us that ultimately, it is our own effort, focus and motivation that will help us get the knowledge. The teacher is no doubt needed to guide us in the right direction. But the effort to purify ourselves through various yanjyaas is ours to put in, no one else can do the hard work for us. Once we develop the right qualities of a sincere seeker and become proficient in whatever spiritual practice that we follow, knowledge will come automatically.
Furthermore, this knowledge is not something that is outside of us. Academic and spiritual literature certainly helps, but true knowledge always comes from within. Shri Krishna also gently warns us that this knowledge will not come instantly, nor will it take thousands of years. It will come when we are ready.
Who is fit for attaining this knowledge? The next shloka explains.