agnijyotiraha shuklaha shanmaasaa uttaraayanam |
tatra prayaataa gachhanti brahma brahma vido janaahaa || 24 ||

 
Fire, light, day, the bright (fortnight of the month), the northern movement comprising six months; those people who have departed through that path, knowers of brahman attain brahman.
 
agnihi : fire
jyotihi : light
ahaha : day
shuklaha : bright
shanmaasaa : comprising six months
uttaraayanam : northern movement
tatra : through that path
prayaataa : one who has departed the body
gachhanti : attain
brahma : brahman
brahmavidaha : knowers of brahman
janaahaa : people
 
Shri Krishna describes the journey that the individual soul or jeeva takes after death in this and the next shloka. Each jeeva is allocated one of two paths based on its actions while on this earth. Here, he speaks about the path taken by those who have practiced single-pointed devotion to Ishvara, indicated by the phrase “knowers of brahman”.
 
It is said that Ishvara has appointed special deities to guide the jeeva to the abode of Lord Brahma after its body has ceased to function. Agni, jyoti, shukla and uttaraayan are symbols that indicate the deities who preside over fire, light, the lunar fortnight and the six month period between winter and summer. The jeeva resides in Lord Brahma’s abode until dissolution, after which it is liberated. In other words, it “attains brahman”.
 
In India, Uttaraayana is considered highly auspicious. Its beginning is celebrated with the Makar Sankraanti festival. The lunar fortnight of each month is also the time in which most Indian festivals are celebrated including Navaratri and Guru Purnima.
 
Next, Shri Krishna described the second path that jeevas take after death.

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