ashvattaha sarvavrikshaanaam devarsheenaam cha naaradaha |
gandharvaanaam chitrarathaha siddhaanaam kapilo munihi || 26 ||

 
Among the trees I am Ashvattha, among the divine sages I am Naarada. Among the Gandharvas I am Chitraratha and among the Siddhas I am sage Kapila.
 
ashvattaha : Ashvattha
sarvavrikshaanaam : among the trees
devarsheenaam : among the divine sages
cha : and
naaradaha : Naarada
gandharvaanaam : among the Gandharvas
chitrarathaha : Chitraratha
siddhaanaam : among the Siddhas
kapilaha : Kapila
munihi : sage
 
Elaborating upon Ishvara’s expressions, Shri Krishna says that the Aswattha tree is Ishvara’s expression, as it is the foremost among trees. The Peepul tree, as it is more commonly known, is used to symbolically describe the human condition in the 15th chapter of the Gita. In India, women traditionally worship this tree for obtaining a good husband. In general, trees are given the status of saints in India. Like saints, trees always give back more to the world than they take.
 
We had already encountered Sage Naarada earlier in this chapter. Shri Krishna references Gandharvas next. Gandharvas are celestial beings who are accomplished singers, musicians and dancers. Among these, he considers Chitraratha foremost, and a manifestation of Ishvara. The word Chitraratha means one who has a wonderful chariot. In the Mahabhaarata, Chitraratha taught the fine arts to Arjuna, and advised the Paandavas to appoint a sage to guide them.
 
We now come to the notion of “siddhis”. A siddhi is a superhuman power. Most people are drawn to sages who demonstrate superhuman powers. But just because someone has superhuman powers does not necessarily mean that he has achieved liberation. Sage Kapila was one of those rare individuals who not only had superhuman powers but also had achieved liberation. He is credited as the originator of the Saankhya school of philosophy. he also delivered a sermon to his mother which is known as the Kapila Gita.

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