CHAPTER 17

• Arjun inquired: O Krishna, what is the situation of those who do not follow the principles of scriptural injunctions and acts according to their own imagination? Are they in goodness, in passion or in ignorance?

• The supreme Personality of Godhead said: According to the modes of nature acquired by the embodied soul, one’s faith can be of three kinds- in passion or in ignorance. Now hear about this.

• Men in the modes of goodness worship the demigods; those in the mode of passion worship the demons; and those in the mode of ignorance worship ghosts and spirits.

• Foods dear to those in the mode of goodness increase the duration of life, purify one’s existence and give strength, health, happiness and satisfaction. Such foods are juicy, fatty, wholesome and pleasing to the heart.

• Foods that are too bitter, too sour, salty, hot, pungent, dry and burning are dear to those in the mode of passion. Such foods cause distress, misery and disease.

• Food prepared more than three hours before eaten, food that is tasteless, decomposed and putrid, and food consisting of remnants and untouchable things is dear to those in the mode of darkness.

• Any sacrifice performed without regard for the directions of scripture, without distribution of prasadam without chanting of vedic hymns and remunerations to the priests, and without faith is considered to be in the mede of ignorance.

• Austerity of speech consists in speaking words that are truthful, pleasing, beneficial and not agitating to others, and also in regularity reciting vedic literature.

• Charity given out of duty, without expectation of return, at the preoper time and place, and to a worthy person is considered to be in the mode of goodness.

• But charity performed with the expectation of some return, or with a desire for fruitive results, or in a gruding mood, is said to be charity in the mode of passion.

• And charity performed at an impure place , at an improper time, to unworthy persons, or without proper attention and respect is said to be in the mode of ignorance.

• Anything done as sacrifice, charity or penance without faith in the supreme, O son of Pritha, is impermanent. It is called ‘asat’ and is useless both in this life and the next.