Bhagavad Gita: Chapter 6, Verse 9

सुहृन्मित्रार्युदासीनमध्यस्थद्वेष्यबन्धुषु |
साधुष्वपि च पापेषु समबुद्धिर्विशिष्यते || 9||

suhṛin-mitrāryudāsīna-madhyastha-dveṣhya-bandhuṣhu
sādhuṣhvapi cha pāpeṣhu sama-buddhir viśhiṣhyate

su-hṛittoward the well-wishers; mitrafriends; arienemies; udāsīnaneutral persons; madhya-sthamediators; dveṣhyathe envious; bandhuṣhurelatives; sādhuṣhupious; apias well as; chaand; pāpeṣhuthe sinners; sama-buddhiḥof impartial intellect; viśhiṣhyateis distinguished

Translation

BG 6.9: The yogis look upon all—well-wishers, friends, foes, the pious, and the sinners—with an impartial intellect. The yogi who is of equal intellect toward friend, companion, and foe, neutral among enemies and relatives, and impartial between the righteous and sinful, is considered to be distinguished among human.

Commentary

It is the nature of the human mind to respond differently to friends and foes. But an elevated yogi’s nature is different. Endowed with realized knowledge of God, the elevated yogi see the whole creation in its unity with God. Thus, they are able to see all living beings with equality of vision. This parity of vision is also of various levels:

“All living beings are divine souls, and hence parts of God.” Thus, they are viewed as equal. ātmavat sarva bhūteṣhu yaḥ paśhyati sa paṇḍitaḥ “A true Pundit is one who sees everyone as the soul, and hence similar to oneself.”

Higher is the vision: “God is seated in everyone, and hence all are equally respect worthy.”

At the highest level, the yogi develops the vision: “Everyone is the form of God.” The Vedic scriptures repeatedly state that the whole world is a veritable form of God: īśhāvāsyam idam sarvaṁ yat kiñcha jagatyāṁ jagat (Īśhopaniṣhad 1)[v2] “The entire universe, with all its living and non-living beings is the manifestation of the Supreme Being, who dwells within it.” puruṣha evedaṁ sarvaṁ (Puruṣh Sūktam)[v3] “God is everywhere in this world, and everything is his energy.” Hence, the highest yogi sees everyone as the manifestation of God. Endowed with this level of vision, Hanuman says: sīyā rāma maya saba jaga jānī (Ramayan)[v4] “I see the face of Sita Ram in everyone.”

These categories have been further detailed in the commentary to verse 6.31. Referring to all three of the above categories, Shree Krishna says that the yogi who can maintain an equal vision toward all persons is even more elevated than the yogi mentioned in the previous verse. Having described the state of Yog, starting with the next verse, Shree Krishna describes the practice by which we can achieve that state.