Bhagavad Gita: Chapter 8, Verse 9-10

कविं पुराणमनुशासितार
मणोरणीयांसमनुस्मरेद्य: |
सर्वस्य धातारमचिन्त्यरूप
मादित्यवर्णं तमस: परस्तात् || 9||
प्रयाणकाले मनसाचलेन
भक्त्या युक्तो योगबलेन चैव |
भ्रुवोर्मध्ये प्राणमावेश्य सम्यक्
स तं परं पुरुषमुपैति दिव्यम् || 10||

kaviṁ purāṇam anuśhāsitāram
aṇor aṇīyānsam anusmared yaḥ
sarvasya dhātāram achintya-rūpam
āditya-varṇaṁ tamasaḥ parastāt
prayāṇa-kāle manasāchalena
bhaktyā yukto yoga-balena chaiva
bhruvor madhye prāṇam āveśhya samyak
sa taṁ paraṁ puruṣham upaiti divyam

kavimpoet; purāṇamancient; anuśhāsitāramthe controller; aṇoḥthan the atom; aṇīyānsamsmaller; anusmaretalways remembers; yaḥwho; sarvasyaof everything; dhātāramthe support; achintyainconceivable; rūpamdivine form; āditya-varṇameffulgent like the sun; tamasaḥto the darkness of ignorance; parastātbeyond; prayāṇa-kāleat the time of death; manasāmind; achalenasteadily; bhaktyāremembering with great devotion; yuktaḥunited; yoga-balenathrough the power of yog; chaand; evacertainly; bhruvoḥthe two eyebrows; madhyebetween; prāṇamlife airs; āveśhyafixing; samyakcompletely; saḥhe; tamhim; param puruṣhamthe Supreme Divine Lord; upaitiattains; divyamdivine


BG 8.9–8.10: God is omniscient, the most ancient one, the controller, subtler than the subtlest, the support of all, and the possessor of an inconceivable divine form; he is brighter than the sun, and beyond all darkness of ignorance. One who at the time of death, with unmoving mind attained by the practice of Yog, who fixes the prāṇ (life airs) between the eyebrows, and steadily remembers the Divine Lord with great devotion, certainly attains him.


Meditation upon God can be of a variety of types. One can meditate upon the names, forms, qualities, leelas, abode, or associates of God. All these different aspects of the Supreme Divinity are non-different from him. When we attach our mind to any of these, our mind comes into the divine realm and hence becomes purified. Hence, any or all of these can be made the object of meditation. Here, eight qualities of the Supreme Lord have been described, which can be meditated upon.

Kavi means poet or seer, and by extension, omniscient. As stated in verse 7.26, God knows the past, present, and future.

Purāṇ means without beginning and the most ancient. God is the origin of everything spiritual and material, but there is nothing from which he has originated and nothing that predates him.

Anuśhāsitāram means the Ruler. God is the creator of the laws by which the universe runs; he administers its affairs, directly and through his appointed celestial gods. Thus, everything is under his regime.

Aṇoraṇīyān means subtler than the subtlest. The soul is subtler than matter, but God is seated within the soul, and hence he is subtler than it.

Sarvasya Dhātā means the sustainer of all, just as the ocean is the support of the waves.

Achintya rūpa means of inconceivable form. Since our mind can only conceive material forms, God is beyond the scope of our material mind. However, if he bestows his grace, by his Yogmaya power he makes our mind divine in nature. Then alone, by his grace, he becomes conceivable.

Āditya varṇa means he is resplendent like the sun.

Tamasaḥ Parastāt means beyond the darkness of ignorance. Just as the sun can never be covered by the clouds, even though it may seem to us that it has been obscured, similarly God can never be covered by the material energy Maya even though he may be in contact with it in the world.

In bhakti, the mind is focused upon the divine attributes of God’s form, qualities, pastimes, etc. When bhakti is performed by itself, it is called śhuddha bhakti (pure bhakti). When it is performed alongside with aṣhṭāṅg yog, it is called yog-miśhra bhakti (devotion alloyed with aṣhṭāṅg yog sādhanā). From verses ten to thirteen, Shree Krishna describes yog-miśhra bhakti. One of the beauties of the Bhagavad Gita is that it embraces a variety of sādhanās, thereby bringing people of diverse upbringing, backgrounds, and personalities in its embrace. When western scholars attempt to read the Hindu scriptures without the help of a Guru, they often become confused by the variety of paths, instructions, and philosophical viewpoints in its various scriptures. However, this variety is actually a blessing. Because of the sanskārs (tendencies) of endless lifetimes, we all have different natures and preferences. When four people go to buy clothes for themselves, they end up choosing different colors, styles, and fashions. If the shop kept clothes of only one color and style, it would be unable to cater to the variety inherent in human nature. Similarly, on the spiritual path too, people have performed various sādhanās in past lifetimes. The Vedic scriptures embrace that variety, while simultaneously stressing bhakti (devotion to God) as the common thread that ties them all together.

In aṣhṭāṅg yog, the life force is raised through the suṣhumṇā channel in the spinal column. It is brought between the eyebrows, which is the region of the third eye (the inner eye). It is then made to focus on the Supreme Lord with great devotion.