What Does Do Your Duty Without Expecting Fruits Of Action Mean?
Last Updated on February 1, 2023
Reading the Bhagavad Gita is really easy but understanding the meaning of the verses is really hard.
Among many verses of Bhagavad Gita, there is a verse in which Krishna advises Arjun to do his duty without expecting the results(fruits) of the action.
In this article, I will tell you what exactly this verse means and what I understand by this shloka of Gita.
Let’s get started.
Do Your Duty Without Expecting Fruits Of Action – Meaning
Before understanding the meaning of “Do your duty without expecting fruits of action” let’s see the full verse(shloka).
This verse comes in chapter 2, verse(shloka) 47 of Bhagavad Gita and it says:
कर्मण्येवाधिकारस्ते मा फलेषु कदाचन |
मा कर्मफलहेतुर्भूर्मा ते सङ्गोऽस्त्वकर्मणि || 47 ||
Thy human right is for activity only, never for the resultant fruit of actions. Do not consider thyself the creator of the fruits of thy activities; neither allow thyself attachment to inactivity.
Undoubtedly this is a very popular verse from Bhagavad Gita, and that’s why there are many wrong interpretations; the actual meaning of the verse becomes confusing and questionable.
According to this verse, Lord Sri Krishna wants to say that there are three types of people in this world.
- Those who live for their own selfish happiness.
- Those who, through misunderstanding of scriptures, indulge in inactivity.
- Those who perform every activity as an offering to God.
Among these three types, the last one is considered wise. You neither should work with selfish motives because, in that case, at the end of his life, he may discover that happiness doesn’t follow a life of egotistical interest.
He may earn millions of dollars, but that person will always be dreaded with the thought of losing everything by death.
He also does not support the second type of people who, through misunderstanding of scriptures, think that all human activities may germinate ego in mind. Hence they embrace inactivity.
This is like a warning to all the spiritual aspirants who, without properly understanding the meaning behind this verse, become mentally and physically idle in the name of being unattached to the fruits of actions.
So what does do your duty without expecting fruits of actions mean?
The Gita does not mean that one should word like a robot, without the thought of probable results.
Do your duty without expectations means working intelligently and ambitiously trying to create the right fruits of actions not with ego or selfishness, but for God and for the people.
The verse indicates humankind to be selfless and to perform actions for the benefit of humanity, not to fulfill their own wants and desires.
Some people also believe that it is impossible to carry out any activity without desiring for the fruit of action in the form of success.
But one should understand that when a person works for his won material gain, he is not so alert, wise, and happy as when he executes his small or large plans just to please God.
One should also understand that when we expect results, we get anxiety when our desired results don’t fulfill, and with this mindset, we easily give up.
If a successful businessman with his abilities uses his good fortune for worthy causes and to help those less fortunate, he will find more joy, more happiness.
Also, remember to avoid the pride of doership because everything you do, no matter how big or small, from inventing a rocket to writing a poem; Remember that God is the only reason and source because of which a man can create something.
At last, just perform your activities without the expectations of selfish results. Spread positivity and use your fortune to help the unfortunate ones.
According to Krishna, every activity is performed for God or to please him and not for hoarding wealth for personal satisfaction.