The Bhagavad-Gītā
                                  Dialogues of Krishna and Arjuna
                                                            The Eighteen Lectures
                                                                                           With Notes
                                             TRANSLATED FROM THE ORIGINAL 

                              IN THE ANCIENT LANGUAGE OF THE BRAHMAN

                                 By CHARLES WILKINS     1785                                        

                                                                                   L E C T U R E. 17. 

                                                               'OF FAITH DIVIDED INTO THREE SPECIES.



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Three Kinds of Faith (Dr. Radhakrishnan)


What is the guide of those men, who, although they neglect the precepts of the Śāstra, yet worship with faith? Is it the Sattva, the Raja or Tama Guṇa?



The faith of mortals is of three kinds, and is produced from the constitution. It is denominated after the three Guṇas, Sattvic, Rajasic, or Tamasic. Hear what these are. The faith of every one is a copy of that which is produced from the Sattva-Guṇa. The mortal Puruṣa being formed with faith, of whatever nature he may be, with that kind of faith is he endued. Those who are of the disposition which ariseth from the Sattva-Guṇa worship the Devās; those of the Raja-Guṇa the Yakṣas, and the Rākṣasa; and those of the Tama-Guṇa worship the departed spirits and the tribe of Bhūta Gaṇas. Those men who perform severe mortifications of the flesh, not authorized


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 by the Śāstra, are possessed of hypocrisy and pride, and overwhelmed with lust, passion, and tyrannical strength. Those fools torment the spirit that is in the body, and myself also who am in them. Know what are the resolutions of those who are born under the influence of the evil spirit.

There are three kinds of food which are dear unto all men. Worship, zeal 111, and charity are each of them also divided into three species. Hear what are their distinctions.

The food that is dear unto those of the Sattva-Guṇa is such as increases their length of days, their power and their strength, and keeps them free from sickness, happy and contented. It is pleasing to the palate, nourishing, permanent, and congenial to the-body. It is neither too bitter, too sour, too salt(y), too hot, too pungent, too astringent, nor too inflammable.  The food that is coveted by those of the Raja-Guṇa giveth nothing but pain and misery and the delight of those in whom the Tama-Guṇa prevaileth, is such as was dressed the day before, and is out of season; hath lost its taste, and is grown putrid; the leavings of others, and all things that are impure.

That worship which is directed by divine precept, and is performed without' the desire of reward, as necessary

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to be done, and with an attentive mind, is of the Sattva Guṇa.

The worship which is performed with a view to the fruit, and with hypocrisy, is of the Tama-Guṇa.

The worship which is performed without regard to the precepts of the law, without the distribution of bread, without the usual invocations, without gifts to the Brahmans at the conclusion, and without faith, is of the Raja Guṇa.

Respect to the Devās, to  Brahmans, masters, and learned men; chastity, rectitude,  the worship of the Deity, and a freedom from injury, are called bodily zeal.

Gentleness, justness, kindness, and benignity of speech, and attention to one's studies, are called verbal zeal.

 Content of mind, mildness of temper, devotion, restraint of the passions, and a purity of soul, are called mental zeal.

This threefold zeal being warmed with supreme faith, and performed by men who long not for the fruit of action, is of the Sattva-Guṇa.

The zeal which is shewn by hypocrisy, for the fake of the reputation of sanctity, honor, and respect, is said to


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be of the Raja-Guṇa; and it is inconstant and uncertain.

The zeal which is exhibited with self-torture, by the fool, without examination, or for injuring another, is of the Tama-Guṇa.

That charity which is bestowed by the disinterested, because it is proper to be given, in due place and season, and to proper objects, is of the Sattva-Guṇa.

That which is given in expectation of a return, or for the sake of the fruit of the action, and with reluctancy, is of the Raja-Guṇa.

That which is given out of place and season, and to unworthy objects, and, at the same time, ungraciously and scornfully, is pronounced to be of the Tama-Guṇa.

Om, Tat, and Sat, are the three mystic characters used to denote the Deity.

By him in the beginning were appointed the Brahmans·, the Vedas, and religion: hence the sacrificial, charitable, and zealous ceremonies of the expounders of the word of God, as they are ordained by the law, constantly proceed after they have pronounced Om!

Tat having been pronounced by those who long for immortality, without any inclination for a temporary


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reward of their actions, then are performed the ceremonies of worship and zeal, and the various deeds of charity. The word Sat is used for qualities which are true, and for qualities that are holy. The word Sat is also applied to deeds which are praiseworthy. Attention in worship, zeal, and deeds of charity, are also called Sat Deeds which are performed for Sat are also to be esteemed Sat.

Whatever is performed without faith, whether it be sacrifices, deeds of charity, or mortifications of the flesh, is called Asat; and is not for this world or that which is above.