Chapter 3 Verse 6 – Karma Yoga

Sloka

Karmendriyaani samyamya ya aaste manasaa smaran;
Indriyaarthaan vimoodhaatmaa mithyaachaarah sa uchyate.

Translation

He who, restraining the organs of action, sits thinking of the sense-objects in mind,
he, of deluded understanding, is called a hypocrite.

Interpretation

In this shloka Lord Krishna speaks about a hypocrite. He says that a hypocrite is a person who controls all his sense organs and tries himself to refrain from doing an action. But somewhere in his mind, the urge of not doing that action keeps troubling him. At that moment he does that action but makes everyone else around him believe that he had refrained from doing that action. Such a person, Lord Krishna says is a hypocrite, whom we all should avoid.

Extending the interpretation to Mankind’s Life!

The entire concentration of this shloka is around hypocrisy and a hypocrite. Who is a hypocrite? A person who deceives, cheats and misleads people is a hypocrite. There are many examples of hypocrites that we see in day to day life. A sanyasi who renounced everything, molesting ladies and young women is a hypocrite. A politician who is supposed to take care of his people, eats away their money but talks all big things before elections is a hypocrite. A father who tells his son to be honest and truthful but takes bribe and tells lies at work place is a hypocrite. Like that we have innumerable examples of hypocrisy and hypocrites? Question then is, why do people become hypocrites?

The answer is simple. We are all bounded by rules and regulations. If our mind wants to act on something, but if it is against the rule, then we cannot do that action. So, we control ourselves and stay away from that action in front of others. But when no one is watching, we do that action and behave as if we didn’t do anything. That behaviour is called hypocrisy. An honest person always talks about his weaknesses and tries to overcome them, whereas a hypocrite talks about not breaking rules in public but in private does the opposite. Such kind of people are called hypocrites and Lord Krishna says that hypocrisy should be avoided at all costs!