Chapter 4 Gnana Yoga Verse 20

Sloka

Apare niyataahaaraah praanaan praaneshu juhwati;
Sarve’pyete yajnavido yajnakshapita kalmashaah.

Translation

Others who regulate their diet offer life-breaths in life-breaths;
all these are knowers of sacrifice, whose sins are all destroyed by sacrifice.

Interpretation

In this sloka Lord Krishna talks about the last way through which a person can sacrifice to attain salvation. He says that regulation of diet is one of the ways in which sacrifices can be offered. Thats one part of it. Regulation of diet means taking food which is limited and sufficient for one’s survival. By doing that he will be able to offer life breaths in life breaths. Food control automatically controls the life and that if offered as a sacrifice by people who understand the value of the sacrifices will be relieved of all the sins.

Extending Interpretation to Mankind’s Life!

Can food also take us to salvation? Sounds funny but true. Why do we take food? It is to keep our body active and perform all the actions. But sometimes when the same food becomes excess a person cannot be active or do things that he was supposed to do. That means the same food which gives him energy also can make him inactive and dull. So you should eat that much food that is essential for you to give you energy. Food should not be taken for taste or enjoyment but it should be taken only for survival.

Now how is all this related to sacrifice and salvation? Food gives us enjoyment as well as energy. So if you sacrifice the enjoyment part and eat food that only can help you in survival it is called as sacrifice. The other way of doing it is eating sattvik food like fresh fruits, vegetables and food cooked with less spices, masala and mirchi. This kind of food might be tasteless but taste is not something you are looking for here. So that feeling of sacrificing the taste comes it will aautomatically makes you a sage.