Chapter V Sloka 18

iv*aivnys<pÚe äaü[e giv hiStin, 
zuin cEv ñpake c pi{fta> smdizRn>.

br˜hmaġe gavi hastini | 
ŝuni caiva ŝvap˜ke ca 
paġŭit˜× samadarŝina× ( 5|18)||

Sages look with an equal eye on a Brahmana endowed with learning and humility, on a cow, on an elephant, and even on a dog and an outcaste.


The liberated sage or Jivanmukta or a Brahmana has equal vision as he beholds the Self everywhere. This magnificent vision of a Jnani is beyond description. Atman or Brahman is not at all affected by the Upadhis or limiting adjuncts as He is extremely subtle, pure, formless and attribute-less. The sun's reflection falls on the river Ganga, on the ocean or on a dirty stream. But the sun is not at all affected in any way.  So is the case with the Supreme Self. The Upadhis (limiting adjuncts) cannot affect Him. Just as the ether is not affected by the limiting adjuncts, viz., a pot, the walls of a room, cloud, etc., so also the Self is not affected by the Upadhis.

The Brahmana is Sattvic. The cow is Rajasic. The elephant, the dog and the outcaste are Tamasic. The sage sees in all of them the one homogeneous immortal Self Who is not affected by the three Gunas and their tendencies. ( Cf. VI. 8, 32; XIV. 24)