Gita : Ch-4. Slo-12.
Srimad Bhagavad-Gita :
Chapter-4. ( Jnana-karma-sanyasa-yogam )
Slokam-12. ( In this world those who desire success for fruitive / rewarding activities worship the various demigods; since in human society success from actions manifests very quickly. )
Kamkshantah karmanam siddhim yajanta iha devatah,
Kshipram hi manushe loke siddhirbhavati karmaja.
iha = here;
karmanam siddhim = the reward / fruit / result gained from all karma-s;
kangkshantah = those who Desiring ( the fruit of karma );
devatah = the demi-gods ( Deva-s );
yajanta = worshipping ( deva-s, for rewards );
hi manushe loke = why because, in the world of mankind;
karmaja siddhih = the attaining of reward from activities;
kshipram bhavati = happens quickly.
It may be questioned that since Lord Krishna is the exclusive awarder of moksa or liberation from the cycle of birth and death; then why is it that most people are obliviously worshipping lesser gods instead of Him? The reason He answers is factual. People worship the lesser gods because they desire material benefits which is what the lesser gods can give. Worshipping lesser gods for wealth, dominion, a beautiful wife, a powerful son, such efforts easily bring quick results and the desired rewards. But moksa or liberation is only achieved as a result of cultivating Vedic knowledge about the Supreme Lord and thus it is hard to attain.
Those that are worshipping the demi-gods and other religions and denominations, how can they be understood to be following Lord Krishna's path? The proof is given in the second half of this verse being: quick indeed do they get their desired fruits from such worship. This is confirmed in the Chandogya Upanisad where it states: tasya ime venayam gayanti, tasmat te dhanasanayah which clarifies that from the Supreme Lord alone are bequeathed the rewards of one's actions.
For the most part persons who desire the material fruits of their actions never worship the Supreme Lord Krishna who is the super soul existing within all living beings and who is the ultimate recipient of all worship and offerings as confirmed in the previous verse. It is very rarely seen that the materialists are inclined to His worship. Instead they worship the demi-gods and other lesser entities. Why is this so? It is because by worshipping them the seekers of material possessions such as wealth, power and dominion find quick results in the fulfilment of their material desires. Manuse loke means in the mortal worlds. This includes all material worlds everywhere in creation. Such persons in these worlds oblivious to the true purpose of human existence due to a vast accumulation of sinful reactions that have not been exhausted from time immemorial. Desire immediate results for their actions causing them to get more and more reactions. Such people worship that which gives temporary material rewards and foolishly pursue transient material objectives even foolishly attempting to gain immortality in their corporeal physical body. Only such a rare being who fearful of samsara or transmigration from physical body to physical body in the endless cycle of birth and death, who aspires for moksa or liberation from the cycle of birth and death, only this rare being would engage themselves in karma yoga or the performance of prescribed Vedic activities as propitiation to the Supreme Lord Krishna. The next verse reveals how to release oneself from sin which obscures one's perception from realising the need to engage in karma yoga.
It may be further asked that if Lord Krishna is the exclusive bestower of the goal of life then why is not every one following Him. To alleviate such a doubt Lord Krishna answers that most people are engaged in karma yoga or the performance of prescribed duties of their caste and station. Performing myriad of actions they seek material results from their efforts. These material benefits are beseeched in the forms of wealth, power, good health and such. For these things they worship lesser gods for quick results and not Lord Krishna. But for moksa or liberation the results do not come quickly as this knowledge must refined and perfected picking up where one left off in a previous birth through many lifetimes. The purport is that most people worship various others because in their present life they have no knowledge of and no intrinsic interest in moksa.
To be continued ....