Bg 3.12

ishtan bhogan hi vo deva

dasyante yajna-bhavitah

tair dattan apradayaibhyo

yo bhunkte stena eva sah


ishtan -- desired; bhogan -- necessities of life; hi -- certainly; vah -- unto you; devah -- the demigods; dasyante -- will award; yajna-bhavitah -- being satisfied by the performance of sacrifices; taih -- by them; dattan -- things given; apradaya -- without offering; ebhyah -- to these demigods; yah -- he who; bhunkte -- enjoys; stenah -- thief; eva -- certainly; sah -- he.


In charge of the various necessities of life, the demigods, being satisfied by the performance of yajna [sacrifice], will supply all necessities to you. But he who enjoys such gifts without offering them to the demigods in return is certainly a thief.

ishtan bhogan hi vo deva, when we give the devatas in charge of our various desired necessities, dasyante, they will provide yajna-bhavitah, we will satisfy them by Yajna, tair dattan, means those things that are provided apradayaibhyo, if we do not offer those back to the devatas. yo bhunkte stena eva sah

, So Krishna is saying if we do not participate in the system of cosmic cooperation then we become thieves yo bhunkte stena eva sah, such people are thieves, those who take the water supply but do not pay the taxes they are thieves so like that if we don’t satisfy the devatas then we become the thieves.

So now if we look at the various Vedic sacrifices sometimes it seems that devatas are depending on the Yajna performed by us for example in SB 7th Canto Hiranyakasyapu is saying if we will stop all the Yajna then devatas will starve and when they will starve they will become weak and we will kill them, and that is how I will become Supreme, So are devatas dependent for their needs on human beings? Actually heavens are far more sumptuously provided then earth so if we are saying like devatas are dependent on us it is like saying America is dependent on poor country like Somalia. So this is not true.

We can see Krishna stopped Yajna for Indira, Indira was not starving but Indra felt dishonored when yajna was denied, it was not starving problem for Indra.

Similarly in case of Daksha Prajapati Yajna mother Sati was not disturbed because Lord Shiva will starve but because respect was not shown to Lord Shiva. So the point is it is acknowledgement of authorities. For example when some guests come we may offer some garland or do arathi so it is not that these things are necesssaity for the guest and he will die if he will not get but this is a way of giving respect. When a worshipable guest comes to our place we need to respect them that will purify us, if we don’t do that it can be offensive, so same we if we don’t do Yajan it can be offensive from our side. So if we are not respecting then ultimately it will be disrespect to Supreme Lord, also Krishna told Vraj Vasis to stop yajan not because He wanted to disrupt the system but He wanted to check Indira’s pride, devatas should take respect on behalf of the supreme Lord not that they think that they are the Supreme, so because Indira was temporarily thinking he is all in all so Krishna curbed his pride, but Krishna didn’t disrupt system of Yajna as we can see here, also He wanted Yudhisthir Maharaj to perform Yajna, so if we try to enjoy separate from the Yajna system then yo bhunkte stena eva sah, then such a person is a thief.

SP talked about Panch Maha Yajna, 5 different types of Yajna performed which helps people elevated, why these Yajans are required because there are 5 different way in which people can perform inevitably bad Karma, when we light a fire that time some living entities are killed, when we walk some living beings are killed, when we put pot of water that time some living beings are killed, so even normal day to day activities some living beings are killed so the point is we all inevitably commit violence and if we wanted to avoid Karmic consequences then we have to do this kind of Yajnas so of course Vedic time we do Panch Maha Yajna in Kaliyuga we do Sankirtan Yajna.