rajo ragatmakam viddhi
tan nibadhnati kaunteya
"The mode of passion is born of unlimited desires and longings, O son of Kunti, and because of this the embodied living entity is bound to material fruitive actions."
Dehinam = atma [possessing body or deham], nibadhnati = is bound firmly, karma-sangena = by association of activities. By inducing us in action, we are made to be in this birth cycle. Let us see the nature of rajo quality and how it binds us. Viddhi = understand, rajo = rajas quality, ragatmakam = is responsible for raga. Ragam is lust or passion between males and females. It is the mutual attraction for sexual pleasures. Rajas quality is responsible for seeking this pleasure. This desire emanates from rajas quality. Satva quality was genearting desire for Gyana; but rajas quality geneartes lust or kama. Trsna = desire in sensual pleasures experienced by the Five Gyana organs, ie. listening, smelling, tasting, seeing and touching. Normally, trsna means thirst for water, but that is not the topic here; the thirst for materialisic pleasures. Sanga = love or affection. The feeling between husband and wife, parents and children, between relatives, etc. Thus rajo quality generates Three things: Lust, Pleasure and Love. Sexual lust, materialistic pleasure and love for relatives, are caused by rajo quality. Samudbhavam = generated. Arjuna got a doubt. It is okay if rajo quality generates desires in us; but why should it push us into bondage in samsaram? Sri Krishna replies that these desires impel us to do actions and get us bonded. We have to see an equation here: Rajo quality = lust, pleasure and love. To attain these Three, we will be encouraged to do some actions. So we will get involved in efforts. These efforts could be permissible by Shasras or not. Never we should indulge in activities not approved by Vedas. If we violate, we will earn papa. What about actions approved by Vedas? For these also, lust, pleasure and love are needed and so what is wrong in showing them? Yes, these Vedas approved efforts will get us punya. But, punyam also is an obstacle for Moksham or libeartion from samsaram. Then what are we to do? While explaining satva quality, the Lord very clearly said that satva quality makes us to seek Gyana and Ananda. They also bind us in samsaram, by impelling us to do actions. Thus both satva and rajas qualities encourage us to perform actions. Satva quality is certainly superior to rajas quality. Because person with satva quality, tries to act to earn Gyana and Ananda for atman. He acts to some extent after verifying whether his proposed actions would be acceptable to Shastras or not. Even this limited action, creates bondage and pushes him into samsaram. But a person with rajo quality, does not do this examination, whether what action he proposed to do was acceptable to Shastras or not. He acts to quench his desire. Thus a person with rajo quality, indescriminately acts to fulfill his desires. How to get out of these? Good actions will earn punya and bad actions will earn papa. It is correct to do actions to earn punya; but the attitude is important, which has been reiterated by the Lord from Chapter 2. We should do Shastras approved actions, without the feeling of 'I-am-doing' and with noble and sublime objectives and without desire for results. If Arjuna fought the war with rajo quality of acquring Kingdom, he will not reach good place; but, if he fought with satva quality of upholding Dharma, protecting the Kingdom from evil doers, fighting enemies is Kshatriya Dharma and with detachment on the results, then he will not accrue either punya or papa. So, rajas quality will encoursge actions and prolong the sufferings in samsaram.