Why is it that we should act? And why is it that we should not expect the fruits of action?
This will be clear to us if we analyse the reason behind our action, and the reason why the fruits will not accrue as we desire. Our actions are obligatory on our part on account of our involvement in this psychophysical organism which is controlled by the movement of the gunas of prakriti; therefore, as long as prakriti moves, as long as the gunas rotate and revolve in this cosmical process of creation and evolution, for that long we also will be involved in that action. So our activity is a why is it that we do not get the result that we expect? The answer to this question is not in the Second Chapter. The answer is in a verse which is in the Eighteenth Chapter:
adhisthanam tatha karta karanam ca prithag-vidham,
vividhas ca prithak cesta daivam caivatra pancamam (18.14).
When we do something, we have a very narrow notion of what result will follow from our action. The narrow notion arises on account of our limitation to body and social conditions, and our completely ignoring our cosmical relation. The fruit accrues according to the sanction of the
involvement of ourselves in the cosmic structure, notwithstanding the fact that we have individually, so-called, initiated the action. The action that we perform is not a stereotyped movement in a very simple manner, as we think. All action is very complicated. It involves many factors. When we take a morsel of food, how many organs in our body act? It is not just that we throw something and it goes into the pit. The entire organism rises up into action. Even if it is only one raisin that we are putting into our mouth, the entire mechanism starts acting. Similarly, any action that we perform sets intomotion the whole rotation of prakriti, and it will act and react according to its laws.