यदा सर्वे प्रमुच्यन्ते कामा येऽस्य हृदि श्रिताः । अथ मर्त्यो'मृतो भवत्यत्र ब्रह्म समश्नुते ॥ १४ ॥

yadā sarve pramucyante kāmā ye'sya hṛdi śritāḥ | atha martyo'mṛto bhavatyatra brahma samaśnute |

When all desires clinging to the heart of one fall off, then the mortal becomes immortal and here attains Brahman.(Katha Up 2.3.14)

In this verse who is becoming immortal?

Because souls is immortal and was immortal and the body is mortal.

BG 2.20: The soul is neither born, nor does it ever die; nor having once existed, does it ever cease to be. The soul is without birth, eternal, immortal, and ageless. It is not destroyed when the body is destroyed.

Soul was never mortal but this verse is say he will become immortal("then the mortal becomes immortal"), so who will become immortal .

Is it the body because it is mortal and subjected to death?

  • Mortal = the soul in samsara, who is experiencing constant birth and death through bodies. Immortal = the soul in moksha, which doesn't keep acquiring bodies. So the statement means the soul will get moksha.
    – Ikshvaku
    Commented May 8, 2021 at 16:38
  • @Ikshvaku gita say soul is immortal, their is no context as you said. It applies to all whether stuck in samsara or not. Commented May 8, 2021 at 17:01
  • @Ikshvaku mortal : of a living human being, often in contrast to a divine being) subject to death. So is soul subjected to death when it enters human body. Commented May 8, 2021 at 17:03
  • 1
    Also, it could be referring to the Jivatma + inhabited body. The Jivatma is immortal, but the body is not, so we can say that Donald Trump is not immortal, but his soul, or him specifically, is immortal.
    – Ikshvaku
    Commented May 8, 2021 at 17:13
  • 1
    @Ikshvaku done, I have give the Transliteration and the sanskrit text Commented May 8, 2021 at 17:34

1 Answer 1


From Swami Nikhilananda's translation

MORTAL: The notions of birth and death result from ignorance of man's true nature and identification with the body.

IMMORTAL: The infinite and omnipresent Atman is beyond time and space and free from the law of causality. Hence birth, death, and rebirth cannot be applied to It.

HERE: A man can destroy all his bondage and attain Freedom while dwelling in this very body. Immortality is the realization of the timelessness of Atman. This realization is attainable here on earth.

The notions are destroyed and the mortal becomes immortal.

From Gambhirananda's translation based on Shankara commentary

before his enlightenment— the intellect, and not the Self, being the seat of the desires, .. atha, then; he who was before enlightenment martyah, mortal, amrtah bhavati, becomes immortal, after enlightenment— by virtue of the elimination of death constituted by ignorance, desire, and deeds; death, which causes departure, having been destroyed, there remains no possibility of departure, and hence atra, here itself ; owing to the cessation of all bondage, like the blowing out of a lamp, samahnute brahma, (he) attains Brahman. i.e. (he) becomes Brahman Itself.

Jiva is defined by Adi Shankara as the one who associates itself with fruits of karma and experiences pleasure and pain. Brahman + avidyA = jIva. Jiva is mortal and when avidya is removed, it is results in brahman, which is immortal.

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