Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 3 verse 16: One who does not follow the wheel set in motion, whose life is sinful, whose contentment lies in the senses, lives in vain.
A bicycle moves forward by downward and upward strokes on the pedals. Life evolves from one state to another, dissolving the first while bringing the next into the moment. With each sacrifice (2.45) — each performance of natural duty (3.08) — we gain a more evolved state and in the process destroy the previous, lesser-evolved one. Creative and destructive forces work in harmony, maintaining life and revolving the wheel of evolution forward. Those who fail to perform their natural duty and sacrifice desire, sacrifice precious time and energy on trying to gain balance. They lose harmony and forward momentum. That is, they lose Brahma’s establishment in sacrifice, infusing life, evolution, balance (2.48), and forward momentum (3.14, 3.15).
'One who does not follow the wheel set in motion, whose life is sinful….’ Sinful acts are selfish acts that retard evolution (2.47, 3.13). Attempting to selfishly fulfill desires by vainly looking for fulfillment in attractive qualities found in objects of the senses holds the mind in bondage to action (2.39). In bondage we're unable to ‘follow the wheel set in motion.’ In bondage, one ‘lives in vain,’ hopelessly wanting more out of life through evolution but bound in place by ignorance born of selfish and sinful acts, spinning away on the cycle of impression-desire-action and paying the wages of sin.
copyright commentary Keith R Parker 2016