We have now realised that just as a man casts off worn-out clothes and puts on new ones, so also the embodied atma casts off worn-out bodies and enters others which are new. In 2.23 we read that all the four elements can affect the body but not the atma. Nainam chindanthi s(h)aasthraaNi nainam dahathi paavaka: Na chainam klaedayathyaapO na s(h)Oshayathi maarutha: 2.23 Weapons (prithvi or earth) do not cut this. Fire does not burn this. Water does not wet this. Air also does not dry this. Only objects belonging to the same degree of reality can affect one another. But at the same , objects belonging to the same order of reality need not affect each other also. Space, for example belongs to the same order of reality as the other four elements but it is not affected or destroyed by any of them. Space has no form and hence cannot be destroyed even by other elements that share the same order of reality. So atma is self-evident and hence is self-existent, depending on nothing for existence Whereas, what is not self-evident is not self-existent and depends entirely upon that which is self-existent. A problem may arise that since a non-existent thing also cannot be destroyed by anyone, perhaps this atma is non-existent ! The next verse puts this doubt to rest. AchchaedyOyam adahyOyam aklaedyOs(h)Oshya aeva cha Nithya: sarvagatha: sthaaNu: achalO(a)yam sanaathana: 2.24 The self cannot be cut, burnt, drowned or dried. It is changeless, all-pervading, unmoving and eternal. Weapons cannot cut this Self. It is eternal. Because It is eternal, It is all-pervading. Because It is all-pervading, It is stable like a pillar. Because It is stable, It is immovable, It is everlasting. As such, It is not produced out of any cause. It is not new. It is ancient. Knowing the atma in this way, there is no reason for us to entertain any grief. But we may say “ I don’t cry for atma. I cry for anatma”. To this Krishna would ask, Why would you cry for the anithya anatma? Anatma is always changing and we have no control over it. Only atma is nithya and there is no way of destroying it”. “ For what do you then grieve, Arjuna?” Krishna asked. “There is no room for grief at all. There is something to be done. Do it.” This constant refrain is sounded in the next verse also. Love, Chithra.