Have you ever wondered why do we only have right-to-do-work, but not to the outcome?
“Bhagavad Gita says so”, doesn’t sound a great answer, at least not in the context of Hinduism, where no one is expected to follow anything blindly. Sincere questioning is not only encouraged, but rather required for ones progress.
Even in Bhagavad Gita, while this particular shloka has become famous among people, there is lot of question-answer happens between Arjun and Krishna, and Krishna has used various explanations to support his assertions.
So, don’t accept anything just because it’s in Bhagavad Gita, but rather go through the discussion in Gita and other scriptures to get better understanding of the reason behind various statements.
Now coming back to “Why कर्मण्येवाधिकारस्ते” ?
While Krishna has explained this using various method, one of the easiest way is to use theory of Karma.
As you might remember from Post#13, we are born in this life, to repay a karma called Prarabdha, and Prarabdha influences situations we will be facing in this life.
We, on our part, also can influence the outcome by doing our work, putting extra efforts etc. But, as you can see, our efforts are only “one of the” contributing factors in the outcome, so that’s the reason we don’t have right to the outcome.
Technically speaking, Prarabdha is also our doing, but given that we don’t get to choose what prarabdha we are born with, we don’t control that aspect completely.