sreyan dravya-mayad yajnaj
sarvam karmakhilam partha
Word for word:
sreyan — greater; dravya-mayat — of material possessions; yajnat — than the sacriﬁce; jnana-yajnah — sacriﬁce in knowledge; param-tapa — O chastiser of the enemy; sarvam — all; karma — activities; akhilam — in totality; partha — O son of Prtha; jnane — in knowledge; parisamapyate — end.
Translation by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Srila Prabhupada:
O chastiser of the enemy, the sacriﬁce performed in knowledge is better than the mere sacriﬁce of material possessions. After all, O son of Prtha, all sacriﬁces of work culminate in transcendental knowledge.
Purport by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Srila Prabhupada:
The purpose of all sacriﬁces is to arrive at the status of complete knowledge, then to gain release from material miseries and, ultimately, to engage in loving transcendental service to the Supreme Lord (Krishna consciousness). Nonetheless, there is a mystery about all these different activities of sacriﬁce, and one should know this mystery. Sacriﬁces sometimes take different forms according to the particular faith of the performer. When one’s faith reaches the stage of transcendental knowledge, the performer of sacriﬁces should be considered more advanced than those who simply sacriﬁce material possessions without such knowledge, for without attainment of knowledge, sacriﬁces remain on the material platform and bestow no spiritual beneﬁt. Real knowledge culminates in Krishna consciousness, the highest stage of transcendental knowledge. Without the elevation of knowledge, sacriﬁces are simply material activities. When, however, they are elevated to the level of transcendental knowledge, all such activities enter onto the spiritual platform. Depending on differences in consciousness, sacriﬁcial activities are sometimes called karma-kanda (fruitive activities) and sometimes jnana-kanda (knowledge in the pursuit of truth). It is better when the end is knowledge.