October 19, 2018

Introduction of Srimad Bhagavad Gita

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The Bhagavad Gita is not a provisional discourse for the trivial commonplace scholar but is a benchmark book of knowledge coming down from time immemorial. Bhagavad-Gita has to be accepted as it is.

In the Mahabharata there is a section called Bhishmaparva, wherein there is a subsection comprising seven hundred verses beginning with the verse 830 and this section is called the Bhagavad Gita. In one sentence we can describe the subject matter of Bhagavad Gita as the Knowledge of the Absolute; the Bhagavad Gita meticulously deals with the riddles of life. The Bhagavad Gita is a pronouncement of complete truth; its message is uni­ver­sal, transcendent, and non-sectarian although it is a part of the scrip­tural trinity of Sanaatana Dharma, commonly known as Hinduism. In any lingo for a mature mind the Gita is very easy to appreciate. A repeated reading of this epic with faith will reveal all the uplifting ideas con­tained in it. The Gita deals with the most hallowed metaphysi­cal science. It imparts the knowledge of the Self; it is a book of yoga, the moral and spiri­tual growth for mankind based on the fundamental ideology of the Hindu faith.

World over the administrators have to put up with the allegations of adherence to greed, cruelty and to the use of force. On the metaphysical plane on which life has been lived, statesmanship has been ruined, and the tradition and conduct of human society has failed. It is in times of such adversity that understanding men turn inwards for guidance. They realise that the fruits of spitefulness are harsh, that the accomplishments are short-lived, that the achievements are empty and that the greatest good of the greatest number of people cannot be achieved. The Indian mind deriving motivation from Indian tradition sees that there can be no lasting peace; and the best qualities which ennoble the humanity cannot be brought to the surface until decadence and injustices are eliminated, artificial barriers of race and colour are demolished and the claims of human race are acknowledged as supreme. IT IS THE SUPREMACY OF THE DIVINE LAW, WHICH HAS TO BE ORDAINED.

Strong interest in certain things can give way to indifference towards the very same things and men later begin to wonder how they could be so thoroughly absorbed in so useless and futile a pursuit. Resolute life shows itself not in words, but in actions; the ordinary mechanism of the mind is controlled and constantly directed towards lofty purposes; virtuous path is a matter of self-examination and self-analysis. The spiritual path is the path along which the torch of knowledge has been handed down from countless generations; it produces eminent and progressive men to sustain the life of the world.  The lustre of spiritual initiation will bring real joy and peace in the long run, therefore the seeking of material and immediate advantages become less urgent. In so far as differences are based on material motives and the desire to have an adequate or greater share in the good things of life; it can be said that whenever a thing is carried to the farthest, at all events in the spiritual world a price must be paid for every deviation from truth and justice

It is generally towards the end of one’s life; through the contact of good men and also the accumulated merits of the past births one is drawn to the wondrous path of spiritual awakening, it is only then it dawns on the individual that his achievements are like rags in tatters, and the complexities and the confusions that absorbed and engrossed throughout his existence are futile

In order to tread the spiritual path it is necessary to adhere to truth, honesty and the awareness of universal compassion; a mental distinction must be comprehensible between living for oneself in selfish pursuits of all objects and living for the welfare of others. The best way to understand a principle is to dwell on it and not to talk about it; Bhagavad Gita must be studied in the same way as a bee gathers honey without hurting the flowers without noise and exertion. Faith when assisted by discipline and a great deal of effort is the source of peace of mind, the peace as is usually sought comes after the effort and not before.  Bhagavad Gita is a work of lasting significance and it is the logical and the most comprehensive philosophy ever made; hence it’s continuing value for all mankind.

The entrenched doctrine of the Bhagavad Gita is to help appreciate, that the entire world of manifestation and multiplicity is not real in itself; to be caught in it is the bondage we are all implicated, this lost condition cannot be removed by our efforts. The central teachings of the Gita is the attainment of free­dom or happiness from the bondage of life; doing one’s duty effi­ciently without being attached to or affected by the results even if that duty may at times demand unavoidable violence.  Only the wisdom that the universal reality and the individual self are identical can bring redemption, when this wisdom arises the ego is dissolved, the wandering ceases and we have perfect joy and inviolability. Some people neglect or give up their duty in life for the sake of a spiritual life while others excuse them­selves from spiritual practices because they believe that they have no time. The Lord’s message is to sanctify the entire living process itself; do your duty as a service to the Lord and humanity, and see everything in a spiritual frame of mind. In order to gain such a spiritual frame of mind, per­sonal discipline, austerity, penance, good conduct, selfless service, yogic practices, medita­tion, worship, prayer, as well as the company of holy persons, and self-inquiry are needed to purify the body, mind, and intellect. Progressive self–enlargement has been the impulse of the nature; one must learn to give up lust, anger, greed, and establish mastery over the mind and five senses (hearing, touch, sight, taste, smell). Whilst striving for excellence in all undertakings one must maintain equanimity in success and failure, gain and loss, and pain and pleasure. The most wonderful thing about the Bhagavad Gita is that it is a source of guidance to everyone; Bhagavad Gita is the supreme knowledge and the sound personification of the Absolute and the Eternal. It is true that in the course of time, social problems do change, value systems do alter, and there are also values that do not change. Illogical situations of life and the same kind of riddles that confronts  us was experienced by our forebears; it is only natural that we become beset with doubts and hesitation; and in this situation we take the route that leads to spiritual path.

The Bhagavad Gita is accepted as a book of wisdom and the Bhagavad Gita does not conclude its teaching with the ideal of a recluse, but with the model of a wise ruler of the people who can bring prosperity, victory, progress and well established justice. This epic teaches a sincere aspirant how to become well established in life and to fully uphold his position no matter whatever vocation or career the reader is into. The inscription placed at the end of every chapter of the Bhagavad Gita reveals its glory and majesty. Sung by the God himself it has been given the name of Srimad Bhagavad Gita, in it is embodied the essence of the Upanishads. This epic is therefore designated as an Upanishad; this epic has been termed as the science of Brahma because it leads to discernment of the ultimate truth and about the reality of God in his absolute and formless state. This scripture is termed Yoga because it reveals the practice of the cultivation of objectivity. The Bhagavad Gita makes public the need for intelligent acceptance and trust of the Divine, an intimate knowledge of our inner moorings and recommends a healthy adherence to our social roles.

The struggle between Prarabdha (fate) and Purushartha (effort) is central to the Mahabharata,   before the war when Dhritaraashtra is being told over and over again to make peace with the Paandavas he keeps saying whatever is fated to happen will happen.  He thus believed in Prarabdha exclusively.  Had he exercised the minimum amount of Purushartha there would have been no war and India would not have been robbed of all the valiant men of those days.  Only ten survived the war: Lord Krishna, the Five Pandavas, Satyaki, Krpipacharya, Kritwarma and Ashwashthma. Gita teaches us to do nishkama karma but karma we must do. There are many other passages in the Mahabharata that support this view, e.g., in the Shantiparva Bhishma says that prarabhdha is like good soil and purushartha is like good seed. You need both to get a good crop!  The Gita clearly has a spiritual connotation – but it also has a strong practical connotation, useful in everyday life. So, the Gita does not believe in artificial compartments like spiritual life and practical life.  When everyday practical life becomes spiritual then one has attained the true meaning of the Gita. WHAT IS TAKING PLACE IS PREDISTINED; THERE IS NO POWER ON EARTH CAPABLE OF ARRESTING THE COURSE OF THIS DEVASTATION, IT WILL END IN THE TRIUMPH OF RIGHTEOUSNESS AND VIRTUE.

In the Srimad Bhagavad Gita Lord Krishna spoke in 574 verses Arjuna in 85 verses Sanjaya in 40 verses and Dhritharashtra in 1 verse  Thus the sum adds to 700 slokas.

In continuation Bhagavad Gita Chapter 1 Arjuna Visaada Yoga; 1st part

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About Sridharan Lakshmanan 12 Articles
Retired officer from Syndicate Bank
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