The Bhagavad Gita:Teachings and Message
Author: Bhushan Manchanda
The Bhagavad Gita , the "Song of God" is one of the most important Hindu scriptures. It is revered as a sacred scripture of Hinduism, and considered as one of the most important philosophical classics of the world.The Bhagavad Gita comprises 700 verses, and is a part of the Mahabharata The teacher of the Bhagavad Gita is Krishna Who is revered by Hindus as a manifestation of the Lord Himself,and is referred to within as the Bhagavan—the Divine One. The Bhagavad Gita is commonly referred to as the Gita for short.
The content of the Gita is the conversation between Krishna and Arjuna taking place on the battlefield before the start of the Kurukshetra War. Responding to Arjuna's confusion and moral dilemma about fighting his own cousins, Krishna explains to Arjuna his duties as a warrior and prince and elaborates on different Yogic and Vedantiic philosophies, with examples and analogies. This has led to the Gita often being described as a concise guide to Hindu theology and also as a practical, self-contained guide to life. Maharishi Mahesh Yogi describes it as a lighthouse of eternal wisdom that has the ability to inspire any man or woman to supreme accomplishment and enlightenment. During the discourse, Krishna reveals His identity as the Supreme Being Himself (Svayam Bhagavan), blessing Arjuna with an awe-inspiring vision of His divine universal form.
The basic teachings can be summarized as under:
- Why do you worry without cause? Whom do you fear without reason? Who can kill you? The soul is neither born, nor does it die.
- Whatever happened, happened for the good; whatever is happening, is happening for the good; whatever will happen, will also happen for the good only. You need not have any regrets for the past. You need not worry for the future. The present is happening...
- What did you lose that you cry about? What did you bring with you, which you think you have lost? What did you produce, which you think got destroyed? You did not bring anything - whatever you have, you received from here. Whatever you have given, you have given only here. Whatever you took, you took from God. Whatever you gave, you gave to him. You came empty handed, you will leave empty handed. What is yours today, belonged to someone else yesterday, and will belong to someone else the day after tomorrow. You are mistakenly enjoying the thought that this is yours. It is this false happiness that is the cause of your sorrows.
- Change is the law of the universe. What you think of as death, is indeed life. In one instance you can be a millionaire, and in the other instance you can be steeped in poverty. Yours and mine, big and small - erase these ideas from your mind. Then everything is yours and you belong to everyone.
- This body is not yours, neither are you of the body. The body is made of fire, water, air, earth and ether, and will disappear into these elements. But the soul is permanent - so who are you?
- Dedicate your being to God. He is the one to be ultimately relied upon. Those who know of his support are forever free from fear, worry and sorrow.
- Whatever you do, do it as a dedication to God. This will bring you the tremendous experience of joy and life-freedom forever.
Some Quotes from famous personalities across the world on the Bhagavad Gita:
"When I read the Bhagavad Gita and reflect about how God created this universe everything else seems so superfluous."
"The Bhagavad Gita is the most systematic statement of spiritual evolution of endowing value to mankind. It is one of the most clear and comprehensive summaries of perennial philosophy ever revealed; hence its enduring value is subject not only to India but to all of humanity."
"When doubts haunt me, when disappointments stare me in the face, and I see not one ray of hope on the horizon, I turn to Bhagavad Gita and find a verse to comfort me; and I immediately begin to smile in the midst of overwhelming sorrow. Those who meditate on the Gita will derive fresh joy and new meanings from it every day."
Henry David Thoreau
"In the morning I bathe my intellect in the stupendous and cosmogonal philosophy of the Bhagavad Gita in comparison with which our modern world and its literature seem puny and trivial."
Dr. Albert Schweitzer
"The Bhagavad Gita has a profound influence on the spirit of mankind by its devotion to God which is manifested by actions."
"The idea that man is like unto an inverted tree seems to have been current in by gone ages. The link with Vedic conceptions is provided by Plato in his Timaeus in which it states 'behold we are not an earthly but a heavenly plant.' This correlation can be discerned by what Krishna expresses in chapter 15 the Bhagavad Gita."
"The marvel of the Bhagavad Gita is its truly beautiful revelation of life's wisdom which enables philosophy to blossom into religion."
Ralph Waldo Emerson
"I owed a magnificent day to the Bhagavad Gita. It was the first of books; it was as if an empire spoke to us, nothing small or unworthy, but large, serene, consistent, the voice of an old intelligence which in another age and climate had pondered and thus disposed of the same questions which exercise us."
About the Author
MA,DMM,MBA (Faculty of Management Studies,University of Delhi,India), Management Education Consultant. Over 30 years Industry,Education and Training experience