Bhagavad Gita (Essence)

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Bhagavad Gita is the Essence of ancient Hindu/Indian scriptures. It includes metaphysics, ethics, yogasastra, the science of reality and the art of union with reality. Bhagavad Gita is an excellent work that encompassed everything relating to human beings. Hindus consider it as the foremost of all spiritual texts available. Bhagavad Gita belonged to masses (a commoner) who look for wisdom in life. The teachings contained in Bhagavad Gita had universal appeal. Any human being belonging to any religion, faith or belief can benefit from words of wisdom. Essence of the Bhagavad Gita is presented in simple words below. Early in the work, Arjuna accepts Krishna as his spiritual master and a guide.

1: Lamenting the Consequence of War

As the opposing armies stand poised for battle, Arjuna, the mighty warrior, sees his intimate relatives, teachers and friends in both armies ready to fight and sacrifice their lives. Overcome by grief and pity, Arjuna's mind becomes bewildered, and he gives up his determination to fight.
Dharma (or righteousness) & Conflicts
  • Is the battle of Kurukshetra the righteous one? Was it a war between two cousins or was it a war of good and evil?
  • Conflicts occur because of 2 opposing parties interpreting Dharma differently
  • Fear of loosing or fear of making mistakes, leads to all problems. Deserting during a war (or any work/project) is cowardice (abandoning people who are behind you or fighting with/for you).

2: The Eternal Reality of the Souls Immortality

The Lord explains the process of transmigration, the nature of selfless service to the Supreme and the characteristics of a self-realized person. Knowledge cannot be given to anyone who does not aspire for it.

3: The Eternal Duties of Human Beings

Everyone must engage in some sort of activity, without selfish motives.

4: Approaching the Ultimate Truth

Transcendental knowledge-the spiritual knowledge of the soul, of God, and their relationship-is both purifying and liberating. Such knowledge is the fruit of selfless devotional action (karma-yoga).
PAA: Perception Action Acceptance
  • Perception - We do not know reality. What we see or perceive, defines our universal view.
    There is no right or wrong view. But there can be different views, because we are all unique and different.
  • Action - Act as response to environment. One can not be idle. Inaction is also wrong like a bad action.
    Good action assures Good reaction or Pleasant environment and vice versa. You have control over your action only.
  • Acceptance - Accept results, what ever it may be. You have no control over results any way.
Expectations Leads to Misery
If you want to help someone or do some work, just do it! Do it for your satisfaction, but not to get anything in return. Stop expecting and start living!
KARMA has its way of payback at the right time! Give good, Get good!
Never get “too” emotionally attached with anyone in this world.

5: Action and Renunciation

Outwardly performing all actions but inwardly renouncing their fruits, the wise attains peace, detachment, and bliss.
Traditionally there are 4 paths: Self-less service (karma yoga); self-discipline (raja yoga); way of wisdom (jnana yoga); and devotion (bhakti yoga).
Teachings of karma yoga, emphasize the accumulation of good merit (good karma) to help us grow in dharma by planting the seeds (causes) that will one day help us reap the harvest of a pure mind (effect). “actions done while remembering the one and without a desire for their intended results, purify the mind and are a means towards liberation“ (upadesa saram, verse 3)
Raja yoga highlights the practices of asana, pranayama and meditation. Its emphasis on force and self-mastery is immense.
Jnana yoga teaches that, there is no individual really capable of controlling or influencing anything. Everything is the one supreme consciousness – one, without a second. One simply learns to accept reality as it is.
Bhakti yoga asks for a passive submission to a higher power. It teaches us worship our beloved by surrendering and there is no room for the ego. Everything is centered upon letting go and falling in love with love itself. The bhakta prefers a form (or an object), while some (rationalists) prefer the formless.
Whatever the path, all the great people agree that there is simply one underlying truth that pervades all. The truth is one, yet the paths are many. One should see diversity and need to find ways to reconcile differences into a harmonious balance.
In truth there are no paths, there is only truth, only one reality, only supreme bliss. By its very nature true love is boundless, inseparable, uncontainable. The path of yoga is the love – it is the light. Learn to look through the eyes of love; do not focus on whether the ray of light has a red, blue or green hue.
All diversity must ultimately reconcile into oneness.

6: The Science of Self Realization

Astanga-yoga, a mechanical meditative practice, controls the mind and the senses and focuses concentration on Paramatma (the Supersoul, the form of the Lord situated in the heart). This practice culminates in samadhi, full consciousness of the Supreme.

7: Knowledge of the Ultimate Truth

Lord is the Supreme Truth, the supreme cause and sustaining force of everything, both material and spiritual.

8: Attainment of Salvation

By remembering Lord in devotion throughout one's life, and especially at the time of death, one can attain to Lord's supreme abode, beyond the material world. Those who think of the Lord tirelessly and pray relentlessly and perform their duty perfectly, they reach the Lord and never come back into the world.

9: Confidential Knowledge of the Ultimate Truth

10: The Infinite Glories of the Ultimate Truth

11: The Vision of the Universal Form

12: The Path of Devotion

13: The Individual Consciousness and Ultimate Consciousness

14: The Three Qualities of Material Nature

15: Realization of the Ultimate Truth

16: The Divine and the Demoniac Natures Defined

17: The Three Divisions of Material Existence

True Knowledge or Wisdom
  • The ultimate purpose of Vedic knowledge is to detach one self from the entanglement of the material world and try to understand/enjoy presence of Lord every where. That is bliss.
  • Everything is contained in Almighty and Almighty is in everything. All creations are Lord's manifestations. All events are Lord's leela or dance. Lord will appear as many times required in any form (through its creations) for our Good.
  • The easiest (best path) is absolute, unconditional, loving surrender to Lord. Lord knows everything and will take care of us. Path of Knowledge is difficult as Lord Almighty, can not be understood easily (Infinitely Unknown).

18: Final Revelations of the Ultimate Truth

The end

Krishna told Arjuna, "Forget about ordinary paths Arjuna, resort to ME alone with single-minded devotion and I will absolve you of all sin, surrender to Me". Arjuna accepts the Lord with unquestioning faith and cheerful heart.
  • சித்தம் சிவலிங்கம் ஹ்ரிதயம் ஹ்ரிஷிகேசம் | சரிரம் பஞ்சபூதம் த்வம் பரப்ரஹ்மம்
    Mind/Intelligence is Sivalinga (seat of wisdom). Heart/emotions/life force is Rishikesa meaning master of senses and emotion. Body is five natural elements. True self (or essence) is Ultimate reality. All are governed by physical, mental and emotional forces.
  • தோற்றம் மாயம். உள்ளது சிவம் | சித்தம் கலக்கம். வேண்டுவது சாந்தம்
    What is seen is illusion. What is present is Sivam or ultimate reality. Mind is always confused or agitated. What you need is peace or balanced mind, nothing else
  • கூத்தனில்லாத கூத்திது. உணர்வது எளிது | அறிவது அரிது. விளக்க இயலாது
    Everything is the cosmic dance or God's play (with hidden or missing dancer). We all can feel/enjoy. But very difficult to understand. Impossible to describe.
  • Ultimately even the concept of Oneness must too be dropped to be in a state of Unity – no thought, idea nor concept can penetrate into the stillness of Pure Being. The feeling one has after climbing to the summit of a very high mountain. There are many paths to the top, but from the very summit, nowhere else to climb, you stand upon a pathless path.

Uddhava Gita

Uddhava Gita or Hamsa Gita, consists of Krishna's final discourse to Uddhava before Krishna leaves the world. Comprising more than 1000 verses, contains the story of an Avadhuta (may be Dattatreya). Sri Dattatreya, who Lord Krishna quotes in The Uddhava Gita, has been evoked as a guru for environmental education. Sri Dattatreya gained enlightenment by observing the world, which provided Him with 24 instructors. Its core message is "never judge by surface appearances but always seek a deeper Truth". The land (or world) is sacred, an aspect of God, and a puzzle. The Uddhava Gita offers the reader philosophy, sublime poetry, practical guidance, and, ultimately, hope for enlightenment.
In Uddhava Gita, Krishna explains about spirituality, supremacy of devotion, and paths to enlightenment. Mind is the root cause of all miseries in the world. The mind is a victim to the illusion of diversity; the good and evil, and discrimination between various types of actions. Krishna stresses the importance of the three yogas of self-discipline. Sankhya is perceived to be atheistic thought, as it teaches the existence of 25 basic constituents of matter derived from Parkriti. Yoga is related to Sankhya, which is a system of self-analysis and self-discipline. Uddhava Gita like Bhagavadgita seeks to synthesize the yoga and Sankhya systems. Uddhava Gita also discusses the Mimamsa and importance of correct performance of Vedic rituals. The results of the ritual are dependent upon the correct performance and also on those that performing.

Vidura Gita

Vidura was a half-brother of Dhritaraashtra and Pandu, born to Parishrami, the slave maid. Vidura is supposed to be the very embodiment of dharma (some texts treat him as incarnation of Yama). He was a friend of the Pandavas, guiding them through out (documented as Vidura Gita). Part of his work is available under Vidhura Gita or Vidhura Neethi on conduct, fairplay and the art of governing and politics in the form of a dialogue between Vidhura and King Dhritharashtra. It is included in Udyoga Parva of Mahabharata.
The Vidhura Gita is full of wisdom and deals with social and individual morality. These values are universal transcending place and time. But unless these timeless values are practised and form the moral fibre of a society, there cannot be any hope or salvation for upliftment and annihilation and destruction will be the result just like Dhritharashtra’s defeat and ruin in the Mahabharatha.
Vidhura was considered divine, avatar of Yama (God of Judgement/death). Vidhura Gita is one of the basic texts used for developing Bagawat gita and introducing Divine Krishna into Mahabaratha, as teacher and guide. Selected verses from Vidhura Gita are given below: