Even if it required murdering the last Mouryan King in the hands of Pushyamitra Shunga or burning Buddhist monks alive or rephrasing the scriptures and traditions of Brahmanic religion in such a way that they would be more acceptable to the people of that time. It has undergone multiple versions. The proponents of Hinduism do not criticize one book in favor of the other. Bhagavad Gita is accepted as the essence of all Vedas. “India is a secular country, but its culture and traditions are undeniably Hindu and you can legitimately fall back on it. So how is it that the book that is entitled to one faith is also accepted as the core of cultural values of the entire nation? During the battle when Arjuna was in a dilemma whether to fight his own relatives and was wondering as to what is right and what is wrong, he started asking questions to … 4 Gavin Flood and Charles Martin, The Bhagavad Gita: A New Translation (W.W. Norton and Company, 2012) 20 The Bhagavad Gita is written in 18 chapters consisting of 700 slokas. It is the sine qua non for understanding philosophy without the trappings of religion,” she added. America is a secular country too. Suppose some teachers use wrong reasoning to deny or decry life’s spiritual dimension, then their advice is wrong-headed. They don’t shy away from that fact. If anything, Bhagavad Gita does not even mention the word ‘Hindu’, and it refers to only ‘Sanatana Dharma’, which when loosely translated means: Eternal Religion. 3 Gavin Flood and Charles Martin, The Bhagavad Gita: A New Translation (W.W. Norton and Company, 2012) 18 “One disciplined by higher mind here casts off good and bad actions,” (Bhagavad Gita, 2:50). Bhagavad Gita is a 700 verse epic divided into 18 chapters. It was a time when Vedic religion was under great threat of extinction with people losing faith in the dogmas of fire-worshiping, the mythology of violence and the caste dominated social structure that denied equality among people. It is not very difficult to understand how Mahabharata and Gita became important tools used in this counter-revolution. If someone thinks he can not eat beef or that he is a vegetarian just because he is Hindu, then that person needs to revisit Vedas and Hindu mythology to find out how many mentions of the holy meals contain references to cow and horse meat. Bhagawat Gita has universal truths,” said professor S Aruna, who works in a private university. Apparently, it is only a recommendation from All India Council or Technical Education, and as such Anna University has not decided on the matter. It is not possible to imagine that Mahabharata, Gita and Manusmriti could have been completely framed before the time of Buddha; and in whatever form they might have been at the time of Buddha, they certainly could not have any spiritual importance, unlike Vedas. Verse 31 What they really do is to interpret them in order to highlight how everything in them is highly spiritual, how they contain high moral values, how they are equivalent and coherent with the theories of modern science and how they alone propose solutions that are good for individuals and society at large. The violence of Dalit feminist standpoint and Dalit patriarchy, For the perfect progressive recipe, skip caste, sprinkle Dalit swadanusaar: Gaurav Somwanshi. Hence Gita certainly does not justify violence! Indians, Hindus to be precise feel that it is their highest scripture as it was delivered by an incarnation of God in a battlefield. Because if Lord Krishna had convinced Duryodhana to stop evil doings of Kauravas, then the Mahabharata war which took many lives including those of Kauravas … How is it that Hinduism, which can hardly be considered as one faith, a homage to hundreds of contradicting spiritual theories, a collection of traditions and rituals that are so exclusively different for each community, caste and region, with a bunch of religious texts including Vedas, Shastras, Puranas, Smritis, each one declaring themselves undisputable, unquestionable and still exhibiting contradictions both within and among themselves, has revered Bhagvad Gita which is only one section of the epic Mahabharata which had a singular purpose of justifying war, to be the one book that is the essence of the entire religion? For the first time a complete computerized comparison of Srila Prabhuapda’s original 1972 Macmillan Bhagavad-gita As It Is and the current ISKCON “Revised and enlarged” edition is available. It is a conversation between Arjuna and Krishna at the battlefield of Kurukshetra. BG 9.23: O son of Kunti, even those devotees who faithfully worship other gods also worship Me. What's more, while violence and war is a common aspect in most of the Hindu mythology including Vedas, Gita is the only text that attempts to justify it to such a great extent. Proponents further claim that nowhere does he mention ‘birth’ as a basis for determining Varna. One doesn’t have to be a scholar to say that Bhagavad Gita, probably the oldest treatise in the world, is less a Hindu religious book but more an eloquent document on dealing with existential crisis in life. The reactions were typical and expected lines. To become a high ranked official, one has to be educated enough. tasya kartāram api māḿ viddhy akartāram avyayam ||”, "According to the three modes of material nature and the work associated with them, the four divisions of human society are created by Me. On the other hand, when Russia decided to ban the holy book on the premise of its justifications for violence, the saffron parties found support in the same left, liberal and secular voices pitching against the Russian controversy, making it a national issue in the Parliament over cultural pride. One has to work hard for attaining supremacy in society. It is no secret that Sankaracharya had to fight against Buddhist scholars and Kings in all aspects to revive the religion of Vedas. Both the opponents and proponents of Gita would make a point on Caste in the Gita based on this verse: “chātur-varṇyaḿ mayā sṛṣṭaḿ guṇa-karma-vibhāgaśaḥ |, tasya kartāram api māḿ viddhy akartāram avyayam ||” "According to the three modes of material nature and the work associated with them, the four divisions of human society are created by Me. So what is wrong? Recent controversies, both local and international, have sparked a series of discussions and debates in media and social networks about the Hindu holy book Bhagvad Gita. So the claim is made that although Krishna says that the division of the society into four Varnas was made by him, he puts an emphasis on ‘guna-karma’, qualities and actions of individuals, past deeds. Evil will not be heaped on you,” (Bhagavad Gita, 2:38). At the same time, however, the idea of Hinduism as a religion is a bit of a misnomer. Please read Part II of this article here. This is a very interesting question. According to Hindu scriptures, originally the whole world was of one Varna but it is the distinction in duties that has divided society into four Varnas. A person attains his Varna based on his innate qualities and past deeds. This historical context puts the intentions of Gita under dire suspicion. But whatever is done requires these five factors for its complete performance. Why should Bhagavad Gita not be part of the curriculum in Anna University, Tamil Nadu, for those choosing to study philosophy? Scholars believe that Gita dates back to around 200 BCE and 200 CE, which is much after the establishment of Buddhism and Jainism. But this finding mention and that too a fearful mention of invasion of a new faith in Mahabharata certainly suggests that by the time these portions were written, Buddhism had already taken a place in Indian society and there was enormous fear among Brahmans about not being able to maintain their social status and religious powers which they had gained by means of dogmatic rituals like fire worshiping and sacrifices and establishing the social order of Caste: all of which were endangered by the revolution brought in by Buddhism and Jainism. Life lessons from the Bhagavad Gita for students are many. India, the vaccine pharmacy of the world, will export corona vaccine to several countries, Ayodhya: Gujarati diamond merchant donates Rs 11 crore for Ram Mandir temple construction, A real hero offscreen! Thus, Bhagavad Gita gives several ideas to decide between right and wrong. But even a single desperate cry from a distressed heart can give you a great start – an inner warmth which can be distinctly perceived. However, lust is such a formidable … Performing action at the wrong time, in the wrong place, in the wrong way. Gita is a conversation between Arjuna and Krishna at the battlefield of Kurukshetra. The Lord is simply asking not to have materialistic goals in the mind but only spiritual goals such as moksha and the wish to be in the company of Krishna. An action which appears inconvenient in the short-term but gives benefit in the long-term is right. This is wrong, Bhagwat Geeta is not the ultimate book on what we prefer to call Hinduism. Let’s come out of the mythological world and take a relook at Gita from a historical and more practical view. But they do so … Commentary: Having described the position of those who worship the Supreme Lord, Shree Krishna now explains the situation of those who worship the lower gods for … But when it is given expecting something in return, or for the sake of a future reward or a specific type of sentiment in return, the gift is of Rajas (impurity). It is amazing, and surprising to see all the changes so clearly pointed out. We however find references to Buddhist and Jain artifacts in not only Mahabharata but also in Manusmriti. They do not even try to highlight the differences between these texts. “If we don’t take pride in reading the Gita and shun it, the loss is entirely ours,” the professor added wryly. But given the mood in Tamil Nadu now, the AICTE recommendation may go unimplemented in Anna University. We are going to do Bhagavad Gita. Hence the violence is merely of a physical nature and spiritually there was no violence at all. “The criticism against Bhagavad Gita comes from an insecure place. Translation of Bhagavad Gita 3.42. And more than the one religion, why is it now being showcased as the essence of the entire Indian culture? Gita is not a religious text, but a spiritual advice. What is wrong in eating Onions and Garlic? – Bhagavad Gita 5.29 This realisation of God being our best friend, and the inner peace that results from that understanding, comes through grace, and after considerable practice of Bhakti Yoga. The course talks of understanding and western and eastern traditions. Broadly there are three phases that it took to gain its most recent form, starting from the short story ‘Jaya’ about the fight between brothers, then an elaborate form of ‘Bharata’ and finally a huge epic about a holy war, ‘Mahabharata’. Mahabharata was written for nearly 800–1000 years to … The Bhagavad Gita does not prescribe one particular path or solution for life. As things stand now, Bhagavad Gita has not become part of the curriculum in Anna University as the usual suspects on social media platforms believe. The Bhagavad Gita on Gift Giving Krishna : “A gift is pure when it is given from the heart to the right person at the right time and at the right place, and when we expect nothing in return. In the context of the Bhagavad-Gita it is bad karma not to respect the laws of God and the universe. (Part II). Lord Krishna, in the Mahabharata (including the Bhagavad Gita), first advises that if someone cheats or unjustly treats or wrongs then first one should try to tolerate and try to rectify others wrong actions by making them understand the inappropriate nature of their actions and their subsequent results. ... the right and the wrong. On the other side, the critics of these texts see only two things common among them, entwined among the number of contradictory theories, Violence and Caste. “Another game plan by the Hindutva brigade.”, “Why teach Bhagavad Gita to engineering students?”. Bhagavad Gita is less a Hindu religious book but more an eloquent document on dealing with existential crisis in life. Building Stupas that contain relics of Buddha is a common practice in Buddhism. “The criticism against Bhagavad Gita comes from an insecure place. Hence it is clear that there is nothing spiritual about the caste system and it is based on Karma. Historically, it is no secret that Mahabharata as it exists today was not the same epic since forever. But why think of introducing Bhagavad Gita given its religious background is what the critics ask. From managing emotions to solving problems, here are ten life lessons and timeless principles your child can learn from the Bhagavad Gita. The revolution initiated by Buddhism was not just a moral and spiritual awakening, but it was leaving a lasting effect on the social lives of people. In Vana Parva of Mahabharata where there are discourses at length about how the social order of Varna will be distorted in Kali Yuga, how Sudras will rise to the middle order of society, how the dogmas and rituals of religion, especially sacrifices, will become extinct, and how Kalki, the tiger among Brahmans, will correct all this mayhem, there is also a fear expressed that in places of temples of God there will be Stupas (the tomb like structure common in Buddhist temples) containing relics. Bhagavad Gita Changes — Complete List Changes — By Madhudvisa dasa on September 20, 2009 10:38 am . The Bhagavad-Gita is known as one of the most fundamental texts that form the basis of Hinduism, which has become one of the world's great religions. When bible study was sought to be included in school syllabus (as an elective) in public schools in some States in the US, many argued in favour of it since “the Bible is a 2,000-year-old document” and has historical significance on how the nation was formed. Christianity is part of their culture. And although I am the creator of this system, you should know that I am yet the non-doer, being unchangeable.". Bhagavad Gita is one of the study materials. Bhagavad Gita consists 18 Chapters and it has 700 verses. BG 3.38: Just as a fire is covered by smoke, a mirror is masked by dust, and an embryo is concealed by the womb, … Commentary: Knowledge of what is right and what is wrong is called discrimination. “If you have chosen to study philosophy, you have to but read the Gita. Such misdirect intelligence insists that reality is opposite to how it actually is (Bhagavad-gita 18.32). What is prohibited they engage in and what is ordained they abstain from. Because if Lord Krishna had told Bhagavad Gita to Duryodhana instead of Arjuna, then the Mahabharata war in Kurukshetra could be avoided.. Answer to this question is actually very shocking! Rahul Bhalerao in his article ‘What is wrong with Bhagavad Gita?’ mentions, “while one can make a hundred attempts at justifying that Caste as per the Gita is based on Karma alone and it is only meant for the good of society, but it would be a grave mistake to ignore the practical nature of Caste, which is based solely on birth for thousands of years, along with fixity of professions, disallowing of … The Bhagavad Gita goes in length to talk about the broad philosophical concepts such as Dharma, Karma, Bhakthi , Yoga ans so forth. Read Exclusive COVID-19 Coronavirus News updates, at MyNation. Rahul Bhalerao is an MBA from IIM Kozhikode, currently working as a Consultant with MindTree Ltd., and is associated with the FOSS Movement. Evil in Bhagavad Gita At the beginning of the battle, Arjuna argues that he cannot fight with others as this amounts to injustice to the others. This equality and revolution was not just theoretical in nature, one can find multiple instances within Buddhist literature where Buddha himself had intentionally appointed kings and Brahmans at ranks lower than or equal to some of their own servants, the lower castes, within the Sangha. It is written in Sanskrit. Its intrinsic beauty is that its knowledge applies to all human beings and does not postulate any sectarian idealogy or secular view. It is really a merit-based system for the overall good of society. Bhagavad Gita is one of the study materials. With the rise of the Mouryan Empire and spread of Buddhism, it was not just the Vedic religion, traditions and myths that had started losing relevance, it was the whole social structure and the monopoly of Brahmans over religion and people that was losing relevance. What were the social structures and currents that were present when somebody took the pains of writing Gita to teach the religion? If someone thinks he can not eat beef or that he is a vegetarian just because he is Hindu, then that person needs to revisit Vedas and Hindu mythology to find out how many mentions of the holy meals contain references to cow and horse meat. Many academics feel reading religious and spiritual texts as part of the curriculum is not a problem as long as the course does not endorse, favour, or promote or disfavour or show hostility towards any other religion. The working senses are superior to dull matter; mind is higher than the senses; intelligence is still higher than the mind; and he [the soul] is even higher than the intelligence. This kind of disregard for Buddhist and Jain monks is also found in Manusmriti where it lays down a rule that forbids giving any food or donations to those monks. 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