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The Bagawat Gita teachings are more relevant today!
The epic Mahabharata contain legendary examples!
How we treat gain and loss? Everyone here exult over gain and mourn over loss! This is natural tendency for common worldly people but self-realized persons treat both gain and loss as equal, since they know that gain or loss is a temporary phenomenon and hence no bearing over our inner peace or joy. The body and mind are so created to undergo the effects of past deeds committed in several previous births. There are no balancing effects like financial companies, where profit and loss are combined to arrive at the final balance. In god’s book of accounts, each effect has to be undergone separately. Our good deeds will never negate evil deeds and hence each act of commission or omission is separately dealt with! Hence we find that even evil doers and corrupt people enjoy the comforts of life (due to the merits done in previous births) while good natured people undergo much sufferings (due to the evil deeds performed in previous births)
Even while undergoing sufferings due to the past effects, good natured people continue to remain good! This is due to the grace of god. They develop tolerance since they are aware that the sufferings are the effects of past evil deeds! But the evil doers while enjoying their past merits continue to remain evil since they become full of ego and selfish. Sooner, their merits will be exhausted and they will start reaping the bitter fruits of sins. The great Mahabharata epic is an eye opener to entire humanity! Similarly, the teachings of Bhagwat Gita, in the war field, by Sri Krishna to Arjun are an eye opener to most of the people of the world. In essence, the teachings contain the duty of man towards himself, society and the universe is well narrated. How one should perform his legitimate duties in the world without harming any and with the welfare of everyone in the view is finely dealt with. If one goes through the teachings, there seems lot of contradictions in the teachings. To Arjun, the Lord told him to take up his bow and engage in war! At some point of teaching, he tells that none should be hated in the world. Both these seems contradictory! But it is not so! Arjun was a Kshatriya by birth (warrior clan). He should not avoid a legitimate war!
Karma yoga as per Gita!
The dejection of Arjuna!
Arjun was not in favor of war in which millions will be brutally killed; many more warriors will be maimed for life. The after effects of any war are history! Many families will lose the bread earning member. Many wives will be widowed and many children will become orphans! Why should there be wholesale tragedy? Arjun questioned Krishna, who was driving his war chariot! First Arjuna asked him to drive the chariot to the middle space between the two armies, from where he can look at the opposite army! What he saw was baffling to him. He saw his own great grandfather, uncles and many of his friends in the opposing army! He saw his revered preceptor who taught him archery. He thought within himself. Those people are venerable ones who are to be honored and respected. How I can aim my arrow cruelly at them. The hands of his great grandfather fondled him many times and embraced him with lot of affection. How can I pierce his chest with my arrows? He could not view any in the opposite army as his foe! All were his dear once! Then he thought, ‘what am I going to gain by engaging in this war? After bloodshed if I gain my Kingdom, how can I remain peaceful? It would be better to become a mendicant than winning the war! He told Krishna, “I can’t proceed; my hands are shivering, my bow is sliding! Why should I fight with my own clan?
Thus said Prabhupada!
Krishna counsels Arjuna!
Krishna saw ‘this is the opportune time to clarify the doubts of the dejected mind of Arjuna! The Lord rebuked him, “how come this pusillanimity Oh Arjuna? This is not the first time, you are entering war zone! Several times, you decimated your enemies in the war field! Why this sudden dejection? You prattle that you are to aim the arrows at your beloved grandpa, preceptor uncles and friends. How the war started? You were cheated by the Kauravas in the dice game, who usurped your all including the Kingdom. Finally your elder brother pledged: Draupadi”, the queen of Pandavas! None of you, the mighty brothers could save her since all of you were already pledged by your elder brother Dharmaja. You people lost everything including the honor of the queen. At last Draupadhi was humiliated in the open hall of Kingdom in front of the venerable elders and preceptors with whom you are going to fight. None of them could open their mouth against the wicked Duryodhana and Duschasana who were emboldened to disgrace the queen! Ultimately I had to intervene and saved her honor! Have you forgotten the vow Draupadhi made on that day? She told me, she won’t do her hair unless she anoint in with the blood of Kaurava brother who touched her hair and tried to disrobe her? Without entering and fighting with the wicked clan, how her vows could be fulfilled? Those who were dumb to the unholy and unrighteous actions of the Prince Duryodhan and Duschasan had to undergo the punishments. The war was thrust on you. You never desired it. As a warrior, it is your legitimate duty to engage in the just war, where unrighteous people will meet their end. Never consider anyone here as your kith and kin!
The Western concept of Gita!
The gist of the teachings of Gita!
The gist of the teaching is this; “Do your duty without being anxious about the results; Leave or surrender the results to god! You are here to fight the evil with the grace of Lord. Where there is righteousness, the Lord will be Present! This is applicable to every being in the world. These teachings do not pertain to any particular religion or region or community. Gita is the Universal guide book to one and all. We have to imbibe the teachings in our heart and practice them in real life. Gita is for entire mankind!