HUMATA, HUKHTA, HUVARSHTA
What I learned from the Gita and my favorite theme is the fact that Arjuna is having this incredible discussion with an entity (Krishna) about the war that he is having. It seems like there are 2 wars going on the actual war in the physical world and the war inside Arjuna. It seems to me that Arjuna was praying to Krishna for guidance and he got the deity's attention. This discussion he has with Krishna, the war within himself, I relate it to the war everybody has within ourselves every day. The Gita is about a war and Arjuna is trying to make the best choice undersatnding every little detail about what he is doing and trying to accomplish, there are many lessons to be learned from this book. Now, if we think about ourselves and the war each one of us faces every day, then we may learn many lessons regardless of how irrelevant the war within might be at that moment.
The lesion of self-knowing the right path to take was of strong influence throughout reading the Gita. Battling the fight between what the mind wants vs. what your heart desires. In the end they are both desires, but only one is the path for which I know I must endeavor. This idea seems rather difficult to balance, in my mind for no matter which desire we succumb to will there not be regrets? Perhaps the understanding that such regrets are part of one’s Dharma may create an easier path with in my mind.; allowing myself to be at complete ease with my dharma. I understand that to fully grasp one’s Dharma we must look within Another notion I took to heart is the knowledge of speaking the truth with kindness. Being coherent with our honest may bring challenging times but in order to live a genuine life it must be done.
Leandro, you bring good insight to the conversation. I'm glad you mentioned that there were two wars going on. The spiritual war going on within Arjuna, and the physical war on the battlefield. War seems to serve as the literary device of symbolism. I am under the impression that it symbolizes the angst, lamentation, and grief which are felt when faced with many of life’s trials and tribulations. There are two ways to approach the situation Arjuna is in, either surrender or fight. As he is weighing his options, he is troubled with what is worth fighting for. Krishna says to fight to carry on the lineage of spiritual values and I agree that this is a valid reason to fight as the repercussion of not carrying on the lineage is to dwell in hell. So either fight or dwell in hell – I’d prefer to fight.
I absolutely love the idea of dharma discussed in the Gita. It implies that we all have our own purpose and duties in this world that needs to be fulfilled. I cannot pursue the dharma of my neighbor, my soul has its own calling, it is torturous to walk a path that wasn't forged for my feet. And as i walk my own path the only thing that I should cogitate is whether I am walking my best strut.
Maria BeltranThe following excerpt from the Gita really spoke to me and I felt that I was meant to read it at the time I did. ''The self cannot be pierced by weapons or burned by fire; water cannot wet it, nor can the wind dry i. The Self cannot be pierced or burned, made wet or dry. It is everlasting and infinite, standing on the motionless foundations of eternity. The Self is unmanifested, beyond all thought, beyond all change. Knowing this, you should not grieve."I have spent the past 4 years grieving a loved ones death, having gruesome nightmares about it and wondering how I would ever accept something so horrible. It was hard for me to understand how everything that makes up a person can just dissolve into nothingness. I spent the same four years worrying about the time of my own and my loved ones deaths. Now I understand that I should not lament or have fear because I am so much more than my body or who I am in this life. Death is inevitable for the living and it is not necessarily something we should sorrow. The Gita helped me realize this and finally be at peace with the idea of death.
I thoroughly enjoyed the Gita and have taken to heart the teaching of performing an action for the sake of the action, instead of the results. Attempting to remove desire from everyday actions has proven very difficult but rewarding. This is a reading I will look back on many times.
Gabby said...I particularly enjoyed the part in the Gita where it is talking about dharma and how its is better to strive in our own dharma then someone else's because competition in anthers dharma breeds fear and insecurity. I relate to this a lot because I don't think that anyones life goal should be a part of someones else's accomplishments. It breeds the fear of never going after what we truly wanted and it breeds the insecurity in believing what we are capable of. I believe that no one can ever reach true moksha by being a part of someone else's dream. "You can just as easily fail at something you don't love so you might as well take a chance at doing something you do love."
Application of the terms and wisdom that the Bhagavad Gita has to offer will lead to self-liberation - and inner peace (of that I'm sure). Self Awareness + Self-Control = Self-Governance which is a gate -keeper to liberation from self-condemnation/regret. Pranayama when I'm experiencing emotional instability. Recognition of Maya when I fixate on certain suffering or ignorance, Niyama - to remember that transformation is constantly generated and not permanent - When the deities invite, there should be no attachment and no smile of satisfaction, contact with the undesirable still possible. It is a constant internal battle for self-governance. And finally, performing an action for the sake of the action, instead of the results.. All come to the teaching that we do good to feel good, not feel good to do good.. An action for the sake of the action because it being done - does well - when nothing done - would become what could of been. (And what should of or could of is regret) - it is to turn away from duty of our awareness and our compassion. This is a book that I've cherished for quite sometime, however this translation is an amazing one to pass on and to look over! Thanks for sharing it with us P. Triff!
in my perspective, and of what i understand from the book, it seems to me that Arjuna is confused as to what has to be done. he deeply doesn't have a need to want to fight in this war, he tries justifying why he shouldn't, why he doesnt want to, and why its wrong. it seems like he looks up to Krishna, for justification as to why he SHOULD be fighting and defending himself. Krishna explains to him that even though its wrong, that it has to be done for a greater good, and self satisfaction. that he can't be defeated without a fight. Krishna basically says that he needs to fight because if he doesn't, everyone will view him as a coward.What i learned from this, is that every religion likes to promote no killing, but when it comes down to war, and wanting, and greed, and wanting to be in charge and having everything at your feet, and defeating an army, killing thousand, is perfectly ok to kill. literally, Arjuna is being talked into going to a war he has no intention in fighting in. he rather die himself, free of sin, than to die in war, having killed. but according to a greater power, you can't go down in defeat and with no self defense. this book is between what you think is right and what you think is right. its white or black. i guess it aims at everyone in a way, because some will rather not fight, and die as a coward. but then theres those who believe in war, and see it as a must. i guess the book just shows two type of people. at the end of the day, its up to ourselves, and Arjuna, to decide what we consider right or wrong, the book just helps you figure out the reasons. pros and cons. Angie.
I recall having this source of frustration when we discussed this excerpt in the Gita, “Actions do not cling to me because I am not attached to their results. Those who understand this and practice it live in freedom.” I was pretty much fuming internally about how even on a daily basis we are focused so much on what our actions will yield as well as thinking of many different examples of how this manifests. Having a strong focus trying to reach a goal or fruits of our labor can also sometimes urge us into procrastination which in turn can make one more tamastic. One spends so much thinking about the possible rewards from actions that you don’t savor the path as you walk along it. One of the applications of this in my own life is with my art. I find myself battling with my desire to produce great quality work. My teacher at the art studio I attend to would remind me not rush and try to master quickly in drawing and painting but to savor what I’m doing as I practice. It becomes very much like a spiritual discipline even, as I practice rather than focus on what will result from my work. It becomes liberating and I reach a sense of serenity in not clinging onto what I’m doing but to simply just do and continuing doing.
The most instilled piece of The Gita in my mind is that " The impermanent has no reality; reality lies in the eternal. Those who have seen the boundary between these two have attained the end of knowledge." Which I can see this as being something that a lot of us young groaning adults can learn from seeing that this life that we are now living is not holding all that is good for us and that there is more good things to come for us that is not going to always be of this life. There are some eternal goodness that we are bound to reach if we go down the right paths of this life which can bring us to the more better things that lie ahead us and the future outside our physical bodies/lives.
Angie, I’m glad you clarified the reasons Krishna gave Arjuna to fight. Here’s what I came up with: 1. The soul is indestructible.2. The material body will die anyways.3. It is Arjuna’s duty is to fight based on religious principles.4. If he doesn’t fight, he will incur sins for neglecting his duties.5. If he doesn’t fight, he will lose his reputation as a fighter.6. If he leaves the battlefield he will be considered insignificant.7. For a respectable person, dishonor is worse than death.8. Fight for the sake of fighting without concern for fruitive results.9. Transcend the gunas and do devotional service by fighting.
Ater much contemplation I have realised why deattachement from desires is so essential. Although we do live off of the results of our actions, i.e food being harvested, we must not attach ourselves to it. For this belief that all our actions merit an approipate result bring us suffering. However the Gita fails to realise how our actions can never fail to yield a result. All actions hold a consequence. We must live in constant practice of Yajna, acting simply because we must act.
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