HUMATA, HUKHTA, HUVARSHTA
Ian DeckIn the Bhagavad Gita, Arjuna has a discussion with the god Krishna before a war that is set to take place between his family. Arjuna does not want his friends and relatives to die so he calls on Krishna for guidance. Krishna reminds him that nobody will truly die because their souls will continue on their spiritual path. He goes on to tell Arjuna that he has a warriors dharma (duty) to fight in the battle and to perform selflessly. What Krishna means by this is that Arjuna mustn't treat this battle differently just because he knows people on the other side. He is a warrior and his path necessitates him to act like one. And, regardless of his leadership role, Arjuna must free himself from the fruits of his labor, acting to serve a higher power rather than his own ego.
I though it was a great and interesting read. The Gita is the conversation between Krishna and Arjuna leading up to the battle. The text start by Arjuna saying he does not want to fight. He doesn't understand why he has to shed his family's blood for a kingdom that he doesn't even necessarily want. For him killing is evil and he does not understand why it would be necessary to kill his family. He then surrenders his weapons. I agree with him, i do understand one has to look out and fight for their family but there are many other ways of doing it. Then Krishna explains him the cycle of birth and death, and states that there is no true death of the soul on the battle field. The purpose of this cycle is to allow a person to work off their karma, accumulated through lifetimes of action. They are working on their drama on the field and fighting their past.Carlota Sanchez
Courage to compensate the lack of discipline, and discipline to protect from the abuse of courage.
I find the concept of moksha particularly interesting. In chapter 18 of the Gita, Arjuna asks Krishna to tell him the reason for renunciation. The Gita teaches us that the path of karma is being in the world, accomplishing what needs to be accomplished, keeping with dharma, performed with bhakti, not to acquire results, but for moksha. Another way, is to live outside of the word's demands and focus only on achieving moksha. This is called Sannyaasa. Both ways are valid ways in which one can achieve enlightenment, liberation, or the True Self. One of my favorite lines of the chapter is verse 46: "By worship of the Lord, who is the source of all beings and who is all-pervading, a man can attain perfection through performing his own work." This pertains to doing your dharma and that can help you achieve moksha.
The Bhagavad Gita, “The War Within,” Arjuna, p. 80, “Of what use is a kingdom or pleasure or even life, if those for whose sake we desire these things are engaging in this battle…what satisfaction could we find in killing Dhritarashtra’s sons?Professor, while reading this chapter again, for the first time, I kind of felt the excitement you express when talking about this book. Except, that I wanted to cry. I felt so sad about what it’s happening not only in Syria, but in Yemen, Afghanistan, Africa, Venezuela, and I can continue mention so many countries, and injustices all around the world. How can governors hurt and kill their own people? What satisfaction is found in their actions? How can they justify what they do? It seems like money and power are their only religion and guides. If they can only read this chapter! Not even the entire book, just a chapter!—and then I realized that this chapter it’s not only about mass injustices, that when I hurt, consciousness or unconsciousness, another human or not human being—a coworker, a friend, a mother, a father, a sibling, an animal—I’m like those governors. What pleasure can I find on my actions? Even if I think they deserve it, I’m becoming a sinner. Only one chapter could be the difference between a change of mind or staying submerged into ignorance. Only one chapter.Elena Murga
It’s so hard to detach oneself especially in these conditioned bodies from people, things, memories, places, etc. In a translation of the Gita that I read there is a part that says, “The excessive attachment for material things puts a man in a bewildering condition of existence”. There is truth in this statement despite only knowing what this particular material world allows us to have and what it has to offer. Arjuna’s attachment to the beings of the physical world blinded him and I believe many of us live our lives this way. Blinded by our desires and ignorant to what really matters.
Action in inaction and inaction in action are two topics that are mentioned in the Bhagavad Gita that we apractice daily. Inaction in action refers to detaching oneself from our actions, inaction in this case refers to our awareness that we are not the doer of the action because our mind has joined a higher ideal. Therefore one who sees inaction in action knows everything is happening out of pakriti, so they are neither the doer nor do they derive anything from the result of the action. Action in inaction is the karmic result of choosing not to choose. If we sit idly by we are still making a choice and taking mental action which has its own karmic repercussions. We cannot escape choice because our karma does not allow it
The powerful realization in Bhagavad Gita, that even in in battle, a King and a soldier (in this case Arjuna) is questioning his god's will as to why he has to fight the people labeled as his enemy, for he does not see them as such. Krishna, the god, explains that even in war, there will be no killing, but only reincarnation. what is can't be killed will live on and reincarnate, thus Arjuna is not killing the people, but their flesh, thus it is his dharma as as well as karma playing their roles in this battle. For a man of Arjuna's stature and rank, to question his own god, it must be a powerful impression caused back in those times when religion was supreme over logic, and many people were certain to have similar doubts or questions relating to their god's will, and to see that Krishna guided and answered Arjuna's dilemma is something with a very unique taste as it could be considered blasphemy by many the fact that one doubts god's ruling, a very satisfying and interesting perspective was taken in this book.
the Bhagavad Gita is a truly beautiful work of art. the way in which it translates and vocalizes the true essence of Hinduism has withstood the test of time. take for instance this poetic verse on karma. "The meaning of Karma is in the intention. The intention behind action is what matters. Those who are motivated only by desire for the fruits of action are miserable, for they are constantly anxious about the results of what they do". or this quote on atman "The senses are higher than the body, the mind higher than the senses; above the mind is the intellect, and above the intellect is the Atman. Thus, knowing that which is supreme, let the Atman rule the ego. Use your mighty arms to slay the fierce enemy that is selfish desire". these quotes express such simple yet profound understanding of that which one seakes to attain.Daniel O'Brien
The Gita and its emphasis on selflessness is something that stuck out and spoke volumes to me. Too often we are simply just looking out for ourselves and looking at the bigger picture. We are all a part of something bigger, and integral piece to our community which is its own whole being made up of tiny pieces. By being selfless and helping others we are also ourselves even if it isn't apparent initially. Helping those in need when you have the ability to is something that should not be passed up as it has he ability to negate your future karma which can reshape your own future while at the same time impacting someone's present who may be in need of something like food.
While we were reading The gita i noticed the book istelf with a lot of food for thought. It uses metaphors to better understand the situation at hand. Moksha is a term i chose to talk about because moksha gives life a while new meaning. once you achieve moksha you can better have a fulfillment of life, and peace of mind. It refers to a freedom of samsara which is a cycle of life and death and moksha plays a role in that liberation. In a way, samsara is there to remind us of moksha; where we have to break free from a cycle that is not healthy to us.
The Bhagavad Gita represent being selfless instead of selfish which really made me think about changing the way I think. Sometimes I fail to see the bigger picture I'm just looking at the moment and just reacting to what I see at the time. Being selfless will help become a better person which would help us grow and see the bigger perspective. Seeing the bigger perspective would make us want to do more to help the world, peers, and so on. It would help us better our future now that we see the world in the new light by being selfless.
To simply put, it's as if a voice telling a brother that it was "okay" to kill your brother. And why so? it is because the dharma that you must fulfilled in this life has been presented to you in your face. Lord Krishna has twist and thread his wordings into Arjuna's heart and this book is all about that. Invoking the disciplinary in a way that ..yes, it is okay to kill, because everything belongs to Brahman, seeing it through the Atman and this battle is not even a thing compare to the battle going on inside your head with Maya. So yes, Lord Krishna it is okay to do your duty, complete your destiny,and solidify your position in the wheel of samsara. But What Lord Krishna has forgot to mention to Arjuna, however, was that which part of hell he'd placed in for the killing of his kins and what kind of animal he would be reincarnate to... if he ever was to be born again.
Quoting a personal translation of the Gita, "For one who has no idea of spiritual life, the mind is the enemy." By assuming we are merely physical entities, our mind begins to work against us. Intensifying our desires and trapping us in what seems to be a never ending cycle of suffering. This sense of living a life without purpose creates a distance between the self and the mind. If, however, one understands their place as a spiritual soul separate from body, the mind becomes a liberating factor. Training one's self to remain unattached may seem difficult, but there is a beauty to this challenge that awaits each individual soul; conquering the mind-- the greatest enemy of them all.Gayle Budow
On Chapter 3, one of the verses really stuck with me: "But for those who rejoice solely in the atman, and are satisfied with the atman, nothing remains to be accomplished." We know by now that Atman is the inner, higher self. So when it says that nothing remains to be accomplished it can be assumed they achieved moksha and they don't do their duty for personal gain, because they have already found satisfaction within. Still, these people are more able to perform selfless acts than anyone else, with a spirit of detachment. They are simply not dependent on anyone for anything. I believe it is a beautiful message, giving (not necessarily something material, but maybe even our own time) without expecting to receive anything in exchange. We could all learn a lot from the Bhagavad Gita, it's a beautiful reading.
The main thing that I got from the Bhagavad Gita is that selflessness is the aim to which we should all aspire. It’s a theme on which Hinduism builds its foundation. It’s a much better way of explaining heaven and hell as I come to understand it, with hell being the constant re-birth to work off their karma, but once that karma is worked off through selfless actions and one has found him self through meditation your soul would be released. Which to me would mean you’ve entered heaven. Im not sure if this completely relates since our understanding of hell was only brought about in the 1300 by Dante. But I do feel like that I see heaven and hell working more through the idea of Hinduism.
Action in inaction is a new concept for me and I have seen countless examples of the consequences that stem from choosing to pass and instead wait. I have seen that it is something I struggle with not doing, as it is usually the easier but less for-filling path. Relationships soured by not responding and feelings hurt because I chose the easier reaction, one filled with unnecessary mysteriousness and immature faith in things solving themselves. I have ignored the innocent and for that I pay. Doing for the sake of doing has helped me keep my cool in situations that are easily anger inducing. Yesterday I spent nearly 5 hours untangling 180 feet of rope and remained in a rhythm with the help of the Bhagavad Gita. Of course it sucked but I not only realized it was my duty to solve the puzzle but also a necessary moment of suffering prescribed to bring me back to reality. It was a test whether or not I'd commit action by inaction. For that I am in appreciation, for it not only forced me to disconnect but to reconnect with my mind.
Action in inaction and selflessness are among the two things that really hit close to me since they are both matters that I've constantly thought about in life situations that occur. The act of being selfless is something that I believe is incredibly important and right, but sometimes find trouble finding complete balance in. There are times of course that you must put yourself first (not for selfish reasons) but say in the matter of a relationship that is volatile to you. Staying in something that is detrimental to you solely just because of the other person is very much wrong and an extreme. At the same time, doing "selfless" acts for others solely just for you benefit or gain is incredibly wrong. So depending on situations and factors involved I usually find myself pondering on whether if I am or not going to do something if it's for the right reasons and if from a selfless standpoint when it should be.-Eric Paz
In the book of Gita, there are three different ways to complete freedom from limits, also known as the yogas. There is Karma yoga which is the yoga of action, Jnana yoga which is the yoga of knowledge, and Bhakthi yoga which is the yoga of devotion. These yogas shows us that in whatever we do in our lives we do it as an offering to God.The world in which we live is said to be a world of illusion. Out of ignorance and selfishness we merge ourselves to this world through our desires and our actions, not knowing our true nature and true purpose. Keeping God at the center of our life, duties will uncover your hidden self and you will be free from the restrictions your actions (good or bad) may have created.
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