Study Of Gita Dr. Shriniwas Kashalikar


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Enlightening experiences and inspiring insights for individual and global blossoming through Gita.

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Study Of Gita Dr. Shriniwas Kashalikar

  1. 1. STUDY OF GITA Dr. Shriniwas Kashalikar
  2. 2. November 4, 2009, 10:30 am GURURBRAHMA GURURVISHNUH GURURDEVO MAHESHVARAH GURUH SAKSHAT PARABRAHMA TASMAISHRI GURAVE NAMAH I salute my Guru, who is Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh called Gunamaya i.e. the penultimate truth; and the Parabrahma; i.e. the ultimate truth. Apparently I wanted to study something world famous and ultimate in every sense; and hence I began the study of Gita. But now it appears that there was much more to it than this. Whether I studied Gita or Gita herself made me study her, is a moot question and I feel; the latter may be truer. When I seriously began to study Gita; about twenty years ago, I found many contradictions in her. For example, in 4th chapter, Krishna says in the same verse, (Chaturvarnayam maya srustam…) that he created four VARNAs and also he did not create them. Also, even as Krishna advocates the war (tasmat uttishtha kaunteya yuddhaya kruta
  3. 3. nishchaya…2nd chapter, nirashi nirmamo bhootva yuddhaya kruta nishchaya.. 3rd chapter), he also upholds nonviolence and control of mind in most of the chapters e.g. (ahinsa satyamakrodham.. 16th chapter, moodhagrahenamatnoyat …17th chapter, ) as a virtue. Similarly, Krishna disapproves Arjuna’s arguments in 1st chapter about VARNA SANKAR, which means indisciplined and unrestricted marriages directed by mere attraction; in different groups, (ashochyana va shochastvam prajnya vadanscha bhashase.. 2nd chapter.. ) he uses the same argument (yadi hyaham na varteyam …and utside yurime lokam… 3rd chapter). In 2nd chapter his argument (akirtim cha pi bhutani….and bhayat ranat uparatam… etc) about “what people would say”, appears to be too superficial and enlightening or philosophical. One can quote many such contradictions, but that is not the purpose of this writing. The purpose of this writing is; to share my experiences and perceptions as I went on studying Gita. Apparently; the reason why I kept on studying and by hearting inspite of contradictions was; I realized the
  4. 4. need to contemplate on the vast canvas of all 700 verses at any given point of time and possibly resolve the contradictions; even while traveling or walking and without having to refer a book! But in reality, I have not quite understood why I kept on reciting and by hearting Gita, inspite of the contradictions! It appears now, that the light in Gita consumed my consciousness, without me being aware of it and kept on absorbing my being in her! The persistence inspite of pains and agony of disagreement, being beyond my desire or voluntary will, may be because of the roots it has in my previous birth. All this may be a continuation of what I had to leave half way in my last birth. You don’t have to believe in this; but I must not hesitate to state it! Life is ANUBANDHA and NITYAGA i.e. linked up and continues; and the continuity is evident in such phenomena. One may appreciate this or discard as a flight of imagination! I leave it to one’s own perceptions and experience! I had tried to write on Gita about ten to twelve years back, but later I stopped as I was not quite satisfied and was not at ease; with my own interpretations. Now I am convinced that Gita enlightens us for the journey that beings from ignorance, individuality and
  5. 5. timed and mortal existence and heads towards the self realization; universality and trans-temporal immortal consciousness respectively! Gita deals with various physical, instinctual, emotional and intellectual activities at individual level, the relationship of these with the universe and the relationship of all these with past, present and future; and the all encompassing nature of our cosmic being. Gita deals with the principles involved in what happens in an individual, society, and in universe, from all eternity to all eternity, which may be termed cosmic dynamics or cosmic orchestra! I have realized that I may not understand Gita, I may misunderstand Gita or I may partially understand Gita. In any case it is useful; because; that kick starts the exciting voyage of enlightenment and blossoming! Complete understanding of Gita is impossible, because it is trans-intellectual i.e. beyond the three levels of consciousness (SWPANA, SUSHUPTI and JAGRUTI) and four modes of communication (VAACHA viz. PARA, PASHYANTI, MADHYAMA and VAIKHARI). However, I have the freedom to keep on studying Gita and merge with my own cosmic consciousness and be empowered enough to quit “my” intellectual,
  6. 6. instinctual, emotional and instinctual realms, “my” material possessions and “my” body, at appropriate time; smoothly and diligently akin to a blossoming flower that emanates its pleasant fragrance! Now before I go ahead, I must state here, that NAMASMARAN enabled the much necessary paradigm shift for understanding Gita and Gita made it possible to adhere to apparently meaningless and unglamorous activity such as NAMASMARAN. But most importantly it is the cosmic consciousness (Guru) that has made all this possible for the benefit of everyone! I am planning to write on individual chapters as and when it becomes feasible. But in as much as I don’t want to keep any copyrights; so that anybody in the world; could utilize these shared perceptions freely, I would also like to clarify that; just as well meaning use of these would aid in universal blossoming; the plagiarism of this material in any form with vested interests and mercenary motives; would prove detrimental to the plagiarists and their readers; and hence to everyone. November 4, 2009, 4:30 pm.
  7. 7. Amidst the cacophony of needs, wants, passions, infatuations, goals, dreams and aspirations, which I was conscious of, there was inexplicable undercurrent that seemed to give sometimes incomprehensible twists and turns to my life beyond my tolerance and forbearance. These twists and turns seemed to shake and stir me from deep within! Study of Gita even as it appeared to create turmoil within my intellectual and emotional framework; I could not get rid of it, till today. This is why, I feel it has link to my past life! The cosmic consciousness (guru) i.e. the field; guides throughout different contingent lives. It is just in recent times that I have started appreciating that Gita has the nectar of immortality that is beyond individual consciousness. But I must share with you that Gita kills one’s subjectivity, which is like a dying experience! This is why I felt it was brutally frightening to study and internalize Gita! But even then, Gita immersed me herself, which is why I feel it has link with my past life! Again, you may not believe this! Many worship Gita and many condemn it, but without studying it! They merely use some quotations from Gita for proving their point! I used to do it as well; to impress the audience and feel good with
  8. 8. myself. But now I know that it is like eating and either enjoying or hating the skin of the fruit! The words of Gita are so simple that often they appeared to be ridiculously simple! I never quite understood then, why Gita enjoyed such a coveted position and reigned supremacy in world literature! In India, Gita is recited, chanted, by hearted by many. Earlier I thought this was stupidity or slavish mentality. At times I thought this was blind belief. But I confess frankly that I was wrong. Today I feel Gita can benefit all the children in the world to develop and tone up their central nervous system (including the speech areas) and enhance their evolution during this life! This is true not merely for a child but for any and every person of any age in the world. As a student of physiology, I am sure that; by hearting of certain facts, meaningful hymns, philosophical or scientific sutras (e.g. those from Ayurveda, Gita, and Arithmetic), without questioning; lets the child build; the edifice of knowledge and then work on it. Up to a certain age there is no capacity in us to analyze and comprehend certain aspects of life and hence insistence of
  9. 9. clarification should not be encouraged. It can lead to arrogant and belligerent behavior detrimental to the building of the edifice of knowledge and grooming of any individual at any stage. After studying Gita I realized that questions should not be discouraged. They should always be asked. But it must also be clear that all questions may not be answered and if answered, the answers may not be understood. Hence respect and patience are very important. Hidden meanings are not understood by casual reading and/or egocentric approach under spell of egalitarian, utopian or any such philosophical thought. It can not be appreciated by individualistic trends hidden under the guise of analytical fervor and scientific temper. Patience (which is born from honesty, commitment and readiness to go beyond individual subjectivity and paradigms of every kind) opens the doors to enlightenment and blossoming at individual and global levels! Now I realize that study of Gita can empower a serious student of Gita to live with unconditioned acceptance, love and respect for every moment and situation, and work in consonance with nature; to one’s complete fulfillment and greatest satisfaction.
  10. 10. Gita enables one to blossom in such a way, that subjectivity gets shed off smoothly; while global unity and harmony begin to pulsate in one’s heart! It is worthwhile to share with you here; that opportunity to study Gita is the greatest treasure in my life for me. November 4, 2009 9:45 pm. During my first few years of study of Namasmaran, Vishnusahasranama and Gita, I was instinctively or intuitively convinced that the essence of the teachings of saints and philosophical literature was not in opposition to the idea of social justice and material abundance explicit in socialistic and leftist way of thinking. I felt that inequality and exploitation were aberrations and not teachings of saints and Hindu philosophy. During those days equality meant a lot to me; because inequality seemed to symbolize exploitation. But gradually it became clear that being not equal can mean merely being different and complimentary (and not necessarily unequal in the sense of constituting antagonistic relationship of exploiter and exploited)!
  11. 11. Hence I was possessed by only one question: How to show that Hindu philosophy acceptable in the mainstream society; is in favor of the essence of socialism and communism in terms of welfare of all? I was obsessed by only one concern: Showing that the philosophy of Hindu dharma and teachings of saints advocated more appropriate, more humane and more progressive complementarity and so I wrote my comments or interpretations on all these with this view in mind. But as the time passed, I started realizing that my efforts were honest but were subjective, incomplete and not absolute. I was really frustrated because I didn’t quite understand the subtle difference between subjective and objective perspectives. I was unable to see how my efforts; admired by most readers; could make no impact whatsoever on the society! My contention however did not dwindle. I still felt quite strongly that real spiritualism; if it is real; then must blossom the universe in every possible way. Gradually I began to realize that it was useless or counterproductive to simply despise both; my own short comings as well those present in what ever was
  12. 12. being marketed under the guise of spiritualism; constituting mainly devotional songs, dances and eating good food. There was no sense in getting frustrated i.e. blaming myself; or accepting defeat or blaming the “spiritual” activities, which many times were tarnished by a variety of accusations and allegations. What is required, is blossoming together and empowering one another; through the study and practice of NAMASMARAN and Gita. Everyone would then realize that being “spiritual” in absence of global blossoming is actually not being really spiritual but being actually escapist and/or schizophrenic. This conviction would enable everyone to grow from within; rather than remaining in fool’s paradise of so called spiritualism! Such blossoming would lead to intellectual, emotional, instinctual and physical actions; in terms of globally nurturing and blossoming policy making, planning, administration and implementation would ensue. November5, 2009 10:00 am 1st chapter Initially when I began to read Gita, I felt that I am reading a story of war. I was rather put off by the list if names and the description of conches they blew.
  13. 13. Later I read about the repulsion of Arjuna about the idea of war and violence and his arguments about the disastrous effects of war. I felt that there was nothing intellectual and it all seemed to be too obvious to be stated. But I kept on by hearting it apparently; as a kind of exercise of memory and probably also to fill the void in me. I did not quite understand the exact meaning MOHA for long time. Some said that Arjuna was afraid and some said that it was his love for the family members. Some felt Arjuna was right and some said he was wrong. But I never seem to understand how this was related day to day life of a common man and me. Some said that the description of war was symbolic and actually Gita relates to the higher self in an individual with his lower self. This seemed impressive but could not explain the relevance of Arjuna’s arguments about VARNA SANKAR i.e. haphazard and lawless marriages
  14. 14. amongst different strata and groups in society and their ill effects. It seems that Gita actually deals with the individual, existence, universe, the time and cosmic consciousness. It also deals with different stages of human development from SADHAKA i.e. seeker and SIDDHA i.e. enlightened individual. It also deals with the various ways and techniques to attain the ultimate state of liberation. Initially I used to feel that Gita relates to individual emancipation and hence felt that there was nothing in terms of solution for the welfare of world. This could be because ego; which prevented me from seeing my unity with the universe (not necessarily unjustified or condemnable, but not accurate either) and developed the passion and mission born out of that ego that “I have to change the world for better”! Since I was expecting a kind blue print for the universal welfare; and since I did not find it; I used to feel that Gita is individualistic and hence of no consequences for the global welfare. Naturally I was not quite in love with Gita. In fact I read and studied it with reluctance and as if because somebody was pushing me from within to study it persistently.
  15. 15. Due to my honest (though subjective) concern; I was obsessed by global welfare, of which I had faint sketch in mind. But I was neither I was finding any reflections of the sketch in reality; nor I was completely convinced by it. I was probably looking for clearer blueprint in Gita. But since Gita does not give any such blueprint, I was rather getting depressed by reading Gita. However in this turmoil gradually began to subside when I started to realize that the role of Gita is not to provide any blueprint but to inspire a universal blueprint conducive to blossoming of everyone in the world in a most democratic way! Some people thought Gita was produced on battlefield, some felt that it was not a creation of one individual. Some said that many people have added different verses out of context and relevance. I felt that such criticism had nothing to do what I was looking for in Gita and hence did not bother. I was not concerned whether it was created by one or many and whether it was narrated on battlefield or elsewhere! Some people said that it was not proper to read Gita at home as it leads to conflicts in home and some
  16. 16. people said that it was inauspicious to read it because it was read after some one’s demise. All these things disturbed me while studying Gita but not enough to deter me from studying it! I however felt that Gita was not very pleasant like a romantic poetry and did not generate elation or ecstasy. It seemed to ruthlessly remind unwanted, unnecessary and unrelated questions and problems such of war and death! Arguments that Gita preaches violence and the opinion that it promotes inequality and exploitation appeared too superficial based on casual reading with preformed notions. Many people in the world alleged then and do so even today; that; Hindu scriptures such as VEDAs, SMRUTIs (Compilations of rules, regulations and practical techniques for social stability, growth and harmony) advocate inequality and exploitation. This was because of the labor division that continued through generations, in a structured form. It is true that various influences such as military invasions and religious persecutions tore apart the fabric of holistic Hindu philosophy and way of life, into arbitrary, coercive and at times absurd traditions and
  17. 17. conventions, but it does not render the Hindu philosophy exploitative, outdated and counterproductive. I began to understand the Hindu philosophy and the revelations in the scriptures depict the cosmic dynamics and how an individual be a part of this eternal orchestra to his or her fullest satisfaction; simultaneously aiding the blossoming of the universe. Those studying it superficially could not see this potential in the Hindu scriptures, which could rejuvenate, regenerate and even revive the chaotic and turbulent human civilization all over the world. I realized this sooner or latter and felt greater and greater need to explore the heart of Gita. I started getting as if haunted by a beautiful and barely seen blurred picture of the core of Gita. The Gita begins with the description of legions of Kauravas and Pandavas on the Kurukshetra. Thus Gita directly begins with the most crucial situation one can have in life viz. the question of life and death. All conflicts in life are concentrated in this situation. Gita deals war of higher self with the lower self in an individual, where there is too much attachment about
  18. 18. likes and dislikes of the lower self. This attachment is depicted in terms of attachment (like that for suicidal and destructive addiction) for the relatives even if they were social psychopaths. This attachment leads to despondent retreat to lower self and passive acceptance of and involvement in degeneration and decay of one’s own true self (and that of the universe). This is MOHA of Arjuna, which I guess is common to most people in the world (which is why Gita is universal). The Gita simultaneously deals with the actual war also; because it looks at the individual and society in a holistic way. It conceives and teaches to appreciate that the condition of war within and our response to that war; naturally manifest in family and social life. I think, I can appreciate this previously unpleasant but unavoidable and eternal war within and out! Strange though it may appear, it is true that this internal and external war is a product of evolution! Animals have no choice! They neither can glorify their instincts nor can they condemn it! Neither are they endowed with the freedom to choose indulgence or are they free to opt for abstinence! Arjuna’s response of MOHA is a response to inner war (that invariably manifests in the society)! Such
  19. 19. despondent response to the lower self of an individual is invariably reflected in the form of retreat to the lower self of the society i.e. psychopathic and detrimental elements in the society. Gita not only depicts the individual and global despondency; but it also depicts an intellectual explanation and justification of such despondency in the form of apparently sublime values and concerns. Thus Arjuna is dismissing the idea of killing teachers, brothers and other loved ones by forecasting the social holocaust in terms of the ruining of families and the exploitation of widows and mutilation of social discipline and harmony leading to ill effects on the departed souls and the abyss thereof! Thus Gita creates a strong case for individual and social mediocrity, individualism, pettiness, gullibility, defeatism, and despondency with intellectual explanations and justifications, which span from individual and social life and even life after death! Through depicting the individual and social despondence (represented by ARJUNA VISHADA) Gita creates a ground for an eternal discourse to shun the individual, social and universal tendencies to sink and decay!
  20. 20. Gita enters into 2nd chapter and then offers the omnipotent and omniscient panacea (to such despondence and decay that surfaces repeatedly in the human civilization throughout history); from the very source of eternally provident cosmic consciousness that rejuvenates the mankind from millennia to millennia and time and again! November 5, 2009; 10:00 pm After creating a strong case for the despondence; like a devil’s advocate; in 1st chapter; the propounder of Gita straight a way proclaims the aphorism that you don’t die; in 2nd chapter! This aphorism can cause a massive shock for any serious reader and I was no exception. Isn’t it natural that normally our mindset cannot understand, agree, believe or realize the concept of immortality of soul? I however; kept on reading it, but without really understanding, agreeing, believing and of course realizing! In fact this all discussion made me feel miserably torn in two conceptual premises! Neither could I agree with the claim, which was beyond my comprehension and even imagination; as I could never imagine myself discarding my body like old clothes or in live in absence of the body, nor
  21. 21. could I dismiss the claim; because I “knew” (though I had not personally realized) that a) nothing is destroyed b) consciousness; thoughts, feelings, time, space, energy etc do not have the same kind of existence, birth or death and c) ‘beginning and end’ are human concepts; derived from the limitations of physiological state, consciousness, perceptions, thinking, feelings and the information processing in the neurons and their network! Arjuna has indicated his disgust for a war that involves killing of near and dear ones. He is selfless and has no interest in any gains from such a war that involves shading of blood of his teachers, brothers and other close ones. So Arjuna is NOT afraid of war like a timid creature, but his conscience has paralyzed him! Arjuna like any sensitive, honest, brave and conscientious individual despised the killing of his brothers. I am sure that any sensitive and conscientious individual would relate with the plight of Arjuna; because it results from information processing through neuroendocrine, autonomic and central nervous systems; and hence is universal! But having said that; as I went on studying Gita, it started becoming clearer, that human beings are not merely physiological; they are potentially much more than that!
  22. 22. November 6, 08:20 pm After listening to Arjuna’s plight, Krishna, who is cosmic consciousness, personified; (and hence can see; what others don’t; and is conscious of what others are not); sees that Arjuna is not able to see the truth beyond the physiologically restricted sensory perceptions, like most people in the world! This inability to see beyond physiological boundaries, leads to either arrogance or despondence. Krishna notes that Arjuna has been paralyzed (inappropriate conation or response) due to inappropriate feelings (affect) resulting from this erroneous perception (cognition). This syndrome is called MOHA. Krishna therefore sets out to explores and salvage the human potential of Arjuna (and mankind) that and wake him to his immortal self, (and thereby rectify cognition, affect and conation) from the despondent slumber of physiological confinements. Krishna does this in a step by step manner, with different explanations.
  23. 23. As a friend, philosopher and guide; he disapproves Arjuna’s response as totally unbecoming for Arjuna. He declares it as totally inappropriate. He explains to Arjuna that love and attachment to the bodies of all the warriors representing sociopathic elements; (and lower elements in us which cloud our perceptions, vulgarize our feelings and deteriorate our actions) is inappropriate. Such wars keep repeating over millennia in as much as wars between the lower self and the higher self in an individual keep recurring from time to time. Krishna shows that waking up and rising to one’s immortal existence engenders the appropriate actions and one should not get deterred by any considerations born out of MOHA. Krishna further clarifies, that the warring factions and the war (which also goes on in the individual as well as in the universe); had beginning and end but its core (cosmic consciousness) is immortal and one should realize it (by evolving through the various means described in scriptures such as NAMASMARAN), and express it enthusiastically with all might, in such a war (which is actually a golden opportunity, because, animals do have such a
  24. 24. choice!) against the forces of darkness (within and outside). This is called DHARMYA YDDHA because it is in tune with cosmic consciousness. This is similar to clinically accurate surgical treatment; which can be required for the health of the whole body (and society) and is totally different from indiscriminate violence or indiscriminate nonviolence, born out of ignorant and subjective premises. It has to be remembered that through out hereafter; Krishna keeps describing how one can conquer the physiological (individualistic and petty) elements in body (which mar the consciousness and cause MOHA). He further also shows that uninterrupted (conscious) union with immortal soul is called YOGA and the actions born through it are accurate, precise and appropriate; and in tune with the infallible cosmic principles! He enlightens Arjuna (and the world) that such state of being (in union with immortal consciousness) and actions springing therefrom; as SWADHARMA. Krishna guides Arjuna about this state and assures him that this state brings peace (for that individual and the universe) even in the face of bodily death.
  25. 25. Since Krishna talked so much about this state of union with immortality, which makes us desireless; the next question would be “Why not remain united with the immortal and be peaceful, instead of warring?” Arjuna asks this question in the 3rd chapter. But before I go ahead to 3rd chapter; and share my understanding (?) about Gita, I must make it clear, that study of Gita, Vishnusahasranama and NAMSMARAN probably compliment each other tremendously. I have a feeling that NAMASMARAN; which I call a mega-fusion, a mega-process; or a mega- fountainhead; is sure to absorb the whole universe in itself i.e. immortal cosmic consciousness and in turn, as and when consciousness adequately blossoms in an individual through NAMASMARAN, the concepts of immortality in Gita would become tangible! The vice versa could also be true! It is this awakening to one’s immortality; that I think; one (and the people of world) could gain from Gita; and that is more precious than anything else in the world; and even the world itself!
  26. 26. November 7, 2009; 12:10 pm In 2nd chapter Krishna declares the aphorism of immortality of the core of universe and individual; and human potential to realize this core that embodies cosmic consciousness. But Arjuna (and student of Gita) cannot experience the immortality right away! Krishna therefore (apart from explaining the ways to rise and conquer the obstacles in the way of cosmic consciousness) gives other supportive arguments to emphasize the importance of SWADHARMA i.e. behavior born from the state of union with cosmic consciousness. Thus Krishna indicates to Arjuna that the greatest value in life is SWADHARMA and hence any person who goes astray (due to his subjective paradigm) from this SWADHARMA; is bound to be ridiculed as coward! This essence of value system is eternal glory of Gita that has been revitalizing mankind from millennia to millennia! Further, Krishna reiterates that all the efforts of human civilization viz. VEDAs are essentially born from and culminate into cosmic consciousness; and get expressed through individuals according to their constitutions. Those who know this; are always
  27. 27. connected with the cosmic consciousness (YOGA); and do not get distracted by the illusive results and those who do not know this; get cut off from the cosmic consciousness and their perceptions, feelings and the quality, methodology and the elegance of their actions get marred. They develop the illusion that their limited existence is the doer of everything; (treating the subordinate as master); and vacillate between pride and pain from the changing results of their inappropriate actions. The 3rd chapter begins with Arjuna’s reluctance to participate in the war, and be contented without bothering about the gains of a bloody war! But Krishna identifies the subtle nihilism, cynicism or pessimism hidden in this attitude. He identifies this darkness and drives the point such “ascetic” extremism is suicidal and not conducive to liberation! Krishna guides Arjuna that it is impossible to live without action. (Isn’t it true that irrespective of whether we want or not, billions of biophysical and biochemical activities go on in our body and mind?). He clarifies that any one who tries to live in inaction, deceives himself or herself. The only way to liberation is to practice SWADHARMA.
  28. 28. Krishna says whether the cosmic consciousness expresses itself in actions or the actions reach you to the cosmic consciousness; both are essentially not different. The first is called JNANAYOGA, where apparently consciousness is predominant and latter is called KARMAYOGA, where apparently; the actions are predominant. Thus the actions which spring from the cosmic consciousness (as a result of the practice of NAMASMARAN), are the ones which lead to realization of cosmic consciousness and hence are called liberating or freeing actions! Krishna then highlights the cycle of nature in which universe manifests from and again dissolves into the consciousness and suggests that when the society and the individual conform to the innate principle of nature, then they blossom together. He also points out that those who don’t conform to these principles, never blossom themselves and also become obstacles in the blossoming of others. This happens because of their being overwhelmed by their own subjectivity and individualistic whims and compulsions. This can happen also because of the superiority or inferiority complex developed about their environment, conditions and apparently unglamorous or despised nature of their SWADHARMA.
  29. 29. Krishna elaborates that since everybody is not exactly the replica of another person and the constitutions are different; the nature of SWADHARMA varies. He reiterates that even in such a situation it is important not get bogged down by the deceptive external and internal influences and persist on one’s SWADHARMA, even if one has to die! This appears a bit harsh. But when I keenly thought over, I realized that living devoid of SWADHARMA is itself like death! Hence SWADHARMA is preferably even in the face of death because it is the express highway of individual and global blossoming! November 7, 2009, 3:30 pm. In the 4th chapter, Krishna expands this concept of SWADHARMA and informs Arjuna that this is the knowledge that has run through generations and millennia. Like any physiological individual, Arjuna also doubts Krishna’s statement and then Krishna reveals to him his immortal and true nature and that it is he (cosmic consciousness) that keeps re-manifesting as and when the universe becomes oblivious of him. (I feel that this is true in an individual, society as well as universe!).
  30. 30. Krishna asserts; that he manifests (probably through rising mass consciousness) and annihilates the demonic and devilish forces of darkness, which obstruct the blossoming of individuals, society and the whole universe and one, who realizes this, unites with immortal consciousness! After revealing his cosmic nature, Krishna elucidates how from the consciousness different VARNAs i.e. four main characteristic personalities manifest (though the consciousness does not produce them; in the physical sense of that word) and how they function! He also states that people work according to their stage of evolution; through different yajnas, pranayamas, and humble dialogue with a guide and reach enlightenment. Krishna points out how the conflicts between upper and lower nature can sabotage one’s progress and assures that SWADHARMA or YOGA liberate and the individual (and society and the universe) and hence appeals Arjuna to get rid of any doubt whatsoever and tread the path of SWADHARMA single mindedly. November 8, 2009 11:30 am
  31. 31. In 5th chapter the discussion begins with a doubt; about the choice between SANYASA and YOGA. I think the word SANYASA here, pertains to renunciation or asceticism; i.e. departure from all the day to day activities required for the normal social life and YOGA pertains to participation in these activities; by following SWADHARMA. Why should Arjuna repeat this question? The answer is; understanding supremacy of SWADHARMA is not adequate. Because, in spite of understanding; the inertia keeps on surfacing and prompting an individual; to escape from the worldly responsibilities giving one excuse or another. In India; there were tides of ideologies glorifying irresponsible “asceticism” from time to time. Even today, there are various breeds of “spiritualism” and “SANYASA” spreading like pandemics in the world and cause masses to move into irresponsible inaction, indolence and parasitism probably as a reaction to harrowingly and violently stressful petty pursuits. Arjuna’s repetition of the question underlines the importance, span and sway of such irresponsible “asceticism”.
  32. 32. Krishna reiterates the vital or shall we say life saving importance of SWADHARMA for individual, social and global growth and blossoming. He confirms that SWADHARMA more meritorious than “asceticism” in which one may conquer one’s petty selfishness but can succumb to the escapist, defeatist and irresponsible indolence and inertia, which drags the individuals, society and the world into abyss of misery! Krishna makes it clear that SANYASA i.e. external renunciation (due to incidental cause) is usually impulsive and not true renunciation. Such renunciation is because of repulsion for day to day activities (SWADHARMA); which appear mediocre; but can serve the purpose of blossoming one and all and engenders misery. It is true that some individuals are born more evolved than the rest and hence neither get interested nor get involved in the day to day transactions of family and society. They renounce the world and accept SANYASA just as ripe fruit falls from the tree. Some other individuals understand and realize the true nature of the world through SANKHYA philosophy without going through the experiences a common goes through.
  33. 33. Being aware of this, Krishna clarifies that we should not get enamored by the SANYASA and SANKHYA philosophy but stick to our SWADHARMA, because even as the SANYASA, SANKHYA and YOGA (SWADHARMA) look different; ultimately culminate into the same pedestal of cosmic consciousness! Having said this Krishna elaborates the sublime characteristics of practitioner of SWADHARMA, which elevates the individual in a blissful state that is beyond physiological boundaries and beyond all petty and subjective considerations of life! November 8, 2009, 4:30 pm In 3rd chapter it is stated that one who cooks and eats merely for his petty pleasures (which are actually detrimental to his blossoming) is a thief. This is a very important aspect of Gita. Gita encourages individuals to be active physically, instinctually, emotionally and intellectually and according to one’s capabilities and skills, but with the
  34. 34. goal getting freed from the subjectivity and merging with the cosmic consciousness. Gita states that one should never dissuade (which is referred to as BUDDHIBHEDA) any other person from his or her activities of livelihood such as crafts, arts and other skilled and productive activities; and in fact encourage and try to do all such activities in life; but with the sole aim of conforming to the absolute truth. Krishna reiterates this even in 5th chapter. The 6th chapter Krishna reinforces this point and describes certain ways by which man can merge with the objective reality. He therefore makes it clear right in the beginning that any one who works without attachment to the results, is a SANYASI and also a YOGI and not the one who does not do his duties as prescribed by the scriptures (with the intention of individual and global blossoming). Just as he imparts the insight in SANYASA by pointing out the dangers of inaction and indolence and importance of getting rid from the results, he also espouses and elucidates the nature of YOGA (which means all activities done to merge with the absolute);
  35. 35. in the sense that YOGA is impossible in presence of SANKALPA i.e. subjective (erroneous) projections or utopia! You can imagine that SANKALPA or individual or subjective goals act as leakages and hinder the merger of individual consciousness with the absolute consciousness! It is exactly like leakages in the pipes through which you cannot pump water to higher floors. Even though these concepts pertain to individual and global blossoming, they also make sense in day to day activities. Thus if you don’t depend on results you can avoid self destructive responses (out of excitation or depression) to results. But it has to be appreciated; that in everyday life action is usually associated with results. Thus some understanding and anticipation of results is bound to be there and has to be there, so that you can perform the action elegantly and diligently. Gita upholds such continued improvement in technique and does not contradict such anticipation; on which your feelings don’t depend! November 8, 2009 7:pm There are many postures, mudras, pranayamas etc apart from proper nutrition, sleep etc. which are
  36. 36. important aspects of life, which ought to be cultivated right from childhood, so that YOGA becomes possible. Krishna does not elaborate in details on this, but suffice it to say that once the goal viz. self realization is identified and given topmost priority and importance, then one can adopt suitable techniques according to one’s physical and social environment, conducive to reach the goal! Krishna reassures Arjuna (and everyone) that dedication and consistent study and practice of make YOGA possible. Krishna also maintains that even if an individual loses his body before reaching the goal, his efforts are never wasted and realizes the YOGA i.e. self realization in the next birth, adorned with the necessary qualities. Krishna also clarifies the importance of YOGA in terms of actual practice (which seems to beneficially evolve the physiology) rather than mere reading and understanding and further emphasizes the importance the focus on the goal viz. self realization i.e. complete submission of the subjectivity to Krishna i.e. objective or cosmic consciousness.
  37. 37. This chapter (like the 16th,17th and 18th chapters) is important for any educationist, education policy maker, educational administrator, teacher or trainer in the world, so as to work holistically because it outlines the actual factors which contribute to the process of blossoming, including diet and nutrition in brief! 10:00 pm It is easy to understand how this would have far reaching and beneficial impact on the world in terms of perspective, policies, plans and implementation; for individual and global blossoming, which is imperative today, because; no individual nation can grow or perish in isolation, without beneficial or adverse impact on the other nations; for long period. The practical relevance of this is on policy making. For example, global reduction in the production of two wheelers and small cars; in preference to mass transport vehicles such as buses, has impact on global environment, fuel consumption, traffic jams, accidents, pollution, wearing out of roads, crowding of local trains (in metros) and so on. If principles of Gita (the essential nutrients for individual and global blossoming) are imbibed and
  38. 38. digested by decision makers of the world, then such globally beneficial policies can emerge in all the fields of life. In 7th chapter Krishna narrates his omnipresent nature to Arjuna and indicates how only few realize this nature and how others do not realize this! He explains that he is the light beyond the physical light and remains unseen by eyes!! November 9, 2009 11:30 am In 1st chapter, there is depiction of subjective; and hence inspite of being very conscientious; erroneous perception, feelings and response of Arjuna. In 2nd chapter there is elaborate explanation of cosmic consciousness and contingent nature of physical existence of the nonliving and living world! There is also a detailed account of the characteristics of the individual who realizes this immortality and expresses accurate cognition, affect and conation. It is obvious that even as reading per se; is not enough to bring about the transformation in an individual and the world; it is also true that the role reading and understanding; in terms of knowing the “road map of blossoming” in the process of
  39. 39. conscious evolutionary transformation of an individual and thereby the world; can not be denied. The 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th chapters describe the concept SWADHARMA and some of the relevant techniques in brief; but which can vary according to geographical, historical, social, religious and other circumstances. 7th chapter is meant for reinforcing these ideas by pointing out how people in, crisis, need, greed or intellectual and emotional yearning may get attracted to the absolute truth. In 7th chapter Krishna reveals his omnipresent nature and indicates how he i.e. cosmic consciousness; is present in every visible and invisible aspect of the universe and how only few realize this nature and how rest others; do not realize this! This can become clear to a discerning student; when he would appreciate the stanza elucidating how Krishna is a light beyond the physical light and remains inaccessible to most! Throughout 6 chapters; one finds the common idea of the rising of consciousness in an individual and the world; and thereby getting freedom from petty, mean and trivial but strong bondages. In 7th chapter there is
  40. 40. endorsement of this and also further buttressing of this point by indicating how the cosmic consciousness encompasses every living and nonliving matter and space and how awareness of this enables one to reunite with immortal self. Naturally Arjuna would ask about the nature of the universe and relevance of it to human life. Thus cosmic dynamics is described by Krishna in 8th chapter. Krishna assures Arjuna that a person blossoms to get freed from the shackles of subjectivity and reunites with one’s true self, through the knowledge of inseparable nature of the cosmic panorama, an individual and their relationship! But before we discuss this further, I think it is important to talk about nonviolence. AHIMSA i.e. nonviolence; appears in chapters such as 16th. In my view this AHIMSA refers to negation or disapproval of violence committed indiscriminately and/or under the influence of utter darkness of ignorance (a variety of self activities destructive to self, society and the universe). Unqualified and indiscriminate nonviolence is NOT advocated in Gita, which is clear from the repeated
  41. 41. appeal by Krishna to Arjuna to participate tin the war (against darkness and destruction). It is important to realize this to avoid perennial schizophrenic state of upholding indiscriminate nonviolence, (without being completely convinced) and practicing violence for with petty selfish motives (again without being fully convinced). In our society violence (almost indiscriminate) is legitimately practiced by killing animals to eat, killing people of other countries for the so called national interest, pride and profit, killing alleged criminals by death sentence and implementing a variety of deterrent punishments and most importantly unleashing policies detrimental to everyone in all the fields. If we understand that AHIMSA means NOT indiscriminate nonviolence, protection of everything conducive to individual and global blossoming and destruction of everything that jeopardizes the blossoming of individuals and universe, then it would resolve the conflicts in the minds of all young and old and everywhere in the world and promote practice of SWADHARMA and blossoming of individuals and universe.
  42. 42. If we keep on talking about nonviolence, then it can create value crisis and semblance of schizophrenia (contrasting, conflicting and contradictory thoughts/feelings and actions); in everyone and everywhere. 2:00 pm I found that the prescription of blossoming and merging with the absolute consciousness through various techniques and through comprehension of the nature and interactions between the cosmos and the individual; and practicing SWADHARMA; in 7 chapters; are not as simple as they appear! In daily routine we tend to get overwhelmed and confused or bewildered (and cut off from our true self) by the deceptive influences coming from our body, family, society, world and the products of all these in terms of literature, art, media, education etc. This makes the self realization (dissolving the subjectivity in objective truth) and self expression i.e. SWADHARMA, which are mutually nurturing and promoting; very difficult. The inappropriate perception generates agony and urgency to respond. But since the response is usually ineffective (because of not being in conformity or
  43. 43. harmony with the nature) one becomes agitated and/depressed. Actually in such a situation the prescriptions in Gita, or the simplest means such as NAMASMARAN advocated by saints and seers from all over the world, must be practiced with greater conviction! But one can not “see” how it would rectify the perceived pathos in personal or global life (even if it be erroneous); and hence tends to enter in a vicious cycle of increasing distress. It is at this point that your SHRADDHA (which means unconditioned devotion and dedication without any petty motive) can rescue you from the vicious cycle of distress and help you enter in wellness cycle. In 6th chapter therefore it is reiterated by Krishna that mind is fickle and likely to fluctuate and vacillate, but one should keep on keep on trying with victorious attitude! One may not see how holistic perspective can create the difference in different fields and may get nervous because of the agonizing plight of people in the world due to callous and corrupt bureaucracy and leaders, but the SADHANA of any suitable nature according to one’s tradition or NAMASMARAN must never be stopped. To convey this strongly; Krishna has
  44. 44. assured that one would never fail if marches on this path! I have begun to realize; which I did not realize before; that all activities (especially NAMASMARAN) to reach the truth, have their impact, though it may not perceived immediately due to one’s subjectivity. The lesson from the 7 chapters therefore is to keep trying to reach the absolute and keep working in its light to the extent it is possible for you at any given time and in victorious manner. That is exactly the reason why I am writing this; and making available for free download for sharing with any one and everyone in the world without any precondition! Trying to keep yourself connected with cosmic consciousness; keeps you reassured on the one hand and active in an appropriate manner (engaged in SWADHARMA) on the other. 4:30 pm . The idea of arbitrary suppression or unabated indulgence do not find place in Gita. Similarly regimentalized stereotypes procedures also do not find place in Gita. That makes Gita somewhat
  45. 45. ambiguous initially, but as you go on internalizing it you find that she is basically universal in nature. In 3rd chapter, 4th chapter and also 6th chapters this is evident. Gita is universal because she show the light to any one and every one with whatsoever state of evolution and from anywhere in the world irrespective of his/her tradition and without being judgmental about anyone’s life style. In 8th chapter Krishna clarifies that a person engaged in SWADHARMA through intellectual, emotional, instinctual activities actually is connected with the absolute and objective reality and hence does not get entangled and shackled in the repetitive basal cycles through different births. There is also a declaration applicable to bright and dark external and internal environments, which lead to the fate of an individual. Thus individual is influenced by adverse external physical, chemical and psychological activities and inner hormonal, autonomic and central nervous activities. But it is also assured that any one who keeps trying to be connected reaches the summit of union with cosmic consciousness.
  46. 46. Nov 10, 2009, 11:15 am I write on day to day basis rather than sticking serially and sequentially to chapters and verses. This has the advantages of being natural in expression rather than formal and also of repetition and/additional emphasis of more important points which reverberate in mind about with reference to some verses. Sometimes it also happens; that I skip many verses, at given point in time because I have nothing to say about them at that time, but latter additional perspective and insights develop in the flow writing; and deserve expression even if it may appear out of context of a give chapter. In the 2nd chapter it is taught that YOGA means (ultimate) elegance or perfection in skill and other way round; the greatest skill or perfection in life is to realize YOGA! There is elaborate discussion on how physical senses should be controlled. But if one takes into account the reference in 3rd chapter, then it becomes clear that the human life and experiences there in; have (and appreciated by us that they have) one goal or destination; and that is SELF REALIZATION and there is one way to achieve it i.e. SWADHARMA.
  47. 47. Gita is unique in the sense that she shows your ultimate goal and also shows you the path and method to tread it. Gita therefore does not advocate suppression or indulgence in an arbitrary manner, but inspires SWADHARMA; in which while enjoying the core or essence of all material pleasures you channellize them to blossoming of and all. This is really universal thought; in view of the different physiological and other needs of people in the world from different regions and cultures. Once the goal of individual and global blossoming and the way of SWADHARMA is identified and adhered to; rest of the dos and don’ts (which need not be regimentalized) follow the suit, in appropriate manner. In this context, one can appreciate the perspective born out Gita study. Thus the we should learn and teach the father and mother principles and parental care; so that we don’t develop disgust for sex and succumb to sexual aberrations on the one hand; and develop carnal sexual obsession and get trapped in unending and unsatisfactory indulgence in sex. It is nice to share here that I found study of Gita different from study of many other books. The study of Gita elevates you from subjectivity to objectivity,
  48. 48. i.e. getting in alignment with the nature. Gita gradually but surely changes your status of being effectual to being causative! This is certainly difficult to agree intellectually. But can only be experienced. Another point that struck me is: Gita teaches and trains us to enter the center of universe! Thus from the world of visible appearances she trains us to see and merge with the core. Thus Gita does not advocate renunciation of the world on the one hand and does not justify or glorify the unending and unsatisfactory retrogressive shackling in petty pursuits as well! This is very useful in day to day life. If you experience the core of your spouse’s heart, then the fear of loss of your spouse (or any loved one) gradually disappears to a large extent and the romance (and love in general) become superromance and super love! Thus Gita trains you supreme romance and super love. Another interesting aspect of Gita is; you begin to refer to Gita as “she” and not it. Because Gita becomes even more valuable than “living” and “loving” mother!
  49. 49. In 5th chapter Krishna assures that you would not be born again if you realize the self. But in 4th chapter; he also assures that he would manifest or reincarnate as and when appropriate/necessary. The explanations to this contradictory statement are: 1. Krishna’s reincarnation is represented by the awakening of consciousness in every individual from time to time. 2. The reincarnation is progressive sojourn of life of an individual (who is either already enlightened or gets enlightened) for guiding the mankind and is different from rebirth, which is full of shackles of ignorance. Gita guides us to develop the conceptual framework or blue print of our life and NAMSMARAN rejuvenates us from moment to moment to proceed. The other way round also may be true! It is like anatomy and physiology. Anatomical structure is essential and complementary to physiological function and vice versa. But when you go deeper; both seem to be indistinguishable! One of the most important things I learnt probably as a by product of studying Gita; is practice of the essence of Gita is immensely important. Repeated reading or recitation of Gita consolidates the
  50. 50. convictions about the essence and thereby rejuvenates the enthusiasm to practice that essence (NAMASMARAN). It is like reading about bath, which develops conviction about the advantages of bath and actual practice of bath makes the difference. Thus both are perfectly complementary. One can compare it with the reading about the advantages of exercise and actual practice of exercise. The practice of NAMASMARAN in turn; reinforces the conviction about the essence of Gita and makes the repeated recitation of Gita a sublimely empowering experience! I also learnt in the course of time that we come across a number of situations in life, (due to internal and external environment) which shroud our consciousness, and we tend to forget our true self and i.e. the essence of Gita and this is a really a shattering and weakening experience. Hence in 6th chapter the importance of consistent practice is emphasized. In my view, even somewhat arbitrary and formal recitation, reading or chanting of Gita; proves very useful (by acting at subconscious and conscious levels; in the process of blossoming. The repetition is important for another reason also, which has physiological basis. Thus repletion of Gita or NAMASMARAN is a central nervous system
  51. 51. activity and probably leads to development of stronger connections and between cerebral cortex and the limbic system, (which are otherwise very weak). This underlines the difference between a well read individual and a self realized individual. Thus one’s happiness depends on the interactions amongst the cerebral cortex, limbic, autonomic, neuroendocrine, and endocrine and other systems of the body. The perceptions, feelings and actions are usually impulsive (and hence chaotic, conflicting and counter posed) because of weak control of cerebral cortex on the remaining systems. Repeated study and practice of Gita and NAMASMARAN probably enhance the integration of all systems, bring it under higher controls such as cerebral cortex, conscience and cosmic consciousness and effectively lead to harmonious behavior blossoming one and all. One can study the changes in the brain from this point of view, in a control group and the one involved in NAMASMARAN, to verify the anatomical and physiological substrate (which may not be accessible to crude technology though,) of what could usher in the essence of global culture.