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The Bhagavadgita Explained

The Bhagavadgita Explained
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Item Code: IDK757
Author: Sri Swami Sivananda
Publisher: The Divine Life Society
Edition: 2005
ISBN: 8170521203
Pages: 112
Cover: Paperback
Other Details: 7.2" X 5.0"
INTRODUCTION
Dhritarashtra and Pandu were brothers. Dhritarashtra married Gandhari, and Pandu married two wives, viz., Kunti and Madri. King Pandu was for a sin, while hunting, due to which he was not permitted to unite with his wife. Kunti got a boon through her sincere service to a wise sage in her younger age and she begot three children, namely Yudhishthira, Bhima and Arjuna respectively, from Yama, Vayu and Indra. Madri had twins, Nakula and Sahadeva, through the celestial physicians called Asvini-Devatas. Dhritarashtra had one hundred and one children by has wife Gandhari. Pandu passed away and his sons, the Pandavas, were brought up by Dhritarashtra along with his sons known as Kauravas. The Pandavas and Kauravas grew up together, but due to the braveness and intelligence of the former, the Kauravas were unable to tolerate them. Hence, the Pandavas decided to live separately, sharing half of their kingdom.

The Pandavas' Pomp, wealth and glory displayed during the Rajasuya Yajna aroused deep jealousy and greed in the mind of Duryodhana, the chief of the Kauravas; who , with the cunning advice of his uncle Sakuni, invited Yudhishthira to a game of dice and fraudulently defeated him, whereby all his wealth, and possessions, including Draupadi, were lost finally, it was settled that the Pandavas, including Draupadi, should repair to the forest for twelve years in exile, after which they had to live incognito for another years, untraced by the Kauravas. During this period the kingdom was to be ruled by Duryodhana.

Having successfully completed these thirteen years, facing many obstacles and dangers caused by the Kauravas, the Pandavas, as per the terms of the agreement, approached the Kauravas for their share of the kingdom. Duryodhana, however, flatly refused to give them even as much land as can be covered by the point of a needle. According to the advice of mother Kunti and by the inspiration of Lord Krishna, the Pandavas decided upon war and tried to establish their rightful claim on the kingdom by overcoming the Kauravas.

Duryodhana and Arjuna from the side of the Kauravas and Pandavas respectively were sent to Dvaraka to seek the help of the Yadava hero, Lord Krishna, in the battle. They both found Krishna resting on a couch in his place, and Duryodhana went in and occupied a nice seat at the head of the couch, while Arjuna stood near the feet of the Lord. The moment Sri Krishna opened his eyes he naturally saw Arjuna and then he saw Duryodhana sitting on a chair, at the head of the couch. After enquiry of their welfare and the purpose of their visit, Sri Krishna, according to the prevailing custom, gave the first chance of choice to Arjuna because of his young age, and also because of his first vision on Arjuna. Krishna asked Arjuna to fulfill his desire in selection either of unarmed Krishna or his entire powerful army called Narayani Sena . Arjuna, who was a devotee of Sri Krishna, expressed his desire to have Krishna with him, neglecting the powerful Narayani Sena , even though Krishna had warned that he would remain a witness, bound by the vow of not participating in battle and not taking up arms. Duryodhana with great delight, thinking that Arjuna was foolish, expressed his desire for the powerful Narayani Sena to help his side in the battle, and returned to Hastinapura.

When Krishna asked Arjuna why he chose him, when he was not for taking up arms, Arjuna said, "O Lord! You have the power to destroy all the forces by a mere sight. Why, then, should I prefer that worthless army? I have for a long time been cherishing a desire in my heart that you should act as my charioteer. Kindly fulfill my desire in this war." The Lord who is ever the most devoted lover of his devotees accepted this request with pleasure and thus Krishna became the charioteer of Arjuna in the battle of the Mahabharata.

After the returns of Duryodhana and Arjuna from Dvaraka, Lord Krishna himself went once to Hastinapura as the emissary of the Pandavas and tried to prevent the emissary of the guidance of Sakuni, the egoistic Duryodhana refused to agree to the peace mission and tried to imprison Lord Krishna, at which Krishna showed his supreme From (visvarupa). Even the blind king Dhritarashtra, saw it by the Lord's Grace. The blind King Dhritarashtra, due to his attachment to his sons, failed to control them, and the Kaurava chief, Duryodhana, with vain hope, decided to meet the powerful Pandavas in the war.

When both side were prepared to commence the battle, the sage Vedavyasa approached blind Dhritarashtra and said, 'If you wise to see this terrible carnage with your own eyes, I can give you a gift of vision.' The Kaurava King replied, 'O chief of Brahmarshis! I have no desire to see with my own eyes this slaughter of my family, but I should like to hear all the details of the battle.' Then the sage conferred the gift of divine vision on Sanjaya (Dhritarashtra's trusted counsellor) and told the King, "Sanjaya will describe to you all the incidents of the war. Whatever happens in the course of the war, he will directly see, hear or otherwise come to know. Whether an incident takes place before his eyes or behind his back during the day or night, privately or in public, and whether it is reduced to actual hidden from his view. He will come to know everything exactly as it happens. Neither weapon will touch his body nor will he feel tiresome. Finally, the victory will be for righteousness.

After the ten days of continued war between the Pandavas and the Kauravas, when the great warrior Bhishma was thrown down from his chariot by Arjuna, Sanjaya announces the news to Dhritarashtra. The blind King, in agony, asks Sanjaya to narrate the full details of the previous ten days' war, from the very beginning, in all detail, as it happened. Here commences the Bhagavadgita.

Back of book
The Bhagavadgita is a gospel for humanity of all times, as a general directive to spiritual development and realisation. It is particularly of value to the present-day world which is anxiety-ridden and tension-torn in almost every walk of life. The Bhagavadgita is the answer of the Infinite to the calls of the finite. It reflects. Solutions not only to the conditions of man on earth but of situations in the universe as a whole. The Bhagavadgita is a textbook not of religion but of religion as such, the voice of the higher consciousness which unfolds itself in to the Absolute. This booklet is a condensation of the entire position of the Bhagavadgita gospel. In this production are involved the efforts of Sri C. Krishnamoorthy (Sri Swami Yogaswarupananda), a resident-seeker at the Headquarters of The Divine Life Society, to which the early release of this work was originally due.

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