Monday, February 28, 2011

Bhagavad Gita- 2nd Chapter, A Summary

Arjuna is agitated. Lord Krishna details about Sankhya Yoga to pacify Arjuna.

Lord Krishna admonishes Arjuna who is in tears by telling that a fickle mind is not suited for warriors. He says that the state of depression does not become of Arjuna, a great warrior.

Arjuna pleads to Lord Krishna who is the embodiment of divine knowledge to teach him the importance and meaning of a truly great warrior, because he is very doubtful. Arjuna says that since he is Lord Krishna’s disciple, he should instruct him on the important role of a great warrior.

Lord Krishna advices Arjuna by consoling him and smilingly says that the wise do not lament over the dead or alive in this world. That which did not exist at all will never be created and that which is present will not get destroyed.

Lord Krishna explains about the universal truth that He, the Lord and Arjuna were present before in another form and now in their own physical bodies. The only permanent object in this world is the soul which has no change. The soul does not kill nor gets killed or destroyed by others. The physical form of the soul may keep on changing as it takes various births according to past karma.

Just as a man discards old and worn out clothes which may be torn and wears new ones, likewise the soul adopts new physical bodies to keep on trying for spiritual enlightenment and moksha or liberation from the cycle of birth and death.

Krishna consoles Arjuna that he is not responsible for killing any bad persons because the soul is not destroyed by fire, water wind or weapon. Birth and death will continue to occur for a soul till it attains spiritual liberation. Death follows birth and birth follows death. The soul does not get killed even if the body is killed. So, Krishna advices Arjuna not to get overwhelmed by depression or sadness and asks him to do his duty.

Krishna chides Arjuna lovingly and says that a dharmic or righteous war is the duty of a Kshatriya [royal clan]. If a warrior withdraws from doing his righteous duty in war and does not slay unjust people, then people will blame him forever.

A bad reputation and cowardice is a greater punishment than death for a person. Krishna says that if Arjuna dies a heroic death, he will attain martyrdom. If he wins, he will be able to rule the world. Just as people will not need a well when they have a huge storage of water, they, who are aware of the permanent nature of the soul, do not need even the support of the Vedas to be shown the right path.

Lord Krishna says that a person should not desire for he results of his actions. Man is not he controller of he effects of Karma. He has no control over the results. Krishna advices Arjuna to carry out his duties like a yogi. Yoga will be attained only when the mind is completely freed from doubt and the buddhi or knowledge is in perfect harmony with he mind.

Arjuna then asks Krishna to describe a Sthithaprajna. Krishna explains that a person who does not grieve, who does not long for comfort, who is not swayed by emotions and is not afraid is a sthithaprajna or a stable minded person.

A person who has controlled his senses is a stable mindd peson. If a person is attached to senses, then there will be feelings of Kama or lust. Anger will rise out of lust and from this confusion. This will result in loss of memory. Krishna tells Arjuna that a person who has complete authoritative control of his senses is a sthithaprajna. Peace of mind will be got if a person reacts equally to joy or grief.