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by M.P.BHATTATHIRY ( RETD. CHIEF TECHNICAL EXAMINER TO THE GOVT.
OF KERALA), RADHANIVAS, THALIYAL, KARAMANA, TRIVANDRUM. 695002.
BHAGAVAD GITA AND (MOOD) MANAGEMENT
Mind is very restless, forceful and strong,O Krishna, it is more
difficult to control the mind than to control the wind"
Arjuna to Sri Krishna
India's one of the greatest contributions to the world
is Holy Gita.
Arjuna got mentally depressed when he saw his relatives with whom
he has to fight. The Bhagavad Gita is preached in the battle field
Kurukshetra by Lord Krishna to Arjuna as a counselling to do his
duty. It has got all the management tactics to achieve the mental
Management has become a part and parcel in everyday life, be it
at home, office, factory, Government, or in any other organization
where a group of human beings assemble for a common purpose, management
principles come into play through their various facets like management
of time, resources, personnel, materials, machinery, finance, planning,
priorities, policies and practice.
Management is a systematic way of doing all activities in any field
of human effort. It is about keeping oneself engaged in interactive
relationship with other human beings in the course of performing
one's duty. Its task is to make people capable of joint performance,
to make their weaknesses irrelevant -so says the Management Guru
It strikes harmony in working -equilibrium in thoughts and actions,
goals and achievements, plans and performance, products and markets.
It resolves situations of scarcities be they in the physical, technical
or human fields through maximum utilization with the minimum available
processes to achieve the goal
The lack of management will cause disorder, confusion, wastage,
delay, destruction and even depression. Managing men, money and
material in the best possible way according to circumstances and
environment is the most important and essential factor for a successful
management. Managing men is supposed have the best tactics. Man
is the first syllable in management which speaks volumes on the
role and significance of man in a scheme of management practices.
From the pre-historic days of aborigines to the present day of robots
and computers the ideas of managing available resources have been
in existence in some form or other. When the world has become a
big global village now, management practices have become more complex
and what was once considered a golden rule is now thought to be
Management Guidelines from The Bhagavad Gita
There is an important distinction between effectiveness and efficiency
Effectiveness is doing the right things and
Efficiency is doing things right.
The general principles of effective management can be applied in
every fields the differences being mainly in the application than
in principles. Again, effective management is not limited in its
application only to business or industrial enterprises but to all
organisations where the aim is to reach a given goal through a Chief
Executive or a Manager with the help of a group of workers.
The Manager's functions can be briefly summed up as under :
Forming a vision and planning the strategy to realise such vision.
Cultivating the art of leadership
Establishing the institutional excellence and building an innovative
Developing human resources.
Team building and teamwork
Delegation, motivation, and communication and
Reviewing performance and taking corrective steps whenever called
Thus Management is a process in search of excellence to align people
and get them committed to work for a common goal to the maximum
The critical question in every Manager's mind is how to be effective
in his job. The answer to this fundamental question is found in
the Bhagavad Gita which repeatedly proclaims that 'you try to manage
yourself'. The reason is that unless the Manager reaches a level
of excellence and effectiveness that sets him apart from the others
whom he is managing, he will be merely a face in the crowd and not
In this context the Bhagavad Gita expounded thousands of years
ago by the Super Management Guru Bhagawan Sri Krishna enlightens
us on all managerial techniques leading to a harmonious and blissful
state of affairs as against conflicts, tensions, lowest efficiency
and least productivity, absence of motivation and lack of work culture
etc common to most of the Indian enterprises today.
The modern management concepts like vision, leadership, motivation,
excellence in work, achieving goals, meaning of work, attitude towards
work, nature of individual, decision making, planning etc., are
all discussed in the Bhagavad Gita with a sharp insight and finest
analysis to drive through our confused grey matter making it highly
eligible to become a part of the modem management syllabus.
It may be noted that while Western design on management deals with
the problems at superficial, material, external and peripheral levels,
the ideas contained in the Bhagavad Gita tackle the issues from
the grass roots level of human thinking because once the basic thinking
of man is improved it will automatically enhance the quality of
his actions and their results.
The management thoughts emanating from the Western countries particularly
the U.S.A. are based mostly on the lure for materialism and a perennial
thirst for profit irrespective of the quality of the means adopted
to achieve that goal. This phenomenon has its source in abundance
in the West particularly the U.S.A. Management by materialism caught
the fancy of all the countries the world over, India being no exception
to this trend.
Our country has been in the forefront in importing those ideas
mainly because of its centuries old indoctrination by the colonial
rulers which inculcated in us a feeling that anything Western is
always good and anything Indian is always inferior. Hence our management
schools have sprung up on the foundations of materialistic approach
wherein no place of importance was given to a holistic view.
The result is while huge funds have been invested in building these
temples of modem management education, no perceptible changes are
visible in the improvement of the quality of life although the standard
of living of a few has gone up. The same old struggles in almost
all sectors of the economy, criminalisation of institutions, more
and more social violence, exploitation and such other vices have
gone deep in the body politic.
The reasons for this sorry state of affairs are not far to seek.
The western idea of management has placed utmost reliance on the
worker (which includes Managers also) -to make him more efficient,
to increase his productivity. They pay him more so that he may work
more, produce more, sell more and will stick to the organisation
without looking for alternatives. The sole aim of extracting better
and more work from him is for improving the bottom-line of the enterprise.
Worker has become a hireable commodity, which can be used, replaced
and discarded at will.
The workers have also seen through the game plan of their paymasters
who have reduced them to the state of a mercantile product. They
changed their attitude to work and started adopting such measures
as uncalled for strikes, Gheraos, sit-ins, dharnas, go-slows, work-to-rule
etc to get maximum benefit for themselves from the organisations
without caring the least for the adverse impact that such coercive
methods will cause to the society at large.
Thus we have reached a situation where management and workers have
become separate and contradictory entities wherein their approaches
are different and interests are conflicting. There is no common
goal or understanding which predictably leads to constant suspicion,
friction, disillusions and mistrust because of working at cross
purposes. The absence of human values and erosion of human touch
in the organisational structure resulted in a permanent crisis of
The westem management thoughts although acquired prosperity to
some for some time has absolutely failed in their aim to ensure
betterment of individual life and social welfare. It has remained
by and large a soulless management edifice and an oasis of plenty
for a chosen few in the midst of poor quality of life to many. Hence
there is an urgent need to have a re-look at the prevalent management
discipline on its objectives, scope and content.
It should be redefined so as to underline the development of the
worker as a man, as a human being with all his positive and negative
characteristics and not as a mere wage-earner. In this changed perspective,
management ceases to be a career-agent but becomes an instrument
in the process of national development in all its segments.
Bhagavad Gita And Managerial Effectiveness
Now let us re-examine some of the modern management concepts in
the light of the Bhagavad Gita which is a primer of management by
Utilisation of Available Resources
The first lesson in the management science is to choose wisely
and utilise optimally the scarce resources if one has to succeed
in his venture. During the curtain raiser before the Mahabharata
War Duryodhana chose Sri Krishna's large army for his help while
Arjuna selected Sri Krishna's wisdom for his support. This episode
gives us a clue as to who is an Effective Manager.
Attitude Towards Work
Three stone-cutters were engaged in erecting a temple. As usual
a H.R.D. Consultant asked them what they were doing. The response
of the three workers to this innocent-looking question is illuminating.
'I am a poor man. I have to maintain my family. I am making a living
here,' said the first stone-cutter with a dejected face.
'Well, I work because I want to show that I am the best stone-cutter
in the country,' said the second one with a sense of pride.
'Oh, I want to build the most beautiful temple in the country,'
said the third one with a visionary gleam.
Their jobs were identical but their perspectives were different.
What Gita tells us is to develop the visionary perspective in the
work we do. It tells us to develop a sense of larger vision in one's
work for the common good.
The popular verse 2.47 of the Gita advises non- attachment to the
fruits or results of actions performed in the course of one's duty.
Dedicated work has to mean 'work for the sake of work'. If we are
always calculating the date of promotion for putting in our efforts,
then such work cannot be commitment-oriented causing excellence
in the results but it will be promotion-oriented resulting in inevitable
disappointments. By tilting the performance towards the anticipated
benefits, the quality of performance of the present duty suffers
on account of the mental agitations caused by the anxieties of the
future. Another reason for non-attachment to results is the fact
that workings of the world are not designed to positively respond
to our calculations and hence expected fruits may not always be
So, the Gita tells us not to mortgage the present commitment to
an uncertain future. If we are not able to measure up to this height,
then surly the fault lies with us and not with the teaching.
Some people argue that being unattached to the consequences of
one's action would make one un-accountable as accountability is
a much touted word these days with the vigilance department sitting
on our shoulders. However, we have to understand that the entire
second chapter has arisen as a sequel to the temporarily lost sense
of accountability on the part of Arjuna in the first chapter of
the Gita in performing his swadharma.
Bhagavad Gita is full of advice on the theory of cause and effect,
making the doer responsible for the consequences of his deeds. The
Gita, while advising detachment from the avarice of selfish gains
by discharging one's accepted duty, does not absolve anybody of
the consequences arising from discharge of his responsibilities.
This verse is a brilliant guide to the operating Manager for psychological
energy conservation and a preventive method against stress and burn-outs
in the work situations. Learning managerial stress prevention methods
is quite costly now days and if only we understand the Gita we get
the required cure free of cost.
Thus the best means for effective work performance is to become
the work itself. Attaining this state of nishkama karma is the right
attitude to work because it prevents the ego, the mind from dissipation
through speculation on future gains or losses.
It has been presumed for long that satisfying lower needs of a
worker like adequate food, clothing and shelter, recognition, appreciation,
status, personality development etc are the key factors in the motivational
theory of personnel management.
It is the common experience that the spirit of grievances from
the clerk to the Director is identical and only their scales and
composition vary. It should have been that once the lower-order
needs are more than satisfied, the Director should have no problem
in optimising his contribution to the organisation. But more often
than not, it does not happen like that; the eagle soars high but
keeps its eyes firmly fixed on the dead animal below. On the contrary
a lowly paid school teacher, a self-employed artisan, ordinary artistes
demonstrate higher levels of self- realization despite poor satisfaction
of their lower- order needs.
This situation is explained by the theory of Self-transcendence
or Self-realisation propounded in the Gita. Self-transcendence is
overcoming insuperable obstacles in one's path. It involves renouncing
egoism, putting others before oneself, team work, dignity, sharing,
co-operation, harmony, trust, sacrificing lower needs for higher
goals, seeing others in you and yourself in others etc. The portrait
of a self-realising person is that he is a man who aims at his own
position and underrates everything else. On the other hand the Self-transcenders
are the visionaries and innovators. Their resolute efforts enable
them to achieve the apparently impossible. They overcome all barriers
to reach their goal.
The work must be done with detachment.' This is because it is the
Ego which spoils the work. If this is not the backbone of the Theory
of Motivation which the modern scholars talk about what else is
it? I would say that this is not merely a theory of Motivation but
it is a theory of Inspiration.
The Gita further advises to perform action with loving attention
to the Divine which implies redirection of the empirical self away
from its egocentric needs, desires, and passions for creating suitable
conditions to perform actions in pursuit of excellence. Tagore says
working for love is freedom in action which is described as disinterested
work in the Gita. It is on the basis of the holistic vision that
Indians have developed the work-ethos of life. They found that all
work irrespective of its nature have to be directed towards a single
purpose that is the manifestation of essential divinity in man by
working for the good of all beings -lokasangraha. This vision was
presented to us in the very first mantra of lsopanishad which says
that whatever exists in the Universe is enveloped by God. How shall
we enjoy this life then, if all are one? The answer it provides
is enjoy and strengthen life by sacrificing your selfishness by
not coveting other's wealth. The same motivation is given by Sri
Krishna in the Th
The disinterested work finds expression in devotion, surrender
and equipoise. The former two are psychological while the third
is the strong-willed determination to keep the mind free of and
above the dualistic pulls of daily experiences. Detached involvement
in work is the key to mental equanimity or the state of nirdwanda.
This attitude leads to a stage where the worker begins to feel the
presence of the Supreme Intelligence guiding the empirical individual
intelligence. Such de-personified intelligence is best suited for
those who sincerely believe in the supremacy of organisational goals
as compared to narrow personal success and achievement.
Work culture means vigorous and arduous effort in pursuit of a
given or chosen task. When Bhagawan Sri Krishna rebukes Arjuna in
the strongest words for his unmanliness and imbecility in recoiling
from his righteous duty it is nothing but a clarion call for the
highest work culture. Poor work culture is the result of tamo guna
overtaking one's mindset. Bhagawan's stinging rebuke is to bring
out the temporarily dormant rajo guna in Arjuna. In Chapter 16 of
the Gita Sri Krishna elaborates on two types of Work Ethic viz.
daivi sampat or divine work culture and asuri sampat or demonic
Daivi work culture - means fearlessness, purity, self-control,
sacrifice, straightforwardness, self-denial, calmness, absence of
fault-finding, absence of greed, gentleness, modesty, absence of
envy and pride.
Asuri work culture - means egoism, delusion, desire-centric, improper
performance, work which is not oriented towards service. It is to
be noted that mere work ethic is not enough in as much as a hardened
criminal has also a very good work culture. What is needed is a
work ethic conditioned by ethics in work.
It is in this light that the counsel 'yogah karmasu kausalam' should
be understood. Kausalam means skill or method or technique of work
which is an indispensable component of work ethic. Yogah is defined
in the Gita itself as 'samatvam yogah uchyate' meaning unchanging
equipoise of mind. Tilak tells us that performing actions with the
special device of an equable mind is Yoga. By making the equable
mind as the bed-rock of all actions Gita evolved the goal of unification
of work ethic with ethics in work, for without ethical process no
mind can attain equipoise. Adi Sankara says that the skill in performance
of one's duty consists in maintaining the evenness of mind in success
and failure because the calm mind in failure will lead him to deeper
introspection and see clearly where the process went wrong so that
corrective steps could be taken to avoid such shortcomings in future.
The principle of reducing our attachment to personal gains from
the work done or controlling the aversion to personal losses enunciated
in Ch.2 Verse 47 of the Gita is the foolproof prescription for attaining
equanimity. The common apprehension about this principle that it
will lead to lack of incentive for effort and work, striking at
the very root of work ethic, is not valid because the advice is
to be judged as relevant to man's overriding quest for true mental
happiness. Thus while the common place theories on motivation lead
us to bondage, the Gita theory takes us to freedom and real happiness.
The Gita further explains the theory of non- attachment to the
results of work in Ch.18 Verses 13-15 the import of which is as
If the result of sincere effort is a success, the entire credit
should not be appropriated by the doer alone.
If the result of sincere effort is a failure, then too the entire
blame does not accrue to the doer.
The former attitude mollifies arrogance and conceit while the latter
prevents excessive despondency, de-motivation and self-pity. Thus
both these dispositions safeguard the doer against psychological
vulnerability which is the cause for the Modem Managers' companions
like Diabetes, High B.P. Ulcers etc.
Assimilation of the ideas behind 2.47 and 18.13-15 of the Gita
leads us to the wider spectrum of lokasamgraha or general welfare.
There is also another dimension in the work ethic. If the karm
ayoga is blended with bhaktiyoga then the work itself becomes worship,
a seva yoga.
Manager's Mental Health
The ideas mentioned above have a close bearing on the end-state
of a manager which is his mental health. Sound mental health is
the very goal of any human activity more so management. An expert
describes sound mental health as that state of mind which can maintain
a calm, positive poise or regain it when unsettled in the midst
of all the external vagaries of work life and social existence.
Internal constancy and peace are the pre- requisites for a healthy
Some of the impediments to sound mental health are
Greed -for power, position, prestige and money.
Envy -regarding others' achievements, success, rewards.
Egotism -about one's own accomplishments.
Suspicion, anger and frustration.
Anguish through comparisons.
The driving forces in today's rat-race are speed and greed as well
as ambition and competition. The natural fallout from these forces
is erosion of one's ethico-moral fibre which supersedes the value
system as a means in the entrepreneurial path like tax evasion,
undercutting, spreading canards against the competitors, entrepreneurial
spying, instigating industrial strife in the business rivals' establishments
etc. Although these practices are taken as normal business hazards
for achieving progress, they always end up as a pursuit of mirage
-the more the needs the more the disappointments. This phenomenon
may be called as yayati-syndrome.
In Mahabharata we come across a king called Yayati who, in order
to revel in the endless enjoyment of flesh exchanged his old age
with the youth of his obliging youngest son for a mythical thousand
years. However, he lost himself in the pursuit of sensual enjoyments
and felt penitent. He came back to his son pleading to take back
his youth. This yayati syndrome shows the conflict between externally
directed acquisitions, motivations and inner reasoning, emotions
Gita tells us how to get out of this universal phenomenon by prescribing
the following capsules.
Cultivate sound philosophy of life.
Identify with inner core of self-sufficiency
Get out of the habitual mindset towards the pairs of opposites.
Strive for excellence through work is worship.
Build up an internal integrated reference point to face contrary
impulses, and emotions
Pursue ethico-moral rectitude.
Cultivating this understanding by a manager would lead him to emancipation
from falsifying ego-conscious state of confusion and distortion,
to a state of pure and free mind i.e. universal, supreme consciousness
wherefrom he can prove his effectiveness in discharging whatever
duties that have fallen to his domain.
Bhagawan's advice is relevant here :
"tasmaat sarveshu kaaleshu mamanusmarah yuddha cha"
'Therefore under all circumstances remember Me and then fight'
(Fight means perform your duties)
Management Needs those Who Practise what the Preach
Whatever the excellent and best ones do, the commoners follow,
so says Sri Krishna in the Gita. This is the leadership quality
prescribed in the Gita. The visionary leader must also be a missionary,
extremely practical, intensively dynamic and capable of translating
dreams into reality. This dynamism and strength of a true leader
flows from an inspired and spontaneous motivation to help others.
"I am the strength of those who are devoid of personal desire
and attachment. O Arjuna, I am the legitimate desire in those, who
are not opposed to righteousness" says Sri Krishna in the 10th
Chapter of the Gita.
The Ultimate Message of Gita for Managers
The despondent position of Arjuna in the first chapter of the Gita
is a typical human situation which may come in the life of all men
of action some time or other. Sri Krishna by sheer power of his
inspiring words raised the level of Arjuna's mind from the state
of inertia to the state of righteous action, from the state of faithlessness
to the state of faith and self-confidence in the ultimate victory
of Dharma(ethical action). They are the powerful words of courage
of strength, of self confidence, of faith in one's own infinite
power, of the glory, of valour in the life of active people and
of the need for intense calmness in the midst of intense action.
When Arjuna got over his despondency and stood ready to fight,
Sri Krishna gave him the gospel for using his spirit of intense
action not for his own benefit, not for satisfying his own greed
and desire, but for using his action for the good of many, with
faith in the ultimate victory of ethics over unethical actions and
truth over untruth. Arjuna responds by emphatically declaring that
all his delusions were removed and that he is ready to do what is
expected of him in the given situation.
Sri Krishna's advice with regard to temporary failures in actions
is 'No doer of good ever ends in misery'. Every action should produce
results: good action produces good results and evil begets nothing
but evil. Therefore always act well and be rewarded.
And finally the Gita's consoling message for all men of action
is : He who follows My ideal in all walks of life without losing
faith in the ideal or never deviating from it, I provide him with
all that he needs (Yoga) and protect what he has already got (Kshema).
In conclusion the purport of this essay is not to suggest discarding
of the Westem model of efficiency, dynamism and striving for excellence
but to make these ideals tuned to the India's holistic attitude
of lokasangraha -for the welfare of many, for the good of many.
The idea is that these management skills should be India-centric
and not America-centric. Swami Vivekananda says a combination of
both these approaches will certainly create future leaders of India
who will be far superior to any that have ever been in the world.
Finally let us see what great people opine about this sacred text.
"No work in all Indian literature is more quoted, because
none is better loved, in the West, than the Bhagavad-gita. Translation
of such a work demands not only knowledge of Sanskrit, but an inward
sympathy with the theme and a verbal artistry. For the poem is a
symphony in which God is seen in all things....The Swami does a
real service for students by investing the beloved Indian epic with
fresh meaning. Whatever our outlook may be, we should all be grateful
for the labor that has lead to this illuminating work."
Dr. Geddes MacGregor, Emeritus Distinguished Professor of Philosophy
University of Southern California
"The Gita can be seen as the main literary support for
the great religious civilization of India, the oldest surviving
culture in the world. The present translation and commentary is
another manifestation of the permanent living importance of the
"I am most impressed with A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada's
scholarly and authoritative edition of Bhagavad-gita. It is a most
valuable work for the scholar as well as the layman and is of great
utility as a reference book as well as a textbook. I promptly recommend
this edition to my students. It is a beautifully done book."
Dr. Samuel D. Atkins
Professor of Sanskrit, Princeton University
"...As a successor in direct line from Caitanya, the author
of Bhagavad-gita As It Is is entitled, according to Indian custom,
to the majestic title of His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami
Prabhupada. The great interest that his reading of the Bhagavad-gita
holds for us is that it offers us an authorized interpretation according
to the principles of the Caitanya tradition."
Professor of Sanskrit and Indology, Sorbonne University, Paris
"I have had the opportunity of examining several volumes
published by the Bhaktivedanta Book Trust and have found them to
be of excellent quality and of great value for use in college classes
on Indian religions. This is particularly true of the BBT edition
and translation of the Bhagavad-gita."
Dr. Frederick B. Underwood
Professor of Religion, Columbia University
"...If truth is what works, as Pierce and the pragmatists
insist, there must be a kind of truth in the Bhagavad-gita As It
Is, since those who follow its teachings display a joyous serenity
usually missing in the bleak and strident lives of contemporary
Dr. Elwin H. Powell
Professor of Sociology
State University of New York, Buffalo
"There is little question that this edition is one of the
best books available on the Gita and devotion. Prabhupada's translation
is an ideal blend of literal accuracy and religious insight."
Dr. Thomas J. Hopkins
Professor of Religion, Franklin and Marshall College
"The Bhagavad-gita, one of the great spiritual texts, is
not as yet a common part of our cultural milieu. This is probably
less because it is alien per se than because we have lacked just
the kind of close interpretative commentary upon it that Swami Bhaktivedanta
has here provided, a commentary written from not only a scholar's
but a practitioner's, a dedicated lifelong devotee's point of view."
"The increasing numbers of Western readers interested in
classical Vedic thought have been done a service by Swami Bhaktivedanta.
By bringing us a new and living interpretation of a text already
known to many, he has increased our understanding manyfold."
Dr. Edward C Dimock, Jr.
Department of South Asian Languages and Civilization
University of Chicago
"The scholarly world is again indebted to A. C. Bhaktivedanta
Swami Prabhupada. Although Bhagavad-gita has been translated many
times, Prabhupada adds a translation of singular importance with
Dr. J. Stillson Judah,
Professor of the History of Religions and Director of Libraries
Graduate Theological Union, Berkeley, California
"Srila Prabhupada's edition thus fills a sensitive gap
in France, where many hope to become familiar with traditional Indian
thought, beyond the commercial East-West hodgepodge that has arisen
since the time Europeans first penetrated India.
"Whether the reader be an adept of Indian spiritualism or not,
a reading of the Bhagavad-gita As It Is will be extremely profitable.
For many this will be the first contact with the true India, the
ancient India, the eternal India."
Francois Chenique, Professor of Religious Sciences
Institute of Political Studies, Paris, France
"As a native of India now living in the West, it has given
me much grief to see so many of my fellow countrymen coming to the
West in the role of gurus and spiritual leaders. For this reason,
I am very excited to see the publication of Bhagavad-gita As It
Is by Sri A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. It will help to stop
the terrible cheating of false and unauthorized 'gurus' and 'yogis'
and will give an opportunity to all people to understand the actual
meaning of Oriental culture."
Dr. Kailash Vajpeye, Director of Indian Studies
Center for Oriental Studies, The University of Mexico
"...It is a deeply felt, powerfully conceived and beautifully
explained work. I don't know whether to praise more this translation
of the Bhagavad-gita, its daring method of explanation, or the endless
fertility of its ideas. I have never seen any other work on the
Gita with such an important voice and style....It will occupy a
significant place in the intellectual and ethical life of modern
man for a long time to come."
Dr. Shaligram Shukla
Professor of Linguistics, Georgetown University
"I can say that in the Bhagavad-gita As It Is I have found
explanations and answers to questions I had always posed regarding
the interpretations of this sacred work, whose spiritual discipline
I greatly admire. If the aesceticism and ideal of the apostles which
form the message of the Bhagavad-gita As It Is were more widespread
and more respected, the world in which we live would be transformed
into a better, more fraternal place."
Dr. Paul Lesourd, Author
Professeur Honoraire, Catholic University of Paris
When I read the Bhagavad-Gita and reflect about how God created
this universe everything else seems so superfluous.
When doubts haunt me, when disappointments stare me in the face,
and I see not one ray of hope on the horizon, I turn to Bhagavad-gita
and find a verse to comfort me; and I immediately begin to smile
in the midst of overwhelming sorrow. Those who meditate on the Gita
will derive fresh joy and new meanings from it every day.
In the morning I bathe my intellect in the stupendous and cosmogonal
philosophy of the Bhagavad-gita, in comparison with which our modern
world and its literature seem puny and trivial.
Henry David Thoreau
The Bhagavad-Gita has a profound influence on the spirit of
mankind by its devotion to God which is manifested by actions.
Dr. Albert Schweitzer
The Bhagavad-Gita is a true scripture of the human race a living
creation rather than a book, with a new message for every age and
a new meaning for every civilization.
The idea that man is like unto an inverted tree seems to have
been current in by gone ages. The link with Vedic conceptions is
provided by Plato in his Timaeus in which it states..." behold
we are not an earthly but a heavenly plant." This correlation
can be discerned by what Krishna expresses in chapter 15 of Bhagavad-Gita.
The Bhagavad-Gita deals essentially with the spiritual foundation
of human existence. It is a call of action to meet the obligations
and duties of life; yet keeping in view the spiritual nature and
grander purpose of the universe.
Prime Minister Nehru
The marvel of the Bhagavad-Gita is its truly beautiful revelation
of life's wisdom which enables philosophy to blossom into religion.
I owed a magnificent day to the Bhagavad-gita. It was the first
of books; it was as if an empire spoke to us, nothing small or unworthy,
but large, serene, consistent, the voice of an old intelligence
which in another age and climate had pondered and thus disposed
of the same questions which exercise us.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
In order to approach a creation as sublime as the Bhagavad-Gita
with full understanding it is necessary to attune our soul to it.
From a clear knowledge of the Bhagavad-Gita all the goals of
human existence become fulfilled. Bhagavad-Gita is the manifest
quintessence of all the teachings of the Vedic scriptures.
The Bhagavad-Gita is the most systematic statement of spiritual
evolution of endowing value to mankind. It is one of the most clear
and comprehensive summaries of perennial philosophy ever revealed;
hence its enduring value is subject not only to India but to all
The Bhagavad-Gita was spoken by Lord Krishna to reveal the science
of devotion to God which is the essence of all spiritual knowledge.
The Supreme Lord Krishna's primary purpose for descending and incarnating
is relieve the world of any demoniac and negative, undesirable influences
that are opposed to spiritual development, yet simultaneously it
is His incomparable intention to be perpetually within reach of
The Bhagavad-Gita is not seperate from the Vaishnava philosophy
and the Srimad Bhagavatam fully reveals the true import of this
doctrine which is transmigation of the soul. On perusal of the first
chapter of Bhagavad-Gita one may think that they are advised to
engage in warfare. When the second chapter has been read it can
be clearly understood that knowledge and the soul is the ultimate
goal to be attained. On studying the third chapter it is apparent
that acts of righteousness are also of high priority. If we continue
and patiently take the time to complete the Bhagavad-Gita and try
to ascertain the truth of its closing chapter we can see that the
ultimate conclusion is to relinquish all the conceptualized ideas
of religion which we possess and fully surrender directly unto the
The Mahabharata has all the essential ingredients necessary to
evolve and protect humanity and that within it the Bhagavad-Gita
is the epitome of the Mahabharata just as ghee is the essence of
milk and pollen is the essence of flowers
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