How is this Book Different?
My commentary / Book is verily different from what has been written about Srimad Bhagawat Gita over the last 1,200 years. [I have attempted to bring out the scientific / rational tenor of The Gita and ardently hope that it shall lead to a 'healthy' debate based on my 'de novo interpretation of some major aspects of this timeless philosophy']. It is different in as much as:
- it brings together science, philosophy, metaphysics, logic, faith, devotion…..not as entirely un-related and/or antagonistic streams of thought…..but as completely complementary nay convergent thought processes;
- it attempts to weave together the schools of ‘Advaita’ and ‘Dvaita’ (indeed there is no ‘real’ irreconcilability between these Vedantic schools);
- it rejects lock, stock & barrel the ‘highly misinterpreted, misused and anachronistic’ concept of ‘caste’ – the scourge of which continues to exert a ‘damning influence’ on our nation and humanity at large…..indeed it continues to divide mankind since times immemorial; on the contrary, The Holy Gita fully negates the concept of ‘caste’; it, in no way, supports the concept of ‘caste’ as determined by ‘birth’…..it, in no way, seeks to allow for its propagation and/or its perpetuation (verily, as per The Gita, Ch. IV and XVIII, the broad classification of men is based on the type of karma they pursue and based on the guna then predominant in them) [It thus calls into question all that passes muster, in India, or elsewhere, on the basis of the rampantly prevalent ‘caste system’…..the havoc it has wreaked on ‘psyche’ of the Indian Nation for ages…..the ‘nonsensical and irrational’ anomalies that have crept into our Constitution…..the quotas, the reservations, the oppression, untouchability…..and what not; IF THIS ASPECT OF MY INTERPRETATION IS UNDERSTOOD AND APPRECIATED, WHICH, I AM SURE, SHALL EVENTUALLY HAPPEN, THEN IT HAS THE POTENTIAL OF CHANGING THE PARADIGM OF OUR SOCIAL FABRIC AS WELL AS POLITICAL DISCOURSE];
- it goads man to rise above ‘religious rites and rituals’ and graduate to ‘spirituality’ (The Lord made Arjuna realize that he could be ‘truly spiritual’ – even in the midst of ‘the battle’ even as he faced grandsire Bhishma, Guru Drona, his kith and kin etc. – as he would be ‘rising in the cause of the larger common good OR dharma);
- it dwells on the necessity of maintaining the pristine nature of Nature (in fact it takes one beyond the concepts of benevolent (and/or malevolent) demi-godesses/Devis and demigods/Devatas and/or concepts like heaven, hell etc.) (Ch. III);
- it talks about the concepts of the Cosmic Mind, the individual mind, ego etc. and how they are inter-related (Ch. VII);
- it dwells extensively on Yoga and Meditation…..as to what they are all about;
- it overtly talks of ‘atomic and sub-atomic particles’ (Ch. VIII);
- it explicitly talks about the ‘Creation and Dissolution of the universe’ (akin to the modern day ‘Big Bang’ and the ‘Big Crunch’ theories); (Ch. IX, XI, XIII, XV & XVI)
- it refers to un-manifest dark-energy/dark-matter;
- it does not subscribe to the concept of ‘random and/or accidental evolution’ (it is but obvious that ‘consciousness’ cannot, does not and has not evolved as ‘matter’ supposedly has; indeed! the evolution theory (ala Charles Darwin) has feebly murmured (based on an extremely ‘fragile’ and/or ‘unfounded/irrational’ assumption) that ‘consciousness’ has evolved or come about consequent upon ‘a happy random accident’; if ‘consciousness’ or any other thing for that matter ‘evolves’ then it makes it ‘changeful’; everything ‘changeful’ has to be mutable; it can be born and it can die; then consciousness CAN die; the question arises as to who/what will then illumine these changes? The Gita declares that ‘consciousness’ is CHANGELESS and that only ONE CONSCIOUSNESS – WHICH IS OMNISCIENT alone exists;
- Science declares that ‘the universe is expanding’, the question is ‘expanding into what…..a vacuum?…..or into something non-existent? (this whole thing appears to be based on the Western assumption – prevalent since the times of Aristotle – that the universe is made of only 4 elements – earth, water, air and fire; whereas The Gita and other Indian Philosophical Literature explicitly talks about the 5th element ‘space or ether or akasha’; the logical question then arises “is space ‘spatially’ infinite”? indeed! there is no way of knowing it…..as INFINITY cannot be ‘straddled’ or ‘measured’…..it can only be ‘visualized or comprehended’; but as The Gita says (and modern day Science probably concurs) that ‘the spatially seemingly infinite space’ is in reality ‘finite’ owing to it being ‘subject to the coordinate of ‘time’…..thus even as the universe came to born following THE BIG BANG, it shall come to collapse over time [this is what is termed as THE BIG CRUNCH]….. the logic of The Gita bears out this fact;
- it does not allow for the recently floated ‘trial-balloon’ of their being a ‘multiverse’; once again it is worth pointing out that the ‘unfounded’ reasoning that has been proffered by theoretical astro-physicists like Sir Roger Penrose (colleague of Stephen Hawking) for there being a ‘possible multiverse’ is that “laws of physics could take different forms in the different universes” and that “parallel universes would contain every possible situation”; my Book counters this ‘unfounded concept’ and dwells on this in a very rational manner (Ch. VII);
- The Gita explicitly declares that all karma - including even the most mundane of karma - are perfectly honourable and can (and should) be raised to the level of ‘the highest dharma’ and shows how to do it;
Indeed! all this and much more is ‘suffused’ in The Holy Gita. On my part, I have, with utmost humility, attempted to unveil the ‘letter and spirit of The Holy Gita while maintaining its sacrosanct nature’; moreover, I have worked very hard to avoid sprinkling my ‘ignorance’ onto this Immortal Wisdom; I have simply attempted to shed light on this treasure nonpareil – the rarest – the highest – timeless Wisdom – compassionately revealed by Lord Sri Krishna to the eternal benefit of man - showing him as to how to live in ‘The Gita way’ – as indeed he ought to.
By penning this commentary in the particular format I have also addressed a need which I direly felt whenever I picked up The Holy Gita heretofore; I have little hesitation in admitting that each time I tried delving into it, I, post-haste, kept it aside – as it appeared to be way beyond my comprehension; indeed! the existing commentaries – by learned Masters – were fully beyond me. Therefore, I am now about to share ‘what are essentially the notes of a student’; surely a large many (like me) shall find it to be an aid – atleast to start with. Indeed! My being the author of this Book is un-important…..in no way do I claim that I be counted amongst The Masters who have commented on The Holy Gita heretofore or shall do so hereafter…..indeed! I am but a humble student. Glory unto Him Who has revealed Himself – The Sole Truth.
The Book brings reading, reciting, chanting of each and every word of The Holy Gita within the reach of anyone and everyone who wishes to do so; each word of every verse (originally in Sanskrit) has been broken down to its elements and has been presented in Hindi (Devanagri) and English languages making it easy and enjoyable for any one who can read these languages [it also makes it easy for one to undertake translating it in other languages]; the meaning of every word has then been explained in English; moreover, the original Sanskrit words have been ‘embedded’ in the translation of the verse…..this enables the reader to discern as to why a particular verse has been translated in a particular way [it also allows one the liberty of translating it differently]; it is my ardent hope that this shall enable the reader to comprehend the import of each verse; a concise commentary on each verse follows the translation – bringing out the ‘flow of thought and/or logic’ that finally enabled the confused and despondent Arjuna to ‘straighten his thinking’ and ‘arise’ in the cause of his righteous duty.