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Alternate Time Friendship and Revelation in the Bhagavad Gita
write a short, well-structured essay comparing how these two texts (Bhagavad Gita and Zhuangzi) are mystical (and how they are not). Use evidence from the texts and the principles outlined bellow to support your answer.
1: above words and senses
2: against commonly assumed ideas
3: siding with the powerless
Also known as the Gita, the Bhagavad Gita (meaning the song of God) is a section of the Mahabharata where Krishna exhorts the devotee to abandon the mortal self and give oneself to the infinite love of God. By loving God a person loves the immortal self, and thereby finds harmony and peace with the universe.
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The subjective and objective aspects of ego are personified in the Bhagavadgita as Krishna and Arjuna. Lord Krishna personifies the universal Self, whereas Arjuna stands symbolically for the ego consciousness or the atomicity (anava). Any suffering or any feeling or emotion that we experience, even a little disturbance or discomfort, is due to ego. In the perceptual world it is the source of all our knowledge, perceptions, feelings, and experience. In truth it is but the Self only, the purest reality (suddha tattva). However, because it remains enveloped by the Natureâs impure reality (tattva), which goes by the name ego, it acts like an individual and a limited entity.
According to the Bhagavadgita, the ego is an aspect of the eightfold division of lower divine nature, which is made up of the five elements, the ego, the mind and reason (7.4&5). It is a part of the physical reality, the kshetra or field (13.5), while egolessnesss is part of the knower of the field or the pure consciousness) (13.8&9).
Uncover The Hidden Treasure Of The Bhagavad Gita!
From the above it is clear that the solution to the problem of ego or bondage is self-evident in the Bhagavadgita. You can escape from the mortal existence when you renounce your egoism and develop a universal vision. An adept yogi, who is pure in his heart, who has controlled himself and conquered his senses, sees himself in all beings and all beings in himself. Thereby, he is not tainted (5.7). If you identify yourself with the universal Self, overlook the duality and divisions of the world, and even vaguely cultivate the universal feeling of oneness with the whole existence, it is a good start. In itself it is a great sacrifice in which your whole life and actions become a continuous offering.
The Rig Veda or other Hindu religious texts do not directly mention Mazda worship or Mazda worshippers. Rather, they mention a set of deities who carry the title asura.
The word asura is the Vedic equivalent of the Avestan ahura. Avestan words can frequently be changed to their Sanskrit equivalent by replacing h with s. Ahura is in turn said to be derived from the word ahu, meaning lord. As with the English word 'lord', ahu is a descriptive title for both a human lord (e.g. a feudal lord or landlord) and a divine lord. In the Avesta, God or Mazda, is sometimes addressed as Ahura (Lord) and sometimes as Ahura Mazda (Lord God). The use of the words in this manner can also be found in the Judeo-Christian Bible.
It is pertinent to note that in the older Veda, the Rig Veda, the term asura or lord is used (as in the Avesta) for individual gods and for people - but never for a group of gods. In other words, asura does not define a class of gods. Rather it is a title. In these older Vedic texts, the term deva, however, is used for both individual gods and the group of devas (visve devah). In other words, deva is used both as a title - a superior god - and as the name for the group of gods. Some gods with the title asura are also referred to as devas. This nomenclature changes in the later Vedic texts, where the word asura is used as a title and as the name of a group of gods, gods who had evolved into demons.
There is a considerable difference in the way asuras are treated in the older and younger Vedic texts and the difference may help us understand the manner in which the Aryan religions, and the relationship between them, evolved.
In the earlier Vedas, the devas and asuras are said to have been born of a common parent, but the asuras were the older (purva-deva) and stronger siblings - powerful and beneficent gods who merited equal if not greater respect than the devas.
In the later Vedic texts starting with the Atharva Veda, the asuras are referred to in the plural, that is as a group of deities. It is also in these later texts that the asuras are depicted as being opposed to the devas. In conflicts between the two, the asuras were invariably victorious. The devas were victorious when they used a ruse or received the help of a benefactor trickster such as Vishnu.
In the post Vedic texts such as the , and , the asuras are transformed and treated as a group of demons who possess the vices of pride, arrogance, conceit, anger, harshness, and ignorance (Gita 16.4). In the texts, the asuras are hostile and opposed to the devas with whom they are in constant conflict.
However, no individual god who carries the title asura in the Rig Veda ever appears as an inimical adversary of the deva gods in the later Hindu religious texts, and none of the gods who bore the title asura in the older Rig Veda are mentioned in these later texts. In other words, the asuras of the earlier texts are not to be considered as demons. In one later text, the , the new character of the asuras are accompanied with a new word, sura, meaning god, thereby implying that asura meant a-sura or a not-god.
It stands to reason that the change in the way the asuras were perceived by the deva worshippers closely parallels the changes in the relations between the asura and deva worshippers. There is an acknowledgement that the asura worship preceded deva worship and that in the early years, the asura worshippers were the dominant group.
A name that appears to be common to both the Avesta and Vedas is the Vedic asura Mitra (also see ) and the Avestan Mithra. In the Vedas, Mitra is often addressed together with the asura Varuna.
While the Vedas tend to anthropomorphize all its deities, it is probable that the asuras, Varuna, Mithra and Agni were originally invisible, non-anthropomorphic, genderless, non-iconic deities (cf. the attributes of Mazda) who may have been worshipped together as Asura worship or exclusively as Mazda worship.
, Hale, Wash Edward (1986), Delhi, Motilal Banarsidass
- Asura in Early Vedic Religion, Oct-Dec, 1993 by Stanley Insler.
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The Bhagavad-Gita Essays and Translations
The ego makes us believe that we are the doers of our actions and responsible for them. Because of that we engage in desire-ridden actions and desire for their fruit, whereby we incur karma and remain bound to the mortal world. As the Bhagavadgita (3.27) states, "All types of action are performed by the gunas, which arise from Nature. Deluded by the ego, the being, thus thinks, "I am the doer."
A commentary on the Bhagavad Gita by Abbot George Burke
The Bhagavadgita also spelled as Bhagavad-Gita and Bhagavad Gita or simply Gita, is considered to be one of the most sacred and popular religious scriptures of Hinduism. Hindus consider the Bhagavad-Gita as a direct message of Vishnu in the avatar of Krishna, revealed to us in the form of a long dialogue between Him and Arjuna in the middle of the battle field of Kurukshetra, where the epic battle of Mahabharata was fought. The Bhagavad-Gita tells us how we should conduct ourselves in our day to day lives, keeping God at the center of our awareness and activities, performing our duties with a sense of detachment and as a way of our sacrificial offering, and accepting God as the doer and facilitator and ourselves as mere instruments engaged in the act of liberation and self-realization. Those who read the Bhagavad-Gita regularly and with sincerity are apt to be benefited in many ways physically, materially, mentally and spiritually. This section deals exclusively with the Bhagavad-Gita, its content, concepts, wisdom and philosophy. The Bhagavad-Gita is relevant even today as it was centuries ago. In many ways perhaps it is more relevant today than it was before as our lives have become more complex and challenging due to pressures of modern life. This section also contains links to important works and translations of the Bhagavad-Gita from external sources. We are hopeful readers will find this section useful.
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For the first TWO pages, discuss what you believe to be the most important teachings presented in the “Bhagavad-Gita: The song of God”. [2 PAGES]
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