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We begin with a question: What is the Bhagavad Gita about? We begin with a question:

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Presentation on theme: "We begin with a question: What is the Bhagavad Gita about? We begin with a question:"— Presentation transcript:

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3 We begin with a question: What is the Bhagavad Gita about? We begin with a question:

4 What does one need to know BEFORE one reads the Bhagavad Gita in order to understand it? We continue with a question:

5 What will one know AFTER they’ve read the Bhagavad Gita IF they have understood it? One more question:

6 The conundrum: In order to understand the Bhagavad Gita one must understand the Bhagavad Gita The conundrum:

7 The first challenge: How do we describe the Bhagavad Gita in a way that will motivate people to read it? The first challenge:

8 The second challenge: How do we help people who want to read the Bhagavad Gita to understand it? The second challenge:

9 Confidenti al Knowledg e 8 Keys to Understanding the Bhagavad Gita by Hari-kirtana das Confidenti al Knowledg e

10 8 Keys to Understanding the Bhagavad Gita Key #1: “What Are They Talking About?” Identifying the Subject Matter of the Bhagavad Gita 8 Keys to Understanding the Bhagavad Gita

11 Key #2: “How do I follow the conversation?” Seeing the Organizational Structure the Bhagavad Gita 8 Keys to Understanding the Bhagavad Gita

12 Key #3: “Where do I fit into this?” Understanding the Conception of Individual Identity in the Bhagavad Gita 8 Keys to Understanding the Bhagavad Gita

13 Key #4: “Who is Krishna?” Understanding the Conception of God in the Bhagavad Gita 8 Keys to Understanding the Bhagavad Gita

14 Key #5: “Who’s fighting and what for?” Unraveling the Paradox of Ethics and Violence in the Bhagavad Gita 8 Keys to Understanding the Bhagavad Gita

15 Key #6: “Am I coming or going?” Decoding the Paradox of Action in the Bhagavad Gita 8 Keys to Understanding the Bhagavad Gita

16 Key #7: “How should I approach the text?” Strategies for Reading Different Editions of the Bhagavad Gita 8 Keys to Understanding the Bhagavad Gita

17 Key #8: “What am I supposed to do?” Living the Teachings of the Bhagavad Gita 8 Keys to Understanding the Bhagavad Gita

18 Today: Keys Sunday, December 7: Keys Keys to Understanding the Bhagavad Gita

19 Key #1: The Subject Matter of the Bhagavad Gita

20 THE OVER-ARCHING THEME OF THE BHAGAVAD GITA Key #1: The Subject Matter of the Bhagavad Gita

21 THE OVER-ARCHING THEME OF THE BHAGAVAD GITA Bg 1.1 dh ṛ tarā ṣṭ ra uvāca dharma-k ṣ etre kuru-k ṣ etre -- samavetā yuyutsava ḥ / māmakā ḥ pā ṇḍ avāś caiva -- kim akurvata sañjaya // Bg (śrī-bhagavān uvāca) sarva-dharmān parityajya -- mām eka ṁ śara ṇ a ṁ vraja / aha ṁ tvā ṁ sarva-pāpebhyo -- mok ṣ ayi ṣ yāmi mā śuca ḥ // Key #1: The Subject Matter of the Bhagavad Gita

22 THE OVER-ARCHING THEME OF THE BHAGAVAD GITA DHARMA AS VIRTUE, DUTY, AND RELIGION Key #1: The Subject Matter of the Bhagavad Gita

23 THE OVER-ARCHING THEME OF THE BHAGAVAD GITA DHARMA AS VIRTUE, DUTY, AND RELIGION 1.Moral Excellence 2.Obligation to Society 3.Proximity to Divinity Key #1: The Subject Matter of the Bhagavad Gita

24 THE OVER-ARCHING THEME OF THE BHAGAVAD GITA DHARMA AS VIRTUE, DUTY, AND RELIGION 1.Moral Excellence 2.Obligation to Society 3.Proximity to Divinity o THE OBJECTIVE OF DHARMA IS HARMONY Key #1: The Subject Matter of the Bhagavad Gita

25 THE OVER-ARCHING THEME OF THE BHAGAVAD GITA DHARMA AS VIRTUE, DUTY, AND RELIGION THE FIVE TOPICS OF THE BHAGAVAD GITA Key #1: The Subject Matter of the Bhagavad Gita

26 THE OVER-ARCHING THEME OF THE BHAGAVAD GITA DHARMA AS VIRTUE, DUTY, AND RELIGION THE FIVE TOPICS OF THE BHAGAVAD GITA 1.The Individual Atomic Self 2.The Infinite Supreme Self 3.The Material World 4.Time 5.Action Key #1: The Subject Matter of the Bhagavad Gita

27 THE OVER-ARCHING THEME OF THE BHAGAVAD GITA DHARMA AS VIRTUE, DUTY, AND RELIGION THE FIVE TOPICS OF THE BHAGAVAD GITA Key #1: The Subject Matter of the Bhagavad Gita

28 Key #2: The Structure of the Bhagavad Gita

29 ORGANIZATION BY SECTION Key #2: The Structure of the Bhagavad Gita

30 ORGANIZATION BY SECTION o Section 1: Karma Yoga : the Yoga of Action chapters 1 – 6 o Section 2: Bhakti Yoga : the Yoga of Devotion chapters 7-12 o Section 3: Jnana Yoga : the Yoga of Knowledge chapters Key #2: The Structure of the Bhagavad Gita

31 ORGANIZATION BY SECTION ORGANIZATION BY CHAPTER Key #2: The Structure of the Bhagavad Gita

32 ORGANIZATION BY SECTION ORGANIZATION BY CHAPTER o Each chapter has a specific theme o Example: Chapter 1 - Visada Yoga – The Yoga of Despair Key #2: The Structure of the Bhagavad Gita

33 ORGANIZATION BY SECTION ORGANIZATION BY CHAPTER ORGANIZATION BY CHANGES IN THE DIALOG Key #2: The Structure of the Bhagavad Gita

34 ORGANIZATION BY SECTION ORGANIZATION BY CHAPTER ORGANIZATION BY CHANGES IN THE DIALOG LEVELS OF TRANSFORMATIONAL PROGRESSION Key #2: The Structure of the Bhagavad Gita

35 ORGANIZATION BY SECTION ORGANIZATION BY CHAPTER ORGANIZATION BY CHANGES IN THE DIALOG LEVELS OF TRANSFORMATIONAL PROGRESSION o Conditional Dharma (material consciousness) o Yoga (the bridge) o Constitutional Dharma (spiritual consciousness) Key #2: The Structure of the Bhagavad Gita

36 ORGANIZATION BY SECTION ORGANIZATION BY CHAPTER ORGANIZATION BY CHANGES IN THE DIALOG LEVELS OF TRANSFORMATIONAL PROGRESSION Key #2: The Structure of the Bhagavad Gita

37 Key #3: Individual Identity in the Bhagavad Gita

38 WHAT ARE YOU? Key #3: Individual Identity in the Bhagavad Gita

39 WHAT ARE YOU? o The Gita begins here: “The Supreme Personality of Godhead said: While speaking learned words, you are mourning for what is not worthy of grief. Those who are wise lament neither for the living nor for the dead. Never was there a time when I did not exist, nor you, nor all these kings; nor in the future shall any of us cease to be.” — Bg Key #3: Individual Identity in the Bhagavad Gita

40 WHAT ARE YOU? ETERNAL INDIVIDUALITY Key #3: Individual Identity in the Bhagavad Gita

41 WHAT ARE YOU? ETERNAL INDIVIDUALITY TEMPORAL INDIVIDUALITY AND SOCIAL ORDER Key #3: Individual Identity in the Bhagavad Gita

42 WHAT ARE YOU? ETERNAL INDIVIDUALITY TEMPORAL INDIVIDUALITY AND SOCIAL ORDER HOW DID I GET HERE? Key #3: Individual Identity in the Bhagavad Gita

43 WHAT ARE YOU? ETERNAL INDIVIDUALITY TEMPORAL INDIVIDUALITY AND SOCIAL ORDER HOW DID I GET HERE? o The mechanics of illusion: Envy and anger The gunas, karma, and samsara Key #3: Individual Identity in the Bhagavad Gita

44 WHAT ARE YOU? ETERNAL INDIVIDUALITY TEMPORAL INDIVIDUALITY AND SOCIAL ORDER HOW DID I GET HERE? o The essential tension between modern and yogic paradigms: Modernity: matter is the cause of consciousness Yoga: consciousness is the cause of matter Key #3: Individual Identity in the Bhagavad Gita

45 WHAT ARE YOU? ETERNAL INDIVIDUALITY TEMPORAL INDIVIDUALITY AND SOCIAL ORDER HOW DID I GET HERE? ETERNAL IDENTITY Key #3: Individual Identity in the Bhagavad Gita

46 WHAT ARE YOU? ETERNAL INDIVIDUALITY TEMPORAL INDIVIDUALITY AND SOCIAL ORDER HOW DID I GET HERE? ETERNAL IDENTITY o the individual self as a subordinate servant of the Supreme Self Key #3: Individual Identity in the Bhagavad Gita

47 WHAT ARE YOU? ETERNAL INDIVIDUALITY TEMPORAL INDIVIDUALITY AND SOCIAL ORDER HOW DID I GET HERE? ETERNAL IDENTITY Key #3: Individual Identity in the Bhagavad Gita

48 Key #4: the Concept of God in the Bhagavad Gita

49 THE CONCEPT OF GOD Key #4: the Concept of God in the Bhagavad Gita

50 THE CONCEPT OF GOD o God as the ‘Supreme Being’ you pray to Key #4: the Concept of God in the Bhagavad Gita

51 THE CONCEPT OF GOD o God as the ‘Supreme Being’ you pray to o God as the ‘not-being’ beyond being Key #4: the Concept of God in the Bhagavad Gita

52 THE CONCEPT OF GOD THE CONCEPT OF BRAHMAN Key #4: the Concept of God in the Bhagavad Gita

53 THE CONCEPT OF GOD THE CONCEPT OF BRAHMAN o “That from which all things proceed” – the ground of being, being itself, and that which is beyond being Key #4: the Concept of God in the Bhagavad Gita

54 THE CONCEPT OF GOD THE CONCEPT OF BRAHMAN o “That from which all things proceed” – the source of being, being itself, and that which is beyond being o (Jnana) Yogis achieve liberation by merging into Brahman Key #4: the Concept of God in the Bhagavad Gita

55 THE CONCEPT OF GOD THE CONCEPT OF BRAHMAN THE CONCEPT OF PARAMATMA Key #4: the Concept of God in the Bhagavad Gita

56 THE CONCEPT OF GOD THE CONCEPT OF BRAHMAN THE CONCEPT OF PARAMATMA o With form / beyond form Key #4: the Concept of God in the Bhagavad Gita

57 THE CONCEPT OF GOD THE CONCEPT OF BRAHMAN THE CONCEPT OF PARAMATMA o With form / beyond form o The self and the Self Key #4: the Concept of God in the Bhagavad Gita

58 THE CONCEPT OF GOD THE CONCEPT OF BRAHMAN THE CONCEPT OF PARAMATMA THE CONCEPT OF BHAGAVAN Key #4: the Concept of God in the Bhagavad Gita

59 THE CONCEPT OF GOD THE CONCEPT OF BRAHMAN THE CONCEPT OF PARAMATMA THE CONCEPT OF BHAGAVAN THE CONCEPT OF THE COMPLETE ABSOLUTE TRUTH Key #4: the Concept of God in the Bhagavad Gita

60 THE CONCEPT OF GOD THE CONCEPT OF BRAHMAN THE CONCEPT OF PARAMATMA THE CONCEPT OF BHAGAVAN THE CONCEPT OF THE COMPLETE ABSOLUTE TRUTH Key #4: the Concept of God in the Bhagavad Gita

61 Confidenti al Knowledg e 8 Keys to Understanding the Bhagavad Gita by Hari-kirtana das Confidenti al Knowledg e


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