CREDOS : Bhagavad Gita

For the Hindus the Bhagavad Gita is what the Bible is to the Christians. It is said in one of the Hindu scriptures that if the Upanishads can be considered as cows, the Bhagavad Gita can be considered as milk.

Truly, the Bhagavad Gita is the essence of the Vedas. It is indeed a summation of the Upanishads. The Gita is in the form of a conversation between the warrior prince Arjun and his charioteer and friend Lord Krishna at the outset of the Mahabharat war. Just before the beginning of the fight, Arjun refused to fight seeing that he had to kill his own kinsmen. Krishna advised him in detail on a variety of subjects. At the end, Arjun took Lord Krishna’s advice and fought a very fierce battle.

The Bhagavad Gita consists of 18 chapters and about 700 verses. It deals in depth all the yogas or ways of God-realisation. There are many versions of the Bhagavad Gita available in the market. Charles Wilkins, the British governor-general of India, did the very first English translation in 1785, with an introduction by Warren Hastings. But Sir Edwin Arnold did the important English translation, under the title The Song Celestial.

The Gita has an answer to every problem a man may face in his life. The Bhagavad Gita never commands one what to do. Instead, it gives the pros and cons of every issue and the final decision is left to the individual. Throughout the Gita, you will not come across even one line starting with “Thou shalt not.” — Am I a Hindu?