Krishna's World View - Arjuna Essay Example

Duncan Guarino James Joiner PHI150 Mar 26, 2013 Krishna’s World View The Bhagavad Gita uses the conversation between Pandava Prince Arjuna and his guide Lord Krishna to portray Hinduism world view and Krishna’s view on the different fundamental questions - Krishna's World View introduction. When he’s facing a war, Arjuna is guided by Krishna to be a selfless leader, and dedication to the cause. Origin, this fundamental question focuses on why is there something rather than nothing. One important aspect of the Krishna world view is that, there is one ultimate reality in which everything was already in existence.

The Brahman, as the ultimate reality is known, is what manifested anything that has been created. Thus, as it is stated in Rigveda, that “existence was born from nonexistence” (10. 72), and gods are a manifestation of the Brahman. * It is also stated that Brahman is “the vast being hidden in the bodies of all creatures. He alone envelops everything as the Lord. …The whole universe is filled by this Person, to whom there is nothing superior, from whom there is nothing different. ” (Bahagavad Gita 10.

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129) In other words, the Brahman is behind all changing appearances, and there is nothing superior or inferior. * Furthermore, in Ibid, the Upanishad described that Brahman is the group of all being, whether material or spiritual, in the form of man, beasts, or gods, heaven, earth, or hell, is an all-inclusive unitary reality, beyond sense-apprehension, ultimate in substance, infinite in essence and self-sufficient; it is the only really existent entity. (129) Condition, this fundamental question calls for the consideration on what is wrong with humanity.

The Hinduism world view seems to be addressing on these several issues of ignorance of identity, the attachment toward reality and the knowledge required achieving true nirvana. First, there is the issue of the identity ignorance. * In Upanishad there are two paragraphs of conversations between the father Uddalaka and his son Shvetaketu, regarding how something exists in this universe that we cannot see but can be certain of. ““You cannot make out what exists in it, yet it is there.

“It is this very fineness which ensouls this entire world, it is the true one, it is the soul. ” and “Everything that exists has its self in that subtle essence. ”(1. 4 1-7) * Krishna pointed out in Bahagavad Gita “that the impermanent has no reality”, that “the spirit was not born; it will never die” and thus, “the spirit kills not, not it will be killed. ” (2. 16) in the same section, he also described the ones who thinks a spirit kills and the ones who think a spirit can be killed, are both ignorant.

The spirit then in Krishna’s view, is immortal and everlasting. * As the prince asked Lord Krishna on whether he should kill for the war, Krishna used the arguments above and more to show that there would be transcendence and so on, and when a person is “killed”, his or her spirit would just throws away its worn-out body and enters a new one. Krishna also addressed the issue of the attachment over reality. * Krishna pointed out that most people are afraid of death, and that the ignorance described previously is what preventing them from achieving immortality.

Only those who have realized that the impermanent has no reality and the reality lies in the eternal; and have seen the boundary between these two would have attained the end of all knowledge. (Bahagavad Gita 2. 15) * He sees that the human “seeks only the gratification of desire as the highest goal; seeing nothing beyond;” (Swami 16) is being greedy. They would require their senses to provide them with a feeling of fulfillment. In Bahagavad Gita, Krishna also expanded on the idea of reincarnation, and whether a subject reincarnates or achieves karma. * In DnyanaYoga, Krishna described how he goes through the reincarnation cycle himself.

“I have been born again and again, from time to time… I have no beginning… Whenever spirituality decays and materialism is rampant, then, O Arjuna, I reincarnate myself! ” (Swami 4) Solution, Krishna tried to solve the human condition by suggesting solutions like meditation or enlightenment, detachment, and worship for these issues. * For example, to solve the issue of earthly attachment, one must be free from all their sensations. Krishna told Arjuna that “The hero whose soul is unmoved by circumstance, who accepts pleasure and pain with equanimity, only he is fit for immortality.

” “When the mind, completely controlled, is centered in the Self, and free from all earthly desires, and then is the man truly spiritual. ” (Bahagavad Gita 2. 15) * Krishna clearly stated that mediation is a key way to achieve Karma. He stated that the soul who meditates on the Self is content to serve the Self and rests satisfied within the Self; there remains nothing more for him to accomplish. (Bahagavad Gita 3) * The dharma is the idea that every being is subject to a cycle of birth and death in which one has to come to Earth to work off their karma by fulfilling their dharma.

It’s an alternative to staying inside the reincarnation cycle. Krishna stated in Bahagavad Gita that “My beloved friend! Why yield, just on the eve of battle, to this weakness which does no credit to those who call themselves Aryans, and only brings them infamy and bars against them the gates of heaven? ” (Swami 2) and “He must always wander about alone, seeking to attain final liberation” (from reincarnation) (Manusmriti  6. 42) * Krishna tells Arjuna that, “The warrior confronted with such a war should be pleased, Arjuna, for it comes as an open gate to heaven. ” (Bahagavad Gita 2.

31) It seems that once a subject reaches the dharma state they’re freed from the cycle of reincarnation. Death, in Krishna’s viewpoint, is not the end of one’s life. As is stated previously, a soul would just be leaving its worn-out body into a freshly new one. * The statement can be seen throughout the whole Bahagavad Gita “One believes he is the slayer, another believes he is the slain. Both are ignorant; there is neither slayer nor slain. You were never born; you will never die. You have never changed; you can never change. Unborn, eternal, immutable, immemorial, you do not die when the body dies.

Realizing that which is indestructible, eternal, unborn, and unchanging, how can you slay or cause another to slay. ” (2. 19) * When Arjuna struggles with whether to kill enemies, Krishna led him to the idea that what he was doing was not what he thinks he was doing. “He who has no pride, and whose intellect is unalloyed by attachment, even though he kill these people, yet he does not kill them, and his act does not bind him. ” (Swami 18) * Krishna calls for a complete spiritual activism and not for violence when he orders those enemy warriors to be killed.

The acts of renouncing attachment to the fruit of actions should be done as duty Critique Personally I think that the Hinduism world view has many followers because of its complexity, and its ability to provide answers to everyone’s questions. The basic concept behind Bahagavad Gita is simple and easy to get a grip on. It does however feel too good to be true in some sections, and over necessarily violent in some others. In retrospect, the battlefield setting has brought the Bahagavad Gita the unnecessary heat and controversy for being “aggressive” and even “extremist” material.

Countries including Russia have tried to ban this book in their countries, and while I can understand their concerns I have to call those actions silly. For the intended audience, the Bahagavad Gita should have delivered a message of love, and peace among others. Many historical figures have come to a similar understanding after reading the Bahagavad Gita. The ides of selfless service highly influenced Mohandas Gandhi’s actions after he read this book. The “father of the Atomic Bomb” J. Robert Oppenheimer has cited the Bahagavad Gita as one of the most influential books to shape his philosophy of life.

He later said he had thought of the quotation “Now I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds”, a verse from the Bahagavad Gita (11. 32) after he witnessed the first ever atomic weapon test. (Trinity) Bibliography Anthology of World Scriptures: Eastern Religions by Robert E. Van Voorst The Bhagavad Gita Translation by Shri Purohit Swami J. Robert Oppenheimer on the Trinity test (1965) by The Atomic Archive http://www. atomicarchive. com/Movies/Movie8. shtml Manusmriti Translation by George Buhler

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