Musings on the Bhagavad Gita 16: The Traces of Divinity within

“I am Telling You All This, O Arjuna,” Krishna tells his cousin, his disciple, warrior Arjuna, “for your own hita, your own good, for your own welfare…” Thus begins the 10th Dialogue of the Bhagavad Gita.

            A questioning mind is always tempted to find out what the truth is, not what truth is, but what The Truth is. This is an intelligent mind. Whereas, the dull witted can not even conceive such a question. They go with the flow, they are too lazy to fight the tide.

            Arjuna’s is an intelligent mind, he is trying to find out what the truth is, the truth behind all the happenings in this visible world. Is there as unseen reality? Is there something more to what we see with our naked eyes?

            He is in the middle of the battlefield of Kurukshetra. He is facing his kith and kin on the opposite side. Is the war over a piece of land alone, or there is some other purpose?

There is No Time to Waste. Krishna must be short and to the point, hence, “The Truth has uncountable facets. Yet, it remains One, Singular. All the different facets and aspects belong to the One and Same Truth.

            “But, why go far? I am That Truth. You are That Truth. Even the seemingly diverse traits of creatures such as the following – all emanate from the same Truth, from Me – from That that is your reality too:

            “Reason, right knowledge, unclouded understanding, forbearance, veracity, control over the senses and mind, joy and sorrow, evolution and dissolution, fear and fearlessness, non-violence, equanimity, contentment, austerity, charity, fame and obloquy…”

All These Diverse Qualities can be likened to various applications on our computer. There is fear, and there is fearlessness; there is love, and there is hatred. The choice is ours, which applications do we want to use. We can even delete all the unnecessary applications.

            Krishna continues, “there is no limit to My manifestations. I am the universal Self seated in the hearts of all beings; so, I alone am the beginning, the middle and also the end of all beings…”

            Krishna’s God, the Supreme Being, the Supreme Self, is not torn apart between good and bad. Krishna’s God is not divided between the forces of light and darkness. Krishna’s God is All That Is.

            What we understand as good, and what we perceive as bad – both are but manifestations of God. Which manifestations are we drawn to entirely depends upon our role. Which role do we want to play in this drama of life?

Hence, “Listen to Me, O Arjuna, what is good for you, what is beneficial…” This is a friendly advice. Elsewhere, Krishna also says: “This is my opinion, now you decide…”

            Krishna does not force his ideas and opinions upon Arjuna. He does not threaten Arjuna with hellfire. Gita is a dialogue, not a monologue. Inspite of all the explanations given, Krishna still honors Arjuna’s inquisitivity:

            “You are the transcendent Eternal, the supreme Abode and the greatest purifier; all the seers speak of You as the Eternal Divine Being, the Primal Deity, Unborn and All-Pervading. I believe as true all that You tell me.

            “Lord, neither demons nor gods are aware of Your manifestations… You alone know what You are by Yourself. Therefore, You alone can describe in full Your divine glories, whereby You pervade all these worlds.

            “O Master of Yoga, through what process of continuous meditation shall I know You? And in what particular forms, O Lord, are You to be meditated upon by me?

            “Tell me once more in detail Your power of Yoga and Your glory; for I know no satiety in hearing Your nectar-like words.”

Krishna Answers, “Arjuna, let me tell you the prominent ones among My divine glories; for there actually is no limit to My manifestations.

            “Know Me, O Arjuna, as the Universal Self seated in the heart of hearts of all beings, in their innermost recesses; indeed, I alone am the beginning, the middle and also the end of all beings.”

            Krishna knows that Arjuna needs some kind of reconfirmation: “Of all Your forms, which form do I meditate upon, which form do I internalize, in order to perform my righteous duty, my svadharma with a full determination and without any doubt?”

            Hence, Krishna must make it very clear to him: “I am the endless Time, the devourer of Time; I am also the sustainer of all, having My face on all sides,” however, at that point of time, He adds, “I am the all-destroying Death that annihilates all…”

Death Signifies Change. And, change is happening all the time. Are we adaptive to the change? Can we face a situation of total disruption, of complete change?

            Krishna is preparing Arjuna to face such a change. And, through Arjuna, He is preparing all of us, each one of us. Do we have our ears open? Are we only hearing the sounds or listening to Him speaking to us.

            How do we listen to Krishna? By opening our inner hearts, the heart of hearts; and, clearing our minds of all unnecessary datas. Let us create a space to process and digest the words of Krishna, the divine wisdom. 

Krishna Continues, “Arjuna, there is no limit to My divine manifestations. This is only a brief description by Me of the extent of My glory. Every such being as is glorious, brilliant and powerful, know that to be a part manifestation of My glory.

            “I am Krishna, as you perceive Me standing before you; I am also You, O Arjuna…But, what will you gain by knowing all this in detail, Arjuna? Suffice it to say that I hold this entire universe by a fraction of My Yogic Power.”

            Krishna’s I – the Universal, Cosmic I, the Self that resides in the heart of hearts of each and every being – is also our core reality. We simply have to shift our consciousness from the limited to the Limitless. From our material body, flesh, bone, marrow, mental, emotional, and intellectual consciousness to the Divine Almighty Consciousness.

            Let us transmute our feelings of helplessness into hopefulness… Thus, ends the 10th Dialogue of the Bhagavad Gita.

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