Mahaabhaarat | Geetaa
Shree Mad-Bhagvad Geetaa is one the most read books of Hindu Religion in the whole world. It has been translated in hundreds of languages for the convenience of other people to read it. It is known as Geetopanishad also. According to Krishn Himself, first it was told to Soorya Dev, then Soorya Dev told this to Manu, then Manu told to Raajaa Ikshwaaku; but in the course of time it was lost so Krishn Himself had to tell this to Arjun in the battlefield of Kurukshetra for the good of coming generations.
It is not a separate book, but it is a very tiny part of Mahaabhaarat - one of the two epics of Hindu religion - Raamaayan and Mahaabhaarat. It is a dialog between Bhagavaan Krishn and Arjun just before Arjun was to start fighting with his cousins - Kaurav in the battlefield.
It is originally written in Sanskrit Language. It has 18 chapters and 700 Shlok. It was heard by four people only - Arjun, Sanjaya, Hanumaan, who was sitting on the flag of Arjun's chariot, and ved Vyaas Jee, of course as he wrote it, but Krishn's Viraat Roop was seen by three people only - Arjun, Sanjaya and Ved Vyaas Jee, Hanumaan Jee couldn't see it because he did not have Divine sight.
Very few people know Sanskrit Language, so the others can read Geetaa only by its translation. It is said that normally literal translations are the other side of tapestry - means, the threads are all there but the pattern is missing. I have attempted to translate Geetaa word by word but keeping in mind that the pattern doesn't get missed. For this a few words have to be added here and there [those words are in square brackets] or their meanings are given in (brackets) or on Glossary page. Thus I have tried to maintain a fluency in the text.
Regarding the superiority between Ved and Geetaa, as both have been the Vaanee (speech) of Parameshwar Himself, Ved is a Shruti, and since Geetaa is a part of Mahaabhaarat, it is a Smriti. It is a general rule that in case of conflict Shruti are to be followed; but fortunately or unfortunately there is no conflict between Geetaa and Ved, hence both are Pramaan.
There is one more thing about Geetaa, that people either do not understand Geetaa or they misunderstand Geetaa. Geetaa can not be taught to anybody, but it should be learnt by one who is full of love and respect for Shree Krishn, if he approaches a right Guru in right manner -
pranipaaten pariprashnen sevayaa | upadekshyanti te Gyaanam Gyaanin statvwda
arshinah || 4-34||
Geetaa in Many Languages
The Bhagvad Geetaa, often called the "perennial philosophy", is already available in over 50 languages. Even as Hindu fight a proposed ban on the Russian translation of the Bhagvad Geetaa, in Catholic-dominated Poland the sacred scripture has for the first time been translated into the Polish language from its original Sanskrit text. The translation has been done by a Polish lady, who has done her PhD in Sanskrit. Though there is a translation of the Geetaa in Polish, it was translated from English language in the beginning of the 20th century. The present translation has been done by Anna Racinska, who has spent almost a decade in Vaaraanasee to master the nuances of Sanskrit. A late bloomer, Racinska is in her 60s and completed her doctorate from the Oriental Institute of Warsaw University two years ago.
Racinska, a mother of
four grown-up children, took interest in Sanskrit on the prompting of her
husband. Today in their home, all the children and parents speak Sanskrit
fluently, and they converse normally in Sanskrit. It may seem odd to outsiders,
but it is normal routine in their home. These days their youngest sibling has
adopted an Indian name, Yogaanand, and he lives in Vaaraanasee. He and his
mother were learning Sanskrit together for many years. Another son, Phillip, is
doing his doctorate in Sanskrit and has visited India more than 12 times. These
children collect their own money to go to India and they give private lessons in
Hindi and Sanskrit in Warsaw. Such is their commitment and passion for Sanskrit.
How to Read This Geetaa
As you are aware that this Geetaa is told by Krishn to Arjun, so this is mostly in Krishn-Arjun dialog form. But at the same time Sanjaya is also telling the account of the battlefield to Dhritraashtra. Ved Vyaas gave him Divine sight for this purpose only, that is why there are some dialog of Dhritraashtra and Sanjaya also in this. And then there is description.
For each part a separate color has been used. Once used to this, reading this Geetaa is easier to understand -
Description is in the normal color - Green.
If you wish to something
special about Geetaa, do read the following pages --
Created by Sushma Gupta On 05/27/04
Modified on 02/03/13