History and Importance of Bhagavad Gita
Bhagavat Gita is a very integral part of Hinduism. The verses of Bhagavat Gita teach about life and the laws of karma or duties. It explains the difference between good and evil forces, the power of Dharma and Adharma and why Lord Krishna should visit the universe in ever Yuga, to protect it from the rulers of Adharma. Bhagavat Gita is the preaching of Lord Krishna towards the pandava prince Arjuna as described in the Hindu mythological epic, Mahabharata
It was during the battle of Kurukshetra in Hindu mythology when Lord Krishna left his army to Duryodhana in the Kaurava side and joined prince Arjuna and Pandavas as per Arjuna’s decision. In this great mythological war Lord Krishna explained the truth of life to Arjuna. Those insights about life and death are collectively referred as Bhagavat Gita.
The Bhagavad Gita arises in the Bhishma Parva of the Mahabharata. It is comprised of 18 chapters from the 25th through 42nd. The Bhagavad Gita is penned by Vyasa who has written the great epic, Mahabharata.
Just before the war of Kurukshetra when Prince Arjuna behaved strangely, he was confused he questioned how he could fight against his own relatives, elders and gurus. It is then Lord Sree Krishna explained him the duties and responsibilities of a prince, a warrior, he analyzed about his karma and dharma in life. All these are described in various analogies of Gita. It is here at Kurokshetra, Lord Krishna disclosed his true personality as the supreme power through his Vishwarupa. Lord Krishna then preached prince Arjuna that Kurukshetra war will make sure the victory of dharma and let it persist or this combat will make sure that good wins over evil power.
Bhagavat Gita explains five truths of life, which are, Ishwara, Prakriti, Kaala, Dharma and jiva.
Ishwara means the absolute controller of this World. Ishwara or the supreme power that is controlling the life and death of the world.
Prakriti or the entire Universe, Prakriti is also the intelligence.
So the creation of the World is based on these basic principles.
Kaala means time or age, and
Dharma means coming together of different forces.
Thus it can be culminated that, Lord Krishna explained that the one has to grow beyond the physical limitations of self and identify oneself with the absolute power or soul. It is a part of the great Hindu epic, Mahabharata. Gita is consisting of 700 verses.
Few Verses from Bhagavat Gita.
‘Yada Yada Hi Dharmasya… Srijamyaham’, this is a very important verse in Gita. Here, Lord Krishna explains to prince Arjuna, that whenever World is threatened by evil power and becomes the playground of Adharma this condition ruins Dharma. In such an unhealthy situation he will take birth again and again to protect the world from the clutches of the evil power.
Next important verse is ‘Paritranaya Sadhunam… Yuge Yuge’ is very meaningful. This verse means that, Lord Krishna is believed to take birth all over again in each Yuga or age in order to defend the creation and guard its beings. He will destroy the evil power and protect the saints.
Other than pandava prince Arjuna, Bhagavat Gita was also heard by Sanjaya – the associate of King Dhritarashtra (who is blind). Sanjaya achieved the power of Divya Drishti from saint Vyasa and could see the war entirely. Hanuman and Barbarika, Ghatotkacha’s son were also receivers of these messages.
Bhagavat Gita is identified as holy as an Upanishad therefore it is recognized as Gitopanishad. But as it has the spirit of teachings of all the Upanishads, it is also called Upanishad of the Upanishads.