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    De Bhagavad Gita  


Beste lezer(es),
De Bhagavad Gita is een bijzonder boek dat inmiddels duizenden jaren oud is, maar nog steeds relevant voor alle mensen die antwoorden zoeken op de existentiele levensvragen. In achttien hoofdstukken wordt verslag gedaan van een dialoog tussen de zoekende mens (Arjuna) en het Hogere Zelf (God of de Werkelijkheid). Sinds enkele eeuwen bestaat er een intensief en een steeds groeiende belangstelling bij wetenschappers, intellectuelen, kunstenaars en spirituele zoekers uit Oost en West.

De westerse mens kan nog veel leren over hoe men in contact kan komen met de “Stem van z’n Hart”om zo de antwoorden te vinden op belangrijke levensvragen. Zonder deze antwoorden leeft hij in onwetendheid en mist hij meestal innerlijke en spirituele rust.

Hieronder vindt u een kort overzicht van mensen uit Oost en West die geïnspireerd zijn geraakt door de inhoud van de Bhagavad Gita.

Beroemde mensen en hun uitspraken over de Bhagavad Gita

Albert Einstein: "When I read the Bhagavad-Gita and reflect about how God created this universe everything else seems so superfluous".

Mahatma Gandhi: "When doubts haunt me, when disappointments stare me in the face, and I see not one ray of hope on the horizon, I turn to Bhagavad-gita and find a verse to comfort me; and I immediately begin to smile in the midst of overwhelming sorrow. Those who meditate on the Gita will derive fresh joy and new meanings from it every day".

Henry David Thoreau: "In the morning I bathe my intellect in the stupendous and cosmogonal philosophy of the Bhagavadgita, in comparison with which our modern world and its literature seem puny and trivial".

Dr. Albert Schweitzer: "The Bhagavad-Gita has a profound influence on the spirit of mankind by its devotion to God which is manifested by actions".

Sri Aurobindo: "The Bhagavad-Gita is a true scripture of the human race a living creation rather than a book, with a new message for every age and a new meaning for every civilization".

Prime Minister Nehru: "The Bhagavad-Gita deals essentially with the spiritual foundation of human existence. It is a call of action to meet the obligations and duties of life; yet keeping in view the spiritual nature and grander purpose of the universe".

Herman Hesse: "The marvel of the Bhagavad-Gita is its truly beautiful revelation of life's wisdom which enables philosophy to blossom into religion".

Ralph Waldo Emerson: "I owed a magnificent day to the Bhagavad-gita. It was the first of books; it was as if an empire spoke to us, nothing small or unworthy, but large, serene, consistent, the voice of an old intelligence which in another age and climate had pondered and thus disposed of the same questions which exercise us".

Rudolph Steiner: "In order to approach a creation as sublime as the Bhagavad-Gita with full understanding it is necessary to attune our soul to it".

Adi Shankara: "From a clear knowledge of the Bhagavad-Gita all the goals of human existence become fulfilled. BhagavadGita is the manifest quintessence of all the teachings of the Vedic scriptures".

Aldous Huxley: "The Bhagavad-Gita is the most systematic statement of spiritual evolution of endowing value to mankind. It is one of the most clear and comprehensive summaries of perennial philosophy ever revealed; hence its enduring value is subject not only to India but to all of humanity".

Ramanuja: "The Bhagavad-Gita was spoken by Lord Krishna to reveal the science of devotion to God which is the essence of all spiritual knowledge. The Supreme Lord Krishna's primary purpose for descending and incarnating is relieve the world of any demoniac and negative, undesirable influences that are opposed to spiritual development, yet simultaneously it is His incomparable intention to be perpetually within reach of all humanity".

Swami Vivekananda: Swami Vivekananda evinced much interest in Bhagavad Gita. It is said, Bhagavad Gita was one of his two most favourite books (another one was The Imitation of Christ). In 1888-1893 when Vivekananda was travelling all over India as a wandering monk, he kept only two books with him - Gita and Imitation of Christ.

J. Robert Oppenheimer: American physicist and director of the Manhattan Project, learned Sanskrit in 1933 and read the Bhagavad Gita in the original form, citing it later as one of the most influential books to shape his philosophy of life.

Oppenheimer later recalled that, while witnessing the explosion of the Trinity nuclear test, he thought of verses from the Bhagavad Gita (XI,12):  "If the radiance of a thousand suns were to burst at once into the sky, that would be like the splendor of the mighty one". Years later he would explain that another verse had also entered his head at that time: “We knew the world would not be the same. A few people laughed, a few people cried. Most people were silent. I remembered the line from the Hindu scripture, the Bhagavad Gita; Vishnu is trying to persuade the Prince that he should do his duty and, to impress him, takes on his multi-armed form and says, 'Now I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds.' I suppose we all thought that, one way or another.“

Hermann Graf Keyserling: German Philosopher regarded Bhagavad-Gita as "Perhaps the most beautiful work of the literature of the world".

Wilhelm von Humboldt: was a Prussian philosopher, he pronounced the Gita as: "The most beautiful, perhaps the only true philosophical song existing in any known tongue ... perhaps the deepest and loftiest thing the world has to show".

Bulent Ecevit: Turkish ex prime minister Bulent Ecevit, when asked what had given him the courage to send Turkish troops to Cyprus . His answer was "I was fortified by the Bhagavad Gita which taught that if one were morally right, one need not hesitate to fight injustice"

Lord Warren Hastings: Was the first governor general of British India wrote: "I hesitate not to pronounce the Gita a performance of great originality, of sublimity of conception, reasoning and diction almost unequalled; and a single exception, amongst all the known religions of mankind".

Sunita Williams: Was an American astronaut who holds the record for longest single space flight by a woman carried a copy of Bhagavad Gita and Upanishads with her to space, said "Those are spiritual things to reflect upon yourself, life, world around you and see things other way, I thought it was quite appropriate" while talking about her time in space.

Annie Besant: said: "That the spiritual man need not be a recluse, that union with the divine Life may be achieved and maintained in the midst of worldly affairs, that the obstacles to that union lie not outside us but within us - such is the central lesson of the Bhagavad-Gita."

E. Sreedharan: said: "You see, spirituality has no religious overtones. The essence of spirituality is to make a person pure in his mind and his thoughts. When I started reading our old scriptures, like the “Baghavad Gita,” I found it was useful for day-to-day life, so I started practicing it. I consider it an administrative gospel, one that will help you in doing things like running an organization"

Shri Narendra D. Modi: Prime Minister of India, Shri Narendra Modi has strongly pitched the Bhagavad Gita as "India's biggest gift to the world".[25] Shri Modi gifted The Bhagavad Gita according to Gandhi to the then President of the United States of America, Mr Barack Obama in 2014 during his US visit.[26] As Shri Modi presents Gita to the leaders of the world, over a billion people find peace and purpose in these words of Krishna through Gandhi

Thomas Stearns Eliot: Said that Indian philosophy had a huge influence on this American poet, who had studied Indian philosophy and Sanskrit during his days in Harvard, from 1911 to 1914. In his poem titled The Dry Salvages, Eliot mentions the conversation between Krishna-Arjuna, from the Bhagvad Gita, to depict a connection between the past and the future, and to emphasize that one needs to follow divine will, rather than seek personal gains. As the famous lines from his poem reads:

Will suffer the trial and judgement of the sea,
Or whatever event, this is your real destination.
So Krishna, as when he admonished Arjuna
On the field of battle.
Not fare well, But fare forward, voyagers

Philip Glass: The American composer who's often referred to as one of the most influential musicians of the late 20th century cited the Bhagvad Gita in one of his works. He composed an Opera, titled Satyagraha, which is loosely based on the life of Mahatma Gandhi and contains text from the Bhagvad Gita that is sung in Sanskrit during the performance.

Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan: Was an Indian philosopher and first vice-president of India (5 September 1888 - 17 April 1975) Second President of India in 1962, his birthday is widely celebrated as teacher’s Day. “Though everything else is taken away from him, though he das to walk the streets, cold, hungry and alone, though he may know no human being into whose eyes he can look and find understanding, he shall yet be able to go his way with a smile on his lips, for he has gained inward freedom".

Lokmanya Tilak: Was an journalist, teacher, social reformer, lawyer and the first popular leader of the Indian Independence Movement. (23 July 1856 - 1 August 1920). The British colonial authorities called him “Father of the Indian unrest”. He was also conferred with the honorary title of "Lokmanya” which literally means “Accepted bij the people” as their leader. He said the following words about the Bhagavad Gita:

“The Gita was preached as a preparatory lesson for living worldly life with an eye tot Release, Nirvanan. My last prayer to everyone, therefore is that one should not fail to thoroughly understand this ancient science of worldly life as early as possible in one’s life”.

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