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Now available to download for Kindle - Essence of Bhagavad Gita - 42 verses selected by Ramana Maharshi and translated from Sanskrit by M. Wright

Essence of the Bhagavad Gita

   A prose translation of the verses selected by Bhagavan for "Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi's Gita"          

A running prose translation of 42 verses from Bhagavad Gita, selected and set in order, by Ramana Maharshi, for use of those interested in Self Enquiry. In these verses Bhagavan reveals the seeker, that which is sought  and the means by which one seeks.


Sanjaya (the Narrator) said:  

Madhusudana (Sri Bhagavan) spoke the following words to Arjuna, who, with a despondent mind, and eyes perplexed, and full of tears, was overcome with pity. 

Sri Bhagavan said: “This body, O Son of Kunti, is called kshetra ‘the field’; Sages call one who knows this Kshetrajna, ‘the knower of the field’. Further, know ‘Me’ as  the knower of the field in all the fields. This knowledge of the field  and the knower of the field is considered, by Me, to be true knowledge. I am  the Self, O Gudakesa, who dwells in the Heart of all beings. I am the  beginning, the middle and, indeed, the end of all beings. For that which is born, death is certain; for that which is dead, birth is certain. Therefore, in the matter of that which is inevitable, you ought not grieve. He is neither born nor does He die. Nor having been will He cease to be again. Unborn, eternal, everlasting, the Self, the Ancient One. He is not slain when the body is slain.” 

“This Self is uncuttable. This Self is unburnable. This Self is unwettable. This  Self is undryable. He is eternal, omnipresent, stable, immovable and everlasting.  Know that That [Self], by which all of this is pervaded, is indeed imperishable. No one is able to effect the destruction of the Immutable. The unreal is never regarded as real; the real is never regarded as unreal. The final truth about both of these has, indeed, been realised by the Seers of truth. As the omnipresent ether is not tainted because of its intangibility, so, in every case, the Self, although seated in the body, remains untainted. It is illuminated by neither sun nor moon, nor fire." 

"Having gone to the Unmanifest they never return, that is My Supreme Abode. This Unmanifested [Abode] is called the  Imperishable (Aum); it is said to be the Goal supreme. Having attained it they  never return, that is My Supreme Abode." 

"Free from pride and delusion of  mind, the detrimental effects of attachment conquered, ever-abiding in the Self, desires at an end, released from the pairs of opposites called pleasure and pain, the undeluded attain this Eternal Home.”  

However, having rejected the words of the scriptures, he, who, instead follows the impulse of desire, attains neither pefection, nor happiness, nor the Supreme Path [of vichara]. He who sees the Supreme Lord abiding alike in all beings, the incorruptible in the corruptible, he it is who truly sees. By devotion, alone, without sense of other, O Arjuna, can I be  known and seen in such a form as I really am, and, indeed, be entered into.”

“The faith of every man is in accordance with his innate disposition (whether sattva; rajas; or tamas etc.). Man is made of faith, as his faith is, so he is. The man of faith, occupied with That only, who has senses under control, obtains Knowledge (jnåna). Having obtained knowledge, he very soon discovers Peace Supreme. To those, who are constantly engaged in  worshipping Me with devotion, I give the Yoga of intellect (Enquiry) (cf. Talks; 112), by which they come to Me. Out of compassion for them, abiding in their Self, I destroy their nescience born of ignorance, with the resplendent Lamp of Knowledge. For those whose ignorance is destroyed by Knowledge of the Self, Knowledge, like the sun, reveals the Supreme in them.”  

“It is said that the power of the senses is great; higher than the senses is the mind; higher than the mind is the intellect; but, even higher, than the intellect, is He, the Self of all. Thus knowing Him (the Self) to be higher than the intellect, fixing self in the Self, slay the elusive enemy (ahamkåra - ego) so hard to find. Just as a blazing fire reduces fuel to ashes, so the Fire of Knowledge reduces all actions to ashes. He, whose undertakings are devoid of the desire for results, whose actions  are completely consumed by the Fire of Knowledge, the wise call ‘Sage!’ Immersion in the Self is assured here and now for those who have strived, have controlled their thoughts, freed themselves from anger and material desire, and realized the Self.”  

“Little by little, one should cease from action, with intellect held resolutely and, having made the mind rest in the Self alone, one should not direct the thoughts towards anything. Whenever the restless and unsteady mind wanders out, one should withdraw it once again, subdue it, and make it rest in the Self alone. [Thus] with senses, mind and intellect controlled, the Sage, having  liberation as his sole aim, free from desire, fear and anger, is indeed liberated. The Self-realised person sees the Self abiding in all beings and all beings in the Self. He looks on all things impartially (cf. Talks; 319). I provide security and maintain the welfare of those men who, ever intent, worship Me without thinking of any other.”  

“Of these, the wise, ever attentive and devoted to the One, excels; for I am very dear to the wise, and he is very dear to Me. At the end of many births the man of wisdom takes refuge in Me, knowing “Vasudeva is the indwelling Self of all.” Such a great soul is indeed hard to find." 

"When one gives up all of the objects of desire that continually pass through the mind (i.e. mindstuff), and remains content in the Self by the Self, alone, then is one declared to be 'established in Wisdom’. He, who abandons all  objects of desire, roams free of longing, and without sense of ‘I’ and ‘mine’, he attains Peace. He, who neither upsets the world nor is upset by the world, who is freed from joy and anger, fear and anxiety, he is dear to Me. The same in honour and dishonour, the same to friend or foe, relinquishing all personal endeavours, he is said to have transcended the gunas."

“He who rejoices in the Self alone, is completely satisfied with the Self alone, and in the Self, alone, is content. For him there is no work to be done. For him, indeed, there is no object to acquire through action in this world, nor is there anything not to be done through action, nor has he [even] to  depend on anyone for anything. Satisfied with whatever Grace may bring, free from the pairs of opposites, free from envy, steady in both success and failure, although acting, he is never bound.” 

 “The Lord dwells in the Heart of all beings, O Arjuna, and by his uncanny  power He moves them around as if they are mounted on a carousel-like universe. Go to Him alone for refuge with all your being. By His  Grace alone shall you obtain that Peace Supreme, the Eternal Abode.” 

(translated by MWright)


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