Sunday, February 13, 2011

Live at Kurukshetra!

One of my literary forays took me through 'Bhagavad Gita as it is' recently. I read it maybe 4 or 5 years ago, but it was not until I watched the Chopra's "Mahabharat" that I really understood why Arjuna and Krishna were there and having this very important discussion. Krishna, the God of Gods, became flesh to transmit His words to the regular (and not so regular) mortals. Sound familiar? In this case, Arjuna was seriously unsure about going to war against his cousins, teachers, and his most beloved grandsire Bhishma. It took a great deal of cajoling and commanding on Krishna's part to convince Arjuna that his part in the plan was necessary and that Evil had to be stopped; even if that meant all 100 of his dastardly cousins and millions on both sides died. Actually, now that I think of it, Jesus did the same through the Gospels. I seem to recall that he supposedly said 'I bring not peace, but a sword.' And how many millions have died since then? Similar, wot? Only the Battle at Kurukshetra is much more overt and early in the game. Also, Krishna didn't have to be crucified to get his point across. He just revealed his True Form to Arjuna and that took care of everything. My understanding is that Krishna died of old age and his whole family was later killed in a drunken bloodbath (Wikipedia shows the way!) But I digress.
Krishna transmitting His wisdom and commands to Arjuna makes for a fascinating read. Sometimes we face difficult ethical issues in life, and rather than shrivel up from indecision, sometimes it's better to make your decision and not worry about the result. This is not carte blanche to do terrible things in the name of Ethics, however. Here's an example. That soccer team that crashed in the Andes had a terrible ethical issue, and their agony must've been intense. Then the ones who were left made their fateful decision and it saved them. The only other example I can come up with right now is the Donner Party, but I've already got one example where cannibalism was the biggie, so I'll move on.
The Battle at Kurukshetra presents tons of ethical issues (and violations), with leaders breaking the Code of War left and right. With Krishna on the Pandavas' side these violations are apparently justified (debatable), and more often than not, it was the opposing side who broke the rules first. For a very insightful and wonderful read, I highly recommend 'Bhagavad Gita as it is'. Have a great day!

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