June 14, 2010

Gita Talk #9: First Date with the Gita? If Not, Remember Yours?

Hi, everyone.  The conversations on the last few Gita Talks have been exhilarating and far-reaching.  But I have a concern that the advanced and sometimes technical nature of some of the dialog might be leaving some of our newer Gita readers behind.

So this blog is primarily for those of you who are relatively new to the Gita.

(This includes those of you who fall into Erica’s #1 of her very funny Top 10 Reasons to Read the Bhagavad Gita: You were supposed to during teacher training, but only got through 20 pages. And you’ve felt guilty ever since.)

If you are a relatively new reader of the Gita, please tell us how you’re feeling about it.  Are my concerns about the last few blogs justified, or have they been good for you, too?  What are the biggest questions on your mind?  What would help you get the most out of this experience?

(I personally went through a period when I rejected the Gita after my first reading.  So I know how that feels, and I’m anxious to help anyone who might be having the same initial reaction.)

If you are an experienced Gita reader, think back on your own first encounter with the Gita.   What were your first reactions when you were a third of the way through the Gita?  Did it draw you in, or did it make you want to run?  Which version were you reading?

What can Gita Talk do to better meet your needs?  All feedback and suggestions are welcome.

I’ll leave you with this, my favorite passage from Chapter 7.  Love to hear your comments and questions:

There is nothing more fundamental
than I, Arjuna; all worlds,
all beings, are strung upon me
like pearls on a single thread.

I am the taste in water,
the light in the moon and sun,
the sacred syllable Om
in the Veda, the sound in air.

I am the primal seed
within all beings, Arjuna:
the wisdom of those who know,
the splendor of the high and mighty.

I am the strength of the strong man
who is free of desire and attachment;
I am desire itself
when desire is consistent with duty. (BG 7.7-7.11)

For next week please read Chapters 8 and 9, p. 106-120.

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