December 1, 2010

Gita in a Nutshell #4: Each of Us is Already Infinitely Wondrous (Divine, if you prefer)

(Complete contents at
Gita in a Nutshell: Big Ideas and Best Quotations.
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Let’s review our first three themes:

2.48, 2.50, 3.7, 3.19, 3.25, 3.30, 4.18-24, 5.23-25, 6.1-4, 7.28, 11.55, 12.13-14, 18.53

6.29-32, 9.4-6, 10.7-8, 10.41-2, 11.5-7, 11.11-13, 11.16, 11.37-40, 18.77-78

5.26-28, 6.10, 6.12,  6.15, 6.35, 8.9, 9.22, 9.34, 12.2, 12.8, 12.14, 18.57

The fourth major theme is:


Each of us is already infinitely wondrous—
miraculous, awe-inspiring, unfathomable
(divine if you prefer).

Our wondrous nature is the same as the infinite wonder of the universe.

We experience this infinite wonder by waking up to reality.

As before, the Gita contains strong passages about this theme, but they are scattered throughout the text. When you read them all together, as below, they are almost overwhelming in their power and clarity.

Read though these stanzas slowly and thoughtfully, jotting down your reactions as you go. Share your comments and questions, and we’ll get some conversation going:

(For those new to Gita in a Nutshell, the main voice speaking here is the infinitely wondrous universe itself, what some refer to as the “Unfathomable Life Force of the Universe” and others choose to call “God”. In the Gita these are one and the same.)

Mature in yoga, impartial
everywhere that he looks,
he sees himself in all beings
and all beings in himself.

The man who sees me in everything
and everything within me
will not be lost to me, nor
will I ever be lost to him.

He who is rooted in oneness
realizes that I am
in every being, wherever
he goes, he remains in me.

When he sees all beings as equal
in suffering or in joy
because they are like himself,
that man has grown perfect in yoga.   (BG 6.29-32)


I will teach you the essence of this wisdom
and its realization; when you come
to master this, there is nothing
further that needs to be known.
(BG 7.2)


Know that it is the womb
from which all beings arise;
the universe is born within me,
and within me will be destroyed.

There is nothing more fundamental
than I, Arjuna; all worlds,
all beings, are strung upon me
like pearls on a single thread.   (BG 7.6-7)


I am the primal seed
within all beings, Arjuna;
the wisdom of those who know,
the splendor of the high and mighty.   (BG 7.10)

But when a man is released
from dualities, he can act
purely, without attachment,
and can serve me with all his heart.   (BG 7.28)

Freedom is union with the deathless;
the Self is the essence of all things;
its creative power, called action,
causes the whole world to be.   (BG 8.3)

This is the supreme wisdom,
the knowing beyond all knowing,
experienced directly, in a flash,
eternal, and a joy to practice.
(BG 9.2)


Understanding and wisdom,
patience, truth, peace of mind,
pleasure and pain, being
and nonbeing, fear and courage,

nonviolence, equanimity,
control, benevolence, fame,
dishonor—all these conditions
come forth from me alone.   (BG 10.4-5)


He who can understand
the glory of my manifestations
is forever united with me
by his unwavering love.

I am the source of all things,
and all things emerge from me;
knowing this, wise men worship
by entering my state of being.
(BG 10.7-8)


I am the Self, Arjuna,
seated in the heart of all beings;
I am the beginning and the life span
of beings, and their end as well.   (BG 10.20)

I am the divine seed
within all beings, Arjuna;
nothing, inanimate or animate,
could exist for a moment without me.   (BG 10.39)

Again and again I bow to you,
from all sides, in every direction.
Majesty infinite in power,
you pervade—no, you are—all things.   (BG 11.40)

#3: Focus the Mind

#5: Why Is the Gita So Upsetting At First?

(Complete contents at
Gita in a Nutshell: Big Ideas and Best Quotations
To receive notice of each weekly blog,
please join our Facebook group.)

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