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infoterror
Thursday, August 4th, 2005, 05:27 AM
Krishna: Thou grievest where no grief should be! thou speak'st Words lacking wisdom! for the wise in heart Mourn not for those that live, nor those that die. Nor I, nor thou, nor any one of these, Ever was not, nor ever will not be, For ever and for ever afterwards. All, that doth live, lives always! To man's frame As there come infancy and youth and age, So come there raisings-up and layings-down Of other and of other life-abodes, Which the wise know, and fear not. This that irks-- Thy sense-life, thrilling to the elements-- Bringing thee heat and cold, sorrows and joys, 'Tis brief and mutable! Bear with it, Prince! As the wise bear. The soul which is not moved, The soul that with a strong and constant calm Takes sorrow and takes joy indifferently, Lives in the life undying! That which is Can never cease to be; that which is not Will not exist. To see this truth of both Is theirs who part essence from accident, Substance from shadow. Indestructible, Learn thou! the Life is, spreading life through all; It cannot anywhere, by any means, Be anywise diminished, stayed, or changed. But for these fleeting frames which it informs With spirit deathless, endless, infinite, They perish. Let them perish, Prince! and fight! He who shall say, "Lo! I have slain a man!" He who shall think, "Lo! I am slain!" those both Know naught! Life cannot slay. Life is not slain! Never the spirit was born; the spirit shall cease to be never; Never was time it was not; End and Beginning are dreams! Birthless and deathless and changeless remaineth the spirit for ever; Death hath not touched it at all, dead though the house of it seems!

http://manybooks.net/pages/anonetext00bgita10/12.html

Study points:

- Vedanta invented by ancient Aryans
- All life is continuous, nothing created or destroyed
- Idea and Order more important than individual lives
- Reality is like dreams or thoughts

Gorm the Old
Sunday, August 7th, 2005, 05:41 PM
This quotation from the Bhagavad Gita is a triumph of rationalization. Arjuna, who has reservations and regrets about the necessity of slaying his kinsmen in battle, is told by Krishna that he need not consider the matter further. First, because it is impossible for him to kill anyone (!), inasmuch as the atman is immortal, and second because , it is his duty as a kshatriya to kill whomever his lord bids him to. The foregoing represents abrogation of any moral responsibility for one's own actions. In its reductio ad absurdum, it implies that there is no reason not to kill anyone whom one chooses to (and can get away with it.) This is a gangster's moral code and a thoroughly pernicious teaching.

Imperator X
Sunday, August 7th, 2005, 10:44 PM
This quotation from the Bhagavad Gita is a triumph of rationalization. Arjuna, who has reservations and regrets about the necessity of slaying his kinsmen in battle, is told by Krishna that he need not consider the matter further. First, because it is impossible for him to kill anyone (!), inasmuch as the atman is immortal, and second because , it is his duty as a kshatriya to kill whomever his lord bids him to. The foregoing represents abrogation of any moral responsibility for one's own actions. In its reductio ad absurdum, it implies that there is no reason not to kill anyone whom one chooses to (and can get away with it.) This is a gangster's moral code and a thoroughly pernicious teaching.

I like it, and besides, Hinduism advocates violence if it is justified. The Kauravas were a wicked clan. The Buddhists in Ghandara did not fight back against Islam, and so now there is no Ghandara, only Muslim Afghanistan. It is the Hindus wisdom in the weapons of war which enabled them to withstand hostile forces, i.e. the Musalmen.

Gorm the Old
Sunday, August 7th, 2005, 10:53 PM
In the eyes of the Pandavas, ther Kauravas were a wicked clan. However, if you read the Mahabharata carefully, you'll note that the ones who repeatedly behave dishonorably, and the ones who use all of the dirty tricks are the Pandavas. Though the Mahabharata is ostensibly written by a Pandava, it reports objectively the events of the war, and it is hard to find anything admirable in the behaviour of the Pandavas. The Only Kaurava who behaves (very) badly is Duryodhana, counting on the blindness of his father Dhritatrashtra to get away with it.

infoterror
Monday, August 8th, 2005, 04:28 AM
This quotation from the Bhagavad Gita is a triumph of rationalization. Arjuna, who has reservations and regrets about the necessity of slaying his kinsmen in battle, is told by Krishna that he need not consider the matter further. First, because it is impossible for him to kill anyone (!), inasmuch as the atman is immortal, and second because , it is his duty as a kshatriya to kill whomever his lord bids him to. The foregoing represents abrogation of any moral responsibility for one's own actions. In its reductio ad absurdum, it implies that there is no reason not to kill anyone whom one chooses to (and can get away with it.) This is a gangster's moral code and a thoroughly pernicious teaching.

Are you a Christian? Because the only people I've seen come up with that kind of dismissive reponse have been fundies.

The main point of the quotation, like similar ones from the Illiad and Odyssey, is that there is a value-state above death, and that individual life is not as important as the overall cosmic order of the universe.

To miss that, you have to be pretty biased.

Gorm the Old
Tuesday, August 9th, 2005, 02:33 AM
I, a Christian ? Ye gods, NO ! That is one thing that I have never been. It is true that chapel attendance was mandatory at the Episcopalian college which I attended as an undergraduate, but that no more made me a Christian than attending the ballet would make me a dancer. I am, and long have been, an agnostic with leanings toward the advaita vedanta.
I still say that Krishna was rationalizing and that the same reasoning could be applied to any homicide, regardless of the circumstances, to wit, it makes no difference because it is impossible to kill the atman.
I most seriously doubt that the cosmic order of the universe would be significantly impaired if Arjuna, owing to his justified misgivings about slaying his kinsmen, had refrained from participation in the war. Note that Krishna, himself, for other reasons, vowed to abstain from active participation in the conflict, which is why he became Arjuna's charioteer, an ostensibly non-combattent role.
Of course, without Arjuna, the Pandavas might have lost the war, but it is debatable whether dharma triumphed in their victory. Throughout the conflict, the dirty fighters using dishonourable tactics were, not the "evil" Kauravas, but the Pandavas. Yudhisthira, "King Dharma", was weak-willed and allowed, by default, tactics to which even the vile Duryodhana didn't stoop.
Consider how the war ended. I am sure that you are aware than in many ancient writings, among them the Old Testament, the word "thigh(s)" is a euphemism for the male genitalia. In the scene of the humiliation of the Pandavas' common wife, Draupadi, by Duryodhana, it is clear that this is how the word is being used. The war ended when Arjuna broke Duryodhana's "thighs" with his club, killing him. The onlookers protested the foul blow vehemently, but, of course, Arjuna was the brother of King Dharma, and, therefore, righteous.
Following Krishna's line of reasoning, it wouldn't have made any difference who won. Had the Kauravas triumphed, Dhritarashtra would have become king in name, though the real head of state would have been his evil son, Duryodhana, who was already acting as regent for his blind father. Ultimately, Duryodhana's body would die and he would be succeeded, perhaps by a better king. In a cosmic sense (sub specie aeternitatis) this would have been but a short insignificant interlude.