In the rainy season, mud paths in villages are often not used, and thus they get covered with grass. Similarly, when authentic scriptures are not studied for long, pure knowledge becomes covered by speculative and unwanted theories that misdirect the human society.
Scriptures present pristine wisdom descending directly from the Supreme Lord, showing us the path of transcending miseries and going back to Godhead. When thick grass covers a pathway, it is difficult to walk on that path or sometimes the path is not even recognized. Similarly, if one generation chooses not to study, understand, apply and spread the knowledge of the scriptures, the later generations would have no precedence and inspiration to study or follow them, or even become aware of them.
Therefore, it becomes the responsibility of sincere spiritual seekers to read and assimilate the scriptural principles and guide the future generations. This Gitd Subodhini is a humble attempt to facilitate and simplify the study of our most vital scripture, the Bhagavad-gita, by giving its structure, flow and gist in a concise form.
Bhagavad-gita is the greatly enlightening philosophical song sung by Lord Sri Krsha, the Supreme Lord, to instruct bewildered Arjuna on the battlefield of Kuruksetra. The Gita is known for its philosophical depth and practical relevance in day-to-day life. The five truths that embody the teachings of the Bhagavad-gita are isvara (God), jiva (living entity), prakrti (material nature), kala (time), and karma (activities).
Bhagavad-gita systematically presents the knowledge of the eternal soul, temporary body, the art of working without reactions, the three modes that influence all beings, regulated habits, how to speak, how to eat, how to recreate, how to donate, mind control, sense control, meditation, the art of rendering service to the Supreme, various powers of God, attachment, detachment and so on. Thus Bhagavad-gita is a standard reference manual for all human beings who seek to know the truth, refine their intellect and uplift their consciousness.
The expanse and depth of the Bhagavad-gita is better appreciated from the commentaries of great acaryas, or spiritual teachers. In Gita Subodhini, I have made a humble attempt to present the flow of the Bhagavad-gita concisely based on the explanations of Srila Prabhupada, Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura and Srila Baladeva Vidyabhusana. For a detailed explanation of each verse, one may refer to the commentaries of these great acaryas.
Initially I restrained writing this book, as there are already various study guides for the Bhagavad-gita presented by many experienced teachers and authors. They are very helpful and I too personally took help from them for my own understanding of the Gita. Yet several devotees including many seniors who appreciated my earlier works – Bhagavata Subodhini and Caitanya Subodhini – requested me to present the Bhagavad-gita in a similar concise format. Therefore, although I hesitated and delayed significantly, I finally submitted to the desires of devotees and now offering this Gita Subodhini to the readers of the Gita.