Before we dive into the ocean of GITA to drink its nectar, let us see the circumstances under what was the GITA taught.
The war between the kauravas and pandavas was imminent – All for a piece of land. Arjuna was blessed to have Shri Krishna as his charioteer. On the battle field, when both the sides were just about to start the war, when the air resounded with deafening sounds of the conchs, of kettle drums and bugles, Arjuna requested Krishna to move to the center of the battle field so that he could, for one last time, have a look at both sides from an equidistant. Krishna obeyed Arjuna’s commands and moved to the center of the battle field.
That Arjuna who was the embodiment of confidence and valour felt his bow slipping out of his hands. He perspired at the sight, his body started shivering, A sudden sea of emotions overcame him. He suddenly realized that he was to fight with his own grandparents, his own guru, his own brothers. This feeling of Arjuna is not unusual. Many a times we feel confident before exams or even before any major event of our lives. But as the time for execution nears, there is a kind of fear that grips us and we tend to become wavy of our own abilities. Arjuna was no different. Though his best friend and cousin, Lord Krishna was always with him, he failed to take advantage of an absolute surrender towards the Lord. Ego did not spare Arjuna too.
The first chapter is called “Arjuna Vishada Yoga” where Arjuna cribs and laments for the state of affairs. He became disillusioned at the fact that he will be killing his own brethren. He sulked at the thought that there will be widows on both sides due to this bloodshed. And all this was for a piece of land. All this enlightenment dawned upon him at the verge of the breakout of the war. He refused to fight, became adamant that he would take to sanyas and lead a life of recluse.
It was then that Krishna taking up the position of an acharya or Guru, gave a long sermon in the form of the divine song – the bagavad-gita. He starts his discourse only in the second chapter after patiently hearing to Arjuna’s complaints. He then speaks at length about the duties of a kshatriya, the varna dharma of Arjuna. He elaborates about the Karma which each one of us is ordained to do. He extols Bhakti as the sole destination for man to attain his holy feet. He explains the nature of the soul and shows the way to redeem this soul from repeated births and deaths. What to talk of the effort that he has taken to bring back Arjuna from a cowardly person to the a brave warrior !!!. This is the ocean of mercy . If Krishna wanted, he could have changed Arjuna by just his sankalpa, by his mere thought. But then the world would have missed a precious GEM like the GITA. It is for the welfare of the world that GITA was given. We are all Arjunas not knowing what to do in the battle of life. Our senses are our enemies. We have to fight them and this is possible when we use knowledge of GITA as our weapon.
The sage Vyasa who is Lord Vishnu incarnate has divided the GITA is 18 chapters comprising of 700 slokas. He has divided it into broadly three parts as Karma Yoga, Jnana Yoga and Bhakti Yoga. People can follow whichever path they want depending on what is suitable to them. All roads lead to the same destination i.e. moksha.
We are all more than 700 days old. It would surely be unfair our part not to know even a single sloka of this divine song. Our Vedas and shastras are a rich treasure to keep us happy. We need to accept and respect them. The Gita explains the highest essence of the Vedas. It cleanses our heart, removes our sins, enhances the satvic mind and leads us to salvation. When GOD himself came down to lift us from this samsara sagara, we have to acknowledge and at least climb one step towards HIM. So, a shloka a day definitely will keep all evils away.