Svadharma, our own unique calling in life - Bhagavad Gita Verses 2.30&2.31

Discussion in 'Chitvish on Hindu Culture & Vedanta' started by Chitvish, Feb 21, 2008.

  1. Chitvish

    Chitvish Moderator IL Hall of Fame

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    Krishna switches from philosophical to moral angle - Bhagavad Gita 2.30-2.31

    <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:smarttags" /><st1:place></st1:place>
    <st1:place>Krishna</st1:place> next goes on to complete his first level of argument, based on philosophical angle.
    The following verse brings to an end the intellectual description of the two aspects of life, the ever-changing and the never-changing.

    Daehee nithyamavadhyO(a)yam daehae sarvasya bhaaratha
    ThasmaathsarvaaNi bhoothani, na thvam s(h)Ochithumarhasi 2.30

    Oh Arjuna! This self, present in everybody, is ever indestructible. Therefore, you should not grieve for the sake of any being.

    Sadness does not depend on what you have or do not have. It is a particular way of thinking. Sorrow is something centred on oneself and this topic is the subject matter of the Gita. Thus, there is the refrain:

    “you should not grieve” (na thvam s(h)Ochithumarhasi ).
    This is the conclusion of all that has been said by the Lord from the eleventh verse onwards.

    Next <st1:place>Krishna</st1:place> introduces the moral or dharmic or ethical angle.
    The following verse begins the argument on the level of duty. This is to deepen the understanding of life after the absolute and relative aspects of existence have been made clear.

    Svadharmamapi chaavaekshya, na vikampithumarhasi
    Dharmyaddhi yuddhaachchraeyOnyath kshathriyasya na vidyathae 2.31

    Moreover considering your own duty also, you should not waver. Because for a warrior, nothing is greater than a righteous war.

    Now <st1:place>Krishna</st1:place> talks about svadharma, what is right, what is to be done. This was a natural outcome of Arjuna’s earlier and numerous comments on dharma. He had said that war will create confusion for which he would be the cause !
    <st1:place>Krishna</st1:place> says that
    Arjuna is a soldier, Kshathriya
    And
    His svadharma is to fight.

    Secondly, he was a crown prince which meant that he was supposed to protect dharma, along with his brothers.
    His dharma was to administer and protect his kingdom.
    Therefore, Arjuna ought not to waver or hesitate about what he had to do.

    (Svadharmamapi chaavaekshya, na vikampithumarhasi).

    <st1:place>Krishna</st1:place> says, this was a dharma-yuddha to establish dharma. There was no room, on Arjuna’s part for lamentation or hesitancy.
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2008
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  2. Anandchitra

    Anandchitra IL Hall of Fame

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    Re: Svadharma, our own unique calling in life

    Thanks for yet another great explanation. Chithra.
    Though it seems the same is being repeated , there is so much more depth and meaning when you read.
    "Sadness does not depend on what you have or do not have. It is a particular way of thinking. Sorrow is something centred on oneself and this topic is the subject matter of the Gita"..
    Over and over again we read about grief and sorrow and how much it affects us.Thats because its day to day matter. So it is true that sadness does not depend on what you have or do not have.
    And so one should not grieve.
    Again another great line .."Moreover considering your own duty also, you should not waver."..
    You have answered a question I had and had also asked today with your last line
    That is a dharma yuddha. hence No space for grief or lamentation.
     
  3. Anandchitra

    Anandchitra IL Hall of Fame

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    Re: Svadharma, our own unique calling in life

    Dear Chithra
    As a warrior Arjuna's duties are clear. For house holders are such duties specified too?
     
  4. Shanvy

    Shanvy IL Hall of Fame

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    Re: Svadharma, our own unique calling in life

    Dear Chithmam,

    Good one.Bow

    Not to grieve for the indestructible is what has been told by Krishna in the last few chapters and concluding on the same is notable.

    Svadharmamapi chaavaekshya, na vikampithumarhasi- I like this line more.

    I tend to assimilate that once you are out of the grieving mode and understand what is your specific duty, and when self realization sets in you go into the higher plane of spirituality then materialistic terms..right??

    So,Arjuna is waging a war for righteousness, for bringing back dharma and it is Arjuna's duty as kshatriya. so the kshatriya dharma is explained. I assume he explains all the other dharmas in the next few chapters.....

    Will wait for all the Feedback, and your replies.....
     
  5. Cheeniya

    Cheeniya Super Moderator Staff Member IL Hall of Fame

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    Re: Svadharma, our own unique calling in life

    Dear Chithra
    The 86-year-old professional hangman from Kolkata, Natta Mullick is a perfect example of svadharma. He was the official executioner of Dhanjoy Chatterjee who was awarded capital punishment for raping and killing a school girl. Mallick comes from a family of professional hangmen — his father, D. Mallick, had hanged nearly 500 people. But the fierce controversy over the case of Dhanjoy Chatterjee made Natta Mallick a celebrity. Newspapers, magazines and television channels fought openly for an "exclusive" interview with the hangman. His pictures, and views on hanging, appeared everywhere.

    Gita further stresses:
    Shreyan svadharma vigun parartha swanishtat
    Svadharma nidhan shrey paramdharma bhayabhav

    <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:smarttags" /><st1:City><st1:place>Superior</st1:place></st1:City> is the law of one’s own nature, though lacking in merits, to that of another even though well observed. Death in working out the law of one’s own nature is superior, but an alien law is fraught with risk
    The word dharma has several connotations. Its derived meaning arises from that which upholds. So dharma, means duty, religion and even nature.Svadharma hence could be translated as one’s prescribed duties. So, the question arises that whether one should continue to perform his or her appointed duties, even when aware that they are wrong!

    If killing is a passport to hell, all hangmen would be languishing there. But in reality this is not so. A hangman performs his allotted task to the best of his ability. Hanging is his svadharma. Hangmen are supposed to observe certain rules and they also rehearse the hanging several times with dummies in order that the condemned dies without much pain and suffering. A hangman’s job clearly espouses the trait of Svadharma as <st1:place>Krishna</st1:place> points out to Arjuna.

    Mother Mira has summed up svadharma very effectively in these lines:
    'There must certainly be something I can do better than anyone else, since each one of us is a special mode of manifestation of the divine power which, in its essence, is one in all. However humble and modest it may be, this is precisely the thing to which I should devote myself, and in order to find it, I shall observe and analyse my tastes, tendencies and preferences, and I shall do it without pride or excessive humility, whatever others may think I shall do it just as I breathe, just as the flower smells sweet, quite simply, quite naturally, because I cannot do otherwise."

    Sri
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2008
  6. vidhi

    vidhi Senior IL'ite

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    Re: Svadharma, our own unique calling in life

    Dear Chith

    Great topic again. Knowing what is one's own duty and following it without fail gives us strength. Following our duty gives us a reason to fight against the obstacles we encounter on the way. And that will gives us peace.

    But what happens when one is not very clear about one's duty?

    Love
    Vidhi
     
  7. sudhavnarasimhan

    sudhavnarasimhan Silver IL'ite

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    Dear Chithra,

    Caught on pretty fast today......what to say....you are taking us in to depths which we are afraid to venture , though we know that they exist and we have to explore. But delving into Gita every time , does make one more clear in many aspects. I liked the Svadharma concept and how Krishna insists on that to keep ourselves going on our path without carrying the extra burdens on us by choosing that path which we are destined to take!
    Well, great post.....carry on in your assigned path ma'am....and we are right behind you!Bow
     
  8. sudhavnarasimhan

    sudhavnarasimhan Silver IL'ite

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    Dear Cheeniya,

    That was a great comparison and writeup abt the Hangman and his duties and swadharma......and loved the last verse of Mother Mira.....that was an apt one and summed up everything Chithra brought in the lead post!

    Thanks for joining here and giving your valuable inputs...after all when two CH 's are there to guide us through this life, nammaku enna bayam!
     
  9. Chitvish

    Chitvish Moderator IL Hall of Fame

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    Re: Svadharma, our own unique calling in life

    Dear AC,
    Thanks.
    I went to the Golden Temple of Vellore in the morning with some friends & returned only by 4 PM. That explains the delay in my reply !
    Just like happiness, grief is a state of mind and does not resde in objects or situations. We are as happy or as sad as we make ourselves to be.
    Happiness or grief is our reaction towards a thing or situation which generates it.

    Krishna has talked enough about atma & vedantic angle. Now he switches over to other points of view.Unless we follow these verses in detail, we will not realise the charm of Gita.
    Love,
    Chithra.



     
  10. Chitvish

    Chitvish Moderator IL Hall of Fame

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    Re: Svadharma, our own unique calling in life

    Dear AC,
    Please read
    The Daily Duties of a Hindu

    To be very frank, Varnasrama Dharma is an elaborate important topic in our scriptures, which very clearly states the duties of a Kula (by birth) Brahmana, Kshathriya, Vaishya & sudra.But I do not plan to write on it for obvious reasons, please understand. I do not want to be involved in a controversy which was raised once when I started writing culture posts.It is enough if you follow the pancha maha yajna, as written about in the above thread.
    Love,
    Chithra.




     

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