Message of Bhagavad Gita

What is the Message that Bhagavad Gita gives?

God in Bhagavad Gita has given various messages via the medium of verses. There are 700 verses in Bhagavad Gita. It is a summary of the Vedas. It guides us to our ultimate goal of human life. There are some verses in Bhagavad Gita which declares its central message loud and clear. The mystery of Bhagavad Gita is that no one has been able to understand the meaning of these verses properly. Everyone gets the common messages from Bhagavad Gita but the vital message has remained overlooked. This has been the case for centuries as no Gita scholar has been able to grasp the core message given by God narrating Gita. 

In this article, we will discuss the common messages from Bhagavad Gita and also the most important overlooked or hidden message of Srimad Bhagavad Gita. 

The obvious points mentioned in Bhagavad Gita which everyone is familiar with are as under.

  • The soul is neither born, nor does it die. (2.20)
  • Concentrate on the action rather than its fruit. (2.47)
  • One comes and goes from this world empty handed.
  • Lust anger and greed lead to hell and should be shunned (16.21)

Most Important Message in Bhagavad Gita

The central message of Bhagavad Gita is to recognise the Supreme God, worship Him and attain Moksha (nirvana). Let us break it down into its entities.

  1. Recognise who is the Supreme God
  2. Acquire the true way of worship of Supreme God (from a Tatvadarshi Saint)
  3. Worship only the Supreme God to attain Moksha

Readers can also read Supreme God in Bhagavad Gita but to understand the central idea that God narrating Bhagavad Gita is trying to convey, please read the verses below.

Recognise who is the Supreme God

It is obvious from the dialogue of Bhagavad Gita that God Krishna is delivering the knowledge of Bhagavad Gita to Arjun at the time of Mahabharata. God Krishna covers various aspects of life, describes the attribute of soul, explains what is mortal and what is immortal, talks about the mantras that should be chanted. Amongst these verses there are some where God Krishna causes bewilderment and then he directs Arjun to seek refuge of a God different to him. Let's start with the verses below.

In Bhagavad Gita Shri Krishan ji indicates towards some other God who in reality is the Supreme God.

The following verses in particular clearly indicate about some other God which Shri Krishan ji is referring to.

Bhagavad Gita Chapter 18, Verse (Shloka) 62

तमेव शरणं गच्छ सर्वभावेन भारत।
तत्प्रसादात्परां शान्तिं स्थानं प्राप्स्यसि शाश्वतम्‌॥

हे भारत! तू सब प्रकार से उस परमेश्वर की ही शरण में जा। उस परमात्मा की कृपा से ही तू परम शांति को तथा सनातन परमधाम को प्राप्त होगा॥62॥

O scion of Bharata, surrender unto Him utterly. By His grace you will attain transcendental peace and the supreme and eternal abode.

Bhagavad Gita Chapter 15, Verse (Shloka) 4

ततः पदं तत्परिमार्गितव्यं यस्मिन्गता न निवर्तन्ति भूयः ।
तमेव चाद्यं पुरुषं प्रपद्ये यतः प्रवृत्तिः प्रसृता पुराणी ॥

उसके पश्चात उस परम-पदरूप परमेश्वर को भलीभाँति खोजना चाहिए, जिसमें गए हुए पुरुष फिर लौटकर संसार में नहीं आते और जिस परमेश्वर से इस पुरातन संसार वृक्ष की प्रवृत्ति विस्तार को प्राप्त हुई है, उसी आदिपुरुष नारायण के मैं शरण हूँ- इस प्रकार दृढ़ निश्चय करके उस परमेश्वर का मनन और निदिध्यासन करना चाहिए॥4॥

Thereafter that Supreme God should be searched for, having gone where, devotees do not return (in birth-death) to this world i.e. attain the eternal salvation and the Supreme God, from whom the creation has originated since time immemorial.

Krishan ji says that I too am in the refuge of that Supreme God. In this way one should remember and worship that Supreme God with full determination.

Bhagavad Gita Chapter 15, Verse (Shloka) 17

उत्तमः पुरुषस्त्वन्यः परमात्मेत्युदाहृतः ।
यो लोकत्रयमाविश्य बिभर्त्यव्यय ईश्वरः ॥

उत्तम पुरुष तो अन्य ही है, जो तीनों लोकों में प्रवेश करके सबका धारण-पोषण करता है एवं अविनाशी परमेश्वर और परमात्मा- इस प्रकार कहा गया है॥17॥

The Supreme God is someone else (other than the two above-mentioned Purushas (Gods), Kshar Purush and Akshar Purush in shlok 16), who is actually said to be the Eternal Supreme God. He only, by entering into the three loks (worlds), sustains everyone.

Bhagavad Gita Chapter 8, Verses (Shloka) 5 - 10

Krishan ji in these verses tells Arjun initially from verse 5-7 about the method of attaining himself and then in verses 8-10 about attaining the Supreme God.

Bhagavad Gita Chapter 8, Verse (Shloka) 5

अंतकाले च मामेव स्मरन्मुक्त्वा कलेवरम्‌ ।
यः प्रयाति स मद्भावं याति नास्त्यत्र संशयः ॥

जो पुरुष अंतकाल में भी मुझको ही स्मरण करता हुआ शरीर को त्याग कर जाता है, वह मेरे साक्षात स्वरूप को प्राप्त होता है- इसमें कुछ भी संशय नहीं है॥5॥

The speaker of Gita says that whosoever, at the time of death, leaves his body while remembering me, attains me. There is no doubt in this.

Bhagavad Gita Chapter 8, Verse (Shloka) 6

यं यं वापि स्मरन्भावं त्यजत्यन्ते कलेवरम्‌ ।
तं तमेवैति कौन्तेय सदा तद्भावभावितः ॥

हे कुन्ती पुत्र अर्जुन! यह मनुष्य अंतकाल में जिस-जिस भी भाव को स्मरण करता हुआ शरीर त्याग करता है, उस-उसको ही प्राप्त होता है क्योंकि वह सदा उसी भाव से भावित रहा है॥6॥

O Son of Kunti! at the time of death, whomsoever one remembers and quits his body, He attains that very state only. i.e. whichever God one remembers at the time of death, he goes to him.

Bhagavad Gita Chapter 8, Verse (Shloka) 7

तस्मात्सर्वेषु कालेषु मामनुस्मर युद्ध च ।
मय्यर्पितमनोबुद्धिर्मामेवैष्यस्यसंशयम्‌ ॥

इसलिए हे अर्जुन! तू सब समय में निरंतर मेरा स्मरण कर और युद्ध भी कर। इस प्रकार मुझमें अर्पण किए हुए मन-बुद्धि से युक्त होकर तू निःसंदेह मुझको ही प्राप्त होगा॥7॥

Therefore O Arjun! remember me all the time and at the same time fight as well. In this way by surrendering your mind and intellect in me, you will undoubtedly attain me.

Up to here Krishan ji is saying to Arjun that you will attain me. From here on Krishan ji explains to Arjun how one goes in to the refuge of some Other Supreme God

Bhagavad Gita Chapter 8, Verse (Shloka) 8

अभ्यासयोगयुक्तेन चेतसा नान्यगामिना ।
परमं पुरुषं दिव्यं याति पार्थानुचिन्तयन्‌ ॥

हे पार्थ! यह नियम है कि परमेश्वर के ध्यान के अभ्यास रूप योग से युक्त, दूसरी ओर न जाने वाले चित्त से निरंतर चिंतन करता हुआ मनुष्य परम दिव्य पुरुष को अर्थात परमेश्वर को ही प्राप्त होता है॥8॥

O Parth, He who meditates on the name of Supreme God with undivided attention and thinks of him constantly, attains the Supreme God (Param Purusham Divyam)

Bhagavad Gita Chapter 8, Verse (Shloka) 9

कविं पुराणमनुशासितार-मणोरणीयांसमनुस्मरेद्यः ।
सर्वस्य धातारमचिन्त्यरूप-मादित्यवर्णं तमसः परस्तात्‌ ॥

जो पुरुष सर्वज्ञ, अनादि, सबके नियंता सूक्ष्म से भी अति सूक्ष्म, सबके धारण-पोषण करने वाले अचिन्त्य-स्वरूप, सूर्य के सदृश नित्य चेतन प्रकाश रूप और अविद्या से अति परे, शुद्ध सच्चिदानन्दघन परमेश्वर का स्मरण करता है॥9॥

A worshipper, who remembers Supreme God (Sachidanandghan) Kabir (Kavim), the Eternal, Controller of all, Subtler than the subtlest, the Sustainer of all, Self-effulgent like the sun (i.e. possessing a bright body), beyond the darkness of ignorance,

Bhagavad Gita Chapter 8, Verse (Shloka) 10

प्रयाण काले मनसाचलेन भक्त्या युक्तो योगबलेन चैव ।
भ्रुवोर्मध्ये प्राणमावेश्य सम्यक्‌- स तं परं पुरुषमुपैति दिव्यम्‌ ।

वह भक्ति युक्त पुरुष अन्तकाल में भी योगबल से भृकुटी के मध्य में प्राण को अच्छी प्रकार स्थापित करके, फिर निश्चल मन से स्मरण करता हुआ उस दिव्य रूप परम पुरुष परमात्मा को ही प्राप्त होता है॥10॥

That worshipper, who is endowed with bhakti, by the power (the earnings of naam jaap) of the meditation of naam, while leaving the body at the time of death, fixing his life air between the eyebrows, while doing the sumiran of naam, goes to that divine Supreme God only.

Gist: It is clear that the God speaking Bhagavad Gita is talking about himself and then about another God. In the same context, the God speaking Bhagavad Gita also talks about attaining the complete knowledge from a Tatvadarshi saint. He thus proves that he himself doesn't have the complete knowledge. Please read the verse below.

Acquire the true way of worship of Supreme God

The narrator God of Bhagavad Gita instructs Arjun to find a Tatvadarshi Saint for the most exclusive knowledge. 

Bhagavad Gita Chapter 4 Verse 34

तत्, विद्धि, प्रणिपातेन, परिप्रश्नेन, सेवया,
उपदेक्ष्यन्ति, ते, ज्ञानम्, ज्ञानिनः, तत्त्वदर्शिनः।।34।।

उस तत्वज्ञान को समझ उन पूर्ण परमात्मा के वास्तविक ज्ञान व समाधान को जानने वाले संतों को भलीभाँति दण्डवत् प्रणाम करनेसे उनकी सेवा करनेसे और कपट छोड़कर सरलतापूर्वक प्रश्न करनेसे वे पूर्ण ब्रह्म को तत्व से जानने वाले अर्थात् तत्वदर्शी ज्ञानी महात्मा तुझे उस तत्वज्ञानका उपदेश करेंगे।

By properly prostrating before those saints who know the true knowledge and solution of the Supreme God, by serving them, and by giving up deceit, asking questions with simplicity, they, who know the Supreme God in essence i.e. Tatvdarshi (knowledgeable) Mahatmas, will instruct you in Tatvgyan/True Spiritual Knowledge.

Gist: The essence of the above verse of Gita is that only a Complete Saint will impart the way of worship of Supreme God. So one needs to find that Complete Saint and very humbly, with full respect, plead to listen to the most conclusive knowledge. 

Worship only the Supreme God to attain Moksha

The God speaking Bhagavad Gita (in Gita 4.5) says to Arjun that both you and I have had several births and this cycle would continue. He clarifies in 15.4 (see above) that there is this another God after attaining whom the birth and death ends. He further clarifies that he himself is in the refuge of that same God too. 

This is that God who can grant Moksha (salvation). This God is definitely different to the speaker God of Bhagavad Gita. 

Conclusion

The following is the main message of Bhagavad Gita. Bhagavad Gita is for the whole mankind. It is not limited to any one reglion and therefore the message it gives applies to all people irrespective of their religion. The God narrating Bhagavad Gita is saying that the Supreme God who is the master of all, is immortal, nurtures everyone, is the only one worthy of worship and is the only one who can cause liberation of a soul. If one worships that Supreme God, then one can escape the cycle of birth and death. One should first of all understand the conclusive knowledge from a Tatvadarshi Saint and then do worship of Supreme God as told by the Tatvadarshi Saint in order to reach the eternal place where there is complete happiness and no misery or death. While attaining heaven is temporary as one is reborn on this earth once the tenure in heaven is over, attaining the eternal place is permanent. Attaining the eternal place is therefore called attaining nirvana as the soul does not come back to this earth after reaching this place. This eternal place is called "Satlok" and is the ultimate goal of human life.