Bhagavad Gita Chapter 18 is said by some commentators to be a summary of the teachings

Like Chapter II, the Bhagavad Gita Chapter XVIII Conclusion is said by some commentators to be a summary of the teachings of the Gītā. It begins by recalling the familiar distinction between: (1) physically giving up (saṃnyāsa) actions, except for a few semi-automatic ones which preserve the body, and (2) energetically performing the actions proper to one’s …

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The Chandogya Upanishad speaks of the food we eat being divided threefold

Food may well seem to some people a topic too mundane to be harped upon in a spiritual classic, but the fact is that it is mentioned many times in the Upanishads, which are the oldest written works in the yogic tradition. As the old German proverb has it, from one point of view man …

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Our experiences and dreamless sleep (sushupti).

According to the Advaita Vedanta, whose most learned and brilliant exponent was the first Shankaracharya, all our experiences from the cradle to the grave take place in one of the three states of waking (jagrat), dreaming (svapna) and dreamless sleep (sushupti). These states correspond to the facts established by our own introspection and are not …

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Nirguna Brahman and Saguna Brahman

Most text-books on the history of Indian philosophy tell us that Shankaracharya designated the ultimate Reality by the term nirguna Brahman., or quality-less Brahman. They say he thought this was quality-less, changeless and beyond the realm of cause and effect. If we are to look, therefore, in his system for the cause of the universe …

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The poetry of T. S. Eliot and the Bhagavad Gita

Despite the great difference between the literary and social backgrounds of the Bhagavad Gita and T. S. Eliot’s poetry, there is an essential similarity between certain ideas which are found in both. The parallelism between these ideas cannot be said to be exact for in the Bhagavad Gita they are related to other Hindu doctrines …

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What is knowledge? What is the purpose of knowledge?

A pupil asks the questions: “What is knowledge? What is the purpose of knowledge?” Imagine an afternoon in the Himalayan valley five or six miles above Rishikesha; the sun has declined and is hidden behind the towering peaks, cool shadows and breezes are prevailing on the shady banks of the Ganges and the holy Teacher …

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