[Advaita-l] Dying to Live Peacefully - III

Raghav Kumar Dwivedula raghavkumar00 at gmail.com
Sat Jan 6 05:15:33 EST 2018

On 06-Jan-2018 12:57 PM, "Jaldhar H. Vyas via Advaita-l" <
advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org> wrote:

On Fri, 5 Jan 2018, kuntimaddi sadananda via Advaita-l wrote:

Bhagavat Geeta is from Mahabharata and Geeta is essentially a manual of
> living beautifully and peacefully to ultimately to arrive at peace that
> passeth understanding. Geeta, in essence, provides the discusses how to
> live peacefully according to sanatana dharma perspective.

!!!  Let's not forget Gita took place on the eve of an ugly war in which
lakhs of people including virtually the entire flower of the ruling classes
were killed.  The Gita is many things but peaceful it is not.  And note
Arjuna is perfectly willing to give up his kingdom, wealth etc.  It is
Krishna Bhagavan who dissuades him.

I was wondering why a battle in which the 'entire flower of the ruling
classes perished' ( one researcher says that this loss of kxatriya prowess
badly affected India for millennia, making it vulnerable to foreign
invaders ) , is still regarded as right by Astika-s .

( Btw , nAstikas like Amartya Sen have a stupid take on the Gita and say
that the Gita is a dishonest book and it asks us to act without bothering
about the consequences etc etc....)

But coming to the Astika-s perspective on extolling certain kinds of
violence -
dharmyaddhi yuddhAt shreyonyat kxatriyasya na vidyate, as they say.

Can we say that if Arjuna had run away, then the forces of adharma would
have caused even more deaths and disruption for society, in the longer run?
So even from a societal perspective this killing people and violence was
unavoidable and was for the larger good, like say, fighting the Nazis?

Not to speak of fighting being good at the individual level for Arjuna in
being karma yoga for him, which I am not focusing on for the moment.

(ISKCON teachers say that the battle was legit because Krishna the supreme
personality of Godhead goaded Arjuna. Period.)

Is there any shAstra reference to what constitutes dhArmic killing? Like
meting out just deserts for an AtatAyin, maybe?


The Mahabharata, particularly if you read the original, does not shy away
from acknowledging the neegative consequences of the Pandavas actions.
Nevertheless it was the right thing to do.  What the Gita teaches is how to
develop the mental equanimity to do the right thing even when it may seem
to be wrong.

Jaldhar H. Vyas <jaldhar at braincells.com>

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