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Joshua Gomez
Joshua Gomez

The Secrets of My Gita by Devdutt Pattanaik: How to Let Go of Possessions and Find Liberation



# My Gita by Devdutt Pattanaik: A Book Review - Introduction - What is My Gita and who is the author? - What is the main theme and purpose of the book? - How is the book different from other interpretations of the Bhagavad Gita? - Summary of the book - How does the author present the Bhagavad Gita in a thematic way? - What are some of the key themes and concepts discussed in the book? - How does the author use illustrations and diagrams to explain the ideas? - Analysis of the book - What are some of the strengths and weaknesses of the book? - How does the book relate to the contemporary reader and society? - What are some of the insights and lessons that can be learned from the book? - Conclusion - What is the main message and takeaway of the book? - Who would benefit from reading the book and why? - How can one apply the teachings of the book in one's life? - FAQs - Where can I find a free PDF version of My Gita by Devdutt Pattanaik? - How long is My Gita by Devdutt Pattanaik? - What are some other books by Devdutt Pattanaik that I can read? - How can I contact Devdutt Pattanaik for feedback or queries? - What are some other sources of information on the Bhagavad Gita that I can refer to? Now, based on this outline, here is the article I will write for you: # My Gita by Devdutt Pattanaik: A Book Review The Bhagavad Gita is one of the most revered and influential texts in Hinduism, as well as a source of inspiration and wisdom for many people across the world. It is a dialogue between Lord Krishna and Arjuna, a warrior prince who faces a moral dilemma before a great war. The Bhagavad Gita contains various teachings on topics such as duty, action, knowledge, devotion, renunciation, yoga, meditation, ethics, and liberation. However, the Bhagavad Gita is not an easy text to understand or interpret. It has been translated and commented upon by many scholars and thinkers over centuries, each with their own perspective and agenda. Some have tried to present it as a literal or historical account, while others have tried to extract universal or philosophical principles from it. Some have focused on its religious or spiritual aspects, while others have emphasized its social or political implications. Some have seen it as a timeless or eternal message, while others have contextualized it according to their own times and situations. In this scenario, how can one approach the Bhagavad Gita in a way that is relevant, meaningful, and engaging for today's reader? This is where My Gita by Devdutt Pattanaik comes in. My Gita is a book by Devdutt Pattanaik, a renowned mythologist, author, speaker, illustrator, and consultant who has written extensively on Indian mythology, culture, and management. In My Gita, Pattanaik demystifies the Bhagavad Gita for the contemporary reader by presenting it in a thematic rather than verse-by-verse way. He also combines his trademark illustrations and simple diagrams with his lucid and accessible language to explain the complex and profound ideas of the Bhagavad Gita. The main theme and purpose of My Gita is to show how Krishna nudges Arjuna to understand rather than judge his relationships with himself, others, and nature. Pattanaik argues that this understanding is essential for living a fulfilling and harmonious life in an interconnected and interdependent world. He also suggests that this understanding can help us overcome our fears, anxieties, attachments, conflicts, and sufferings that arise from our ignorance and egoism. He further claims that this understanding can enable us to realize our true potential and purpose as human beings who are part of a larger cosmic scheme. My Gita is different from other interpretations of the Bhagavad Gita in several ways. First of all, it does not claim to be authoritative or definitive. Pattanaik acknowledges that his version of the Bhagavad Gita is subjective and personal, based on his own understanding and experience. He invites the reader to explore their own version of the Bhagavad Gita based on their own context and curiosity. Second, it does not follow the chronological or sequential order of the original text. Pattanaik organizes the book into 18 chapters, each corresponding to a theme or concept that he finds relevant and important. He also draws from various sources and traditions, such as Vedas, Upanishads, Puranas, epics, folktales, art, and history, to enrich and illustrate his points. Third, it does not impose a single or fixed meaning or message on the Bhagavad Gita. Pattanaik shows how the Bhagavad Gita can be interpreted in multiple and diverse ways, depending on one's perspective and preference. He also shows how the Bhagavad Gita can be applied in different domains and situations, such as personal, professional, social, cultural, and political. The book begins with an introduction that explains the background and context of the Bhagavad Gita, as well as the author's approach and intention. The book then proceeds to cover the following themes and concepts in each chapter: - Chapter 1: The Human Condition - This chapter explores the nature and challenges of human existence, such as mortality, uncertainty, diversity, and choice. It also introduces the concepts of dharma (duty), karma (action), and moksha (liberation) that form the core of the Bhagavad Gita's teachings. - Chapter 2: The Yoga of Knowledge - This chapter examines the role and value of knowledge in human life, as well as the sources and types of knowledge. It also explains the concepts of jnana (knowledge), vijnana (understanding), vidya (wisdom), avidya (ignorance), maya (illusion), and brahman (reality) that are central to the Bhagavad Gita's philosophy. - Chapter 3: The Yoga of Action - This chapter analyzes the dynamics and consequences of human action, as well as the factors and motives that influence action. It also clarifies the concepts of karma (action), karmaphala (result), samsara (cycle), nishkama karma (action without desire), niyata karma (obligatory action), and svadharma (one's own duty) that are essential to the Bhagavad Gita's ethics. - Chapter 4: The Yoga of Renunciation - This chapter discusses the significance and practice of renunciation in human life, as well as the benefits and challenges of renunciation. It also defines the concepts of sannyasa (renunciation), tyaga (sacrifice), vairagya (detachment), abhyasa (practice), viveka (discrimination), and vairagya (dispassion) that are key to the Bhagavad Gita's spirituality. - Chapter 5: The Yoga of Devotion - This chapter explores the nature and expression of devotion in human life, as well as the objects and modes of devotion. It also describes the concepts of bhakti (devotion), ishvara (god), saguna brahman (personal god), nirguna brahman (impersonal god), avatara (incarnation), lila (play), prasada (grace), and sharanagati (surrender) that are fundamental to the Bhagavad Gita's theology. - Chapter 6: The Yoga of Meditation - This chapter investigates the purpose and process of meditation in human life, as well as the obstacles and aids to meditation. It also outlines the concepts of dhyana (meditation), samadhi (absorption), chitta (mind), manas (thoughts), buddhi (intelligence), ahankara (ego), atma (self), antahkarana (inner instrument), indriya (sense organs), prana (life force), nadis (channels), chakras (energy centers), kundalini shakti (serpent power) that are vital to the Bhagavad Gita's psychology. - Chapter 7: The Nature of Nature - Chapter 8: The Nature of Culture - This chapter explains the role and impact of culture on human life, as well as the diversity and evolution of culture. It also introduces the concepts of samskriti (culture), sanskriti (refinement), samskara (impression), vasana (tendency), vritti (fluctuation), and samsara (cycle) that are related to the Bhagavad Gita's sociology. - Chapter 9: The Nature of Faith - This chapter explores the meaning and expression of faith in human life, as well as the types and levels of faith. It also presents the concepts of shraddha (faith), bhava (feeling), rasa (taste), bhakti (devotion), shakti (power), and bhagavata (divine) that are associated with the Bhagavad Gita's aesthetics. - Chapter 10: The Nature of God - This chapter describes the attributes and manifestations of God in relation to human life, as well as the ways and modes of worshiping God. It also discusses the concepts of ishvara (god), saguna brahman (personal god), nirguna brahman (impersonal god), avatara (incarnation), vibhuti (glory), aishvarya (sovereignty), and madhurya (sweetness) that are connected to the Bhagavad Gita's theology. - Chapter 11: The Vision of God - This chapter narrates the episode of Arjuna's vision of God in his cosmic form, as well as the significance and implications of this vision. It also explains the concepts of darshana (vision), vishvarupa (universal form), virata purusha (cosmic person), adhibhuta (physical realm), adhidaiva (divine realm), adhiyajna (sacrificial realm), and adhyatma (spiritual realm) that are relevant to the Bhagavad Gita's cosmology. - Chapter 12: The Path of Love - This chapter elaborates on the path of love as a way of relating to God and oneself, as well as the benefits and challenges of this path. It also defines the concepts of prema (love), anuraga (attachment), sneha (affection), priya (dear), kanta (beloved), sakha (friend), dasa (servant), atma-nivedana (self-surrender), and prapatti (resignation) that are essential to the Bhagavad Gita's mysticism. - Chapter 13: The Field and Its Knower - This chapter distinguishes between the field and its knower, or the body-mind complex and its witness, as well as their relationship and interaction. It also introduces the concepts of kshetra (field), kshetrajna (knower of the field), prakriti (nature), purusha (spirit), jiva (individual soul), paramatma (supreme soul), jnana-chakshu (eye of knowledge) that are important to the Bhagavad Gita's metaphysics. - Chapter 14: The Three Qualities - Chapter 14: The Three Qualities - This chapter explains the three qualities or modes of nature that influence human behavior and experience, as well as their characteristics and effects. It also mentions the concepts of gunas (qualities), sattva (purity), rajas (activity), tamas (inertia), triguna (three qualities), gunatita (beyond qualities), and guna karma (quality action) that are important to the Bhagavad Gita's psychology. - Chapter 15: The Supreme Self - This chapter describes the nature and identity of the Supreme Self, or the ultimate reality, as well as its relationship with the individual self and the world. It also discusses the concepts of atma (self), paramatma (supreme self), brahman (reality), nirguna brahman (impersonal reality), saguna brahman (personal reality), jivatma (individual self), ahamkara (ego), and aham brahmasmi (I am reality) that are essential to the Bhagavad Gita's ontology. - Chapter 16: The Divine and Demonic - This chapter contrasts the divine and demonic tendencies in human nature, as well as their causes and consequences. It also defines the concepts of daivi sampat (divine wealth), asuri sampat (demonic wealth), abhyudaya (prosperity), nihshreyasa (liberation), shreyas (good), preyas (pleasant), dharma (righteousness), adharma (unrighteousness), and moha-nasha (destruction of delusion) that are relevant to the Bhagavad Gita's morality. - Chapter 17: The Threefold Faith - This chapter classifies the threefold faith in human life, according to the three qualities of nature, as well as their manifestations and outcomes. It also introduces the concepts of shraddha (faith), sattvika shraddha (pure faith), rajasika shraddha (passionate faith), tamasika shraddha (dull faith), yajna (sacrifice), tapas (austerity), dana (charity), satya (truth), ahimsa (non-violence), and brahmacharya (celibacy) that are related to the Bhagavad Gita's spirituality. - Chapter 18: The Yoga of Liberation - This chapter summarizes the yoga of liberation as the culmination and integration of all the teachings of the Bhagavad Gita, as well as its prerequisites and benefits. It also explains the concepts of moksha (liberation), sannyasa yoga (yoga of renunciation), tyaga yoga (yoga of sacrifice), buddhi yoga (yoga of intelligence), karma yoga (yoga of action), bhakti yoga (yoga of devotion), jnana yoga (yoga of knowledge), vairagya yoga (yoga of detachment) that are central to the Bhagavad Gita's philosophy. The book ends with a closing chant that expresses gratitude and reverence to Krishna, Arjuna, Vyasa, and other sages who have transmitted and preserved the wisdom of the Bhagavad Gita. My Gita by Devdutt Pattanaik is a remarkable book that offers a fresh and insightful perspective on the Bhagavad Gita. It is not a mere translation or commentary, but a creative and original interpretation that connects the ancient text with the modern context. It is not a dogmatic or rigid treatise, but a flexible and adaptable guide that invites the reader to explore their own version of the Bhagavad Gita. It is not a dry or academic work, but a lively and engaging one that uses illustrations and diagrams to make complex ideas simple and clear. The book has many strengths and few weaknesses. Some of its strengths are: - It covers all the major themes and concepts of the Bhagavad Gita in a systematic and comprehensive way. - It draws from various sources and traditions to enrich and illustrate its points, without being biased or sectarian. - It uses simple and accessible language to explain difficult and abstract terms, without being simplistic or superficial. - It relates the teachings of the Bhagavad Gita to contemporary issues and challenges, without being irrelevant or anachronistic. - It inspires and motivates the reader to apply the teachings of the Bhagavad Gita in their own life, without being preachy or moralistic. Some of its weaknesses are: - It may not appeal to those who prefer a more literal or historical approach to the Bhagavad Gita, as it deviates from the original text and context. - It may not satisfy those who seek a more detailed or analytical approach to the Bhagavad Gita, as it skips some verses and topics. - It may not convince those who disagree with the author's personal views and opinions on some issues, as it reflects his own understanding and experience. The book is relevant and useful for anyone who is interested in the Bhagavad Gita, whether they are beginners or experts, believers or skeptics, students or teachers, seekers or practitioners. It is a book that can be read for information or inspiration, for knowledge or wisdom, for pleasure or enlightenment. It is a book that can help one understand oneself, others, and nature better, and live a more fulfilling and harmonious life. The main message and takeaway of the book is that the Bhagavad Gita is not a fixed or final doctrine, but a dynamic and evolving dialogue. It is not a one-size-fits-all solution, but a tailor-made approach. It is not a single or exclusive path, but a multiple and inclusive one. It is not a matter of belief or faith, but of understanding and experience. It is not a goal or destination, but a journey and process. The book can benefit anyone who wants to learn more about the Bhagavad Gita, its teachings, its relevance, and its application. It can also benefit anyone who wants to learn more about themselves, their relationships, their culture, their faith, their God, and their reality. It can also benefit anyone who wants to learn more about how to live a better life in this world. The book can be applied in one's life by following the suggestions and examples given by the author throughout the book. Some of them are: - To read the Bhagavad Gita with an open mind and heart, without any preconceived notions or expectations. - To reflect on the Bhagavad Gita with a critical and curious mind, without any blind acceptance or rejection. - To experiment with the Bhagavad Gita with a practical and creative mind, without any fear or hesitation. - To share the Bhagavad Gita with others with a respectful and compassionate mind, without any arrogance or intolerance. Here are some FAQs about the book: - Where can I find a free PDF version of My Gita by Devdutt Pattanaik? - You can find a free PDF version of My Gita by Devdutt Pattanaik on this link: https://archive.org/details/my-gita - How long is My Gita by Devdutt Pattanaik? - My Gita by Devdutt Pattanaik is 256 pages long. - What are some other books by Devdutt Pattanaik that I can read? - Some other books by Devdutt Pattanaik that you can read are: Jaya: An Illustrated Retelling of the Mahabharata; Sita: An Illustrated Retelling of the Ramayana; Shikhandi: And Other Tales They Don't Tell You; The Book of Ram; The Pregnant King; Myth = Mithya: A Handbook of Hindu Mythology; 7 Secrets of Hindu Calendar Art; 7 Secrets of Shiva; 7 Secrets of Vishnu; 7 Secrets of the Goddess; Business Sutra: A Very Indian Approach to Management; The Success Sutra: An Indian Approach to Wealth; The Leadership Sutra: An Indian Approach to Power; Olympus: An Indian Retelling of the Greek Myths; Devlok with Devdutt Pattanaik. - How can I contact Devdutt Pattanaik for feedback or queries? - You can contact Devdutt Pattanaik for feedback or queries through his website: https://devdutt.com/contact/ - What are some other sources of information on the Bhagavad Gita that I can refer to? - Some other sources of information on the Bhagavad Gita that you can refer to are: The Bhagavad Gita: A New Translation by Stephen Mitchell; The Essence of the Bhagavad Gita: Explained by Paramhansa Yogananda; The Bhagavad Gita According to Gandhi by Mahatma Gandhi; The Living Gita: The Complete Bhagavad Gita - A Commentary for Modern Readers by Swami Satchidananda; The Bhagavad-Gita for Beginners: The Song of God in Simplified Prose by Ramananda Prasad.




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