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Philosophy: Mahabharata, Bhagavad Gita and Ramayana Summaries Essay

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Updated: Mar 22nd, 2020

The Sumerians inspired the Hindus to write the Ramayana and Mahabharata poetic stories on the power of the gods and the ideals on how people should live. Brahmin who was named Valmiki wrote the poems that were made public between 400 and 200 BCE. Brahmin’s story was inspired by earlier events that occurred when Aryans worked hard to rule the Dravidians who were in Southern India using a strategy of divide and conquer combined with the use of military force and missionary activities.

Brahmin who was later named Valmiki wrote seven books with 24,000 versus about Ramayana or Rama and embodied the Aryan culture of great ideals. Rama was a very powerful prince who esteemed the truth and stood against evil.

On the other hand, Mahabharata also known as Vyasa, meaning Great India exists in eight books with several interspersed verses of prose were written by Brahmin between 400 and 100 BCE. Mahabharata contains a detailed description of the Aryan tribes’ way of life from northern India and the struggles the Aryans underwent to conquer the northern people and create an empire.

Mahabharata’s writings provide a detailed description of the points of morality for the people to observe under the guardianship of the great hero Krishna. The writings emphasized on the gods of Vishnu and Shiv while different authors and editors who have written about Mahabharata differently emphasize on Bhagavad Gita, the infallible god, and reference on to conduct one’s self.

Part of the story in Mahabharata that was later known as the Lord’s Song or Bhagavad Gita was one of the greatest Indian Hindu scripts that are widely read and referenced today as a source of inspiration on how to conduct one’s self. The work of Mahatma Gandhi adds value by viewing Bhagavad Gita as an infallible guide in day to day conduct of one’s life.

The Lord’s song or Bhagavad Gita details how Vishnu went through an incarnation to become Krishna, the Supreme Deity who had appeared in human form who originated from north-western India as a non-Aryan god. Mahabharata narrated a story to Krishna the charioteer that Gita came into existence because of the effects of the royalty wars.

As the war progressed, Krishna refused to give a signal to fight because their enemies were his relatives and wondered why war could be such important for him to kill his kinsmen when he had no intentions to kill his own people. However, Indira Krishna instructed Arjuna to accept death by asserting that a person who went to war had a very strong resolve to die because death leads one to paradise.

If Arjuna refused to fight, then it could be assumed that he had rejected karma and rejecting karma meant to refuse to accept and honor karma’s position in one’s life. The argument was reinforced by Krishna, who presented an irrefutable argument that he was the god Krishna was to obey fully.

At the end of the story, Arjuna became an instructor and defender of family values and tradition while Krishna became a loving personal god like Yahweh, who does not like war. Krishna’s values were detailed in Gita (2:37) where good behavior, owning earthly possessions, the behavior of worshippers and the immortality of the soul were described and the best way to live the present life.

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IvyPanda. 2020. "Philosophy: Mahabharata, Bhagavad Gita and Ramayana Summaries." March 22, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/philosophy-mahabharata-bhagavad-gita-and-ramayana-summaries/.

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IvyPanda. (2020) 'Philosophy: Mahabharata, Bhagavad Gita and Ramayana Summaries'. 22 March.

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