We are dedicating the month of December to the Bhagavad Gita in celebration of Gita Jayanti.

Summary of the Bhagavad Gita

It is extremely difficult, and perhaps presumptuous, to offer a summary of a work as important as the Bhagavad Gita. However, two summaries of the Bhagavad Gita in English and Bhagavad Gita in Hindi are made available for those who want or need the message of the Gita in fast-food style. This summary highlights the salient message(s) and theme(s) of this primary treatise of Hinduism. We hope you enjoy the same and share with your friends and families!

  • Change is the law of the universe. What you think of as death, is indeed life.
  • This body is not yours, neither are you of the body.
  • Dedicate your being to God. He is the one to be ultimately relied upon.
  • What did you bring with you, which you think you have lost?
  • Why do you worry without cause? Whom do you fear without reason? Who can kill you? The soul is neither born, nor does it die!

Central Message of the Bhagavad Gita

The central message of the Gita (available with Translation and Audio ) is made famous by the central theme in Chapter 2, Verse 47:

Karmanye Vaadhika-raste, Maa Phaleshu Kadachana
Maa karma-phala-hetur-bhoorma, MaTe sangostwakarmini.

कर्मण्ये वाधिकारस्ते मा फलेषु कदाचन, मा कर्मफलहेतुर्भूर्मा ते संगोस्त्वकर्मणि ।

A brief audio version of the above shloka is also available below.

Audio – Karmanye Vaadhika-raste, Maa Phaleshu Kadachana

Your right is to work only, but never to its fruits.
Let not the fruits of action be thy motive,
Nor let thy attachment be to inaction. This famous verse contains the essential principle of disinterestedness or detachment. It also contains a warning not to use detachment as an excuse for inaction. This alone is the secret of all real achievements. Lord Krishna is perhaps advising Arjuna on the art of living an inspired life!

The next article will discuss some more shlokas (sayings) related to karma-yoga (the yoga of work) from the Gita – stay tuned!

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So how has the Bhagavad Gita impacted your life? Or are you just getting started with this wonderful book? Please share with fellow readers in the comments. Thanks!

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  • sid_b

    If Tim Berners Lee did not think of the fruits i.e. have a great way to distribute information electronically, none of you would be writing and agreeing on this blog. I highly doubt if higher levels of perfection can be gained without thinking of the end result. Definitely, in India we follow the ‘disinterested’ advice very seriously. No wonder the government employees are ‘disinterested’, the police is ‘disinterested’, we rank lowest in all of the international comparative indexes and even in sports are are really poor. Of course we love all the goodies the West invents but we ourselves are never ‘interested’ in the fruits so we don’t participate in any of the improvements.

    • kash

      Let’s see it one more time. We have the right to work but we have no right to results – that’s because results come from God – He is the owner of the results. We need to perform our work with “Arpana Buddhi”, i.e., as an offering to God. We do not give imperfect things to God, so, we need to be as perfect as possible in the work we do because that’s offering to God. We are recommended to receive results with “Prasada Buddhi”, i.e., as divine blessings from God. However, we can not tell a farmer to sow the seeds and not expect a good crop – that’s not what is meant; we need to expect the best outcomes, just that we do not own them, that’s all. To summarize further, what’s central to Hindu belief is to possess everything but not being possessed by nothing. A scratch on my car may hurt me if I am “attached” to it, it will not, if I am “not attached” to it – I would rather focus on handing it over to someone who can mend it. My humble submission, I do not claim to be an expert on the subject but this is how I have understood it and this is the way I live it on a day to day basis as far as possible. Hope it helps.

    • abhilash

      There is only a iota of difference between uninterested and disinterested. Disinterested means not having any vested interest in the outcome, while uninterested means not interested in performing the duty. I think you are referring to uninterested. No religion including Hinduism has insisted not to perform one’s duty. Bhagavadgita discourse itself is a preaching given to Arjuna to perform his duties disinterestedly (meaning without attachment to results), and Karma Yoga of Bhagavadgita strongly insists individuals to perform their duties scrupulously but without expectation of results.

  • Pankaj

    I have been explained this by my friend, who I consider as my relegious guide
    you can concentrate on the soul or chaitanya, which is within you, in times of stress, and remind yourself, that the chaitanya, is constant, unperishable,unchanging, pure, surrounded by the body with imperfections like greed , envey , anger, lust, , etc which are changable factors Look Inwards. Try. It will not be easy. It is not easy.
    This concentration will make you still, peacefull, and bring you back to balance.
    It is working for me. I am a very ordinary person, with all possible failings, and more.

    • kajmani

      This is a beautiful thought expressed by Shri Pankaj! Actually, it is more than a thought – it is a practical way in which ordinary folks (including me :-)) can be inspired by Vedanta and put Vedanta into practice in our daily lives.

      Maybe it helps Shri Arun (see previous comment) in some small way too….

      Namaste!

  • arun

    how can a comman man like me bring this in actual life? There is always demands from a man like me such as I will do this and i will get this I will do another thing I will be liable to get something. This and that.

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  • http://www.facebook.com/dr.balakrishna.m.ramaraju Balakrishna

    I will do my duty to the best of my ability .
    anasooya-athrison-aathreya-sehanjaneya

    • drspshukla

      doing your duty should be the only aim if you are sincere rest should be left for supreme power

  • Krishnamurthy Kumar

    Thank you for making my day with your Bagavad gita summery and message. There is a saying in English, NOT TO ASK WHY BUT DO YOUR DUTY AND DIE, but I believe in do your duty and be happy , as result is not the aim of doing it.

    Kumar

    • kajmani

      I am glad you enjoyed the article. I think the saying you are mentioning is sometimes quoted in the services (Army etc) to motivate the troops.

      In any case, my intent is to share what I learn from all the great Gurus who have written commentaries on the Gita. Namaste!