Bhagavad-Gita is knowledge of five basic truths and the relationship of each truth to the other: These five truths are Krishna, or God, the individual soul, the material world, action in this world, and time. The Gita lucidly explains the nature of consciousness, the self, and the universe. It is the essence of India’s spiritual wisdom, the answers to questions posed by philosophers for centuries.
In translating the Gita, A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada has remained loyal to the intended meaning of Krishna’s words, and thus he has unlocked all the secrets of the ancient knowledge of the Gita and placed them before us as an exciting opportunity for self-improvement and spiritual fulfillment.
The Gita is a conversation between Krishna and His dear friend Arjuna. At the last moment before entering a battle between brothers and friends, the great warrior Arjuna begins to wonder: Why should he fight? What is the meaning of his life? Where is he going after death?
In response, Krishna brings His friend from perplexity to spiritual enlightenment, and each one of us is invited to walk the same path.
Dr. Elwin H. Powell, a professor of sociology at the State University of New York, wrote: “If truth is what works, as Pierce and the pragmatists insist, there must be a kind of truth in the Bhagavad Gita As It Is, since those who follow its teachings display a joyous serenity usually missing in the bleak and strident lives of contemporary people.”
Bhagavad-Gita is universally renowned as the jewel of India’s spiritual wisdom. Spoken by Lord Sri Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, to His intimate devotee Arjuna, the Gita’s 700 concise verses provide a definitive guide to the science of self-realization. Indeed, there is no work even comparable in its revelations of man’s essential nature, his environment and, ultimately, his relationship with God.
His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada is uniquely qualified to present this English translation and commentary on Bhagavad-Gita. He is the world’s foremost Vedic scholar and teacher, and he is also the current representative of the unbroken chain of fully self-realized spiritual masters beginning with Lord Krishna Himself. Thus, unlike other editions of the Gita, this one is presented as it is—without the slightest taint of adulteration of personal motivation. Replete with sixteen full-color plates, this new edition is certain to stimulate and enlighten any reader with its ancient yet thoroughly timely message.
“In the morning I bathe my intellect in the stupendous and cosmogonal philosophy of the Bhagavad-Gita, in comparison with which our modern world and its literature seem puny and trivial.”
—Henry David Thoreau
“I owed a magnificent day to the Bhagavad-Gita. It was the fist of books’ it was as if an empire spoke to us, nothing small or unworthy, but large, serene, consistent, the voice of an old intelligence which in another rage and climate had pondered and thus disposed of the same questions which exercise us.”
—Ralph Waldo Emerson
“When doubts haunt me, when disappointments stare me in the face, and I see not one ray of hope on the horizon, I turn to Bhagavad-Gita and find a verse to comfort me; and I immediately begin to smile in the midst of overwhelming sorrow. Those who meditate on the Gita will derive fresh joy and new meanings from it every day.”
—Mohandas K. Gandhi