Gita Study: Class 4


Topics for today:

  1. Opening prayers and Gita Dhyanam
  2. Concluding part of “Introduction” chapter of the Study material
  3. First verse of Gita Dhyanam

 Highlights of today’s class:

Teaching in the form of a dialogue:

  • In the Gita as also in the Upanishads, the teaching is in the form of a dialogue between the teacher and student.
  • The goal of teaching is for the student to understand the subject; therefore, it is normal for the student to ask questions to get a clear understanding. Hence the teaching is in the form of a dialogue.

Four types of dialogues:

  • Vaada: A discussion among equals who are all interested in understanding the subject matter.
  • Jalpa: A dialogue between two people who are already committed to different beliefs; each person tries to win over the other.
  • Vitanda: A dialogue where one person always tries to prove the other wrong.
  • Samvaada: A discussion between a teacher and a student. The dialogue in Gita and Upanishads fall into this category.

Saadhya vs Siddha vishayas:

  • Saadhya vishaya is a subject matter which is yet to be accomplished by doing something. The focus of understanding a saadhya vishaya is to understand how to do that something. Examples are learning how to cook a food item or how to perform a Vedic ritual, etc.
  • Siddha vishaya is a subject matter which is already accomplished. Here the focus of understanding is to know the subject matter. For example, knowing that there is an apple on my palm by engaging a pramana, means of knowledge, namely my eyes.
  • The teaching of Gita and Vedanta is that I am already secure and happy. This is a siddha vishaya, an already accomplished subject matter. The focus of our studying then is to know this for ourselves by employing the shabda pramana, namely the Vedas.


om tat sat


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