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3.0 out of 5 stars New to "The Gita.", March 22 2001
This review is from: Bhagavad Gita: A New Translation (Hardcover)
The BHAGAVAD GITA "is a great religious poem," Ghandi wrote. "The deeper you dive into it, the richer the meanings you get" (p. 220). I was new to "The Gita," and I should have looked before I leaped into this edition.
I am not qualified to compare Mitchell's translation to any of the other two hundred English translations of the of The Gita published since it was written nearly two thousand years ago, nor am I qualified to discuss The Gita's path of self realization. But to me, it seems like this translation rarely goes more than ankle deep into The Gita's teachings. It is nevertheless a worthwhile book in at least two respects. It confronts its reader with the important question, "How should I live an authentic life?" It also shows that The Gita is intended to include all paths and all people, excluding no one from the boat of wisdom carrying us across "the sea of all sin" (4.36). Krishna says, "However men try to reach me,/ I return their love with my love;/ whatever path they may travel,/ it leads to me in the end" (4.11).
In his Introduction, Mitchell writes that The Gita can be read as an "instruction manual for spiritual practice," and as a "guide to peace of heart" (p. 23). The Gita tells us, "Though the unwise cling to their actions,/ watching for results, the wise/ are free from attachments, and act/ for the well-being of the whole world" (3.25). Although the path to self realization is not well defined in Mitchell's translation, reading any Gita is better than reading no Gita. As for me, I'm ready now to dive into a more meaningful Gita. Any recommendations?
G. Merritt
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