Bhagavadgita -Radhakrishnan 129

The Bhagavadgita -S. Radhakrishnan

The Way of Knowledge

The Bheigavata says, "The omnipresent Lord appears in the world, not only for destroying the demoniac forces but also for teaching mortals. How else could the Lord who is blissful in Himself experience anxieties about Sita, etc. "[1] He knows hunger and thirst, sorrow and suffering, solitude and forsakenness. He overcomes them all and asks us to take courage from His example. He not only teaches us the true doctrine by which we can die to our separate temporal selfless and come to union with Timeless Spirit but He offers Himself to be a channel of grace. By inviting souls to trust and love Him, He promises to lead them to the knowledge of the Absolute. The historical fact is the illustration of a process
ever unfolding in the heart of man. The avataras helps us to become what we potentially are. In Hindu and Buddhist systems of thought, there is no servitude to one historic fact. We can all rise to the divine status and the avatars help us to achieve this inner realization Cp. Gautarna the Buddha : "Then the Blessed on spoke and said, `no Vasettha, that from time to time a Tathagata is born into the world, a fully enlightened one, blessed and worthy, abounding in wisdom and goodness, happy with the knowledge of the worlds, unsurpassed as a guide to erring mortals, a teacher of gods and men, a Blessed Buddha. He proclaims the truth both in its letter and in its spirit, lovely in its origin, lovely in its progress, lovely in its consummation. A. higher life doth he make known in all its purity and in all its perfectness.' [2] According to Mahayana Buddhism there have been many previous Buddhas and Gautama would have a successoi in Mettreya (Maitreya) Gautarna himself passed through many births and acquired the qualities which enabled him to discover the Truth. It is possible for others to do the same. We hear of disciples taking the vow to attain the enlightenment of a Buddha. These systems do not believe in any exclusive revelation at one unique instant of time.


References and Context

  1. martyavatarastv ha martyasiksanam raksovadhayaava na kevalam vibhoh kuto 'nyatha syad ramatah sva atmana sitakrtani vyasanani'.svarasya. V, 19, 5.
  2. Tevzjja Sutra. Cp. Romans : "For if we have grown into him by a death like his, we shall grow into him by a resurrection like his, knowing as we do that our old self has been crucified with hum in order to crush the sinful body." VI 6. Moffatt's E.T.