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The Gospel of Selfless Action: The Gita according to Gandhi
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The Gospel of Selfless Action: The Gita according to Gandhi

4.14 of 5 stars 4.14  ·  rating details  ·  490 ratings  ·  31 reviews
s/t: Translation of the original in Gujarati, with an additional introduction & commentary
The Bhagavad Gita, or "Song of God", is one of the world's great scriptures. The story of the warrior Arjuna's battlefield conversation with the divine Krishna, it holds the universal essence of Hindu philosophy & wisdom." "Mahatma Gandhi's translation and commentary on the Gi
Paperback, 392 pages
Published 1951 by Navajivan Publishing House (Ahmedabad) (first published 1946)
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This was the first time I've read the Gita. I'm glad I happened to read this version which includes Gandhi's comments--without them I don't think I would have gotten a whole lot from it, with them, I found it to be a beautiful and peaceful book.

One of the problems I've had with my limited attempts at understanding Eastern philosophy is how to reconcile the Eastern idea non-striving with the Western values of action and ambition. Both, in their proper context, seem appealing and right. The Bhagav
I'm not sure you can rate a spiritual text...
Nathan Satterlee
Gandhi's translation and interpretation of this classic Hindu poem is unique in the way it emphasizes the need for hard work, constant striving, and determined effort in the pursuit of our social obligations, moral strengthening, and spiritual fulfillment.

"Yoga means nothing but skill in work," he claims, and the background to his religious and political beliefs revealed in these lectures gives deeper meaning to his attempts to establish schools, factories, and communities in rural India with th
It is hard for me to relate to and understand many parts of this text - including the commentaries by Gandhi - but several parts strike me with truth like an arrow hitting the center of a target. It is a beautiful book and, together with others, will become part of my core important books.
Erik Graff
Jun 03, 2015 Erik Graff rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: everyone
Recommended to Erik by: no one
Shelves: religion
Prince Arjuna has qualms at the prospect of fighting his friends and relatives while awaiting the charge on the battlefield. Lord Krishna, disguised as his charioteer, talks him out of his hesitation.
"What an unlikely text for the exegetical efforts of the world's most famous pacifist, M.K. Gandhi!" I thought upon seeing it on the shelves of the Grinnell College library. I'd read the Gita previously and a substantial amount of material by and about Gandhi, but this was new and intriguing. I ch
Fusheng Chen
"Yoga means nothing but skill in work," he claims, and the background to his religious and political beliefs revealed in these lectures gives deeper meaning to his attempts to establish schools, factories, and communities in rural India with the goal of freedom from colonial rule in sight.

Gandhi teaches that life is suffering, liberation is unattainable, and none of us will ever reach perfection in this life. "But, without worrying ourselves about this, we should continue to strive and cultivate
I've never read a religious text other than the Bible before. It was truly interesting to get a new perspective on the world, especially in how Gandhi applied it to his own life. I made several connections to the book, but there were also aspects I disagreed with on a fundamental level. Part of this was naturally from how I've been raised and how I've come to look at the world. Yet I appreciated the challenge and the opportunity to reexamine my own beliefs.
Christine Bourgeois
I'm not sure yet... Very deep and a lot to digest. Actually... Not sure I can ever rate it... Can you rate a spiritual text? Does the bible have a rating?
Melinda Terry
Interesting, but I love the Holy Bible Best
Jul 19, 2015 Jeff rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Jeff by: Andy M.
This is Book #4 in 2012's survey of holy shit (#3 was Hinduism's Upanishads).

(note: i said to myself before i started typing, "I'm gonna try to be a real straightshooter in this review"; rereading for typos before posting, i see that i strayed from that narrow path)

Synopsis of the Gita, as distinct from the commentary
Arjuna is prince of the good guys (the Pandavas) and he's slated to lead his troops against the forces of evil (the Kauravas). The combatants are as closely related to each other as
Some of d nitty gritties of modern world's complexities is so aptly simplified by GITA ,further explained by GANDHI.
It was a start-to-finish read.
This is another book which, if read at an early enough age (early 20's) would form a solid foundation for moving forward well in life. When combined with readings of the Bible, Koran, Dhammapda and other texts of ancient wisdom traditions, we see the commonalities for peace and nonviolence are much greater than the differences which people ignorantly use to foment violence and fear.

Having Gandhi's commentary is illuminating.

I recommend reading a stand-alone text first, drawing your own views and
Less accessible to western audiences thereby highlighting, if not necessarily illuminating, fundamental differences between eastern and western cultures. I left with some new insight regarding Gandhi, and some new thoughts about the Gita, but above all a feeling that there are some things that I, being from New York City, will probably never understand about the east.
It seems that Gandhi tried to use the Bhagavad Gita to mold his philosophy of non-violence. The interpretations of Gandhi didn't follow the true teachings of the Gita; however is a good read if you'd like to find out more about Gandhi's insight and religious view, as well as giving you an opportunity to learn about the maxims of the Gita.
Lackluster translation of an outstanding scripture. Fave renditions are by Isherwood or Easwaran.
St. Wait
A lot of interesting thoughts have been presented to me. I enjoyed the comment by Ghandi on many of the failures we face in life: "Failure is not due to want of effort but is in spite of it." Also, "Knowledge w/o devotion will be like a misfire," as we must have devotion and then knowledge will more clearly follow.
The Bhagavad Gita is certainly not an easy book to read, but Gandhi's interpretation makes it much more accessible to the casual reader. At times his interpretation of the Gita is a bit strained toward his own political leanings, but otherwise it's a great spiritual work.
This is a very down to earth discussion of the meaning of this text; the focus is on non-violence. Whether this is what Gandhi got out of the text, or something he read back in after he cemented his philosophy is beyond me. Still, it's inspirational and very readable.
Peter Ferko
Fascinating to hear Gandhi's views of the typical confusion people have with Krishna's advice to Arjuna. A book about a warrior's duty interpreted by a master of non-violence.
Jul 03, 2011 Emily marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: stalled
This is my first stab at reading the Gita, and I just got stuck. I think I'll be able to manage all the commentary more effectively after reading a different translation first.
A good starting book on Bhagavad Gita. Definitely not an elaborated book on gita. But i say its a must read on gita. Gandhi is a serious advocate of Gita way of living.
Maughn Gregory
Gandhi's own translation and commentary on the Gita are must-reads for spiritual and political practitioners everywhere.
simply awesome. i'm not sure what to say, though. i think i really read this about three times, reading and rereading...
This wasn't a real page turner, but getting to learn about the faith that shaped Gandhi's life is very inspirational.
Beautiful, I would suggest readomg Stephen Mitchell's first, however. Much easier to engage with and absorb
Chris Holmberg
One of the few books I keep with me at all times.
Katie Hoener
Great explanation and commentary. Wonderful text.
May 09, 2011 Kat marked it as incomplete  ·  review of another edition
I can't do it. I'm getting a different translation.
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Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, commonly known as Mahatma Gandhi, was the preeminent leader of Indian nationalism in British-ruled India. Employing non-violent civil disobedience, Gandhi led India to independence and inspired movements for non-violence, civil rights and freedom across the world.

The son of a senior government official, Gandhi was born and raised in a Hindu Bania community in coastal Gu
More about Mahatma Gandhi...
The Story of My Experiments With Truth The Essential Gandhi: An Anthology of His Writings on His Life, Work, and Ideas Non-Violent Resistance (Satyagraha) Gandhi On Non-Violence Hind Swaraj and Other Writings

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“I might be ready to embrace a snake, but, if one comes to bite you, I should kill it and protect you.” 7 likes
“Before God the work of man will be judged by the spirit in which it is done, not by the nature of the work which makes no difference whatsoever.” 1 likes
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