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Questions > Who is primary author of The Bhagavad Gita?

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message 1: by Asteropê (new)

Asteropê (21tauri) | 144 comments Can someone clarify who the primary author for all editions of The Bhagavad Gita is supposed to be?

1. Anonymous
or
2. Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa


There are countless editions of the text, but the primary authors are not uniform - some are Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, some are Anonymous and some are countless other authors.

It is really confusing.

https://www.goodreads.com/work/editio...


I thought it was supposed to be Anonymous due to it being a sacred text, but then I saw something that made me think it was supposed to be Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa and so went to reverse some of my edits.

If it's supposed to be Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa then a lot of editions will need to have that added as primary. Which I am willing to do...but won't even attempt to tackle unless I get confirmation.

Thanks!


message 2: by Sandra (new)

Sandra | 23727 comments Not sure on your primary question, but the other authors could be adapted editions which wouldn't be combined, as the other authors are considered the primary author.


message 3: by Adi Rocks Socks (last edited Aug 13, 2018 02:54PM) (new)

Adi Rocks Socks (adirockssocks) | 11 comments You could say the Bhagavad Gita is like the Bible; there’s no “author”. However, there are interpretations (every copy you see out there is an interpretation of the verses of the Bhagavad Gita) and all of these differ in a manner similar to the way the Testaments differ.

Myth has it that Lord Krishna narrated the 700 odd verses to a warrior prince to help the latter find clarity of thought (during a war where he had to fight against his family). These weren’t written down (as they were communicated orally), and were supposed to have been finally penned down after the said war ended by Sage Vyasa. (Option 2, according to what you’ve said.)

But please keep in mind, all the copies out there in the market are considered commentaries of the original verses, so any book being logged here should be marked separately, as long as the commentators/interpreters are different.

I hope this helps, :)


message 4: by rivka, Librarian Moderator (new)

rivka | 42415 comments Mod
Asteropê wrote: "I thought it was supposed to be Anonymous due to it being a sacred text"

And the author is debated because of that status, yes? Then Anonymous would be correct.


Adi Rocks Socks (adirockssocks) | 11 comments rivka wrote: "And the author is debated because of that status, yes? Then Anonymous would be correct."

Hi! I spoke to a few more people who are into the intellectual aspect of pursuing the Hindu/Vaishnavite scriptures, and here's what I can tell you:

There's no debate about who authored it. Here's hopefully a clearer explanation:

1. Lord Krishna essentially gave a discourse to the Pandava Prince Arjuna about one's duty in life, how to find contentment, and how to work hard without expecting anything in return. (This was in the midst of the Mahabharat War.)

2. Much after this, Sage Vyasa transcribed it. (So he really can't be considered the author.)

3. The various Bhagavad Gita versions that are published are considered commentaries of Lord Krishna's words. So works are identified by the commentator, because there isn't any dispute in the Hindu religious circles about #1 and #2.

The Sanskrit experts who write the translations and commentaries, and the publishing houses which publish them own the intellectual property rights. (That's what the copyright disclaimers say in the various copies we have at home.)

Further, contemporary preachers refer to the works by the name of the "commentator" and not Vyasa. But because real people actually own intellectual property rights, it can't be classified as anonymous as well.

(Hey Ad, what authority do you have to say this: I'm a practising Hindu who likes reading up on our various texts and scriptures from a scientific and spiritual POV. I indulge in intellectual discussions with fellow Hindus who aren't ritualistic, but spiritualistic in their approach.)

I hope this clarifies my earlier comment. :D


message 6: by rivka, Librarian Moderator (new)

rivka | 42415 comments Mod
So Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa is a combination of two people's names?


message 7: by Michael (last edited Aug 14, 2018 07:04AM) (new)

Michael Korleone (michaelkorleone) | 3881 comments rivka wrote: "So Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa is a combination of two people's names?"

Same person referred with different names- Vyasa or Sage Vyasa or Veda Vyasa or Krishna Dwaipayana. He's credited to be the first to transcribe Mahabharata (of which Bhagavad Gita is a part) in written form.

Hindu mythological and religious characters are referred with several names based on their features, characteristics, actions, etc. Krishna, for example, refers to dark complexion skin and both Lord Krishna (who has several more names) and Sage Vyasa (who also has several more names - see above) get that name due to their complexion.

Krishna - for dark complexion skin
Dwaipayana - for being born on an island
Vyasa - means compiler (of several important texts, including the partition of 4 Vedas)

As I understand, Anonymous is used if we do not know the author for any book. For Bhagavad Gita, there is no dispute - it was told by Lord Krishna to Arjuna in oral verse form during Kurukshetra war and it was first transcribed later by Sage Vyasa in written form.

Whatever the author name is going to be on GR, I suppose only those books which list all 700 verses have to be combined while other commentaries should be treated similar to adaptations


Adi Rocks Socks (adirockssocks) | 11 comments Michael wrote: "Same person referred with different names- Vyasa or Sage Vyasa or Veda Vyasa or Krishna Dwaipayana. He's credited..."

Everything that Michael said is spot on!


message 9: by rivka, Librarian Moderator (new)

rivka | 42415 comments Mod
If there is no debate regarding the author, then that undebated author should be listed.


message 10: by Emy (new)

Emy (emypt) | 5029 comments Just adding some older discussion links, including one project which I suggest this request is perhaps merged into?

Project: https://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/...
https://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/...


message 11: by Adi Rocks Socks (new)

Adi Rocks Socks (adirockssocks) | 11 comments Emy wrote: "Just adding some older discussion links, including one project which I suggest this request is perhaps merged into?

Project: https://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/...-..."


The thread you've started is pretty insightful. :) I've commented there too; I commend you for taking up such a lofty task. :D


message 12: by Emy (new)

Emy (emypt) | 5029 comments Ad wrote: "The thread you've started is pretty insightful. :) I've commented there too; I commend you for taking up such a lofty task. :D

Just insane ;)


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