Bhagavad Gita 1.1 Explained – Dharmakshetra Kurukshetra

धृतराष्ट्र उवाच

धर्मक्षेत्रे कुरुक्षेत्रे समवेता युयुत्सवः।

मामकाः पाण्डवाश्चैव किमकुर्वत सञ्जय।।1.1।।

श्रीमद्भगवद्गीता 1.1

Dhritarashtra Uvacha

Dharmakshetre Kurukshetre Samaveta Yuyutsavah

Mamakah Pandavaschaiva Kimakurvata Sanjaya

Shrimad Bhagavad Gita 1.1

The King Dhritarashtra asked: “O Sanjaya! What happened on the sacred battlefield of Kurukshetra, when my people gathered against the Pandavas?”

English Translation of BG 1.1

Insights into BG 1.1: Reflecting on Swami Ramsukhdas Ji’s Divine Commentary

At the heart of the Bhagavad Gita’s opening verse lies a profound question posed by Dhritarashtra, the blind king, to his charioteer Sanjaya. This inquiry is not just a quest for the outcome of a historic battle; it is a symbolic representation of the eternal struggle between righteousness and unrighteousness, duty and desire, dharma and adharma.

Kurukshetra, described as “Dharmakshetra,” the field of dharma, serves multiple layers of symbolism. Historically, it was a place sanctified by rituals and austerities, a land where kings and sages performed sacrifices to uphold the principles of dharma. This physical battlefield, chosen for the epic clash between the Kauravas and the Pandavas, transcends its geographical significance to embody the battleground of life where every individual confronts ethical and moral dilemmas.

Swami Ramsukhdas Ji emphasize the innate message that any action in life, including warfare, should be aligned with dharma. The choice of Kurukshetra as the battlefield underscores the underlying intention that even in conflict, one’s actions should lead to the ultimate good. The emphasis on dharma serves as a reminder that our duties and actions should contribute positively to society and our spiritual evolution.

Dhritarashtra’s inquiry to Sanjaya reveals more than a concern for the outcome of the war; it reflects the internal conflict within Dhritarashtra himself. His use of the words “Mamakah” (my sons) and “Pandavas” (the sons of Pandu) indicates a division in his heart, a partiality that blinds him to the righteousness of the Pandavas’ cause. This bias, stemming from attachment, leads to the downfall of his lineage.

Swami Ramsukhdas Ji poignantly points out that the real battle is not external but within each individual. The true Kurukshetra is the human heart, where every moment, dharma and adharma vie for supremacy. This verse, therefore, is not just a prelude to an epic battle but a call to introspection and righteousness.

The Bhagavad Gita commences with this verse, setting the stage for a profound dialogue on duty, righteousness, and the spiritual path. It beckons us to consider our actions in the light of dharma, urging us to perform our duties without attachment to the outcome, thus paving the way for spiritual liberation.

In conclusion, this opening verse encapsulates the essence of the Bhagavad Gita’s teachings: the pursuit of dharma amidst the trials of life. It encourages us to act with wisdom and integrity, reminding us that every choice we make is a step on the path to our ultimate liberation. As we navigate the battlefield of life, let us carry the message of Kurukshetra in our hearts, striving always to uphold dharma in every action we undertake.