All of us face difficult times in life when going gets tough. When one is not able to face the situation bravely, the mind thinks of ways of escaping it. This is why the cases of suicides are becoming more common these days.
Stress and confusion have become our daily companions in this difficult life. During the course of the day, we fight several battles within ourselves. Should I speak up my doubts? Will it offend someone? Should I hide my feelings and behave normally? Is this right for me or that? Should I tell him what to do? Will he listen to me?
Several hundred years ago, in the times of Mahabharata, Arjuna, the great Pandav warrior, faced a grave dilemma. Fighting against His cousins and relatives, in the battlefield of Kurukshetra, he thought is this the right way to conquer the bad? What sort of victory will it be if I will end up killing half of my clan in the war?
Then Lord Krishna, Arjuna’s saarthi, friend, philosopher and guide came to help him overcome His dilemma. He gave him the wisdom of life that brought him into action. The 700-verses taught by Krishna to Arjuna on the battlefield were compiled into Bhagavad Gita, which is not just a holy book but the ‘manual of life’.
The teachings of Krishna weren’t just relevant then. They hold even more relevance these days when our modern lives are no less than a battlefield. The teachings of Lord Krishna mainly indicate that that fighting a challenge begins from fighting it in the mind. Winning the mind is the first step to win, whether on the battlefield or in the real life.
And not only on the battlefield of Panipat, Krishna taught many lessons to mankind during His avatar. Other than His sermons, His own actions set the benchmark for the people to imbibe in their lives.
While His teachings are infinite, here we are picking up a few which we find we can start following in our lives.
- Doing one’s duties diligently
Being Kartavya Parayana (dedicated to duties) in all circumstances is Lord Krishna’s prime lesson. His life was full of problems and challenges right from His childhood, but Krishna told his disciples how to carry out their duties despite everything.
Though he was born as a prince, but His birth was in jail. No sooner was He born, He was taken away from His mother and was whisked away by His father in midnight to escape the fatal clutches of His cruel uncle. Father and son braved torrential rains and crossed gushing river Yamuna to reach the adjoining village.
Difficulties were His constant companion. He braved several obstacles to continue living yet he protected the people of His village without any neglect. As a king, He took care of His people’s needs with diligence. No matter how many problems came His way, Krishna did not forget His duties.
- Do your duty, don’t worry about results
Karmany evadhikaras te, ma phalesu kadachana, ma karma-phala–hetur bhur ma te sango ’stv akarmani
Krishna often spoke about nishkam karma, which means doing action without keeping any expectations.
As one cannot control everything in life, one should carry out one’s duties on which he complete control, he cannot put claim over the results.
In life, we are often not able to take our decisions clearly, because we think about their consequences and want positive outcomes. For doing one’s duty, the fruits should not be the only motive.
One should not feel inactive if the fruits are unclear, you never know what might be coming your way. The benefit is that every gain of your actions coming your way will be a bonus for you and you will learn to appreciate the rewards.
Despite being the creator of the entire world, Lord Krishna never appeared full of himself but always remained humble. He always respected His elders and guru and was always helping for His friends and juniors.
All the powers of the Universe remained eager to serve Him, but he was always anxious to carry out His duties, without anyone’s help. He taught the mankind that it is natural for the trees bearing fruits to bend down.
Even if you reach great heights in your life and accomplished great titles, but you should always remain humble and treat those around you with the most humility.
- Treat everyone equally
The greatness of a person is shown from the fact that he is impartial towards friends, partners, enemies, relatives, acquaintances, strangers, saints and sinners.
When both Duryodhana and Arjuna came to Lord Krishna for help, Duryodhana, being full of pride sat towards His head, while Arjuna feeling modest and grounded, stood towards His feet. Arjuna chose the Lord’s hand over His entire Army, which Duryodhana took happily. And, we know who the winner at the end of the battle was.
This is what pride does to us – it clouds our mind and affects our ability to make a clear decision. However, though Lord Krishna knew that between the two of them who is right and on the path of Dharma, still he offered help both of them equally.
Treat everyone with the same lens of impartiality, no matter how good and bad they are for you.
- Always smile and enjoy the bliss
It is Lord’s Krishna’s mesmerising smile that wins everybody’s hearts. As a child, he was very naughty as he stole gopis’ clothes, broke their matkis and stole their butter. But even if they complained against him to Mother Yashoda, His smile always melted their hearts and they pleaded Mother Yashoda not to punish Him.
No matter what the situation was, He always smiled. Even when enormous monsters would attack the infant Krishna, He kept on smiling and beat them in a jiffy. During the battle of Mahabharata, when Arjuna was perplexed in dilemma about what to do, Lord Krishna just smiled and gave the biggest lesson of life to Arjuna. He faced several hostile times and despite all the tirade, Krishna forever smiled and was in complete bliss.
DISCLAIMER : Views expressed above are the author’s own.