Chinmaya Mission West organized talks on Vibhisana Gita by Swami Tejomayananda in Virginia, U.S.A. which were very much liked by the devotees. Some sincere devotees took great pains to record the talks. To meet the pressing and persistent demand of devotees who could not attend, the recorded talks were transcribed and are now being brought out in the form of this book.
In this book, diacritical marks are used for transliteration of non-English words in the verses and commentary. Non-English words have been italicized. This will help readers to identify and pronounce the words correctly.
The English plural sign "s" has been added to untranslated non-English words after a hyphen-to show that it is not elemental to the word e.g. mantra-s, veda-s etc.
A key to the transliteration and pronunciation has been added in the beginning of the book.
About the Book
Most of you are familiar with Srimad Bhagavad Gita. Some of you must have, as well, heard of other Gita-s such as Astavakra Gita, Hamsa Gita, Avadhuta Gita etc.. Most of these Gita-s are in Samskrta language but the Vibhisana Gita is written in the Avadhi language, which is a dialect of Hindi spoken in Ayodhya the birth-place of Lord Rama. The Vibhisana Gita is found in the sixth canto entitled Lanka-Kanda or Yuddha-Kanda of Sri Ramacaritamanas, popularly known as Tulasi Ramayana composed by Gosvami Tulasidas. In samskrta. Gita means "song", but the word has also come to be associated with spiritual teachings in the Gita-s mentioned above. In Tulasi Ramayana itself, besides the one under discussion, there are many Gita-s e.g. Rama Gita, Siva Gita, Laksmana Gita and Purajana Gita.
There is one similarity between Bhagavad Gita and Vibhisana Gita in so far as battlefield was the background of both-Bhagavad Gita was taught to Arjuna in the battlefield of Kuruksetra, Sri Rama teaches this Gita to Ravana's brother Vibhisana on the battlefield of Sri Lanka. The nature of problem and situation in each case was. However different. At Kuruksetra, when Arjuna came face to face with the Kaurawa's powerful and vast army, he developed doubts about his victory against such a well-equiped army, as well as the righteousness of his action. He expressed his doubts before Lord Krsna his friend and sought his advise. The Lord then dispelled Arjuna's confusion by imparting him self-knowledge, which we know now as the Bhagavad Gita. In the case of present text, the doubt in Vibhisana's mind arose as a result of extreme love and affection for Sri Rama and not out of ignorance like that of Arjuna's. To understand this concept clearly let us take an instance from day to day happenings in our life. A child is, for the first time, entering competitive sports or a stage performance or appearing for a selection text. The child is naturally both tense and exited. But what is relevant here is not the mental condition of the child but that of the parents of that child. The parents know that there child is fully competent. Brilliant, an excellent actor, actress or a sportsman, still a doubt, a fear lingers on as to whether their child will really succeed. In most cases, the anxiety of parents is much more than that of the child himself and to assure themselves rather than the child they say "I hope you can do well" "Remember the Lord when you go". This anxiety is, like Vibhisana, born out of love and not out of ignorance like that of Arjuna's.
Brahma Sutras (81)
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