There are numerous benefits to reading the Bhagavad Gita. And the benefits can be seen both on the material and spiritual levels. The holy scripture of Srimad Bhagavad Gita is the essence of all the Vedic Knowledge as Lord Krishna speaks it. This verse reflects the essence of Vedic wisdom:
sarvopanishado gavo, dogdha gopala-nandanah
partho vatsah su-dhir bhokta, dugdham gitamritam mahat
“All the Upanisads are like a cow, and the milker of the cow is Lord Shri Krishna, the son of Nanda. Arjuna is the calf, the beautiful nectar of the Gita is the milk, and the fortunate devotees of fine theistic intellect are the drinkers and enjoyers of that milk.”
As Shri Adi Shankaracharya stated in one of the verses of his Bhagavad Gita Mahatmya,
gita-shastram idam punyam, yah pathet prayatah puman
vishnoh padam avapnoti, bhaya-shokadi-varjitah.
“with a regulated mind, one who recites this Bhagavad-gita scripture with devotion, which is the bestower of all virtue will attain a holy abode such as Vaikuntha, the residence of Lord Vishnu, which is always free from the mundane qualities based on fear and lamentation.”
Being a regular reader of the Bhagavad Gita myself, I have experienced some remarkable benefits of reading Bhagavad Gita. Lord Sri Krishna himself speaks of many of these benefits in the Bhagavad Gita.
Krishna says in the Bhagavad Gita (Chapter 2, Verse 14) that a person will face both happy and tough times in life. But these situations are temporary and come and go like seasons. So, a person should keep his calm in tough times and learn to tolerate these times.
O son of Kunti, the nonpermanent appearance of happiness and distress, and their disappearance in due course, are like the appearance and disappearance of winter and summer seasons. They arise from sense perception, O scion of Bharata, and one must learn to tolerate them without being disturbed.
The discussion continues and Lord Sri Krishna goes on to say that a person who is steady in these both situations is eligible for liberation. To do this, a person needs to understand the nature or identity of the self which is our next benefit of reading the Bhagavad Gita.
You will get to know the identity of your existence
We identify ourselves with many things such as body, mind, citizen of a country, a family member, etc. This identification leads to creating beliefs and the purpose of our life. When we are identified with temporary material things, material fears and anxiety induces within us. But as Lord Sri Krishna says in the Bhagavad Gita (Chapter 2, Verse 20), we are the eternal soul. Therefore these anxieties and fears disappear.
For the soul there is neither birth nor death at any time. He has not come into being, does not come into being, and will not come into being. He is unborn, eternal, ever-existing and primeval. He is not slain when the body is slain.
Reading further in the Bhagavad Gita will reveal the qualities of the soul and the journey a soul has to go through throughout a lifetime and beyond.
You will become more focused by reading Bhagavad Gita
Lord Krishna mentions this benefit in the Bhagavad Gita (Chapter 2, Verse 41).
Those who are on this path are resolute in purpose, and their aim is one. O beloved child of the Kurus, the intelligence of those who are irreolute is many-branched.
He says that in order to achieve any goal (either material or spiritual), one must have absolute focus. This will happen when the purpose of the goal is clear. Otherwise, the individual’s focus is divided into many branches, and completing a task requires more time and energy.
Reading Bhagavad Gita makes you peaceful
One way or the other, a human being is starving to have peace. But we don’t know the way to attain it. Lord Krishna made it very simple to state the principle in the Bhagavad Gita (Chapter 2, Verse 70).
A person who is not disturbed by the incessant flow of desires – that enter like rivers into the ocean, which is ever being filled but is always still – can alone achieve peace, and not the man who strives to satisfy such desires.
He explains the nature of the mind and how it is always desirous. So, the person will find genuine, ever-lasting peace not by satisfying these sensory desires but by not being affected by them.
Know your biggest enemy and the courage to fight it
Lord Krishna elaborately describes the nature of our biggest enemy (Lust) in the Bhagavad Gita (Chapter 3 from Verses 37-43). He helps us understand the nature of lust and how it is dangerous for our existence.
Thus the wise living entity’s pure consciousness becomes covered by his eternal enemy in the form of lust, which is never satisfied and which burns like fire.
He also focuses on the importance of fighting and winning over this enemy and gives instructions on how you can achieve this. Regulating your senses and praying to the Lord for his mercy will help a lot.
Learn Yoga from Bhagavad Gita
One of the greatest benefits of reading Bhagavad Gita is that Lord Krishna introduces various forms of Yoga to us. As you read through the book, you will learn the principles of Karma Yoga, Buddhi Yoga, Dhyana Yoga, Ashtanga Yoga, and Bhakti Yoga. And not just the principles but the daily actionable activities for our making our day-to-day life better.
Know the Absolute from Bhagavad Gita
In the 7th chapter of the Bhagavad Gita, Lord Krishna describes the Absolute to Arjuna. The whole chapter is dedicated to the knowledge of the Absolute. He describes how this universe and the spirit soul are just an expansion of the Absolute in the form of its energy.
Intelligent persons who are endeavoring for liberation from old age and death take refuge in Me in devotional service. They are actually Brahman because they entirely know everything about transcendental activities.
You will get to know about the different categories of men. There are some people who are willing and capable to understand the Absolute Truth. Lord Krishna describes their personality and how to identify such a person.
Note: The following Chapter also describes the methods and practices to attain the Supreme Absolute Truth. This is one of the best benefits of reading Bhagavad Gita.
Generate faith to render Devotional Service to the Lord
Lord Krishna tells Arjuna about the benefits of rendering devotional service to the Supreme Lord Shri Krishna. As Bhagavad Gita Chapter 12 (Verse 6-7) emphasizes:
But those who worship Me, giving up all their activities unto Me and being devoted to Me without deviation, engaged in devotional service and always meditating upon Me, having fixed their minds upon Me, O son of Prthha – for them I am the swift deliverer from the ocean of birth and death.
Lord Krishna knows that practicing the regulations of Bhakti-Yoga can be difficult for the person who is just starting. So, he presents various options to start small and methods to gradually fix yourself in the devotional service.
Bhagavad Gita helps you control your mind by purifying it
Lord Krishna puts a great emphasis on controlling one’s mind as it is the most powerful and unstable among all the senses. Throughout the Bhagavad Gita, he repeatedly tells the importance of purifying your mind and consciousness. He even goes on to speak that the mind can be your best friend or the worst enemy.
Controlled Mind → Best Friend
Uncontrolled Mind → Worst Enemy
By reading the Bhagavad Gita, you understand the importance of controlling the mind. You will find a detailed description of why the mind is so unstable and how you can control the mind through practice and detachment.
Why should you read Bhagavad Gita?
In today’s world of chaos where suffering and confusion are at their peak, the foundation laid in the Bhagavad Gita becomes more relevant than ever. You can find many great personalities in the modern world who recommend reading the Bhagavad Gita and describing the benefits they themselves are experiencing.
Bhagavad Gita is a wholesome book that reaches beyond caste, age, gender, race, or nation. The principles described are universal and anyone who is willing to transform the heart and life can read the Bhagavad Gita.
A small article like this can never present the whole essence of the Bhagavad Gita entirely. So, you must read it to sink into the ocean of wisdom that comes out of the mouth of Lord Krishna himself.
Image Source: vedabase.io
Verses Source: iskcondesiretree.com