BHAGAVAD-GITA AS IS IT 2.9. A BRASH AFFRONT TO SRILA PRABHUPADA!
As I compared BGAII OT 2.9 and BGAII 2.9 V1 & V2, –V1 and V2 are basically similar–, I realized that the editors have introduced “and fell silent”, which is conspicuous by its absence in BGAII OT by Srila Prabhupada Himself.
In the word for word, Srila Prabhupada indeed gives:
It may therefore be said that “tusnim babhuva” is Sanskrit antecedent for “fell silent.” Now if this is the case, the question is: In the translation itself, did Srila Prabhupada overlook or ignore this detail about Arjuna’s subsequent silence?
But then on the other hand, I realized that in their haste to show their small mastery of Sanskrit and AUDACITY to correct Srila Prabhupada, our glorious and superlatively qualified Spiritual Master, the original editors unceremoniously dropped not less than three (3) important and essential, informative conceptual elements of translation mentioned by Srila Prabhupada in BGAII OT as follows:
1) Arjuna as “master of controlling ignorance.”
2) Krishna as “the master of the senses”, i. e. master of all senses of all living entities, in Sanskrit “Hrsikesam.”
3) Krishna as Govinda or “the pleasure of all senses”, as Srila Prabhupada puts it so elegantly.
At best such behavior is childish and irresponsible. We may call it mischievous as well. However because of the stakes involved, it must be considered very serious matter. When children disturb one’s activities, one may ask them to go home and play at home.
These considerations answer my question as well.
Srila Prabhupada decided not to mention the unimportant “fell silent” and concentrate on the essentials. We all know that Arjuna fell silent at that point of time. It will be best for all parties to follow in His Lotus Footprints. Srila Prabhupada clearly defines the nature and use of silence in Nectar of Instruction, Text 1, purport: “Silence may appear helpful for some time, but ultimately it proves a failure.” And what can be learned from a silent teacher? Nonsense editors should definitely remain silent and away from editing! Let them chant Hare Krishna Maha-Mantra 24 hours a days. That will save them.
BGAII V3 suggested reading will be as follows:
Sanjaya said: “Thereafter Arjuna, the chastiser of enemies and master of controlling ignorance, informed Krsna, the master of the senses, as follows: “Oh Govinda, the pleasure of all senses, I shall not fight.”
Or even closer to Srila Prabhupada’s own rendition as follows:
Sanjaya said, “Thereafter Arjuna the chastiser of enemies and master of controlling ignorance, informed Krsna, the master of the senses, saying like this: Oh Govinda, the pleasure of all senses, I shall not fight.”
What is wrong with the Srila Prabhupada’s expression: “saying like this”?
For my esteemed reader’s convenience, BGAII OT reads as follows:
Samjaya said, “Thereafter Arjuna the chastiser of enemies and master of controlling ignorance informed Krsna the master of the senses saying like this: Oh Govinda, the pleasure of all senses, I shall not fight.” The “m” is Sanjaya is not a typographical error, neither mine, nor Srila Prabhupada’s.
Same reasoning would have to apply to BGAII 2.14, were the editors with their super intelligence and super audacity again correct our Srila Prabhupada by adding “O scion of Bharata”. Srila Prabhupada perhaps forgot to mention it due to his old age. (Sarcastic mode). But He certainly didn’t forget to comment on it in the purport. We expect this nonsense to be repeated.
Let us always remember and never forget that insulting or displeasing Srila Prabhupada in any way –or in a broader sense, insulting or displeasing Guru–brings us undoubtedly one step closer to sure spiritual failure. In Shastra we find many illustration of these adverse personal spiritual dynamics.
“Don’t jump over God, crossing the spiritual master. Then it will be failure. You must go through. We are observing Vyaasa-puujaa ceremony, the birth anniversary of our Guru Mahaaraaja. Why? We cannot understand Krishna without spiritual master. That is bogus. If anyone wants to understand Krishna, jumping over the spiritual master, then immediately he becomes a bogus. Therefore Caitanya Mahaaprabhu says, guru-krishna-kripaaya paaya bhakti-lataa-bija [Cc. Madhya 19.151]. That is Vedic injunction. Tad viddhi pranipaatena pariprashnena sevayaa [Bg. 4.34]. Nobody can understand Krishna without going through His most confidential servant. This is the meaning of this Vyaasa-puujaa. You cannot surpass. If you think that you have become very learned and very advanced, now you can avoid the spiritual master and you understand Krishna, that is the bogus. That is the meaning of this Vyaasa-puujaa ceremony. We should always pray, yasya prasaadaad bhagavat-prasaadah. Yasya prasaadaad: only by the grace of spiritual master we can achieve the grace or mercy of Krishna. This is the meaning of this Vyaasa-puujaa, offering obeisances by paramparaa system.” 750302BA.Atl
At last in BGAII OT 2.2, we also get Srila Prabhupada’s verdict on “values of life”, in favor of V1 presentation” values of life.” Should it have been “values of life” as in BGAII V1 or “value of life” as in BGAII V2? This has been my brainteaser for many, many years and while examining the Vedabase, one may argue for either one. Both expressions have got a different meaning though. They are not at all interchangeable. But under the circumstances, to change it from a plural to a singular would denote a pretty peculiar character, to put it politely.
This particular move actually represents the ultimate materially diseased expression of wanting to lord it over. The relevant editor is thinking “How can I influence and steer this most powerful man, A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami? Oh what a challenge! Now that will be an achievement for MY EGO!” THIS MENTALITY is totally WHIMSICAL, CALLOUS, WITH NO CARE FOR OTHER’S WELFARE, LOW CLASS and ABSOLUTELY EGOTISTICAL. It is meant to confuse and waste time. It is therefore a nasty mentality. It is Maya or illusion. It is spiritually suicidal and it is deemed to be a failure. It is to be rejected by all means.
If that’s the type of Bhagavad Gita you want, that’s fine. After all the great Mahatma Gandhi himself saw the Bhagavad Gita as a treatise on non-violence, until his assassination clearly proved him wrong. We already have about 650 renditions of Bhagavad-gita and you can have any type of Bhagavad Gita you wish indeed. With preliminary license from BBT International, you can fabricate any additional Bhagavad Gita you want and call it accordingly.
But don’t try to cheat and mislead the entire world and call it “Bhagavad-gita As It Is” because it is not!
It is too far removed from the original intentions of the two authors, Sri Krishna and His appointed representative Srila Prabhupada!
In the light of such and similar numerous other misrepresentations, of which I have pointed out just a few, I have come to reject both presentations of BGAII as not totally genuine. They are not totally “Bhagavad-Gita As It Should Be”, as per Srila Prabhupada’s wishes. They are not fully “Bhagavad Gita As It Is.”
Immediately I can hear the protests that: ”But Srila Pabhupada personally accepted version one of BGAII. Totally true, how could we deny this fact? He did point out however that passages such as “cattle raising”, to name only one, must be corrected. (And fortunately they have now been corrected). That means to me by inference, that ALL deficiencies of BGAII presentations must be corrected. Subsequently the Governing Body Commision of ISKCON, which is supposed to be the expression of Srila Prabhupada’s will, endorsed BGAII V2. Does it mean that Srila Prabhupada contradicted Himself? Let us not look at it that way.
The quest for better quality is a natural one and Srila Prabhupada’s broad order is:”Do the needful.” My simple ambition is to offer Srila Prabhupada the most faithful Bhagavad-gita As It Is. It will be called Bhagavad-gita As It Is, third Edition. No one can stop me in this project. It is my constitutional and disciple’s right to endeavor in this way. Whether Srila Prabhupada will accept it, that we shall see in due course of time. In the meantime this enterprise has already begun. I am simply begging for the benediction and blessings of the assembled Vaishnavas for the grand success of this wonderful and transcendental service adventure. Thank you very much.
All glories to Srila Prabhupada and His distinguished family!