K N Pandita
Author : Makhan Lal Thussu
Pages : 162
Cost : Rs. 200
A few months ago Advocate Makhan Lal Thussu Vishnupad published the translation of Valmiki Ramayan into simple Hindustani in Urdu script. I had the privilege to write its review which the Daily Excelsior published in the interests of the general public. The learned translator has achieved another milestone in service to the spiritual legacy of Hindu civilization. He has translated the Bhagwat Geeta into simple but lucid Hindustani in both Hindi and Urdu scripts adding its Sanskrit text also. We pay tribute to his scholarship in all three languages which he has put to use in this work. But more importantly, his knowledge of Sanskrit classical language has enabled him to produce a valuable translation which ordinary people can understand without hassles.
Bhagwat Geeta, as we know, is the most important and celebrated philosophical work of which India is proud. For centuries, this divine voice has remained the lodestar of the Hindu civilizational fund. The dramatic element of this work of philosophy makes it unique among all widely acclaimed works of high philosophy as it deals with man and his being. The dramatic element is that nearly seven thousand years ago when the great battle of Mahabharata was fought on the plains of Kurukshetra between the Pandavas and the Kauravas, Arjuna, the Commander of the Pandavas began to show signs of indecisiveness when he found that those ready to give him a fight were none other than his kith and kin. He had never imagined that one day he would be called upon to become the killer of his people. On beholding Arjun’s hesitancy, Lord Krishna, who was also driving Arjuna’s war chariot, called him to his presence and delivered him a 47-minute sermon on the subject of duties and responsibilities. The happenings on the battlefield were recounted graphically by one Sanjaya to Dhritrashtra as a remote device.
Lord Krishna’s discourse turns into a supreme philosophical textbook compiled in 18 adhyayas (sections) in a total of 700 shlokas (verses). In general, the themes succinctly dealt with are knowledge, devotion, karma yoga (action/duty), and righteousness leads to liberation. Bhagwat Geeta is included in the Upanishads and its other name is Geetu Upanishads. The resolution of suspense in the mind of Arjuna has given birth to the great verse spoken by the Lord to him:
Vasansi jeernne yatha vihaye / nvani grahnati naroprani
Tatha shareerani vihay jeernanya /nyani sanyati nvani dehi
Tr: Just as a man abandons his old clothes and wears new clothes/ similarly the soul departs from old and inactive bodies and enters fresh frames. (Transmigration)
Advocate Makhanlal Thussu Vishnupad is a scholar in his own right. But he is a karma yogi also. He has always been on the frontline of service to society and the nation. He has headed various Kashmiri Hindu social organizations and contributed immensely to their improvement. A saintly person, he has carved a respectable place for himself in the gallery of eminent intellectuals and social workers of the Kashmiri Pandit community.
K N Pandita