Bhagvad Gita Approach to Stress Mitigation and Holistic Well-Being
This chapter endeavors to highlight the preachings of Lord Krishna in the form of Bhagavad Gita (BG) which forms a part of the epic Mahabharat, one of the Sanskrit epics of ancient India composed by Vyasa “after the very early Vedic period” (Datta, The Encyclopaedia of Indian Literature (Volume Two) (Devraj to Jyoti), 2006). The preaching of Lord Krishna to Arjuna, the warrior prince in exile, facing dilemma during the Mahabharat war has been analysed to gain insight into dealing with mental stresses. The accelerating pace of life, increasing competitiveness, technological advancements pose challenges to the coping ability of people in the modern era. Through the study of Bhagvad Gita (BG) we have identified ways for mitigating stress and enhancing mental as well as emotional well-being. BG offers various forms of yogic techniques to deal with stress and provides understanding of human nature through the concept of gunas viz., Tamas, Rajas and Sattva. This facilitates understanding of self and helps people in obtaining inner peace by moving towards sattva guna. When an individual evolves from tamas to sattva, he starts treading the path of Karma Yoga (Agarwalla, Seshadri and Krishnan, Journal of Human Values, 21(1), 11–22, 2015). In addition to the spiritual message, the BG also has a broader and secular framework, and its principles have been applied by scholars and practitioners to a variety of contexts. Broadly speaking BG offers healthy, enlightened and positive thoughts for dealing with stresses and challenges of life and attaining well-being.
KeywordsBhagvad Gita approach to well-being Stress mitigation Holistic well-being Nishkama Karma and social responsibility Karma yoga Spirituality & well-being Bhagvad Gita Indian philosophy of life
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