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The Bhagavadgita and the Dhammapada

Booklet: The Bhagavadgita and the Dhammapada
Author: Bhadant Aanand Kaushalayan & D.C.Ahir
Publication: Bhikkhu Niwas, Deeksha Bhoomi, Nagpur.
Edition: 1st – 1978 and 2nd – 1998
Price: Rs.5.00
Pages: 28
The Bhagavadgita and the Dhammapada are the most popular religious books of the Hindus and the Buddhist respectively. The Dhammapada is a collection of the select sayings of Buddha, forming part of Pali Tripitika, and is one of the 15 books of the Khuddaka Nikaya, the last Nikaya of the Sutta Pitaka. Whereas, Bhagavadgita forms part of the Mahabharata and is considered to be of post Buddha period. This booklet offers a brief comparative study of the two religious texts.The Bhagavadgita is greatly indebted to the Dhammapada, the traces of which are visible in verse 54, chapter II of the Gita. Besides, it refers to many other Buddhist ideas. It is substantially a series of discourse between Krishna and Arjuna where Krishna uses different modes of argument to instigate Arjun to fight against his respected Guru and brothers. The Dhammapada, is only a collection of select verses. There are fundamental differences in the teachings of the two texts. Buddhism does not accept the entity of soul in any form but Krishna argues in its favour.The Bhagavadgita reiterates the existence of four-fold division of society, but Buddhism rejects it, and so, unlike the Gita, it is universally applicable.

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