Comparing Buddhism And The Bhagavad

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Comparing and Contrasting Early Buddhism and the Bhagavad Gītā

Early Buddhism and the Bhagavad Gītā have a wide array similarities and differences. Both Buddhism and the Gita deal with an inner struggle. We see Arjuna dealing with the struggle of whether or not he should murder his family in order to obtain a kingdom. In Buddhism, we see the inner struggle as the quest to find nirvana and the pain that is the very act of living. Although there are some similarities, the differences between Buddhism and the Gita are clear. One of the biggest digressions between the two is how one deals with the notion of atman and how one must live their life in order to reach the ultimate goal of nirvana or moksha. One of the most important divergences between Buddhism and the Gita is how dharma is interpreted. In the Bhagavad Gītā Krishna is able to shed some light on the significance of dharma. On the subject of dharma Krishna says: “It is better to strive in one’s own dharma than to succeed in the dharma of another. Nothing is ever lost in following one’s own dharma. But competition in another’s dharma breeds fear and insecurity” (BG 3:35). Here Krishna is talking to Arjuna. Krishna is trying to get the point across that Arjuna is always better off following his svadharma rather than adhering to what others want him to do. It is important for Arjuna to follow his own path in order to reach moksha. Krishna is stressing that Arjuna must follow the path that has been carved out
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