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The Bhagavadgita in the Nationalist Discourse$
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Nagappa Gowda

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780198072065

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198072065.001.0001

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The Sthitaprajna as the Foundation of the Nation

The Sthitaprajna as the Foundation of the Nation

Tilak and the Gita Rahasya

(p.50) 2 The Sthitaprajna as the Foundation of the Nation
The Bhagavadgita in the Nationalist Discourse

Nagappa K. Gowda

Oxford University Press

The nationalist leader and social reformer Bal Gangadhar Tilak's thoughts on the Bhagavadgita based on his book Gita Rahasya are discussed in this chapter. It suggests that Tilak saw the Bhagavadgita as a work on ethics that upheld a morality of disinterested action and he believed that the moral foundation for the Indian nation could be built on the basis of the Gita. It explains that Tilak also suggested that the masses are entitled to their entry into politics even as bhakti allows them admission to the high realms of religion. It argues that Tilak also believed in the importance of Sthitaprajna (Steady-in-Mind) as the foundation of nationalism.

Keywords:   Bal Gangadhar Tilak, Bhagavadgita, Gita Rahasya, ethics, morality, Indian nation, politics, bhakti, Sthitaprajna, nationalism

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