8

The first and second verses in chapter 9 are as follows:

First verse chapter nine:

The Supreme Lord said: My dear Arjuna, because you are never envious of Me, I shall impart to you this most secret wisdom, knowing which you shall be relieved of the miseries of material existence.

Second verse, Chapter nine:

This knowledge is the king of education, the most secret of all secrets. It is the purest knowledge, and because it gives direct perception of the self by realization, it is the perfection of religion. It is everlasting, and it is joyfully performed.

The aforementioned verses allude that the knowledge of Bhagavad Gita is supposed to be a secret knowledge. Why would it be considered a secret? Secret from whom? Wouldn't it be helpful for everyone to know this knowledge and shouldn't it be a common knowledge imparted to all?

  • well until that moment it was a secret but after that it's known to everyone. – Just_Do_It Oct 23 '17 at 18:37
  • 1
    All the Scriptures mention such verses- "Keep this as a secret, this is not to be told to anyone, this should not be disclosed" et cetera. It is stated that keep it secret from Non devotee, non believer, rude, bad, sinful, impure et cetera person. So that a great knowledge may not be contaminated and also it may not be disrespected – user9392 Oct 23 '17 at 19:30
  • In fact, I have read often times in some Stotras, or in many Geetaas, and in some other worship ritual books, that do not tell it[the particular stotra, or mantra or book] to anyone, if you tell, then you get sin of killing a brahmin, drinking liquor, conducting illegitimate intercourses et cetera. – user9392 Oct 23 '17 at 19:34
6

I am going to explain "Why the knowledge of Gita is confidential" on the basis of another similar shloka given in the 15 th chapter i.e. last Shloka of 15th chapter ,and commentaries written on this shloka by scholars including Adi Shankaracharya.

There are two different point of views (meanings) given , with which we are going to look at your query.

Now let us look at last Shloka of 15th chapter -

इति गुह्यतमं शास्त्रमिदमुक्तं मयाऽनघ।
एतद्बुद्ध्वा बुद्धिमान्स्यात्कृतकृत्यश्च भारत।।15.20।।

iti guhya-tamaṁ śāstram
idam uktaṁ mayānagha
etad buddhvā buddhimān syāt
kṛta-kṛtyaś ca bhārata

15.20 Thus, this most secret science has been taught by Me, O sinless one; on knowing this, a man becomes wise, and all his duties are accomplished, O Arjuna.BG 15.20

Point 1- English Translation Of Sri Shankaracharya's Sanskrit Commentary By Swami Gambirananda.

15.20 This guhyatamam, most secret, i.e. most mystical;- what is that?-sastram, scripture-. Although the Gita as a whole is spoken of as the scripture, still this chapter itself is here referred to as such, and this for eulogy as is evident from the context. For, not only has the entire meaning of the scripture Gita been stated here in brief, but the whole purport of the Vedas also has been comprehended here. And it has been said, 'He who realizes it is a knower of the Vedas' (1), 'I alone am the object to be known through all the Vedas' (15). (Thus, this most secret scripture) BG 15.20

What Adi Shankaracharya mean is-: Here the word "Secret" does not mean that this knowledge is hidden , since Shree Krishna revealed it ,but secret in the sense that the person (dvija) ,who will know this will become knower of Vedas. It's said in the commentary that "why the knowledge of this chapter is secret" It's because the entire meaning of Gita and hence the whole purport of Vedas also described here. A dvija who knows this becames learned in Vedas ,if he is perfectly following his Dharma and living his life according to scriptures.

That's the real meaning of word secret here.


Point -2 : English Commentary By Swami Sivananda.   The second point is why this knowledge is Ghuya (Secret). It's because it should be to handed down to the person (dvija) who is only eligible to receive it.

By using the word Anagha? also indicates that the Guru who is a knower of Brahman should instruct the most profound secret (the science of the Self) only to alified persons who are free from impurities of the heart or tossing of the mind? who are calm and endowed with the four means of salvation. The man of impure mind will not be able to grasp the truth. The sinful man with his perverted intellect will distort the truth and thus pave the way for the destruction of himself and his followers.BG 15.20


Conclusion - -So from these two points we can say that this knowledge is secret and confidential in the sense that It's the purport of the entire vedas and the person who knows thus become knower of Vedas. And this secret knowledge only to be revealed to a eligible person , who is pure from heart ,sinless and perfectly following Dharma.So the knowledge of Gita is confidential in the senses of these two points.

2

"Why would it be considered a secret?"

It's debatable.
The word which is translated as "secret" in BG 9.1-9.2 is "गुह्य" (guhya). The most appropriate meanings seem "mystical" or "insightful" from Sanskrit dictionary, due to following reasons:

  • This "secret" has to be revealed to the devotees:

    BG 18.68 - Those who, entertaining supreme devotion to Me, will speak of this highest secret/mystery/insight, to My devotees will without a doubt reach Me alone.

  • "secret" is usually referred by "गुप्त" (gupta)
  • Many part of Gita refers from other VedAnta & philosophical sources, which were not top secrets either

"Secret from whom?"

This knowledge should not be departed to those who are not interested:

BG 18.67 - This [Knowledge] is never to be told by you to those devoid of austerities and those not devotees; also, neither those who don't devote service, nor those who objects Me

Here,

secret = not to be flaunted

For example, how are we born are lifelong kept secrets by our parents. Though everyone knows in concept, no one knows in details.

"Wouldn't it be helpful for everyone to know this knowledge and shouldn't it be a common knowledge imparted to all?"

No. Gita is not useful in day to day life as it's not Dharma ShAstra like Manu smriti or AnushAsana Parva. Refer:
What is Dharma according to the Bhagavad Gita?

Those who still find life as purposeful, Gita won't help. It's for those who are tending to believe otherwise.

1

It is secret & confidential because It can be distorted by evil-harted or deluded (As you have seen, such people after knowing these knowledge can make fun or distort). All such scriptures are faithful, reason is given by Lord Shiva in Shiv Rahasya.

  1. Verily, My Word of Truth shall be kept secret that It may not be corrupted and distorted by the evil-hearted and deluded. In this World, Truth has many an embittered foe. But when the time has come It shall be openly revealed to all. For when the flame is only young it is easily extinguished even by a child. But when it has grown in strength, the dark forest of delusion comes to a swift end. 11 Chapter.

Now, I am not sure whether flame is sufficiently strong or not to impart all!

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