The Essence of the Bhagavad Gita

Explained by Paramhansa Yogananda
Narrated by: Swami Kriyananda
Length: 19 hrs and 47 mins
4.3 out of 5 stars (469 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Rarely in a lifetime does a new spiritual classic appear that has the power to change people's lives and transform future generations. This is such a book. The Essence of the Bhagavad Gita: Explained by Paramhansa Yogananda shares the profound insights of Yogananda, author of Autobiography of a Yogi, as remembered by one of his few remaining direct disciples, Swami Kriyananda.

This revelation of India's best-loved scripture approaches it from an entirely fresh perspective, showing its deep allegorical meaning as well as its down-to-earth practicality. The themes presented are universal: how to achieve victory in life in union with the divine; how to prepare for life's "final exam", death, and what happens afterward; and how to triumph over all pain and suffering.

©2006 Crystal Clarity Publishers. All rights reserved. (P)2006 Crystal Clarity Publishers. All rights reserved.

What listeners say about The Essence of the Bhagavad Gita

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Excelent Read, Very Informative

The Essence of the Bhagavad Gita is an excellent read for anyone trying to understand more deeply the Bhagavad Gita and Hindu teachings in general. The elaborate explanations of each passage help one to understand not only the original context of the script, but how it compares with other scriptures (i..e. the New Testament) and how it can be applied in daily life. While the text is not quite as elaborate as the original translation done by Paramahansa Yogananda (published by SRF in hardcover only), it seems to contain the essence of Yogananda’s translation and, as this is the only version of Yogananda’s translation in audio format, it is a definite must read. If you were intrigued by “Autobiography of a Yogi” this is definitely a great next read. I am glad that Swami Kriyananda and Ananda’s publishing team at “Crystal Clarity Publishers” are bringing so many great works to Audible. A note on the book; this can be somewhat more deep than Autobiography so it is not a book you can simply zone out to while doing other tasks. While there was a bit of repetition on key points, it can be very easy to miss a valuable topic if you are distracted. All in all it was an excellent read, well worth the credit. I am already placing an order for another of Swami Kriyananda’s books.

89 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Wonderful, elevating book for daily support

I listen to this book as i drive to and from work and other places. It has had an amazing influence, helping to restore my attention to its best places and attitudes. It also has helped tremendously in sorting out some particular practical matters i have been pondering lately about my path of spiritual growth.

There seem to be a few errors in the audio book--an entire segment beginning around 4 hours and 43 minutes or so is definitely repeated--but then, none of this is anything that doesn't bear repeating anyway. This book is both enjoyable and edifying to me.

8 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

Very Enlightening

I am a Christian but always looking to have a deeper more meaningful spiritual life. I believe that great light and truth can be found in many forms of religious thought. In fact this book gave me many new insights into my own New Testament and the teachings of Christ. The reader at first seemed too soft spoken, but found that it fit the subject matter very well and was fine once I got used to it.

17 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars

I bit off more than I can process with this one...

I was merely looking for an overview as to what the Bhagvad Gita was... instead, I found myself immersed into a conversation that concerns the finer details of the book. I also ended up with a lot of opinion and speculations about other religions - This is not what I was after.

So, if you want to be bathed in the personal opinions and teachings of Swami Kriyananda's, then this is a winner. If you are merely looking for a general, greater understanding, it may be best to look else where.

On the plus side though, the narrator has a very soothing voice.

24 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Remarkable

I've read the Gita in several different translations and interpretations. Profound and rare this particular one is a wonderful work of pure spirit and intuitive completeness. Even in its long 20 hours listening to it only once is impossible.

15 people found this helpful

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Unexpected

What made the experience of listening to The Essence of the Bhagavad Gita the most enjoyable?

I have heard nothing like this. This book helped me push my spirituality to the next level. I have since bought and read many more books from James Donald Walters or Kriyananda. I wish I could explain the growth that this book has helped accomplish.

7 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Great Creation

I have read various versions, but nothing comparable to this. Really amazing. For those who wish to pursue thier spiritual path, there is nothing better than this.

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Life Long Work Revealed Wisely

I can not say enough about J. Donald Walters.
His life long mission to emulate his spiritual master is magnetic, and magnificently revealed in this volume. Every time I listen to it on my way home from teaching a class of sixth through eighth grade special education students I feel spiritually revived.

20 people found this helpful

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Must Read

There are several iterations of this sacred scripture, each blessed with its own intuitive slant. However, (through Swami Kriyananda)Paramahansa Yogananda has managed to digest this text for the nourishment of all men independent of sect and caste, triggering the self-realization process for humanity at large.

1 person found this helpful

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NOT AUDIBLE QUALITY

I’ve heard better narration in Libravox. The constant labored breathing, swallowing, and the sound of spit rolling around in the reader’s voice made my skin crawl and I was unable to finish the first chapter. I feel entitled to a refund. It’s a shame because I was greatly interested in the subject matter but couldn’t overcome the awful quality of this recording.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Arash
  • 04-14-13

Refreshing

This books shows one of the clear contrasts between the abrahamic and eastern faith in the role and nature of good. There is no mention of the angry and vengeful god but the predominant focus is on a form of pseudoscientific explanation for the soul and it's interaction with the body. A nice read for any enthusiast in religion.

7 people found this helpful

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  • Agni Lahiri
  • 12-20-17

Meditative

So far this year I've listened to this book three times from start to finish and revisited parts of it countless time, yet to get bored of it. It's dense with brilliant nuggets of wisdom which when taken with the right attitude can't help but improve you as a person/soul. NB: I'm am, for the lack of a better term an atheist (Or rather anti religion) I believe wisdom of the universe can be found anywhere when seen through clear eyes and a wise mind. This book manages to look at gita not as a gospel but as a collection of ideas on how to live life as a good man.

5 people found this helpful

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  • M
  • 11-10-13

Gita that touches your life!!!

Where does The Essence of the Bhagavad Gita rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

One of the best versions of Gita i have heard. Actually very practical, informative and inspiring.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Julia
  • 06-16-16

An Ayurvedic view on spirituality

An amazing read for anyone on the path to enlightenment and fit so well with current Ayurvedic practices of living a more balanced life in mind, body and spirit.

3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Mrs A Higgins
  • 04-20-16

The only book worth reading/listening to

A book on how to live, behave and cope with life. Including every imaginable word of wisdom to survive the battlefield of life. This is God's work, the sweetest of divine work, exquisitely narrated by Sri Swami Kriyananda ji

2 people found this helpful

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  • Reginald pelle
  • 10-05-15

Insightful!

Deep, very profound and full of useful wisdom. But at the same time, must be absorbed and gathered through moderation, and with mere caution.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • ASHISH SINHA
  • 09-01-20

Amazing essence of Spiritual Wisdom

This is not my first reading of Bhagawad Gita.in a book or audible form. Hence I approached this rendering of the essence of Bhagawad Gita with some expectations. While the accent took some time to get used to. Once you settle in with the narration, the deep narrative with examples start taking over. Based on the teaching of Swami Yogananda, the examples and teachings are deeply rooted and full of wisdom. I would strongly recommend this audible book to all Spiritual seekers

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  • Shibu thomas
  • 11-08-18

poor narration

narrator was panting.story was good .It could have been more intresting by a better narration.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 04-19-17

Had a very good experience.

I tried to listen to it every day non stop. It was wonderful experience. I loved it.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 03-27-18

Awesome

Found it easier to listen to at 1.15x on the speed dial. Wonderful explanation of the Gita.

1 person found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Jaswant Jonnada
  • 08-08-17

Good book

Very much dedicated to kriya yoga. Bhagavad Gita meaning adjusted to kriya yoga. Thank you