Bhagavad Gita

Social Obligations in the Bhagavad Gita

Introduction

In the first chapter of the Bhagavad Gita, Arjuna is asking an important philosophical question: what obligations do I owe to society when society has broken down (e.g. why should I fulfill my social obligation to fight in this civil war when the civil war itself represents a complete breakdown of society and society's obligations to people). This activity helps students connect that question with their own lives.

Ancient Psychologists

Introduction

In this activity, students will put the psychological theories of the Bhagavad Gita and / or the Republic to use.

Background Information

Motivation

Students sometimes have difficulty conceptualizing ancient theories of psychology as theories that are meant to actually explain human behavior - this exercise helps students think of two of these ancient theories of psychology as live theories, and it helps students to realize that these theories, though perhaps simplistic, have surprising explanatory power.

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