Sample from the Spring 2007 issue of Integral Yoga Magazine
An Interview with Graham M Schweig, PhD
Dr. Schweig’s brand new book, Bhagavad Gita: The Beloved Lord’s Secret Love Song is described by Huston Smith (the internationally recognized authority on world religion) as a “beautiful and accessible translation of the Gita.” In this interview, Dr. Schweig explains that while the Gita is about divine yearning, “at a deeper level, it is a song issuing forth from the heart of God. It is the secret call of the divinity for all souls to love him, to take the journey to him, to be blissfully united with him.”
IYM: What is the Gita’s relationship to Yoga?
GS: The Gita is the book on Yoga par excellence. The narrator himself calls Krishna’s teachings, and the whole dialogue between Arjuna and Krishna, “the supreme secret of Yoga” (18.75). Yoga, in its ultimate form, is the natural outpouring of hearts to one another, the human heart and the divine heart: this is the supreme secret of Yoga. We learn in the Gita that the divinity practices his Yoga through his amazing manifestations, one of which is his full presence within the inner region of our hearts. Humans, on the other hand, are to practice a Yoga that allows them to enter fully into the heart of divinity. When you realize you are drowning yourself in Krishna’s heart, you are not cognizant of your individuality, though you remain an individual. You lose yourself completely to gain yourself fully. For the Gita, Yoga is the mutual loving embrace between humanity and divinity—this is the supreme Yoga.
IYM: Gita means song. Why a song?
GS: Most wondrously, we learn in the Gita that the heart of God passionately desires to connect with the hearts of humans, and he expresses this through a “gita,” a song of love that he keeps secret. It is not a song in the lyrical sense, but it is a song coming from the divine heart to us. As I say in the introduction to the book, “It is a song issuing forth from the heart of God. It is the secret call of the divinity for all souls to love him, to take the journey to him, to be blissfully united with him.” Our Yoga is ultimately meant to hear this secret song.
IYM: You reference three secrets in the text. What are these?
GS: The supreme secret is revealed as having three layers and is most fully described in the 18th chapter: the secret, the greater secret, and the greatest secret of all, and these correspond to how we should act in the outer world of conflict, what we should expect to find in the inner world of transcendence, and finally in the innermost world of the heart, respectively. The great secret is that we should act out of love. We should act in the way in this world that best expresses our heart. This is said in verses 1-49. The greater secret is revealed in verses 50-63. Krishna tells Arjuna to know him as Brahman and as the Purusha, embracing him from within one’s own heart. A running theme throughout the Gita is the instruction to experience one’s self as it is embraced by Brahman and Purusha. The greatest secret of all comes in verses 64-66 in which Krishna reveals his own heart’s divine passion: “You are so much loved by me!” Here the divine heart so passionately desires the love of the human heart and is inviting the human heart to embrace his.
IYM: Why keep this a secret?
GS: The greatest impoverishment in the world is the impoverishment of the human heart. If the heart would be nurtured it would take care of all other impoverishments. Krishna keeps his love a secret simply because we are just not ready to hear it. If we would hear it, we would be filled with his love. He’s already embracing us with all his numerous manifestations, but we may not respond. He is therefore a passive lover at this point, an eternally patient lover…
Read the rest of this article in the Spring 2007 issue of Integral Yoga Magazine.