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Ref: Lesson 7

7. Answer the following questions with reference to verses, analogies, and


statements from Prabhupadas purports. !hagavad"gita #.#$, #7%
a. &hen is violence 'ustified(
b. &h) did *rishna, who is all loving, incite Ar'una to war(
c. +s terrorism in the name of religion appropriate or inappropriate(
Nobody likes violence. However, violence has been used for certain cause since
history. Such act brings death to loved ones. In this connection, Krishna speaks
about soul elaborately in the second chapter of Bhagavad-ita. He says !B ".#$%
That which pervades the entire body you should know to be indestructible. No one
is able to destroy that imperishable soul. &herefore, we understand that the eternal
soul is actually not sub'ect to death when the body dies and death for the body is
inevitable.
a( )iolence is 'ustified only if it is for the supre*e 'ustice keeping law and order
in hu*an society. &herefore, it has to be according to the will of the +ord, and
the person carrying out violence should be in knowledge. An example is
given of a 'udge who awards capital punish*ent to a person co**itting
*urder. Srila ,rabhupada draws reference fro* Manu-sahit in purport of
B "."# that it is advantageous for the *urderer to be killed because all the
reactions for his sin would be forgiven at once in his ne-t birth. .lso the 'udge
would not incur any sinful reactions as he is in knowledge. .n analogy is
*entioned of a surgical operation which is *eant to cure the patient, but not
to kill hi*. )iolence cannot ha*per the i**ortality of the soul.
b( .r'una was grief-stricken to see all his cousins, grandfather and teacher
standing before hi* to fight. /ven though he argued of co*passion, sinful
reactions, en'oy*ent and destruction of dynasty, he did not consider the
ulti*ate benefit of war dovetailed with the will of the +ord.
Krishna, therefore, instructed .r'una to fight telling hi* that there is no death
for the indestructible soul. &his would *ake hi* knowledgeable in the real
ter*. Knowing this and understanding the will of the +ord, he will not incur
sinful reaction.
Secondly, Krishna re*inded .r'una of his prescribed duty 0 to fight in the
battlefield of Kuruk1etra, being a k1atriya. &here was no real reason for hi*
to withdraw fro* the battlefield.
c( &erroris* technically invites *ass *urder of hu*ans, irrespective of whether
real 'ustice is achieved. .lso, nowadays, groups that perfor* terroris* have
no infor*ation about the indestructible soul and their actions are co*pletely
on the bodily platfor*. Srila ,rabhupada writes in his purport B "."$ that
one has to take birth according to ones activities o! li!e. "nd a!ter !inishing
one term o! activities# one has to die to take birth !or the ne$t. %n this way
one is going through one cycle o! birth and death a!ter another without
liberation. However, Srila ,rabhupada clarifies that such cycle of repeated
birth and death is disrupted on the occasion of unnecessary *urder,
slaughter and war. &herefore, such interruptive actions are against the
supre*e law, which only per*its violence for the purpose of good
ad*inistration and upholding religious principles. Hence, i**oral and illegal
terroris* in the na*e of religion is not appropriate.