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The Dnyaaneshwari (or Jñaneshwari) (Marathi ज्ञानेश्वरी) is the commentary on Bhagavad Gita written by Marathi saint and poet Dnyaneshwar during the 13th century at age 16. This commentary has been praised not only for its scholarly, but also for its aesthetic value.

Importance of work

The Dnyaaneshwari provides the philosophical basis for the Bhagawata Dharma, a Bhakti sect which had a lasting effect on the history of Maharashtra. It became one of the sacred books (i.e. the Prasthanatrai of Bhagawata Dharma) along with Ekanathi Bhagawata and Tukaram Gaathaa. It is one of the foundations of the Marathi language and literature, and continues to be widely read in Maharashtra. The Pasayadan or the nine ending verses of the Dnyaaneshwari are also popular with the masses.

According to Vaisnava belief, the Bhagavad Gita is the ultimate statement of spiritual knowledge since it was professed by Lord Krishna who was an avatar of Vishnu. Dnyaneshwari is considered to be more than a commentary on the Bhagavad Gita because it was professed by Dnyaneshwar, who is considered to be a saint.

Great Quotes

Dnyaneshwar expanded the Bhagavad Gita, which consisted of 700 shlokas (Sanskrit verses), into around 9999 Marathi verses (ovis). The first line of each ovi rhymes with the next two, rendering a lyrical quality to the entire work.

The first ovi of the Dnyaneshwari follows a rhyme scheme, where the first three lines end in "ā." This ovi is an invocation to OM, and is followed by an elaborate explanation of Lord Ganesha's form as the embodiment of the vedas and puranas, and the complete representation of OM:

                              Om Namojee Ādyā |
Vedapratipādyā |
Jaya Jaya Swasaṃvedyā |
Ātmarūpā ||1||
ॐ नमोजी आद्या | वेद प्रतिपाद्या | जय जय स्वसंवेद्या | आत्मरुपा

The second ovi and all the ovis after it follow the same rhyme scheme:

                              Devā Tūchi Gaṇeshū |
Sakalārthamatiprakāshū |
Mhaṇe Nivṛtti Dāsū |
Avadhārijojē ||2|| देवा तूंचि गणेशु | सकलमति प्रकाशु | म्हणे निवृत्ति दासु | अवधारिजो जी

The content of "Dnyaneshwari" reflects a detailed knowledge of kundalini, metaphysics and astrology. The commentary lays importance on God as energy. It emphasises that although there may be many different living forms, they all breathe oxygen (even fishes under water and reptiles deep inside the earth) and have the same life force within them, which is a part of God, who is energy and intelligence. It states that people can use energy and intelligence to connect with the supreme and provides methodologies to achieve the same.

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