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Believe it or not!
According to the Mahabharata, original Bhagvad Gita had 745 shlokas (verses) but modern Gita has only 700 verses. It is mentioned in the Bhishma Parv of Mahabharata Adhyaai 43, shloka 4
षट्शतानि सविंशानि श्लोकानां प्राह केशवः
अर्जुनं सप्तपंचाशत सप्त षष्ठि च संजयः
धृतराष्ट्र श्लोक मेकं गीतायां मान मुच्यते
"In Gita 620 shlokas were spoken by Sri Krishna, Arjuna spoke 57 shlokas, Sanjaya spoke 67, while Dhritrashtra spoke 1 shloka"
The total comes to 745 shlokas. However in the modern Gita the shlokas of Krishna are 575, Arjuna shlokas are 84, Sanjaya shlokas are 40 and Dhritrashtra shloka is 1. The total is 700.
Below is the scanned image of Mahabharata from Gita Press Gorakhpur
This reference from Mahabharata gives us an idea of the nature of these alterations. While the Krishna Shlokas reduced from 620 to 575, Arjuna shlokas increased from 57 to 84. This proves that there have been verses inserted as well as deleted from the Gita which we have today. Thus, we cannot be sure which of the verses of Gita are genuine and which are counterfeit.
How can such a text ever be taken as a book of guidance?
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