Friends, I’ve been teaching the Bhagavad Gītā in Indian philosophy and World philosophy courses for over a decade, as well as incorporating selections of the Gītā into other course offerings. I’ve yet to use a version that isn’t frustrating. Even those that are philologically credible are often clunky or make interpretative choices that I find at odds with easy classroom use. This year I found myself translating relevant verses on the fly while lecturing, out of dissatisfaction with the texts.
Of course, I haven’t read every translation or even most (and thus no offense to those of you who have penned translations yourselves; assume I haven’t tried yours!).
I am asking veteran teachers for suggestions on what works. In my case, I’m teaching philosophy students and humanities students for the most part, not aspiring Sanskritists.
I’m not fishing for criticisms of existing translations. And I’m not going to mention the ones I’ve found frustrating, because my point isn’t to complain but rather locate useful directions.