Arjuna Vishada Yoga (अर्जुनविषादयोगः)

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Arjuna Vishada Yoga (Samskrit: अर्जुनविषादयोगः) is the commonly given name to the first chapter of the Bhagavad Gita. As the name suggests, it is the chapter in which Arjuna pours out his agony.[1]

परिचयः ॥ Introduction

The great Mahabharata war between the Pandavas and the Kauravas took place on the holy plain of Kurukshetra. After the failure of Lord Krishna’s peace mission, when He Himself went to Hastinapura as the emissary of the Pandavas, there was no other alternative for the Pandavas but to engage in war for their rightful share of the kingdom.

All the famous warriors from both sides had assembled on the battlefield. Lord Krishna arrived there in a magnificent chariot yoked by white horses. He was to act as the charioteer of Arjuna, one of the Pandava princes.

Then the din of hundreds of conches, blaring forth suddenly, announced the commencement of the battle. Arjuna blew his conch “Devadatta”, while Bhima, his brother, sounded the “Paundra”. And all the other great warriors blew their respective conches.[2]

ततः शङ्खाश्च भेर्यश्च पणवानकगोमुखाः । सहसैवाभ्यहन्यन्त स शब्दस्तुमुलोऽभवत् ॥१-१३॥

ततः श्वेतैर्हयैर्युक्ते महति स्यन्दने स्थितौ । माधवः पाण्डवश्चैव दिव्यौ शङ्खौ प्रदध्मतुः ॥१-१४॥

पाञ्चजन्यं हृषीकेशो देवदत्तं धनञ्जयः । पौण्ड्रं दध्मौ महाशङ्खं भीमकर्मा वृकोदरः ॥१-१५॥[3]

tataḥ śaṅkhāśca bheryaśca paṇavānakagomukhāḥ । sahasaivābhyahanyanta sa śabdastumulo'bhavat ॥1-13॥

tataḥ śvetairhayairyukte mahati syandane sthitau । mādhavaḥ pāṇḍavaścaiva divyau śaṅkhau pradadhmatuḥ ॥1-14॥

pāñcajanyaṁ hr̥ṣīkeśo devadattaṁ dhanañjayaḥ । pauṇḍraṁ dadhmau mahāśaṅkhaṁ bhīmakarmā vr̥kodaraḥ ॥1-15॥

As the two armies were arrayed, ready for battle, Arjuna requested Krishna to place his chariot between them so that he might survey his opponents. He was bewildered by the scene before him, for he beheld on both sides, fathers and grandfathers, teachers and uncles, fathers-in-law, grandsons, relatives and comrades.

Confusion reigned in Arjuna’s mind. Should he participate in this terrible carnage? Was it proper to destroy one’s relatives for the sake of a kingdom and some pleasures? Would it not be much better for him to surrender everything in favour of his enemies and retire in peace? As these thoughts rushed into his mind, a feeling of despondency overtook Arjuna. He had no enthusiasm to engage in this battle. Letting his bow slip from his hands, Arjuna could do nothing but turn to Lord Krishna for guidance and enlightenment.[2]

The despondent queries that reigned the mind of Arjuna at this stage are elaborated in the first chapter of the Bhagavad Gita called Arjuna Vishada Yoga (अर्जुनविषादयोगः).

अध्यायसारः ॥ Summary of the First Chapter

The 5th verse of Gitartha Samgraha (गीतार्थसङ्ग्रहः) by Yamunacharya (यामुनाचार्यः) summarises the chapter one of the Gita.

अस्थानस्नेहकार्पण्यधर्माधर्मधियाऽऽकुलम् । पार्थं प्रपन्नमुद्दिश्य शास्त्रावतरणं कृतम् ॥ ५ ॥[4]

asthānasnehakārpaṇyadharmādharmadhiyā''kulam । pārthaṁ prapannamuddiśya śāstrāvataraṇaṁ kr̥tam ॥ 5 ॥

Meaning: Arjuna saw the dear relatives like Bhima, Acharyas (आचार्य-s | Masters) like Drona assembled opposite him to engage in battle with him.  Arjuna's love and daya (दया । compassion) for them overflowed although they had no fitness for that display of affection.  As a result, Arjuna concluded that the righteous war with them befitting his status as a Kshatriya was adharma (अधर्मः । unrighteous).  He was overcome with weakness.  He threw down his bow and arrows and sat down with dejection at the foot of his chariot. Next, Arjuna appealed to Lord, his charioteer, to show him the right way.  With smile on His face, Lord Parthasarathy (पार्थसारथी । Sri Krishna) commenced His upadesha (उपदेशः । teaching) for Arjuna on Jivatma svarupa (जीवात्मस्वरुपः । the real nature of the embodied being), of the Paramatma (परमात्मा । Supreme Being), the means to reach Paramatma and related esoteric meanings of Vedanta.  Lord's teaching was like nectar for Arjuna and easy to understand (Gita. Samg. verse 5).[5]

गीतायाः पार्श्वभूमिः ॥ Background of the Gita

The Gita begins with the words of Dhrtarashtra.

धृतराष्ट्र उवाच | धर्मक्षेत्रे कुरुक्षेत्रे समवेता युयुत्सवः । मामकाः पाण्डवाश्चैव किमकुर्वत संजय ॥१-१॥[3]

dhr̥tarāṣṭra uvāca | dharmakṣetre kurukṣetre samavetā yuyutsavaḥ । māmakāḥ pāṇḍavāścaiva kimakurvata saṁjaya ॥1-1॥

Meaning: Dhrtarashtra said, What did the sons of Pandu (पण्डुः) and also my people do when they had assembled together, eager for battle on the holy plain of Kurukshetra, O Sanjaya? (Bhag. Gita 1.1).[2]

It is said that, when both sides were prepared to commence the battle, the sage Veda Vyasa approached blind Dhrtarashtra and said, “If you wish to see this terrible carnage with your own eyes I can give you the gift of vision.” The Kaurava Raja replied, “O Chief of the Brahmarishis! I have no desire to see with my own eyes this slaughter of my family, but I should like to hear all the details of the battle.”

Then the sage conferred the gift of divine vision on Sanjaya, the trusty counsellor of the Raja, and told the Raja, “Sanjaya will describe to you all the incidents of the war. Whatever happens in the course of the war, he will directly see, hear or otherwise come to know. Whether an incident takes place before his eyes or behind his back, during the day or during the night, privately or in public, and whether it is reduced to actual action or appears only in thought, it will not remain hidden from his view. He will come to know everything, exactly as it happens. No weapon will touch his body nor will he feel tired.”

After the ten days of continued war between the Pandavas and the Kauravas, when the great warrior Bhishma was thrown down from his chariot by Arjuna, Sanjaya announces the news to Dhrtarashtra. In agony the Raja asks Sanjaya to narrate the full details of the previous ten days war, from the very beginning, in all detail as it happened. And here commences the Bhagavad Gita.[6]

Here, Kurukshetra, the place of battle is referred to as Dharmakshetra. Sri Velukudi in his discourse, gives the etymology as follows:

धर्मक्षयात् त्रायते इति धर्मक्षेत्रम् । dharmakṣayāt trāyate iti dharmakṣetram ।

Meaning: That which saves Dharma from getting destroyed.

Also, the question posed by Dhrtarashtra here, 'what his sons and Pandavas who have gone to wage war, are doing ?' is vital. Though it seems like an oxymoron, it has to be understood that it was Dhrtarashtra's anxiety about Kauravas losing that made him raise this question. That is why Dhrtarashtra is considered blind not just by sight, but also ignorant to jnana (ज्ञानम् । knowledge). For, even though he knew that the Kauravas were at fault and were the sole reason for the war, he was blinded by the love for his sons.[1]

As a reply to the above shloka, Sanjaya begins to narrate the situation on the battle field and thus, begins the Bhagavad Gita.

सञ्जय उवाच | दृष्ट्वा तु पाण्डवानीकं व्यूढं दुर्योधनस्तदा । आचार्यमुपसंगम्य राजा वचनमब्रवीत् ॥१-२॥

पश्यैतां पाण्डुपुत्राणामाचार्य महतीं चमूम् । व्यूढां द्रुपदपुत्रेण तव शिष्येण धीमता ॥१-३॥[3]

sañjaya uvāca | dr̥ṣṭvā tu pāṇḍavānīkaṁ vyūḍhaṁ duryodhanastadā । ācāryamupasaṁgamya rājā vacanamabravīt ॥1-2॥

paśyaitāṁ pāṇḍuputrāṇāmācārya mahatīṁ camūm । vyūḍhāṁ drupadaputreṇa tava śiṣyeṇa dhīmatā ॥1-3॥

Meaning: Sanjaya said, having seen the army of the Pandavas drawn up in battle array, Raja Duryodhana then approached his teacher (Drona) and spoke these words: "Behold, O Teacher, this mighty army of the sons of Pandu, arrayed by the son of Drupada (Dhrshtadyumna), thy wise disciple ! (Bhag. Gita 1.2 and 3).[2]

सैन्यविवरणम् ॥ The Pandava and Kaurava Army

In shlokas 4-9 of the first chapter of the Gita, Sanjaya describes Duryodhana enlisting the names of some of the valiant warriors from both, the Pandava and Kaurava armies.[2]

Pandava Army Kaurava Army
युयुधनः ॥ Yuyudhana द्रोणाचार्यः ॥ Dronacharya
विराटः ॥ Virata भीष्मः ॥ Bhishma
द्रुपदः ॥ Drupada कर्णः ॥ Karna
धृष्टकेतुः ॥ Dhrishtaketu कृपः ॥ Kripa
चेकितानः ॥ Chekitana अश्वत्थामा ॥ Ashvatthama
काशीराज: ॥ Raja of Kashi विकर्णः ॥ Vikarna
पुरुजित् ॥ Purujit सौमदत्तिः ॥ Son of Somadatta (Jayadratha)
कुन्तिभोजः ॥ Kuntibhoja
शैब्यः ॥ Shaibya
युधमन्युः ॥ Yudhamanyu
उत्तमौजाः ॥ Uttamaujas
सौभद्रः ॥ Son of Subhadra (Abhimanyu)
द्रौपदेयाः ॥ Sons of Draupadi

अत्र शूरा महेष्वासा भीमार्जुनसमा युधि । युयुधानो विराटश्च द्रुपदश्च महारथः ॥१-४॥

धृष्टकेतुश्चेकितानः काशिराजश्च वीर्यवान् । पुरुजित्कुन्तिभोजश्च शैब्यश्च नरपुङ्गवः ॥१-५॥

युधामन्युश्च विक्रान्त उत्तमौजाश्च वीर्यवान् । सौभद्रो द्रौपदेयाश्च सर्व एव महारथाः ॥१-६॥

अस्माकं तु विशिष्टा ये तान्निबोध द्विजोत्तम । नायका मम सैन्यस्य संज्ञार्थं तान्ब्रवीमि ते ॥१-७॥

भवान्भीष्मश्च कर्णश्च कृपश्च समितिंजयः । अश्वत्थामा विकर्णश्च सौमदत्तिस्तथैव च ॥१-८॥

अन्ये च बहवः शूरा मदर्थे त्यक्तजीविताः । नानाशस्त्रप्रहरणाः सर्वे युद्धविशारदाः ॥१-९॥[3]

atra śūrā maheṣvāsā bhīmārjunasamā yudhi । yuyudhāno virāṭaśca drupadaśca mahārathaḥ ॥1-4॥

dhr̥ṣṭaketuścekitānaḥ kāśirājaśca vīryavān । purujitkuntibhojaśca śaibyaśca narapuṅgavaḥ ॥1-5॥

yudhāmanyuśca vikrānta uttamaujāśca vīryavān । saubhadro draupadeyāśca sarva eva mahārathāḥ ॥1-6॥

asmākaṁ tu viśiṣṭā ye tānnibodha dvijottama । nāyakā mama sainyasya saṁjñārthaṁ tānbravīmi te ॥1-7॥

bhavānbhīṣmaśca karṇaśca kr̥paśca samitiṁjayaḥ । aśvatthāmā vikarṇaśca saumadattistathaiva ca ॥1-8॥

anye ca bahavaḥ śūrā madarthe tyaktajīvitāḥ । nānāśastrapraharaṇāḥ sarve yuddhaviśāradāḥ ॥1-9॥

Having thus surveyed the armies on either side, Duryodhana said,

अपर्याप्तं तदस्माकं बलं भीष्माभिरक्षितम् । पर्याप्तं त्विदमेतेषां बलं भीमाभिरक्षितम् ॥१-१०॥

अयनेषु च सर्वेषु यथाभागमवस्थिताः । भीष्ममेवाभिरक्षन्तु भवन्तः सर्व एव हि ॥१-११॥[3]

aparyāptaṁ tadasmākaṁ balaṁ bhīṣmābhirakṣitam । paryāptaṁ tvidameteṣāṁ balaṁ bhīmābhirakṣitam ॥1-10॥

ayaneṣu ca sarveṣu yathābhāgamavasthitāḥ । bhīṣmamevābhirakṣantu bhavantaḥ sarva eva hi ॥1-11॥

Meaning: This army of ours marshalled by Bhishma is insufficient, whereas their army, marshalled by Bhima, is sufficient. Therefore, do ye all, stationed in your respective positions in the several divisions of the army, protect Bhishma alone (Bhag. Gita 1.10 and 11).[2]

It seems odd in this place for Duryodhana to invoke Bhima as the protector of the Pandava army when Yudhisthira is the chief and Dhrshtadyumna is the senapati (सेनापतिः । army commander) just like Bhisma is the Senapati of the Kauravas. Even if he was trying to compare archery prowess of Bhishma, it should have been Arjuna at the other end. This makes the choice of comparison a mysterious one.

However, one possible hidden reason may be - both Bhishma and Bhima have taken deadly Vows.

  • Bhishma had vowed that he will not kill the five pandavas
  • While Bhima had vowed that he will not spare the 100 kauravas

So, Duryodhana is bringing out the contrast between the two by saying that his army is led by Bhishma, who has vowed not to kill the five pandavas who are the strength of his opposition. Whereas on the other side, Bhima has taken vow to kill all the 100 kauravas, including tearing Dushasana.[1]

However, a literal interpretation of the shloka is, "our strength is immesurable, and we are perfectly protected by Grandfather Bhishma, whereas the strength of the Pandavas, carefully protected by Bhima, is limited."[7] For, aparyapta (अपर्याप्तम्) means unlimited, and Paryapta (पर्याप्तम्) means limited. So, it may be intrepreted that Duryodhana is boasting here that his army's strength is unlimited, whereas Pandava's army is limited. However, the invokation of Bhima suggests that he is scared and is actually praising the Pandava army.[1]

अर्जुनविषादः ॥ The Despondency of Arjuna

  • Seeing all the people of Dhrtarashtra’s party standing arrayed and the discharge of weapons about to begin, Arjuna, the son of Pandu, whose ensign was that of a monkey, took up his bow and said the following to Krishna,(Bhag. Gita 1.20)[2]

    महीपते । सेनयोरुभयोर्मध्ये रथं स्थापय मेऽच्युत ॥१-२१॥

    यावदेतान्निरिक्षेऽहं योद्‌धुकामानवस्थितान् । कैर्मया सह योद्धव्यमस्मिन् रणसमुद्यमे ॥१-२२॥

    योत्स्यमानानवेक्षेऽहं य एतेऽत्र समागताः । धार्तराष्ट्रस्य दुर्बुद्धेर्युद्धे प्रियचिकीर्षवः ॥१-२३॥[3]

    mahīpate । senayorubhayormadhye rathaṁ sthāpaya me'cyuta ॥1-21॥

    yāvadetānnirikṣe'haṁ yod‌dhukāmānavasthitān । kairmayā saha yoddhavyamasmin raṇasamudyame ॥1-22॥

    yotsyamānānavekṣe'haṁ ya ete'tra samāgatāḥ । dhārtarāṣṭrasya durbuddheryuddhe priyacikīrṣavaḥ ॥1-23॥

    Meaning: O Lord of the Earth ! In the middle of the two armies, place my chariot, O Krishna, so that I may behold those who stand here, desirous to fight, and know with whom I must fight when the battle begins. For I desire to observe those who are assembled here to fight, wishing to please in battle Duryodhana, the evil-minded (Bhag Gita 1.21-23).
  • Being thus addressed by Arjuna, Lord Krishna, having stationed that best of chariots, in the midst of the two armies, in front of Bhishma and Drona and all the rulers of the earth (Bhag. Gita 1.24 and 25), said:[2]

    पार्थ पश्यैतान्समवेतान्कुरूनिति ॥१-२५॥[3] pārtha paśyaitānsamavetānkurūniti ॥1-25॥

    Meaning: O Arjuna, behold now all these Kurus gathered together! (Bhag. Gita 1.25)
  • Then Arjuna beheld there stationed, grandfathers and fathers, teachers, maternal uncles, brothers, sons, grandsons and friends, too. He saw fathers-in-law and friends also in both armies. The son of Kunti, Arjuna, seeing all these kinsmen standing arrayed, spoke thus sorrowfully, filled with deep pity. (Bhag. Gita 1.26 and 27)[2]

दृष्ट्वेमं स्वजनं कृष्ण युयुत्सुं समुपस्थितम् ॥१-२८॥

सीदन्ति मम गात्राणि मुखं च परिशुष्यति | वेपथुश्च शरीरे मे रोमहर्षश्च जायते ॥१-२९॥

गाण्डीवं स्रंसते हस्तात्त्वक्चैव परिदह्यते | न च शक्नोम्यवस्थातुं भ्रमतीव च मे मनः ॥१-३०॥

निमित्तानि च पश्यामि विपरीतानि केशव | न च श्रेयोऽनुपश्यामि हत्वा स्वजनमाहवे ॥१-३१॥

न काङ्क्षे विजयं कृष्ण न च राज्यं सुखानि च | किं नो राज्येन गोविन्द किं भोगैर्जीवितेन वा ॥१-३२॥[3]

dr̥ṣṭvemaṁ svajanaṁ kr̥ṣṇa yuyutsuṁ samupasthitam ॥1-28॥

sīdanti mama gātrāṇi mukhaṁ ca pariśuṣyati | vepathuśca śarīre me romaharṣaśca jāyate ॥1-29॥

gāṇḍīvaṁ sraṁsate hastāttvakcaiva paridahyate | na ca śaknomyavasthātuṁ bhramatīva ca me manaḥ ॥1-30॥

nimittāni ca paśyāmi viparītāni keśava | na ca śreyo'nupaśyāmi hatvā svajanamāhave ॥1-31॥

na kāṅkṣe vijayaṁ kr̥ṣṇa na ca rājyaṁ sukhāni ca । kiṁ no rājyena govinda kiṁ bhogairjīvitena vā ॥1-32॥

Meaning: Seeing these, my kinsmen, O Krishna, arrayed, eager to fight, my limbs fail and my mouth is parched up, my body quivers and my hairs stand on end! The (bow) “Gandiva” slips from my hand and my skin burns all over; I am unable even to stand, my mind is reeling, as it were. And I see adverse omens, O Keshava! I do not see any good in killing my kinsmen in battle. For I desire neither victory, O Krishna, nor pleasures nor kingdoms! Of what avail is a dominion to us, O Krishna, or pleasures or even life? (Bhag. Gita 1.28-32)[2]

  • Arjuna's thoughts as he sees his kith and kin arrayed in the battlefield is out poured in the following verses.

    येषामर्थे काङ्क्षितं नो राज्यं भोगाः सुखानि च । त इमेऽवस्थिता युद्धे प्राणांस्त्यक्त्वा धनानि च ॥१-३३॥

    आचार्याः पितरः पुत्रास्तथैव च पितामहाः । मातुलाः श्वशुराः पौत्राः श्यालाः संबन्धिनस्तथा ॥१-३४॥

    एतान्न हन्तुमिच्छामि घ्नतोऽपि मधुसूदन । अपि त्रैलोक्यराज्यस्य हेतोः किं नु महीकृते ॥१-३५॥[3]

    yeṣāmarthe kāṅkṣitaṁ no rājyaṁ bhogāḥ sukhāni ca । ta ime'vasthitā yuddhe prāṇāṁstyaktvā dhanāni ca ॥1-33॥

    ācāryāḥ pitaraḥ putrāstathaiva ca pitāmahāḥ । mātulāḥ śvaśurāḥ pautrāḥ śyālāḥ saṁbandhinastathā ॥1-34॥

    etānna hantumicchāmi ghnato'pi madhusūdana । api trailokyarājyasya hetoḥ kiṁ nu mahīkr̥te ॥1-35॥

    Meaning: Those for whose sake we desire kingdoms, enjoyments and pleasures, stand here in battle, having renounced life and wealth. Teachers, fathers, sons and also grandfathers, grandsons, fathers-in-law, maternal uncles, brothers-in-law and relatives - These I do not wish to kill, though they kill me,O Krishna, even for the sake of dominion over the three worlds, leave alone killing them for the sake of the earth! (Bhag. Gita 1.33-35).[2]
  • He questions Sri Krishna with regards to the battle in the following words,

    निहत्य धार्तराष्ट्रान्नः का प्रीतिः स्याज्जनार्दन । पापमेवाश्रयेदस्मान्हत्वैतानाततायिनः ॥१-३६॥

    तस्मान्नार्हा वयं हन्तुं धार्तराष्ट्रान्स्वबान्धवान् । स्वजनं हि कथं हत्वा सुखिनः स्याम माधव ॥१-३७॥[3]

    nihatya dhārtarāṣṭrānnaḥ kā prītiḥ syājjanārdana । pāpamevāśrayedasmānhatvaitānātatāyinaḥ ॥1-36॥

    tasmānnārhā vayaṁ hantuṁ dhārtarāṣṭrānsvabāndhavān । svajanaṁ hi kathaṁ hatvā sukhinaḥ syāma mādhava ॥1-37॥

    Meaning: By killing these sons of Dhrtarashtra, what pleasure can be ours, O Janardana? Only papa (पापम्) will accrue by killing them. Therefore, we should not kill the sons of Dhrtarashtra, our relatives; for, how can we be happy by killing our own people, O Madhava (Krishna)? (Bhag. Gita 1.36 and 37).[2]

    यद्यप्येते न पश्यन्ति लोभोपहतचेतसः । कुलक्षयकृतं दोषं मित्रद्रोहे च पातकम् ॥१-३८॥

    कथं न ज्ञेयमस्माभिः पापादस्मान्निवर्तितुम् । कुलक्षयकृतं दोषं प्रपश्यद्भिर्जनार्दन ॥१-३९॥[3]

    yadyapyete na paśyanti lobhopahatacetasaḥ । kulakṣayakr̥taṁ doṣaṁ mitradrohe ca pātakam ॥1-38॥

    kathaṁ na jñeyamasmābhiḥ pāpādasmānnivartitum । kulakṣayakr̥taṁ doṣaṁ prapaśyadbhirjanārdana ॥1-39॥

    Meaning: Though they, with intelligence overpowered by greed, see no evil in the destruction of families, and no papa in hostility to friends; Why should not we, who clearly see evil in the destruction of a family, learn to turn away from this papa, O Janardana (Krishna)? (Bhag. Gita 1.38 and 39).[2]
  • He tries reasoning in the following manner and finally gives up his weapons in despair.

    कुलक्षये प्रणश्यन्ति कुलधर्माः सनातनाः । धर्मे नष्टे कुलं कृत्स्नमधर्मोऽभिभवत्युत ॥१-४०॥

    उत्सन्नकुलधर्माणां मनुष्याणां जनार्दन । नरकेऽनियतं वासो भवतीत्यनुशुश्रुम ॥१-४४॥[3]

    kulakṣaye praṇaśyanti kuladharmāḥ sanātanāḥ । dharme naṣṭe kulaṁ kr̥tsnamadharmo'bhibhavatyuta ॥1-40॥

    utsannakuladharmāṇāṁ manuṣyāṇāṁ janārdana । narake'niyataṁ vāso bhavatītyanuśuśruma ॥1-44॥

    Meaning: In the destruction of a family, the immemorial religious rites of that family perish; on the destruction of adhyatmikity, impiety overcomes the whole family.We have heard, O Janardana, that inevitable is the dwelling for an unknown period in hell for those men in whose families the religious practices have been destroyed! (Bhag. Gita 1.40 and 44).[2]

    अहो बत महत्पापं कर्तुं व्यवसिता वयम् । यद्राज्यसुखलोभेन हन्तुं स्वजनमुद्यताः ॥१-४५॥

    यदि मामप्रतीकारमशस्त्रं शस्त्रपाणयः । धार्तराष्ट्रा रणे हन्युस्तन्मे क्षेमतरं भवेत् ॥१-४६॥[3]

    aho bata mahatpāpaṁ kartuṁ vyavasitā vayam । yadrājyasukhalobhena hantuṁ svajanamudyatāḥ ॥1-45॥

    yadi māmapratīkāramaśastraṁ śastrapāṇayaḥ । dhārtarāṣṭrā raṇe hanyustanme kṣemataraṁ bhavet ॥1-46॥

    Meaning: Alas! We are involved in a great papa in that we are prepared to kill our kinsmen through greed for the pleasures of a kingdom. If the sons of Dhrtarashtra, with weapons in hand, should slay me in battle, unresisting and unarmed, that would be better for me (Bhag. Gita 1.45 and 46).

Having thus spoken in the midst of the battlefield, Arjuna, casting away his bow and arrow, sat down on the seat of the chariot with his mind overwhelmed with sorrow (Bhag. Gita 1.47).[2]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3
  2. 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 2.11 2.12 2.13 2.14 Swami Sivananda (2000), Bhagavad Gita, Uttar Pradesh: The Divine Life Society, The Yoga of the Despondency of Arjuna
  3. 3.00 3.01 3.02 3.03 3.04 3.05 3.06 3.07 3.08 3.09 3.10 3.11 3.12 Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 1.
  4. Sri Gitartha Samgraha
  6. Swami Sivananda (2000), Bhagavad Gita, Uttar Pradesh: The Divine Life Society, Introduction.
  7. A.C.Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada (1998), Bhagavad-Gita As It Is, The Bhaktivedanta Book Trust, Chapter 1.