Bhagavad Gita – Chapter 2, Slokas 8 to 10

Newsletter on Bhagavadgita by Dr. P.V. Nath

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Sloka 8

NA HI PRAPASHAYAMI MAMAPANUDHYAYA
YACCHOKAM UCCHOSHANAM INDRIYANAM
AVAPYA BHOOMAVASAPATNAM RAJYAM SURANAMAPI CHADIPATYAM

Even though possessing a prosperous kingdom free from rivals and holding even lordship over the Gods, I do not see that which would remove the sorrow of mine which burns up my senses.

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We are now coming to the end of Arjuna’s lamentations. Sri Krishna gave him the freedom to express the inner feelings of guilt. Arjuna feels that even if he wins lordship over denizens of heaven he would not find the peace or happiness. The grief of slaying so many loved ones would override the happiness of the lordship over the three worlds.

This disease is at the level of the mind and is not a physical ailment. No amount of external remedy or wealth would suffice to cure it. The only remedy is “Atma Jnana”: the knowledge of one’s true Self.

We are going to get that medicine in the subsequent chapters.

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Sloka 9

Sanjaya uvacha

EVAM UKTVA HRISHIKESHAM GUDAKESHAHA PARANTAPA
NA YOTSYA ITi GOVINDA UKTVA TOOSNIM BABHOOVA HA

Sanjaya said:

Having spoken thus to Hrishikesha, the destroyer of foes said to Krishna, “I will not fight” and became silent.

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Sanjaya has informed the blind king Dhritarashtra that the mighty Arjuna completed describing in detail his symptoms of grief and sat down saying, “I will not fight.”

Even though physically Arjuna was a well trained warrior, he was not trained to fight his own ignorance. The Vedic teaching he received in his younger days did not cover the topic on fighting the ignorance. Sri Krishna now takes up the task of correcting Arjuna’s mental state.

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Sloka 10

TAM UVACHA HRISHIKESHAHA PRAHASANNIVA BHARATA
SENAYOR UBHAYOR MADHYE VISHIDANTAM IDAM VACHAHA.

O King, seeing Arjuna lamenting in the middle of the two armies, Hrishikesha, as if smiling, spoke these words.

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Sri Krishna, like a good doctor, has listened patiently the symptoms expressed by the Arjuna. The first requirement for a good doctor is to listen patiently to all the symptoms of the patient. The flow of thoughts of the patient should not be disturbed. The patient should not feel that the doctor has no time for him.

At the same time, doctor’s facial expression has to bring confidence to the patient. In this instance, Sanjaya has noticed that Sri Krishna has kept a smiling face and not laughing at the patient’s ignorance.

This sloka is depicted as the famous scene of the “Gitopadesham.” In the picture of the same, one can see Krishna the embodiment of dharma, standing in the front of the chariot, with a smiling face holding the whip in his hand depicting the role of the charioteer. Arjuna is seen sitting at the back of the chariot and his face is showing signs of depression.

One can almost say that Krishna is saying to Arjuna “is that all you are crying for?”

We all know that for an ignorant man, a span of ground appears like an ocean and for the wise man the ocean appears like a small ground. The ignorant is frightened to cross the small piece of land and while the wise is not perturbed to cross the enormous ground in front of him. There is an ocean of difference in the knowledge the two possess. Krishna, is the embodiment of the “Supreme Knowledge’ and Arjuna is the personification of “utter ignorance.”

Copyright for the texts on Bhagavad Gita by Dr. P.V. Nath, UK.
Questions concerning the text please direct to Dr. Nath at “snath@btinternet.com“.

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