9-10. Chapter 2

Krishna responds to Arjuna’s despondency, setting the stage for his counsel.

सञ्जय उवाच
एवमुक्त्वा हृषीकेशं गुडाकेशः परन्तप।
न योत्स्य इति गोविन्दमुक्त्वा तूष्णीं बभूव ह॥ 2.9 ॥

Sañjaya uvāca
Evam uktvā hṛṣīkeśaṁ guḍākeśaḥ parantapa
Na yotsya iti govindam uktvā tūṣṇīṁ babhūva ha

Meaning:
Sanjaya said: Having spoken thus to Hrishikesha (Krishna), Gudakesha (Arjuna), the conqueror of sleep, and scorcher of foes, declared, "I will not fight," and became silent.

 

तमुवाच हृषीकेशः प्रहसन्निव भारत।
सेनयोरुभयोर्मध्ये विषीदन्तमिदं वचः॥ 2.10

Tamuvāca hṛṣīkeśaḥ prahasan-niva bhārata
Senayor ubhayor madhye viṣīdantam idaṁ vacaḥ

Meaning:
O Bharata (Dhritarashtra), Hrishikesha (Krishna), as if smiling, spoke these words to the despondent one (Arjuna) amidst the two armies.

 

In these shlokas, the scene unfolds with Arjuna, the mighty warrior, expressing his unwillingness to fight in the great battle of Kurukshetra. Overcome by compassion and sorrow, he puts down his bow and arrows, declaring to Krishna that he will not engage in battle. Observing Arjuna’s despair and confusion, Krishna, as his charioteer, prepares to impart crucial spiritual teachings. Sanjaya, the narrator, describes Krishna’s demeanor as he prepares to address Arjuna’s inner turmoil and guide him through his moral and philosophical dilemma. These verses set the stage for the profound discourse of the Bhagavad Gita, where Krishna’s wisdom will unravel the nature of duty, righteousness, and the eternal self.

 

Today's Context

These shlokas are significant today as they highlight the importance of facing our responsibilities even when we feel overwhelmed or confused. Arjuna’s reluctance symbolizes the common human tendency to retreat when confronted with difficult decisions or moral dilemmas. Krishna’s role emphasizes the need for guidance, self-awareness, and clarity in such times. In modern life, these verses remind us that true wisdom involves understanding our duties and acting with conviction and courage, rather than succumbing to despair. They teach the importance of seeking inner strength and clarity when faced with life’s challenges, encouraging us to act rightly despite personal fears or doubts.

 

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Knowledge Bank

Is there anything else I should know before visiting Yamunotri?

It's important to respect the local customs and traditions while visiting Yamunotri. It's advisable to dress modestly and refrain from consuming alcohol or non-vegetarian food during your visit. It's also recommended to carry some cash as there might not be ATMs or card payment facilities available in the remote areas. Lastly, always follow the instructions and guidelines provided by the local authorities for a safe and fulfilling pilgrimage experience.

Evolution of Practices in Sanatana Dharma

Sanatana Dharma, the eternal way, holds core values that remain unchanged. However, its practices and customs have evolved and must continue to do so to stay relevant. Some believe that Hinduism, with all its practices, is unchanging. This view misinterprets history and sacred texts. While Sanatana Dharma embodies eternal principles, it does not imply that every rule and custom is fixed. Hindu philosophy emphasizes the importance of adapting practices based on Desha (place), Kala (time), Patra (person), Yugadharma (dharma of the age), and Lokachara (local customs). This adaptability ensures that Sanatana Dharma remains relevant. Evolving practices are essential for the tradition’s growth and vitality. Rigid adherence to outdated practices risks rendering them obsolete and disconnected from the present age. Thus, while core values remain constant, the evolution of practices ensures the enduring relevance and vibrancy of Sanatana Dharma.

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Which region is called Aaryavarta ?
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