Wednesday, May 20, 2009

II: 34-36

Chapter 2, Verse 34

“People will speak of your shame
Both now and in times to come.
For the honored,
This is surely worse than death.”

Maharishi Mahesh Yogi:

“Arjuna is the most famous archer of his time. That is why Krishna addresses the significance of an honored person. Krishna lays stress on the importance of honor, not for the sake of honor itself, but to call Arjuna’s attention to a principle of life: if he behaves in a way that will bring him shame, he will become a center of something unrighteous which will impair his personal evolution. It is primarily the principle of personal evolution that is the subject of consideration in this verse.”

Chapter 2, Verse 35

“The great warriors will say
That fear has driven you from battle.
You will be despised by those
Who have admired you for so long.”

Swami Chidbhavananda:

“The sworn enemies of Arjuna were compelled, though grudgingly, to admire his valor. They had to concede, with concealed envy, that Arjuna was one who engaged the Lord Shiva himself in an encounter and wrested from him as a prize, the divine weapon Pasupata. In the present situation, they would fail to understand that Arjuna withdrew from the battle lines out of love and consideration for his kith and kin. They would, on the other hand, slight him as one who fled from fear. Regard for the hero would at once transform itself into ridicule.”

Chapter 2, Verse 36

“Your enemies will speak of you
With contemptuous words
Of ill-will and derision,
Mocking your strength.”

Swami Chidbhavananda:

“The very thought of Arjuna makes his enemies shudder in their hearts. His martial appearance on the field of battle has dampened their war-zeal. But if he happens to beat a retreat at this time of crisis, those trembling enemies will surely come to themselves again. Their indulgence in insolent jokes would become unbearable.”

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