sañjaya uvāca —
evam uktvārjunaḥ saṅkhye
rathopastha upāviśat
visṛjya sa-śaraṁ cāpaṁ

“Sañjaya said: Having spoken these words in the midst of the battlefield, Arjuna, his mind distracted by lamentation, cast aside his bow and arrows and sat down on the chariot.”


Sanjaya told Dhṛtarāṣṭra, “Now, Arjuna is giving up his bow and arrows and sitting despondently upon his seat in the chariot with a downcast head, full of lamentation.”

One person who is strong, full of willpower like an Ācārya or Guru, if he is attacked by bad attachment, moha, all his strength and power will be lost.

Now Arjuna was silent; devoid of all strength. When do people lose their strength? Guru-pāda-padma and the Ācāryas teach us that intelligence is given by God. When we use our intelligence against God and our mentality goes against dharma, then we will lose everything. Our strength, our brain will stop working. Arjuna has now transferred himself near to crazy, mental people and material enjoyers. He was absorbed in thoughts about them and their welfare. Externally, he was with Kṛṣṇa, but he did not follow Kṛṣṇa. He empathetically left Kṛṣṇa, and went over to the Kauravas.

The Vrajavāsīs, Vraja-devīs may remain in their houses and buildings, but they always think of Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa thinks of them as well, and therefore they are always strong. When Kṛṣṇa played on His flute, the gopīs immediately left everything and ran to Him. However, Arjuna was with Kṛṣṇa, yet not with Kṛṣṇa in reality. He was with his blood relatives who were all like criminals and terrorists.

In the first chapter of the Bhagavad-gītā, the position of Arjuna before battle has been shown to have come about by the effect of bad association. It has been shown in the first chapter how badly a situation will come upon one due to evil association. His were only so-called relatives, who only had a desire to drink blood. They did not follow appropriate etiquette, but still, being attached to them caused him so much suffering. This kind of attachment is not beneficial to any sādhaka. Therefore this is an important instruction given in the gītā.

Arjuna’s inner faculties had now all become weak and devoid of potency. He sat with a downcast face, silent like a dead body.

In the Śrīmad-bhāgavatam, Śukadeva Gosvāmī says—

If anyone hears the glories of Kṛṣṇa and His instruction, then devotion will arise from within and all low mentality and bad attachment will dissipate. Therefore Arjuna prayed to Kṛṣṇa for His help.

Sanjaya said to Dhṛtarāṣṭra: Arjuna then told Kṛṣṇa, “I will not fight,” and fell silent.

He addressed him as “Gudakesa”. Arjuna had already conquered his senses prior to this day, but now what had happened to all his prior strength? Saying this Sanjaya implied, “If this could happen to Arjuna, then what to speak of you and I?”
“You are Govinda; the helper and nourisher of all the senses. I am now hopeless, Kṛṣṇa.” Arjuna said.

Kṛṣṇa is master of the senses, Hṛṣīkeśa; the helper of all. Duryodhana thought he had conquered over everything, thinking māyā had made him victorious. Now however, Arjuna had completely taken shelter of Kṛṣṇa and thus,the Kauravas had no hope of success.

Many people think and endeavour to steal disciples or spiritual aspirants away from Guru and God, like when Kala Kṛṣṇa dāsa was taken from Caitanya Mahaprabhu. However, Caitanya Mahaprabhu brought him back. Guru and Vaiṣṇavas will bring back anyone who has love and affection for them.

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