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When Do We Actually Surrender To God? 

Sakshi Joshi
Sakshi Joshi Life Lessons

The Chapter 2 of Shreemad Bhagvad Geeta is called Sankhya Yoga for a reason. 

One reason is - Sankhya = Knowledge / Gyaan. 

In this particular chapter, Krishna imparts knowledge which is the nectar and rules all. 

Another reason is - Sankhya = Numbers

In this chapter, Krishna recites the numbers of elements (Tatva) in the Universe, with the knowledge of which, one can attain clarity in self. 

Fun Fact - Are you aware of the strategic name-calling in the Shreemad Bhagvad Geeta? Krishna and Arjuna are addressed with different names in different chapters. Let’s understand the tactics of name calling with a few examples. 

Krishna calls Arjuna with various names such as Parth specifically in this chapter as he wants him to remember his mother’s name Pritha (Kunti). So that if he remembers his mother, he will also remember that Kunti wanted him to fight the war for the greater good of the society. 

While Sanjay recites the happenings of the war to Dhritarashtra, he is continuously addressing Krishna as Madhusudan psychologically to remind Dhritarashtra on how Krishna killed the demon Madhu (The one who was committed to atrocities against the demigods). So that Dhritarashtra gains consciousness on how powerful Arjuna’s charioteer Krishna is, and calls off the war.

Sanjay is reciting everything to Dhritharashtra regarding Arjuna’s helplessness and how he is consumed by cowardly compassion, grief, sadness and is now seeking Krishna’s advice on the same. 

1 & 2nd Verse 

Krishna questions Arjuna on his behaviour. 

‘Arjuna, you’re the considered the most proficient archer in the world, how can you become an obstacle in your own thoughts. It seems like you’ve fallen in trap of your own emotions. How can you be ignorant about the purpose of the far? Is this the right time for all your mindless thoughts, while we are in the middle of the war?’

3rd Verse 

In the 3rd verse, Krishna asks Arjuna, ‘’Hey Parantapa, Are you the same powerful warrior who used to win all the wars? Have you forgotten about the divine weapons that you’ve gained as blessings from the Gods just for this war? Have you forgotten how divine and powerful your body is?’’

Note: Parantapa is another name for Arjuna, meaning the one who’s powerful enough to set his enemies on deadly fire. 

Krishna continues in a harsh tone, ‘’Arjuna, you’ve become impotent with your thoughts and emotions at this time.That’s because your thoughts are proving to be an obstacle in your way. This is not compassion at all. This is cowardliness and weakness. Sacrifice these thoughts for the greater good.’’ 

Did You Know? 

Arjuna’s Gaandiv Bow was gold plated and with this bow he won many wars agains the demigods too. Arjuna was awarded this bow by the God of Fire. The bow was considered divine because it was with Brahma for 1000 years, Prajapati for 503 years, Indra for 85 years, the Moon God for 500 years and Varunadeva for 100 years.

Moreover, Arjuna also had Pashupatastra (The Great Divine Weapon of Lord Shiva) which he acquired after his tough meditation on one toe and no food. You’d be surprised to know that during his meditation, the area where he meditated became hot like fire with his aura due to which all the saints in that area prayed to Lord Shiva to appear before Arjuna and grant him the blessing. 


4th Verse 

Arjuna again laments in this verse saying that it’s impossible for him to kill his divine sworn grandfather and idol - Bhishma Pitamah and his honoured teacher Drona. They’re not worth killing. 

Arjuna never ever raised his voice against his teachers and mentors and today when it came to killing them, his hands are shaking with anxiousness and grief. 

Also, he justifies himself by saying that killing our elderly and teachers is not humanity. Why should I indulge in inhumane acts like these? Krishna, how can you encourage me towards killing these divine personalities? I can’t even think of killing them in my dreams. I learned from them to kill them? Am I a demon?

5th Verse 

Arjuna questions Krishna again, ‘’What will I get after killing them? It’d be better if I eat food by begging instead of killing my mentor, teachers or idols. I’ll be guilt striken my whole life. What will I do with a kingdom that I acquire with their blood?

Arjuna is in the state of confusion. Because, Kshatriyas (The warrior clan) considers eating by begging to stay alive inauspicious. Similarly, killing their Gurus was out of the question, because the one who kills his Gurus can never remain happy in any part of the Universe. 

6th Verse 

Arjuna rants on and on with his unreasonable justifications for not fighting the war. He says, ‘Hey Madhusudan, we’re also not sure that who will win the war? What is good for everyone? Don’t you think, in this situation, it’s better to loose this war? I’m not concerned about my life at all. I can’t do this crime.’

The surprising fact is that being a powerful warrior of the Kshatriya clan, his current thought process is shaking with overwhelmed emotions and cowardliness. 

‘’Hey Krishna, are you getting what I mean to say?’’

Arjuna thinks whether Krishna is listening to him or not. 

‘’What’s the reason that you’re not completely focussing on what I’m saying? I’ve completely poured my heart out in front of you. And now if the reality is something else, then you only know it.’

7th Verse

And, in the 7th verse he finally says that he is in delusion of his own thoughts. He is totally helpless and doesn’t know what to do. As the consciousness is no more his companion, he seeks refuge in Krishna’s advice. He eagerly asks Krishna to guide him towards the right path while his mind is filled with delusional thoughts and he has become impotent to his thoughts. As he says that he has totally lost his wisdom and conscience, he is no longer in a position to make any decision. He finally surrenders to Krishna that would ultimately fuel his sole purpose. 

If you look at story of Mahabharta, Arjuna considered Krishna his friend. However, in this situation, it has gone beyond friendship because we seek advice from our friends but we never surrender to them. We surrender to someone we think is above us and we take their preachings as well. Since Arjuna is unaware, unconscious and delusional, he takes refuge in surrendering to Krishna. 

8th Verse 

Totally powerless and vulnerable, Arjuna surrenders to Krishna by saying that even if he gets the kingdom of heavens, his grief won’t decrease. He has no desires left to be satisfied. Then he says, ‘Please educate me on what shall I do next.’

Q/A : Why did Arjuna Surrender to Krishna? 

Arjuna heard a lot about Krishna from his mother (Kunti), teachers and the whole country sang glories of Krishna. He knew that Krishna was the creator himself.
Considering he was omnipotent, omnipresent, omniscient, ocean of divinity, prosperous, melodious, brave and the BHAGWAN himself, Arjuna surrendered. 

BHAGWAN = Aishwarya (Prosperity) + Dharma (Righteouness)  + Yash (Eminence) + Shree (Shakti) + Gyaan ( Self Knowledge) + Veragya (Fulfillment)

The one who has all these Bhag (6 qualities) is known as BHAGWAN in our culture. 

9th Verse 

Arjuna’s state of bewilderment is proved in this verse when he again goes back to the same statement that he would not fight the battle. At one moment, he surrenders, in the other moment he goes back to not fighting the battle. 

Arjuna’s Perplexity

He was the one who urged Krishna out of courage to take the chariot in the no man’s land to see who’s supporting Duryodhana in his evil deeds.

He was the one who becomes a prisoner of his own thoughts and emotions after looking at his Gurus and family members.

He surrenders by saying that he will take orders from Krishna for the greater good.

Even after the surrender, he backs off by saying that he won’t be interested in the war. He also asks Krishna not to motivate him for the war.

10th Verse 

Krishna with his mischievous smile laughs knowing that Arjuna has finally surrendered to him. 

The whole mystery plot of making Arjuna grieve, sad and helpless was played by mischievous Krishna to help him surrender because that would ultimately take him closer to the purpose of his life. So, Arjuna was asking for some permanent solution that would detach him from this grief and sadness. 

The Crux : We usually surrender to God when there are no solutions left. When we have tried everything and nothing works for us, that is the time when our ego destroys and we think of surrendering to God thinking that he would provide us with a better solution. Isn’t it?


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