Bhagavad Gita Chapter 2 Verse 11

अशोच्यानन्वशोचस्त्वं प्रज्ञावादांश्च भाषसे ।
गतासूनगतासूंश्च नानुशोचन्ति पण्डिताः ॥२-११॥

ashochyam anvashochas tvam pragyavadam s cha bhasase
gatashoon agatashunascha na anushochanti panditah ॥ 2-11 ॥



In Bhagavad Gita chapter 2 verse 11, Krishna tells Arjuna thus: you grieve for those who are not worthy of thy name. Those in enemy camp… how could Arjuna grieve for them? It was Kauravas who indulged in adharma (lawlessness). Grieving for such was not dharma of a Kshatriya (warrior caste). As a Kshatriya he must only think of fighting the enemy head-on.


Krishna further admonishes Arjuna for acting like a Pandita (one who exercises power of discrimination). As Arjuna failed to distinguish right from wrong… his acting like a Pandita was vague, false… unacceptable to Krishna! Until Arjuna developed power of discrimination… he must not act like one. At his level he must demonstrate true abilities of a Kshatriya.


Krishna further says: for human beings who were dead and those still living, a true Pandita never grieves. Why? For those already dead… what purpose grieving! For those alive, as they would also face death one day… why grieve ever! What Krishna wanted to convey to Arjuna was… life and death on mother earth was part of cosmic design.


One who had taken birth… would also die one day! One who has already died… would also rebirth in new manifestation!



The Explanation

Bhagavad Gita chapter 2 verse 11 has a very deep spiritual meaning to convey. As per Krishna… both life and death lay in hands of God Almighty! One who was truly wise must never get perturbed by happenings of physical manifest world. As per Krishna… death was only temporal. In the world of god… death carried no meaning! It was as simple as changing of guards at Buckingham Palace.


Through Bhagavad Gita chapter 2 verse 11 Lord Krishna distinctly conveys that life in cosmic domain always belonged to our soul atman, the spirit within and never the manifest physical human form. Manifestation after manifestation, body after body… a soul atman, the spirit within keeps manifesting new life forms until it reaches last leg of cosmic life… 8.4 millionth manifestation! Manifesting a body by a soul atman was part of cosmic design.


Of itself… every soul atman, the spirit within remained inert! To purify itself it needs a medium, a body to work out its karma… remove dross impurities within! Human form is the highest manifest stage in cosmic life cycle. It was only in human form a soul atman reached cosmic end of life, 8.4 millionth manifestation when human beings reached stage of enlightenment (kaivalya jnana) and finally salvation moksha forever.


In bhagavad gita chapter 2 verse 11 Lord Krishna makes it explicitly clear to Arjuna that control of life in physical manifest world laid in hands of our soul atman, the spirit within and not the physical manifest self! It was exercising power of discrimination, through path of contemplation human beings finally realized presence of a soul atman, a spirit within our body! Krishna made it clear to Arjuna that he had yet to realize presence of a soul atman, the spirit within his body. If he had realized this cosmic fact of life… he would not lament for those dead or living.


As souls’ atmans were governing in cosmos… lamentation by physical manifest self carried no meaning. Only an ignorant in matters spiritual would give importance to physical body as being done by Arjuna. By travelling path of dharma (righteousness) one only realized our true nature… our true inner self… our soul atman, the spirit within! When a soul never dies… why grieve for death of someone on mother earth. Krishna impresses upon Arjuna to realize this cosmic truth, the fundamental relationship between a soul atman and physical manifest self.


Pandita (also called pundit) in Hinduism scriptures was one who exercised power of discrimination to distinguish right from wrong. Krishna advises Arjuna to act like a true Pandita by contemplating on spiritual principles of life. To understand meaning of life… our indulgence in world of souls’ atmans vis-à-vis human body was necessitated. Krishna also tells Arjuna that mortality was a temporary phase in the life of a soul atman, the spirit within! A true traveler of spiritual path would never fear death… no matter what!


Journey of spiritual path was not a requirement of physical manifest life. Human beings undertook spiritual journey to facilitate our soul atman, the spirit within regaining its lost original pure prime pristine primordial form forever. Liberation from cycle of birth and death was the ultimate goal of life for a soul atman, the spirit within! No soul atman, the spirit within could do without manifesting a form on life supporting planets like mother earth.


Krishna urges Arjuna to fight battle of dharma (righteousness) to root out evil from society. The spiritual journey, spiritual path can only be undertaken in a serene atmosphere! In times of strife, tribulation… we just could not expect human beings to undertake spiritual journey to reach god! Lord Krishna clearly advises Arjuna not to grieve for those already dead and those who were alive. Why grieve for death which was inevitable.


As goal of life for Arjuna was to understand intricacies of spiritual life… he should not fear death at any stage of life! In the battle of Mahabharata… if the death of his maternal grandfather Bhishma Pitamah and Guru Dronacharya occurred at hands of Pandavas, then what was there to grieve! Their souls’ atmans would manifest a new life form based on residual balance of karma at the time of death of body. For Arjuna to understand this cosmic truth, Krishna presented to him teachings of Srimad Bhagavad Gita.


A wise traveler of spiritual path never fears death. In the domain of souls’ atmans, death was but a platform to manifest new life. Unless death of body occurred… how could a soul atman, the spirit within manifest new body! The crux of life laid in indulgence in good karma, positive karma so that our soul atman, the spirit within manifests a higher level in next manifestation. At the time of death, closing balance of present life becomes opening balance for next manifestation.


Krishna advises Arjuna to wisely exercise his power of discrimination all the time. It is this power of discrimination that distinguishes human beings from animals. Krishna advises Arjuna to act wise and distinguish right from wrong. No matter who gets killed in the enemy or his own camp… he must fight this battle between dharmic (righteous) and adharmic (evil) forces of nature. This power of discrimination also tells us that we were primarily a soul atman, the spirit within… and not a manifest physical human form!


As a human being it was our prime duty to assist our soul atman, the spirit within in liberating self from cycle of birth and death at the earliest! The whole aim behind spiritual journey was reaching stage of enlightenment (kaivalya jnana) and finally salvation moksha. Krishna knew well that it was only Arjuna amongst the entire Pandava camp who was competent to do so and the sermon of Bhagavad Gita was delivered only to Arjuna by Lord Krishna in the battle of Mahabharata.


Commentary by: Vijay Kumar “Atma Jnani”… The Man who Realized God in 1993 – Sep 5, 2014

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