Chapter 1- Arjun vishaad yog

My goal for this year as far as reading is considered is to read the Bhagwad Geeta. I was inspired to read Bhagvad geeta as I was reading Shri Sai Satcharita. It’s believed that Bhagvad geeta can provides you answers to all the mystical and practical questions of life. As the name suggests it’s the song of God OR song from God.

Not sure what all I will explore and learn from this book or let me put it in a right way, not sure how mature is my mind to understand and absorb all that this book has to offer. However, I decided to pen my very basic thoughts and understandings as I read through the chapters of this book.

Bhagvad geeta has total 18 chapters and I just finished yesterday chapter 1 and its called Arjun Vishaad. The word vishaad means sorrow, sadness or here in this context I feel it’s the sadness arising from dilemma in Arjun’s mind hence Arjun’s vishaad yoga. The whole chapter is about Sanjay giving live commentary to King Dhritrashtra about battle yet to begin in Kurukshetra. This chapter is more about setting the stage for the actual bhagvad geeta learning as Arjun is sad and contemplating on his actions of entering in to war with his own relatives and friends. My interpretations are very raw as by no means I am a scholar but I just wanted to jot whatever I learnt from these chapters and my understanding and thoughts as a laymen that can help  people like me and even some young children.So here goes the learnings :

Chapter 1- Arjun vishaad yog

Hrishikesh- another name of Shri krishna, which means lord of mind and senses

Kapi Dhwaj – Another name of Arjun that means Monkey Bannered as Arjun’s chariot had flag bearing insignia of Lord Hanuman.

Paanchajanya- conch of Shri krishna

Anantavijay- conch of Yudhishthir,

DevaDutta – conch of Arjuna

Paundra – conch of Bheem

Sughosh – conch of Nakul

Manipushpak -conch of Sahadev

Gandeev- Arjun’s bow

My take away from chapter 1 came from story behind the shlok 20

The story teaches you to be humble and never boast / ego centric and revolves around Arjun and hanuman. Arjun in this shlok is addressed by another name, “Kapi Dhwaj,” which means “Monkey Bannered.” This name is due to the presence of the mighty Monkey God “Hanuman” on Arjun’s chariot. The story behind is that, once Arjun became very boastful of his archery skills . He said to Lord Krishna, “I do not understand why during Lord Rama’s time, the monkeys worked so hard to make a bridge from India to Lanka with heavy stones? If I was there, I would have made a bridge of arrows.” The Omniscient Lord asked him, “Alright, go ahead show me your bridge.”

Very skillfully Arjun showered thousands of arrows and made a huge bridge. Now, it was time to test it. Shree Krishna called upon great Hanuman for the job. As soon as Hanuman started walking on the bridge, it started crumbling under his feet. Arjun realized his folly; his bridge of arrows could not have upheld the weight of Lord Rama’s huge army. He asked for their forgiveness. Subsequently, Hanuman gave Arjun lessons on being humble and polite (not boastful). He also granted Arjun a boon that, during the great war, he would seat himself on Arjun’s chariot. Therefore, Arjun’s chariot flag carried the insignia of the great Hanuman.