Gita Daily Readings

16th January
Chapter
II: 4-6
Arjuna said: How, Oh Madhusudana, shall l fight with arrows in battle against Bhishma and Drona, who are fit to be worshipped?

Indeed, in this world it is better to accept alms than to slay the most noble teachers. But if I kill them, even in this world all my enjoyments of wealth and pleasures will be stained with blood.

I can hardly tell which will be better: that we should conquer them or that they should conquer us. The sons of Dhrtarashtra, after slaying those whom we do not even wish to live, stand facing us.

Commentary

Up to this point in the Bhagavad Gita, Arjuna is the guru, the wise man, who could discriminate between right and wrong. Now the vehement assertion of knowledge of dharma has yielded to a confusion - perhaps brought on by the gentle chiding administered by Krishna.

These are inevitable stages through which everyone passes. The fool thinks he is the wisest man in the world and has a solution to all problems that face mankind. He is sure that God exists or does not exist. He is, paradoxically enough. convinced of his own and everyone else's duty. There is no confusion in him; in his case  "ignorance is bliss." He has not sufficiently evolved to enter into the state of confusion that lies between the lower orders of human beings and the true (i.e. enlightened) human being. The unenlightened human being almost constantly finds himself on the horns of a dilemma. Often he is ridiculed by the fool: "I told you, give up all this philosophizing and be happy as I am." It is good to know that confusion is a stage higher than ignorance. It lasts till we find a guru or preceptor who opens the gates of wisdom for us to enter - guru in the sense of "light that dispels darkness." Such a guru may be personal or impersonal.

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