01. Observing the Armies : Sainya-darsana

Dhrtarastra said: O Sanjaya, what did my sons and the sons of Pandu do, after assembling for battle at the holy place of Kuruksetra?
1:1 | Observing the Armies : Sainya-darsana

Sanjaya said: Looking over the Pandavas' soldiers and armies arrayed in military formation, King Duryodhana approached Dronacarya and spoke as follows:
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O master, please observe the great armies of the Pandavas, arrayed in military formation by your intelligent disciple, Dhrstadyumna.
1:3 | Observing the Armies : Sainya-darsana

Among these soldiers are the expert bowmen Bhima and Arjuna, as well as others who are equally expert, such as Satyaki, King Virata, the great fighter Drupada, Dhrstaketu, Cekitana, the mighty hero Kasiraja, Purujit, Kuntibhoja, the noble King Saibya, va
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O best of the twice-born, please also be informed of the great heroes and leaders of our armies. I shall now fully describe them for your consideration.
1:7 | Observing the Armies : Sainya-darsana

Besides your worthy self, who are always victorious in battle, and Bhisma, Karna, Krpacarya, Asvatthama, Vikarna, Saumadatti (Bhurisrava), and Jayadratha, there are many other heroes who are expert in the art of warfare; they are all armed with various w
1:8 | Observing the Armies : Sainya-darsana

Our army, headed by Bhisma, is inadequate, whereas the army of the Pandavas, protected by Bhima, is competent.
1:10 | Observing the Armies : Sainya-darsana

Therefore, remaining in your respective divisions at the strategic points of the formation, please cooperate to protect Grandfather Bhisma.
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Then, with a war-cry like the roar of a lion, Bhisma, the mighty grandsire of the Kurus, loudly blew his conchshell to encourage Duryodhana.
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At once, conchshells, kettledrums, hand-drums, bugles, and other instruments were suddenly sounded, producing a tumultuous vibration.
1:13 | Observing the Armies : Sainya-darsana

On the other side, Lord Sri Krsna and Arjuna, in a grand chariot drawn by white horses, resounded their divine conchshells.
1:14 | Observing the Armies : Sainya-darsana

Hrsikesa sounded His conchshell, Pancajanya; Dhananjaya sounded his, the Devadatta; and Bhimasena, the performer of mighty tasks, blew the great conchshell named Paundra.
1:15 | Observing the Armies : Sainya-darsana

King Yudhisthira, the son of Kunti, blew the Anantavijaya, while Nakula and Sahadeva sounded the conchshells named Sughosa and Manipuspaka respectively.
1:16 | Observing the Armies : Sainya-darsana

O lord of the earth, the expert bowman Kasiraja, the great warrior Sikhandi, Dhrstadyumna, King Virata, the unconquerable Satyaki, King Drupada, the sons of Draupadi and the mighty son of Subhadra, Abhimanyu all sounded their respective conchshells.
1:17 | Observing the Armies : Sainya-darsana

The tremendous sound of those conchshells, resounding throughout the land and heavens, pierced the hearts of the sons of Dhrtarastra.
1:19 | Observing the Armies : Sainya-darsana

O King, at that time, Dhananjaya (Arjuna), mounted on a chariot decorated with the flag of Hanuman, was ready to release his weapons. Seeing Duryodhana and his company poised for battle, he picked up his bow and spoke to Sri Krsna as follows:
1:20 | Observing the Armies : Sainya-darsana

Arjuna said: O Krsna, please place my chariot between the two armies, so I may observe the warriors with whom I must contend on this battlefield, and who have come to fight for the satisfaction of the wicked Duryodhana.
1:21 | Observing the Armies : Sainya-darsana

Sanjaya said: O descendant of Bharata, after the vigilant Arjuna spoke these words, Sri Krsna (the Lord of all senses) maneuvered the grand chariot between both armies, in front of Bhisma, Drona, and all the emperors. The Lord then said: O Partha, behold
1:24 | Observing the Armies : Sainya-darsana

There, within both armies, Arjuna could actually see fatherly elders, grandfathers, teachers, maternal uncles, brothers, sons, grandsons, fathers-in-law, friends, and other well-wishers.
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Thus, seeing his own kinsmen present on the battlefield, the son of Kunti, Arjuna, griefstricken and overwhelmed with great compassion, spoke the following words:
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Arjuna said: O Krsna! Seeing my own relatives all standing before me eager for warfare, my limbs are being sapped of their strength and my mouth feels parched.
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My whole body is trembling and bristling. I am losing grip of my bow Gandiva, and my skin is burning.
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O Kesava! I cannot contain myself any longer. My mind is bewildered, and I see only hostile signs fraught with evil.
1:30 | Observing the Armies : Sainya-darsana

Nor do I see any good in killing my own relatives in this battle. O Krsna, I have no desire for victory, kingdom, or happiness.
1:31 | Observing the Armies : Sainya-darsana

O Govinda, of what value is our kingdom? What is the purpose of happiness and enjoyment, if those for whom we desire all this - teachers, fatherly elders, sons, grandfathers, maternal uncles, fathers-in-law, grandsons, brothers-in-law, and other relative
1:32 | Observing the Armies : Sainya-darsana

O Janardana, even if we gain sovereignty over the three worlds, not to speak of ruling over the earth, what happiness shall we obtain by killing Duryodhana and company?
1:35 | Observing the Armies : Sainya-darsana

Only sin will befall us if we slay our teachers and guardians, even if they be our aggressors. We cannot take the lives of our own relatives, the sons of Dhrtarastra. O Madhava, how can we be happy by killing our own kinsmen?
1:36 | Observing the Armies : Sainya-darsana

Although these men, their hearts afflicted by greed, cannot see the grave sin of fighting with friends and killing family members, why, O Janardana, should we not refrain from this heinous act, being in full knowledge of the grave consequences?
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With the decline of the dynasty, the religious traditions of the family are curtailed. When religious practices are thus disrupted, the entire remaining dynasty is overwhelmed by irreligion.
1:39 | Observing the Armies : Sainya-darsana

O Krsna, descendant of the Vrsni dynasty, when the family is thus predominated by irreligion, the women of the family become depraved, and from adultery, unwanted and unvirtuous progeny is born.
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Undesirable progeny forces both the family and its destroyers into a hellish condition. The same fate befalls the ancestors of that family, because the regular offerings of food and water to those ancestors are discontinued.
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The heinous acts of such destroyers of the dynasty cause the outbreak of mongrelized progeny. By those acts, ageless family tradition and noble high lineage are utterly devastated.
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O Janardana, we have heard that persons whose familial, social, and religious traditions are disrupted dwell always in hell.
1:43 | Observing the Armies : Sainya-darsana

Alas! What a grave sin we have decided to commit. Driven by our greed for trifling royal happiness, we are about to kill our own kinsmen.
1:44 | Observing the Armies : Sainya-darsana

If unarmed and unresisting, I were to be killed on this battlefield by the armed sons of Dhrtarastra, then that would be much more auspicious for me.
1:45 | Observing the Armies : Sainya-darsana

Sanjaya said: Having thus spoken on the battlefield, Arjuna cast aside his bow and arrows and sat down on the chariot, his heart overwhelmed with lamentation.
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Srimad Bhagavad Gita