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NITAAI-Veda.nyf > Shrimad Bhagavad Gita > Gita By Acharyas > Gita 11 Vishvarupa Darshana Yoga

Ch 11. Visvarupa Darsana Yoga

Yoga Through Beholding the Lord's Universal Form

This chapte reveals that the visvaupa of Bhagavan is illusory. His svarupa (form) is aprakta nara-vapu, transcendental and human like. Only bhaktas whose eyes are anointed with prema can have darsana of His rasika sekhara form. Bhagavan is only attained by ananya bhakti-yo ga.

The Glories of Chapter Eleven (Mahatmya)

Lord Siva said; “My dear Parvati, now I will relate to you the glories of the Eleventh Chapter of Shrimad Bhagavad-gita. It is not possible to tell it’s full glories, as there are thousands of stories, I will relate one of them only.
On the banks of the Pranita river is a large town of the name Megankara in which is the famous temple of Jagat Isvara. Jagat lsvara is holding in His hand a bow. In that town of Megankara, there was a pure brahmana of the name Sunand, ho remained a brahmachari his whole life.

Sunand would sit in front of Lord Jagat Isvara and recite the Eleventh Chapter of the Shrimad Bhagavad-gita and remember the Universal Form of the Lord. By reciting that Eleventh Chapter of Shrimad Bhagavad-gita, he gained complete control over his senses and was able to remember Lord Jagat Isvara continuously.

Once that pure brahmana Sunand went on a tour of the holy places on the banks of the Godavari River. He visited all the sacred places, starting with Viraj-Tirtha. In all the holy places he visited, he bathed, and took darshan of the presiding deity. One day he reached the town of Vivaha Mandap. Along with his associates he searched for a place to stay and eventually in the middle of that town they found a dharmashala, where they all took rest for the night. When Sunand woke up in the morning he found that all his associates had left. While searching for them, he met the headman of the town, who immediately fell at his feet and said, “Oh great sage, I cannot say where your associates have gone, but I can tell you that there is no devotee equal to you. I have never seen anyone as pure as you. Oh, my dear brahmana, I am begging you to stay in this town.”

When Sunand heard the humble request of the headman of the town, he decided to stay for some days.
That headman made every arrangement for the comfortable stay of Sunand and engaged in his service day and night. After eight days had passed, one villager came before Sunand, crying very loudly and said, “Oh pure Brahmana, last night one rakshasa ate my son.” Sunand inquired, “Where does that rakshasa stay? And how did he eat your son?”
The villager replied, “In this town one very frightful rakshasa lives, who every day was eating villagers as and when he pleased. One day, we all went to that rakshasa and requested him to protect us, in return for which we would provide him with his daily food. One dharmashala was built, and any travelers who came here were sent there to stay and while they were sleeping the rakshasa would eat them, In this way we have been able to protect ourselves from this rakshasa. You, along with your associates, stayed at that dharmashala, but that rakshasa did not eat you along with everyone else. The reason I will tell you. Last night a friend of my son came but I did not realize that he was a very close and dear friend of my son, so I sent him to stay in dharmashala. Later when my son found out, he went after him to try and bring him back from the dharmashala but when he went there, he was also eaten by that rakshasa. Today, in the morning, I went to that rakshasa and asked him, why he had eaten my son along with the other travelers. I also requested him, if there was any way, I could get back my son. That rakshasa told me, “I did not know that your son had also entered the dharmashala, thus he was eaten with everyone else. As far as getting him back that will be possible when I am freed from this rakshasa body which will be possible by the mercy of a person who recites the Eleventh Chapter of Shrimad Bhagavad-gita daily.
Right now, there is one brahmana staying in this town, who had stayed at this dharmashala, but I had not eaten him, because he daily recites the Eleventh Chapter of Shrimad Bhagavad-gita. If He daily recites the Eleventh Chapter of Shrimad Bhagavad-gita seven times then sprinkles water on me, then I will be able to get free from the curse of this rakshasa body”.

Sunand inquired, from that villager, “What sin did this person perform to attain a rakshasa body?” The villager replied, ‘Long ago there had been a farmer living in this town. One day he was guarding the fields when, just a little distance away from him, one large vulture attacked a person, who was travelling on the road. At that time, one yogi was passing by and when he saw that person being attacked by that vulture he came running to his aid but when he reached him, it was too late. Then that yogi became very angry with the farmer and spoke to him as follows, “One who sees others in danger from thieves, snakes, fire, attack by weapons etc., and even though he is capable of helping them, but does not come to help, is punished by Yamaraja. After suffering in hell for a very long time, he takes birth as a wolf. And one, who helps someone in need of help, certainly pleases Lord Vishnu. One, who attempts to save a cow from the hands of a ferocious animal, a low-class man or a wicked ruler, attains Lord Vishnu. Wicked farmer, you saw that vulture attacking that person but still you made no attempt to save him. Now I curse you to take birth as a rakshasa.” The Farmer said, “I was watching the fields for the whole night and I am very tired, so kindly be merciful to me, oh, gentle sage.” The yogi replied, “When someone, who is daily reciting the Eleventh Chapter of Shrimad Bhagavad-gita, sprinkles water on your head, then you will become free from this curse”.

The villager said. “My dear Sunand, with your hand kindly sprinkle water on the head of this rakshasa.” After hearing that history from the villager, Sunand went along with him to the place where that rakshasa was staying and while he was reciting the Eleventh Chapter of Shrimad Bhagavad-gita, sprinkled water on his head. That rakshasa immediately attained a four-armed form like that of Lord Vishnu. Not only he, but all the thousands of persons he had eaten also attained a four-armed form like that of Lord Vishnu. Then they all sat down in the flower aeroplane, which had been sent to take them all to Vaikuntha.

Seeing those amazing events, the villager inquired from the rakshasa which one was his son. The rakshasa started to laugh and pointed at one of those thousands of beautiful persons sitting in the transcendental airplane and replied, “That is your son”. The villager requested his son to come home with him. Hearing his father’s request the son smilingly replied, “My dear sir, many times you have been my son and I yours but now by the grace of this great pure devotee Sunand, I have been released from this wheel of birth and death and now I am going to my real home, Vaikuntha. Dear sir, kindly surrender unto the lotus-feet of Sunand and hear from him the Eleventh Chapter of Shrimad Bhagavad-gita, and you also will be able to attain the abode of Lord Vishnu (Vaikuntha), of this there is no doubt. From Lord Krishna’s mouth, these nectarian instructions came on the battlefield of Kuruksetra in reply to the questions of His friend Arjuna. And only by hearing and reciting this discourse can one break the tight knot which is binding us to this wheel of birth and death.”
Lord Siva said; “After speaking those words, full of wisdom, to his father, along with all those other fortunate souls, he went to Vaikuntha and his father learned the Eleventh Chapter of Shrimad Bhagavad-gita from Sunand and very soon they also went to Vaikuntha.

My dear Parvati, you have heard the glories of the Eleventh Chapter of Shrimad Bhagavad-gita, which is capable of destroying all sinful reactions.”


arjuna uvaca
mad-anugrahaya paramam / guhyam adhyatma-samjnitam
yat tvayoktam vacas tena / moho 'yam vigato mama

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.1 <>

arjuna uvaca---Arjuna said; vacah---the words; paramam---of supreme; guhyam---confidential knowledge; adhyatma-samjnitam--- concerning Your opulences; yat---which; uktam---were spoken; tvaya---by You; mat-anugrahaya---out of mercy for me; tena---by those words; ayam---this; mohah---delusion; mama---of mine; vigatah---has been dispelled.

Arjuna said: Having heard the supremely confidential knowledge of Your vibhutis, which You revealed out of compassion for me, my delusion has now been dispelled.


In the Eleventh Chapter, Arjuna becomes fearful upon seeing the vishvarupa (universal form) of Shri Bhagavan, and with perplexed intelligence he begins praying to Him. Thereafter, Shri Hari gives bliss to Arjuna by again showing him His eternal two-handed form.

At the end of the last chapter, Shri Krishna said, "I pervade and support the whole universe merely by one of My amshas (portions)." After hearing of the vibhutis of his dear friend who is the primeval person and the abode of all vibhutis, Arjuna became immersed in supreme bliss. He rejoiced upon hearing Shri Bhagavan's descriptions of His vibhutis. With a desire to see that form, Arjuna now speaks three shlokas, the first beginning with the words mad-anugrahaya.

Arjuna's moha (ignorance) of the aishvarya of Shri Krishna was dispelled upon hearing the statements of Shri Bhagavan, from whom all these vibhutis originate.


In the previous chapter, when Arjuna heard Shri Bhagavan speak the most confidential and supremely secret instructions on atma-tattva, his delusion was removed to a certain extent. He understood clearly that Shri Krishna is Svayam Bhagavan, the limit of para-tattva. By His amsha of Paramatma, He enters and pervades this entire universe, manifesting unlimited opulences. Although He is the fountainhead of all vibhutis, He remains distinct from them in His eternal, two-handed Shyamasundara svarupa. Arjuna rejoices upon hearing Bhagavan's statements and wants to realise this jnana (and thus possess it as vijnana). He therefore says, "Previously I doubted whether or not Your vibhutis are independent from You. But now this doubt, which was born from ignorance, has been dispelled." On a deeper level, this statement indicates that he now wants to see Krishna's vishvarupa.


bhavapyayau hi bhutanam / shrutau vistarasho maya
tvattah kamala-patraksha / mahatmyam api cavyayam

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.2 <>

kamala-patra-aksha---O lotus-eyed Lord; hi---indeed; shrutau--- have been heard; maya---by me; tvattah---from You; vistarashah--- extensively; bhava-apyayau---the origin and dissolution; bhutanam---of the living beings; ca---and; api---also; avyayam--- Your immortal; mahatmyam---glories.

O lotus-eyed Lord, I have heard from You in detail about the origin and dissolution of the living entities, as well as Your unlimited glories.


These middle six chapters explain that the root cause of everything, including creation and annihilation, is Shri Bhagavan. As it is said in Gita (7.6), "I alone am the cause of the creation and destruction of the entire universe." Shri Bhagavan is unchangeable and eternal (avyaya). That is, although He manifests the creation, He remains free from any transformations and attachments. This is shown in shlokas such as Gita (9.4): "By Me this whole universe is pervaded," and Gita (9.9): "All these works cannot bind Me."


evam etad yathattha tvam / atmanam parameshvara
drashtum icchami te rupam / aishvaram purushottama

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.3 <>

parameshvara---O Supreme Controller; evam---I accept; etat---this; yatha---as; tvam---You; attha---have spoken; atmanam---of Yourself (concerning Your opulences); purusha-uttama---O Supreme Person; icchami---I wish; drashtum---to see; te---Your; rupam--- form; aishvaram---of opulence.

O Parameshvara, I accept all that You have spoken about Yourself as true. O Purushottama, now I wish to see that great form, replete with Your aishvarya.


Atmanam tvam yathattha. You said, "I am situated in this world by pervading it with one of My amshas. (Gita 10.42). This is, indeed, true. I have not a trace of doubt about this. Yet I desire the satisfaction of seeing Your aishvarya form. That is, I want to see with my own eyes the form of that amsha, Your ishvara form, in which You exist upon entering this world."


With a desire to see that form of Bhagavan which is full of aishvarya, Arjuna is saying, "O Parameshvara, I have heard about Your wonderful, unlimited vibhutis and I have no doubt that You are the source of them. Now, however, I am becoming eager to actually see that aishvarya form of Yours. You are Antaryami, who exist within everyone's heart (sarvaantary ami). Therefore, You also know my inner desire and You are capable of fulfilling it."

Someone may raise the following doubt: If Arjuna is an eternal friend of Krishna, who is the madhurya-maya-vigraha (embodiment of sweetness), why is he desiring to see the vishvarupa which expresses Bhagavan's aishvarya? The answer is that, just as a person who is very fond of sweets also sometimes desires to eat bitter and sour food (such as neem leaves or pickle), in the same way, Arjuna, who is always tasting Shri Krishna's sweetness (madhurya) also developed a desire to see His vishvarupa which is an expression of His aishvarya. This has another meaning. Although Arjuna has no doubt about the aishvarya and super-excellence of Shri Krishna, he is desiring to see this aishvarya form simply for his own personal satisfaction.


manyase yadi tac chakyam / maya drashtum iti prabho
yogeshvara tato me tvam / darshayatmanam avyayam

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prabho---O master; yadi---if; tvam manyase---You think; iti---that; tat---it; shakyam---is possible; drashtum---to be seen; maya---by me; tatah---then; yoga-ishvara---O controller of all mystic power; darshaya---show me; avyayam---Your unchanging; atmanam---self.

O Prabhu! If You think that it is possible for me to behold Your imperishable aishvarya form, then please, O Yogeshvara, reveal that form to me.


Arjuna says, "Although I am not qualified to see that form of Yours, it is possible for me to see it by the influence of Your mystic power, because You are Yogeshvara, the Supreme Mystic."


In the previous shloka, Arjuna expressed his desire to see the aishvarya form of Shri Bhagavan. In the present shloka, he is seeking His approval. "O Prabhu! O master of all! O Yogeshvara! I have expressed my internal desires to You. Although I am unqualified, if You consider me an object of Your mercy, then kindly reveal that vishvarupa to me."

Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura says, "The jiva is an atomic conscious entity (anu-chaitanya), therefore he cannot properly understand the activities of Shri Bhagavan who is supreme infinite consciousness (vibhu-chaitanya). "I am a jiva but even after You have mercifully bestowed upon me the adhikara to understand and behold Your svarupa-tattva, the universal form, I am unable to comprehend Your infinite aishvarya features. This is because they are beyond the conception of the jiva. You are Yogeshvara and my Prabhu. Therefore, please show me Your yoga-aishvarya which is by nature imperishable and conscious.""


shri-bhagavan uvaca
pashya me partha rupani / shatasho 'tha sahasrashah
nana-vidhani divyani / nana-varnakritini ca

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.5 <>

shri-bhagavan uvaca---the all-opulent Lord said; partha---O son of Pritha; pashya---behold; me---My; rupani---forms; shatashah---by the hundreds; atha---and; sahasrashah---thousands; (they are) nana-vidhani---variegated; divyani---divine; ca---and; nana- varna---have many colours; akritini---and shapes.

Shri Bhagavan said: O Partha, behold My hundreds and thousands of various multi-coloured divine forms.


"Initially, I will reveal to him (Arjuna) the first purusha (Karanodakashayi), who is My amsha and the Antaryami of material nature. He is described in the Purusha-sukta as having thousands of heads, eyes and feet. I will then make him understand My svamsha, My own expansion whose feature of kala, all devouring time, is relevant to the present context." Thinking like this, Shri Bhagavan instructs Arjuna, "Be attentive. " In saying this, He draws Arjuna's attention towards Himself. By using the two words pashya and rupani, Shri Bhagavan is saying, "In My one svarupa only, there are hundreds of forms (hosts of vibhutis). Behold them."


Understanding Arjuna's internal desire, Shri Bhagavan is making Arjuna attentive. He does this in order to show Arjuna His form as the Antaryami of material nature. This form has hundreds of heads, eyes and forms as described in the Purusha-sukta, and it is His svamsha-rupa (the form of His own expansion). He also wants Arjuna's attention so that He can show him the unlimited vibhutis existing in just one of His amshas. In other words, on the pretext of making him attentive, Bhagavan is blessing Arjuna to have the qualification to see this form. By addressing him as Partha, Krishna also indicates His relationship with him.


pashyadityan vasun rudran / ashvinau marutas tatha
bahuny adrishta-purvani / pashyashcaryani bharata

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.6 <>

bharata---O descendant of Bharata; pashya---see; adityan---the Adityas; vasun---Vasus; rudran---Rudras; ashvinau---Ashvinis; tatha---and; marutah---the Maruts; pashya---behold; bahuni--- many; ashcaryani---astonishing (sights); adrishta-purvani---which you have never seen before.

O Bharata, behold the twelve Adityas, the eight Vasus, the two Ashvini-kumaras, the forty-nine Maruts and so many other wondrous and astonishing forms that you have never seen before.


Here Shri Bhagavan's addressing Arjuna as Bharata is significant. Arjuna was born in the dynasty of rajarshi Bharata, the greatly pious and pure bhakta. For this reason, he is also greatly dharmika and an aikantika bhakta of Bhagavan. Therefore, he is qualified to see the form of Bhagavan which had not been seen before.


ihaika-stham jagat kritsnam / pashyadya sa-caracaram mama dehe gudakesha / yac canyad drashtum icchasi

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gudakesha---O conqueror of sleep; adya---now; pashya---behold; mama dehe---in My body; kritsnam---the entire; jagat---universe; sa-cara-acaram---together with all moving and non-moving beings; iha---here; eka-stham---in one place; ca---and; yat---whatever; anyat---else; icchasi---you desire; drashtum---to see. O Gudakesha, now behold the entire universe, including all moving and non-moving beings, assembled together in one place within this body of Mine. Whatever else you may wish to see is also visible within this universal form.


"That whole universe which you will not be able to see, even by wandering for millions of years, is situated in just one part of My body." To explain this, Shri Bhagavan is speaking this shloka beginning with the words ihaika-stham jagat. "The cause of your victory or defeat, whatever it may be, is existing in this body, which is the shelter of the universe. "


Shri Bhagavan is again saying, "Within this universal form of Mine, you will behold the entire world of moving and nonmoving entities. This universal form cannot be seen by the performance of hard labour for millions of years. It can only be seen by My mercy. In this vishvarupa, you will see Me and the entire world, as well as your victory or defeat in this battle of Kurukshetra. Moreover, you can also see whatever else you want to see." Here, the word Gudakesha is used. Gudaka means sleep or ignorance, and isha means master. In this way, Bhagavan indicates that Arjuna should behold this form with great attention. Thus his doubts about victory or defeat will be dispelled, and Arjuna will be able to understand that in this universe the performance of every activity is prearranged by Krishna. Neither Arjuna nor anyone else is able to change this arrangement in any way.


divyam dadami te cakshuh / pashya me yogam aishvaram

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but; eva---certainly; na shakyase---you are unable; drashtum--- to see; mam---Me; anena---with these; sva-cakshusha---eyes of yours; dadami---I am giving; te---to you; divyam---divine; cakshuh---eyes; pashya---now see; me---My; yogam---mystic; aishvaram---opulence.

However, you are unable to see Me with the eyes you have now. Therefore, I confer upon you divine eyes with which to behold My yoga-aishvarya.


Shri Bhagavan is saying, "Arjuna, do not consider this form to be illusory and composed of maya, but know it to be saccid- ananda. My svarupa, in which the whole universe exists, is beyond the perception of the material senses." To make him understand this, Shri Bhagavan is speaking this shloka beginning with na tu. He says, "You will not be able to see Me, the embodiment of concentrated cit, with your material eyes. Therefore, I am granting you divyam (divine) eyes by which you will see Me." The purpose of the above statement is just to astonish Arjuna who identifies himself as being an ordinary mortal human being. But Arjuna is a chief associate of Shri Bhagavan and only appears to be a human, so his eyes are not actually material like those of an ordinary human. Arjuna, who directly experiences the madhurya of Shri Krishna, will not be able to see His amsha (the universal form) with those same eyes and, therefore, he has to accept divine eyes. What kind of logic is this? Some say that the supremely fortunate eyes of an ananya-bhakta see the great sweetness, maha-madhurya, of Shri Krishna's human-like pastimes and do not see the aishvarya feature of His divine pastimes. This is compared to the tongue which is used to tasting mishri (rock sugar) and does not appreciate the taste of guda (gur, unproccessed sugar). Therefore, on the request of Arjuna, and to give him the special, wondrous sight of the aishvarya feature of His divine form, Shri Bhagavan gives him divya-cakshu, superhuman eyes appropriate for savouring this particular loving exchange. Another purpose in giving him divya-cakshu will become clear at the end of this chapter.


Arjuna is a nitya-siddha parikara, an eternally perfect associate of Shri Krishna. With eyes full of prema, he always sees and relishes the ever-sweet form of Krishna. However, because he has a desire to see the universal form, Bhagavan's giving him divya-cakshu is discussed herein. Transcendental eyes are superior to gross material eyes. Yet, these divine eyes are quite insignificant and inferior to the unalloyed loving eyes of Arjuna. The vishvarupa of Shri Bhagavan cannot be seen with gross material eyes; it can only be seen by divine vision attained by His mercy. Still, the madhurya of Shri Bhagavan is neither visible to ordinary eyes nor to divine eyes. Shrila Baladeva Vidyabhushana clarifies this point in his commentary. "Shri Krishna gave Arjuna divine eyes which were needed to see His divine vishvarupa, but He did not give him a corresponding divine mind. If He had given him a divine mind, Arjuna would have developed interest in actually relishing the vishvarupa, but upon seeing it, Arjuna became disinterested. This is evident in Arjuna's words after his astonishment upon seeing the universal form. He prayed that Shri Krishna only show him His natural, sac-cid-ananda, twohanded form." This sentiment is also found in Shrimad- Bhagavatam (10.7.34-37):

ekadarbhakam adaya / svankam aropya bhamini
prasnutam payayam asa / stanam sneha-paripluta
pita-prayasya janani / sutasya rucira-smitam
mukham lalayati rajan / jrimbhato dadrishe idam
kham rodasi jyotir-anikam ashah /
suryendu-vahni-shvasanambudhimsh ca
dvipan nagams tad-duhitrir vanani /
bhutani yani sthira-jangamani
sa vikshya vishvam sahasa / rajan sanjata-vepathuh
sammilya mrigashavakshi / netre asit suvismita

One day, Krishna was on Yashoda-maiya's lap. She was breast-feeding Him and kissing His captivating cheeks which were enhanced by His mild smile. The child then yawned and showed Yashoda-maiya His universal form within His mouth. The sudden sight of this universal form in the mouth of her baby greatly astonished her. Her body started to tremble and she closed her eyes. She thought, "Alas! What is this I have seen?. Fearful that somebody may have cast an evil-eye or spell on Krishna, she called the family priest and had him chant mantras for Krishna's protection. She felt relief only after she had given Krishna a purifying bath.

In his commentary on this shloka, Shrila Sanatana Gosvami explains a deep secret. "How is it that Yashoda-maiya was able to see the vishvarupa of Krishna if she didn't have divya-cakshu? For the nourishment of Krishna's pastimes (lila-pushti), the maidservant of Lakshmi-devi (the pleasure potency), is making Yashoda's love ever-new and ever-fresh by allowing her to taste vismaya-rasa (the nectar of astonishment) of Shri Krishna's aishvarya-shakti."

The purport of Shrila Vishvanatha Cakravarti Thakura's commentary on this Bhagavatam story is as follows. "This aishvarya-shakti could not slacken the vatsalya-jnana of Yashoda-maiya. This shakti of Shri Hari appeared in order to test Prema devi, the goddess of love, but upon seeing Prema devi's immeasurable power, she accepted the position as Prema devi's servant. Here Yashoda-maiya's vatsalya-prema is Prema devi."

Shrimad-Bhagavatam (10.8.32-39) describes the following pastime:

ekada kridamanas te / ramadya gopa-darakah
krishno mridam bhakshitavan / iti matre nyavedayan...
...etad vicitram saha-jiva-kalasvabh
sunos tanau vikshya vidaritasye /
vrajam sahatmanam avapa shankam

One day, Shri Krishna was playing at Brahmanda-ghata with Shridama, Subala, Balarama and some other cowherd boys. Child Krishna secretly ate some mud, but somehow the cowherd boys saw Him doing this and complained to Yashoda-maiya. Yashoda- maiya came running, and, catching hold of Krishna's hand, she began to chastise Him. Trembling with fear, Krishna said, "Mother, I have not eaten any mud. All these boys are liars. If you don't believe Me, then you can look in My mouth and see for yourself. " Saying this, Krishna opened His mouth and showed her the whole universe containing all moving and non-moving entities, the sky, etc., as well as His own dhama.

Although the aishvarya feature is not acknowledged in madhurya-lila, it manifests itself at the appropriate time. That is, although Shri Krishna's aishvarya remains unmanifest in His madhurya-lila, madhurya-lila is not devoid of it. Shri Krishna is the fountainhead of all aishvarya and madhurya. In some specific pastimes when both are needed, the aishvarya manifests itself. Being inspired by the potency called satyasa nkalpa (when one's words are always truthful), the aishvarya shakti manifested and drowned Yashoda-maiya in vismaya-rasa by showing her Krishna's vishvarupa. This made her forget her anger towards Him. In this way, the aishvarya-shakti rendered service to Prema devi. Shri Krishna is sporting as a human boy and therefore, for the nourishment of His lila and to increase the prema of His bhaktas, He sometimes manifests His aishvarya.

Shri Chaitanya-caritamrita describes how Advaita Acarya requested Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu to show Him that vishvarupa which is described in Bhagavad-gita. On His request, Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu showed Him all the incidents that took place in the battle of Mahabharata along with His vishvarupa. Seeing the vishvarupa, Advaita Acarya closed His eyes. Then Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, making that form unmanifest, showed His natural form thereby restoring Advaita Acarya to His normal state.

Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura quotes Krishna as saying, .You are My bhakta. With the eyes of unalloyed prema, you can see My Krishna svarupa. My aishvarya is related to the phenomenal world, so it has no purpose for those with eyes of unalloyed prema and it cannot be seen by them. Gross material eyes also cannot behold My aishvarya form. But those eyes which are not filled with pure love, having some relationship with this world, but at the same time are not material, are called divya-cakshu. I am bestowing upon you divya-cakshu by which you will be able to see My aishvarya form. Those who are endowed with divine eyes and the ability to reason naturally become attached to My aishvarya svarupa which has a connection with this cosmic world, unlike My transcendental Krishna svarupa. This is because their eyes of unalloyed prema remain closed."


sanjaya uvaca

evam uktva tato rajan / maha-yogeshvaro harih

darshayam asa parthaya / paramam rupam aishvaram

sanjaya uvaca.Sanjaya said; rajan.O king; tatah.then;

uktva.having spoken; evam.thus; maha-yogeshvarah.the great Master of all mystic power; harih.Shri Hari; darshayam asa.displayed; Partha; rupam.His form; paramam.of supreme; aishvaram.opulence.

Sanjaya said: O King, after saying this, Maha

Yogeshvara Shri Hari revealed to Arjuna His supreme

aishvarya form.


After saying this, Shri Bhagavan showed Arjuna His

vishvarupa. Sanjaya is describing this subject to the blind king Dhritarashtra in six shlokas, while saying that Shri Krishna is not only great, but that He is the greatest mystic, Yogeshvara. In order to show His universal form to Arjuna, He has given him divine eyes, which means that Arjuna is very dear to Him. The purport here is that victory for Arjuna in this battle appears to be a simple matter of course. Now there is no doubt that by the mercy of Bhagavan, both material and spiritual auspiciousness will come to Arjuna. By this, Sanjaya also indicates to Dhritarashtra that his desire for his sons. victory has been completely thwarted.


aneka-vaktra-nayanam / anekadbhuta-darshanam
aneka-divyabharanam / divyanekodyatayudham

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.10 <>

divya-malyambara-dharam / divya-gandhanulepanam
sarvashcarya-mayam devam / anantam vishvato-mukham

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.11 <>

(that form had) aneka---many; vaktra-nayanam---mouths and eyes; aneka---many; adbhuta-darshanam---wonderful aspects; aneka---many; divya-abharanam---divine ornaments; aneka--- many; divya---divine; udyata-ayudham---raised weapons; dharam---it wore; divya-malya---divine garlands; ambara---and garments; (it was) anulepanam---smeared; divya-gandha---with divine scents; (it was) ashcarya-mayam---astonishing; sarva---in every way; devam---brilliant; anantam---limitless; (and had) mukham---faces; vishvatah---on all sides.

Arjuna saw the vishvarupa of Shri Bhagavan, who possessed unlimited mouths and eyes and all varieties of astonishing features. Countless exquisite ornaments and heavenly garlands bedecked that form, in whose hands numerous celestial weapons were raised. He was dressed in lavish garments, anointed with divine fragrances and He was full of wonders, unlimited and resplendent, with faces on all sides.


Vishvato-mukham means whose face is everywhere.


divi surya-sahasrasya / bhaved yugapad utthita
yadi bhah sadrishi sa syad / bhasas tasya mahatmanah

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.12 <>

yadi---if; bhavet---there could be; sah bhah---the light; suryasahasrasya ---of a thousand suns; utthita---arising; yugapat---simultaneously; divi---into the sky; sadrishi---such; syat---would be; bhasah---the splendour; tasya---of that; maha-atmanah---great personality.

If a thousand suns rose all at once in the sky, such splendour might approach the effulgence of that Supreme Person in His radiant universal form.


If the splendour of a thousand suns were to appear simultaneously, then to some extent it could be compared to the effulgence of this vishvarupa purusha.


tatraika-stham jagat kritsnam / pravibhaktam anekadha
apashyad deva-devasya / sharire pandavas tada

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.13 <>

tada---at that time; pandavah---the son of Pandu; apashyat---saw; tatra---there; kritsnam---the entire; jagat---universe; pravibhaktam---divided; anekadha---into many; eka-stham---in one place; sharire---within the body; deva-devasya---of the God of gods.

At that time, Arjuna could see the totality of the entire universe situated in one place in that gigantic body of Vishvarupa, the God of gods.


On that very battlefield, Arjuna saw unlimited universes in the body of deva-devasya, the God of gods. With their various distinctive features, they were situated in one part of His body, in every pore and in each belly. The word anekadha means that some of these forms were made of earth, some were golden and some were made of gems. Some were fifty yojanas in measurement (one yojana equals eight miles), some a hundred, some lakhs of yojanas and some were millions of yojanas in size.


tatah sa vismayavishto / hrishta-roma dhananjayah
pranamya shirasa devam / kritanjalir abhashata

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.14 <>

tatah---then; sah dhananjayah---he, the winner of wealth, Arjuna; vismaya-avishtah---(became) overwhelmed by wonder; hrishtarom ah---his hairs stood erect; pranamya---bowing down; shirasa---his head; krita-anjalih---and folding his hands; abhashata--- he addressed; devam---the Lord.

Struck by wonder, his hair standing on end, Arjuna bowed his head to offer pranama and, with folded hands, he spoke the following words to Shri Krishna, the originator of that universal form.


The universal form which Maha-Yogeshvara Krishna showed to Arjuna was most astonishing, supremely resplendent, wonderful to behold and decorated with various types of celestial ornaments. It was unlimited and all-pervading. In the body of the Supreme Lord Shri Krishna, Arjuna saw the entire universe situated in one place and divided into various forms. To remove Dhritarashtra's doubt that Arjuna may have run away in fear after seeing that terrifying form, Sanjaya said, "Arjuna is a great bhakta who knows krishna-tattva and is endowed with sattva-guna. He did not become fearful upon seeing that thousand-headed form of Krishna, but instead experienced adbhuta-rasa (astonishment). Arjuna was endowed with natural fortitude, but because he was absorbed in adbhuta-bhava, he became ecstastic; his hairs stood on end and his body trembled. Paying obeisances by bowing his head and folding his hands, he began to speak."

Arjuna's eyes were not closed out of fear, but due to his experiencing abdhuta-rasa. The vishvarupa of Shri Krishna is the vishaya-alambana (object) of this rasa, and Arjuna is the ashraya-alambana (receptacle). To see that form again and again is an uddipana (stimulus for remembrance). Paying obeisances and folding his hands are anubhavas, and his hairs standing on end, etc., are sattvika-bhavas. Agitation of mind, fortitude, exhilaration and so forth are sancari-bhavas. Here the sthayi-bhava is vismaya (wonder). All the above-mentioned ingredients combined with Arjuna's sthayi-bhava to manifest vismaya-rasa. Regarding adbhuta-rasa, Shrila Rupa Gosvami writes in his Bhakti-rasamrita-sindhu (4.2.1):

atmocitair vibhavadyaih / svadyatvam bhakta-cetasi
sa vismaya-ratir nitad- / bhuto-bhakti-raso bhavet

When vismaya-rati becomes relishable within the heart of a bhakta by mixing with the appropriate elements of vibhava and so forth, which are proper and favourable to one's own bhava, it is called adbhuta-rasa.


arjuna uvaca

pashyami devams tava deva dehe

sarvams tatha bhuta-vishesha-sanghan

brahmanam isham kamalasana-stham

rishimsh ca sarvan uragamsh ca divyan


arjuna uvaca.Arjuna said; deva.O Lord; pashyami.I perceive; tava dehe.within Your body; devan.the gods; well as; sarvan.all; sanghan.the assemblies; bhuta-vishesha.of different living beings;  brahmanam.Brahma; (who is) kamala-asana-stham.

seated on the lotus; isham.Shiva; rishin.the sages; ca.and; sarvan. all; divyan.divine; uragan.snakes.


Arjuna said: O My Lord, within Your divine body I

see the devatas and all the hosts of living beings. I see

Lord Brahma upon his lotus-flower seat, Lord Shiva and all the divine rishis and serpents.



The phrase bhuta-vishesha-nama means all those living entities who are born from the womb, from eggs and from perspiration. The word kamalasana-stham means Lord Brahma, who is situated on the Sumeru mountain, which is like the lotus-whorl of the universe


pashyami tvam sarvato 'nanta-rupam
nantam na madhyam na punas tavadim
pashyami vishveshvara vishva-rupa

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.16 <>

vishveshvara---O Lord of the universe; vishva-rupa---O form of the universe; pashyami---I see; tvam---You; (with) ananta-rupam--- Your limitless forms; (which have) aneka---limitless; bahu---arms; udara---bellies; vaktra---mouths; (and) netram---eyes; sarvatah--- on all sides; pashyami---I see; na---no; antam---end; na---no; madhyam---middle; (and) punah---furthermore; na---no; adim--- beginning; tava---to Your form.

O Vishveshvara, Lord of the universe! O Vishvarupa! I see Your innumerable forms with unlimited hands, bellies, mouths and eyes on all sides. Moreover, I cannot see in You any beginning, middle or end.


The word vishveshvara means the Primeval Person.


Arjuna says, "O Vishvarupa! I see in Your body all-pervading, unlimited forms with unlimited hands, bellies, mouths and eyes, but I am unable to understand Your body's beginning, middle or end."


kiritinam gadinam cakrinan ca
tejo-rashim sarvato diptimantam
pashyami tvam durnirikshyam samantad
diptanalarka-dyutim aprameyam

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.17 <>

pashyami---I see; tvam---You; (like an) aprameyam---immeasurable; diptimantam---brilliant; tejo-rashim---mass of splendour; sarvatah--- on every side; kiritinam---wearing crowns; gadinam---bearing clubs; ca---and; cakrinam---discs; dur-nirikshyam---difficult to behold; dipta---with a blazing radiance; anala---like fire; (and) arkadyutim ---an effulgence like the sun; samantat---everywhere.

I see Your form as the supremely brilliant, all-pervading abode of splendour, adorned with crowns and bearing clubs and discs on all sides. It is very difficult to look upon You in the blazing fire of Your effulgence, which is radiating like the sun in all directions.


After seeing the vishvarupa, Arjuna says, "O Vishveshvara, I am seeing Your bodily limbs, heads, crowns, clubs, discs and so forth to be like the effulgence of millions of suns. It is difficult for me to look at them. I am seeing them on all sides and am unable to ascertain their beginning or end." If one asks how Arjuna was easily able to see this form, the answer is that Bhagavan mercifully gave him divya-cakshu.


tvam aksharam paramam veditavyam
tvam asya vishvasya param nidhanam
tvam avyayah shashvata-dharma-gopta
sanatanas tvam purusho mato me

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.18 <>

tvam---You (are); paramam---the supreme; aksharam---brahma (Vishnu); veditavyam---worthy to be known (by liberated souls); tvam---You (are); param---the supreme; nidhanam---resting place; asya---of this; vishvasya---universe; tvam---You (are); avyayah--- the immutable; gopta---protector; shashvata-dharma---of eternal dharma; tvam---You (are); sanatanah---the primeval; purushah--- person; (this is) me---my; matah---opinion.

You are parabrahma, the supreme knowable object for all liberated persons. You are the supreme resting place of this universe. You are inexhaustible, the protector of sanatana-dharma and the primeval purusha. This is my opinion.


The word veditavyam means worthy to be known by liberated persons. Yad aksharam means brahma-tattva, and nidhanam means the place of dissolution.


Upon seeing the inconceivable aishvarya form of Bhagavan, Arjuna concluded that He is indeed the supreme object of knowledge, akshara-tattva (the imperishable reality), and can be known only by transcendental knowledge. He is the resting place of everyone, immutable, and the imperishable person. He is also the source of eternal dharma, and He is its protector.

sa karanam karanadhipadhipo
na casya kashcijanita na cadhipah
Shvetashvatara Upanishad 6.9

The eternal, primeval person and cause of all causes, as described in this mantra, is also Him.


anadi-madhyantam ananta-viryam
ananta-bahum shashi-surya-netram
pashyami tvam dipta-hutasha-vaktram
sva-tejasa vishvam idam tapantam

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.19 <>

tvam---You; (are) anadi-madhya-antam---without beginning, middle or end; ananta-viryam---having infinite prowess; ananta-bahum--- infinite arms; shashi-surya-netram---eyes like the sun and moon; pashyami---I see; dipta-hutasha---the blazing fire of the agni-hotra yajna emanating from; vaktram---Your mouths; idam---this; vishvam--- universe; tapantam---is scorched; sva-tejasa---by Your radiance.

You are without beginning, middle or end. You possess infinite prowess, innumerable arms, and eyes like the sun and the moon. I see fire blazing from Your mouths and the whole universe being scorched by Your radiance.


Since Arjuna is absorbed in an ocean of great wonder, repetition of this statement beginning with the word anadi is not a defect. It is said that if one repeats a subject twice or thrice inadvertently out of surprise or happiness, it is not incorrect.


dyav a-prithivyor idam antaram hi
vyaptam tvayaikena dishash ca sarvah
drishtvadbhutam rupam idam tavogram
loka-trayam pravyathitam mahatman

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.20 <>

tvaya---You; ekena---alone; vyaptam---pervade; sarvah---all; dishah---directions; idam antaram---the space; dyav-prithivyoh--- between heaven and earth; ca---and; maha-atman---O great personality; drishtva---seeing; idam---this; adbhutam---astonishing; ugram---terrible; rupam---form; tava---of Yours; loka-trayam--- the three worlds; pravyathitam---are very disturbed.

You alone pervade all the directions and all space between earth and the heavens. O Mahatman! Seeing this wondrous and terrible form of Yours, all the inhabitants of the three worlds are becoming afflicted with fear.


Now in this shloka beginning with the word dyav and for the next nine shlokas, Shri Bhagavan is showing His kala-rupa, the feature of all-devouring time, as part of that universal form, because it has a purpose in the present context.


After seeing that kala-rupa of Shri Bhagavan, Arjuna says, "O Sarvashraya, resting place of everyone, You are pervading the whole earth, the firmament, the sky and all directions with Your vishvarupa. By You alone, the three worlds are pervaded. Upon seeing this most wonderful divine form of Yours, the people of the three worlds are disturbed and agitated in fear."

This great battle of Kurukshetra was also seen by devas such as Brahma, many asuras, the Pitris (forefathers), Gandharvas, Yakshas, Rakshasas, Kinnaras and human beings. All saw the battle according to their respective temperaments such as friendship, enmity and indifference, but only those who were bhaktas could see the universal form, by Krishna's mercy, due to being given divya-cakshu.

It was not that only Arjuna saw the vishvarupa with its chariots, horses and so on like a person who sees his own dream, but even personalities like Vyasa, Sanjaya, Grandsire Bhishma and Brahma witnessed this aishvarya form of Shri Bhagavan. This is the meaning of this shloka.


ami hi tvam sura-sangha vishanti
kecid bhitah pranjalayo grinanti
svastity uktva maharshi-siddha-sanghah
stuvanti tvam stutibhih pushkalabhih

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.21 <>

hi---indeed; ami sura-sanghah---the assembly of gods; vishanti--- are entering; tvam---unto You; kecit---some; bhitah---out of fear; pranjalayah---with hands clasped; uktva iti---after first uttering; svasti---let there be auspiciousness; grinanti---they are offering prayers; maharshi-siddha-sanghah---the assembly of great sages and siddhas; stuvanti---are praising; tvam---You; pushkalabhih---with Vedic; stutibhih---hymns.

The hosts of devas are taking Your shelter by entering into You. Out of fear, some are eulogizing You with folded hands. The great sages and siddhas are gazing upon You while chanting auspicious Vedic hymns, offering many prayers and praising You profusely.


The word tvam means unto You.


Upon seeing the kala-rupa feature of the universal form, Arjuna became absorbed in it and again began saying, "All the devas on the battlefield are taking shelter of You by entering into You. Some of them are ready to run in fear but, unable to do so, are praying in a perplexed mood with folded hands, "O Prabhu, please protect me!" At the same time, the maharshis and siddhas are seeing the terrible result of the battle and saying, "Let there be auspiciousness for the universe. ""


rudraditya vasavo ye ca sadhya
vishve 'shvinau marutash coshmapash ca
vikshante tvam vismitash caiva sarve

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.22 <>

rudra---the Rudras; adityah---the Adityas; ye vasavah---the Vasus; ca---and; sadhyah---the Sadhyadevas; vishve---the Vishvadevas; ashvinau---the two Ashvinis; marutah---the Maruts; ca---and; ushma-pah---the forefathers; ca---and; gandharva--- the Gandharvas; yaksha---Yakshas; asura---Asuras; ca---and; siddha-sanghah---the assembly of Siddhas; vismitah---in great wonder; sarve---all; vikshante eva---are verily beholding; tvam--- You.

The eleven Rudras, the twelve Adityas, the eight Vasus, the Sadhyadevas, the Vishvadevas, the two Ashvini-kumaras, the Maruts, Pitris, Gandharvas, Yakshas, Asuras and the Siddhas are all beholding You with wonder.


Those who accept offerings of hot food items are known as ushma-pah. In the shruti also it is stated: ushma bhaga hi pitarah. "The portion given to the Pitris is ushma (hot)."


Not only Arjuna but also the Rudras, the twelve Adityas, the eight Vasus, the Sadhyas, the Vishvadevas, the two Ashvini- kumaras, the Maruts, the Pitris headed by Ushma-pa, the Gandharvas such as Citraratha, the Yakshas such as Kuvera, the Daityas such as Virocana, and the Siddhas (perfected beings) such as Kapila, all are looking at the majestic form of Shri Bhagavan with amazement. Here the word ushma-pah means the forefathers who accept offerings of hot food.


rupam mahat te bahu-vaktra-netram
maha-baho bahu-bahuru-padam
bahudaram bahu-damshtra-karalam
drishtva lokah pravyathitas tathaham

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.23 <>

maha-baho---O mighty-armed one; drishtva---seeing; te---Your; mahat---gigantic; rupam---form; (with its) bahu---many; vaktra--- faces; (and) netram---eyes; bahu---many; bahu---arms; uru--- thighs; padam---and feet; bahu---many; udaram---bellies; bahu--- many; karalam---terrible; damshtra---teeth; lokah---the people; pravyathitah---are very fearful; tatha---as also; aham---I (am).

O Maha-baho, on seeing Your gigantic form with its unlimited mouths, countless eyes, innumerable arms, thighs, feet, bellies and many fearsome teeth, everyone, including me, is becoming terrified.


nabhah-sprisham diptam aneka-varnam

vyattananam dipta-vishala-netram

drishtva hi tvam pravyathitantar-atma

dhritim na vindami shaman ca vishno

vishno.O Lord Vishnu; drishtva.seeing; tvam.Your form; (which is) diptam.blazing; (and) aneka-varnam.multi-coloured; nabhah-sprisham.pervading the sky; vyatta-ananam.with wideopen mouths; dipta-vishala-netram.with fiery vast eyes; mind; very disturbed; hi.indeed; na

vindami.I do not find; dhritim.steadiness; ca.or; shamam.



O Vishnu! Seeing Your blazing, multi-coloured form

pervade the sky with Your great fiery eyes and vast,

wide-open mouths, my mind is overpowered by fear and I am not feeling steady or at peace.



The word shamam means peace.




damshtra-karalani ca te mukhani

drishtvaiva kalanala-sannibhani

disho na jane na labhe ca sharma

prasida devesha jagan-nivasa


drishtva.seeing; te.Your; damshtra-karalani.fearsome teeth;

ca.and; mukhani.mouths; eva.indeed; sannibhani.resembling; anala.the fire; kala.of annihilating time; na jane.I am unable to ascertain; dishah.the four directions; ca.and; na labhe.I do not obtain; sharma.happiness; deva-isha.O Lord of

the gods; jagat-nivasa.O shelter of the universe; pleased.


Seeing all those dreadful mouths, full of fearsome

teeth and blazing like the fire of annihilation, I am

unable to ascertain where the four directions are,

or feel any kind of happiness. O Lord of the devas!

O shelter of the universe! Kindly be merciful to me.




ami ca tvam dhritarashtrasya putrah

sarve sahaivavani-pala-sanghaih

bhishmo dronah suta-putras tathasau

sahasmadiyair api yodha-mukhyaih

vaktrani te tvaramana vishanti

damshtra-karalani bhayanakani

kecid vilagna dashanantareshu

sandrishyante curnitair uttamangaih

ca.and; eva.indeed; sarve.all; ami.these; putrah.sons;

dhritarashtrasya.of Dhritarashtra; saha.together; avani-palasa nghaih.with the assembly of kings; bhishmah.Bhishma; dronah.Dronacarya; asau.that; suta-putrah.charioteer.s son, Karna; tatha.and also; api.indeed; saha.together; asmadiyaih.with our; yodha-mukhyaih.chief soldiers; te. they; vishanti.are entering; tvaramanah.speedily; tvam. Your; vaktrani.mouths; bhayanakani.which are filled with fearful; damshtra-karalani.frightful teeth; kecit.some; sandrishyante.are seen; vilagnah.stuck; dashana-antareshu.

between the teeth; uttama-angaih.with their heads;



All the sons of Dhritarashtra along with their allied

host of kings, Bhishma, Drona, Karna, as well as

the leading warriors on our side, are rushing towards

you with great speed and entering Your cave-like

mouths which are filled with frightful teeth. Some

are also trapped there, with their heads crushed

between those teeth.


yatha nadinam bahavo'mbu-vegah
samudram evabhimukha dravanti
tatha tavami nara-loka-vira
vishanti vaktrany abhivijvalanti

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.28 <>

eva---indeed; (just) yatha---as; ami---these; vira---heroes; naraloka ---of human society; vishanti---enter; tava---Your; abhivijvalanti---blazing; vaktrani---mouths; tatha---similarly; bahavah---the many; ambu-vegah---waves; nadinam---of rivers; dravanti---impetuously rush; abhimukhah---towards; samudram---the ocean.

All these great heroes are entering Your blazing mouths, just as the waves of a river rush impetuously towards the ocean.


yatha pradiptam jvalanam patanga
vishanti nashaya samriddha-vegah
tathaiva nashaya vishanti lokas
tavapi vaktrani samriddha-vegah


yatha---as; patangah---moths; samriddha-vegah---with great speed; vishanti---enter; pradiptam---a blazing; jvalanam---fire; nashaya--- for destruction; tatha---similarly; eva---indeed; lokah---these people; api---also; samriddha-vegah---with great speed; vishanti--- enter; tava---Your; vaktrani---mouths; nashaya---to their destruction.

As moths rush into a blazing fire and perish, so too are these warriors entering Your mouths with great speed, only to die.


lelihyase grasamanah samantal
lokan samagran vadanair jvaladbhih
tejobhir apurya jagat samagram
bhasas tavograh pratapanti vishno

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.30 <>

vishno---O Vishnu; lelihyase---You lick (them with fiery mouths); samagran---all; lokan---people; samantat---from all sides; grasamanah---devouring (them); jvaladbhih---with blazing; vadanaih---mouths; pratapanti---scorching (the universe); samagram---the entire; jagat---universe; apurya---filled; tejobhih---with the rays; (of) tava---Your; ugrah---terrible; bhasah---light.

O Vishnu, with Your fiery tongues You are licking up the hosts of living beings on all sides and devouring them with Your blazing mouths. You are scorching the entire universe with the fierce, allpervading rays of Your effulgence.


akhyahi me ko bhavan ugra-rupo
namo 'stu te deva-vara prasida
vijnatum icchami bhavantam adyam
na hi prajanami tava pravrittim

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.31 <>

deva-vara---O best of gods; astu namah---let my obeisances be; te---unto You; prasida---be gracious (to me); icchami---I wish; (You to) akhyahi---tell; me---me; kah---who?; (are) bhavan---You (are); (this) ugra-rupah---fierce form of the Lord; vijnatum---to understand; bhavantam---Your honour; (who are) adyam---the primeval cause; hi---indeed; na prajanami---I do not understand; tava---Your; pravrittim--- activities.

O Deva-vara, best among gods, I offer my obeisances unto You. Kindly be gracious to me and tell me who You are in this ferocious form. I very much want to know You, the primeval cause, because I do not comprehend Your activities.


shri-bhagavan uvaca
kalo 'smi loka-kshaya-krit pravriddho
lokan samahartum iha pravrittah
rite 'pi tvam na bhavishyanti sarve
ye 'vasthitah pratyanikeshu yodhah

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.32 <>

shri-bhagavan uvaca---the all-opulent Lord said; asmi---I am; pravriddhah---mighty; kalah---time; loka-kshaya-krit---destroyer of the worlds; pravrittah---engaged; samahartum---to destroy; lokan---the people; iha---in this world; api---even; rite---without; tvam---you; sarve---all; yodhah---the soldiers; ye---who; avasthitah---are present; pratyanikeshu---in either army; na bhavishyanti---shall not remain.

Shri Bhagavan said: I am time, the mighty destroyer of the world, and I am here to annihilate all these people. Even without your efforts, not one warrior in either army will survive.

Shri Bhagavan tells Arjuna, "I am all-destroying time and at present I have accepted this gigantic form. I am present here to annihilate Duryodhana and others. The result of My mission will be that, except for you five Pandavas, no one on this battlefield will remain alive. Even without your endeavour or the efforts of other warriors like you, all will be devoured within the jaws of terrible time, because in My form as time I have already taken their lives. Those heroes who are present on both sides will definitely enter the mouth of death, even without doing battle. Therefore, O Arjuna, if you remain aloof from the battle, you will fall down from your status as a kshatriya because you have neglected your sva-dharma, and still they will not be saved."


tasmat tvam uttishtha yasho labhasva
jitva shatrun bhunkshva rajyam samriddham
mayaivaite nihatah purvam eva
nimitta-matram bhava savya-sacin

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.33 <>

tasmat---therefore; tvam---you; uttishtha---arise; (and) labhasva--- attain; yashah---fame; jitva---by conquering; (your) shatrun---enemies; (and) bhunkshva---enjoy; samriddham---a prosperous; rajyam---kingdom; eva---indeed; ete---these (soldiers); purvam--- already; nihatah---are slain; maya---by Me; savya-sacin---O expert bowman; bhava---just be; eva nimitta-matram---but an instrument.

Rise up, therefore, to enter the battle and achieve glory by conquering your enemies, and thereby enjoy an unrivalled kingdom. All these warriors are already slain by Me alone. O Savyasacin, expert bowman, just become My instrument.


dronan ca bhishman ca jayadrathan ca

karnam tathanyan api yodha-viran

maya hatams tvam jahi ma vyathishtha

yudhyasva jetasi rane sapatnan

dronam.Drona; ca.and; bhishmam.Bhishma; ca.and; jayadratham Jayadratha; ca .and; karnam.Karna; tatha.also; anyan.other; yodha-viran.heroes among the fighters; api. although; (they are) hatan.already slain; Me; jahi. you must slay (them);; ma vyathishthah.should not be disturbed; yudhyasva.just fight; shall vanquish; (your) sapatnan.enemies; rane.on the battlefield.

Drona, Bhishma, Jayadratha, Karna and many other

great heroes have already been destroyed by Me, so

simply kill them and do not be disturbed. Your victory in battle is assured; therefore fight.




There is a hidden meaning to the statement, .I have already killed Bhishma, Drona, Jayadratha, Karna and others..Bhagavan is saying that when all the warriors on the side of the Kauravas were publicly insulting Draupadi by disrobing her, at that time they were all killed by Him because of their heinous Vaishnava aparadha. .Just to give you fame, I have made these people stand before you like statues. It is as if they are lifeless. Just be the instrument in killing them..

Shri Krishna had already taken the life force from all the heroes who were participating in the battle of Mahabharata. Similarly, in Shrimad-Bhagavatam, Bhishma prayed as follows:


sapadi sakhi-vaco nishamya madhye

nija-parayor balayo ratham niveshya

sthitavati para-sainikayur akshna

hritavati partha-sakhe ratir mamastu

(Shrimad-Bhagavatam 1.9.35)


Let my supreme attachment be to that Partha-sakha, Shri Krishna, who, upon hearing the request of his friend Arjuna to situate his chariot in the centre of both  armies, immediately brought the chariot to that spot. On the pretext of pointing out Drona, Bhishma and so on, He took away the life of the warriors in the opposing party with His glance.


sanjaya uvaca
etac chrutva vacanam keshavasya
kritanjalir vepamanah kiriti
namaskritva bhuya evaha krishnam
sa-gadgadam bhita-bhitah pranamya

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.35 <>

sanjaya uvaca---Sanjaya said; shrutva---hearing; etat---this; vacanam---statement; keshavasya---of Shri Keshava; kiriti---Arjuna; kritaa njalih---with folded hands; vepamanah---trembling; namaskritva--- bowed down; bhuyah---repeatedly; eva---indeed; pranamya---with a bowed head; bhita-bhitah---very fearfully; aha---he addressed; krishnam---Shri Krishna; sa-gadgadam---with a choked voice.

Sanjaya said to Dhritarashtra: Upon hearing these words of Shri Keshava, Arjuna, trembling, offered repeated obeisances with folded hands and, being extremely frightened, began speaking to Krishna in a faltering voice as follows.


After hearing this dialogue between Krishna and Arjuna from the mouth of Sanjaya, Dhritarashtra Maharaja undoubtedly understood that the great unconquerable fighters headed by Bhishma and Drona would also be killed and that there was no possibility of Duryodhana's victory. The idea that they should try for a truce in such a situation came to his mind, but he didn't express this externally. The wise Sanjaya could understand his mind and immediately began to describe what happened next. On the side of the Pandavas, Arjuna trembled upon hearing the words of Krishna. Paying obeisances again and again, with a disturbed mind and a faltering voice, he offered his supplication at the lotus feet of Shri Bhagavan.


arjuna uvaca
sthane hrishikesha tava prakirtya
jagat prahrishyaty anurajyate ca
rakshamsi bhitani disho dravanti
sarve namasyanti ca siddha-sanghah

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.36 <>

arjuna uvaca---Arjuna said; sthane---rightly; hrishika-isha---O Lord of the senses; jagat---the world; prahrishyati---rejoices; ca--- and; anurajyate---becomes attached; tava prakirtyah---to Your glorification; bhitani---the fearful; rakshamsi---fiends; dravanti---flee; dishah---to all directions; ca---and; siddhasa nghah---the assembly of perfected beings; sarve---all; namasyanti---bow down.

Arjuna said: O Hrishikesha! Everyone in the universe is becoming joyful and attached to You on hearing the glori-fication of Your name, form and qualities. The rakshasas are scattering out of fear, while the hosts of siddhas are offering their obeisances unto You. All this is, indeed, most appropriate.


Arjuna knows the following tattva: The shri vigraha of Bhagavan is pleased with those who are devoted to Him, whereas He displays His dreadful feature to those who are averse to Him. Arjuna explains this while offering prayers to Shri Bhagavan. The word sthane is indeclinable and it means yukta or appropriate. It is used in all components of this shloka. Arjuna has addressed Krishna as Hrishikesha, meaning one who turns the senses of His bhaktas towards Himself, and the senses of His non-devotees away. .This entire world is being attracted to You by the sankirtana of Your glories. This is appropriate because this world is devoted to You. Rakshasas, asuras, danavas, pishacas, etc., are running in all directions out of fear. This is also appropriate because they are averse to You. Hosts of beings, who have become perfect by practising bhakti to You, are paying obeisances to You. This is also appropriate because they are Your bhaktas.. This shloka is famous in mantra-shastra as the rakshoghna-mantra (a mantra to destroy rakshasas).


The transcendental influence of Shri Bhagavan's form is such that bhaktas become joyful upon seeing it. But to those who are asurika by nature and who are not devoted to Him, this form appears like Yamaraja, the lord of death. In the wrestling arena of Mathura, worshipable elders like Nanda Maharaja, friends and the Yadavas were very pleased to see the beautiful nava-kishora, Shri Krishna, but He appeared as death personified to Kamsa, as hard as a thunderbolt to the wrestlers, as the enforcer of chastisement to the wicked kings, and as para-tattva (Paramatma) to the yogis. Therefore, upon hearing the glories of Krishna, devoted jivas feel joy and become attached to Him. The siddhas become surrendered to Him, while the asuras and rakshasas who are averse to Him run in fear. These reactions are appropriate for each of them.


kasmac ca te na nameran mahatman
gariyase brahmano 'py adi-kartre
ananta devesha jagan-nivasa
tvam aksharam sad-asat tat param yat

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.37 <>

mahatman---O great person; deva-isha---Lord of the gods; ananta---O unlimited person; ca---and; jagat-nivasa---O refuge of the universe; gariyase---who are greater; api---even; brahmanah---than Brahma; adi-karttre---and who are the original creator; tvam---You (are); aksharam---the imperishable (reality); tat---that; yat---which (is); param---transcendental; satasat ---to cause and effect; kasmat---why?; na nameran---should they not offer obeisances; te---to You.

O Mahatman! O Lord of the devas! O Ananta! O refuge of the world! You are greater even than Brahma. You are the original creator and You are brahma, the imperishable reality beyond both cause and effect. Why then, would they not offer obeisances to You?


Arjuna said, "Why will they not offer obeisances and bow down to You? Certainly they will." Here, the word sat means effect, and asat means the cause, thus, "That person who is superior to and beyond both sat and asat is You, the imperishable (akshara) brahma."


In the previous shloka, Arjuna explained that Shri Bhagavan is worshipable for Brahma, etc. In this shloka, he establishes that Shri Bhagavan is the soul of everyone. "Devas, rishis, Gandharvas and other beings like them will indeed pay obeisances to You. They cannot exist without doing so because You are one without a second, inconceivable, and endowed with wonderful potencies. You are the Supreme Person, superior to everyone. You are the original creator of Lord Brahma, who is the creator of the universe. Therefore, You are even superior to Brahma."

Arjuna also said, "Only Shri Bhagavan is worshipable for all, but not only that but since He is the soul of everyone, He is everything." He is superior to and distinct from the imperishable brahma-tattva, jiva-tattva and prakriti-tattva. Although He is different from all these tattvas, they manifest from His acintya-shakti. Therefore, He also exists as everything. Not everything is Shri Bhagavan, nor is anything equal to Him. Everything is the effect or result of His shakti. From this point of view, He alone is everything, because no other object or reality exists independent of Him. Thus, He is called the unparalleled parama-tattva. The shrutis state, sarvam khalv idam brahma. "Indeed, everything is brahma. (Chandogya Upanishad 3.14.1). They also state, neha nanasti kincana .(Brihad-aranyaka Upanishad 4.4.19) and (Katha Upanishad 2.1.11). Here it is said that everything such as the jiva and the inert world is brahma. There is nothing except brahma.

In contrast to this, shruti states:
nityo nityanam cetanash cetananam
eko bahunam yo vidadhati kaman
Katha Upanishad 2.2.13,
Shvetashvatara Upanishad 6.13

Parabrahma is the prime eternal among all eternal beings and the prime conscious entity among all conscious beings. According to this shloka, the jivas are eternal, conscious and unlimited in number but parabrahma is the one and only supreme eternal and the supreme conscious being. Subsequently, the only verdict of the Vedas is the principle of acintyabhed abheda, the purest of all tattvas.


tvam adi-devah purushah puranas

tvam asya vishvasya param nidhanam

vettasi vedyan ca paran ca dhama

tvaya tatam vishvam ananta-rupa


tvam.You (are); adi-devah.the original God; tvam.You (are); puranah.the primeval;purushah.personality; param

nidhanam.the sole resting place; asya.of this; vishvasya.universe; param.the supreme; dhama.abode; ca.and; asi.You are; vetta.the knower; (and) vedyam.that which is worthy of being known; ananta-rupa.O You who have unlimited forms; You; vishvam.the universe; pervaded


You are the original Lord, the primeval person and the sole resting place of this universe. You are the supreme abode, the knower of everything and all that is to be known. O Ananta-rupa, possessor of unlimited forms, You alone pervade the entire universe.



Nidhanam means resting place or place of dissolution, and param dhama refers to that svarupa which is beyond the gunas.




Shri Krishna is the original God. He is the supreme refuge of everyone and He is all-pervading. Because His dhama is a manifestation of His para-shakti (transcendental energy), He is non-different from His abode according to the principle of shakti-shaktiman abhede. This is established in Shvetashvatara Upanishad (6.7):


tam ishvaranam paramam maheshvaram

tam devatanam paramam ca daivatam

patim patinam paramam parastad

vidama devam bhuvanesham idyam


We know our worshipable God, who is the master of the worlds, to be the supreme amongst all controllers, the supreme God of gods, and the supreme protector of those who can award protection. He is transcendental to impersonal brahma. And furthermore, Shvetashvatara Upanishad (6.8) states:

na tasya karyam karanam ca vidyate

na tat-samash cabhyadhikash ca drishyate

parasya shaktir vividhaiva shruyate

svabhaviki jnana-bala-kriya ca


The Lord has no duty to perform nor is anyone seen to be equal to or greater than Him. From realised souls we hear that the Supreme Lord.s energy acts in manifold ways to make everything in His creation function systematically, as if it takes place automatically.



vayur yamo 'gnir varunah shashankah
prajapatis tvam prapitamahash ca
namo namas te 'stu sahasra-kritvah
punash ca bhuyo 'pi namo namas te

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.39 <>

tvam---You (are); vayuh---the wind-god; yamah---the god of chastisement; agnih---the fire-god; varunah---the ocean-god; shasha-ankah---the moon-god; praja-patih---the progenitor Brahma; ca---and; pra-pita-mahah---the father of the grandfather Brahma; astu---let there be; namah namah---repeated obeisances; te---to You; sahasra-kritvah---a thousand times; ca---and; punah---again; api---and still; bhuyah---further; namah namah---repeated obeisances; te---unto You.

You are the wind-god Vayu and Yama, the superintendent of death. You are the fire-god Agni, the ocean-god Varuna, the moon-god Candra, the creator Brahma, and also the father of Brahma. Therefore, I offer my obeisances to You thousands of times, again and again.


namah purastad atha prishthatas te
namo 'stu te sarvata eva sarva
ananta-viryamita-vikramas tvam
sarvam samapnoshi tato 'si sarvah

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.40 <>

sarva---O original form of everything; astu---let there be; namah---obeisances; te---to You; purastat---from the front; atha---and then; prishthatah---from behind; namah---obeisances; te---to You; sarvatah---from all sides; eva---indeed; amitavikrama h---You possess limitless prowess; ananta-virya---and limitless valour; tvam---You; samapnoshi---pervade; sarvam---everything; tatah---hence; asi---You are; sarvah---everything.

O Sarva-svarupa! My obeisances to You from the front, behind and from all sides! Possessing infinite prowess and valour, You pervade the entire universe. Therefore, You are everything.


"Just as gold is present in all golden ornaments, such as armour and earrings, You pervade this world which is Your effect, and thus You are sarva (everything)."


Upon understanding that Krishna is everyone's worshipable object, Arjuna paid his obeisances again and again to He who embodies everything. Out of deep faith and honour, not considering these pranamas enough, he bowed down to Krishna who has unlimited prowess (ananta-virya) and immeasurable strength (aparimeya-shakti), who is sarvatma, the soul of souls, and sarva-svarupa, the form of everything (front, back, left, right and all directions). This is also seen in the statement of Shukadeva Gosvami in Shrimad-Bhagavatam (10.14.56):

vastuto janatam atra / krishnam sthasnu carishnu ca
bhagavad-rupam akhilam / nanyad vastv iha kincana

Those in this world who understand Shri Krishna as He is, perceive all things, either moving or non-moving, to be His manifestations. Such liberated souls see no other reality.


sakheti matva prasabham yad uktam
he krishna he yadava he sakheti
ajanata mahimanam tavedam
maya pramadat pranayena vapi

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.41 <>

yac cavahasartham asat-krito 'si
eko .tha vapy acyuta tat-samaksham
tat kshamaye tvam aham aprameyam

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.42 <>

ajanata---because of not knowing; idam---these; mahimanam--- glories; tava---of Yours; pramadat---out of carelessness; va api--- or else perhaps; pranayena---out of affection; matva---thinking (of You); iti---as; sakha---a friend; yat---what; uktam---was said; maya---by me; prasabham---rashly; iti---thus; he krishna---O Krishna!; he yadava---O Yadava!; he sakha--O friend!; avahasa-artham--- with the purpose of jesting; yat---by which; asi---You were; asatk ritah---dishonoured; ca vihara-shayya-asana-bhojaneshu---while sporting, relaxing, sitting and taking food; ekah---alone; atha va---or; api---also; acyuta---O Acyuta!; tat-samaksham---in the presence of relatives; tat---for that; tvam---from You; aprameyam---O immeasurable one; aham kshamaye---I request forgiveness.

Not knowing Your glories, and either because I was careless, or affectionately considering You as my friend, I have rashly addressed You, . He Krishna! He Yadava! He Sakhe! He Acyuta!. If in jesting I have shown You disrespect, either alone with You or in the presence of relatives, while sporting, relaxing, sitting or taking food, I humbly entreat You, O Aprameya, Lord of boundless glories, to please forgive me.


"Alas! Alas! I have committed unlimited offenses to You, the possessor of supreme aishvarya." Lamenting like this Arjuna spoke this shloka beginning with the word sakheti. Arjuna says, "He Krishna" and so forth, meaning "You, Krishna, are famous as the son of Vasudeva, a human being who is not famous and who is even known as an arddharathi (one who needs assistance to defeat a single opponent). But I, Arjuna, am an atirathi (one who can fight alone against unlimited warriors), and I am popular as the son of King Pandu." He Yadava means, "You were born in the Yadu dynasty and have no kingdom, whereas I was born in the dynasty of Puru and am therefore of royal lineage. Yet the friendly relationship I have with You is not because of Your ancestors or the influence of a dynasty, but because of You. It was with friendly intentions that I rashly spoke insulting words. For that reason, I am begging Your forgiveness." These words are related to the following statement.

"Due to madness, the affection I expressed while sporting and joking with You insulted the glory of Your universal form. In other words, either alone or in the presence of friends, I have insulted You with sarcastic words such as satyavadi, you are truthful, nishkapata, you are free from cheating, and parama-sarala, you are very simple. I beg Your forgiveness for thousands of such offenses. O Prabhu! Please forgive me. I implore You!.


Upon seeing the supremely majestic vishvarupa of Shri Krishna, which is a manifestation of His vibhuti, Arjuna for got his natural friendly relationship in sakhya-rasa, as aishvarya-jnana arose within him. He is lamenting for all the times he addressed Krishna in sakhya-bhava "He Sakhe! He Yadava! He Krishna!" and is begging His forgiveness again and again.


pitasi lokasya caracarasya
tvam asya pujyash ca gurur gariyan
na tvat-samo 'sty abhyadhikah kuto 'nyo
loka-traye 'py apratima-prabhava

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.43 <>

apratima-prabhava---O possessor of unrivalled power; asi---You are; pita---the father; lokasya---of this world; cara-acarasya---of moving and non-moving beings; tvam---You; pujyah---are worshipable; ca---and; guruh---the spiritual guide; gariyan---the greatest respectable person; asya---of this world; na asti---there is no one; tvat-samah---equal to You; api loka-traye---even within these three worlds; kutah---where is?; anyah---another; (who is) abhyadhikah---greater.

O possessor of unrivalled power! You are the father, the most worshipable, the guru and the most honoured person in this entire world of moving and non-moving beings. No one in the three worlds is Your equal, so who could possibly be greater than You?


tasmat pranamya pranidhaya kayam
prasadaye tvam aham isham idyam
piteva putrasya sakheva sakhyuh
priyah priyayarhasi deva sodhum

tasmat---thus; pranamya---offering obeisances; pranidhaya--- prostrating; kayam---my body; aham prasadaye---I plead for grace; tvam---from You; idyam---the adorable; isham---Lord; iva---as; pita---a father; putrasya---with his son; iva---as; sakha---a friend; sakhyuh---with his friend; priyah---as a lover; priyaya---with his beloved; deva---O Lord; arhasi---You ought; sodhum---to forgive (me).

Thus, I offer my prostrated obeisances at Your lotus feet. O adorable Parameshvara, I entreat You to be gracious to me. O Deva, just as a father forgives his son, a friend tolerates a friend or a lover excuses his beloved, please forgive all my offenses.


The phrase kayam pranidhaya means falling to the ground like a stick.


adrishta-purvam hrishito 'smi drishtva
bhayena ca pravyathitam mano me
tad eva me darshaya deva rupam
prasida devesha jagan-nivasa

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.45 <>

deva---O Lord; drishtva---having seen; adrishta-purvam---that which has not been seen before; asmi---I; hrishitah---am overjoyed; ca--- but; me---my; manah---mind; pravyathitam---is extremely perturbed; bhayena---by fear; eva darshaya---just show; me---me; tat. that (familiar); rupam---form; deva-isha---O Lord of the gods; jaganniv asa---O abode of the universe; prasida---please be gracious.

O Deva! Having seen this vishvarupa of Yours which was never seen before, I am overjoyed, but my mind is also very much perturbed due to fear. O Devesha, God of gods! Please again show me Your four-handed form. O Jagan-nivasa, refuge of the entire universe, please be gracious to me!


Arjuna says, "Upon seeing this vishvarupa which has never been seen before, I feel jubilant. At the same time, my mind is agitated with fear because of its terrible features. Therefore, please show me that form of Yours as Vasudevanandana, which is the pinnacle of sweetness and millions of times more dear to me than my own life. Please be gracious to me. I have seen enough of Your aishvarya. I acknowledge that You alone are Devesha, the God of all gods, the controller of all devas, and Jagan-nivasa, the abode of the whole universe." When Arjuna saw the universal form, he was unable to see Krishna's original human form, because it was covered by yogamaya, even though Krishna remained present before him. This is understood here. SARARTHA-VARShINI PRAKAShIKA-VRiTTI Shri Krishna is asamorddhva-tattva: nobody is equal to or greater than Him. In this regard Bhagavan Himself says: mamaham evabhirupah kaivalyad Shrimad-Bhagavatam 5.3.17 I am advitiya-purusha, one without a second. Only I am equal to Myself. There is no one who is equal to Me, what to speak of being greater than Me.


It is also said in Shvetashvatara Upanishad (6.8):
na tat-samash cabhyadhikash ca drishyate
The Lord has no duty to perform. A person who is equal to Him or greater than Him is not to be seen.

In Chaitanya-caritamrita (Madhya-lila 20.152) it is said: krishnera svarupa-vicara shuna, sanatana
advaya-jnana-tattva, vraje vrajendra-nandana
O Sanatana, please hear about Shri Krishna's eternal svarupa. Although He is the Absolute Truth devoid of duality, He is eternally present in Vraja as the son of Nanda Maharaja.

Shri Krishna's power is inconceivable. He is the adorable father and the adi-guru (original guru) of the entire moving and non-moving world. He alone is the supreme worshipable reality (sevya-tattva) for the jivas. Considering this, Arjuna paid obeisances again and again and said, "In this world, the father does not accept the faults of his son as serious, a friend the faults of a friend, nor a lover the faults of the beloved. You are Shri Bhagavan, yet You feel pleasure in dealing with bhaktas in sakhya, vatsalya and madhurya-rasa. Out of mercy, You reciprocate with all of them accordingly. Although my earlier behaviour with You was not improper from the perspective of our eternal relationship in sakhya-bhava, when I consider Your glories and tattva, it seems that it was improper.

"Previously, I had not seen this universal form of Yours. Now my curiosity is satisfied. Although by seeing it I feel happy, my mind is disturbed due to its terrible features. Therefore, please again show me Your form as Vasudeva-nandana, the zenith of sweetness, which is millions of times more dear to me than my own life." Although the narakara-rupa (human- like form) of Vasudeva-nandana Krishna was present before Arjuna as he beheld the universal form, it was covered by yogamaya. Therefore, Arjuna was unable to see Him and he requested Him to show His caturbhuja-rupa (fourhanded form).


kiritinam gadinam cakra-hastam
icchami tvam drashtum aham tathaiva
tenaiva rupena catur-bhujena
sahasra-baho bhava vishva-murtte

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.46 <>

aham---I; icchami---wish; drashtum---to see; tvam---You; tatha eva---like that; kiritinam---helmeted; gadinam---holding a club; cakra-hastam---and disc in hand; sahasra-baho---O thousandarmed one; vishva-murtte---O universal form; eva bhava---just be present; tena---in that; rupena---form; catur-bhujena---with four arms.

I long to see You in that caturbhuja-rupa, adorned with helmet, mace and disc. O Sahasra-baho, thousand- armed one! O Vishvamurte, universal form! Please show me that four-armed form once again.


"In the future, whenever You show me Your aishvarya feature, please only show me that of Your nara-lila, that Vasudeva-nandana rupa which I have seen earlier. Please show me that parama-rasamaya-rupa, the form which embodies supreme rasa and which gives bliss to mana-nayana, the eyes of my mind. That form is not adrishta-purva, that which was not seen before. The aishvarya of the universal form, which is part of Your divine pastime, is not very appealing to the eyes of my mind."

With the above intention in mind, Arjuna says, "Please give me darshana of that form I saw previously, which has a divine, precious helmet made of jewels. In other words, I want to see that form You showed Your parents at the time of Your birth. O Vishvamurte (one who has the form of the universe)! O Sahasra-baho (one who has thousands of arms)! Please withdraw this present form (vishvarupa), and appear in Your caturbhuja-rupa."


The svarupa of Krishna is that of a young boy (nava-kishora), a beautiful actor (nata-vara), dressed as a cowherd boy (gopave sha) with a flute in his hand (venu-kara). This is Krishna's eternal form. Although He is the embodiment of madhurya, aishvarya is also fully present in Him. Whether aishvarya is manifest or not, if the activities appropriate for nara-lila are not transgressed, it is certainly called madhurya. For example, the killing of Putana occured when Krishna was a baby. However, His behaviour as a baby was not exceeded by this manifestation of His aishvarya. Neglecting the activities of naral ila to manifest aishvarya-bhava is called aishvarya. For example, at the time of His birth, Shri Krishna appeared before Vasudeva and Devaki bedecked with various ornaments and dresses, thus exceeding the activities of a human child. This is called aishvarya-mayi-lila.

Here Arjuna's seeing the universal form is aishvarya-mayi-lila. Afterwards he prayed to see the four-handed form, which was somewhat familiar to him, as this was appropriate for the activities of nara-lila. While performing His pastimes with the Yadavas and Pandavas in His two-handed form, Shri Krishna would sometimes manifest His four-handed form. The pastimes in Dvaraka are somewhat aishvarya-mayi, but all pastimes in Vraja are madhurya-mayi, or naravat (human-like). When Arjuna tied Ashvatthama, the killer of Draupadi's five sons, with ropes and brought him to her feet, Draupadi was able to forgive Ashvatthama, but Bhima could not and wanted to kill him. To fulfil the desires of both and also to test the sharpness of Arjuna's intelligence, Shri Krishna manifested His four-handed form. Shrimad-Bhagavatam (1.7.52) states:

nishamya bhima-gaditam / draupadyash ca catur-bhujah
alokya vadanam sakhyur / idam aha hasann iva

Caturbhuja, after hearing the words of Bhima, Draupadi and others, saw the face of His dear friend Arjuna, and began to speak as if smiling.

Once, while Krishna was joking with Rukmini, she could not understand the meaning of His words and fell to the ground unconscious. At that time, Krishna manifested His caturbhujar upa and lifted her up with two of His arms. With His other two arms He began to arrange her dishevelled hair and clean her face. As it is said in Shrimad-Bhagavatam (10.60.26):

paryankad avaruhyashu / tam utthapya catur-bhujah
keshan samuhya tad-vaktram / pramrijat padma-panina

Arising swiftly from the couch, the four-armed Lord smoothed her hair and gently touched her face with His lotus hand. Once, in His Vraja lila, Krishna suddenly disappeared from the rasa-lila. Manifesting His caturbhuja-rupa He stood on the path of the gopis who were searching for Him. When the gopis saw Him, they paid their obeisances and moved on in search of dvibhuja (two-handed) Shyamasundara. In the meantime, Shrimati Radhika, the embodiment of mahabhava, came to that place. Seeing Her, Krishna became overwhelmed and despite great endeavour He was unable to maintain His fourarmed form. This caturbhuja-rupa disappeared into His dvibhuja-rupa.

Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura quotes Arjuna as saying, "Now I want to see Your four-armed form in which You wear a crown on Your head and carry weapons such as a club and disc in Your hands. When You manifested the creation from Your caturbhuja-murti, You manifested Your vishvarupa-murti, of sahasra-bahu (one thousand arms). O Krishna, I have understood without a doubt that this two-armed Shyamasundara form is the embodiment of sac-cid-ananda para-tattva, is eternal and is the attractor of all jivas. The caturbhuja-murti of Narayana eternally exists as the aishvarya-vilasa of this two-armed Shyamasundara rupa. At the time of creation, this gigantic vishvarupa-murti manifests from that four-armed Narayana form. My curiosity has been satisfied by this supreme knowledge."


shri-bhagavan uvaca
maya prasannena tavarjunedam
rupam param darshitam atma-yogat
tejo-mayam vishvam anantam adyam
yan me tvad anyena na drishta-purvam

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.47 <>

shri-bhagavan uvaca---the all-opulent Lord said; arjuna---O Arjuna; maya---because I; (am) prasannena---pleased; tava---with you; idam---this; tejo-mayam---resplendent; anantam---unlimited; adyam---original; param---supreme; vishvam---universal; rupam--- form; darshitam---has been shown; me atma-yogat---by My yogamaya; (a form) yat---which; na drishta-purvam---has not been seen previously; anyena---by someone other; tvat---than you.

Shri Bhagavan said: O Arjuna, because I am pleased with you, I have shown you My resplendent, unlimited and priSh meval universal form by My inconceivable yogamaya shakti. This form has never been seen by anyone other than you.


"O Arjuna, you prayed to Me, Purushottama, to show you My aishvarya-rupa (Gita 11.3), and thus I have shown you that vishvarupa purusha which is but an amsha, partial aspect of Me. Why has your mind become disturbed upon seeing it? Moreover, you now desire to see My human-like form and are entreating Me, "Be gracious, be gracious!" Why do you speak in this surprising manner? I showed you and no one else My vishvarupa because I was pleased with you. No one but you has ever seen it before. Why do you no longer wish to see it?.


Bhagavan Shri Krishna told Arjuna, "On your request, I showed you My partial aspect, My resplendent vishvarupa, through the potency of My acintya-shakti because I was pleased with you." In Shri Baladeva Vidyabhushana's commentary, he has compared this prakasha (manifestation) of Krishna with a valuable gem and an expert theatre actor. Although a valuable gem is only one object, by displaying its various colours it satisfies many viewers. Similarly, an expert actor entertains his audience by appearing in various roles. In the same way, although Krishna is one, He manifested the vishvarupa which is present within Him. This is the hidden meaning of Krishna's statement.

Krishna again said, "Because of you, even the devatas and many bhaktas saw this form. No one had ever seen it before. When I went to the assembly of Duryodhana as a messenger of the Pandavas, and in various ways tried to persuade the Kauravas to give half the kingdom to the Pandavas, the wicked Duryodhana tried to capture Me. I then manifested a partial aspect of My vishvarupa before Dhritarashtra, the kings of various states and many noble persons. Bhishma, Drona and all the rishis who were present in that assembly were unable to tolerate its effulgence and closed their eyes. On Dhritarashtra's request, I gave him divine vision for a short while so that he could see Me. Arjuna, you are My friend, and I have shown you this form which was never shown to anyone else because I am pleased with you."


na veda-yajnadhyayanair na danair
na ca kriyabhir na tapobhir ugraih
evam-rupah shakya aham nri-loke
drashtum tvad anyena kuru-pravira

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.48 <>

kuru-pravira---O hero among the Kurus; anyena tvat---other than by you; aham---I; na shakyah---cannot; drashtum---be seen; nri- loke---in this world of men; evam-rupah---in this way; vedaadhyayanai h---through study of the Vedas; yajna---through sacrificial performances; na---not; danaih---by acts of charity; na--- not; kriyabhih---by ritualistic activities; ca---and; na---not; ugraih---by severe; tapobhih---austerities.

O Kuru-pravira, great hero among the Kurus, no one but you in this mortal world is able to see My vishvarupa. This form cannot be seen by study of the Vedas, nor through sacrifices, charity, rituals or severe penances.


Shri Bhagavan says, "The ability to see the form I have shown you cannot be achieved even by processes such as studying the Vedas. I am unable to show this form to anyone other than you. Fix your nishtha in that most rare of forms only, understanding that you have achieved the most unattainable object. Why do you again wish to see My human form after seeing this most rare form?.


Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura quotes Krishna as saying, "O Kuru-pravira, nobody in this world has ever seen this vishvarupa, manifested by My yogamaya-shakti, even by the study of the Vedas, sacrifices, charity, religious activities or severe austerities. You are the only one to have seen it. All those jivas who have attained the position of devas see and remember My vishvarupa with their divine eyes and divine minds. In this mundane world, those who are bound by delusion and covered by ignorance cannot see this divine form, but My bhaktas, who are in yoga (union) with Me and always fixed in nityacit- tattva (the eternal conscious reality), transcend delusion as well as divinity. They, just like you, do not feel comfortable with this form, but hanker to see My chinmaya-nitya-rupa, that transcendentally beautiful human-like form."


ma te vyatha ma ca vimudha-bhavo
drishtva rupam ghoram idrin mamedam
vyapeta-bhih prita-manah punas tvam
tad eva me rupam idam prapashya

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.49 <>

ma te---you should not have; vyatha---fear; ca---and; ma--- do not; (be) vimudha-bhavah---bewildered; drishtva---having seen; idrik---such; idam ghoram---a terrible; rupam---form; mama---of Mine; (be) vyapeta-bhih---free from fear; pritaman ah---of cheerful mind; tvam prapashya---you just behold; punah---again; idam---this; tat eva---very same; rupam---form; me---of Mine.

Do not fear or be deluded by seeing this terrible form of Mine. Become fearless and with a cheerful mind behold once again My beautiful four-armed form to your complete satisfaction.


"O Parameshvara! Why aren't You blessing me? You want to forcibly show me this form even though I am unwilling to see it. My body is becoming troubled and my mind perplexed by seeing Your aishvarya-rupa. I am repeatedly falling unconscious. I pay my obeisances from a distance to this parama-aishvarya-rupa of Yours, and will never again pray to You to show it to me. Please forgive me for this. Please forgive me. Please show me the moon-like face of Your human-like form with which You shower the nectar of Your sweet smile."

Shri Bhagavan speaks this shloka beginning with the word ma te to give solace to a disturbed Arjuna.


Arjuna became very fearful and agitated upon seeing the terrible vishvarupa. Shri Bhagavan pacified him saying, "Be neither fearful nor agitated. In the assembly when Draupadi was being insulted, Duryodhana, Bhishma, Dronacarya and others remained silent. Even Yudhishthira and the other Pandavas were unable to protect her and remained sitting with their heads lowered. Duryodhana, Karna and others were ridiculing her with various sarcastic statements and Duhshasana slapped his thigh and then pulled at Draupadi's cloth with his full strength. In such a helpless situation, Draupadi fully surrendered to Me. At that time, I vowed to destroy the adharmika, wicked Duryodhana and all his followers. Therefore, I will shurely execute this massacre. You are just an instrument. I have shown you My wrathful, terrible, annihilating form just to give you faith in this. You are My nitya-sakha therefore, I know that this form will not be pleasing to you. Now without fear, behold that form you have requested Me to show you."

Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura quotes Krishna as saying, "Foolish persons do not believe in this vishvarupa. By seeing this terrible form you should be neither agitated nor bewildered. My bhaktas are peaceful, and therefore they long to see My sac-cid-ananda-nara-rupa. I therefore bless you not to be agitated or bewildered by My vishvarupa. Those bhaktas who are attracted to My madhurya have no purpose with this vishvarupa. Since you are My lila-sakha (pastime friend), you are to be an instrument in all My pastimes. It is not proper for you to be disturbed like this. Now give up your fear, and with a cheerful mind see My nitya-rupa (transcendental human-like form)."


sanjaya uvaca
ity arjunam vasudevas tathoktva
svakam rupam darshayam asa bhuyah
ashvasayam asa ca bhitam enam
bhutva punah saumya-vapur mahatma

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.50 <>

sanjaya uvaca---Sanjaya said; tatha iti---thus; uktva---speaking; maha-atma---the magnanimous; vasudevah---son of Vasudeva; bhuyah---again; darshayam asa---showed; svakam---His personal; rupam---form; arjunam---to Arjuna; ca---and; ashvasayam asa--- consoled; enam---that; bhitam---frightened person; bhutva---by becoming; punah---again; saumya-vapuh---the gentle form.

Sanjaya said: Having spoken thus, the supremely compassionate son of Vasudeva again revealed His four-armed form, and then further consoled the frightened Arjuna by assuming His gentle two-armed form.


In this way, after showing the extremely wrathful form of His amsha, Shri Bhagavan showed His madhurya-aishvarya-maya caturbhuja-rupa, His four-armed form decorated with helmet, mace, cakra and so forth, being so requested by Arjuna. That Supreme Personality again manifested His pleasing twohanded form, decorated with bracelets, earrings, turban, pitambara and other ornaments, thus giving solace to the frightened Arjuna.


Sanjaya is describing what happened next. Bhagavan Shri Krishna withdrew His sahasra-sirsha-rupa (thousand-headed form) and manifested His caturbhuja-rupa, blackish in colour like the blue lotus. He had manifested this form as Devaki- nandana in the prison house of Kamsa. Finally, He gave solace to the frightened Arjuna by manifesting His supremely pleasing dvibhuja-murti (two-armed form).


arjuna uvaca
drishtvedam manusham rupam / tava saumyam janardana
idanim asmi samvrittah / sa-cetah prakritim gatah

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.51 <>

arjuna uvaca---Arjuna said; janardana---O Janardana; drishtva--- seeing; idam---this; manusham---human-like; aumyam---pleasing; rupam---form; tava---of Yours; idanim---now; asmi samvrittah---I have become; sa-cetah---rational; (and) gatah--- have returned; prakritim---to my nature.

Arjuna said: O Janardana, now my heart feels delight upon seeing this captivating human-like form of Yours, and I have returned to my normal condition.


Seeing the most sweet form of Shri Krishna, and feeling as if he were immersed in the ocean of bliss, Arjuna said, "My heart feels delight now that I have returned to my prakritim (normal state)."


At that time Arjuna, who was now free from all fear, saw Shri Krishna first in His extremely sweet caturbhuja-rupa, and then in His dvibhuja Shyamasundara form. In great bliss Arjuna said, "O Janardana, after seeing Your most pleasing human-like form, I have become self-composed and have regained my natural condition."

Shri Krishna mostly performed His pastimes with the Yadavas and the Pandavas in His dvibhuja-rupa, yet sometimes He performed them in His caturbhuja-rupa. Therefore, His caturbhuja-rupa is also known as human. In Shrimad- Bhagavatam (7.15.75), Narada Muni describes Shri Krishna's human form to Maharaja Yudhishthira: gudham param brahma manushya-lingam. "Shri Krishna is living intimately with you in your house, just like your brother."


shri-bhagavan uvaca
su-durdarsham idam rupam / drishtavan asi yan mama
deva apy asya rupasya / nityam darshana-kankshinah

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.52 <>

shri-bhagavan uvaca---the all-opulent Lord said; idam---this; rupam---form; mama---of Mine; yat---which; drishtavan asi---you have seen; (is) su-durdarsham---very rarely seen; api---even; devah---the gods; nityam---always; darshana-kankshinah---aspire to have a sight; asya---of this; rupasya---form.

Shri Bhagavan said: This human form of Mine which you have seen, is rarely seen by others. Even the devas are ever hankering to have darshana of this form.


In this and the next two shlokas beginning with the words su-durdarsham, Shri Bhagavan is explaining the glory of the svarupa He is now showing to Arjuna. "Even the devas aspire to see this svarupa but never can. However you, Arjuna, do not want to see My vishvarupa. This is appropriate because you are eternally tasting the maha-madhurya of My original human form. How, therefore, could this vishvarupa attract your eyes? I blessed you with divine eyes, but I did not bless you with a corresponding divine mind. Therefore, you whose mind only likes to see My maha-madhurya human form, did not fully appreciate seeing My other (universal) form, even though I gave you divine vision. If I had given you an appropriate divine mind, then you would also have become attracted to My vishvarupa, like the devas."


In the present shloka Shri Krishna is explaining the glory of His human-like form (nara-rupa). Exhibiting the most exceptional aspect of His mercy to Arjuna, He says, "It is extremely rare to behold this human form which you are seeing. Even the devas cannot see it. In Shrimad-Bhagavatam, Tenth Canto, the Garbha-stotra states that it is even difficult for the devas to see this form. You are My nitya-bhakta who tastes the great sweetness of My human form. Therefore, the vishvarupa was not pleasing to you. I gave you divine eyes but not a divine mind. If I had given you a divine mind, then, like the devas, you would have been attracted to this universal form. Because you are My nitya-sakha, you can never give up your sakhya-bhava. Thus, this human form is very pleasing to you."

Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura quotes Krishna as saying, "O Arjuna, the form which you now see is most rare, sudurdar sham. Even devas like Brahma and Rudra always hanker to see this nitya-rupa. If you wonder how this human form is so rare when it is seen by everyone, then I want to explain this tattva to you. Hear attentively. There are three types of perceptions related to My sac-cid-ananda krishna-rupa: avidvatprat iti, yauktika-pratiti and vidvat-pratiti. Avidvat-pratiti is the perception of the ignorant which is only based on empiric knowledge. They see My nitya-svarupa as mundane and temporary. One cannot understand the supreme nature of this svarupa by such perception. By yauktika (reasoning) or divyaprat iti, the devas and persons who are proud of their jnana consider My svarupa to be mundane and temporary. They accept the eternal reality of either My universal form, which pervades the whole universe, or My negative aspect of the universe, nirvishesha-brahma. They conclude that My human form is only a temporary means of worship. However, by vidvat-pratiti (perception which is based on transcendental knowledge), My bhaktas, who are endowed with conscious vision (cit-cakshu), realise My human form to be directly the abode of sac-cid-ananda. This type of realised vision is rare even for the devas, among whom only Brahma and Shiva, who are My shuddha-bhaktas, are always longing to see My human form. Having seen this vishvarupa, you have been able to understand, by My mercy, the supremacy of My eternal form. This is because you are engaged in My pure bhakti in friendship."


naham vedair na tapasa / na danena na cejyaya
shakya evam-vidho drashtum / drishtavan asi yan mama

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.53 <>

aham---I; na shakyah---can not; drashtum---be seen; evam-vidhah--- in this way; yatha---as; drishtavan asi---you have seen; mam---Me; vedaih---by study of the Vedas; na---nor; tapasa---by austerities; na---not; danena---by charitable acts; ca---and; na---nor; ijyaya--- by sacrifice.

It is not possible to see Me in this form as you see Me now merely by studying the Vedas, practising austerities, giving in charity or performing sacrifices.


"If, like you, someone wants to see My eternal two-handed human form, considering it to be the essence of human endeavour, they will not be able to know or see it, even if they perform such processes as studying the Vedas and executing austerities. Believe this."


One cannot obtain darshana of Shri Krishna in His most pleasing eternal human like form, which was seen by the bhakta Arjuna, by studying the Vedas, or by performing austerities, charity or worship, etc. It is said in Shrimad-Bhagavatam (11.12.9):

yam na yogena sankhyena / dana-vrata-tapo-'dhvaraih
vyakhya-svadhyaya-sannyasaih / prapnuyad yatnavan api
Even by practices performed with great endeavour such as mystic yoga, philosophical speculation, charity, vows, austerities, performance of sacrifice, teaching Vedic mantras, study of shastra, or taking the renounced order of life, one cannot achieve Me. And furthermore it is said:

na sadhayati mam yogo / na sankhyam dharma uddhava
na svadhyayas tapas tyago / yatha bhaktir mamorjita
Shrimad-Bhagavatam 11.14.20

My dear Uddhava, I am controlled only by the bhakti rendered to Me by My pure hearted devotees. I can never be controlled by those who only study Sankhya philosophy or shastra, or who perform mystic yoga, pious acts, austerity or renunciation.


bhaktya tv ananyaya shakya / aham evam-vidho 'rjuna
jnatum drashtun ca tattvena / praveshtun ca parantapa

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.54 <>

parantapa---O chastiser of the foe; arjuna---Arjuna; tu---however; ananyaya---by exclusive; bhaktya---devotional service; aham---I; shakyah---can; jnatum---be known; ca---and; drashtum---seen; evam- vidhah---in this way (in this human-like form); ca---and; tattvena--- truly; praveshtum---enter (into association with Me.)

O Parantapa, Arjuna! Only by ananya-bhakti can one actually know and see My eternal, beautiful human form and truly enter into association with Me in My abode.


"Then by which means are You attainable?" Expecting this question from Arjuna, Shri Bhagavan speaks this shloka beginning with the word bhaktya. Even if one has the desire to attain nirvana-moksha (impersonal liberation), he can only enter into the brahma-svarupa with the help of bhakti. There is no other way. After jnana-sannyasa, the guni-bhuta bhakti of the jnanis finally develops to a slight degree. Nothing else happens. By this they attain sayujya-mukti.

"Later they attain Me, having known My svarupa in truth." This I will explain and establish later in Gita 18.55.


The vision of this pleasing human form is possible only by ananya-bhakti. In this regard, Shrimad-Bhagavatam (11.12.8) states:

kevalena hi bhavena / gopyo gavo naga mrigah
ye 'nye mudha-dhiyo nagah / siddha mam iyur anjasa
The residents of Vraja, such as the gopis, cows, animals, the snakes such as Kaliya, the twin arjuna trees and other non-moving entities with their consciousness covered, such as, bushes and shrubs, all attained the perfection of life, and came to Me simply because of their one-pointed devotion for Me. And furthermore, Shrimad-Bhagavatam (11.14.21) states:

bhaktyaham ekaya grahyah / shraddhayatma priyah satam
bhaktih punati man-nishtha / shva-pakan api sambhavat
I can only be attained through bhakti performed with full faith. I am naturally dear to My bhaktas who take Me as the exclusive goal of their bhajana. Even the dog-eaters can purify themselves of their lower birth by performing bhajana to Me.


mat-karma-krin mat-paramo / mad-bhaktah sanga-varjitah
nirvairah sarva-bhuteshu / yah sa mam eti pandava

Click here to read Shrila Prabhupada's Bhagavad Gita As It Is 11.55 <>

pandava---O son of Pandu; sah---he; yah---who; mat-karma-krit--- dedicates his work to Me; mat-paramah---makes Me his ultimate shelter; mat-bhaktah---practises devotional service to Me; sangavarjita h---free from (materialistic) association; nirvairah---without enmity; sarva-bhuteshu---towards any living being; eti---comes; mam---to Me.

O son of Pandu, one who works exclusively for Me and considers Me alone to be his supreme goal, who engages in the various limbs of bhakti such as shravanam and kirtanam while avoiding mundane attachments, and who remains free from enmity towards any living being'he alone attains Me in My supremely beautiful Krishna form.


Now in this shloka beginning with the words mat-karmak rit, Shri Bhagavan explains the characteristics of His ananya-bhaktas to conclude the discussion on bhakti, which began in Chapter Seven. Sanga-varjitah means devoid of attachment to the results and free from poor association. The import of the Eleventh Chapter is that Arjuna has become firmly convinced about the maha-aishvarya of Shri Krishna and that he will be victorious in battle.

Thus ends the Bhavanuvada of the Sarartha-Varshini Tika, by Shrila Vishvanatha Cakravarti Thakura, on the Eleventh Chapter of Shrimad Bhagavad-gita, which gives pleasure to the bhaktas and is accepted by all saintly persons.


In this shloka Shri Krishna is explaining the limbs of bhakti that are to be followed by bhaktas who take shelter of ananyabhakti. "Those who become free from all mundane attachment and envy towards all jivas and engage in My ananyabhakti by performing activities such as building temples for Me, cleaning them, offering service to Tulasi-devi, and performing shravana, kirtana and smarana of hari-katha, they alone are My bhaktas."

Similar statements are made in Shrimad-Bhagavatam (11.11.38-39):

mamarca-sthapane shraddha / svatah samhatya codyamah
udyanopavanakrida- / pura-mandira-karmani
sammarjanopalepabhyam / seka-mandala-vartanaih
griha-shushrushanam mahyam / dasa-vad yad amayaya

One should faithfully install My Deity form in the temples. If one is unable to perform this work alone, he should endeavour with the help of others. He should make flower and fruit gardens, cities and temples for Me, as well as places to celebrate My pastime festivals. Like a faithful and devoted servant he should, render service in the temple without duplicity, clean it, wash it, sprinkle it with fragrant water, and perform various services. Shrila Baladeva Vidyabhushana writes, "My bhaktas are those who are mat-paramah, who consider only Me to be the supreme goal and who do not aspire for other goals, such as Svarga. They are engaged in tasting nine types of bhakti-rasa (the limbs of bhakti), such as the hearing and chanting of My name, form and so forth. Those who are sanga-varjita, free from the attachment to the results of their actions and free from poor association, and those who are nirvaira, free from enmity to all living beings, see that their miseries are the result of their own previous karma and have no feeling of enmity towards those who are inimical towards them. Rather, they feel compassion for them. Only such persons attain to My krishna-svarupa, not others."

Shrila Bhaktivinoda Thakura writes in his Vidvat-ranjana commentary, "In this chapter Shri Krishna's rupa has been established as the supreme refuge and the ultimate worshipable reality, compared to His vishvarupa kala-rupa and even the vishnu-rupa. Besides the svarupa-vigraha, (the eternal, allattractive human form of Shri Krishna), bhaktas have no attraction for the sambandha-vigraha (the relative manifestation of Bhagavan). This chapter concludes that the form of Shri Krishna alone is the ocean of all nectarean mellows (nikhila-rasamrita-sindhu) and the only abode of supreme sweetness (parama-madhurya-bhava)."

Thus ends the Sarartha-

Varshini Prakashika-vritti, by Shri Shrimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Maharaja, on the Eleventh Chapter of Shrimad Bhagavad-gita. 55