ABSTRACT: In this study, four popular translations of the Bhagavad Gita are reproduced for the sake of study and research by serious students of the bhagavad Gita who may want to compare the English translations of the teachings of Lord Krishna in the Bhagavad Gita. The bhagavad Gita gives the essence of the teachings of Hinduism. The four translations are: (1)Translations by A.C.Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, the founder of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON) (2) American/International Gita Society's translation of the Gita by Dr. Ramananda Prasad, the founder of the Gita Society.(3) Rendition by Dr. S. Radhakrishnan, former Vice President of India, and (4) Translation by Swami Gambhirananda of the Vedanta Society.
NOTE: Not for commercial use. Solely to be fairly used for the educational purposes of research and open discussion. Most of the translations are copyrighted and commercial use is prohibited. Compilation was done by Harry Bhalla, who took great care in typing and double checking. Typo-errors found in this document will be immediately corrected if notified to: Gita Society
The motivation for comparing translation of the Sanskrit verses, by different authors, came from a “want” of better understanding of the Bhagavad-Gita. I had just finished abbreviating the Gita, when this desire to compare translations of the verses from Sanskrit to English took hold. I find it easier to read books on my computer screen for various reasons, I can change the font to suit reading conditions, I have access to a thesaurus at a click of a button, a notebook weighs considerably less, I can search for words, verses etc.
Often people say that the epics are merely a translation or an author’s understanding of the real text. A verse by verse comparison of various authors translations help alleviate this doubt.
The translations of the Bhagavad-Gita I have compared so far are very similar even though the authors wrote their versions of the Gita miles apart from each other and in different time frames. The subtle differences between the translations make for good discussion leading to better understanding of the teachings of the Bhagavad-Gita. As far as possible, the verses have been copied exactly as they appeared in publications, except possibly for “typos”. Verses typed in red color are considered important by Dr. Prasad.
Example of differences; verse 7.24, 15.16-18. Also it appears that in Iskon (Bhagavad-Gita as it is) the word “Yoga” means bhakti in most cases. Where Dr. Prasad has used deity worship for Upasanaa, Iskon says worship of the Supreme Lord, as they do not seem to believe in the existence of deities, even though we know that deity worship exists.
The Gita says;
- “Do your duty to the best of your ability without worrying about the results.” A farmer has control over how he works his land, yet no control over the harvest. But, he cannot expect a harvest if he does not work his land.
- “Perceive that God is present equally in all beings”
- “Treat all beings equally.”
- The four goals of human life are:
- Doing one’s duty
- Earning wealth
- Material and sensual enjoyment (with senses under control)
- Attaining salvation
It seems to me that the Gita differentiates between knowledge required to earn wealth from knowledge required to attain salvation.
The aim of the Gita doctrine is to lead one to tranquility, happiness and equanimity. No rituals are prescribed. The Gita says that the world needs different religions, cults and deities to meet the vastly different needs of individuals.
For those who have never read the Gita, or are interested to know what the Gita is about, we suggest that you read “Beyond Religion”, our BlueBook, available free of charge from The International Gita Society or www.gita4free.com. Those who wish to buy a copy for the Gita, may find the comparison of verses helpful in determining which publication to purchase.
The King inquired: Sanjaya, please now tell me, in details, what did my people (the Kauravas) and the Pandavas do in the battlefield before the war started? (1.01)
Gita as it is
Dhrtarastra said: O Sanjaya, after my sons and the sons of Pandu assembled in the place of pilgrimage at Kuruksetra, desiring to fight, what did they do? (1.01)
PROFESSOR S. RADHAKRISHNAN
(1) In the field of righteousness, the field of the Kurus, when my people and the sons of Pandu had gathered together, eager for battle, what did they do, O Samjaya?
O Sanjaya, what did my sons (and others) and Pandu’s sons (and others) actually do when, eager for battle, they assembled on the sacred field, the Kuruksetra? (1.01)
Sanjaya said: O King, After seeing the battle formation of the Pandava's army, your son approached his guru and spoke these words:
O Master, behold this mighty army of the Pandavas, arranged in battle formation by your other talented disciple! There are many great warriors, valiant men, heroes, and mighty archers. (1.03-06)
Also there are many heroes on my side who have risked their lives for me. I shall name few distinguished commanders of my army for your information. He named all the officers of his army, and said: They are armed with various weapons, and are skilled in warfare. (1.07-09) Our army is invincible, while their army is easy to conquer. Therefore all of you, occupying your respective positions, protect our commander-in-chief. (1.10-11)
Gita as it is
Sanjaya said: O King, after looking over the army arranged in military formation by the sons of Pandu, King Duryodhana went to his teacher and spoke the following words. (1.02)
O my teacher, behold the great army of the sons of Pandu, so expertly arranged by your intelligent disciple the son of Drupada. (1.03)
Here in this army are many heroic bowmen equal in fighting to Bhima and Arjuna: great fighters like Yuyudhana, Virata and Drupada. (1.04)
There are also great, heroic, powerful fighters like Dhrstaketu, Cekitana, Kasiraja, Purujit, Kuntibhoja and Saibya. (1.05)
There are the mighty Yudhamanyu, the very powerful Uttamauja, the son of Subhadra and the sons of Draupadi. All these warriors are great chariot fighters. (1.06)
But for your information, O best of the brahmanas, let me tell you about the captains who are especially qualified to lead my military force. (1.07)
There are personalities like you, Bhisma, Karna, Krpa, Asvatthama, Vikarna and the son of Somadatta called Bhurisrava, who are always victorious in battle. (1.08)
There are many other heroes who are prepared to lay down their lives for my sake. All of them are well equipped with different kinds of weapons, and all are experienced in military science. (1.09)
Our strength is immeasurable, and we are perfectly protected by Grandfather Bhisma, whereas the strength of the Pandavas, carefully protected by Bhima, is limited. (1.10)
All of you must now give full support to Grandfather Bhisma, as you stand at your respective strategic points of entrance into the phalanx of the army. (1.11)
PROFESSOR S. RADHAKRISHNAN
(2) Then, Duryodhana the prince, having seen the army of the Pandavas drawn up in battle order, approached his teacher and spoke this word:
(3) Behold, O Teacher, this mighty army of the sons of Pandu organized by thy wise pupil, the son of Drupada.
(4) Here are heroes, great bowmen equal in battle to Bhima, Arjuna, Yuyudhana, Virata and Drupada, a mighty warrior.
(5) Dhrstaketu, Cekitana and the valiant King of Kasi, also Purujit, kuntibhoja and Siaibya the foremost of men.
(6) Yudhamanyu, the strong and Uttamauja, the brave; and also the son of Subhadra and sons of Draupadi, all of great warriors.
(7) Know also, O Best of the twiceborn, the leaders of my army those who are most distinguished among us. I will name them now for thy information.
(8) Thyself and Bhisma and Karna and Karpa, ever victorious in battle; Asvatthaman, Vikarna, and also the son Somadatta.
(9) And many other heroes who have risked their lives for my sake. They are armed with many kinds of weapons and are all well skilled in war.
(10) Unlimited is this army of ours which is guarded by Bhisma, while that army of theirs which is guarded by Bhima is limited.
(11) Therefore do ye all support Bhisma, standing firm in all the fronts, in your respective ranks.
But then, seeing the army of the Pandavas in battle array, King Duryodhana approached the teacher (Drona) and uttered a speech: (1.02)
O teacher, (please) see this vast army of the sons of Pandu, arrayed for battle by the son of Drupada, your intelligent disciple. (1.03)
Here are the heroes wielding great bows, who in battle are compeers of Bhima and Arjuna : Yuyudhana (Satyaki) and Virata, and the maharatha (great chariot rider) Drupada : (1.04)
Dhrstaketu, Cekitana, and the valiant king of Kasi (Varanasi) ; Purujit and Kuntibhoja, and Saibya the choicest among men ; (1.05)
And the Chivalrous Yudhamanyu, and the valiant Uttamaujas ; son of Subhadra (Abhimanyu) and the son of Draupadi, - all (of whom) are verily, maharathas (1.06)
But, O best among the Brahmanas, please be appraised of those who are foremost among us, the commanders of my army. I speak of them to you by way of example (1.07)
(They are;) Your venerable self, Bhisma and Karna who is ever victorious in battle ;Asvatthama, Vikarna, Saumadatti and Jayadratha. (1.08)
There are many other heroes dedicated their lives for my sake, who possess various kinds of weapons and missiles (and) all of whom are skilled in battle (1.09)
Therefore, our army under the complete protection of Bhisma and others is unlimited. But this army of these (enemies) under the protection of Bhima and others is limited. (1.10)
However, venerable sirs, all of you without exception while occupying all the positions in the different directions as allocated (to you respectively), please fully protect Bhisma in particular. (1.11)
The mighty commander-in-chief and the eldest man of the dynasty, roared as a lion and blew his conch loudly, bringing joy to your son. (1.12)
Soon after that; conches, kettledrums, cymbals, drums, and trumpets were sounded together. The commotion was tremendous. (1.13)
After that, Lord Krishna and Arjuna, seated in a grand chariot yoked with white horses, blew their celestial conches. (1.14)
Krishna blew His conch first, and then Arjuna and all other commanders of various divisions of the army of Pandavas blew their respective conches. The tumultuous uproar, resounding through the earth and sky, tore the hearts of your sons. (1.15-19)
Gita as it is
Then Bhisma, the great valiant grandsire of the Kuru dynasty, the grandfather of the fighters, blew his conchshell very loudly, making a sound like the roar of a lion, giving Duryodhana joy. (1.12)
After that, the conchshells, drums, bugles, trumpets and horns were all suddenly sounded, and the combined sound was tumultuous. (1.13)
On the other side, both Lord Krsna and Arjuna, stationed on a great chariot drawn by white horses, sounded their transcendental conchshells. (1.14)
Lord Krsna blew His conchshell, called Pancajanya; Arjuna blew his, the Devadatta; and Bhima, the voracious eater and performer of herculean tasks, blew his terrific conchshell, called Paundra. (1.15)
King Yudhisthira, the son of Kunti, blew his conchshell, the Ananta-vijaya, and Nakula and Sahadeva blew the Sughosa and Manipuspaka. That great archer the King of Kasi, the great fighter Sikhandi, Dhrstadyumna, Virata, the unconquerable Satyaki, Drupada, the sons of Draupadi, and the others, O King, such as the mighty-armed son of Subhadra, all blew their respective conchshells. (1.16-18)
The blowing of these different conchshells became uproarious. Vibrating both in the sky and on the earth, it shattered the hearts of the sons of Dhrtarastra. (1.19)
PROFESSOR S. RADHAKRISHNAN
(12) In order to cheer him up, the aged kuru, his valiant grandsire roared aloud like a lion and blew his conch.
(13) Then conches and kettledrums, tabors and drums and horns suddenly were struck and the noise was tumultuous.
(14) When stationed in their great chariot, yoked to white horses, Krsana and Ariuna blew their celestial conches.
(15) Krsna blew his Pancajanya and Arjuna his Devadatta and Bhima of terrific deeds blew his mighty conch, Paundra.
(16) Prince Yudhisthira, the son of Kunti, blew his Ananta-vijaya and Nakula and Sahadeva blew their Sughosa and Manipuspaka.
(I7) And the king of Kasi, the Chief of archers, Sikhandin, the great warrior, Dhrstadyumna and Virata and the invincible Satyaki.
(18) Drupada and the sons of Draupadi, O Lord of earth, the strong-armed son of Subhaadra, on all sides blew their respective conches.
(19) The tumultuous uproar resounding through earth and sky rent the hearts of Dhrtarastra's sons.
The valiant grandfather, the eldest of the Kurus, sounding a lion roar, blew the conch to raise his (Duryodhana’s) spirits. (1.12)
Just immediately after that conchs and kettle drums , and tabors, trumpets and cow-horns blared forth. The sound became tumultuous. (1.13)
Then, Madhava (Krsna) and the son of Pandu (Arjuna) stationed in their magnificent chariot with white horses yoked to it, loudly blew their divine conchs. (1.14)
Hrsikesa (Krsna) (blew the conch) Pancajanya ; Dhananjaya (Arjuna) (the conch) Devatta ; and Vrkodara (Bhima) of terrible deeds blew the great conch Paundra; (1.15)
King Yudhisthira, son of Kunti, (blew) the Anantavijaya ; Nakula and Sahadeva, the Sughusa and the Manipupaka (respectively) (1.16)
And the King of Kasi, wielding a great bow, and the great charioteer Sikhandi, Dhrstadyumna and Virata and Satyaki the unconquerable ; (1.17)
Drupada and the sons of Draupadi and the son of Subhdra (Abhimanyu) the mighty-armed , - all (of them ) together , O King , blew their respective conchs. (1.18)
That tremendous sound pierced the hearts of Dhrtarastra as it reverberated through the skies. (1.19)
Seeing your sons standing, and the war about to begin with the hurling of weapons; Arjuna, whose banner bore the emblem of Lord Hanumana, took up his bow and spoke these words to Lord Krishna: O Lord, please stop my chariot between the two armies until I behold those who stand here eager for the battle and with whom I must engage in this act of war. (1.20-22) I wish to see those who are willing to serve and appease the evil-minded Kauravas by assembling here to fight the battle. (1.23)
Sanjaya said: O King; Lord Krishna, as requested by Arjuna, placed the best of all the chariots in the midst of the two armies facing Arjuna's grandfather, his guru and all other Kings; and said to Arjuna: Behold these assembled soldiers! (1.24-25) Arjuna saw his uncles, grandfathers, teachers, maternal uncles, brothers, sons, grandsons, and other comrades in the army. (1.26)
Gita as it is
At that time Arjuna, the son of Pandu, seated in the chariot bearing the flag marked with Hanuman, took up his bow and prepared to shoot his arrows. O King, after looking at the sons of Dhrtarastra drawn in military array, Arjuna then spoke to Lord Krsna these words. (1.20)
Arjuna said: O infallible one, please draw my chariot between the two armies so that I may see those present here, who desire to fight, and with whom I must contend in this great trial of arms.(1.21-22)
Let me see those who have come here to fight, wishing to please the evil-minded son o Dhrtarastra.(1.23)
Sanjaya said: O descendant of Bharata, having thus been addressed by Arjuna, Lord Krsna drew up the fine chariot in the midst of the armies of both parties.(1.24)
In the presence of Bhisma, Drona and all the other chieftains of the world, the Lord said, Just behold, Partha, all the Kurus assembled here.(1.25)
There Arjuna could see, within the midst of the armies of both parties, his fathers, grandfathers, teachers, maternal uncles, brothers, sons, grandsons, friends, and also his fathers-in-law and well-wishers.(1.26)
PROFESSOR S. RADHAKRISHNAN
(20) Then Arjuna, whose banner bore the crest of Hanuman, looked at the sons of Dhrtarastra drawn up in battle order; and as the flight of missiles (almost) started, he took up his bow.
(21) And, O Lord of earth, he spoke this word to Hrsikesa (Krsna): Draw up my chariot, O Acyuta (Krsna), between the two armies.
(22) So that I may observe these men standing eager for battle, with whom I have to contend in this strife of war.
(23) I wish to look at those who are assembled here, ready to fight and eager to achieve in battle what is dear to the evil-minded son of Dhrtarastra.
(24) Thus addressed by Gudakesa (Arjuna), Hrsikeasa (Krsana) drew up that best of chariots, O Bharata (Dhrtarastra) betweens the two armies.
(25) In front of Bhisma, Drona and all the chiefs he said: “Behold, O Partha (Arjuna), these Kurus assembled (here)."
(26) There saw Arjuna standing fathers and grandfathers, teachers, uncles, brothers, sons and grandsons as also companions.
O king, thereafter, seeing Dhrtarastra’s men standing in their positions, when all the weapons were ready for action, the son of Pandu (Arjuna) who had the insignia of Hanuman on his chariot flag, raising up his bow, said the following to Hrsikesa. (1.20)
O Acyuta, please place my chariot between both the armies – (1.21)
until I survey these who stand intent on fighting, and those who are going to engage in battle with me in the impending war. (1.22)
I wish to survey these who have assembled here with the intention of fighting, and who want to accomplish in the war what is dear to the perverted son of Dhrtarastra (1.23)
Sanjaya said: O scion of the line of Bharata (Dhrtarastra) Hrsikesa being told so by Gudakesa (Arjuna) placed the excellent chariot between the two armies, in front of Bhisma Drona as also the other rulers of the earth, and said, ‘O Partha (Arjuna), see these assembled people of the Kuru dynasty. (1.24-25)
Then Partha (Arjuna) saw, marshaled among both the armies, (his) uncles as also grandfathers, teachers, maternal uncles, brothers, (and cousins), sons grandsons, as well as comrades and fathers-in-law and friends. (1.26)
After seeing fathers-in-law, companions, and all his kinsmen standing in the ranks of the two armies, Arjuna was overcome with great compassion and sorrowfully spoke these words: O Krishna, seeing my kinsmen standing with a desire to fight, my limbs fail and my mouth becomes dry. My body quivers and my hairs stand on end. (1.27-29) The bow slips from my hand, and my skin intensely burns. My head turns, I am unable to stand steady, and O Krishna, I see bad omens. I see no use of killing my kinsmen in battle. (1.30-31) I desire neither victory, nor pleasure nor kingdom, O Krishna. What is the use of the kingdom, or enjoyment, or even life, O Krishna? Because all those for whom we desire kingdom, enjoyments, and pleasures are standing here for the battle, giving up their lives. (1.32-33) I do not wish to kill my teachers, uncles, sons, grandfathers, maternal uncles, fathers-in-law, grandsons, brothers-in-law, and other relatives who are about to kill us, even for the sovereignty of the three worlds, let alone for this earthly kingdom, O Krishna. (1.34-35) O Lord Krishna, what pleasure shall we find in killing our cousin brothers? Upon killing these felons we shall incur sin only. (1.36) Therefore, we should not kill our cousin brothers. How can we be happy after killing our relatives, O Krishna? (1.37) Though they are blinded by greed, and do not see evil in the destruction of the family, or sin in being treacherous to friends. Why should not we, who clearly see evil in the destruction of the family, think about turning away from this sin, O Krishna? (1.38-39)
Gita as it is
When the son of Kunti, Arjuna, saw all these different grades of friends and relatives, he became overwhelmed with compassion and spoke thus.(1.27)
Arjuna said: My dear Krsna, seeing my friends and relatives present before me in such a fighting spirit, I feel the limbs of my body quivering and my mouth drying up.(1.28)
My whole body is trembling, my hair is standing on end, my bow Gandiva is slipping from my hand, and my skin is burning.(1.29)
I am now unable to stand here any longer. I am forgetting myself, and my mind is reeling. I see only causes of misfortune, O Krsna, killer of the Kesi demon.(1.30)
I do not see how any good can come from killing my own kinsmen in this battle, nor can I, my dear Krsna, desire any subsequent victory, kingdom, or happiness.(1.31)
O Govinda, of what avail to us are a kingdom, happiness or even life itself when all those for whom we may desire them are now arrayed on this battlefield? O Madhusudana, when teachers, fathers, sons, grandfathers, maternal uncles, fathers-in-law, grandsons, brothers-in-law and other relatives are ready to give up their lives and properties and are standing before me, why should I wish to kill them, even though they might otherwise kill me? O maintainer of all living entities, I am not prepared to fight with them even in exchange for the three worlds, let alone this earth. What pleasure will we derive from killing the sons of Dhrtarastra?(1.32-35)
Sin will overcome us if we slay such aggressors. Therefore it is not proper for us to kill the sons of Dhrtarastra and our friends. What should we gain, O Krsna, husband of the goddess of fortune, and how could we be happy by killing our own kinsmen?(1.36)
O Janardana, although these men, their hearts overtaken by greed, see no fault in killing one's family or quarreling with friends, why should we, who can see the crime in destroying a family, engage in these acts of sin?(1.37-38)
With the destruction of dynasty, the eternal family tradition is vanquished, and thus the rest of the family becomes involved in irreligion.(1.39)
PROFESSOR S. RADHAKRISHNAN
(27) And also fathers-in-law and friends in both the armies. When the son of Kunti (Arjuna) saw all these kinsmen thus standing arrayed.
(28) He was overcome with great compassion and uttered this in sadness:
(29) My limbs quail, my mouth goes dry, my body shakes my hair stands on end.
(30) (The bow) Gandiva slips from my hand and my skin is burning all over. I am not able to stand steady. My mind is reeling.
(31) And I see evil omens, O Kesava (Krsna), nor do I foresee any good by slaying my own people in the fight.
(32) I do not long for victory, O Krsna, nor kingdom nor pleasures. Of what use is kingdom to us, O Krsna, or enjoyment or even life?
(33) Those for whose sake we desire kingdom, enjoyments pleasures, they stand here in battle, renouncing their lives and riches.
(34) Teachers, fathers, sons and also grandfathers; uncles fathers-in-law, grandsons and brothers-in-law and (other) kinsmen.
(35) These I would not consent to kill, though they kill me, O Madhusudana (Krsna), even for the kingdom of the three worlds how much less for the sake of the earth?
(36) What pleasure can be ours, O Krsna, after we have slain the sons of Dhrtarastra? Only sin will accrue to us if kill these malignants.
(37) So it is not right that we slay our kinsmen, the sons of Dhrtarastra. Indeed. How can we be happy? O Madhava (Krsna), if we kill our own people?
(38) Even if these whose minds are overpowered by greed, see no wrong in the destruction of the family and no crime in treachery to fiends:
(39) Why should we not have the wisdom to turn away from this sin, O Janardana (Krsana), we who see the wrong in the destruction of the family?
The son of Kunti (Arjuna), seeing all those relatives arrayed (there), became overwhelmed by supreme compassion and said this sorrowfully; (1.27)
O Krsna, seeing these relatives and friends who have assembled here with the intention of fighting, my limbs become languid and my mouth becomes completely dry. (1.28)
And there is trembling in my body, and there is horripillation; the Gandiva (bow) slips from the hand and even the skin burns intensely. (1.29)
Moreover, O kesava (Krsna), I am not able to stand firmly, and my mind seems to be whirling. And I notice the omens to be adverse. (1.30)
Besides I do not see any good (to be derived) from killing my own people in battle. O Krsna, I do not hanker after victory, nor even a kingdom nor pleasures. (1.31)
O Govinda ! What need do we have of a kingdom, or what (need) of enjoyments and livelihood? Those for whom kingdom, enjoyments and pleasures are desired by us, viz teachers, uncles, sons, and so also grandfathers, maternal uncles. Fathers-in-law, grandsons, brothers-in-law, and also relatives, - those very ones stand arrayed for battle risking their lives and wealth. (1.32-34)
O Madhusudana, even if I am killed, I do not want to kill these even for the sake of a kingdom extending over three worlds; what to speak of doing so for the earth ! (1.35)
O Janardana, what happiness shall we derive by killing those sons of Dhrtarastra? Sin alone will accrue to us by killing these felons. (1.36)
Therefore, it is not proper for us to kill the sons of Dhrtarastra who are our own relatives. For, O Madhava, how can we be happy by killing our kinsman ? (1.37)
O Janardana, although these people, whose hearts have become perverted by greed, do not see the evil arising from destroying the family and sin in hostility towards friends, yet how can we who clearly see the evil arising from destroying the family remain unaware of (the need for) abstaining from all sin? (1.38-39)
Eternal family traditions and codes of moral conduct are destroyed with the destruction of the family. And immorality prevails in the family due to the destruction of family traditions. (1.40)
And when immorality prevails, O Krishna, the women of the family become corrupted; when women are corrupted, unwanted progeny is born. (1.41) This brings the family and the slayers of the family to hell, because the spirits of their ancestors are degraded when deprived of ceremonial offerings of love and respect by the unwanted progeny. (1.42) The everlasting qualities of social order and family traditions of those who destroy their family are ruined by the sinful act of illegitimacy. (1.43) We have been told, O Krishna, that people whose family traditions are destroyed necessarily dwell in hell for a long time. (1.44) Alas! We are ready to commit a great sin by striving to slay our relatives because of greed for the pleasures of the kingdom. (1.45) It would be far better for me if my cousin brothers kill me with their weapons in battle while I am unarmed and unresisting. (1.46)
Gita as it is
When irreligion is prominent in the family, O Krsna, the women of the family become polluted, and from the degradation of womanhood, O descendant of Vrsni, comes unwanted progeny. (1.40)
An increase of unwanted population certainly causes hellish life both for the family and for those who destroy the family tradition. The ancestors of such corrupt families fall down, because the performances for offering them food and water are entirely stopped.(1.41)
By the evil deeds of those who destroy the family tradition and thus give rise to unwanted children, all kinds of community projects and family welfare activities are devastated. (1.42)
O Krsna, maintainer of the people, I have heard by disciplic succession that those who destroy family traditions dwell always in hell. (1.43)
Alas, how strange it is that we are preparing to commit greatly sinful acts. Driven by the desire to enjoy royal happiness, we are intent on killing our own kinsmen.(1.44)
Better for me if the sons of Dhrtarastra, weapons in hand, were to kill me unarmed and unresisting on the battlefield.(1.45)
Better for me if the sons of Dhrtarastra, weapons in hand, were to kill me unarmed and unresisting on the battlefield. It is the custom--according to ksatriya fighting principles--that an unarmed and unwilling foe should not be attacked. Arjuna, however, decided that even if attacked by the enemy in such an awkward position, he would not fight. He did not consider how much the other party was bent upon fighting. All these symptoms are due to soft-heartedness resulting from his being a great devotee of the Lord. Sanjaya said: Arjuna, having thus spoken on the battlefield, cast aside his bow and arrows and sat down on the chariot, his mind overwhelmed with grief.(1.46)
[Note: There are only 46 verses in this version, almost all other versions have 47 verses in Chapter 1]
PROFESSOR S. RADHAKRISHNAN
(40) In the ruin of a family, its ancient laws are destroyed: and when the laws perish, the whole family yields to lawless-ness.
(41) And when lawlessness prevails, O Varsneya (Krsna), the women of the family become corrupted and when women are corrupted, confusion of castes arises.
(42) And to hell does this confusion bring the family itself, as well as those who have destroyed it. For the spirits of their ancestors fall, deprived of their offerings of rice and water.
(43) By the misdeeds of those who destroy a family and create confusion of varanas, the immemorial laws of the caste and the family are destroyed.
(44) And we have heard it said, O Janardana (Krsna), that the men of the families whose laws are destroyed needs must live in hell.
(45) Alas, what a great sin have we resolved to commit in striving to slay our own people through our greed for the pleasures of the kingdom!
(46) Far better would it be for me if the sons of Dhrtarastra, with weapons in hand, should slay me in the battle, while I remain unresisting and unarmed.
From the ruin of the family are totally destroyed the traditional rites and duties of the family. When rites and duties are destroyed, vice overpowers the entire family also. (1.40)
O Krsna, when vice predominates the women of the family become corrupt. O descendant of the Vrsnis, when women become corrupted, it results in the intermingling of castes. (1.41)
And the intermingling in the family leads the ruiners of the family verily into hell. The forefathers of these fall down (into hell) because of being deprived of the offerings of rice-ball and water. (1.42)
Due to these misdeeds of the ruiners of the family, which cause intermingling of castes, the traditional rites and duties of the castes and families become destroyed. (1.43)
O Janardana, we have heard that living in hell becomes inevitable for those persons whose family duties get destroyed. (1.44)
What a pity that we have resolved to commit a great sin by being eager to kill our own kith and kin out of greed for the pleasures of a kingdom! (1.45)
If, in this battle, the sons of Dhrtarastra armed with weapons kill me who am non resistant and unarmed, that will be more beneficial to me. (1.46)
Sanjaya said: Having said this in the battlefield and casting aside his bow and arrow, Arjuna sat down on the seat of the chariot with his mind overwhelmed with sorrow. (1.47)
PROFESSOR S. RADHAKRISHNAN
(47) Having spoken thus on the (field of) battle, Ariuna sank down on the seat of his chariot, casting away his bow and arrow, his spirit overwhelmed by sorrow.
Having said so, Arjuna, with a mind afflicted with sorrow, sat down on the chariot in the midst of the battle, casting aside the bow along with the arrows. (1.47)
Sanjaya said: Lord Krishna spoke these words to Arjuna whose eyes were tearful and downcast, and who was overwhelmed with compassion and despair. (2.01)
Lord Krishna said: How has the dejection come to you at this juncture? This is not fit for a person of noble mind and deeds. It is disgraceful, and it does not lead one to heaven, O Arjuna. (2.02)
Do not become a coward, O Arjuna, because it does not befit you. Shake off this trivial weakness of your heart and get up for the battle, O Arjuna. (2.03)