11 : Vishwaroopa-darshana Yõga
In the 10th Adhyãya, to
satisfy Arjunas curiosity the Lord gave a vivid description of his
divine aspects by enumerating certain selected examples. From macroscopic to microscopic
things, animate as well as inanimate, moving, non-moving as well. Arjuna saw
behind everything the Absolute as the animating force. It penetrates into material,
emotional and intellectual qualities of the manifested objects. The formless Brahman
through its magical form of lshwara crates everything and remains immanent
in it. The formless Brahman is difficult to comprehend and can not be seen.
Extensive manifestations decried by the Lord induced Arjuna to see for himself the cosmic
form of lshwara who is the creater, the sustainer and the destroyer.
Verse l to 4
Arjuna was delighted by the
Lords grace in showing him the grandeur of his divine manifestations. He expresses
his gratitude in befitting words:
"You have taught me this profoundest
secret of spiritual matters to do me a kind favour. By these words of yours my delusion
has disappeared. Oh Lotus eyed one! 1 have learnt from you, extensively about the origin
and the dissolution of creatures and about your inexhaustible glories.
Oh Great Lord! If you are as you have
described yourself to be, then, oh Supreme Person, I wish to see your divine form.
If you think it possible that I can see
that form, then, oh master of Yõga, reveal to me your eternal form.
Verse 5 to 8
Lord Krishna promptly responded to Arjunas
sincere prayer and he promised to show him his divine forms in hundreds and thousands,
various in kinds, various in colour and various in shapes. He tells Arjuna to see the
Adityas and the Vasus and the Rudras and the Ashwins and Maruts.
Showing him first these various classes of celestial beings Lord asks him to see many more
wonderful things which no one had ever seen before.
The Lord promises Arjuna that he would see
this very day the entire universe with things, animate and inanimate and whatever else he
may wish to see, gathered into one place in the body of the Lord.
But it was not possible to see him thus
with human eyes, therefore the Lord offers to give Arjuna divine sight
through his yõgic power.
Verses 9 to 14
Now Arjuna is well equipped to bear the
avalanche of Gods most dreadful cosmic form. Sanjaya who was reporting
this whole episode to Dhritarashtra was struck with awe when he himself could see that
great master of Yõga revealing to Arjuna his supreme &
divine form. Sanjaya describes this form having innumerable mouths and eyes,
with many marvellous aspects, glittering with divine ornaments, brandishing heavenly
weapons, wearing celestial garlands, anointed with scents of heavenly fragrance. All was
wondrous, brilliant, limitless and with mouths appearing all over. If thousand suns were
to rise in the sky with their brilliance at once shining, that might resemble the
effulgence of the Supreme Lord in that universal form.
Sanjay further narrates: Then Arjuna saw
the entire universe though other wise divided in many parts was brought together in one
place in the body of the God of gods.
Verses 15 to 31
Arjuna was wonderstruck with his hair
standing erect. He bowed his head before the Lord in adoration and with folded hands said:
"Oh Lord, I see gods and all creatures
in their specified groups present within your body. I see Brahma, the
creator sitting on lotus flower, also see all the sages and divine serpents.
I have lost the sense of directions. Oh
Lord I am totally bewildered.
There I see sons of Dhitarashtra,
along with the hosts of kings and Bhishma, Drona, Karma along
with our own chief warriors g ashing to your fearful months which look so
dreadful due to your grinding teeth. Some are seen trapped under your teeth with their
heads crushed to dust.
As the swift gushing streams of the rivers
flow into the ocean so do all these warriors of human world burning in flames rush to your
As the month swiftly enter into the burning
flames and get destroyed, so also these people rushing into your month with full speed -
meet their destruction.
Swallowing all these people from all sides
by your burning mouths you are licking them. Oh Vishnu ! Filling the entire universe by
your effulgence your terrible rays are scorching it.
Getting Awestruck and frightened Arjuna is
puzzled and dazedly asks the Lord about the actual mission of this devastating experience.
"Oh Lord of Lords, I bow down to you
Have mercy on me and tell me who you are so forceful in form. I wish to know your original
nature because I do not know your functions.
I am seeing your endless form with many
arms, many bellies, many mouths and many eyes but Oh ! Lord of the universe, Oh! Universal
form, I see neither your end nor the middle nor the beginning.
I am seeing your glowing form which
otherwise is difficult to see. I see you wearing a crown, holding a club and a disc. You
are blazing like a fiery sun in a immeasurable way.
You are known as the Imperishable Supreme.
You are the Ultimate resting Abode of this universe. You are inexhaustible. You are the
protector of eternal religion. For me you are the eternal Supreme Lord.
I see you without any beginning, middle and
end. You possess unlimited power. You have innumerable arms. The sun and the moon are your
eyes. I see you with blazing fire coming out of your month. Your radiance is heating up
the entire universe.
By you alone is pervaded the sky and the
earth including all space in between and all the directions. Oh! Great soul, seeing your
awful and terrible form all the three worlds tremble.
There the groups of demigods are entering
in you. Some of them greatly frightened are offering you prayers with folded hands.
Uttering peace the hosts of great sages and the perfected beings are singing
your praise with hymns of adoration.
The Rudras, the Adityas,
the Vasus, the Ashwins, the Maruts, the Gandharvas,
the Yakshas the Asuras and the Siddhas are
all beholding you in wonder.
Seeing your great form with mouths, eyes
arms, legs, bellies and terrifying teeth in manifold numbers all the worlds are frightened
Seeing you reaching the sky with your
glowing colours, your mouth widely opened, big eyes shining, my inner soul is trembling
and oh Vishnu, I have lost my courage and peace,
Oh God of gods, oh shelter of the world,
seeing your mouths looking fierceful due to your terrible teeth and resembling with the
fire flames of death.
Verse 32 to 34
The Lord replies Arjunas
question pointing to his all devouring nature.
"I am the time, the supreme destroyer
of the worlds and growing so big I have come to destroy all people even if you are not
there (to fight) all the soldiers of opposing sides will not remain. (As they will be
Arjuna is thus motivated by the
Lord to rise and fight to win the war. By conquering the enemies he should enjoy the
prosperous kingdom. Arjuna should become a mere cause because his enemies
are already slain by the Lord (in his design)
"You should kill, Drõna,
and Bhishma and Jayadratha and Kana and other great warriors
who have already been killed by Me. Do not worry. Just fight. You will conquer your
enemies in the battle."
Verse 35 to 51
Sanjaya then reports to Dhritarashtra
how Arjuna after hearing the words of Lord Krishna,
folding his hands bowed down to the Lord with his body trembling. With great fear he again
spoke to Krishna in a choking voice. His heart was full of devotion.
The Cosmic revelation brought complete
transformation in Arjuna. He started showering words of praise on his master.
"Oh, Master of the sense, It is in
fitness of things that the world gets delighted in singing your praise and becomes
attached to you. At your sight, however the demons flee to all directions in terror. But
the hosts of perfected souls offer salutations to you."
And why should not they offer these
salutations to you who is greater than the Brahma, the original creator? Oh
endless one, Lord of gods, ultimate abode of the world, you are eternal, you are exists
and what are what exist not and what transcends them.
You are the first God, you are the ancient Purusha,
you are the ultimate refuge of this cosmos. You are the known, you are all that is
knowable, You are the highest goal, oh of infinite forms, this Universe is pervaded by
You are the wind, you are the death, you
are the fire, you are the water, you are the moon and you are prajapatti the
great grandfather. Unto you my thousand salutations. Again and again Isalute you.
I bow down to you from the front from
behind and from all sides, oh All!
Oh! Of boundless power, you are of
limitless glory. You cover all therefore you are everything.
Carelessly I addressed you as Oh Keshav,
oh Yadav, oh friend" considering you my comrade. Not knowing your
greatness I might have done this out of foolishness or love.
I have disregarded you many times jesting
in relaxation, while lying down or sitting or while eating, at times alone or in company
of others. Please forgive me for all these offences oh, immeasurable one!
For, you are the father of this moving and
unmoving world. You alone are worthy of worship. You are the great master. No one is equal
to you. Who can then surpass you in three worlds? Oh Lord of infinite power
Therefore bowing down my body I offer my
salutations to you who is the Lord of my worship, to seek your mercy. Oh God, forgive me
as father forgives his son, a friend forgives his friend and a lover forgives his beloved.
I am delighted seeing that universal form
which no one had ever seen before. But still my mind is fearful and disturbed. Therefore
have mercy on me, and reveal to me your earlier form Oh Lord of gods. Oh abode of the
I wish to see you with crown, holding mace
and a disc in your hands. Therefore please appear in your earlier four-armed form, Oh
thousand armed one ! Pleased with Arjunas prayer, the Lord responded positively and
said to Arjuna :
"Oh Arjuna, taking mercy on you and
using my internal Yoga power I showed you my highest form which is
illustrious, universal, limitless and primal. No one had seen -this before.
Neither by the Vedas, nor by
sacrifices nor by charities nor by studies nor by ceremonies nor by austerities nor to any
person other than you in this world I am to be seen in this form, Oh Greatest of the
Do not get frightened nor you should be
confused by seeing this my terrible form. Discarding fear, with comfortable mind, see
again that known for m of mine."
Sanjay reports how Krishna again appeared
in his pleasing form. He narrates:-
Saying thus to Arjuna, Lord
Krishna again showed him his own form. The great soul, once again assumed his mild form to
bring solace to Arjuna who was in fearful state.
Sanjay records Arjunas mental
relief after seeing the pleasing form of Lord Krishna. Arjuna reacts:
Oh Janardan, seeing your mild
human form, I am fully settled and have come back to awakened state.
Verse 52 to 55
The Lord while summing up, brings out the
special significance of his cosmic form and tells the secret by which one is able to see
it. Lord says:
"This form that you experienced is
very difficult to see. Even the gods remain thirsty to see this form. It is very difficult
to see Me in that form in which you saw Me. Through Vedas, penance even
charity or sacrifices it is not possible."
" Dear Arjuna, by single-minded and intense devotion
alone that form of mine can be fully known and seen and entered into. He who is engaged in
My work, makes Me his goal, is devoted to Me, is free from attachment and feeling no
hatred to any creatures reaches Me."