Canto 1: CreationChapter 15: The Pāṇḍavas Retire Timely

Bhaktivedanta VedaBase: Śrīmad Bhāgavatam 1.15.15

yo bhīṣma-karṇa-guru-śalya-camūṣv adabhra-


agrecaro mama vibho ratha-yūthapānām

āyur manāḿsi ca dṛśā saha oja ārcchat


yaḥit is He only; bhīṣmaBhīṣma; karṇaKarṇa; guru — Droṇācārya; śalyaŚalya; camūṣuin the midst of the military phalanx; adabhra — immense; rājanya-varya — great royal princes; ratha-maṇḍala — chain of chariots; maṇḍitāsu — being decorated with; agrecaraḥ — going forward; mama — of mine; vibhoO great King; ratha-yūtha-pānām — all the charioteers; āyuḥ — duration of life or fruitive activities; manāḿsi — mental upsurges; ca — also; dṛśā — by glance; sahaḥ — power; ojaḥ — strength; ārcchat — withdrew.


It was He only who withdrew the duration of life from everyone and who, in the battlefield, withdrew the speculative power and strength of enthusiasm from the great military phalanx made by the Kauravas, headed by Bhīṣma, Karṇa, Droṇa, Śalya, etc. Their arrangement was expert and more than adequate, but He [Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa], while going forward, did all this.


The Absolute Personality of Godhead, Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa, expands Himself by His plenary Paramātmā portion in everyone s heart, and thus He directs everyone in the matter of recollection, forgetfulness, knowledge, the absence of intelligence and all psychological activities (Bg. 15.15). As the Supreme Lord, He can increase or decrease the duration of life of a living being. Thus the Lord conducted the Battle of Kurukṣetra according to His own plan. He wanted that battle to establish Yudhiṣṭhira as the Emperor of this planet, and to facilitate this transcendental business He killed all who were on the opposite party by His omnipotent will. The other party was equipped with all military strength supported by big generals like Bhīṣma, Droṇa and Śalya and it would have been physically impossible for Arjuna to win the battle had the Lord not helped him by every kind of tactic. Such tactics are generally followed by every statesman, even in modern warfare, but they are all done materially by powerful espionages, military tactics and diplomatic maneuvers. But because Arjuna was the Lord's affectionate devotee, the Lord did all this Himself without personal anxiety by Arjuna. That is the way of the devotional service to the Lord.

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His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda, Founder Ācārya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness