Don’t Just Take My Word For It

[Arjuna praying]“Krishna is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and one should always meditate upon Him and enjoy one’s transcendental relationship with Him. He is the supreme existence. He is free from bodily needs, birth and death. Not only does Arjuna confirm this, but all the Vedic literatures. the Puranas and histories.” (Shrila Prabhupada, Bhagavad-gita, 10.12-13 Purport)

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Arjuna’s word would have been sufficient. After all, he was a celebrated bow-warrior. He was the leader of the Pandava side in the great Bharata War. He loyally and dutifully followed etiquette and protocol, both within family life and during military conflict.

He came from a respectable family. His eldest brother, Maharaja Yudhishthira, was known for following dharma. Yudhishthira was born from the god of justice, Yamaraja, and he tried his best to uphold the principles of righteousness, both when as a leader and also during a period of an unlawful ouster, when the brothers were exiled from the community after being cheated out of their kingdom.

Arjuna was also good friends with the son of Nanda and Yashoda. Krishna was related to him as cousin-brother, and they were close in terms of association. Krishna later revealed that they have always been constant companions; the distinction is that Krishna can remember the previous experiences, whereas Arjuna cannot.

श्री-भगवान् उवाच
बहूनि मे व्यतीतानि
जन्मानि तव चार्जुन
तान्य् अहं वेद सर्वाणि
न त्वं वेत्थ परन्तप

śrī-bhagavān uvāca
bahūni me vyatītāni
janmāni tava cārjuna
tāny ahaṁ veda sarvāṇi
na tvaṁ vettha parantapa

“The Blessed Lord said: Many, many births both you and I have passed. I can remember all of them, but you cannot, O subduer of the enemy!” (Bhagavad-gita, 4.5)

There were no gaps in the building of credentials. Arjuna had it all. Therefore, when he stated that Krishna was the supreme pure, pavitram paramam, there was no reason to doubt the claim. The endorsement from Arjuna was sufficient for establishing authenticity.

At the same time, we know that the mind is flawed. It is one of the eight primary material elements, falling within the subtle category. The movement towards sense objects indicates the will of the mind. Everything begins with the mind.

That mind is vulnerable to illusion. Regret can only take place if there was a mistake. There can only be a mistake if the mind did not process input correctly. If there can be mistakes, the mind is not always perfect.

Therefore, Arjuna’s classification of Krishna might not be correct. Though he witnessed firsthand the virata-rupa, though he knows from great feats exhibited in past incidents, there is always the chance of an error in judgment.

To settle doubts, Arjuna supports the claim by referencing authority figures. Krishna is known as Bhagavan within the Vedas themselves. He is so great that the Vedas are not sufficient for describing Him. He is best known by those who want to know Him, who desire His association, but the Vedas exist for facilitating that approach.

निगम अगम साहेब सुगम राम साम्̐चिली चाह |
अम्बु असन अवलोकि’अत सुलभ सबै जग माम्̐ह ||

nigama agama sāheba sugama rāma sām̐cilī cāha |
ambu asana avaloki’ata sulabha sabai jaga mām̐ha ||80||

“The Supreme Lord, who is difficult to know by even the Vedas, can become known easily when there is sincere desire for Rama, just as water and food come easily for those living in this world.” (Dohavali, 80)

Then there are the authority figures who follow the Vedas. Devala, Asita, and Narada confirm that Krishna is Bhagavan. They know that Narayana is the source of men and that He appears in this world from time to time.

[Shrimad Bhagavatam]They support Arjuna’s conclusion that Krishna is the supreme resting place, param dhama. He can only be known in this way; through parampara. Through the word of others, who received the information in the same chain of descending instruction, we can know God in truth and make our lives perfect.

In Closing:

Ignorance quickly clearing,
When through others hearing.

Of Shri Krishna’s standing,
How as greatest commanding.

Such that none superior to see,
Supreme resting place is He.

Supported by authority figures who,
Devala, Vyasa and Narada too.

Categories: bhagavan

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1 reply

  1. Radhe Radhe ❤️ oshriRadhekrishnaBole ❤️ Hare Ram Hare Ram Ram Ram Hare Hare Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare
    Jay Jay Shree Siya Ram

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