BG Chapter 11: The Lord’s Transfiguration

11ChapterBG

Highlighted Text by Dr. Radhakrishnan

Sanskrit Text, Transliteration, & Word Meaning by Veeraswamy Krishnaraj

अर्जुन उवाच

मदनुग्रहाय परमं गुह्यमध्यात्मसंज्ञितम् ।

यत्त्वयोक्तं वचस्तेन मोहोऽयं विगतो मम ॥११- १॥

arjuna uvāca
madanugrahāya paramaṁ guhyam adhyātmasaṁjñitam
yat tvayoktaṁ vacas tena mohoyaṁ vigato mama 11.1

arjuna uvāca
madanugrahāya1 paramam2 guhyam3 adhyātma-saṁjñitam4
yat5 tvayā6 uktam7 vacaḥ8 tena10 mohaḥ11 ayam12 vigataḥ13 mama14 11.1

arjuna uvāca = Arjuna said: madanugrahāya1 = as grace to me; adhyātma-saṁjñitam4 = concerning Spiritual Self; [and] paramam2 = supreme; guhyam3 = secret; vacaḥ8 = words; uktam7 = were said; tvayā6 = by You;  yat5 = by which; [and] tena10 = by that; ayam12 = this; mohaḥ11 = delusion; mama14 = of mine; vigataḥ13 = disappeared. 11.1 

Arjuna said:

(11.1) The supreme mystery, the discourse concerning the Self which thou hast given out of grace for me-by this my bewilderment is gone from me.

The illusion that things of the world exist in themselves and maintain themselves, that they live and move apart from God has disappeared.

भवाप्ययौ हि भूतानां श्रुतौ विस्तरशो मया ।

त्वत्तः कमलपत्राक्ष माहात्म्यमपि चाव्ययम् ॥११- २॥

bhavāpyayau hi bhūtānāṁ śrutau vistaraśo mayā
tvattaḥ kamalapatrākṣa māhātmyam api cāvyayam 11.2

bhava-apyayau1 hi2 bhūtānām3 śrutau4 vistaraśaḥ5 mayā6
tvattaḥ7 kamala-patra-akṣa8 māhātmyam9 api10 ca11 avyayam12 11.2

kamala-patra-akṣa8 = O lotus-leaf-eyes [Krishna]; bhava-apyayau1 = creation and dissolution; hi2= indeed; bhūtānām3 = of beings; śrutau4 = have been heard; vistaraśaḥ5 = at length; mayā6 = by me; tvattaḥ7 = from You; ca11 = and; api10 = also; [Your] avyayam12 = imperishable; māhātmyam9 = greatness. 11.2

(11.2) The birth and passing away of things have been heard by me in detail from Thee, O Lotus-eyed (Kṛṣṇa), as also Thy imperishable majesty.

एवमेतद्यथात्थ त्वमात्मानं परमेश्वर ।

द्रष्टुमिच्छामि ते रूपमैश्वरं पुरुषोत्तम ॥११- ३॥

evam etad yathāttha tvam ātmānaṁ parameśvara
draṣṭum icchāmi te rūpam aiśvaraṁ puruṣottama 11.3

evam1 etat2 yathā3 āttha4 tvam5 ātmānam6 parameśvara7
draṣṭum8 icchāmi9 te10 rūpam11 aiśvaram12 puruṣottama13 11.3

parameśvara7 = O Supreme Lord; evam1 = thus; tvam5 =You; [are] etat2 = that; yathā3 = as; [You] āttha4 = have said;  ātmānam6 = Yourself; puruṣottama13 = O Supreme Person.  icchāmi9 = I desire; draṣṭum8 = to see;  te10 = Your; aiśvaram12 = divine and auspicious; rūpam11 = Form. 11.3

(11.3) As Thou hast declared Thyself to be, O Supreme Lord, even so it is. (But) I desire to see Thy divine form, O Supreme Person.

It is one thing to know that the Eternal Spirit dwells in all things and another to have the vision of it. Arjuna wishes to see the Universal Form, the visible embodiment of the Unseen Divine how He is the "birth and passing away of all beings." X, 8 The abstract metaphysical truth should be given visible reality.

मन्यसे यदि तच्छक्यं मया द्रष्टुमिति प्रभो ।

योगेश्वर ततो मे त्वं दर्शयात्मानमव्ययम् ॥११- ४॥
manyase yadi tac chakyaṁ mayā draṣṭum iti prabho
yogeśvara tato me tvaṁ darśayātmānam avyayam 11.4

manyase1 yadi2 tat3 śakyam4 mayā5 draṣṭum6 iti7 prabho8
yogeśvara
9 tataḥ10 me11 tvam12 darśaya13 ātmānam14 avyayam15 11.4

 prabho8= O Lord; yadi2 = if; manyase1 = You think; tat3 = that; [it] śakyam4 = is possible; mayā5 = by me; draṣṭum6 = to witness; iti7 = thus;  yogeśvara9 = O Lord of Yogis (one with auspicious qualities); tataḥ10 = then;  tvam12 = You; darśaya13 = show; avyayam15 = the imperishable; ātmānam14 = Your Self;  me11 = to me. 11.4

(11.4) If Thou, O Lord, thinkest that by me, It can be seen then reveal to me, Thy Imperishable Self, O Lord of yoga (Kṛṣṇa). 

श्रीभगवानुवाच

पश्य मे पार्थ रूपाणि शतशोऽथ सहस्रशः ।

नानाविधानि दिव्यानि नानावर्णाकृतीनि च ॥११- ५॥

śrībhagavān uvāca
paśya me pārtha rūpāṇi śataśotha sahastraśaḥ
nānāvidhāni divyāni nānāvarṇākṛtīni ca 11.5

śrībhagavān uvāca
paśya1 me2 pārtha3 rūpāṇi4 śataśaḥ5 atha6 sahasraśaḥ7
nānā-vidhāni
8 divyāni9 nānā10 varṇa11 ākṛtīni12 ca13 11.5

śrībhagavān uvāca = Sri Bhagavan said: pārtha3 = O Partha;  paśya1 = see; me2 = My;  rūpāṇi4 = forms; śataśaḥ5 = by hundreds; atha6 = and; sahasraśaḥ7 = by thousands (infinite numbers): divyāni9 = divine;  nānā-vidhāni8 = different kinds; nānā10 = different; varṇa11 = colors; ca13 = and; ākṛtīni12 = forms. 11.5

The Blessed Lord said:

(11.5) Behold, O Partha (Arjuna), My forms, a hundred-fold, a thousand-fold, various in kind, divine, of various colors and shapes.

The stupendous self-revelation of Divine power is manifested to Arjuna who understands the true meaning of the cosmic process and destiny. In M.B., VI, 131, it is said that Kṛṣṇa appeared in His world-form to Duryodhana, who attempted to make Him a prisoner when He approached Duryodhana for a

final attempt at reconciliation. The vision is not a myth or a legend but spiritual experience. In the history of religious experience, we have a number of such

visions. The transfiguration of Jesus,1 the vision of Saul on the Damascus Road, Constantine's vision of the Cross bearing the motto "In this sign, conquer," Joan of Arc's visions are experiences akin to the vision of Arjuna.

 1Mark ix, 2-8. Saint Hildegard (1098-1180) reports a vision in which she saw a "fair human form" who declared his identity in words reminiscent of the Gītā description. "1 am that supreme and fiery force that sends forth all the sparks of life. Death hath no part in me, yet do I allot it, wherefore I am girt about with wisdom as with wings. I am that living and fiery essence of the divine substance that glows in the beauty of the fields. I shine in the water. I burn in the sun and the moon and the stars. Mine is that mysterious force of the invisible wind. I sustain the breath of all living. I breathe in the verdure and in the flowers, and when the waters flow like living things, it is I. I formed those columns that support the whole earth.... All these live because I am in them and am of their life. I am wisdom. Mine is the blast of the thundered word by which all things were made. I permeate all things that they may not die. I am life.'' Quoted in Studies in the History and Method of Science, edited by Charles Singer (I917), p. 33.

पश्यादित्यान्वसून्रुद्रानश्विनौ मरुतस्तथा ।

बहून्यदृष्टपूर्वाणि पश्याश्चर्याणि भारत ॥११- ६॥

paśyādityān vasūn rudrān aśvinau marutas tathā
bahūny adṛṣṭapūrvāṇi paśyāścaryāṇi bhārata 11.6

paśya1 ādityān2 vasūn3 rudrān4 aśvinau5 marutaḥ6 tathā7
bahūni
8 adṛṣṭa-pūrvāṇi9 paśya10 āścaryāṇi11 bhārata12 11.6

paśya1 = See (in Me); ādityān2 = the (12) Adityas; vasūn3 = the (8) Vasus; rudrān4 = the (11) Rudras; aśvinau5 = the two Asvins; marutaḥ6 = the (49) Maruts; tathā7 = also;  paśya10 = see; bahūni8 = many; āścaryāṇi11 = wonders; adṛṣṭa-pūrvāṇi9 = not seen before;  bhārata12 = O the best of the Bharatas.11.6

(11.6) Behold, the Ᾱdityas, the Vasus, the Rudras, the two Aśvins and also the Maruts, Behold, O Bhārata (Arjuna), many wonders never seen before.

इहैकस्थं जगत्कृत्स्नं पश्याद्य सचराचरम् ।

मम देहे गुडाकेश यच्चान्यद् द्रष्टुमिच्छसि ॥११- ७॥

ihaikastham jagat kṛtsnaṁ paśyādya sacarācaram
mama dehe guḍākeśa yac cānyad draṣṭum icchasi 11.7

iha1 ekastham2 jagat3 kṛtsnam4 paśya6 adya7 sa8 cara9 acaram10

mama dehe11 guḍākeśa12 yat13 ca14 anyat15 draṣṭum16 icchasi17 11.7

paśya6 = See; iha1 = here; ekastham2 = in one site (one part of My sacred Body); kṛtsnam4 = the whole; jagat3 = universe;   sa8 = with; cara9 = the mobile; acaram10= and the immobile; adya7 = now; mama dehe11 = in My body; guḍākeśa12 = O Gudakesa; ca14 yat13 anyat15 = also whatever else;  icchasi17 = you desire; draṣṭum16 = to see. 11.7

(11.7) Here today, behold the whole universe, moving and unmoving and whatever else thou desirest to see, O Guḍākeśa (Arjuna), all unified in My body.

It is the vision of all in the One. When we develop our full capacity of apprehension, we see that all (past, present and future) is present.

न तु मां शक्यसे द्रष्टुमनेनैव स्वचक्षुषा ।

दिव्यं ददामि ते चक्षुः पश्य मे योगमैश्वरम् ॥११- ८॥

na tu māṁ śakyase draṣṭum anenaiva svacakṣuṣā
divyaṁ dadāmi te cakṣuḥ paśya me yogam aiśvaram 11.8

na1 tu2 mām3 śakyase4 draṣṭum5 anena6 eva7 sva-cakṣuṣā8
divyam9 dadāmi10 te11 cakṣuḥ12 paśya13 me14 yogam15 aiśvaram16 11.8 

tu2 = But; [you] na1 śakyase4 = would not be able; draṣṭum5 = to see; mām3 = Me; eva7 = indeed; [with]  anena6 = these;  sva-cakṣuṣā8  = natural eyes of your own; dadāmi10 = I bequeath; divyam9 = divine; cakṣuḥ12 = eyes; te11 = to you;  paśya13 = to see; me14 = My;  aiśvaram16 = divine (auspicious qualities) ; yogam15 = Yogam. 11.8

(11.8) But thou canst not behold Me with this (human) eye of yours; I will bestow on thee the supernatural eye. Behold My divine power.

No fleshly eye can see that sovereign form. Human eye is not made for such excess of light. Divya cakṣus is the angelic eye while māṁsa cakṣus is the eye of the flesh.1

Human eyes can see only the outward forms; the inner soul is perceived by the eye of spirit. There is a type of knowledge that we can acquire by our own efforts, knowledge based on the deliverances of the senses and intellectual activity. Another kind of knowledge is possible when we are under the influence of grace, a direct knowledge of spiritual realities. The god-vision is a gift of god. The whole account is a poetic device to indicate the unity of the cosmic manifold in the Divine nature.

The vision is not a mental construction but the disclosure of a truth from beyond the finite mind. The spontaneity and directness of the experience are brought out here.

1 The Upaniṣad says:

Hearing they hear not; knowing they know not; seeing they see not; only with the eye of enlightenment do they see.

                       śṛṇvanto pi na śṛṇvanti jnanto pi na jānate

                      paśyanto pi na paśyanti, paśyanti jñānacakṣuṣah.

Mokṣadharma has the following verse:

māyā hy ẹṣa mayā sṛṣṭā yan māṁ paśyasi nārada

sarvabhūtaguṇair yukta na tu māṁ draṣṭum arhasi,

Commenting on it, Madhusūdana says: sarvabhūtaguṇair yukta

kāraopādhi māṁ carmacakuṣā draṣṭum nārhasi,''

Cp. the Prophet's words: "Lord, open his eyes that he may see." See also the Vision of Ezekiel, Exodus xxxiii, 18; Revelation iv ; and Saddharmapuṇḍarīka, 1. "Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee. Thou shalt see and be radiant and thy heart shall thrill and be enlarged" (Isaiah lx, 1-5).

Saṁjaya Describes the Form

संजय उवाच

एवमुक्त्वा ततो राजन्महायोगेश्वरो हरिः ।

दर्शयामास पार्थाय परमं रूपमैश्वरम् ॥११- ९॥

sañjaya uvāca
evam uktvā tato rājan mahāyogeśvaro hariḥ
darśayāmāsa pārthāya paramaṁ rūpam aiśvaram 11.9

sañjaya uvāca
evam1 uktvā2 tataḥ3 rājan4 mahāyogeśvaraḥ5 hariḥ6
darśayāmāsa
7 pārthāya8 paramam9 rūpam10 aiśvaram11 11.9

sañjaya uvāca = Sanjaya said: rājan4 = O King [Dhrtarastra]; mahāyogeśvaraḥ5 = the Great Yogameister;   uktvā2 = having spoken; evam1 = thus; tataḥ3 = thereafter; hariḥ6 = Hari (Krishna); darśayāmāsa7 = showed; pārthāya8 = to Partha (Arjuna);  paramam9 = Supreme;aiśvaram11 = Self-endowed divine; rūpam10 = Universal Form. 11.9

Samjaya said:

(11.9) Having thus spoken, O King, Hari, the great lord of yoga, then revealed to Pārtha (Arjuna), His Supreme and Divine Form. 

This is Kṛṣṇa’s transfiguration where Arjuna sees all the creatures in heaven and earth in the Divine Form.

अनेकवक्त्रनयनमनेकाद्भुतदर्शनम् ।

अनेकदिव्याभरणं दिव्यानेकोद्यतायुधम् ॥११- १०॥

anekavaktranayanam anekādbhutadarśanam
anekadivyābharaṇaṁ divyānekodyatāyudham 11.10

aneka-vaktra-nayanam1 aneka-adbhuta-darśanam2
aneka-divya-ābharaṇam3 divya-aneka-udyata-āyudham4 11.10

aneka-vaktra-nayanam1 = Having many mouths and eyes [many-mouths-eyes]; aneka-adbhuta-darśanam2  = exhibiting many wondrous visions [many-wondrous-visions]; aneka-divya-ābharaṇam3  = wearing many divine ornaments [many-divine-ornaments]; divya-aneka-udyata-āyudham4 = holding many hoisted heavenly weapons [divine-many-hoisted-weapons. 11.10

(11.10) Of many mouths and eyes, of many visions of marvel of many divine ornaments, of many divine uplifted weapons.

The poet seems to feel here the dearth of words, the roughness of speech in trying to describe an experience which is essentially ineffable.

anekavaktranayanam: many mouths and eyes, He is all-devouring and all-seeing. These are descriptions of the Universal Being. In the Puruṣa

Sūkta also, a similar account is found. sahasraśīrṣa puruṣaḥ sahasrākṣaḥ sahasraāt (Rg. Veda, IX, 4, 90). Cp, Muṇḍaka Up., II, I, 4.

दिव्यमाल्याम्बरधरं दिव्यगन्धानुलेपनम् ।

सर्वाश्चर्यमयं देवमनन्तं विश्वतोमुखम् ॥११- ११॥

divyamālyāmbaradharaṁ divyagandhānulepanam
sarvāścaryamayaṁ devam anantaṁ viśvatomukham 11.11

divya-mālya-ambara-dharam1divya-gandha-anulepanam2
sarva-āścaryamayam3 devam4 anantam5 viśvataḥ-mukham6 11.11

divya1A-mālya1B-ambar1C-dharam1D = wearing1D divine1A garlands1B, and garments1C; divya2A-gandha2B-anulepanam2C  = anointed2C with divine2A perfumes and unguents2B; sarva-āścaryamayam3  = all replete with resplendence; devam4 = divine; anantam5 = infinite; viśvataḥ-mukham6  = faces in all places --directions.11.11 

 (11.11) Wearing divine garlands and raiments, with divine perfumes and ointments, made up of all wonders, resplendent, boundless, with face turned everywhere.

दिवि सूर्यसहस्रस्य भवेद्युगपदुत्थिता ।

यदि भाः सदृशी सा स्याद्भासस्तस्य महात्मनः ॥११- १२॥

divi sūryasahastrasya bhaved yugapad utthitā
yadi bhāḥ sadṛśī sā syād bhāsas tasya mahātmanaḥ 11.12

divi1 sūrya sahasrasya2 bhavet3 yugapat4 utthitā5
yadi6 bhāḥ7 sadṛśī89 syāt10 bhāsaḥ11 tasya12 mahātmanaḥ13 11.12

yadi6 = If; bhavet3 = there were; sūrya sahasrasya2  =  a thousand suns; utthitā5 = to rise; divi1 = in the sky;  yugapat4 = all at once/simultaneously; syāt10 = it may be; 9 = that;  bhāḥ7 = light; [is] sadṛśī8 = similar;  bhāsaḥ11 = in splendor; tasya12 = of Him; mahātmanaḥ13 = the Great Soul/Exalted Being. 11.12
 

(11.12) If the light of a thousand suns were to blaze forth all at once in the sky, that might resemble the splendour of that exalted Being.

तत्रैकस्थं जगत्कृत्स्नं प्रविभक्तमनेकधा ।

अपश्यद्देवदेवस्य शरीरे पाण्डवस्तदा ॥११- १३॥
tatraikasthaṁ jagat kṛtsnaṁ pravibhaktam anekadhā
apaśyad devadevasya śarīre pāṇḍavas tadā 11.13

tatra1 ekastham2 jagat3 kṛtsnam4 pravibhaktam5 anekadhā6
apaśyat7 devadevasya8 śarīre9 pāṇḍavaḥ10 tadā11 11.13

tadā11 = At that time; pāṇḍavaḥ10 = Arjuna/Pandava; apaśyat7 = saw; tatra1 = there; śarīre9 = in the body; devadevasya8 = of the God of gods;  kṛtsnam4 = the whole; jagat3 = universe; [appearing as]  anekadhā6 = many different; pravibhaktam5 = divisions; ekastham2 = in one place [of His body].11.13  

(11.13) There the Paṇḍava (Arjuna) beheld the whole universe, with its manifold divisions gathered together in one, in the body of the God of gods.

Arjuna had the vision of the One in the many and the many in

the One. All things remain the same and yet all are changed. There is astonishment at the disappearance of the familiar landmarks of the everyday world. Everything is interfused, each with each and mirrors the whole. The vision is a revelation of the potential divinity of all earthly life.

ततः स विस्मयाविष्टो हृष्टरोमा धनंजयः ।

प्रणम्य शिरसा देवं कृताञ्जलिरभाषत ॥११- १४॥

tataḥ sa vismayāviṣṭo hṛṣṭaromā dhanaṁjayaḥ
praṇamya śirasā devaṁ kṛtāñjalir abhāṣata 11.14

tataḥ1 saḥ2 vismaya-āviṣṭaḥ3 hṛṣṭa-romā4 dhanañjayaḥ5
praṇamya
6 śirasā7 devam8 kṛta-añjaliḥ10  abhāṣata11 11.14

tataḥ1 = Then; saḥ2 = he [Arjuna]; vismaya-āviṣṭaḥ3 = filled with wonder; [and] hṛṣṭa-romā4  = his hair standing on end; dhanañjayaḥ5 = Dhananjaya;  praṇamya6 = bowing down; śirasā7 = with his head; devam8 = to the Lord; kṛta-añjaliḥ10 = with opposed hands; abhāṣata11 = he [Arjuna] said. 11.14

(11.I4) Then he, the Winner of wealth (Arjuna) , struck with amazement, his hair standing on end, bowed down his head to the Lord, with hands folded (in salutation), said:

In an agony of awe, his hair uplift, his head on high, his hands clasped in supplication, Arjuna adores.

अर्जुन उवाच

पश्यामि देवांस्तव देव देहे: सर्वांस्तथा भूतविशेषसंघान् ।

ब्रह्माणमीशं कमलासनस्थ-: मृषींश्च सर्वानुरगांश्च दिव्यान् ॥११- १५॥

arjuna uvāca
paśyāmi devāṁs tava deva dehe sarvāṁs tathā bhūtaviśeṣasaṁghān
brahmāṇam īśaṁ kamalāsanasthaṁ ṛṣīṁś ca sarvān uragāṁś ca divyān 11.15

arjuna uvāca
paśyāmi1 devān2 tava3 deva4 dehe5 sarvān6 tathā7 bhūta-viśeṣa-saṅghān8
brahmāṇam
9 īśam10 kamala-āsana-stham11 ṛṣīn12 ca13 sarvān14 uragān15 ca16 divyān17 11.15

 arjuna uvāca = Arjuna said: deva4 = O God; paśyāmi1 = I see; tava3 dehe5 = in Your body; sarvān6 = all;  devān2 = gods; tathā7 = also; bhūta-viśeṣa-saṅghān8  = many kinds of living beings; brahmāṇam9 = Brahma; kamala-āsana-stham11 = seated on the lotus (seat);  īśam10 = Lord Siva; ca13 = and; ṛṣīn12 = Rishis [Sages];  ca16 = and; sarvān14 = all; divyān17 = divine; uragān15 = snakes. 11.15
 

 Arjuna said:

(11.15) In Thy body, O God, I see all the gods and the varied hosts of beings as well, Brahma, the lord seated on the lotus throne and all the sages and heavenly nāgas.

The vision of God widens our horizon and takes us beyond the earthly tumults and sorrows which so easily obsess us. God's creation is not limited to this small planet, which is only an insignificant part of the cosmos. Arjuna sees the great and various company of spirits filling the universe.

अनेकबाहूदरवक्त्रनेत्रं : पश्यामि त्वां सर्वतोऽनन्तरूपम् ।

नान्तं न मध्यं न पुनस्तवादिं : पश्यामि विश्वेश्वर  विश्वरूप ॥११- १६॥
anekabāhūdaravaktranetraṁ paśyāmi tvāṁ sarvatonantarūpam
nāntaṁ na madhyaṁ na punas tavādiṁ paśyāmi viśveśvara viśvarūpa 11.16

aneka-bāhu-udara-vaktra-netram1 paśyāmi2 tvām3 sarvataḥ4 ananta-rūpam5
na antam6 na madhyam7 na punaḥ8 tava9 ādim10 paśyāmi11 viśveśvara12 viśva-rūpa13 11.16

viśveśvara12 = O Lord Controller of the Universe; paśyāmi2 = I see; tvām3 = You; aneka1A-bāhu1B-udara1C-vaktra1D-netram1E = with many1A arms1B, many stomachs1C, many mouths1D, many eyes1E; ananta-rūpam5  = infinite forms; sarvataḥ4 = on all sides;  paśyāmi11 = I see; tava9 = Your;  viśva-rūpa13  = universal form; [with] na antam6 = no end; na madhyam7  = no middle; na punaḥ8 ādim10  = nor again any beginning.11.16

(11.16) I behold Thee, infinite in form on all sides, with numberless arms, bellies, faces and eyes, but I see not Thy end or Thy middle or Thy beginning, O Lord of the universe, O Form Universal.

vaktra: faces or mouths.

किरीटिनं गदिनं चक्रिणं च : तेजोराशिं सर्वतो दीप्तिमन्तम् ।

पश्यामि त्वां दुर्निरीक्ष्यं समन्ता-: द्दीप्तानलार्कद्युतिमप्रमेयम् ॥११- १७॥

kirīṭinaṁ gadinaṁ cakriṇaṁ ca tejorāśiṁ sarvato dīptimantam
paśyāmi tvāṁ durnirīkṣyaṁ samantād dīptānalārkadyutim aprameyam 11.17

kirīṭinam11 gadinam22 cakriṇam3 ca4 tejorāśim5 sarvataḥ6 dīptimantam7
paśyāmi8 tvām9 durnirīkṣyam11 samantāt12 dīpta-anala-arka-dyutim13 aprameyam14 11.17

paśyāmi8 = I see; tvām9 = You; [wearing] kirīṭinam11 =  a crown; [holding] gadinam22 =  the mace; ca4 = and; cakriṇam3 = the discus; dīptimantam7 = glowing; [with] tejorāśim5 = a mass of light; sarvataḥ6 = all around; durnirīkṣyam11 = difficult to behold; samantāt12 = on every side; [with] dīpta13A-anala13B-arka13C-dyutim13D = splendor13D of burning13A fire13B and the sun13C;[and] aprameyam = unlimited, unfathomable. 11.17 

(11.17) I behold Thee with Thy crown, mace and discus, glowing everywhere as a mass of light, hard to discern, (dazzling) on all sides with the radiance of the flaming fire and sun, incomparable. 

त्वमक्षरं परमं वेदितव्यं : त्वमस्य विश्वस्य परं निधानम् ।

त्वमव्ययः शाश्वतधर्मगोप्ता : सनातनस्त्वं पुरुषो मतो मे ॥११- १८॥

tvam akṣaraṁ paramaṁ veditavyaṁ tvam asya viśvasya paraṁ nidhānam
tvam avyayaḥ śāśvatadharmagoptā sanātanas tvaṁ puruṣo mato me 11.18

tvam1 akṣaram2 paramam3 veditavyam4 tvam5 asya6 viśvasya7 param8 nidhānam9
tvam10 avyayaḥ11 śāśvata-dharma-goptā12 sanātanaḥ13 tvam14 puruṣaḥ15 mataḥ16 me17 11.18

tvam1 = You; [are] akṣaram2 = imperishable; [and] paramam3 = supreme; veditavyam4 = to be realized. tvam5 =You; [are] param8 = supreme; nidhānam9 = repository, abode; asya6 viśvasya7  = of this universe.  tvam10 = You; [are] avyayaḥ11 = the imperishable; śāśvata-dharma-goptā12  = protector of eternal Dharma. tvam14 = You; [are] sanātanaḥ13 = the eternal;  puruṣaḥ15 = Person; [in]  me17 = my; mataḥ16 = opinion. 11.18

 (11.18) Thou art the Imperishable, the Supreme to be realized. Thou art the ultimate resting-place of the universe; Thou art the undying guardian of the eternal law. Thou art the Primal Person, I think.

akṣaram; imperishable. Arjuna states that the Supreme is both Brahman, and Īsvara, Absolute and God.1

śāśvatadharmagoptā: the undying guardian of the eternal law. Abhinavagupta reads sāttvatadharmagoptā, the guardian of the sāttvata dharma.

1 etena saguṇarūpasya nirguṇajñāpakatvam uktam. Nīlakaṇṭha.

अनादिमध्यान्तमनन्तवीर्य-: मनन्तबाहुं शशिसूर्यनेत्रम् ।

पश्यामि त्वां दीप्तहुताशवक्त्रं: स्वतेजसा विश्वमिदं तपन्तम् ॥११- १९॥

anādimadhyāntam anantavīryam anantabāhuṁ śaśisūryanetram
paśyāmi tvāṁ dīptahutāśavaktraṁ svatejasā viśvam idaṁ tapantam 11.19

anādi-madhya-antam1 ananta-vīryam2 ananta-bāhum3 śaśi-sūrya-netram4
paśyāmi5 tvām6 dīpta-hutāśa-vaktram7 sva-tejasā8 viśvam9 idam10  tapantam11 11.19

paśyāmi5 = I see; tvām6 = You; anādi-madhya-antam1 = without beginning, middle and end; ananta-vīryam2  = with infinite power; ananta-bāhum3  = many arms; śaśi-sūrya-netram4  = having the sun and the moon as the eyes;  dīpta-hutāśa-vaktram7 = having a blazing fire of a mouth. sva-tejasā8  = By Your radiance; idam10  = this; viśvam9 = universe; [is]  tapantam11 = heating up. 11.19

(11.I9) I behold Thee as one without beginning, middle or end, of infinite power, of numberless arms, with the moon and the sun as Thine eyes, with Thy face as a flaming fire, whose radiance burns up this universe.

द्यावापृथिव्योरिदमन्तरं हि : व्याप्तं त्वयैकेन दिशश्च सर्वाः ।

दृष्ट्वाद्भुतं रूपमुग्रं तवेदं : लोकत्रयं प्रव्यथितं महात्मन् ॥११- २०॥

dyāvāpṛthivyor idam antaraṁ hi vyāptaṁ tvayaikena diśaś ca sarvāḥ
dṛṣṭvādbhutaṁ rupam ugraṁ tavedaṁ lokatrayaṁ pravyathitaṁ mahātman 11.20

dyāu āpṛthivyoḥ1 idam2 antaram3 hi4 vyāptam5 tvayā6 ekena7 diśaḥ8 ca9 sarvāḥ10
dṛṣṭvā11 adbhutam12 rupam13 ugram14 tava15 idam16 loka-trayam17 pravyathitam18 mahātman19 11.20

idam2 = This; antaram3 = intermediate space; dyāu āpṛthivyoḥ1 = between heaven and earth;  hi4  = indeed; vyāptam5 = is pervaded;  tvayā6 =  by You; ekena7 = alone; [in] sarvāḥ10 = all; diśaḥ8 = directions. dṛṣṭvā11 = By seeing; tava15 = Your; adbhutam12 = wonderful; ca9 = and; ugram14 = terrible; rupam13 = form;  idam16 = these; loka-trayam17 = three worlds; pravyathitam18 = tremble in fear; mahātman19 = O Great Soul.11.20

(11.20) This space between heaven and earth is pervaded by Thee alone, also all the quarters (directions of the sky). O Exalted One, when this wondrous, terrible form of Thine is seen, the three worlds tremble. 

अमी हि त्वां सुरसंघा विशन्ति : केचिद्भीताः प्राञ्जलयो गृणन्ति ।

स्वस्तीत्युक्त्वा महर्षिसिद्धसंघाः: स्तुवन्ति त्वां स्तुतिभिः पुष्कलाभिः ॥११- २१॥

amī hi tvāṁ surasaṁghā viśanti kecid bhītāḥ prāñjalayo gṛṇanti
svastīty uktvā maharṣisiddhasaṁghāḥ stuvanti tvāṁ stutibhiḥ puṣkalābhiḥ 11.21

amī1 hi2 tvām3 surasaṅghā4 viśanti5 kecit6 bhītāḥ7 prāñjalayaḥ8 gṛṇanti9
svasti10 iti11 uktvā12 maharṣi-siddha-saṅghāḥ13 stuvanti14 tvām15 stutibhiḥ16 puṣkalābhiḥ17 11.21

amī1= These; surasaṅghā4 = bevy of gods; hi2 = indeed; viśanti5 = enter; tvām3 = You. kecit6 = Some; gṛṇanti9 = extol thee;  bhītāḥ7 = in fear;  prāñjalayaḥ8 = with folded hands. maharṣi-siddha-saṅghāḥ13 = Confluence of great sages; uktvā12 = saying; svasti10 iti11 = 'may it be auspicious'; stuvanti14 = praise;  tvām15 = You; [with] puṣkalābhiḥ17 = elaborate/richly beautiful; stutibhiḥ16 = panegyric hymns. 11.21

(11.21) Yonder hosts of gods enter Thee and some, in fear, extol Thee, with folded hands, And bands of great seers and perfected ones cry "hail" and adore Thee with hymns of abounding praise.

The spiritual hosts adore His glory and are lost in ecstatic worship.

रुद्रादित्या वसवो ये च साध्या : विश्वेऽश्विनौ मरुतश्चोष्मपाश्च ।

गन्धर्वयक्षासुरसिद्धसंघा : वीक्षन्ते त्वां विस्मिताश्चैव सर्वे ॥११- २२॥

 rudrādityā vasavo ye ca sādhyā viśveśvinau marutaś coṣmapāś ca
gandharvayakṣāsurasiddhasaṁghā vīkṣante tvāṁ vismitāś caiva sarve 11.22

 rudra1 ādityā2 vasavaḥ3 ye4 ca5 sādhyāḥ6 viśve7 aśvinau8 marutaḥ9 ca10 uṣmapāḥ11 ca12
gandharva13 yakṣa14 asura15 siddha16 saṅghāḥ17 vīkṣante18 tvām19 vismitāḥ20 ca21  eva22 sarve23 11.22 

 rudra1 ādityā2 = Rudras and Adityas; vasavaḥ3 = the Vasus; ye4 = all these; ca5 = and; sādhyāḥ6 = the Sadyas;  viśve7 = Visvedevas; aśvinau8 = the Asvins; marutaḥ9 = the Maruts; ca10 = and; uṣmapāḥ11 = the Usmapas (manes); ca12 = and; saṅghāḥ17 = the assembly of; gandharva13 = Gandharvas; yakṣa14 = the Yaksas; asura15 = the Asuras; siddha16 = the Siddhas; ca21 = and; eva22 = indeed; sarve23 = all; vīkṣante18 = gaze; tvām19 = at You;  vismitāḥ20 = in amazement; . 11.22 

(11.22) The Rudras, the Ᾱdityas, the Vasus, the Sādhyas: the Viśvas, the two Aśvins, the Maruts and the manes and the hosts of Gandharvas, Yakṣas, Asuras and Siddhas, all gaze at Thee and are quite amazed.

रूपं महत्ते बहुवक्त्रनेत्रं : महाबाहो बहुबाहूरुपादम् ।

बहूदरं बहुदंष्ट्राकरालं : दृष्ट्वा लोकाः प्रव्यथितास्तथाहम् ॥११- २३॥

rūpaṁ mahat te bahuvaktranetraṁ mahābāho bahubāhūrupādam
bahūdaraṁ bahudañṣṭrākarālaṁ dṛṣṭvā lokāḥ pravyathitās tathāham 11.23

rūpam1 mahat2 te3 bahu-vaktra-netram4 mahābāho5 bahu-bāhu-uru-pādam6
bahu-udaram
7 bahu-damṣṭrā-karālam8 dṛṣṭvā9 lokāḥ10 pravyathitāḥ11 tathā12 aham13 11.23

mahābāho5 = O mighty-armed one; dṛṣṭvā9 = seeing; te3 = Your; mahat2 = great; rūpam1 = form; bahu-vaktra-netram4  = with many mouths and eyes;  bahu-bāhu-uru-pādam6  = many arms, thighs and legs; bahu-udaram7 = many stomachs; bahu-damṣṭrā-karālam8  = many formidable teeth;  lokāḥ10 = the worlds; pravyathitāḥ11 = shake in fear;  tathā12 = likewise; aham13 = I [do].11.23

(11.23) Seeing Thy great form, of many mouths and eyes, O Mighty-armed, of many arms, thighs and feet, of many bellies, terrible with many tusks, the worlds tremble and so do I.

This is a poetic exaggeration to bring out the universality and the omnipresence of the Supreme.

नभःस्पृशं दीप्तमनेकवर्णं : व्यात्ताननं दीप्तविशालनेत्रम् ।

दृष्ट्वा हि त्वां प्रव्यथितान्तरात्मा : धृतिं न विन्दामि शमं च विष्णो ॥११- २४॥

nabhaḥspṛśaṁ dīptam anekavarṇaṁ vyāttānanaṁ dīptaviśālanetram
dṛṣṭvā hi tvāṁ pravyathitāntarātmā dhṛtiṁ na vindāmi śamaṁ ca viṣṇo 11.24

nabhaḥ-spṛśam1dīptam2 aneka-varṇa3 vyātta-ānanam4 dīpta-viśāla-netram5
dṛṣṭvā6 hi7 tvām8 pravyathita9 antarātmā10 dhṛtim11 na12 vindāmi13 śamam14 ca15 viṣṇo16 11.24

hi7 = Indeed; dṛṣṭvā6 = seeing; tvām8 = You;  nabhaḥ-spṛśam1 = touching the sky; dīptam2 = glowing; aneka-varṇa3 = in many colors; vyātta-ānanam= with wide open mouth; dīpta-viśāla-netram5 = large lustrous eyes; antarātmā10 = my inner soul; pravyathita9 = shakes in fear; [I] vindāmi13 = find; na12 = no; dhṛtim11 = courage; ca15 = and; śamam14 = tranquility;  viṣṇo16 = O Vishnu. 11.24  नभः1 = nabhah = Parama Vyoman = Supreme Ether = Supreme heaven above prakṛti (matter composed of three Gunas)-Ramanuja.

(11.24) When I see Thee touching the sky, blazing with many hues, with the mouth opened wide, and large glowing eyes, my inmost soul trembles in fear and I find neither steadiness nor peace, O Viṣṇu!

दंष्ट्राकरालानि च ते मुखानि : दृष्ट्वैव कालानलसन्निभानि ।

दिशो न जाने न लभे च शर्म : प्रसीद देवेश जगन्निवास ॥११- २५॥

 daṁṣṭrākarālāni ca te mukhāni dṛṣṭvaiva kālānalasaṁnibhāni
diśo na jāne na labhe ca śarma prasīda deveśa jagannivāsa 11.25

 daṁṣṭra-karālāni1 ca2 te3 mukhāni4 dṛṣṭvā5 eva6 kāla-anala7 sannibhāni8
diśaḥ9 na10 jāne11 na12 labhe13 ca14 śarma15 prasīda16 deveśa17 jagannivāsa18 11.25

eva6 = Thus; dṛṣṭvā5 = seeing; te3 = Your; daṁṣṭra-karālāni1 = formidable teeth; mukhāni4 = faces; ca2 = and;  kāla-anala7 sannibhāni8 = a likeness to Time's Fire [Fire of Dissolution]; na10 jāne11 = I do not know; diśaḥ9 = the directions; ca14 = and; na12 labhe13 = do not find; śarma15 = comfort; deveśa17 = O Lord of gods; jagannivāsa18 = the Refuge of the Universe; prasīda16 = confer Grace [on me]' . 11.25  

(11.25) When I see Thy mouths terrible with their tusks, like Time's devouring flames, I lose sense of the directions and find no peace. Be gracious, O Lord of gods, Refuge of the worlds!

kālānala: literally the doomsday fire.

Arjuna loses his bearings. The tremendous experience has in it elements of astonishment, terror and rapture. 

अमी च त्वां धृतराष्ट्रस्य पुत्राः : सर्वे सहैवावनिपालसंघैः ।

भीष्मो द्रोणः सूतपुत्रस्तथासौ : सहास्मदीयैरपि योधमुख्यैः ॥११- २६॥

amī ca tvāṁ dhṛtarāṣṭrasya putrāḥ sarve sahaivāvanipālasaṁghaiḥ
bhīṣmo droṇaḥ sūtaputras tathāsau sahāsmadīyair api yodhamukhyaiḥ 11.26

amī1 ca2 tvām3 dhṛtarāṣṭrasya4 putrāḥ5 sarve6 saha7 eva8 avanipāla-saṅghaiḥ9
bhīṣmaḥ10 droṇaḥ11 sūta-putraḥ12 tathā13 asau14 saha15 asmadīyaiḥ16 api17 yodha-mukhyaiḥ18 11.26

amī1 = These; dhṛtarāṣṭrasya4 putrāḥ5 = sons5 of Dhṛtarāṣṭra4; ca2 = and; saha7 = with; eva8 = indeed; avanipāla9A-saṅghaiḥ9B = host9B of rulers of earth9A; sarve6 = all; [enter] tvām3 = into You;  bhīṣmaḥ10 = Bhisma; droṇaḥ11 = Drona; tathā13 = also; asau14 = this; sūta-putraḥ12  = son of Suta [Karna]; saha15 = with; api17 = also; asmadīyaiḥ16 = our;  yodha-mukhyaiḥ18  = chief warriors; 11.26 

(11.26) All yonder sons of Dhrtarastra together with the hosts of kings and also Bhisma, Drona and Kama along with the chief warriors on our side too,-

वक्त्राणि ते त्वरमाणा विशन्ति : दंष्ट्राकरालानि भयानकानि ।

केचिद्विलग्ना दशनान्तरेषु : संदृश्यन्ते चूर्णितैरुत्तमाङ्गैः ॥११- २७॥

vaktrāṇi te tvaramāṇā viśanti daṁṣṭrākarālāni bhayānakāni
kecid vilagnā daśanāntareṣu saṁdṛśyante cūrṇitair uttamāṅgaiḥ 11.27

vaktrāṇi1 te2 tvaramāṇāḥ3 viśanti4 daṁṣṭrā5 karālāni6 bhayānakāni7
kecit8 vilagnāḥ9 daśana-antareṣu10 sandṛśyante11 cūrṇitaiḥ12 uttama-aṅgaiḥ13 11.27

tvaramāṇāḥ3 = run in haste; [and] viśanti4 = enter;  te2 = Your; vaktrāṇi1 = mouths; [with] bhayānakāni7 = fearful; daṁṣṭrā5 karālāni6  = formidable teeth.  kecit8 = Some; vilagnāḥ9 = entangled; daśana-antareṣu10  = between the teeth; sandṛśyante11 = are seen; [with] cūrṇitaiḥ12 = crushed; uttama-aṅgaiḥ13  = heads [uppermost body part].11.27 

(11.27) Are rushing into Thy fearful mouths set with terrible tusks. Some caught between the teeth are seen with their heads crushed to powder.

यथा नदीनां बहवोऽम्बुवेगाः: समुद्रमेवाभिमुखा द्रवन्ति ।

तथा तवामी नरलोकवीरा : विशन्ति वक्त्राण्यभिविज्वलन्ति ॥११- २८॥

 yathā nadīnāṁ bahavombuvegāḥ samudram evābhimukhā dravanti
tathā tavāmī naralokavīrā viśanti vaktrāṇy abhivijvalanti 11.28

 yathā1 nadīnām2 bahavaḥ3 ambu-vegāḥ4 samudram5 eva6 abhimukhāḥ7 dravanti8
tathā
9 tava10 amī11 nara-loka-vīrāḥ12 viśanti13 vaktrāṇi14 abhivijvalanti15 11.28

yathā1 = As; bahavaḥ3 = many; ambu-vegāḥ4  = water currents; nadīnām2 = of the flowing water [river];   dravanti8 = flow; abhimukhāḥ7 = towards; samudram5 = the ocean; eva6 = indeed;   tathā9 = likewise;  amī11 = these; nara-loka-vīrāḥ12 = human world heroes; viśanti13 = enter into; tava10 = Your; abhivijvalanti15 = blazing; vaktrāṇi14 = mouths. 11.28

(11.28) As the many rushing torrents of rivers race towards the ocean, so do these heroes of the world of men rush into Thy flaming mouths.

यथा प्रदीप्तं ज्वलनं पतङ्गा : विशन्ति नाशाय समृद्धवेगाः ।

तथैव नाशाय विशन्ति लोका-: स्तवापि वक्त्राणि समृद्धवेगाः ॥११- २९॥

yathā pradīptaṁ jvalanaṁ pataṅgā viśanti nāśāya samṛddhavegāḥ
tathaiva nāśāya viśanti lokās tavāpi vaktrāṇi samṛddhavegāḥ 11.29

yathā1 pradīptam2 jvalanam3 pataṅgāḥ4 viśanti5 nāśāya6 samṛddha vegāḥ7
tatha eva8 nāśāya9 viśanti10 lokāḥ11 tava12 api13 vaktrāṇi14 samṛddha-vegāḥ15 11.29

yathā1 = As; pataṅgāḥ4 = moths; viśanti5 = enter; pradīptam2 = blazing; jvalanam3 = fire; [with] samṛddha vegāḥ7  = increasing speed; nāśāya6 = for annihilation;  tatha eva8  = likewise;  lokāḥ11 = beings; viśanti10 = enter; tava12 = Your; vaktrāṇi14 = mouths; [with] samṛddha-vegāḥ15  = increasing speed; nāśāya9 = for annihilation; api13 = also. 11.29

(11.29) As moths rush swiftly into a blazing fire to perish there, so do these men rush into Thy mouths with great speed to their own destruction.

These beings blinded by their own ignorance are rushing to their destruction and the Divine Controller permits it, as they are carrying out the effects of their own deeds. When we will a deed, we will its consequences also. The free activities subject us to their results. As this law of cause and consequence is an expression of the Divine mind, the Divine may be said to execute the law. The writer points out through the conception of world-form how the whole cosmos with its vastness, beauty and terror, gods, blessed souls, animals, plants are all there in the plenitude of God's life. God cannot move outside Himself, having all within Himself. We, human beings, who think discursively, are occupied, now with one object and now with another. We think consecutively but the Divine mind knows all as one. There is no past to it nor future. 

लेलिह्यसे ग्रसमानः समन्ता-: ल्लोकान्समग्रान्वदनैर्ज्वलद्भिः ।

तेजोभिरापूर्य जगत्समग्रं : भासस्तवोग्राः प्रतपन्ति विष्णो ॥११- ३०॥

lelihyase grasamānaḥ samantāl lokān samagrān vadanair jvaladbhiḥ
tejobhir āpūrya jagat samagraṁ bhāsas tavogrāḥ pratapanti viṣṇo 11.30

lelihyase1 grasamānaḥ2 samantāt3 lokān4 samagrān5 vadanaiḥ6 jvaladbhiḥ7
tejobhiḥ8 āpūrya9 jagat10 samagram11 bhāsaḥ12 tava13 ugrāḥ14 pratapanti15 viṣṇo16 11.30

[As You] grasamānaḥ2 = gulp down; samagrān5 = all; lokān4 = beings; samantāt3 = from all directions;  jvaladbhiḥ7= with flaming; vadanaiḥ6 = mouths; lelihyase1 = You lick.  tava13 = Your; ugrāḥ14 = terrible; bhāsaḥ12 = rays; āpūrya9 = filling; samagram11 = all; jagat10 = world;  tejobhiḥ8 = with intense heat;  [are] pratapanti15 = scorching; viṣṇo16 = O Vishnu, The Pervader.11.30 

(11.30) Devouring all the worlds on every side with Thy flaming mouths, thou lickest them up. Thy fiery rays fill this whole universe and scorch it with their fierce radiance, O Visnu!

आख्याहि मे को भवानुग्ररूपो : नमोऽस्तु ते देववर प्रसीद ।

विज्ञातुमिच्छामि भवन्तमाद्यं: न हि प्रजानामि तव प्रवृत्तिम् ॥११- ३१॥

ākhyāhi me ko bhavān ugrarūpo namostu te devavara prasīda
 vijñātum icchāmi bhavantam ādyaṁ na hi prajānāmi tava pravṛttim 11.31

ākhyāhi1 me2 kaḥ3 bhavān4 ugrarūpaḥ5 namaḥ6 astu7 te8 deva-vara9 prasīda10
 vijñātum11 icchāmi12 bhavantam13 ādyam14 na15 hi16 prajānāmi17 tava18 pravṛttim19 11.31

ākhyāhi1 = Tell; me2 = me; kaḥ3 = who; bhavān4 = You; [are with] ugrarūpaḥ5 = fierce form. namaḥ6 = salutations; astu7 = let there be;  te8 = to You; deva-vara9  = Most excellent among gods. prasīda10 = Be of Grace; icchāmi12 = I desire; vijñātum11 = to know;  bhavantam13 = You; ādyam14 = the Primal One; hi16 = indeed. na15 prajānāmi17 = I do not know; tava18 = Your; pravṛttim19 = activity. 11.31

(11.31) Tell me who Thou art with form so terrible. Salutation to Thee, O Thou Great Godhead, have mercy. I wish to know Thee (who art) the Primal One, for I know not Thy working.

The disciple seeks for deeper knowledge.

श्रीभगवानुवाच

कालोऽस्मि लोकक्षयकृत्प्रवृद्धो : लोकान्समाहर्तुमिह प्रवृत्तः ।

ऋतेऽपि त्वां न भविष्यन्ति सर्वे : येऽवस्थिताः प्रत्यनीकेषु योधाः ॥११- ३२॥

śrībhagavān uvāca
kālosmi lokakṣayakṛt pravṛddho lokān samāhartum iha pravṛttaḥ
ṛtepi tvāṁ na bhaviṣyanti sarve yevasthitāḥ pratyanīkeṣu yodhāḥ 11.32

śrībhagavān uvāca
kālaḥ1 asmi2 loka-kṣaya-kṛt3 pravṛddhaḥ4 lokān5 samāhartum6 iha7 pravṛttaḥ8
ṛte9 api10 tvām11 na12 bhaviṣyanti13 sarve14 ye15 avasthitāḥ16 pratyanīkeṣu17 yodhāḥ18 11.32

śrībhagavān uvāca = Sri Bhagavan said: asmi2 = I am; kālaḥ1 = Time; pravṛddhaḥ4 = the great; loka-kṣaya-kṛt3 = destroyer of the world; pravṛttaḥ8 = engaged; samāhartum6 = in destroying; lokān5 = the beings. iha7 =  here [in this world]; api10 = even;  ṛte9 = without; tvām11 = you; sarve14 = all; yodhāḥ18 = warriors; ye15 = who; avasthitāḥ16 = arrayed; pratyanīkeṣu17 =  in opposing armies; na12 = will not; bhaviṣyanti13 = exist. 11.32 

The Blessed Lord said:

(11.32) Time am I, world-destroying, grown mature, engaged here in subduing the world. Even without thee (thy action), all the warriors standing arrayed in the opposing armies shall cease to be.

Kāla or time is the prime mover of the universe. If God is thought of as time, then He is perpetually creating and destroying. Time is the streaming flux which moves unceasingly. The Supreme Being takes up the responsibility for both creation and destruction. The Gītā does not countenance the familiar doctrine that, while God is responsible for all that is  good, Satan is responsible for all that is evil. If God is responsible for mortal existence, then He is responsible for all that it includes, life and creation, anguish and death.

God has control over time because He is outside of it and we also shall obtain power over time if we rise above it. As the force behind this, He sees farther than we, knows how all events are controlled and so tells Arjuna that causes have been at work for years and are moving towards their natural effects which we cannot prevent by anything we can do now. The destruction of his enemies is decided irrevocably by acts committed long ago. There is an impersonal fate, what the Christians call Providence, a general cosmic necessity, moira1, which is an expression of a side of God's nature and so can be regarded as the will of His sovereign personality, which pursues its own unrecognizable aims. Against it, all protestations of self-determination are of no avail.

1Moira = Moira. /moy"reuh/, n., pl. Moirai. Class. Myth.

              a. the personification of fate.

              b. Moirai, the Fates.

              2. (often l.c.) (among ancient Greeks) a person's fate or destiny. Random House Dictionary.

तस्मात्त्वमुत्तिष्ठ यशो लभस्व : जित्वा शत्रून् भुङ्क्ष्व राज्यं समृद्धम् ।

मयैवैते निहताः पूर्वमेव : निमित्तमात्रं भव सव्यसाचिन् ॥११- ३३॥

tasmāt tvam uttiṣṭha yaśo labhasva jitvā śatrūn bhuṅkṣva rājyaṁ samṛddham
mayaivaite nihatāḥ pūrvam eva nimittamātraṁ bhava savyasācin 11.33

tasmāt1 tvam2 uttiṣṭha3 yaśaḥ4 labhasva5 jitvā6 śatrūn7 bhuṅkṣva8 rājyam9 samṛddham10
maya11 eva12 ete13 nihatāḥ14 pūrvam15 eva16 nimitta-mātram17 bhava18 savyasācin19 11.33

tasmāt1 = Therefore; tvam2 = you; uttiṣṭha3 = rise up; labhasva5 = gain; yaśaḥ4 = fame; jitvā6 = vanquishing; śatrūn7 = enemies; [and] bhuṅkṣva8 = enjoy; samṛddham10 = prosperous; rājyam9 = kingdom. ete13 = All these; eva12 = indeed; [were] nihatāḥ14 = killed; pūrvam15 = earlier; eva16 = verily; maya11 = by Me.  [you] bhava18 = become; nimitta-mātram17 = a mere instrumental cause; savyasācin19 = O Savyasaci, the left-handed archer. 11.33

(11.33) Therefore arise thou and gain glory. Conquering thy foes, enjoy a prosperous kingdom. By Me alone are they slain already, Be thou merely the occasion, O Savyasācin (Arjuna).

The God of destiny decides and ordains all things and Arjuna is to be the instrument, the flute under the fingers of the Omnipotent One who fulfils His own purpose and is working out a mighty evolution. Arjuna is self-deceived if he believes that he should act according to his own imperfect judgment. No individual soul can encroach on the prerogative of God. In refusing

to take up arms, Arjuna is guilty of presumption. See XVIII, 58.

nimittamātram.· merely the occasion. The writer seems to uphold the doctrine of Divine predestination and indicate the utter helplessness and insignificance of the individual and the futility of his will and effort. The decision is made already and Arjuna can do nothing to change it. He is a powerless tool in God's hands, and yet there is the other note that God is not arbitrary and capricious but just and loving. How are the two to be reconciled?

The numinous idea of the predestinating and solely acting God which induces in us the feeling of the utter dependence on God, the "wholly other" standing over against us in absolute antithesis, is here expressed. The intense intuition of the power of God comes out here and in Job and in Paul: "Shall the thing

formed say to Him that fanned it, why hast thou made me thus?" We need not look upon the whole cosmic process as nothing more than the unfolding of a predetermined plan, the unveiling of a ready-made scenario. The writer here is not so much denying the unforeseeableness of human acts as affirming the meaning of eternity in which all the moments of the whole of time, past,

present and future, are present to the Divine Spirit. The radical novelty of each moment of evolution in time is not inconsistent with Divine Eternity.

The ideas of God are worked out through human instrumentality. If we are wise, we so act that we are instruments in His hands. We allow Him to absorb our soul and leave no trace of the ego. We must receive His command and do His will with the cry "In thy will is our peace"; "Father, into Thy hands I

commend my Spirit."1 Arjuna should feel, "Nothing exists save Thy will. Thou alone art the doer and I am only the instrument." The dread horror of the war repels him. Judged by human standards, it is quite incomprehensible but when the curtain is lifted, so as to reveal the purpose of the Almighty, he acquiesces in it. What he himself desired, what he might hope to gain in

this world or the next do not count any more. Behind this world of space-time, interpenetrating it, is the creative purpose of God. We must understand that supreme design and be content to serve it. Every act is a symbol of something far beyond itself.

1 Luke xxiii, 46.

द्रोणं च भीष्मं च जयद्रथं च : कर्णं तथान्यानपि योधवीरान् ।

मया हतांस्त्वं जहि मा व्यथिष्ठा : युध्यस्व जेतासि रणे सपत्नान् ॥११- ३४॥

 droṇaṁ ca bhīṣmaṁ ca jayadrathaṁ ca karṇaṁ tathānyān api yodhavīrān
mayā hatāṁs tvaṁ jahi mā vyathiṣṭhā yudhyasva jetāsi raṇe sapatnān 11.34

droṇam1 ca2 bhīṣmam3 ca4 jayadratham5 ca6 karṇam7 tathā anyān8 api9 yodhavīrān10
mayā11 hatān12 tvam13 jahi1415 vyathiṣṭhāḥ16 yudhyasva17 jetāsi18 raṇe19 sapatnān20 11.34

tvam13 = You; jahi14 = destroy;  droṇam1 ca2 = also Drona; bhīṣmam3 ca4 = and Bhisma; jayadratham5 ca6 = and Jayadratha;  karṇam7 = Karna;  tathā anyān8  =  also others; api9 = indeed; yodhavīrān10 = brave warriors; [who had been previously] hatān12 = killed; mayā11 = by Me.15 = Do not;  vyathiṣṭhāḥ16 = be perturbed; yudhyasva17 = fight; jetāsi18 = you will conquer; sapatnān20 = [your] foes; raṇe19 = in the battle.11.34  

(11.34) Slay Droṇa, Bhīṣma, Jayadratha, Karṇa and other great warriors as well, who are already doomed by Me. Be not afraid. Fight, thou shalt conquer the enemies in battle.

māya hatām: doomed by me. God knows the direction of their lives and their appointed goal. There is nothing however small or insignificant that has not been ordained or permitted by God, even to the fall of a sparrow.

Arjuna is asked to assume the office of Providence. He will be externally master of nature and inwardly superior to all possible accidents.

संजय उवाच

एतच्छ्रुत्वा वचनं केशवस्य : कृताञ्जलिर्वेपमानः किरीटी ।

नमस्कृत्वा भूय एवाह कृष्णं : सगद्गदं भीतभीतः प्रणम्य ॥११- ३५॥

sañjaya uvāca
etac chrutvā vacanaṁ keśavasya kṛtāñjalir vepamānaḥ kirīṭī
namaskṛtvā bhūya evāha kṛṣṇaṁ sagadgadaṁ bhītabhītaḥ praṇamya 11.35

sañjaya uvāca
etat1 śrutvā2 vacanam3 keśavasya4 kṛta-añjaliḥ5 vepamānaḥ6 kirīṭī7
namaskṛtvā8 bhūyaḥ9 eva10 āha11 kṛṣṇam12 sa-gadgadam13 bhīta-bhītaḥ14 praṇamya15 11.35

sañjaya uvāca = Sanjaya said: etat1 = thus; śrutvā2 = hearing; vacanam3 = the words; keśavasya4 = of Kesava; kṛta-añjaliḥ5  = with opposed palms; vepamānaḥ6 = trembling; kirīṭī7 = Arjuna, the wearer of the crown; namaskṛtvā8 = paying obeisance; bhūyaḥ9 = again; eva10 = also; āha11 = said; kṛṣṇam12 = to Krishna; sa-gadgadam13  = stammering; bhīta-bhītaḥ14 = terrified; praṇamya15 = offering bowing obeisance.11.35 

Saṁjaya said:

(11.35) Having heard this utterance of Keśava (Kṛṣṇa), Kirītin (Arjuna), with folded hands and trembling, saluted again and prostrating himself with great fear, spoke in a faltering voice to Kṛṣṇa.

Rudolf Otto gives this whole scene as an example of the place of the numinous, the mysterium tremendum in religion. It presents to us the transcendent aspect of God. 

अर्जुन उवाच

स्थाने हृषीकेश तव प्रकीर्त्या : जगत्प्रहृष्यत्यनुरज्यते च ।

रक्षांसि भीतानि दिशो द्रवन्ति : सर्वे नमस्यन्ति च सिद्धसंघाः ॥११- ३६॥

arjuna uvāca
sthāne hṛṣīkeśa tava prakīrtyā jagat prahṛṣyaty anurajyate ca
rakṣāṁsi bhītāni diśo dravanti sarve namasyanti ca siddhasaṁghāḥ 11.36

arjuna uvāca
sthāne1 hṛṣīkeśa2 tava3 prakīrtyā4 jagat5 prahṛṣyati6 anurajyate7 ca8
rakṣāṁsi9 bhītāni10 diśaḥ11 dravanti12 sarve13 namasyanti14 ca15 siddha-saṅghāḥ16 11.36

 

arjuna uvāca = Arjuna said: hṛṣīkeśa2 = O Hrsikesa, the Lord of senses; sthāne1 = rightly, properly;  tava3 prakīrtyā4 = by Your renown; jagat5 = the world; prahṛṣyati6 = is joyous; ca8 = and; anurajyate7 = delights. rakṣāṁsi9 = The Raksasas; bhītāni10 = afflicted with fear; dravanti12 = run/flee; sarve13 diśaḥ11 = in all  directions; ca15 = and; siddha-saṅghāḥ16  = confluence of Siddhas; namasyanti14 = offer obeisance. 11.36

  

11.36:  Arjuna said:

O Hrisikesa (Krishna), rightly, by glorifying You, the world rejoices and delights. The raksasas, out of fear are fleeing in all directions. The confluence of Siddhas bows down to you in reverence.

 

 

कस्माच्च ते न नमेरन्महात्मन् : गरीयसे ब्रह्मणोऽप्यादिकर्त्रे ।

अनन्त देवेश जगन्निवास : त्वमक्षरं सदसत्तत्परं यत् ॥११- ३७॥

 kasmāc ca te na nameran mahātman garīyase brahmaṇopy ādikartre
ananta deveśa jagannivāsa tvam akṣaraṁ sad asat tatparaṁ yat 11.37

 kasmāt1 ca2 te3 na4 nameran5 mahātman6 garīyase7 brahmaṇaḥ8 api9 ādi-kartre10
ananta11 deveśa12 jagannivāsa13 tvam14 akṣaram15 sat-asat16 tatparam17 yat18 11.37

 

 kasmāt1 = Why; [should they] na4 = not; nameran5 = bow down; te3 = to You; mahātman6 = O Great Soul; ca2 = and; ādi-kartre10  = the original Creator; garīyase7 = who are greater than;  brahmaṇaḥ8 = Brahma; api9 = though; ananta11 = O infinite Being; deveśa12 = O God of gods; jagannivāsa13 = abode of the universe. tvam14 = You; [are] akṣaram15 = imperishable; sat-asat16  = Being and non-being; yat18 = which [is] tatparam17 = superior and beyond that. 11.37

11.37:  Why should they not bow to You, O Mahatman (Great Soul), when You are the original creator of, and more venerable than Brahma Himself? O Infinite Being, O God of gods, O refuge of the universe, You are imperishable, Sat and Asat (Being and NonBeing) and (what is) beyond that.

 

 

त्वमादिदेवः पुरुषः पुराण-: स्त्वमस्य विश्वस्य परं निधानम् ।

वेत्तासि वेद्यं च परं च धाम : त्वया ततं विश्वमनन्तरूप ॥११- ३८॥

tvam ādidevaḥ puruṣaḥ purāṇas tvam asya viśvasya paraṁ nidhānam
vettāsi vedyaṁ ca paraṁ ca dhāma tvayā tataṁ viśvam anantarūpa 11.38

tvam1 ādi-devaḥ2 puruṣaḥ3 purāṇaḥ4  tvam5 asya6 viśvasya7 param8 nidhānam9
vettā10 asi11 vedyam12 ca13 param14 ca15 dhāma16 tvayā17 tatam18 viśvam19 anantarūpa20 11.38

 

tvam1 = You; [are] ādi-devaḥ2  = the Primal God; purāṇaḥ4 = the ancient; puruṣaḥ3 = Person.  tvam5 = You; [are] param8 = the Supreme; nidhānam9 = refuge [of] viśvasya7 = the Universe. asya6 = You are; vettā10 = the Knower; asi11 = You are; vedyam12 = the object of knowledge; ca13 = and; param14 = Supreme; dhāma16  = abode; ca15 = and; viśvam19 = the Universe; tatam18 = is pervaded; tvayā17 = by You;  anantarūpa20 = O Infinite Form.11.38 
 

11.38:   You are the Primal God, the most ancient Purusa (person). You are the Supreme abode of the universe. You are the knower, the knowable, and the supreme refuge. You pervaded this universe, O Infinite Form.

 

 

वायुर्यमोऽग्निर्वरुणः शशाङ्कः: प्रजापतिस्त्वं प्रपितामहश्च ।

नमो नमस्तेऽस्तु सहस्रकृत्वः: पुनश्च भूयोऽपि नमो नमस्ते ॥११- ३९॥

vāyur yamognir varuṇaḥ śaśāṅkaḥ prajāpatis tvaṁ prapitāmahaś ca
namo namas testu sahastrakṛtvaḥ punaś ca bhūyopi namo namas te 11.39

vāyuḥ1 yamaḥ2 agniḥ3 varuṇaḥ4 śaśāṅkaḥ5 prajāpatiḥ6 tvam7 prapitāmahaḥ8 ca9
namaḥ10 namaḥ11 te12 astu13 sahastra-kṛtvaḥ14 punaḥ15 ca16 bhūyaḥ17 api18 namaḥ19 namaḥ20 te21 11.39

 

tvam7 = You; [are] vāyuḥ1 = Air; yamaḥ2 = Death; agniḥ3 = Fire; varuṇaḥ4 = Water; śaśāṅkaḥ5 = Moon; prajāpatiḥ6 = Brahma; prapitāmahaḥ8 = the Great Grandfather; ca9 = and; namaḥ10 = homage; namaḥ11 = homage; te12 = to You; astu13 = be; sahastra-kṛtvaḥ14  = a thousand times; punaḥ15 = again; ca16 = and; bhūyaḥ17 = again; api18