Chapter 1. Despondency of Arjuna: Verse 35

Sanskrit Verse

एतान्न हन्तुमिच्छामि घ्नतोऽपि मधुसूदन |
अपि त्रैलोक्यराज्यस्य हेतो: किं नु महीकृते ||


Etaan-na hantum-ichchhaami ghnato api madhusoodana
Api trailokya-raajyasya hetoh kim nu mahee-krite

English Translation

O Krishna, I do not wish to kill them even if they kill me
(I can't kill) even for the sake of kingship of three worlds (Physical, Astral & Causal) then what to speak of just this Earth.

Commentary & Explanation

Arjuna says he does not wish to kill Kauravas even if they try to kill him. Attachments lead to such emotional turbulences that even the spiritually evolved ones sometimes lose simple sense.

Mental turmoil has troubled even the greats like Vaistha, Vishwamitra, Brihaspati, Indra. Emotional imbalance rarely happens to spiritually advanced, but it does happen nevertheless, whereas it happens very frequently in an ordinary person.

There are three types of beings and mental states:

  • Ordinary person: Values one's life and conveniences more than other people's.
  • An enlightened Person: Values everyone's life equally, sees himself/herself as the same as others.
  • Emotionally attached person: Sees others' life as more important than one's own, Example: Parents towards their children, New Lovers in throws of strong passion.

Arjuna in his emotional state is valuing his own life less than others', he just wants to be out of the turmoil even at the cost of his own.

There are three planes of Existence as per Indian philosophy:

  • Physical (Earth)
  • Astral (Heaven/hell)
  • Causal (State of subtle existence)

Arjuna was such an evolved person that he went to Astral realms without losing his consciousness (people after leaving the body gradually forget the past), even the King Indra of Astral realms lovingly gave Arjuna half the throne (which he deserved), Arjuna had conquered astral kingdoms defeating numerous demons, Gandharvas.

Arjuna could have become the ruler of the three worlds, but he never desired that, Now fighting for the mere Earth seemed futile to him. 

Spiritual View: A spiritual practitioner can attain the powers and pleasures of three realms, he can attain a even higher state of pure bliss in Samadhi, however sometimes being too attached to ideas and things of material planes he doesn't wish to go further spiritually, he stops his spiritual practices, he sticks to enjoying unworthy pleasures until later when he realizes that and comes back on the path.



EtaanAll these
HantumTo kill
IchchhaamiI wish
GhnatahBeing killed
ApiEven if; even though
MadhusoodanaKiller of demon Madhu (Krishna)
ApiEven if
TrailokyaThree worlds; Tri=three, Loka=world;
RaajyasyaDominion over kingdom
HetohFor the sake of, in exchange
Kim nuWhat to speak of
Mahee-kriteFor the sake of the earth