In this play, Sri Chinmoy relates several episodes from the life of Sri Krishna, some of which comprise part of India's great epic the Mahabharata. The play includes Krishna's early life and the gopis of Brindavan, Krishna's conversations with his disciple Arjuna on the Battlefield of Kurushetra, and tales of Krishna's devotees.
Read the full play: Sri Chinmoy Library
Dramatis personae 1
(Krishna and Arjuna on the battlefield.)
ARJUNA: Krishna, I have to fight now. I have to conquer my enemies. But Krishna, now that I am in the battlefield, I am nervous. You know I have never suffered from nervousness before.
Sidanti mama gatrani
mukham ca parisusyati
vepathus ca sarire me
romaharsas ca jayate
(My limbs give way and my mouth is parched, my body quivers, and my hair stands on end.)
KRISHNA: Arjuna, you must never be nervous. This kind of thing I do not expect from you. You are a great hero, Arjuna. You must not be nervous.
ARJUNA: Krishna, please tell me what you actually want from my life. What do you expect from my life? Please tell me. What do you want from me? I am all yours.
KRISHNA: Do not be nervous. I have told you that you are the hero of heroes, the supreme hero. You have to fight. Fight for the right cause. I shall tell you all about the inner life, the spiritual life, the life of perfection, inner and outer. First I shall teach you the life of realisation and revelation. Then I shall teach you the life of perfection.
ARJUNA: Krishna, you came into the world with a special purpose, I know. But please tell me, what is that purpose? I want to know from you.
Yada-hada hi dharmasya
glanir bhavati bharata
tada ’tmanam srjamy aham
vinasaya ca duskrtam
(O Arjuna, whenever righteousness declines and unrighteouness prevails, Myself I embody and manifest. For the protection of the good and for the destruction of the wicked, and for the establishment of the inner code of life, I come into being from age to age.)
Dramatis personae 2
(Krishna and Arjuna on the battlefield.)
ARJUNA: Krishna, the battle is about to start. Alas, I see death-forces all around me.
KRISHNA: Stop, Arjuna. Your heart has always been a perfect stranger to fear.
Klaibyam ma sma gamah...
(Yield not to feebleness.)
ARJUNA: My Lord, please tell me something about death.
KRISHNA: Arjuna, this is a divine battle, so be not afraid of killing others, nor of being killed yourself. Here is my teaching with regard to death.
Vasamsi jirnani yatha vihaya
navani grhnati naro ’parani
tatha sarirani vihaya jirnany
anyani samyati navani dehi
(As a man casts off his worn-out garments and puts on new ones, so also the embodied soul casts off the worn-out body and enters into a new form for manifestation.)
ARJUNA: Is there anything that is not killed?
KRISHNA: Yes, Arjuna, the soul is not killed. The soul cannot be killed.
Nai ’nam chindanti sastrani
nai ’nam dahati pavakah
na cai ’nam kledayanty apo
na sosayati marutah
(Weapons cannot cleave the soul.
Fire cannot burn the soul.
Water cannot drench the soul.
Wind cannot dry the soul.)
Nimitta matram bhava savyasachin
(O Arjuna, become a mere instrument.)
ARJUNA: O Krishna, fear of death is gone. I shall be afraid neither of killing others nor of being killed by others. Fight I must, and conquer the forces undivine.
Dramatis personae 3
(A scholar is walking along the street. He sees a Brahmin holding a copy of the Bhagavad-Gita and weeping.)
SCHOLAR: O Brahmin, your eyes are swimming in a sea of tears. My heart is all sympathy for you. I clearly see that you have been unable to understand the teachings of the Gita. But I shall gladly help you. Tell me, where do you find it difficult? Which particular shloka don’t you understand? I shall explain it to you.
BRAHMIN: There is a special reason why I am weeping.
SCHOLAR: Yes, I am sure you have a special reason. Why don’t you be frank with me? Tell me straight away which particular shloka you find difficult to understand.
BRAHMIN: You will not understand me. You will not believe me.
SCHOLAR: I will understand you. I will believe you. Tell me why you are weeping. I have not much time, for I am now on my way to my school, where my students are waiting for me. Please don’t waste my time. Please tell me.
I am a fool, they say.
Am I, am I a fool?
I go to my inner School;
God’s Eye my eternal Day.
To help my Lord in His Play,
To found His Smile on earth,
My divinely human birth.
Yet I am a fool, they say.
BRAHMIN: I am weeping, I am weeping because...
SCHOLAR: Please don’t waste my time. Don’t weep, don’t weep. Just let me know what you can’t understand and I shall immediately help you.
BRAHMIN: I am weeping because I see the Lord Krishna right in front of me. No matter which page I turn to, I see Arjuna’s charioteer, Krishna. These are my psychic tears. I see my Lord in all the pages. I see Sri Krishna in His chariot. That is why I am shedding tears. It is not that I do not understand the teachings of the Gita.
(The scholar bows to the Brahmin.)
SCHOLAR: I have studied the Gita hundreds of times. I have taught thousands of people the Gita, but none of them have said that they have seen Lord Krishna. They haven’t seen even a spark of Sri Krishna’s light. I have personally talked and talked about the Gita. I have taught and taught the Gita, but I have never seen Sri Krishna on the pages, or before my eyes in a mental vision. I have never felt his presence deep in my heart. (Pauses.) O Brahmin, forgive my arrogance, forgive my impertinence. Today I am not going to school to teach. Today is the end of my teaching career. Today begins my life of aspiration, my life of the inner cry. From now on I shall only pray to Krishna instead of explaining Him. Instead of speaking about Him I shall meditate on Him, and like you, I am sure, one day I will be able to see Krishna, my beloved Lord. My life of outer teaching now ends, and my life of inner searching begins.