We see in the second part of Gita first chapter that there was a break-up in Arjuna’s personality when he faced the grave situation in the battlefield of Kurukshetra. His repressions and supressions erupted from the deep layers of his personality. He lost his reasoning and mental balance completely. He felt dejected that he was unable to face the challenge. Swami Chinmayananda aptly calls this Arjuna Disease ! This is a universal disease, natural to any man of action. It is also common to people of all creeds, cultures and races. What is the cure for this disease ? The panacea for all these mental disillusions is the subject matter of Gita, woven as a fabric in the eighteen chapters. A special point of interest in our scriptures is that , the imperatives Thou shalt, Thou shall not are never used. The student has the freedom to question at every step and has a moral right to expect satisfactory answers from the teacher. Only the Gita gives answers to the whys and the wherefores regarding life and living. Thus Gita provides answers not only to Arjuna but to all those who find themselves in such a shattered mental condition. Arjuna and his brothers had always been the under-dogs at every turn in their lives, suffering hardships caused by the Kauravas. So, he was itching to strike the Kauravas; but when he saw that they were intermingled with his own near and dear ones, Arjuna realized that he did not have the capacity to answer the call to the battle. His personality was broken at all levels and he was emotionally shattered. Arjuna thought that by destroying his own people, he would be creating great confusion in the society. He argued that, by going on with the war, he would be the cause of all confusions arising from adharma and therefore, he wanted to be no part of it. We see that the moment Arjuna comes in front of Bhishma and Dhrona, his intellect was overcome by emotion. This is the beginning of samsara. We read about this in the second section of the first chapter Krupayaa parayaa(aa)vishto visheedannidamabraveeth 1.27 He was overcome by supreme compassion and sorrowing. What is the samsara caused by dependence ? One technical term used by Vyasa is Krpayavishtah In this context krpa does not mean compassion, but means attachment. Attachment means depending on another person for our own security, happiness and comfortable feeling ! Arjuna’s attachment to Bhishma and Drona was intense. Attachment is a potential source of sorrow – if the person dies, we are very much affected by the loss. So we see that death is not the cause of sorrow, but our dependance on the person who died and our pshychological weakness for that person is the cause of sorrow. Samsara is caused by three technical terms. Attachment is a problem. We often get confused between love and attachment. Love is a positive virtue. In attachment I depend on the other person, whereas in love, I allow another person to depend on me. Love is born out of independence and strength and there is less expectation. Attachment is born out of weakness, dependence and there are expectations. This is what Vyasacharya calls Krpa. Arjuna was overpowered by this attachment. The immediate consequence was Vishidannidamabraveet He spoke in grief. Vishada means sorrow. That is why this chapter s called Arjuna-vishada-yoga. So we see that sorrow is caused only by attachment. This problem of attachment is universal. If the sorrow is intense, It is shown in the body as, Arjuna says Seedanthi mama gaathraani mukham cha parichushyathi Vaepathushcha shareerae mae romaharshascha jaayathae 1.29 My limbs droop, my mouth dries up, my body trembles and hairs stand on end. Psychosomatic diseases disturb the mind first and then the body. The third problem is delusion or confusion. The rational faculty takes a back seat. Arjuna thinks, he will get papa by killing atatayins. Atatyayins are people who commit cardinal sins. Duryodhana is a maha atyayin ! But now that his mind is veiled, he thinks so. According to dharma sastra an atatyayin should be given capital punishments without even a enquiry ! So, thus we see that samsara is caused by Attachment – Raga Sorrow - Shoka Confusion - Moha Arjuna intensely experiences samsara and therefore decides not to fight this battle. Hence at the end of the chapter we find Aevamukthva(a)rjuna: sankhyae rathopastha upaavishath Visrujya sasharam chaapam shoka-samvigna-manasa: 1.47 Arjuna sat down on the chariot in that battle, casting away bow and arrows, being grief-stricken at heart. Do we not identify ourselves with Arjuna ? Humanity is always marked by Raga, Shoka and Moha. We continue this bondage forever ! We fall into traps of dejection and despair. Our intellect is clouded and offers us no line of right action. Once we diagnose our disease, we must understand our problem is nothing but our own dependence. Swami Dayananda says The problem is you and the solution is you. Krishna watches Arjuna going through samsara, but does not come to his rescue because there is a rule in our shastra which says; Never advise a person unless he seeks advice. That way, we lose our respect and value. The seeker must always ask for advice ( the only exception is in the case of children). So, now we see at the end of the first chapter, Arjuna has identified his problem, but he has not asked for Krishna’s advice. So Krishna’s teachings do not start in the first chapter. The essence of the first chapter is presenting the context and Arjuna’s discovery of his problem as samsara. The treatment of such a natural, mortal illness of the inner mind is the theme of the entire Gita. Love, Chithra.