1.26-27. “Parth then saw, mustered in the two armies, uncles, granduncles, teachers, maternal uncles, brothers, sons, grandsons and friends, as well as fathers-in-law and well-wishers. Seeing all these kinsmen assembled together and overwhelmed by intense pity, he spoke thus in great sorrow:”
Parth, the perfect marksman who has made a chariot of his earthformed body, looks at the army and sees his kinsmen. What is noteworthy is that in the two armies he sees only his own family, the families of maternal uncles, and of fathers-in-law, friends, and teachers. According to scholarly estimates, the two armies of the Mahabharat consisted of eighteen akshauhini chariots, elephants, horses, and foot soldiers, which is approximately 650 million, a very large number indeed. It hardly needs saying how the world is faced today with numerous grave problems of food and housing on account of rising population. So what are we to make of it when we are told that just three or four families of Arjun’s kinsmen are so large in number? Is it possible for any family to be so huge? The answer must be in the negative. So what we have here is a portrayal not of physical armies but of the sphere of the mind and heart. Overcome with deep compassion, when he sees all his kinsmen mustered for battle, Arjun speaks in grief. He grieves because he sees that he has to fight his own family.
1.28-29-30. Arjun said, “Seeing these kith and kin, mustered with the purpose of waging war, O Krishn, my limbs grow weak, my mouth is dry, my body trembles, my hair stands on end, the Gandeev (Arjun’s bow) slips from my hand, my skin is burning all over, I am unable to stand, and my mind is bewildered.”
Looking at the gathering of his kinsmen, Arjun is unnerved. His body grown inert, his mouth is parched, his limbs tremble, and his hair stands erect. The Gandeev falls from his hand and his skin is hot. He is sorely distressed by the prospect of a war in which his own kinsmen face him. He is confused. He bewails that he cannot even stand properly and look ahead.
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