War had been declared between the Pandavas and the Kauravas. Both sides were busy, trying to amass the larger army, and sent envoys to all the kings to ask them to take their side in the war.
The Yadavas, led by
Krishna, were a sizeable force, one to reckon with. Knowing that Krishna, with his army, had the capacity to tilt the scales in the war, Duryodhana decided to go to Dwaraka himself and secure the co-operation of Krishna, especially his army. Meanwhile, the Pandavas who were truly devoted to Krishna, only wanted his support, and they sent Arjuna, the one closest to Krishna, to Dwaraka to humbly ask Krishna to join them.
Arjuna and Duryodhana arrived at Dwaraka at the same time.
Krishna was having his siesta when the two of them arrived. Since both, Arjuna and Duryodhana were closely related to Krishna, they were allowed to wait in his room till he woke up. At once, Arjuna went to wait humbly at Krishna’s feet while Duryodhana, as haughty as ever, took a seat near the head of the bed.
As soon as
Krishna woke up, his eyes fell on Arjuna. He sat up and then saw Duryodhana. He welcomed them and asked them the reason for their visit. Arjuna said, “ Krishna, you know that war has now been declared. I have come to ask you to join us and give us your blessings.” Duryodhana said, “ Krishna, I too have come to ask you for your help. Since I arrived here first, you must fulfill my desire before you grant Arjuna his wish.”
As soon as Krishna stopped, Arjuna said, “
Krishna, I have made my choice. I only want you, not your army.” Krishna advised Arjuna to think again, but Arjuna was adamant, and Krishna granted him his wish.
Meanwhile, Duryodhana was thrilled! “Arjuna is a fool. He has chosen
Krishna, who isn’t even going to take up arms. How can he help Arjuna? Now I have Krishna’s powerful army, and that I what I really wanted!” he thought. Outwardly, he humbly thanked Krishna for his army and left with a smile on his face.
When Duryodhana had left,
Krishna asked Arjuna why he had chosen him. Arjuna said, “ Krishna, you are divine and the greatest of all. If you are by my side, I will surely win the war!” Krishna was happy and smilingly blessed Arjuna.
The Great War began and both sides faced each other. As Arjuna’s charioteer,
Krishna held the reins and guided Arjuna without taking up any weapons. It was he who counseled Arjuna on the means to defeat his enemies and guided them to victory. Without Krishna, the Pandavas could never have won the war. It was Arjuna’s humility and devotion to Krishna which secured them the support of the Lord, and helped them trounce their enemies.
The true devotee is one who has a firm faith in the Lord, and performs his duty in a humble manner. Such a devotee always has the lord by his side, guiding him and steering him towards success and happiness.