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Now I am confused about my duty and have lost all composure because of miserly weakness. In this condition I am asking You to tell me for certain what is best for me

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Expressions researched:
"I am confused" |"Now I am confused about my duty and have lost all composure because of miserly weakness. In this condition I am asking You to tell me for certain what is best for me"

Bhagavad-gita As It Is

BG Chapters 1 - 6

BG 2.7, Translation:

Now I am confused about my duty and have lost all composure because of miserly weakness. In this condition I am asking You to tell me for certain what is best for me. Now I am Your disciple, and a soul surrendered unto You. Please instruct me.

Lectures

Bhagavad-gita As It Is Lectures

One who has ācārya as his guidance, he is supposed to know everything.
Lecture on BG 2.1-10 and Talk -- Los Angeles, November 25, 1968:

Tamāla Kṛṣṇa: "Now I am confused about..."

Prabhupāda: Yes, what is there?

Tamāla Kṛṣṇa: "Now I am confused about duty and have lost all composure because of weakness. In this condition I am asking You to tell me clearly what is best for me. Now I am Your disciple and a soul surrendered unto You. Please instruct me (BG 2.7)." Purport. "By nature's own way, the complete system of material activities is a source of perplexity for everyone. In every step there is perplexity, and it behooves one therefore to approach a bona fide spiritual master who can give one the proper guidance for executing the purpose of life. All Vedic literatures advise us to approach a bona fide spiritual master to get free from the perplexities of life which happen without our desire. They appear like a forest fire which takes place without being set by anyone. Similarly, the world situation is such that perplexities of life automatically appear without our wanting such confusion. Nobody wants fire, and yet it takes place and we are perplexed. The Vedic wisdom therefore advises that in order to solve the perplexities of life and to understand the science of the solution one must approach a spiritual master who is in disciplic succession. A person with a bona fide spiritual master is supposed to know everything. One should not therefore remain in..."

Prabhupāda: This is a translation of a Vedic version, ācāryavān puruṣo veda. Ācāryavān, one who has ācārya as his guidance, he is supposed to know everything. Ācāryavān puruṣo veda. That is given there.

This is very important verse in Bhagavad-gītā. It is a turning point of life.
Lecture on BG 2.7 -- London, August 7, 1973:

Pradyumna (leads chanting, etc.):

kārpaṇya-doṣopahata-svabhāvaḥ
pṛcchāmi tvam dharma-sammūḍha-cetāḥ
yac chreyaḥ syān niścitaṁ brūhi tan me
śiṣyas te 'haṁ śādhi māṁ tvāṁ prapannam
(BG 2.7)

"Now I am confused about my duty and have lost all composure because of weakness. In this condition, I am asking You to tell me clearly what is best for me. Now I am Your disciple, and a soul surrendered unto You. Please instruct me."

Prabhupāda: This is very important verse in Bhagavad-gītā. It is a turning point of life. Kārpaṇya-doṣa. Miserly, doṣa means fault When one does not act according to his position, that is fault. And that is called miserly. So everyone has got his natural propensities, svabhāva. Yasya hi svabhāvasya tasyāso duratikramaḥ. Svabhāva, natural propensities. It is a common example, it is given, that yasya hi yaḥ svabhāvasya tasyāso duratikramaḥ. One, habit is the second nature. One who has, who is habituated or one whose nature, characteristic in some way, it is very difficult to change. The example is given: śvā yadi kriyate rājā saḥ kiṁ na so uparhanam. If you make a dog a king, does it mean that he'll not lick up shoes? Yes, dog's nature is to lick up shoes. So even if you dress him like a king and let him sit down on a throne, still, as soon as he'll see one shoe, he'll jump over and lick it. This is called svabhāva. Kārpaṇya-doṣa.

General Lectures

Yes. So Arjuna understood his weakness, his weak point.
Address to Rotary Club -- Chandigarh, October 17, 1976:

Prabhupāda: Translation.

Pradyumna: "Now I am confused about my duty and have lost all composure because of weakness. In this condition I am asking You to tell me clearly what is best for me. Now I am Your disciple, and a soul surrendered unto You. Please instruct me."

Prabhupāda: Yes. So Arjuna understood his weakness, his weak point. Therefore he said to Kṛṣṇa that kārpaṇya-doṣopahata-svabhāvaḥ. Kārpaṇya, this word, comes from kṛpaṇa. Kṛpaṇa... Kṛpaṇa, this word, is known practically everyone. Kṛpaṇata means miserly. A person who has got enough resources but if he does not use it properly, it is called, he is called a kṛpaṇa, miser. And the opposite word of kṛpaṇa is udhara, or liberal. So there are two words, kṛpaṇa. So Arjuna said, kārpaṇya-doṣa: "I know I can fight. I am quite competent military person, but I am not using my resources; therefore it is kārpaṇya-doṣopahata-svabhāvaḥ." Svabhāvaḥ means naturally a military man, a kṣatriya, is very bold enough to fight. That is one of the qualification of a military man. Yuddhe cāpalāyanam. The śaurya, vīrya, tejaḥ, yuddhe cāpalāyanam, these are the symptoms of kṣatriya. He would never go away from fighting. When there is challenge, fighting, a kṣatriya will never deny.

Conversations and Morning Walks

1971 Conversations and Morning Walks

You cannot give up this śloka. Yes. So first of all you answer. See practical example. When Arjuna became confused, he said, śiṣyas te 'haṁ śādhi māṁ prapannam: "Now I am surrendered unto You. Please teach me."
Discussion with Indians -- January 18, 1971, Allahabad:

Guest (2): There is a difference of day and night between blind following and his following.

Haṁsadūta: That is not blind following. Submissive inquiry and then you have to be prepared to test. Just like the professor, the professor in a college. He says, "You inquire from me." "My dear professor, how is it?" He says, "It is like this. You simply do this homework." And you do it. You have to do it; otherwise you cannot get any mark. You cannot make any advancement in the class. If you simply say, "Oh, why, why, why...?"

Guest (1): No, no, but...

Haṁsadūta: That is submission. That is inquiry and submission, that the master is there and you say, "All right, I accept you as my master and I want to follow your instruction." And then in the end, when you have done the work, then you can say, "Oh, this master, yes, he is correct," or "No, he's a fool."

Guest (6): You have caught up only one śloka.

Haṁsadūta: There is no other way. It is not possible. Every śloka in the Bhagavad-gītā is as good as any other śloka because it is absolute.

Guest (6): Let me say, tell you what submissive word means in relation of Gītā.

Haṁsadūta: Yes, the perfect example given by Arjuna, the perfect disciple, is "Now I am confused about duty..."

Guest (7): ...more than you or I.

Haṁsadūta: Arjuna says to Kṛṣṇa... Arjuna says to Kṛṣṇa... What does he say?

Prabhupāda: No, no, no. First let me know whether you want to submit or not?

Guest (8): I do!

Prabhupāda: First of all answer this question, whether you want to submit or not.

Guest (6): We want to submit after understanding.

Haṁsadūta: Try to understand. The teaching of Bhagavad-gītā, teaching of Bhagavad-gītā begins when Arjuna admits, when he admits that "Oh, now I see. Now I am confused about my duty. Now I am a soul surrendered unto You. You please instruct me."

Guest (6): We don't want... We have not come here... (many Indians talking at once)

Haṁsadūta: If you are not prepared to follow the example of Arjuna and submit yourself...

Guest (2): Swami Bhaktivedanta has said...

Haṁsadūta: No, no, no.

Guest (2): When we are all... (several talking at once)

Haṁsadūta: One at a time. One at a time. Let me make my point, that Gītā begins... The reason Gītā has value is because Arjuna, he admits his ignorance. He says, "Now I am confused about my duty and I am a soul surrendered unto You. You please instruct me." That is the beginning of Bhagavad-gītā. And if, if we want to take, or if we want to get the benefit of Gītā, then we must follow the example of Arjuna, who is the perfect disciple, and Kṛṣṇa is the perfect master. And the first point is you must become submissive.

Guest (2): We understand now what you mean, submissiveness.

Haṁsadūta: So that same thing is there if you want to learn from a spiritual master, that you come with an attitude of submission and prepared to follow the instructions. But if you think, "Well, if I like the instruction, I may follow. And if I don't like, then let him go to hell," then what is the use of inquiry?

Guest (2): No, no, no. We don't want Prabhupāda...

Guest (1): That is not the idea. Submissiveness is the only lesson of Gītā

Haṁsadūta: That is the only lesson. "You just give up all..."

Prabhupāda: No, we cannot hear any more. That is the only lesson. That is the only example.

Haṁsadūta: Kṛṣṇa says, "Give up all forms of religiousness and just surrender unto Me."

Guest (2): You are taking one śloka...

Haṁsadūta: Any śloka, any śloka.

Prabhupāda: Neither you can give up this śloka. You cannot give up this śloka. Yes. So first of all you answer. See practical example. When Arjuna became confused, he said, śiṣyas te 'haṁ śādhi māṁ prapannam: (BG 2.7) "Now I am surrendered unto You. Please teach me." Unless you come to that point, there will be no teaching and there is no use of teaching.

1974 Conversations and Morning Walks

Arjuna says, "Actually I am now confused. So in confusion I cannot take the right conclusion. I therefore accept You as my spiritual master. You just give me the proper lesson." This is the point.
Room Conversation with Irish Poet, Desmond O'Grady -- May 23, 1974, Rome:

Nitāi: Text seven.

kārpaṇya-doṣopahata-svabhāvaḥ
pṛcchāmi tvāṁ dharma-sammūḍha-cetāḥ
yac chreyaḥ syān niścitaṁ brūhi tan me
śiṣyas te 'haṁ śādhi māṁ tvāṁ prapannam
(BG 2.7)

"Now I am confused about my duty and have lost all composure because of weakness."

Prabhupāda: Yes. That... Here is the question, "confused."

O'Grady: I am the first statement. "I am confused about my duty," that what is the... Thank you.

Nitāi: "...and have lost all composure because of weakness. In this condition I am..."

O'Grady: This duty, this duty, is this duty to the self or duty to others or duty to the state?

Prabhupāda: He is confused because he was a kṣatriya, soldier. A soldier's duty is to fight with the enemy. So Kṛṣṇa was advising him, "The opposite party is your enemy. You are a kṣatriya. Why you are trying to become non-violent? This is not good." Therefore he says, "Actually I am now confused. So in confusion I cannot take the right conclusion. I therefore accept You as my spiritual master. You just give me the proper lesson." This is the point. So they were friends. Still, he was confused. So in chaotic condition, in confusion status of life, we must approach the person who is in full knowledge of the things. Just like you go to a lawyer, you go to a physician; similarly, every one of us in the material world, we are confused. Therefore we must go to the spiritual master who can give us real knowledge.

1976 Conversations and Morning Walks

Yes. That is the beginning of Bhagavad-gītā. So because he accepted discipleship, so He immediately chastised him that "You rascal, you are talking like a very learned man, but you are on the platform of bodily conception of life, the platform of the animals."
Room Conversation -- April 30, 1976, Fiji:

Prabhupāda: Yac chreyaḥ syāt, yac chreyaḥ syāt tat brūhi me niścitam. So the spiritual master's duty is how to benefit the disciple, śreyaḥ. What is the translation?

Puṣṭa Kṛṣṇa: "Now I am confused about my duty and have lost all composure because of weakness. In this condition I am asking You to tell me clearly what is best for me."

Prabhupāda: Yes. That is the beginning of Bhagavad-gītā. So because he accepted discipleship, so He immediately chastised him that "You rascal, you are talking like a very learned man, but you are on the platform of bodily conception of life, the platform of the animals." Yasyātma-buddhiḥ kuṇape tri-dhātuke (SB 10.84.13). Anyone who accepts this body as self, he's animal. He's not even a human being. So the whole world is on this bodily concept of life. That is going on. "American," "European," "Hindu," "Muslim," "black," "white," this, that. They do not know what is education. That is the first education, that "You rascal, you are not this body. You are within the body." So who understands this? And they're declaring that "We are student of Bhagavad-gītā. We have studied Bhagavad-gītā." Hmm? Even Gandhi, he takes photograph with Bhagavad-gītā, but his fighting is for nationalism. The others are doing that. So what is the use of taking Bhagavad-gītā? The Pakistanis are also doing that. But you have taken Bhagavad-gītā, you are doing the same work. So what is your credit? This is going on. So nobody is learning Bhagavad-gītā. It is first time that we are teaching Bhagavad-gītā as it is. Otherwise, everyone is misled. The subject matter is that the soul is different from this body.

Now you can discuss among yourselves whether you have approached such spiritual master.
Garden Conversation -- June 15, 1976, Detroit:

Jayādvaita reading Translation: Now I am confused about my duty and have lost all composure because of weakness. In this condition I am asking You to tell me clearly what is best for me. Now I am Your disciple, and a soul surrendered unto You. Please instruct me.

"By nature's own way the complete system of material activities is a source of perplexity for everyone. In every step there is perplexity, and therefore it behooves one to approach a bona fide spiritual master who can give one proper guidance for executing the purpose of life. All Vedic literatures advise us to approach a bona fide spiritual master to get free from the perplexities of life, which happen without our desire."

Prabhupāda: Now you can discuss among yourselves whether you have approached such spiritual master. What is that? This purport?

Jayādvaita: Read again. "Therefore it behooves one to approach a bona fide spiritual master who can give one proper guidance for executing the purpose of life. All Vedic literatures advise us to approach a bona fide spiritual master to get free from the perplexities of life, which happen without our desire."

Prabhupāda: So, whether you have approached such spiritual master, that you can discuss. This is the necessity of approaching a spiritual master.

Jayādvaita: Necessity.

Prabhupāda: Hmm. It must. Tad-vijñānārthaṁ sa gurum evābhigacchet (MU 1.2.12).

Jayādvaita: Śrotriyaṁ brahma-niṣṭham.

Prabhupāda: Hmm. So, whether you have got such spiritual master who can guide you, proper guidance, what is stated there?

Jayādvaita: What is stated next?

Prabhupāda: No.

Jayādvaita: Oh, whether we've got such a spiritual master?

Prabhupāda: Yes.

Jayādvaita: Oh, yes, because...

Prabhupāda: That you have to discuss.

Guru is necessary. Everyone is perplexed. Nobody can decide himself. Even a physician, a medical man, when he is sick, he does not make his own treatment. He calls for another physician because he is sick, his brain is not in order. How he can prescribe the real medicine for himself?
Answers to a Questionnaire from Bhavan's Journal -- June 28, 1976, Vrndavana:

Hari-śauri:

kārpaṇya-doṣopahata-svabhāvaḥ
pṛcchāmi tvāṁ dharma-sammūḍha-cetāḥ
yac chreyaḥ syān niścitaṁ brūhi tan me
śiṣyas te 'haṁ śādhi māṁ tvāṁ prapannam
(BG 2.7)

"Now I am confused about my duty and have lost all composure because of weakness. In this condition I am asking you to tell me clearly what is best for me. Now I am your disciple and a soul surrendered unto you. Please instruct me."

Prabhupāda: Yes. So therefore guru is necessary. Everyone is perplexed. Nobody can decide himself. Even a physician, a medical man, when he is sick, he does not make his own treatment. He calls for another physician because he is sick, his brain is not in order. How he can prescribe the real medicine for himself? That is natural. So similarly, when we are perplexed, bewildered, we cannot make any solution, at that time the right person, guru, is required. It is essential. You cannot avoid it. So in our present existence we are all perplexed. Arjuna is representating the perplexed position of the materialistic person. And we are actually all perplexed. So under the circumstances, to give us real direction a guru is required. Now, here is the example that Arjuna decided Kṛṣṇa as guru. He did not go to anyone else to accept as guru. The explanation is there. Find out. Na hi prapaśyāmi. "Without you I don't find anybody..."

The purport is that Arjuna is accepting Kṛṣṇa as guru to instruct him how to get relief from the perplexed position. So in this sense the real guru is Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa is guru. Not only for Arjuna, for everyone. So if we take instruction from Kṛṣṇa and abide by that order, instruction, then our life is successful. That is our mission. Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement means accept Kṛṣṇa as guru.
Answers to a Questionnaire from Bhavan's Journal -- June 28, 1976, Vrndavana:

Hari-śauri: "The Supreme Person Bhagavān said: My dear Arjuna, how have these impurities come upon you? They are not at all befitting a man who knows the progressive values of life. They do not lead to higher planets, but to infamy. O son of Pṛthā, do not yield to this degrading impotence. It does not become you. Give up such petty weakness of heart and arise, O chastiser of the enemy. Arjuna said: O killer of Madhu, Kṛṣṇa, how can I counteract with arrows in battle men like Bhīṣma and Droṇa who are worthy of my worship? It is better to live in this world by begging than to live at the cost of the lives of great souls who are my teachers. Even though they are avaricious, they are nonetheless superiors. If they are killed, our spoils will be tainted with blood. Nor do we know which is better, conquering them or being conquered by them. The sons of Dhṛtarāṣṭra, whom if we killed we should not care to live, are now standing before us on this battlefield. Now I am confused about my duty and have lost all composure because of weakness. In this condition I am asking You to tell me clearly what is best for me. Now I am your disciple and a soul surrendered unto You. Please instruct me. I can find no means to drive away this grief which is drying up my senses. I will not be able to destroy it even if I win an unrivalled kingdom on the earth with sovereignty like that of the demigods in heaven. Sañjaya said: Having thus spoken, Arjuna the chastiser of the enemies told Kṛṣṇa, Govinda, I shall not fight, and fell silent. O descendant of Bhārata, at that time, Kṛṣṇa, smiling in the midst of both the armies spoke the following words to the griefstricken Arjuna."

Prabhupāda: So he has said already that "I do not find any other means to pacify me, and You are the only..." The purport is that Arjuna is accepting Kṛṣṇa as guru to instruct him how to get relief from the perplexed position. So in this sense the real guru is Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa is guru. Not only for Arjuna, for everyone. So if we take instruction from Kṛṣṇa and abide by that order, instruction, then our life is successful. That is our mission. Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement means accept Kṛṣṇa as guru. We don't say... Don't divert your attention. We don't say that "I am Kṛṣṇa." We never say that. We simply ask people that "You abide by the order of Kṛṣṇa." Kṛṣṇa says, sarva-dharmān parityajya mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja (BG 18.66), and we say that "You surrender to Kṛṣṇa. Give up all other ideas of so-called dharma or religiosity." The same thing. But we don't say that you or me, "I am the authority." No, we don't say that. We say, "Kṛṣṇa is the authority, and you try to understand Kṛṣṇa." This is Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. Therefore the question is guru. So here, from the behavior of Arjuna, we see that guru is necessary. Arjuna was talking with Kṛṣṇa as friend, but Arjuna saw that "This is, there is no good talking like this. We can continue talking.... Because we are equal status. Kṛṣṇa is my friend. I am also His friend. So He's answering, I am giving something. If this talking will go on, there will be no fruit." Therefore he said, "Now, Kṛṣṇa, I am becoming Your disciple." Disciple means there is no argument. Whatever the guru will say, you have to accept. That is disciple. That is final. There is no argument. So Arjuna put him into that position that "I cease to talk with You on equal level of friends. Now I accept You as guru." Therefore the guru is necessary, undoubtedly, because every one of us in perplexed position. But who is guru? Guru means Kṛṣṇa or Kṛṣṇa's representative. And all others are bogus.

Everyone is perplexed conditioned. In this material world, you cannot find anyone who is not perplexed. Is there anyone who is not perplexed? Can anyone say that "I am not perplexed"?
Evening Darsana -- July 6, 1976, Washington, D.C.:

Puṣṭa Kṛṣṇa:

kārpaṇya-doṣopahata-svabhāvaḥ
pṛcchāmi tvāṁ dharma-sammūḍha-cetāḥ
yad chreyaḥ syān niścitaṁ brūhi tan me
śiṣyas te 'haṁ śādhi māṁ tvāṁ prapannam
(BG 2.7)

Translation: "Now I am confused about my duty and have lost all composure because of weakness. In this condition I am asking You to tell me clearly what is best for me. Now I am Your disciple, and a soul surrendered unto You. Please instruct me."

Prabhupāda: Everyone is perplexed conditioned. In this material world, you cannot find anyone who is not perplexed. Is there anyone who is not perplexed? Can anyone say that "I am not perplexed"? (laughs) Everyone is. Therefore everyone requires guru. But a guru knows. Guru means like Kṛṣṇa or His representative.

This is the position. Unless one feels like that and asks somebody, a superior, accepts him as guru, there is no use talking. It will not be useful. This is the position.
Room Conversation -- August 10, 1976, Tehran:

Harikeśa:

kārpaṇya-doṣopahata-svabhāvaḥ
pṛcchāmi tvāṁ dharma-sammūḍha-cetāḥ
yac chreyaḥ syān niścitaṁ brūhi tan me
śiṣyas te 'haṁ śādhi māṁ tvāṁ prapannam
(BG 2.7)

"Now I am confused about my duty and have lost all composure because of weakness. In this condition I am asking You to tell me clearly what is best for me. Now I am Your disciple, and a soul surrendered unto You. Please instruct me."

Prabhupāda: This is the position. Unless one feels like that and asks somebody, a superior, accepts him as guru, there is no use talking. It will not be useful. This is the position. If the injunction is tad vijñānārthaṁ sa gurum evābhigacchet (MU 1.2.12), if anyone is interested to know about the transcendental subject matter, he must approach a guru, and unless one approaches a guru, he cannot understand, and if by force I become guru, he may not be interested. This is the position. But still, for a preacher, he has to do something against all odds. That is preaching. You cannot expect favorable position. Your question was that we go and they say like this, but you cannot expect that wherever you are going you'll find favorable situation to talk. That you must understand. But you have to preach, you have to create favorable situation. That is your duty.(?) You cannot expect. If they are not prepared to take good instruction.