In today’s fast & complicated life, we often come face to face with problems & difficulties and are so lost that we don’t even know …..what should we do ? …..which is the right path to choose ? At these times, we often need a person who can mentor us & guide us in what is right for us. I sought this answer from my readings of the Bhagvad Gita & following is the answer that I got from Krishna & Arjuna…..
Krishna was Arjuna’s friend, cousin, charioteer in war, guide, philosopher but the relation that appeals me the most, between them is that of a mentor-mentee.
Earlier, I always pondered that why Krishna must have chosen Arjuna over everyone else to be the hero i.e. the victor of war? Why not Karna, Guru Dronacharya or Bhishma? Though Karna was an equally good archer and warrior, his blind attachment to his friend Duryodhana and choosing him over the Dharma, disqualified him. Guru Dronacharya and Bhishma, the greatest of warriors of their times also weren’t chosen because, they were bound by their duty towards the throne of Hastinapur which was under Duryodhana!
Arjuna was chosen because he was on the right side besides his noble intentions and virtues. One cannot ignore the fact that he had his flaws too which is evident in many instances of his life.
Then what was it that made Krishna choose Arjuna over everyone else?
Then as I read more, I realised Arjuna was a perfect mentee as much as Krishna was the perfect mentor. Arjuna knew the importance of having a good mentor, hence chose an unarmed Krishna over the mighty Yadav army. He was aware of the fact that even the best of resources, are valueless without strategic vision and skills possessed by Krishna. He knew that when a sugar cane is crushed and juice is taken out, the importance is of the juice and not the remnants of sugarcane!
Playing his role as mentor in imparting advice and knowledge, Krishna provided guidance to Arjuna every step along the way.
If we look closely, we realise Krishna playing the perfect role of a mentor in identifying and clarifying values. Just before the onset of battle, when Arjuna was plagued with doubts and apprehensions, Krishna recited him the Divine Bhagwad Gita, and helped him to get the right perspective about his values and duties.
I want to highlight the sheer beauty of this relationship here wherein Krishna doesn’t mock Arjuna for his doubts nor does he play the ring master to him & order him to “DO WHAT I SAY.” Instead, he explains to him the entire philosophy of life & clarifies even the slightest of doubts. Krishna remained steadfast in his confidence in Arjuna’s abilities and as a mentor knew that Arjuna will optimise his potential capabilities once he is free from all doubt.
On the other hand, Arjuna as a mentee blindly trusted Krishna with respect to the philosophies he taught. The complete confidence and trust that the mentor and mentee reposes in each other is something worth emulating. Not once did Arjuna ever doubt the veracity of the advice given to him by Krishna.
Krishna always protected Arjuna from potential risks and dangers which signifies how important the role of a mentor is, in protecting and nurturing his mentee’s growth path, as he has a much better vision and foresight to be able to judge the long term impact of actions taken today. And in turn Arjuna never turned down Krishna’s advice.
One more thing worth noticing is the candour Krishna & Arjuna shared in their relationship. Arjuna was always welcome to clarify his doubt up to his satisfaction but what makes this more divine is the respect Arjuna maintained while asking his doubts on tasks assigned.
This pair of eternal consorts, maintained all flavours of a healthy & productive relationship and ended up achieving their respective goals of life. Krishna, succeeded in establishing the rule of Dharma with Arjuna as the CEO to execute his plan.
In this day and age, a mentor – mentee relationship is ever more important, due to the ever increasing complexities and dilemmas that one faces at every step of one’s life and career. Fortunate are those who are in the umbrage of an able charioteer to steer one’s professional chariot through the morasses of the professional landscape. Often one finds oneself in a predicament similar to Arjuna, not being able to discern the right from wrong. At such a time, a trusted mentor can help one seeing things in a correct perspective.
While you seek out your mentor, be sure and ready to give your professional reins into their hands. Having said that one doesn’t need to blindly trust & follow everything that is said but to seek clarity at the time of any doubt & be convinced yourself. Once you are convinced you will be in a better position to implement the advice.
Friends, Go out and find out Your Mentor, hand him over your reins, paddle up and off You Go to achieve your Vision.
Reach out to me on sahana@pravaahwellness if you need more answers on The Bhagvad Gita & my perspectives on it in our daily lives or visit us at www.pravaahwellness.com & leave a message here at Pravaah