As I discuss in this question, in the Udyoga Parva of the Mahabharata Arjuna delivers a message to Duryodhana, urging him to reach a peaceful resolution to avert the impending war. Among other things, Arjuna says that astrologers and others have foreseen that the Pandavas are going to win:

There are, with us, many aged Brahmanas, versed in various sciences, of amiable behaviour, well-born, acquainted with the cycle of the years, engaged in the study of astrology, capable of understanding with certainty the motions of planets and the conjunctions of stars as also of explaining the mysteries of fate, and answering questions relating to the future, acquainted with the signs of the Zodiac, and versed with the occurrences of every hour, who are prophesying the great destruction of the Kurus and the Srinjayas, and the ultimate victory of the Pandavas, so that Yudhishthira, who never made an enemy, already regardeth his objects fulfilled in consequence of the slaughter of his foes. And Janardana [Krishna] also, that lion among the Vrishnis, endued with the knowledge of the invisible future, without doubt, beholdeth all this. And I also, with unerring foresight, myself behold that future, for that foresight of mine, acquired of old, is not obstructed. The sons of Dhritarashtra, if they fight, will not live.

Now it's no big surprise that Krishna had the ability to see the future; he is an incarnation of Vishnu after all.

But my question is, why does Arjuna say "And I also, with unerring foresight, myself behold that future, for that foresight of mine, acquired of old, is not obstructed."? When did Arjuna acquire the ability to see the future?

He says he acquired it "of old", but I'm not familiar with any story where was given a boon of clairvoyance. Perhaps he acquired it in his five-year stay in Devaloka. In any case, are there any other instances in the Mahabharata of Arjuna using this ability? That might narrow down when he acquired it.

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    Those 5 yrs. staying in Devloka are in refrence of which planetary system..5 yrs of Devloka will make 5×360=1800 yrs. of earth... isn't it?
    – Tezz
    Commented Apr 14, 2016 at 15:34
  • @Tezz I'm not sure what the correct resolution is, but a question was posted about it here. Perhaps only 5 days were spent according to Devaloka time. Commented Apr 14, 2016 at 15:53
  • This is an interesting question. Arjuna did not have an ability to see the future but Sahadeva has. The explanation of that incident is given by you as an answer in other question here. Pandu's last wish.But the journal you mentioned was a folk tale created by people. Shree Krishna being the Paramatma has no need to eat flesh of a human being. Commented Apr 14, 2016 at 16:48
  • @SreeCharan Yeah, it is a folktale, and an implausible one at that, so I see no reason to believe that Sahadeva actually had the ability to see th future. Commented Apr 14, 2016 at 17:08
  • @Tezz See this question I posted about the same thing.
    – Surya
    Commented Apr 14, 2016 at 17:28

1 Answer 1


Mahadeva told Arjuna about his past while giving Pashupatastra.

"Mahadeva said, 'Thou wert in thy former life Nara, the friend of Narayana. In Vadari wert thou engaged in fierce ascetic austerities for several thousands of years. In thee as well as in Vishnu--that first of male beings--dwelleth great might. Ye both, by your might, hold the universe; O lord, taking up that fierce bow whose twang resembled the deep roar of the clouds, thou, as well as Krishna, chastisedest the Danavas during the coronation of Indra.

Mahadeva himself said that Arjuna and Krishna hold, by their might, te entire universe. He also said that he was engaged in fierce ascetic austerities for several thousands of years.

I think that is the reason why Arjuna was able to see the future.

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