In life in most situation while making choices we have to choose lesser adharma. Because no person is 100 percent saint , everyone is somewhat bad , somewhat good. If we keep finding fault in people, we will be left alone. So, ultimately we have to take side of the one who less evil (adharmi) .

Another example can be while going to vote in election we have to choose the political party which is lesser evil. If we will start finding fault , all parties will be somewhat bad and if don't vote thinking all parties are evil ,then definitely bad people will capture the government.

Even in Mahabharat war , Pandavs were also not 100 percent good . Yudhistira took part in gambling and betted his wife and didn't save her despite being capable. And the four brothers also didn't do anything to save Draupdi. Yudhistira in his lust for gambling, didn't care about his responsibility for people of his kingdom.

But despite all this , Ultimately Krishna took the side of Pandavs.

So, my question is - Has Krishna in Mahabharata anywhere mentioned about such a thing - i.e.choosing lesser evil ?
If not Krishna , then Has Vyas mentioned about such a thing or any other godly figure like -Shiva ?

  • 1
    Its not because of addiction Yudhishtira indulged in gambling. In view of Rajadharma, (which says a King may accept an offer for sports or gamble , for the sake of diplomacy, peace ), he happened to accept the offer (under the pretext of dharma).Neither did he anticipate exploitative plot ., nor did he resort to Lord Krishna for help. On the contrary he did not want Sri Krishna to know it.
    – Athrey
    Apr 21, 2023 at 10:00

2 Answers 2


Sri Krishna himself admitted that he used unfair means to kill four Kaurava generals. He said he was forced to do this because there was no other way. Sri Krishna even says that in extreme war like situations when one has run out of all options one has to necessarily use unfair means. Clearly, Sri Krishna did this because he thought victory of Kauravas under Duryadhana would be bad for dharma compared to a Pandava victory under Yudhisthira. This seems to imply that one should choose the lesser evil.

Krishna’s defense

Krishna defended his actions as follows in a voice deep as that of the clouds or the drum: "All of them were great car-warriors and exceedingly quick in the use of weapons! If ye had put forth all your prowess even then ye could never have slain them in battle by fighting fairly! King Duryodhana also could never be slain in a fair encounter! The same is the case with all those mighty car-warriors headed by Bhishma! From desire of doing good to you, I repeatedly applied my powers of illusion and caused them to be slain by diverse means in battle. If I had not adopted such deceitful ways in battle, victory would never have been yours, nor kingdom, nor wealth! These four were very high-souled warriors and regarded as Atirathas in the world. The very Regents of the Earth could not slay them in fair fight. Similarly, the son of Dhritarasthra, though fatigued when armed with mace, could not be slain in a fair fight by Yama himself armed with his bludgeon! Ye should not take it to heart that this foe of yours hath been slain deceitfully. When the number of one's foes becomes great, then destruction should be effected by contrivances and means. The gods themselves, in slaying the Asuras, have trod the same way. That way, therefore, that had been trod by the gods, may be trod by all."

(Mahabharata, Salya Parva, Section 61)


No, he never said that we should choose a lesser devil. Instead, he said that you have to balance out the dharma and the karma. In bhagwad Gita he says that all this is an act made by him, and all the characters are he himself. Only Duryodhan had an ansh of Kali in him. And the act is a guideline for the new Yuga coming, ie Kali Yuga. Mahabharat tells us how one should live and carry out his karmas.So as the Yuga changes the mentality of people change as well. So to chose a greater good is the only way to live in Kali Yuga. There may be instances where you may have to do adharm to achieve a greater dharma. Eg in Mahabharata he said to Arjuna to kill Karna, when Karna was not wearing any shastras and was fallen from his chariot. Technically, in wars it is not considered as a good thing or a moral thing. But it was for a greater good or Dharma.

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