O King, having spoken thus, the Supreme Lord of all mystic power, the Personality of Godhead, displayed His universal form to Arjuna. Arjuna saw in that universal form unlimited mouths, unlimited eyes, unlimited wonderful visions. The form was decorated with many celestial ornaments and bore many divine upraised weapons. He wore celestial garlands and garments, and many divine scents were smeared over His body. All was wondrous, brilliant, unlimited, all-expanding. If hundreds of thousands of suns were to rise at once into the sky, their radiance might resemble the effulgence of the Supreme Person in that universal form. At that time Arjuna could see in the universal form of the Lord the unlimited expansions of the universe situated in one place although divided into many, many thousands. Then, bewildered and astonished, his hair standing on end, Arjuna bowed his head to offer obeisances and with folded hands began to pray to the Supreme Lord.
Arjuna said: "My dear Lord Kṛṣṇa, I see assembled in Your body all the demigods and various other living entities. I see Brahmā sitting on the lotus ﬂower, as well as Lord Śiva and all the sages and divine serpents. O Lord of the universe, O universal form, I see in Your body many, many arms, bellies, mouths and eyes, expanded everywhere, without limit. I see in You no end, no middle and no beginning. Your form is difﬁcult to see because of its glaring effulgence, spreading on all sides, like blazing ﬁre or the immeasurable radiance of the sun. Yet I see this glowing form everywhere, adorned with various crowns, clubs and discs. You are the supreme primal objective. You are the ultimate resting place of all this universe. You are inexhaustible, and You are the oldest. You are the maintainer of the eternal religion, the Personality of Godhead. This is my opinion. You are without origin, middle or end. Your glory is unlimited. You have numberless arms, and the sun and moon are Your eyes. I see You with blazing ﬁre coming forth from Your mouth, burning this entire universe by Your own radiance. Although You are one, You spread throughout the sky and the planets and all space between. O great one, seeing this wondrous and terrible form, all the planetary systems are perturbed. All the hosts of demigods are surrendering before You and entering into You. Some of them, very much afraid, are offering prayers with folded hands. Hosts of great sages and perfected beings, crying “All peace!” are praying to You by singing the Vedic hymns. All the various manifestations of Lord Śiva, the Ādityas, the Vasus, the Sādhyas, the Viśvedevas, the two Aśvīs, the Maruts, the forefathers, the Gandharvas, the Yakṣas, the Asuras and the perfected demigods are beholding You in wonder. O mighty-armed one, all the planets with their demigods are disturbed at seeing Your great form, with its many faces, eyes, arms, thighs, legs and bellies and Your many terrible teeth; and as they are disturbed, so am I. O all-pervading Viṣṇu, seeing You with Your many radiant colors touching the sky, Your gaping mouths, and Your great glowing eyes, my mind is perturbed by fear. I can no longer maintain my steadiness or equilibrium of mind. O Lord of lords, O refuge of the worlds, please be gracious to me. I cannot keep my balance seeing thus Your blazing deathlike faces and awful teeth. In all directions I am bewildered. All the sons of Dhṛtarāṣṭra, along with their allied kings, and Bhīṣma, Droṇa, Karṇa – and our chief soldiers also – are rushing into Your fearful mouths. And some I see trapped with heads smashed between Your teeth. As the many waves of the rivers ﬂow into the ocean, so do all these great warriors enter blazing into Your mouths. I see all people rushing full speed into Your mouths, as moths dash to destruction in a blazing ﬁre.
O Viṣṇu, I see You devouring all people from all sides with Your ﬂaming mouths. Covering all the universe with Your effulgence, You are manifest with terrible, scorching rays. O Lord of lords, so ﬁerce of form, please tell me who You are. I offer my obeisances unto You; please be gracious to me. You are the primal Lord. I want to know about You, for I do not know what Your mission is."
The Supreme Personality of Godhead said: "Time I am, the great destroyer of the worlds, and I have come here to destroy all people. With the exception of you [the Pāṇḍavas], all the soldiers here on both sides will be slain. Therefore get up. Prepare to ﬁght and win glory. Conquer your enemies and enjoy a ﬂourishing kingdom. They are already put to death by My arrangement, and you, O Savyasācī, can be but an instrument in the ﬁght."