Lord Krishna was a great teacher and a healer. He gave perfect counseling to Arjuna when he was in the state of acute anxiety, confusion, indecisiveness and depression. His supreme knowledge, skills and understanding of human relationship were responsible for convincing Arjuna that he had to perform his duty, regardless of who his opponents were.

There are basic principles to be learnt from the teachings of Bhagavad Gita, if one wants to get to the right state of mental and physical strength.

• The 1st principle is to listen, listen and listen. In the first chapter of Bhagavad Gita, Krishna only listened when Arjuna spoke. One must learn to listen to others. Out of 18 counseling sessions (the 18 chapters of Gita), one full session was devoted only to listening to Arjuna. Almost 50% of the emotions of a person are out once he has spoken to the Healer about his or her problems.

• The 2nd principle is to remain non-judgmental while listening. This is beautifully described in Chapter 2 shloka 10. While listening, Krishna did not show any signs of anger to Arjuna even at those extremely difficult moments. On the contrary, He kept on smiling and listened patiently. This is another avenue where most of the healthcare workers fail in their relationship with the patients. We (doctors) sometimes become annoyed with the patients because they narrate unrelated details of their health problems. We need to understand and appreciate their predicaments.

• The 3rd principle is that every answer should be validated by reasoning. Throughout the 18 counseling sessions between Arjuna and Krishna that included 700 question and answers, Krishna gave proper reasoning, either experiential or based on sound logic. He never forced Arjuna to believe in what He was saying without getting convinced about it.

• The 4th principle is that of reassurance. Krishna re-assures Arjuna on two occasions. Firstly, when he said that “I’ll appear whenever there is adharma” meaning thereby that whenever there is injustice someone will come and set it right. As a Healer, the doctor should convincingly say that “wherever there is a disease I will be there”. In Chapter 18 shloka 65, Krishna says that anyone who takes conscious decision and interprets things with full devotion, there is no reason why he or she should not become happy or healthy. He again assures Arjuna that he is going to be successful.

• The 5th principle is depicted in the last shloka of Gita (18.78), which summarizes the importance of a good doctor-patient (teacher-student) relationship where Sanjay says to Dhritrashtra that when there is a Healer like Krishna and a patient like Arjuna, there is no reason why there will not be a victory.