Shri Phadnis writes..
“On the other hand, in (Ref. 127), in Shanti-GP 302 – 4, more or less at the end of Shantiparva, Yudhishthir specifically told Bhishma ‘your days while in dakshinayana are almost over.’ Shri. Oak quotes this reference and then, without batting an eyelid, says ‘This then is the reference made on 52nd day before Bhishma Nirvana’. Really? I am tempted to say, ‘You must be joking!’ “
First, the background…
In my book, I made a case for duration of Bhishma-Yudhishthir samvad being equal to 6 days. My rationale for this assertion is presented in my book and also here,
and also here,
Subsequently, Shri Phadnis pointed out the error in my assumption (my assumption that Yudhishthir was alone with Bhishma (without his brothers) on the 4th day of this Bhishma-Yudhishthir samvad. This led to reduction of supporting evidence for this 6 day long samvad down to 5 days in Exhibit 2 of my blog article, here.
However, broader conclusion, that Bhishma-Yudhishthir samvad took place over 6 days remained, unaffected.
Against, this background….
The reference 127 (of my book), Shanti GP 302:4, appears, in a chronological sequence, somewhere between 53rd and 51st day before Bhishma Nirvana. As a result, I had assigned it to ’52nd day before Bhishma Nirvana’.
In reality, this statement of Yudhishthir to Bhishma that “your days while in dakshinayana are almost over” (or “only few days have left for sun to complete its Dakshinayan, when you (Bhishma) will attain moksha”) could have been said on 53rd, 52nd or 51st day before Bhishma Nirvana. The inability to pinpoint the exact day (53rd, 52nd or 51st before Bhishma Nirvana) is due to the fact that Mahabharata text did not provide us, to the best of my knowledge, additional references to have further accuracy.
Where comes the question of ‘batting an eyelid’ or ‘joking‘!