Reconciling 56 & 58! Agree on explanation but…

In reconciling Krishna’s statement of ’56 more day remaining’ & Bhishma’s statement of ‘I spent 58 painful nights on the bed of arrows’,

Shri Phadnis writes…

“On the other hand, 56 total days on deathbed would mean 57 nights, counting the night of Bhishma’s fall, till the morning of first day of uttarayana. Compare this with what Bheeshma said just before dying, ‘he spent 58 extremely painful nights’. The matching is far too perfect to ignore!


In my opinion it calls for only one conclusion. Krishna and Bhishma are saying the same thing! 57 or 58 nights on deathbed. There is no contradiction. (Bhishma may have spent one extra day to be sure that Uttarayana had really started.)”

In response to my blog article, here,

Shri Phadnis wrote…

I am not bothered about the ‘astronomical puzzles.’ That is your headache!

I do not agree that Bhishma made a ridiculous statement that he spent 58 painful nights on deathbed when he had spent 91+ nights (if that was the truth). He had no occasion to be silly. You have never answered my question WHY Bhishma said so and why Vyasa has recorded it without contradiction.

I have also pointed out that the number of days mentioned by Krishna agree far too closely with what Bhishma said. Others may not have noticed this surprisingly close agreement. Hence my explanation that ‘शेषं’ may have meant ‘from 10th day of war’ which is not ‘ruled out’ by the wording of the shloka.”

My Response…

I agree with the explanation of Shri Phadnis, specifically, reconciliation of ’56 more day left to live’ (Shanti GP 51:14) of Krishna’s statement, uttered when first time Pandava brothers, Krishna and party met Bhishma, after returning from Ganga and after Yudhishthir Rajyabhishek, with that of Bhishma stating, on the day of Bhishma Nirvana, that ‘Bhishma spent painful 58 nights on the bed of arrows’ (Anushasan GP 167:26-28).

However, while Shri Phadnis claims that both statements were referring to total duration of Bhishma on the bed of arrows (from ‘fall of Bhishma’ through ‘Bhishma Nirvana’); I assert that both Krishna and Bhishma are referring to the time Bhishma spent on the bed of arrows from the time Pandava brothers, Krishna and party met Bhishma, for the first time, after returning from Ganga and leading to the day of Bhishma Nirvana.

I will soon present the entire chronology from ‘fall of Bhishma’ through ‘Bhishma Nirvana, with the help of specific astronomy and chronology observations of Mahabharata text.  I will include observations identified by Shri Phadnis to my existing list of observations – 108 through 130 (in my book).


One thought on “Reconciling 56 & 58! Agree on explanation but…

  1. Oh I see! So all the earlier nights (40+ ) which Bhishma spent on deathbed prior to the visit by Krishna and Yudhishthira were NOT PAINFUL! Pain started only after Krishna’s visit! Thats a good one.

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