kireetinam gadinam chakrahastamicchhaami tvaam drishtumaham tathaiva |
tenaiva roopena chaturbhujena sahastrabaaho bhava vishvamoorte || 46 ||

Wearing a crown, holding a mace, disc in hand, in that four-armed form do I wish to see you. O one with infinite arms, be that very form, O universal form.
kireetinam : wearing a crown
gadinam : holding a mace
chakrahastam : disc in hand
icchhaami : I wish
tvaam : you
drishtum : see
aham : I
tathaiva : like that
tenaiva : that very
roopena : form
chaturbhujena : with four arms
sahastrabaaho : O one with infinite arms
bhava : be
vishvamoorte : O universal form
Fearing Shri Krishna’s terrible form, Arjuna begged Shri Krishna to transform back into his normal form. Terming a four-armed figure as a normal form may seem strange. We need to dig deeper into the symbolic aspect of the number four to understand this request properly. The number four has a deep significance in the scriptures, since it represents the four Vedas, the four Varnas or classes, the four aashramas or stages, and the four purushaarthaas or aims of life. As an example, let us explore the four aashramas.
A person is supposed to pass through four aashramas or stages during their life. They begin life under the instruction of a guru or teacher, with the sole aim of seeking knowledge. This stage is called brahmacharya. After graduating from their school, they then lead the life of a householder in the grihastha stage. When that is fulfilled, they enter into a stage where they begin to gradually renounce all material attachments. This is known as vaanaprastha. After complete renunciation, a person’s life culminates in the sanyaasa stage where there sole aim is spiritual pursuits.
In this manner, we can uncover the significance behind several aspects of the number four. But what Arjuna really meant to convey to Shri Krishna was a request to assume the form that his admirers and devotees loved the most, the form that was the object of their meditation. This was Shri Krishna’s form as Lord Naaraayana, which was the embodiment of peace and serenity, and a polar opposite of his rudra or terrible form that Arjuna wanted to go away.