Although he saw many defects in both the alternatives yet be decided that it was more creditable to be called a coward and disregard duty than to fight, bringing ruin upon the whole, family and he did this for want of a better alternative.
In this thinking, to fight would be selfish and it had, therefore, to be sacrificed for selflessness. But he also knew that he was disregarding his duty as a Kshatriya. He was hi a fix due to this conflict. Lord Krishna showed him other alternative more clearly.
He said that there is a third alterative which can solve the difficulties of the two previous alternatives.
Besides war, working without any longing, or working and leaving the rest in the hands of God, work can also be done with a feeling of social consolidation.
In such a situation, duties will be fulfilled and there will be no bondage due to results of actions. The interests, both of the individual and the society, rest safe in this course of action.
(2) Analysis of Consequences:
After the alternatives have been classified, their consequences should be analyzed. The person analyses consequences of alternatives on the basis of history and past experience. If the consequences of all alternatives are analyzed, the situation becomes clear, moral judgment becomes easier.
In the Gita, Aijuna had two alternatives. He thought more about the consequences of fighting than the consequences of abstaining from it. This was done by Lord Krishna. He explained that the infamy accruing from abstention would be worse than death.
Besides, analyzing the consequences of the third and best alternative, nishkama karma yoga, he has shown that it has no defects and is good from every standpoint. In this way, it is necessary to analyze the consequences of all the alternatives.
(3) Imagining oneself in the time and place of the consequences:
By his power of imagination, every person can think of the consequences of his work by imagining to himself the shape of things to come. Thinking in this way may facilitate judgment. The more powerful the imagination the quicker will be the decision of the correct course to be followed.
(4) Looking at oneself with the eyes of the people to be effected by one’s activity:
A person with an eye for ethics should be imaginative enough to be able to establish a connection with others and to understand their condition. He should analyze the consequences of his work from the viewpoint of society. He should put himself in the place of another and think of the effect his work may have on them.
Only then will he be able to work rightly from the social viewpoint because any work improper, from the viewpoint of altruism is always improper, whatever may be its justification from the selfish viewpoint. Ultimately, a compromise between the personal and social is necessary.
(5) Evaluation and Comparison of Values:
After the fourth step the person should evaluate the activities of each alternative and see which one of them has a higher moral value by comparison. This task makes a proper knowledge of ethics indispensable. He should know what are values, which of them are superior ones etc.
In a moral situation the intellect becomes paralyzed so that advice can be solicited from some able person. In the Gita, Lord Krishna has evaluated the various alternatives and after comparison of their values, has suggested the best course to follow.
Now comes the stage of decision. A mutual comparison of the values of the alternatives brings the best alternative into the focus, leaving the other out of it in this way, a path is decided upon.
But unless the decision is given an active form, the mental struggle of the moral situation does not cease. Thus a complete solution of moral decision is possible only when it is made active.
The above seven steps in the activity of moral decision are present in some form or the other. It is possible that their order may be slightly changed or that their number may vary. In a man’s practical life, the above order will change according to a man’s mental and moral condition but when analyzed these seven steps can be clearly traced.