In the Mahabharata, what was the significance of Lord Hanuman being present on the chariot of Arjuna (on the flag of Arjuna)? To the doubt raised by a disciple at Satsang of Art of Living, Guruji Sri Sri Ravishankar replied as…
Well, in those days they used some flag, like how every political party uses some flag today. The Congress party uses a flag with the ‘palm’ symbol, another party uses ‘lotus flower’ symbol. Like that in ancient days they used Hanuman because it is a sign of victory, and Krishna chose it because Krishna is always victorious in whatever he takes.
He said to Arjuna, ‘You better take Hanuman as a flag,’ so he took it. He listened.
Hanuman was a symbol of victory in the previous yuga (age) when Rama fought the war with the most prosperous kingdom of Sri Lanka. Rama fought with just a bunch of monkeys and just a few people with him, it was a very weak party. And on the other side was this strong army which was loaded with so much power and wealth.
It is said, in those days Sri Lanka was so prosperous that every rooftop was made of gold. It was the golden city. The pillars of every home were studded with precious stones. So when from India Rama went to Sri Lanka, he said, ‘The city is so amazing! But even though this is so full of gold and so rich, I prefer to go to my motherland. My motherland is better than heaven.’
So Rama went back after winning the war.
Hanuman was the symbol of victory over apparent weakness. One who appears to be weak physically but who is spiritually powerful. So the Pandavas were only five and the Kauravas were hundred. It was not an equal balance to fight in anyway. You should at least be fifty-fifty to fight. So, to give that moral, ethical and emotional strength to Arjuna, Krishna said, ‘Let’s put Hanuman as our flag. Remember, they did it. You can do it too.’
That is what Krishna always said.