Saturday, 10 December 2011

Pandavas move to a more habitable Dvaitavana. But Draupadi is not happy. Visitng Mahabharata 71.

The Pandavas decide to move to Dvaitavana and stay near the lake, a place where rishis lived and is surrounded by an abundance of fruit trees and flowering plants. While it was peaceful, the dramatic change in their lifestyle frustrates Draupadi and understandably she chooses to take it out on Yudhisthira.

One evening Draupadi reveals her thoughts to Yudhisthira, 'Lord, there is no peace in my mind. How could Duryodhana be so cruel as to drive us to a forest? His heart must be made of iron. While the rest of Hastinapura were shedding tears, these four heartless men showed no feelings! I cannot bear to even look at the type of bed you sleep on. You were surrounded by attendants all the time, now there are none. The body which was adorned with sandal paste is now covered by dust. Fine clothes are now replaced by coverings made of hemp. Thousands of people ate, served by you in vessels of gold, before you ate. Now you and your brothers have to eat whatever is found in the forest.'

 She is unable stomach the fact that  he has chosen to tolerate a situation wherein his brothers are suffering. They are bound by his passive acceptance and their respect for him, which prevent them from fighting. She is upset that she, daughter of a king and married to the sons of Pandu, is now constrained to live in a forest.  She is dismayed that he has no anger, which is so normal for a  khastriya! She points out that a khastriya, who has no anger even at this juncture will face contempt by all beings. She urges him to fight as it is the time to show valor and defeat the enemies.

She quotes from a conversation between Bali and Prahlada. Bali asked his grandfather 'Which is better Forgiveness or attack?'  Prahlada said that 'We cannot choose one or the other. It depends. If one is always forgiving, even servants will neglect such a person. None will show respect! Evil people will think nothing of stealing from them. They will take away his money, clothes, valuables and even food. They will even try to steal his wife. Even his wife will become independent! It is better to die than face such a humiliation'.

'At the same time a person with an unforgiving nature, will make enemies of his friends even. Such people will even be killed because of their unforgiving nature. It is best to forgive the first mistake, but punish the next one. Forgive those who make mistakes unknowingly. So there is a time for forgiveness and there is a time to be tough.'  And Draupadi concludes: 'Maharaja I think it is time to teach a lesson to the greedy and criminal minded kauravas.'

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