Monday, 19 March 2012

Krishna reaches Hastinapura. Mahabharata 115

While Udyoga parva reflects human nature in all its complexities and frailties, it is embedded with two important treatises,  Viduraniti and Sanatsujatiya, with a hope that the future generations would be guided better. The Sanatsujatiya has some added importance as Adisankara chose to comment upon it. While you could read a small bit of Viduraniti in my blog, the Sanatsujatiya, considered vedanta, was not included in Vachana Bharata as the author thought it was not part of the story. Interestingly Viduraniti  is considered a great source of wisdom, by a few management experts.

Krishna is on his way to Hastinapura, his chariot fully loaded with weapons. Duryodhana has arranged many pavilions  to greet Krishna on the way. Women wait with scented garlands to welcome him. There is plenty of food and  comfortable seats to relax. Krishna ignores all this and reaches Vrukasthala.

Kauravas are excited that Krishna is visiting. Dritharashtra plans to overwhelm Krishna with gifts. He intends to give, 'Sixteen golden chariots harnessed with four black horses each brought from  the country Bahlika, eight elephants, a hundred maids, goats from the hilly regions known for their soft wool , a thousand skins from China. Decorate the whole town. Let Krishna occupy Dussasana's house, which is better than Duryodhana's place.'  He wants everyone, excepting Duryodhna, to go and receive him. 

Vidura reacts with 'Maharaja, you are now getting old. Learn, at least now, to be an upright person. Do not loose your kingdom and your family! There is no doubt that Krishna  deserves all these gifts.  But, if you think that Krishna will come to your side and you can avoid parting with the five villages pandavas have asked for, you are mistaken. Krishna will not be swayed by your gifts and forsake Arjuna. He has come with good intentions for the kauravas, do as he wants and treat pandavas as your children.'

Duryodhana agrees with Vidura that Krishna is partial to Arjuna and that these gifts are not needed. 'If we show him  too much respect, he will think that we are doing it out of fear. That will be insulting to us, khsatriyas. The war has already begun and there is no peace until after the war.'

This upsets Bheeshma, he advocates a truce. He tells Dritharashtra, 'Krishna is not the one to be upset whether he is treated well or not. He will not react with disrespect even if he is treated with contempt. You cannot influence him if he has come with a purpose. Listen to what he has to say and  go accordingly. Make peace with pandavas with his help!'

Even before his father reacts, Duryodhana replies, 'Grandfather, I am ruling the kingdom all by myself. I have no intention of sharing it with pandavas as long as I am alive. This is what I have decided. I will capture Krishna, pandavas main support, tomorrow, hold him in captivity. Once this is done, the vrishnis, pandavas and the world will be subjugated. If you think of a way to accomplish this without him suspecting my plans and we will be free from danger, tell me!'

Hearing this, a saddened Drithrashtra protests, 'Duryodhana, it is not dharma for a king to arrest an emissary. In addition, Krishna is our relative, friend and a well-wisher and is not against us!' 

 Bheeshma is totally upset, 'Dhritarashtra, your son has lost his mind. He is unwilling to listen to those who mean well. He has lost his way with the bad company he keeps and you support him! If he attempts to attack Krishna, he will face ruin in a second! I cannot bear to listen to his talk which will only lead him to disaster' and walks out!

1 comment:

Raghunath said...

So realistic!