Mahaabhaarat | Kathaa | 5-Pre-War
|Kathaa - 5-Pre-War|
Now Dhritraashtra got a bit relieved. Duryodhan asked Sanjaya - "Hey Sanjaya, How do they feel about war? What are they doing about it?" Sanjaya said - "All are very happy. Arjun said, "See our army and my chariot, we will surely conquer, O Sanjaya." and I also feel the same way." Duryodhan said - "You are rejoicing with our enemy whom we have defeated in dice? Tell me what kind of horses and banners they have?"
Sanjaya said - "The clever celestial Tashtree or Bhauman with the aid of Indra and Dhaatree has adorned Arjun's chariot with many various beauties. He has given Divine illusion of celestials' images on his flagstaff. Besides he has created an illusion that the banner will cover one Yojan space both vertically and laterally without any hindrance. Its colors and form are ever varying. It has no weight and it cannot be obstructed too. His chariot has excellent celestial white 100 horses which run with the speed of mind. They all are given his friend Chitrasen. Formerly a Var has been granted to them that they will always be 100 however number of horses among them are killed.
Yudhishthir also has white horses of equal energy in his chariot. Bheem's chariot is equipped with horse with the speed of wind and splendor of Sapt Rishi. His horses are superior to those of Arjun's own. Nakul has the horses given by Indra himself to him. Draupadee's sons and Abhimanyu also have the horses equal to Paandav's horses given by celestials."
At this Dhritraashtra asked - "Who and who will be fighting against my son's forces?" Vidur spoke - "I have seen Krishn, Chekitaan, Saatyaki, Drupad with his ten heroic sons (Shikhandee, Dhrishtdyumn, Satyajit, Uttamaujaa etc), Viraat with his two sons - Shankh and Uttar; Sahadev - the son of Jaraasandh, Chedi king Dhrishtketu (Shishupaal's son), five sons of Draupadee and Abhimanyu, and five Kaikaya brothers. Dhrishtdyumn will be the Commander of his army,
As for the opponents in the war, Shikhandee will be against Bheeshm; Viraat and other warriors will support Shikhandee; Yudhishthir will be against Shalya; Bheem will be against Duryodhan, his brothers and his sons; and Arjun will be against Karn, Ashwatthaamaa, Jayadrath and other kings who are supposed to be invincible and may come to their help. Kaikaya Brothers will be against their cousins who have joined Duryodhan and the Maalavaa warriors. Shaalv have taken Trigart brothers as their opponents, although they may not kill them but they will harass them as much as they can. The sons of Paandav are to support Dhrishtdyumn to kill Drone. He is going to kill Drone. Abhimanyu is going to fight with all the sons of Duryodhan and Dushaasan. Chekitaan hopes to meet Somdatt in a single fight. Saatyaki has chosen Kritvarmaa because he has not forgiven him for joining Kaurav. Sahadev is going to kill Shakuni, and Nakul is going to kill Ulook - Shakuni's son. This is their plan for the time being although there may be any change any time. Now you can take action as you think best."
Dhritraashtra said - "It is very sad that my brave sons, addicted to dice game, are already dead when they are going to see Bheem in the field, even all the kings will be dead when they will rush towards Gaandeev. All of them you have named are great warriors. Those that have Yudhishthir as their leader, Krishn as their protector, Arjun and Bheem like warriors, and Nakul, Sahadev, Dhrishtdyumn, Saatyaki, Drupad, Dhrishtketu with his son, Uttamaujaa, Yudhaamanyu, Shikhandee, Kshatradev and Vabhru (son of Viraat) like fighters, My wicked son wants to fight with such superhuman people?"
At this Duryodhan said - "We both are of the same family, why do you think that only they will win? Bheeshm, Drone, Kripaa, Karn, Jayadrath, Somdatt, Ashwatthaamaa all cannot be defeated even by Indra united with all celestials. Paandav cannot even look at them. I am powerful enough to fight with them." Thus Duryodhan again assured Dhritraashtra of his victory, but Dhritraashtra is not convinced because he believed in Sanjaya, so he said to Sanjaya - "This my son speaks like a mad man, because he is incapable to defeat Yudhishthir the just. In fact Bheeshm knows them very well that is why he does not war with them.
Sanjaya said - "Dhrishtdyumn has always been saying to Yudhishthir to wage war saying, "You need not to fear from them, I alone can defeat them." Yudhishthir said - "I know, in fact we wholly depend on you." Dhrishtdyumn himself said to me, "Go, and tell all the kings who have to fight with us that they should not come to be killed by Arjun who is protected by celestials. It is better for them if somebody approaches Yudhishthir and give back his kingdom. There is no warrior like Arjun whose chariot is protected by celestials. No human being can defeat him, that is why they should drop the idea of war."
Dhritraashtra said - "It is very foolish on the part of my sons that they want to fight with Yudhishthir like person ignoring me who is weeping like this for them. O Duryodhan, war is not desirable at all if you give his kingdom back. Just think that this army is for your own death. Nobody wants this war. It is very sad that it is not because of your own will but because of evil-minded Karn, Dushaasan and Shakuni."
At this Duryodhan lost his control, he said - "OK, I do not want anybody to fight for me unwillingly. If anybody wants to go from here, he is free to go. I have Dushaasan and Karn with me, Either I will kill Paandav or they will kill me and enjoy the Earth. I can sacrifice my life, kingdom, wealth, but I cannot live side by side with them. I am not giving them the land even equal to the tip of the needle." Dhritraashtra said - "I now abandon my son who is going to lead you to the abode of Yam. O kings, Paandu's sons will kill your leader. If you are not making peace with them you are certainly inviting a great calamity upon you. When Bheem will kill you all then you will rest in peace and then you will all remember my words."
After having said thus Dhritrashtra asked Sanjaya - "I am eager to know what Arjun and Vaasudev said?" Sanjaya said - "I now tell you that also what they said. I entered the inner apartments where neither Abhimanyu nor the twins can go. Arjun, Krishn, Satyabhaamaa and Draupadee were there. Both Krishn and Arjun were seated on the same seat. They seemed to me like Indra and Vishnu seated together. At that very moment I was convinced that Yudhishthir's dream will come true. Although Arjun offered me a golden seat, but I touched it with my hand and sat down on the ground. Krishn said very mild, sweet, polite words - "Hey Sanjaya, Tell these words to Dhritraashtra, Bheeshm, Drone etc after saluting them first. Do all kinds of sacrifices, and all kinds charities because Yudhishthir is eager for victory. Arjun alone is enough for you all, and this has already been proved in Viraat's encounter." Then Arjun also said the similar words."
Hearing this Dhritraashtra got worried. He found the truth in it. Weighing the powers of both sides, he said to Duryodhan - "All beings show their love to their off springs. In the same way good people also do good to their benefactors. Remembering the Khaandav Van incident, Agni Dev surely help Arjun. And because of parental affection all Devtaa will also come to help Paandav. In that situation all your warriors will be incapable to fight with those superhuman powers. I am very much worried about Kuru because Paandav are much mightier than you. He who has Divine Gaandeev with him, he who has inexhaustible quivers got from Varun with him, he who has an unobstructed banner like smoke and has celestial monkey image on it, whose chariot is unequalled on earth, he who is considered as superhuman in energy, that Arjun is regarded super human being by Bheeshm, Drone, Kripaa and Ashwatthaamaa etc. He can shoot 500 arrows from his bow at a time. I can foresee that he is going to create a great havoc in this war. I am for the peace, not for war. "
Duryodhan was again very angry at Dhritraashtra's words, he said - "What do you think? Are they mightier than us only because of having celestial help? Devtaa are Devtaa because of their indifference. Father, Do you know the definition of Devtaa? Vyaas and Naarad told us that Devtaa are those who are beyond any desire, envy, emotions and greed. They have no attachments, no enmities. They do not fight as we do. The power of Devtaa is great indeed, but mine is greater than those of Devtaa. If the earth splits itself, I can reunite it. I can extinguish Agni in a moment. By my incantations, I can stop all that which is used to destroy Prithvi. I set the affairs of both Devtaa and Asur. All Devta will not dare to protect my enemies. So don't be worried about this. I have no fear from anybody. If those Devtaa had protected them, they would have not fallen in such calamities for 13 years. You will hear the defeat of Paandav only. My intelligence is superior, my energy is superior, my power is superior, my knowledge is superior, my resources are superior, Whatever knowledge of weapons Arjun, Bheeshm, Drone, Kripaa and Shalya have, I also have it."
After saying this he asked Sanjay to tell him other things at Yudhishthir's side about the preparation of war. Karn said to Duryodhan - "Mu Guru Parashuraam cursed me so lightly for such a great offence. "When your time will come, you will fail to use to this weapon." That great Rishi's power is so great that it can consume the whole earth. By attention and personal bravery I won his heart. That weapon is still with me and my time has not yet run, so the victory will be mine. Let Bheeshm and other kings stay with you, I can kill Arjun and his brothers alone. Let that responsibility be mine."
Bheeshm could not be silent at this, he said - "What are you saying? Your intellect is covered by the dust of your Time. The Power given by Indra, of which you are proud of will be reduced to ashes by Krishn's Divine disc. Your other Powers also of which you are proud of will also be destroyed as soon as they meet Arjun's. O Karn, Vaasudev the slayer of Van and Bhoomi's son Narakaasur, has killed peoples superior to you and protected Arjun in other battles also." Karn said - "I know that. so I lay down my weapons. Pitaamah now will see me only in the court not in the battlefield. When you will fall then only people will see my power." After saying this Karn got up and walked out of the court. (see my Doubts - Why Karn did not... here). Bheeshm said smilingly - "Let us see how far does he keep his this promise? How will he keep his promise of killing thousands and tens of thousands soldiers made to kings of Avantee and Kaling, Jayadrath, etc. In fact he had lost his virtue and asceticism at the very moment when he told lie to his Guru."
At this Duryodhan said to Bheeshm - "Why do you think that they will win? Both are equal in energy, power, intelligence, age, knowledge of scriptures, weapons, art of ar and skill. I am not asking you to be relied upon you for fighting, Karn, Dushaasan and myself are enough to kill all Paandav. Even Keshav will have to give up."
Vidur said - "Learned people say that self-restraint is highly beneficial. In Braahman's case it is his duty. He whose self-restraint follows charity, asceticism, knowledge, study of Ved always success. People are always afraid of those who are without self-restraint. And Kshatriya are born to keep such people under control. It is the best vow for all the four Aashram of life. the attributes of self-restraint are - forgiveness, firmness of mind, abstention from injury, an equal regard for everything, truthfulness and gentleness in speech, simplicity, control over the senses, patience, modesty, liberality. He that is well-behaved, of good disposition, has contented soul, great matured wisdom is said to be the foremost of men. As the consequence of his wisdom he is always calm and cheerful. He moves quickly in this world, And as the path of birds is invisible, so the path of that sage is not visible as a result of knowledge. Abandoning the world he takes the Sanyaasee mode of life and goes to Swarg."
Vidur continued - "Once upon a time, a hunter spread a net to catch birds. Two birds that lived together got caught in that net and flew away with that net. That hunter also followed them. At that time an ascetic had just finished his morning prayers and saw the hunter following the net in the hope to catch the birds. He said to him - "It is so strange that a land creature is trying to catch a sky creature." The hunter said - "They have taken away my net, but when they will quarrel, they will be under my control." And it so happened that they quarreled and fell on the ground. The hunter caught both of them. In the same way the people who quarrel are subjected to be the victim of their enemies.
I tell you another story, after hearing that you may do whatever is best for you. Once we went to northern mountain (Gandhmaadan) with hunters and some Braahman who were fond of discouraging charms and herbs. So we arrived at a place where these herbs were overgrowing. Siddh and Gandharv used to live there. There we saw a quantity of golden honey and a measure of jar. It was Kuber's favorite drink and was well guarded by poisonous snakes. Drinking of it would bring immortality, a sightless man will start seeing, and an old man will become young. Braahman were talking about it and the hunters were planning to get it. As the hunters tried to take it they all died because of snakes. In the same way your son desires to enjoy the whole earth without a rival. I don't see the power in him which may carry him safe through the battle with Arjun. Do you still remember Viraat Nagar's incident? But Yudhishthir would still forgive you for that. He is looking for what do you order him."
Dhritraashtra said to Duryodhan - O son, You are trying to fight Paandav who are like five elements. Saatyaki also is very powerful. Krishn along with all His wives, relatives etc is equal to Arjun. You should listen to your Pitaamah, Drone, Kripaa, Vikarn and Baahleek etc. They all love you. Take Paandav with their hands as your brothers and cherish the kingdom with them." Then he asked Sanjaya to tell him what else Arjun said.
Sanjaya said - "Arjun said - "Whoever will come in the battlefield with Duryodhan will be standing on the eve of his death. Tell this to all and make sure that they hear it properly." So I rushed here immediately to tell you all this." As Duryodhan didn't show any interest in Sanjaya's message, all kings retired.
And I don't understand their request also of five villages, I can afford to give them to them, even I can afford to give them their half kingdom, but I don't want to give. His this request is ridiculous."
Vidur said to Duryodhan - "Yudhishthir is not a fool to ask for these four villages. He could have asked just any five, but he has not done so, why? This is just a reminder to you and elders for his sufferings. Take Baaranaavat - it is the reminder of the plot to kill Paandav with Kuntee. Indraprasth - it is the reminder of another injustice. You father promised to give half the Kuruland, but they were given only barren land - Khaandavprasth. Jayant - you have not forgotten the hall where you won them by cheating and insulted Draupadee. Vrikprasth - the place adjoining the coppice Pramanaavat that is where Paandav spent their first night of their exile. Fifth one is of your choice. Now can you see how Yudhishthir can be sarcastic and angry if he wants to. In fact this is a way of saying "Even after this you want us to be patient?"
Dhritraashtra was terribly upset hearing Sanjaya's words. The request of these specific four villages was a poison which went directly to his heart, so he again tried to explain Duryodhan the greatness of Paandav - "Arjun's satisfying Agni Dev during the burning of Khaandavprasth, so he will help him in war too. All Devtaa - Indra, Vaayu, Yam and the Ashwinee Kumaar, will also help their sons against your Bheeshm, Drone and all of you. Even Hanumaa is also with them as Bheem's elder brother. Let us not challenge them, let us call for peace."
Now Duryodhan's patience was just crossed the limit, he said - " They are not to be feared, so don't worry about them. I am a good king, and people speak good about me. Devtaa also cannot accuse me for anything." After saying this he walked out of the court, Karn followed him. All others also left after Karn. Dhritraashtra was left alone with Sanjaya. It was pathetic to see a father trying to make fruitless efforts to save his sons through the war.
Created by Sushma Gupta On 03/09/02
Modified on 12/05/12