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Ashwamedh Yagya-1

Vaishampaayan Jee said - "Hearing that Paandav have returned, Krishn went to see them. All came in and greeted all elders. They heard the whole account of the birth of your father. After a few days Vyaas Jee came there. Yudhishthir said to him - "We have got the wealth, now I wish to spend it on the sacrifice (Yagya). Please guide us we are at your and Krishn's disposal." Vyaas Jee said - "You have my permission for this. Do whatever you want to do after this. Worship deities with horse sacrifice, there is no sacrifice greater than this to cleanse one's sins." Yudhishthir said to Krishn - "You go under the rites of the initiation. You are the highest, if you will perform the sacrifice, I will be free from all sins. You are everything. With my approval you adore all deities in this sacrifice. You order us what we have to do. (When you will be sacrificing being the eldest brother of Paandav, your younger brothers will also be sacrificing with you.)"

Vaishampaayan Jee said - "Yudhishthir said to Vyaas Jee - "You initiate me when the time comes. My this sacrifice wholly depends on you." Vyaas Jee said - "All, Pail, Yaagyavalkya and myself, will perform all rites at proper time. The rite of initiating you will be performed on the day of Chaitra Poornimaa. All should be ready before that - Soot, Braahman, a worthy horse. The horse will wander all over the earth displaying your glory." All the materials were collected and Vyaas Jee was informed about it. Vyaas Jee said - "Sphya (wooden sword to slay the horse) and Kurch (handful of Kush grass) should be made of gold. Loose the animal to wander on the earth today." Yudhishthir asked - "Who will protect this horse while wandering about?" Vyaas Jee said - "Arjun will protect the horse. He is completely celestial, so he is competent to do this duty. Bheem and Nakul will protect the kingdom. Sahadev will attend the relatives coming to this sacrifice.

When the time came, Yudhishthir was initiated for the sacrifice. Horse was loosened. Yudhishthir, after the initiation, wore a golden necklace, wore a black deer skin as upper garment, bore a staff in his hand. Arjun followed the horse. All people, including children came out to see mighty armed Arjun and blessed him to come back safely. The horse went to north, then east.

Arjun's Battles

Arjun fought several battles. Among the main battles was one with the sons and grandsons of Trigart. He killed Sooryavarmaa, their king, and Ketuvarmaa, the king's younger brother. Dhritvarmaa also fought very bravely so Arjun but seeing his bravery Arjun didn't kill him.

Vaishampaayan Jee further said - "Then Arjun came to Praag Jyotish city where Bhagadatt's son Vajradatt came to fight with Arjun. They fought for three days. On the fourth day Vajradatt said to Arjun - "Wait Arjun, Today is the opportunity to offer water rites to my father. My father was a friend of your father and you killed him because he was old. Now you fight with me - his boy." Arjun again fought and felled him on the ground and said - "I spare your life, as Yudhishthir said to me not to kill those people who come to fight with me - just to make them disable (defeat); and those kings also who come to fight with me with their relatives and kinsmen - just to spare them and ask them to come to the sacrifice. So you may go back to your city and come back to join us for the sacrifice on Chaitra Poornimaa." Vajradatt said, "So be it", and went back to his city.

Then Arjun fought with Saindhav who were still living after the destruction of their clan in the war. They fought with bravery and afflicted Arjun. Everybody feared in Tri-Lok. Devtaa prayed for his welfare. He got up and remembering Yudhishthir's words, he said to them - "If you want to fight with me, you may, but I am saying this for your benefit that I have no intention to kill you, so whoever will come in my shelter, he will be spared, so act in the way which is beneficial for you." But Saindhav didn't listen to him. Remembering that Jayadrath was slain by Arjun he started fighting more fiercely. Arjun killed many in their army. Then Dushalaa, the daughter of Dhritraashtra, picked up her grandson (son of Surath) and came to Arjun. The brave prince came to his maternal grand-uncle for the safety of Saindhav warriors. Dushalaa started weeping in front of Arjun. Seeing his sister, Arjun dropped his bow and arrow and asked her what he could do for her?

Dushalaa said - "See this child, he is the son of your sister's son." Seeing him he asked about her own son Surath, "Where is he?" Dushalaa said - "Burning with grieved of his father's death he also died. Listen now how he died. He had already heard that his father was killed by you, and when he heard that you were coming as the follower of the sacrificial horse, he just fell down and died. Seeing him falling down like this I picked up his infant son and came to you to protect him." After saying this Dushalaa started weeping. Arjun also became very sad hearing all this. He was looking down. Dushalaa again said - "You know your duty very well, it is your duty to show mercy on this child forgetting about Duryodhan and wicked Jayadrath. As Pareekshit has been born from Abhimanyu, this child is born from Surath. This child seeks to gratify you by bowing his head. He is asking you for peace. Forget about what has happened. Do not be angry, show your mercy to this child."

Arjun forgetting his Kshatriya practices for some time said to Dushalaa - "Fie on Duryodhan because of whom my all kinsmen were killed by me." He then comforted his sister, made the peace, embraced her happily and sent her back to her city. Dushalaa also stopped all her warriors to fight and went back to her palace. Then the horse arrived in Manipur area.

Arjun in Manipur

The ruler of Manipur, Babhruvaahan - the son of Arjun and Chitraangadaa (married to him according to Putrikaa Dharm), hearing that his father has arrived, came to see him with many gifts. But remembering the duties of a Kshatriya, Arjun did not approve this gesture at this time, he said to him angrily - "You have forgotten Kshatriya's duties. Seeing that I have come in your kingdom as the protector of Yudhishthir's Ashwamedh horse, you should have fought me. Fie on you that you have come to me peacefully while I have come to fight with you. You are acting like a woman." Hearing this Uloopee (the Naag's daughter and Vabhruvaahan's step-mother) came out of the earth through a hole. She saw her son very sad at all this - rebuked by his own father. She said to her son - "I am the daughter of a Naag, and know me as your mother. Fight your father who is irresistible in battle and do your duty." So he made up his mind to fight with his father.

He came to fight with him. He afflicted his father badly. Arjun got very happy to see his son's bravery. Later Arjun killed his son's horses. He came down of his chariot and fought fiercely so Arjun fell down in swoon. He himself also got unconscious because of tiredness and knowing that his father was slain by him only. Hearing this Chitraangadaa came out of the palace weeping and trembling. As she came to the battlefield, she also fell down. After regaining her consciousness, she saw Uloopee there, she said to her - "How is it that after seeing my husband killed by my son, you are not sad? I am not grieved for my son, but for my husband who received hospitality from my son." Then she went to Arjun and said - "Rise, my Lord, You are the most loved among Kuru king. Here is your horse, it has been set free by me. Follow your horse now, why are you lying on the ground now? O Uloopee, Are you not grieved seeing him like this? If you will not revive your husband slain by my son, I will die now and here only. As I am deprived of my son and husband, I will sit here in Praya." And she sat there in Praya restraining her speech taking Arjun's feet in her lap.

Babhruvaahan, in the meantime, regained his consciousness and saw her mother sitting at the feet of Arjun. He said to her - "What a sad sight to see one's mother sitting on the naked floor in the battleground. It is true that one does not die until his hour comes. See, this father has been slain by his own son. O Naag's daughter, Your husband has been slain by me. I have accomplished what you wanted. I will also die here. Now you be happy to see both of us dead." He touched water and said - "If my father doesn't rise then I will give up my life here only in this battlefield. My sin is so great that nobody can rescue me from it."

After both, mother and son, sat for Praya, Uloopee thought of that gem which had the power of reviving a dead man. As she thought of that, it came to her hand. She said to Babhruvaahan - "Rise up O Son, your father has not been vanquished by you. He cannot be defeated even by Indra. I have created this illusion deceiving your senses so that your father can know your might. That is why I asked you to fight with him. He is a Rishi - eternal and indestructible. I give you this gem, place it on the chest of your father, you will see him alive." The prince who had not committed any sin placed the gem on Arjun's chest; and Arjun got up as if he has awaken from a long sleep. He embraced his son and asked - "Why this battlefield is mixed with grief, wonder and joy? Why your mother and Uloopee are here? I know that you fought with me at my command then what these women are doing here?" Chitraangadaa said - "Ask Uloopee."

Then Arjun asked this Uloopee - "Did anybody hurt you? Why are you here?" Uloopee said - "No, Nobody has hurt me. Just listen to me, don't be angry with me, I bow to you. You killed Shaantanu's son Bheeshm in unrighteous ways, what I have done is to clear your sin. You did not overthrow Bheeshm while fighting with you. He was fighting with Shikhandee. Considering him as your help, You fought with him. If you had died without clearing that sin, you would have certainly fallen into Hell. What you have got from your son is the clearance of that sin. I heard, that after the fall of Bheeshm, Vasu came to take bath in Gangaa River and said these terrible words to her - "Arjun has killed Bheeshm. Although Bheeshm was engaged in fighting with other person and was not fighting with him (Shikhandee), that is why we give Shaap to Arjun." At the same time Gangaa readily said, "Be it so". Since then I was very much afflicted. I went to my father and told him everything. He also got very worried, so he went to Vasu and tried to gratify them by every means, then they said to him - "Arjun has a highly blessed son, the king of Manipur. When he will fell Arjun in the battle then only this curse will be cleared." He came back to me and told everything. I have freed you from that curse today. You are incapable of being defeated even by Indra, but this is your son and so is like yourself, that is why he could defeat you. That is why I am not at any fault."

Arjun got very happy to hear this, he said - "You have done a great favor to me." Then he said to his son - "The sacrifice at Hastinaapur is on Chaitra Poornimaa, come there with your mother, counselors and others." Babhruvaahan said - "I will surely come and will take charge of distributing food to Braahman, but to show your grace please come to your city with your two wives, live in your palace for a night then go further." Arjun said - "You know that I am under the vow. Until it is over I cannot enter the city. This horse wanders at his will, I just follow him. God bless you, I must go now." And Arjun went away taking the permission from his son and his two wives.


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Created by Sushma Gupta On 05/27/04
Modified on 04/08/13