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12-Shaanti, 1-7
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Yudhishthir Grieves

Vaishampaayan Jee said - "After offering the water oblations Dhritraashtra, Vidur, Yudhishthir and Bharat women lived there. Yudhishthir wanted to stay there for one month - the period of lamentations. Many Rishi came there to see him. Naarad said to Yudhishthir - "By the grace of Maadhav you have won this Prithvi and you have escaped the war with life. So will you not rejoice this victory?" Yudhishthir said - "This is right, but the grief of this war will always be into my heart. What will Subhadraa say to me? How Draupadee will tolerate her loss? Kuntee told me that Karn, the Soot's son, was actually our elder brother. I always wanted him to be slain. Arjun didn't know that he was his eldest brother. In fact nobody among us knew him as our brother. I heard that mother went to him requesting to join us but he said - "If I make peace with Yudhishthir, people will say that I got afraid of Arjun, but after defeating Arjun and Krishn I can make peace with them." Then mother again said - "You fight with Arjun but spare my other four sons." At this he said - "If I killed Arjun, then your five sons will be alive, and if I am killed then also your five sons will be alive." I am very sad for him. If I had Karn and Arjun with me I could have defeated even Vaasudev Himself. Why my brother was cursed that his wheel was stuck in the earth, I wish to know this."

Naarad Jee said - "In maidenhood, Kuntee conceived a child who became the son of Soot. He learned weaponry from Drone. Seeing your intelligence, Bheem's might, humility of twins, quickness of using weapons of Arjun, and the relationship of Arjun and Vaasudev made him envious of you all. Accidentally he became a friend of Duryodhan and his envy towards continued to increase. Once Karn went to Drone and expressed desire to learn Brahm Astra to fight with Arjun but Drone said - "Either a Braahman or a Kshatriya with severe Tap can know it, nobody else." Karn worshipped him and went directly to Parashuraam living on Mahendra mountains. He told him that he was a Braahman of Bhrigu's family. This brought honor to him and he lived there. He met many Gandharv, Raakshas, Yaksh, Devtaa and learned many kinds of weapons from them. He soon became favorite of Devtaa.

One day he wandered towards sea-coast and accidentally killed a cow of a Braahman. He reported the incident to him and asked for his forgiveness. But he cursed him that "when you will be fighting, the earth will swallow the wheel of your chariot. And when this will be happening your enemy, whom you always challenge, will cut your head." Karn tried to give cows, wealth, gems to that Brahman in exchange of that cow but that Braahman could not be satisfied with them and he did not take his words back also."

Naarad Jee further said - "Raam was very happy with his services so he taught him Brahm Astra. Karn also passed his days there happily. Once Raam, very weak from fasting, slept in Karn's lap. In the meantime a worm came and bit Karn's thigh. The pain was unbearable but Karn tolerated it lest his Guru wakes up. Blood touched Raam and he woke up saying - "I am made impure, what are you doing this?" Karn told him that it was a worm. As soon as Raam cast his look on the worm it died immediately dissolving itself in the blood it drew. It gave Karn a surprise. The then a Raakshas was seen in the vicinity, he was standing in the sky, he said - "You have freed me from this hell. You have done good to me." Raam asked "But who are you and how did I good to you?" He said - "Before I was a great Asur named Dansh. In Sat Yug I was of the same age as of Bhrigu. One time I took his wife by force, so he gave me Shaap "subsisting on urine and phlegm you live in hell". On asking "when I will be free from this", he said that "Raam born in my lineage will free you, that is why I did this mean act." After saying this and bending his head he went away.

Then Raam said to Karn - "No Braahman can tolerate such pain, only a Kshatriya can tolerate it. Tell me the truth, who are you?" Karn feared to be cursed, said - "I am a Soot, an offspring of a Braahman and a Kshatriya. My name is Karn. Please be pleased with me, I did this only to learn weapons. Because Guru is like a father that is why I introduced myself as the member of your own family." Raam said - "You lied because of being greedy of weapons, you will not remember them. Because you are not a Braahman you will not be able to use this weapon until you meet a warrior equal to yourself. I have no place for liars. Nobody will be equal to you in battle on earth."

Naarad Jee further said - "Thus Karn started passing time in the company of Duryodhan. Once there was Swayamvar of Kaling Desh's princess, daughter of Chitraangad, at his capital Raajpur. There were Duryodhan, Karn, Jaraasandh, Shishupaal, Bheeshmak, Vakra, Kapotaroman, Neel, Rukmee, Shring etc. As she passed Duryodhan, he could not tolerate his insult and asked her to stop. He abducted her by force relying on the powers of Bheeshm and Drone. Karn followed him. Other kings followed them with the intention to fight with him, but Karn fell their bows etc with a single arrow. The kings had to retreat and Duryodhan brought the princess safely to Hastinaapur.

Hearing this Jaraasandh challenged Karn for a single combat. Both were conversant with celestial weapons. At last both lost their bows, exhausted arrows, broke swords, and they both were without chariots, they began to fight with bare arms. Karn was about to sever the two portions of his body, that Jaraasandh felt an inense pain in hi body and said to him "I am satisfied". As a token of friendship he gave Maalinee town to Karn. Till now he was the king of Ang only but now he was the ruler of Champaa also. Then Indra begged his Kavach and Kundal to do your good and he gave those precious things to him. That is why he was killed by Arjun. So it was because of the Shaap of the Braahman, anger of Parashuraam, boon to Kuntee and Indra's illusion, that he was killed by Arjun. Bheeshm counted him as half warrior, Shalya destroyed his half energy by his words, Vaasudev's policy, obtaining celestial weapons from Rudra, Indra, Yam, Varun, Kuber, Drone and Kripaa made Arjun succeed in killing him. But you should not grieve for that tiger among men."

Naarad got silent after saying this and Yudhishthir again sank in thoughts. Seeing this Kuntee said - "Don't grieve like this. Listen to what I say to you. Soorya Dev (once in dream and once in my presence) and I tried to tell him good about the relationship with you, but neither by affection nor by logic we could change him to unite with you, so I gave up." Yudhishthir said - "It is because you concealed this fact from me that is why I am so grieved." Then he said - "From today no woman will be able to keep anything a secret." and he again plunged into the sea of grief."

Vaishampaayan Jee further said - "When Yudhishthir gathered himself, he said to Arjun - "If we had been living peacefully in Vrishni's or Andhak's cities then this situation would not have arisen. Now our enemies are in Heaven and we are grieving for our people. We are bearing the weight of our being alive. Who have been killed they should not have been killed by us even for the whole earth or mountains of gold. Fathers wish for the good for their children, mothers observe vows and fasts to conceive, then they pass ten months in misery wishing for their safe delivery. And after their delivery they wish for their happy and peaceful life. But alas, today those children have gone to Yam Raaj. Being a father Dhritraashtra tolerated Duryodhan's every evil act. Who else could use such bad language in the presence of Krishnaa as he did. Because of his acts this race is finished today. I don't need this kingdom now." And Yudhishthir got silent.


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Created by Sushma Gupta On 03/09/02
Modified on 11/24/11