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Thread: The Greatest Indian Epic - Mahabharath

  1. #1
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    The Greatest Indian Epic - Mahabharath

    Dear all,

    Let's discuss about the Greatest Epic ever and it's Characters, from the Pandavas, Kauravas to Lord Krishna. I would be greatful if intellectuals like Sudhaama / Pradheep actively take part in this.

    Ok, here is my first Question, Lord Vishnu took an Avatar as Krishna during the Dwapara Yuga as Krishna/Balram, and as Ram/lakshman in Satya Yuga, where the lord is to take an Avatr as Kalki in the Kali yuga.

    were all my statements above correct, Kalki avtar is said to be the last Avatar in the process, this is the Lord's 10th Avatar!

    now, which year did the greatest battle of Kurushestra take place?

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    Senior Member Seasoned Hubber viggop's Avatar
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    Dear Raghu
    Let us stick to the characters of Mahabharatha.Going into dates in tricky and will lead to confusions.

    Lakshmana was an avatara of Adi Seshan

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    Senior Member Seasoned Hubber viggop's Avatar
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    I think Mahabharatha as a story starts with King Janemajayan /King Yayati?

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    Quote Originally Posted by viggop
    Dear Raghu
    Let us stick to the characters of Mahabharatha.Going into dates in tricky and will lead to confusions.

    Lakshmana was an avatara of Adi Seshan
    Dear viggop

    Ok, cool, but Balram was an avatar of Lakshman right?

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    was the greatest warrior Karna Right about his Dharma, ie, even though he knew that his
    dearest friend Dhoriyodhana was fighting an adharma Yuth, and he will be fighting his own brothers?

    Are his reasons justified by the fact, his life was indebted to Dhoriyodhana, I think he chose
    the right path, any different opinions?

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    Viggop,
    Yayati's story is different. I think the king you are referring to is Vichitra Veerya(or Veeran?). Yayati was another ancient king whose storyline is somewhat similar to Dushyantha.

    Reminded of the Mahabharat series that ran on Doordarshan starting Sunday October 2 1988. Interestingly, the Seoul Olympics ended that day

    Vichitra Veerya rules over Hastinapur and during the course of his hunting expeditions, happen to encounter Ganga and marries her..Ganga is of course the sea goddess who tosses 7 of their children into the sea. The moment Vichitra questions her, she leaves him for good.

    wait a minute, if my memory is right, VV was father to Dhritharashtra and Pandu. If thats the case, VV is not the guy who married ganga...did Pandu and Dh.... come up so early in the family tree?

    anyways, the mahabharat on TV was good fun(Oct 88 to May 90) - lot of old Hindi actors/actresses. Rupa Ganguly played Draupadi, Nitish Bharadwaj as Krishna, Puneet Issar as Duryodhan(following his successful portrayal, Puneet enjoyed a fine casting in a murder mystery serial that ran Thursday nights 9:50), Praveen Kumar as Bheema - Praveen is none else but the guy who won the discus bronze medal for India in the Teheran Asian Games 1974

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    Remember Amrapali and Yayati's stories appearing back to back in Amar Chitra Katha releases in the mid-80s. I think RK Narayan covered yayati in "Gods, Demons and Other Stories".

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    Moderator Veteran Hubber Badri's Avatar
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    It is sad that sometimes the only way we get information about our immortal epics is by way of TV serials.

    Anyway, hehewalrus, that was Shantanu. He was Bheesma's father. It was he who married Ganga.

    Madhu, regarding your question about Karna, I have this to share with you.

    was the greatest warrior Karna Right about his Dharma, ie, even though he knew that his
    dearest friend Dhoriyodhana was fighting an adharma Yuth, and he will be fighting his own brothers?

    Are his reasons justified by the fact, his life was indebted to Dhoriyodhana, I think he chose
    the right path, any different opinions?
    Actually, although at face value, what Karna did seems right to everyone, and therefore, Krishna and Arjuna seem to be the villains of the piece in unfairly killing Karna, consider the following argument.

    Karna was ridiculed as a mere charioteer's son even though he excelled in the archery contest. Duryodhana for his own selfish reasons more than friendship for Karna immediately stepped in and offered Karna a kingdom, and made him the king of Anga Desa.

    This made Karna indebted to Duryodhana. So far so good. In fact, the friendship between Karna and Duryodhana was so strong that it seems once Karna was playing dice with Duryodhana's wife when her upper garment slipped and fell, and she did not notice it. Duryodhana, who happened to come by, saw this and he helped her with her dress, without saying a word in anger, meaning he trusted Karna so much.

    Excellent relationship. Now comes the tricky question of Dharma. Clearly, what Duryodhana did later on (tricking the Pandavas, and worse, disrobing Draupadi) was wrong. Now, if Raghu, I were really a good friend of you, would I cheer you in your wrong doing, or would I step in and tell you the consequences of your act? Would I counsel you and prevent you from doing something that would bring harm on you, or would I egg you on, and participate along with you in the wrong doing?

    This is what Karna did. He, along with Duryodhana, Dusshana and Shakuni became counted as the Dushta Chatushtaya or the Four Villains for his infamous act in disrobing Draupadi. In fact, it was he who suggested it to Duryodhana in the first place.

    While people argue that Karna was an epitome of gratitude, nothing can be farther from the truth. In actually leading his best friend down the path of ruin and ultimately to death, he not only brought a blemish on friendship but also on gratitude.

    Perhaps by fighting he tried to make amends. Even then, his fight was against Arjuna, so there was the element of personal vendetta too involved in his supporting Duryodhana in the war. It was not purely an unselfish participation, merely for the sake of Duryodhana who had helped him. Therefore in fighting for Duryodhana, there was no question of any dharma at all - neither dharma as in right vs wrong, nor in dharma as in a debt of friendship.

    In fact, with respect to Karna, one can say, with friends like these, who needs enemies!!
    When we stop labouring under the delusion of our cosmic self-importance, we are free of hindrance, fear, worry and attachment. We are liberated!!!

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    Moderator Veteran Hubber Badri's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hehehewalrus
    Viggop,
    Yayati's story is different. I think the king you are referring to is Vichitra Veerya(or Veeran?). Yayati was another ancient king whose storyline is somewhat similar to Dushyantha.
    Actually Viggop is right. The Mahabharatha story can be said to start with Yayati. He was the forefather of the Kuru line. Yayati had three sons, and lived to a ripe old age, when he wanted to enjoy the pleasures of youth again. He approached each son, and requested them to exchange their youth for his old age. The first 2 refused, and only the 3rd Puru accepted to sacrifice his youth to satisfy his father's desire. Yayati further enjoyed as a young man, with renewed vigour, when wisdom finally dawned on him that no matter how much one strives to enjoy the pleasures of the world, one never gets truly satisfied. Much chastened, he returned the youth back to Puru and further rewards him by making him the heir to the throne although he was the third son. One of Yayati's son founds the Yadava race. Puru's descendants became the Kuru clan to which both the Kauravas and the Pandavas belonged.
    When we stop labouring under the delusion of our cosmic self-importance, we are free of hindrance, fear, worry and attachment. We are liberated!!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by sbadri99
    Anyway, hehewalrus, that was Shantanu. He was Bheesma's father. It was he who married Ganga.
    Badri, thanks for correcting Nice recollection there! I forgot how Bheeshma was born. I remember the point where Ganga takes another baby to the river and Shanthanu follows her and stops her before she tosses that one. Who exactly was Bheeshma's mother?

    About Yayati, I am not able to remember much. I can only recollect this fragment : Yayati is going on a chariot with his first wife and they approach a group of boys playing in the forest. The boys note him and cry out "It's father"! Yayati's wife cries out, "Father?? Nooooooo!!!" :P Is that the same Yayati or am I totally wrong there?

    Its not true that other than TV there is no way of recollecting these stories. Starting with Krishna(1980) Amar Chitra Katha was released as a fortnightly and covered one character from history/mythology each issue. This was the bread-and-butter of most school kids and they covered arguably lesser known characters in great detail, such as Shikhandi, Parasurama, Hari Singh Nalva. (When I was 12, I fractured my hand and was exempt from school for 2 months. My mother used to get half dozen books daily from the nearby library to keep me occupied. When Mahabharat started in October, my joy knew no bounds - Ramayan had ended in July 88 and the scenes of those funny graphic wars between Indrajith and Ram/Lakshman vanished for a while. Good to see those funny fights where the TV screen shows two toy arrows approaching each other at top speed, with a loud whoooooooooosh sound in the background, and then one arrow hits the other exactly in the middle and splits it into two! After watching those fights, we kids started collecting ballpen refills and fire away on "targets" all over the neighborhood)

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