shalmali-tree
I will narrate another story to demonstrate how an enemy should never be trusted even if he appears to be soft and is gentle in his speech. There lived a king by name Brahmadatta in the city of Kāmpilya. A bird by name Pūjini had built its nest in his palace and had lived there for a long time. The queen gave birth to a son and on the same day the bird too had an offspring. The bird brought fruits from the sea shore and fed the royal child and...
 
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Bhishma-Parva-Yudhishtira
It is good character that is more important than physical strength. Noble character leads to honesty, dhārmic outlook, strength and wealth. In the past, Prahlāda won over Indra and ruled the three worlds, merely because of his unblemished character. Indra disguised himself as a brāhmaṇa, went to Prahlāda and lived as a student with him. He received noble characteristics as a boon from Prahlāda, for having served him with sincerity. As soon as...
 
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In the activities related to the protection of his people, a king must only take help from people who are courageous, devoted, loyal, respected, hailing from a good family, those with health and strong bodies, good students, those who keep company of noble persons, those with self-respect, those who don’t look upon others with disdain, well-educated, experienced in worldly affairs, those with an eye on their legacy and the hereafter, those who...
 
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Bhīṣma began his instruction to Yudhiṣṭhira on rāja-dharma (the art and science of governance). First of all, a king has to be devoted to the deities and to brāhmaṇas. By worshipping deities and brāhmaṇas, the ṛṇa (debt) of dharma is paid and the king becomes loved by all. Skill in doing his work, integrity, and moral uprightness are important qualities that a king must possess; he must have compassion towards people from all four varṇas. But he...
 
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On a chosen day, Dharmarāja sat on a new chariot drawn by sixteen white steeds. Bhīma was the charioteer; Arjuna held a white umbrella; Nakula and Sahadeva fanned him with cāmaras (feathered fans). Yuyutsu, Sātyaki, and Kṛṣṇa were seated in different chariots that went behind Yudhiṣṭhira. Kuntī, Draupadī, Subhadrā, and other women received gifts from Vidura and set out on their own chariots. Dhṛtarāṣṭra and Gāndhārī went in front of everyone...
 
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Śānti-parva After offering the jala-tarpaṇa and other funeral rites to their departed relatives, Dharmarāja, Dhṛtarāṣṭra, and the rest of the Pāṇḍavas and Kauravas spent a month on the banks of the Gaṅgā until their mourning period was complete. Yudhiṣṭhira was overcome with disgust and cynicism. He looked at Arjuna and said, “Arjuna! It would have been better for us to spend our days seeking alms in the kingdom of the Yādavas rather than...
 
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Dharmarāja walked past all the women who were shouting at him, went to the old king Dhṛtarāṣṭra, and bowed down to him. The others too called out their own names and saluted the king. Dhṛtarāṣṭra embraced Dharmarāja without any affection. He asked, “Where is Bhīmasena?” His anger was getting invigorated by winds of rage and it seemed as though he would burn Bhīma to death. Kṛṣṇa, who knew Dhṛtarāṣṭra’s heart, was already prepared for such a...
 
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Starting from the first day of the war, Sañjaya went to the battlefield from the capital city every day and reported the day’s events to Dhṛtarāṣṭra. As the old king heard that Duryodhana was killed along with his entire army, he was engulfed in sorrow and sat motionless like a stone, unable to speak or think anything. He appeared like a huge tree that had lost all its leaves, branches, and fruits with only a part of its stump left behind....
 
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DuryodhanaLastMoments
Duryodhana was alive catching on to his last few breaths. He had trouble breathing and was being eaten alive by foxes, wolves and other wild animals. He was trying his best to shoo them away and hold on to his last moments. Kṛpa and Aśvatthāmā were touched looking at his sad state. Aśvatthāmā said – ‘O dear king! You are Balarāma’s student! How did that mere cook get a chance to beat you up so much? Time and Fate are very powerful. What kind of...
 
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Sauptika
Aśvatthāmā, Kṛpa and Kṛtavarma left Duryodhana and by sunset reached a forest in the vicinity. They fed their horses with water, gulped down sips from a river nearby and rested below a banyan tree. In no time, the Sun went down the horizon and night, like a nurse of the entire world night enveloped the place. The sky that was decked with stars and looked like a saree decorated with flowers. Rākṣasas started roaming around the forest in the...
 
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