This is true. The great Bhishma once fought with Parshurama, an incarnation of Vishnu and was undefeated. Here are some unknown facts about him.
This is true. The great Bhishma once fought with Parshurama, an incarnation of Vishnu and was undefeated. Here are some unknown facts about him.
Mahabharata war which lasted eighteen days has seen various great warriors in action. On one side, there were five pandavas with Krishna as their guide, another side was full of great warriors, Bhishma, Drona, Karna and many more.
In the context of Mahabharata, eighteen is an important number. Duryodhana had 11 akshouhini soldiers and Pandavas had 7, making a total of eigtheen. There are eighteen chapters in the epic and last but not the least, the war has lasted for exactly eighteen days.
Uttara and Sweta, sons of Virata, were killed on day one of Mahabharata war. Shalya killed Uttara and Bhishma killed Sweta. This day belonged to Kauravas. Second day belonged to Pandavas and Satyaki killed Bhishma’s charioteer. Bhishma dazzled in kurukshetra and Yudhishthira was forced to thinking that how would they conquer this army which has warriors like Bhishma.
Such was the power of Bhishma that even Lord Krishna decided to fight with him though he said that he will not fight in the war.
On day three, Bhishma killed many soldiers of Pandava army. On fourth day, Bhima killed eight brothers of Duryodhana. Day eight spelled some misery for pandavas, as Arjuna’s son Iravan was killed.
On ninth day, Shri Krishna lost his patience and intended to attack Bhishma. Bhishma so far was proving too much for pandavas army, but Arjuna pacified him. He devises a strategy to cause Bhishma’s downfall. Interestingly, the secret of his downfall was given by Bhishma only. This was made possible by Shikhandi facing him and Arjuna using Shikhandi as shield. (Tenth day). Pandava’s chances only improved after Bhishma was removed from the equation.
On Twelfth day, Susharma engaged Arjuna. Susharma was part of the Duryodhana’s plan to capture Yudhishthir to win the war. On thirteenth day, while Arjuna was fighting Bhagdatta and Susharma, Drona made Chakravyuha formation. Nobody in pandavas knew the key to this apart from Arjuna. Abhimanyu knew how to enter but did not know how to come out of it. Once he entered, Jayadrath ensured that no pandava could follow him. Trapped, Abhimanyu fought valiantly before dying in hands of son of Dushasana, Durmashana.
Abhimanyu killed Brihadbala. He also defeated Duryodhana but let him live because Bhima was under oath to kill him. Seeing this, Karna snaps Abhimanyu’s bow from behind while Drona kills Abhimanyu’s horses and charioteer from the front. Then all Kauravas attacked him simultaneously. Dushasana’s son crushed his skull with a mace. However, Abhimanyu killed him with his own mace before dying. He also killed more than half akshouhini’s of Kaurava’s that day.
Next day (fourteenth), Arjuna kills 5 Akshouhini’s of Kauravas and Jayadrath after coming to touching distance of death. This could have doomed pandava’s chances of winning the battle had Krishna not intervened. Karna kills Ghatotkacha with Indrastra, this again ensures that one more factor of Arjuna’s death is taken care of. Satyaki killed Bhurisravas.
on Day fifteen, Drupad and Virata were killed by Drona. This was indeed Drona’s day, as he was decimating pandava’s army with the help of brahmadanda. Bhima killed an elephant, named Ashwaththama, and claimed that Drona’s son was killed. Drona dropped his arms after Yudhishthira confirmed this and was killed by Dhristdyumna.
On sixteenth day, Dushashana was killed by Bhima. Bhima tore his arm and drank the blood from his heart. Draupadi could finally tie her hairs with the blood from Dushashana’s heart.
Day seventeenth saw the demise of Karna in hands of Arjuna. He was killed in the same way as Abhimanyu, helpless. Earlier that day, Karna spared Sahdev and Arjuna. Nakula, the most handsome of kuru clan, killed Shakuni’s son Uluka. He took this oath during the gambling loss of killing Uluka. Nakula also killed three of Karna sons, Chitrasena, Sushena and Satyasena. Shalya became the commander of Kaurava’s army on seventeenth day of Mahabharat war.
On final (eighteenth) day, Shalya, who acted as the charioteer of Karna, was killed by Yudhishthir. There was a strange ability to him that he would grew more stronger in a battle as the aggression of his enemies grew. Only Yudhishthir could kill the powerful warrior because the eldest Pandava was not a man of aggression. Sahdev killed Shakuni to avenge the events which followed dice game. Seeing his eminent defeat, Duryodhana sought refuge in a lake. Pandavas found him there and Yudhisthira made a mistake. He offered Duryodhana to pick any of the Pandavas for a duel. Duryodhana chose Bhima. Balrama also watched this great duel between strength and agility. Bhima finally breaks Duryodhana thighs which enrages Balrama as this was against the rules of the war. Incidentally, Bhima vowed after the dice game that he would break Duryodhana’s thighs.
Later in the night, Ashwaththama slays sons of Pandavas while they were sleeping. He also kills Shikhandi and Dhrishtadyumna. Dhrishtadyumna was the commander of Pandavas that day. He also attempted to kill unborn son of Abhimanyu who was saved by Shri Krishna. Ashwaththama was later cursed by Shri Krishna. Ashwaththama was supported by Kritvarma and Kripacharya.
Bhishma, or Devvrata will be known in the history as one of the great warriors who adorned this earth. The story of his birth was and his death were strange, but even stranger were his deeds on this planet. We all know that he has taken couple of difficult vows, but there are few other stories which are equally mesmerizing. Read on.
This is the story of Amba and Bhishma. It is a well known fact that Amba was discarded by her lover and Bhishma. She did severe penance to exact her revenge on Bhishma. Following this, Lord Subramanya appeared and given her a garland of lotuses which were fresh forever. This was also said that whosoever wears the garland, would be the enemy of Bhishma. Getting her desired blessing, she sought the help of the present warriors, but such was the clout of Bhishma, nobody dared to accept the garland.
Frustrated, she hanged the garland at the gates of King Drupad and left. Later on, she dived in a pyre of fire and given her life. In her next life, she was born as a girl to Drupad and playfully wore the garland and later became the reason of Bhishma’s demise.
After leaving garland of Lotus, Amba reached to Parshurama and requested him to teach Bhishma a lesson. Parshurama, who also was the teacher of Bhishma, decided to fight him in order to have justice for Amba. The fight ensued for a long time and nobody could be beaten. Reason, Parshurama was akhand chiranjeevi, means one who could not die and Bhishma had a boon from his father, Shantanu, that he would be able to choose the time of his death.
Bhishma was the child of Ganga and Shantanu. There is a story of how Ganga drowned her seven sons, and Bhishma was eighth. This was because of a curse from sage Vasistha. Ganga took her eighth child away with her. After 16 years, a youth was found stopping the water flow of Ganga with a wall of arrows. When Shantanu came to know, he himself went to see that. He found a young man doing this, then he got ready to have a fight with him, the then Gangaa came, introduced him as his son and handed over him to Shantanu. Shantanu brought him home. His Guru were Parashuraam Jee and Brihaspati Jee like teachers.
Grandsire Bhishma’s body was pierced all over by arrows which served as his bed. He noticed that the sun was in Dakshinayana and hence it was not the best time to embrace death. Hence he waited 58 days for Uttarayana while lying on the bed of arrows. Bhishma Pitamaha had attained a boon from his father Shantanu that death would befall him only when he desired it.
On the bed of arrows, after the war of Mahabharata was over, Pandavas reached over to Bhishma. Yudhisthira asks some questions which essentially ask how the welfare of mankind can be achieved. Bhishma answers by stating that mankind will be free from all sorrows by chanting the [quote]”Vishnusahasranama“[/quote], which are the thousand names of the all-pervading Supreme being Vishnu, who is the master of all the worlds, the supreme light, the essence of the universe and who is Brahman. All matter animate and inanimate reside in him, and he in turn resides within all matter. This is available in anushashana parva of Mahabharata.
Vasus went for a holiday with their wives to a mountain tract where stood the hermitage of Vasishtha. One of them saw Vasishtha’s cow, Nandini, grazing there. Its divinely beautiful form attracted him and he pointed it out to the ladies. They were all loud in praise of the graceful animal, and one of them requested her husband to secure it for her. The vasu, Prabhasa explained that this cow is of no use, but on her insistence, he has given in. When Vasistha knew about, he cursed vasus to be born into the world of men. When the Vasus came to know of the curse, they asked forgiveness. Vasistha softened the curse on other brothers, but not on the one who took the cow away. This boy later became the eighth child of Ganga and Shantanu, Devvrata. He later known as Bhishma, who even caused the Lord to break his promise.
Perhaps the grandest of his feats, was the occasion in the war of kurukshetra, when Shri Krishna decided to fight the grandsire. This happened after Bhishma created havoc in pandava’s army with his skills. Lord Krishna decided before the war that he will not pickup any weapon. On other hand Bhishma promised Duryodhana that he will fight like a lion and will kill Arjuna. There was an intense battle between Arjuna and Bhisma and Arjun being powerful still was no match for Bhishma. Bhishma shot arrow which cut Arjuna armour and his gandiva bow. Arjuna was helpless before the wrath of the old, but powerful warrior. As Bhishma was about to kill Arjuna with his arrow Lord Krishna could not tolerate his devotee’s plight and he immediately threw down the chariot rein and jumped off the chariot onto the battle field and lifted a chariot wheel and charged Bhishma. Arjuna tried to stop Lord krishna but Lord says that in order to protect my devotee I must break my own promise.
Here we come again with an unknown fact from the great indian epic, Mahabharata. This is about the brother of Pandu and Dhritrashtra, who was knowledgeable and wise, the great Vidura.
Few people know that Vidura, the chief minister of Dhritrashtra was an incarnation of Dharma. There is an interesting story behind this. Dharma was cursed by a sage so Vidura incarnated on the earth.
Sage Mandavya was deep in meditation and he was mistaken as a chief of robbers by a king and was punished too. When the king realized the mistake, he came and asked for forgiveness. At that point of time, the Sage questioned Dharmaraj that what was his fault.
Lord Dharma, who knew the great power of the sage, replied in all humility: “O sage, you have tortured birds and bees. Are you not aware that all deeds, good or bad, however small, inevitably produce their results, good or evil?” Sage Mandavya was surprised and inquired that when did he commit the sin? Dharma said that when he was a little child.
Hearing this, Sage Mandavya cursed Dharma that he would be born as mortal as his punishment far outweighs the misdeed he did.
Lord Dharma who was thus cursed by the sage Mandavya incarnated as Vidura and was born of the servant-maid of Ambalika, the wife of Vichitravirya.
This story shows that Vidura was the incarnation of Dharma. The great men of the world regarded Vidura as a sage who was unparalleled in his knowledge of dharma, sastras and statesmanship and was totally devoid of attachment and anger.
He was appointed by Bhishma, while he was still in his teens, as the chief counsellor of king Dhritarashtra. Vyasa has said that no one in the three worlds could equal Vidura in virtue and knowledge.
Bhishma (son of Shantanu and Ganga) was a great archer and a warrior. He is known for his vow of celibacy and skills in the Mahabharata. He had the task of finding a bride for his half-brother, Vichitravirya. He abducted princesses Amba, Ambika and Ambalika of Kashi (Varanasi) at their swayamvara. Salwa, the ruler of Saubala, and Amba (the eldest princess) were committed to each other. When Amba confided in Bhishma that she wished to wed Salwa. Knowing this, He sent her back to Salwa who turned her down as it was humiliating for him to accept a woman who had been so long in the company of another man. She then naturally approached Bhishma and demanded him to marry her, which he refused, citing his vow. Amba, humiliated and enraged beyond measure, vowed to avenge herself against Bhishma.
Legend has it that at her maternal grandfather’s suggestion Amba sought refuge with Parshurama, who ordered Bhishma to marry Amba. Parshurama (sixth incarnation of Lord Vishnu) was the guru of Bhishma. He politely refused saying that he was ready to give up his life at the command of his teacher but he could not break his promise. Upon the refusal, Parshurama called him for a fight at Kurukshetra. At the battleground, while he was on a chariot, Parshurama was on foot. Bhishma requested Parasurama to also take a chariot and armour so that Bhishma would not have an unfair advantage. Parshurama blessed Bhishma with the power of divine vision and asked him to look again. When Bhishma looked at his guru with the divine eye-sight, he saw the Earth as Parshurama’s chariot, the four Vedas as the horses, the upanishads as the reins, Vayu (wind) as the charioteer and the Vedic goddesses Gayatri, Savitri & Saraswati as the armour.
Bhishma got down from the chariot and sought the blessings of Parshurama to protect his dharma, along with the permission to battle against his teacher. Parshurama was pleased and said to Bhishma that if he had not behaved in this manner, Parshurama would have cursed him, for it is the duty of warriors who fight against elders to not abandon the traditions of humility and respect for elders. Parshurama blessed him and advised him to protect his dharma of brahmacharya as Parshurama himself must fight to fulfil his dharma of fighting to uphold his word as given to Amba. They fought for 23 days without conclusion — Parshurama was chiranjeevi (immortal) and Bhishma had a boon that let him choose the time of his death. Two versions exist about how their battle came to and end.
As per one, On the 22nd night, Bhishma prayed to his ancestors to help him end the battle. His ancestors gave him a weapon which was not known to Parshurama . They told him that it would put Parshurama to sleep in the battlefield. A person who sleeps in the battlefield is considered to be dead as per Vedas. They advised Bhishma to call back the weapon at the end of day after sunset so that Parshurama will come back to his sense and that shall bring the end to war. However the weapon was never used as Bhishma walked out of the war.
As per the other version, on the 23rd day, Bhishma summoned the infallible celestial weapon(astra) Prashvapastra, the method of using which was known to him and him alone. Neither did a counter-attack exist, nor was a defense against it known to Parshurama . As Bhishma mounted the astra on his bow, a divine voice guided Bhishma not to fire the weapon as its use would lead to the humiliation of Bhishma’s guru(Parasurama himself). Bhishma refrained from using the weapon that would have brought him certain victory. Upon witnessing this, Parshurama was overcome with adulation for his disciple and proclaimed Bhishma as the victor.
Parshurama thus told Amba that he could not win over Bhishma and gave her the boon of “mahakal shiva”. Amba did penance to please Lord Shiva. Shiva gave her the boon that she would be instrumental in the death of Bhishma. Amba would later be reborn as the eunuch prince Shikhandi in the household of king Drupada.
Parshurama is the sixth incarnation (one of the dashavatara) of Lord Vsihnu. He is said to be one of the chiranjeevis. Chiranjeevi means one who doesn’t die.
Parshurama is born to Sage Jamdagni and Renuka. Parshurama was very obedient to his father, and once when asked by his father, he did not hesitate and beheaded his own mother. Jamdagni and Renuka meditated before the birth of Parshurama and with the blessing of Shiva, Vishnu agreed to take incarnation as their son which became sixth of the ten dashavataras. He was the fifth son of his parents.
In his childhood, he did severe penance and pleased Lord Shiva. Lord presented him with the weapon parshu, thus the boy was called as Parshurama.
At that point of time, a king named Kartavirya Arjuna became very strong. He also defeated Ravana. One day, he came to the hermitage of sage Jamdagni and was welcomed by the sage. Jamdagni had a cow, Kamdhenu, presented by Indra, which allowed him to serve his guests. Impressed, kartavirya wanted the cow, which Jamdagni denied. The king stole the calf.
Parshurama was not at home at this point of time. When he returned back, he went to the palace of King Kartavirya and killed him. Then he retrieved Kamdhenu and came back to his home.
Soon, sons of Kartavirya discovered their father at the palace and knew that only Parashurama could have killed him. In revenge, they traveled to the hermitage and murdered Jamadagni, surrounding the rishi and shooting him to death with arrows like a stag. Afterwards, they decapitated his body and took his head with them.
When Parshurama discovered his mother weeping over the body of his father, he vowed to avenge the death of his father. He hunted down the sons of Kartavirya at the palace. He killed them all and returned with the head of his father to conduct the cremation. Parashurama then vowed to enact a genocide on the war-mongering Kshatriyas twenty-one times over.
Parshurama is also the guru or teacher of Bhishma, Drona and Karna. Parshurama’s famous curse is on Karna which rendered the Brahmastra useless for Karna.
During Sita swayamvar, Rama broke the bow of Lord Shiva. Hearing the sound of breaking of the bow, Parshurama came there and challenged Rama to string the bow with an arrow. Rama, being an avatar of Lord Vishnu, easily mounted the arrow and asked Parshurama, where should I fire this arrow now? Parshurama realized that Rama was an incarnation of Lord Vishnu, and his own role has completed now.
In the epic Mahabharata, there are numerous facts which fascinates us. This is also known as pancham veda or fifth veda. Few people know that the entire epic was narrated as a flashback at the Sarpa Yagna being conducted by Janmejaya, the son of Parikshit (Abhimanyu’s son). There are interesting stories which narrate why the Sarpa Yagna had to be conducted, and who were all the people acting as catalysts for the Yagna.
Following are the 51 facts, which will surely entertain you.
1. Kauravas had one sister. Her name was Dushala. She was later married to Jayadratha, who was killed by Arjuna to revenge the death of his son, Abhimanyu.
2. Abhimanyu’s wife was Uttara. His son Parikshit later on became the king.
3. Satyawati smelled like a fish. Her name was Matsyagandha. By the boon of sage Parashar, she smelled like a flower. She was also a mother of Sage Vyasa. Satyavati was the daughter of a cursed apsara named Adrika.
4. Drona was born in a vessel. He was sage Bhardwaj’s son.
5. Jarasandh was born in two halves. These two halves were fused by a rakshasi Jara, hence his name Jarasandh. Jarasandh was killed by Bheema.
6. Arjuna defeated the kauravas after the agyaatvaas, which included Drona, Karna and Bhishma. Uttar was his charioteer.
7. By a boon of Gandhari, Duryodhana’s body became impregnable, save for his thighs, where, he, on advice of Shri Krishna, wore a loin cloth.
8. Bhima could only kill Duryodhana because of stroke of the genius, Shri Krishna. See this link for details.
9. Shri Krishna did not fight the Mahabharata war. His army Narayani vahini, was on Kaurava’s side. Duryodhan and Arjun both went to Dwarka to meet Lord Krishna to seek his support for the war. Duryodhan was first to reach Dwarka. Satyaki informed that Krishna was asleep. Both Arjun and Duryodhan entered Krishna’s room. Duryodhan who entered the room first, sat on Krishna’s bed besides his head. Arjun went to the foot of the bed and stood there with his hands folded. When Krishna woke up he saw Arjun first. But Duryodhan said that since he came first if was only fair for Krishna to support the Kauravas. However, Krishna smiled and said that since he saw Arjun first so it would only be fair if he supported both the sides. So, on one hand was his famous Narayani army and on the other hand was he alone without any weapon. Naive Duryodhana thought that Shri Krishna would not be of use and he decided to have the Narayani Army.
10. Sahadeva (the youngest Pandava) was an excellent astrologer. He knew everything about the future. He knew that a war was going to occur, but he kept silent because he was under a curse that if he revealed anything to anybody he would die. There is also a story of him being a great astrologer. Pandu (Father of Pandavas) wished his sons must eat his flesh post death so that all the knowledge may transfer to them which he had collected after so many years. Only Sahadeva ate a piece; the moment he ate, he was able to see future but stopped by God.
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11. Draupadi kept her hair untied after the cheerharan. She vowed that she will tie her hair with Dushashana’s blood. Bheem did the needful.
12. Dhritrashtra crushed the iron statue of Bheema with bare hands. Duryodhana used to practice with the replica. Shri Krishna knew that he would like to kill Bheem, so he switched their places.
13. Pandavas hid their weapons on Sami tree during the agyaatvaas.
14. Ved Vyasa was the father of Dhritrashtra, Pandu and Vidura.
15. Bhishma’s real name was Devvrata. This is because of the vow he took so that his father can marry Satyavati, he was called Bhishma.
16. Arjuna was really a eunuch during the agyaatvaas. He was known as Brihannala. Thanks to a curse from Urvashi. In Indralok, Arjun was propositioned by Urvashi, but he used to address her as ‘mother’ as she had was married to his ancestor, Pururva. Annoyed with Arjun’s rejection, Urvashi cursed him to become a eunuch.
When lord Indra came to know about the curse, he told Arjun that this curse is going to serve as a boon during the one year stay in hiding and after spending that period, he would regain his masculinity. This proved to be true in Agyaatvaas. After spending twelve years in forest, Pandavas spent the 13th year of exile in cognito, in the court of King Virat. Arjuna used his curse and lived as a eunuch named Brihannala and remain undetected as required by the condition of anonymity.
17. Shri Krishna forgave Shishupala hundred times before killing him.
18. Karna’s teacher was Parshurama.
19. Babhruvahana killed Arjuna, his father. Arjuna’s life was restored with the help of a gem, given by Uloopi.
20. Subhadra, Chitrangada and Uloopi were wives of Arjuna. Subhadra was the sister of Shri Krishna.
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21. Karna and Bhishma never fought together. Because Bhishma treated Karna very lowly.
22. Ghatotkacha was killed by Karna with ekaghni.
23. Karna was born with Kavach and Kundala.
24. Draupadi was the daughter of King Drupada. Drupada was a friend of Drona. Panadavas defeated and imprisoned Drupada.
25. Drupada desired a son who could kill Drona who had humiliated him in battle and taken half his kingdom. Dhristdyumna killed Drona in Mahabharata war.
26. Ashwaththama killed Dhristdyumna, Shikhandi and sons of Pandavas with help of Kritvarma and Kripacharya on the last night of Mahabharata war.
27. Shri Krishna cursed Ashwaththama to be alive because of his act of cowardice.
28. Of the 100 brothers of kaurava, only Yuyutsu survived the Mahabharata war.
29. Yuyutsu had fought from Pandavas side.
30. Bheema killed all 99 brother of Kauravas.
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31. Bhishma himself told Yudhishthir that he can be defeated by a woman. Then Shikhandi came to rescue of Pandavas.
32. Drona killed Drupada.
33. Shalya was killed by Yudhishthir.
34. Shalya wanted to fight the war from Panadavas side, but Duryodhana tricked him to join the war from Kauravas. He finally became the commander, but popularly known as the sarathi of Karna.
35. Due to a boon given by Lord Shiva, Jayadratha was able to keep Pandavas away for a day. This became the reason of Abhimanyu’s demise.
36. Mahabharat war lasted for 18 days.
37. Pandavas rule was followed by their grandson, Parikshit. Pandavas son were killed by Ashwaththama during the Mahabharat war.
38. Abhimanyu learnt the trick of entering Chakravyuha, in his mother, Subhadra’s womb. Arjuna realised that she was asleep. So he did not explain the method of coming out from Chakravyuha, a skill which Abhimanyu could not learn.
39. Bhim killed Hidimb after escaping from Lakshagriha. He later married his sister, Hidimba.
40. Bhim also killed Vakasur, who ate large amount of grains and buffaloes everyday.
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41. Vidura helped Pandavas to escape from Lakshagriha.
42. Barbari was the grandson of Bhim. Krishna asked for his head as a gurudakshina, as it was feared that Pandavas would not be able to fulfill their vows, if he fought the Mahabharata war.
43. The Mahabharata has eighteen parvas or chapters.
44. Early life and Draupadi swayambar is written in Adi Parva.
45. The thirteenth parva of Mahabharat is Anushashana parva, where Bhishma tells Yushishthir how to conduct governance.
46. Jarasandha was killed in the same way he born, in two halves. He was killed by Bhima.
47. Kichak, in the Hindu epic Mahabharata, was the brother of queen Sudeshna of King Virata, the king of Matsya. Kichak was slain by Bhima during one year of incognito exile spent by Pandavas at the court of king Virata. King Virata was killed by Drona during the great war.
48. Killing of Kichak made Duryodhana to think that Pandavas were hiding at King Virata’s place. After all, there were very few people, who were capable of killing Kichak, Bhima was one of them.
49. After Shri Krishna’s death, Pandavas too lost their interest in life. They started their journey to heaven. All Pandavas have lost their lives during the journey. Only Yudhisthir and a dog made it to heaven. That dog was Dharmaraj.
50. Yudhisthira found his brothers in heaven. A surprising presence there was that of Duryodhana. Narada explained to Yudhisthira that Duryodhana never showed cowardice, he had been a just and good king, he died a brave’s death that too in the holy place. That’s why he is in heaven. Surprising indeed.
51. The Mahabharat war happened because of a lady. It is believed that Draupadi addressed sons of Dhritrashtra as sons of blind. This made Duryodhana to become a staunch enemy of Pandavas.
Mahabharata was was fought over for eighteen days. The major part saw the prowess of Bhishma. He was on the verge of decimating pandavas army single-handedly, before Shikhandi came to the rescue of Pandavas. Following is a brief on how the great warriors were neutralized and killed.
Bhima vowed that he would avenge Draupadi’s insult by breaking his thighs. Also, due to a boon from Gandhari, his body became invulnerable except for thighs. During his duel with Duryodhana in mahabharata war, Bhima broke Duryodhana’s thighs. Balrama fiercely protested but calmed by Krishna.
Bhima killed all the Kaurava’s, most notable of those were of Duryodhana’s and Dushashana’s.
Drona was proving too much for the pandava’s army on the fifteenth day of the mahabharata war. In a desperate bid to be saved from the onslaught, they resorted to some less than wanted tactic. On advise of Shri Krishna, Bhima claimed that his son, Ashwaththama is slain. Drona clarified this from Yudhishthira and went into meditation. He was killed by Dhrishtdyumna, son of Drupad.
Bhishma was the son of Shantanu and Ganges. He was the supreme commander of Kauravas in the mahabharata war. He himself let pandavas know the secret of his downfall. Otherwise, he was proving to be too much for pandavas and got Sri Krishna agitated as well.
Abhimanyu was the son of Arjuna and Subhadra and was a great warrior. His unjust killing in mahabarata led to the killing of Kauravas.
Only Abhimanyu had the knowledge of penetrating a chakravyuha. Drona plans a chakravyuha to capture Yudhishthira, but Abhimanyu was there for his rescue. But the boy did not know how to come out of that and though he was surrounded by all warriors including Duryodhana, Karna and others, yet he was proving difficult to overcome. At last, against the rules of war, he was killed by son of Dushashana after a mace fight.
In the war of kurukshetra, Karna’s chariot got stuck in the mud. He was unable to fight due to a curse from his teacher, Parshurama.
Arjuna killed him with the weapon anjalika while he was trying to retrieve the wheel. At this point of time, he was sans any weapon, which was against the rules of the war.
During Draupadi’s cheerharan, Dushashan dragged her in the courtroom by holding her hair. Draupadi vowed that she would not tie her hair until they are wet with the blood of Dushashan heart. She asked Bhim to bring the blood of Dushashana after killing him. Bhima obliged.
Jayadrath was Duryodhana’s brother in law. He was once insulted by Pandavas when he tried to abduct Draupadi. After severe penance, he obtained a boon from Lord Shiva. Due to this, he became the reason of Abhimanyu’s death. Arjuna vowed and killed him on the next day of the war. Of course, with help of Shri Krishna.
We come across unparalleled sacrifices in Indian mythology. Here are seven of them which are the most remarkable.
Sage Dadhichi has done the ultimate sacrifice of giving his life so that Devas finally got an upper hand over asuras. Because of his sacrifice, Indra got his famous weapon Vajra. This weapon was made from the bones of sage Dadhichi.
Once, Vritrasur, a powerful demon, wanted to conquer heaven. He fought with the gods and swallowed all their weapons. The gods went for help to Lord Vishnu. He said , the weapon made of sage Dadhichi bones can kill Vritasur. As the sage is my devotee, he should not be killed. You will have to request him to die to give his bones. Gods, led by Indra, went to Dhadichi and begged for his bones.
Dadhichi was ready to sacrifice his, but he wanted to go on a pilgrimage before that. Hearing this, Indra brought all the holy places near him. After taking dips in the holy waters, Dhadichi gave up his life. Indra made a weapon called Vajra with his bones and killed Vritrasur. This same vajra was used on Hanuman by Indra.
Devvrata, son of Ganga and Shantanu, pledged to remain bachelor all through his life. This was because Shantanu could marry Satyavati since her gather was sceptical that Satyavati’s sons would not get the ascendancy to the throne. Hearing this, Bhishma vowed that he will remain unmarried. Due to this, he is called Bhishma and his oath is called as Bhishma Pratigya.
Bhishma was not the only son who sacrificed for his father. Puru, son of Yayati, made a similar sacrifice by exchanging his youth with his fathers’ old age. As it happened that Yayati was cursed by Shukracharya to lose his youth. He later diluted the curse that Yayati could exchange his old age with someone’s youth.
Karna forgone the throne of Hastinapur when Kunti offered to him before the war of mahabharata. Karna also promised that Kunti will always have five sons. Due to his promise, he did not kill four pandavas, though he had a chance to do so. He also sacrificed his kavach and kundal to Indra.
Abhimanyu, Arjuna’s son literally opened the flood gates for killing of Kauravas with not so desired methods. Abhimanyu was killed in after he was trapped in Chakravyuha formation when he was fighting alone with all the veterans in Kaurava’s army. Shri Krishna leveraged this fact in killing of Drona and other warriors.
Barbari, son of Ghatotkach, grand son of Bhima was mightier than both pandavas and kauravas alone. Shri Krishna asked him for his head before the war of Mahabharata. This was because, due to a vow taken by Barbari, there was a possibility that he would have destroyed all the warriors from both armies.
Eklavya gave away the lone ambition of his life, to his teacher, Drona. This was probably the unparalleled sacrifice. A pupil, sacrificing everything to the teacher, who did not accept him as his pupil. What he gave? The right thumb, which is foremost important in archery.
Mahabharat has inspired bollywood. A number of hindi movies are based on this epic and rightly so, because no other epic provides the depth and variety as this does. There are a number of films and serials which have been made on Mahabharat story and in recent times, we see a modernised version of Mahabharat where the story line is inspired by Mahabharat.
Probably, the first movie based on Mahabharat was A Throw of Dice (Prapancha Pash 1929). This was based on myths and legends drawn from Indian epic Mahabharat. Charu roy and Sita devi were the characters of this film. This was directed by a german filmmaker Franz Osten. This same gentleman has directed the landmark hindi movie, Acchut kanya.
Kalyug – Many people perhaps struggle in remembering this hindi movie, but I reckon this was a commendable effort with actors related to art films. Victor Banerjee played the role of Duryodhana and Yudhisthir was played by Raj Babbar. Though the movie was based on modern times, one can easily relate to the characters. This was directed by Shyam Benegal.
Rajneeti – This is quite recent and the story line appears to be inspired by Mahabharat and The Godfather, a famous novel by Mario Pujo. Ajay Devgan has played Suraj which is Karna in Mahabharat. Manoj Bajpai admirably plays Duryodhana. There is Nana Patekar as Brijgopal or Shri Krishna and Ranvir Kapoor plays the role of Arjuna and Michael Corleone. The story is inspired by The Godfather here, where the elder brother of Ranveer, Arjun Rampal dies in the movie. This is more like Sonny Corleone. Nevertheless, a good attempt, but the surprise factor was not there. To read more about Rajneeti, the hindi movie, visit here.
Mahabharat – This hindi movie was made in 1965 with the same name as of this epic. Dara Singh played the role of Bhima. Abhi bhattacharya as Krishna and most appropriately, Jeevan played Shakuni. We don’t know much about how did this movie fared, perhaps you can help by giving your feedback through comments.
Mahabharat, the serial: In 1988, BR Chopra, the famous director – producer of Waqt fame, did a fantastic job of telling this epic. So beautifully this serial was made, that people used to wait in anticipation. The streets were deserted when this serial was aired on sunday mornings. Dara Singh played a brief cameo of Hanuman. Shri Krishna’s character was made his own by Nitish. Mukesh Khanna is also remembered fondly for his role played as Bhishma Pitamah.
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