Wednesday, July 17, 2013


volume I - Adiparva

vaiSampAyana uvAca Adi127 001 tatah srastottarapaTah saprasvedah savepathuh- viveSAdhiratho rangam yashTiprANo hvayann iva || tam Alokya dhanus tyaktvA pitrigauravayantritah- karNo abhishekArdraSirAh SirasA samavandata || tatah pAdAv avacchAdya paTAntena sasambhramah- putreti paripUrNArtham abravId rathasArathih || parishvajya ca tasyAtha mUrdhAnam snehaviklavah- angarAjyAbhishekArdram aSrubhih sishice punah || tam drishTvA sUtaputro ayam iti niScitya pANDavah- Bhimasenas tadA vAkyam abravIt prahasann iva Adi127 006 na tvam arhasi pArthena sUtaputra raNe vadham- kulasya sadriSas tUrNam pratodo grihyatAm tvayA || angarAjyam ca nArhas tvam upabhoktum narAdhama- SvA hutASasamIpastham purodasam ivAdhvare || evam uktas tatah karNah kim cit prasphuritAdharah- gaganastham vinihSvasya divAkaram udaikshata || tato duryodhanah kopAd utpapAta mahAbalah- bhrAtripadmavanAt tasmAn madotkaTa iva dvipah.

CONTEXT AND GIST Princes pANDavas and kauravas were learning archery from preceptor drONa.
drONA arranged an Open exhibition of skills of Princes.
2nd pANDava prince bhIma excelled in wrestling and fighting with mace. kaurava prince duryOdhana too.
3rd pANDava prince arjuna excelled in archery.
At that point of time, son of a charioteer, by name karNa rose up and showed out some of his own skills.
He wanted to have a single combat with arjuna.
Preceptor 2 kripAcarya intervened and said that such contests could only take place between Princes (Kings) and not between unequals.
As karNa was just son of a charioteer, he bent his head in shame.
kaurava Prince 1 duryOdhana stepped in, offered his friendship to karNa, and anointed him as a king of anga kingdom.
Seeing his son coronated as king, karNa`s faster father approached his son, joyfully.
Seeing his father approaching, karNa embraced him and shared his joy.
Here I shall quote from Ganguli`s translation:
Seeing him, Karna left his bow and impelled by filial regard bowed down his head still wet with the water of inauguration. And them the charioteer, hurriedly covering his feet with the end of his sheet, addressed Karna crowned with success as his son. And the charioteer embraced Karna and from excess of affection bedewed his head with tears, that head still wet with the water sprinkled over it on account of the coronation as king of Anga. Seeing the charioteer, the Pandava Bhimasena took Karna for a charioteer's son, and said by way of ridicule, 'O son of a charioteer, thou dost not deserve death in fight at the hands of Partha. As befits thy race take thou anon the whip. And, O worst of mortals, surely thou art not worthy to sway the kingdom of Anga, even as a dog doth not deserve the butter placed before the sacrificial fire.'

Karna, thus addressed, with slightly quivering lips fetched a deep sigh, looked at the God of the day in the skies. And even as a mad elephant riseth from an assemblage of lotuses, the mighty Duryodhana rose in wrath from among his brothers, and addressed that performer of dreadful deeds, Bhimasena, present there, 'O Vrikodara, it behoveth thee not to speak such words. Might is the cardinal virtue of a Kshatriya, and even a Kshatriya of inferior birth deserveth to be fought with. The lineage of heroes, like the sources of a lordly river, is ever unknown. The fire that covereth the whole world riseth from the waters. The thunder that slayeth the Danavas was made of a bone of (a mortal named) Dadhichi. The illustrious deity Guha, who combines in his composition the portions of all the other deities is of a lineage unknown. Some call him the offspring of Agni; some, of Krittika, some, of Rudra, and some of Ganga. It hath been heard by us that persons born in the Kashatriya order have become Brahmanas. Viswamitra and others (born Kshatriyas) have obtained the eternal Brahma. The foremost of all wielders of weapons, the preceptor Drona hath been born in a waterpot and Kripa of the race of Gotama hath sprung from a clump of heath. Your own births, ye Pandava princes, are known to me. Can a she-deer bring forth a tiger (like Karna), of the splendour of the Sun, and endued with every auspicious mark, and born also with a natural mail and ear-rings? This prince among men deserveth the sovereignty of the world, not of Anga only, in consequence of the might of his arm and my swearing to obey him in everything. If there be anybody here to whom all that I have done unto Karna hath become intolerable, let him ascend his chariot and bend his bow with the help of his feet.

MY PERSONAL VIEWS AS BLOGGER We can easily see the loose talk indulged in by bhIma. He had unnecessarily created illwill between himself and karNa. Otherwise, there would have been no need for karNa to hate bhIma or pANDavas. Though karNa was grateful to duryOdhana for raising him from the son of a charioteer to the king of anga, karNa would not have unreasonably hated pANDavas.

Of course, duryOdhana might have tried to kill bhIma by drowning him in rivers and offending him with snake bites. But, this could not be a reason for looking down upon karNa. It can be a cause for hating durYodhana. Not for insulting karNa.
bhIma instead of calling karNa a dog longing to taste the sacrificial butter (a very very bad simile), and insulting him, should have befriended him by offering him some gifts. With the permission of elders, he should offered a kingdom/princehood to karNa, even before duryOdhana offered it.

Thus we can know loose-talk and scoundrel-ity are traits which are inherent traits of prince-hood and royalty.

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