In this episode, someone asks - "Sadhguru, you were talking about the cycles of existence. Why these cycles? Also, is dharma something we choose, or something that is waiting for us to discover it?". Sadhguru explains, what really is Dharma, and if it is predetermined and unchangeable! And how the right Sadhana can help calibrate a person their true Dharma.
This is an intriguing episode, in which Sadhguru narrates the story of Krishna's dream. After listening to the story, a seeker asks - "Sadhguru, the people whom Krishna let pass were either exploiters or exploited, but this person whom he does not let pass seems to be neither. So why did he not pass?" Sadhguru gives us insight, and explains - "Sweetness of life is not a goal by itself but a necessary condition for you to flower. This life flowers only when it tastes sweetness."
In this episode, Sadhguru answers a seeker's question on luck and grace. He asks, "..... Isn’t luck a byproduct of grace? Are intelligence and intellect the same?". Sadhguru says - "For the Pandavas, Krishna is their grace, and Draupadi is their luck." Sadhguru also elaborates on what is Karma, "Karma is not a concept of crime and punishment, that if you commit a crime, someone punishes you. Karma is a consequence of your own action.", and that intellect is not intelligence - "Intelligence is not thinking up something – intelligence means you have yoked yourself and are in tune with creation. This is what dhyana or meditation means; this is what Yoga means."
In this episode, a seeker asks Sadhguru to elaborate on Yudhishthira's response to a Yaksha's question. Yaksha asked - "And what is true forgiveness?", Yudhishthira responds - "He who endures enmity truly forgives." Sadhguru elaborates and says - "Forgiving means that you will not act out of resentment – you will act out of what is needed for the situation."
In this episode, Sadhguru answers a seeker's question on destiny - '.....to what extent is it already known which choices a person will make in their lifetime?' Sadhguru elaborates and tells us "The very essence of the spiritual process is to deal with your destiny now."
In this episode, Sadhguru answers a seeker's question: "Sadhguru, what can we learn from the story of Ekalavya? He was a greater archer than Arjuna but still lost out." Sadhguru explains, "Drona was an enormously talented man, but his meanness and corruption resulted in a tragedy for Ekalavya."
Sadhguru says, it was Yudhishthira's humility that saved the Pandavas many times. Yudhishthira was always honoring the elders. At the end of Bhishma's life when he was lying on the bed of arrows, Yudhishthira and his brothers went to meet him. Sadhguru says - "Yudhishthira asked a hundred questions which developed into a very elaborate discourse with Bhishma.
In this episode of Mahabharata... Gandhari curses Krishna, "May you not have a glorious death like my sons who died in the battlefield. You must die like a common human being." Krishna says, "Mother, what you are saying is anyway written, because who else can kill the Yadavas unless they kill each other? Yadavas cannot be killed by anyone else but each other, so let it be so. And how I exit this world does not matter for me, as I anyway know how to exit. Do not worry about my destiny. Focus on yours." Sadhguru narrates how all this came true.
In this episode of Mahabharata.. Bhima kept insluting Dhritrashtra. Even though Yudhishthira tried to stop him, he would say - "We fought the battle, and still Dhritarashtra tried to crush me. Still, the old woman tried to burn you. No! There is no charity in my heart for them." Eventually, unable to bear the insults, and on Vidura's advice, Dhritrashtra, Kunti, Gandhari, Vidura and Sanjay moved the forest. One day, a forest fire consumed them.
In this episode - after the war, they moved towards Hastinapur. Instead of celebrations, all they heard was wailing of orphans and widows. Seeing this - Yudhishthira asked himself, “What is all this for? I never wanted to be the king. Why did I cause this?”. Sadhguru tells the story of how Krishna saved Bhima and Yudhishthira from Dhritrashtra and Gandhari who were seething with revenge.
In this episode: Ashwatthama had killed Pandava's five children. Pandava's pursued him, and a duel happens between Arjuna and Ashwatthama. Ashwatthama pulls out the Brahmastra. Sadhguru says, from Vyasa's description of Brahmastra, it seems like it was a modern day nuclear weapon. Ashwatthama releases the Brahmastra and Krishna has to step in to counter its aftereffects on a just born infant. Krishan broough a stillborn child alive, and this act completely changed Krishna.
In this episode of Mahabharata, Sadhguru distills the three keys to success which we can learn from Mahabharata. One - Be skillful and listen. "If you listen to something, your mind will become focused and still; if you are simply hearing things, the mind will become distressed – that is the effect of noise." Two - Lack of faith leads to failure". And three - Rage will not work for you. "When there is faith, there is no fear. When there is no fear, there is no rage in your heart. When there is no rage in your heart, you will act towards the purpose of your life, without even knowing it intellectually."
In this episode of Mahabharata, Sadhguru explains the significance of the practice of yagna. Yagnas are an ancient form of ritual that involves mantras and offerings to fire. Sadhguru says - "Yagna means a disciplined action that will benefit all. If you sit here and meditate, and then you dance around so that everyone benefits from your meditation, it is a yagna. How to perform a yagna? There are many ways to do it...."
In this episode Sadhguru explains the original rationale of the traditional caste system, and different forms of social divisions in modern society, and its relevance in contemporary society. He says - "Is the varnashrama dharma of dividing a society based on craft or competence still there? Is the world not divided by competence? Whether you like it or not, it is divided. The only thing is we have made it a little more porous..."
In this episode Sadhguru explains about what is Dharma - is it an absolute truth or a relative truth. He explains using the context if two questions - one about Yudhishthira and the second about Krishna. This is a compelling read, as it breaks our notion about morality and righteousness. What really is Dharma or Truth? Sadhguru says - "The ultimate truth is to act out of your inclusiveness"
Questioner: Sadhguru, you said Barbarik came from the South, and that the southern mysticism had a big influence in the war. Could you elaborate on that? In this episode, Sadhguru elaborates on the Southern influence on the war, though the war was between the Northern kings.
As the world population is growing, where are the new 'souls' coming from? About five thousand years ago, since the time of Mahabharata, the world population has grown from just 18 million to 7.7 billion today! If there is rebirth and reincarnation, then how are the number of souls increasing? Sadhguru explains - "When you say the word “soul,” which is so loosely used today, we are not talking about a physical thing." So, the usual laws of the physical world, as we understand them, do not apply.
Somebody asks Sadhguru "What is the distinction between an avatar and a bhagavan? What is Krishna, really?" Sadhguru says - "Avatar means he is a manifestation of the Creator, but he is not living like that every moment." Sadhguru explains the difference between a bhagavan and an avatar, and tells us what Krishna fits into.
Duryodhana tells Bhishma - "Krishna is only a cowherd. What can he do?". When Krishna defeated Duryodhana and Karna by himself, how can Duryodhana say this? Sadhguru says - "People say all kinds of things. Sometimes, the same people who crawled at your feet and said you are God, turn negative at some point, or even become deadly enemies". Sadhguru also tells us that Krishna told Arjuna, that Karna is a better archer than him. "Arjuna was completely disillusioned. He had always been walking around with this aura of being the greatest warrior on the planet."
Mahabharat is full of individuals following their own dharma. But, how does one decide their Dharma? Sadhguru tells us about Gandhari's life. She went through many difficult situations, and what all it did to her mind was not a small thing. Once she came to know that her husband was blind, one of the things she realized was that she will have to do everything for him. But suppose she chose to be blind, than being a queen, everything will be done for her by someone else. And, the public glory that came with that sacrifice was an added incentive. Once, she has taken a public vow, that becomes her Dharma.
Sadhguru tells us about nara/narayana. "Nara means the same source manifested in a more compulsive manner – Narayana means the same source manifested in a more conscious manner". A compulsive life is capable of more action, a conscious life should not be very active. If Krishna chose to act, the scope of his life would come down, so they acted in tandem. Krishna tells Arjuna, "leave it to me and act". He is only saying, Leave the results to me. Don’t leave the action to me. The action is still yours".
Though Kripacharya wanted to stop Ashwatthama, eventually he did participate in the killing. When they realized that they have killed the children, Duryodhana died, and Ashwatthama lost his mind and went to stay in some ashram. Draupadi went in rage again and wanted Ashwatthama's head. The rishi, where he was staying, did not allow Arjuna to kill Ashwatthama, so instead he plucked off the jewel from Ashwatthama's forehead and brought it to Draupadi. Without the jewel, Ashwatthama would lose his mind completely. They went back to hastinapur.
Krishna reminded Bhima of his vow to break Duryodhana's thigh. Though hitting below the belt in a mace fight was not allowed, still Bhima hit him, and Duryodhana fell, mortally wounded. Though, by law they should have killed him, but they left him to die slowly. Ashwatthama was raging because Pandavas had killed his father. He wanted revenge. As per tradition, the Pandavas, after victory, went to the Kaurava's camp to sleep. Ashwatthama, Kritavarma, and Kripacharya sneaked into the Pandava camp. They killed Drupada, and Pandava's five children.
The war is over, but Duryodhana is still alive. He is burning like hot oil. To cool himself down, using certain capabilities, he sits underwater in a pond. To make him come out, Krishna asks Bhima to insult him. Yudhishthira, out of his goodness, offers Duryodhana a last duel. He can choose who to fight, and with whom. If he wins, he gets his kingdom back. Duryodhana chooses to fight with Bhima with the mace. Duryodhana starts winning the fight - he starts laughing - just playing with Bhima.
On the ninth day of the war, Krishna convinces Arjuna to fight the war. By the sixteenth day, the Pandava army became bigger, since the losses on Kaurava side were much higher, and Duryodhana became desperate. For Karna, his only objective was to kill Arjuna. He defeats Yudhishthira, Bhima, Nakula and Sahadeva, but as promised doesn't kill them. Indra takes Karna's kavacha, and in return Karna gets Indra's shakti astra. Though Karna was saving the shakti astra for Arjuna, he ends up using to kill Gatotkacha, Bhima's son, who was creating havoc with his occult powers. Arjuna defeats Karna.
Arjuna wants to withdraw from the war, and go back to the forest. Krishna gives the vishwarupa darshan, and tells him that it is not possible now. Mahabharata describes the war in great detail - arrow by arrow. Sadhguru gives us a glimpse of these gory details. Battle sees a seesaw between the Pandavas and the Kauravas. Sometimes Pandavas dominate, and sometimes Kauravas. Arjuna avoids going for the kill when facing certain people - especially Bhishma. Krishna tells - hesitation is the worst of all crimes! Once you start something, you don't bail out half way through. Sadhguru also tells us the wisdom behind Krishna left Dwarka, because of which Kaurvas called him ranchor.
It is only in situations of crisis, you know the true colors of people, what they can take, and to what extent they will go. War was inevitable. There was one last push for peace. To make peace, Yudhishthira asked for just five towns as settlements, but Duryodhana refused to part with even a needlepoint of land! Draupadi was seething for revenge, she wanted war at all costs. The armies assembled at Kurukshetra. Rukmi and Balrama did not take sides. Barbarik, a warrior from the South arrived for the battle. He met Krishna, and in curious turns of events, he lost his head. Krishna had assured him that his head could see and speak, even after it was severed from the body. His head was placed at a vantage point, where he could see everything about the war!
During the one year of agyatvaas (incognito), Pandavas were in Krishna's protection in Matsya. Kichaka, the queen's husband went mad with desire to have Draupadi. But if something happened to Kichaka, they ran the risk of blowing over their cover. Draupadi went to Bhima. Bhima killed Kichaka, and left his trademark of pushing the limbs of the dead into the body. Thew news spread, and Duryodhana was alarmed. Kauravas attacked Matsya. Arjuna, in the guise of Brihnala, a eunuch, became Uttara's charioteer. Uttara was the king's seventeen year old son. Arjuna single handed defeated the Kauravas.
Is it just coincidence that both Rama and Pandavas were exiled for twelve years? Or is there any significance to the duration of twelve years. Twelve years is the solar cycle and it takes twelve years for anything significant to happen to a man. Going to the forest is not a punishment, but a learning process. Pandavas were exiled for twelve years, and an additional one year incognito, just to make sure that they got the point. It was very important that Pandavas did not get discovered during this one year, else they would have had to go in exile for another twelve years. What strategy did the Pandavas adopt to go incognito? Who helped them? How did they achieve not being discovered?
Was twelve years of living in the forest a curse for the Pandavas? Or did it made them into much better human beings? Was it Krishna's plan? In this episode Sadhguru narrates the incidence when all four Yudhishthira's brothers fall dead after drinking water from a pond. He now has to answer questions to the Yaksha in the hope of reviving his brothers. This is a must read. Yudhishthira's responses to the forty questions that the Yaksha asks, are a goldmine - pearls of wisdom!
In this episode - Pandavas Twelve year 'vanavas' (exile) is coming to end. The four brothers go in search of Arjuna, who had gone to do 'tapasya' and acquire extra-ordinary powers and divine weapons. Searching for him they reach the Himalayas, around the area of Badrinath. While searching, Bhima encounters a monkey. What follows takes care of Bhima's pride.
Pandavas started having too many visitors. So they decided to move deeper into the jungle. Draupadi continuously taunted and abused Yudhishthira. And Bhima added to this. Draupadi knew that without Yudhishthira's permission none of the brothers would do anything. So, Draupadi used Bhima, who was really fond of her. After almost six years in exile, Arjuna decides to go into tapasya to acquire astral weapons for the war. In the forest, Sadhguru tells us how Arjuna met Shiva and got the Pashupatastra - the most powerful weapon. After this, Indra took Arjuna, his son, with him. Sadhguru tells us anecdotes from the time that Arjuna spent with Indra.
Pandavas were in exile in the forest. Duryodhana wanted to have the pleasure of visiting them and expressing sympathies! On the excuse of counting the number of cows in the kingdom, he took his entourage and camped at the edge of the forest. Bhima and Arjuna, when the came to know of this, picked up arms, ready for a battle. But Yudhishthira calmed them down. In the meantime, Chitrasena a Gandharva, had an altercation with Duryodhana. Chitrasena killed a few soldiers and tied up everyone except the women. Though the Pandavas were reluctant, on Yudhishthira's instructions, they went and defeated Chitrasena and freed up Duryodhana. Of shame, Dhuryodhana refused to go back to the palace, and for more than a month acted like a madman in the forest.
Sage Durvasa, was a very angry sage. If pleased, he would bless; if unhappy, he would curse. Draupadi had received the akshaya Patra from the sungod and Duryodhana was distraught knowing that Pandavas are eating well in the forest. He sent Sage Durvasa to the Pandavas, conniving that they will not be able to feed him and his disciples. This would enrage the sage and he would curse the Pandavas. Draupadi had to take Krishna's help to avoid the situation. Krishna did such course correction many times. But people asked - why all this? You could have taken care of this earlier and not let the situation happen. Sadhguru reveals this profound aspect. How to best make use of Grace!
Vidura, Dhritarashtra's brother enjoyed an intimate relationship with him. He was terribly upset that Duryodhana was planning to hunt down Pandavas in the forest. Vidura tried to reason with Dhritrashtra, and encouraged him to call Pandavas back from the forest, and give them half the kingdom. Vidura tells him, if it comes to battle, Arjuna can defeat the Kauravas on his own. Dhritarashtra is not convinced. An argument ensures, both narrating incidents to support their point of view. Dhritarashtra got fed up, and sent off Vidura out of the palace into the forest!
After the game, Pandavas had to give up everything and go into the wild. When they were leaving for the forest, for their love of the Pandavas, a large number of people wanted to go to the forest with them. Pandavas requested everyone to go back, other than a few brahmins who accompanied them. As they reached the forest, other than Yudhishthira, everyone else was distraught at losing everything. Yudhishthira was enjoying the forest. Seeing him joyful, Bhima and Draupadi were incensed. Soon, the grains ran out and Draupadi was distraught at not being able to feed the brahmins. On sage Vyasa's advise, she prayed to the sun god for akshaya patra. Duryodhana was still not settled. He schemed with Karna to go and hunt down the Pandavas in the forest.
The shameful act perpetrated in the Kuru kingdom turned gentle people into beasts. Draupadi vowed to keep here hair loose untill they were washed in Dushasana's blood. Seeing her rage, Dhritrashtra granted here three boons and she asked for Pandava's freedom and kingdom be given back. Kaurvas taunted Pandavas on being saved by a woman, which brought them back again for a second game of dice. Pandavas lost everything again and were exiled to jungles for twelve years. Seeing Draupadi in tears, what does Krishna say and takes a vow for?
Duryodhana wanted to take revenge from Pandavas but did not know what to do. And then Shakuni, the deceit master of all times came to his rescue. They laid out a trap to defeat Pandavas in game of dice. But how could Shakuni be so sure of winning? Was there something in the dice? Yudhishthira is invited to game of dice and looses everything - his kingdom, himself, his brothers, even his wife Draupadi. Duryodhana asks Draupadi to be dragged and disrobed in full presence of court as a revenge for his humiliation. Was Draupadi saved from this brutality? What happens to Pandavas next?
Pandavas were all set to perform their Rajsuya Yagna, Bhishma asked Krishna to be made the guest of honor, which incensed Krishna's cousin brother Shishupala. There was old enmity between the two which led to further bloodbath Did Krishna succeed in killing Shishupala? Once the Yagna was eventually over, Yudhishthira, asked his cousin Duryodhana and his brothers to stay over for few more days and enjoy the hospitality. Duryodhana was filled with envy and jealousy on seeing so much wealth and prosperity of Pandavas. While taking tour of the palace, what caused Duryodhana to feel so embarrassed and humiliated that he could not sleep for weeks once he returned to his kingdom?
In pursuit of becoming emperors, Pandavas had planned to conduct Rajsuya Yagna. But Jarasandha, their arch rival had already hatched a sabotage plan by sacrificing One hundred Kshatriya kings and he already had captured Ninety nine and was just one short. Only way for Pandavas to succeed was to kill Jarasandha. Pandavas, along with Krishna, hatch a plan to kill him and wearing disguise as Brahmins, they reach his kingdom. But Jarasandha saw through their disguise and became suspicious. Did Pandavas succeed in their mission?
Having build the beautiful city of Indraprastha, the Pandavas continue to move towards greater power. Krishna guides Arjuna to destroy the forest, to make the place habitable for humans. While destroying the forest, they spare the life of Mayasura, who build one of a kind, exquisite hall for them. Sadhguru narrates the captivating tale, of how Narada visits them and convinces them to perform the Rajasuya Yagna, which will elevate them to the emperor status! When Duryodhana comes to know - his rage and jealousy reaches a boiling point!
How did the city of Kandavprastha, and abandoned barren land, get transformed into a beautiful city of Indraprastha overnight? Not only the invaders chose to rule from Indraprastha, but even today Indraprastha is the capital of India - it is part of New Delhi, and corridors of power continue to live there. Sadhguru tells us about how the kingdom got divided, and the pain that Bhishma had to go through; and how coming about of Indraprastha in a magical way made everyone see Pandavas as godlike.
You always want a capable and competent person to run the nation. Yudhishthira, out of his goodness, surrendered his powers even though he was crowned the king. In trying to be good, he created situations where many people had to risk and lose their lives. Duryodhana started plotting ways to get rid of the Pandavas. He schemed buying Drupada; poisoning Pandava's food; seducing them and turn Draupadi against them; corrupt Nakula and Sahdeva and turn them against their brothers; using his own wife as a bait for Krishna. Now, Krishna started taking an active role in everything that happened.
We have all heard stories about the evil of Duryodhana - the greatest villain! What was it about him that made him exhibit such rage and evil intentions? Did Duryodhana loved his young and beautiful wife Bhanumati? Sadhguru also talks about the relationship between crime and friendship. Who is friendless - geniuses or criminals? Sadhguru unfolds the Mahabharat in his distinctively captivating style.
How Duryodhana conspired to kill Bhima? In this episode, Sadhguru tells this riveting tale! The rivalry between the Kauravas and the Pandavas had flared up like never before. Bhima's dangerous fling, and a chance event... makes for a thriller!
Everyone wanted to marry Draupadi. Not only because she was incredibly beautiful, but also because Drupada was a very powerful king. All the Kshitriyas came for the Swayamvara, which had a competition which only the best warrior could win. All those who tried failed. Dusshasana also failed. Duryodhana bowed out, to avoid the shame of failure. Karna was publicly shamed by Draupadi by calling him a "suta" loudly. Finally, Arjuna in the guise of a Brahmana, and won. When they returned to their abode, Kunti, their mother called out from inside "Whatever it is, share it among yourselves". This was Draupadi's predicament. How can she marry five brothers? Rishi Vyasa guided Draupadi towards an appropriate decision, and also made her see her past life, and the fact that she now had five husbands was her own wish!
Guru Drona after training the Kauravas and Pandavas asked them to bring king Drupada to him as guru dakshina. Kaurava princes attacked Panchala kingdom, but were beaten by ordinary citizenry. Then Bhima and Arjuna went and captured Drupada and brought him to Guru Drona's feet. Drona humiliated Drupada and spared his life. Raging for revenge, Drupada prayed to Shiva and asked for a child who would take revenge, not only on Drona but the entire Kuru clan. Through tantrik process, Drupada extracted a young man and a young woman from the fire, Drishtadhyumna and Draupadi. They came to life with the sole purpose of revenge. Sadhguru also narrates Krishna's moving to Dwarka; why and how it happened. Drupada wanted Krishna to marry Draupadi. To get himself out of this situation, and to get a brave and capable warrior for Draupadi, Krishna suggested a swayamvara with a contest for her.
Kunti befriended a tribal woman with five children. One day she spiked their drinks; escaped the palace with the Pandavas and set the palace on fire. The tribal woman and her five children died in the fire, and everyone presumed that Kunti and the Pandavas are dead. They went deep into the jungle, where many things happened. One important event that happened - Bhima killed a rakshasa to protect themselves. His sister, Hidimbi fell in love with Bhima. They married and bore a child, Ghatotkacha. Kunti then moved everyone to a small town called Ekachakra. Sadhguru narrates Arjuna's duel with a Gandharva, Angaraparna - because Arjuna spared his life. out of gratitude he gifts Arjuna hundred horses and narrates hundred tales of wisdom. Sadhguru also narrates one such tale - the story of shakti. Sadhguru also tells us about Drupada and Drona, how they studied together as friends, and how the situation evolved to Drona swearing revenge on Drupada.
When Karna came to show his skills as an archer, Arjuna objected, because Karna was not a Kshatriya. Duryodhana did not want to let go of this opportunity. He conducted a coronation on the spot and made Karna king of Anga, and embraced him as his brother. Karna was totally overwhelmed and became loyal to Duryodhana for life. Meanwhile, the people, within and outside the palace started aligning themselves with either Kauravas or the Pandavas. Concerned about an impending civil war, Dhritrashtra was advised to put an end to the Pandavas. Deviously they were sent into a palace of lac (a combustible resin). Vidura found out about it, and very cleverly passed on this information to them.
Wanting to be the best archer in the world, made Arjuna insecure, and do inhumane things. Once Eklavya came to Drona with a desire to learn archery from him. Because he was not a kshatriya, Drona refused to become his Guru. Eklavya took Drona's blessings and went into the forest, made Drona's sculpture and started learning on his own. For one to become an archer, it is not only the skills of the hands, but also the keenness of observation with your eyes. Arjuna displayed these qualities, and Drona started giving him advanced training. One day, when Pandavas went to the forest, they encountered Eklavya. Arjuna was distraught at finding an archer greater than him. Arjuna went to Drona and cried. To once again make Arjuna the best archer, Drona asked Eklavya for his right thumb as Guru Dakshina.
Adiratha found an infant in a wooden box floating in the river. The boy was Karna, the child of Kunti and Sun God. Since, Kunti was not married, to avoid social situations she abandoned the child in the river. Drona became rajaguru, and started teaching Kauravas and the Pandavas. Though Parashurama, Drona's guru, when handing over his astras to Drona forbid him to teach the Kshatriyas, but he was a crooked and greedy human being. When Karna went to Drona to take him as his Guru, Drona dismissed him as a Suta Putra (a low born). Karna went to Parashurama, faking himself as a Brahmin, since he knew that Parashurama would only take Brahmins as a disciple. Situations led Karna to be cursed, and then double-cursed!
Duryodhana made unsuccessful attempts to kill Bhima inside the palace. Then Shakuni taught Duryodhana the art of deception. All the Pandava brothers fell for it, except Sahadeva. Sadhguru tells the story of how Sahadeva got the wisdom of his father Panu, and Krishna's command to him never to express his wisdom. Once Duryodhana gained Pandavas trust, he poisoned Bhima. By sheer coincidence, Bhima survived. The brothers saw through Duryodhana's deception, and the enmity between them grew.
The five Pandavas grew up in the forest. One day Pandu could not resist the temptation, and because of the curse, died in Madri's arms having intercourse with her. Madri feeling guilty about it, decided to enter the funeral pyre. Kunti and the five Pandavas, walked to Hastinapur. People of Hastinapur were excited, but Duryodhana started burning with Jealousy. Duryodhana started plotting to kill Bhima. In the meantime, Shakuni entered the place as an advisor, determined to take revenge and destroy the Kuru clan.
This is a deeply profound episode where Sadhguru elaborates on the significance of Dharma. Why it is important to first establish Dharma and let Karma flow out of it. He answers two questions. First 'Sadhguru, you said that everyone can have their own life, freedom, and dharma without colliding with someone else’s dharma. But is it not the other way around nowadays, that we build our dharma based on our personality and thus crash into each other?', and Second 'Sadhguru, when you are talking about ultimate nature and dharma – I understand dharma as a set of laws. Why not deal with life and things as they come, rather than having a set of laws?'
Mahabharat revolves around the two fundamental aspects of Dharma and Adharma. The fundamental thread of Dharma allowed the possibility of civilized existence. Dharma is about organizing life in such a way that everyone is moving towards their ultimate nature. Before Dharma was established, there used to be something called matsya nyay, or fishy justice. Sadhguru tells us that Mahabharat was way ahead of its time!
Dhritrashtra wanted to have a son. Gandhari got pregnant, but did not deliver for 12 months. Then she beat her stomach with a stick, and a lump of flesh aborted from her. Gandhari called Vyasa, saying that you had blessed me with 100 sons, but instead I have this lump of flesh which does not even look human. Vyasa cut it into 101 pieces and put them into 101 pots in a cellar; and after a year 100 sons and 1 daughter was born to Gandhari. When the first son was born, there were ominous omens, but Dhritrashtra and Gandhari ignored them all.
Pandu married Kunti and Madri (princess of Madra). Pandu was cursed by a sage that he could not be intimate with his wives; and he had no children yet. Despondent, Pandu went to the jungle with his wives. He was so frustrated that he wanted to commit suicide. That is when Kunti told him about a boon she got earlier in life, that she can call on any god and bear his child. Kunti bore Yudhishthira -the child of Dharma, Bhima - the child of Vayu, Arjuna - the child of Indra. And Madri had twins, Nakula and Sahadeva, children of Ashvins. These five children, panch pandavas, though king's children, they grew up in the forest for 15 years.
Till now we have seen Yayati's son Puru's lineage. Yayati's other son, Yadu, who was cursed that he can not become a king, came down south (to present day Mathura). He became chief of the council that governed the various tribes, collectively known as the Yadavas. Sadhguru tells the story of how Kamsa became the king, with Jarasandha's help. Kamsa was cursed that he would be killed by Devaki's eighth child. As events took turn, Kamsa had all children killed. So, in Yadu clan, only surviving children were those of Vasudeva, Balarama and Krishna. Vasudeva's sister, Kunti married Pandu of the Kuru clan.
Amba was raging for revenge. She went to many places, seeking someone to kill Bhishma. But nobody was willing to fight Bhishma. Amba went to Parashurama, Bhishma's guru. Parashurama asks Bhishma to marry Amba. Bhishma refuses. Parashuram fought Bhishma, but could not beat him. Amba went to the Himalayas, and did deep sadhana, calling upon Karthikeya, son of Shiva. Karthikeya couldn't help her as he had left his body. He gave her a garland and a boon, whoever wears the garland will kill Bhishma. But she couldn't find anyone willing to wear the garland, so she came back and sat in great austerity, calling for Shiva. Shiva appeared, and gave her a boon, that she herself will kill Bhishma in her next birth.
Satyavati bore two children with Shantanu. Chitrangada and Vichitraveerya. Chitrangada was killed by a Gandharva. Vichitraveerya, a strange masculinity, did not want to marry. Bhishma couldn't marry. So, the Kuru clan was at a standstill. King of Kashi announced swayamvara for his three daughters, Amba, Ambika and Ambalika. Kuru house was not invited. Bhishma went and abducted all the three of them. Vivhitraveerya married Ambika and Ambalika, but refused to marry Amba. Amba had no place to go, she just went out alone, in complete desolation.
Shantanu, now fell in love with Satyavati. Satyavati was the child of Uparichara, king of Chedi and a fisher girl. The fisher girl delivered twins, a boy and a girl, Matsyaraja and Matsyagandhi. Uparichara took the boy with him, and left the girl behind. She was brought up by the chief of fisherfolk, Dasa. It happened, that an injured Parshara, a realized being, was placed under the care of Matsyagandhi. She bore him a son, who was later known as Veda Vyasa. Parshara took the boy with him, and gave a boon to Matsyagandhi that she smelt like a fragrant flower; then on she was called Satyavati. Dasa put a condition on Shantanu for marrying Satyavati to him. Devavrata came to know of the condition, and to convince Dasa, castrated himself, and became Bhishma. Satyavati was married to Shantanu.
Ganga delivered a son, but she took him to the river and drowned him. Shantanu was broken, but he remembered that if he asked Ganga anything, Ganga would leave. This continued, and seven children were drowned, almost driving Shantanu to insanity. When Ganga was going to drown the eighth child, Shantanu couldn't stop himself from asking Ganga - why? Ganga told Shantanu the reason of why she did what she did, and then left, taking the eighth son with her. She promised Shantanu that she will bring up their son for him to become a capable king, and bring him back when he turned sixteen. As promised Ganga brought their son, Devavrata, back and handed him over to Shantanu. Shantanu was delighted and made him the yuvraj.
Bharata was highly regarded for his qualities. He had many sons, but he did not find any of them worthy of becoming a good king. He found Vithatha. Vithatha was child of Mamata, who was Brihaspati's brother's wife. But Vithatha was Brihaspati and Mamata's son. Bhartha made Vithatha the king, and fourteen generations later came Shantanu. Shantanu was the great grandfather of the Kauravas and the Pandavas. Shantanu fell in love with Ganga, and asked for her hand. She agreed, but with a condition! Of course, Shantanu agreed.
Vishwamitra was born in the Puru lineage. But though born as a king, he wanted to become a sage. Seeing his intensity of sadhana, Indra felt threatened, and sent Maneka. Maneka succeeded in distracting him, and they had a daughter Shakuntala. Shakuntala was abandoned and brought up by sage Kanva. One day king Dushyanta met Shaknutala by coincidence, and fell in love with her, and married her. They had a child Bharata. The king went back, promising to return to fetch Shakuntala, but for some curse, he forgot her. Bharata grew up in the forest into a very brave and strong young man. Later, when he got reminded, he came and brought both Shakuntala and Bharata back to the palace.
Devyani, Shukracharya's daughter was friends with Sharmishtha, daughter of the Asura king Vrishaparva. In a certain situation, Sharmishtha insulted Devyani. Devyani went to Shukracharya and pleaded for revenge. Sadhguru tells, that through out the Mahabharat, there are curses and boons. But sometimes life makes boon into a curse, and curse into a boon! Shukracharya forced Vrishaparva to make Sharmishtha into Devyani's maid. Devyani got married to Yayati, and bore Yadu - the Yadavas cam from this Yadukula. Yayati had a secret love affair with Sharmishtha, whom Devyani had taken along, and they had a child, Puru, who became one of the fathers of the Kuru dynasty.
King Sudhyumna goes hunting to the same forest that is abode to Shiva and Parvati. Inadvertently, Shiva turns him into a woman. On pleading to Shiva, Shiva changes the curse, such that when the moon is waning he will be a woman, when it is waxing he will be a man. The king did not go back to the palace, and lived in the jungle as Ela. One day Ela met Budha. They bore many children, the first Chandravamshis. One of their children was Nahusha, who after a series of events was cursed by Agastya Muni to become a python. Nahusha had children, Yati and Yayati were of significance. Yati became an ascetic, and Yayati became a king. Series of events happened, and Kacha, son of Brihaspati, learnt the sanjeevani mantra from Shukracharya, the priest of the asuras.
When you read Mahabharat, you need to be totally involved, not like reading some history, but by becoming a part of it. Don't dissect, and intellectually try and understand, simply embrace this story, and the characters. This happened 5000 years ago, in dwapar yuga. Brihaspati was lord Indra's priest. His wife Tara, seeing him philander, fell in love with Chandra one day, and eloped with him. Brihspati got furious, and for various reasons, compelled Indra to bring Tara back. Tara bore Chandra's child, who was named Budha. Brihspati cursed the child to become a neuter, neither a man nor a woman.
The first version of Mahabharat was written by Ganpati himself. Sadhguru tells, that when sage Vyasa narrated the Mahabharat for Ganapati to write, he told him, that even if there is a moments gap, he will leave the project and stop writing. Sadhguru explains that the story and characters of Mahabharat are not something to be judged. When we live the story, it will become a spiritual process for us.
Mahabharat Episode 68: Get Out of Cyclical Existence and Karma
Mahabharat Episode 67: The One Thing That Existence Cannot Forgive
Mahabharat Episode 66: Grace and Luck – Where to Draw the Line?
Mahabharat Episode 65: Should I Forgive and Forget?
Mahabharat Episode 64: Destiny or Free Will – What Determines the Course of Your Life?
Mahabharat Episode 63: How Ekalavya Lost His Thumb
Mahabharat Episode 62: Bhishma on the Bed of Arrows
Mahabharat Episode 61: Krishna’s End
Mahabharat Episode 60: The End of the Kuru Dynasty
Mahabharat Episode 59: After the War, the Meanness Continues
Mahabharat Episode 58: One Act that Changed Krishna Forever
Mahabharat Episode 57: Three Keys to Success, According to the Mahabharat
Mahabharat Episode 56 : Yagnas – Timeless Rituals
Mahabharat Episode 55: The Age-Old Caste System – Discrimination from the Start?
Mahabharat Episode 54: Dharma – An Absolute or Relative Truth?
Mahabharat Episode 53: Little-Known Southern Influences
Mahabharat Episode 52: How Do Souls Multiply?
Mahabharat Episode 51: Krishna – Avatar or Bhagavan?
Mahabharat Episode 50: Who Decided The Course Of The Kurukshetra War?
Mahabharat Episode 49: The Real Reason Gandhari Chose To Be Blindfolded
Mahabharat Episode 48: The Truth About Krishna and Arjuna’s Relationship
Mahabharat Episode 47: The Ugly Aftermath of War
Mahabharat Episode 46: The Feud’s Bloody Climax
Mahabharat Episode 45: Duryodhana vs. Bhima – The Final Fight Begins
Mahabharat Episode 44: Arjuna vs Karna – A Battle between Archrivals
Mahabharat Episode 43: The Worst Crime
Mahabharat Episode 42: The Strongest Warrior in Mahabharat
Mahabharat Episode 41: When Arjuna Single-Handedly Defeated the Kauravas
Mahabharat Episode 40: The Pandavas Go Incognito
Mahabharat Episode 39: Yudhishthira Answers the Yaksha’s Questions
Mahabharat Episode 38: Hanuman Teaches Bhima Some Humility
Mahabharat Episode 37: Arjuna’s Astras
Mahabharat Episode 36: Pandavas Rescue Duryodhana
Mahabharat Episode 35: Durvasa’s Visit – Averting Fury and Curse
Mahabharat Episode 34: Vidura Puts His Foot Down
Mahabharat Episode 33: The Forest Exile
Mahabharat Episode 32: Krishna’s Vow To Draupadi
Mahabharat Episode 31: The Game Of Dice
Mahabharat Episode 30: Duryodhana Humiliated To The Core
Mahabharat Episode 29: When Bhima Wrestled Jarasandha
Mahabharat Episode 28: Jarasandha – Born Divided
Mahabharat Episode 27: Rajasuya Yagna
Mahabharat Episode 26: How Was The City Of Indraprastha Created?
Mahabharat Episode 25: Duryodhana – On the Road to Ruin
Mahabharat Episode 24: Duryodhana – No Excuses for Him
Mahabharat Episode 23: When an Aghori Almost Killed Bhima
Mahabharat Episode 22: Draupadi’s Predicament
Mahabharat Episode 21: Draupadi – Born for Revenge
Mahabharat Episode 20: Of Ploy, Humiliation and Revenge
Mahabharat Episode 19: The Kauravas Find a New Ally
Mahabharat Episode 18: When Arjuna Met Ekalavya
Mahabharat Episode 17: Karna – Doomed from Birth
Mahabharat Episode 16: Duryodhana’s Murder Plots
Mahabharat Episode 15: The Pandavas Enter Hastinapur
Mahabharat Episode 14: Dharma and Karma – What’s the Connection?
Mahabharat Episode 13: Dharma – Individual and Universal Laws
Mahabharat Episode 12: The Kaurava Brothers – Born Under a Bad Sign
Mahabharat Episode 11: The Origins of the Pandavas
Mahabharat Episode 10: The Yadava Clan and Krishna’s Birth
Mahabharat Episode 9: Amba Thirsts For Revenge
Mahabharat Episode 8: Amba’s Plight
Mahabharat Episode 7: Devavrata Becomes Bhishma
Mahabharat Episode 6: The Birth of Devavrata
Mahabharat Episode 5: Shantanu Meets Ganga
Mahabharat Episode 4: Shakuntala and the Birth of Bharata
Mahabharat Episode 3: Curses or Blessings?
Mahabharat Episode 2: The Origin of the Chandravamshis
Mahabharat Episode 1: Brihaspati’s Curse and Tara’s Child
Mahabharat: An Introduction