In the previous episode we had witnessed the continuation of the huge family tree that forms the crux of the Mahaabhaarata text. In due course we witnessed the birth of King Dhirdriraashtra and Paandu. We witnessed an interesting accord behind these two people’s birth, wherein Ambika and Ambaalika had to meet Sage Veda-Vyaasa to get his blessings to be impregnated. Accordingly due to the impatience of Satyavati, Ambika and Ambaalika were pushed into a tight spot wherein they had to deliver two children but with physical defects. King Dhirdriraashtra was born blind and Paandu was born with a perpetual disease of nervousness and shiver.
Now moving on further, as the news of the birth of two children reaches Satyavati she started to rejoice with happiness. But her happiness was cut short when she further heard that both the children were handicapped – One without eyesight and the other having a perpetual sickness! Now who would be the successor of the kingdom after Vichitra-Veerya? How can a blind person take over? Rather, how can a perpetually weak person rule the kingdom too? Both children were unfit to succeed the throne! What would poor Satyavati do now? Her ideas had completely backfired very badly! She sobs bitterly, given the complex situation in hand!
After a while, Satyavati makes up her mind and wants to give another try. She again calls her son Sage Vyaasa for help. She explains the situation and requests him to help her one more time in getting a proper male child who would be fit enough to succeed the throne. Although Sage Vyaasa refuses to accept his mother’s request, with repeated convincing he gives in. He now offers one more chance. Thus accordingly, Satyavati hurries into the chambers of her two daughter-in-laws Ambika and Ambaalika and requests them to meet Sage Vyaasa one more time. This time, she requests them to be mentally prepared to bare his dirty smelling body. Both of them accept Satyavati’s request, but reluctantly.
However as Satyavati leaves the place, Ambika thinks within herself, “Oh! I’ve already experienced this sage’s foul smelling dirty body and I couldn’t bare it even for a second. This mother-in-law is requesting me to go to that person one more time! It’s never going to be possible for me! Hence, let me call up my servant and ask her if she can go instead of me!” Thinking thus, she calls up her servant to come and meet her. Ambika explains her situation to the servant woman, and this woman readily agreed to Ambika’s request. Rather, she was happy that she was going to meet a great sage!
According to the arrangement thus, this servant lady goes and meets Sage Vyaasa that following night. Sage Vyaasa arrives and this lady is very happy to meet him, despite his foul-smelling dirty body. She was able to tolerate it with ease! Thus, with the divine blessings of Sage Vyaasa, this servant lady gets impregnated. After ten months of pregnancy, she yields a perfectly fit child, who was none other than Vidura! Thus, we can see here that Vidura is a person who was born to a servant woman, but with the divine blessings of Sage Veda-Vyaasa. At the same time, Vidura can also be considered as the brother of Dhirdriraashtra and Paandu, since all their father roots are from Sage Veda-Vyaasa only.
Thus amongst the three brothers Dhirdriraashtra, Paandu and Vidura, only Vidura was the person who was physically fit without any problems. However, he was born to a servant woman and hence he was declared unfit to succeed the throne. Again, Satyavati’s plans had failed! She did not expect that Ambika would engage herself into this kind of a ploy! Strictly speaking, all the three people were unfit for the throne! We can imagine the pain in which Satyavati would have been! Here is where all the problems in the Mahaabhaarata commence! All the enmity, ploys, foul plays commence at this point!
From the above detailed accord spanning across three episodes now, we’ve seen how the family tree has perpetuated from King Saanthanu. For today, let us recollect and remember this important family tree and understand how it all began! There is another interesting episode coming up tomorrow, in which I’m going to talk about the fact as to why Vidura is considered to be an embodiment of Yama-Dharma-Raaja. Let’s stay tuned to find out! 🙂