In the previous episode, we had witnessed how King Yayaati got into such a mess in his life – Thanks to his uncontrollable amounts of worldly desires! This even led King Yayaati to forget Sage Shukraachaarya’s advice not to mingle with Sharmishta although she might be very tempting in nature. However, King Yayaati gave into the desire of having Sharmishta with him, and this resulted in Sage Shukraachaarya’s extreme anger, that came along with a curse. Even after receiving the curse, King Yayaati’s desires did not come to an end. Instead, it only aggravated further, which led him to shamelessly ask his sons to give him their youthfulness for him to enjoy life for the next thousand years! As all his sons refused, only one son came forward to offer King Yayaati for what he had asked. Puru was gracious enough to transfer his youthfulness to his father, which again brought King Yayaati to his handsome young looks. With this, King Yayaati enjoyed his youthfulness for the next thousand years unabated. But at the end of the thousandth year, was he happy and satisfied? The answer is a big “No”! He wanted more and more!
This is the biggest lesson that all of us can learn from King Yayaati’s accord. If we think that we can obtain a control over our desires by experiencing them upto our satisfaction, it is never going to happen. The more we experience and go behind the desire, the more it would make us committed to it. We’re going to witness in the coming episodes as to how even King Yudishtra was carried away with the desire of winning the gambling game against Duryodhana and Co., even though he knew that Shahuni was playing spoilsport. Although King Yudhistra being an epitome of “Dharma”, he too was carried away with the proceedings of the gambling game. Even though he knew that every time he was at the losing end, he was not ready to stop it. King Yudishtra’s ego was very badly hurt every time he lost the plot. This only made him go for it again and again, rather than accepting defeat and stop playing. Even though Vidura and the other Paandava brothers advised him to stop, he failed to pay heed to any of them. Ultimately, all of us know what happened to King Yudishtra at the end, isn’t it? Draupati was dragged to the courtroom and was publicly insulted by Ducchaasana. This is the grave outcome of King Yudishtra’s desire.
In similar lines, we’ve witnessed in our Ramayana project as to how Ravana ended up the same way for his excessive desire on Mother Sita. Although many people including the likes of his own brothers, Vibhishana, Kumbakarna, advised him to give back Mother Sita to Bhagawan Rama, Ravana did not pay heed. Even after Hanuman left a trail of destruction at Lanka and then advised Ravana to stop this “Adharma” that he’s doing, Ravana failed to pay heed. Finally, even when Angadha came to Ravana’s courtroom and gave one final chance for Ravana to relent from his desire, he did not pay heed. Finally with all these chances going down the drain, Bhagawan Rama had no other option but to kill Ravana in the war. We can witness many such instances in various contexts of our “Sanaatana Dharma” that if we do not control our desires, we’re only searching for our downfall with them! Thus, we should understand here that it is very difficult to overcome desires by experiencing them more and more. Instead, if we understand that we’re getting carried away by the desire, it is always better to put a fullstop to it then and there.
In the Bhagawad Gita, Bhagawan Krishna details the nature of “Kaama” (Desire). He explains thus, “Oh Arjuna! This “Kaama” and “Krodha” are the results of something called “Rajo Guna”! If you’re giving room for “Kaama” to rise, “Krodha” (Anger) would also accompany it. Ultimately, both of them would make sure that you would be destroyed once and for all!” Thus, we need to understand this point very clearly as we move forward. As King Yayaati realized this after the thousandth year, he once again gives back the youthfulness to his son Puru and with this, Sage Shukraachaarya’s curse of making King Yayaati old, again takes shape. However, even with this realization, King Yayaati did not come to terms fully. Since Puru was the only son who sacrificed his youthfulness to his father, King Yayaati decided that Puru would be his next successor. With this, even though Yadu was the eldest son and even though Yadu was the rightful successor, King Yayaati denied him of the right, since he did not oblige his father’s words of giving him youthfulness.
So now, it is clear that Puru is going to take the lead in ruling the kingdom after King Yayaati! For today, let us understand upto this point and let us wait till the next episode to move forward from here on! Stay tuned! 🙂