In the previous episode, we had witnessed Arjuna showing his expertise once again by freeing Guru Dhronaachaarya’s leg from the clutches of a crocodile. As the others were panicking around doing nothing, Arjuna and his expertise came to the forefront once again as he took it upon himself to free Guru Dhronaachaarya’s aching leg from the crocodile’s mouth, and at the same time, without harming the crocodile in any way. This heroic act of Arjuna made him very popular amidst all of them and this led to Guru Dhronaachaarya giving him a huge certificate of honor that there is nobody else in this world who is as great as Arjuna in using the bow and arrow! This thrilled the little child as the certificate has come from a great Guru. But one day, when Arjuna saw a dog being stitched with seven arrows in its mouth, but without harming it in any way, he understood that there’s someone else who is equal to or greater than him in terms of employing the bow and arrow!
As Arjuna investigated who this person was, he came to know that there was another child by name “Ekalavya” who was the son of a famous hunter. Arjuna and the kids went to see who this Ekalavya was. Upon seeing Arjuna, Ekalavya was very happy and introduced himself to him thus, “Oh Arjuna! I’m Ekalavya, son of Hiranya Dhanush. I’m a hunter and I keep hunting animals for my survival!” Arjuna was surprised upon looking at the little boy and asked him thus, “Oh Ekalavya! How is it that you’ve gained so much expertise in handling the bow and arrow? Who is your Guru? I would love to meet him and perhaps learn something better from him also!” Upon Arjuna’s enquiry thus, Ekalavya replied back, “Oh Arjuna! My Guru is none other than Guru Dhronaachaarya – The same Guru as yours!”
Upon hearing this from little Ekalavya, Arjuna was even more surprised! This has a small background story here, which many of us might know already. Ekalavya was extremely interested to learn the art of using the bow and arrow and approached Guru Dhronaachaarya to learn lessons from him. Guru Dhronaachaarya had inspected Ekalavya’s skillset and he knew that if he trains Ekalavya, he would end up being the best student – A step more than Arjuna! Hence, Guru Dhronaachaarya declined Ekalavya’s request! Guru Dhronaachaarya’s intention was that, there should not be any other person in this world who would be better than Arjuna in using the bow and arrow! Again, we’re seeing how Guru Dhronaachaarya had this “partiality” and “bias” attitude. With this, he chased Ekalavya away by saying that he was a mere hunter and that, he doesn’t want to teach hunters amidst the group of princes from the Hastinapura kingdom.
As Ekalavya heard this, he was disappointed! But he took this as a challenge! Normally, if we get such answers from a senior person, we would just quit our interest completely, isn’t it? We would get demotivated and sit in a corner and cry! However, Ekalavya was miles apart! He took this as a challenge, came back home and set up a statue like Guru Dhronaachaarya at his home! He was extremely determined in his mind that if at all he had bow and arrow lessons, it should be only from Guru Dhronaachaarya and nobody else! With this savage resolution, Ekalavya starts learning the lessons on bow and arrow from the statue of Guru Dhronaachaarya! Eventually, with the level of “Guru Bhakti” and the interest he had in the subject, Ekalavya was able to master the art of bow and arrow with ease, even with the help of a mere statue! It is thus with this expertise, he has challenged Arjuna virtually by hitting the dog’s mouth with seven arrows with great precision! With this, Ekalavya announced to the world that there can always be a better person in handling the bow and arrow other than Arjuna in this world!
Such is the story of the great Ekalavya! So for today, let us understand and appreciate Ekalavya’s dedication and expertise in the subject of bow and arrow and in the next episode we shall understand some important lessons that Ekalavya teaches all of us! Stay tuned! 🙂