In the previous episode, we had witnessed an important event wherein Arjuna received his “Gaandeepa” bow from Agni Bhagawan, as Bhagawan Krishna blessed it as well. Apart from the “Gaandeepa” Arjuna also received a unique chariot with Hanuman on it’s top flag. This is the first time we’re witnessing Hanuman in the Mahabharata, and from this point onwards, Hanuman has an important role to play in Arjuna’s and Bhagawan Krishna’s trajectories of life. Impressed by his loyalty and “Bhakti”, Bhagawan Rama couldn’t have given Hanuman a better gift than keeping him by His side even during His next incarnation as Bhagawan Krishna. Thus, with all the equipment in hand, Arjuna ensured that Agni Bhagawan obtained his food in the form of the burning forest. However, Indra tried his best to put out the fire by bringing in the rain clouds, but Arjuna was at his best! His “Aagneya-Asthra” made sure that the rain clouds were dashed away from the burning forest! As the forest was burning, the duo expected Snake Takshaka to come out along with the other dangerous animals residing there, which were fleeing away for life! However, Takshaka was “out of station” (at Kaashi) and it was only his son who was still trying to hold on amidst the raging fire! Out of compassion, Arjuna decided to leave him alone and with the consent of Bhagawan Krishna, Takshaka’s son was allowed to escape the deadly fire.
As animal after animal came out dead, finally there was one person who came out of the fire – He was none other than “Mayan” who was the builder for the Raakshasas. In fact, this “Mayan” was also having a hand while building the “Laaksha-Griha” along with Duryodhana’s other colleagues. With this, we come to an end of this “Parva”, and now we subsequently move into the “Maya-Darshana Parva”, wherein Mayan is going to have a conversation with the duo of Arjuna and Bhagawan Krishna. Meanwhile, the “Kaandava-Vanam” was burning on and on for the next fifteen days, and Mayan was sitting inside the burning forest till the last day, amidst the plumes of smoke and heat. He was scared to face Bhagawan Krishna and Arjuna as he knew that if he did so, he would be killed on the spot. He somehow wanted to resist the fire and stay inside, however, beyond a point, he couldn’t do so!
Thus, hesitatingly, Mayan came out of the burning forest, and upon seeing the duo, he tried to escape along with the other animals. However, he wasn’t able to, and he surrendered to both of them. Unlike Mayan’s thought process, Arjuna and Bhagawan Krishna did not want to kill him. Since he was extremely talented in building artistic buildings, luxury homes, excellent wood-work and interiors, etc. Bhagawan Krishna and Arjuna decided that he could be employed for something useful, rather than killing him. In fact, Bhagawan Krishna and Arjuna had no idea that Mayan was inside. However, it was only Mayan’s perspective that he would be killed if he goes out. Thus, when Mayan came out, to his surprise, he was greeted and welcomed by Arjuna and Bhagawan Krishna. Only after coming out and meeting both of them, Mayan realized that the forest was burnt down not to kill him, but to destroy all the dangerous animals that resided there, which posed a security threat for people living in the vicinity. However, because Bhagawan Krishna and Arjuna gave him a warm welcome, he wanted to do something good in return for their hospitality. It is at the same time, Indra also appeared in front of all of them, and he also realized that the intention of Bhagawan Krishna and Arjuna was not to harm the Devas in any way.
Realizing this, Indra was extremely happy as well, and he requested Bhagawan Krishna and Arjuna to ask him for a boon together. Readers should note here that it is not Bhagawan who is requesting Indra to ask for a boon. It is the other way around. Indra is requesting Bhagwan to ask him for a boon. Now what is Bhagawan going to ask Indra? Does He even have anything in His mind to ask Indra? Let us wait till the next episode to find out! Stay tuned! 🙂