Episode # 409 – “My ‘Purushaartha’ is to follow ‘Dharma’ & obtain the kingdom!” – Yudishtra replies to Bheemasena & Draupati!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed Draupati taking her argument with Yudishtra to an entirely different level altogether. As Draupati does so, Bheemasena too joins the bandwagon to corner Yudishtra, in a bid to go for the kill immediately without wasting any more time. Draupati and Bheemasena together talk about the “Purushaartha” and question Yudishtra’s commitment to his “Purushaartha” as a king. The definition of “Purushaartha” that both of them are talking about is “attack”, “avenge”, “kill”, “anger”, “victory” and “battling it out” with Duryodhana and Co. As Yudishtra is still steadfast with his “Dharma” of patience and perseverance, Draupati and the others are getting irked by it as time passes by. This entire argument surfaces primarily because Draupati has an innate feeling that Yudishtra is under gross inaction and is completely insensitive to what is happening around him. Draupati moreover feels that Yudishtra is somehow hiding himself under the blanket called “Dharma”, and is using it as an excuse for not taking action against Duryodhana and the others. 

As Draupati and Bheemasena accuse Yudishtra of sacrificing his “Purushaarhta” for something called “Dharma”, Yudishtra has to now give a befitting reply to these people. So what is Yudishtra going to reply? Yudishtra beautifully puts across his answer thus, “Oh Draupati! Oh Bheemasena! I completely understand your frustration and anger! But please understand – This is not the time to exhibit them in the open. You’re all talking about “Purushaartha”, but the meanings that you attach to it are all pertaining to short-term implementation of the “Purushaartha”. However, as a king, my understanding of “Purushaartha” is “following the “Dharma” and finally attaining the highest “Moksha” and in the meanwhile, discharge my duties as a king in the most righteous way possible!” This is the real long-term definition of what “Purushaartha” is. If one has to go for a war every now and then, what is the point in having something called “Dharma”, “Artha” and “Moksha”? At some points in time, we’ve to show restraint. Just because I’m not taking action at this point, it doesn’t mean that I’m inefficient or inactive. Please do not get into such conclusions. If one follows the “Dharma” meticulously, that “Dharma” itself will be a huge saviour for him / her. Please understand this eternal truth!” 

As Yudishtra says thus, Bheemasena quips again: “Oh Yudishtra! If that is the case, what kind of “Purushaartha” are you following? As a king and as part of your “Dharma”, you should have something in your agenda, isn’t it? What is that you’re following?” As Bheemasena asks thus, Yudishtra immediately replies back, “Oh Bheemasena! There you are! Now you’re coming to the point! I’m following all the aspects of the “Purushaartha” of a Kshatrya prince!” As Yudishtra gives such a reply, Bheemasena did not understand anything for a moment! He asks Yudishtra back, “Oh Yudishtra! What is the “Purushaartha” that you’re following as a “Kshatrya Prince”? You’re neither getting angry, nor taking steps to obtain our kingdom back! If you’re inactive on both these fronts, what “Purushaartha” are you following?” For this, Yudishtra again gives a beautiful reply. He says thus, “Oh Bheemasena! Did I ever tell you that I’m not going to try and get back our kingdom of Indraprastha? Did I ever tell you that I’m only going to roam around in the forest all the time? Who told you that anger is the only way through which one can obtain the lost kingdom and wealth? There are other ways of doing it as well! I shall meticulously exhibit my “Dharma” and re-obtain my kingdom and I’m confident about it! All these suffering that we’re undergoing is temporary in nature. It will go off very soon. When the time comes, you would see who this Yudishtra is!”

This is where we can see a gross difference between Yudishtra and Arjuna! At this point in time, except Yudishtra, everybody including Arjuna wanted to go for an all-out war against Duryodhana and win over him. However, when it came to the actual Kurushetra battlefield, who tried to run away from it? It was Arjuna, and not Yudishtra, isn’t it? This is where we have the 700-sloka Bhagawat Gita, which ultimately pulled Arjuna back to the battlefield to fight the war! But did Yudishtra shudder even for a moment? The answer is “No” isn’t it? Thus, we can witness here that Yudishtra is someone who is steadfast in his “Dharma”! If there should be silence, there should be no war at that point in time. However, if there should be a war, there is no place for silence at that point in time! Yudishtra was steadfast in this “Dharma”, isn’t it? This is the significance of Yudishtra as a righteous king! So for today, let us understand up to this point and we shall continue this discussion in the next episode as well! Stay tuned! 🙂  

Published by Dr. Jeayaram

Holds a PhD in Management Psychology from Universite Paris Saclay, Paris, France. Also an Asst. Professor of Human Resources management at Bharatidhasan Institute of Management (BIM) Trichy, India A professional South Indian classical musician (singer) performing concerts. Through this blog, I'm trying to bring out the richness of Indian culture & values and I request your support and feedbacks in making this humble effort a success!!

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