In the previous episode, we had witnessed a detailed accord on how Bhagawan Shiva makes His divine appearance in front of Arjuna. Initially He did not do so, but came to Arjuna in the form of a hunter. Eventually Bhagawan Shiva intentionally picked up a “war of words” and also a physical fight with Arjuna, just to test his calibre as a “Kshatrya Prince”. On Arjuna’s front, he tried his best to defeat the so-called hunter, both in terms of words and in terms of physical fighting, but in vain! As Arjuna was at the verge of accepting defeat, Bhagawan Shiva revealed His true form and provided His divine “Anugraha” to Arjuna. Along with this, Bhagawan Shiva also blessed Arjuna with the most powerful “Asthra” called the “Paashupatha-Asthra”, and also taught Arjuna how to use it. Subsequently, Bhagawan Shiva goes on to declare that all the other Celestial Beings (Devatas) will also be in queue to meet Arjuna and bless him with various other divine “Asthras” very soon. Saying thus, Bhagawan Shiva leaves the place in a jiffy. Arjuna is extremely happy with what had just happened.
Subsequently as Bhagawan Shiva leaves the place, as per what He had mentioned just now, Indra comes to meet Arjuna. Indra explains to Arjuna thus, “Oh Arjuna! Please do not mistake me! I should have come earlier itself when you had called me. But since Bhagawan Shiva had to initiate the proceedings, we were waiting for the “Divine Will” to start. Now that Bhagawan Shiva has provided His divine “Anugraha”, I shall now chip in along with the other “Devatas” like Varuna, Yama, Vaayu, and the others. Oh Arjuna! Please do one thing! You come along with me to the “Svarga Lokha” and I shall provide you my divine “Anugraha” in the form of various boons and other important “Asthras”. As I leave this place now, I shall immediately send you a divine chariot which would be driven by my charioteer, Maathali. You just get into that chariot and Maathali will straightaway drive you to my “Svarga Lokha”. We shall meet there for further discussions on this subject!”
Saying thus, Indra leaves the place. Subsequently Maathali arrives with his chariot, as per Indra’s instruction. Maathali requests Arjuna to get into the chariot immediately and Arjuna obeys. Thus, Maathali straightaway drives Arjuna to the “Svarga Lokha”! With this, we come to the end of the “Arjuna-Abhigamana Parva” and the “Kailaasa Parva”. Now as Arjuna ascends to the “Svarga Lokha”, we enter into the important “Indra-Lokha Abhigamana Parva”. As Maathali hurries the chariot towards Indra’s “Svarga Lokha”, upon looking into either sides on the way, Arjuna is extremely happy! He hasn’t seen such amounts of happiness ever in his life till date! In fact, at one point in time, he even forgets that all his four brothers and Draupati are waiting for him in the “Bhoo Lokha” below. Arjuna gets into the mindset of “Let them wait for me! I shall enjoy all this and then come back!” as he is being driven swiftly on the chariot by Maathali.
As Arjuna thus enters the contours of the Indra Lokha, he gets stunned by its beauty and attractiveness! As Arjuna moves further inside, he reaches the “Indra-Sabha” which is sprawling in nature with all its dazzles! At the centre of the “Sabha”, Indra is sitting with all his wives fanning him from all sides! As Indra sees Arjuna coming towards him, he quickly runs and receives Arjuna, hugs him and takes him to his throne. Subsequently, Indra makes Arjuna sit on his lap and looks at him with all his love and affection! Afterall, Arjuna is none other than Indra’s son! We should never forget this. Thus, the father in Indra is awakened as he sees his son, Arjuna! As both of them settle down, Indra tells Arjuna thus, “Oh Arjuna! You stay here with me for a short period of time! I’m going to teach you two important things – One is the “Asthra-Viddha” and the second is the “Sangeetha-Viddha”. Along with this, Chitrasena, who is sitting here by the side, will teach you dance, some musical instruments, etc. Oh Arjuna! You might be thinking within yourself that what am I going to do with music and dance? Please understand that you would require this at some point in time, and I’m teaching you all of this in advance! Please utilize this time to learn all these things!”
As Indra says thus, Arjuna accepts Indra’s proposal without a second opinion! With this, Arjuna stays in the Indra Lokha for the next five years! Nobody amongst the Paandava brothers even could trace where Arjuna is! So for today, let us understand up to this point, and in the next episode, we shall continue this interesting discussion further! Stay tuned! 🙂