In the previous episode, we had witnessed Duryodhana coming back to Hastinapura with a refreshed mood – Thanks to the Dhaanavas for their “Dhur-Bodhana” (Wrong advice & misguidance) that they had made to him! The King of the Dhaanavas had grossly misguided Duryodhana that he has all the qualities to pip Yudishtra quite easily and become the next king of Hastinapura. With this “Bodhana”, Duryodhana starts feeling overconfident from that very moment onwards! He returns back with a new rigour and proposes to all his mates, including the likes of Sahuni and the others, that he wants to perform a “Raaja-Suya Yaaga”, similar to the one that Yudishtra did when he was the king of Indraprastha. However, the Brahmin Pandits struck down that idea because Duryodhana wasn’t eligible to perform such a “Yaaga” at that point in time due to various reasons. Mainly, he wasn’t even a king of Hastinapura and moreover, how can he perform this Yaaga when his father is alive?
However, the Brahmin Pandits gave him an alternative course of action. The Brahmin Pandits say thus, “Oh Duryodhana! Do not worry that you’re unable to do the “Raaja-Suya Yaaga” at the moment. Time will come, and we shall think of it at that moment. However, now, you can perform an equivalent “Vaishnava-Satra Yaaga” and prove your mettle to the world! Hence, please try and perform this Yaaga as a substitute to the “Raaja-Suya Yaaga”!” This sounds good for Duryodhana and Co. and they get ready for the same almost immediately! Thus, Duryodhana arranges for a grand “Yaaga” at Hastinapura and it takes place with a lot of grandeur. With this, Duryodhana and all the others surrounding him are extremely happy and satisfied! King Dhridarasshtra is also happy that Duryodhana is slowly gaining a lot of prominence in the power circles of the kingdom. With this, we come to the end of this “Goshayatra Parva”. We’ve seen how Duryodhana initially wanted to see Yudishtra and Co. suffering in the forest, thereafter pick up a war with them and finish them off. However, unfortunately as fate would have it, Duryodhana landed up in the hands of Chitrarasa and was almost beaten to death, only for Arjuna to come and save him. Filled with embarrassment, Duryodhana decided to commit suicide – Thanks to the Dhaanavas who saved him from it! Now, Duryodhana has regained that confidence by performing the “Vaishnava-Satra Yaaga” and he is back to his original form!
Moving on further from here, we go into the next small Parva, which is nothing but the “Mriga-Svapnotthava Parva”. Now this is a sad Parva, wherein all the animals living around the “Dvaita Vanam” are feeling threatened. As the Paandava brothers are living in this “Dvaita Vanam”, they are catching one or two animals every passing day and killing them as part of their regular hunting exercise. As this continues further everyday, the population of these animals living there are coming down slowly. With this, the animals are worried about whether they will become extinct soon. Thus, one night when Yudishtra goes to sleep, all these dead animals come in Yudishtra’s dream and tell him thus, “Oh Yudishtra! You’re known for “Dharma” and “Righteousness”, isn’t it? Is it “Dharma” to kill all of us for no fault of ours? What mistake did we make to you? Why are we meeting a ghastly end to our lives? All of us are living in fear in this forest area, and with each animal passing away, the population of animals is coming down! Oh Yudishtra! Why are you people roaming around in the forest, which is our dwelling place? Why don’t you go back to your kingdom and live happily?”
As the animals ask thus with tears in their eyes, Yudishtra replies back, “Oh! We never came here on our own! We were chased away from our kingdom and this is the reason we’re roaming around here! Anyway, now that you’ve raised your concern, we will assure you of no more troubles from our side. We shall vacate this “Dvaita Vanam” and move to a different place!” Saying thus, next day, Yudishtra and Co. move to the “Kaamyaka Vanam”! So for today, let us understand up to this point and in the next episode, we shall witness what is going to happen in the “Kaamyaka Vanam”. Stay tuned! 🙂