Episode # 650 – The “Agnyata-Vasam” begins – Commencing the “Virata Parva”!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed the end of the “Aaranya Parva”, wherein we’ve witnessed the “Yaksha-Prashnam” in a bit of a detail. Here, Yudishtra had answered various questions pertaining to “Dharma” which were posed by Yaksha, who was none other than Yama-Dharma-Raja himself. We’ve also witnessed the “Phala-Stuthi” at the end of this Upa-Parva and with this we’ve called it close! Subsequently, we’re going to commence the next important Parva, called the “Viraata Parva”. This is going to be yet another lengthy one, followed by the “Udyoga Parva”, wherein the main content is the “Vidura-Neeti”, which we shall be witnessing as time progresses. Of course, we’ve done a separate project on the “Vidura-Neeti” earlier, but we shall recall those discussions here as part of the “Udyoga Parva” in brief. But before that, we’ve to see a few instances that take place as part of the “Viraata Parva”, which would lead us to the “Vidura-Neeti” later on. So from today, we shall commence the “Viraata Parva” and we shall discuss important events pertaining to it. 

Commencing the “Viraata Parva” thus, the Paandava brothers are about to proceed with their “Agnyaata Vaasam”. We’ve to understand and recall that the Paandavas have by now, completed twelve years in the forest and they’re entering into the thirteenth. This thirteenth year is the “Agnyaata Vaasam” wherein they should not be spotted by anyone from Hastinapura. They should live in a disguised form, unable to be noticed by anyone for a full one year period and if they complete this, they shall be able to return back to Indraprastha once again. Now, Yudishtra and Co. are contemplating on how to go about the “Agnyaata-Vaasam” with his brothers and Draupati. This is where, Arjuna expresses his opinion and lists out the names of a few important territories wherein they can go and live without being noticed by anyone. This “Viraata Parva” has five main “Upa-Parvas” namely, the “Paandava Pravesha Parva”, “Samaya-Paalana Parva”, “Keechaka Vadha Parva”, “Go-Harana Parva” and “Vaivaahika Parva”. We’ve witnessed around 21 “Upa-Parvas” as part of the “Vana Parva”, which is perhaps one of the most lengthiest ones in the entire Mahabharata text. We’re now going to witness these five “Upa-Parvas” as part of the “Viraata Parva” and subsequently we will witness 10 “Upa-Parvas” as part of the upcoming “Udyoga Parva” and after this, we’re going to enter into the Kurukshetra war zone straightaway! I’m sure, readers are eagerly awaiting this section as we’re going to witness a lot of intricate details. But before that, we shall cross over the “Viraata Parva” and “Udyoga Parva” as quickly as possible. Of course, there are a lot of “Upadeshams” (Spiritual advice) given by various Maharishis and Vidura himself, just like how we had aplenty during the “Vana Parva”. We shall witness these “Upadeshams” in a bit more of a detail and keep the storyline shorter, as many of us might be knowing the storyline already. 

Commencing the “Viraata Parva” thus, we’re slipping into the conversation between Sage Vaishampayana and King Janame-Jaya. We’ve earlier witnessed that the entire Mahabharata story is being narrated by Sage Vaishampayana to King Janame-Jaya as the “Sarpa Yaagam” has been stopped by the Maharishis. Readers should remember and recall this discussion that we’ve had, some 200 episodes ago! 🙂 Now, King Janame-Jaya is asking Sage Vaishampayana thus, “Oh great Sage! You’ve explained the twelve years of my grandfathers’ “Vana Vaasam” in detail. Now during the thirteenth year, where did they go for their “Agnyaata Vaasam”? Which city did they live in? Were they able to successfully finish their “Agnyaata Vaasam” without any major hiccups? What are the various incidents that happened during this important phase? Did they live with their original forms or did they live in disguise?” 

All these questions are being raised by King Janame-Jaya to Sage Vaishampayana. With this, Sage Vaishampayana is going to give important replies, which forms the “Viraata Parva”. So for today, let us understand up to this point, and in the next episode, we shall witness the commencement of Sage Vaishampayana’s important answers! Stay tuned for an important and an interesting accord! 🙂 


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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