Wednesday, November 26, 2008

PDE Mahabharata: The Himalayas

Reading Guide. With this episode, you will now return to Draupadi and the four Pandava brothers in exile who now embark on a journey to the Himalayas. They miss Arjuna and, finally, he rejoins them.

Source. Indian Myth and Legend by Donald A. Mackenzie (1913). [300 words]

Indraprastha | 45. The Himalayas | Hanuman

During the years that Arjuna had his dwelling in Indra's celestial city, Yudhishthira and his three younger brethren, with Draupadi and the priest Dhaumya, abode a time in the forest of Kamyaka. Great sages visited them there, and from one Yudhishthira obtained skill in dice. Others led the wanderers to sacred waters, in which they were cleansed of their sins, and they achieved great virtues. And the sages related unto them many tales of men and women who suffered and made self-sacrifices, undergoing long exiles and performing penances so as to attain to great wisdom and win favor from the gods.

Thereafter the exiles went northward towards the Himalayas, and at length they beheld afar off the dwelling of Kubera, lord of treasure and king of yakshas. They gazed upon palaces of crystal and gold; the high walls were studded with jewels, and the gleaming ramparts and turrets were adorned by dazzling streamers. They saw beauteous gardens of bright flowers, and soft winds came towards them laden with perfume; wonderful and fair were the trees, and they were vocal with the songs of birds.

Kubera walked forth and spake words of wisdom unto Yudhishthira, counselling him to be patient and long-suffering, and to wait for the time and the place for displaying kshatriya prowess.

The exiles wandered on, and one day, when they sighed for Arjuna, they beheld the bright car of Indra, and they worshipped Matali, the charioteer. Then Indra came with his hosts of apsaras and gandharvas, and when they had adored him, the god promised Yudhishthira that he would yet reign in splendor over all men.

Arjuna appeared, and he was received with rejoicing, and all the Pandavas returned together to Kamyaka. There they were visited by Markandeya, the mighty sage, whose life endures through all the world's ages, and he spake of the mysteries and all that had taken place from the beginning, and revealed unto them full knowledge of the Deluge.

Indraprastha | The Himalayas | Hanuman

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