The Mahabharata is one of India's most popular epics. The Kurukshetra war is depicted in the epic as a historical battle between two groups of cousins. It was the most horrific battle ever fought.
Sage Vyasa is known for writing this epic. The Pandavas- Yudhishthira, Bhima, Arjuna, Nakula, and Sahadev, the five brothers, and the Kauravas are the main characters in the Mahabharata. It's almost like a family feud over land and property. Pandu, the king of Hastinapur, chose to live in the forest with his two wives, Kunti and Madri, and his sons. Therefore he gave up his throne to his brother Dhritrashtra and went into the forest to live.
In the kingdom of Hastinapur, Dhritrashtra's wife, Gandhari, gave birth to a hundred sons. Duryodhana was the eldest of them all. Bhisma assigned Dhronacharya to teach the Pandavas all the skills of warfare when they returned to Hastinapur. Dhronacharya taught both the Pandavas and the Kauravas.
Once the Pandavas entered the Kingdom of Panchala. The king of Panchala had a beautiful daughter Draupadi, who was the subject of a competition. The competition was based on archery skills, and Arjuna, who was an unrivaled archer, entered and won. At the Swayamvara, the Pandavas encountered Krishna, Kunti's nephew.
When they all came back to Hastinapur, Dhritarashtra gave the Pandavas, a small piece of barren land, far away from Hastinapur. The Pandavas built a beautiful city there named Indraprastha. Soon again, Duryodhana along with his evil uncle Shakuni started plotting and invited Yudisthira to play a dice game with the Kauravas. Yudhishthira not only lost his kingdom and wealth in this game but also his brothers and wife. After the game when Draupadi was humiliated in the open palace, Dhritrashtra out of fear and consequences returned everything to the Pandavas. But the game did not stop there. In the next round when the Pandavas lost again, they had to go on an exile for 12 years and spend another year in disguise.
Listen to the next part of the story in the next episode of this podcast.
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Disclaimer: Some of the dialogues in the narration have been inspired by C Rajagopalachari's Mahabharata.
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