Faith

Who were the Pandavas?

Who were the Pandavas, and why were they so devoted to Krishna? The story begins with Indra’s visit to Kailasa, said V.S. Karunakarachariar, in a discourse. There he says Siva has not treated him with due respect, considering that he is chief of the celestials. Siva then shows him an underground chamber. In the chamber are the four previous Indras. Siva says that they were pushed there as punishment for their arrogance. Indra apologises to Siva, who says it is time for the five Indras to go to the earth. Siva says, “The five of you will be responsible for the death of many, and will thus reduce the pressure on the earth.” He then takes the five Indras to meet Vishnu. Once a person goes to Sri Vaikuntha, he cannot come back. So how could the five Indras go there and then come to the earth? Siva takes them not to Sri Vaikuntha, but to what is known as Karya Vaikuntha.

Siva requests Vishnu to take His next avatara, to relieve the earth’s burden. Siva says that during this avatara, the five Indras will serve Him with devotion. Vishnu sheds two hairs from his body — one white in colour and the other black. The black hair becomes Krishna, the son of Devaki. The white hair becomes Balarama, son of Rohini. The five Indras are born as the Pandavas. They had already seen Vishnu when Siva took them to Karya Vaikuntha, but now when they are born on the earth, they are further taught of His greatness by sages, and this makes them more attached to Him. Krishna tells Duryodhana, that He will not eat what Duryodhana offers, because the latter is the enemy of the Pandavas, Every person has five praanas — prana, apana, samana, udana and vyana, and all five have to be in equilibrium, for a person’s good health. Krishna says that the Pandavas are His five praanas.


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Printable version | Sep 18, 2021 7:33:20 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/society/faith/who-were-the-pandavas/article32828697.ece

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