Mahabharat Sambhav Parva Section LXVII mentions that the five sons of Draupadi from the Pandavs were actually rebirths of Vishwas.

And, O bull in Bharata's race, they who became the five sons of Draupadi, those bulls amongst the Bharata princes, were the celestials known as the Viswas. Their names were Pritivindhya, Sutasoma, Srutakirti, Satanika, Nakula, and Srutasena, endued with mighty energy.

I want to know if these Vishwas are the same as the Vishwedevas? Also since Draupadi had five sons (one with each Pandava), why are there 6 of these celestials mentioned?

1 Answer 1


Yes, the Vishwas are the same as the Vishwadevas. This excerpt from the Markandeya Purana describes how when Vishwamitra took Harishchandra's kingdom from him, five of the Vishwadevas spoke out, and Vishwamitra put a curse on them to be born as humans:

But then spoke five Vishwadevas in pity, "This Vishwamitra is very wicked; what worlds will he obtain, who has uprooted this best of sacrificers from his throne? By whose funeral ceremony further shall the soma juice expressed at the great sacrifice by purified, by drinking which shall we reach the exhilaration that is preceded by incantations?" ...

Having heard their remark, the sage of the Kaushika race, exceedingly enraged, cursed them -- "Ye shall all assume human form." And propitiated by them, the great Muni added, "Although in human form, ye shall have no offspring. There shall be neither marriage nor wives for you, nor hostility: freed from love and anger ye shall be gods again." Thereupon those gods descended to the mansion of the Kurus with their own portions; they were born from the womb of Drauapdi as the five grandchildren of Pandu. Hence the five heroic Pandaveyas did not take to themselves wives, through the curse of that great Muni.

In any case, the chapter you're quoting may have either a transmission error or a translation error, because all other references to the Upapandavas don't mention Draupadi having a son named "Nakula". They just mention five sons: Prativindhya, Sutasoma, Srutakarman, Satanika, and Srutasena. See this chapter of the Adi Parva of the Mahabharata, this chapter of the Vana Parva, etc.

  • Thanks for the reference. Can you check in the original text for the reference to the 6th Vishwa? Commented Jan 8, 2018 at 6:45
  • @Dr.VineetAggarwal These are not names of Vishwadevas, but the human names of Draupadi's sons. Commented Jan 8, 2018 at 6:46
  • Ahh okay got it, wonder what the original text actually says. Commented Jan 8, 2018 at 6:50
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    @Dr.VineetAggarwal I just checked the Sanskrit chapter, it doesn't even mention their names, it just says "draupadeyāś ca ye pañca babhūvur bharatarṣabha | viśve devagaṇān rājaṃs tān viddhi bharatarṣabha ||" sacred-texts.com/hin/mbs/mbs01061.htm That corresponds to the sentence "And, O bull in Bharata's race, they who became the five sons of Draupadi, those bulls amongst the Bharata princes, were the celestials known as the Viswas." Maybe the verse listing their names is only present in some recensions of the Mahabharata. Commented Jan 8, 2018 at 7:08
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    In any case, I'm guessing that the verse would have said "Satanika son of Nakula" and Ganguli took it as two separate people. Commented Jan 8, 2018 at 7:09

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