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I watched in Star Plus Mahabharata that:

Balarama says it was more adharma of Yuddhisthir than Duryodhana. And says, "why did he bet his wives and brothers, when he could simply quit". He was the reason of everything that happened that day.

At this, Krishna agrees and says to Arjuna sometimes you have to forget your dharma for good reasons.

According to Krishna, Yuddhisthir, Bhishma etc. knew Dharma but they were egoist in the game of dice.

Now, I don't say this is part of authentic Mahabharata, but it doesn't seem wrong either.

And personally, my mind deviates to think that Yuddhisthir made the biggest mistake than Duryodhana. He was responsible for whatever happened. And since they were daas, stripping draupadi wasn't adharma. Even the game of dice rules were fair. (I may be wrong. I've asked this here to clear doubt, if you want to see).

So, when both did adharma, why Krishna wanted to support Pandavas more than Kauravas?

(The incident when Krishna gave choice to Duryodhana and Arjuna for choosing Narayana army or himself is a different thing).

  • Duryodhan was born adharma. Duryodhan Shakuni planned to kill Pandavas so many times. Dirthirahstra blinded by ambition of making his son his successor. Duryodhan wanted to kill Pandavas some way. He wanted to have war with them. Or play the dice and defeat them. He had ambition of defeating them. So to avoid all that Yuddhisthir tried his best in accepting dice game but for Yuddhisthir's mistakes he faced his consequences of 12yrs vanavas which Krishna also didnt interfere. Each one has to face conseq. for own actions. Duryodhan was born with adharma. So no choice he had to be killed! – Parabrahman Jyoti Jul 26 at 2:57
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    Just because of that, will you forgive the bigger adharma of Yuddhisthir? @AkshayS – Vikas Jul 26 at 3:01
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    Yuddhisthir bigger adharma? Where did i mention forgiveness? Remember one who realises their mistakes, ll never do it again and they deserve forgiveness. Secondly Yuddhisthir for his wrong act faced 12yrs vanavas and he never blamed anyone for his consequences. Read my points carefully again!!! If for you conspierancy is small adharma and Yuddhisthir bigger adharma, then no point in prolonging this conversation!! there is no big or small adharma. Yuddhisthir accepted consequence of his action but Duryodhan never and instead multiplied his adharma. So he had to be killed! – Parabrahman Jyoti Jul 26 at 3:08
  • That satisfies me :D @AkshayS – Vikas Jul 26 at 4:45
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    Dont be satisfied. Satisfaction doesnt lead to anything. Understand the truth than understanding logics! – Parabrahman Jyoti Jul 26 at 4:55
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Balarama never said that "why did he bet his wives and brothers, when he could simply quit". It is not from Mahabharata, but imagination of the Director.

  1. After the marriage of Abhimanyu was performed with Uttara, all the royal heroes assembled and discussed the next course of action to be taken. It was then Balarama says as follows:

When Yudhishthira had his throne, he forgot himself by being engaged in gambling and was dispossessed by them of his kingdom. This valiant Kuru, this descendant of Ajamida, Yudhishthira, though not skilled in dice and though dissuaded by all his friends, challenged the son of the king of Gandhara, an adept at dice, to the match. There were then at that place thousands of dice-players whom Yudhishthira could defeat in a match. Taking however, no notice of any of them, he challenged Suvala's son of all men to the game, and so he lost. And although the dice constantly went against him, he would still have Sakuni alone for his opponent. Competing with Sakuni in the play, he sustained a crushing defeat. For this, no blame can attach to Sakuni.

  1. After war between Duryodhana and Bhima was over, this is what Balarama said before leaving the war area:

Hearing these words of Vasudeva the wielder of the plough, who was conversant with rules of morality, said,

"Morality is well practised by the good. Morality, however, is always afflicted by two things, the desire of Profit entertained by those that covet it, and the desire for Pleasure cherished by those that are wedded to it. Whoever without afflicting Morality and Profit, or Morality and Pleasure, or Pleasure and Profit, followeth all three--Morality, Profit and Pleasure--always succeeds in obtaining great happiness. In consequence, however, of morality being afflicted by Bhimasena, this harmony of which I have spoken hath been disturbed, whatever, O Govinda, thou mayst tell me!"

Hearing this fallacious discourse from Keshava, O king, Rama failed to dispel his wrath and became cheerful. He then said in that assembly,

"Having unfairly slain king Suyodhana of righteous soul, the son of Pandu shall be reputed in the world as a crooked warrior! The righteous-souled Duryodhana, on the other hand, shall obtain eternal blessedness! Dhritarashtra's royal son, that ruler of men, who hath been struck down, is a fair warrior. Having made every arrangement for the Sacrifice of battle and having undergone the initiatory ceremonies on the field, and, lastly, having poured his life as a libation upon the fire represented by his foes, Duryodhana has fairly completed his sacrifice by the final ablutions represented by the attainment of glory!" Having said these words, the valiant son of Rohini, looking like the crest of a white cloud, ascended his car and proceeded towards Dwaraka.

The reasons for which Krishna supported Pandavas are as follows:

For pacifying the angry Rama, Keshava addressed him, saying,

"There are six kinds of advancement that a person may have: one's own advancement, the advancement of one's friends, the advancement of one's friends', the decay of one's enemy, the decay of one's enemy's friends, and the decay of one's enemy's friends' friends. When reverses happen to one's own self or to one's friends, one should then understand that one's fall is at hand and, therefore, one should at such times look for the means of applying a remedy.

The Pandavas of unsullied prowess are our natural friends. They are the children of our own sire's sister!

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    'They are the children of our own sire's sister!' - so it all comes down to blood relations 😒 – sv. Jul 26 at 16:59
  • I'm talking about before war. – Vikas Jul 26 at 17:35
  • @Vikas: I have updated my answer please. Krishna's stand was the same whether it was before war or after war. – srimannarayana k v Jul 27 at 2:33
  • @srimannarayanakv this english is very tough for me :( – Vikas Jul 27 at 13:41
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    I have copied from the available translation of Mahabharata.:-). If you could not understand something, please quote the same. I'll try my best to explain @Vikas – srimannarayana k v Jul 27 at 14:19
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It has to be understood that game of dice was played twice. First time, Pandavas lost their kingdom and themselves too (became Daasa/slaves). Draupadi never became daasi in the opinion of wise like Vidura because she was staked after Yudhisthira himself lost. Later, even Arjuna confirmed that Yudhisthira lost himself first so he had no right to stake Draupadi. Due to insult shown to Draupadi as a daasi (which she was not) many bad omens happened there and terrified by the bad omens, Dhritrastra asked Draupadi to demand boons:

  • In first boon, Draupadi asked freedom of Yudhisthira.

Dhritrastra granted the boon and asked Draupadi to wish another boon.

  • In second boon, Draupadi asked freedom of Bhima, Arjuna, Nakula and Sahdeva

Dhritrastra granted the boon and asked Draupadi to wish another boon. But Draupadi said that Kashtriya women can't ask more than 2 boons and said that her husbands will again earn wealth as they are free now.

But, terrified Dhritrastra returned the wealth won in dice to Yudhisthira:

Dhritarashtra replied.--'O Ajatasatru, blest be thou. Go thou in peace and safety. Commanded by me, go, rule thy own kingdom with thy wealth. ... ~Sabha Parva: SECTION LXXII

The same was confirmed by Shakuni:

Sakuni then said,--'The old king hath given ye back all your wealth. ... ~ Sabha Parva: SECTION LXXV


This was over and Pandavas left for their kingdom i.e. Indraprastha. But now, Duryodhan requested his father to call Pandavas one more time. He said they will not forgive the insult done to Draupadi, so let there be one more game and either they will go in woods for 12+1 years or we will go.

And, Dhritrastra sent a messenger to call back Pandavas (who had by that time gone far to Indraprastha). And commanded by their uncle, Pandavas came back to play for which the condition was:

Sakuni then said,--'... Either defeated by ye at dice, dressed in deer skins we shall enter the great forest and live there for twelve years passing the whole of the thirteenth year in some inhabited region, unrecognised, and if recognised return to an exile of another twelve years; or vanquished by us, dressed in deer skins ye shall, with Krishna, live for twelve years in the woods passing the whole of the thirteenth year unrecognised, in some inhabited region. If recognised, an exile of another twelve years is to be the consequence. On the expiry of the thirteenth year, each is to have his kingdom surrendered by the other. O Yudhishthira, with this resolution, play with us, O Bharata, casting the dice.' ~ Sabha Parva: SECTION LXXV


Now, again Yudhisthira lost and as agreed spent 12+1 years in the woods which is described in Did Pandavas really complete their ajnatavasa? post.

As per the condition, on the completion of 13 years, Yudhisthira was supposed to get his kingdom back. But, Duryodhana didn't return the kingdom which clearly mean that Duryodhana is doing Adharma.

Now, it should be clear that Pandavas completed the 12+1 years exile and should get their kingdom back as per the conditions. So, Krishna favoured the Pandavas!


Lord Krishna listed lot of adharma of Kaurvas in this chapter of Mahabharata: Udyoga Parva:

[Lord Krishna to Duryodhana:] Thou thinkest, O thou of little understanding, that thou hast committed no offence against the Pandavas? Let the (assembled) monarchs judge. Grieved at the prosperity of the high-souled Pandavas, thou conspirest, O Bharata, with Suvala's son about the gambling match. O sire, how could those virtuous, honest, and superior kinsmen of thine (otherwise) engage in such a wicked act with the deceitful Sakuni? O thou that art endued with great wisdom, gambling robs even the good of their understanding, and as regards the wicked, disunion and dire consequence spring from it. It was thou who hadst devised with thy wicked counsellors, that terrible source of calamity in the form of the gambling match, without consulting with persons of righteous behaviour. Who else is there, capable of insulting a brother's wife in the way thou didst or of dragging her into the assembly and addressing her in language thou hadst used towards Draupadi? Of noble parentage, and endued with excellent behaviour, and dearer to them than their very lives, the queen-consort of Pandu's sons was treated even thus by thee. All the Kauravas know what words were addressed in their assembly by Dussasana unto those chastisers of foes,--the sons of Kunti,--when they were about to set out for the woods. Who is there capable of behaving so wretchedly towards his own honest kinsmen, that are ever engaged in the practice of virtue, that are untainted by avarice, and that are always correct in their behaviour? Language such as becomes only those that are heartless and despicable, was frequently repeated by Karna and Dussasana and also by thee. Thou hadst taken great pains to burn to death, at Varanavata, the sons of Pandu with their mother, while they were children, although that effort of thine was not crowned with success. After this, the Pandavas with their mother were obliged to live for a long while, concealed in the town of Ekachakra in the abode of a Brahmana. With poison, with snakes and cords, thou hadst, by every means, sought the destruction of the Pandavas, although none of thy designs was successful. With such feelings when thou hadst always acted towards them so deceitfully, how canst thou say that thou hast not offended against the high-souled Pandavas? Thou art not, O sinful man, willing to give them their paternal share in the kingdom, although they are begging it of thee. Thou shalt have to give it them, this, when divested of prosperity, thou shalt be laid low. Having, like a heartless fellow, done innumerable wrongs to the Pandavas and behaved so deceitfully towards them, thou seekest now to appear in a different garb.

  • let's assume 2nd part of dice wouldn't happen. Then would he still favored Pandavas in future in any incident like war? – Vikas Jul 28 at 10:25
  • Also, whatever happened in dice game, whatever Vidur said, the result matters. And as of result, Draupadi was daasi. So do you think it was adharma and Krishna wanted to teach them a lesson for it? – Vikas Jul 28 at 10:26
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    for ur first Q, whatever is not happened or not mentioned, how we can predict that..that becomes opinion based....for second Q, as already mentioned, she didn't become daasi...it's Duryodhana's weird interpretation by which he claims her daasi but that's not acceptable and considered adharma... – YDS Jul 28 at 10:44
  • any references for you above comment? Because, in serials, it is shown Yuddhisthir bets Draupadi and fairly loses her, hence becomes a daasi. – Vikas Jul 28 at 10:48
  • But Balarama was not in a mood to do partiality. Why was that? – Vikas Aug 25 at 8:55
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So, when both did adharma, why Krishna wanted to support Pandavas more than Kauravas?

Because the Pandavas were incarnations of the Devas, whereas the Kauravas were incarnations of Rakshasas and Asuras, and the Mahabharata war was actually a war between the Devas and Asuras for supremacy of the Earth.

From the Adivansavatarana Parva:

"And, O bull of the Bharata race, when such was the blessed state of the terrestrial world, the Asuras, O lord of men, began to be born in kingly lines. And the sons of Diti (Daityas) being repeatedly defeated in war by the sons of Aditi (celestials) and deprived also of sovereignty and heaven, began to be incarnated on the earth. And, O king, the Asuras being possessed of great powers, and desirous of sovereignty began to be born on earth amongst various creatures ... And, O protector of the earth, owing to those already born and to those that were being born, the earth became incapable of supporting herself. And amongst the sons of Diti and of Danu, cast out of heaven, some were born on the earth as kings of great pride and insolence. Possessed of great energy, they covered the earth in various shapes. Capable of oppressing all foes, they filled the earth having the ocean for its boundaries. And by their strength they began to oppress Brahmanas and Kshatriyas and Vaisyas and Sudras and all other creatures also. Terrifying and killing all creatures, they traversed the earth, O king, in bands of hundreds and thousands. Devoid of truth and virtue, proud of their strength, and intoxicated with (the wine of) insolence, they even insulted the great Rishis in their hermitages.

Then, the Goddess of Earth, being overburdened with Asuras, went to Lord Brahma for help:

"And the earth, thus oppressed by the mighty Asuras endued with great strength and energy and possessed of abundant means, began to think of waiting on Brahman... And then, O king, the earth, oppressed with weight and afflicted with fear, sought the protection of the Grandsire of all creatures. And she beheld the divine Brahman--the Creator of the worlds who knoweth no deterioration

Brahma ordered the Devas to incarnate on Earth and fight the Asuras:

And the Creator then commanded all the gods saying, 'To ease the Earth of her burden, go ye and have your births in her according to your respective parts and seek ye strife (with the Asuras already born there)'. And the Creator of all, summoning also all the tribes of the Gandharvas and the Apsaras, spake unto them these words of deep import, 'Go ye and be born amongst men according to your respective parts in forms that ye like.'

Then, Indra went and asked Narayana to incarnate on Earth too to help them:

Him, Indra the most exalted of persons, addressed, saying, "Be incarnate." And Hari replied,--'Let it be.'"

...

And the dwellers in heaven gradually became incarnate on earth for the destruction of the Asuras and for the welfare of the three worlds.

The Vishnu Purana also says the same thing:

At this present season many demons, of whom Kálanemi is the chief, have overrun, and continually harrass, the region of mortals. The great Asura Kálanemi, that was killed by the powerful Vishńu, has revived in Kansa, the son of Ugrasena, and many other mighty demons, more than I can enumerate, as Arisht́a, Dhenuka, Keśin, Pralamba, Naraka, Sunda, and the fierce Báńa, the son of Bali, are born in the palaces of kings.

....

When Brahmá had ended, the supreme lord plucked off two hairs, one white and one black, and said to the gods, "These my hairs shall descend upon earth, and shall relieve her of the burden of her distress. Let all the gods also, in their own portions, go down to earth, and wage war with the haughty Asuras, who are there incorporate, and who shall every one of them be destroyed.

So, it only makes sense that Krishna, who is an incarnation of Vishnu, supported the Pandavas.

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