Karna, born before Kunti's marriage is considered as Pandu's son. However, Krishna Dwaipayana Vyasa is not considered as Santanu's son but is son of Parashara. What is the reason for this difference?


2 Answers 2


Well, TBH, my answer will be in the greyish zone so don't see it with the lenses of black and white. Prd..

At first let's see why and how Lord Krishna described Karna as the son of Pandu.

The Mahabharata. Book 5.: Udyoga Parva. SECTION CXL.:

"Vasudeva (Krishna) said, 'O son of Radha (Karña), thou hast worshipped many Brahmanas fully conversant with the Vedas. With concentrated attention and mind free from envy thou hast also (on many an occasion) enquired of them after truth. Thou knowest, therefore, O Karna, what the eternal saying of the Vedas are. Thou art also well-versed in all the subtle conclusions of the scriptures. It is said by those conversant with the scriptures that the two kinds of sons called Kanina and Sahoda that are born of a maiden, have him for their father who weddeth the maid. Thou, O Karna, hast been born in this way. Thou art, therefore, morally the son of Pandu. Come, be a king, according to the injunction of the scriptures. On the side of thy father, thou hast the sons of Pritha, on the side of thy mother, thou hast the Vrishnis, (for thy kinsmen). O bull among men, know that thou hast these two for thy own....."

  • Sahoda - the son of a woman pregnant at the time of marriage.

  • Kānīna - the son born of a young and unmarried woman.

So, both Karna and Vyāsa comes into Kānina son category.

So, technically Vyāsa is also the son of Shantunu.

But he is called as mostly Parāsarā's son. Just like Karna is mostly called as Surya Putra (Biological) or Suta (Adaptive) Putra. But who knows in some scripture he might be called as Shantunu's son.

Another reason why Vyāsa Krishna Dwaipayaña is called as Parāsarā's son might be because of the boon of Bhagawan Shiva.:

The Mahabharata Book 13: Anusasana Parva.: SECTION XVIII.:

"Parasara said,--'In former times I gratified Sarva, O king. I then cherished the desire of obtaining a son that would be possessed of great ascetic merit, endued with superior energy, and addressed to high Yoga, that would earn world-wide fame, arrange the Vedas, and become the home of prosperity, that would be devoted to the Vedas and the Brahmanas and be distinguished for compassion. Even such a son was desired by me from Maheswara. Knowing that this was the wish of my heart, that foremost of Deities said unto me.--Through the fruition of that object of thine which thou wishest to obtain from me, thou shalt have a son of the name of Krishna. In that creation which shall be known after the name of Savarni-Manu, that son of thine shall be reckoned among the seven Rishis. He shall arrange the Vedas, and be the propagator of Kuru's race. He shall, besides, be the author of the ancient histories and do good to the universe. Endued with severe penances, he shall, again, be the dear friend of Sakra. Freed from diseases of every kind, that son of thine, O Parasara, shall besides, be immortal.--Having said these words, the great Deity disappeared there and then. Even such is the good, O Yudhishthira, that I have obtained from that indestructible and immutable God, endued with the highest penances and supreme energy.'

Plus, as i have discussed in this answer of mine. Shāntunu is the incarnation of Lord Vishnu and Ocean and Krishna Vyāsa is also the incarnation of Lord Vishnu.

And, just a speculation, Vyāsa is called as island born dweepayana. Ayana can mean abode, son, etc like Mata Sàti is called as Dakshāyini. And island has other synonyms in Sanskrit such as payogaDa (पयोगड), pariSyanda (परिष्यन्द), etc which means water, river, etc. So, Vyāsa can also be called as Krishna Water Born and Water is Shāntunu being the incarnation of the Ocean.

Anyways, that's just a theory.

Hm, That's it I guess.

|| ॐ तत् सत् ||


The same way Karna is not a son of Pandu. Both Vyasa and Karna were born before the marriage of their mothers.

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