Thursday, March 24, 2016

Mahabharata - Parikshit and Sushobhana

Parikshit and Sushobhana

Once upon a time there was a king called Pariskshit belonging to the Ikshaku dynasty of Ayodhya. He had gone for hunting. The deer whom he was chasing led him astray and he lost his way and was far away from the human habitat. He was extremely fatigued and afflicted with hunger and thirst and saw himself in a dense forest devoid of any human habitation. In that forest he came across a vast lake of weet water. Being extremely thirsty, he took a bath, drank water, unharnessed his horse to give it good grass and water and took some rest. While resting he heard a sweet music and being curious about it he searched and found a very beautiful lady who was singing while gathering flowers. The king was fascinated by her beauty and without much enquiry asked for her hand in marriage. The lady consented upon one condition, that the king would never show her any water. The king agreed and they got married and had a great time together. In the meanwhile king's soldiers came to that spot searching for him and by seeing him along with the beautiful lady, they were delighted and too both of them back to the capital. After coming back to the palace the king forgot all his duties and remained with the fair lady day and night. Nobody could meet the king and all royal duties came to a standstill. At this the minster became very anxious and he enquired the king's companions the reason for king ignoring his duties. The companions told him that the king is married to a beautiful lady and made a pledge before her that he would never show her water and he was busy in her company day and night. At this the minister formed an idea. He caused an artificial forest to be created near the royal palace and also built a tank full of sweet water in one corner and covered it with a net of pearl to keep it hidden. Then he told the king that the king could roam around delightfully with his queen in that beautifu forest. The king accordingly took the queen out and sported with her. After a while he got tired and thirsty and discovered the tank. He sat beside the tank and told his wife to take a plunge in it, quite forgetting his pledge. At this the fair lady took a plunge in the water but never came back. At this the king was extremely sad and he ordered the water of the tank to be drawn out to make it empty, in the hope of discovering his love. However when all the water was drawn out he could see nothing but a frog near a water hole. At this the king was enraged and said that the frog must have killed his wife. Therefore all frogs should be exterminated. He ordered in wrath that nobody should visit him without giving him a tribute of dead frogs killed by that person. Soon there began a terrible slaughter of frogs in his kingdom and all the frogs became very much afraid and went to their king. The king of frogs became very sad seeing his subjects getting killed, transformed himself into an ascetic and came to meet the king Parikshit. He told Parikshit that it was not proper for him to kill innocent frogs. Parikshit told him that a frog killed his wife and he must kill them to avenge her death. At this the frog king said that he was the king of frogs and that his name was Ayu. The king had actually married his daughter Sushobhana, who was that beautiful maiden. She had played a prank with him, as she had done earlier with several kings. The king then requested him to giver his daughter in marriage to him, to which the frog king consented. However the frog king was very angry with his daughter as because of him so many innocent frogs had died and so many kings were deceived by her. He cursed her saying that her sons would not respect or obey Brahmins and thereby incur great unpleasantness. Sushobhana married Parikshit and had three sons by the names of Sala, Dala and Vala.

No comments:

Post a Comment