Friday, September 1, 2023

Mahabharata Quiz - 47

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Question – 47

When did Krishna begin his journey for peace to avert the war between Pandava-s and Kaurava-s? Did he begin the journey in Sharad season or Varsha season?


Krishna started the journey to Hastinapura in the Sharad season in ‘Kaumudi’ month, says the Mahabharata.

Krishna started in Maitri Muhurta, on the day of Revati coming in the waxing phase of Kartika, mentioned as “Kaumudi Maasa” If the Full Moon of Kartika occurred in the star Krittika, the tithi on Revati was likely to be Shukla Dwadasi. By Kartika Shukla Dwadasi, half of the Sharad season was over. This prompted Vyasa to say that Krishna started at the end of Sharad season.

The exact line is this: “kaumude māsi revatyāṃ śarad ante himāgame”. By stating “sharad ante” Vyasa did not give any room for doubt on the season running then. Unfortunately, this was interpreted by Mr. Nilesh Oak that it refers to the Varsha season, to suit his date of the Mahabharata.

If the Varsha (rainy) season was running then, lack of heat must have been indicated, since the sun could be mostly hiding behind the clouds. But the words “arciṣi divākare” in the verse say the opposite. Arciṣi is the name of one of the twelve suns that is characterized as blazing or in flame. It is referred so in Ṛg Veda in that sense.

The sun of the rainy season cannot be described as ablaze. In the very next line of the same verse the growth of abundant crops is mentioned thereby rejecting any scope for an interpretation that it was rainy reason (MB:5.81.7). Enlarged corn and grains on top had come up in time (kāle kalyaḥ) abounding with life. Crops of this description cannot be seen in the rainy season. These crops are the result of the rainy season that appear in the Sharad season. These were present in the surroundings under the blazing sun when Krishna started off from Upaplavya carrying the message of the Pandava-a to the Kaurava-s.

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