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Itihasa-purana - II
ciis people are looking at my website. let us see what the reaction is.
Kaushal garu

On the page


It gives a link http://www.india-forum.com/categories/Hinduism/

It should instead be.. http://www.india-forum.com/categories/Cali...xtbook-Episode/

which has all the 20-25 articles on this episode.
Sunder, a paragraph 90 lines) for most,but a page for those need special mention would work. But if you have more to say on any individual so be it.
Thank you rajesh . you are invaluable.
In the western world women have been playing a second-fiddle to men, in mythology as well as in history. It is unknown in Semitic sects that a woman has been worshipped independently for her own qualities. i.e. even in the Christian Mythology, in case of Mary, she has only been revered as the "Mother" of Jesus, and not independently before the conception of "Son of God".

In the West, one rarely finds works extolling the virtue of women and reverence to them. There seems to be a dearth of information on women Role Models who are equated or elevated to the stature of a goddess let alone Goddess (with a Capital G) so much so that even the Mariam Webster's dictionary fails to have an entry for "Goddess" (with an upper-case G).

Indian culture and tradition don the other hand does not consider women as "objects" to be ritualistically worshipped, not does it sideline women to being mere wall-flowers who watch life pass by them. Women have always played and active and *important* role in the Indian society. The Scriptures have 'Suktas' specially for women Goddesses like Shri Suktam, Neela Suktam, Bhu Suktam etc. The most exalted of all Mantras - The Gayatri Mantra - is also addressed to the Mother of Vedas, Veda Matha Gayatri. Thus we see that for all it's hypocrisy, the west has to be satisfied with a Ruth or a Mary as compared to the Hindu Women who were very valorous, highly knowledgeable, extremely compassionate, and undoubtedly Strong Willed women who were Self-empowered.

The Upanishads and the epics address women by the epithet "Fire". The purity and chastity of a woman in Indian culture was something even the gods would be afraid of. Anasuya (Atri's wife), and Sita (Rama's wife) are examples of this. A Hindu who is faithful to his traditions would not look upon any woman except his wife with lust. Thanks to modern influence this outlook is slowly eroding away the Hindu mind.

Here are some women who are role models for all women.

*) Lalita Mahatripura Sundari. (Supreme Goddess who is even higher than Brahma, Vishnu and Rudra.)

1) Sita. (Intelligence, Self-determination, and courage.)
2) Savitri. (Self Determination and intelligence.)
3) Anasuya. (For her humility, and extreme power.)
4) Satyabhama. (Valour.)
5) Lopamudra (composer/contributor of Rig Veda.)
6) Vakh Ambrini (composer/contributor of Rig Veda.)

While the above list is only a sample, there are innumerable examples of women who have been revered by Hindus that it is impossible to list them all here.
This confining women to the inner apartments is an off shoot of the brabarian invasions. I have a book on Indian dance by Ram Swarup that has a page with pen and ink sketches of "Faces of Indian Women". It shows the face of a same woman at different times to show the progress and lack of it. I will try to bring the book for Kaushal when we meet.
Interesting site. Perhaps HH might have some comments..

You are right sunder about the plethora of choices . I had thought of highlighting about a dozen well known names (like savitri,draupadi etc) and a few others from tales of ordinary women who took charge.and finally a section on ideals of womenhood as embodied in the various Goddesses starting with Saraswati and Lakshmi).

Any pictures/sketches (preferably scanned on a memory stick) , would be useful , Ramana.

I will have a special section on Goddesses (apart fromt this )to describe the roler they play in enhancing value systems and beliefs
Here is the greatest story ever told, and the greatest war ever waged. The War between Lalitha Maha Tripura Sundari Parabhattarika, and Bandasura.

The initial portions or Sri Lalitha Sahasranamam covers this incident. In one line, the entire Dashavatara - 10 incarnations of Vishnu is covered. "Karaanguli nakotpanna Naarayana Dasaakruthi:"

During this war, waged by an ALL WOMAN army against Bandasura and his sons, Sri Lalitha delivers a crushing defeat to the Asura. The only two male characters I know on Lalitha Devi's side are Maha Kameswara, and Sri Vigna Vinayaka who is created specifically to destroy Banda's impediments.

I know of no other story/incident that can equal this one in the Puranas in terms of satiating your spiritual thirst.
Please check this thread on stree dharma, there are some good links in there.
<!--QuoteBegin-Sunder+Mar 14 2006, 03:27 PM-->QUOTE(Sunder @ Mar 14 2006, 03:27 PM)<!--QuoteEBegin-->The only two male characters I know on Lalitha Devi's side are Maha Kameswara, and Sri Vigna Vinayaka who is created specifically to destroy Banda's impediments.

I am not to nitpicking, but just to mention there was another male warrior on the side of kAmeshvarI in that war: chaNDochchaNDa, the gaNa of vArAhI, who was the commander of the shakti senA.
A truly commendable effort at this website:
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->'The Mahabharata' of Krisha-Dwaipayana Vyasa, translated by Kisari
Mohan Ganguly is made avaialble to you @ http;//www.bharatadesam.com


This is the only complete translation of the whole text of the Vyasa
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We brought this huge text online after a lot of effort and we hope
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Listen to Ved Puran in Hindi
Narratives of the irAvAn temples in TN
1) airavata was the great lord of the nAga-s and performed the first sarpa-sattra. His son was dhR^itarAShTra. His sons in turn were kauravya and others. kauravya became king of the nAga-s. His daughter was ulUpI the princess of the sarpa-s.

2) ayodo dhaumya of the bhArgava clan had a student named veda also of the bhArgava clan. veda's student was utanka also of the bhArgava clan. utanka at the behest of veda's wife had gone to obtain the magical ear-rings from the kShatriya pauShya, but they were stolen from him on the way by the nAga chief takShaka who was ulUpI's husband's brother.

3) To retrieve them utanka used spells to indra, such and "fire horse of indra". The nagas were terrified by the fire horse of indra and were scurrying around in terror when tArkShyo ariShTanemI swept down from the firmament and attacked the husband of the nAga princess ulUpI. He was killed in the fight and eaten by the fierce divaH shyena, the killer of elephants and turtles. The naga princess was thus widowed and led a forlorn existence thereafter.

4) R^iShyashri~Nga, the young udgAtha, lived alone in the forest with his father without any contact with women. He diligently spent all his time learning the rahasya gAnaM-s, the shakvarI-s and the AraNyageya-s. One day the king of a~Nga had sent a comely puMshchali to entice him even as he was practicing the shakvarI, which is verily the vajra of the god of the gods. He was fascinated by her breasts and alluring ball-game that she played and fell prey to his natural instincts to dally with her. Of their coitus was born the terrible rAkShasa, alambuSha was born, who got endowed with the might of the shakvarI in his body.

5)When arjuna pANDuputra, in course of his exile for having interrupted yuddhiShThira's dalliance with draupadi, was performing his pitR^i-tarpaNaM on the banks of the ga~NgA a terrific female uraga arose from the waters and catching him in her coils pulled him down to sarpa-loka. There she gave him a sacrificial fire to arjuna to perform his rites. He duely did so and asked why he had be been brought there. nAga woman told him that she was ulupI the daughter of kauravya the snake-king. She told him that she was alone, with out mate and striken by kAma's arrows was induced to pull him down to her abode. He protested that it was a sin for him do anything that broke his brahmacharya. She then told him that it would not be a major sin especially since he was being solicited by a mateless woman and was saving her life by giving her an offspring and asked him to dally with her. kauravya asked him to arjuna his daughter as his wife.

6) He duely did so staying over in her abode for a night and then next day she brought him back to the banks of the ga~NgA let him go.

7) Out of this pairing was born the handsome irAvAn. He was abandoned by his uncle takShaka because in the great battle of khANDava, arjuna and his friend kR^iShNa vAsudeva had brutally destroyed the realm of takShaka disobeying indra and the deva's orders.

8) ulUpI brought irAvAn up on her own and trained him with various weapons and asked him seek arjuna when he was in indra-loka. irAvan duely did so and arjuna showering his affection on him asked him to aid the pANDus in the forthcoming war against the kaurava-s. irAvAn agreed and returned to his region. He obtained the horses bred with the founder of the yajur vedic school tittiri and built a cavalry division.

9) On the 8th day of the great war irAvAn fought a great cavalry battle with the gAndhAra division of shakuni under shakuni's six fierce clansmen. In a fierce battle that followed arjuna's son cut down five of the 6 gAndhAra heroes with his sword and mangled the 6th. duryodhana seeing his maternal clansmen savaged thus sent his great friend R^iShyashri~nga's son the rAkshasa alambuSha to kill irAvAn.

10) alambuSha and irAvAn had a fiery encounter in which irAvAn cut his bow with a swift strike of his sword. He then struck alambuSha repeatedly with his battle axe, but the rAkShasa resorting to mAyA tactics confounded the son of arjuna. Finally, a nAga relative of ulUpI came to irAvAn's aid, but he was devoured by the ArShyashri~nga assuming the form of a garuDa. When irAvan was confounded by the rAkShasa's mAyA, alambuSha swept down upon him and cut his head off with his sword.
A sub-set of the smarta brahmins of Gingee, Melaccheri Kadu and parts of the modern Telugu country upwards of Kalahasti, usually belonging to the great sect of bR^ihatcharaNaM or rarely the vaDamas (northerners), are called pAratiyAr-s. There are other pAratiyAr-s belonging the middle caste vELALar-s. Both of them are associated with the draupadi ammAL temples of the region, whose many patrons are vanniyar-s. The vanniyar-s are described by some as shUdra or avarNa, but their and internal beliefs point to the possibility that they were actually vahni-kula rAjaputra-s. Both the smArta and vELALar pAratiyArs are experts in the narration of the mahAbhArataM or the makApArataM as they respectively call it. Their versions are obviously different. The vELALar version, is very popular with the vanniyars and they enact it in kuttu-s or Dravidian dance-dramas, though the smArta version too is enacted by these actors. The vELALar form is ahistoric, anachronistic and full of local Dravidian deities. While the smArtas too incorporate some of these their narrative of the draupadi ammAL kathai has an interesting consistency with the paurANIc narratives.

The critical smArta version goes thus:
1) bhIma the second pANDava killed baka in the outskirts of ekachakra.
2) His terrified attendents and wives begged bhima to spare them. He agreed but asked them to leave ekachakra for good.
3) In the reign of king shuchadratha, 6 rulers after king janamejaya pArikShita, hastinApura was drowned by the unexpected flood. The king and his family fled the place with the surivors.
4) A colateral kuru prince vR^iShNiman declared himself king of the kuru realm. But by then shuchadratha had reached kaushambi, where he established a new city and declared himself ruler again.
5) In the new kuru capital of kaushambi, sunitha succeeded shuchadratha
6) achalAdhipa, a rAkShasa and descendent of baka, attacks sunItha and ravages his kingdom. He has a hundred heads and he could not be killed if 99 of them are cut. Anyone who cut the 100th head would die instantaneously like the curse of vR^iddhakShatra and jayadratha.
7) He is told by his brAhmaNa-s that he has to invoke draupadi to incarnate again.
8) sunItha goes to the Himalayas and performs a fire ritual. As he casts the oblations in the fire, draupadi emerges from it holding a trishUla, shakti ands pAsha.
9) The draupadi asks sunItha to get her assistant yuddhapati (tamil: pOrmannan or pOttu-rAjan, a popular vanniyar deity) to help her in the campaign, and he duely does so.
10) After a fierce fight she cuts of all the heads and finally severs the 100th head with her trishUla. But before it could fall to the ground yuddhapati grabs it and keeps holding it for enternity.
11) sunItha founds the cult of draupadi by building her primal temple and in its AvarNa there is yuddhapati with the achala's severed head. The Gingee temple and others in the region are said to be replicas of this original temple of sunItha.

In some versions pOtturAja comes out of li~Nga.
From the accounts of vedic tradition the bhR^igu-s were the foremost of the R^iShi-s. It appears that they were the founders of the fire ritual which is at the heart of the vedic religion. They are not authors of many mantra-s of the R^ig veda, though their surrogate clan, the shaunahotra-s, have a maNDala to themselves (RV2). Nevertheless, bhR^igu or the bhR^igu-s are mentioned 27 times by name in the RV. A single ancient member of the main-line bhR^igu clan ushanA kAvya, the grandson bhR^igu, through his son kavi bhArgava, is mentioned by that name in 15 times in the RV. Another much latter main-line bhR^igu, jamadagni, is mentioned as contemporary by two of the great RV R^iShis, vishvAmitra (who was an ally jamadgni) and vasiShTha. He is mentioned 9 times in the RV. Other bhR^igus are fleetingly mentioned by name, like apnavAna (at least 2 times) and aurva, and, like ushanA kAvya are clearly historical figures even for most of the RV composers.

bhR^igu/s are mentioned by name by most major clans of the RV from all three dvija varNas:
13 times by the other ancient brahminical clan the A~Ngirasa from whom most mainstream brahmins descended. 3 times by vasiShTha-s. 3 times by vishvAmitra-s. 2 times by kShatriya hymn composers. 2 times the by ancient vaishya sages vatsapri and bhAlandana. 1 time by atri-s. 1 time by the shaunahotra-s 1 time by the later bhR^igu-s. bhR^igu may also be refered to by his generic name atharvan. The name atharvan in used 14 times in the RV. Seven (7) of these occurences are directly used in the sense of bhR^igu/s in connection to their ancient kindling of fire or ancient sacrifice. 4 occurences are in the sense of a contemporary atharvan priest performing a rite.

Many important themes emerge by examining the hymns mentioning bhR^igu-s in the RV:
1) A persistant motif which appears to be common knowledge amongst the vedic composers is that of mAtarishvAn (vAyu) bearing agni to bhR^igu-s.
2) agni is often discovered by the bhR^igu-s hidden cave or is brought to them from a hidden cave by mAtarishvAn.
3) The bhR^igu-s are associated with the kindling of fire and the two births of agni, one of which appears to be within water. The fire within water is also a major theme with other bhR^igu sages like aurva. Several bhR^igu-s have fiery names: bhR^igu= cognate of fiery, phleugai etc; aurva- the fire in water; jamadagni- the feeder of fire.
4) The bhR^igu-s make a car for the gods.

The observation that most clans mention bhR^igu-s as the promulgator of the fire rite, suggests that they were ancient predcessors of the vedic rite. This is well-supported by the subheShaja hymn and the sAmidhenI rite. However, this role might have even been performed by the later bhR^igu-s as the term 'gR^iNAna' is used 5 times with jamadagni bhArgava, suggesting he proclaimed the fire rite to many even in his period.

RV 1.58.6 nodhA gautama
dadhuSh TvA bhR^igavo mAnuSheShvA rayiM na chAruM suhavaM janebhyaH
hotAramagne atithiM vareNyaM mitraM na shevaM divyAya janmane

The bhR^igus established you among the people, for the descendents of manu, like a beautiful treasure, pleasing to invoke; You, agni, as a messenger and and excellent guest, like an auspicious friend to the gods.

RV 1.60.1 nodhA gautama
vahniM yashasaM vidathasya ketuM suprAvyaM dUtaM sadyo artham
dvijanmAnaM rayimiva prashastaM rAtiM bharad bhR^igave mAtarishvA

mAtarishvA brought, as a friend, to bhR^igu, the famed agni, the light of rituals, the protector , the swift messenger, with two births, (to be to him) as it were precious wealth.

RV 1.071.04 parAshara shAktya (vasiShTha)
mathId yadIM vibhR^ito mAtarishvA gR^ihe-gR^ihe shyeto jenyo bhUt
AdIM rAj~ne na sahIyase sachA sannA dUtyaM bhR^igavANo vivAya

When the all-pervading mAtarishvA , incites agni, he becomes bright and manifest in every house; I, following [the method of] bhR^igu, invoke agni to be messenger, as an ambassador to the emperor.

RV 1.120.05
pra yA ghoShe bhR^igavANe na shobhe yayA vAchA yajati pajriyo vAm
pra iShayur na vidvAn

The great is the chant that was uttered by ghoShA, like that of bhR^igu, the chant with which the pajras worship you, who is like a mighty intelligent one.

RV 1.127.7 paruchChepa daivodAsi
dvitA yadIM kIstAso abhidyavo namasyanta upavochanta bhR^igavo mathnanto dAsA bhR^igavaH | agnirIshe vasUnAM shuchiryo dharNireShAm
priyAnapidhInrvaniShIShTa medhira A vaniShIShTa medhirah

bhR^igus, lauded him (agni) in both his forms, glorifying him, and saluting him, proclaim his praises; the bhR^igus, rubbing (the fire) for the oblation. The shining agni, who is the guardian of treasures, with power, the receiver of oblations, the wise one, may the wise one be pleased.

RV 1.143.04 (dIrghatama auchAthya)
yamerire bhR^igavo vishvavedasaM nAbhA pR^ithivyA bhuvanasya majmanA
agniM taM gIrbhir hinuhi sva A dame ya eko vasvo varuNo na rAjati

Bring to his own abode with hymns that agni th all-knowning, whom the bhR^igus obtained from the navel of the earth; for, like varuNa, he reigns sole over wealth.

RV 2.004.02 gR^itsamada shaunahotra
imaM vidhanto apAM sadhasthe dvitAdadhur bhR^igavo vikShvAyoH
eSha vishvAnyabhyastu bhUmA devAnAm agnir aratir jIrAshvaH

The bhR^igus, extracting agni, have twice made him manifest; (once) in the abode of the waters, and (once) among men; may that agni, with a fast horse, messenger of the gods, be the lord.

RV 3.002.04 vishvAmitra gAthina
A mandrasya saniShyanto vareNyaM vR^iNImahe ahrayaM vAjam R^igmiyam
rAtiM bhR^igUNAm ushijaM kavi kratum agniM rAjantaM divyena shochiShA

Desiring gain, we seek from the adorable, the benefactor excellent and vigorous; the wealth of bhR^igus, willing, of sagely deeds, agni shining forth with light that comes from heaven.

RV 3.005.10 vishvAmitra gAthina
ud astambhIt samidhA nAkam R^iShvo.agnír bhavann uttamo rocanAnAM
yadI bhR^igubhyaH pari mAtarishvA guhA santaM havyavAhaM samIdhe

The mighty agni, the best of the heavenly lights, sustained the heaven with radiance, when mAtarishva bore the bearer of oblations, (who was concealed) in a cave from the bhR^igus.
RV 4.7.1 vAmadeva gautama
ayam iha prathamo dhAyi dhAtR^ibhir hotA yajiShTho adhvareShv IDyaH
yam apnavAno bhR^igavo viruruchur vaneShu chitraM vibhvaM vishe-vishe

Here by ordainers was this god appointed the first hotar, and the adhvaryu who worships at the rites; whom apnavana, and the bhR^igus caused to shine bright and colored in the wood, spreading from home to home.

RV 4.7.4 vAmadeva gautama
AshuM dUtaM vivasvato vishvA yash charShaNIr abhi
A jabhruH ketum Ayavo bhR^igavANaM vishe-vishe

vivasvAn's messenger, men have taken as their flag, swift; the ruler over all peoples, moving in each home as [invoked] by bhR^igu.

RV 4.016.20 vAmadeva gautama
eved indrAya vR^iShabhAya vR^iShNe brahmAkarma bhR^igavo na ratham
nU chid yathA naH sakhyA viyoShad asan na ugro .avitA tanUpAH
Hence we offer to the mightyIndra, the showerer, the acts of brahman and ritual, as the bhR^igus made the chariots, that he may never withdraw his friendship from us, and he the fierce one protect us.
RV 6.015.02 bharadvAja bArhaspatya
mitraM na yaM sudhitaM bhR^igavo dadhur vanaspatA vIDyam UrdhvashochiSham
sa tvaM suprIto vItahavye adbhuta prashastibhir mahayase dive dive

Like a friend to the bhR^igu-s, who established the benevolent agni, with upward flames in wood; be pleased with vItahavya, since you are magnified by his praise day after day.
RV 7.018.06 vasiShTha maitrAvaruNi
puroLA it turvasho yakShurAsId rAye matsyAso nishitA apIva
shruShTiM chakrurbhR^igavo druhyavashcha sakhA sakhAyamatarad viShUchoH
RV 8.003.09 medhyAtithi kANva
tat tvA yAmi suvIryaM tad brahma pUrvachittaye
yenA yatibhyo bhR^igave dhane hite yena praskaNvamAvitha

RV 8.003.16 medhyAtithi kANva
kaNvA iva bhR^igavaH sUryA iva vishvamid dhItamAnashuH
indraM stomebhirmahayanta AyavaH priyamedhAso asvaran

ya indra yatayastvA bhR^igavo ye cha tuShTuvuH
mamed ugra shrudhI havam

RV 8.035.03 shyAvAshva Atreya
vishvair devais tribhir ekAdashair ihAdbhir marudbhir bhR^igubhiH sachAbhuvA
sajoShasA uShasA sUryeNa cha somaM pibatam ashvinA

RV 8.043.13 virUpa a~Ngirasa
uta tvA bhR^iguvachChuche manuShvad agna Ahuta
a~Ngirasvad dhavAmahe
agni one, to whom oblations are offered as by bhR^igu and by manu; we invoke you as the a~Ngirasas.

RV 8.102.04 prayoga bhArgava
aurvabhR^iguvachChuchimapnavAnavadA huve
agniM samudravAsasam

Like aurva, bhR^igu and like apanvAna, I invoke the pure Agni, dwelling in the midst of the sea.
RV 9.101.13 prajApati vaishvAmitra
pra sunvAnasyAndhaso marto na vR^ita tad vachaH
apa shvAnam arAdhasaM hatA makhaM na bhR^igavaH

Let no mortal hear the sound of the effused Soma; away with the dog that offers no rituals, as the bhR^igu-s drove off makha (also seen the mantras of the bhR^igu sage iTant bhArgava).

RV10.014.06 ?
a~Ngiraso naH pitaro navagvA atharvANo bhR^igavaH somyAsaH
teShAM vayaM sumatau yaj~niyAnAmapi bhadre saumanasesyAma

RV 10.039.14 ghoSha kAkShitvatI
etaM vAM stomamashvinAvakarmAtakShAma bhR^igavo na ratham
nyamR^ikShAma yoShaNAM na marye nityaM na sUnuntanayaM dadhAnAH

RV 10.046.02 vatsaprI bhAlandana
imaM vidhanto apAM sadhasthe pashuM na naShTaM padairanu gman
guhA chatantamushijo namobhiriChanto dhIrAbhR^igavoavindan

RV 10.046.09 vatsaprI bhAlandana
dyAvA yamagniM pR^ithivI janiShTAmApastvaShTA bhR^igavo yaM sahobhiH
ILenyaM prathamaM mAtarishvA devAstatakShurmanave yajatram

RV 10.092.10 shAryAta mAnava
te hi prajAyA abharanta vi shravo bR^ihaspatirvR^iShabhaHsomajAmayaH
yaj~nairatharvA prathamo vi dhArayad devAdakShairbhR^igavaH saM chikitrire

RV 10.122.05 chitramahA vAsiShTha
tvaM dUtaH prathamo vareNyaH sa hUyamAno amR^itAyamatsva
tvAM marjayan maruto dAshuSho gR^ihe tvAM stomebhir bhR^igavo vi ruruchuH
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Relevance of Mahabharata</b>
Hiranmay Karlekar
A time of transition for a nation is a time of normlessness, which the French social philosopher Emile Durkheim called a time of anomie. It is a time when there is confusion about the values that rule the lives of people, those of the old order having lost their force and those of the emergent one still to crystallise. India is passing through precisely such a phase, with a traditional, feudal society evolving into a modern, industrial one, powered by science and technology and guided by a democratic polity. Like all such stages in history, it is marked by social stress and strain, often erupting into violence, as those adversely affected by change react in anger.

While there is optimism all round about the country's future, it would be unwise to ignore some of the ominous portents on the horizon. Development and a savage process of urban renewal are making hundreds of thousands homeless, robbing them of their means of livelihood and driving them to destitution. A rapidly-spreading, advertisement-driven consumer culture that makes the capacity for self-indulgence and possession of goods the index of a person's worth, is making for a relentless pursuit of wealth and its ostentatious display heedless of the rights of others and the resentment it causes among the deprived. An exploitative and thoroughly corrupt administrative system, law's delays and controversial judicial decisions have raised serious doubts about the ability of the present system to deliver. Resentment is rampant. Two hundred and forty districts are in state of insurgency, with Maoists calling the shots. The gap between means and compulsive consumer aspirations is leading to crime as means of income. One wonders whether the policies that guide development and the wider social engineering that has been attempted are correct, whether political opportunism, pandering to divisive sectional interests, will not undermine economic development, and whether the present system itself will not be torn asunder by mutually hostile forces struggling for supremacy.

At a time like this, it is imperative for a nation to draw upon the entire reservoir of its wisdom, traditional and contemporary, and introspect deeply about its course and destiny. Unfortunately, however, no such serious effort is underfoot and those that are, ignore a vital source of wisdom, the philosophical texts of its illustrious antiquity and its two great epics, the Ramayana and the Mahabharata.

At the heart of the Mahabharata, the Great Epic, is the battle of Kurukshetra, fought between the Pandavas and the Kauravas. Understandably, it has a surfeit of stories of heroic deeds, primal violence and warfare. It, however, was far more than that. Marking the end of the Dwapara and the beginning of the Kali Yuga or Age, it was fought to vanquish Adharma or evil, embodied in the line of the Kauravas, and Dharma, for which the Pandavas stood. Unfolding through the great narrative, therefore, is the eternal conflict between Dharma and Adharma. After the feast that marked the end of mourning for the death of King Pandu, from whom the lineage of the Pandavas has been named, Vyasa, composer of the Mahabharata, told his mother, Satyavati, that there would be enmity between the sons of Pandu and Dhritarashtra and would lead to an unprecedented war that would destroy the power of the Kshatriyas in the world signal the end of an age. He added that he had a vision of it from the Himalaya, as a war between Dharma and Adharma, light and darkness.

The point was definitively underlined by Krishna when, while reciting the Bhagavat Gita on the eve of the battle of Kurukshetra, he said "Whenever evil dominates the world/ And there is an upsurge of Adharma/ I create a body for myself/ To save the virtuous, destroy the evil-doers and re-establish Dharma/ I arrive from age to age." Dharma is the most important thing for a person. Every individual, according to the Bhagavat Gita, must perform his own Dharma, however imperfectly, than the Dharma of others, however, flawlessly. It is better to die performing one's own Dharma. The performance of another's Dharma can have fearful consequences.

Two questions arise at this stage. What is Dharma? Why is it important? An episode in the Mahabharata occurred by a lake in Dwaityavana where the Pandavas came to slake their thirst. A Yakshya told them that they had to answer his questions before they drank. Nakul, Sahadev, Bheem and Arjuna drank without doing so and died. Yudhistira agreed to answer and two of his replies are most illuminating. Asked what was the highest Dharma, he answered that it was not to injure any living being. In reply to another question, he descried liberality as the highest sanctuary of Dharma. The Yakshya was in reality the God Dharma who had come to test Yudhistira. Satisfied by the latter's answers, he brought the Pandavas back to life and allowed all of them to drink from the lake.

In the Udyoga Parva of the epic, Vidura tells Dhritarashtra, "Eight are the paths of Dharma: Sacrifice, study, asceticism, charity, truth, mercy, forgiveness and contentment. The first four may exist from vanity; the last four are found only in the truly great men" (Ramesh Menon, The Mahabharata: A Modern Rendition). Earlier he had told Dhritarashtra during the same conversation, "Poison or an arrow will kill one man, but evil counsel will destroy a kingdom. Dharma is the highest good; the supreme peace is forgiveness. In the knowledge of truth lies the only stability and contentment, and joy only in benevolence."

Of course, the word Dharma has specific connotations for specific categories of people like Brahmins, Kshatriyas, Shudras and Vaishyas. But there are certain fundamental elements common to all of them, and these universal elements constitute the essence of the concept of Dharma the Mahabharata enshrines. No doubt, these are the words of all perennial religions. But then like the Upanishads, the Vedas, the Puranas and the Ramayana, the Mahabharata is a part of the essential Indian heritage. Its message has been transmitted throughout the ages among hundreds of millions of Indians who have internalised it and sought to implement it in their quotidian lives. Unfortunately, the Indian elites, particularly the intelligentsia and the policy makers, are heedless of it. The result is a near collapse of morality in public life, which is one of the major causes of the ills afflicting the nation.
In sundra kandam("Valmiki Ramayan) I gueess we have a section where Rama kills Bali (Vaali) sugreeva's brother and there by which Sugreeva helps in fiding sita.
I like to know
1. Is there any name for that episode alone(killing of Vaali)
2. Also I guess there is a some words increibed on the arrow which Vaali(Bali) will identify that Lord Rama is the one who shot the arrow. I like to know what is the words that is written on the arrow or do we have any name for arrow that killed Vaali.

First of all, the death of VAli is in the Kishkinda kandam, not the Sundara Kandam.

1. I don't think there is a name for this "episode". The Ramayana has chapter names, like BAla Kandam, Ayodhya Kandam, etc, and the story of VAli's death is in the chapter named Kishkinda Kandam. But this chapter contains a lot more than just the story of VAli's death.

2. Not in the version I am familiar with, the Valmiki Ramayana, and I believe it is authentic. There is nothing inscribed on the arrows of Rama. VAli knows Rama shot him, because as soon as he falls down, <b>Rama and Lakshmana come into his presence</b>. It becomes obvious then and there.
1. VishwasJi is right - "Vali vadh" is described in Kishkindha Kand. However, each "Kand" in Valmiki Ramayan can be indeed further indexed by "Sarga". Sargas are individual pieces of proses numbered but not titled. Going by that, Vali-vadh episode is described in the 16th Sarg of Kishkindha Kand in Valmki Ramayan.

2. Indeed there is no particular name mentioned for the name of the equipment used by Ram on Vali. In fact I dont think there was a particular equipment needed. As per the story what was needed was to kill him without confronting him because Vali had the blessing to grow his own power by the power of the opponent.

Here is the exact Shloka, under 16th Sarg of Kishkindha Kand, which describes Ram fetching that particular arrow:

tato dhanuSi sa.mdhaaya sharam aashii viSa upamam |
puurayaamaasa tat caapam kaala cakram iva antakaH || 4-16-33

tataH= then; aashii viSa upamam= which has fang's, venom, in simile - venomous serpent like; sharam dhanuSi sandhaaya= arrow, in bow, on tautening; antakaH kaala cakram iva= Terminator, Time, disc, like [bow]; puurayaamaasa tat caapam= started to draw out [the string,] that, bow.

<span style='color:red'>Meaning: Then on tautening a venomous serpent like arrow in the bow, Rama started to draw out bowstring, whereby that bow attained a similitude with the Time-disc of the Terminator. [4-16-33]</span>

<b>BUT, that was not the only arrow Ram shot at VAli</b>. There is one more arrow described in the same Sarg. After VAli fell down to the ground but did not die, Ram used another deadly arrow - "Sharottam" or best arrow - which looked like "glance by the thrid-eye of Rudra, the subduer of unfriendly".

narottamaH kaala yugaa.ntakopamam sharottamam kaa.mcana ruupyabhuuSitam |
sasarja diiptam tam amitra mardanam sa dhuumamagnim mukhato yathaa haraH || 4-16-38

38. nara uttamaH= among men, best one Rama; kaala= at the time of era end; yuga antaka upamam= era, ender, in simile; kaancana ruupya bhuuSitam= in gold, silver, decorated; diiptam= glowing; a+mitra mardanam= unfriendly ones, subduer of; tam shara uttamam= that, arrow, best one; haraH mukhataH= Shiva's, from face; sa dhuumam agnim yathaa= with [emitting,] smoke, fire, as with; shara uttamam= arrow, the best; sasarja= let go, released.

<span style='font-size:14pt;line-height:100%'>That best one among men Rama released a blazing and enemy subjugating arrow which in simile is like an Epoch-ender at the end of era, and that best arrow decorated in gold and silver looked like the glance from the Third-Eye of Rudra, emitting fire with smoke.</span>

So I dont think there was a particular name of the arrow(s) VAli was kiled with. But I guess we can call them "Arrow with nenomous fang of serpent", "Arrow like the Glance of Rudra's third-eye".

Here is one resource where you can read translation of 16th Sarg (Vali-vadh) in detail:

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