The News Of the Tournament

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After those events, the Pandavas remained welcome guests in the Brahmana’s house.

A few months had passed, when one day a pilgrim who was passing through the town stayed for lunch with them. On that occasion, he was asked what around him was of importance. He did not wait for them to beg him and began to tell about an important svayamvara that was about to take place in the capital of the kingdom of Panchala.

“I don’t know if you are acquainted with the story of king Drupada and the hatred he feels for Drona,” he said, unaware of the true identity of his interlocutors. “Having been severely humiliated, he wandered in the forest for many years, addressing many ascetics and devoting himself to yoga practices and renunciation to gain powers by performing great sacrifices. He knew well that only by counting on his military courage he could never get revenge on Drona, who, thanks to Parasurama, had become practically invincible.

“Drupada wanted to gain the Brahmanic powers that arise through the practices of renunciation. After a long time and countless austerities, Drupada was able to celebrate a fire sacrifice in collaboration with some very powerful monks, and thanks to them he had two children, a male and a female, born directly from the fire of sacrifice: Dhristadyumna and the beautiful Draupadi. They are celestial characters who descended on this world with a specific mission: Dhristadyumna with the aim of killing Drona, and Draupadi with the aim of indirectly causing the death of millions of warriors. Since then, Drupada has found serenity, because he knows that for his revenge he only has to wait. Those two children have always brought the king great satisfaction. Now the time has come for Draupadi to marry, but the king only wants to give her to a person who possesses truly extraordinary qualities.

“For this, he has organized a svayamvara, a tournament, and whoever succeeds in it will be able to marry the girl.”

There was a moment of silence and then the traveler continued to say:

“But, everyone says that this tournament will be made based on a test so difficult that only Arjuna could overcome it, so after his death it seems that practically no one will be able to do it.

The guest then spoke of Draupadi, describing her with such admiring tones that it made the Pandavas feel a very strong attraction for such beauty and wish to go see her.

That same evening they talked about it with Kunti, who agreed that the best thing would be to go to Kampilya. They said they were just curious to admire Draupadi, but it was clear that everyone hoped to have her as a wife.


It was a journey that lasted a few days, with its adventures and special situations.

One night, Arjuna ran into the Gandharva Citraratha, with whom he first had a heated altercation. After an armed confrontation, Pandu’s brave son prevailed by beating the inhabitant of the celestial planets but, despite the duel, the two became great friends. It was Citraratha, on that occasion, who suggested that they accept a spiritual master before arriving in Kampilya. In that area lived the famous Rishi Dhaumya, and the Pandavas were happy to get spiritual initiation from that great sage who, in turn, decided to follow them during their travels.


This is a section of the book “Maha-bharata, Vol. 1”.

To buy the complete book, click above

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