The Noble Character Of Draupadi

The Noble Character Of Draupadi

THE FOLLOWING LECTURE ON SRIMAD-BHAGAVATAM, FIRST CANTO, CHAPTER 7, “THE SON OF DRONA PUNISHED”, WAS GIVEN BY HIS HOLINESS BHAKTI CHARU SWAMI IN ISKCON UJJAIN, INDIA.

Om Namo Bhagvate Vasudevaya
Om Namo Bhagvate Vasudevaya
Om Namo Bhagvate Vasudevaya

So, today we are going to discuss the 7th chapter, 1st Canto of Srimad Bhagavatam. This chapter is entitled: “The Son of Drona Punished.” Son of Drona, is Asvatthama. Asvatthama is punished because he very inappropriately, very abominably, he killed the five sleeping sons of Draupadi. Not only he killed the five sons, he also killed the sleeping Pandavas generals and the important allies of the Pandavas after the battle of Kuruksetra. And Asvatthama’s incidence is coming here because Sukadeva Goswamiis describing the appearance of Pariksit, Maharaja. Pariksit, Maharaja’s appearance was linked with Asvatthama because when he was in the
womb of his mother, Asvatthama tried to kill him by using Brahmastra and at that time Krishna personally saved him. So, this chapter begins with, “What was the end of the sixth chapter? How did the sixth chapter end? Who remembers?”

“Yeah”, Narada Muni after instructing Vyasadeva left and then Shaunaka Rishi questioned “O Suta, the great and transcendentally powerful Vyasdeva heard everything from Sri Narada Muni.” So after Narada Muni’s departure “What did Vyasadeva do?”

Sri Suta said: “On the western bank of the River Sarasvati, which is intimately related with the Vedas, there is a cottage for meditation at Samyaprasa which enlivens the transcendental activities of the sages.” (SB 1.7.2)

River Sarasvati is on the western bank and is manifestation of the energy of Sarasvati. Sarasvati is a personality “Who is Sarasvatidevi?” She is the Goddess of learning therefore she is intimately connected to Vedas and her river is Sarasvati river. There are few very auspicious rivers in India and Sarasvati is one of them Vyasadeva was situated or he had an ashrama on the western bank of Sarasvati. “Why?” Because when we are situated on the western bank we face Sarasvati in the eastern direction so, eastern
direction is the auspicious direction, for receiving transcendental knowledge east is very auspicious direction. For yoga north is the
appropriate direction. For going to hell south is the auspicious direction (laughter) and for material prosperity west is the direction. East, North, West and South, So, Vyasadeva made his cottage on the western bank of the river Sarasvati at a place called Samyaprasa this place is also known as Badrika Ashrama because Badri is a kind of berries so that place had groves of berries therefore it was Badrika Ashrama. In that place Srila Vyasadeva in his own ashrama which was surrounded by berry trees sat down to meditate
after touching water for purification. That place was surrounded by Badri trees therefore the ashrama was known as Badrika ashrama. So there after touching water

asino pa upasprsya
pranidadhyau manah svayam

Sat down to meditate after touching water for purification. Thus he fixed his mind, perfectly engaging it by linking it in devotional service (Bhakti-yoga) without any tinge of materialism, and thus he saw the Absolute Personality of Godhead along with His external energy, which was under full control. (1.7.4)

So there he saw the Supreme Personality of Godhead along with his external energy and this external energy was completely under control. That means Vyasadeva saw Krishna as well as the material nature and when Krishna is the centre of the material nature the material is under full control. If the material nature is without Krishna, if we approach the material nature without Krishna, “What will happen?” She will be completely wild (laughter) like we see the form of Kali, Candi, Camunda, destructive form of material nature. Due to this external energy, the living entity although transcendental to the three modes of material nature thinks of him as a material product and thus undergoes the reactions of material miseries. Due to the influence of the external energy or the material nature the living entity although transcendental to three modes, the living entities are not actually meant to be under the control of the modes but when the living entity rejects Krishna then he becomes affected by the three modes of material nature and as a result of that he identifies himself with the material nature. “How does one identifies with the three modes of material nature?” By thinking that the body is he actually he is a soul but because his identification with the material nature he begins to identify himself with the material body and as result of that he forgets his identity as a soul which is beyond the modes of material nature. The soul is not affected
by the modes of the material nature it is the body that becomes affected and when the body becomes affected by the modes of the material nature the living entity thinks that he is being affected by the modes. The material miseries of the living entities which are superfluous to him can be directly mitigated by the linking process of devotional service. But the mass of people do not know this and therefore the learned Vyasadeva compiled this Vedic literature which is in relation with the Supreme Truth.  So this is a very important verse to remember. From tomorrow we will take one verse and write on the board and we will recite the verse as we do
usually do and then discuss the whole chapter. Now this verse is very important

anarthopasamam saksad
bhakti yogam adhoksaje
lokasyajanato vidvams
cakre satvata-samhitam

(SB 1.7.6)

This verse, you take note. (Repeats the verse) Anartha means the things which are superfluous, anartha that are not really necessary, not very desirable.

Anartha means not desirable. Upasanam. We know about anarth nivritti.  Upasanam actually means nivritti, upasanam means mitigation. So anarthaupasanam and anartha nivritti is the same thing. “And how does it happen?” Sakshad bhakti yogam adhoksage. Adhoksaja is Krsna and adhoksaje means unto Krsna. The linking process of devotional service. Adhoksaja –
unto the transcendence. Lokasya – of the general mass of men. Ajanat –
those who are unaware. The mass of people, the general mass do not know
about that. “What they do not know?” That anarthopasamam. saks.ad bhakti-
yogam adhoks.aje. If one renders devotional service unto the Supreme
Personality of Godhead then all his material miseries are immediately
mitigated. “Do you want to suffer? Does anybody want to suffer?” No. then
“what should we do?” bhakti-yogam adhoks.aje. Render devotional service
unto Krsna. Lokasyajanata and vidvam the supreme learned. Cakre – compiled.
satvata samhitam – in relation with the supreme personality of godhead.
Satvatam means? This word satvata is coming from the word satva. Satva
means goodness or absolute truth. So there are samhitam. There are
literatures in different modes. “Now which literature is in the mode of
goodness?” There are six Puranas but there is one purana which is in the
mode of absolute goodness, pure mode of goodness. That is Srimad Bhagavatam.
And that is satvam samhitam. So lokasyajanata because it is unknown to the
general mass of people. Therefore vidvan – learned Vyasadeva compiled the
satvatam samhita. So you can see the importance of Srimad Bhagavatam. “Why
Vyasadeva compiled Bhagavatam?” To make people understand that by rendering
devotional service to the Supreme Personality of Godhead, he can become
free from all material miseries. “Wonderful solution!” People are trying so
much to mitigate their material sufferings. “Isn’t it?” But the solution is
so simple. But because it is lokasyajanata – because people do not know
that they are suffering, they are trying so hard. But while they are trying
“What is happening?” They are increasing their miseries. They are not
decreasing their miseries. And the western world is a very good example for
that. “They are trying to make all kinds of arrangements but what is
happening?” It is causing more and more difficulties. For example they try
to derive all kinds of energy. Like first it was steam energy. Boiling
water you get the energy and with that energy, they were running mills.
They were running railways. Then they got electrical energy. And then they
got atomic energy. But they are making all these arrangements, but these
energies are misused. The atomic energy now has become the most powerful
and destructive arrangement. And the whole world is in total chaos. And
anxiety because of the terrorist attack and eventually “what will happen?
The terrorist are not going to sit down. They will attack and this time how
will they attack?” They will attack with the most powerful weapon. The
atomic energy, nuclear weapon, so many, like some years back, I was going
in London from one place to another. It was such a traffic jam, that there
are so many cars. They are fast moving cars. On both sides of the road.
Nice roads to make this car to move on and cars also move with two hundred/
two hundred and forty/ two hundred and fifty kilometres an hour. But we got
struck in a traffic jam and we had a very important meeting. And we struck
in a traffic jam for hours. And between those times somebody was telling
me. The driver was telling me that the time it takes from one point to
another point hundred years back, it is the same time now to go from that
point to that point. “Why?” They have created these fast moving cars but
their roads are jammed so many cars that the cars cannot move. And in this
way they are causing so many difficulties. Anyway, so at least we know how
to mitigate the miseries of the material nature. So the solution is:

anarthopasamam. saksad
bhakti yogam adhoksaje
lokasyajanato vidvams
cakre satvata-samhitam
(SB 1.7.6)

The material miseries of the living entity, which are superfluous to him,
can be directly mitigated by linking the process of devotional service. But
the mass of people, do not know this, and therefore the learned Vyasadeva
compiled this Vedic literature, which is in the relation with the Supreme
Truth. (SB 1.7.6 translation)

Simply by giving aural reception to this Vedic literature, the feeling for
loving devotional service to Lord Krishna, the Supreme Personality of
Godhead, sprouts up at once to extinguish the fire of lamentation, illusion
and fearfulness. (SB 1.7.7 translation)

This is also another very important verse

yasyam vai sruyaman.ayam
Krsne parama-puruse
bhaktir utpadyate pumsah
soka moha bhayapaha
(SB 1.7.7)

Jai Sri Sri Krishna Balarama ki Jai! Jai Sri Sri Radha Madanmohan Ki Jai!
Jai Sri Sri Gaura Nitai ki Jai! (Altar gates close)

Simply by giving aural reception to this Vedic literature, that is Srimad-
Bhagavatam, the feeling for loving devotional service to Lord Krishna, the
Supreme Personality of Godhead, sprouts up at once to extinguish the fire
of lamentation, illusion and fearfulness. Apaha means which extinguishes.
That which extinguishes.

The great sage Vyasadeva, after compiling the Srimad Bhagavatam and
revising it, taught it to his own son, Sri Sukadeva Gosvami, who was
already engaged in self-realization. (SB 1.7.8 translation)

Sukadeva Gosvami was already self realized. But Vyasdeva gave him Srimad
Bhagavatam. Then Saunaka Rishi makes a very pertinent question. He asks a
very wonderful question, “Sukadeva Goswami was already self realized so why
he had to study this vast literature Srimad Bhagavatam?”

Sri Saunaka asked Suta Gosvami: Sri Sukadeva Goswami was already on the
path of self-realization, and thus he was pleased with his own self. So why
did he take the trouble to undergo the study of such a vast literature? (SB
1.7.9 translation)

So then also comes another very important verse.

suta uvaca
atmaramas ca munayo
nirgrantha apy urukrame
kurvanty ahaitukim. bhaktim
ittham-bhuta-gun.o harih.
(SB 1.7.10)

“Why this verse is so important?” Because Caitanya Mahaprabhu asked
Sarvabhauma Bhattacharya to explain this verse. Sarvabhauma Bhattacharya
was an impersonalist. So this is the verse that smashes the impersonalist.
The impersonalist thinks that to merge into Brahman realization, to achieve
Brahman realization is the ultimate. Now the question is Sukadeva Goswami
was already on the Brahma bhuta platform, Brahman realized, then “why did
he study Srimad Bhagavatam after that?”

Ordinary people derive pleasure from their senses.

All different varieties of atmaramas, those who take pleasure in atma, or
soul. Atmara means those who derive pleasure from the atma, they do not
derive pleasure of their senses like ordinary people. Ordinary people
derive pleasure from their senses but a self realized soul derives pleasure
from his atma. Especially those established on the path of
self-realization, though freed from all kinds of material bondage, desire
to render unalloyed devotional service unto the Personality of Godhead.
This means that the Lord possesses transcendental qualities and therefore
can attract everyone, including liberated souls. (Explanation of SB 1.7.10
translation)

Srila Sukadeva Gosvami, son of Srila Vyasadeva, was not only
transcendentally powerful. He was also very dear to the devotees of the
Lord. Thus he underwent the study of this great narration (Srimad Bhagavatam)
(SB 1.7.11 translation)

Suta Gosvami thus addressed the rishis headed by Saunaka: Now I shall begin
the transcendental narration of the Lord Sri Krishna and topics of the
birth, activities and deliverance of King Pariksit, the sage amongst kings,
as well as topics of the renunciation of the worldly order by the sons of
Pandu (SB 1.7.12 translation)

“So now he is saying what he is going to describe now? He will narrate the
transcendental activities of Krishna. The activities of birth and
deliverance of King Pariksit, and how the Pandavas retired from the worldly
activities.”

When the respective warriors of both camps, namely the Kauravas and the
Pandavas, were killed on the Battlefield of Kuruksetra and the dead
warriors obtained their deserved destinations, and when the son of
Dhr.taras.t.ra fell down lamenting, his spine broken, being beaten by the
club of Bhimasena, the son of Dronacarya (Asvatthama) beheaded the five
sleeping sons of Draupadi and delivered them as a prize to his master,
foolishly thinking that he would be pleased. Duryodhana, however,
disapproved of the heinous act, and he was not pleased in the least. (SB
1.7.13 and 14 translation)

Actually Duryodhana, when he lost the battle he was hiding under water and
Pandavas along with Krishna came to that lake and started to insult
Duryodhana. “You coward! You are hiding?” Like a warrior feels very
insulted and actually, cannot bear to hear any insult especially when he is
called a coward. Especially when he is told he should rather wear a sari
and not claim that he is a man. So Duryodhana came up and Yudhisthira gave
him an option. He said “Duryodhana, you fight any one of us five brothers
and if you win you will be considered victorious, we will accept defeat.”
We can see that how noble the kshatriyas used to be. Duryodhana selected
Bhima. Although he knew Bhima was the most powerful. But because Bhima was
his arch enemy. He always considered Bhima to be his arch enemy. So he
decided to fight with Bhima and the choosing of weapon was also left to
Duryodhana. And Duryodhana was very expert in mace fight with gada.
Balarama himself taught him how to fight with mace. That is why Balarama
was Duryodhana’s Guru. Balarama taught him how to fight with mace, and
Balarama’s weapon is mace. So who can be a better teacher than magnificent
Balarama? So Duryodhana learned mace fighting, gada yudha, how to fight
with mace, by Balarama. Bhima was also expert in mace fighting but
Duryodhana was actually better in mace fighting than Bhima. And so
Duryodhana selected Bhima. And Duryodhana selected mace to fight with
Bhima. And both of them were fighting and nobody would defeat. Duryodhana
was very expert and Bhima was also equivalent. They fought for a long time
and at that time, Krishna reminded Bhima of his promise that he was
supposed to break Duryodhana’s thigh. So in a mace fight or in any fight
hitting low the belt or low the navel is considered to be unfair. All the
attack has to be above. So Krishna indicated pointing that to his thigh and
then Bhima at a point when Duryodhana jumped Bhima just smacked his thigh
and broke his thigh. Balarama was there. Balarama was very upset. Balarama
attacked Bhima with him plough. He wanted to kill Bhima for breaking the
law. So Krishna prevented Balarama reminding that Bhima actually took a
vow. So when in order to fulfill his vow, he hit him there, was not unfair
according to the rule of fighting. And why Bhima took a vow to break
Duryodhana’s thigh? Because when they lost in that game of dice, when they
lost Draupadi in the game of dice, Yudhisthira Maharaja was playing with
Shakuni and he lost everything then finally they put Draupadi, as stake but
he lost. So Duryodhana ordered Dushashana to bring Draupadi to the
assembly, so Dushashana grabbed Draupadi, by her hair and dragged her away
into the assembly and then Duryodhana indicating his thigh, indicated by
pointing to his thigh to undress/disrobe her. That’s why Bhima took a vow
that he would break Duryodhana’s thigh when the time comes. And he took
another vow he took was he would drink Dushashana’s blood. And he did that,
when he killed Dushashana, just before killing, he tore open Dushashana’s
chest. So these are Ksatriyas (laughter) This is how Krishna pacified
Balarama.

And Duryodhana was laying there and then Asvatthama and Kripa came there.
Who was the third? Salva. Anyway three of them came. And they saw that
Duryodhana was lying there with a broken thigh. And Asvatthama was very
upset. All three of them were very upset that Bhima broke his thigh in a
mace fight, which was unfair. Then that night they were lying down under a
tree. And he saw Asvatthama couldn’t sleep. And he saw that one owl came
and attacked the nest of a bird. That was, and killed all the babies, the
baby birds. So from that he got an idea of attacking in night. And the
battle was over. So Pandavas army was sleeping in their tent and when they
were sleeping in their tent, Asvatthama went there and he went inside the
tent and started to slaughter everyone. And he killed the five sons of
Draupadi, First of all they were young boys, they were hardly about
fourteen years old. And the sleeping sons were killed. And he brought the
heads of those five sons of Draupadi to Duryodhana and he said he thought
that he would let Duryodhana leave his body happily. That was Asvatthama’s
idea. He would leave his body happily thinking that he has taken his
revenge. “The five Panadavas have been killed”. Asvatthama presented that
he brought the head of the five Pandavas. Duryodhana at first was happy but
then he took their head and out of anger he squished their head. And the
head crabbed. And from that Duryodhana could understand that these were not
the Pandavas’s head. These are the son-boys head. And Duryodhana became
very upset with Asvatthama that “you killed the boys, the sons of Pandavas.
You didn’t kill the Pandavas.” So that is how Duryodhana however
disapproved of the heinous act. And he was not pleased in the least.

Draupadi, the mother of the five children of the Pandavas, after hearing of
the massacre of her sons, began to cry in distress with eyes full of tears.
Trying to pacify her in her great loss, Arjuna spoke to her thus (SB 1.7.15
translation)

O gentle lady, when I present you with the head of that brahman.a, after
beheading him with arrows from my Gandiva bow, I shall then wipe the tears
from your eyes and pacify you. Then, after burning your sons’ bodies, you
can take your bath standing on his head. (SB 1.7.16 translation)

Arjuna, who is guided by the infallible Lord as friend and driver, thus
satisfied the dear lady by such statements. Then he dressed in armor and
armed himself with furious weapons, and getting into his chariot, he set
out to follow Asvatthama, the son of his martial teacher. (SB 1.7.17
translation)

Asvatthama, the murderer of the princes, seeing from a great distance
Arjunacoming at him with great speed, fled in his chariot, panic
stricken, just
to save his life, as Brahma fled in fear from Siva. (SB 1.7.18 translation)

Jai Sri Sri Radha Madanmohan Ki Jai! Jai Sri Sri Krishna Balarama Ki Jai !
Jai Sri Sri Gaura Nitai Ki Jai ! (altar gates open)

When the son of the brahman.a (Asvatthama) saw that his horses were tired,
he considered that there was no alternative for protection outside of his
using the ultimate weapon, the brahmastra (nuclear weapon)(SB 1.7.19
translation)

Since his life was in danger, he touched water in sanctity and concentrated
upon the chanting of the hymns for throwing nuclear weapons, although he
did not know how to withdraw such weapons.(SB 1.7.20 translation)

Thereupon a glaring light spread in all directions. It was so fierce that
Arjuna thought his own life in danger, and so he began to address Lord Sri
Krishna.(SB 1.7.21 translation)

Arjuna said: O my Lord Sri Krishna, You are the almighty Personality of
Godhead. There is no limit to Your different energies. Therefore only You
are competent to instill fearlessness in the hearts of Your devotees.
Everyone in the flames of material miseries can find the path of liberation
in You only. (SB 1.7.22 translation)

You are the original Personality of Godhead who expands Himself all over
the creations and is transcendental to material energy. You have cast away
the effects of the material energy by dint of Your spiritual potency. You
are always situated in eternal bliss and transcendental knowledge. (SB
1.7.23 translation)

And yet, though You are beyond the purview of the material energy, You
execute the four principles of liberation characterized by religion and so
on for the ultimate good of the conditioned souls. (SB 1.7.24 translation)

Thus You descend as an incarnation to remove the burden of the world and to
benefit Your friends, especially those who are Your exclusive devotees and
are wrapped in meditation upon You. (SB 1.7.25 translation)

O Lord of lords, how is it that this dangerous effulgence is spreading all
around? Where does it come from? I do not understand it. (SB 1.7.26
translation)

The Supreme Personality of Godhead said: Know from Me that this is the act
of the son of Drona. He has thrown the hymns of nuclear energy (brahmastra),
and he does not know how to retract the glare. He has helplessly done this,
being afraid of imminent death. ( SB 1.7.27 translation)

O Arjuna, only another brahmastra can counteract this weapon. Since you are
expert in the military science, subdue this weapon’s glare with the power
of your own weapon. (SB 1.7.28 translation)

Sri SutaGosvami said: Hearing this from the Personality of Godhead,
Arjunatouched water for purification, and after circumambulating Lord
Sri Krishna, he cast his brahmastra weapon to counteract the other one. (SB
1.7.29 translation)

When the rays of the two brahmastras combined, a great circle of fire, like
the disc of the sun, covered all outer space and the whole firmament of
planets. (SB 1.7.30 translation)

All the population of the three worlds was scorched by the combined heat of
the weapons. Everyone was reminded of the sam.vartaka fire which takes
place at the time of annihilation. (SB 1.7.31 translation)

Thus seeing the disturbance of the general populace and the imminent
destruction of the planets, Arjuna at once retracted both
brahmastraweapons, as Lord
Sri Krishna desired. (SB 1.7.32 translation)

So Arjuna first counteracted the Brahmastra and then retracted the
brahmastra which Asvatthama didn’t know how to retract the brahmastra.

Arjuna, his eyes blazing in anger like two red balls of copper, dexterously
arrested the son of Gautami and bound him with ropes like an animal. (SB
1.7.33 translation)

After binding Asvatthama, Arjuna wanted to take him to the military camp.
The Personality of Godhead Sri Krishna, looking on with His lotus eyes,
spoke to angry Arjuna. (SB 1.7.34 translation)

Lord Sri Krishna said: O Arjuna, you should not show mercy by releasing
this relative of a brahman.a (brahma-bandhu), for he has killed innocent
boys in their sleep. (SB 1.7.35 translation)

A person who knows the principles of religion does not kill an enemy who is
careless, intoxicated, insane, asleep, afraid or devoid of his chariot. Nor
does he kill a boy, a woman, a foolish creature or a surrendered soul. (SB
1.7.36 translation)

Kshatriyas although warriors and very valiant fighters, they very strictly
follow the principles of warfare. In this verse that had been explained. A
kshatriya is allowed to kill his enemy. A kshatriya could kill his enemy
and no sin will be in-born. But here it is pointed out under certain
condition a kshatriya doesn’t kill his enemy, if the enemy is careless,
intoxicated, insane, asleep, afraid or devoid of his chariot. If the enemy
doesn’t have a chariot. Nor does he kill a boy, a woman.

A cruel and wretched person who maintains his existence at the cost of
others’ lives deserves to be killed for his own well-being, otherwise he
will go down by his own actions. (SB 1.7.37 translation)

Furthermore, I have personally heard you promise Draupadi that you would
bring forth the head of the killer of her sons. (SB 1.7.38 translation)

So Krishna reminded Arjuna that you took a vow to kill Asvatthama and bring
his head to Draupadi, This man is an assassin and murderer of your own
family members. Not only that, but he has also dissatisfied his master. He
is but the burnt remnants of his family. Kill him immediately. (SB 1.7.39
translation)

Suta Gosvami said: Although Krishna, who was examining Arjuna in religion,
encouraged Arjuna to kill the son of Dronacarya, Arjuna, and a great soul,
did not like the idea of killing him, although Asvatthama was a heinous
murderer of Arjuna’s family members. (SB 1.7.40 translation)

After reaching his own camp, Arjuna, along with his dear friend and
charioteer (Sri Krishna), entrusted the murderer unto his dear wife, who
was lamenting for her murdered sons. (1.7.41 translation)

Sri SutaGosvami said: Draupadi then saw Asvatthama, who was bound with
ropes like an animal and silent for having enacted the most inglorious
murder. Due to her female nature, and due to her being naturally good and
well-behaved, she showed him due respects as a brahman.a. (SB 1.7.42
translation)

She could not tolerate Asvatthama’s being bound by ropes, and being a
devoted lady, she said: Release him, for he is a brahman.a, our spiritual
master. (SB 1.7.43 translation)

It was by Dronacarya’s mercy that you learned the military art of throwing
arrows and the confidential art of controlling weapons.(SB 1.7.44
translation)

He (Dronacarya) certainly still exists, being represented by his son. His
wife Krpi did not undergo a sati with him because she had a son. (SB 1.7.45
translation)

O most fortunate one who knows the principles of religion, it is not good
for you to cause grief to glorious family members who are always
respectable and worshipful. (SB 1.7.46 translation)

So this way, you can see how noble a personality Draupadi was. Although her
five children were murdered brutally in their sleep by Asvatthama and when
Asvatthama was dropped to her, just by seeing him, her whole attitude
changed. She said that here is a brahmana not an ordinary one, the son of
Arjuna’s spiritual master. And Dronacharya was so affectionate towards
Arjuna and she felt that this person shouldn’t be killed. She felt also
that if he is killed how his mother is going to feel. “I lost my sons. They
are not going to come back. But if he is killed, my sons are not going to
come back. But if he is killed, the way I am feeling the pain his mother is
going to feel the pain.” So Draupadi, requested Arjuna “Please release
him.”

My lord, do not make the wife of Dronacarya cry like me. I am aggrieved for
the death of my sons. She need not cry constantly like me. (SB 1.7.47
translation)

If the kingly administrative order, being unrestricted in sense control,
offends the brahman.a order and enrages them, then the fire of that
rageburns up the whole body of the royal family and brings grief upon
all. (SB
1.7.48 translation)

So we can see that like, sometimes people think especially in the west,
even some of our devotees think that in the Vedic culture women was
subjugated. The woman was maltreated and so forth. But here we can see how
glorious the women in the Vedic culture used to be. Like Draupadi, so wise
and such a profound character and such deep and broad attitude she had. She
is saying that what he knows the consequences of killing a Brahmana. That
killing a Brahmana can destroy the entire Kshatriya family. So that is how
the Brahmanical order was respected by the ruling class at that time.

Suta Gosvami said: O brahmanas, King Yudhist.hira fully supported the
statements of the Queen, which were in accordance with the principles of
religion and were justified, glorious, full of mercy and equity, and
without duplicity. (SB 1.7.49 translation)

Nakula and Sahadeva (the younger brothers of the King) and also Satyaki,
Arjuna, the Personality of Godhead Lord Sri Krishna, son of Devaki, and the
ladies and others all unanimously agreed with the King. (SB 1.7.50
translation)

So Yudhisthira Maharaja was agreed with Draupadi,’s statement and everyone
else was agreed with Yudhisthira Maharaja’s statement.

Bhima <http://vedabase.net/b/bhima>, however, disagreed with them and
recommended killing this culprit who, in an angry mood, had murdered
sleeping children for no purpose and for neither his nor his master’s
interest. (SB 1.7.51 translation)

So others could forgive but Bhima could not. So he said no, he must be
murdered.

Caturbhuja (the four-armed one), or the Personality of Godhead, after
hearing the words of Bhima, Draupadi and others, saw the face of His dear
friend Arjuna, and He began to speak as if smiling. (SB 1.7.52 translation)

The Personality of Godhead Sri Krishna said: A friend of a brahman.a is not
to be killed, but if he is an aggressor he must be killed. All these
rulings are in the scriptures, and you should act accordingly. You have to
fulfill your promise to your wife, and you must also act to the
satisfaction of Bhimasena and Me. (SB 1.7.53 and 54 translation)

So now Arjuna is in a dilemma. In one hand, he shouldn’t kill but on the
other hand he should kill him.

Just then Arjuna could understand the motive of the Lord by His equivocal
orders, and thus with his sword he severed both hair and jewel from the
head of Asvatthama.  (SB 1.7.55 translation)

Asvatthama was born with a jewel in his head. So Arjuna severed the jewel
from his head along with his hairs.

He (Asvatthama) had already lost his bodily luster due to infanticide, and
now, moreover, having lost the jewel from his head, he lost even more
strength. Thus he was unbound and driven out of the camp.(SB 1.7.56
translation)

Cutting the hair from his head, depriving him of his wealth and driving him
from his residence are the prescribed punishments for the relative of a
brahman.a. There is no injunction for killing the body. (SB 1.7.57
translation)

Thereafter, the sons of Pandu and Draupadi, overwhelmed with grief,
performed the proper rituals for the dead bodies of their relatives.(SB
1.7.58 translation)

Thus end the Bhaktivedanta purports of the First Canto, Seventh Chapter, of
the Srimad-Bhagavatam, entitled “The Son of Drona Punished.”

“Interesting hey!”Hare Krishna. All glories to Srila Prabhupada!

His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: Does anybody have any question? Yes
Chitrangada.

Devotee asks a question to His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami.

His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: Ok. Yeah. Good. It has been mentioned
there that in the battle of Kurukshetra the soldiers on the both sides died
and attained their respective destinations. Those who were devotees they
went back to Godhead but those who were not devotees but because they died
in the battlefield, they went to heavenly planets. So when a Kshatriya dies
in a battlefield they go to heavenly planets. So if a Kshatriya dies in a
battlefield either he goes to heavenly planet or if he is a devotee of
Krishna especially when Krishna was there, some of them left their bodies
seeing Krishna. So they went back to Godhead. Take the mike.

Devotee asks a question to His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami.

His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: Yeah. Aswatthama like a mad man is still
wandering around in the Himalayan mountains. He had a very long duration of
life. Almost immortal. So he didn’t die. He still exists but because of his
sinful activity, he didn’t stop there. He again released Brahmastra to kill
Pariksit Maharaja, so that will come in the next chapter. So he was such an
abominable personality. Although born out of such a great parentage. And
because he is so disturbed, because of his sinful reaction, like a mad man
he is wandering around. So Prabhupada said that he is the snowman,
abominable snowman. (laughter). Yes, Krishnachan. What’s your question?
Give him the mike.

Krishnachan das asks a question to His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami.

His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: The five sons of Draupadi,, there must
have been some reason. But I don’t remember. But the thing is that
ultimately it is all the laws of material nature. In the material nature
everyone has to undergo various kinds of tribulations and especially
Kshatriyas, on one hand they have the facilities to enjoy. But everything
you see that this nature is full of suffering and it is also very important
to note that the Kshatriyas and especially when you read Mahabharata, we
see that it is so full of suffering. Which indicates the mode of passion
will bring suffering. Mode of passion will cause suffering and that is how
the law of nature is. You try to enjoy the material nature, you end up
suffering. Like an example is an classical example is Satyavati’s father
Devraja wanted that his daughter’s son become a king. And as a result of
that Bhismadeva had to take a vow that he would not have any claim and he
will not ever get married. Now satyavati’s two sons both of them died
young. See the grandfather wanted that the grandchildren become kings but
both of them although they became kings, they died very young and they died
without children. And there was not successor to the throne. And that same
Satyavati is requesting Bhisma that you please procreate to continue the
dynasty and Bhisma said that’s not possible. The Pandavas you know for so
many years were in exile. They get back their kingdom but then still they
lose everything in that game of dice. And then they get their kingdom. “And
consider what happens now that they got their kingdom back practically
everyone was dead, everyone died. Now you like to enjoy with your near and
dear ones but what’s the point in getting the kingdom back when all your
near and dear ones are gone. So in this way we get to see the real nature
of this material nature. What the material nature is like? This is what the
material nature is like. Trying to enjoy, make all kinds of arrangements
and no enjoyment, only suffering.” Yes. (in Hindi) Mike mein bolo.

Devotee asks a question to His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami.

His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: Yes, they will be here  until the time of
annihilation. (Laughter) Yeah, Krishna in Dwarka is sometimes Chaturbhuja
and sometime Dwibhuja. This is Dwarkadesa. Krishna Vasudeva. Krishna at the
time of his birth. “How many arms he have when he appeared at Kamsa’s
prison?” Four arms. He can take four arms as well as two arms. Also when
Akrura was taking Krishna from Vrindavan to Mathura. “What did Akrura see
when Krishna and and Balarama went to take bath?” He saw the four armed
form. So Mathuraesh Krishna and Dwarkesh Krishna / Vasudeva Krishna is
sometimes Dwibhuja sometimes Caturbhuja. But Vrindavan Krishna is always
Dwibhuja. He can take Chaturbhuja. He can always assume the form but that’s
not his original form. And the residents of Vrindavan especially Radharani
knows that. So once when Krishna disappeared from the rasa dance, he
assumed the four armed form and stood there. But Radharani was not
interested, the other Gopis offered obeisances but they also were not
interested because they knew that this is not the real Krishna. This is
another Krishna who is born in the Yadu Dynasty. But Vrajendra Nandan
Krishna is svayam bhagavan. Therefore Gopis offered obeisances and left.
But when Radharani saw, rather when Krishna saw Radharani, He could not
keep His four arms, His other two arms disappeared and He became two armed.
Yes.

Devotee asks a question to His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami.

His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami : Well that happened in her absence in the
battlefield. In the battlefield when they fight that’s one thing but here
he was brought to her bound like an animal, seeing that she felt compassion
and she was moved by compassion. Duryodhana is a Kshatriya and Kshatriyas
fight and kill each other. That’s ok. Killing a Brahmana was not right. Yes

Devotee asks a question to His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami.

His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: okay, say what’s your question?

Devotee continues to ask a question to His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami.

His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: Okay, okay. Yeah. Once Brahma became
attracted to his daughter Saraswati. And he ran after her at that time Lord
Shiva became very angry that he being his father running after his
daughter. So Lord Shiva took his trident (laughter) and chased Brahma and
Brahma out of fear ran. Yes, Yamuna.

Yamuna dasi asks a question to His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami.

His Holiness Bhakti Charu Swami: Come again, it meant pure mode of goodness
is the same. Pure goodness. Pure goodness is transcendental. But material
goodness is mixed goodness. Material goodness is not pure. The goodness
sattva, raja and tama guna, the sattva in material nature is not pure.
There is some tinge of passion and ignorance in that goodness. Therefore it
is called mishra sattva. But transcendental goodness is suddha sattva, pure
goodness and Srimad Bhagavatam is transcendental goodness, nothing to do
with material nature. Other scriptures may derive some material benefit or
indicate some material benefit. Vedas are in three modes. Trai guna visaya
veda. The Vedas are influenced by the three modes but Arjuna, you become
transcendental to the modes and that is pure goodness. Yeah, okay.

Transcription : His Grace Kartika Dasa

Editing : Her Grace Hemavati Radhika Dasi