Friday, August 24, 2012

Bheema and the Saugandhika flower - Part 2 of 2


After saying goodbye to Hanuman, Bheema set out towards the garden. Bheema felt like as if he was in heaven...Even heaven would not smell so sweet...Bheema felt as he inhaled the beautiful Saugandhika flowers.

He was about to enter the garden, when he saw a big rakshasa standing outside the garden. Any other man would have quailed on seeing the ferocious monster...But not Bheema...With his eyes gleaming, Bheema tried getting inside the garden.

The rakshasa stopped him, 'STOP!' It growled, 'This garden belongs to Lord Kubera, the treasurer of the Devas...You cannot enter without his permission...'

Bheema looked contemptuously at the rakshasa, 'I am a warrior! I do what is right. I will not ask someone permission for doing what is right...'

The rakshasa roared once more, 'You puny human! Get out of here, before I actually thrown you out of here!'

Bheema let out a roar with delight. Unlike his brothers, Bheema did not shy away from any fights. The rakshasa fought with him. The rakshasa should have found it odd that a human was willing to fight him. Not thinking properly proved to be the end of the rakshasa. Bheema made short work of the rakshasa. Astonished on seeing this, the other rakshasas came forward and fought with Bheema...

Bheema was after all the son of the Wind God. It is said that soon after he was born Kunti, his mother had dropped him by mistake. She watched in horror as the baby fell on a big rock...She was in for a bigger surprise, when the rock shattered and the baby was lying on the rock as if nothing had happened! After meeting Hanuman, his brother, Bheema had become stronger than ever before. The army of the rakshasas were no match for him. Bheema just crushed through the army as if they were nothing...

The rakshasas afraid ran away to their general a yaksha by name Manimantha. Manimantha was huge and he was a yaksha. That meant he also had magic and brute force. Angered by what the rakshasas were telling him, Manimantha went to meet the ferocious human himself.

To Bheema it did not matter whether he was facing a yaksha or a rakshasa. The result was the same... Manimantha saw the outside of the garden with the dead rakshasas and the yakshas and angrily attacked Bheema.

The rakshasa army was watching with baited breath the fight between Manimantha and Bheema...

Meanwhile outside the ashrama, Draupadi was sitting anxiously waiting for Bheema to come. Yudhishtar saw her looking anxious, 'Draupadi! What is it? Why are you so anxious?'

Draupadi looked at Yudhishtar with a little fear, 'It is Bheema! I sent him to get some fragrant flowers...He has not yet come back....'

Yudhishtar laughed, 'Draupadi! I thought you knew Bheema better than that...Do you really think anything can happen to him...He is the strongest person in the world...No one can even remotely match him...' Yudhistar said with a sense of pride.

Draupadi nodded her head still looking worried, 'I know! I know! But it is just that I sent him a long time back. He should have come back by now!'

Yudhishtar smiled and shook his head, 'Fine! I will go looking for him...'

Sahadeva, Yushishtar's younger brother came as he listened to the whole conversation, 'Brother! I do not think we can go. Why don't you call Ghadothgaja? I am sure he can find Bheema is a matter of minutes...' [Ghadothgaja is a rakshasa and is son of Bheema and Hidimbi. He has the power to move through air and can do magic. Ghadothgaja had given his father and uncles the power that he would appear before them the minute they thought of him. Yudhishtar loved Ghadothgaja more than anyone else.]

Yudhishtar's eyes brightened as he closed his eyes and thought of Ghadothgaja. As soon as he had opened his eyes, he saw the lovable Ghadothgaja before him. Yudhishtar embraced him lovingly. Ghadothgaja fell at his feet, 'Uncle! You called me! What is the matter?'

Yudhishtar looked at Ghadothgaja, 'It is just that Draupadi is anxious about Bheema...' Yudhishtar told Ghadothgaja everything. Ghadothgaja closed his eyes trying to sense Bheema. Suddenly frowning he opened his eyes. Yudhistar was suddenly alarmed looking at Ghadothgaja's expression, 'What is it, son? Something wrong?'

Ghadothgaja nodded his head, 'Father is in the garden of Kubera! I cannot sense inside that garden...It looks like there has been a fight there...'

Draupadi paled, 'Take me there now, please Gadothgaja! I will plead with Kubera for my husband's life...It is because of me that my husband has gone there...' She said clutching Gatothgaja's hands tightly.

Yudhishtar shook his head, 'Draupadi! I still do not think, anything can happen to Bheema...' But Draupadi shook her head and said angrily, 'I want to go now!'

Yudhishtar sighed and turned to Ghadothgaja, 'Son! Can you take the two of us to Kubera's garden, please!' Gatothgaja nodded and within a matter of minutes they were outside Kubera's garden.

Yudhishtar and Draupadi looked around. Draupadi trembled as she saw the dead rakshasas. What if Bheema also...Draupadi shook her head vigorously. She must not think of that....She went inside the unguarded garden and found that Bheema was asleep in the middle of the garden, surrounded by the Saugandhika flowers!

Near him was lying a huge dead yaksha. Almost sobbing with happiness Draupadi shook Bheema awake. 'Bheema! Bheema!'

Bheema groggily woke up, 'Draupadi! What are you...?' He saw Yudhishtar and Ghatothgaja looking anxiously at him. He got up still unclear. 'I had a fight...a terrible fight and then the flowers were so overpowers...I fell asleep...' Yudhistar looked around. 'What happened?'

Bheema carelessly waved his hands, 'Oh! They tried stopping me from getting inside the garden...I guess they should not have done that...'

'WHO IS THAT HUMAN, WHO IS...' Startled all of them turned to see a royal Yaksha who looked decked in ornaments from head to toe. The yaksha was studying them and was particularly looking at Bheema. His soldiers were all behind him carrying heavy arms. The yaksha held up his hands. The soldiers looked at Bheema who had leapt before the others and was eyeing all of them ferociously and uncertainly put their weapons down.

'Who are you?' The yaksha asked.

'Yudhishtar bowed, 'My Lord! I am Kunti's son Yudhishtar...and this is...'

The yaksha looked at the others, 'Oh! You must be Draupadi and Bheema!' Everyone nodded. The yaksha smiled.

Yudhishtar looked around, 'My Lord! My brother recklessly fought with this man...' Yudhishtar said looking at the huge Yaksha lying dead. 'I am sorry my Lord! He acted without thinking....I think he is your general...' Yudhishtar said looking at the markings on the man.

The yaksha had a strange expression on his face. He slowly nodded. 'Yes! Your brother acted without thinking. He needs to be restrained...' Bheema looked angrily and ready to pounce. Yudhistar silenced him with a look. 'But you do not have to worry about that yaksha! He was cursed by Sage Agastya to die in the hands of a human...It just happened to be in the hands of your brother'

Yudhistar looked at the yaksha, 'Who are you sir?'

The yaksha smiled, 'I am Kubera, the treasurer of the Devas!' Yudhishtar and the others looked disbelievingly at each other. 'The yaksha you have killed is Manimantha.' Kubera nodded to himself as he looked at Bheema, 'You have put him out of curse! I am grateful to you for that....' He turned to his soldiers. 'Prepare for a feast! We are among friends...'

The other Pandavas also came to Kubera's palace. There they enjoyed the hospitality of Kubera. Finally the Pandavas realized that they would have to go and meet Arjuna, who was due to come back from Indra's court. Kubera pleased with the brothers sent a basket full of saugandhika flowers with Draupadi!


-From the Mahabharatha

2 comments:

  1. Namaste, written stories are very good to read, please post 'Bheema and the Saugandhika flower - Part 1 of 2 , i did not find.

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    1. It is under August 2012

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