Mahabharata Podcast

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Sinopsis

An English language re-telling of the ancient epic Mahabharat.

Episodios

  • Episode 81 - Downfall

    Episode 81 - Downfall

    08/02/2015

    Episode 81 - So this is it; the moment everyone has been waiting for.  Ever since Episode 7 when Duryodhana was born, he has finally received his well-deserved defeat.  But even as he falls, the finger pointing, hand-wringing and grief at the price that has been paid for this victory has already begun.Balaram shows up just in time to referee the final death match between Bhima & Duryodhana, only to get really annoyed when Bhima is forced to bend the rules a bit in order to win.

  • Episode 80 - Kurukshetra, Day 18: Shalya  the dissolution of the Kauravas

    Episode 80 - Kurukshetra, Day 18: Shalya & the dissolution of the Kauravas

    08/02/2015

    Episode 80 - This episode covers the final day of the great war.  If you were expecting things to go out with a bang, you'll be disappointed.  Once the Kaurava general Shalya is killed, things just sort of disintegrate.  Duryodhana's remaining brothers are all killed.  Shakuni is killed.  Karna's sons are exterminated.  The Pandavas make one final sweep over the field, killing literally everyone who was left standing.  They spend the rest of the day sifting through the corpses in search of Duryodhana.By this point, the only survivors are Krpa, Aswatthaman, Kritavarman, Sanjay, & Duryodhana.  Everyone else is dead.  The Pandavas still have their tight group of heroes and Draupadi's sons, but most of their troops are dead.Duryodhana finds himself standing alone, abandoned & on foot in the midst of the battlefield.  Everyone is dead or has fled the scene.  Stunned, he wanders off the field and makes his way aimlessly towards Hastinapur.  Sanjay

  • Episode 79 - Kurukshetra, Day 17: Down with Dushasan/Killing Karna

    Episode 79 - Kurukshetra, Day 17: Down with Dushasan/Killing Karna

    08/02/2015

    Episode 79 - This is a big day in the war.  Bhisma fulfills one of his oaths by killing Dushasan and drinking his blood.  Now he will be gunning for Duryodhana.Arjun & Karna finally get busy with their final showdown.  The whole universe apparently took sides in this conflict, with everyone choosing a champion to cheer for.  The pair begin fighting with conventional weapons, but soon escalate to magical weapons. At one point, Arjun gets the upper hand, and strikes Karna until he's lost his wits and drops his weapons. Arjun then allows his opponent to recover somewhat before they resume fighting.  Krishna scolds Arjun (not for the first time!), for failing to strike the enemy when he's down.  Arjun has quit arguing with Krishna over these things, so he resolves to kill Karna at the next possible opportunity.At this point, Fate and Mother Earth have had enough and they intervene directly.  Mother Earth seizes Karna's chariot wheel, bringing her enemy to a halt.  Karna

  • Episode 78 - Kurukshetra, Day 17: A Counterfeit Curfuffle

    Episode 78 - Kurukshetra, Day 17: A Counterfeit Curfuffle

    08/02/2015

    Episode 78 - Karna begins the 17th day of the war by fighting each Pandava except Arjun.  He is actually defeated by both Yuddistira and Bhima, but then he defeats Nakul and Sahadev.   Both of the elder brothers spare his life, out of consideration for Arjun's oaths.  Yuddistira then goes for a second round with Karna, but this time it doesn't work out so well.Karna defeats Yuddistira and nearly captures him, but he reconsiders and lets the Pandava go.  Yuddistira then flees to his camp to have his wounds tended to, and there he slips into a strange funk.  What follows seems completely bogus to me.  Arjun retreats to the camp to check on his brother's health, and Yuddistira perversely assumes that he must have already killed Karna.Yuddistira admits that he's been terrified of Karna and hasn't slept for 13 years out of fear for him. When he finds out that Karna isn't killed, he gets really mad at Arjun and suggests that Arjun hand his bow to Krishna and that they change place

  • Episode 77 - Kurukshetra, Day 16: Karnas in charge

    Episode 77 - Kurukshetra, Day 16: Karna's in charge

    08/02/2015

    Episode 77 - Drona is dead and a new commander is needed.  Ashwatthaman proposes that Karna be given the position and everyone else agrees.  Karna leads the army through a rather desultory day of fighting and then complains that what he is missing is a good driver.  Shalya is drafted to be his charioteer. Shalya had promised to cause trouble should things come to this pass, and he lives up to it by constantly bickering with Karna.  For some reason, Karna chooses this moment to confess how he deceived Rama Jamadagnya in order to obtain the Brahma weapon.  When Rama finds out Karna is just a Suta disguised as a Brahmin, he curses Karna.

  • Episode 76 - Some thoughts on the story so far...

    Episode 76 - Some thoughts on the story so far...

    08/02/2015

    Episode 76 - I present my wild theories and hypotheses about the Mahabharata.  Among other things, we discuss its relationship to the Precession of the Equinoxes and the Yuga cycle as defined by Markandeya and Sri Yukteshvar.  We look into the role of magic in the story and our prospects for regaining this lost knowledge in the future. We delve into the mystery of the metaphysical origins of the Pandavas and consider whether the five brothers might have originally been based on just a single hero-- the proto-Arjun.

  • Episode 75 - Kurukshetra, Day 15: Ashwatthaman goes Ballistic!

    Episode 75 - Kurukshetra, Day 15: Ashwatthaman goes Ballistic!

    08/02/2015

    Episode 75 - Earlier in day 15, Drona is killed by Dhrstadyumna.  The Kaurava army literally comes unraveled until Ashwatthaman hears the news.  The boy is outraged at the way his father was treated and swears revenge on both Dhrstadyumna (for killing him), and Yuddistira (for betraying his trust).Drona's son then pulls the army together and rushes to battle waving his WMD.  First he tries to use the Narayana weapon, but Krishna is too tricky for that-- he knows its weakness, which is that it is ineffective against unarmed men.  The Pandavas all drop their weapons and the bomb is a dud.  One other problem with the Narayana weapon: it's only good for one shot.  So much for that.Next, he pulls out his Agneya weapon, which is pretty much like a thermonuclear device.  Without a second thought, he gets into range with Arjun and sets the thing off.  It wipes out perhaps half of the Pandavas' remaining army, but Arjun & Krishna simply brush off the ashes and resu

  • Episode 74 - Kurukshetra, Day 15: Drona

    Episode 74 - Kurukshetra, Day 15: Drona

    08/02/2015

    Episode 74 - Two significant deaths this episode-- first Gatotkacha basically gets sacrificed by Krishna so that Arjun need not face Karna's special unstoppable Indra Dart.  It's a mean trick, but Krishna explained that one of the purposes of this war is to eradicate the race of Rakshasas, so if they didn't have Karna kill him, then they would have had to do it themselves.  Besides, it was a small price to pay in order to save Arjun for the final showdown.The second big shot to go down is their old guru Drona.  I must confess that I never really took a shine to this fighting brahmin.  He always seemed over-proud and a bit prickly.  Also, I never liked the way he manipulated the Pandava kids into fighting his own grudge match with King Drupad.  After he took half of Drupad's kingdom, he said that they could be friends again.  Some friend-- he then kills Drupad earlier in the day without a second thought.And what the hell is a brahmin doing fighting anyway?  They are supp

  • Episode 73 - Kurukshetra, Day 14: Killing Jayadratha

    Episode 73 - Kurukshetra, Day 14: Killing Jayadratha

    08/02/2015

    Episode 73 - We continue with the events of the 14th day of war.  You can relax because we find out that both Satyaki and Bhim made it to Arjun's side, and everyone is OK after all.  Arjun finally spots Jayadratha, but he is very well protected, and the sun is about to set.  It is time for one of Krishna's tricks!Following Jayadratha's "exploding head syndrome", the Kauravas are so bent out of shape that they ignore the sunset and just keep fighting.   Next episode will cover the night battle of the 14th day.Thanks for all your nice comments.  I love to hear from you!  If you haven't already, please visit my blog at mahabharatapodcast.com and leave a message.

  • Episode 72 - Kurukshetra, Day 14: Killing Alambusha

    Episode 72 - Kurukshetra, Day 14: Killing Alambusha

    08/02/2015

    Episode 72 - We begin the 14th day of the war.  The morning starts with many dark omens, but no one is quite sure for which side they portend doom.  Arjun sets off immediately to fight his way through the Kaurava army and to find and kill the miserable king Jayadratha.  He & Krishna soon disappear into the hordes while Yuddistira struggles to avoid capture at the hands of Drona.By mid-day, with no news from the two Krishnas, Yuddistira begins to worry about them.  He hears their conches and interprets the sound to have some urgency.  Eventually, his concerns are too much, and he sends Satyaki, his very best bodyguard, off on a solo mission to find and rescue their kinsmen.Then Satyaki also crashes through the enemy lines and disappears.  Not long after, the lack of news from either Satyaki or the Krishnas again proves too much for Yuddistira's nerves.  This time, he sends Bhima away to find the others.Now Yuddistira has only Dhrstadyumna to protect him, and the rest

  • Episode 71 - Kurukshetra: A Dramatic Interlude

    Episode 71 - Kurukshetra: A Dramatic Interlude

    08/02/2015

    Episode 71 - Vyasa finishes his comforting storytelling, and then vanishes, leaving it up to Yuddistira to deal with breaking the news to Arjun that his son is dead.  Arjun comes home expecting a party, only to find the camp in mourning over the loss of his son.  He responds by swearing to kill Jayadratha by sunset tomorrow.The Kauravas find out about his oath and hastily make plans to keep the prince safe long enough for Arjun's vow to fail.  That is all it will take to get the Pandava out of the war!Now Arjun is a bit worried, but still he's got Krishna to help out.  Even though the oath was sworn without Krishna's advice, he arranges a meeting with Shiva.  Shiva provides a magic missile that should take care of everything.  Arjun still has a long row to hoe-- we'll see how it works out tomorrow!

  • Episode 70 - The death of Abhimanyu

    Episode 70 - The death of Abhimanyu

    08/02/2015

    Episode 70 - Drona has been in charge now for two days, and so far he has failed in his mission to capture Yuddistira.  This despite the fact that they have sacrificed a whole nation of warriors just to keep Arjun away long enough for them to grab his brother.  The Trigartas are nearly all dead so they need to come up with a new idea.  This time, Drona implements a fancy new formation, based on a wheel, which few know how to break.It turns out that Abhimanyu is one of those who know its secrets.  But with Arjun busy, he is the only one.  Helpless to protect himself and his followers any other way, Yuddistira sends the boy wonder into the jaws of death.  Even then, they could have protected the boy, except they were stopped by old Jayadratha of Sindh. Remember this guy?  He's actually related in marriage to Duryodhana-- he married Duryodhana's sister.  But one wife wasn't good enough for him, and he stupidly tried to run off with Draupadi, without first defeating the Pan

  • Episode 69 - Kurukshetra, Days 11  12: The Drona Parva

    Episode 69 - Kurukshetra, Days 11 & 12: The Drona Parva

    08/02/2015

    Episode 69 - Bhisma is out of commission, and his book is nearly over.  In one last scene, Karna comes to meet his fallen nemesis.  Bhisma is quite affectionate toward his prodigal nephew, and he tells him that he was only pretending to be antagonistic.  He really didn't mean it, he just wanted to discourage Karna from enabling Duryodhana's evil ways. Bhisma begs Karna to forget his grievances and to join with his brothers and end the war this moment.  But Karna is too far gone.  He owes Duryodhana too much, and he has nursed his grievances for far too long to ever reconcile with the Pandavas.  It is better that he exit this world in the most honorable manner possible-- on the field of battle, at the loving hands of his famous brother, Arjuna.This scene ends the Bhisma Parva, and we pick up the story the next morning, in the Drona Parva.  Drona is made commander of the Kaurava army, and their strategy is to kidnap Yuddistira.  If they get him, then they could force him

  • Episode 68 - Kurukshetra, Day 10: The Bed of Arrows

    Episode 68 - Kurukshetra, Day 10: The Bed of Arrows

    08/02/2015

    Episode 68 - I know it feels like this war is really dragging on; but I think that is precisely how Vyasa wanted us to feel by this point in the battle.  We are all getting tired of the unending violence.  Even the main cause of all the violence, Bhisma, is getting tired of this, and he has begun looking for a way out.On day 9, the old Kuru apparently relieved himself of the last of his commitments, which was to wipe out the army of the Saumakas.  Now the only thing left for him to do was to find the most noble way to meet his death.  On the evening of the ninth day, the Pandavas visit their grand-uncle in his tent and walk away with the old man's permission and even blessing to kill him on the tenth day.So this is it-- Arjun is finally committed to this action, and Sikhandin is put at the head of the attack.  By the time they are done, Bhisma is literally a human pincushion.  He is impaled by so many arrows that his body does not touch the ground when he finally falls.Arjun kind

  • Episode 67 - Kurukshetra, Day 9

    Episode 67 - Kurukshetra, Day 9

    08/02/2015

    Episode 67 - On the previous day, Duryodhana was quickly losing faith with his uncle.  He began to suspect that Bhisma was throwing the contest in favor of the Pandavas.  Karna didn't help any when he offered to take charge in place of the old man.  So Duryodhana asked the old man to either fulfill his oaths or get out of the game.  Now today, on the 9th day, Bhisma sets out to finish off his Dharma so he could move on to the next phase in his life.On the battlefield, he kills hundreds of thousands, including the entire nation of the Saumakas.  Bhisma takes out a large chunk of the Pandava army.  If he keeps this up another day or two, there will be no one left to fight on the Pandavas' side.So that night, after the battle, they go unarmed to Bhisma's tent and ask him what they should do about this and how they should win the war.  Of course, they've known what they needed to do all along, but it's nice to have Bhisma tell you himself and to even give his blessing!

  • Episode 66 - Kurukshetra, Days 7  8

    Episode 66 - Kurukshetra, Days 7 & 8

    08/02/2015

    Episode 66 - The seventh and eighth days of the War.  Bhisma kills a few more Dhartarastras, king Virata loses another son, and we meet Arjun's son Iravat, a Naga prince from Arjun's tour of the holy places, long long ago.We meet Iravat only to see him killed by the demon Alambusha.  Alambusha is also the son of a famous father-- none other than the peculiar half-deer Rshyashrnga!  In the story we get from the epic, Rshyashrnga's son is the child of a Kshatriya princess, and becomes Raja of the kingdom.  We are not told where or on whom he begot this demon!Arjun and Bhisma seem ready to get down and fight, but it never seems to happen.  Maybe on day 9?  Duryodhana is quickly losing faith in his general, and Karna is making trouble on the sidelines, so he'd better do something big on day 9...

  • Episode 65 - Kurukshetra, Days 5  6

    Episode 65 - Kurukshetra, Days 5 & 6

    08/02/2015

    Episode 65 - The fifth and sixth days of the great war.  Arjun wipes out an army of 25,000, and we find out Satyaki has 10 fully grown sons.  Soon after we learn about these sons, they get decapitated by King Bhurishravas.  In return, Satyaki kills off the king's entire army, but the pair are too well-matched and both must be dragged off of the battlefield after sunset.Bhima can't resist an opportunity to kill more cousins, but risks getting himself killed or captured behind enemy lines.  Dhrstadyumna rescues him, only to require rescuing by Abhimanyu.

  • Episode 64 - Kurukshetra, Days 3  4

    Episode 64 - Kurukshetra, Days 3 & 4

    08/02/2015

    Episode 64 - The third and fourth days of the great war.  It seems like the tide may be turning somewhat, since both days of fighting were dominated by Arjun and Bhimasena.  Despite having the honor of receiving Krishna's teaching firsthand, Arjun still seems to be holding back somewhat.  His lassitude gets so bad that Krishna finally gets annoyed with him, and takes matters in his own hands.Contrary to the way I've always heard the story told, Krishna does not take any consideration for his oath not to fight, and does not use a chariot wheel as his weapon.  Instead, he just pulls out his Sudarshana Chakra, and sets out to destroy the Kauravas in one blow.Arjun does not explain why this cannot happen.  He just dives for his friend and tries to tackle him before any damage could be done.  Meanwhile, Bhisma is waiting with open arms to receive his lord.Having made his point, Krishna puts out his frisbee and takes up the reins again.  Arjun promises to do better next time.

  • Episode 63 - Kurukshetra, Day 2

    Episode 63 - Kurukshetra, Day 2

    08/02/2015

    Episode 63 - The second day of battle comes and goes.  If the first day went to the Kauravas, the 2nd day certainly belonged to the Pandavas.  The day ends with Bhimasena and Arjun dominating the field, and the Kaurava soldiers crapping their pants.  The cream of Kalinga manhood has been exterminated on the field, and even their enemies are forced to admire the way the two brothers cleared the field of all comers.Lots more people died, but so far, not much has been accomplished.  Maybe day 3 will go better?  I doubt it!

  • Episode 62 - Kurukshetra, Day 1: Concluded

    Episode 62 - Kurukshetra, Day 1: Concluded

    08/02/2015

    Episode 62 - Let's admit it, we were all impatient for this war to get started.  Like the characters in the story, we concluded many episodes back that there was never going to be a peaceful solution, and it would take nothing less than a massive bloodletting to make sure the bad guys were punished and the good guys got their rightful honors.But now that the war has started, those frustrating days of exile in the forest are looking more attractive.  Sure, we all feel that Duryodhana deserves a good kick in the ass, but wars are never that satisfying.  Entire nations of warriors will be extinct before Duryodhana gets his first bruise.  And then there are the other 98 Kaurava brothers.  Sure, they might have collectively done some sneaky things, but how exactly did they earn the fate of preceding their elder brother into the underworld, like some primitive escort?We might have learned thousands of years ago that war can never have a satisfactory outcome, and by now we should have f

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