Yudhisthira’s wisdom, four levels 

Literal Comprehension:

These experts have been taken from the MAHABHARAT. One of the two major Sanskrit epics of ancient India. Recounting events that allegedly took place some 2.800 years ago. The writing of this epic took place centuries later, possibly spanning from the vedic period (about 2500 years ago) to the early Gupta period (about 1700 years ago) According to the Hindu tradition, the author is YAKSHA.While Hunting for deer in forest, the five Pandava brothers grow thirsty. Exhausted Yudhisthira, the eldest sends one brother to search for water. When this brother fails to return, Yudhisthira sends his other brother one at a time , but the too fail to return. Then Ydhisthira goes to search for his brother He finds a beautiful pool but alas, hear it he finds his four brothers prostarate on the ground either dead or unconscious. Unknown to Yudhisthara, they have all ignored a Yaksha’s admonition not to drink water before answering his question. Despite his overwhelming thirst, Yudhisrthira obeys the Yaksha. Moreover, he correctly answers the Yaksha’s philosophical queries. Pleased with Yudhisthira wisdom, the Yaksha agree to revive one of the brother, leaving Yudhisthira bases his choice entirely on moral considerations, not on his own selfish need and predilections. The Yaksha reveals himself as a Yama (The god of justice and righteousness) , tells Yudhistra how pleased he is with his uprights, restores to him for bother promises him protection from future hardships, and gives him some useful advice on where to go next.

  Once Pandava brothers were wandering in a forest to hunt a deer, but the deer in their sight disappeared abruptly. In the meantime, they grew thirsty and couldn’t move ahead. Yudhisthira, the eldest brother, sent one of his brothers Nakula in search of water. But he didn’t come back for a long time. So, he sent all his brothers one after the other gradually but none of them returned with any information of source of water nearby. Therefore, ultimately, Yudhisthira himself set out to fetch water and his brothers. After a short walk, he noticed a beautiful pool on the bank of which were lying all his brothers either unconscious or dead. Though he was in extreme distress and sorrow due to this event, he bent to drink water from the pool since his thirst overpowered his grief. But an unknown voice warned him not to drink water before answering his questions. So, Yudhisthira tactfully answered all the questions asked by the voice i.e. Yama, the God of Justice and Death, whereas his brother had disobeyed him and as such were prostrate on the ground. His philosophical answers pleased the God and he became ready to revive one of his brothers. Yudhisthira utilizing his wisdom abandoned his selfishness and selected, on moral grounds, his step-brother for revival. As a result, the god appeared in front Yudhisthira, highly appreciated him for his patience, righteousness and wisdom and restored all his brothers to life.


The story may be trying to tell us something about the importance of patience, obedience to gods, wisdom and right conduit. Without these characteristics, the PANDAVA brothers would have been lost. The Philosophical portion of course of great interest, with reflections on such concepts as desire and courage.

Critical Thinking: 

For the critical thinker, this story is a variable good mine. Here are a few examples of what skeptics might say about this charming tale. Are there gods out there. If so, what is the evidence for their existence? Can we truly say that patience and right conduct are rewarded on this earth?


This story brought for me many associations. It led me for instance , to ask again, which view is right the one which extols desire, or the one which holds it to be the source of much sufferings and evil?


As I read this story, it reminded me of one incident that had once taken place in my village. When I was in my village, a hut caught fire. Many people gathered there and they heard a small baby crying inside the burning hut. But nobody was ready to help him. Ultimately, I ventured lo gel in lo the hut and saved the fife of the baby. This story has encouraged and inspired me to get involved in selfless service.

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