Chapter 35 Paravasu and Aravasu
King Brihadyumna, a student of the sage Raibhya, offered a significant sacrifice and asked the sage to allow his two sons, Paravasu and Arvavasu, to preside. Both of them happily departed for the king’s capital with the approval of their father.
Paravasu wanted to visit his wife one day while preparations were being made for the sacrifice, so he walked by himself all night and arrived at his hermitage before sunrise. He noticed what appeared to be a predatory animal crouched for a spring close to the hermitage in the waning light and shot it dead.
To his astonishment and anguish, he later realised that he had mistaken his father, who was dressed in skins, for a wild woodland creature and murdered him. He understood that the Bharadwaja curse was what caused the fatal error.
After hurriedly completing his father’s burial ceremonies, he went to Arvavasu and related the tragic event to him. He stated: “But the king’s devotion shouldn’t be hampered by this incident. Please do the ceremonies in my place to atone for the sin I unintentionally committed. Thankfully, there is atonement for crimes done without knowledge. I will be able to go and help with the king’s sacrifice if you would step in for me here and endure the atonement. You cannot yet officiate without assistance, although I can.”
The good brother concurred and said: “You may attend to the sacrifice for the king. To absolve you of the horrible stigma of having slain a parent and a brahmana, I will do atonement.”
As a result, the honourable Arvavasu decided to perform the expiatory ceremonies on his brother’s behalf. After doing that, he joined his brother at the king’s court to participate in the sacrifice.
Since expiation cannot be done by proxy, Paravasu’s sin was not erased. It filled his thoughts with evil intentions.
When Arvavasu entered the hall, Paravasu yelled out loudly for the king to hear, “This man has committed the sin of killing a brahmana. How can he enter this holy sacrificial place?” Out of jealousy for the brightness on his brother’s face, Paravasu decided to dishonour him by casting upon him an injustice as a person.
Arvavasu vehemently refuted the charge, but no one listened to him, and the monarch humiliatingly ordered his ejection from that chamber of sacrifice.
Arvavasu asserted his innocence several times. “The fault was perpetrated by my brother, and even then, it was unintentional. I have offered him salvation by means of atonement.”
This just made things worse for him because no one understood the atonement he had received was not for his own crime and everyone assumed he was accusing his brother of being at fault in addition to his other misdeeds.
The honourable Arvavasu, who was not only wrongfully accused of a terrible crime but also called a liar, withdrew to the forest in hopelessness of seeking justice in the world and began to practise strict austerities.
The kind gods kindly enquired of him, “O righteous soul, what is the gift you seek?” He prayed simply for his father’s recovery from illness and for his brother’s release from evil and the crimes he had done. In the meanwhile, high thinking and intense meditation had purified his heart of all resentment for his brother’s actions. He prayed, and the gods heard him.
In a location close to Raibhya’s hermitage, Lomasa told Yudhishthira this tale while remarking, “O Pandavas, bathe here and wash off your emotions in this holy river.”
Both Arvavasu and Paravasu were the children of an esteemed scholar. They both picked up knowledge at his feet and went on to achieve greatness in academia.
But knowledge is one thing, while virtue is something else entirely. It is true that in order to pursue goodness and avoid evil, one must be able to distinguish between the two. But one should let this information permeate every thought and action in their life.
Indeed, knowledge then turns into virtue. Virtue cannot be instilled by knowledge that just amounts to cramming the mind with unprocessed material.
Like our clothing, it is only an appearance and not a true component of who we are.
Keep Mahabharat Book at Home and Read Daily – DO NOT FALL TO FAKE PROPAGANDA and Allow Enemies to Weaken our Dharma and Bharat
This historical epic Mahabharat is known as fifth Veda. It is a common misconception spread by mlecchas; muslims and christian missionaries, and secular Hindus that reading Mahabharat or keeping it at home will likely lead to arguments and fighting. All of this misinformation was spread by illiterate mlecchas and anti-Hindus, and it is completely incorrect. It is done to mentally weaken Hindus so that they avoid reading Mahabharat. Because Mahabharat invokes bravery, pride and sense of confidence in Hindus.
Keep a copy of Mahabharat at home and read it online at the HariBhakt website. Mahabharat is rightly called the fifth Veda for Kaliyuga people because it is a tool and guidance to invoke confidence and bravery in Sanatan Dharmi Hindus.
You can read complete Mahabharat by following Chapter links given below. You can check Glossary of Mahabharat here.