ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

TWO GREAT MOTHERS OF THE MAHABARATA

Updated on May 8, 2011

Rukmini & Draupadi

What makes a woman a great mother? Many women have children, but that by itself does not necessarily make a woman a great mother. Some women never have children. All of us mother in various ways. We birth great service to the community, great ideas, great reforms, great careers, and do the right thing by living their life purposes. Some of us are homemakers. Some are leaders of nations. These great women often break stereotypes and do not do what is expected of them. They have the courage to say "no" to their relatives and friends in order to follow their life purposes, abilities, dreams and spiritual values. These inner aspects are allowed to shine.

RUKMINI

One of my favorite mothers of the Mahabarata is Queen Rukmini. I just loved it when I first saw her in the Indian movie. She really lived the concept that woman has the right to choose her own husband. She did not accept the demands of her family that she marry Prince Shishupala for political reasons. Her brother, Rukmi, feared Emperor Jarasandra. Shishupala was a vassal of the emperor and an ally of Rukmi. Rukmini loved Lord Krishna and asked him to marry her. She wrote him a letter and explained the plans of her relatives and the situation which was brewing which confronted her. Krishna upheld her right to choose her own husband. He met her at the temple and she jumped into his chariot. He defeated her brother with the help of his brother, Balarama. She married Krishna at Dwarka. As Krishna said, "A woman has a right to choose her own husband!" She did have many children by Lord Krishna but her initial brave act was the thing which made her a truly great mother. I love this concept of women choosing their own husbands and marrying for love first. She did not settle for second best. She knew who she loved and acted on her right to do so. She is a great inspiration to me. She is a great mother because she did what was right not what was expected.

DRAUPADI

Another great mother of the Mahabarata, Draupadi, is the wife of the five Pandavas brothers--Arjuna, Yudhistra, Bheema, Nakul and Sahadev. She had five sons, one from each of her five husbands. Many people are familiar with the story of Yudhistra playing dice and chatteling off Draupadi like a piece of property. Duryodhan orders his son, Dusshasana, to drag her by her hair to the court and disrobe her in front of everyone. No one comes to her defense at first--neither The Elders nor her five husbands. She wastes no time telling the Elders off for their actions, demanding they step in and do justice. She distracts every one with a social ritual to buy time. Very smart woman. In her mind she calls for Krishna her only true beloved friend or Sakha. He is the only one who provides justice to her time and time again. He does not take the side of the five brothers. He tells Yudhistra, "Your wife is not a piece of property, not a piece of chattel. She is your life's companion." She stands up for herself despite the actions of others. This makes her a truly great mother who spoke the truth even when it was hard for others to take it. Krishna and Drapaudi are great role models because they speak the truth that people need to hear.

Both men and women need to speak up in these kind of situations and not tolerate this kind of behavior. I worked in a women's shelter and saw all too often the real-life reality of how women can be treated by their husbands and boyfriends. Many of these men believed they could do anything they wanted with these women. It started with psychological abuse and then got progressively more violent. Sadly, this was often learned behavior from their families of origin. I have always admired how each of these great individuals spoke their truth in these situations. Great mothers speak the truth like Drapaudi and Rukmini and do not do what is expected of them.

All great social change is based on truth being greater than tradition or what is expedient or expected. Gandhi spoke of this idea and called it truth force. This means you live the truth, not just talk about it. Many of these ideas came from the Gita, which is part of the Mahabarata. Being a great mother takes courage. These fore mothers were brave and great souls who paved the way for the upliftment of women even to this very day. We often hear about fore fathers, but we often do not honor fore mothers for their greatness and courage. Often at Yagnas we ask men to be MCs and take leadership roles, but we do not ask equally capable, articulate women as often to do these tasks. It is time we truly honor mothers in an equal way for their great abilities. Go, Mothers, Go! Happy Mother's Day!

JAI SHRI MOTHERS!

Radhapriestess

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • profile image

      radhapriestess 

      5 years ago

      Thanks for the information on the Nepali aspect of Draupadi. Bhima is what the Indians call Bhimsen. I got to admit, though, I am more impressed with Krishna's action in the whole story compared with the actions of the husbands.

    • Vinaya Ghimire profile image

      Vinaya Ghimire 

      5 years ago from Nepal

      Krishna had many wives, but Rukmini was the principle queen. I have read the stories of Krishna and Rukmini number of times, how he kidnapped her, and fought with her brothers and possible suitors for love of his life.

      Draupadi is one of the bravest women in Hindu scriptures. Her life story is picturesque. She was a mortal but became divine. People in Nepal worship Draupadi and Bhimsen, one of Draupadi's five husbands in the form of Terrifying deities Bhairav and Bhairavi.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)