Para…Para…Paradise

After crowning Parikshit, son of Abhimanyu, grandson of Arjun, it was finally the time for the Pandavas to retire. They walked north toward the great snow clad mountain whose peak touches the peak of the Swarga. ‘If we truly upheld dharma in our lives, then our bodies will not die. We will enter the realm of the gods with this flesh,’ said Yudhishtir. His brother, the other Pandavas and even Draupadi, agreed.

Suddenly, Draupadi slipped and fell. She cried out for help but no one turned around. Then Sahadeva and then Nakula slipped and fell. No one turned around for to help them. Then Arjun and finally Bheem, Yudhishtir stood his ground, and continued walking up the path. Yudhishtir had refused to turn and help anyone. ‘I have renounced everything,’ he told himself.

At long last, Yudhishtir reached the peak and found himself before the gate of the Swarga. ‘Come inside,’ said the Devas. ‘But keep the dog out.’ He turned around surprised and found a dog behind him. It followed him all the way to the gate. ‘Dogs are not welcome in Swarga.’
The dog looked at Yudhishtir with adoration, his heart melted. ‘I have given up everything but this dog has not given up on me. Surely, he too has earned the right to Swarga, as I have. You must let him in.’ he said. ‘We both have equal merits. I will not enter Swarga without him.’ Devas said, ‘you refuse Swarga for the sake of a dog!’ ‘I refuse Swarga for the sake of justice,’ said Yudhishtir.

The Devas smiled. ‘Once again Yudhishtir you display your integrity. This dog behind you is none other than Dharma, god of righteous conduct. He has followed you and you have not abandoned him. That is why ONLY YOU have earned the right to enter Swarga with your mortal body.’

And for your knowledge, Kauravas, the enemy of Pandavas and the villain of the epic MAHABHARAT, they were already in Swarga before Yudhisthir. But why? How?. Now for this we have to take a look before MAHABHARAT, the forefather Kuru was granted with the wish that anyone who dies in the battle of Kurukshetra will directly sent to the Swarga and the Kauravas died but not Pandavas. TWIST

What happened to the other four Pandavas and Draupadi?

Well they ended up in the Naraka or hell.

When Yudhishtir came to know that, he demanded to see them. When he saw the miserable life of his brothers and wife, he cried and took a decision that he will stay in Naraka with them not in Swarga with Kauravas. Devas laughed and said,’but we thought you had renounced everything?’ ‘You have given up everything but not your hatred toward Kauravas, you have not forgiven them.’

At that moment, Yudhishtir realized he was not the great man who he thought he was. Realization humbled Yudhishtir. Led by the Devas, he then took a dip in Ganga and purified, truely liberated, with the sincere desire to forgive and accept Kauravas. There was no more hatred. There was only love. Everyone was one.

Finally, Yudhisthir had won the ultimate victory, victory over himself.

Now he would ascend to a heaven higher than Swarga, Vaikuntha, the abode of God.

from the book Jaya by Devdutt Pattanaik