story

Mahabharata for children

Mahabharata Episode 3

Ganga continued, "Upon the request from the Vasus, I assume the human form and marry you. My job is now over and I must now go back to my heavenly abode. I am taking your eighth son with me and will bring him back to you after he is amply grown up."

After saying this, Ganga flew away into the sky along with the newborn. King Shantanu felt very disappointed and returned to his palace with a broken heart.

Many years after, when Shantanu was taking a stroll on the bank of the river Ganges (Ganga), Goddess Ganga emerged out of the river with a young boy.

Ganga spoke, " Oh King! Here is your eighth son, Deva Vrata. I have brought him up in order that he may be able to cope with what is to befall on him in his life on this earth."

The king happily brought the prince to the palace and celebrated his advent by declaring him the crown prince of his kingdom. Deva Vrata was brave, just and looked highly promising.

King Shantanu was getting old and announced his retirement. He was lonely and always missed Ganga. It was one day while he was taking a stroll on the bank of the river Ganges; he was attracted towards a charming maiden, Satyavati. She was the daughter of the chief of the fishermen tribe. She took the sages across the river on her boat. She had a divine aroma coming out of her body.



Shantanu did not know the secret that circled around Satyavati during her maiden days. Satyavati once had a bad fishy smell on her body. Sage Parashar, one of the sages who she took across the river, had a special liking for her. He was pleased and blessed her with a sweet aroma along with the boon of a son who was named Vyas. Immediately after birth, Vyas grew up quickly through his divine powers and left for the forest. Vyas, however, promised his mother Satyavati that he will come back whenever he was called for. Vyas, later known as Veda Vyas, had mastery of the Vedas but was extremely ugly looking and had a horrible smell. Veda Vyas authored the story of the Mahabharata, for the sake of the posterity. It is said that Vyas dictated the entire epic at a stretch while Lord Ganesh acted as the scriber. In addition, Vyas played a central role in his story appearing and disappearing on the scene whenever his mother or her family members sought his help. He had rare magical qualities to resolve their problems.

Shantanu, unaware of the secrets of Satyavati's maiden life, was charmed by her beauty. He went to her father, the chief fisherman, and asked him for the hand of his daughter. The chief fisherman, placed the condition that the son born of Satyavati will be the successor of the Kaurava throne and not Deva Vrata. Santanu was shocked to hear the condition and returned home disappointed and unhappy. Deva Vrata later discovered the cause of his father's unhappiness and went to Satyavati's father, to advocate his father’s position on marrying Satyavati. In return he promised to give up his right to the throne for Satyavati's son.