A Carnival Of Hope In The Celebration Of Faith!!
The palanquin was put down by the men, and she alighted from it like an afternoon sun! Radha and Yashoda were wonderstruck watching that beautiful woman walking towards them in that late morning time. She walked with a regal stride, the servant maids making her way with a silken carpet. She entered the house and looked around. A simple house of a village head, but in this house, the God himself once crawled, laughed, played gleefully, and mesmerized every one of this village! While entering into it, she left her footwear outside as if entering a temple!
The maidens around whispering-' she is Satyavathi, Raj Mata of Hasthinapur! Kuru Vansh... Kauravas and Pandavas' Daadi Maa!'
'Great-grandmother? Are you mad Madhavi? She is looking so young like us!
Radha looked at her inquisitively, Satyavathi noticed the surprise in her eyes!
When Yashoda bent to wash the feet of Raj Mata, Satyavathi stopped her- "Yashoda, you are revered in this world for your fortune, you shouldn't do such things!"
'You are the queen of this entire Kingdom Rajmata, I am a villager, a humble subject of yours !'- said Yashoda.
She held Yashoda's hands and told her ---" you are the mother of God himself, breastfed him, sung lullabies to him, and taken care of him and later when he wanted to leave, you dedicated him to his kingdom, like any selfless mother! " Her eyes reflected a great adoration towards that innocent mother!
She turned to Radha and said with a smile "girl, I know you are wondering about my youthful looks! It is true, I am the stepmother of Bheeshma, and great-grandmother of Kauravas and Pandavas, and to your Krishna too! I was blessed by sage Parashar to be ever youthful with a sweet fragrance! After my grandson Pandu's death, I left the kingdom and went to the forest for penance, occasionally visiting the kingdom to see the growth of the Kuru heirs. This time, after visiting the royal palace I was disturbed a bit by the developments there. Then I called Vidur, who is also my grandson, a wise person in that kingdom, questioned him why all these jealousies and where it will lead? He asked me to meet Vasudev Krishna to know the answers. While returning to the forest, I went to Dwaraka to meet Krishna! I was stunned by his divine aura, his godly presence made me open my heart and share with him many of the incidents in my past life! " She started recollecting :
When she met Krishna for the first time, he expressed his appreciation towards her otherwise criticized and condemned decisions by many in the earlier part of her life! She was remembering her conversation with Krishna:
"Krishna, I thought that a kingdom needs an heir, needs a king to rule, so I put aside all the societal norms and implemented my tribe's traditions! Felt like it was my responsibility to install an heir to the throne. In that obsessive desire, I forgot to know the feelings of my daughters in- law, the sensitive sentiments of my deceased son's queens. I have no idea whether I did right or wrong, but at that time my main aim was to safeguard the kingdom and embellish it with a king! Later, I asked your aunt Kunti to adopt the same tribal tradition, to get sons through Heavenly blessings! Now, the kingdom is blessed with many young princes, but unfortunately, there is a never-ending competition between the princes to show their might! After my grandson Pandu's death, I left for the forest for penance. An occasional visit to the Raj Mahal evokes many emotions in me, making me rethink whether I did the right thing by asking for heirs for the kingdom! This time my grandson Vidur asked me to meet you once before I retreat to my penance. Now I realized, why he asked me to meet you! Your Divine aura filled my heart with peace Krishna!
While she was talking to Krishna, Rukmini entered with fruits and milk for Raj Mata. The other consorts followed her to touch the feet of Satyavathi seeking her blessings. With a smile, Raj Mata asked Krishna, --"I heard that you are trying to define the society with new norms, adopting new methods to change the age-old traditions and customs, is it true Krishna?"--
"Yes Raj Mata, there is a necessity to change the customs now, we are in a harbinger state of living, the needs and desires are changing, people are deviating from dharma and adopting adharma to win over the other! Until now, you have taken decisions on behalf of the kingdom. Now they thought that the time has come to a man to stand up and show his might to the world! There is an illusion cropping up in the minds of people that, the might and Valour have to take the world into its hands, they are trying to disturb the peace in the society! As long as the authority is in the hands of an able King, and the might bow its head in front of motherhood, people were in peace! Now, when the egotistical man taking the authority into his hands, selfishness, and lust started ruling the universe. The coming days are not conducive for amenable human beings Rajmata! Death is inevitable to those who want to own the woman against her will and who desire other's wealth. they must be meted to death for their sins, has to be killed. I know the future of all these humans. I will try to prevent war, not sure whether I will be able to prevent it or to lead it from the front, but coming days are not comfortable to people like you. By now, you must have realized why Vyas advised you to visit the Rajmahal one last time and why Vidur asked you to meet me once.! You can't bear the pain of losing your great grandsons in front of your eyes Rajmata. I will save your heirs, that is my assurance for sure! As Ved Vyas advised you, the time has come for you to seek your heavenly abode!" She became emotional after this interaction.
Her tears were wiped by Rukmini. Jambavathi has taken the peacock feather fan from the servant-maid and started waving it!
Suddenly She asked --'Krishna, I heard that you descended with your consort Laxmi to this earth, but something amiss here, I can feel it, Krishna! But I have no idea what it is!' With a smile, Krishna advised her--' while going back to the forest, once go to Nandgaon to meet Yashoda, my first mother, and Radha, my strength and wisdom!' --
She recollected that conversation and realized the truth in Krishna's words. With a divine glow, Radha was standing there in front of her. This delicate, fragile woman who was once shaped and strengthened Krishna's thoughts with her love!
"Radha, when I met Shri Krishna at Dwaraka, he was surrounded by his Ashta Bharyas! I realized that God himself is in front of me! When I asked him ' you are the wisest man on earth now, everyone will listen to your words, can't you stop these all-pervasive and destructive deeds in this world?"
For that he answered, -- 'Rajmata, I will try my best to stop the total destruction, your dynasty will survive the war and the remaining Princes will take the kingdom towards a bright future again! Yes, meanwhile in that process, mankind will lose some able administrators, brave warriors, great kings, and many of your close relatives! But a few will survive and revive the Kuru dynasty, will take it from the curse of war into the flourishing future! Anyway, there is so much time left for all this to happen. Until then, let us live in our illusory bliss' --he said to me. Suddenly a portrait of a beautiful girl caught my eyes,-- I questioned your Krishna, 'Who is this beautiful girl?' for that, all the Ashta Bharyas answered in one voice, 'it is me you can see some of my traits in that portrait !!!' I was surprised and looked into his eyes! How beautiful those eyes were! The entire love of this world is flowing from those eyes as moonlight ...so soothing it was! His well-tuned voice sounded like a gently flowing river's musical whispers. I can't express my feelings at that moment in mere words Radha! But I realized one thing, why Vidur advised me to meet him once before I leave for my penance and the consequent end, given me an opportunity to see the God with these eyes while alive! Krishna asked me to meet his childhood mother and his lovely maiden before I leave this world! I felt it as his order, his every word is a discourse to mankind! How delicate his order was! Now I realized, why the Almighty asked me to meet you both before my end!"--
Satyavathi hugged Yashoda and took her both hands into hers and touched them to her eyes with respect, bowed her head and said-- 'this Kuru Vansh Raj Mata is honoring the village woman Yashoda, who swayed the God in her arms, sang lullabies for her wonder kid and made him sleep on her bosom !'-Yashoda was in trance, as usual, whenever anyone praises her Kanha, she will slip into his childhood days, with a smile on her face, hugged Rajmata Satyavathi while recollecting those divine days she spent with her little Kanha!
Radha was watching the Raj Mata and her Bhabhi with a smile!
Suddenly Satyawati turned towards Radha with a hearty laugh !" What a cunning person your Krishna is! Instead of naming you when I was watching that beautiful girl's portrait, he saved himself from the wrath of his wives by advising me to meet you once! In a way it is correct Radha, he searched for your special traits in those beautiful women and married all of them to have a strand of you nearer to him in that Raj Mahal! I heard about you from Rukmini, she said, you gifted him to the vast universe to do his duty! I have seen pure love in her eyes, so selfless and dedicated! She loves him unconditionally just like you! Can imagine your self-pride, and courage who always wanted to protect her Krishna from all dangers, the warrior queen Satya Bhama possessed this special trait of you! The unmatched adoration for her Krishna I saw in the eyes of Jambavathi there, now seeing it here in your eyes, I have seen the complete dedication to Krishna in Mitravinda's smiles, that same smile I am witnessing now when you are thinking about your Krishna! Your peace-loving nature is owned by Bhadra there! "-
When she took leave from them, Satyavathi saw the carnival of hope and the celebration of faith for their Krishna in that Nandgoan! While moving towards her palanquin she watched once again Radha's face who stood there with that lovely ochre in that mid-morning light, and noticed the pride and glow in that innocent mother's eyes! Suddenly Raj Mata Satyavati was conscience-stricken over her selfishness!! "With greed, I wanted the kingdom for my sons, with pride these two women dedicated Him to the universe! For this ultimate realization, you sent me to this Sanctum Krishna ?! "---
To be continued ...