Ninth upa parva in the epic Mahabharat is the Hidimba Vadha Parva, under the first mahaparva named as Adi parva . All the five Pandava brothers saved their lives, since they had obediently followed the instructions and advices of their mother. Vidura started thinking, regarding the moral lessons, actually shown by Purochana by getting his own end of life, in the burnt lac home. After eating good food received from Kunti, the other unknown five forest brothers, the sons of the lady servant, due to greed or over temptation, had consumed the alcohol, and died there. Vidura himself confirmed the idea, as uncontrolled consuming of alcohol would always bring adverse end to the human life.

Bhima with his demon wife Hidimbi
Bhima and his wife Hidambi
भारतं पञ्चमो वेदः सुपुत्रः सप्तमो रसः ।
दाता पञ्चदशं रत्नं जामातो दशमो ग्रहः ॥

Meaning: Mahabharat is considered as the fifth Veda. Good child is equivalent to the seventh taste. A donor is alike the fifteenth gem but a step mother, always denote trouble, like a tenth planet. In astrology, the satellite of Saturn is called as Mandi, is generally a notation for troubles in the horoscope house charts.

Vaishampayana continued the ninth upaparva, the Hidimba vadha parva.

Bhima was still watching in the night, but the other four Pandava brothers and his mother Kunti fell asleep. There lived a demon. His name was Hidimba. He was very cruel and a cannibal. His sister was Hidambi. When Pandavas entered inside the forest, the demons could smell through the air and grasp the presence of the human habitats. Hidimba felt happy by the thought of catching and eating them.

Hidimba ordered his sister, Hidambi, to catch the Pandavas and bring near him. Hence Hidambi came near them. She could see Bhima was waiting. Hidambi was attracted to see the physical body of Bhima. He was half asleep and simply passing time and when the lady demon had gazed towards him, he could not grasp her.

Hidambi returned to residence. She decorated herself and wore pleasant dress. Also, she disguised as a young lady and exhibited in front of Bhima. She desired to marry him. In that forest, she could never get a match for her marriage and hence she abandoned the idea of killing any human beings. She started thinking. If she had caught a small Pandava man or the big Bhima and offered to her brother, he would kill him and eat his flesh, then for a small time, after eating Hidimba may be satisfied. Instead, if she had married Bhima, she could live life for a long time happily. Thus her mind directed her to request for her marriage with Bhima.

Hidambi first introduced herself to Bhima on seeing him. Then standing very near to him, she told him regarding her brother, Hidimba and his plans to eat the five Pandavas and Kunti. When they were talking, the impatient demon due to hunger came there, searching for his sister. He felt very much puzzled. He had no passions for life and started abusing his sister.

Bhima had started to fight physically with him. When he screamed loudly, the four Pandava brothers and Kunti were awakened. They understood the situation. Yudhishtira told Bhima to kill him without wasting any time. Bhima had killed Hidimba. Bhima had pulled his dead body away to another side of the forest.

Then Yudhishtira and all four Pandava brothers walked to a certain distance and Hidimba followed them. Then Kunti had put her condition. In the day time, she had been permitted to live with Bhima anywhere but in the evening Bhima should return there and she should go to her house. Hidambi had agreed. Then both of them went to the top of a hill and married. In the evening, Bhima returned. The demon Hidambi had gone to her home in the night. She came on the following day. Again she went with Bhima to the neighborhood forest. On that evening, they returned with a child and he was named as Ghatotkacha. Both the child and Hidambi returned to their home at night.

Karna and Ghatotkacha engaged in battle
Karna and Ghatotkach engaged in battle

Then they would come as and when they were pleased as the condition relaxed. Hidambi and Ghatotkacha went to northern forests and Pandavas with Kunti started their journey in disguise. They wore dresses like sanyasis and travelled many countries. One day, they had met with Veda vyasa Rishi.

The Pandava brothers with Kunti treated Veda Vyasa Rishi with due honor. Veda Vyasa Rishi advised them to live in Ekachakrinagar in the house of a Brahmin.  Then they had decided to help the owner of the house, to assist him and to live by means of alms got in the small city for a few weeks. Veda Vyasa Rishi knew about the future of Pandava brothers. He assured Kunti regarding their future. In future, Yudhishtira would conduct Rajasuya yagas and Ashvamedha yagas, Vyasa assured. He promised he would visit them again after few weeks.

Next post, Mahabharat: Bakasura parva may not be missed.

Mahabharat: Chaitraratha Parva would be presented separately in another article.

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