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Bharata, the son of Shakuntala and Dushyanta grew up and became a great king in his youth itself. He slowly conquered the entire sub continent of current India from the lower seas to upper Himalayas. He named the land as Bharatavarsha, simply called as the land of Bharata. He conducted several sacrifices for the country with Sage Kanva as its chief priest. He married three wives. He had nine sons from three wives. According to him, none of his son was not a worth to become the next Emperor. Bharata became old and the time had come to decide his next heir. So he decided to perform a yagna. He conducted the yagna and as a result, the Devas gave him a son called Bhumanyu.

Once, Brihaspati got attracted to Mamata, the wife of Brihaspati’s brother Utathya. At that time Mamata was pregnant and Brihaspati was unaware of this. Both made love for each other and after the incident Brihaspati came to know about this. The child was later born and both Brihaspati and Mamata rejected the child. This child was named as Bhumanyu and was accepted by the Devas who later given him to Bharata during yagna. Bhumanyu grew up as a talented ruler and later he was succeeded to the throne of Bharata. According to Bharata the decisive factor for kingship should be worthiness and not in the royal bloodline. This made Bharata, as one among the noblest king of Puru Dynasty.

Later kings of this royal bloodline did not follow Bharata’s footsteps. It is also an evident reason for Kurushetra war. Since Dhritarashtra preferred his son, Duryodhana over Yudhishtira to became the king even though Yudhishtira was clearly more worthy. The Ancestory from King Dushyanta to Janamejaya

Puru Dynasty


King /Husband
Wife
Heir
01
Dushyanta
Shakuntala
Bharata
02
Bharata
Sunanda
Bhumanyu
03
Bhumanyu
Vijaya
Sahotra
04
Sahotra
Suvarna
Hasti
05
Hasti
Yashodhara
Vikunthana
06
Vikunthana
Vasudeva
Ajameedha
07
Ajameedha
Kaikeyi, Gandhari and Ruksha
124 sons
08
Samvarana
Surya Kumari Tapati
Kuru

Kuru Dynasty


King /Husband
Wife
Heir
01
Kuru
Subhangi
Vidhooradha
02
Vidhooradha
Sampriya
Anaswa
03
Anaswa
Amrutha
Parikshitha
04
Parikshitha
Suyasa
Bhimasena
05
Bhimasena
Kumari
Pratisravasana
06
Pratisravasana
-
Prateepa
07
Prateepa
Sibhi
Shantanu
08
Shantanu
Satyavati
Vichitravirya
09
Vichitravirya
Ambika and Ambalika
Dhritarashtra, Pandu
10
Pandu
Kunti
Pandavas, Kauravas
11
Dhritarashtra
Gandhari
12
Pandavas
Draupadi
13 sons
13
-
-
Parikshit
14
Parikshit
Madravati
Janamejaya



Kaushika was a king of kusha dynasty and was the descendant of the sun (Surya-vamsi). He realized that the power achieved by penances is much superior to the physical power of a king so he wanted to become a Rishi. He changed his name to Vishwamitra and he gave up his material wealth. Then he went to the highest mountain to perform severe `Tapasya`. If the tapasya went successful, he would become more powerful than any man or even god.Indra, the king of gods feared that Vishwamitra will intend to displace him. So he sent Menaka, one of the apsara to distract Vishwamitra from meditation. Menaka is most beautiful celestial nymph of heaven. Vishwamitra lost his control of his senses when she danced before him. He abandoned his tapasya and the two made love for many years. However, she fell in sincere love with him. When Vishwamitra realized that he had been tricked by Indra, he was enraged towards Menaka. But due to Menaka’s sincere love, he merely cursed Menaka to be separated from him forever. However Menaka gave birth to Vishwamitra’s child and it was a girl. Vishwamitra rejects the child and Menaka was also realized that she could not leave the child with him. So they both abandoned the child on the forest. This new born child was found by Kanva Rishi and at that time it was surrounded by Shakun birds. They sheltered the child. So he named her Shakuntala. Shakuntala grew up beautiful and also a cultured woman in Kanva’s hermitage in the forest.

Once Dushyanta, the descendant of Pururava went to hunting in the forest. King Dushyanta met Shakuntala while travelling through the forest. At that time, he was chasing a male deer injured by his own weapon. Dushyanta fell in love with Shakuntala upon meeting. Dushyanta requested Shakuntala to marry him, but she told to ask Kanva. Unfortunately, Kanva was no there at that time. He was away on a pilgrimage. Dushyanta want to marry Shakuntala as a Gandharva Marriage (man and woman unites based on mutual consent without the permission of parents) with trees as their witness. The innocent Shakuntala fallen in handsome king’s words and agreed the marriage after some hesitation since their tradition does not allow this. After that Dushyanta stayed there for several days in the hermitage by making love to her wife. Finally Dushyanta recognizes it was time for him to return to his kingdom. But Kanva had still not returned and Dushyanta was not able to wait more. So Dushyanta left for his kingdom, promising to come back soon and take Shakuntala with him.

After several weeks, Kanva returned. He realizes that his daughter was in love with Dushyanta and she is bearing a child in her stomach. He was delighted and conducted an event for joy and then waited for Dushyanta to return. Shakuntala spent much time dreaming of her days with husband. One day, a great rishi, Durvasa came to Kanva’s hermitage. Since Shakuntala was always in dream of her husband, she failed to greet the rishi properly. Annoyed by this slight, Durvasa cursed Shakuntala that the person she was dreaming all time would forget about her altogether. But after hearing the incidents of Shakuntala and Dushyanta from her friend, Durvasa found that his curse was not reasonable. So he altered his curse by saying that the man who had forgotten her would memorize all again if she showed him a special gift given to her.

Time passed and by the time, Shakuntala gave birth to a son and was named Bharata. Bharata grew up in Kanva’s hermitage. Yet there was no sign of Dushyanta and everybody slowly started to forget Dushyanta and his promise. But the boy, Bharata once inquired his mother about his father. Kanva realize that Bharata should know about his father. Kanva decided to send Shakuntala along with his son, Bharata to Dushyanta rather than waiting for invitation. Shakuntala agreed and set out for the capital city of Dushyanta with his son. On the way, they had to cross a river. They slowly started to walk across the river and attracted by the flowing blue water, Shakuntala ran her fingers through the water. Suddenly the royal ring presented by Dushyanta was slipped off her finger, but she did not notice it.

Arriving at Dushyanta's court, Shakuntala introduced herself and her son, but she was hurt by the king. The king asked, whether there is any witnesses for their marriage. She replied ‘’the trees”. Upon the reply, everybody in the court of king laughed and she was surprised when her husband did not recognize her. She tried to remind Dushyanta, but was failed and the only evidence of royal ring is also lost. Then she came back to forest and shifted their home to the wild part of the forest. Time passed and Bharata became a strong youth. He lived with the wild animals in the forest.

Meanwhile, a fisherman got a ring in the stomach of a fish. Recognizing that it is a royal, he took it to the palace and given it to the king. Upon seeing the ring, Dushyanta remember his lovely bride, Shakuntala and also her visit along with Bharata. He immediately sent his army to Kanva’s hermitage, but he found that she was no longer there. Dushyanta continued his search in the deeper forest also. During the search, he saw a young boy, who opened the mouth of a lion and was busy counting its teeth. The king surprised with the bravery and strength of that boy and much more to his curiosity, the boy answered that his name is Bharata, the son of King Dushyanta. Bharata took him to Shakuntala. The king apologized for his behavior towards Shakuntala and then declared publicly that Shakuntala his queen and Bharata his heir. Bharata was one among the unique kings who has an ancestral lineage from both surya vamsa (solar line) and Chandra vamsa (lunar line). His mother, Shakuntala was from surya vamsa and his father Dushyanta was from Chandra vamsa.
The sage Vishwamitra elevated to the status of a Brahmin from Kshatreeya by Dharma. After becoming Brahmin, he released Galav another young sage, who attended his classes. Galav decided to pay him Guru Dakshina, but the Guru refused it. Galav did not want to leave Guru without paying Dakshina and he insisted Guru what he want from him. Annoyed Guru, asked him to give 800 snow-white horses with black ears. Galav became clueless on how to obtain 800 snow-white horses which is rare. He told his sad to his friend, Garud who directed him to king Yayati, the friend of Garud. At that time, Yayati was going through nervy situations on financial matters. But he doesn’t want to disappoint Garud and Galav. Yayati offered his lovely daughter, Madhavi to them. Madhavi is Yayati's secret daughter. Then the King said them to offer her daughter to a rich king and demand those rare horses. Since Madhavi was blessed with a unique boon of giving birth to unbeatable kings, so any king would accept her as wife.

The obedient daughter did what his father said. She followed Galav and they approached a rich king named Haryashcha from Ayodhya. But the king only wanted her until she produces a baby and he had only 200 such horses to gave. Galav gave her and she was duly returned by king to Galav after the birth of one brave son. Next Galav approached Divodas, king of Kashi and he too accepted to marry her for getting a brave son. He also gave 200 horses and returned her to Galav after getting a son. Similarly Ushinar, the King of Bhoj who was childless married her only for a son. After getting the son, the king gave 200 such horses and Madhavi was also returned.

Finally Galav returned to Vishwamitra along with Madhavi and those 600 horses. He presented those 600 horses and also the Madhavi to Guru. Then he said to take those six hundred of the eight hundred horses that he wanted. And also to take Madhavi for begetting a son and it should be equal to the remaining two hundred horses. Vishwamitra accepted the horses and the maiden for fathering a son. Vishwamitra then told to Galav, that he should have given Madhavi for him to bear four children instead of giving her to those kings. After bearing a son for Vishwamitra, Madhavi was finally returned to her father by Galav. Yayati then arranged a Swayamvara ceremony to choose her husband. Many princes participated in the event and those princes were introduced to her by his father one by one. But she refused all and went mad from that ceremony. She then decided to become a Sanyasini and went to forest for tapasya.

After declaring Puru as his successor, Yayati decided to renounce the world and to ascend the Heaven. He renounced the world and went to Heaven. There he enjoyed all the happiness of paradise but only for a very short time. The god then casted him out from heaven to earth citing that Yayati have exhausted all his . He fell on earth in a forest where Madhavi is conducting tapasya. Feeling sorry for the incidents happened to her father, Madhavi went to her four sons, who were now famous kings of their respected kingdom. She asked them to give a quarter of their merits in life to their grandfather. At first they refused, since he treated his own daughter like a commodity by passing her from king to king and gained benefit from that trade. Then Madhavi taught her sons about the value and power of forgiveness. Enlightened by their mother’s words, they agreed to gave a quarter of their merits to grandfather. Yayati thanked his daughter and with these merits he once again went to heaven (as ).The value of Madhavi’s forgiveness was forgotten after generations. Pandavas or Kauravas have not even learnt the value of forgiveness, which they later paid its cost by destruction of Kuru clan.

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