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As the Pandava fame spread far and wide, many kings from around the bharatvarsha and celestials visited Yudhishthira’s court where they were welcomed with good manners and respect by Pandavas. The divine sage Narada was one such visitor. Yudhishthira welcomed Narada. He offered Arghyam and paadyam to Narada and given him a convenient seat in the Mayasabha. They then discussed various matters on political administration. Then Narada instructed Yudhishthira on following the dharma, morals and virtues in his rule by giving some points and they are as follows.

1. Performing the job by following Dharma and morals.
2. Thinking twice on important matters at mid night in a peaceful atmosphere.
3. Employing people with steady mind and with good moral in important posts.
4. Employing efficient Brahmins who know the customs and vedas very well.
5. Preventing administrative secrets carefully without leakage.
6. Chief priest performing his duties efficiently by doing important sacrifices on time.
7. Employing faithful and capable persons as the Army Generals who does not betray him, since money and power always corrupt a man to become greedy.
8. Fixing good scientists for predicting the future events on earth and space matters.
9. Employing Doctors who perform their duties efficiently by serving the common people.
10. Employing experts in financial matters, who have the good knowledge in administrative and financial wing.
11. Employing persons by talent and ability from lower to upper categories.
12. Disbursing salaries to employees punctually in time to avoid sadness in their faces.
13. Recognizing the services of the persons who are working honestly for the kingdom.
14. Providing food and shelter to those families, who sacrificed their lives for sake in the battles.
15. Not sending persons with evil and greedy minded for discharging administrative duties.
16. Avoiding thefts, bribes and crimes in the city by punishing them.
17. Whether all the tanks in the city are filled with water and there should not have any shortage of water both for drinking and agricultural purposes.
18. Supplying seeds to all the poor farmers for raising crops.
19. Giving loans to citizens and farmers for low interest.
20. Extending help to handicapped like blind, deaf and dumb and also orphans.
21. Forgiving the enemy soldiers who are captured in war and giving them a new life by appointing them in the army.
22. Recognizing persons who extended their help to him.
23. Spending only one-third or only half from the revenues generated and keeping the remaining as reserve.
24. Employing persons with good virtues and honesty in treasuries and defense sectors and armory.
25. Taking care of older citizens, retired teachers, sculptors and others from different services by extending help to them for their livelihood in their old age.
26. Conducting assembly daily with ministers, army generals and discussing administrative matters.
27. Protecting himself, from the internal conflict and outside violence by keenly observing the actions of your enemies through the spies.
28. Administering justice equally for all people in the society, without any partial attitude.
29. Collecting up-to-date news regularly and sincerely running the administration.
30. Checking all the fields under his control, whether they are filled with food grains and crops. Also to check the armory space for arms and ammunition and also for groceries, drinking water, and fuel.
31. Checking the armies in the forts for confirming that they are occupied with weapons.
32. Conquering all the six inner enemies of any person, viz kama (lust), krodha (anger), lobha (greed), moha (attachment and delusion), madha (pride) and matsarya (jealousy).
33. Conquering the enemies having jealous, filled with pride, and inimically willing towards him always.
34. Trying all the possible methods for maintaining peace with enemies and also with those who are fixing wars against the kingdom.

Then Narada told Dharma Raja about 14 things not to be done by an honest king. They are as follows.

1. Non-believer in God.
2. Liar.
3. Lethargic.
4. Allow useless fellows for important discussions.
5. Get anger without a cause.
6. Allow Execution of works with delay and incurring extra costs.
7. Spend time unnecessarily in sorrow for the past events and bad performances.
8. Ignore talented persons.
9. Think illogically while planning important creative works.
10. Allow delay in carrying out the public works within the fixed period.
11. Leak official Secrets by officially announcing.
12. Ignore implementation of social welfare projects.
13. Always engage in sensual pleasures.
14. Lazy, sluggish, elusive and unwilling.

King Yudhisthira patiently and with great devotion heard all the instructions told by Sage Narada. He obediently replied that he will follow the instructions and never do injustice to anybody knowingly or unknowingly.

The Danava demon, Maya, whose life was spared by Krishna and Arjuna during the destruction of the Khandava forest, felt grateful to Pandavas. So he wanted an opportunity to return the favour by showing his expertise in construction as he was the architect of demons. Krishna instructs Maya to build a magnificent palace hall for king Yudhisthira at Indraprastha. Over a period of fourteen months, Maya built the palace hall of great majesty in Indraprastha such that its floors was finished in such an illusionary manner that it had the mirror image of water whereas the pools along the hall is made such that the mirror image of a flat surface seeming no water in it.  It is lavishly decorated by gems and can be comparable to the god Indra’s assembly hall. The gigantic amphitheatre was accepted by one and all as an architectural wonder. The hall is later named as Mayasabha. On one auspicious day, Yudhisthira (Dharma Raja) started his rule as making Mayasabha as the palace hall. Every king from around Bharatha-varsha visited Yudhishthira’s court and offered him valuable gifts.
One day, while walking along the river Yamuna, Arjuna inquired Krishna that why Rama is not able to build bridge of arrows across the sea, despite being considered as a great archer. Arjuna stated that he can create the bridge of arrows across the sea, as he early did for the elephants of Indra to descend to earth. Hanuman now disguised as a small monkey overheard the conversation of Arjuna, while on a tree. Hanuman did not like Arjuna’s boast. He went down to the ground from the tree and said to Arjuna that bridge of arrows can’t bear the weight of monkeys. So he built a bridge of stones. Hanuman then said to Arjuna that a bridge of arrows can’t support the weight of a single monkey like him. Arjuna, who did not recognize Hanuman, thought that the small monkey is mocking him. So he built a magnificent bridge extending hundred miles across the ocean and then said to that monkey to dance and play on the bridge. The monkey placed his paw on it and the bridge broken immediately. Hanuman laughed and mocked Arjuna that is he the real man who created the bridge of arrows between heaven and earth for Indra’s elephants to descend to earth.

Arjuna felt so shamed and even thought about killing himself. But that time, a sage saw the incidents and he went to Arjuna and said to build a bridge of arrows once more by chanting “Ram Krishna Hari”. Arjuna did as per the advice by the sage and this time, the bridge held the weight of monkey when stepped. Hanuman then exposed his true form to Arjuna and increased his body to giant size as that of a mountain. The bridge stood solid despite being the gigantic pressure of Hanuman. The sage then said to Arjuna that the name of Rama ensured the bridge of stones to hold the weight of monkeys and it was the name of Krishna ensured the bridge of arrows to hold the weight of Hanuman. Arjuna then realized that strength alone is not enough to accomplish the tasks but divine grace is needed. The sage added that without Krishna, Arjuna is nothing and both of them were Nara and Narayana. Arjuna bowed the sage and then fell at Hanuman’s feet for forgiving his arrogance. Hanuman then blessed Arjuna and given the promise of ever presenting in his chariot flag as a sign and keep on serving him. Arjuna who is now unaware about the meaning of Nara and Narayana inquired Hanuman. Hanuman replied that the secret will be shortly revealed to him.

Later Krishna revealed the secret to Arjuna that once they together fought many demons and won many battles for Devas in Satya Yuga. Now both of them were reborn in earth to restore dharma as Nara is Arjuna and Narayana is Krishna. Krishna then left for Dwaraka.

As Krishna was performing his morning rituals to Sun god, a Gandharva called Gaya spits the pan down his divine plane. It fell on Krishna’s head. Furious, Krishna saw Gaya in the sky and understood the situation. Krishna became angry due to his disrespect and he vowed to kill Gaya. Hearing the vow, Gaya panicked. A frightened Gaya ran to Indraprastha and fell at Subhadra’s feet and begged for life. He then told her that a mad warrior chasing him for killing due to an accidentally happened crime. Feeling sorry, Subhadra consoled Gaya that her husband, Arjuna would save her from that mad warrior. Shortly thereafter, an angry Krishna came to Indraprastha to behead Gaya. Subhadra realized that the mad warrior was none other than his brother, Krishna. But she could not go back on her word, so she informed Arjuna to protect Gaya from Krishna. Krishna who had taken the vow to kill Gaya was not ready to back from it, despite being sister’s protection.

Before long, Krishna and Arjuna stood face to face. Arjuna took his Gandiva in his hand while the Sudarshan Chakra is whirring around Krishna’s finger. Gaya lay trembling at Subhadra’s feet. The situation was nervous. Both of them were not ready to back in order to protect the given words. As keeping the one’s word is the primary rule of dharma. If Arjuna struck Krishna, then the world would cease as he is the preserver of life in earth, and if Krishna struck Arjuna, then it will result in the end of the Pandavas. The gods watching from heaven were so alarmed and they begged Brahma and Shiva to mediate the situation. Brahma then appeared in front of Arjuna and said to let Krishna behead Gaya. After that Brahma would restore Gaya to life so that Arjuna can keep his word. Realizing the seriousness of the situation, Arjuna lowered his bow. Krishna then beheaded the Gaya to carry out his vow. Brahma then restored the life of Gaya. Gaya thanked Arjuna and apologized to Krishna for having caused such environmental pollution.
Kunti along with the members of Pandava family welcomed Arjuna and Subhadra. Krishna, Balarama and other family members including the people from Vrishnis, Andhakas and Bhojas (Yadava tribes) followed them and arrived at Indraprastha. They brought some attractive dowry to the Pandava capital, which includes cows, mares, mules, draught horses, chariots, gold, silver, elephants, gems and rich clothing. After much happiness and the bride’s party, they returned to Dwaraka. Krishna alone stayed back to spend some time with Arjuna. In due course, Arjuna and Subhadra gave birth to a son. His name was Abhimanyu.

Draupadi (Panchali) already bored a son to each of the five brothers, in intervals of one year after their Swayamvara. They were Prativindhya of Yudhishthira, Sutasoma of Bhima, Srutakarman of Arjuna, Satanika of Nakula and Srutasena of Sahadeva. Together they were called as Upapandavas. They were raised in their maternal palace - Panchal. Draupadi's brother Dhristyadhumna took care of their education and war skills.

Travelling West to bharatvarsha, Arjuna reached the holy sea shore of Prabhasa which is nearer to Dwaraka.  Then he arrives at Dwaraka, the famous port city of the Yadavas. Krishna, who heard about Arjuna’s arrival rushed to him and advised him to enter the city disguised as a mendicant and to stay in a cave of Raivatakaadri. One day Arjuna saw a maiden of divine beauty, neat in walk, with eyes like a doe’s, while he chanting the japa beads disguised as a mendicant. Arjuna was smitten with desire. Krishna who observe this, informed Arjuna that she was his sister, Subhadra. Krishna knew that Subhadra also loves Arjuna. But his elder brother Balarama and father Vasudeva oppose them. So Krishna encouraged Arjuna to abduct Subhadra. As soon as Subhadra realized that the mendicant was none other than Arjuna, she rode out of the city with Arjuna on a chariot.

Arjuna swept the princess in his chariot, but they were stopped by Balarama and Vasudeva. They found that the mendicant was none other than Arjuna. The furious Balarama went to attack Arjuna. But Krishna intervened and convinced Balarama to leave them since they love each other and it is not worth to force their sister to an unwilling marriage. Balarama realized the fact and called off the attack. He then permitted their wedding and all the elders joined in blessing the couple. After a year of enjoyment at Dwaraka, Arjuna spent the last year of his exile with Subhadra in the sacred town of Prabhasa. Now it’s the time to return to Indraprastha. But Draupadi had made it clear that no other Pandava wife would be allowed to stay in her city.

But Krishna advised Arjuna to return to Indraprastha along with Subhadra. After reaching the gates of Indra-prastha, Krishna instructed Subhadra to enter Draupadi’s chamber disguised as a milkmaid and to beg shelter for herself and her husband.  Subhadra then entered Draupadi’s chambers as a milkmaid and said Draupadi that she was eloped with his husband and need a shelter as they were afraid of husband’s senior wife. Subhadra said without revealing her identity. Draupadi consoled her and said to stay with her. Then she revealed with shy and nervous that his name is Subhadra and her husband is Arjuna. Draupadi realized that she had been tricked, but she forgave Subhadra and let her to stay in Indra-prastha.
During his pilgrimages, Arjuna visited many sacred places located on riverbanks and also in the top of the Himalayas. On one occasion, when Arjuna was bathing in a sacred river, he was dragged to the bottom by Ulupi, the daughter of the Naga king. On reaching the snakeworld, she expressed her wish for union with Arjuna. Arjuna refused, but she convinced him by saying that it is against dharma to reject a woman who comes to him willingly. Arjuna had then no choice but to spend a night with her. Ulupi later took Arjuna to their king, Kauravya. The king was delighted with Arjuna and he treated him lovingly. The Nagas then taught him the art of residing inside water for a lengthy period. They also taught him, the art of attacking an amphibian. Arjuna then moved from the snakeworld to the real world. A few nagas escorted him to the riverbank. Ulupi later gave birth to Arjuna’s son Iravan.

Arjuna then travelled northwards ascended the peak of Vasishta in the Himalayas. Then he crossed the green forests of Naimisha, the Kingdom of Kalinga in the East and the Mahendra Mountains. Along the Himalayas he traversed to Manipura in Northeast India. The king of Manipura, Chitravahana welcomed Arjuna and treated him as his guest. Arjuna then came to saw beautiful princess of Manipura, Chitrangada who was also a great warrior. Both of them attracted to each other instantly. Arjuna then approached the king and asked his desire to marry Chitrangada. Chitravahana was pleased with Arjuna. But the king sought a promise from Arjuna to leave his wife and progeny in Manipura before Arjuna returns. Since their progeny wants to rule the kingdom after the king’s renounce. Arjuna agreed. Both of them married and in due course, Chitrangada gave birth to Arjuna’s son who was named Babruvahana. Arjuna left Manipura three years later by leaving his son and wife to Chitravahana.

Travelling South, Arjuna reached the shores of the ocean. He then arrived at a lake of crocodiles. Without knowing the presence of crocodile, he dipped in the lake. Suddenly he was attacked by five crocodiles, but he was managed to fight and destroy them all. To his surprise, the destroyed crocodiles suddenly turned into five apsaras. They bowed to the Arjuna and told him that they were grateful to him for liberating them from a horrible curse. The apsaras were early cursed to become crocodiles by a sage for disturbing him from meditation. The sage told them that a warrior would liberate them and Arjuna became that warrior. Arjuna then moved to other pilgrimages, including the southern regions of Bharatavarsha.


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