Swargarohana Parva - Ascent to heaven

Swargarohana Parva - Ascent to heaven

Swargarohana Parva - Ascent to heaven

When Yudhishtira entered heaven, he found Duryodhana seated on a throne. Yudhishtira was upset and asked sage Narada why the evil Duryodhana was in heaven. Narada told him that Duryodhana had practiced Kshatriya Dharma and had hence attained heaven. He had become a hero by offering his own body in battle.

Yudhishtira was upset that Duryodhana, who had, through his actions, caused the destruction of so many kingdoms and so many deaths, was in heaven. He wanted to see his own brothers, his wife, and others. A messenger then took Yudhishtira to meet his family members.

The place they reached was dark and infested with moss. There was the stench of blood, and there were crows and vultures everywhere. There were rivers of boiling water, and the atmosphere was unbearable.

Yudhishtira asked why he was brought here, to which the messenger told him he could leave if he wanted. Then he heard voices of his loved one’s asking him to stay. They told him that his presence was like a cool breeze in the oppressing environment of hell.

Yudhishtira then heard the voices of Karna, Bheema, Arjuna, Nakula, Sahadeva, Draupadi, the sons of Draupadi, Dhristadyumna, and others.

Yudhishtira was terribly upset that while Duryodhana was in heaven, his family members who had practiced Dharma were suffering in hell. He then told the messenger of gods that he would remain in hell with his family members and not come to heaven.

The Gods then appeared before him. Indra, Yama, and the other gods appeared. Instantly, the darkness disappeared, as did all the terrible things that constituted hell. Indra then told Yudhishtira that all kings need to see hell. He told him that since he had lied about the death of Drona’s son; he had to see hell.

Indra informed Yudhishtira that all his family members had entered heaven. Yama told his son that he had passed the third test he had given successfully. He had tested him first by questioning him after stealing the Arani used to kindle fire.

The second test was when Yama had accompanied Yudhishtira as a dog, and Yudhishtira refused to enter heaven without the dog. The final test was passed when Yudhishtira decided to remain in hell with his family members.

Yudhishtira then bathed in the divine Ganga and became a divine being. He then saw Krishna as Narayana blazing in his radiance. Worshipping him was Arjuna in a brilliant form. Yudhishtira then saw Karna with the Adityas, Bheema with the Maruts, Nakula and Sahadeva with the Ashwins, and Draupadi in splendid beauty.

Indra told Yudhishtira that Draupadi was Shri who had come without being born in any womb. Abhimanyu was seen with the radiance of the moon. Pandu was with his wives, Kunti and Madri. Bheeshma was with his brothers the Vasus. Drona was with Brihaspathi.

With this, Vaishampayana concluded the narrative of the story of Janmejaya’s ancestors. The sage Astika was happy that the snake sacrifice had stopped and the snakes saved from death. The Emperor Janmejaya then left for Hastinapura.

This narration was then concluded by Souti, who said that whoever hears the story of the Mahabharata in the evenings would be freed from his sins. He said that Vyasa had composed Bharata. Narada recited it to the Gods, Shuka to the celestials, and Vaishampayana to the humans.

The people who listen to the history known as Jaya will achieve heaven. This is sacred, ot is pure, and will remove all sins.

End of Swargarohana Parva &
 End of Vyasa Mahabharata
कायेन वाचा मनसेन्द्रियैर्वा 
बुद्ध्यात्मना वा प्रकृतेः स्वभावात् 
करोमि यद्यत्सकलं परस्मै 
नारायणयेति समर्पयामि 
All that I do with my body, speech, mind, senses, intellect, feelings through my natural tendencies, I do it for you and surrender it at the feet of Lord Narayana.