Wednesday, June 9, 2010


Little children sometimes get angry with each other. One will take away a toy,

or an ornament and the other will say angry words, or even give a blow in

return. Is this the good conduct that we find shown by the holy Ones of the


Oh no; they were ready to forgive those that hurt them, and if evil was done

to them they did not do evil in return.

There are many beautiful words in the holy Books which tell us to forgive

those who do us wrong.

Shri Krishna says: "He who has no ill-will to any being, who is friendly,

compassionate and forgiving, is dear to me."

There are also many stories telling us how good men forgave those who did them

harm. I will tell you about Vidura, who was the brother of King Dhritarashtra.

This King had a son called Duryodhana: he was not good and gentle, he

quarrelled with his cousins the Pandavas and treated them very badly. He took

away from them the Kingdom that belonged to them, and drove them away to the


Then King Dhritarashtra asked his brother Vidura what he should do. Vidura

told him that he should tell Duryodhana to make peace with his cousins, that

he should give them back their kingdom, and that he and his followers should

ask their forgiveness. Then Dhritarashtra became very angry with his brother

Vidura, for he did not like to have his son blamed.

King Dhritarashtra said many unkind things to Vidura, and was very cruel to

him and even spoke many things that were untrue. At last he went away from

Vidura with hot anger in his heart. But Vidura was not angry in return, he was

only sad. He went away to the Pandavas and told them how angry the King was,

and asked them to try, on their part, to be wise and gentle.

Sometime after Vidura had gone away, King Dhritarashtra became sorry that he

had been angry with his brother. He called his messenger and said: "O Sanjaya,

go and see if my brother still lives, my brother Vidura whom I drove away with

angry words. Go find him and bring him to me, for he has never been angry with

me. I am sorry that I have done this wrong to him."

The Sanjaya went to the forest where Vidura was with his royal nephews.

Sanjaya wondered if Vidura would forgive the King Dhritarashtra and go back to


He found Vidura with the princes, who gave him great honour and loved him very

much. Sanjaya then begged him to forgive the King and to return with him.

Was Vidura angry, and did he refuse to go to king Dhritarashtra? Oh no! he

went quickly to his brother, and said to him: "O King, I have forgiven thee,

thou art my elder brother, and I have come quickly longing to see thy face.I

was sorry for my nephews because they were unhappy, but thy sons are dear to

me also, O King".

Vidura spoke very gently to his elder brother, and showed him he had quite

forgiven all the wrong that had been done to him.

We may also read how the Pandavas behaved to King Dhritarashtra when they

came back to their kingdom. Were they unkind to the old King? No indeed! for

fifteen years they did all things by his advice. They waited upon him, and sat

beside him, and bowed down before him with loving reverence, and treated the

old King and Queen as if they were their old father-in-law and mother-in-law.

Yudhishthira, who was the eldest of the Pandavas, used to tell his brothers

that they must see that Dhritarashtra, who had been deprived of all his

children, should not feel unhappy about anything that they could help. And the

brothers, hearing these words of Yudhishthira, gave particular obedience to the

old king. They forgave him their long years of exile, they for-gave him all the

trouble and sorrow he had made them bear, they had no ill-will towards him.

There was only one among them who could not forgive, that was Bhima; he it was

that kept his anger. Yudhishthira and Arjuna put before him that the good do

not remember the wrongs done to them, but only the benefits, yet Bhima could

not restrain his anger. He behaved badly to the old King, till at last

Dhritarashtra became full of sorrow, and determined to leave the Kingdom and

go to the forest. But Yudhishthira loved the old King, and said to him: "If

thou, O King of Kings, goest to the woods leaving me, I shall them follow

thee. I had thought that by waiting upon thee, and doing thy commands, I

might have rescued from the sorrow of thy heart".

Thus he showed how perfect was his forgiveness for all the wrongs that had

been done to him, and Dhritarashtra loved him as a son.

We should learn from this story to forgive those who do us wrong. Let us not

utter unkind words but speak gently and without anger.

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