Karna & Dambhodbhava Connection

TA Na Na ta na na na ta na na tana na na …..

TA Na Na ta na na na ta na na tana na na 

by Pranshu B. Saxena

Dambhodbhava was ancient emperor and a mighty warrior. He brought the whole world under control. There was nobody left to fight with. So he walked about challenging everybody he met with. But no one fought him. Then Brahma advised him to challenge Nara & Narayana who was doing penance at Gandhamadan mountain. So the emperor went with his mighty army to Gandhamadan and informed Nara and Narayana of his desire to fight.

This is an important year in BC and imagine we are there at the Gandhamadan stadium where Maharishi Nara and Maharishi Narayanaare at the crease.

Maharishi Nara looked at Maharishi Narayana and Maharishi Narayana looked at Maharishi Nara.

Maharishi Nara said “Dambhodbhava becomes Dumber and Dumber becomes Dambhodhava because their behinds are very plumper for no fight and all play makes Dambodhbhava a very fat boy”.

Maharishi Narayana said to Maharishi Nara “Look Maharishi Nara, this is a very prestigious battle and we must consider it very prestigiously. We must take this into consideration, the consideration that this is an important prestigious battle and ultimately this consideration must end in a battle, prestigious one that is.

So considering the consideration that Maharishi Narayana gave to Maharishi Nara, Maharishi Nara told Maharishi Narayana that we ultimately must either run or when pulling the Dambodhbhava on the leg side, Sir, this consideration will became into an ultimatum and ultimately Maharishi Narayana went to Maharishi Nara and said “take some ishika grass and start them running”.

So Maharishi Nara picked some grass (ishika) and smoked it. “This is some damn good grass”. How good?

Maharishi Narayana and Maharishi Nara threw some grass on the Emperor and his army. Though the army of the emperor was mighty and vast it could not stand against the grass in the hands of the hermits. Finally the emperor also admitted “That is some good grass” and he bowed before the hermits. They advised him not to be arrogant in future and to lead a pure life, no adulterated drugs. Hearing the exhortations of the hermits the emperor became a devoted man (to grass). He returned to his palace and led a life of righteousness. Mahabharata Udyoga Parva chapter 96. He was reborn as Karna and chased success against Maharishi Nara and Maharishi Narayana again.

So here we are at the hot concrete saucer of the Faridabad Stadium (Kurukshetra). when Bharata was playing against Pandavas and Karna was showing that being taught by Kripa, Drona and Parsurama does not give one skills to change a flat tire, Krishna Pandava (Black Pandava) and Krishna Yadava they were at the crease (or ratha) and Krishna Yadava gave the same consideration to Krishna Pandava and Krishna Pandava told Krishna Yadava-look Sir, This ultimately has to end in a consideration which I cannot consider, therefore the consideration that you are giving me must be considered very ultimately. Therefore, the shot that they were taking, Krishna Yadava told Krishna Pandava you take the shot, and ultimately one of them shot and considerately they got Karna ultimately. End of Karna Parva!!!


This story is in Tamil legends, Malayalam legends and in three old Sanskrit texts, none of whom are Puranas. This story is in Telegu literature also. It could be preformed as a performance by either Telugu Association of North America (TANA) or Tamil Association of North America (TANA). No one would violate other’s legends. It’s there in Yakshagana and Gayoupakhyana in Kannada and Telugu legends as well. It can be preformed by Kannada Association of Revisionist North America (KARNA) as well as Malayalam Association of rejuvenated North America (MARNA). They can have a joint yakshagana Kathakali performance of KARNA MARNA presentation of TANA TANA.

Tana na tana na na

After the defeat by Nara and Narayana, Dambhodbhava was not satisfied. He prayed to Surya, the sun God, not Singham. Surya satisfied with austerities appeared and said “Neengalum Vellalam Oru Kodi.”

Sorry, wrong Surya, the other one came Nerrukku Ner and said “உங்கள் கண்கள் மகன் திறக்க! நான் உங்கள் பக்தி மகிழ்ச்சி

Open your eyes son! I am pleased with your devotion! Ask me any boon.

Dambhodbhava said with a smile, “My Lord! Please make me immortal! That will Kaakha and Kaakha me from Nara and Narayana and knock the Aaru off their bowling.

Surya frowned “Everybody has to die. Immortality is out of question!! Why do you fight Nara and Narayana, aren’t you “Friends” with them. Kaadhale Nimmadhi (devotion is peace, theek hai I don’t speak tamil! only movie titles). Poovellum Kettupar actually Aṉaittu pul kēḷuṅkaḷ. (ask all the grass!)”.

Mounam Pesiyadhe. Silence spoke.

Dambhodbhava’s shoulders drooped. He knew that no matter how much he asked, Surya would never grant him the immortality. All the time he had spent meditating seemed a waste then he had an idea.

Vaaranam Aayiram. Thousand elephants!!!

With a glint in in his eyes, Dambhodbhava bowed to him, “My Lord! I want to be protected by a thousand armours!

The Thousand armors can be broken only by someone who performs penance for a thousand years!! And then whoever breaks my armor should die immediately!

And Surya had a 7 aum arivu, seventh sense that Dambhodbhava was not going to use his powers for good but who has seen the Rakta Charitra in advance or even in Hindi. He granted the boon. He had no Maattrraan. Alternative.

Well getting his wish, Dambhodbhava became anjaan and Singham. Not only Singham, even Singham II.

Surya’s 7 aum Arivu was right. Immediately after getting the boon from Surya, Dambhodbhava started wrecking havoc on people. People were scared of fighting with him. There was no way of defeating him. Anybody who stood in his way was crushed by him. People started calling him Sahasrakavacha (meaning one who has a thousand armors). But the thousand armors had another side-effect, the sound travelled of armors rubbing each other and People called him Tanasura. The sound went tana na tana na na na …..

He even defeated Narakasura in Varuna’s Sabha and took his title.

So, Daksha gave his daughter Murti to marry Dharma. Murti had heard of the menace of Tanasura and people had prayed to her to deliver. Jaisi rahi bhavna aisi, Prabhu Moorti dekhi tin taisi.

Moorti also took the petitions of people to Lord Vishnu and prayed to him. Vishnu being pleased with this decided to be born as twin sons of Murti, Maharishi Nara and Maharishi Narayana.

Narayana and Nara grew up in the ashrama surrounded by the forests. They enjoyed praying to Lord Shiva. Their mother also encouraged them to learn warfare and arts of fighting. Soon the twins were proficient in all arts, civil and military.

Being twins, they were inseparable and what one thought the other was always able to finish. Both of them trusted each other implicitly and never questioned the other.

Like a moth comes to the flame, like Raju guide came to the deserted temple at Malgudi (Tana na tana na na na), Tanasura came to Badrinath and attacked Nara and Narayana.

Tanasura looked at the calm eyes of Nara and for the first time since he got his boon, felt fear building inside him. He said nervously, “I can be killed only by performing penance for a thousand years. You cannot…, why are you laughing, are my flies open?”.

Nara looked at Tanasura and spoke “My brother Narayana is doing the penance for me! And instead of him, I come to fight with you. By the way, dumbo, you did not define the year. Any measure of Kaal and mana is a year as defined.

Tanasura was worried, they were separate but like one soul and two bodies and he realized his mistake that a year is not defined. He should have defined it as three hundred and sixty five and quarter times eighty six thousand four measures of duration of 9192631770 periods of the radiation corresponding to the transition between the two hyperfine levels of the ground state of the caesium 133 atom.

But this was too late.

Nara then raised his arrow and that arrow sped like Ananta Nag and hit the armor and broke it. The sound of armor hitting came Tana na tana na na….

Nara dropped dead. Narayana in his mind’s eye in the meditation, spoke the Mrityunjaya mantra and Nara got up. Within the duration of 9192631770 periods of the radiation corresponding to the transition between the two hyperfine levels of the ground state of the caesium 133 atom, Nara came charging again at Tanasura and his arrow like Shankar Nag broke the armor.

Tana na tana na na….

Nara fell dead and Within the duration of 9192631770 periods of the radiation corresponding to the transition between the two hyperfine levels of the ground state of the caesium 133 atom, Nara came charging again at Tanasura and his arrow like Ananta Nag broke the armor.

Tana na tana na na….

Tana na tana na na….

Tana na tana na na….

Tana na tana na na….

……………. www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Iz5EjmZO3Q

This went on for Nine hundred and ninty nine times when realizing the jig was up, Tanasura ran to Surya for kaakha Kaakha.

Narayana and Nara both went to Surya asked him to hand him over but Surya pleaded that for all his sins, he is my devotee and hence he cannot turn him away.

Thus, Surya had turned Tanasura into a fruit and by mistake one day ingested the fruit like Hanumana tried to ingest Surya one day like a fruit. The fruit passed to Lady Kunti and Tanasura Dambhaodbhava Sahsrakavacha was reborn with one remaining armor. Nara and Narayana also re-appeared considering this consideration that ultimately they have to consider the last case of the last armor.

Now, we all know why Indra asked Karna’s Kavacha & Kundala.

Post Author: Mahabharata World

3 thoughts on “Karna & Dambhodbhava Connection

    Lakshmi Seshu

    (January 2, 2019 - 10:38 am)

    Know this story. But never connected it with Indra asking the kavacham. It is definitely an aha moment.

    Still couple of questions. If the boon is still valid across time, then Narayana can use the same cure aka maha mritunjaya mantra. Say, Indra did not ask Karna for armor. Arjun is still capable of killing Karna. Even if Arjuna falls dead after piercing Karna’s armor and killing him, Krishna should be able to revive him using maha mrityunjay mantra. So what is the need for Indra to approach Karna? Pl. share your thoughts

    Loved your articles in multiple forums. Thanks for your time an generous sharing of knowledge and insights

    Lakshmi Seshu

    (January 2, 2019 - 10:54 am)

    Never mind. I found the small detail I missed earlier

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