What did Kauravas bet during first dice game? Especially when Yudhistara bet his brothers, what did Kauravas stake?
Thanks for asking,
As I have studied so many times Dyuta Parva to understand the rules & regulations and how stake should have been placed and these are unfortunately never explained in details. Mahabharata has many incidents which were re-narrated again & again and Dice Game too but that were descriptive not with subtle details.
Mahabharata has subtle meaning and details for so many things but still dice game rules are unexplained by Vyasa, thats why so many thinks that Dice Game never happened in the epic, it’s latter additions due to Boom Boom scenes.
However, in my opinion Vayas doesnt need to explained the rules of “Game of Shame” which has so many evils. Actually, It’s represent Kali (which Kali?).
We knew two/three Kali’s here.
- Kali – Mata Parvati another destructive forms
- Kali – Nivatkavacha son reborn as Duryodhana
- Kali – The cycle of Yuga or time
Now, above all are representations of the destructions and also we have seen Rudra aka Shiva aka Maheshwra playing Dice Game (Dyuta) with Parvati (Kali) in Adi Parva (vaivahika Parva). Nala played dice with his brother Pushkara & Nala possessed the Kali. Yudhishthira also narrating the same. Duryodhana possessed the Kail.
Now, we have Kali is most important in the epic for destruction and Vaysa created the epic for victory over Birth called Jaya and his listener JanmaiJaya (Janmajaya). So we have more details on Dharma, Artha, Kama & how moksha should be achieved not Dice Game.
Our knowledge of the rules of gaming in ancient India is extremely limited, but the present dramatization in The Assembly Hall gives us at least some idea of this particular game’s rules.
- Two parties, rather than two individuals, play, for Duryodhana’s uncle Sakuni may play for him; it is Duryodhana who pays in the stake.
- The two parties pay in the first stake in the same amount.
- The loser adds to his stake, while the winner’s presumably remains the same.
- It is not clear whether the entire stake stays in the game or the winner pockets the loser’s last stake after each play.
- Never stated but implicit is this game’s rule that it will go through twenty plays, which are presented as two phases of ten each.
In the first ten plays Yudhisthira forfeits most of his possessions, and after the tenth Vidura, the benevolent uncle of the Pandavas, makes an impassioned plea that the game be stopped.
To whom would one ordinarily expect such a plea to be directed?
To the loser Yudhisthira, one fancies. But, on the contrary, Vidura urges Duryodhana’s father to stop it and vilifies Duryodhana for persisting in it. This would make no sense if Vidura considered Yudhisthira a free agent; it makes excellent sense if Yudhisthira is bound by the rules of his own rajasuya and must rise to the challenge (Which is explained by KM Munshi in his book Krishnavtara).
I have an upcoming post below; will be published soon and it’s under-construction.
Game of Shame (Dice)
We always talked about the shameful game of dice and always criticize Pandavas more and more but not the Kauravs. We always ask questions Why Yudhishthira, so called DharmaRaja stacked his own beloved wife (Draupdi), why he gambled, why he played, why he didn’t save his wife, why he did that, if wife was/is not a property and many more questions always raise in our mind.
I’m trying to analyze the whole scenarios, BTW we had discussed it before many times, but still making a long post based on Psychological effect of Game (We all have faced same situation once in our lives, when we play Game like, Ludo, Chess or Cricket and any others, we don’t leave it in middle till the result came out), Kshatriyas duty, Virtue or Vow, rules of Game, future destruction as explained by Vyasa and Vidura as well and destiny aka time. (Sabha Parva) and many more examples….
Will look forward to it. During the post, pl. share your thoughts on Yudhisthira betting his brothers and his empire. He became an emperor because of courage and valour of his brothers.
I dont mean to say staking Draupadi is correct. But I have read so many arguments and counter arguments on that topic. In that discussion no one asks how come Yudhisthira bet his brothers including their divine weapons. What rights he has on Gandiv?
Thanks for the reply.
Well, I don’t agree with Yudhisthara’s acts in Dyuta, what he did in dice game.
From current rules and regulations and family bond, what’s Yudhisthara did was greater mistake.
Please keep in mind that Sin and Mistake are two different words and actions.
Now, from ancient or Mahabharata perspectives, Arjuna and Bhima & Draupadi has answer in the epic itself and I completely agree with them.
Yudhisthara was everyone’s master as king or as an elder person for the family. They all were their dependent and we have seen it too. Yudhisthara was responsible for them and he was with them in every tough situations. They were greatest family ever seen in entire epic. They were attached to each other like all the vains of body togather. Their actions were like bodies part performing different did time to time.
Yudhishthira is supposed to be mind in Pandava purusha and Can others bodies say what is the rights of mind to taking decisions for all others bodies ? No, not at all. They all were believing that what Yudhisthara is going to do is better than all his brothers can do.
just replace the Yudhisthara with any Pandava you’ll get same result, just plan could be different for Kauravas.
Yes, betting all in games was his mistake which he accepted himself in the Vana Parva, so I’ll not try to make him innocent. Panchali had already did that in Sabha Parva and that’s why She was the favourite wife of Yudhishthara. She is knowing Yudhishthara more than all except Krishna himself.
coming to the point, yes he had all the authorities for staking them all. Yes, we can argue by law of manu, family bond, politics rules and we will get that yes he had rights by any points. So, let’s discard that points.
even, I think same that my father & mother have every rights on me. I’m their + Brahma creation so they can prosper me and can destroy me as well, how Brahma did in ancient time.
For Gandiva – Gandiva one of the best weapon of Yudhishthara kingdom and Arjuna could not said that his weapons is only his. Not for King or Kingdom. Every weapons made by scientists are for country for not themselves and who used for personal interest only are called terrorists. So, every treasure of kingdom belongs to king or kingdom or country first than to individual.
Draupadi followed the Manu Dharma while saving Yudhishthara first. We can write so many things here but I think now it’s not required.