सनातन धर्म भूमिका

Meaning of "Ashvathama"







In General

Ashvathama was a great warrior and son of Dronacharya and Kripi. Duryodhana noticed the talent in Ashvathama, his hatred towards Pandavas and so took him in his company. During the Great War he fought in the side of Kauravas and he commanded the Kaurava army in the final hours of war.

He was an Avathara of one of the eleven Rudras. Kripacharya is his maternal uncle. Ashvathama is a Chiranjeevi, the one who have no death.


The moment he was born he made a wild sound resembling the braying of a horse and a heavenly sound pronounced the word Aswathama. So, the boy was named Ashvathama.

Drona was very loved his son and wanted to teach him something special in archery. So he used to instruct him during the time the other disciples went to fetch water for the asrama. Arjuna came to know of this and he, thereafter, started bringing his quota of water quickly enough to join the special class of Drona. Thus Arjuna and Ashvathama learned a lot more than the others in archery.

During the Kuruksetra war he played a very important role. He killed many veteran warriors and kings like Suratha, Satrunjaya, Balanika,Jayanika, Jayasva, Srutasva, Hemamali, the ten sons of Kuntibhoja, Sudarsana, Vrddhaksetra. He was instrumental in defeating Abhimanyu in chakravyuha.

By using Agneyastra (the arrow of fire) he made Krishna and Arjuna fall fainting in the battle-field. He killed many Panchalas and Somakas while they were sleeping.

When Ashvathama heard of his father's death by the hand of Dhrstadyumna his rage knew no bound. He immediately went to the heart of the military camp of the Pandavas. There at the gate of the camp he was beheld by a ghostly huge figure of Siva. Ashvathama fought with the figure but found all arrows absorbed by its body. In despair Ashvathama meditated on Siva and Siva appearing before him and gave him a divine dagger. With that he entered the bed-chamber of Dhrstadyumna, woke him up by striking him with his foot, caught hold of him by the hair on his head and killed him. When the war was almost over he mercilessly killed the five sons of Panchali while they were sleeping. His anger was still not over; to terminate the race of Pandavas he then sent Brahmasirastra against the only surviving child, which is in the womb of Uttara, wife of Abhimanyu. Krishna came to the rescue and saved the child.

The success of Ashvathama was because of the divine jewel in his head. To make sure he don’t harm the human race any further, the jewel was removed from his head and he was allowed to let go to forest.

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