Arjun is remembered as a great warrior and archer extraordinaire, but did you know that he was also the greatest lover to have ever lived?
This is what the author, Saurish Hegde, writes in his new book “Arjuna The Greatest Lover”. The book explores how legends and stories about Arjuna have been told and retold through various mediums across time to teach moral lessons and share wisdom. But never about how he was the greatest lover to have ever lived.
As everyone knows, Arjuna won Draupadi at her Swayamvar as his wife, but were you aware that he had three other wives as well? Abhimanyu was Arjuna’s son. But Arjuna had four other sons, one of whom became his arch-enemy.
Arjuna the Greatest Lover delves deep into the story of the passionate lover and warrior. After Arjuna wins Draupadi’s hand in marriage, a mistake on his mother’s part results in Draupadi ending up as the common wife of all five Pandavas. With Draupadi by their side, the brothers turn the forests of Khandavaprastha into the beautiful city of Indraprastha.
Unfortunately, Arjuna breaks a pact concerning Draupadi and is exiled from the city. During his exile, he travels across the land. On the way, he meets Ulupi, the Naga princess; Chitrangadha, the warrior queen; Lord Krishna’s sister, Subadhra; and the celestial nymph and dancer, Urvashi.
These women, who loved Arjuna deeply, tell the tale of his adventures in love and life in Arjuna the Greatest Lover.
Preeti Chaturvedi in conversation with Saurish Hegde about his new book on Arjuna the Greatest Lover.
Your new book “Arjuna as the Greatest Lover” is about the Arjuna who we always knew as a warrior. What led you to the journey of writing about him as the Greatest over.
From my childhood, my father has infused me with these wonderful and insightful stories of the Mahabharata and Arjuna has always been the main character who I have been fascinated about especially for his bravery and his warrior skills.
When talking to Suhail about ideas for our book, he cited that Arjuna had a really fascinating love life, and all of his encounters with his women were unique in their own ways. That made me intrigued, so I started reading more about his love stories and I decided to write something as it would be exciting for the young readers to know more about it as well.
How does the story of Arjuna, the greatest lover, inspire us in today’s world?
Arjuna the greatest lover, is a story that is really about being open to adventures, and to love. The main thing that is probably bothering young people is that they really feel like they are caged in their colleges and work, and they don’t get time to explore relationships and themselves.
So here Arjuna even though he was confirmed as a prince with so much restriction he chose to break free from those norms and explored new things.
Arjuna played a very crucial role in Mahabharata as the great warrior. But how would people’s perception of Arjuna change if they knew that he was the greatest lover too?
It wouldn’t change as much, but it would add another layer to his already colorful character. People would probably see that sometimes people find love in unexpected times and they are really meant for each other. People might also open up to new cultures and relationships. So it would probably make people see Arjuna as a much more adventurous character than just a warrior prince.
What should people expect while reading about Arjuna as the lover instead of a warrior they always knew?
People can expect a story of spontaneity and how true love is more about letting go than holding on tight or being obsessed with the person or at least trying to be.
So this is a very free-flowing kind of storyline where Arjuna meets these wonderful women along his journey and the adventures he undertakes to pursue them.
Why do you think History never focused on the life of Arjuna as the greatest lover?
History never focused probably because, Mahabharata is such an exhausting piece of literature, a vast ocean of stories. So there are Krishna stories and the Kurukshetra war, Kauravas and Pandavas, there are so many strong characters. So probably it took some time for people like me to get into Arjuna’s romantic side. So Yes, there is no other reason other than the fact that this story took its course.
If you’re the one who has a great interest in History and epic Literature, then The Happy Mom’s Cafe recommends you this book, and it is definitely worth the read!