Posted: 27 Dec 2015 07:56 PM PST

Pandavas are born on earth due to Indra's arrogance

It is well known that the Pandavas were born to Kunti(Yudhishtir, Bhima and Arjuna) and Madri(Nakula and Sahadeva). There is some history to this beyond Kunti's boon
from Durvasa for getting children through invoking celestials. The Pandavas are, in another way, incarnations of Lord Indra cursed to serve amongst the human beings by
Shiva. This story will explain it in detail.

Long before the Mahabharata happened, there was once a grand sacrifice performed by the celestials in the forest of Naimisha. At that sacrifice, many celestials were present, including Indra, the God of Gods. Indra was sitting near the river Baghirati during this sacrifice, and noticed a golden lotus carried by the river current. Inquisitive, Indra follows the river up stream and sees a beautiful maiden in the river, crying. Her tear drops, when they were falling in to the river were becoming golden lotuses. Indra approaches her and asks her about her weeping. The maiden requests Indra to follow her if he wanted to find out the reason. Indra follows her.
Not far from there, Indra sees a handsome youth seated in a throne in the Himavat mountains playing dice with a young lady. Indra gets agitated because the youth does not pay any attention to him. Indra approaches him and claims that he is the lord of the universe. The youth continues to play dice and still does not pay any attention to Indra's claim. Indra gets angry and again quotes that he is the Lord of the Universe. The youth, who is none other than Shiva, continues to play the dice, smiles and glances at Indra. That glance paralyzes and freezes Indra. Once the game of dice is over, Shiva looks at the weeping woman and tells her to bring the frozen Indra to him, so that he may teach a lesson such that pride does not get to Indira's head again. As soon as the woman touches Indra, he comes back to life, but very weak and unable to stand, understands that the youth was none other than Mahadeva.

Shiva points to a cave covered by a rock, and asks Indra to remove the cover and enter the cave. Indra removes the stone and sees that there are 4 men standing inside. Shiva quotes that these are all forms of Indra and those were the times that Indira had behaved arrogantly in the past. Shiva also orders them to be born as human beings in the world, achieve many difficult feats and kill many thousand humans. It is only then that they will salvage their arrogance and become celestials again. The 4 men together agree to that, but request the gods of Dharma, Vayu, Meghavat and the twin Aswins to bear them as children to their would be mother. Born as human beings, together with the celestial powers, they will then be able to finish their task on earth and return back to Indra's abode. Indra, then instead of entering the cave as the fifth person, creates another self from within, and appoints that as the 5th person. Shiva agrees to this and also appoints Sri, as a common wife of these men. These 5 people are termed as Indras of "Old Order" and are named Vishwabuk, Bhutadhaman, Sivi of great energy, Santi the fourth, and Tejaswin the fifth.

Shiva along with these men, then approach lord Vishnu, who approves everything. Lord Vishnu, then takes up 2 hairs from his body, one white and the other black. These
2 strands of hair enters the womb of Devaki and Rohini of the Yadu race. One of the strands, the white one, becomes Valadeva, or Balarama as we know and the black hair strand is born as Krishna (Vishnu himself) to Devaki.

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It is thus described that the Pandavas were none other than five forms of Indira born in human form through the celestials to fulfill their tasks assigned by Mahadeva. And Sri, was born as Draupadi through a sacrificial fire to king Drupada to be married to the Pandavas.

There is no closure to what happens to the weeping woman, accompanied by Indra. Same is the case with her tears becoming golden lotuses in the Bhaghirati river. They remain incomplete.