MAHABHARAT -- a different view?
From the time I think I had the sense to analyze events, I realized one thing -- Victor writes the history. In any era, the victor survives to tell the tale from his point of view. Without a doubt, the loser is the villain.
Take any story from the legends -- there is a hero and a villain and the rest just take sides (for whatever reasons). The hero wins in the end -- or the survivor is the winner? The slain is the loser.
Check out any epic -- Ram-Ravan, Kaurava-Pandava, Shivaji-Aurangzeb, Hitler-Allies, Saddam-Bush, Steve Waugh-Ganguly, Ponting-Kumble.
For a moment, just think about a keenly contested India-Australia cricket match. An Indian sports writer and an Australian sports writer can come up with entirely different versions of the game.
That made me think, is Mahabharat the way it is (or the way Mr. B. R. Chopra presented it) really that way? Could there be another view to it?
Think -- Will any king ever name his sons as Duryodhan (Bad luck and wealth, It was Suyodhana) or Dusshasana (Bad ruler, it was Susshasana). Would any woman like to be termed herself as alms on the day of her swayamvara and shared among 5 brothers for the rest of her life? Can a prince who seems to know Dharma ever gamble on his wife? Weird!!!
Thats when I came across Prem Panicker's blog where Mahabharat is written from Bheem's point of view (okay, written by Prem thinking how Bheem would have written it).
link -- http://www.prempanicker.com/index.php (search tag = "Bhimsen")
And it gives an different view of the characters. Again note, Bheem was a Pandava, so Kauravas are going to be doomed as villains. But still, there is a entirely different version of himself (no doubt). A not-so-confident version of Arjun (worried about Karna). A very dark side of Yudhishtira (boring to be with, addicted to gambling, attracted to Draupadi) etc.
While this version is still a work-in-progress, it is very interesting. Makes me wonder if there was a version of Mahabharat from some survivor from the Kaurava side? Would make a very interesting read.