Mutual regard for meaningful relationships

Sometimes, we make a conscious effort to reconnect with the people who populated our past. It could be either with the agenda of keeping or redeeming a promise or very simply to enjoy a bit for the sake of old times.

Situations like these warrant a little understanding and courtesy even if we do not mean to take the association any further. If we realise that the attitude is not mutual it will be in our best interests to keep away, lest life decants an ungainly stress on us and lead us to the path of self-destruction.

An incident in the Mahabharata enunciates this point ever so well. Drona a poor Brahmin and Drupada, the prince of Panchala went to Gurukula together. Drupada who availed constant academic help from his erudite friend, promised to give his friend unto half his kingdom as a token of his appreciation. Drona declined the offer. Each of them went their way. Several years passed. One day, Drona thought it would be a good idea to touch base with his old chum and probably seek a cow in charity in the capacity of a Brahmin.

The meeting with the king of Panchala proved to be a disaster as Drupada, refused to recognise his old friend. The much insulted Drona vowed to win over Panchala in an open court. Later on when it was time for his students, the Kuru princes, to offer him Gurudakshina, he demanded that they capture Panchala for him. On getting his fee, he made Drupada recall the unpleasant scene. Then he made a grand gesture of dividing Panchala and offered half  of it to Drupada and rubbed salt on to the wounded ego of the erstwhile friend.

Drona thought he had settled scores. Little did he realise, that he had triggered off a chain of nasty events. Drupada performed a special Yajna to beget a son who would kill Drona. He aspired for his daughter Draupadi to wed Arjuna, the star student of Drona to beard the lion in his own den.

The immaturity of Drupada snowballed into a series of unfortunate events.

Equations in human relationships change from time to time. Any relationship can be taken forward only if there is mental maturity and mutual understanding.

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