Outdoor Travel Guide Exploring North Indian City Kurushetra

Travel Guide About Dharmakshetra Kurukshetra

 

Kurushetra is a most famous beautiful ancient historical north indian city which is very well known as Dharmakshetra. This city is world famous due to great epic Mahabharata War,the origin city of Shrimad Bhagavadgita. This city named after King Kuru, the ancestor of Kauravas and Pandavas. This land belongs to great epic Mahabharat. Millions of Peoples died here at the time of Mahabharat War which was held in Dawapar Era. This disrict is approximately 160Kms from Delhi. The town of Kurukshetra, a sacred place for the Hindus, is the administrative headquarters of this district. The district occupies an area of 1530.00 km².

 

 

The district has a population of 964,65. This district is part of Ambala division. Jyotisar is the place in Kurukshetra where Krishna is believed to deliver the sermon of Gita to Arjuna in the Mahabharata. The district was carved out from the erstwhile Karnal district in 1973. Later some parts of this district were transferred to Kaithal and Yamuna Nagar districts at the time of their creation. Kurukshetra is not just the land known as the land of Mahabharta; it is also known for the Philosophy of Life and Karma given to Arjuna by Lord Krishna . For more than 5000 years now, Srimad Bhagawad Gita has emerged as the one scripture which is free from the tags of religions and communities. It is equally reverend all over the world for the message of Selfless Karma which is much relevant in all ages.

 

Shri Hanuman Ji
Bhishma Kund Kurushetra

 

Kuru King:

 

Kuru was the name of a Vedic Indo-Aryan tribal union in northern Iron Age India, encompassing the modern-day states of Delhi, Haryana, Punjab, Uttarakhand and the western part of Uttar Pradesh, which appeared in the late Vedic period and developed into the first recorded state-level society in the Indian subcontinent. The Kurus figure prominently in Vedic literature after the time of the Rigveda. The Kurus here appear as a branch of the early Indo-Aryans, ruling the Ganga-Yamuna Doab and modern Haryana. The focus in the later Vedic period shifted out of Punjab, into the Haryana and the Doab, and thus to the Kuru clan. This trend corresponds to the increasing number and size of Painted Grey Ware settlements in the Haryana and Doab area. Archaeological surveys of the Kurukshetra District have a revealed a more complex three-tiered hierarchy for the period of period from 1000 to 600 BCE, suggesting a complex chiefdom or emerging early state, contrasting with the two-tiered settlement pattern in the rest of the Ganges Valley. Although most PGW sites were small farming villages, several PGW sites emerged as relatively large settlements that can be characterized as towns; the largest of these were fortified by ditches or moats and embankments made of piled earth with wooden palisades, albeit smaller and simpler than the elaborate fortifications which emerged in large cities after 600 BCE. The Kuru tribe was formed in the Middle Vedic period as a result of the alliance and merger between the Bharata and Puru tribes, in the aftermath of the Battle of the Ten Kings. With their center of power in the Kurukshetra region, the Kurus formed the first political center of the Vedic period, and were dominant roughly from 1200 to 800 BCE. The first Kuru capital was at Āsandīvat, identified with modern Assandh in Haryana. Later literature refers to Indraprastha and Hastinapura as the main Kuru cities.The Atharvaveda praises Parikshit, the “King of the Kurus”, as the great ruler of a thriving, prosperous realm. Other late Vedic texts, such as the Shatapatha Brahmana, commemorate Parikshit’s son Janamejaya as a great conqueror who performed the ashvamedha. These two Kuru kings played a decisive role in the consolidation of the Kuru state and the development of the srauta rituals, and they also appear as important figures in later legends and traditions.The Kurus declined after being defeated by the non-Vedic Salva tribe, and the center of Vedic culture shifted east, into the Panchala realm, in Uttar Pradesh.According to post-Vedic Sanskrit literature, the capital of the Kurus was later transferred to Kaushambi, in the lower Doab, after Hastinapur was destroyed by floods as well as because of upheavals in the Kuru family itself. In the post Vedic period, the Kuru dynasty evolved into Kuru and Vatsa janapadas, ruling over Upper Doab/Delhi/Haryana and lower Doab, respectively. The Vatsa branch of the Kuru dynasty further divided into branches at Kaushambi and at Mathura.

 

 

 

Mahabharat War:

 

The Mahābhārata is the longest epic poem known and has been described as “the longest poem ever written”.Its longest version consists of over 100,000 śloka or over 200,000 individual verse lines , and long prose passages. At about 1.8 million words in total, the Mahābhārata is roughly ten times the length of the Iliad and the Odyssey combined, or about four times the length of the Rāmāyaṇa. W. J. Johnson has compared the importance of the Mahābhārata in the context of world civilization to that of the Bible, the works of William Shakespeare, the works of Homer, Greek drama, or the Quran. Within the Indian tradition it is sometimes called the Fifth Veda. Research on the Mahābhārata has put an enormous effort into recognizing and dating layers within the text. Some elements of the present Mahābhārata can be traced back to Vedic times.The background to the Mahābhārata suggests the origin of the epic occurs “after the very early Vedic period” and before “the first Indian ’empire’ was to rise in the third century B.C.” That this is “a date not too far removed from the 8th or 9th century B.C.”is likely. Mahābhārata started as an orally-transmitted tale of the charioteer bards. It is generally agreed that “Unlike the Vedas, which have to be preserved letter-perfect, the epic was a popular work whose reciters would inevitably conform to changes in language and style,” so the earliest ‘surviving’ components of this dynamic text are believed to be no older than the earliest ‘external’ references we have to the epic. It is estimated that the Sanskrit text probably reached something of a “final form” by the early Gupta period.Vishnu Sukthankar, editor of the first great critical edition of the Mahābhārata, commented: “It is useless to think of reconstructing a fluid text in a literally original shape, on the basis of an archetype and a stemma codicum. What then is possible? Our objective can only be to reconstruct the oldest form of the text which it is possible to reach on the basis of the manuscript material available.”That manuscript evidence is somewhat late, given its material composition and the climate of India, but it is very extensive.The Mahābhārata itself distinguishes a core portion of 24,000 verses: the Bhārata proper, as opposed to additional secondary material, while the Aśvalāyana Gṛhyasūtra makes a similar distinction. At least three redactions of the text are commonly recognized: Jaya with 8,800 verses attributed to Vyāsa, Bhārata with 24,000 verses as recited by Vaiśampāyana, and finally the Mahābhārata as recited by Ugraśrava Sauti with over 100,000 verses. However, some scholars, such as John Brockington, argue that Jaya and Bharata refer to the same text, and ascribe the theory of Jaya with 8,800 verses to a misreading of a verse in Ādiparvan. The redaction of this large body of text was carried out after formal principles, emphasizing the numbers 18 and 12. The addition of the latest parts may be dated by the absence of the Anuśāsana-parva and the Virāta parva from the “Spitzer manuscript”.

The oldest surviving Sanskrit text dates to the Kushan Period. According to what one character says at Mbh. 1.1.50, there were three versions of the epic, beginning with Manu, Astika or Vasu, respectively. These versions would correspond to the addition of one and then another ‘frame’ settings of dialogues. The Vasu version would omit the frame settings and begin with the account of the birth of Vyasa. The astika version would add the sarpasattra and aśvamedha material from Brahmanical literature, introduce the name Mahābhārata, and identify Vyāsa as the work’s author. The redactors of these additions were probably Pāñcarātrin scholars who according to Oberlies likely retained control over the text until its final redaction. Mention of the Huna in the Bhīṣma-parva however appears to imply that this parva may have been edited around the 4th century.

The historicity of the Kurukshetra War is unclear. Many historians estimate the date of the Kurukshetra war to Iron Age India of the 10th century BCE. The setting of the epic has a historical precedent in Iron Age India, where the Kuru kingdom was the center of political power during roughly 1200 to 800 BCE. A dynastic conflict of the period could have been the inspiration for the Jaya, the foundation on which the Mahābhārata corpus was built, with a climactic battle eventually coming to be viewed as an epochal event. Puranic literature presents genealogical lists associated with the Mahābhārata narrative. The evidence of the Puranas is of two kinds. Of the first kind, there is the direct statement that there were 1015 years between the birth of Parikshit and the accession of Mahapadma Nanda, which would yield an estimate of about 1400 BCE for the Bharata battle. However, this would imply improbably long reigns on average for the kings listed in the genealogies. Of the second kind are analyses of parallel genealogies in the Puranas between the times of Adhisimakrishna and Mahapadma Nanda. Pargiter accordingly estimated 26 generations by averaging 10 different dynastic lists and, assuming 18 years for the average duration of a reign, arrived at an estimate of 850 BCE for Adhisimakrishna, and thus approximately 950 BCE for the Bharata battle. B. B. Lal used the same approach with a more conservative assumption of the average reign to estimate a date of 836 BCE, and correlated this with archaeological evidence from Painted Grey Ware sites, the association being strong between PGW artifacts and places mentioned in the epic. John Keay confirm this and also gives 950 BCE for the Bharata battle.Attempts to date the events using methods of archaeoastronomy have produced, depending on which passages are chosen and how they are interpreted, estimates ranging from the late 4th to the mid-2nd millennium BCE.The late 4th-millennium date has a precedent in the calculation of the Kaliyuga epoch, based on planetary conjunctions, by Aryabhata. Aryabhata’s date of 18 February 3102 BCE for Mahābhārata war has become widespread in Indian tradition. Some sources mark this as the disappearance of Krishna from earth. The Aihole inscription of Pulikeshi II, dated to Saka 556 = 634 CE, claims that 3735 years have elapsed since the Bharata battle, putting the date of Mahābhārata war at 3137 BCE. Another traditional school of astronomers and historians, represented by Vriddha-Garga, Varahamihira and Kalhana place the Bharata war 653 years after the Kaliyuga epoch, corresponding to 2449 BCE.

 

 

 

The Vamana Purana tells how King Kuru came to settle here. He chose this land at the banks of Sarasvati River for embedding spirituality with eight virtues: austerity, truth, forgiveness, kindness, purity, charity, Yajna and Brahmacharya. Lord Vishnu was impressed with the act of King Kuru and blessed him. God gave him two boons: one that this land forever will be known as a Holy Land after his name as Kurukshetra and the other that anyone dying on this land will go to heaven. The land of Kurukshetra was situated between two rivers — the Sarasvati and the Drishadvati. Kurukshetra is well connected with NH1 and has much access by road, rail and air. The journey is comfortable with facilities provided in route.

 

Road Way:

 

Buses of Haryana Roadways and other State Corporations ply through Kurukshetra and connect it to Delhi, Panipat, Ambala, Chandigarh, Ludhiana, Jammu, Amritsar and Shimla.

 

By Air:

 

The airports close to Kurukshetra are at Delhi and Chandigarh, which are well connected by road and rail. Taxi service as well as bus service is also available.

 

By Train:

 

Kurukshetra railway station is a railway junction station, well connected with all important towns and cities of the country. The Shatabadi Express halts here. Dhoda Kheri, Dhirpur, Dhola Majra Shahabad Markanda and Mohri are the railway stations between Kurukshetra to Ambala of Indian railway route.

 

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