Q. 34.2( 13 Votes )

Compare and contrast the dharma or norms mentioned in the stories of Drona, Hidimba and Matanga.

Answer :

1. DRONA- a. In the story of Eklavya, drone being a Brahmana, his dharma was to teach archery to Kshatriyas not to Nishada or any one from any other Varna.

b. According to the Brahmanical text norms Drona tough Archery only to the Pandavas who were the kshatriyas and refused to teach Eklavya – a Nishada.


c. Thus, Drona exercised his Dharma successfully.


2. HIDIMBA – a. In the case of Hidimba , she failed to practise dharma and broke the laws of marriage.


b. as per the marriage rules, laid down in Manusmriti, the bride’s father was supposed to choose the bridegroom and give consent to marriage.


c. contrastingly Hidimba herself proposed to Bhima to marry her and also tried to convince kunti Bhima’s mother to give consent to their marriage.


3. MATANGA- a.In the story of Matanga also the norms of Dharma were not followed.


b. Matanga was a chandala who dared to break the laws of the varna system as well as the rules of marriage.


c. not only did he read religious books, despite belonging to lower varna, but also married a girl of higher caste (vaishya community). According to the rules of marriage mentioned in Brahmanical texts, intercatse marriage was strictly prohibited.


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RELATED QUESTIONS :

Read the following extract carefully and answer the questions that follow :

‘‘Proper’’ Social Roles


Here is a story from the Adi Parvan of the Mahabharata :


Once Drona, a Brahmana who taught archery to the Kuru princes, was approached by Ekalavya, a forest-dwelling nishada (a hunting community). When Drona, who knew the dharma, refused to have him as his pupil, Ekalavya returned to the forest, prepared an image of Drona out of clay, and treating it as his teacher, began to practise on his own. In due course, he acquired great skill in archery. One day, the Kuru princes went hunting and their dog, wandering in the woods, came upon Ekalavya. When the dog smelt the dark nishada wrapped in black deer skin, his body caked with dirt, it began to bark. Annoyed, Ekalavya shot seven arrows into its mouth. When the dog returned to the Pandavas, they were amazed at this superb display of archery. They tracked down Ekalavya, who introduced himself as a pupil of Drona.


Drona had once told his favourite student Arjuna, that he would be unrivalled amongst his pupils. Arjuna now reminded Drona about this. Drona approached Ekalavya, who immediately acknowledged and honoured him as his teacher. When Drona demanded his right thumb as his fee, Ekalavya unhesitatingly cut it off and offered it. But thereafter, when he shot with his remaining fingers, he was no longer as fast as he had been before. Thus, Drona kept his word: no one was better than Arjuna.


(1) Why did Drona refuse to have Ekalavya as his pupil?


(2) How had Drona kept his word given to Arjuna?


(3) Do you think Drona’s behaviour with Ekalavya was justified? If so, give a reason.

History - Board Papers