One of the most Epic Game, ever played in the history, resulted in the largest war human beings have ever witnessed. A game that can still be held as a Lesson.
To particularly evaluate and review the game of dice played around thousands of years ago, I’d probably need to write multiple articles in order for you to understand why and what lead to that game. But if you are from India or any fan of Indian History, you probably will recognise many names and events.
The Game of Dice: Played between two groups of brother, The Five Pandavs & The Hundred Kauravas, could also be evaluated as a one sided game due to the loyalty of dices towards the Mastermind Shakuni. But if you’ll look through Shakuni’s perspective, you find it well played without any cheating.
To consider it as a simple game would be a mistake, for a party lost everything while the opponents kept wining, it is a game where everything was bet upon and at a point in the game, under the illusion of having a chance to win it all back, he bet his brothers, himself, his wife, and lost it all.
Planning of the Game:
It was Shakuni’s Idea to invite the Pandavas for the Game, for he knew that the oldest of Pandavas, Yudhisthira, would never deny the request to play, so that was a clever honeypot. After accepting the invitation, one mistake Yudhisthira made was not to inform Bhagwan Sri Krishna of the event, but then the game would have been totally different from what we know.
Shakuni was an expert in regards with games and planning itself and a plus point he had was that the dices to be used for this game were made out of the thigh bone of his father, meaning that the dices would never betray Shakuni, and that’s where the game changed. Shakuni and his family has history and if you knew it, you wouldn’t blame Shakuni for what he did.
What was won & what was lost?
Well, for Kauravas, the winning side, won everything they wanted, EVERYTHING. While the Pandavas, lost all they. Yudhisthira, who was playing and was being played at the thought of being a winner, lost everything, from his brothers, who were then owned by the Duryodhana, the oldest of kauravas. Moving on, Yudhisthira lost his wife in bet, followed by betting himself and losing. By now, Yudhisthira and his brothers have lost their rights to be citizen of the kingdom they were kings of.
By the end, after losing themselves, their pride, respect and wealth, they were to attain an exile of 12 years and an year of Agyatvas – which means within that time of year, if they were spotted by anyone, they would have been killed and so they went in disguise for the 13th year of exile.
Towards the end, you might ask Why the Pandavs played the game in first place? and even if they did, why kept losing and yet continuing. The answer wouldn’t be simple but they had to play because Yudhisthira accepted the invite as a Warrior, and while losing, Shakuni and Kauravas kept giving them fake chances of winning it all back, so they kept playing and losing,
And to conclude:
There is a lot to mention and talk about the game of dice and even just by reading stories surrounding the Mahabharata, you can learn a lot. This Game of Dice, for me is a lesson of when to take risk, understand the premises before footing in, what to bet and most importantly, not to allow the emotions take decisions when playing.
I hope this article and the game itself brings you wisdom, for the modern man, the premises has changed but the game and tactics are still the same.