Eastern Spirituality

Glossary Contents: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

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He was a young prince of the Nishadha tribes, who achieves a skill level parallel to the great Arjuna, despite Drona's rejection of him. He was a member of low caste and he wished to study in the gurukulam of Dronacharya.

Eklavya (Sanskrit: éklavya) is a character from the epic Mahābhārata. He was a young prince of the Nishadha, a confederation of jungle tribes in Ancient India. He was son of Vyatraj Hiranyadhanus, the king of the outcasts in the Kingdom of Magadha. Eklavya aspired to study archery in the gurukul of Guru Dronacharya (Drona), the greatest known teacher in the use of weaponry and martial art knowledge at the time.

Eklavya sincerely sought the mentorship of Drona in weaponry and martial art. However, since Eklavya belonged to the lower castes, he was denied access to Drona's mentorship. But because Eklavya was self-motivated and was determined to learn from Drona, what he did is a phenomenal feat of dedication and imagination strategized to extraordinary learning activity leading to mastery of the art. Eklavya created an image of Drona and took the image as his guru monitoring and inspiring him. He practiced the arts of Drona in front of Drona's image. When Drona and his more fortunate disciples came to practice in the forest, Eklavya used to secretly watch from behind the trees and build upon those tips by self-practicing and showing his work to the pseudo guru he created himself in the image of Drona.

Eklavya is called as one of the foremost of kings in the Rajasuya Yajna where he honours Yudhishthira with his shoes. Though he didn't have his right thumb, he was noted as a very powerful archer and charioteer.

He was killed in battle by Krishna, who hurled a rock at him.

Glossary Contents: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z