(Last Updated on : 26-09-2009)
The epic Mahabharata
affirms that Kripa is the son of Sharadvan and Janapadi..
Kripa combated in the battle of Kurukshetra
for the Kaurava side. Later he was appointed as the teacher of Parikshita, who was the grandson of Arjuna
. He was also the head priest at the court of Hastinapur.
Kripa once criticized Kama for wishing to measure weapons with Arjuna
. He also advised Duryodhana to end the war with the Pandavas. In the Kurukshetra war when Duryodhana
was mortally wounded Kripa hurried to him and gave him water. Kripa is also known as Saradvata
There is a legendary story related to the birth of Kripa. Kripa's father Shardwan was born with arrows and was a great archer. Shardwan meditated and attained proficiency in the art of all types of warfare. Being expert in archery no one could beat him. Lord Indra was alarmed and felt most threatened.
then advised the beautiful celestial nymph Janpadi to go to Shardwan and to distract him from meditating. Janpadi seduced the sage Shardwan and he was allured by the beauty of the Apsara.
Shardwan's concentration was lost and he dropped his bow and arrows. His semen fell on some weeds and divided the weeds into two from which a boy and a girl were born. The saint distressed left both his hermitage and his bow and arrow and went to the forest for penance.
King Shantanu, the great-grandfather of the Pandavas unexpectedly, was crossing from there and saw the children by the wayside. By looking at them he could realize that they were the children of a great archer Shardwan. He named the twins Kripa and Kripi as they were nurtured through pity (Kripa) and decided to take them back with him to his palace. There he performed the various rituals which are executed for the children of Brahmins. Kripa was taught archery, Vedas and other Shastra. Kripa came to be known as Kripacharya and who later became a teacher and was a great archer.