Hinduism and Tribal Religions

Living Edition
| Editors: Pankaj Jain, Rita Sherma, Madhu Khanna


  • Ravi Khangai
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-024-1036-5_349-1



Bhīma is one of the important characters in the Indian epic Mahābhārata. He was the second Pāṇḍavā and also known as Vṛkodara, the wolf belly, for his rapacious appetite. He was born to Kuntī from the wind God. He stands out as the strongest of all the Pāṇḍavās and always comes out as the protector of the family.

Bhīma, the Protector of the Family

The Kauravas and the Pāṇḍavās were cousins and there was a rivalry among them. As a child strong Bhīma often beat up Duryodhana and his brothers. Unable to match him in the straight fight, Duryodhana tried to assassinate Bhīma by poisoning him and throwing him in the river, but he survived ([1], p. 265).

When Duryodhana tried to burn the Pāṇḍavās along with their mother in the house of lac, everybody escaped through the tunnel. When they grew tired, Bhīma carried his mother and other four brothers on his shoulders, arms, and hip ([1], p. 292). He killed the demon named Hiḍimba, who was eager...

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Authors and Affiliations

  • Ravi Khangai
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of HistoryRashtrasant Tukadoji Maharaj Nagpur UniversityNagpurIndia
  2. 2.Hindu University of AmericaOrlandoUSA