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Story of Haihaya Prince and Son of Sage Tarkshya Arishtanemi – How Death is overcome by Those Following Dharma

The story of Haihaya Prince and Son of Sage Tarkshya Arishtanemi is found in the Markandeya Samasya Parva in the Mahabharata. It is a story that narrates who people who follow Dharma can overcome death. A prince of Haihayas was interested in hunting. Once while on a hunting tradition, the prince shoots an arrow on an antelope. But to his dismay he found that he had shot and killed a Sage who was wearing an antelope skin.

The sorrow and remorse of the prince made him lose his senses. He reached the palace and narrated to the King of Haihayas about the sin he had committed. The entire palace was distressed.

The king along with the prince then reached spot where the unfortunate incident took place. But they could no find the body of the Sage. The searched the entire forest and finally reached the ashram of Sage Tarkshya Arishtanemi.

The king narrated about the incident that happened earlier on the day and now that they could not find the body of the dead Sage.

Sage Tarkshya Arishtanemi, after patiently hearing to the royal party, called his son. The Haihaya prince was baffled on seeing the son of Sage Tarkshya as it was the same person whom he had shot and killed with the arrow.

The prince wanted to know how the person whom he had killed was still alive.

Sage Tarkshya Arishtanemi then said that they follow Dharma. They know nothing but Truth. They do not even think about anything other than truth. Thus they live in a region that is ruled by truth. And therefore they have no fear of death.

Thus the Haihayas were relieved.