With Vichitravirya having died of sickness, Bhishma unable to take the throne because of his vow, and Bahlika’s line unwilling to leave Bahlika Kingdom, there was as succession crisis in Hastinapur. Satyavati invites her son Vyasa to impregnate the queens Ambika and Ambalika under the Niyoga practice. When Vyasa went to impregnate Ambika, she got frightened due to his scary appearance and closed her eyes during their union; hence, her son Dhritarashtra was born blind.
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Story – When Vyasa went to impregnate Ambika, she got frightened & closed her eyes causing her son Dhritarashtra to be born blind
Dhritarashtra, along with his younger half-brother Pandu is trained in the military arts by Bhishma and Kripacharya. Hindered by his handicap, Dhritarashtra is unable to wield weapons, but is having the strength one hundred thousand elephants due to boon of Vyasa and is said to be so strong that he can crush iron with his hand.
When it came time to nominate an heir, Vidura suggested that Pandu would be a better fit because he wasn’t blind. Though bitter at the result, Dhritarashtra willingly conceded the crown, though this act would flower into the protectiveness he would have over his crown later in life.
Lord Krishna as a peace emissary of Pandavas traveled to Hastinapura persuading Kauravas to avoid bloodshed of their own kin. However, Duryodhana conspired to arrest him that resulted in failure of mission. After Krishna’s peace mission failed and the war seemed inevitable, Vyasa approached Dhritarashtra and offered to grant him divine vision, so that Dhritarashtra could see the war. However, not willing to see his kin slaughtered, Dhritarashtra asked that the boon be given to Sanjaya his charioteer. Sanjaya dutifully narrates the war to his liege, reporting how Bhima killed all his children. Sanjaya would console the blind king while challenging the king with his own viewpoints and morals. When Lord Krishna displayed his Vishvarupa (Universal Form) to Arjuna on the battlefield of Kurukshetra, Dhritarashtra regretted not possessing the divine sight.
Dhritarashtra was confident that Bhishma, Drona, Karna and other invincible warriors would make the Kaurava camp victorious. He rejoiced whenever the tide of war turned against Pandavas. However, the results of the war devastated him. All of his trueborn sons were killed in the carnage. Dhritarashtra’s only daughter Duhsala was widowed. Yuyutsu had defected to Pandava side at the onset of war and was the only son of Dhritrashtra who had managed to survive Kurukshetra War.