Jai Guru Deva,
Let me write about the great teacher of Hastinapur: Dronacharya.
Guru Dronacharya was born in a brahmin family Bharadwaja clan and was a disciple and student of Sage Parasurama. Parasurama was himself an embodiment of Narayana. As a student of Parasurama his prowess with weapons is beyond the reach of any ordinary man. Arjuna who is the greatest warrior of this country mentions that "only Grandsire Bhishma, Guru Dronacharya, God Indra and God Mahadev can break his bow" which means Guru Dronacharya's archery skills are nothing short of God Indra and Lord Mahadeva. What can be a bigger praise for a mortal life? Apart from his skills of archery he also knew the Divine weapons which are invincible but also he is a master strategist. Whatever victories Kauravas had won in the war are majorly because of him. He is the architect of chakravyuh which killed Abhimanyu.
On the other side of the great warrior there stays a poor Brahmin who has to face several hardships to feed his family. His son was fooled and fed with water mixed floor as milk. He was wronged by his friend who had promised to share the kingdom with him. The same friend insulted him saying "friendship happens between equals" and a cow will be given to Drona as a part of biksha but not as a friend. Agitated Drona makes a promise to teach a lesson to his friend. Finally he kills his friend Drupad in the Kurukshetra. Main criticism on Drona is that he is partial towards Arjuna and he had spoiled the life of Ekalavya. Arjuna always took pride in being a student of Drona and that makes him a pet student of his beloved teacher. As far as Ekalavya is concerned, he had not learnt the archery but he had stolen it which befits a punishment.
For me, main learning from Guru Dronacharya is his affection towards his disciples. When Bhim claims that he had killed "Ashwathama", Drona did not avenge Bhim. He says a student is also like a son and I shall not kill him. Also, when Dushtadyum son of Drupad comes and asks for a blessing he readily gives the blessing even it means killing is ownself. He was a perfect Brahmin and stood by all the principles of being one. He played every role of his to perfection. This is a feature of all the great personalities. They play the role they take to perfection. Giving 100% to what we do is most critical for a successful human life and Guru Dronacharya stands as the epitome of that principle.
In the serial, Surendra Pal played role of Guru Dronacharya to perfection. His clear and unquestionable diction was something phenomenal. I particularly liked his conversation with Lord Brahma in the middle of the war about his life as a brahmin and as the commander of the kaurav army.