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holding them in that plight, Yudishthira, that foremost of
righteous men, became deeply afflicted. That chief of the
Kurus then bsgan to weep aloud and fell down on the Earth,
deprived of his senses, along with all his followers." 51



Section XI.

Vaicampayana said,— "Beholding his sons, grandsons, and
friends all slain in battle, the king's soul became overwhelmed
with great grief, O Janamejaya ! J Recollecting those sons and
grandsons and brothers and allies, a deep sorrow took posses-
sion of the illustrious monarch. 9 Senseless and trembling, his
eyes were bathed in tears. His friends then, themselves filled
with anxiety, began to comfort him. 3 At that time, Nakula,
skilled in executing errands, arrived there on his car of solar
effulgence, accompanied by the princess Krishna in great
affliction. 4 She had been residing at Upaplavya. Having
received that heart-rending intelligence about the slaughter of
all her sons, she became exceedingly agitated. 6 Trembling
like a plantain tree shaken by the wind, the princess Krishna,
arrived at the presence of Yudhishthira, fell down, afflicted
by grief. 8 Her face, adorned with eyes resembling a couple
of full-blown lotuses, seemed to be darkened by grief like the
Sun himself when enveloped in darkness. 7 Beholding her
prostrate on the Earth, the wrathful Vrikodara, of prowess
incapable of being baffled, advancing hastily, raised her up
and clasped her with his arms. 8 The beautiful lady, comforted
by Bhimasena, began to weep, and addressing the eldest son
of Pandu with his brothers, said 9 , — 'By good luck, O monarch,
having obtained the whole Earth, thou shalt enjoy her after
the slaughter of thy brave sons in the observance of Kshatriya



Sauptika parva. 4-S*

duties ! 19 By good luck, O son of Prithfi, thou art happy at
the thought of having obtained the whole Earth ! By good
luck, thy thoughts do not dwell on Subhadra's son whose
tread resembled that of an infuriate elephant I" By good
luck, thou dost not, like myself while residing at Upaplavya,
recollect thy heroic sons slaughtered in the observance of
Kshatriya duties ! 18 O son of Pritha, hearing of the slaughter
of those sleeping heroes by Urona's son of sinful deeds,
grief burns me as if I wero in the midst of a fire !' 8 If
Drona's son be not made to reap the fruit of that sinful deed of
his, — if, putting forth your prowess in battle, thou dost not
take the life of that wretch of sinful deeds, along with the lives
of all his followers, — then, listen to me, ye Pandavas, I shall
sit here in Praya /' 14 ~" Having said these words, the help-
less Krishna, the daughter of Yajnasena, sat by the side of
the eldest son of Pandu, viz., king Yudhishthira the just."
The royal sage Yudhishthira, of righteous soul, seeing his
dear queen sit in Praya, addressed her, saying, — 'O auspicious
lady, O thou that art conversant with morality, all thy sons
and brothers have righteously met with a noble death ! It be-
faoveth thee not to grieve for them V"'~ n As regards Drona's son,
he hath gone to a distant forest, O beautiful princess ! How
shalt thou, O lady, make thyself sure of his fall in battle ?' 19

"Draupadi answered, — 'I have heard that Drona's son hath
a gem on his head, born with him ! I shall see that gem
brought to me after the slaughter of that wretch in battle !
Placing that gem on thy head, O king, I shall endure to live !
Even this is my resolve !''° Having said these words unto the
royal son of Pandu, the beautiful Krishna approached Bhima-
sena and said these words of high purpose unto him :" —
'Remembering the duties of a Kshatriya, O Bhima, it behov-
eth thee to come to my rescue ! Slay that man of sinful
deeds like Magavat slaying Camvara!" Thero is no one in
this world who is equal to thee in prowess! It is known
throughout the world how on an occasion of great calamity ■■
thou becamest at the town of Varanfvvata the refuge of all
the PiLrthas ! When again we were seen by Hidimva. it wai
tihou that becamest our refugo in the same way : 3 * Like



£1 mahabharita,

Magavat rescuing (his spouse, viz.,) the daughter of Puloma,
fchou hadst rescued my afflicted self, in Virata's city, from a
great calamity !"• Like those great feats, O Partha, that
th >u hast achieved in former days, slay now, O slayer of foes,
the sm of Drona and be thou happy !' 8 ' — Hearing these and
other piteous lamentations of the princess, Kunti's son Bhima-
sena of great might could not endure them.' 7 He mounted
upon his great car adorned with gold, and took his beautiful
bow with arrow placed on the string.* 8 Making Nakula his
charioteer, and resolved upon slaying the son of Drona, he
began to stretch his bow and caused his steeds to be urged
without delay. 88 Those steeds, fleet as the wind, thus urged,
O tiger among men, proceeded with great speed.' Possessed
of great valor and unfading energy, Bhima set out from the
Paudava camp and proceeded with great celerity along the
track of Acwatthaman's vehicle." 3 '

Section XII.

Vaic,ampayana said, — "After the irresistible Bhimasena had?
fifth out. that bull of Yadu's race, possessed of eyes like lotus
petals, addressed Kuril's son Yudhishthira, saying,' — '0 son of
Panda, this brother of thine, overwhelmed with grief at
the slaughter of his sons, proceedeth alone to battle, from
d^ire of slaying the son of Drona'* bull of Bharata's
rve, of all thy brothers, Bhima is thy dearest! Beholding
him fallen into a great danger why dost thou not stir thyself? 8
The weapon called Brahmagira, which that subjugator of
hostile towns, viz., Drona, communicated to his son, is cap-
able of consuming the whole world. 4 The illustrious and
highly blessed preceptor, that foremost of all wieiders of bows,
lelighted with Dhananjaya. had given him that very we:ip n.'
Uoa')le to endure it, his only son then begged it of him. Un-
willingly he impirted the knowledge of that weapon to Acwat-
thaman.' The illustrious Drona knew the restlessness of his
son. Acquainted with all duties, the preceptor laid this com-
mand on him, saying, 7 — Even when overtaken by the greatest
danger, child, in the niidst of battle, thou shouldst ne\er



Sauptika parva. 4«f

use this weapon, particularly against human beings !' — Even
thu=* the procepbor Drona spoke unto his son. A little while
aft^r he again spoke, saying. — O bull among men, thou wilt
not, it seems, walk in the path of the righteous!' — Hearing
those bitter words of his sire, the wicked souled Acwatthaman,
in despair of obtaining every kind of prosperity, began in grief
to wander over the Earth. 10 Then, O chief the Kurus, whilo
you were living in the woods, Bharata, he came to Dwarakii
and took up his abode there, worshipped by the Vrishnis."
One day, after he had taken up his abode in Dwaraka, he
came to me, without a companion and when I myself was
without anybody by my side, on the sea-coast, and there smil-
ingly addressing me, said," — O Krishna, that weapon, called
Brahmagira, worshipped by gods and Gandharvas, which
my sire, the preceptor of the Bharatas, of prowess incapable
of being baffled, had obtained from Agastya after performing
the austerest penances, is now with me, O Dacarha, as much
as it is with my sire! 15 "'* O foremost one of Yadu's race, in
exchange for that celestial weapon, give me thy discus which
is capable of slaying all foes in battle !" — While he with join-
ed hands and great importunity thus begged of me my discus,
myself, O bull of Bharata's race, from desire of gladdening
him, told him these words," — Gods, Danavas, Gandharvas,
men, birds and snakes, assembled together, are not equal to
even a hundredth part of my energy. 17 I have this bow, this
dart, this discus, and this mace ! I will give thee whichever
amongst these thou desirest to have from me !" Without giv-
ing me the weapon thou wishest to give, take from among
these weapons of mine whichever thou mayst be able to wield
and use in battle !" — Thus addressed, the illustrious son of
Drona, as if challenging me, solicited at my hands my discus
of excellent nave and hard as thunder, possessed of a thousand
spokes, and made of iron. 10 — Take it, — I said unto him. Thus
addressed, he rose suddenly and seized the discus with his
left hand. 21 He failed, however, to even move the weapon
from the spot on which it lay. Ho then made prepnrations
for seizing it with his right-hand." Having seized it then
very firmly and having put forth a!! bis strength, bo Btill



46 MAHABHARATA,

failed to either wield or move it. At this, Drona's son became
filled with sorrow. After he was tired with the exertions
he made, he ceased, Bharata !""** When he withdrew
his heart from that purpose, I addressed the anxious and
senseless Acwatthaman and said, 98 — He who is always regard-
ed as the foremost of all human beings, that wielder of
Gandiva, that warrior having white steeds yoked unto his
car, that hero owning the prince of apes for the device on his
standard, 88 that hero who, desirous of vanquishing in a
wrestling encounter the god of gods, viz., the blue-throated
lord of Uma, gratified the great Cankara himself,* 7 that
Phalguna than whom I have no dearer friend on Earth, that
friend to whom there is nothing that I cannot give including
my very wives and children, 98 that dear friend Partha of un-
stained acts, never said unto me, O Brahmana, such words as
these which thou hast uttered !" That son whom I obtained
through ascetic penances and observance of austere Brahma-
chary a for twelve years on the breast of Himavat whither I
had gone for the purpose, 80 that son of mine, viz., Prad-
dyumna, of great energy and a portion of Sanatkumara him-
self, begotten by me upon my wife Rukmini who had practised
vows as austere as mine, 81 that hero even never solicited this
best of objects, viz., this unrivalled discus, which thou of
little understanding hast solicited ! 8a Rama of great might
never said such words to me ! Neither Gada, nor Camva,
have ever asked that of me which thou hast asked ! 8S No one
among the other great car-warriors of the Vrishni and the
Andhaka race residing in Dwaraka has ever asked this of me
which thou hast asked! 84 Thou art the son of the preceptor
of the Bharatas, thou art held in high respect by all the
Yadavas ! Let me ask thee, foremost of car-warriors, with
whom wouldst thou fight using this weapon ?" — Thus address-
ed by me, Drona's son replied, saying, — After offering wor-
ship to thee, O Krishna, it was my intention to fight thee,

thou of unfading glory ! 8 * It was for this, O Krishna, that

1 solicited thee for thy discus which is adored by gods and
Dcinavas ! If I had got it I would then have become invin-
cible in the world ! S7 Having failed, Kecava. in obtaining



SA.T7TIKA PARTA, 17

my almost unattainable wish, I am about to leave thee, O
Govinda ! Address me in fair words now !* 8 This terrible
weapon is held by thee that art the foremost of all terrible
persons ! Unrivalled art thou for this weapon ! There is none
else in this world capable of possessing it! 19 — Having said
these words unto me, the son of Drona, taking many couples
of steeds and much wealth and diverse kinds of gems, left
Dwaraka. 40 He is wrathful, wicked souled, restless, and very
cruel ! He knows the weapon called Brahmacira. Vrikodara
should be protected from him !' " 41



Section XIII.

Vaigampayana said, — 'Having said these words, that fore-
most of all wielders of weapons, viz., that delighter of all
the Yadavas, mounted upon his excellent car equipt with
every kind of powerful weapons. 1 Unto that vehicle were
yoked two pairs of foremost steeds of the Kamvoja breed, that
were adorned with garlands of gold. The Lhur of that best
of cars was of the hue of the morning sun." On the right
was yoked the steed known as Caivya ; on the left was placed
Sugriva ; the Parshni was borne by two others called Megha->
pushpa and Valahaka.' There was seen on that car a
celestial standard decked with gems and gold and created by
the divine Artificer, and standing high like the Maya (of Vish-
nu himself).* Upon that standard was Vinata's son (Garuda)
shining with great splendour. Indeed, that enemy of snakes
perched on the standard-top of Kec;ava who is Truth embodied.'
Then Hrishikeca, that foremost of all bowmen, mounted on
that car. After hiin Arjuna of irresistible feats and Yndhish-
thira the king of the Kurus ascended the same vehicle. 1 Seated
on that car, by the side of him of Dacarha's race who wielded
the bow called Camga, the two sons of Pandu looked exceed-
ingly beautiful, like the twin Ac, wins seated by the side of
Vasava. 7 Causing them to ascend on that car of his which
was adored by all the world, he of Dacarha's race urged
those foremost of steeds endued with great fleetncss.' Those
steeds then suddenly How, taking after them that excellent



$5 KiJUHHARATA,

vehicle ridden by the two sons of Pandu and by that bull of
Yadu's race. 9 Endued with great speed, as those animals bore
away the wiolder of £dr)iga, loud became the noise caused
by their rush, like that of birds coursing through the air.' c
Proceeding with great speed, they soon came up, bull of
Bharata's race, with the mighty bowman Bhimasena in whose
wake they had followed. 11 Although those great car-warriors
met Bhima, they failed however to stop that son of Kunt.i,
as, filled with wrath, he proceeded fiercely towards the foe. 1 *
Iu the very sight of those illustrious and firm bowmen, Bhima,
by means of his very fleet steeds, proceeded towards the bank
of the river brought down by Bhagiratha. 18 He beheld the
high-souled and illustrious and dark-complexioned and island-
born Vyasa sitting near the edge of the water in the midst of
many Rlshis. 1 * And he also saw Drona's son of wicked deeds
sitting beside them, covered with di:st, attired in a piece of
cloth made of Kuga grass, and smeared all over with clarified
butter. 1 * The mighty-armed Bhimasena, the son of Kunti,
taking up his bow with shaft fixed on it, rushed towards Acwat-
thatnan, and said, — 'Wait, wait !'" Drona's son, beholding
that terrible bowman coming towards him bow in hand, and
his two brothers on Janarddana's car, 17 became exceedingly
agitated and thought his hour had come. Of soul incapable
of being depressed, he called to his mind that high weapon
(which he had obtained from his sire). 18 He then took up a
blade of grass with his left hand. Fallen into great distress, he
inspired that blade of grass with proper mantras and converted
it into that powerful celestial weapon. 19 Unable to brook the
arrows (of the Pandavas) and the presence of those wielders
of celestial weapons, he uttered in wrath these terrible words,
viz., — 'For the destruction of the Pandavas.' 80 Having said
these words, O tiger among kings, the valiant son of Drona
let off that weapon f<>r stupifying all the worlds. 91 A fire then
was bom in that blade of grass, which seemed capable of
consuming the three worlds like the all-destroying Yama at
the end of the Yuga."**



Section XIV.

Vaicampayana said, — "At the very outset the mighty -
arined hero of l)a<;arha's race understood from signs the inten-
tion of Prona's son. Addressing Arjuna, he said, 1 — 'O Arjuna,
O son of Panda, the time is come for the use of that celestial
weapon which is in thy memory and the knowledge of which
was imp ir ted to thee by Drona !' For protecting thyself as
also thy brothers, O BUarata, shoot in this battle that weapon
which is capable of neutralising all weapons !' 8 Thus addressed
by Kecava, Arjuna, that slayer of hostile heroes, quickly
alighted from the car, taking with him his bow with shaft
fixed on the string.* Sjftly wishing good unto the preceptor's
son and then unto himself, and unto all his brothers, that
scorcher of foes* then bowed unto all the gods and all his
superiors and let off his weapon, thinking of the welfare of
all the worlds and uttering the words, — 'Let Aywatthaman's
weapon be neutralised by this weapon !' 4 That weapon, quickly
let otf by the wielder of Gdadlva, blazed up with fierce flames
like the ail-destroying fire that appears at the end of the
Yuga. 1 Similarly, the weapon that had been shot by Drona's
son of fierce energy, blazed up with terrible flames within a
huge sphere of fire.* Numerous peals of thunder were heard;
thousands of metors fell ; and all living creatures became
inspired with great dread. 9 The entire welkin seemed to be
filled with noise and assumed a terrible aspect with those
flames of fire. The whole Earth, with her mountains and
waters and trees, trembled. 10 Then the two great lilahis, viz.,
Narada who is the soul of every creature, and the grandsirc
of all the Bharata princes, (viz., Vyasa), beholding those two
weapons scorching the three worlds, showed themselves there.
The two Rishis sought to pacify the two heroes Aawatthaman
and Dhananjaya. 11 " 1 * Conversant with all duties and desirous
of the welfare of all creatures, the two sages, possessed of
great energy, stood in the midst of those two blazing weapons."
Incapable of being overwhelmed by any forco, those two illus-
trious Rishls, placing themselves between the two weapons,
stood like two blazing fires. 1 * Incapable of being checked by
any creature endued with life, and adored by g.ids aud Dana

7



50 MAHABHARA7A,'

vas, they two acted in this way, neutralising the energy of the
two weapons and doing good to all the world. 11

"The two Rishie said, — 'Those great car-warriors who have
fallen in this battle were acquainted with diverse kinds of
weapons. They, however, never shot such a weapon upon
human beings. What act of rashness is this, ye heroes, thai
ye have done V " lt i



Section XT.

Vaitjampayana said, — -"At the very sight, O tiger among 1
inen, of those two Rishis possessed of splendour like that of fire,
•Dhananja)^ quickly resolved to withdraw his celestial shaft. 1
Joining his hands, he addressed those Rishie, saying, — 'I used
this weapon, saying, — Let it neutralise the (enemy's) weapon ! 9
—If I withdraw this high weapon, Drona's son of sinful deeds
will then, without doubt, consume us all with the energy
of his weapon. 8 Ye two are like gods \ It behoveth you to
devise some means by which our welfare as also that of the
three worlds may be secured !'* — Having said these words,
Dhananjaya withdrew his weapon ! The withdrawal of thab
weapon by the gods themselves in battle is exceedingly diffi-
cult.* Not excepting the great Indra himself, there was
■nobody save the son of Pandu, who was capable of withdraw-
ing that high weapon after it had once been let off. 8 That
weapon was born of Brahma energy. No person of unclean-
sed soul can bring it back after it is once let off. Only one
that leads the life of a Brahmagh&rin can do it. 7 If one who
has not practised the vow of Brahmacharya seeks to bring ife
back after having shot it, it strikes off his own head and
destroys him with all his equipments. 8 Arjuna was a Brahma'
charm and an observer of vows. Having obtained that al-
most unobtainable weapon, he had never used it even when
plunged into situations of the greatest danger. 9 Observant of
the vow of truth, possessed of great heroism, leading the life
cf a Brahmacharin, the son of Pandu was submissive and
obedient to all his superiors. It was for this that he sue-
^sodad in withdrawing his weipin, 10 DronVs son, beholding



*AttPTI*A PAR7A. ?

those two Rishls standing before him, could not by his energy
withdraw his own terrible weapon." Unable to withdraw the
high weapon in battle, Drona's son, O king, with a cheerless
heart, said unto the island-born Rishi these words. 1 *— Threat-
ened by a great danger, and desirous of protecting my life,
I let off this weapon, through fear of Bhimasena, O sage \ t%
This Bhimasena of false bohaviour, acted ainftdly, holy ont,
while slaying the son of Dhritarashtra in battle !'* It is Cor
this, regenerate one, that of uncleansed soul as I am, I let
off this weapon ! I dare not, however withdraw it now !'•
Having inspired this irresistible and celestial weapon with tha
energy of fire, I let it off for the destruction of the Panda-
vas." Contrived for the destruction of the Pandavas, thai*
weapon, therefore, will take away the lives of all the sons of
Pandit." O regenerate one, I have, in wrath, done this sinful
deed! I invoked this weapon in battle for the destruction
of the Pandavas!' 1 *

"Vyasa said, — 'Pritha's son Dhananjaya, child, was ac-
quainted with the weapon called Brahmagira. Neither from
wrath, nor for thy destruction in battle, did he shoot thia
weapon. 1 ' Arjuna, on the other hand, used it for baffling
thy weapon. He has again withdrawn it !*° Having obtained
even the Brahma weapon through thy sire's instructions, the
mighty-armed Dhananjaya did not fall off from a Kshatriya's
duties. 81 Arjuna is possessed of such patience, and such
honesty. He is, besides, conversant with every weapon.
Why dost thou seek to compass the destruction of such a
person with all his brothers?" That region where the weapon
called Brahmafira is baffled by another high weapon, suffers
a drought for twelve years for the clouds do not pour a drop
of water there for this poriod !*• For this reason, the mighty-
armed son of Pandu, although he had tho power, would not
still, from desire of doing good to living creature*, baffle thy
weapon with his !* 4 The Pandavas should bo protected ; thy
own self should be protected ; the kingdom also should be
protected. Thereforo, O thou of mighty-arms, withdraw this
celestial weapon of thine !** Dispel this wrath from thy heart,
*nd lot th«a Pamfavas be safe I The royal BSgi Yudhichthira



52 MAHABHAIUTA,

never desires to win victory by perpetrating any sinful act !"'*
Give unto these that gem which is on thy head. Taking that,
the Pandavas will in return grant thee thy life !' 27

"Drona's son said, — 'This my gem is more valuable than
all the wealth that has ever been earned by the Pandavas and
the Kauravas!* 8 If this gem is worn, the wearer ceases to
have any fear from weapons or disease or hunger ! He ceases
to have any fear of gods and Ddnavas and Ndgas ?" His
apprehensions from Rdkshasas as also from robbers will cease*
Even these are the virtues of this gem of mine !'° I cannot, by
any means, part with it ! 80 That, however, O holy one, which
thou sayest, should be done by me. Here is this gem ! Here
is myself! ■ This blade of grass (inspired into a fatal weapon)
will, however, 81 fall into the wombs of the Pandava women,
for this weapon is high and mighty, and inoapable of being
frustrated! O regenerate one, I am unable to withdraw it,
having once let it off! 8 * I will now throw this weapon into
the wombs of the Pandava women. As regards thy commands
in other respects, O holy one, I shall certainly obey them !' 38

"Vyasa said, — 'Do then this. Do not, however, entertain
any other purpose, O sinless one ! Throwing this weapon
into the wombs of the Pandava women, stop thyself !" 84

Vaigampayana continued, — "The son of Drona, having
heard these words of the island-born, threw that uplifted
weapon into the wombs of the Pandava women.' " S8



Section XVI.

Vaigampayana said, — "Understanding that that weapon was
♦brown (into the wombs of the Pandava women) by Drona's
son of sinful deeds, Hrishikeca, with a cheerful heart, said
these words unto him :' — 'A certain Brahmana of pious vows,
beholding Virata's daughter who is now daughter-in-law to
Arjuna, while she was at Upaplavya, said,' — While the Kuru
line will become extinct, a son will be born to thee. This

* T think, the meanm? q{ bfoU ia that Yudhishthira would nofe



Sauftika r.uiVA. 53

thy son, for that reason, will be called by the name of Parik-
shit !* — The words of that pious man shall become true !
The Pandavas shall have a son called Parik.shit !'* Unto
Qovinda, that foremost one of the Satwata race, while he was
saying these words, Drona's son, filled with wrath, replied,
saying,' — 'This, O Kec,ava, that thou sayest from thy parti-
ality for the Pandavas, shall not happen ! O thou of eyes
like lotus petals, my words cannot but be fulfilled ! e Uplifted
by me, this weapon of mine shall fall on the foetus that is
in the womb of Virata's daughter, — upon that foetus which
thou, Krishna, art desirous of protecting !' 7

"The holy one said, — 'The fall of this mighty weapon will
not be fruitless. The foetus will die. But being dead, it will



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