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ed by Kunti, Vyasa, that foremost of all persons, said unto her
in reply, — 'Blessed be thou, all that thou hast said unto me
•will happen. ®° (As regards the birth of Kama) no fault is
ascribable to thee. Thou wert restored to virginity. The
deitie.; arc possessed of (Yoga) puissance. They arc able to



Parva] acramavasika parva. 69

penetrate human bodies.*^* There are many deities. They
beget (offspring) by thought alone. By word, by sight, by
touch, and by sexual union, also, they beget children. These
are the five methods.^^ Thou belongest to the order of
humanity. Thou hast no fault (in what happened). Know
this, Kunti ! Let the fever of thy heart be dispel)ed '**
For those that are mighty, everything is becoming. For those
that are mighty, everything is pure. For those are mighty,
everything is meritorious. For those that are mighty, every-
thing is their own.' "^*



Section XXXI.

"Vyasa said, — 'Blessed be thou, Gandhari, thou shalt
behold thy sons and brothers and friends and kinsmen along
with thy sires this night like men risen from sleep.* Kunti
also shall behold Kama, and she of Yadu's race shall behold
her son Abhimanyu. Draupadi shall behold her five sons, her
sires, and her brothers also.*^ Even before ye had asked me,
this was the thought in my mind, I entertained this purpose
when I was urged to that effect by the king, by thee, Gan-
dhari, and by Kunti '^ Thou shouldst not grieve for those
foremost of men. They met with death in consequence of
their devotion to the established practices of Kshatriyas.*
O faultless one, the work of the gods could not but be accom-
plished. It was for accomplishing that object that those heroes
came down on Earth. They were all portions of the deities.^
Gandharvas and Apsaras, and Pi^achas and Guhyakas and
Rakshasas, many persons of great sanctity, many individuals
crowned with success (of penances), celestial Rishis,® deities
and Danavas, and heavenly Rishis of spotless character, met
with death on the battle-field of Kurukshetra.f^ It is heard
that he that was the intelligent king of the Gandharvas, and

* The puissance here referred to is that of Anima, Laghima, &c.,
i. e., the capacity of becoming minute and subtile, &c. — T.

t The sense is that those had been incarnated as human beings and
fighting with one another met with death as regards their human exist-
ence, — T.



70 MAHABHARATAi [PutraduTcanct

named Dhritarashtra, took birth in the world of men as thy
lord Dhritarashtra.^ Know that Pandu of unfading glory
and distinguished above all others, sprung from the Maruts.
Kshattri and Yudhishthira are both portions of the deity of
Righteousness.^ Know that Duryodhana was Kali, and Ca-
kuni was Dwapara. thou of good features, know that Dus^
(jasana and others were all Rakshasas.^" Bhimasena of great
might, that chastiser of foes, is from the Maruts. Know that
this Dhananjaya, the son of Pritha, is the ancient Rishi
Nara.^^ Hrishike^a is Narayana, and the twins are the
A^wins, That foremost of heat-giving ones, tiz., Surya, hav-
ing divided his body in twain, continued with one portion to-
give heat to the worlds and with another to live (on Earth) as
Kama. He that took his birth as the son of Arjuna, that
gladJener of all, that heir of the possessions of the Pandavas,.
who was slain by six great car- warriors (fighting together), was
Soma. He was born of Subhadra. Through Yoga-puissance he
had divided himself in twain.*^'"^* Dhrishtadyurana who sprung
with Draupadi from the sacrificial fire, was an auspicious
portion of the deity of fire. Cikhandin was a Rakshasa.^^
Know that Drona was a portion of Vrihaspati, and that
Drona's son is born of a portion of Rudra. Know that Ganga's
son Bhishma was one of the Vasus that became born as a
human being.^^ Thus, thou of great wisdom, the dei.ies had
taken birth as human beings, and after having accomplished
their purposes have gone back to Heaven.^^ That sorrow
which is in the hearts of you all, relating to the return of
these to the other world, I shall today dispel.^^ Do you all
go towards the Bhagirathi. You will then behold all those
that have been slain on the field of battle.' ""

VaiQampayana continued, — 'All the persons there present,
having heard the words of Vyasa, raised a loud leonine shout
and then proceeded towards the Bhagirathi.^" Dhritarashtra
with all his ministers and the Pandavas, as also with all those
foremost of Rishis and Gandharvas that had come there, set
out as directed.^^ Arrived at the banks of Ganga, that sea of
men took up their abode as pleased them.^" The king, pos-
sessed of groat intelligence, with the Pandavas, took up his



Ftirva.] ACRAMAVASIKA PARVA." 71

abode in a desirable spot, along with the ladies and the aged
ones of his household.^s They passed that day as if it were a
whole year, waiting for the advent of the night when they
would behold the deceased princes.^* The Sun then reached
the sacred mountain in the west and all those persons, having
bathed in the sacred stream, finished their evening rites."''''

Section XXXII.

Vaigampayana said.— "When night came, all those persons,
having finished their evening rites, approached Vyasa.^ Dhri-
tarashtra of righteous-soul, with purified body and with mind
solely directed towards it, sat there with the Pandavas and
the Rishis in his company.^ The ladies of the royal house-
hold sat with Gandhari in a secluded spot. All the citizens
and the inhabitants of the provinces ranged themselves ac-
cording to their years.« Then the great ascetic, V\asa, of
mighty energy, bathing in the sacred waters of the "^Bhagi-
•rathi, summoned all the deceased warriors,* viz., those that
had fought on the side of the Pandavas, those that had fought
for the Kauravas, including highly blessed kings belonging to
diverse realms.^ At this, Janamejaya, a deafening uproar
was heard to arise from within the waters, resembling that
which had formerly been heard of the forces of the Kurus and
the Panda vas.« Then those kings, headed by Bhishma and
Drona, with all their troops, arose by thousands from the
waters of the Bhagirathi.' There were Virata and Drupada,
with their sons and forces. There were the sons of Draiipadi
and the son of Subhadra, and the Rakshasa Ghatotkacha.«
There were Kama and Duryodhana, and the mighty car- war-
rior Cakuni, and the other children, endued with great
strength, of Dhritarashtra, headed by Dus(;asana.« There were
the son of Jarasandha, and Bhagadatta, and Jalasandha of
great energy, and Bhuri9ravas, and Cala, and Calya, and
Vrishasena with his younger br ther.^° There were prince
Lakshmana (the son of Durvodhana), and the son of Dhrishta-
dyumna, and all the children of Cikhandin, and Dhrishtal.etu
with his younger brother.^^ There were Achala and Vrishaka,



72 MAHABHARATA. [PiUradnv^ana

and the Rakshasa Alayudha, and Valhika, and Somadatta,
and kino' Chekitana.^^ These and many others, who for their
number cannot be conveniently named, appeared on that
occasion. All of them rose from the waters of the Bhagirathi,
with resplendent bodies.^^ Those kings appeared, each clad
in that dress and equipt with that standard and that vehicle
which he had while fighting on the field." All of them were
now robed in celestial vestments and all had brilliant ear-
rings. They were free from all animosity and pride, and di-
vested of wrath and jealousy." Gandharvas sang their praises,
and bards waited on them, chaunting their deeds. Robed in
celestial vestments and wearing celestial garlands, each of them
Avas waited upon by bands of Apsaras.'" At that time, through
the puissance of his penances, the great ascetic, the son of
Satyavati, gratified with Dhritarashtra, gave him celestial
vision." Endued with celestial knowledge and strength, Gan-
dhari of great fame saw all her children as also all those that
had been slain in battle.'® All persons assembled there beheld
with steadfast gaze and hearts filled with wonder that amazing
and inconcievable phenomenon which made the hair on their
bodies stand on its end.'" It looked like a high carnival of
gladdened men and women. That wondrous scene looked
like a picture painted on the canvass.''"' Dhritarashtra, be-
holding all tho^e heroes, with his celestial vision obtained
through the grace of that sage, became full ot joy, chief of
Bharata's race.' '^



Section XXXIII.

Vaig unpayana said, — "Then those foremost of men, di-
vested of wrath and jealousy, and cleansed of every sin, met
with one another,' agreeably to those high and auspicious or-
dinances that have been laid down by regenerate Rishis. AH
of them were happy of hearts and looked like gods moving iu
Heaven." Son met with sire or mother, wives with husbands,
brother witli brother, and friend with friend, king.^ The
Pandavas, full of joy, met with the mighty bowman Kama'
as also with the sou of Snbhudra, and the children of Drau-



Parva.] ACRAMAVASIKA PARVAi 73

padi> With happy hearts the sons of Pandu approached
Kama, O monarch, and became reconciled with him.^ All
those warriors, O chief of Bharata's race, meeting with one
another through the grace of the great ascetic, became recon-
ciled with one another.® Casting off all unfriendliness, they
became established on amity and peace. It was even thus
that all those foremost of men, viz., the Kauravas and other
kings, became united with the Kurus and other kinsmen of
theirs as also with their children. The whole of that night
they passed in great happiness.''"^ Indeed, the Kshatriya
warriors, in consequence of the happiness they felt, regarded
that place as Heaven itself. There was no grief, no fear, no
suspicion, no discontent, no reproach in that region,^ as those
warriors, monarch, met with one another on that night.
Meeting with their sires and brothers and husbands and
sons,^° the ladies cast off all grief and felt great raptures of
delight. Having sported with one another thus for one night,
those heroes and those ladies," embracing one another and
taking one another's leave, returned to the places they had
come from. Indeed, that foremost of ascetics dismissed that
concourse of warriors.^^ Within the twinkling of an eye that
large crowd disappeared in the very sight of all those (living)
persons. Those high-souled persons, plunging into the sacred
river Bhagirathi/^ proceeded, with their cars and standards,
to their respective abodes. Some went to the regions of the
gods, some to the region of Brahman,^* some to the region
of Varuna, and some to the region of Kuvera. Some among
those kings proceeded to the region of Surya.^^ Amongst the
Rakshasas and Pi^achas some proceeded to the country of the
Uttara-Kurus. Others, moving in delightful attitudes, went
in the company of the deities.-*^ Even thus did all those
high-souled persons disappear with their vehicles and animals
and with all their followers. After all of them had gone
away, the great sage, who was standing in the waters of the
sacred stream,^^ viz., Vyasa of great righteousness and energy,
that benefactor of the Kurus, then addressed those Kshatriya
ladies who had become v/idows, and said these words,^^ — 'Let
those amongst these formost of women that are desirous of

[ 10 ]



74 MAHABHARATA, [Putraclarcanei

attaining to the regions acquired by their husbands cast away
all sloth and quickly plunge into the sacred Bhagirathi l'^^ —
Hearing these words of his, those foremost ladies, placing faith
in them, took the permission of their father- in law, and then
plunged into the waters of the Bhagirathi."° Freed from
human bodies, those chaste ladies then proceeded, king,
with their husbands to the regions acquired by the latter.^*
Even thus, those ladies of virtuous conduct, devoted to their
husbands, entering, the waters of the Bhagirathi, became freed
from their mortal tenements and attained to the companion-
ship of their husbands in the regions acquired by them.^^
Endued with celestial forms, and adorned with celestial orna-
ments, and wearing celestial vestments and garlands, they
proceeded to those regions where their husbands had found
their abodes. ^^ Possessed of excellent behaviour and many
virtues, their anxieties all dispelled, they were seen to ride
on excellent cars, and endued with every accomplishment
they found those regions of happiness which were theirs by
sright."* Devoted to the duties of piety, Vyasa, at that time,
becoming a giver of boons, granted unto all the men there
assembled the fruition of the wishes they respectively cherish-
•ed.^^ People of diverse realms, hearing of this meeting be-
tween the hallowed dead and living human beings, became
•highly delighted."® That man who duly listens to this narrative
meets with everything that is dear to him. Indeed, he ob-
■tains all agreeable objects both here and hereafter.^^ That
man of learning and science, that foremost of righteous per-
sons, who recites this narrative for the hearing of others ac-
quires great fame here and an auspicious end hereafter, as also
a union with kinsmen and all desirable objects. Such a man
has not to undergo painful labour for his sustenance, and meets
with all sorts of auspicious objects in life. Even these are the
rewards reaped by a person who, endued with devotion to
Vedic studies and with penances, recites this narrative in the
hearing of others.^^"-^ Those persons who, possessed of good
conduct, devoted to self-restraint, cleansed of all sins by the
gifts they make, endued with sincerity, having tranquil souls,
freed from falsehood and the desire of injuring others, edorned



Fem'va.] acramavasika parva." 75

with faith, belief in the scriptures, and intelligence, listen to
this wonderful parvan, surely attain to the highest goal here-
after."3o-"



Section XXXIV.

Sauti said, — Hearing this story of the reappearance and
departure of his forefathers, king Janamejaya of great in-
telligence became highly pleased.* Filled with joy, he once
more questioned VaiQampayana on the subject of the reappear-
ance of dead men, saying, — "How is it possible for persona
whose bodies have been destroyed to reappear in those very
forms 1"^ Thus asked, that foremost of regenerate persons,
viz., the disciple of Vyasa, that first of speakers, possessed of
great energy, thus answered Janamejaya.*

Vai9ampayana said, — "This is certain, viz., that acts are
never destroyed (without their consequences being enjoyed or
endured). Bodies, king, are born of acts ; so also are
features.* The great primal elements are eternal (indestruc-
tible) in consequence of the union with them of the Lord of
all beings. They exist with what is eternal. Accordingly,
they have no destruction when the non-eternal are destroyed."
Acts done without exertion are true, and foremost, and bear
real fruit. The soul, united however with such acts as require
exertion for their accomplishment, enjoys pleasure and pain.*^
Though united so (that is, with pleasure and pain), yet it is a
certain inference that the soul is never modified by them, like
the reflection of creatures in a mirror. It is never destroyed.f '

* Nilakantha explains that 'anayasakritam karma' implies the reli-
gion of Nivritti, for the religion of Pravritti consists of acts that re-
quire 'aySsa' or exertion for their accomplishment. The relij^on of
Nivritti or abstention from acts is said here to be true and superior, and
productive of real fruit, in the form, that is, of Emancipation. The
soul, however, in the generality of cases, united with 'ebhih,' by which
is meant 'ayasakritam karma,' that is, the acts done in pursuance of the
religion of Pravritti, becomes embodied and, therefore, enjoys happi-
ness or endures misery as the case may be. — T.

t The aense seems to be this : when a creature stands before a mirrojf



70 MAHABHARATA. [ Put radar jcma

As long as one's acts are jiofc exhausted (by enjoyment or en-
durance of their fruits good and bad), so long does one regard
the body to be oneself The man, however, whose acts have
been exhausted, without regarding the body to be self, takes
the self to be something otherwise.*^ Diverse existent objects
(such as the primal elements and the senses &c.,) attaining to
a body, become united as one. To men of knowledge who
understand the difference (between the body and self,) those
very objects become eternal.-f-^ In the Horse-sacrifice, this
Cruti is heard in the matter of the slaying of the horse. Those
which are the certain possessions of embodied creatures, viz.,
their life-breaths (and the senses, &c.), exist eternally even
when they are borne to the other world.-'" I shall tell thee
what is beneficial, if it be agreeable to thee, O king. Thou:
hast, while employed in thy sacrifices, heard of the paths of
the deities.^^ When preparations were made for any sacri-
fice of thine, the deities became beneficially inclined to thee.
When, indeed, the deities were thus disposed and came to
thy sacrifice, they were lords in the matter of the passage
(from this to the next world) of the animals slain. t^^ For this
reason, the eternal ones {viz., Jivas), by adoring the deities
in sacrifices, succeed in attaining to excellent goals. When
the five primal elements are eternal, when the soul also is
eternal, he called 'Purusha {viz., the soul invested with case)



its image is formed in the mirror ; such reflection, however, never affects
the mirror in the least, for when the object leaves the vicinity of the
mirror, the image or reflection vanishes away. The soul is like the
mirror. Pleasure and pain are like reflections in it. They come and
go away without the soul beins: at all modified by them in any way.
Pleasure and pain are destructible, but not so the soul.— T.

* The ordinary man thinks this conglomeration of diverse objects to
be his self. The man of wisdom who has exhausted his acts does not
think so. He is freei from the obligation of taking a body. — T.

t The sense probably is this. In the case of ordinary men, the
component parts of the body dissolve away, while Yogins can keep such
parts from dissolution as long as they like. — T.

I The sense is, the deities bear away to the next world the animals
slain in sacrifices. Though the bodies of such animals are apparently
destroyed, yet their life-breaths and senses continue to exist.— -T,



Parva.] acramivasika parva, 77

is equally so.^^ When such is the case, he who beholds a
creature as disposed to take diverse forms, is regarded as hav-
ing an erroneous understanding. He who indulges in too much
grief at separation is, I think, a foolish person,^* He who
sees evil in separation should abandon union. By standing
aloof, no unions are formed, and sorrow is cast off, for sorrow
in the world is born of separation. *^^ Only he who under-
stands the distinction between body and self, and not another,
becomes freed from the erroneous conviction. He that knows
the other {viz., self ) attains to the highest understanding and
becomes freed from error.-f-^^ As regards creatures, they ap-
pear from an invisible state, and once more disappear into
invisibleness. I do not know him. He also does not know
me. As regards myself, renunciation is not yet mine.^"
He that is not possessed of puissance enjoys or endures the
fruits of all his acts in those bodies in which he does them.'®
If the act be a mental one, its consequences are enjoyed or
endured mentally ; if it be done with the body, its conse-
quences are to be enjoyed or endured in the body.$'®



* The sense is that as wives &o., when lost, are sources of sorrow,
wise men should abstain from contracting such relations. Tliey might
then be free from sorrow. — T.

t 'Paraparajnah' is one that understands the distinction between
body and self. 'Apara' is, therefore, one that is not possessed of such
knowledge ; hence, as Nilakantha explains, it implies one who has not
attained to 'Jnana-nishtha.' What is said in the second line is that he
that adores 'saguna Brahma,' succeeds afterwards, through such adora-
tion, in reaching to 'nirguna Brahma.' — T.

I The sense seems to be this : we spring from the unmanifest and
disappear once more in the unmanifest. The Bengal texts read the first
line incorrectly. It is 'adarganatapatitah.' The second line is unin-
telligible. 'Naham tam vedmi' is taken by Nilakantha as implying 'I do
not know him,' i. e., him that is Emancipate. 'Asau cha no vetti mam*
is explained as due to 'karanabhat' But who is 'asau V *I have no
renunciation,' or 'renunciation is not yet mine,' implies that Emancipa-
tion, which directly flows from renunciation, is not mine. — T.

$ What is stated here is that if a man does an act that is bad, its
consequences he will have to endure in a human body. The same with
regard to rewards, By doing a meritorious act in one's human form,



[Putradarganct



Section XXXV.

Vaicjampayana said, — "King Dhritarashtra had never ba^'
held hi3 own sons. Obtaining eje-sight through the grace of
the Rishi, he beheld, for the first time, perpetuater of
Kuru's race, those children of his that were very like his own
self.* That foremost of men, viz., the Kuru monarch, had
learnt all the duties of kings, as also the Vedas and the
Upanishadas, and had acquired certitude of understanding
(from the same source).^ Vidura of great wisdom attained to
high success through the power of his penances. Dhritarashtra
also attained to great success in consequence of having met
the ascetic Vyasa."*

Janamejaya said, — "If Vyasa, disposed to grant me a boon,
kindly shows me my sire in that form which he had, clad as
he used to be clad, and as old as he was when he departed
from this world, I may then believe all that thou hast told
me.* Such a sight will be most agreeable to me. Indeed, I
shall regard myself crowned with success. I shall have gained
a certainty of conclusion. 0, let my wish be crowned with
fruition through the grace of that foremost of Rishis !''^

Sauti said, — After king Janamejaya had said these words,
Vyasa of great energy and intelligence showed his grace and
brought Parikshit (from the other world).^ King Janamejaya
beheld his royal father, possessed of great beauty, brought
down from Heaven, in the same form that he had and of the
same age as he was (at the time of leaving this world).'' The
high-souled Camika also, and his son Cringin, were similarly
brought there. All the counsellers and ministers of the king
beheld them.^ King Janamejaya, performing the final bath



one will enjoy its good consequences in one's human body. So acts done
mentally affect the mind and those done with the body affect the body.

It should be noted that the whole of the above translation is offered
tentatively. A verbal rendering has been attempted. The chain of
reasoning is not at all clear. The Commentator has done much to
elucidate the sense, but the original obscurities have scarcely been re-
moved. — T.



Parva.] acramavasika parva. 79

in his sacrifice, became highly glad. He poured the sacred
water on his father even as he caused it to be poured on him-
self.' Having undergone the final bath, the king addressed
the regenerate Astika who had sprung from the race of the
Yayavaras and who was the son of Jaratkaru, and said these
words :^° — "0 Astika, this sacrifice of mine is fraught with
many wonderful incidents, since this my sire has been seen
by me, he who has dispelled all my sorrows !"**

Istika said, — "The performer of that sacrifice in which the
ancient Rishi, the Island-born Vyasa, that vast receptacle of
penances, is present, is sure, foremost one of Kuru's race
to conquer both the worlds I^^ son of the Pandavas, thou
hast heard a wonderful history. The snakes have been con-
sumed into ashes and have followed the footsteps of thy sire.^*
Through thy truthfulness, monarch, Takshaka has with
difficulty escaped a painful fate. The Rishis have all been wor-
shipped. Thou hast seen also the end that has been attained
by thy high-souled sire.^* Having heard this sin-cleansing
history thou hasfc achieved abundant merit. The knots of thy
heart have been untied through sight of this foremost of per-
sons.^^ They that are the supporters of the wings of Right-
eousness, they that are of good conduct and excellent dis-
position, they at sight of whom sins become attenuated, we
should all bow to them !""

Sauti continued, — Having heard this from that foremost of
regenerate ones, king Janamejaya worshipped that Rishi, re-
peatedly honouring him in every way." Conversant with all
duties, he then asked the Rishi Vai^ampayana of unfading



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