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Section VIII.

VaigatnpayaTia said, — "As Arjuna entered the asylum of
the truthful Rishi, he beheld the son of Satyavati seated in a
secluded spot.^ Approaching that Rishi of high vows and
endued with a knowledge of all duties, he said, — 'I am Ar-.
juna' — and then awaited his pleasure.^ Satyavati's son, endued
with high penances, answered, saying,— 'Welcome !' Of tran-
quil soul, the great Muni further said,— 'Take thy seat.'^ See-
ing that the son of Pritha was exceedingly cheerless and
breathing heavy sighs repeatedly and filled with despair, Vyasa
addressed him, saying,* — 'Hast thou been sprinkled with water
from anybody's nails or hair, or the end of anybody's cloth, or
from the mouth of a jar ? Hast thou had sexual congress
•with any woman before the cessation of her functional flow ?
Hast thou slain a Brahmana ?^ Hast thou been vanquished
in battle ? Thou lookest like one shorn of prosperity ! I do
not know that thou hast been defeated by any one. Why
then, chief of Bharata's race, this exceedingly dejected
aspect ? It behooveth thee, son of Pritha, to tell me all, if,
indeed, there be no harm in telling it !'^

"Arjuna said, — 'He whose complexion was like that of a
(newly-risen) cloud, he whose eyes were like a pair of large
lotus petals, viz., Krishna, has, with Rama, cast off his body
and ascended to Heaven.^ At Prabhasa, through iron bolts
generated by the curse denounced by Brahmanas, the destruc-
tion has taken place of the Vrishni heroes. Awful has that
carnage been, and not even a single hero has escaped.^ The
heroes of the Bhoja, the Andhaka, and the Vrishni races, O
Brahmana, who were all endued with high souls, great might,
and leonine pride, have slaughtered one another in battle."
Possessed of arms that looked like maces of iron, and capable
of bearing the strokes of heavy clubs and darts, alas, they
have all been slain with blades of Erahd grass ! Behold the
perverse course of Time !^° Five hundred thousand mighty-
armed warriors have thus been laid low. Encountering one
another, they have met with destruction.^^ Thinking re-
peatedly of this carnage of the Yadava warriors of im-


measurable energy and of the illustrious Krishna, I fail to
derive peace of mind.^^ The dea(?h of the wielder of Carnga
is as incredible as the drying up of the ocean, the displace-
ment of a mountain, the falling down of the vault of heaven,
or the cooling property of fire.^** Deprived of the company of
the Vrishni heroes, I desire not to live in this world.^* An-
other incident has happened that is more painful than this,
O thou that art possessed of wealth of penances ! Repeatedly
thinking of it, my heart is breaking !^^ In my very sight,

Brahmana, thousands of Vrishni ladies were carried away
by the Abhiras of the country of the five waters, who assailed
us." Taking up my bow I found myself unequal to even
string it. The might that had existed in my arms seemed to
have disappeared on that occasion. ^'^ great ascetic, my
weapons of diverse kinds failed to make their appearance.
Soon, again, my shafts became exhausted.^^ That person of
immeasurable soul, of four arms, wielding the conch, the discus,
and the mace, clad in yollow robes, dark of complexion, and
possessing eyes resembling lotus-petals, is no longer seen by
me ! Alas, reffc of Govinda, what have I to live for, dragging
my life in sorrow ?^® He who used to stalk in advance of my
car, that divine form endued with great splendour and unfad-
ing puissance, consuming as he proceeded all hostile warriors,
can no longer be seen by me.^° No longer beholding him who
by his energy first burnt all hostile troops whom I afterwards
despatched with shafts sped from Gandiva, I am filled with
grief and my head swims, best of men ! Penetrated with
cheerlessness and despair, I fail to obtain peace of mind !^^"^^

1 dare not live, reft of the heroic Janarddana. As soon as
I heard that Vishnu had left the Earth, my eyes became dim
and all things disappeared from my vision .^^ best of men,
it behooveth thee to tell me what is good for me now, for I am
now a wanderer with an empty heart, despoiled of my kins-
men and of my prowess !'"*

"Vyasa said, — 'The mighty car- warriors of the Vrishni and
the Andhaka races have all been consumed by the Brahmana's
curse, O chief of Kuru's race, it behooveth thee not to grieve
for their destruction !-^ That which has happened had been


ordained. It was the destiny of those high-souled warriors.
Krishna suffered it to take place although he was fully com-
petent to baffle it.^^ Govinda was able to alter the very course
of the universe with all its mobile and immobile creatures.
What need then be said of th.e curse of even high-souled Brah-
manas?^'^ He who used to proceed in front of thy car, armed
with discus and mace, through affection for thee, was the
four-arnied Vasudeva, that ancient Rishi !-^ That high-souled
one of expansive eyes, viz., Krishna, having lightened the
burthen of the Earth and cast off his (human) body, has at-
tained to his own high seat."^ By thee also, foremost of
men, with Bhima for thy helpmate and the twins, mighty-
armed hero, has the great work of the gods been accomplish-
ed !^° foremost one of Kuru's race, I regard thee and thy
brothers as crowned with success for ye have accomplished the
great purpose of your lives ! The time has come for your
departure from the world. Even this, puissant one, is what
is beneficial for you now.®^ Even thus, understanding and
prowess and foresight, O Bharata, arise when days of pros-
perity have not outrun. These very acquisitions disappear
when the hour of adversity comes.*^^ All this has Time for its
root. Time is, indeed, the seed of the universe, Dhanan-
jaya ! It is Time, again, that withdraws everything at its
pleasure.f^^ One becomes mighty, and, again, losing that
might, becomes weak. One becomes a master and rules others,
and, again, losing that position, becomes a servant for obeying
the behests of others.^* Thy weapons, having achieved suc-
cess, have gone away to the place they came from. They
will, again, come into thy hands when the Time for their
coming approaches.*" The time has come, BJiarata, for
you all to attain to the highest goal. Even this is what

* Nilakantha explains that, 'Buddhi' here means the faculty of
discovering what should be done in view of the situation at hand, aTid
'pratipatti' means the faculty of applying precaationary measures, that
is, foresight, for avoiding disagreeable consequences. — T.

t Time, in such connection, is regarded as the alter ego ol the Lord
of the universe, or the Supreme Deity. — T. . • • •


I regard to be highly beneficial for you all, chief of
Bharata's race !' "*3«

Vaicjampayaria continued, — "Having heard these Avords of
Vyasa of immoasurable energy, the son of Pritha, receiving his
permission, returned to the city named after the elephant.*'^
Entering it, the hero approached Yudhishthira and inform-
ed him of all that had taken place with reference to the


* The word 'punar' in verse 35, implies another cycle of years, i., e.,
•Yugautare,' lu 36, 'gatim mukhyum' is 'Swargam.'— T,


Yuyudhana strikes ofif the head of Kritavarraan
Krishna rushes forward for preventing Satyaki

from doing further mischief
Others rush towards Satyaki for punishing him

for his rashness
Krishna does not interfere ...
Satyaki assailed on all sides
Pradyumna rushes towards Satyaki for his

Overwhelmed by odds, both Satyaki and Pra-
dyumna are slain
Krishna in wrath takes up a handful of EraJca

grass ...

Every blade of grass becomes changed into a

fatal bolt of iron
"With those bolts Krishna begins to slay all who

come in his way
Others take up blades of grass which in their

hands become changed into bolts of iron
The slaughter becomes general
Inebriated, with wine, none think of escape or

flight .
Krishna beholds the sight unmoved
The de=!truction becomes complete of the

Vrishnis and the Andhakas, &c. ...
Daruka, Kecjava, and Babhru leave the spot
They discover the place where Rama sat in silence
Krishna directs Daruka to go to the Kurus and

inform them of what had happened
Krishna directs Vabhru to go to Dwaraka for

protecting the ladies ...
Vabhru slain by an iron bolt that ran of its own

accord at him
Krishna asks Rama to stay for his return
Entering the city of Dwaravati Krishna meets

with his father

• • • • • •

Krishna apprises him of Arjuna's coming
[ b ]


















Ditto announces to his father his intention of

retiring into the woods for practice of

penances ... ••• ••• ••• 10

The wives of Krishna set up a loud wail ... ib
Tlrishna returns for assuring his wives and in-
forms thera of Arjuna's coming ... ... ib

"Rama casts off his body ... ... ... ib

He assumes his true shape, viz., that of the

mif^hty snake Ananta ... ... ... ib

Ananta received with honour by Vasuki and

other snakes ••• .•• •»• lo
Krishna recollects the words of Durvasas and

Gandhari ... ••• ••• ••• ^^

Ditto lays himself down in Yoga ... ... ib

A hunter, named Jara, mistaking Krishna for

a deer, pierces the sole of his foot with a shaft... ib

Jara discovers his mistake ... ••• ••• "^

Krishna comforts him ... ••• ••• i"

Krishna ascends to Heaven ••• ••• "^

Ditto received with honours by the deities,

celestial Rishis, and the Gandharvas ... ib

Daruka reaches the Kuru city ... ... ib

Arjuna sets out for Dwaraka ... ... ib

The wives of Krishna set up a loud wail upon

seeing Arjuna ... ••• ••• *"

Arjuna's grief at the appearance of the Yadava

city ••. ••• ••• •'*

Arjuna sees his maternal uncle Vasudeva ... ib

The grief of Vasudeva ... •-. ••• ^^

Vasudeva's lamentations ... ... ••• lo

Arjuna's reply ... ... ••• ••• ^^

Ariuna summons the chief officers of the


Vrishnis ... ••• ••• ••• •*•"

Arjuna proposes to take away the ladies and the

children of the Vrishnis away from Dwaravati ... ib

Arjuna enters Vasudeva's mansion ... ... i"

The ladies utter a loud wail of grief ... ... i»



Arjuna asks the ladies to prepare for leaving,

the city ... ..^ ... ... 16

Vasudeva casts off his body ... ... • ib

The wail of grief uttered by his widows ... ib

Vasudeva's body carried to the crematorium ... ib

The body duly disposed off... ... ... 17

The four wives of Vasudeva burn themselves on

his funeral pyre ... ... ... ib,

Th« children of the Vrishnis and the Andhakas

offer oblations of water to Vasudeva ... ib'

Arjuna visits the slaughter-ground of the

Vrishnis ... ... ... ... ib.

Arjuna causes the bodies of Krishna and Rama

to be duly cremated ... ... ... ib-

Arjuna sets out of the Yadava city with the

ladies and children, the Yadava troops, and

other inhabitants ... ... ... ib

Description of the procession ... ... ,18.

The Yadava city swallowed up by the ocean ... ib'

The Abhiras of Panchanada conspire to rob th«

cavalcade ... ... ... .., ib-

Arjuna opposes the robbers unsuccessfully ... ig

Ditto strings Gandiva with difficulty ... ... ib.

The celestial weapons do not make their appear-

rance at the call of Arjuna ... ... ib

The Vrishni- warriors fail to rescue the ladies ... ib

The robbers retreat with theit booty of wealth

and women ... ... ... ... ib<

Arjuna's grief at his inability to resist the

robbers ... ... ... ... 20

Arjuna escorts the remnant of the cavalcade to

Kurukshetra ... ... ... ib

Yuyudhana's son established on the banks of the

Saraswati ... ... ... ... ib

Krishna's great grandson, Vajra, established at

Indraprastha ... ... ... ib.

The widows of Akrura retire into the woods ... ih



Rukmini and other wives of Krishna ascend the

funeral pyre ... ... ... ib

Satyabhama and other wives of Krishna retire

to Kalapa beyond the Himavata ... ... ib

The citizens of Dwaravati, distributed into

groups, bestowed upon Vajra ... ... ib

Arjuna, with eyes bathed in tears, enters the

retreat of Vyasa ... ... ... ib

Arjuna beholds Vyasa and announces himself to

miu ••• ••• ••• ••• ^x

Vyasa enquires after the dause of Arjuna's grief

and change of aspect ... ... ... ib

Arjuna informs Vyasa of the carnage of the

Vrishnis, the ascension to Heaven of Krishna,

&c., and his own discomfiture at the hands of

the robbers ... ..^ ... ... ib

Vyasa comforts Arjuna ... ... ... 22

Vyasa's discourse on the changes brought about

by time ... ... ... ... 23

Vyasa tells Arjuna that the time has come for

the departure of the Pandavas from the world ... ib

Arjuna leaves Vyasa's retreat and enters

Hastinapura ... ... ... 24

Arjuna informs Yudhishthira of all that has

happened ... ... ... ... ib






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( The right of trantlaiion it reserved* )


Slowly but steadily I have ascended another rung. The
Mausala Parva has been finished, and the Mahaprasthanika is
reached. The applications I have addressed to the patrons
of my husband still remain unanswered. Only one has been
disposed of, viz., that which I had ventured to lay before
Maharajah Sir Lichmeswar Sing Bahadur of Durbhanga. To
my singular raisf)rtune, the Maharajah has rejected my
humble appeal. From the beginning of the enterprise, my
husband had made several attempts to interest in it the
"primier nobleman of Bengal" as Dr. Sambhu C. Mukerjee,
with his usual felicity of expression, first styled the Maharajah
on his entrance into public life. To his great grief, however,
my hiisbind found the Maharajah entirely inaccessible. My
husband was favoured with interviews by Viceroys and Pro-
vincial Governors and Lieutenant-Governors, and ruling chiefs
and princes. The "primier nobleman of Bengal," however, re-
jected every prayer of my husband to grant him an interview
and every appeal for aid. The French Government went out
of its way for helping the enterprise even liberally, disregarding
its serial character and the fact of its being an incomplete
foreign publication. Every local Government, the Government
of India, and the Secretary of State have helped it. That such
an enterprise should fail to interest the primier nobleman of
Bengal and enlist his active sympathy, is inexplicable. Tiiere
is one other nobleman, viz., the Maharajah Sir Gajapati Ptao
of Vi'^ianagram, who also has not as jet done a)iYthi)ig tor
the p iblic vtion. The house of Vizianagram has been noted
for its liberality. The present Maharajah is distinguished for
his culture. On the occasion of the visit of the Archdnke of
Austria, he was the only Indian nobleman who was able to
converse with the Archduke without the aid of an inter-
preter. He was pleased to favour my husband with several
interviews and to even promise him substantial aid. One of mv
husband's patrons, an eminent official, having recommanded
the enterprise to the notice of the ilaharajah, received ample

( 2 )

as3:in.nc0i in reply. Since my husband's death, I have ad-
dressed several letters to .the Maharajah to none of which I
hvve been favourei with an answer. I have very little doubt
that the recollection of his promise, though repeated to Sir
Andrew Scoble, has faded from the Maharajah's recollection,
and that none of my letters have actually reached him, in con-
sequence, as I have heard, of the clunisy arrangement of the
Vizianagram sherista. To whatever causes due, the only two
noblemen from whom no aid has been received for this national
enterprise are Durbhanga and Vizianagram. It is scarcely
necessary to state that between them they can easily suport
ten such publishing enterprises as the English translation of
the Mahabharata. No discredit can possibly attach to names
so distinguished for liberality as Durbhanga and Vizianagram
for siich oiTdission to help my husband or his poor widow. That
omission must be ascribed bo our misfortune.

In finishing the Mahaprasthanika, my debts have increased.
There remains only one more fascicule to issue for completing
the great task. I have no means for repaying my debts unless
I receive help. Hope has been extinguished in my heart.
My appeals addressed to different quarters are still unanswered.
It is for the patrons of the enterprise to judge whether the
Mihabharata is to remain incomplete by one fascicule and
whether a poor Hindu widow who has devoted her all for its
completion should bear the burthen of her debts without the
means of repaying them till her very house is sold and shared
between her creditors.



mountain Meru, the foremost of all high-peaked mountains.'*
As those mighty ones were pi-oceeding quickly, all rapt in/
Yoga, Yajnaseni, falling off from Yoga, dropped down .oa,
the Earth.^ Beholding her fallen down, Bhimasena of great,
strength addressed king Yudhishthira the just, saying,* — <
'O scorcher of foes, this princess never did any sinful act.
Tell us what the cause is for which Krishna has fallen down
on the Earth !'^

"Yudhishthira said, — 'She had great partiality for Dhanan-
jaya in especial. She obtains the fruit of that conduct today^
O best of men !' "^

VaiQampayana continued, — "Having said this, that fore-?
most one of Bharata's race proceeded on. Of righteous soul,
that foremost of men, endued with great intelligence, went
on, with mind intent on itself.'^ Then Sahadeva of greafe
learning fell down on the Earth. Beholding him drop down,
Bhima addressed the king, saying,*^' — 'He who with great
humility used to serve us all, alas, why is that son of Madravati
fallen down on the Earth ?'^

"Yudhishthira said, — 'He never thought anybody his equal
in wisdom. It is for that fault that this prince has fallen
down.' "^«

Vai9ampayaHa contiqiued, — "Having said this, the king
proceeded, leaving Sahadeva there. Indeed, Kunti's son Yu-i
dhishthira went on, with his brothers and with the dog." Be-
holding both Krishna and the Pandava Sahadeva fallen down;
the brave Nakula, whose love for kinsmen was very great,'
fell down himself.^^ Upon the falling down of the heroia
Nakula of groat personal beauty, Bhima once more addressed
the king, saying,^^ — 'This brother of ours who was endued with
righteousness without incompleteness, and who always obeyed'
our behests, this Nakula who was unrivalled for beauty, has
fallen down !'^* Thus addressed by Bhimasena, Yudhishthira
said, with respect to Nakula, these words : — 'He was of right-
eous soul and the foremost of all persons endued with intelli-
gence.^^ He, however, thought that there was nobody that
equalled him in beauty of person. Indeed, he regarded him-
self as superior to all in that - respect." It is. for this that


Nakula hag fallen down. Know this, Vrikodara I That,
O hero, which has been ordained for a person, must have to be
endured by him.'" Beholding Nakula and the others fall
down, Pandu's son Arjuna of white steeds, that slayer of
hostile heroes, fell down in great grief of heart." When that
foremost of men, who was endued with the energy of Cakra,
had fallen down, indeed, when that invincible hero was on
the point of death, Bhima said unto the king,^® — 'I do not
recollect any untruth uttered by this high-souled one. In-
deed, not even in jest did he say anything false. What then
is that for whose evil consequence this one has fallen down on
the Earth ?'*«

"Yudhishthira said, — 'Arjuna had said that he would con-
sume all our foes in a single day. Proud of his heroism, ho
did not, however, accomplish what he had said. Hence has
he fallen down.^* This Phalguna disregarded all wielders of
bows. One desirous of prosperity should never indulge such
sentiments.' "^"^

Vai(;ampayana continued, — "Having said so, the king pro-
ceeded on. Then Bhima fell down. Having fallen down,
Bhima addressed king Yudhishthira the just, saying,^^ — O
king, behold ! I who am thy darling have fallen down ! For
what reason have I dropped down ? Tell me if thou knowest
it !'"

"Yudhisthira said, — 'Thou wert a great eater, and thou
didst use to boast of thy strength. Thou never didst attend,
Partha, to the wants of others while eating. It is for
that, Bhima, that thou hast fallen down \'^^ Having said
these words, the mighty-armed Yudhishthira proceeded on,
without looking back. He had only one companion, viz., the
dog of which I have repeatedly spoken to thee, that followed
him now."**

Section III.

Vai^ampayana said, — "Then Cakra, causing the firmament
and the Earth to be filled by a loud sound, came to the son of
Pritha on a car and asked him to ascend it.* Beholding his



brothers fallen on the Earth, king Yudhishthira the just said
unto that deity of a thousand eyes these words:' — 'My
brothers have all dropped down here ! They must go with
me. Without them by me I do not wish to go to Heaven,
O lord of all the deities !' The delicate princess (Draupadi)
deserving of every comfort, Purandara, should go with us !
It behooveth thee to permit this !'*

"Cakra said, — 'Thou shalt behold thy brothers in Heaven.
They have reached it before thee ! Indeed, thou shalt see all
of them there, with Krishna. Do not yield to grief, chief
of the Bharatas !^ Having cast off their human bodies they
have gone there, chief of Bharata's race ! As regards thee,
it is ordained that thou shalt go thither in this very body of
thine !'«

"Yudhishthira said, — 'This dog, lord of the Past and
the Present, is exceedingly devoted to me. He should go
with me. My heart is full of compassion for him !'^

"Cakra said, — 'Immortality and a condition equal to mine,
O king, prosperity extending in all directions, and high
success, and all the felicities of Heaven, thou hast won to-
day ! Do thou cast olf this dog. In this there will be no

"Yudhishthira said, — 'O thou of a thousand eyes, thou
that art of righteous behaviour, it is exceedingly difficult for
one that is of righteous behaviour to perpetrate an act that is
unrighteous. I do not desire that union with prosperity for
which I shall have to cast otf one that is devoted to me !'*"

•''Indra said, — 'There is no place in Heaven for persons with
dogs. Besides, the (deities called) Krodhava(;as take away
all the merits of such persons. Reflecting on this, act, O
king Yudhishthira the just ! Do thou abandon this dog.
There is no cruelty in this 1'^®

"Yudhishthira said, — 'It has been said that the abandon-
ment of one that is devoted is infinitely sinful. It is equal

* The first line, rendered literally, would run, 'An Arya feels great
difficulty in doing an act that is not worthy of an Arya.' Of
course, 'Arya' here implies a person of respectable birth and righteous
cwnduct, — T.


to the sin that one incurs by slaying a Brahmana. Hence,
O great Indra, I shall not abandon this dog today from desire
of my happiness !" Even this is my vow steadily pursued,
viz., that I never give up a person that is terrified, nor one
that is devoted to me, nor one that seeks my protection, say-
ing, that he is destitute, nor one that is atHicted, nor one that
has come to me, nor one that is weak in protecting oneself,
nor one that is solicitous of life. I shall never give up such
a one till my own life is at an end !'^*

"Indra said, — 'Whatever gifts, or sacrifices spread out, or
libations poured on the sacred fire, are seen by a dog, are takeri
away by the Krodhava^as. Do thou, therefore, abandon this
doc^. By abandoning this dog thou wilt attain to the region
of the deities.^^ Having abandoned thy brothers and Krishna,
thou hast, hero, acquired a region of felicity by thy own
deeds. Why art thou so stupefied ? Thou hast renounced
everything. Why then dost thou not renounce this dog ?'^*

"Yudhishthira said, — 'This is well known in all the worlds

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