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Krishna Dwaipayana Vyasa
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 454 pages of information about Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa Bk. 3 Pt. 1.

“Arjuna replied, ’O Matali, mount thou without loss of time this excellent car, a car that cannot be attained even by hundreds of Rajasuya and horse sacrifices.  Even kings of great prosperity who have performed great sacrifices distinguished by large gifts (to Brahmanas), even gods and Danavas are not competent to ride this car.  He that hath not ascetic merit is not competent to even see or touch this car, far less to ride on it.  O blessed one, after thou hast ascended it, and after the horses have become still, I will ascend it, like a virtuous man stepping into the high-road of honesty.’”

Vaisampayana continued, “Matali, the charioteer of Sakra, hearing these words of Arjuna, soon mounted the car and controlled the horses.  Arjuna then, with a cheerful heart, purified himself by a bath in the Ganges.  And the son of Kunti then duly repeated (inaudibly) his customary prayers.  He then, duly and according to the ordinance, gratified the Pitris with oblations of water.  And, lastly, he commenced to invoke the Mandara—­that king of mountains—­saying, ’O mountain, thou art ever the refuge of holy, heaven-seeking Munis of virtuous conduct and behaviour.  It is through thy grace, O mountain, that Brahmanas and Kshatriyas and Vaisyas attain heaven, and their anxieties gone, sport with the celestials.  O king of mountains, O mountain, thou art the asylum of Munis, and thou holdest on thy breast numerous sacred shrines.  Happily have I dwelt on thy heights.  I leave thee now, bidding thee farewell.  Oft have I seen thy tablelands and bowers, thy springs and brooks, and the sacred shrines on thy breast.  I have also eaten the savoury fruits growing on thee, and have slated my thirst with draughts of perfumed water oozing from the body.  I have also drunk the water of thy springs, sweet as amrita itself.  O mountain, as a child sleepeth happily on the lap of his father, so have I, O king of mountains, O excellent one, sported on thy breast, echoing with the notes of Apsaras and the chanting of the Vedas.  O mountain, every day have I lived happily on thy tablelands.’  Thus having bidden farewell to the mountain, that slayer of hostile heroes—­Arjuna—­blazing like the Sun himself, ascended the celestial car.  And the Kuru prince gifted with great intelligence, with a glad heart, coursed through the firmament on that celestial car effulgent as the sun and of extra-ordinary achievements.  And after he had become invisible to the mortals of the earth, he beheld thousands of cars of extra-ordinary beauty.  And in that region there was no sun or moon or fire to give light, but it blazed in light of its own, generated by virtue of ascetic merit.  And those brilliant regions that are seen from the earth in the form of stars, like lamps (in the sky)—­so small in consequence of their distance, though very large—­were beheld by the son of Pandu, stationed in their respective places, full of beauty and effulgence and blazing

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