The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa Bk. 3 Pt. 2 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 521 pages of information about The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa Bk. 3 Pt. 2.
Surya sweetly said unto Karna these words for his benefit, ’O son, do thou O Karna, listen to these words of mine, O thou foremost of truthful persons!  O mighty-armed one, I tell thee to-day from affection, what is for thy great good!  With the object, O Karna, of obtaining thy ear-rings, Sakra, moved by the desire of benefiting the sons of Pandu, will come unto thee, disguised as a Brahmana!  He, as well as all the world, knoweth thy character, viz., that when solicited by pious people, thou givest away but never takest in gift!  Thou, O son, givest unto Brahmanas wealth or any other thing that is asked of thee and never refusest anything to anybody.  Knowing thee to be such, the subduer himself of Paka will come to beg of thee thy ear-rings and coat of mail.  When he beggeth the ear-rings of thee, it behoveth thee not to give them away, but to gratify him with sweet speeches to the best of thy power.  Even this, is for thy supreme good!  While asking thee for the ear-rings, thou shalt, with various reasons, repeatedly refuse Purandara who is desirous of obtaining them, offering him, instead, various other kinds of wealth, such as gems and women and kine, and citing various precedents.  If thou, O Karna, givest away thy beautiful ear-rings born with thee, thy life being shortened, thou wilt meet with death!  Arrayed in thy mail and ear-rings, thou wilt, O bestower of honours, be incapable of being slain by foes in battle!  Do thou lay to heart these words of mine!  Both these jewelled ornaments have sprung from Amrita.  Therefore, they should be preserved by thee, if thy life is at all dear to thee.’

“Hearing these words, Karna said, ’Who art thou that tellest me so, showing me such kindness?  If it pleaseth thee, tell me, O illustrious one, who thou art in the guise of a Brahmana!’—­The Brahmana thereupon said, ’O son, I am he of a thousand rays!  Out of affection, I point out to thee the path!  Act thou according to my words, as it is for thy great good to do so!’ Karna replied, ’Surely, this itself is highly fortunate for me that the god himself of splendour addresses me today, seeking my welfare.  Listen, however, to these words of mine!  May it please thee, O bestower of boons, it is only from affection that I tell thee this!  If I am dear to thee, I should not be dissuaded from the observance of my vow!  O thou that are possessed of the wealth of effulgence, the whole world knoweth this to be my vow that, of a verity, I am prepared to give away life itself unto superior Brahmanas!  If, O best of all rangers of the sky, Sakra cometh to me, disguised as a Brahmana, to beg for the benefit of the sons of Pandu, I will, O chief of the celestials, give him the ear-rings and the excellent mail, so that my fame which hath spread over the three worlds may not suffer any diminution!  For persons like us, it is not fit to save life by a blame-worthy act.  On the contrary, it is even proper for us to meet death with the approbation of

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The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa Bk. 3 Pt. 2 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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