The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 1 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 1,884 pages of information about The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 1.
home, the wearing of matted locks on the head, lying under the canopy of heaven, daily fasts, the worship of fire, immersion in water, and lying on the bare ground,—­these alone cannot produce such a result.  They only that are possessed of holiness succeed, by knowledge and deeds, to conquer disease, decrepitude and death, and acquire a high status.  As seeds that have been scorched by fire do not sprout forth, so the pains that have been burnt by knowledge cannot effect the soul.  This inert body that is only like a block of wood when destitute of souls, is, without doubt, short lived like froth in the ocean.  He that obtaineth a view of his soul, the soul that resideth in every body, by help of one or half of a rhythmic line (of the Vedas), hath no more need for anything.  Some obtaining a knowledge of identity with the Supreme Soul from but two letters (of the Vedas) and some from hundreds and thousands of rhythmic lines, acquire salvation, for the knowledge of one’s identity with the Supreme Soul is the sure indication of salvation.  The men of old, distinguished for their knowledge, have said, neither this world nor that hereafter nor bliss can be his who is disturbed by doubts.  And belief of one’s identity with the Supreme Soul is the indication of salvation.  He that knoweth the true meaning of the Vedas, understandeth their true use.  Such a man is affrighted at the Vedic ritual like a man at sight of a forest conflagration.  Giving up dry disputation, have recourse to Sruti and Smriti, and seek thou, with the aid of thy reason, the knowledge of the Undecaying One that is without a second.  One’s search (after this knowledge) becometh futile from defect of means.  Therefore, should one carefully strive to obtain that knowledge by aid of the Vedas.  The Vedas are the Supreme Soul; they are His body; they are the Truth.  The soul that is bounded by the animal organism is incompetent to know Him in whom all the Vedas merge.  That Supreme Soul, however, is capable of being known by the pure intellect.  The existence of the gods as stated in the Vedas, the efficacy of acts, and the capacity for action of being furnished with bodies, are noticeable in every Yuga.  Independence of these and annihilation are to be sought from purity of the senses.  Therefore, the suspension of the function of the senses is the true fasting.  One may attain to heaven by asceticism, one may obtain objects of enjoyment by the practice of charity and may have his sins purged off by ablutions in tirthas.  But complete emancipation cannot be had except by knowledge.’”

Vaisampayana continued, “Thus addressed, O great king, by the Rishi, Yudhishthira of great fame then said, ’O holy one, I desire to listen to the rules about that charity which is meritorious.”

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The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 1 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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