The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 1 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 2,273 pages of information about The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 1.
the power to stand.’  Hearing these words, Savitri quickly advancing, approached her husband, and sat down upon the ground, placing his head upon her lap.  And that helpless lady, thinking of Narada’s words, began to calculate the (appointed) division of the day, the hour, and the moment.  The next moment she saw a person clad in red attire with his head decked with a diadem.  And his body was of large proportions and effulgent as the Sun.  And he was of a darkish hue, had red eyes, carried a noose in his hand, and was dreadful to behold.  And he was standing beside Satyavan and was steadfastly gazing at him.  And seeing him, Savitri gently placed her husband’s head on the ground, and rising suddenly, with a trembling heart, spake these words in distressful accents, ’Seeing this thy superhuman form, I take thee to be a deity.  If thou will, tell me, O chief of the gods, who thou art and what also thou intendst to do!’ Thereat, Yama replied, ’O Savitri, thou art ever devoted to thy husband, and thou art also endued with ascetic merit.  It is for this reason that I hold converse with thee.  Do thou, O auspicious one, know me for Yama.  This thy lord Satyavan, the son of a king, hath his days run out.  I shall, therefore, take him away binding him in this noose.  Know this to be my errand!’ At these words Savitri said, ’I had heard that thy emissaries come to take away mortals, O worshipful one!  Why then, O lord, hast thou come in person?’

“Markandeya continued, ’Thus addressed by her, the illustrious lord of Pitris, with a view to oblige her, began to unfold to her truly all about his intentions.  And Yama said, ’This prince is endued with virtues and beauty of person, and is a sea of accomplishments.  He deserveth not to be borne away by my emissaries.  Therefore is it that I have come personally.’  Saying this, Yama by main force pulled out of the body of Satyavan, a person of the measure of the thumb, bound in noose and completely under subjection.  And when Satyavan’s life had thus been taken out, the body, deprived of breath, and shorn of lustre, and destitute of motion, became unsightly to behold.  And binding Satyavan’s vital essence, Yama proceeded in a southerly direction.  Thereupon, with heart overwhelmed in grief, the exalted Savitri, ever devoted to her lord and crowned with success in respect of her vows, began to follow Yama.  And at this, Yama said, ’Desist, O Savitri!  Go back, and perform the funeral obsequies of thy lord!  Thou art freed from all thy obligations to thy lord.  Thou hast come as far as it is possible to come’.  Savitri replied, ’Whither my husband is being carried, or whither he goeth of his own accord, I will follow him thither.  This is the eternal custom.  By virtue of my asceticism, of my regard for my superiors, of my affection for my lord, of my observance of vows, as well as of thy favour, my course is unimpeded.  It hath been declared by wise men endued with true knowledge that by walking only seven paces with another,

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