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This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 1,884 pages of information about The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 1.

SECTION CCXXXIV

(Khandava-daha Parva continued)

“Jaritari said, ’The person that is wise remaineth wakeful in view of death.  Accordingly, when the hour of death approacheth, he feeleth no pangs.  But the person of perplexed soul, who remaineth not awake, when the hour of death comes, feeleth the pangs of death and never attaineth salvation.’

“The second brother Sarisrikka, said, ’Thou art patient and intelligent.  The time is come when our lives are threatened.  Without doubt, one only amongst many becometh wise and brave.’

“The third brother, Stamvamitra, said, ’The eldest brother is called the protector.  It is the eldest brother that rescueth (the younger ones) from danger.  If the eldest himself faileth to rescue them, what can the younger ones do?’

“The fourth and the youngest brother, Drona said, ’The cruel god of fire, with seven tongues and seven mouths quickly cometh towards our habitation, blazing forth in splendour and licking up everything in his path.’

“Vaisampayana continued, ’Having addressed one another thus, the sons of Mandapala then each devotedly addressed an eulogistic hymn to Agni.  Listen now, O monarch, to those hymns as I recite them.’

“Jaritari said, ’Thou art, O fire, the soul of air!  Thou art the body of the Earth’s vegetation!  O Sukra, water is thy parent as thou art the parent of water!  O thou of great energy, thy flames, like the rays of the sun, extend themselves above, below, behind, and on each side.’

“Sarisrikka said, ’O smoke-bannered god, our mother is not to be seen, and we know not our father!  Our feathers have not grown as yet.  We have none to protect us save thee.  Therefore, O Agni, infants that we are protect us!  O Agni, as we are distressed, protect us with that auspicious form thou hast and with those seven flames of thine!  We seek protection at thy hands.  Thou alone, O Agni, art the giver of heat (in the universe).  O lord, there is none else (save thee) that giveth heat to the rays of the sun.  O, protect us who are young and who are Rishis.  O Havyavaha (carrier of sacrificial butter), be pleased to go hence by some other route.’

“Stamvamitra said, ’Thou alone, O Agni, art everything!  This whole universe is established in thee!  Thou sustainest every creature, and thou supportest the universe!  Thou art the carrier of the sacrificial butter, and thou art the excellent sacrificial butter itself!  The wise know thee to be one (as cause) and many (as effects)!  Having created the three worlds, thou, O Havyavaha, again destroyest them when the time cometh, swelling thyself forth!  Thou art the productive cause of the whole universe, and thou also art the essence in which the universe dissolveth itself!’

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