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.

“Krishna said,—­’O thou of mighty arms, there is a certain person of the head of a (royal) line who upholdeth the dignity of his race At his command have we come against thee.  Thou hast brought, O king, many of the Kshatriyas of the world as captives (to thy city.) Having perpetrated that wicked wrong how dost thou regard thyself as innocent?  O best of monarchs, how can a king act wrongfully towards other virtuous kings?  But thou, O king, treating other kings with cruelty, seekest to offer them as sacrifice unto the god Rudra!  O son of Vrihadratha, this sin committed by thee may touch even us, for as we are virtuous in our practices, we are capable of protecting virtue.  The slaughter of human being as sacrifice unto the gods is never seen.  Why dost thou, therefore, seek to perform a sacrifice unto god Sankara by slaughtering human beings?  Thou art addressing persons belonging to thy own order as animals (fit for sacrifice)!  Fool as thou art, who else, O Jarasandha, is capable of behaving in this way?  One always obtaineth the fruits of whatever acts one performeth under whatever circumstances.  Therefore, desirous as we are of helping all distressed people, we have, for the prosperity of our race, come hither to slay thee, the slaughterer of our relatives.  Thou thinkest that there is no man among the Kshatriyas (equal to thee).  This, O king, is a great error of judgment on thy part.  What Kshatriya is there, O king, who endued with greatness of soul and recollecting the dignity of his own parentage, would not ascend to eternal heaven that hath not its like anywhere, falling in open fight?  Know O bull among men, that Kshatriyas engage themselves in battle, as persons installed in sacrifices, with heaven in view, and vanquish the whole world!  Study of the Vedas, great fame, ascetic penances, and death in battle, are all acts that lead to heaven.  The attainment of heaven by the three other acts may be uncertain, but death in battle hath that for its certain consequence.  Death in battle is the sure cause of triumph like Indra’s.  It is graced by numerous merits.  It is for this reason that he of a hundred sacrifices (Indra) hath become what he is, and by vanquishing the Asuras he ruleth the universe.  Hostility with whom else than thee is so sure of leading to heaven, proud as thou art of the excessive strength of thy vast Magadha host?  Don’t disregard others, O king.  Valour dwelleth in every man.  O king of men, there are many men whose valour may be equal or superior to thine.  As long as these are not known, so long only art thou noted for thy valour.  Thy prowess, O king, can be borne by us.  It is, therefore, that I say so.  O king of Magadha, cast off thy superiority and pride in the presence of those that are thy equals.  Go not, O king, with thy children and ministers and army, into the regions of Yama.  Damvodhava, Kartavirya, Uttara, and Vrihadratha, were kings that met with destruction, along with all their forces, for having disregarded their superiors.  Desirous of liberating the captive monarchs from thee, know that we are certainly not Brahmanas.  I am Hrishesha otherwise called Sauri, and these two heroes among men are the sons of Pandu.  O king of Magadha, we challenge thee.  Fight standing before us.  Either set free all the monarchs, or go thou to the abode of Yama.

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