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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.

“The fathers then answered, ’Try thy best, O child, to beget a son to extend our line.  Thou wilt then, O excellent one, have done a meritorious art for both thyself and us.  Not by the fruits of virtue, not by ascetic penances well hoarded up, acquireth the merit which one doth by becoming a father.  Therefore, O child, by our command, set thy heart upon marriage and offspring.  Even this is our highest good.’

“Jaratkaru replied, ’I shall not marry for my sake, nor shall I earn wealth for enjoyment, but I shall do so for your welfare only.  According to this understanding, I shall, agreeably to the Sastric ordinance, take a wife for attaining the end.  I shall not act otherwise.  If a bride may be had of the same name with me, whose friends would, besides, willingly give her to me as a gift in charity, I shall wed her duly.  But who will give his daughter to a poor man like me for wife.  I shall, however, accept any daughter given to me as alms.  I shall endeavour, ye sires, even thus to wed a girl!  Having given my word, I will not act otherwise.  Upon her I will raise offspring for your redemption, so that, ye fathers, ye may attain to eternal regions (of bliss) and may rejoice as ye like.’”

So ends the thirteenth section in the Astika Parva of the Adi Parva.

SECTION XIV

(Astika Parva continued)

“Sauti said, ’That Brahmana of rigid vows then wandered over the earth for a wife but a wife found he not.  One day he went into the forest, and recollecting the words of his ancestors, he thrice prayed in a faint voice for a bride.  Thereupon Vasuki rose and offered his sister for the Rishi’s acceptance.  But the Brahmana hesitated to accept her, thinking her not to be of the same name with himself.  The high-souled Jaratkaru thought within himself, ’I will take none for wife who is not of the same name with myself.’  Then that Rishi of great wisdom and austere penances asked him, saying, ’Tell me truly what is the name of this thy sister, O snake.’

“Vasuki replied, ’O Jaratkaru, this my younger sister is called Jaratkaru.  Given away by me, accept this slender-waisted damsel for thy spouse.  O best of Brahmanas, for thee I reserved her.  Therefore, take her.’  Saying this, he offered his beautiful sister to Jaratkaru who then espoused her with ordained rites.’”

So ends the thirteenth section in the Astika Parva of the Adi Parva.

SECTION XV

(Astika Parva continued)

“Sauti said, ’O foremost of persons acquainted with Brahma, the mother of the snakes had cursed them of old, saying, ’He that hath the Wind for his charioteer (viz., Agni) shall burn you all in Janamejaya’s sacrifice!’ It was to neutralise that curse that the chief of the snakes married his sister to that high-souled Rishi of excellent vows.  The Rishi wedded her according to the rites ordained (in the scriptures), and from them was born a high-souled son called Astika.  An illustrious ascetic; versed in the Vedas and their branches, he regarded all with an even eye, and removed the fears of both his parents.

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