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.
of drinking the Amrita.  They saw that the bed of kusa grass whereon the Amrita had been placed was empty, the Amrita itself having been taken away by a counter-act of deception.  And they began to lick with their tongues the kusa grass, as the Amrita had been placed thereon.  And the tongues of the snakes by that act became divided in twain.  And the kusa grass, too, from the contact with Amrita, became sacred thenceforth.  Thus did the illustrious Garuda bring Amrita (from the heavens) for the snakes, and thus were the tongues of snakes divided by what Garuda did.

“Then the bird of fair feathers, very much delighted, enjoyed himself in those woods accompanied by his mother.  Of grand achievements, and deeply reverenced by all rangers of the skies, he gratified his mother by devouring the snakes.

“That man who would listen to this story, or read it out to an assembly of good Brahmanas, must surely go to heaven, acquiring great merit from the recitation of (the feats of) Garuda.’”

And so ends the thirty-fourth section in the Astika Parva of the Adi Parva.

SECTION XXXV

(Astika Parva continued)

“Saunaka said, ’O son of Suta, thou hast told us the reason why the snakes were cursed by their mother, and why Vinata also was cursed by her son.  Thou hast also told us about the bestowal of boons, by their husband, on Kadru and Vinata.  Thou hast likewise told us the names of Vinata’s sons.  But thou hast not yet recited to us the names of the snakes.  We are anxious to hear the names of the principal ones.’

“Sauti said, O thou whose wealth is asceticism, from fear of being lengthy, I shall not mention the names of all the snakes.  But I will recite the names of the chief ones.  Listen to me!

“Sesha was born first, and then Vasuki. (Then were born) Airavata,
Takshaka, Karkotaka, Dhananjaya, Kalakeya, the serpent Mani, Purana,
Pinjaraka, and Elapatra, Vamana, Nila, Anila, Kalmasha, Savala, Aryaka,
Ugra, Kalasapotaka, Suramukha, Dadhimukha, Vimalapindaka, Apta, Karotaka,
Samkha, Valisikha, Nisthanaka, Hemaguha, Nahusha, Pingala, Vahyakarna,
Hastipada, Mudgarapindaka, Kamvala Aswatara, Kaliyaka, Vritta,
Samvartaka, Padma, Mahapadma, Sankhamukha, Kushmandaka, Kshemaka,
Pindaraka, Karavira, Pushpadanshtraka, Vilwaka, Vilwapandara, Mushikada,
Sankhasiras, Purnabhadra, Haridraka, Aparajita, Jyotika, Srivaha,
Kauravya, Dhritarashtra, Sankhapinda, Virajas, Suvahu, Salipinda,
Prabhakara, Hastipinda, Pitharaka, Sumuksha, Kaunapashana, Kuthara,
Kunjara, Kumuda, Kumudaksha, Tittri, Halika, Kardama, Vahumulaka,
Karkara, Akarkara, Kundodara, and Mahodara.

“Thus, O best of regenerate ones, have I said the names of the principal serpents.  From fear of being tedious I do not give names of the rest.  O thou whose wealth is asceticism, the sons of these snakes, with their grandsons, are innumerable.  Reflecting upon this, I shall not name them to thee.  O best ascetics, in this world the number of snakes baffles calculation, there being many thousands and millions of them.’”

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