O king, O best of men, thou wilt have to do it solely
for my sake, though it may not be proper to be done.
O valiant one, hear what I submit to thee. O great
king, thou art equal to Krishna on the field of battle.
When, O best of kings, the single combat between Karna
and Arjuna will take place, I have no doubt thou wilt
have to drive Karna’s car. On that occasion,
if thou art inclined to do good to me, thou must protect
Arjuna. O king, thou must likewise so act that
the Suta’s son Karna may be dispirited and the
victory may be ours. Improper it no doubt is;
but, O my uncle, for all that thou must do it.
Salya said, ’Good betide thee. Listen, O
son of Panda. Thou tellest me to so act that
the vile son of the Suta may be dispirited in fight.
To be sure, I shall be his charioteer’ on the
field, for he always considers me equal to Krishna.
O tiger like descendant of Kuru, I shall certainly
speak to him, when desirous of fighting on the field
of battle, words contradictory and fraught with harm
to him, so that bereft of pride and valour, he may
be easily slain by his antagonist. This I tell
thee truly. Asked by thee to do it, this I am
determined to do, O my son. Whatever else I may
be able to bring about, I shall do for thy good.
Whatever troubles were suffered by thee together with
Draupadi on the occasion of the game at dice, the rude
inhuman words uttered by the Suta’s son, the
misery inflicted by the Asura Jata and by Kichaka,
O illustrious one, all the miseries experienced by
Draupadi, like those formerly experienced by Damayanti,—will
all, O hero, end in joy. Thou shouldst not be
aggrieved at this; for Destiny is all powerful in
this world; and, O Yudhishthira, high-minded persons
have to endure miseries of various kinds, nay, even
the gods themselves, O king, have suffered misfortunes.
O king, O descendant of Bharata, it is narrated that
the high-minded Indra, the chief of the celestials,
had to endure together with his wife very great misery,
“Yudhishthira said, ’O foremost of monarchs,
I wish to know how it was that great and unparalleled
misery had to be endured by the illustrious Indra
together with his queen.’
“Salya said, ’Listen, O king, to me as
I relate this ancient story of the events of former
days,—how, O descendant of Bharata, misery
befell Indra and his wife. Once Twashtri, the
lord of creatures and the foremost of celestials,
was engaged in practising rigid austerities. And
it is said that from antipathy to Indra he created
a son having three heads. And that being of universal
form possessed of great lustre hankered after Indra’s
seat. And possessed of those three awful faces
resembling the sun, the moon, and the fire, he read
the Vedas with one mouth, drank wine with another,
and looked with the third as if he would absorb all
the cardinal points. And given to the practice
of austerities, and mild being and self-controlled,