The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 2 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 2,393 pages of information about The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 2.
and fighteth wrathfully without seeking to fly.  I am a Kshatriya stationed in the practice of Kshatriya duties.  One doth not incur sin, nor doth one incur any harm by behaving towards a person exactly as that person deserveth.  When a person acquainted with the proprieties of time and place and well-versed in matters affecting both profit and virtue, feels doubtful, as regards anything, he should without scruples of any kind, devote himself to the acquisition of virtue which would confer the highest benefit on him.  And since thou, O Rama, in a matter connected with profit of doubtful propriety, actest unrighteously, I would certainly fight with thee in a great battle.  Behold the strength of my arms and my prowess that is superhuman!  In view of such circumstances, I shall certainly do, O son of Bhrigu, what I can.  I shall fight with thee, O regenerate one, on the field of Kurukshetra!  O Rama of great effulgence, equip thyself as thou listest for single combat!  Come and station thyself on the field of Kurukshetra where, afflicted with my shafts in great battle, and sanctified by my weapons, thou mayest obtain those regions that have been won by thee (thought for thy austerities).  O thou of mighty arms and wealth of asceticism, there I will approach thee for battle,—­thee that art so fond of battle!  There, O Rama, where in days of yore thou hadst propitiated thy (deceased) fathers (with oblations of Kshatriya blood), slaying thee there, O son of Bhrigu, I will propitiate the Kshatriya slain by thee!  Come there, O Rama, without delay!  There, O thou that art difficult of being vanquished, I will curb thy old pride about which the Brahmanas speak!  For many long years, O Rama, thou hast boasted, saying,—­I have, single-handed, vanquished all the Kshatriyas of the Earth!—­Listen now to what enabled thee to indulge in that boast!  In those days no Bhishma was born, or no Kshatriyas like unto Bhishma!  Kshatriyas really endued with valour have taken their births later on!  As regards thyself, thou hast consumed only heaps of straw!  The person that would easily quell thy pride of battle hath since been born!  He, O mighty-armed one, is no other than myself, even Bhishma, that subjugator of hostile cities!  Without doubt, O Rama, I shall just quell thy pride of battle!’

“Bhishma continued, ’Hearing these words of mine.  Rama addressed me, laughingly saying, ’By good luck it is, O Bhishma, that thou desirest to fight with me in battle!  O thou of Kuru’s race, even now I go with thee to Kurukshetra!  I will do what thou hast said!  Come thither, O chastiser of foes!  Let thy mother, Jahnavi, O Bhishma, behold thee dead on that plain, pierced with my shafts, and become the food of vultures, crows, and other carnivorous birds!  Let that goddess worshipped by Siddhas and Charanas, that blessed daughter of Bhagiratha, in the form of a river, who begat thy wicked self, weep today, O king, beholding thee slain by me and lying miserable on that plain, however undeserving

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The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 2 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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