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This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 2,413 pages of information about The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 3.

SECTION CCXIII

“Bhishma said, ’From the attribute of Passion arises delusion or loss of judgment.  From the attribute of Darkness, O bull of Bharata’s race, arise wrath and cupidity and fear and pride.  When all these are destroyed, one becomes pure.  By obtaining purity, a person succeeds in arriving at the knowledge of the Supreme Soul which is resplendent with effulgence, incapable of deterioration, without change, pervading all things, having the unmanifest for his refuge, and the foremost of all the deities.  Invested in His maya, men fall away from knowledge and become senseless, and in consequence of their knowledge being darkened, yield to wrath.[736] From wrath, they become subject to desire.  From desire spring cupidity and delusion and vanity and pride and selfishness.  From such selfishness proceeds various kinds of acts.[737] From acts spring diverse bonds of affection and from those bonds of affection spring sorrow or misery and from acts fraught with joy and sorrow proceeds the liability to birth and death.[738] In consequence of the obligation of birth, the liability is incurred of a residence within the womb, due to the union of vital seed and blood.  That residence is defiled with excreta and urine and phlegm, and always fouled with blood that is generated there.  Overwhelmed by thirst, the Chit-Soul becomes bound by wrath and the rest that have been enumerated above.  It seeks, however, to escape those evils.  In respect of this, women must be regarded as instruments which set the stream of Creation agoing.  By their nature, women are Kshetra, and men are Kshetrajna in respect of attributes.  For this reason, persons of wisdom should not pursue women in especial (among other objects of the world).[739] Indeed, women are like frightful mantra-powers.  They stupefy persons reft of wisdom.  They are sunk in the attribute of Passion.  They are the eternal embodiment of the senses.[740] In consequence of the keen desire that men entertain for women, off-spring proceed from them, due to (the action of) the vital seed.  As one casts off from one’s body such vermin as take their birth there but as are not on that account any part of oneself, even so should one cast off those vermin of one’s body that are called children, who, though regarded as one’s own, are not one’s own in reality.  From the vital seed as from sweat (and other filth) creatures spring from the body, influenced by the acts of previous lives or in the course of nature.  Therefore, one possessed of wisdom should feel no regard for them.[741] The attribute of Passion rests on that of Darkness.  The attribute of Goodness, again, rests on that of Passion.  Darkness which is unmanifest overspreads itself on Knowledge, and causes the phenomena of Intelligence and Consciousness.[742] That knowledge possessing the attributes of Intelligence and Consciousness has been said to be the seed of embodied Souls.  That, again, which is the seed of such knowledge is called

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