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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.
the great deity worshipped the celestial Rishi with those rites and ceremonies which have been laid down in the scriptures by himself.  Narada also gave due honours to the ancient Rishi Narayana.  After such honours had been mutually given and received, the son of Parameshthi departed from that spot.  Endued with high Yoga-puissance, Narada suddenly soared into the firmament and reached the summit of the mountains of Meru.  Proceeding to a retired spot on that summit, the great ascetic took rest for a short while.  He than cast his eyes towards the north western direction and beheld an exceedingly wonderful sight.  Towards the north, in the ocean of milk, there is a large island named the White Island.  The learned say that its distance from the mountains of Meru is greater than two and thirty thousand Yojanas.  The denizens of that realm have no senses.  They live without taking food of any kind.  Their eyes are winkless.  They always emit excellent perfumes.  Their complexions are white.  They are cleansed from every sin.  They blast the eyes of those sinners that look at them.  Their bones and bodies are as hard as thunder.  They regard honour and dishonour in the same light.  They all look as if they are of celestial origin.  Besides, all of them are endued, with auspicious marks and great strength.  Their heads seem to be like umbrellas.  Their voices are deep like that of the clouds.  Each of them has four Mushkas.[1794] The soles of their feet are marked by hundreds of lines.  They have sixty teeth all of which are white (and large), and eight smaller ones.  They have many tongues.  With those tongues they seem to lick the very Sun whose face is turned towards every direction.  Indeed, they seem to be capable of devouring that deity from whom hath sprung the entire universe, the Vedas, the deities, and the Munis wedded to the attribute of tranquillity.

“Yudhishthira said,—­’O grandsire, thou hast said that those beings have no senses, that they do not eat anything for supporting their lives; that their eyes are winkless; and that they always emit excellent perfumes.  I ask, how were they born?  What also is the superior end to which they attain?  O chief of Bharata’s race, are the indications of those men that become emancipate the same as those by which the denizens of the White Island are distinguished?  Do thou dispel my doubts?  The curiosity I feel is very great.  Thou art the repository of all histories and discourses.  As regards ourselves, we entirely depend on thee for knowledge and instruction!

“Bhishma continued,—­’This narrative, O monarch, which I have heard from my sire, is extensive.  I shall now recite it to thee.  Indeed, it is regarded as the essence of all narratives.  There was, in times past, a king on Earth of the name of Uparichara.  He was known to be the friend of Indra, the chief of the celestials.  He was devoted to Narayana known also by the name of Hari.  He was observant of all the duties laid down in the scriptures. 

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