Vaishampayana continued, “Hearing those evil tidings, the Kuru king Dhritarashtra suddenly fell down on the ground from his excellent seat. Similarly, the royal lady Gandhari of great foresight fell down. She indulged in diverse lamentations, for the slaughter of Karna in battle. Then Vidura and Sanjaya both raised the fallen monarch and began to console him. Similarly the Kuru ladies raised Gandhari. Thinking destiny and necessity to be all powerful, that royal ascetic, under that great grief, seemed to lose his senses. His heart filled with anxiety and sorrow, the king, however, did not again swoon away. Comforted by them, he remained silent, indulging in melancholy musing. He that reads of this great battle, which is like unto a sacrifice, between the high-souled Dhananjaya and Adhiratha’s son, so also he that hears the account of this battle read, both obtain, O Bharata, the fruit of a great sacrifice duly performed. The learned say that the holy and the eternal Vishnu is Sacrifice, and each of those other gods, viz., Agni, Wind, Soma, and Surya, is so. Therefore, he that will, without malice, hear or recite this Parvan, will be happy and capable of attaining to every region of bliss. Filled with devotion, men always read this sacred and first of Samhitas. They that do, rejoice, obtaining wealth, and grain, and fame. A man must, therefore, ever hear it without malice. He that does so will obtain all kinds of happiness. With that foremost of persons, Vishnu, and the illustrious Self-born, and Bhava also, become pleased. A Brahmana, by reading it, would obtain the fruit of having studied the Vedas; a Kshatriya obtains strength and victory in battle; Vaishyas would obtain immense wealth, and Shudras would obtain health and freedom from disease. Then again the illustrious Vishnu is eternal. And since it is that god who hath been glorified in this Parvan, it is for this that the man reading or hearing it becometh happy and acquireth all the objects of his heart. These words of the great Rishi (Vyasa) can never the untrue! The merit that may be attained by listening to the recitation of the Karna Parvan is equal to his who giveth away unceasingly for a whole year good cows with calves.”
The end of Karna Parva.