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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.
not indulge in jests with thy servants.  O tiger among kings, listen to the faults of such conduct.  If the master mingles too freely with them, dependents begin to disregard him.  They forget their own position and most truly transcend that of the master.  Ordered to do a thing, they hesitate, and divulge the master’s secrets.  They ask for things that should not be asked for, and take the food that is intended for the master.  They go to the length of displaying their wrath and seek to outshine the master.  They even seek to predominate over the king, and accepting bribes and practising deceit, obstruct the business of the state.  They cause the state to rot with abuses by falsifications and forgeries.  They make love with the female guards of the palace and dress in the same style as their master.  They become so shameless as to indulge in eructations and the like, and expectorate in the very presence of their master, O tiger among kings, and they do not fear to even speak of him with levity before others.  If the king becomes mild and disposed to jest, his servants, disregarding him, ride on steeds and elephants and cars as good as the king’s.[162] His counsellors, assembled in court, openly indulge in such speeches as:  ’This is beyond thy power.  This is a wicked attempt.’  If the king becomes angry, they laugh; nor are they gladdened if favours be bestowed upon them, though they may express joy for other reasons.  They disclose the secret counsels of their master and bruit his evil acts.  Without the least anxiety they set at naught the king’s commands.  If the king’s jewels, or food, or the necessaries of his bath, or unguents, be not forthcoming, the servants, in his very presence, do not show the least anxiety.  They do not take what rightfully belongs to them.  On the other hand, without being content with what has been assigned to them, they appropriate what belongs to the king.  They wish to sport with the king as with a bird tied with a string, And always give the people to understand that the king is very intimate with them and loves them dearly.  If the king becomes mild and disposed to jest, O Yudhishthira, these and many other evils spring from it.’”

SECTION LVII

“Bhishma said, ’The king, O Yudhishthira, should always be ready for action.  That king is not worth of praise who, like a woman, is destitute of exertion.  In this connection, the holy Usanas has sting a Sloka, O monarch.  Listen to it with attention, O king, as I recite it to thee:  ’Like a snake swallowing up mice, the earth swallows tip these two, the king that is averse to battle and the Brahmana that is exceedingly attached to wives and children.[163] It behoveth thee, O tiger among kings, to bear this always in thy heart.  Make peace with those foes with whom (according to the ordinance) peace should be made, and wage war with them with whom war should be waged.  Be he thy preceptor or be he thy friend, he that acts inimically towards

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