The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 3 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 2,886 pages of information about The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 3.
of a like nature, having quaffed the Soma and ruled over and protected all his subjects righteously, O foremost of speakers, having performed the Rajasuya, the horse sacrifice, and other great sacrifices, having invited learned Brahmanas for reciting the scriptures and made presents unto them according to their desires, having obtained victories small or great in battle, having placed on his throne the son of his loins or some Kshatriya of good birth for the protection of subjects, having worshipped the Pitris by performing with due rites the sacrifices laid down for honouring them, having attentively worshipped the gods by performing sacrifices and the Rishis by studying the Vedas, the Kshatriya, who in old age desires another mode of life, may, O king, adopt it by leaving that one which immediately precedes it, and by that means he is sure to obtain (ascetic) success.  A Kshatriya, for leading the life of a Rishi, O king, may adopt the Bhikshu mode of life; but he should never do so for the sake of enjoying the pleasures of the world.  Having left the domestic mode of life, he may adopt the life of mendicancy by begging, what would barely support his life.  A life of mendicancy is not obligatory upon the three orders (viz.  Kshatriyas, Vaisyas. and Sudras), O giver of profuse presents!  Inasmuch, however, as they can adopt it if they choose, this mode of life, therefore, is open to the four orders.  Amongst men, the highest duties are those which are practised by Kshatriyas.  The whole world is subject to the might of their arms.  All the duties, principal and subordinate, of the three other orders, are dependent (for their observance) upon the duties of the Kshatriya.  The Vedas have declared this.  Know that as the footprints of all other animals are engulfed in those of the elephant, even so all the duties of the other orders, under every circumstance, are engulfed, in those of the Kshatriya.  Men conversant with the scriptures say that the duties of the other three orders afford small relief or protection, and produce small rewards.  The learned have said that the duties of the Kshatriya afford great relief and produce great rewards.  All duties have kingly duties for their foremost.  All the orders are protected by them.  Every kind of renunciation occurs in kingly duties, O monarch, and renunciation has been said to be in eternal virtue and the foremost of all.[199] If the science of chastisement disappears, the Vedas will disappear.  All those scriptures also that inculcate the duties of men become lost.  Indeed, if these ancient duties belonging to the Kshatriyas be abandoned, all the duties in respect of all the modes of life, become lost.  All kinds of renunciation are seen in kingly duties:  all kinds or initiation occur in them; all kinds of learning are connected with them; and all kinds of worldly behaviour enter into them.  As animals, if slaughtered by the vulgar, become the means of destroying the virtue and the religious acts of the slaughterers, even so all other duties, if deprived of the protection given by kingly duties, become liable to attack and destruction, and men, full of anxiety, disregard the practices laid down for them.’”

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The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 3 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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