Intermixture of the four orders takes place. Vedic
rites fail to produce fruits. All the seasons
cease to be delightful and become fraught with evil.
The voice, pronunciation, and minds of men lose vigour.
Diseases appear, and men die prematurely. Wives
become widows, and many cruel men are seen. The
clouds do not pour seasonably, and crops fail.
All kinds of moisture also fail, when the king does
not, with proper attention to the great science, protect
the subjects. The king is the creator of the
Krita age, of the Treta, and of the Dwapara. The
king is the cause of the fourth age (called Kali).
If he causes the Krita age, he attains to everlasting
heaven. If he causes the Treta age, he acquires
heaven for a period that is limited. If he causes
the Dwapara, he attains to blessedness in heaven according
to the measure of his merits. By causing the
Kali age, the king incurs a heavy load of sin.
Stained by wickedness, he rots in hell for innumerable
years, for sinking in the sins of his subjects, he
incurs great sin and infamy himself. Keeping the
great science in his view, the Kshatriya possessed
of learning should strive to acquire those objects
which he desires and protect those that have been
already acquired. The science of chastisement,
which establishes all men in the observance of their
respective duties, which is the groundwork of all
wholesome distinctions, and which truly upholds the
world and sets it agoing, if properly administered,
protects all men like the mother and the father protecting
their children. Know, O bull among men, that
the very lives of creatures depend upon it. The
highest merit a king can acquire is acquaintance with
the science of chastisement and administering it properly.
Therefore, O thou of Kuru’s race, protect thy
subjects righteously, with the aid of that great science.
By protecting the subjects and adopting such a conduct,
thou wilt surely attain to such blessedness in heaven
as is difficult of acquisition.”
“Yudhishthira said, ’By adopting that
conduct, O thou that art conversant with every kind
of behaviour, can a king succeed in easily acquiring,
both here and hereafter, objects productive of happiness
in the end?’
“Bhishma said, ’There are these thirty-six
virtues (which a king should observe). They are
connected with thirty-six others. A virtuous person,
by attending to those qualities, can certainly acquire
great merit. The king should observe his duties
without wrath and malice. He should not abandon
kindness. He should have faith. He should
acquire wealth without persecution and cruelty.
He should pursue pleasure without attachments.
He should, with cheerfulness, utter what is the agreeable,
and be brave without brag. He should be liberal
but should not make gifts to persons that are unobserving.
He should have prowess without cruelty. He should
make alliance, avoiding those that are wicked.