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.
now resembles that of dishonest men and not that of the good.  Thou art like a pit, O king, abounding with snakes of virulent poison.  Thou resemblest, O king, a river full of sweet water but exceedingly difficult of access, With steep banks overgrown with Kariras and thorny canes.  Thou art like a swan in the midst of dogs, vultures and jackals.  Grassy parasites, deriving their sustenance from a mighty tree, swell into luxuriant growth, and at last covering the tree itself overshadow it completely.  A forest conflagration sets in, and catching those grassy plants first, consumes the lordly tree with them.  Thy ministers, O king, resemble those grassy parasites of which I speak.  Do thou check and correct them.  They have been nourished by thee.  But conspiring against thee, they are destroying thy prosperity.  Concealing (from thee) the faults of thy servants, I am living in thy abode in constant dread of danger, even like a person living in a room with a snake within it or like the lover of a hero’s wife.  My object is to ascertain the behaviour of the king who is my fellow-lodger.  I wish to know whether the king has his passions under control, whether his servants are obedient to him, whether he is loved by them, and whether he loves his subjects.  For the object of ascertaining all these points, O best of kings, I have come to thee.  Like food to a hungry person, thou hast become dear to me.  I dislike thy ministers, however, as a person whose thirst has been slaked dislikes drink.  They have found fault with me because I seek thy good.  I have no doubt that there is no other cause for that hostility of theirs to me.  I do not cherish any hostile intentions towards them.  I am engaged in only marking their faults.  As one should fear a wounded snake, every one should fear a foe of wicked heart!’[243]

“The king said, ’Reside in my palace, O Brahmana!  I shall always treat thee with respect and honour, and always worship thee.  They that will dislike thee shall not dwell with me.  Do thou thyself do what should be done next unto those persons (of whom thou hast spoken).  Do thou see, O holy one, that the rod of chastisement is wielded properly and that everything is done well in my kingdom.  Reflecting upon everything, do thou guide me in such a way that I may obtain prosperity.’

“The sage said, ’Shutting thy eyes in the first instance to this offence of theirs (viz., the slaughter of the crow), do thou weaken them one by one.  Prove their faults then and strike them one after another.  When many persons become guilty of the same offence, they can, by acting together, soften the very points of thorns.  Lest thy ministers (being suspected, act against thee and) disclose thy secret counsels, I advise thee to proceed with such caution.  As regards ourselves, we are Brahmanas, naturally compassionate and unwilling to give pain to any one.  We desire thy good as also the good of others, even as we wish the good of ourselves. 

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