The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 3 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 2,413 pages of information about The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 3.
from her without boring her udders and without starving the calf.  The king should (in the matter of taxes) act like the leech drawing blood mildly.  He should conduct himself towards his subjects like a tigress in the matter of carrying her cubs, touching them with her teeth but never piercing them therewith.  He should behave like a mouse which though possessed of sharp and pointed teeth still cuts the feet of sleeping animals in such a manner that they do not at all become conscious of it.  A little by little should be taken from a growing subject and by this means should he be shorn.  The demand should then be increased gradually till what is taken assumes a fair proportion.  The king should enhance the burthens of his subjects gradually like a person gradually increasing the burthens of a young bullock.  Acting with care and mildness, he should at last put the reins on them.  If the reins are thus put, they would not become intractable.  Indeed, adequate measures should be employed for making them obedient.  Mere entreaties to reduce them to subjection would not do.  It is impossible to behave equally towards all men.  Conciliating those that are foremost, the common people should be reduced to obedience.  Producing disunion (through the agency of their leaders) among the common people who are to bear the burthens, the king should himself come forward to conciliate them and then enjoy in happiness what he will succeed in drawing from them.  The king should never impose taxes unseasonably and on persons unable to bear them.  He should impose them gradually and with conciliation, in proper season and according to due forms.  These contrivances that I declare unto thee are legitimate means of king-craft.  They are not reckoned as methods fraught with deceit.  One who seeks to govern steeds by improper methods only makes them furious.  Drinking-shops, public women, pimps, actors, gamblers and keepers of gaining houses, and other persons of this kind, who are sources of disorder to the state, should all be checked.  Residing within the realm, these afflict and injure the better classes of the subjects.  Nobody should ask anything of anyone when there is no distress.  Manu himself in days of old has laid down this injunction in respect of all men.[254] If all men were to live by asking or begging and abstain from work, the world would doubtless come to an end.  The king alone is competent to restrain and check.  That king who does not restrain his subjects (from sin) earns a fourth part of the sins committed by his people (in consequence of the absence of royal protection).  This is the declaration of the Srutis.  Since the king shares the sins of his subjects like their merits, he should, therefore, O monarch, restrain those subjects of his that are sinful.  The king that neglects to restrain them becomes himself sinful.  He earns (as already said) a fourth part of their sins as he does a fourth part of their merits.  The following faults of which I speak should be checked.  They are such
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The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 3 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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