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This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 1,319 pages of information about The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 4.
unstable, casts off his body on those mountains, abstaining from all food and drink in accordance with the rites laid down in the scriptures, after having adored the deities and bent his head in worship of the ascetics, is sure to attain to success and proceed to the eternal regions of Brahman.  There is nothing unattainable to him who resides in a tirtha, restraining lust and subjugating wrath, in consequence of such residence.  For the purpose of repairing to all the tirthas in the world, one should mentally think of those amongst them that are almost inaccessible or sojourns to which are attended with insurmountable difficulties.  Sojourns to tirthas is productive of the merits of sacrifices.  They are competent to cleanse everybody of sin.  Fraught with great excellence, they are capable of leading to heaven.  The subject is truly a great mystery.  The very deities should bathe in tirthas.  To them also they are sin-cleansing.  This discourse on tirthas should be imparted to Brahmanas, and to such honest or righteous persons as are bent upon achieving what is for their own good.  It should also be recited in the hearing of one’s well-wishers and friends and of one’s obedient and devoted disciples.  Angiras possessed of great ascetic merit, had imparted this discourse to Gautama.  Angiras himself had obtained it from Kasyapa of great intelligence.  The great Rishi regard this discourse as worthy of constant repetition.  It is the foremost of all cleansing things.  If one recites it regularly every day, one is sure to become cleansed of every sin and to proceed to heaven after the termination of this life.  One who listens to this discourse recited in his hearing,—­this discourse, viz., of Angiras, that is regarded as a mystery,—­is sure to attain in one’s next life to be born in a good family and, what is more, one would become endued with the memory of one’s previous existence.’”

SECTION XXVI

“Vaisampayana said,—­’Equal unto Vrihaspati in intelligence and Brahma himself in forgiveness, resembling Sakra in prowess and Surya in energy, Bhishma the son of Ganga, of infinite might, had been overthrown in battle by Arjuna.  Accompanied by his brothers and many other people, king Yudhisthira asked him these questions.  The old hero was lying on a bed that is coveted by heroes, in expectation of that auspicious time when he could take leave of the physical frame.  Many great Rishis had come there for seeing that foremost one of Bharata’s race.  Amongst them were Atri and Vasishtha and Bhrigu and Pulastya and Pulaha and Kratu.  There were also Angiras and Gotama and Agastya and Sumati of well-restrained soul, and Viswamitra and Sthulasiras and Samvarta and Pramati and Dama.  There were also Vrihaspati and Usanas, and Vyasa and Chyavana and Kasyapa and Dhruva, and Durvasas and Jamadagni and Markandeya and Galava, and Bharadwaja and Raibhya and Yavakrita and Trita.  There were Sthulaksha

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