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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.

’The deities said, ’O illustrious one, thou art the lord of all the earth as also of all the deities.  With thy permission, O highly blessed one, we desire to perform a sacrifice.  The person who has not obtained by lawful means the earth whereon to make the sacrificial altar, earns not the merit of the sacrifice he performs.  Thou art the Lord of all the universe consisting of its mobile and immobile objects.  Hence, it behoveth thee to grant us a piece of earth for the sacrifice we wish to make.’

“Brahman said, ’Ye foremost of deities, I shall give you a piece of earth whereon, ye sons of Kasyapa, you shall perform your intended sacrifice.’

“The deities said, ’Our wishes, O holy one, have been crowned with fruition.  We shall perform our sacrifice even here with large Dakshina.  Let, however, the Munis always adore the piece of earth.  Then there came to that place Agastya and Kanwa and Bhrigu and Atri and Vrishakapi, and Asita and Devala.  The high-souled deities then, O thou of unfading glory, performed their sacrifice.  Those foremost of gods concluded it in due time.  Having completed that sacrifice of theirs on the breast of that foremost of mountains.  Himavat, the deities attached to the gift of earth a sixth part of the merit arising from their sacrifice.  The man who makes a gift of even a span of earth (unto a Brahmana) with reverence and faith, has never to languish under any difficulty and has never to meet with any calamity.  By making a gift of a house that keeps out cold, wind, and sun, and that stand upon a piece of clean land, the giver attains to the region of the deities and does not fall down even when his merit becomes exhausted.  By making a gift of a residential house, the giver, possessed of wisdom, lives, O king, in happiness in the company of Sakra.  Such a person receives great honours in heaven.  That person in whose house a Brahmana of restrained sense, well-versed in the Vedas, and belonging by birth to a family of preceptors, resides in contentment, succeeds in attaining to and enjoying a region of high felicity.[341] After the same manner, O best of the Bharatas, by giving away a shed for the shelter of kine that can keep out cold and rain and that is substantial in structure, the giver rescues seven generations of his race (from hell).  By giving away a piece of arable earth the giver attains to excellent prosperity.  By giving a piece of earth containing mineral wealth, the giver aggrandises his family and race.  One should never give away any earth that is barren or that is burnt (arid); nor should one give away any earth that is in close vicinity to a crematorium, or that has been owned and enjoyed by a sinful person before such gift.  When a man performs a Sraddha in honour of the Pitris on earth belonging to another person, the Pitris render both the gift of that earth and the Sraddha itself futile.[342] Hence, one possessed of wisdom should buy even a small piece of earth and make a gift of it.  The Pinda that is offered

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