“Bhishma said, ’In this connection is cited the old story, O monarch, of the conversation between kine and Sree, O best of the Bharatas! Once on a time the goddess Sree, assuming a very beautiful form, entered a herd of kine. The kine, beholding her wealth of beauty, became filled with wonder.’
“The kine said, ’Who art thou, O goddess? Whence hast thou become unrivalled on earth for beauty? O highly blessed goddess, we have been filled with wonder at thy wealth of beauty. We desire to know who thou art. Who, indeed, art thou? Whither wilt thou proceed? O thou of very superior splendour of complexion, do tell us in detail all we wish to know.’
“Sri said, ’Blessed be ye, I am dear unto all creatures. Indeed, I am known by the name of Sri. Forsaken by me, the Daityas have been lost for ever. The deities, viz., Indra, Vivaswat, Soma, Vishnu, Varuna, and Agni, having obtained me, are sporting in joy and will do so for ever. Verily, the Rishis and the deities, only when they are endued with me, have success. Ye kine, those beings meet with destruction into whom I do not enter. Religion, wealth, and pleasure, only when endued with me, become sources of happiness. Ye kine who are givers of happiness, know that I am possessed of even such energy! I wish to always reside in every one of you. Repairing to your presence, I solicit you. Be all of you endued with Sri.
“The kine said, ’Thou art fickle and restless. Thou sufferest thyself to be enjoyed by many persons. We do not desire to have thee. Blessed be thou, go wheresoever thou pleasest. As regards ourselves, all of us are possessed of good forms. What need have we with thee? Go wheresoever thou likest. Thou hast already (by answering our questions) gratified us exceedingly.’
“Sri said, ’Is it proper with you, ye kine that you do not welcome me? I am difficult of being attained. Why then do you not accept me? It seems, ye creatures of excellent vows, that the popular proverb is true, viz., that it is certain that when one come to another of one’s own accord and without being sought, one meets with disregard. The Gods, the Danavas, the Gandharvas, the Pisachas, the Uragas, the Rakshasas and human beings succeed in obtaining me only after undergoing the severest austerities. You who have such energy, do ye take me. Ye amiable ones, I am never disregarded by any one in the three worlds of mobile and immobile creatures.’
“The kine said, ’We do not disregard thee, O goddess. We do not show thee a slight! Thou art fickle and of a very restless heart. It is for this only that we take leave of thee. What need of much talk? Do thou go wheresoever thou choosest. All of us are endued with excellent forms. What need have we with thee, O sinless one?’