The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 4 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 1,319 pages of information about The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 4.
which has their own hearts for its authority.  Those men that commit diverse acts of sin and then seek to expiate them by continuous vows and observances of piety, become endued with both happiness and misery and live in great anxiety of heart.[517] Those men that are of sinful conduct and that yield to the influence of cupidity and stupefaction, without doubt, take birth as Mlechchhas that do not deserve to be associated with.  Those men on the other hand, who abstain from sin all their lives, become free from disease of every kind, endued with beauty of form and possessed of wealth.  Women also, when they act in the way indicated, attain to births of the same kind.  Indeed, they have to take births as the spouses of the animals I have indicated.  I have told thee all the faults that relate to the appropriation of what belongs to others.  I have discoursed to thee very briefly on the subject, O sinless one.  In connection with some other subject, O Bharata, thou shalt again hear of those faults.  I heard all this, O king, in days of old, from Brahman himself, and I asked all about it in a becoming way, when he discoursed on it in the midst of the celestial Rishis.  I have told thee truly and in detail all that thou hadst asked me.  Having listened to all this, O monarch, do thou always set thy heart on righteousness.’”

SECTION CXII

“Yudhishthira said, ’Thou hast told me, O regenerate one, what the end is of unrighteousness or sin.  I desire now to hear, O foremost of speakers, of what the end is of Righteousness.  Having committed diverse acts of sin, by what acts of people succeed in attaining to an auspicious end in this world?  By what acts also do people attain to an auspicious end in heaven?’

“Vrihaspati said, ’By committing sinful acts with perverted mind, one yields to the sway of unrighteousness and as a consequence goeth to hell.  That man who, having perpetrated sinful acts through stupefaction of mind, feels the pangs of repentance and sets his heart on contemplation (of the deity), has not to endure the consequences of his sins.  One becomes freed from one’s sins in proportion as one repents for them.  If one having committed a sin, O king, proclaims it in the presence of Brahmanas conversant with duties, one becomes quickly cleansed from the obloquy arising from one’s sin.  Accordingly as one becomes cleansed therefrom fully or otherwise, like a snake freed from his diseased slough.  By making, with a concentrated mind, gifts of diverse kinds unto a Brahmana, and concentrating the mind (on the deity), one attains to an auspicious end.  I shall now tell thee what those gifts are, O Yudhisthira, by making which a person, even if guilty of having committed sinful acts, may become endued with merit.  Of all kinds of gifts, that of food is regarded as the best.  One desirous of attaining to merit should, with a sincere heart, make gifts of food.  Food is the life-breath of men. 

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The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 4 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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