The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 4 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 1,582 pages of information about The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 4.
wish to perform, refuses to eat their libations[544].  Those men who drink the milk of kine whose calves are very young, never get children for perpetuating their races.[545] Such men see their children, die and their races shrink.  Even these are the consequences of the acts referred to, as observed by regenerate persons venerable for age in their respective races.  Hence, one should always avoid that which has been interdicted, and do only that which has been directed to be done, if one is desirous of achieving prosperity.  This that I say unto thee is very true.’  After the celestial preceptor had said this, the highly blessed deities, with the Maruts, and the highly blessed Rishis questioned the Pitris, saying, ’Ye Pitris, at what acts of human beings, who are generally endued with little understanding, do ye become gratified?  What gifts, made in course of such rites as are gone through for improving the position of deceased persons in the other world, become inexhaustible in respect of their efficacy?[546] By performing what acts can men become freed from the debt they owe to the Pitris?  We desire to hear this.  Great is the curiosity we feel.’

“The Pitris said, ’Ye highly blessed ones, the doubt existing in your minds has been properly propounded.  Listen as we declare what those acts are of righteous men that gratify us.  Bulls endued with blue complexion should be set free.  Gifts should be made to us, on the day of the new moon, of sesame seeds and water.  In the season of rains, lamps should be lighted.  By these acts of men, they can free themselves from the debt they owe to the Pitris.[547] Such gifts never become vain.  On the other hand, they become inexhaustible and productive of high fruits.  The gratification we derive from them is regarded to be inexhaustible.  Those men who, endued with faith, beget offspring, rescue their deceased ancestors from miserable Hell’.  Hearing these words of the Pitris, Vriddha-Gargya, possessed of wealth of penances and high energy, became filled with wonder so that the hair on his body stood erect.  Addressing them he said, ’Ye that are all possessed of wealth of penances, tell us. what the merits are that attach to the setting free of bulls endued with blue complexion.  What merits, again, attach to the gift of lamps in the season of rains and the gift of water with sesame seeds?’

“The Pitris said, ’If a bull of blue complexion, upon being set free, raises a (small) quantity of water with its tail, the Pitris (of the person that has set that bull free) become gratified with that water for full sixty thousand years.  The mud such a bull raises with its horns from the banks (of a river or lake), succeeds, without doubt, in sending the Pitris (of the person that sets the animal free) to the region of Soma.  By giving lamps in the season of rains, one shines with effulgence like Soma himself.  The man who gives lamps is never subject to the attribute of Darkness.  Those men who make

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