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.
and compassion, that are pure in body and mind, that are firm in their adherence to truth, and that are contented with what belongs to them, succeed in ascending to Heaven.  Those men that do not bear ill-will to any creature, that do not stand in need of labour for their subsistence, that bear friendly hearts towards all beings, and that entertain compassion towards all, succeed in ascending to Heaven.  Those men that are endued with faith, that have compassion, that are holy, that seek the company of holy men, and that are conversant with the distinctions between right and wrong, succeed in ascending to Heaven.  Those men, O goddess, that are conversant with what the consequences are of good and bad deeds, succeed in ascending to Heaven.  Those men that are just in all their dealings, that are endued with all desirable accomplishments, that are devoted to the deities and the Brahmanas, and that are endued with perseverance in the doing of good acts, succeed in ascending to Heaven.  All these men, O goddess, succeed in ascending to Heaven through the meritorious consequences of their deeds.  What else dost thou wish to hear?’

“Uma said, ’I have a great doubt, O Maheswara, on a subject connected with human beings.  It behoveth thee to explain it to me carefully.  By what acts does a man succeed, O puissant deity, in acquiring a long life?  By what penances also does one acquire a long life?  By what acts does one become shortlived on earth?  O thou that art perfectly stainless, it behoveth thee to tell me what the consequences are of acts (in the matter of bestowing a long or a short life on the doer).  Some are seen to be possessed of great good fortune and some weighted with misfortune.  Some are of noble birth while others of ignoble birth.  Some are of such repulsive features as if they are made of wood, while others are of very agreeable features at even the first sight.  Some appear to be destitute of wisdom while others are possessed of it.  Some, again, are seen endued with high intelligence and wisdom, enlightened by knowledge and science.  Some have to endure little pain, while others there are that are weighted with heavy calamities.  Even such diverse sights are seen with respect to men.  It behoveth thee, O illustrious one, to tell me the reason of all this.’

“The god of gods said, ’Verily, O goddess, I shall discourse to thee on the manifestation of the fruits of acts.  It is by the rules of that manifestation that all human beings in this world enjoy or endure the consequences of their acts.  That man who assumes a fierce aspect for the purpose of taking the lives of other creatures, who arms himself with stout sticks for injuring other creatures, who is seen with uplifted weapons, who slays living creatures, who is destitute of compassion, who always causes agitation to living beings, who refuses to grant protection to even worms and ants, who is endued with cruelty,—­one who is such, O goddess, sinks in Hell.  One who

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