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.
Righteousness, it is this (and nothing else).  To put faith in Righteousness is the indication of the wisdom of all persons.  One that is acquainted with both (i.e., what should be done and what should not be done), with a view to opportuneness, should, with care and devotion, achieve what is right.  Those Righteous men who have in this life been blessed with affluence, acting of their own motion, take particular care of their souls so that they may not, in their next lives, have to take birth as persons with the attribute of Passion predominating in them.  Time (which is the supreme disposer of all things) can never make Righteousness the cause of misery.  One should, therefore, know that the soul which is righteous is certainly pure (i.e., freed from the element of evil and misery).  As regards Unrighteousness, it may be said that, even when of large proportions, it is incapable of even touching Righteousness which is always protected by Time and which shines like a blazing fire.  These are the two results achieved by Righteousness, viz., the stainlessness of the soul and unsusceptibility of being touched by Unrighteousness.  Verily, Righteousness is fraught with victory.  Its effulgence is so great that it illumines the three worlds.  A man of wisdom cannot catch hold of a sinful person and forcibly cause him to become righteous.  When seriously urged to act righteously, the sinful only act with hypocrisy, impelled by fear.  They that are righteous among the Sudras never betake themselves to such hypocrisy under the plea that persons of the Sudra order are not permitted to live according to any of the four prescribed modes.  I shall tell thee particularly what the duties truly are of the four orders.  So far as their bodies are concerned, the individuals belonging to all the four orders have the five primal elements for the constituent ingredients.  Indeed, in this respect, they are all of the same substance.  For all that, distinctions exist between them in respect of both practices relating to life or the world and the duties of righteousness.  Notwithstanding these distinctions, sufficient liberty of action is left to them in consequence of which all individuals may attain to an equality of condition.  The regions of felicity which represent the consequences or rewards of Righteousness are not eternal, for they are destined to come to an end.  Righteousness, however, is eternal.  When the cause is eternal, why is the effect not so?[629] The answer to this is as follows.  Only that Righteousness is eternal which is not promoted by the desire of fruit or reward. (That Righteous, however, which is prompted by the desire of reward, not eternal.  Hence, the reward though undesired that attaches to the first kind of Righteousness, viz., attainment of identity with Brahman, is eternal.  The reward, however, that attaches to that Righteousness prompted by desire of fruit.  Heaven is not eternal).[630] All men are equal in respect of their physical organism.  All of them,
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The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 4 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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