Bhishma Charitra

by Kartik Pandya | 2011 | 48,028 words | ISBN-10: 8171101966

The English translation of the Bhishma Charitra, an important Mahakavya (epic poem) consisting of 20 cantos. This book details the life and legends of Devavrata Bhishma: a major character in the Mahabhara and relative to both the Pandavas and Kauravas. The Bhisma Charitra (Bhismacaritam) was written by Dr. Hari Narayan Dikshit, an important author...

Canto 3 - The Convocation Ceremony

1. Then there began the convocation ceremony of the prince Devavrata in the extremely large auditorium which has been well decorated.

2. In that function the prominent personalities of different classes and different castes were invited.

3. The landlords of all the states, who were really faithful to the king Śāntanu and who were invited with honour were also seated there.

4. Devavrata, of tranquil mind, compassionate towards the poors, intelligent, having worn clothes of silk and sitting on the seat, was shining.

5. The melodious tune of the music, pleasing to the ears, was really delighting the minds of all people sitting in the hall.

6. The smoke flowing like the azure waves of the river Yamunāin the incensory of an incense stick was satisfying the noses of the people sitting in the hall.

7. The lamps of different shapes and of different colours, prepared with gems on it, were attracting the eyes of the people sitting in the hall towards them.

8. As all the members and invited guests were waiting for the beginning of the function, there entered the king with the teachers following him in a queue.

9. All the members and guests sitting in the hall invited and honoured them by standing up and saw them eagerly. The procession entering slowly-slowly had been very fascinating to the mind of the poet.

10. All the teachers walking slowly and respectably reached on the stage and sat on their respective golden chairs.

11. After the Maṅgalācaraṇa and prayer to goddess Sarasvatī, the King having stood up announced in the hall thus:

12. O gentlemen! I invite you all. I am really thankful to you for your presence here. By your presence this gathering has become divine one.

Pair (Couple)

13-14. Those teachers who have trained my son Devavrata in the use of weapons both used as missiles and for throwing, in the knowledge of scriptures, in the system of public administration, etc. are the same teachers sitting on the dais who are famous in the entire country India, having indepth knowledge like the ocean; and always thinking and working for the welfare of the society.

15. By teaching my son, they have immensely bestowed blessings upon me.

I am really indebted to all of them.

16. The teachers are really worthy of worship on this earth. If they are not there on the earth, then the path of virtue will become extinct.

17. The Sun removes the darkness of the outer world i.e. gross world and the teacher removes the darkness of the mind. There is still doubt in the minds of people about who is greater between the Sun and the teacher.

18. In this world the parents only give the birth to the child. Rather a true teacher only gives the knowledge of what is correct and what is incorrect to the child.

19. I shall be thankful to these teachers forever as they have trained my son successfully and made his life full of fortune.

20. I shall also honour these teachers who have become helmsmen by providing them with subsistence.

21. There is no doubt that there live all kinds of prosperity in the nation, where the teachers are worshipped and honoured by providing them with the livelihood.

22. There is no doubt that the beautiful creation of the nation is made by fully satisfied and prosperous teachers only.

23. The satisfied teachers only make the development and protection of the nation by the teaching of their knowledge and wisdom. A king only protects the nation.

24. There is no doubt that in the absence of teachers the nation befalls the calamity; and when they become happy then the nation becomes happy.

25. Therefore it is the duty of people and king not to make the teachers unhappy for any reason.

26. All the members happily received the speech of King Śāntanu with clapping which was conveying the message of importance of teachers.

27. The king Śāntanu faithfully advocated the chief of all the teachers with the intension of betterment of his son Devavrata when the clapping was over.

28. O revered teacher! You are equivalent to Bṛhaspati, the teacher of Gods. I bow down to you. Please give some advice to Devavrata on his convocation ceremony.

29. The cerebrotonic and of tranquil nature Sarvācārya by name stood up from his seat to give the advice to Devavrata, when the King Śāntanu having concluded his speech sat on his seat thus.

30. He said, O long-lived! Pure! Devavrata! May you always get auspicious result. Today listen to my last message on this convocation ceremony of yours.

31. Always understand the practice of truth as the devotion to Lord. Because Lord resides in the truth and the truth resides in Lord.

32. Always understand the practice of duty as the worship of Lord.

(Because) God does not get pleased on a person who is devoid of own duty.

33. Always practise the subjects which you have studied. Because the knowledge of weapons and scriptures are not recalled in times of need when not practised again and again.

34. Consider mother, father and teacher worthy of worship like Bṛhaspati, the teacher of Gods. Always be obedient to them.

35. Ignore their bad habits and accept respectably their good qualities. Honey-bee protects itself from the thorns while collecting honey from the flowers.

36. Though the successors of ancestral property are weak or children, never deceit them. Because the family which is in the form of garden, gets devastated when the successors get enraged.

37. Welcome the guests like Gods. (Because) The worship of guests is greater than all types of worship.

38. Be compassionate towards miserable. Be modest while donating the needy people. Have special complaisance while dealing with women.

39. Always make efforts for the development of humanity. Humanity, which has got developed in the society, only attains divinity.

40. Never support viciousness in any way. (Because) A person fostering wickedness gets trapped in an affliction with the wicked persons.

41. Never repose in the shadow of a tree which is in the form of atrocity. Any intelligent person never eats that food which is mixed with poison just to overcome his appetite.

42. Be away from the well of calamities which are very condemned; and are in the form of crookedness. (Because) The persons who are engaged in malfeasance surely become unhappy at last.

43. Do not give rise to kṣetravāda. Jativāda (Casticism) is also condemned. A nation immediately becomes weak when it falls in the traps of controversies.

44. If the (four) human goals are becoming enemies of one another, then it is not proper. One should serve the human goals which have become mutual friends like the different parts of body.

45. Do not give pain to others, nor do get pained by others. In your life, protect and follow the principle of ‘live and let others live.’

46. Do not trust back-biters without thinking on yourself. The poison remains present in the grinders of the snakes, while it remains present on the tongue of the back-biter.

47. I wish that you will always follow these instructions, so that all the paths become fruitful for you during your stroll in this world.

48. The great sage Sarvācārya speaking thus sat on his seat. Then prince Devavrata with bent head stood up and said thus:

49. I take an oath that I shall always follow the instructions given by my teacher, who has bestowed blessings upon me.

50. All the members become happy on hearing the sentimental speech of the prince. Then King Śāntanu, becoming extremely happy in his mind, thanked all with sweet and gentle words.

51. Immediately after this the melodious and known song which was full of sense of devotion for nation was heard. On its completion the chief-minister of the King invited all for their love-feast (banquet).

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