Kautilya Arthashastra

by R. Shamasastry | 1956 | 174,809 words | ISBN-13: 9788171106417

The English translation of Arthashastra, which ascribes itself to the famous Brahman Kautilya (also named Vishnugupta and Chanakya) and dates from the period 321-296 B.C. The topics of the text include internal and foreign affairs, civil, military, commercial, fiscal, judicial, tables of weights, measures of length and divisions of time. Original ...

Chapter 2 - Wonderful and Delusive Contrivances

A dose of the powder of śirīṣa (mimosa sirisa), udumbara (glomerous fig-tree), and śami (acacia suma), mixed with clarified butter, renders fasting possible for half a month; the scum prepared from the mixture of the root of kaśeruka (a kind of water-creeper), utpala (costus), and sugar-cane mixed with bisa (water-lily), dūrva (grass), milk, and clarified butter enables a man to fast for a month.

The powder of māṣa (phraseolus radiatus), yava (barley), kuluttha (horse-gram), and the root of darbha (sacrificial grass), mixed with milk and clarified butter; the milk of valli (a kind of creeper), and clarified butter derived from it, and mixed in equal proportions, and combined with the paste prepared from the root of sāla (shorea robusta) and pṛśniparṇi [pṛśniparṇī?] (hedysarum lagopodioides), when drunk with milk; or a dose of milk mixed with clarified butter and spirituous liquor, both prepared from the above substances, enables one to fast for a month.

The oil prepared from mustard seeds previously kept for seven nights in the urine of a white goat will, when used (externally) after keeping the oil inside a large bitter gourd for a month and a half, alter the colour of both biped and quadruped animals.

The oil extracted from white mustard seeds mixed with the barley-corns contained in the dung of a white donkey, which has been living for more than seven nights on a diet of butter, milk and barley, causes alteration in colour.

The oil prepared from mustard seeds which have been previously kept in the urine and fluid dung of any of the two animals, a white goat and a white donkey, causes (when applied) such white colour as that of the fibre of arka plant or the down of a (white) bird.

The mixture of the dung of a white cock and ajagara (boa-constrictor) causes white colour.

The paste made from white mustard seeds kept for seven nights in the urine of a white goat mixed with butter-milk, the milk of arka plant, salt, and grains (dhānya), causes when applied for a fortnight, white colour.

The paste prepared from white mustard seeds which have been previously kept within a large bitter gourd and with clarified butter prepared from the milk of vallī (a creeper) for half a month, makes the hair white.

* A bitter gourd, a stinking insect (pūtikīṭa), and a white house-lizard; when a paste prepared from these is applied to the hair, the latter becomes as white as a conch shell.

When any part of the body of a man is rubbed over with the paste (kalka) prepared from tinduka (glutinosa) and ariṣṭa (soapberry), together with the dung of a cow, the part of the body being also smeared over with the juice of bhallātaka (sernecarpus anacardium), he will catch leprosy in the course of a month.

(The application of the paste prepared from) guñja seeds, kept previously for seven nights in the mouth of a white cobra or in the mouth of a house-lizard, brings on leprosy.

External application of the liquid essence of the egg of a parrot and cuckoo brings on leprosy.

The paste or decoction prepared from priyāla (chironjia sapida or vitis vinifera?) is a remedy for leprosy.

Whoever eats the mixture of the powders of the roots of kukkuṭa (marsilia dentata), kośātakī (duffa pentandra), and śatāvarī (asperagus racemosus) for a month will become white.

Whoever bathes in the decoction of vat a (banyan tree) and rubs his body with the paste prepared from sahacara (yellow barleria) becomes black.

Sulphuret of arsenic and red arsenic mixed with the oil extracted from śakuna (a kind of bird) and kaṅka (a vulture) causes blackness.

The powder of khadyota (fire-fly) mixed with the oil of mustard seeds emits light at night.

The powder of khadyota (fire-fly) and gaṇḍūpada (earth-worm) or the powder of ocean animals mixed with the powder of bhṛṅga (malabathrum), kapāla (a pot-herb), and khadira (mimosa catechu), and karṇikāra (pentapetes acerifolia), combined with the oil of śakuna (a bird) and kaṅka (a vulture), is tejanacūrṇa (ignition powder).

When the body of a man is rubbed over with the powder of the charcoal of the bark of pāribhadraka (erythrina indica) mixed with the serum of the flesh of maṇḍūka (a frog), it can be burnt with fire (without causing hurt).

The body which is painted with the paste (kalka) prepared from the bark of pāribhadraka (erythrina indica) and sesamum seeds burns with fire.

The ball prepared from the powder of the charcoal of the bark of pīlu (careya arborea) can be held in hand and burnt with fire.

When the body of a man is smeared over with the serum of the flesh of a frog, it bums with fire (with no hurt).

When the body of a man is smeared over with the above serum as well as with the oil extracted from the fruits of kuśa (ficus religiosa) and āmra (mango tree), and when the powder prepared from an ocean frog (samudra maṇḍūkī), phenaka (sea-foam), and sarjarasa (the juice of vatica robusta) is sprinkled over the body, it burns with fire (without being hurt).

When the body of a man is smeared over with sesamum oil mixed with equal quantities of the serum of the flesh of a frog, crab, and other animals, it can burn with fire (without hurt).

The body which is smeared over with the serum of the flesh of a frog, burns with fire.

The body of a man which is rubbed over with the powder of the root of bamboo (veṇu) and śaivāla (aquatic plant), and is smeared over with the serum of the flesh of a frog, burns with fire.

Whoever has anointed his legs with the oil extracted from the paste prepared from the roots of pāribhadraka (erythrina indica), pratibalā (?), vañjula (a kind of ratan or tree), vajra (andropogon muricatum or euphorbia), and kadalī (banana), mixed with the serum of the flesh of a frog, can walk over fire (without hurt).

* Oil should be extracted from the paste prepared from the roots of pratibalā, vañjula and pāribhadraka, all growing near water, the paste being mixed with the serum of the flesh of a frog.

* Having anointed one’s legs with this oil, one can walk over a white-hot mass of fire as though on a bed of roses.

When birds such as a haṃsa (swan), krauñca (heron), mayūra (Peacock), and other large swimming birds are let to fly at night with a burning reed attached to their tail, it presents the appearance of a fire-brand falling from the sky (ulkā).

Ashes, caused by lightning quench the fire.

When, in a fireplace, kidney beans (māṣa) wetted with the menstrual fluid of a woman, as well as the roots of vajra (andropogon muricatum) and kadalī (banana), wetted with the serum of the flesh of a frog are kept, no grains can be cooked there.

Cleansing the fireplace is its remedy.

By keeping in the mouth a ball-like piece of pīlu (careya arborea) or a knot of the root of linseed tree (suvarcala) with fire inserted within the mass of the ball and wound round with threads and cotton (picu), volumes of smoke and fire can be breathed out.

When the oil extracted from the fruits of kuśa (ficus religiosa) and āmra (mango) is poured over the fire, it burns even in the storm.

Sea-foam wetted with oil and ignited keeps burning when floating on water.

The fire generated by churning the bone of a monkey by means of a bamboo stick of white and black colour (kalmāṣaveṇu) burns in water instead of being quenched.

There will burn no other fire where the fire generated by churning, by means of a bamboo stick of white and black colour, the left side rib-bone of a man killed by a weapon or put to the gallows; or the fire generated by churning the bone of a man or woman by means of the bone of another man is circumambulated thrice from right to left.

* When the paste prepared from the animals, such as cucundari (musk rat), khañjarīṭa (?), and khārakīṭa (?), with the urine of a horse is applied to the chains with which the legs of a man are bound, they will be broken to pieces.

The sun-stone (ayaskānta), or any other stone (will break to pieces) when wetted with the serum of the flesh of the animals kulinda (?), dardura (?), and khārakīṭa (?).

The paste prepared from the powder of the rib-bone of nāraka (?), a donkey, kaṅka (a kind of vulture), and bhāsa (a bird), mixed with the juice of water-lily, is applied to the legs of bipeds and quadrupeds (while making a journey).

When a man makes a journey, wearing the shoes made of the skin of a camel, smeared over with the serum of the flesh of an owl and a vulture and covered over with the leaves of the banyan tree, he can walk fifty yojanas without any fatigue.

(When the shoes are smeared over with) the pith, marrow or sperm of the birds, śyena, kaṅka, kāka, gṛdhra, haṃsa, krauñca, and viciralla, (the traveller wearing them) can walk a hundred yojanas (without any fatigue).

The fat or serum derived from roasting a pregnant camel together with saptaparṇa (lechites scholaris), or from roasting dead children in cremation grounds, is applied to render a journey of a hundred yojanas easy.

* Terror should be caused to the enemy by exhibiting these and other wonderful and delusive performances; while anger causing terror is common to all, terrification by such wonders is held as a means to consolidate peace.

[Thus ends Chapter II, “Wonderful and Delusive Contrivances,” in Book XIV, “Secret Means” of the Arthaśāstra of Kauṭilya. End of the hundred and forty-seventh chapter from the beginning.]

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