Mahabharata (English)

by Kisari Mohan Ganguli | 2,566,952 words | ISBN-10: 8121505933

The English translation of the Mahabharata is a large text describing ancient India. It is authored by Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa and contains the records of ancient humans. Also, it documents the fate of the Kauravas and the Pandavas family. Another part of the large contents, deal with many philosophical dialogues such as the goals of life. Book...

Section II

"Vaisampayana said, "Thus addressed by the intelligent king Dhritarashtra Yudhishthira, possessed of understanding, became calm. And then Kesava (Krishna) accosted him,—'If a person indulges excessively in sorrow for his departed forefathers, he grieves them. (Therefore, banishing grief), do you (now) celebrate many a sacrifice with suitable presents to the priests; and do you gratify the gods with Soma liquor, and the manes of your forefathers with their due food and drink. Do you also gratify your guests with meat and drink and the destitute with gifts commensurate with their desires. A person of your high intelligence should not bear himself thus. What ought to be known has been known by you; what ought to be done, has also been performed. And you have heard the duties of the Kshatriyas, recited by Bhishma, the son of Bhagirathi, by Krishna Dvaipayana, Narada and Vidura. Therefore you should not walk the way of the stupid; but pursuing the course of your forefathers, sustain the burthen (of the empire). It is meet that a Kshatriya should attain heaven for certain by his (own) renown. Of heroes, those that came to be slain never shall have to turn away (from the celestial regions). Renounce your grief, O mighty sovereign. Verily, what has happened was destined to happen so. You canst in no wise see those that have been slain in this war.—Having said this unto Yudhishthira, prince of the pious, the high-spirited Govinda paused; and Yudhishthira answered him thus, 'O Govinda, full well do I know your fondness for me. You have ever favoured me with your love and your friendship. And, O holder of the mace and the discus. O scion of Yadu’s race, O glorious one, if (now) with a pleased mind you dost permit me to go to the ascetic’s retreat in the woods, then you wouldst compass what is highly desired by me. Peace find I none after having slain my grand-father, and that foremost of men, Karna, who never fled from the field of battle. Do you, O Janarddana, so order that I may be freed from this heinous sin and that my mind may be purified. As Pritha’s son was speaking thus, the highly-energetic Vyasa, cognisant of the duties of life, soothing him, spoke these excellent words, My child, your mind is not yet calmed; and therefore you are again stupefied by a childish sentiment. And wherefore, O child, do we over and over again scatter our speech to the winds? You knowest duties of the Kshatriyas, who live by warfare. A king that has performed his proper part should not suffer himself to be overwhelmed by sorrow. You have faithfully listened to the entire doctrine of salvation; and I have repeatedly removed your misgivings arising out of desire. But not paying due heed to what I have unfolded, you of perverse understanding hast doubtless forgotten it clean. Be it not so. Such ignorance is not worthy of you. O sinless one, you knowest all kinds, of expiation; and you have also heard of the virtues of kings as well as the merits of gifts. Wherefore then, O Bharata, acquainted with every morality and versed in all the Agamas, art you overwhelmed (with grief) as if from ignorance?'"


This concludes Section II of Book 14 (Ashvamedha Parva) of the Mahabharata, of which an English translation is presented on this page. This book is famous as one of the Itihasa, similair in content to the eighteen Puranas. Book 14 is one of the eighteen books comprising roughly 100,000 Sanskrit metrical verses.

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