Yoga Vasistha [English], Volume 1-4

by Vihari-Lala Mitra | 1891 | 1,121,132 words | ISBN-10: 8171101519

The English translation of the Yoga-vasistha: a Hindu philosophical and spiritual text written by sage Valmiki from an Advaita-vedanta perspective. The book contains epic narratives similar to puranas and chronologically precedes the Ramayana. The Yoga-vasistha is believed by some Hindus to answer all the questions that arise in the human mind, an...

Chapter CXIII - Description of the ocean

Argument:—Relation of the cessation of arms, and description of majestic ocean.

Vasishtha continued:—

The hostile forces of the enemies thus flying on all sides, were pursued to a great distance by the four forms of Vihaschit as said before.

2. These four forms of almighty power, and of one soul and mind; went on conquering the four regions on every side, with one intent and purpose.

3. They chased the retreating enemies without giving them any respite, to the shores of the seas on all sides; as the currents of rivers keep on their course without intermission, to the coast of the far distant ocean.

4. This long course of the royal forces, as well as of the enemies, soon put an end to all their provisions and ammunitions, and all their resources and strength were exhausted at last, as a rill is lost under the sands ere it reaches the lake.

5. The king beheld his forces and those of his enemies, to be as exhausted at the end; as the merits and demerits of a man are lost up on his ultimate liberation.

6. The weapons ceased to fly about, as if they were at rest after they had done their part in the sky; and as the flames of fire subside of themselves, for want of fuel and the combustibles.

7. The horses and elephants went under their shelters, and the weapons stuck to trees and rocks; and they seemed to fall fast asleep, like birds upon their spray at night fall.

8. As the waves cease to roll in a dried up channel, and the snows to fall under the clouded sky; and as the clouds fly before the storm, and the fragrance of flowers is borne away by the wind.

9. So the flying weapons were submerged like fishes, under the falling showers of rain; and the dripping drops of darts, were thwarted by the thickening showers of snow (i.e. the dropping arrows were driven away, by the drifts of snow).

10. The sky was cleared of the whirling disks, that were hurled by hundreds, and hurtling in the hazy atmosphere; and it got a clean sweep of the gathering clouds, that were soaring up in surges, and pouring down in floods of rain.

11. The firmament presented the appearance of an immense ocean, composed of the limpid fuel of the vast void; and containing the sparkling gems of the stars in its bosom, and the burning submarine fire of the sun in the midst of it.

12. The great vacuum appeared as extensive and deep, and as bright and serene, and devoid of the dust of rajas or pride, as the minds of great men (which are of equal extent and depth of knowledge &c.).

13. They then beheld the oceans, lying as junior brothers of the skies; being of equal extent and clearness, and stretching to the utmost limits of the horizon.

14. These with their deep sounding waves and foaming froths, are as gratifying to the minds of people; as the roaring clouds with their showers of snow, are ravishing of human hearts.

15. They having fallen down from high heaven, and stretching wide their huge bodies on the earth below; seem to be rolling grievously on the ground, with their deep groanings and breathings, and raising up their billowy arms, in order to lift themselves on high.

16. They are gross and dull bodies, yet full of force and motion, and though they are mute and dumb, yet full of noise and howling in their hollow cavities; they are full of dreadful whirlpools, as is this world with all its dizzy rounds.

17. The gems sparkling on the banks, add to the brightness of the sun beams (in the morning); and the winds blowing in the conch shells, resound all along the coast.

18. Here the huge waves are growling, like the big clouds roaring loudly on high; and the circling eddies are whirling around, as the shattered corallines were scattered along.

19. The hoarse snorting of sharks and whales, is howling in the bosom of the deep; and the lashing of the waters by their tails, sounded as the splashing of the oars of vessels in them.

20. Here are the horrid sharks and alligators, devouring the fleecy mermaids and marine men in numbers; and a thousand suns shining in their reflexions on the rising waves.

21. Here are seen fleets of ships floating on the surface of the waters, and rising aloft on the tops of the waves; and driven forward by the blowing winds, howling horribly through the furling sails and cracking cordage.

22. The ocean with his hundreds of arms of the heaving waves, handles the orbs of the sun and moon; and displays varieties of sparkling gem, with reflexions of their 'beams in them.

23. Here were the shoals of sharks, skimming over the foaming main; and there were the water spouts, rising like columns of elephants' trunks to the skies, and representing a forest of bamboos.

24. In some places, the rippling waves were gliding, like curling creepers, with hairy tufts and frothy blossoms on them; and in others, little rocks resembling the backs of elephants and bearing the vernal flowers, were scattered in the midst of the waters.

25. Some where were the heaps of froth and frost and hills of ice bergs, resembling the edifices of the gods and demigods; and else where were the groups of sparkling little billows, that laughed to scorn the clusters of shining stars in the skies.

26. Here are branches (chains) of rocks concealed in its depth, like little gnats hidden in the hollows underneath the ground; and there are the huge surges, which make pigmies and dwarfs of the high hills on earth.

27. Its coasts are spread over with sparkling gems, like beds of gemming sprouts and shoots of flowers on the ground (or) as the ground strewn over with the germinating shoots and sprouts of gemming blossom); while the glistening pearls bursting out of their silvery shells sparkle amidst the spreading sands.

28. The sea seems to weave a vest of silken stuff, with its fleecy waves; and decking it with all its floating gems and pearls; while the rivers flowing into it from all directions, serve to colour it with their various waters.

29. The coasts studded with gems and pearls of various hues, display as it were the beams of a hundred moons, in the versicoloured nails of its feet.

30. The shadows of the beaching tali forests, falling on the swelling waves of the sea, were imbued with the hues of the marine gems; and appeared as moving arbours with their variegated foliage, fruits and flowers.

31. There are seen the shadows of sundry fruit trees, reflected in the waters gliding below; and as rising up and falling down with their reflexions in the moving waves and billows. The false and falling shadows, gathered numbers of marine beasts under them, for gorging the falling fruits. (This is pursuing a shadow).

32. Again the greedy fishes were collected some where, and leaping to catch the birds that were sitting on the fruit trees, and seen in their reflexions on the waves.

33. Here are seen many sea monsters also, that break the embankments, and rove about at random in the watery maze, as birds fly freely in the vacuous air.

34. The ocean being a formless deep, bears the image of the three worlds impressed on its bosom; it bears also the image of the pure vacuum in itself, as it bore the image of Narayana in its breast.

35. Its great depth, clearness and immeasurable extent, gives it the appearance of the majestic firmament, which is reflected in its bosom, as it were imprest upon it.

36. It bears the reflexion of the sky and of the flying birds thereof, as if they were the images of aquatic fowls swimming on its surface, or resembled the black bees fluttering about its lotus like waves.

37. Its boisterous waves are borne to the skies by the violent winds, and washing the welkin's face with their briny sprays; and the deep sounding main, resounding from its hollow rocks, is roaring aloud like the diluvian clods.

38. The gurgling noise of the whirlpools, resembles the loud thunder claps of heaven; and the submarine fire is sometimes seen to burst out of the deep, like the latent flame of Agastya, that consumed the waters of the main.

39. The watery maze presents the picture of a vast wilderness, with its waves as the waving trees; the billows as its branch boughs, its surfs as blossoms, and the foams and froths as flowers.

40. The high heaving surges with the shoals of fishes skimming and skipping upon them; appear as fragments of the sky fallen below, and carried away by the gliding waters.

41. Thus the hostile forces were driven afar to the shores of the salt seas;extending far and wide and bounding the earth on every side;while the lofty mountains rising to the skies with their verdant tops, intercepted the sight on all sides.