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 CXXIII - The king's excursions on all sides

Argument:—The King and his train, pass over the islands and proceed towards the west.

Vasishtha related:—

1. Thus they proceeded onward, to explore into the visible phenomena, exposed before them by Ignorance (avidya or external nature); and continued to walk on foot, over the watery maze and the islands it contained.

2. They passed over the ocean to some island, and then from that island to the sea again; and in this manner they traversed on foot, over many a mountain and wilderness in interminable succession.

3. Then as the king was proceeding towards the western main, he was seized and devoured by a voracious fish, which was as the undying breed of Vishnu's fish, and as fleet as a boat in the stream of Bitasta Beyah. (Vishnu's fish was the deathless incarnation of himself).

4. The fish fled with him in his belly to the milky ocean; but finding him too hard for his digestion, he bore him in his bowels to a great distance in another direction.

5. He was then borne to the saccharine ocean on the south, and was there cast out in the island of Yakshas; where he was overpowered to the love of a female fiend by her art of enchantment, (or) where he was enchanted into the amour of a female Yakshi, by her skill in sorcery. (The yakshas are the present yakhas of Ceylon, or Egypt, and are said to be equally adept in the art of maya or magic).

6. He then went towards the east, and passing by the Ganges, he killed a shark that had pursued him, and arrived at last at the district of Kanya Kubja the modern Cawnpore.

7. Then proceeding towards the north, he came to the country, of Uttara-kurus, where he was edified by his adoration of Siva, and became exempted from the fear of death, in all his wanderings on all sides of the earth.

8. In this way, travelling long and afar, both by land and sea; he was often attacked by wild elephants on the boundary mountains, and repeatedly gorged and disgorged by sharks and alligators in the seas.

9. Then proceeding towards the west, he was picked up by an eagle and set upon his back; and the bird took to his golden pinions, and bore him in an instant to the Kusa-dwipa across the ocean.

10. Thence he passed to the Krauncha-dwipa on the east; where he was seized and devoured by a Rakshasa of the mountain, but whom he killed afterwards by ripping up his belly and its entrails.

11. Roving then in the south, he was denounced to become a yaksha by curse of Daksha the king of that part: until he was released from that state by the king of the Saca-dwipa after some years.

12. He then passed over the great and smaller seas lying in the north, and after passing over the great frigid ocean, he arrived at the country of gold, where he was changed to a stone by the siddhas of that place.

13. In this state he remained a whole century, till by the grace of his god Agni—ignis, he was released from the curse of the siddha, who received him again into his favour.

14. Then travelling to the east, he became king of the country of cocoanuts; and after reigning there for full five years, he was restored to the remembrance of his former state.

15. Then passing to the north of the Meru Mountain, he dwelt among the Apsaras, in the groves of kalpa trees for ten years, and subsisted on the bread fruits of cocoanuts.

16. Going afterwards to the Salmali-dwipa in the west, which abounds in trees of the same name, he dwelt in the society of birds for many years, having been previously instructed in their language, when he had been carried away by Garuda.

17. Thence journeying in his westerly course, he reached to the Mandara Mountain which abounded in verdure and madara forests; and here he sojourned for a day in company with Mandari—a Kinnera female.

18. He then journeyed to the Nandana garden of the gods, which abounded in kalpa trees rising as high as the waves of the milky ocean; and he remained in the company of the woodland gods for a septenary, sporting with the Apsara damsels in their amorous dalliance.