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Title: A Prose English Translation Of Vishupuranam - (Based on Professor H. H. Wilson’s translation.)
Author: Dutt, Manmatha Nath
Language: English
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Transcriber's Note

This book was transcribed from scans of the original found at the
contained inconsistent spellings of names, misplaced punctuation,
misspellings, inconsistent use of the macron (ā), improper nested
quotations, and other problems. I have attempted to correct these where
the author's intent was obvious. Manmatha Nath Dutt's translation is
based on an earlier one by H. H. Wilson, available at sacred-texts.com.
Where the wording or meaning of certain passages was unclear, either
because of damage to the book or bad proofing, I have consulted the
Wilson translation to make sure I got the meaning right.

There are two words in the text that may seem like one word
inconsistently spelled but which are not: Brahma and Brahmā. The former
refers to the impersonal form of Vishnu, and the latter is the demigod
in charge of creation of the material universe.

The cover illustration makes use of art from the Met Museum, Krishna
Govardhandhara, a miniature painting commissioned by Akbar (c.1590-95)
Ink, opaque watercolor, and gold on paper.








Rector, Keshub Academy;

Author of the English Translations of the Srimadbhagavatam, Mahabharata,
Bhagavat-Gita and other works.



Elysium Press 65/2 Beadon Street.



That Purāna in which Parāsara, beginning with the events of Varāha
Kalpa, expounds all duties, is called Vaishnava and is said to consist
of twenty-three thousand stanzas. But the actual number of verses falls
far short of the enumeration of the Matsya and the Bhagavata. Vishnu
Purānam consists of all the characteristics of the Purāna, namely, five
specified topics and has been divided into six books.

In this translation of Vishnupurānam I have principally drawn upon
Professor H. H. Wilson's splendid work, and have tried, as best as lies
in my power, to interpret the ancient thought entombed in this great
work. My work is not so much intended for scholars as for the general
readers who have not the time and leisure to read the original.
Professor Wilson's book is very costly and cannot be always procured by
the readers; and in the face of this difficulty I hope my edition will
not be unwelcome to the general public.


September 1894



Section I.—Invocation. Maitreya inquires of his teacher Parāçara, the
origin and nature of the universe. Parāçara performs a rite to destroy
the demons; reproved by Vasishtha, he desists; Pulastya appears, and
bestows upon him divine knowledge; he repeats the Vishnu Purāna, Vishnu
the origin, existence, and end of all things.

Section II.—Prayer of Parāçara to Vishnu. Successive narration of the
Vishnupurana. Explanation of Vasudeva; his existence before creation;
his first manifestations. Description of Pradhana or the chief principle
of things. Cosmogony. Of Prakrita or material creation; of time; of the
active cause. Development of effects; Mahat; Ahankara; Tanmatras;
elements; objects of sense; senses; of the mundane egg. Vishnu the same
as Brahmā the creator; Vishnu the preserver; Rudra the destroyer.

Section III.—Measure of time, Moments or Kastha's, &c., day and
fortnight, month, year, divine year; Yugas or ages; Mahajuga, or great
age; day of Brahmā; periods of the Manus; a Manwantara; night of Brahmā,
and destruction of the world; a year of Brahmā, his life; a Kalpa;
Parardha; the past or Padma Kalpa the present or Varaha.

Section IV.—Nārāyana's appearance, in the beginning of the Kalpa, as the
Varaha or Boar; Prīthivi addresses him; he raises the world from beneath
the waters; hymned by Sanandana and the Yogis. The earth floats on the
ocean; divided into seven zones. The lower spheres of the universe
restored. Creation renewed.

Section V.—Vishnu as Brahmā creates the world. General characteristics
of creation. Brahmā meditates, and gives origin to immovable things,
animals, gods, men. Specific creation of nine kinds; Mahat, Tanmatra,
Aindriya, inanimate objects, animals, gods, men, Anugraha Kaumara. More
particular account of creation. Origin of different orders of beings
from Brahmā's body under different conditions; and of the Vedas from his
mouths. All things created again as they existed in a former Kalpa.

Section VI.—Origin of the four castes; their primitive state. Progress
of Society. Different kinds of grain. Efficacy of sacrifice. Duties of
men; regions assigned them after death.

Section VII.—Creation continued. Production of the mind-born sons of
Brahmā; of the Prajāpatis; of Sanandana and others; of Rudra and the
eleven Rudras; of the Manu Swayambhuva, and his wife Satarupa; of their
children. The daughters of Daksha, and their marriage to Dharma and
others. The progeny of Dharma and Adharma. The perpetual succession of
worlds, and different modes of mundane dissolution.

Section VIII.—Origin of the Rudra; his becoming eight Rudras; their
wives and children. The posterity of Bhrigu. Account of Sri in
conjunction with Vishnu. (Sacrifice of Daksha).

Section IX.—Legend of Lakshmi, Durvasa gives a garland to Indra; he
treats it disrespectfully, and is cursed by the Muni. The power of the
gods impaired; they are oppressed by the Dānavas, and have recourse to
Vishnu. The churning of the ocean. Praises of Sri.

Section X.—The descendants of the daughters of Daksha married to the

Section XI.—Legend of Dhruva, the son of Uttanpada; he is unkindly
treated by his father's second wife; applies to his mother; her advice;
he resolves to engage in religious exercises; sees the seven Rishis, who
recommend him to propitiate Vishnu.

Section XII.—Dhruva commences a course of religious austerities.
Unsuccessful attempts of Indra and ministers to distract Dhruva's
attention; they appeal to Vishnu, who allays their fears and appears to
Dhruva. Dhruva praises Vishnu, and is raised to the skies as the

Section XIII.—Posterity of Dhruva. Legend of Vena; his impiety, he is
put to death by the Rishis. Anarchy ensues. The production of Nishad and
Prithu; the latter the first king. The origin of Suta and Magadha they
enumerate the duties of kings. Prithu compels Earth to acknowledge his
authority; he levels it; introduces cultivations; erects cities. Earth
called after him Prithivi; typified as a cow.

Section XIV.—Descendants of Prithu. Legend of the Prachetas they are
desired by their father to multiply mankind by worshipping Vishnu; they
plunge into the sea, and meditate on and praise him; he appears and
grants their wishes.

Section XV.—The world overrun with trees; they are destroyed by the
Prachetasas. Soma pacifies them, and gives them Marisha to wife; her
story; the daughter of nymph Pramlocha. Legend of Kandu, Marisha's
former history. Daksha the son of the Prachetasas; his different
characters; his sons; his daughters; their marriage and progeny allusion
to Prahlāda, his descendant.

Section XVI.—Inquiries of Maitreya respecting the history of Prahlāda.

Section XVII.—Legend of Prahlāda. Hiranyakashipu, the sovereign of the
universe; the gods dispersed, or in servitude to him; Prahlāda, his son
remains devoted to Vishnu; questioned by his father, he praises Vishnu;
Hiranyakashipu orders him to be put to death, but in vain; his repeated
deliverance; he teaches his companions to adore Vishnu.

Section XVIII.—Hiranyakashipu's reiterated attempts to destroy his son;
their being always frustrated.

Section XIX.—Dialogue between Prahlāda and his father; he is cast from
the top of the palace unhurt; baffles the incantation of Samvara; he is
thrown fettered into the sea; he praises Vishnu.

Section XX.—Vishnu appears to Prahlāda. Hiranyakashipu relents and is
reconciled to his son; he is put to death by Vishnu as the Nrisingha,
Prahlāda becomes king of the Daityas; his posterity; fruit of hearing
the story.

Section XXI.—Families of the Daityas. Descendants of Kasyapa by Danu.
Children of Kasyapa by his other wives. Birth of the Mārutas, the sons
of of Diti.

Section XXII.—Dominion over different provinces of creation assigned to
different beings. Universality of Vishnu. Four varieties of spiritual
contemplation. Two conditions of spirit. The perceptible attributes of
Vishnu; types of his imperceptible properties. Vishnu everything. Merit
of hearing the first book of the Vishnu Purana.


Section I.—Descendants of Priyavrata, the eldest son of Swayambhuva
Manu; his ten sons; three adopt a religious life; the others become
kings of seven Dwipas, or isles, of the earth. Agnidhras, king of
Jambu-dwipa divides it into nine portions, which he distributes amongst
his sons, Nabhi king of the south succeeded by Bharata; India named
after him Bhārata; his descendants reign during the Swayambhuva

Section II.—Description of the earth. The seven Dwipas and seven seas
Jambu-dwipa. Mount Meru; its existence and boundaries. Extent of
Illavrita. Groves, lakes, and branches of Meru. Cities of the Gods.
Rivers. The forms of Vishnu worshipped in different Varthas.

Section III.—Description of Bharata-Varsha; extent; chief mountains;
nine divisions; principal nations; superiority over other Varshasi
especially as the seat of religious acts.

Section IV.—Account of kings, divisions, mountains, rivers, and
inhabitants of the other Dwipas viz. Plaksha, Silmala, Kusa, Krauneba,
Sāka, and Pushkara; of the oceans separating them; of the tides; the
confines of the earth; the Lokaloka Mountain. Extent of the whole.

Section V.—Of the regions of Patala, below the earth. Nārada's praises
of Patala. Account of the serpent Sesha. First teacher of astronomy and

Section VI.—Of the different hells, or divisions of Naraka, below
Patala; the crimes punished in them respectively; efficacy of expiation;
meditation on Vishnu the most effective expiation.

Section VII.—Extent and situation of the seven spheres viz., earth, sky,
planets, Moharloka, Janaloka, Tapoloka, and Satyaloka. Of the egg of
Brahmā and its elementary envelopes. Of the influence of the energy of

Section VII.—Description of the Sun; his chariot; its two axles; his
horses. The cities of the regents of the cardinal points. The Sun's
course; nature of his rays; his path along the ecliptic. Length of day
and night. Divisions of time; equinoxes and solstices, months, years,
the cyclical yuga, or age of five years. Northern and southern
declinations. Saints on the Lokaloka mountain. Celestial paths of the
Pitris, gods, Vishnu. Origin of the Ganga, and separation, on the top of
Meru into four great rivers.

Section IX.—Planetary system, under the type of a Sisumara or porpoise.
The earth nourished by the Sun. Of rain whilst the Sun shines. Of rain
from clouds. Rain the support of vegetation, and thence of animal life.
Nārāyana the support of all beings.

Section X.—Names of the twelve Adityas. Names of the Rishis, Gandharvas,
Apsaras, Yakshas, Uragas, and Rākshasas, who attend the chariot of the
sun in each month of the year. Their respective functions.

Section XI.—The sun distinct from, and supreme over, the attendance on
his car; identical with the three Vedas and with Vishnu; his functions.

Section XII.—Description of the Moon; his chariot, horses, and course,
fed by the Sun; drained periodically of ambrosia by the progenitors and
gods. The chariots and horses of the planets; kept in their orbits by
aerial chains attached to Dhruva. Tropical members of the planetary
porpoise. Vasudeva alone real.

Section XIII.—Legend of Bharata. Bharata abdicates his throne and
becomes an ascetic; cherishes a fawn, and becomes so much attached to it
as to neglect his devotions; he dies; his successive births; works in
the fields and is pressed as a palanquin-bearer for the Raja of Sauvira;
rebuked for his awkwardness; his reply; dialogue between him and the

Section XIV.—Dialogue continued, Bharata expounds the nature of
existence, the end of life, and the identification of individual with
universal spirit.

Section XV.—Bharata relates the story of Ribhu and Nidagha, the latter,
the pupil of the former, becomes a prince, and is visited by his
preceptor, who explains to him the principles unity and departs.

Section XVI.—Ribhu returns to his disciple, and perfects him in divine
knowledge. The same recommended to the Rajah by Bharata, who thereupon
obtains final liberation. Consequences of hearing this legend.


Section I.—Accounts of the several Manus and Manwantaras Shwarochisha
the second Manu; the divinities, the Indra, the seven Rishis of his
period and his sons. Similar details of Auttami, Tamasa, Raivata,
Chakshusha, and Vaivaswata. The forms of Vishnu, as the preserver, in
each Manwantara. The meaning of Vishnu.

Section II.—Of the seven future Manus and Manwantaras. Story of Sanjna
and Chhaya, wives of the Sun. Savarni son of Chhaya the eighth Manu. His
successors, with divinities, &c of their respective periods. Appearance
of Vishnu in each of the four Yugas.

Section III.—Division of the Vedas into four portions, by a Vyasa in
every Dwapara age. List of the twenty-eight Vyasas of the present
Manwantara. Meaning of the word Brahmā.

Section IV.—Division of the Veda, in the last Dwapara age, by the Vyasa
Krishna Dwaipayana. Paila made reader of the Rich; Vaisampayana of the
Yajush; Jaimani of the Saman and Sumantu of the Atharvan. Suta appointed
to teach the historical poems. Origin of the four parts of the Veda.
Sanhitas of the Rig Veda.

Section V.—Division of the Yajur-veda. Story of Yajnawalkya forced to
give up what he has learned, picked up by others, forming the
Taittiriya-yajush. Yajnawalkya worships the Sun who communicates to him
the Vajasaneyi-yajush.

Section VI.—Divisions of the Sama-veda; of the Atharva-veda. Four
Pauranik Sanhitas. Names of the eighteen Puranas. Branches of knowledge.
Classes of Rishis.

Section VII.—By what means men are exempted from the authority of Yama,
as narrated by Bhishma to Nakula. Dialogue between Yama and one of his
attendants. Worshippers of Vishnu not subject to Yama. How they are to
be known.

Section VIII.—How Vishnu is to be worshipped as related by Aurva to
Sagara. Duties of the four castes, severally and in common; also in time
of distress.

Section IX.—Duties of the religious student, householder, hermit and

Section X.—Ceremonies to be observed at the birth and naming of a child.
Of marrying or leading a religious life. Choice of a wife. Different
modes of marrying.

Section XI.—Of the Sadacharas or perpetual obligation of a householder.
Daily purifications, ablutions, libations, and oblations; hospitality;
obsequial rites; ceremonies to be observed at meals, morning and evening
worship, and on going to rest.

Section XII.—Miscellaneous obligations—purificatory, ceremonial and

Section XIII.—Of Sraddhas, or rites in honour of ancestors, to be
performed on occasions of rejoicing. Obsequial ceremonies. Of the
Ekoddishta or monthly Srāddha, and the Sapindana or annual one. By whom
to be performed.

Section XIV.—Of occasional Sraddhas, or obsequial ceremonies; when most
efficacious, and at what places.

Section XV. What Brahmans are to be entertained at Sraddhas; Different
prayers to be recited. Offerings of food to be presented to deceased

Section XVI.—Things proper to be offered as food to deceased ancestors;
prohibited things. Circumstances vetiating a Srāddha; how to be avoided.
Song of the Pitris or progenitors, heard by Ikshwāku.

Section XVII.—Of heretics, or those who rejects the authority of the
Vedas; their origin, as described by the Vasistha to Bhishma; the gods,
defeated by the Daityas, praise Vishnu; an illusory being or Buddha,
produced from his body.

Section XVIII.—Buddha goes to the earth and teaches the Daityas to
contempt the Vedas; his sceptical doctrines; his prohibition of animal
sacrifices. Meaning of the term Bauddha. Tainas and Bauddhas, their
tenets. The Daityas loose their power and are overcome by the gods.
Meaning of the term Nagna. Consequences of neglect of Duty. Story of
Satadbanu and his wife Saivya. Communion with heretics to be shunned.


Section I.—Dynasties of kings. Origin of the Solar dynasty from Brahmā.
Sons of the Manu Vaivaswata. Transformation of Illa or Sudyumna.
Descendants of the sons of Vaivaswata; those of Nedishta. Greatness of
Marutha, kings of Vaisali. Descendants of Saryati. Legend of Raivata;
his daughter Revati married to Baloram.

Section II.—Dispersion of Revata's descendants; those of Drisha; those
of Nabhaga. Birth of Ikshwaku, the son of Vaivaswata; his sons. Line of
Vikukshi. Legend of Kakutstha; of Dhundhumara; of Yuvanāswa; of
Mandhatri; his daughter married to Sauvari.

Section III.—Shaubhri and his wives adopt an ascetic life, Descendant of
Mandhatri. Legend of Narmāda and Purukutsa. Legend of Trisanku, Bahu
driven from his kingdom by the Haihayas and Talajanghas. Birth of
Sagara; he conquers the barbarians, imposes upon them distinguishing
usage, and excludes them from offerings to fire and the study of Vedas.

Section IV.—The progeny of Sagara; their wickedness; he performs an
Aswamedha; the horse stolen by Kapila; found by Sagara's sons who are
all destroyed by the sage; the horse recovered by Ansumat; his
descendants. Legend the Mitrasaha or Kalmashapada the son of Sudasa.
Legend of Khatwanga. Birth of Rāma and other sons of Dasaratha. Epitome
of the history of Rāma; his descendant and those of his brothers. Line
of Kusha. Vrihadbala, the last, killed in the great war.

Section V.—Kings of Mithila. Legend of Nimi, the son of Ikshwaku. Birth
of Janaka. Sacrifice of Siradhwaja. Origin of Sitā. Descendant of
Kusadhwaja. Krita the last of Maithila princes.

Section VI.—Kings of the lunar dynasty. Origin of Soma or the moon; he
carries off Tara, the wife of Vrihaspati; war between the gods and
Asuras in consequence; appeared by Brahmā, Birth of Budha; marred to
Illa, daughter of Vaivaswata. Legend of his son Pururavas, and the nymph
Urvashi; the former institutes offerings with fire; ascends to the
sphere of the Gandharvas.

Section VII.—Sons of Pururavas. Descendants of Amavasu. Indro born as
Gadhi. Legend of Richika and Satyavati; Birth of Jatnadagna and
Viswamitra. Parasurama the son of the former. Sunahseplas and others the
sons of Viswamitra forming the Kausika race.

Section VIII.—Sons of Ayus. Line of Kshatravriddha, or Kings of Kashi.
Former birth of Dhawntari. Various names of Pratarddana. Greatness of

Section IX—Descendants of Raji, son of Ayas, Indra resigns his throne to
him; claimed after his death by his sons, who appostatise from the
religion of the Vedas, and are destroyed by the Indra. Descendants of
Pratikshatra, son of Kshatravriddha.

Section X.—The sons of Nahusha. The sons of Yayati; he is cursed by
Sukra; wishes his sons exchange their vigour for his infirmities. Puru
alone consents. Yayati restores him his youth; divides the earth amongst
his sons under the supremacy of Puru.

Section XI.—The Yadava race, or descendants of Yadu. Karttavirja obtains
a boon from Dattatreya; takes Ravana prisoner; is killed by Parasurama;
his descendant.

Section XII.—Descendants of Kroshtri; Jyamaghas connubial affection for
his wife Saivya, their descendants kings of Vidharbha and Chedi.

Section XIII.—Sons of Satawata. Bhoja princes of Mrittiktavati. Surja
the friend of Satrajit; appears to him in a bodily from; gives him the
Syamantaka gem; its brilliance and marvellous properties. Satrajit gives
it to Prasena, who is killed by a lion; the lion killed by the bear
Jambavat. Krishna suspects of killing Prasena, goes to look for him in
the forests; traces the bear to his cave, fights with him for the jewel;
the contest prolonged, supposed by his companions to be slain; he
overthrows Jambavat, then marries his daughter Jāmbavati, returns with
her and the jewel to Dwārakā and restores the jewel to Satrajit, and
marries his daughter Satyabhāmā. Satrajit murdered by Sataddhanwan;
avenged by Krishna. Quarrel between Krishna and Balarāma. Akrura
possessed of the jewel; leaves Dwārakā. Public calamities. Meeting of
the Yādavas. Story of Akrura's birth; is invited to return; accused by
Krishna of having the Syamantaka jewel; produces it in full assembly; it
remains in his charge; Krishna acquitted of having purloined it.

Section XIV.—Descendants of Sini, of Anamitra, of Swaphalka and Chittra,
of Andhaka. The children of Devaka, and Ugrasena. The descendants of
Bhajamana. Children of Sura; his son Vasudeva; his daughter Pritha
married to Pandu; her children, Yudhishthira and his brothers; also
Karna by Aditya. The sons of Pandu by Madri. Husbands and children of
Sura's other daughter. Previous births of Sisupala.

Section XV.—Explanation of the reason why Sisupal in his previous births
as Hiranyakashipu and Ravana was not identified with Vishnu on being
slain by him, and was so identified when killed as Sisupala. The wives
of Vasudeva; his children; Balarāma and Krishna his sons by Devaki both
apparently of Rohini and Yasoda. The wives and children of Krishna.
Multitude of the descendants of Yadu.

Section XVI.—Descendants of Turvasu.

Section XVII.—Descendants of Druhyu.

Section XVIII.—Descendants of Anu. Countries and towns named after some
of them, as Anga, Banga and others.

Section XIX.—Descendants of Puru. Birth of Bharata, the son of
Dushyanta; his sons killed; adopts Bharadwaja or Vitatha. Hastin,
founder of Hastināpur. Sons of Ajamidha, and the races derived from
them, as Panchalas, etc. Kripa and Kripi found by Santanu. Descendants
of Ritsha, the son of Ajamidha, Kurukshetra named from Kuru. Jarasandha
and other kings of Magadha.

Section XX.—Descendants of Kuru. Devapi abdicates the throne; assumed by
Santanu; he is confirmed by the Brahmans; Bhishma his son by Ganga; his
other sons. Birth of Dhritarashtra, Pandu and Vidura. The hundred sons
of Dhritarashtra. The five sons of Pandu; married to Draupadi; their
prosperity. Parikshit, the grandson of Arjuna, the reigning king.

Section XXI.—Future Kings. Descendants of Parikshit, ending with

Section XXII.—Future kings of the family of Ikshwaku, ending with

Section XXIII.—Future kings of Magadha, Descendants of Vrihadratha.

Section XXIV.—Future kings of Magadha. Five Princes of the line of
Pradyota. Ten Saisunagas. Nine Nandas. Ten Mauryas. Ten Sungas. Four
Kanwas. Thirty Andhrabhrityas. Kings of various tribes and castes, and
periods of their rule. Ascendancy of barbarians. Different races in
different regions. Period of universal iniquity, and decay. Coming of
Vishnu as Kalki, Destruction of the wicked and restoration of the
practices of the Vedas. End of the Kali, and return of the Krita age.
Duration of the Kali. Verses chanted by earth, and communicated by Asita
to Tanaka. End of the fourth book.


Section I.—The death of Kansa announced. Earth, oppressed by the
Daityas, applies to the gods. They accompany her to Vishnu who promises
to give her relief. Kansa imprisons Vasudeva and Devaki. Vishnu's
instructions to Yoganidra.

Section II.—The conception of Devaki; her appearance; she is praised by
the gods.

Section III.—Birth of Krishna, conveyed by Vasudeva to Mathura and
exchanged with the new-born daughter of Yasoda. Kansa attempts to
destroy the latter, who becomes Yoganidra.

Section IV.—Kansa addresses his friends, announces their danger and
orders male children to be put to death.

Section V.—Nanda returns with the infants Krishna and Balarāma to
Gokula. Putaua killed by the former. Prayers of Nanda and Yasoda.

Section VI.—Krishna overturns a wagon; casts down two trees. The Gopis
depart to Vrindavana. Sports of the boys. Description of the season of
the rains.

Section VII.—Krishna combats the serpent Kaliya; alarm of his parents
and companions; he overcomes the serpent, and is propitiated by him;
commands him to depart from the Yamuna river to the ocean.

Section VIII.—The Demon Dhenuka destroyed by Rāma.

Section IX.—Sports of the boys in the forest. Prahlamba the Asura comes
amongst them; is destroyed by Rāma, at the command of Krishna.

Section X.—Description of autumn. Krishna dissuades Nanda from
worshipping Indra; recommends him and the Gopas to worship cattle and
the mountains.

Section XI.—Indra offended by the loss of his offerings causes heavy
rains to deluge Gokula. Krishna holds up the mountain Gobardhana to
shelter the cowherds and their cattle.

Section XII.—Indra comes to Gokula; praises Krishna and makes him prince
over the cattle. Krishna promises to befriend Arjuna.

Section XIII.—Krishna praised by the cowherds; his sports with Gopis,
their imitation and love of him, The Rasa dance.

Section XIV.—Krishna kills the demon Arishta, in the form of a bull.

Section XV.—Kansa informed by Nārada of the existence of Krishna and
Balarāma; he sends Kesin to destroy them and Akrura to bring them to

Section XVI.—Kesin in the form of a horse, slain by Krishna; he is
praised by Nārada.

Section XVII.—Akrura's meditation to Krishna, his arrival at Gokula; his
delight at seeing Krishna and his brother.

Section XVIII.—Grief of the Gopis on the departure of Krishna and
Balarāma with Akrura; their leaving Gokula. Akrura bathes in the Yamuna;
beholds the divine form of the two youths, and praises Vishnu.

Section XIX.—Akrura conveys Krishna and Rāma near to Mathura, leaves
them; they enter the town. Insolence of Kansa's washerman; Krishna kills
him. Civility of a flower-seller; Krishna gives him his benediction.

Section XX.—Krishna and Balarāma meets Kubja; she is made straight by
the former; they proceed to the palace. Krishna breaks a bow intended
for a trial of arms. Kansa's orders to his servants. Public games.
Krishna and his brother enter the arena; the former wrestles with
Chanura, the latter with Mushtika, the king's wrestlers; who are both
killed. Krishna attacks and slays Kansa; he and Balarāma do homage to
Vasudeva, and Devaki; the former praises Krishna.

Section XXI—Krishna encourages his parents; places Ugrasena on the
throne; becomes the pupil of the Sandipani, whose son he recovers from
the sea, he kills the marine demon, Panchajana, and makes a horn of his

Section XXII.—Jarasandha besieges Mathura; is defeated, but repeatedly
renews the attack.

Section XXIII.—Birth of Kalayavana; he advances against Mathura, Krishna
builds Dwārakā and sends thither the Yadava tribe; he leads Kalayavana
into the cave of Muchukunda; the latter awakes, consumes the Yavana
king, and praises Krishna.

Section XXIV.—Muchukunda goes to perform penance, Krishna takes the army
and treasures of Kalayavana, and repairs with them to Dwārakā. Balarāma
visits Vraia; inquires its inhabitants after Krishna.

Section XXV.—Balarāma finds wine in the hollow of a tree and becomes
inebriated; commands the Yamuna to come to him, and on her refusal drags
her out of her course; Lakshmi gives him ornaments and a dress; he
returns to Dwārakā and marries Revati.

Section XXVI.—Krishna carries off Rukmini; the princes who come to
rescue her repulsed by Balarāma. Rukmin overthrown but spared by
Krishna, found Bhojakata. Pradyumna born of Rukmini.

Section XXVII.—Pradyumna stolen by Sambara; thrown into the sea, and
swallowed by a fish; found by Mayadevi; he kills Sambara, marries
Mayadev, and returns with her to Dwārakā. Joy of Rukmini and Krishna.

SECTION XXVIII.—Wives of Krishna, Pradyumna's son Anirudha; nuptials of
the latter. Balarāma beat at dice, becomes incensed, and slays Rukmin
and others.

Section XXIV.—Indra comes to Dwārakā, and reports to Krishna the tyranny
of Naraka. Krishna goes to his city, and puts him to death. Earth gives
the earrings of Aditi to Krishna and praises him. He liberates the
princesses made captive by Naraka, sends them to Dwārakā, and goes to
Swarga with Satyabhāmā.

Section XXX.—Krishna restores her earrings to Aditi, and is praised by
her; he visits the garden of Indra and at the desire of Satyabhāmā
carries off the Pārijāta tree. Sachi excites Indra to its rescue.
Conflict between the gods and Krishna, who defeats them. Satyabhāmā
derides them. They praise Krishna.

Section XXXI.—Krishna with Indra's consent, takes the Pārijāta tree to
Dwārakā; marries the princesses rescued from Naraka.

Section XXXII.—Children of Krishna. Usha the daughter of Bana, sees
Aniruddha in a dream, and becomes enamored of him.

Section XXXIII.—Bana solicits Siva for war; finds Aniruddha in the
palace, and makes him prisoner. Krishna, Balarāma, and Pradyumna come to
his rescue. Siva and Skandha aid Bana; the former is disabled; the
latter put to flight, Bana encounters Krishna who cuts off all his arms,
and is about to put him to death. Siva intercedes and Krishna spares his
life. Vishnu and Siva are the same.

Section XXXIV.—Paundraka, a Vasudeva, assumes the insignia and style of
Krishna, supported by the king of Kasi. Krishna marches against and
destroys them. The son of the king sends a magical being against
Krishna; destroyed by his discus, which also sets Benares on fire, and
consumes it and its inhabitants.

Section XXXV.—Samba carries off the daughter of Duryodhana but is taken
prisoner. Balarāma comes to Hastināpur, and demands his liberation; it
is refused; in his wrath he drags the city towards him, to throw it into
the river. The Kuru chiefs give up Samba and his wife.

Section XXXVI.—The Asura Dwivida in the form of an ape destroyed by

Section XXXVII.—Destruction of Yadavas. Samba and others deceive and
ridicule the Rishis. The former bears an iron pestle, it is broken, and
thrown into the sea. The Yadavas go to Prabhasa by desire of Krishna;
they quarrel and fight and all perish. The great serpent Sesha issues
from the mouth of Rāma. Krishna is shot by a hunter, and again becomes
one with universal spirit.

Section XXXVIII.—Arjuna comes to Dwārakā, and burns the dead and takes
away the surviving inhabitants. Commencement of the Kali age. Shepherds
and thieves attack Arjuna and carry off the women and wealth. Arjuna
regrets the loss of his prowess to Vyasa; who consoles him and tells him
the story of Ashtavakra's cursing the Apsaras. Arjuna and his brothers
place Pariskhit on the throne, and go to the forests. End of the fifth


Section I.—Of the dissolution of the world; the four ages; the decline
of all things, and deterioration of mankind, in the Kali age.

Section II.—Redeeming properties of the Kali age. Devotion to Vishnu,
sufficient to salvation in that age for all castes and persons.

Section III.—Three different kinds of dissolution. Duration of a
Parardha. The Clepsydra, or vessel for measuring time. The dissolution
that occurs at the end of a day of Brahmā.

Section IV.—Continuation of the account of the first kind of
dissolution. Of the second kind, or elemental dissolution; of all being
resolved into primary spirit.

Section V.—The third kind of dissolution, or final liberation from
existence. Evils of worldly life. Sufferings of infancy, manhood, old
age. Pains of hell. Imperfect felicity of heaven. Exemption from birth
desirable by the wise. The nature of spirit or god. Meaning of the terms
Bhagavat and Vasudeva.

Section VI.—Means of attaining liberation. Anecnotes of Khandikya and
Kesidhwaja. The former instructs the latter how to atone for permitting
the death of a cow. Kesidhwaja offers him a requital, and he desires to
be instructed in spiritual knowledge.

Section VII.—Keshidwaja describes the nature of ignorance, and the
benefits of the Yoga or contemplative devotion. Of the novice and the
adept in the performance of the Yoga. How it is performed. The first
stage, proficiency in acts of restraints and moral duty; the second
particular mode of getting; the third, Pranayama, modes of breathing;
the fourth, Pratyahara, restraint of thought; the fifth, apprehension of
spirit; the sixth retention of the idea. Meditation on the individual
and universal forms of Vishnu. Acquirement of knowledge. Final

Section VIII.—Conclusion of the dialogue between Parāçara and Maitreya.
Recapitulation of the contents of the Vishnupurana; merit of hearing it;
how handed down, Besides of Vishnu. Concluding prayer.



Om![1] Salutation unto Vāsudeva![2] O Pundarikāsha,[3] victory unto
thee! I bow unto thee, O origin of the universe! O Hrishikesha,[4] O
great Purusha, O thou the first born! That Vishnu,[5] who is eternal,
indecayable one, who is Brahmā, the Isvara and the Purusha,—who causeth
the creation, the sustentation and the dissolution (of the world)
consequent on the qualities[6] being agitated,—and from whom hath sprung
the cosmos with Pradhāna,[7] Buddhi, etc.;—may he confer on us excellent
understanding wealth[8] and emancipation! Bowing down unto Vishnu, lord
of the universe, and saluting Brahmā and the rest, and paying reverence
unto my preceptor, I will rehearse the Purāna that is equal to the
Vedas. Saluting and paying homage unto that best of ascetics,
Parāçara—son unto Vasistha's son—versed in annals and the Purānas,[9]
accomplished in the Vedas and the branches thereof, and learned in the
mysteries of the scriptures,—who had finished his first daily
devotions.—Maitreya asked him, saying,—"O preceptor, I have one by one
studied near thee all the scriptures as well as the Vedas and their
branches. It is owing to thy grace that, O foremost of ascetics, almost
all of those that are even our enemies, confess that I have studied all
the branches of knowledge. O thou cognisant of righteousness, I am
desirous of hearing from thee how this universe came into being, and
how, O virtuous one, it shall be in the future; in what, O Brāhmana, the
cosmos consists; wherefrom sprang this system of mobile and immobile
objects; where it lay at first and where it shall dissolve itself; as to
the objects that have manifested themselves; the genesis of the gods;
the establishment of seas and mountains and the earth, and that of the
sun, etc. and the dimensions thereof; the genealogies of the
deities,—all about the Manus, and the Manwantaras,[10] and Kalpas[11]
and Vikalpas of Kalpas composed of the fourfold division into Yugas; the
character of the close of Kalpas; and the entire tendencies of the
Yugas; and, O mighty ascetic, the history of Devarshis[12] and monarchs;
the proper division by Vyāsa of the Vedas into different parts; and the
morality concerning Brāhmanas and others, as well as that of
householders. O son of Vasishtha, I wish to hear all this related by
thee. O Brahmana, incline thy mind favourably unto me, so that, O mighty
anchoret, I may know all this through thy grace".

Pāraçara said,—"Excellent well; O Maitreya, O thou that art conversant
with righteousness. Thou bringest into my recollection what of old my
grandsire, the reverend Vasishtha, had said of old. When I heard that my
sire had been devoured by the Rākshasa sent by Vicwāmitra, I was wrought
up with an exceeding rage. Then I set about disturbing the sacrifice of
the Rakshas; and in that sacrifice reduced to ashes night-rangers by
hundreds. On the Rakshas undergoing extermination, the eminently pious
Vasishtha, my grandfather, said unto me,—'Do not indulge in excessive
wrath, O child, control this passion of thine. Albeit the Rākshasas did
thus unto thy sire, yet have they not transgressed. This ire springeth
up in fools; but where is the anger of the wise? Who, my child,
destroyeth whom? Persons[13] but reap their acts. O child, anger heweth
away the great and immense asceticism and fame acquired with extreme
toil by men. The prime saints ever banish anger, which retardeth heaven
and emancipation. Therefore, my child, do not thou come under its sway.
No need of burning the night-rangers, who have not wronged. Stop this
sacrifice of thine. Pious people are composed of forgiveness.' Thus
exhorted by my high-souled grandsire, I, for the sake of the dignity of
his speech, stopped the sacrifice. Thereat, that foremost of ascetics,
the reverend Vasishtha was gratified. And it came to pass that there
appeared then Pulastya, son unto Brahmā. And when my grandfather had
offered him arghya,[14] when he had taken his seat, O Maitreya, the
exceedingly righteous elder brother of Pulaha addressed me, saying,—'As,
albeit a mighty enmity existeth (between thyself and the Rākshasas),
thou hast resorted to forgiveness at the words of thy superior, thou
shall master all the branches of knowledge. And as, although highly
enraged, thou hast not cut off my sons, I, O pious one, shall confer on
thee a mighty boon. Thou shalt be the author of the Purāna and
Samhita,[15] and thou shalt attain a consummate knowledge of the
celestials. And through my grace, O child, thy intelligence shall be
clear and unobstructed as concerns the Present and the Past.' Then my
grandsire, the reverend Vasishtha, said,—'What Pulastya hath uttered to
thee, must be so.' At thy question I remember me in full of all that
formerly had been said unto me by Vasishtha and the intelligent
Pulastya. And, O Maitreya, as thou hast asked me, I shall at length
relate unto thee adequately the Purāna Samhitā.—Do thou understand that
properly. This universe hath sprung from Vishnu,—and in Him it is
established. He is the cause of the creation, maintenance and
destruction thereof, and He is the universe".


Parāçara said:—"I bow unto Him that is holy and eternal—the supreme Soul
who is ever uniform,—even Vishnu, the Lord of all. I bow unto
Hiranyagarbha, unto Hara and Sankara, unto Vasudeva the saviour, even
him who bringeth about creation, maintenance and destruction to
everything. I bow unto him that is uniform yet hath a multiplicity of
forms; who is both subtle and gross;—who is manifested and unmanifested;
unto Vishnu, the cause of salvation. I bow unto Vishnu, the supreme
Soul, who pervadeth the universe, and who is the fundamental cause of
the creation, sustenance and extinction of everything. And bowing down
unto Him, who is the stay of the universe,—who is minuter than the
minutest monad,—who resides in every being—unto the undeteriorating
foremost Purusha, who is extremely pure, and constitutes knowledge of
the highest kind,—who in consequence of the erroneous sight (of people)
seemeth to be endowed with a shape; unto the Vishnu who can compass the
creation, maintenance and destruction of the universe,—saluting the Lord
of the world, un-born, unchangeable and undeteriorating,—I shall relate
what formerly, asked by Paksha and other great ascetics, the reverend
lotus sprung Great-sire said unto them, and what they rehearsed unto
king Purukutsa on the banks of the Narmadā; and what he, in his turn,
related to Sāraswata,—and the last unto me. He who is Prime and Greater
than the greatest, who is the supreme Soul resident in himself,—who
cannot be differentiated by by form, color, etc, who is without
deterioration or destruction, and without birth, growth and dissolution;
who can only be asserted as existing,—is called by the learned Vāsudeva,
in consequence of his existing everywhere and in all objects.[16] That
Brahmā is prime and eternal,—without birth, change or deterioration. He
is uniform, and pure in consequence of the absence of the ignoble. He is
all this (that is)—he is Manifested and Unmanifested;[17] and he exists
as the Primal Purusha and Time. O twice-born one, the first form of the
Primæval Brahmā is a Male Being. His other forms are Manifested and
Unmanifested, Time and the rest.[18] The wise see that sacred state of
Vishnu, which is superior to Pradhāna Purusha,[19] Manifest and Time.
The forms of Vishnu, first consisting of Pradhāna, Purusha, Manifest and
Time are the causes and expressions[20] of creation, sustenance, and
destruction. Do thou understand that Vyakta,[21] Vishnu, Avyakta,
Purusha and Time are the exertions of Him, resembling those of a child
sporting. That which is the Unmanifested Cause, is called subtle Nature
by the foremost saints,—external, and instinct with cause and effect. It
is indestructible, supportless, immeasurable, undeteriorating, real
devoid of sound or touch, and without form, etc. It hath three several
modes;—and is the mother of the Universe, without beginning and is the
end of all. Formerly after the universal dissolution, everything was
permeated by it. O Brāhmana, those versed in the language of the
Veda,—exercising self-control and meditating the Deity, read the sense
expressive of Pradhāna, thus. Day was not, nor night, nor sky, nor
earth. And there was neither darkness nor yet light. And there existed
then Pradhāna, Brahmā and the Purusha,—incapable of being apprehended by
ear and the other organs, or the intellect. As O Vipra, the prime Vishnu
hath two forms, Pradhāna and Purusha, so, O twice-born one, he hath
another, which is joined to him (on the occasion of creation) and
severed from him during the universal dissolution; and this is called
Kāla. (Time). During the past dissolution, in consequence of the Vyakta
remaining nascent in Prakriti, this circumstance in popular parlance is
called Kāla. O twice-born one, the revered Kāla hath no beginning and
hath no end; and in it genesis, stability and dissolution are
uninterrupted. On the occasion of the universal dissolution, when
Prakriti and Purusha remain separate, O Maitreya, there exists the form
of Vishnu termed Kāla. Then at the time of creation, the supreme Brahmā,
the Prime spirit pervading the universe, reaching everywhere—the lord of
all beings, and the soul of all—the foremost Lord, Hari, entering into
Pradhāna and Purusha, agitated them. And as odour, simply by reason of
its proximity, and without any act, stirreth the mind, even so did the
Supreme Lord. That best of males, O Brāhmana, is he that stirreth, and
He it is that is stirred; he possessing in himself the three modes alike
when in equilibrium and when not, entereth into Pradhāna. And that Lord
of lords, Vishnu, manifests himself in gross elements in subtle objects,
and in such forms as Brahmā and others. And, O best of twice-born ones,
on the occasion of creation, from the equipoise of the principles
presided over by Kshetrajna,[22] springs up that which manifests the
principles.[23] And then Pradhāna overspread Mahat; and the three kinds
of Mahat pertaining respectively to goodness, passion and foulness, were
enveloped by Pradhāna, even as the rind envelopeth the seed. And from
the three kinds of Mahat sprang three kinds of ahankāra;[24]
(consciousness,) viz., vaikārika, taijasa and bhutādi.[25] And, O mighty
ascetic, as Pradhāna had enveloped Mahat, that cause of the elements and
the senses, viz., akankāra from its containing the three principles, was
in its turn, enveloped by Mahat. Then the bhutādi,[26] etc., being
wrought, produced the rudiments of sound, and from the latter came into
being ether, having the property of sound. And (anon) the bhutādi
overspread the rudiments of sound as well as the ether; and, ether being
wrought, produced the rudiments of touch; and then sprang the powerful
air, whose property is known to be touch. And ether furnished with
nascent audibility, covered air, endowed with tangibility. And then the
air, wrought up, brought forth the rudiments of form. Light came from
the air, and its property is said to be form. And the rudimental air
endowed with touch, enveloped the rudimental tangibility. And light,
being agitated, caused the taste; and therefrom sprang water, the
residence of taste. And the rudiments of form overspread the rudiments
of taste. And water, stirred, developed the rudiments of odour;
therefrom sprang hardness endued with the property of odour. The subtle
condition of a property existing in diverse objects is called Tanmātra.
In consequence of the Tanmātras not being differentiated, they are
undistinguishable; they are not agreeable or unpleasant of cause
dullness,—and they are not marked by any distinguishing feature. From
the consciousness related to darkness sprang the five rudiments and the
five elements; from the conciousness relating to light sprang the organs
of sense and from the consciousness relating to goodness sprang the ten
deities.[27] The mind is the eleventh (organ).[28] The deities are known
to have sprung from the principle of goodness. O twice-born one, the
touch, the eye, the nose, the tongue, and the ear for the fifth, are
designed for the perception of sound, etc. and are backed by intellect.
The other organs are the anus, the organs of generation, the hands, the
feet, and the vocal organs for the fifth; and the functions of these are
excretion, articulation, motion, and mechanic labor. Ether, air, light,
water, and earth, O Brāhmana, are respectively furnished with the
properties of sound etc. and in consequence of their being agreeable or
otherwise, or bringing on delusion,—they are known as Vicesha.

"And endowed with distinct energies, they without combining, and being
all of them interfused, could not create objects. And then, coming
together, and each supporting the others, they attained firmness and
harmony and a uniform appearance. And in consequence of their being
presided over by the Purasha, and favored by Pradhana, (who was ripe for
it), those, commencing from Mahat and ending in Vishesha, brought forth
an egg. And that egg resembling a watery bubble, fostered by the
elements, attained dimensions. O thou of exceeding intelligence; and
that egg formed by Prakriti, resting on water, became the body of Vishnu
wearing the form of Brahmā,—And there Vishnu—lord of the universe—who is
incapable of being perceived,—becoming manifest, remained in the form of
Brahmā.[29] And Meru became the bellows-like inner covering of that
exceedingly high-souled one, and the other mountains became his outer
covering; and the seas served for his water in the womb. And, O Vipra,
in that egg sprang mountains and islands, and seas, light, and numbers
of worlds, and deities, Asuras and human beings. And that egg was
environed ten times successively with water, fire, air, ether, and
bhutādi and the bhutādi was surrounded in the same way by mahat.[30] And
mahat along with all those was also covered by avyakta.[31] As the
internal cocoanut fruit is covered by the external rind, etc., even so
was the egg surrounded by the natural coverings. Then the lord of the
universe, inspiring the principle of passion,[32] and becoming Brahmā,
became engaged on creation. And until the expiry of Kalpa,[33] the
worshipful Vishnu of immeasurable power, instinct with the principle of
goodness, sustaineth creation. And at the end of a Kalpa, O Maitreya,
Janārddana,[34] surcharged with the principle of foulness, wearing a
fierce form and becoming terrific swalloweth up all. And having
swallowed up all beings, anon the cosmos becoming one ocean, the supreme
Lord lieth down on the couch[35] (formed by) the serpent. And walking,
he, wearing the form of Brahmā, again addresseth himself to creation.
And in consequence of his creating, sustaining and dissolving verily one
Janārddana acquireth the appellations of Brahmā, Vishnu and Siva. As
creator, Vishnu createth himself, and, as sustainer, he sustaineth
himself, and, finally, becoming the destroyer, the Lord himself
destroyeth everything. And as earth, water, light, air and ether, all
the organs of sense and the heart go by the name Purusha, (Vishnu as
being the Primal male, is the author of all these.) And, as he is the
lord of all beings, and, as, knowing no decay, he hath the universe for
his form, even he is the creator of all, and his also are the ends
attained by beings".[36]


Maitreya said:—"How can Brahmā, who is devoid of quality and confineless
and pure and unblamed of soul, possibly engage in creation, etc.?"
Thereat Parāçara said,—"As the powers of many an object are
incomprehensible and incapable of being construed to sense, the powers
of creation etc., possessed by Brahmā, like the heat of fire, are also
so. O foremost of ascetics, hearken how the Professor of the eight kinds
of wealth becomes engaged in creation. O wise one, in consequence of the
eternal reverend Vishnu coming into being from objects, as Brahmā the
Grand-father, he is designated as produced. According to the measure set
by him human life is known as consisting of an hundred years. This (age)
is called para, and the half thereof Parārdha. O sinless one, do thou
listen to me as I mention unto thee the divisions of that which I have
named unto thee as the Time-form of Vishnu,—in relation to Him as well
as other creatures, and mobile and immobile objects, and the seas and
all other things, O best of men. O chief of ascetics, a kāsthā is
composed of fifteen nimeshas;[37] thirty kāsthās make up a kalā; and
thirty kalās a muhurta; and as many muhurtas make up a day and a night
unto human beings. As many days and nights form a month; and a month
consists of two fortnights. Six months form an ayana; and a year is
composed of two ayanas, one northern, the other southern. The southern
ayana is the night of the celestials, as the northern is their day. The
period of twelve thousand years of the deities constitute the four
Yugas, viz. Krita, Tretā, and the others.[38] Do thou understand
that.[39] Chronologists say that four, three, two, and one thousand
divine years successively compose Krita and the other Yugas. An hundred
divine years are said to constitute the first twilight, as another
hundred years the last, of the Yuga. The space that intervenes between
these twilights goeth by the name of Yuga, embracing Krita, Tretā and
the rest. And O anchoret, a thousand of the four Yugas, Krita, Tretā,
Dwāpara and Kali, constitute one day of Brahmā. One day of Brahmā O
Brāhmana, compriseth four and ten reigns of the Manus.[40] Listen to the
chronology thereof! The seven saints, the celestials, Sakra, Manu, and
his sons—kings all of them—are created at the same time and, as
formerly,[41] are destroyed at the same time, O excellent one, a little
over seventy-one four Yugas constitute a Manwantara—the period of Manu
as well as the gods. Manwantara takes up over eight lakshas[42] and
fifty-two thousand years; and, O twice-born one, full thirty[43] kotis
above sixty-seven[44] niyutas and about twenty thousand human years. Ten
and fourteen such periods[45] form one day of Brahmā. Then comes on his
sleep[46] and at the end thereof, the universal dissolution. And then
all the triune world, comprising Bhur, Bhuva and the rest, are in
conflagration, and the dwellers of the regions of Maha, exercised with
the heat, resort to the regions of Jana. On the three regions being
reduced to one sheet of sea, that deity, the lotus-sprung Brahmā
instinct with Nārāyana, contemplated by the Yogis[47] of
Janasthāna,—with the intention of swallowing up the three worlds,—lieth
down on the bed (formed by) the serpent. And having spent the night
measuring that period,[48] at the end thereof he begins anew the work of
creation. This is the year of Brahmā and thus is the space of his
hundred years; and the life of that high-souled one is an hundred (such)
years. O thou without sin, one half of Brahmās life is spent. On the
expiration thereof passeth away a Mahākalpa—which is called Pādma. O
twice-born one, this is the Kalpa distinguished as Vatrahā belonging to
the second Parāddha, which is present".


Maitreya said:—"O mighty ascetic, relate unto me how the reverend Brahmā
whose name is Nārāyana, created all beings at the commencement of the
Kalpa". (Thereat) Parāçara said,—"Hear as to how that god, the lord of
Prajāpati,[49] the reverend Brahmā instinct with Nārāyana, created
beings. On the expiration of the past Kalpa, that Master, Brahmā,
surcharged with the energy of righteousness, awaking from his slumbers,
saw the universe—void of all. And the supreme, incomprehensible
Nārāyana—the lord of the greatest—as the worshipful Brahmā, became
engaged in creation. This sloka is used with reference to the divine
Nārāyana, the creator of the universe, in the form of Brahmā. Apa is
named nāra, having been created by Nara;[50] and in days of yore,
(water) having been the abode of him, he hath hence been called
Nārāyana.—And on the universe becoming one ocean, the creator of all
beings, the Lord resting on water, inferring that the Earth was thus
placed, set his heart on delivering her. And as he, on former occasions,
had assumed the forms of a fish, a Tortoise, etc., he now assumed the
form of a Boar. And for sustaining the entire universe, the lord of
creatures, impregnated with the Veda and sacrifices, of serene soul and
the soul of all,—the Supreme spirit—stay of soul, and the prop of the
Earth,—hymned by the Siddhas inhabiting the region of Jana,—Sauaka and
others,—then entered water.—And seeing him enter the nether regions,
that exalted one, the Earth, bowing low in humility and reverence, began
to praise him. And the Earth said,—'I bow unto thee, who art all being;
I bow unto thee, holding the conch and the mace. Do thou rescue me from
here, now, as, thou hadst formerly done. I had formerly been delivered
by thee. O Janārddana, I as well as other things, such as the sky, etc.,
are permeated by thee. Reverence unto thee, O prime spirit, O male soul,
I bow unto thee. I bow unto thee, who art pradhāna and vaykta, and who
art Time. Thou, wearing the forms of Brahmā, Vishnu and Rudra, art the
creator of all beings, and thou art the maintainer as well as the
destroyer thereof. Having destroyed everything, thou, O Govinda,[51] on
the universe having become one Ocean,—contemplated by the pious,
reposest (on the serpent-couch). None knoweth the high mystery
encompassing thee; and the deities do but adore that form in which thou
incarnatest thyself. O supreme Brahmā, adoring thee, those desirous of
emancipation, attain the same. Who, not worshipping Vasudeva, obtaineth
liberation? Thy entire form comprehends ail that may be secured by the
mind, all that may be perceived by sight and the other senses, all that
may be discriminated by thought. And I am supported, and created, and
maintained by thee. And for this it is that people call me Mādhavi.[52]
Victory to thee, O thou that art all knowledge! Victory to thee, who art
gross and undeteriorating! Victory to thee, O thou that art infinite!
Victory to thee, thou that art the Nascent! Victory to thee, thou that
art Manifest. Thou, O lord! O prime of prime souls! O soul of the
Universe! Victory to thee, O master of sacrifice, thou, who art sinless!
Thou art Sacrifice, and Vaskatkāra[53] and thou, Omkarāa[54] and thou,
Fire. Thou art the Vedas, and thou the branches thereof, and thou
Hari,[55] art the person presiding; over sacrifice. Thou art the Sun,
etc., and the planets and stars, and thou the entire universe. And O
foremost god, thou art all that is formless and that is formed, and that
is hard and, O best of male beings, all that I have mentioned and also
all that I have left un mentioned. I bow down unto thee. I bow unto thee
again and again.'"

Parāçara said:—Thus eulogised by Earth, that graceful one, the holder
thereof, began to roar in Sāma[56] accents. Then heaving up the Earth
with his razors from the deep, the mighty Boar, having eyes resembling
blown lotuses,—and himself like unto lotus-leaves,—rose up like a
gigantic dark-blue mountain. And as he emerged, the troubled water
dashed by the wind forced out from his mouth, surging up, splashed the
highly resplendent and sinless ascetics, Sananda and others, dwellers of
the regions of Jana. And on the nether regions being broken up by the
hoof-impacts (of the boar), the water began to run down with roars; and
the Siddhas constantly inhabiting the regions of Jana, were moved about
by the air of his breath. And the ascetics, placed in the tactual pores
of the mighty bore as he rose up holding the Earth in his abdominal
cavity and kept shaking his Veda-impregnated person,—experienced the
highest bliss. And yogis dwelling in the regions of Jana, Sananda and
others, with delighted hearts, and with heads bent in humility, hymned
the holder of the Earth, remaining moveless, with his eyes
expanded,—saying,—"Victory unto thee, O foremost God of gods,—O
Keçava,[57] O wielder of the conch, mace, sword and discus! The cause of
creation, destruction and sustentation, save thee, supreme state there
is none whatever. The Vedas are thy feet, and the yupa,[58] thy larger
tooth, and Sacrifice, thy smaller; the place of the (sacrificial fire)
is thy mouth, and the fire itself thy tongue; and darva is thy down. O
Lord, thou art the person presiding over Sacrifice. O mighty soul, day
and night are thy eyes; and that refuge of all—the state of Brahmā,
himself—is thy head; the entire complement of Suktas[59] composeth thy
matted locks; and thy tongue is the sacrificial offerings, O god. O thou
having the (sacrificial) ladle for thy face! O thou who hast the solemn
accents of Sāma for thy voice, O thou that hast the front-part of the
sacrificial ground, for thy body! O thou who hast all the sacrifices for
thy joints! O god, thou hast for thy ears the morality of the Smritis as
well as the Srutis.[60] Be thou propitiated! O undeteriorating one, O
thou that hast the Universe for thy form, we know thee as having covered
the Earth with thy paces, and that thou art the cause and stay thereof.
Thou art the foremost Lord of the cosmos. Be thou gracious! Thou art the
master of the mobile and the immobile. Raised on thy razor-ends, all
this Earth, O Lord, seemeth like a lotus-leaf besmeared with mud on the
tusk of an elephant that hath plunged into a pool of lotuses. O thou of
unparalleled power, all the space between heaven and earth hath been
covered with thy body. O thou, the universe hath been enveloped with
whose splendour, O Lord, prove thou of profit to the universe. Thou art
the sole highest reality,—there is none other, sovereign of the
universe. And this glory in which the mobile and the immobile are
enfolded,—is thine. O thou that art knowledge, unspiritual people,
through ignorance, look upon this form of thine displayed in the world.
Foolish persons, regarding this entire universe impregnated with
knowledge, as real, fall into a sea of delusion. But O supreme lord,
those that are versed in knowledge and are of pure spirit, look on this
entire universe as thy form replete with knowledge. O Sarva, O soul of
all! Be thou gracious! For the good of this world do thou, O thou of
immeasurable soul, raise the Earth up. O lotus-eyed one, confer on us
what is good. Thou, O reverend one, art surcharged with the virtue of
goodness. O Govinda, for the benefit (of all), O lord, raise up this
Earth. O lotus-eyed one, confer on us what is good. Mayst thou incline
thy mind to creation fraught with profit to the universe! We bow unto
thee. O lotus-eyed one, confer on us what is good".

Parāçara said,—"Thus hymned by the divinities, that supreme soul, the
holder of Earth, at once lifted her up, and set her on the mighty sea.
And, resting on the sea like a giant bark, Earth did not sink in
consequence of the flatness of her frame. Then leveling the Earth, the
worshipful supreme Lord without beginning, placed mountains on her in
proper order. And by his infallible power, that one of truthful purposes
created on the Earth all the mountains that had been burnt on the
occasion of the burning of the foregone creation. And then; properly
dividing the land containing seven islands, he, as formerly, created the
four regions, viz., Bhuva and the rest. And then, possessed with the
principle of passion, the reverend Deity, Hari, wearing the form of
Brahmā and assuming four faces, set about creation, But in the matter of
creation, he was an instrument merely; as the force resident in the
things created, was the principal Cause. Being ripe for development,
(objects at the time of creation) desiderate nothing more. O foremost of
those practising austerities, objects attain their objectivity by virtue
of their inherent force".[61]


Maitreya said:—"O twice-born one, tell thou me truly how the Deity
created celestials, and saints, and Pitris,[62] Dānavas, and men, and
beasts, and trees, and those inhabiting land and water and air; as well
as concerning (the respective) qualities and characters and natures (of
the creatures) dwelling in Earth,—which Brahmā had created at the
commencement of creation".

Thereat Parāçara said—"O Maitreya, listen thou heedfully! I shall tell
thee how the Lord God created all,—deities and the rest. As he was
contemplating creation as in former Kalpas, through lack of vigilance
was generated Illusion, formed of Foulness.—Five are the kinds of
Illusion which spring from this high-souled one, viz., tamas, moha,
mahamoha, tamisra and andhatamisra.[63] And as (Brahmā) contemplated,
were created five kinds of things, trees, &c., having no sense,
undeveloped internally as well as externally, and of pent-up selves. As
these, trees etc. were the first objects of creation, they are
designated the principal creation. But finding these incapable of
answering the end, he thought of again creating other things. And as he
was revolving creation, sprang up the Tiryyaksrotas.[64] Those that live
in Tiryyaksrotas. They are beasts, &c,—composed mainly of foulness, and
devoid of liberal curiosity. Leading unrestrained lives, these, albeit
devoid of knowledge, deem themselves as possessing the same. Proud, and
considering vastly of themselves, they are subject to eight and twenty
kinds of ills.[65] And although developed internally, they cannot
express themselves to each other. And finding even these as insufficient
for his purpose, (Brahmā) bethought him of other ways; and there came
into being the third class of objects, named Urddhasrotas[66] to whom
the principle of goodness predominates. They have great capacity for
pleasure and happiness; and being developed alike externally and
internally and, in consequence, more fitted to express themselves on
both sides, have been designated Urddhasrotas. This third creation, that
of the deities—is called Tushtatman.[67] And great was the pleasure of
Brahmā on the consummation of this creation. But, deeming these main
creations as not fulfilling his purpose, he revolved within himself
another excellent creation, capable of bringing about his end. As that
one of true resolve was thus meditating, there came forth from avyakta
the arvvyāksrotas competent to accomplish his purpose. And as these eat
by swallowing down, they are called arvvyāksrotas. The are bountifully
developed; and, albeit possessing a share of foulness, have passion in a
larger measure. And it is for this that in them unhappiness
preponderates, and that they act continually.[68] They are developed
internally and externally,—they are human beings fulfilling the purpose
(of the Creator). Thus, O foremost of ascetics, have I narrated unto
thee the genesis of the six orders of creation. Brahmā first created
Mahata, next he created Tanmātras, which reckon as the second class, and
are comprehended under the designation of Bhutasarga.[69] The third
creation is Vaikārika, and is known as aindriya.[70] Thus hath been the
creation of Buddhi and the others, which is called Prākrita.[71] And the
main creation counts as the fourth, and includes the immobile objects.
By the name of Tiryyaksrotas is meant, beasts, &c. And the sixth
creation is Urddhasrotas, which is known as Devasarga.[72] And the
seventh is Arvvāksrotas which is man. The eighth is the creation of
Anugrahas[73] composed of goodness and passion. Five are the
Vaikrita[74] acts of creation; and three are Prākrita.—And they together
constitute Prākrita and Vaikrita. And the ninth is known as Kaumāra.
Thus have I described unto thee the nine acts of creation of the Lord of
creatures. The Prākrita and the Vaikrita are the radical causes of the
world. What wouldst thou further hear of the Lord of the universe,
engaged in creation?"

Maitreya said—"O ascetics, thou hast narrated unto me in brief the
origin of gods &c. But, O best of the foremost anchorets, I wish to hear
this at length". Parāçara said,—"O Brāhmana, on Brahmā being engaged in
creation, from his mind issued the four orders of beings commencing with
celestials and concluding with the immobile,—and although these are
destroyed at the time of universal dissolution, they are never bereft of
the mental tendencies they acquire in existence, consequent on their
acts; or of the good or bad fortune resulting respectively from their
fair or foul actions.[75] Then desirous of creating deities, Asuras,
ancestors and men, all going under the name of ambha, Brahmā began to
contemplate. And as the lord of beings concentrated his soul, passion
overspread him; and first from forth his hips came out Asuras. And then
(Brahmā) renounced his person surcharged with darkness; and, O Maitreya,
on being renounced by him, Foulness was converted into Night.[76] And
having assumed another body, he (again) became desirous of creating, and
from the face of the pleased Brahmā, came forth, O twice-born one,
celestials surcharged with the virtue of goodness. And that body also
having been resigned, the quality of righteousness was turned into Day.
And therefore it is that Asuras are powerful by night and deities by
day. And he then assumed a person, fraught with goodness; and, he being
honored as a sire, out of him sprang the ancestors. And having created
the ancestors, the Lord renounced that form also. And on being
renounced, the same became Twilight, remaining between day and night.
And then he assumed a person filled with the principle of passion; and,
O foremost of the twice-born ones, thereat sprang men fierce, with
passion entering into their composition. And the lord of creatures
speedily resigned that form also,—And it became Moonlight, which is
termed prāksandhydā.[77] And therefore it is, O Maitreya, man and the
Pitris, become powerful in Moonlight and Twilight. Moonlight, Night,
Day, and Twilight,—these four, are the bodies of Brahmā, endowed with
the three principles. And then he assumed another body filled with the
principle of passion, and thereat sprung Hunger from Brahmā, and from
Hunger, wrath. Then the reverend one in the dark created beings
frightful and bearded, and always exercised with hunger. And (as soon as
these) were created, they rushed at the Lord. And of those that
cried,—‘Ho! don't do this,—save him,'—are Rakshas;[78] and others that
said,—‘We shall eat him up,'—are Yakshas, from Yakshana[79] eating.
Seeing them mischievous, the hair of the Deity fell off,—and having
fallen off from his head, it again rose to his head. And from their
movement (sarpana), the hair became sarpas,[80] —and from their having
fallen off, they are known as ahis.[81] Then the creator of the
universe, waxing wroth, generated some beings of wrathful souls.
Twenty-hued, they are beings subsisting on flesh. And then came forth
from him Gandharvas, whose office is music. O regenerate one, as these
came into being, drinking in strains (of music), they are called
Gandharvas, All these beings created the reverend Brahmā, directed by
inherent force resident in these (respectively). Then he at his pleasure
created another order of beings—fowls of the air. And he created sheep
from his breast, and goats from his mouth. And the lord of creatures
created kine from his womb and flanks. And he created from his feet
horses, elephants, sarabhas,[82] gavayas,[83] deer, camels, mules,
nyankus,[84] and other species. And from his down sprang medicinal herbs
furnished with fruits and roots. And, O twice-born one, at the
commencement of the Tretā-Yuga and on the eve of the Kalpa, Brahmā,
having created the beasts and the drugs, then set them apart
respectively for sacrifice. Fair complexioned males, sheep, horses,
mules, and asses, were called Grāmyā[85] animals. And know also those
that are wild. (These are) beasts of prey, the cloven-hoofed, elephants,
monkeys, and, fifthly, birds, and, sixthly, aquatic animals, and,
seventhly, reptiles. Then from his first mouth he generated the
Gāyatri,[86] the Richas,[87] the Trivatstoma[88] the Rathantara,[89] and
the Agnishtoma[90] among sacrifices. Then from his southern mouth he
created the Yajus,[91] the Trishutva metre, the fifteenth Stoma,[92] the
Vrihat Sāman,[93] and the Uktha.[94] And from his western mouth, he
created the Sāmas and the Fagati metre, the seventeenth Stoma, the
Vairupa[95] and the Atirātra.[96] And from his northern mouth he brought
forth the twenty-first Stoma, the Atharva Veda, the Aptoryāma,[97] the
Anishtubha metre, and the Vairāyya Sāma. Thus from his person came forth
noble and ignoble. And having created gods, Asuras, Pitris, and men,
that lord of beings, the great-sire, at the commencement of the Kalpa,
created Yakshas, Piçāchas,[98] Gandharvas, and numbers of Apsaras; and
that lord, the reverend Brahmā, the first Cause, created Naras,[99]
Kinnaras,[100] Rākshasas, birds, beasts, deer, serpents, and mobile and
immobile objects lasting or other-wise. And in successive creations,
verily each creature is born into those acts which it used to perform in
its former existence.[101] Some are cruel and some kind, some mild and
some harsh, some virtuous and some vicious, some truthful and some
false,—in consequence of their inheriting their respective natures as
developed in previous births; and it is also for this that each affects
a particular course of conduct (in preference to others).[102] The Deity
is the lord of all objects of enjoyment, of all creatures, and all
bodies; and it is the Deity who hath personally divided and
differentiated them. And at the beginning from the Vedic Vocabulary he
assigned names unto creatures, celestials and other, as well as unto
sacrifices; and also fixed forms and shapes thereof. And from the
auditory Veda, he assigned appellations unto the sages,—and appointed
them to their respective functions. And as the signs of the seasons
successively manifest themselves, the characteristics, of the Yugas are
seen in due order. And instinct with energy arising from a desire of
creation, He, actuated by the creative impulse, thus again and again
bringeth about creation at the commencement of Kalpas".


Maitreya said,—"Thou hast called man by the term Arvvāksrotas. But O
Brāhmana, tell me at length how Brahmā created him. And tell me also how
he created the orders,—and, O mighty ascetic, of their qualities; and
the offices assigned to Vipras and the rest".

Parāçara said,—"O foremost of twice-born ones, Brahmā of true intents
was inspired with the desire of creating the kosmos from his mouth, O
foremost of twice-born ones, came out creatures surcharged with the
principle of goodness; and from the breast of Brahmā creatures
surcharged with the principle of passion; and from his thighs came out
beings surcharged with both goodness and foulness; and, O best of
regenerate ones, from his feet Brahmā created other beings, who were
impregnated with the principle of dullness. This is the fore-fold
division into orders. And, O excellent Brāhmana, Brāhmanas, Kshatriyas,
Vaiçyas and Sudras, came from the feet, the thighs, the chest and the
mouth of Brahmā. O exalted one, Brahmā brought into being these four
orders capable of satisfactorily performing sacrifices, in order to the
successful celebration of them. O thou cognisant of righteousness, the
celestials, gratified with sacrifices, in turn gratify creatures,—and
therefore sacrifices conduce to welfare. It is men engaged in observing
their proper morality, of pure ways, and good, and walking the path of
righteousness,—who perform sacrifices. It is by virtue of having been
born as human beings that men, O ascetic, can obtain heaven and
emancipation; and, O twice-born one, that they can go to the wished-for
regions. O foremost of ascetics, men (at the beginning) having been
divided into four orders, were reverent and of excellent ways. Then they
lived wherever they liked,—without any let. And they were pure in
heart,—unpolluted; and cleansed in consequence of their observing all
rites. And their minds being pure and the Pure Hari residing in their
heart, they perceived that state which goeth after the name of Vishnu,
and which is genuine knowledge. Then that portion of Hari which is
fraught with Fatality, spread sin (amongst men), causing slight pleasure
and an overmeasure of woe. O Maitreya, this, composed of anger, &c,
springs from the seed of unrighteousness and begets delusion and
covetousness,—and stands in the way of the attainment (of the summum
bonum). And men anon could not (any more) completely attain the eight
kinds of success, Rasa, Ullāsa, &c. And on sin progressing, and those
becoming exceedingly feeble, creatures became subject to physical
changes[103] and to all the miseries consequent thereon. Then they
constructed forts composed of trees, or rocks, or water; and artificial
forts; and cities; and towns. And, O mighty ascetic, they only made
houses in those towns, for shelter from cold, the sun, and other
(physical discomforts). Having thus provided against cold, etc., men
then betook themselves to tasks capable of being performed with the
hands, for subsistence. And Vrihi,[104] barley, wheat, small seeds,
sessame, prijangu,[105] udāra, kodrava,[106] chināka,[107] māsha,[108]
mudga,[109] masura, simbi,[110] kulatkthaka,[111] āraki,[112] oats, and
hemp,—these seventeen kinds, O ascetic, were among the rural plants
grown. And fourteen sorts are the plants intended to be used in
sacrifice, divided into grāmya[113] and āranya[114] Vrihi, barley,
māsha, wheat, small seeds, prijangu, sessame, kulaththaka, these eight
belong to villages. And Syāmāka,[115] nirāba,[116] jartila,[117]
gavedhuka, benuyava, and markataka,[118] (these), O ascetic, (are the
plants growing wild in the woods). These fourteen species of plants,
grāmya and āranya, are intended for the celebration of sacrifices, and
they are very useful for that purpose. All these plants together with
sacrifices are the causes of the increase of population; and it is for
this those versed in the highest significance of things celebrate
sacrifices. By performing sacrifices day after day, one, O foremost of
ascetics, reapeth great good, and hath one's sins, committed, shorn of
their rancour. O mighty-minded one, it is those only in whose minds the
drop of sin attaineth proportions, that set their face against
sacrifices. These, reprobating the ordinance of the Veda and the
divinities presiding over sacrifices, endeavour to stand in the way of
sacrifices. And wicked wights of evil ways and crooked aims, running the
Vedas down, lay the axe at the root of courses leading to progress.
Having created men, the Lord, on their means of subsistence according
with their respective qualities, having been settled, placed them duly
in consonance with dignity; and, O best of those practising
righteousness, ordained the codes of duty in respect of the orders; and
their modes of life; and the regions attainable by them; concerning all
the castes, observing the rules of their respective orders. And the
sphere assigned to Brāhmanas observing the rules of their order, is that
of the Creator himself. And the sphere assigned to Kshatriyas, not
turning away from fight, is that of Indra. And Vaiçyas, following the
laws of their order, attain the regions of Marut.[119] And those
belonging to the Sudra caste that spend their lives in serving (the
other orders), attain the regions of the Gandharvas. Those practising
the Brahmacharyya injunctions attain the regions of Marut belonging to
the eight and eighty thousand ascetics that have drawn up their vital
fluid. And those living in the forest reap the place of the seven sages;
householders repair to the regions of the Creator; and mendicants, to
the sphere named Brahmā. The sphere of the yogis is Amrita[120] —which
is the supreme state of Vishnu himself. Those yogis that contemplate
Brahmā with a single soul,—of these is that supreme state which is seen
by the celestials. The sun, the moon, and the other planets, going to
this region again and again, return therefrom again and again,—but to
this day those that contemplate the twelve-lettered (Mantra),[121] do
not have to return therefrom. Tāmisra, Andhatāmisra, Mahāraurava,
Raurava, Asipatravana, Ghora, and the waveless Kālasutra,—these are
appointed the regions of those that revile the Vedas,—that obstruct
sacrifices; and that abandon their own religion".


Parāçara said—"Then came forth unto him the mind-sprung beings,
embodying causes and consequences arising from his own person. And out
of the body of that intelligent one came out the souls. And thus were
generated all those mobile and immobile objects beginning with the
deities and concluding with the immovable,—which are established in the
three several spheres,[122] —and of which I have told thee before. And
when these beings of that intelligent one did not multiply, then he
created other mind-begotten sons, resembling himself,— viz. Bhrigu,
Pulastya, Pulaha, Kratu, Angiras, Marichi, Daksha, Atri, and the
mind-sprung Vasishtha. The Purāna saith that these nine resemble Brahmā
himself. Those who formerly had been created by Vedas, being bereft of
love and hate, and possessed of the highest knowledge, did not take to
the world, or produce offspring. And these being indifferent to the
increase of people, a mighty wrath took possession of Brahmā, capable of
consuming the three worlds. And, O anchoret, the entire triune universe
was then illuminated with the flame flowing from the ire of Brahmā. And
then from his furrowed forehead inflamed with wrath sprang Rudra,
resembling the mid-day Sun; having a body, half-female,—terrific; and of
a prodigious person. And saying unto him,—'Divide thou thyself.'—Brahmā
then vanished. Thus directed, he divided himself into a male and a
female. And then he divided the male into one and ten parts; and the
Lord God also divided the female into Saumya,[123] Asaumya,[124]
Santa,[125] Asānta,[126] Sita,[127] Asita,[128] and many other parts
resembling himself. Then the Lord appointed the Self-create Manu,
formerly sprung from Brahmā's self, and resembling himself, to rule
creatures. And that lord, the divine Self-create Manu, took to wife the
female Satarupā,[129] purged of all sin through asceticism. And to that
person Satarupā bore Priyavrata and Uttānapada; and two daughters, named
Prasuti and Akuti,—endowed, O thou cognisant of righteousness, with the
perfections of beauty, and nobility. And the Lord of creatures of old
conferred Prasuti on Daksha, and Akuti on Rucha. And unto this wedded
couple were born, O exceedingly righteous one, Yajna and Dakshina; and
these were then united in marriage. And ten sons were borne to
Yajna[130] by Dakshina.[131] At the time of the Self-create Manu, these
went by the designations of Deva and Yāma. And on Prasuti, Daksha begat
four and twenty daughters,—whose names do thou hear, Sraddhā,[132]
Lakshmi,[133] Dhriti,[134] Tushti[135] Pushti,[136] Medha,[137]
Kriya[138] Buddhi,[139] Lajja,[140] Vapu,[141] Santi, Siddhi,[142] and
Kriti.[143] These thirteen daughters of Daksha were wedded by the Lord
Dharma.[144] The daughters remaining after these elder ones, were
eleven, furnished with fair eyes,—Khyati,[145] Sati,[146] Sambhuti,[147]
Smriti,[148] Priti[149] Kshamā,[150] Sannati,[151] Anasuyā,[152]
Urjjā,[153] Swahā,[154] and Swadhā. Bhrigu, Bhava, Marichi, Angiras,
Pulastya, Pulaha, Kratu, Atri, Vasishtha, Vanhi, and the pitris,
espoused respectively the daughters, Khyāti and the rest, O foremost of
ascetics. And then Sradhā brought forth Kāma;[155] and Chalā,[156]
Darpa;[157] and Dhriti, Niyama[158] as her son; and Tushti,[159]
Santosha,[160] and Pushti,[161] Lobha[162] And Medha[163] brought forth
Srutam;[164] and Kriya,[165] Dandam,[166] Naya,[167] and Vinaya;[168]
and Buddhi,[169] Bodha;[170] and Lajja, Vinayaj and Vapu,[171]
Vyavasaya[172] as her son; and Santi brought forth Kshamā; and Siddhi,
Sukha;[173] and Kirti, Yaças.[174] These are the offspring of Dharma.
Nanda bore unto Kama, Harsha[175] —grandson unto Dharma. Hinsā[176] was
the wife of Adharma;[177] and from her were born Anrita,[178] and a
daughter—Nikriti.[179] And from these came forth Bhaya[180] and
Naraka;[181] and two daughters—Maya[182] and Vedana.[183] And Maya and
Bhaya gave birth to Mrityu[184] —that allayer of the three kinds of
heat,[185] And Vedana bore unto Rauraba, a son named Duhkha.[186] And
from Mrityu sprang Vyadhi[187] Jwara,[188] Soka,[189] Trishnā,[190] and
Krodha.[191] These ultimately lead to misery; and all have marks of
unrighteousness. They have no wives, being all of vital fluid drawn
up.[192] And, O son of the Prime ascetic, these are the terrific forms
of Vishnu; and they ever bring on the universal dissolution. And, O
exalted one, Daksha, Marichi, Bhrigu, and others—lords of creatures—are
always the causes of the creation of the universe. And the Manus and
their sons and kings possessed of wealth and prowess, and ever abiding
by the way of righteousness,—and heroic,—are the causes of the
maintenance of the cosmos".

Maitreya said,—"O Brahmana, thou hast alluded to constant creation,
constant sustenance and constant dissolution. Do thou describe unto me
the characteristics of them".

(Thereat) Parāçara said,—"That one of incomprehensible soul,—the
reverend destroyer of Madhu—the Lord assuming respective shapes,
effecteth the creation, maintenance, and destruction (of the Universe).
The dissolution (of beings) is of four kinds, viz., O twice-born one,
Naimittika, Prākritika Atyantika, and Nitya. When, on the expiry of his
Day, Brahmā—the lord of the Universe—lieth down, takes place the
dissolution called Naimittika. When the mundane egg dissolveth itself
away in Primæval Nature, takes place the Prākrita dissolution. The
fusion of the Yogis into the Supreme Soul through knowledge, is the
Atyantika dissolution. And the constant dissolution of things taking
place day and night, goeth by the name of Nitya. The creation which
comes of Primæval matter, is known as Prakriti; that which takes place
at the end of a minor dissolution, is known as Damandini; and, O
foremost of anchorets, the constant daily creation of beings, is called
Nitya by the wise versed in the import of the Puranas. Thus that origin
of all beings, Vishnu, remaining in the bodies of all things, bringeth
about creation, maintenance and destruction. O Maitreya, the energies of
Vishnu relative to creation, sustenance, and destruction, remaining in
the bodies of all beings, are ever coursing on day and night. O
Brahmana, he that, compounded of these mighty powers, overruleth the
three principles, attaineth the Supreme state (of Vishnu), and hath not
to come back to this scene".


Parāçara said,—"O mighty ascetic, I have narrated unto thee the creation
of Brahmā connected with the principle of dullness. Now I shall unfold
unto thee the creation called Rudra. Do thou hearken as I proceed! At
the outset of a Kalpa, as the Lord was rapt in thoughts about a son
resembling himself, on his lap appeared one hued red-blue. And, O best
of regenerate persons, crying in sweet tones, he went about. And as he
was crying, Brahmā asked him,—'Why dost thou weep?' And thereon, he said
unto the Lord of creatures,—let me have a name.' And (the Lord said),—‘O
divine one, thou art named Rudra. Do not cry. Have patience.' Thus
accosted, he again cried for seven times. And thereat the Lord gave him
seven other names; and assigned six receipients thereof, as well as the
six wives and sons of the latter. Bhava, Sarva, Isana, Pasupati, Bhima,
Ugra, and Mahadeva,—these seven names were mentioned by the
Great-father, And the holders thereof were respectively the Sun, water,
earth, fire, air, ether, the initiated Brāhmana, and Soma. And
Suvarchala, Uma, Sukesi, Siva, Dik, Dikshā, and Rohini,—are, O best of
men, the wives of the Rudras, named the Sun, etc. And hearken (unto me)
reciting the names of their offspring, whose sons and grandsons have
filled the universe. Sanaischara, Suka, Lohitānga, Manojava, Skanda,
Swarga, Santāna and Budha,—these are respectively the sons (of the Eight
Forms.) Rudra, formed thus, took to his wife Sati, And through Daksha's
ire, Sati renounced her person. And then, O best of the born ones, she
became the daughter of Himavat by name Umā. Then the reverend Bhava
again married Umā, who was his solely. And Bhrigu's wife, Khyati,
brought forth the gods—Dhata and Vidhata; as well as Sri, who is
Nārāyana's spouse".

Maitreya said:—"We have heard that Sri arose from the Ocean of milk on
the occasion of the churning of the deep. But why dost thou say that she
was begot by Bhrigu on Khyati?"

Thereat Parāçara said;—"That mother of the Universe—Vishuu's energy—is
enduring and undeteriorating, O foremost of the twice-born ones, even as
Vishnu is omnipresent, so this one also. Vishnu is the sense and she is
the word; she is morality, Vishnu is justice; Vishnu is perception, and
she the power thereof; he is merit, and she the act of piety.—Vishnu is
the creator, and she the creation; Sri is earth,—and Hari, the supporter
thereof. The reverend one is contentment, and, O Maitreya, Lakshmi is
permanent peace; Sri is desire, and the worshipful one is Kama; he is
sacrifice, and she the dakshina; the goddess is the first libation, and
Janārddana is Purodāsa;[193] O ascetic, Lakshmi is patuisālā,[194] and
Madhusudana is the prākvansa[195] (of a sacrifice); Lakshmi is the
chitti and Hari is the yupa;[196] Lakshmi is sacrificial fuel, and the
reverend one is Kuça; The reverend one is Sāman, the Lotus-dwelling Sri
is Udgiti;[197] Lakshmi is Swāhā, that Lord of the Universe,—Vāsudeva—is
fire, the worshipful Sauri is Sankara, (the mistress of) Wealth is, O
best of the twice-born one, Gauri. O Maitreya, Kesava is the Sun, the
Lotus-seated one is the splendour thereof; Vishnu are the paternal
manes, and the Lotus-throned one is Swadha, ever conferring
gratification; Sri is the city of the celestials, that soul of
all—Vishnu—is the exceedingly spacious sky; the support of Sri is the
Moon, and Sri is the constant resplendence thereof; Lakshmi is Fortitude
and Exertion; Hari is the air-coursing everywhere. O twice-born one,
Govinda is the Ocean; and, O magnanimous Vipra, Sri is the shore
thereof. Lakshmi is like the spouse of Indra, and the Destroyer of Madhu
is the Indra of the immortals; the holder of the discus is Yama himself,
and the Lotus-presiding one is Dhumorna.[198] Sri is Prosperity, that
god—the supporter of Sri—is the Lord himself of riches. Lakshmi is the
highly exalted Gauri and Kesava is Varnna himself. Sri is the celestial
host, O foremost of Vipras, and Hari is the lord thereof. The
mace-handed one is Avashtambha, and, O best of the regenerate, Lakshmi
is Energy. Lakshmi is Kastha.[199] and he is Nimesha.[200] He is
muhurta, and she is kalā; Lakshmi is the light, and Hari, or Sarva—lord
of all—is the lamp. The Mother of the universe is the plant, and
Vishnu—the spouse of Sri—is the tree established. Sri is Night, and that
deity—the holder of the discus and mace—is Day. The boon-bestowing
Vishnu is the bridegroom, and she dwelling in the lotus-grove is the
Bride. The reverend One is like a male river. Pundarikaksha is the
(banner), and the Lotus-seated Sri is the Ensign. Lakshmi is Thirst, and
that master of the Universe, the Great Nārāyana, is Desire. And, O thou
cognisant of righteousness, Lakshmi and Govinda are respectively
Attachment and Love. What is the use of dilating? I tell thee this in
brief,—the Reverend Hari compriseth gods, men, beasts and other
creatures that are termed male; and, O Maitreya, Lakshmi compriseth all
that are termed female. There exists naught that is beyond these".


Parāçara said:—"O Maitreya, listen to what I say anent thy question
about Sri, as I had heard from Marichi. That Emanation of
Sankara—Durvasa—was ranging this Earth. And it came to pass that the
sage saw in the hand of a Vidyadhari a celestial garland,—perfumed by
which, O Brahmana, that entire forest of Santanakas[201] had become
surpassingly charming to the rangers of woods. And it came to pass that
on seeing that graceful garland, that mad Vipra practising the vows,
asked for the same of that bride of a Vidyadhara. And solicited by him,
that slender-framed and large-eyed spouse of a Vidyadhara, saluting him
with regard made it over unto him. And thereat, laying the wreath on his
head, that Vipra wearing the form of a maniac proceeded to roam about
the earth. And then he saw that deity—Sachi's lord—sovereign of the
three regions—mounted on the mad Airavata,—approaching along with the
celestials. And the ascetic, resembling a mad man, taking from his head
that garland, whose odour was maddening six-footed (black-bees), threw
it on the sovereign of the celestials. And thereon the king of the
immortals, taking the wreath, placed it over the head of Airavata; and
thus placed, the same appeared like the Jahnavi on the peak of Kailasa.
And it came to pass that the elephant with his eyes blinded by the
temporal exudation,—on being assailed by the odour, smelt the perfume
with his trunk (raised),—and then cast the same away to the earth. Then
was wroth the reverend Durvasa, best of anchorets; and, O Maitreya,
being enraged, he spoke unto the sovereign of the celestials, saying,—‘O
thou intoxicated with wealth! O wicked of soul! O Vāsava! how art thou
puffed up! But inasmuch as thou dost not regard this wreath, which is
the abode of Auspiciousness,—and as, bowing down the head, thou hast
not, said,—Thy favour!—nor, with thy cheeks beaming with delight, hast
thou placed it on thy head,—as, in (brief), thou dost not pay high
homage to this garland given by me,—O fool, thy celestial prosperity
shall depart from thee. Surely, O Sakra, me thou deemest like other
twice-born ones; and therefore, thou thinking immensely of thyself, hast
thus slighted me. And as thou hast cast away the wreath given by me to
the earth, therefore thy Triune world shall be reft of Auspiciousness.
Me whom when wroth the mobile and the immobile fear,—thou, O monarch of
the immortals, hast insulted from thy excess of arrogance".

Parāçara said;—"Thereat the great Indra, swiftly alighting from the back
of his elephant, propitiated the sinless Durvasa. And propitiated by him
with his head humbled, that best of ascetics—Durvasa—answered the
thousand-eyed (Deity),—saying,—‘I am not kind of heart; nor doth
forgiveness find, a place in me. They, O Sakra, are other ascetics; but
know me as Durvasa. Gautama and others have for nothing fostered thy
pride. But me thou must know as Durvasa, who is nothing if not
unforgiving. And having been hymned aloud by Vasistha and
others,—overflowing with clemency, thou hast grown haughty,—and it is
for this reason that thou insultest even me in this way. Who is there in
all these three regions that beholding the frowning face of mine
furnished with flaming matted locks,—can keep off fear; forgive I will
not. What then is the use, O thou of an hundred sacrifices, of thy
expending much speech. Thou again and again puttest thyself to useless
trouble in thus beseeching me".

Parāçara said:—Having said this, the Vipra went away. And, O Brahmana,
the monarch of the immortals also, mounting Airavata, went to Amaravati.
O Maitreya, from that time the three worlds with Sakra became shorn of
Auspiciousness, and the glory thereof faded; and sacrifices and
medicinal herbs grew feebler. And no sacrifices are performed, and none
practiseth asceticism; and none taketh any delight in good works, such
as charity. And all men, void of power, came under the masterdom of the
senses; and O prime of the regenerate ones, they could not restrain
their hearts even in things intrinsically small. Where strength is,
there is Prosperity, and strength ever followeth Prosperity. Where is
the strength of the inauspicious? And without strength, where are
virtues? And without virtues, persons cannot have power, affluence, etc.
And those divorced by power and wealth, are; overriden by all. And,
when, overruled a person albeit possessed of time, loseth his sense. On
the three worlds, shorn of Auspiciousness, being bereft of strength
Daityas and Dānavas began to use force against the celestials. And the
Daityas, shorn of Auspiciousness and devoid of strength, being
overmastered by covetousness, entered upon hostilities with the
celestials, having neither Auspiciousness nor strength. And the
celestials, Indra and the rest, on being vanquished by the Daityas,—with
the god of Fire at their head,—sought the protection of the exceedingly
exalted Great-father. And, having been addressed duly by the deities,
Brahmā, then spoke unto the celestials. And Brahmā said,—‘Do ye seek the
protection of the Supreme of supreme deities, that Lord, the Destroyer
of Asuras, the cause of all,—as well as of creation, protection and
destruction, the Lord of the lord of creatures—Vishnu; Infinite; the
unvanquished; the cause of the unborn Pradhana and Purusha ripe for
creation; Him that taketh off the misery of the humble; even Vishnu. He
will provide for your welfare.' Having spoken thus unto the assembled
celestials, Brahmā—Great father of all—went along with them to the
Northern shore of the Milky Ocean. And repairing thither surrounded by
all the celestials, the Great-father, with excellent speech eulogized
the prime of prime and the master—Hari. And Brahmā said,—"We bow unto
thee, who art All and the Lord of all,—who art infinite, unborn and
unspent: who art the stay of the worlds, and the prop of the Earth; who
art unmanifested and without difference; Nārāyana,—who art the subtlest
of all subtile objects: and who art the weightiest of all things weighty
on earth; He in whom and from whom are all things that have sprung into
existence, commencing with Sat: who surpassest the Prime person; and art
the Embodiment of the Supreme Spirit; who are contemplated in order to
emancipation by Yogis desirous of deliverence; in whom are not Goodness
and the rest,—nor the attributes inhereing in Prakriti. May that one
pure beyond all things pure—that primaeval Male be propitious (to us)!
May that pure Hari, whose power is not tethered to kalā, kāshthā,
nimesha, etc., prove propitious (to us)! May He that is styled the
Supreme Lord, who is free from all things,—that Vishnu who is the Soul
of embodied things,—be propitious (to us)! May that Hari, who is cause
as well as effect, who is the cause even of the cause,—who again is, the
effect of the effect,—prove propitious to me! We bow down unto Him who
is the effect of the effect of the effect,—and who also is Himself the
effect of that effect,—and who is the effect of the effect thereof. We
bow unto thee who art the foremost of the celestials,—who art the cause
of even the cause,—and the cause of the cause of that cause,—and the
origin of all these causes combined. We bow down unto that Supreme State
which is the creator as well as the created,—and which is at once cause
and consequence. We bow unto that Prime State of Vishnu which is pure
cognition, which is constant, causeless, undeteriorating and unspent;
and which is the unmanifested and unmodified. We bow down unto that
Prime and ever pure state of Vishnu, which is not gross and yet not
subtile; which cannot be differentiated. We bow unto that
undeteriorating one who is the Supreme Brahmā,—and in one of whose
Ayuta[202] of Ayuta portions is this cosmic energy established. We bow
unto that Prime State of Vishnu—that Supreme Deity—which is not known
either to the deities, or the ascetics, or me, or Sankara himself. We
bow unto that Suprenje incomprehensible and indestructible State of
Vishnu, which, on the exhaustion of their merits and demerits, the
Yogis, ever perservering, view, grounded in the Pranava.[203] We bow to
the Prime State of that God Vishnu, who is without equal, and whose
energy is Brahmā, Vishnu and Siva. O Lord of all! O soul of all beings!
O thou that art all! O refuge of all! O thou that never fallest off! O
Vishnu, be thou propitious! Come thou within the ken of us who are thy
devotees". Hearing this invocation of Brahmā, and then the deities,
bowing down, said,—"Be propitious! Come thou within the range of our
vision? O thou that art in every thing! O thou that never fallest off! O
support of the Universe! we bow unto that Prime State which even the
reverend Brahmā doth not know". When the deities as well as Brahmā had
ended thus, the Devarshis,[204] headed by Vrihaspati,[205] said,—"We bow
down unto him—the creator of the cosmos devoid of difference—who is
primæval, who is the Sacrificial Person, who is worthy of being
extolled, and who is prior in birth to everything. O Worshipful one! O
thou that art the Lord of Past and Future! O thou who hast the Universe
for thy form! O undeteriorating one! Be propitious; and manifest thyself
unto us who humble ourselves. This is Brahmā; and this is Trilochona
in[206] Company with the Rudras. And this is the Sun along with the
Adityas[207] and this is the God of Fire with Agni. And these are the
two Açwinas and the Vasus; and these are the Maruts. And these are the
Sidhyas, and these the Viçwas; and these the deities,—and this the Lord
Indra of the celestials. O Lord, all the hosts of the celestials, having
been routed by the forces of the Daityas, seek shelter at thy hands,
standing in humble guise".

Parāçara said:—O Maitreya, thus hymned (by the deities), that reverend
one—the holder of the conch and discus—that Supreme Lord—rendered
himself visible unto them. And seeing then that holder of the conch,
discus, and mace, that abode of wonderful grace,—a very mass of
energy,—the deities, with the Great-father at their head, bowing down in
humble guise, with their eyes quivering with agitation, began to hymn
Pundarikāksha. And the celestials said,—"Salutation! Salutation unto
thee! O thou that art without difference! Thou art Brahmā, and thou art
the holder of Pināka.[208] Thou art Indra, and Agni and Pavana,[209] and
Varuna, and the Sun, and Yama. And the Vasus, and the Maruts, and the
Sādhyas, and the Viçwa gods thou. And, O god, those deities that have
come unto thee are even thyself, who art the creator of the
Universe,—since thou art in everything. Thou art sacrifice, and thou
Vashatkāra, and thou Prajāpati. And, O soul of all, thou art knowable
and unknowable; and this entire universe is permeated with thee. O
Vishnu, worsted by the Daityas, we seek refuge of thee. O Soul of all,
be propitious unto us; and do thou favour us by vouchsafing us thy
energy. So long affliction lasts, so long the desire of defeating the
foe agitates the heart, as long doth stupor last and so long is misery
experienced,—as one doth not throw one's self on thy protection, O thou
that destroyest all sins. Therefore, O thou of complacent soul, do thou
extend thy grace unto us. O master of all energy, do thou favour us with
thy own power".

Parāçara said:—"Thus eulogised by the immortals, that creator of the
cosmos—the worshipful Hari—casting a complacent glance, spoke (as
follows). And the auspicious reverend One said,—‘Ye gods, I shall
increase your power. Let the deities do as I say. Bring in company with
the Daityas all the medicinal plants to the shore of the Ocean of milk,
and making Mandāra the churning-stick and Vāsuki the cord, let the
deities churn (the Ocean) for ambrosia, I assisting them. And concluding
peace with the progeny of the Daitya's, ye should enlist their services
in this task; and tell them,—Ye shall in common with us reap the fruit
of this undertaking. And on the sea being churned, ye should by drinking
the nectar that will come up, attain access of strength and be immortal
to boot. And, ye gods, I shall so order that the enemies of the
celestials shall not get ambrosia,—but shall only undergo all the

Parāçara said:—Thus addressed by the god of gods, all the celestials,
concluding peace with the Asuras, set about churning for ambrosia. And
procuring various medicinal herbs, the deities, the offspring of the
Daityas, and the Dānavas,—throwing the same into the waters of the ocean
of milk, resembling autumnal clouds,—and O Maitreya, making Mandāra the
churning-stick and Vāsuki the twine,—at once addressed themselves to
churning for ambrosia. And instructed by Krishna, the gods in a body
held that (part of Vāsuki's body) where the tail was, and the Daityas
held by the fore-part of his body. And, O thou of measureless Splendour,
the Asuras, smitten with the fire sprung from the breath of Vāsuki's
hood, became enfeebled. And clouds scattered by the breath issuing from
Vāsuki's mouth, showering down at his tail, the deities were enlivened.
And, O mighty ascetic, remaining in the midst of the Milky sea in the
shape of a tortoise, the revered Hari himself became the support of the
churning-stick. And the holder of the discus and mace, remaining in one
form in the midst of the immortals, and in another, in the midst of the
Daityas,—began to pull the king of serpents. And, O Maitreya, in another
gigantic form, Keçava pulled the mountain upwards,—which form was seen
neither of the celestials nor the Asuras. And Hari obliged with energy
the king of serpents; and the Lord invigorated the immortals with
another energy. And on the milky-sea being churned by the celestials and
the Asuras, first came into existence Surabhi, worshipped of the
celestials,—home of clarified butter. And thereat both the deities and
the Dānavas experienced very great delight, O great ascetic; and with
their minds attracted, they steadily gazed at her. And as the Siddhas
were questioning within themselves,—"What is this?"—out came the exalted
Vāruni, with her eyes rolling in consequence of intoxication. And then
perfuming the universe with odor, from forth a whirlpool of the
Milky-sea arose Pārijāta—the tree in which the celestial females
delight. And then, O Maitreya, from the Milky-occan arose numbers of
Apsarās, wonderful exceedingly, and furnished with grace and nobility.
And then sprang the Mild-rayed one;[210] and Maheçwara appropriated him.
And the serpents appropriated the poison that sprang from the Milky-sea.
And then arose the divine Dhanwantari;[211] clad in white raiment,
bearing a Kamandalu[212] filled with nectar. And thereat, O Maitreya,
all the Daityas' sons and the Dānavas, along with the ascetics, felt
delighted. And then from the water arose the exalted Sri, endowed with
excellent grace,—seated on a blown lotus, and carrying also a lotus in
her hand. And filled with delight, her hymned the mighty saints with the
Srī Sukta;[213] and the Gandharvas, headed by Viçwāvasu, began to chant
before her. And, O Brāhmana, bevies of Apsarās—Ghritāchi and
others—began to dance, and the rivers—Gangā and the rest—came with
water, for bathing her. And an elephant of one of the cardinal points,
taking water out of the golden vessels, bathed that goddess—the mighty
Mistress of all the worlds. And the Milky-sea, assuming a form,
presented her with a wreath of unfading lotuses; and Viswakarmā decked
her person with ornaments. And wearing divine garlands and attire,
bathed and adorned with ornament, she in the sight of all the celestials
sought the bosom of Hari, And on being gazed at by the goddess Lakshmi
remaining in Hari's bosom, the celestials, O Maitreya, suddenly attained
excess of delight. And, O exceedingly pious one, on being overlooked by
Lakshmi, the Daityas, ever disregarding Vishnu—headed by
Viprachitti—were wrought up with extreme anxiety. And then, O twice-born
one, the Daityas, endowed with great prowess, possessed themselves of
the Kamandalu that was in the hand of Dhanwantari, and which contained
the ambrosia. And then Vishnu, assuming a female form, and thereby
exciting their desire, secured the same, and then the Lord made it over
unto the celestials. And then the immortals,—Sakra and the rest—quaffed
off the ambrosia; and thereat the Daityas rushed against them with
upraised weapons and Nistrinsas.[214] And having drunk ambrosia, the
invigorated gods beat the Daitya-hosts, and these flew in all directions
and entered the nether regions. Then the deities, bowing down unto the
bearer of the conch, discus and mace, as formerly, began to govern the
celestial regions. And then the glad-rayed Sun began to course in his
own path; and, O best of ascetics, the luminaries also gyrated in their
own orbits. And then the reverend Fire, crowned with a fair splendour,
began to burn brightly. And, all creatures felt a regard for
righteousness. And, O foremost of anchorets, the triune world was
furnished with grace; and that chief of the celestials—Sakra—again waxed
graceful. And Sakra, seated on his throne, receiving back the celestial
regions, and established in his celestial sovereignty, began to hymn the
Goddess holding a lotus in her hand. And Indra said,—"I salute the
Lotus-sprung mother of all beings—unto Sri having lotus-like eyes, and
reposing in the bosom of Vishnu. Thou art Siddhi, and thou art nectar,
and thou Swāhā and Swadhā, O purifier of the worlds. And thou art
twilight and light and lustre, and affluence, and intelligence, and
veneration, and Saraswati. Thou art the learning of sacrifice; thou art
the worship of the Universe-form (of the Most High); thou art the Occult
Learning, O beauteous one; and thou art the knowledge of Brahmā, O
goddess,—and thou art the bestower of the fruit of emancipation. And
thou art the Science of Dialectics; and thou art the Three (Vedas); and
thou art the Vārttā; and thou art the knowledge of chastisement, etc. O
goddess, this universe is filled with thy gentle and terrific forms.
And, O goddess, who, save thee, can dwell in the person of that god of
gods, the bearer of the mace, who is contemplated by the yogis. O
goddess, the triple world, having been renounced by thee, had come to
the verge of destruction; and, through thee hath it again recovered its
position. And, O exalted one, men come by wives and sons, and houses,
and friends, and corn, and wealth through thy kind look. And, O goddess,
freedom from bodily ailments, riches, destruction of foes, and felicity,
are not difficult of attainment for those people that view thy glances.
Thou art the mother of all creatures, as that god of gods—Hari—is their
father. And this universe consisting of mobile and immobile, was
primævally permeated by thee as well as Vishnu. And, O thou that
purifiest everything, if thou forsakest (us), neither our treasures, nor
our cattle, nor our houses, nor our attires, nor our bodies, nor our
wives, are secure unto us. O thou that residest in the bosom of that
god, Vishnu, if thou forsakest me, neither sons, nor friends, nor
ornaments are secure unto me. O stainless one, he that is forsaken by
thee, is also forsaken by goodness, truth, purity character, and other
virtues. And, those that are glanced at by thee,—albeit devoid of any
good quality, ever attain note, on account of character and other
virtues, as well as lineage, and wealth. And, O goddess, he that is
looked at by thee, is praiseworthy and accomplished and blessed and
intelligent and high-born and heroic and possessed of prowess. And, O
nurse of the Universe, O beloved of Vishnu, all virtues, character,
etc., are instantly prevented in him from whom thou turnest away thy
countenance. But the tongue even of the Deity is incapable of
celebrating thy perfections. O lotus-eyed one, prove auspicious! Me
mayest thou never renounce."

Parāçara said,—"Thus eulogised to the height, the goddess Sri resident
in all beings spoke unto Satakratu[215] in the hearing of all the gods.
And Sri said,—'O chief of the celestials, O Hari, pleased am I with thy
hymn. Do thou mention the boon thou desirest. I have come hither to
confer the same on thee.' Thereat Indra said,—‘O goddess, if thou
wouldst confer a boon on me, if I am worthy of one, let this be the
great boon, that this triple world thou wouldst not forsake. And let
this be the second boon that him also thou woudst not forsake, who, O
ocean-sprung One, shall propitiate thee with this hymn.' Thereat Sri
said,—‘O foremost of the celestials, O Vāsava, this triple world will I
not leave. I confer upon thee this boon, being pleased with thy hymn and
prayer. And I shall never be displeased with him whoever shall chant
this hymn.'"

Parāçara said,—"O Maitreya, formerly the great goddess, Sri being
pleased with the hymn and prayer, conferred this boon on the lord of the
celestials. In the days of yore, Sri was begot of Bhrigu on Khyati. And
she again came out of the Ocean when it was churned by the celestials.
As the great god Janārddana,[216] the lord of the Universe, goes through
incarnations, so does Sri to help Him. When Hari assumed the form of a
dwarf, she took birth as a lotus, and when He descended on earth as
Parasurāma, she appeared as the Earth. At time of the incarnation of
Rāma, she became Sitā, and when He was born as Krishna, she became
Rukhmini. And thus in all the incarnations, she assisted Vishnu. When he
had a celestial shape, she assumed the shape of a celestial, and when he
assumed a human form, she took a human shape. She changed her body
(human or celestial) according as Vishnu did. Sri does not renounce the
abode of him for three generations, who reads or hears of this story of
her birth. O sage, never can quarrelsome Alakshmi,[217] dwell in that
house where this hymn of Sri is chanted. O Brāhmana, I have related unto
thee everything of what thou didst ask me for—how Sri formerly was born
as the daughter of Bhrigu and how she afterwards came out of the Ocean
of milk. This eulogy of Lakshmi, the source of all wealth, came out of
the mouth of the lord of celestials. Poverty can never infest those
persons on earth, who chant this hymn every day".


Maitreya said,—"O great sage, thou hast related unto me all I had asked
thee for. Do thou now give me again an account of the family of Bhrigu
from Bhrigu downwards".

Parāçara said,—"Lakshmi was born of Bhrigu and Kyāti and became the
spouse of Vishnu. And two more sons were born of Bhrigu and Kyāti namely
Dhātā and Bidhātā. Two daughters, by name Ayati and Niyati were born of
the high-souled Meru. And Dhāta and Bidhātā took them as their wives.
They gave birth to two sons named Prāna and Mirkandu. Of Mirkandu again
was born a son named Mārkandeya. And hear then again, a son was born of
Prāna by name Vedaçirā. Of the other sons of Prāna one was named
Kritimān and the other Rājavān. And in this way did spread the family of
the great Bhrigu. Māricha's spouse Satmbhuti gave birth to a son named
Paurnamasam. And of him were born two sons named Birajā and Sarvaga. And
their sons I shall mention, O twice-born one, when I shall relate the
lineage at leisure. And Angirā's wife Smriti gave birth to four
daughters, named Sinibali, Kuhoo, Rākā and Anumati. And by Atri, Anasuyā
gave birth to three sons untouched by sin named Soma, Durbāsā and the
sage Dattatreyo. And Pulastya's wife Preeti gave birth to a child named
Dattoli, who in his former birth or in the Sayambhava Manwantara was
known as the sage Agāstya. Kshamā, the wife of the Patriarch Pulaha was
the mother of three sons; Kardama, Avarian and Sahishnu. The wife of
Krātu, Sannati, brought forth the sixty thousand Bālakhilyas, pigmy
sages, no bigger than a joint of the thumb, chaste, pious, resplendent
as the rays of the Sun. Vasishtha had seven sons by his wife Urjja,
Rajas, Gātra, Urdhabhahu, Basana, Anagha, Sutapas and Sukra, the seven
pure sages. The Agni, named Abhimani, who is the eldest born of Brahmā,
had, by Swahā, three sons of surpassing brilliancy:—Pavaka, Pavamana and
Suchi who drinks up water. They had forty-five sons who (with the son of
Brahmā, the Agni named Abhimani and his three descendants) constitute
the forty-nine Fires. I have mentioned the progenitors (Pritras) who
were created by Brahmā. Of those by Agnishwattas and Varhishads the
former being devoid and the latter, possessed of Fires,[218] Swadha had
two daughters Mena and Baidhārini. They were both, O twice-born one,
acquainted with theological truth and given up to religious meditation,
accomplished in perfect wisdom and adorned with all estimable qualities,
Thus I have narrated the progeny of the daughters of Daksha. He who
hears it with reverence, shall never want offspring".


Parāçara said:—I mentioned unto you that the Menu Swāyambhava had two
heroic and pious sons Priyavrata and and Uttanpada. O these two, O
Brahman, Uttanpada, had, by his favourite wife Suruchi, a son, Uttama,
whom he dearly loved. O twice-born one, the king had another queen by
name Suniti, to whom he was less attached. By her he had another son
Dhruva. Beholding his brother Uttama on the lap of his father as he was
seated upon his throne, Dhruva was desirous of ascending to the same
place. But as Suruchi was present the king could not receive his son,
approaching there delightedly and desiring to be taken on his father's
knee. Beholding the child of her sapatni[219] thus anxious to be placed
on his father's lap and her own son already seated there Suruchi
said,—"O child, why do you vainly cherish such a presumptuous desire
born as thou art from a different mother and art no son of mine. Thou
art inconsiderate enough to aspire to a station which is fit for
excellent Uttama. It is true thou art the son of the king but I have not
given thee birth. This regal throne, the seat of the king of kings is
suited to my son only; why shouldst thou trouble thyself for it. Why
does thou idly cherish such an ambition as if thou wert my son? Dost
thou not know that thou art the offspring of Suniti?" Parāçara said;—O
twice-born one, hearing the words of his step-mother, and quitting his
father, the boy repaired in a passion to the apartment of his own
mother. Beholding him angry and his lips trembling, Suniti took him upon
her lap and said,—"O child, who is the cause of your anger? Who hath not
welcomed thee? Who doth not know, that by behaving ill towards thee he
hath offended thy father?" Being thus addressed Dhruva repeated to his
mother all that the arrogant Suruchi had said to him in the presence of
the king. Her son having related all these sighing, she was greatly
distressed. And Suniti, rendered poorly, with her eyes dimmed, sighed
and said,—"Suruchi has rightly spoken; thine, child, is as an
unfortunate fate: those who are born to fortune are not liable to the
insults of their step-mothers. Yet be not afflicted, my child, for who
shall efface what thou hast formerly done, or shall assign to thee what
thou hast left undone. The regal throne, the umbrella of royalty,
excellent horses and elephants are his whose virtues have deserved them;
remember this my son and be consoled. That the king favours Suruchi is
the reward of her merits in a former birth. The name of wife alone
belongs to such as I, who have not equal merit. Her son is the progeny
of accumulated piety and is born as Uttama and mine son art thou, O
Dhruva, of inferior merit. It does not behove thee, O my child, to be
sorry on this account; a wise man will be satisfied with the degree
which appertains to him. If thou art greatly hurt at the words of
Suruchi, do you try to amass piety which bestows all good. Be thou
good-natured, virtuous-souled, friendly and engaged in doing good to all
living creatures; for prosperity descends upon worthy persons as water
flows towards low ground".

Dhruva said;—"O mother, what thou hast said to console me doth not find
place in my heart which has been rent asunder by harsh words. I shall so
exert that I may attain to the most exalted rank adored by the whole
world. I am not born of Suruchi who is the favourite wife of the king.
Do thou behold my prowess, O mother, who am born of and reared by thee.
Let Uttama, my brother, who is not born of thee, receive the regal
throne, conferred on him by my father.

"I do not wish to have that which is given by others, O mother. I shall
by my actions acquire such a position which had not been enjoyed even by
my father". Parāçara said:—Having addressed his mother thus, Dhruva
issued out of his mother's dwelling. And quitting the city, he repaired
to a neighbouring thicket. He beheld there seven ascetics, who had
repaired there before, sitting upon the hides of the black antelope,
which they had taken from off their persons, and spread over the holy
kusa grass. Saluting them respectfully and bowing unto them humbly the
prince said, "Do ye know me, O great ascetics, as the son of Uttanpada,
born of Suniti. Being dissatisfied with the world, I have appeared
before you". The Rishis replied:—"O prince, thou art only a boy and but
four or five years of age. There can be no reason why you should be
dissatisfied with life. You cannot be disgusted with anxiety since thy
father reigns; we cannot imagine, O boy, that you suffer the pain of
separation from the object of your affections. Nor do we see any sign of
disease on your person. What is the cause of your dissatisfaction? Tell
us if it is known to you". Parāçara said,—Thereupon he repeated unto
them what Suruchi had spoken to him. And having heard that they said to
one another,—"Oh! How wonderful is the vehemence of Kshatriya nature? He
is a mere boy and still he cannot stoop to indignities and he has not
been able to remove from his mind what his step-mother had said. O son
of Kshatriya, if it pleases thee, tell us what thou desirest to do
through your dissatisfaction with the world. O thou of immeasurable
prowess, tell us in what thou wishest to have our help? Speak freely:
for we perceive that thou desirest to have something from us". Dhruva
said:—"O ye foremost of twice-born ones, I wish not for riches, neither
do I long for a kingdom. I aspire to a station which hath never been
acquired by any before. O excellent sages, tell me how I may effect this
and attain to that station which is the most elevated in this world".
Maychi said—"O Prince, none can attain to that best of stations who does
not propitiate Govinda. Do thou therefore worship the undecaying". Attri
said—"He with whom is pleased the first of spirits Janārddana, gets at
this imperishable dignity—I mention unto you the truth". Angira
said,—"If thou desirest for an exalted station do thou worship Govinda
in whom immutable and undecaying, all that is, exists". Pulastya
said,—"Worshipping the divine Hari, the Supreme Soul, the Supreme Stay
and Supreme Brahmā thou mayst attain to eternal liberation, what of
reaching that most exalted station". Kratu said,—"Nothing is difficult
to attain if Janārddana is pleased, who is the soul of sacrifice in
sacrifices and supreme spirit in abstract contemplation". Pulaha
said,—"Do thou adore, O pious boy, that Vishnu, the lord of sacrifice,
and Universe, worshipping whom Indra obtained the dignity of a king of
the celestials". Vasishtha observed:—"Anything, that a man desires, may
be obtained in this world by adoring Vishnu what of that exalted
position". Dhruva said:—"You have told me, humbly bowing before, what is
the deity to be adored: do ye now inform me of the prayer which is to be
meditated by me to propitiate him. May the great ascetics, delightedly
inform me of the prayer by which I may propitiate the God". The Rishis
said,—"O Prince, hear, we shall relate unto thee, how those, who are
devoted unto Vishnu, shall worship Him. They shall first withdraw their
minds from all exterior objects and then fix it steadily on that being
in whom the world exists. O Prince, hear from us the prayer that is to
be recited by him, who has thus concentrated his thoughts on one only
object, whose heart is filled with his spirit, and who has controlled
himself. 'Om, salutation to Vasudeva, who is manifest as Brahmā, Vishnu
and Siva, and whose form is inscrutable'. This prayer was offered in
olden times by your grandsire, the Manu Swayambhuva, and propitiated by
which, Janārddana conferred upon him prosperity, which he desired,
unequalled in three worlds. Do thou therefore try to propitiate Govinda
by reciting this prayer continually".


Parāçara said:—O Maitreya, hearing these words from beginning to end,
that Prince, saluting these sages, issued out of that thicket. And
confiding in the accomplishment of his object, O twice-born one, he
repaired to the holy place on the banks of the Yamuna called Madhuvana,
or the grove of Madhu, called after the name of a demon of that name who
resided there and was known thus on the earth. Slaying the highly
powerful son of the Rakshasa, Madhu—Lavana, Satrughna (the youngest son
of Daçaratha,) founded a city at that spot which was named Mathura. And
Dhruva engaged in performing penance at that holy shrine the purifier of
all sin, where was Mahadeva, the god of Gods meditating upon Hari. In
accordance with instruction given by Marichi and others, he began to
contemplate, Vishnu the sovereign of the gods, seated in himself. O
twice-born one, Dhruva, thus contemplating him, having his mind
perfectly withdrawn from all other thoughts, the Great Hari, ever
existing in all creatures and natures, took possession of his heart. O
Maitreya, Vishnu thus occupying the heart of that one engaged in his
meditation, the earth, the supporter of elemental life, could not
sustain his height. When he used to stand upon his left foot (for
praying) one half of the earth bent beneath him and when he used to
stand upon his right foot the other half of the earth sank down. And
when he used to stand touching the earth with his toes, the whole earth
shook with its mountains and rivers, O twice-born one. The rivers and
seas were greatly agitated thereby and even the celestials called Yāmas,
being greatly alarmed, in consultation with Indra began to concert
measures for interrupting the devout exercises of Dhruva. And, O great
ascetics, the Kushmandas in company with Indra, assuming, various shapes
actively engaged in obstructing his meditations. One assuming, by virtue
of illusion, the shape of his mother Suniti, stood before him, with
tears in his eyes, and saying in tender accents—"My son, desist from
this penance, that is destroying thy health. I have after many troubles
gained thee and have formed many hopes in thee. O child, it does not
behove thee to forsake me, at the words of my rival, helpless, alone and
unprotected. Thou art my only refuge. Thou art a boy of five years old.
Such a hard penance doth not become thee. Desist therefore from such
fearful practices which are not productive of any beneficial result. For
thee this is the time of youthful pastime, then comes the season for
study, then the period of worldly enjoyment and lastly that of austere
devotion. O my boy, thou art but a child, this is the season of thy
play—why hast thou thou engaged in asceticism to destroy thyself? Thy
chief duty consists in thy devotion to me now. Do thou engage in such
works as become thy age and circumstances. Be not guided by bewildering
error and desist from such unrighteous actions, If thou dost not
renounce to-day these devout austerities I shall terminate my life
before thee". Parāçara said:—But Dhruva being wholly intent upon seeing
Vishnu did not behold his mother weeping, with her eyes bleared with
tears. "O child! O child! fly, the hideous Rākshasas, with uplifted
weapons are coming this side of the forest". Saying this (the illusion)
disappeared. Instantly crowded there the Rākshasas uplifting terrible
arms and with countenances emitting fiery flame. They began to emit
hideous cries before that prince and whirl and toss their threatening
weapons. Hundreds of jackals, from whose mouths gushed out flame, while
they expanded them, yelled horrible cries to appal the boy wholly
engrossed by meditation. Those night-rangers cried out: "Kill him, kill
him, tear him to pieces; eat him up, eat him up". And those goblins
having faces of lions, and camels, and crocodiles, howled about to
strike terror into the heart of the prince. All these (illusions of)
Rākshasas and jackals, their cries and weapons made no impression upon
his senses whose mind was completely given up to the meditation of
Govinda. The son of the lord of earth, entirely taken up by one idea,
beheld continually. Vishnu only seated in himself and saw no other
object All these illusions being thus baffled the celestials were
greatly disturbed. Being terrified at this discomfiture and afflicted by
the devout austerities of the boy the celestials assembled and repaired
in a body for help to Hari, who is the creator of the universe, and
without beginning or end. The celestials said:—"O lord of the
celestials! O lord of the world! O great god! O supreme spirit! being
afflicted by the devout austerities of Dhruva, we have come to thee to
seek thy refuge. As the moon increases in his orb day by day, so, O
lord, (this boy) by his devotion is approaching incessantly superhuman
power. O Janārddana, we have been greatly alarmed by the devout
austerities of the son of Uttanpadā and have taken thy refuge: do thou
desist him from his devout exercises. We do not know whose position, he
aspireth to—whether the throne of Sakra, of the sun, of the lord of
wealth or that of Varuna the lord of water.

"O lord, be propitiated with us, remove this mace of affliction from our
breast and desist the son of Uttanpada from his devout exercises". The
Great God (Vishnu) replied:—"He aspireth not to the throne of Indra, nor
to the sovereignty of the solar orb or the deep, nor to the rank of the
lord of riches. I shall soon confer on him, O celestials, what he
desireth to have. Removed of your anxiety do you all proceed to your
respective quarters—I shall soon desist that boy, whose mind is wholly
engrossed with devout meditation".

Parāçara said:—Being thus addressed by Vishnu the celestials headed by
the performer of hundred sacrifices, saluting him, repaired to their
respective habitations. And that Great God, who is all things, being
pleased with Dhruva's whole-minded devotedness to him, assuming his
shape with four arms, approached him and said,—"May good betide thee, O
son of Uttanapada! I am pleased with thy devout exercises. I have come
here to confer boons on thee—do thou beg one, O thou of firm vows.
Withdrawing thy mind from external objects while thou hast dedicated it
to me alone—I am greatly pleased with thee; do thou therefore beg of me
an excellent boon". Parāçara said—Hearing the words of that great God,
the boy opened his eyes and beheld before him that Hari whom he had seen
in his meditation. And beholding him with the conch, the discus, the
mace, the bow and the scimitar in hand and crowned with a diadem, he
bowed his head down to the earth. With his hair standing erect and being
greatly stricken with fear, Dhruva addressed himself for worshipping
that great God. Reflecting how he could offer thanks unto him, and what
he could say in his praise, he was greatly perplexed with anxiety and
then at last had recourse to that deity. Dhruva said,—"O great God if
thou art greatly pleased with my devout exercise, do thou confer upon me
this boon, that I may praise thee whenever I wish. O god, I am a boy,
how shall I be able to sing thy glory, whom even the great sages like
Brahmā, conversant with Vedas, have not been able to know sufficiently.
My heart is filled with devotion to thee, O lord, do thou grant me the
understanding of placing my praises at thy feet". Parāçara said,—O
foremost of twice-born ones, the lord of the earth Govinda touched with
the tip of his conch, the son of Uttanapada standing with jollied palms.
And greatly pleased, that prince, bending low his head, praised that
undecaying protector of living beings. Dhruva said,—"I bow unto Him
whose forms are earth, water, fire, air, ether, mind, intellect, the
first element, primæval nature, and the pure, subtle, all-pervading soul
that excels nature. Salutation unto that Purusha who is devoid of
qualities, pure, subtle, extending all over the earth, and who is
separate from Prakriti; who is supreme over all elements, all objects of
sense, intellect and who is separate even from Purusha. I seek refuge
unto him, who is one with Brahmā, who is the soul of the whole universe,
pure, and who is the foremost of all gods. Salutation unto that form of
thine, O thou the soul of all things, which is designated as Brahmā by
virtue of his pervading and maintaining the whole Universe, which is
unchangeable and meditated upon by the sages. Thou art the great god
pervading the whole universe with a thousand heads, a thousand eyes, a
thousand feet and who passes ten inches beyond its contact.[220] Thou
art that excellent Purusha—whatever has been and whatever is to be. Thou
art the progenitor of Virāt,[221] Swarat,[222] Samrāt,[223] and
Adipurusha. The lower and upper and middle parts of the earth are not
without thee—the whole universe is from thee—whatever has been and
whatever shall be. The whole universe is thy form and exists in thee.
From thee is sacrifice derived, and all oblations and curds and ghee and
animals of either class (domestic or wild). From thee the Rig Veda, the
Shāma Veda, the metres of the Vedas and the Yajur Veda have sprung.
Horses and cows having teeth in one jaw only have been created by thee
and as well as goats, sheep and deer. Brahmanas originated from thy
mouth; warriors from thy arms; Vaiçyas from thy thighs and Sudras from
thy feet. From thine eyes came the Sun, from thy mind the moon, from thy
central veins the Vital breath, from thy mouth the fire, from thy navel
the sky, from thy head the heavens, from thy ears the regions and from
thy feet the earth. And from thee the whole world was derived. As the
wide-spreading Nyagrodha (Indian fig-tree) exists (before it grows up
into a tree) in a small seed, so at the time of dissolution, the whole
world exists in thee as its germ. As the Nyagrodha, originating from its
seed, spread gradually into a huge tree, so the creation originating
from thee expands itself into the universe. O lord, as nothing is
visible of a plantain tree, except its bark and leaves, so nothing is
seen in thee except the whole universe. The faculties of intellect that
are the source of pleasure and pain exist in thee as one with all
existence. But the sources of pleasure and pain, singly or blended, do
not exist in thee freed as thou art from all qualities. Salutation to
thee, who art the subtile rudiment, who art single when a cause, but
manifold in actions. Salutation to thee, who art the proximate cause of
life and action and identical with the great elements. Thou art manifest
in spiritual knowledge, thou art the great Purusha, Brahmana, Brahmā and
Manu. Thou art beheld by mental contemplation and imperishable. Thou
abidest in all, art element of all; thou assumest all forms; all
elements are from thee and thou art the soul of all—glory unto thee as
thou art the soul of all, lord of all things—the origin of all things.
What shall I speak unto thee, as thou knowest every thing, being seated
in all hearts? O thou the soul of all thing, the sovereign lord of all
creations-the source of all elements, thou knowest all creatures and
their desires. O lord, do thou satisfy my desire. O lord of earth, my
devout exercises have been crowned with success to-day since I have
beheld thee". The Lord said:—"Thy devotion hath been crowned with
success since thou hast beheld me, O Dhruva. The sight of me, never goes
without any result, O prince. Do thou ask of me a boon, whatever thou
wishest for; whenever I appear before men all their desires are
satisfied". Dhruva said "O lord! O sovereign of all creatures, thou dost
exist in the hearts of all. How can that be unknown to thee, O lord what
I am cherishing in my mind? Yet O lord of celestials, I shall mention
unto thee, the object hard to attain, which my presumptuous mind panteth
after. But what can there be which cannot be got at, if thou art
pleased, O creator of the universe; for it is by thy favour, that Indra
enjoyed the sovereignty of three worlds. 'This regal throne is not for
thee, since thou art not born of me'. These haughty words my step-mother
addressed loudly unto me. By thy favour I beg of thee, O lord, an
exalted station, which surpasses all others, which is the support of the
universe and shall last for ever". The Lord said:—"Forsooth shalt thou
attain to the station thou art soliciting for; for, O boy even in thy
former birth, thou didst satisfy me (with thy austere devotion). Thou
wast, in thy previous existence, a Brahmin, devoted with all thy heart
unto me, ever dutiful to thy parents and always satisfying thy duties.
In course of time, a prince became thy friend, who in his youth indulged
in all sensual pleasures, who was of a beautiful appearance and bright
form. While in his company and beholding his riches, hard to acquire,
thou didst desire that you might be born as the son of a king. It is by
virtue of that desire, thou art born as a prince in the mansion of
Uttānpāda, O Dhruva, which cannot be easily obtained. The birth, in the
race of Swambhuva, is considered by others, as a great boon, and for
this I was propitiated by thee, O boy; but now thou art not valuing it
so much. The man, who worships me, obtains in no time, liberation from
life: what is the abode of celestials to one whose mind is centered in
me, O boy! Thou shalt, by my favour, O Dhruva, attain to a station which
is above the three worlds and become the stay of stars and planets:
there is not the least doubt about it. I do confer upon thee, O Dhruva,
a station, which is above those of the Sun, the Moon, stars, Mercury,
Venus, Saturn and all other constellations; above the regions of the
seven Rishis and the divinities who traverse the atmosphere. Some of the
celestials live for four ages; some for the reign of a Manu; but thou
shalt live the duration of a Kalpa. Thy mother, Sunoti too,
metamorphosed into a clear star, shall exist by thee in the welkin for
the same period. People singing thy glory, with concentrated minds,
morning and evening, shall attain to an accession of piety". Parāçara
said:—O thou of a great mind, obtaining this boon, from Janārddana, the
sovereign of the celestials and the lord of earth, Dhurva attained to
this excellent station. Beholding the increase of his honor and glory,
the preceptor of the celestials and Asuras, Usānas, repeated these
verses. "Oh how great is the strength of his austere devotion, and how
mighty is the success thereof, since the seven Rishis are preceded by
him. This too is Dhruva's mother Suniti, who is otherwise named Sunritā.
Who on this earth, can recount her glory? Giving birth to Dhruva, she
hath got at a station which is the refuge of the three worlds, and which
is a station eminent above all. He, who shall celebrate the translation
of Dhruva into the abode of the celestials, shall be released from his
sins, and be adored in heaven. He shall not lose his station, either in
this world, or in heaven (after death) and shall live long, possessed of
every blessing".


Parāçara said,—By Dhruva the abode of all blessings, his spouse Shambhu
gave birth to two sons, Shisti and Vabya. Suchaya, the wife of Sishti
gave birth to five sons, freed from sin, by name, Ripu, Ripunjaya,
Sipra, Vrikala, and Vrikatejas. Of these Ripu begat upon Vrihatee a
highly effulgent son named Chakshusa, who again begot the Manu Chakshusa
on Pushkarini of the race of Varuna, who was the daughter of the
high-souled patriarch Aranya. O great sage, the patriarch Vairaja had a
daughter named Nadbala, on whom Manu begot ten highly effulgent
sons—Uru, Pooru, Satadumnya, Tapasher, Satyavak, Kavi, Agnistoma,
Atiratra, Sudyumnya and Abhimanyu. Uru begot on his wife Agneyi six
highly effulgent sons—Anga, Sumanas, Svati, Kratu, Angiras and Siva. And
Anga begot on Suneetha one son named Vena. O great sages, with a view to
multiply his progeny, the Rishis rubbed his right hand. And from his arm
sprang a famous king named Vainya, who was celebrated as Prithu for
milking the earth for the advantage of his subjects. Maitreya said,—"O
foremost of ascetics, do thou tell me why the right hand of Vena was
rubbed by the great Rishis, in consequence of which the mighty and
powerful Prithu was born". Parāçara said:—Originally a daughter was born
of Mritya named Suneetha. Anga married her. And she gave birth to Vena.
O Maitieya, being born from the daughter of Mrityu, he inherited the
evil propensities of his grand father. When he was inaugurated by the
great Rishis, Vena caused it to be proclaimed everywhere that he was the
lord of the earth. No one would undertake any sacrifice, offer any
oblation or make any gift. "I am the king the lord of sacrifice, no one
is entitled to oblations except myself". Thereupon the Rishis assembled
there and worshipping the lord of earth, addressed him, O Maitreya, with
sweet words. The Rishis said,—"O king, O lord, do thou hear, what we
speak unto thee, for then thy health as well as the interest of thy
subjects shall be secure. We purpose to worship, for thy welfare, with
protracted rites, Hari, the lord of the celestials and sacrifices. And
thou shalt also be entitled to a share in it. If, O king, with our
sacrifices, the lord of sacrifices is propitiated, he shall also satisfy
all thy desires. In whose kingdom, O king, Hari, the lord of sacrifices
is worshipped with sacrifices, he confers on him, the satisfaction of
all his desires". Vena said—"Who is there above me that, I even, shall
have to worship him. Who is that person, who is known as Hari and whom
ye do all consider as the lord of sacrifices? Brahmā, Janārddana,
Sambhu, Indra, Vayu, Jama, the Sun, Fire, Varuna, Dhata, Pusha, (the
sun) Bhumi (earth) and the lord of earth (the moon)—these and all others
who are capable of imprecating curses and conferring boons (on mankind)
do all exist in the person of a king for the essence of a sovereign is
all that is divine. O twice born ones, understanding this full well, do
ye all obey my commands—you should not make gifts or offer oblations
unto any one (but me) and should not worship any body else. As to serve
her own husband is the prime duty of a female, so it is incumbent upon
you, O twice-born ones, to satisfy my behests only". The Rishis
said,—"Give us command, O great king, to undertake sacrifices, so that
piety may not suffer decrease. All this world is but the outcome of
oblations".[224] Parāçara said:—Being thus addressed by the great Rishis
and requested by them often and often, Vena did not give them. Thereupon
all the ascetics, being stricken with excessive ire, cried out "Kill
him!—kill this vicious weight! He, who vilifies our lord the sovereign
of sacrifices, without beginning or end, is not worthy of the
sovereignty of the earth". Saying this, the ascetics slew that king with
the blades of Kusa grass, consecrated by prayer, who had already been,
destroyed by his impiety towards God. Thereupon those ascetics beheld
dust on all sides and said to the people who were nigh, "What is this?"
To which the people replied—"The kingdom is without a king and hence the
robbers and thieves have engaged in their dishonest work of encroaching
upon the property of others. And O great ascetics, this dust has been
raised by those robbers hastening to seize other's property". Thereupon
consulting with each other those ascetics, intent upon creating a
prince, began to rub the thigh of that childless monarch. The thigh
being thus rubbed, there arose a being of the complexion of a charred
stake, with flattened features and of a dwarfish stature. And he
speedily addressed all the ascetics there saying, "What shall I do?"
Whereto they replied—"Sit down" (Nishada) and thence his name was
Nishada. O foremost of ascetics, from this person sprang a race called
Nishadas who inhabit the Vindya mountain and are characterised by the
exterior tokens of depravity. By this means the wickedness of the king
(Vena) was extracted and the Nishadas was thus born destroying Vena's
son's. Thereupon those twice-born ones began to rub the right hand of
Vena from which sprang the highly powerful son of Vena named Prithu
resplendent in person and burning like the fire itself. Thereupon from
the welkin fell down the original bow of Hara named Pinaka, and the
celestial arrow and the celestial armour. Prithu thus born, all the
beings around were greatly delighted. And at the birth of that pious
son. Vena too attained to the region of celestials and was delivered by
that high-souled one from the hell named Pat. Thereupon the seas and
rivers from all sides come there with holy water and pearls and gems of
diverse kinds, for his inauguration on the throne. The great parent of
all, Brahmā, with the celestials and the descendants of Angiras (the
fires) and with all things, animate or inanimate, came there and
performed the ceremony of consecrating the lord of people—the son of
king of Vena. And beholding in his right hand the mark of the discus of
Vishnu and recognising a portion of that deity in Prithu the great
parent attained to an excess of delight. For all those who become the
sovereign kings of the earth, have always the mark of the discus of
Vishnu in their hands. The highly powerful Prithu, the son of Vena,
being thus invested with a mighty dominion, his power was unimpeded even
in the region of the celestials. That highly effulgent one, being
installed according to due rites, by these who were skilled in religious
rites, those subjects even, who were disaffected in his father's regeme,
became fully attached unto him. And in consequence of his attachment
unto his subjects he was known all over as "the king". The waters became
solid when he traversed the deep; the mountains opened him a way and his
banners were unbroken even when he passed through the forests. (In his
time) the earth yielded crops without cultivation; people got their food
without any thought—the king gave milk at any time and honey was stored
in every flower. At the auspicious sacrifice which was performed at the
birth of Prithu and which was headed by the great parent—the highly
intelligent Suta was produced from the juice of the moon plant. And in
that great sacrifice the highly intelligent Māgadha was also born.
Thereupon the Rishis accosted Suta and Māgadha saying "Do you sing the
glory of this powerful king Prithu, the son of Vena. This is your
special function and he is the fit object of your praise". Thereupon
both of them, with folded hands, spoke unto the twice-born ones
saying—"This king is born to-day—his works or merits we are not
cognizant of; nor his fame has spread abroad—tell us on what subject
shall we base our praise?" The Rishis said—"Sing his glory mentioning
the works he shall perform, becoming the emperor of the earth and the
merits he shall be crowned with". Parāçara said:—Hearing these words the
king was highly gratified and reflected, saying—"Persons (in this world)
are eulogised for their various actions. And surely my virtuous actions
shall be the theme of these bards. And whatever merits, they will relate
in their panegyric, I will acquire with all my attention. And whatever
faults they shall recommend to be avoided I shall always shun". The king
resolved thus. Thereupon Suta and Māgadha, with sweet-voiced discourses,
sang the future virtues of the intelligent Prithu, the son of Vena.—"He
shall be truthful, charitable, observer of his promises, the lord of
people, wise, benevolent, patient, valient and the supresser of the
wicked; pious, grateful, kind, sweet-spoken; shall always respect the
venerable, perform sacrifices, respect the Brāhmins and shall be always
recognised by the pious. He shall cherish the good and in administering
justice shall be indifferent to friend or foe". He cherished in his mind
the virtues thus celebrated by Suta and Māgadha and practised them in
his life. Thereupon that king governed the earth and performed many
sacrifices accompanied with liberal donations. One day the subjects
stricken with hunger approached the king for the edible plants had
perished during the season of anarchy. And when asked by him the cause
of thus coming they said—"O foremost of kings, during the period of
anarchy all vegetable products were withheld and, O lord of men, many
are now perishing for want of food. Thou hast been appointed (by the
Providence) as our lord and sustainer—grant us vegetable—the support of
our lives who are dying with hunger". Parāçara said:—Hearing this, the
king, inflamed with wrath, took up his bow Pināka and his celestial
arrows and issued forth to assail the Earth. And the Earth too, assuming
the shape of a cow, instantly fled away. From his fear she traversed the
Brahmā, and all other regions—and wherever she, the supporter of
elements, went, she beheld the son of Vena, with uplifted weapons. At
last trembling with terror, the earth, desirous to escape his arrows,
addressed Prithu, the hero of resistless prowess,—"O lord of men, do
thou not know that there is a great sin hanging upon the destruction of
females—why dost thou then try to slay me?" Prithu said,—"O thou the
perpetrator of vicious deeds, when by the destruction of one malignant
being the happiness of many is secured—that destruction is considered as
an act of virtue". The Earth said,—"If dost thou, for the behoof of thy
subjects, slay me, who shall support them, O foremost of kings?" Prithu
said,—"O Earth, slaying thee with my arrows, who art beyond my control,
I shall support my own men, by virtue of my own devotion". Parāçara
said,—Thereupon the earth, overcome with fear, trembled and bowing unto
him, addressed that king again, saying,—"All undertakings prove
successful whenever suitable means to accomplish them are employed. I
shall now suggest thee a means, which, if pleases thee, thou mayst
accept. O lord of men, the edible plants, which I had devoured before, I
may return thee, if thou likest, in the shape of milk. O thou the
foremost of the pious, for the behoof of thy subjects, give me a calf by
which I may be able to secrete milk. O hero, make also all places level,
so that I may produce, equally around, milk which is the source of all
vegetation". Parāçara said,—Thereupon the son of Vena with his bow and,
uprooted mountains by hundreds and thousands and thenceforth all the
hills are lying scattered all around.[225] Before this the surface of
the earth was irregular, and there was no boundaries of villages and
cities. There was no cultivation, no pasture, no agriculture, no high
way for merchants; all these originated, O Maitreya, in the reign of the
son of Vena. Whatever there was level ground, the king made habitations
for the subjects. Before his time, the fruits and roots, which were the
staple food of the subjects, were procured with great difficulty for all
vegetables were destroyed. Thereupon having made, the Swaymbhuva, Manu,
the calf, that lord of men, Prithu, milked the earth with his own hands.
He desiring the benefit of his subjects, corns and vegetables of all
kinds were produced upon which the people even now and perpetually
subsist. By conferring life on her, Prithu became the father of the
Earth and thence she got the patronymic Prithivi (the daughter of
Prithu). Thereupon the celestials the ascetics, the demons, the
Rākshasas, the mountains, the Gandharvas, the Uragas, the Yakshas, the
Pitris, and the trees, with their respective vessels, milked the earth,
as much O Manu, as they required. And the milker and the calf were both
peculiar to their own species. The Earth, the mother, the nurse, the
supporter and the nourisher of all creations was produced from the sole
of the foot of Vishnu. And Prithu, the son of Vena, became so very
powerful, that by virtue of his pleasing the subjects he was the first
man who was styled the lord of the earth. He who shall relate the story
of the birth of the son of Vena shall never suffer any retribution for
his iniquitous deeds. And he who shall hear of the birth and virtues of
Prithu shall be relieved from the affliction of evil dreams.


From Prithu were born two highly powerful sons named Antardhāna and
Pāli. And Antardhāna begot on Shiknandini a son named Habirdhāna. And
Habirdhāna again begot on Dhishana six sons—named, Prāchinberhis, Sukra,
Gaya, Krishna, Braja and Ajina. Prāchinverhis was a mighty prince and
patriarch by whom mankind was multiplied after the death of Havirdhāna.
He was called Prāchinverhis on account of his placing upon the earth (at
the time of his prayer) the sacred grass pointing to the east. After a
protracted devotion that lord of earth married the daughter of the Ocean
named Savaranā. And Prāchinverhis, begot on Savaranā, the daughter of
the Ocean ten sons, who were all called Prachetas and were all
well-skilled in archery. They all practised the same religious
austerities and remained immersed in the bed of the deep for ten
thousand years. Maitreya said,—"Do thou, O great ascetic, tell me, why
those high-souled Prachetas practised austerities being immersed in the
deep". Parāçara said,—Welcoming the high-souled Prāchinverhis, the
Patriarch requested him to multiply race. And he accordingly addressed
his sons, saying,—"O my sons, I have been commanded by Bramhā, the god
of gods to multiply mankind. And I too had promised obedience. Do ye
therefore, my sons, diligently promote the increase of mankind. You
shall all with reverence obey the commands of the Patriarch". Parāçara
said,—Hearing the words of their father those princes said, "So be it"
and repeatedly addressed him, O Muni, saying,—"By what, O father, we
shall be able to multiply mankind? It behoveth thee to mention this unto
me". The father said,—"There is no doubt that people shall meet with an
accomplishment of all their desires, if they worship Vishnu, the
conferrer of boons. There is no other alternative. What future can I
tell you? If you wish to succeed, do you adore Govinda who is Hari, the
lord of all beings, in order to bring about the increase of mankind. The
excellent Purusha, without beginning, should be worshipped by him who
wishes for virtue, wealth, enjoyment or liberation. Adore him, who is
imperishable and propitiating whom the great Patriarch Brahmā succeeded
in creating the universe". Parāçara said,—Being thus addressed by their
father the ten Prachetas plunged into the deep and with concentrated
minds, engaged in devotion. O foremost of ascetics, with their minds
wholly devoted to Nārāyana, the refuge of all creatures and the lord of
the universe, and withdrawing their thoughts from all other exterior
objects, they remained (in the state of devotion) for ten thousand
years. And remaining there they worshipped with concentrated minds that
great God Hari, who, when propitiated, confers, on all those who praise
him, whatever they desire. Maitreya said,—"O foremost of ascetics, the
praises addressed to Vishnu, by those Prachatas, lying plunged in the
depths of the ocean are sacred and it behoveth thee to relate them unto
me". Parāçara said—Do thou hear—(I shall recount) the praises addressed,
of old, to Govinda by the Prachetas as they stood in the waters of the
deep. Prachetas said,—"We bow unto him who is the eternal theme of all
speech, who is the beginning of the boundless universe and the lord of
it; who is the primeval light—who has not the like of him; indivisible
and infinite; who is the creator of all things, mobile and
immobile—salutation unto him, who is one with time, who is without
form—and whose first form is the day and the second and third form are
the evening and night. Salutation unto him, who is the same with the
moon who is the life of all living beings, and who is the receptacle of
ambrosia, drunk daily by the celestials and progenitors. Salutation unto
him, who is one with the sun, who with his fierce rays, dispels darkness
from the sky and who is the creator of the seasons—the summer, the
winter and the rains. Salutation unto him, who is one with the
earth—who, being solid, is supporting the whole universe and is the
asylum of smell and all other objects of sense. We bow to that form of
Hari, which is water, which is the seed of all living beings and the
womb of the world. Salutation unto Vishnu, who is one with Fire, who is
the mouth of the celestials being the eater of the Havya and who is the
mouth of the progenitors being the eater of the Kavya. Salutation unto
him who is at one with the air, which exists as five vital airs in the
body causing constant vital action and is the origin of ether.
Salutation unto him, who is at one with the atmosphere, who is pure,
whose form and end cannot be perceived, who is shapeless and limitless
and who gives separate existence to all creatures. Salutation unto
Krishna, who is the creator, is perceived in the form of sensible
objects and is the direction of the faculties of sense. We bow unto
Hari, who is one with senses both subtle and substantial, who receives
the impression of the senses, and who is the source of all knowledge.
Salutation unto that universal soul, who as intellect carries the
impressions received by the senses to the soul—Salutation unto him who
is Prakriti—who has created the Universe, who is maintaining it and in
whom it shall perish. We bow unto that excellent Purusha, who albeit
freed from all and devoid of all qualities, appears, to the creatures
labouring under mistakes, as enveloped with all qualities. Salutation
unto that Brahmā, who is the ultimate condition of Vishnu, who is
unchangeable, without birth, pure, void of qualities and free from
accidents; who is neither high nor low neither massive nor thin, has
neither shape, nor colour, nor shadow, nor substance nor affection nor
body; who is neither ethereal nor capable of being touched; who is
neither smell nor taste; who has no eyes, cars, or motion or speech,
breath mind; who is without name, gotra, countenance or lustre; who is
without fear or mistake; without blame, disease or death; who is free
from passion, without sins, imperceptible, inactive, independent of
place and time, separated from all investing properties, but exercising
irresistible might, and who is at one with all beings and dependant upon
none. Salutation to that nature of Vishnu which tongue cannot describe
nor eye hath seen". Parāçara said—Thus glorifying Vishnu the Prachetas
performed austerities for ten thousand years in the depths of the sea.
Thereupon Hari, having the complexion of the full-blown lotus leaf,
being pleased, appeared before them even in the midst of waters. And
beholding him mounted on Garuda, the Prachetas bending low their heads
with reverence, saluted him. Thereupon Vishnu addressed them,
saying,—"Do you ask of me a boon. Being pleased with you I have come
here to confer boons on you". Bowing unto that giver of boons, the
Prachetas asked of him the multiplication of mankind as ordered by their
parents. And granting them the wished for boon Vishnu disappeared
instantly and Prachetas too came out of the sea.


Parāçara said,—When the Prachetas were thus engaged in devout exercises
the earth was covered with huge trees and the subjects suffered decease.
The welkin being obstructed with the branches of trees, the wind did not
blow for ten thousand years and the mankind did not labour. And when the
Prachetas came out of the water they were greatly inflamed with ire
beholding the earth, and wind and flame issued out of their mouths. The
wind uprooted all the trees and left them sear and dry and the fierce
fire consumed and thus the earth was cleared off the forests. Beholding
all the trees thus destroyed and only few left, their king Soma
approached those princes and said,—"Renounce your ire, O princes, and
hear what I say; I shall bring about peace between you and the trees.
This precious and beautiful maiden, sprung from the trees, has been
nourished by me with my rays who am cognizant of futurity. Her name is
Marishā and she has sprung from the trees. That lucky damsel shall be
your wife and the multiplier of the family of Dhruva. From half of your
lustre and half of mine, the learned and the great Patriarch Daksha
shall be begotten on her; your lustre as well as mine being conjoined in
him he shall be effulgent like fire and multiply the human race. There
lived in the days of yore an ascetic named Kandu—the foremost of those
conversant with the Vedas. He engaged in an austere devotion on the
picturesque bank of the river Gomati. To obstruct his devotion a highly
beautiful nymph named Pramlocha was despatched by the king of the
celestials. And being thus engaged, the sweet-smiling nymph diverted the
sage from the practice of his pious austerities. Being thus diverted he
lived with her for a hundred and fifty years at the valley of the mount
Mandāra, his mind being wholly given up to worldly enjoyment. Once on a
time the damsel said to the high-souled Rishi,—'O Brahman, I desire to
go to the abode of the celestials—do thou, with a delighted countenance,
grant me the permission'. Being thus addressed by her, the ascetic,
solely attached to her, replied,—'O fair lady, do thou stay a few days
more with me'. Being thus requested by him that damsel of a slender
person, enjoyed earthly pleasures in the company of that high-souled
ascetic, for more than a hundred years. And being again accosted by her
with 'O lord! allow me to return to the abode of the celestials' he
again requested her to stay a few more with him. After the expiration of
another hundred years the beautiful damsel, with a smile of love, again
said,—'I shall now go to the abode of the celestials, O Brāhman'. Being
thus addressed the ascetic, detaining the fair-eyed damsel, said,—'Stay
a little more, thou shalt depart for a long time'. Afraid of incurring
an imprecation the graceful nymph lived with the ascetic for nearly two
hundred years more. The high-souled sage was repeatedly asked by the
nymph to allow her to repair to the abode of the lord of the celestials
and she was as often desired by him to remain. Afraid of his curse,
excelling in amiable manners and knowing full well the pain consequent
upon the separation from an object of love she did not quit the ascetic,
who, enjoying in her company day and night and having his mind possessed
by cupid, became fully attached unto her. Once while he was speedily
issuing out of the cottage the nymph said to him. 'Where are you going?'
Whereto he replied, 'O damsel, the day is fast approaching its close, I
must perform my evening ablutions or else I shall neglect a duty'.
Thereupon smiling, she, delightedly, said to the sage,—'O thou
conversant with all religions, why dost thou talk of to-day approaching
its close? Is thy day, O Brāhman, the aggregate of many hundred years?
Shall it not create astonishment in other? Do thou tell me'. The ascetic
said,—'O fair damsel, you came to the riverside this morning—I saw you
there and brought you to my hermitage. The day has passed and the
evening has well-nigh arrived. Tell me in sooth what the truth is'. The
(nymph) Pramlocha said,—'True it is, O Brāhman, that I came here at
dawn. It is not false—but after that hundreds of years have flown away'.
Thereupon, the sage, stricken with fear, asked that nymph, having
expansive eyes, saying,—'Tell me how many years I have spent in
enjoyment with you'. Pramlocha said,—'You have spent nine hundred and
seven years six months and three days'. The ascetic again said,—'No more
of laughter, O fair nymph, tell me the truth; methinks I have spent one
day in your company'. To which Pramlocha replied: 'O venerable sage why
shall I speak untruth unto thee since I have been specially requested by
thee to-day to speak the truth'. Soma said,—O Princes, when the sage had
heard these words and thought them to be true he began to reproach
himself exclaming, 'O fie, fie upon me; my penance has been
obstructed—the wealth of those who are cognizant of Brahmā, has been
stolen; my judgement has been blinded; by whom women have been created
to beguile mankind? O fie upon that passion by which my self-control has
been stolen whereby I, was about to attain the knowledge of Brahmā who
is above the reach of those who are immersed in the six waves—namely,
hunger, thirst, sorrow, stupification, decay and death. By this evil
company, which is the road to hell all my austerities, leading to the
acquisition of the wisdom of the Vedas, have been obstructed'. Having
thus reviled himself the pious sage spoke to the nymph, who was near
him, saying,—'Go where dost thou wish, O vile nymph—thou hast performed
that for which thou hast been enjoyned by the lord of the
celestials—thou hast obstructed my penances with thy fascinations. I do
not reduce thee to ashes with the fierce fire of my rage. Seven paces
together are quite sufficient for the friendship of the pious, and thou
and I have lived together for a pretty long time. Or what for is thy
folly—and why should I be offended with thee—verily this is an outcome
of my own folly since I have not been able to control my passions. O fie
on hated thee, the box of fascinations, who, to win favour with Sakra,
has disturbed my devotion'. Soma said,—While the sage spoke thus to the
nymph she perspired and stood trembling. Thereupon, the foremost of
ascetics again said angrily to her, thus trembling and with drops of
perspiration issuing from every pore—'Depart! Depart'. Being thus
remonstrated with by that sage she issued out of the hermitage and began
to wend her way by the welkin, rubbing the perspiration with the leaves
of the trees. She went forth from tree to tree rubbing her limbs and the
perspiration with the durky shoots. And the child, she had conceived by
the sage, came out from the pores of her skin, in drops of perspiration.
The trees received those drops and the wind collected them. I protected
it with my rays till it increased in size gradually. Because she sprang
from the drops on the tops of the trees that fair damsel was called
Mārisha; the trees will give her to thee—let your anger be appeased. She
is Kandu's child—she was sprung from the trees—she is my offspring as
well as that of the wind—and she is also the daughter Pramlocha. And the
great sage, Kandu, on the wane of his devotion, repaired to the region
of Vishnu called Purushottama, O Maitreya. And there he, O princes,
devoted himself, with his whole mind to the adoration of Vishnu and
engaged in the Yoga, with uplifted hands and uttering the prayers
comprehending the supreme truths of the Vedas". The Prachetasas
said,—"We wish to hear of the excellent prayers of the sage, by which
Kandu engaged in devotion and in the adoration of Keshava". On which
Soma repeated them:—"'Vishnu is beyond the limit of all earthly things,
he is the infinite; through him we may get at the other end of the
limitless deep—the earth: he is above all that is above; he is the
finite truth; he is worthy of being approached by those who are
conversant with the Vedas; the limit of elemental being; above the
perception of the senses and the protectors (the divinities who protect
the creation). He is the cause of cause; the cause of the cause in
cause; the cause of finite cause; and in effects he, both as every
object and agent, preserves the creation. He is Brahmā the lord; Brahmā
all beings; Brahmā the creator of the human race; the undecaying,
imperishable and eternal; he is spread all over the earth, unborn,
incapable of increase or diminution. Purushottama, is the eternal,
unborn, immutable Brahmā. May he annihilate the infirmities of my
nature'. Repeating those prayers, comprehending the essence of divine
truth and propitiating Keshava the ascetic attained to the final
emancipation. I shall now describe to you what Mārisha was in her
previous birth—for a recital of her glorious acts will be of immense
benefit to you. O princes, she was in her previous birth a queen, and
was left childless at her husband's death; and she therefore propitiated
Vishnu with zealous devotion. Thus pleased with her devotion Vishnu
appeared to her in person and said,—'Do thou beg of me a boon'. Whereto
she replied communicating her desire,—'O lord of earth—I am a widow from
my childhood—unfortunate as I am, in vain is my birth on this earth. Do
thou so favour me, that I may be blessed with a good husband in every
birth and a son equal to a patriarch amongst men; I may be possessed of
beauty and wealth and may be pleasing unto all—that I may be born out of
the ordinary course'. Hrishikesha, the lord of the celestials, the giver
of all boons thus prayed to, raised her from her prostrate attitude and
said,—'In one birth you shall have ten husbands of great prowess whose
fame shall spread far and wide. And O fair damsel, you shall have a
great son gifted with mighty prowess and all the accomplishments that
are to be seen in the great Patriarch. The supremacy of his family shall
be established all over the universe and the three worlds shall be
filled with his descendants. And you, by my favour, shall be of
marvellous birth, chaste, endowed with grace and loveliness and
delightful to men'. Having thus spoken to that fair damsel, having
spacious eyes, the Deity disappeared and the princess, was accordingly
born as Mārisha, who is given to you for a wife, Princes". Parāçara
said:—Thereupon renouncing their ire against the trees at the words of
Soma, the Prachetas took Mārisha righteously to wife. And the Ten
Prachetas begot on Mārisha the eminent Patriarch, Daksha, who had (in a
former birth) been born as the son of Brahmā. O thou of great mind, for
the multiplication of creation and increase of his own race this eminent
Daksha created progeny. Obeying the mandate of Brahmā for the
furtherance of creation he made moveable and immoveable things, bipeds
and quadrupeds. Having created (that) by his will he created females out
of which ten were conferred on Dharma, thirteen on Kasyapa and
twenty-seven who regulate the course of time on the Moon, And from them
were produced the gods, the demons, the snake-gods, cows, birds,
singers, the spirits of evil and others. Thenceforth creatures were
produced by sexual intercourse. O Maitreya—before that they were
generated, by the by sight, by touch and by the influence of austerities
practised by the ascetics of accomplished piety. Maitreya said:—"O great
ascetic, Daksha, as I am informed, was born from the right thumb of
Brahmā: tell how he was born again as the son of Ten Prachetas. Another
great doubt exists in my mind O Brahmā that how could he, who was the
grandson of Soma, be also his father-in-law". Parisara said:—O thou of
great piety, birth and death are constant in all creatures. Rishis
having divine vision do not wonder at it. Daksha and other eminent
ascetics take birth in every age and they again cease to be: the learned
are not perplexed by it. O foremost of the twice-born ones, in the days
of yore there was neither senior nor junior (by age); asceticism and
spiritual power were the sole causes of being considered as senior.
Maitreya said:—"O Brāhman, do thou relate at length, the origin of the
gods, demons, Gandharvas, serpents and goblins". Parāçara said:—Do thou
hear, O thou of a high-mind, how commanded by Brahmā, Daksha created
living creatures. At first Daksha created his will-born progeny—the
deities, the Rishis, the Gandharvas, the demons and the snake-gods. When
he found, O twice-born one, that his mind-born progeny did not multiply
he began to meditate upon some other means of increasing the living
creatures, Then desirous of multiplying the race by means of sexual
intercourse he married the daughter of the Patriarch Veerana by name
Ashikni who was devotee! to austerities and the eminent supportress of
the world. And the energetic Patriarch for the multiplication of the
progeny begot on Ashikni the daughter of Veerana, five thousand sons.
And beholding them desirous of multiplying the race, the divine ascetic
Nārada approaching them addressed them with sweet words—Nārada said,—"O
ye highly powerful Haryaswas, it is evident that you intend multiplying
the progeny—do ye hear this: you like ignorant people, do know not the
middle, the height and the depth of the world: how would you propagate
progeny then? Your understanding is not hindered by interval, height or
depth, why do ye not O fools, behold the end of the universe?" Parāçara
said—Having heard these words they repaired to various quarters and have
not returned as yet as the rivers lose themselves in the ocean (and do
not come back).

The Haryaswas having gone away the Patriarch Daksha again begot a
thousand sons upon the daughter of Beerana. And, they, who were named
Savalaswas, were desirous of multiplying mankind and they were again
addressed by Nārada, Brāhmana, with the words mentioned before. They
said to one another,—"What the Muni had said is perfectly true. We must
follow the path wended by our brothers: there is not the least doubt
about it. And ascertaining the extent of the universe we will multiply
our race". They also went to various quarters by the path (followed by
their brothers) and have not returned like rivers flowing into the deep.
Thenceforth, O twice-born one, a brother searching after a brother, is
generally lost: the wise do not resort to such actions. Finding that all
his sons had disappeared the eminent Patriarch Daksha was worked with
ire and imprecated Nārada. We have heard, O Maitreya, that thereupon the
learned Pratriarch Daksha, desirous to multiply the race begot upon the
daughter of Veerana sixty daughters. Of whom he gave ten to Dharma,
thirteen to Kasyapa, twenty-seven to Soma, four to Arishtanemi, two to
Bahuputra, two to Angiras and two to the learned Krisaswa. Do thou hear
their names from me. Arundnati, Vasu, Yami, Lamba, Bhami, Marutwati,
Sankalpa, Muhurtta, Sadhya and Viswa were the ten wives of Dharma. I
will mention their offspring. Viswadevas[226] were the sons of Viswa and
the Sadhyas[227] were the sons of Sadhya. The Maruts or Winds were the
offspring of Marutwati and the Vasus of Vasu. The Bhānus (or suns) were
the sons of Bhānu and the deities governing the moments of Muhurtta,
Ghosa was born of Lamba and Nāgabithi[228] was born of Yāmi (night). And
all the objects of the world were born of Arundhuti and Sankalpa (pious
determination) was the son of Sankalpa. I shall mention at length the
particulars of the eight Vasus who abound in effulgence and night. They
are Apa, Dhruva, Soma, Dhara, Anila, Anala, Pratyusha and Prabhāsha. The
sons of Apa were Vaitandya, Srama (weariness) Srānta (fatigue) and Dhur,
and the son of Dhruva was the great Kāla (Time) the cherisher of the
world. The son of Soma was Varchas (light) by whom was generated
Varchaswi (radiance). And Dhara had, by his wife Monohora, Dravina,
Hutaravyavaha, Sisira, Prāna and Ramana. Anila's wife was Siva; and he
had by her two sons—Monojova (swift as thought) and Avijnātagati
(unknowable motion), The son of Agni—Kumara, was born in a clump of Sara
reeds, whose sons were Sākha, Visākha, Naigameya and Prishthaja. The son
of Kritikas was named Kartikeya. The son of Pratyushwa was the great
ascetic Duvala who had two intelligent and philosophic sons. The great
ascetic Vrihaspati had a sister who was the foremost of the females,
virtuous and of accomplished asceticism. Without beings attached to the
world she travelled all over the world. She became the spouse of
Pravasha the eighth Vasu. Of her was born the noble Patriarch Viswakarma
the author of a thousand arts, the architect of the celestials, the
inventor of all ornaments and the foremost of the artists. He
constructed the chariots of all the deities; and by the skill of that
high-souled one, people obtain subsistence. He had four sons whose names
hear from me. They were Ayaikapad, Ahirvradhna, Twashtri and Rudra and
they were all wise. And the self-born son of Twashtri was also the
famous Viswarupa. There are eleven well-known Rudras, lords of the three
worlds—Hara, Bahurupa, Tryambaka, Aparajitā, Vrishahapi, Sambhu,
Kaparddi, Raivata, Mrigavyadha, Sarava and Kapāli; but there are a
hundred names of the Rudras of unmitigated prowess.

Kashyapa married the thirteen daughters of Daksha namely Aditi, Diti,
Danu, Arishta, Surasa, Surabhi, Vinatā, Tāmrā, Krodha, Vasa, Idā, Khasā,
Kadru and Muni. I will describe their progeny to you. There were twelve
well-known celestials in a former Manwantara, named Tushitas, who, on
the approach of the present Manwantara and at the end of the reign of
Manu Chakhusha assembled and said to one another,—"O deities, let us all
speedily enter into the womb of Aditi that we may be born in the next
Manwantara for we shall thereby be again crowned with blessings". Having
said this they at the end of the reign of Manu Chakshusha were born the
sons of Kashyapa, the son of Mārichi by Aditi the daughter of Daksha. Of
them were born first Vishnu and Sakra and the Aryaman, Dhuti, Twashtri,
Pushan, Vivaswat, Sāvitri, Mitra, Varunā, Ansa and Bhaga. These who, in
the reign of Chākshusha Manu were Tushitas, were called the twelve
Adityas in the Manwāntara of Vaivaswata. The twenty-seven virtuous
daughters of the Patriarch who were married to the Moon were all
well-known as the nymphs of the lunar constellations after their names;
they had children of unmitigated effulgence. The wives of Arishthanemi
bore sixteen children. The daughters of the learned Bahaputra were the
four lightnings. The excellent Paratyangirasa Richas were born from the
wives of Angiras and the celestial weapons were the children of the
Rishi Krishaswa. These deities take their birth once after the expiry of
a thousand yugas; they are thirty-three in number and their appearance
and disappearance is here spoken of as birth and death and O Maitreya
these divinities appear and disappear, age after age as the sun sets and
rises again.

It is said that Kashyapa begat on Diti two sons—One was named
Hiranyakashipu and the other was named Hiranyaksha and both of them were
invincible. She had also a daughter named Sinhika who was married to
Biprachitwa. Hiranyakashipu had four highly effulgent sons—named
Anuhlāda Hlāda, Prahlāda and Sanhlāda;—they were all highly intelligent,
powerful and the multiplier of the Daitya race. O noble sage, amongst
these, Prahlāda, looking impartially on all things, devoted his whole
faith to Janārddana. O twice-born one, the flames lighted by the king of
Daityas did not consume him in whose heart Vasudeva was present. The
whole earth shook, when bound with ropes, he moved in the midst of the
water of the deep. Having his mind entirely engrossed by Achuta his body
firm as the rock was not assailed by the diverse weapons hurled on him
by the order of the king of Daityas. And the venomous snakes could not
destroy him (even). And he remembering the excellent Purusha and
protected by the recollection of Vishnu as his armour he did not
renounce his life albeit overwhelmed with rocks. The earth received the
high-minded (Prahlāda) when he was hurled from on high by the king of
Daityas residing in Swerga. The slayer of Madhu being present in his
mind, the wind sent into his body to wither him up was itself destroyed.
Being ordered by the lord of Daityas the maddened elephants of the
spheres broke their trunks and baffled their pride against his firm
breast. The rites of the priests of the Daitya monarch were useless to
bring about the destruction of one who was attached to Govinda. The
thousand illusions of the illusive Samvara were baffled by the discus of
Krishna. The poison offered by the cooks, at the command of the king of
Daityas, could not produce any change upon the intelligent (Prahlāda)
void of pride, who unhesitatingly partook that. He looked impartially
upon the world and all creatures, was full of kindness and regarded all
things equally and as identical with himself. He was pious and an
inexhaustible mine of purity and truth and a model for all pious men.


Maitreya said—"O great ascetic, you have described to me the human races
and the ever-existing Vishnu, the cause of the world; but who was this
Prahlāda the foremost of the Daityas of whom you spoke and whom fire
could not burn, and who did not die even when assailed by weapons. And
Prahlāda being present in the waters, in bonds, earth trembled, agitated
by his movements. And he did not die before albeit overwhelmed with
rocks. Thou hast related the unlimited glory of that intelligent
Prahlāda. O muni, I am desirous to hear an account of the character and
unequalled might of that effulgent worshipper of Vishnu. O Muni, Why was
he assailed by the descendants of Diti with weapons? And why was he,
ever engaged in pious observances, thrown into water? For what was he
overwhelmed with rocks? And why bitten by venomous snakes? Why thrown
down from the mountain-top? Why cast into fire? And why was he made a
butt for the tusks of the elephants of spheres? And why was the wind
sent by the mighty Asuras into his body to wither him up? O Muni, Why
the spiritual guides of the Daityas were engaged in ceremonies for his
destruction? And why did the Daitya Samvara spread thousands of
illusions for his destruction? Why did the cooks of the Daitya-chief
offer him poison for his destruction which was digested by that
high-souled sage? O noble Manu—I wish to hear all this—an account of the
high-souled Prahlāda, full of marvelous glories. I am not the least
surprised for the Daityas not being able to destroy him: for who can
slay him whose mind is solely devoted to Vishnu? Why did the Daityas,
born in his race, cherish dreadful malice against him ever engaged in
pious observances and in the worship of Kesava? Relate to me, Why the
sons of Diti offer violence to one so pious,—high-souled and ever
devoted to Vishnu and free from sin? The great cannot offer violence to
a person gifted with such qualities even if he be an enemy; how could
his own kin (behave thus towards him)? O foremost of the Muni, do thou
relate all this—the character of the sovereign of Daityas. I wish to
hear it at length".


Parāçara said:—Maitreya, hear the interesting story of the wise,
high-souled and magnanimous Prahlāda. In the days of yore the three
worlds were brought into subjection by the valiant son of
Diti—Hiranyakashipu, proud of the boon conferred on him by Brahmā. That
Daitya had usurped the sovereignty of Indra and exercised the functions
of the sun of air, of the lord of waters, of fire and of the moon. He
himself became the lord of riches and Yama; and that Asura appropriated
to himself, without reserve, all that was offered in sacrifice to the
celestials. O foremost of ascetics, renouncing their own region the
celestials, through his fear, wandered upon the earth, disguised in
mortal shapes. Having conquered the three worlds, he was inflated with
the pride of the riches, and being eulogised by the Gandharvas, enjoyed
all wished-for objects. Thereupon all the Siddhas, Gandharvas and
Pannagas worshipped the valiant Hiranyakashipu addicted to drinking. The
Siddhas stood delighted before the Daitya chief, some singing, some
playing on musical instruments and others shouting out cries of victory.
When the Asura delightedly quaffed the inebriating cup in his
picturesque crystal palace, the nymphs danced there gracefully.

His illustrious son, by name Prahlāda, while yet a boy, residing in the
dwelling of his preceptor, read such readings as are studied in early
years. Once on a time the high-souled (Prahlāda) in the company of his
preceptor appeared before his father the Daitya-chief while drinking.
The father Hiranykasipu, raising up his son prostrate at his feet, spoke
to Prahlāda of unmitigated prowess, saying,—"Repeat, boy, agreeably, the
substance of what you have read during the period". Prahlāda
said,—"Hear, father I will repeat the substance of what I have read.
Hear attentively what occupies my thoughts. I bow to that Great Being
who is without beginning, middle or end, increase or diminution: the
imperishable lord of the world, the universal cause of causes". Parāçara
said:—Hearing those words the lord of the Daityas, his eyes red with ire
and lip swollen with indignation, looked towards the preceptor and
said,—"O vile Brahmana, what is this? O vicious-minded, thou hast, in
disrespect to me, taught my boy the worthless commendation of my foe".
The preceptor replied,—"O sovereign of Daityas, it doth not behove thee
to give way to anger; I have not taught thy son what he has uttered".
Hiranyakashipu said,—"Prahlāda, my boy, by whom then you have been thus
taught. Your preceptor says that he has not instructed you thus".
Prahlāda replied,—"Vishnu, O father, is the instructor of the whole
world and is present in our minds. Who else, but that Great Soul can
teach us (any thing)?" Hiranyakashipu said,—"O thou of vile
understanding, who is this Vishnu, of whom thou art speaking again and
again before me the valiant lord of the world?" Prahlāda said,—"He is
Vishnu, the great God, who is being meditated upon by the devout, whose
glory cannot be described in words, who is all things and from whom all
things proceed". Hiranyakashipu said,—"O fool, myself living, to whom
else you give the title of supreme lord? Are you desirous of death that
you are mentioning this again and again?" Prahlāda replied, "O father,
Vishnu, who is Brahmā, is not only the creator, preserver and supreme
lord of me only, but of all creatures as well as of thyself. Be
propitiated; why art thou angry?" Hiranyakashipu said,—"What evil spirit
has entered into the breast of this silly lad, that, he, like one
possessed, gives expression to such profane words". Prahlāda said,—"That
Vishnu is not only present in my mind, but he pervades the whole
universe; He is omnipresent and commands me, thyself and all creatures".
Hiranyakashipu said,—"Away with this wicked boy; take him again to the
preceptor's house and govern him; perhaps he has been taught by some
vicious-minded (men) to sing the glories of my foes". Parāçara said:—He
having said this Prahlāda was again conducted to the preceptor's house
by the Daityas, where always prompt to attend upon the preceptor he
received instructions constantly. After a considerable time that lord of
Asuras sent for Prahlāda again and said "O my boy, recite me some
poetical composition". Prahlāda said—"May that Vishnu be propitiated
with us, from, whom matter and soul originate and all that is mobile and
immobile proceeds and who is the cause of all this creation".
Hiranyakashipu said,—"Destroy this vicious-minded boy; there is no use
of his life; he is a fraud to his own family since he has proved a
traitor to his kin". Parāçara said—Being thus commanded by him, hundreds
and thousands of Daityas, with huge weapons, addressed themselves for
his destruction. Prahlāda said to the Daityas—"Since Vishnu is present
in your weapons as well as in mind, your weapons shall fail to hurt me".
Parāçara said—Thereupon hundreds of Daityas assailed Prahlāda with their
weapons but he did not feel the least pain and his strength was ever
renewed. Hiranyakashipu said—"O you of vile understanding, refrain from
glorifying my enemy; I promise you immunity, be not so foolish".
Prahlāda replied: "No fear can overwhelm me since that immortal remover
of all dangers is present in my mind, the very recollection of whom is
enough to remove all perils consequent upon birth and human
infirmities". Hiranyakashipu said—"O serpents, speedily bring this
vicious lad to destruction with your envenomed fangs". Parāçara
said:—Being thus commanded by him, Kuhaka, Takshaka, Artdhaka and many
other venomous serpents, bit him in every part of his body. But with his
mind solely devoted to Krishna he remained in that pleasurable
recollection; he could not feel anything although he was bitten by
deadliest serpents. The serpents said to the sovereign of the
Daityas—"Our fangs are broken; our jewelled crests are shattered; our
hoods are burning; Our hearts are trembling; but the skin of this body
is unhurt; O king of Daityas, resort to some other expedient".
Hiranyakashipu said—"O Elephants of the spheres, unite your tusks and
slay this deserter of his own family and the supporter of our enemy;
sometimes our own descendants bring about our own destruction as the
fire consumes the wood from which it proceeds". Parāçara said:—The boy
was then cast down on the earth being assailed by the tusks of those
elephants of the spheres as huge as mountain peaks; but he recollecting
Govinda, thousands of tusks were blunted against his breast: he then
spoke to his father: "The tusks of the elephants hard as adamant have
been blunted. This is not on account of any strength of mine but is
consequent upon my calling upon Janārddana who destroys all dangers and
sins the sources of all these evils". Hiranyakashipu said:—"Away, O ye
elephants of the spheres. O Asuras, light out fire; O deity of the
winds, blow up the fire, and let this perpetrator of endless iniquities
be destroyed therein". Parāçara said:—Thereupon commanded by their
master the Dānavas piled a huge heap of wood around the son of the king
of Asuras and then put fire thereto to burn him. Prahlāda said—"This
fire, although blown up by the wind, doth not burn me: I behold all
around me the face of the quarters, cool, and the beds of lotuses".
Parāçara said:—Thereupon the twice-born ones, the sons of Bhargava, the
high-minded priests skilled in speech and the reciters of Shama Veda,
eulogising him, said to the sovereign of the Daityas,—"O king, subdue
thy anger against this lad, thy own begotten son. Even thy ire against
the celestials bore fruits. O king, we shall so bring up this boy, that
he growing humble shall engage in the destruction of thy enemies. O king
of daityas, since childishness is the root of all these evils, it
behoveth thee to renounce thy ire against this boy. If he according to
our instructions, does not abandon the cause of Hari we shall then
concert infallible measures to bring about his destruction". Parāçara
said Thereupon being thus solicited by the priests the king of Daityas
had his son brought out from the flames by the Daityas.

Thence-forth residing in the house of the preceptor the boy Prahlāda,
whenever he got an opportunity, gave lessons himself to the sons of the
Dānavas. Prahlāda said,—"O sons of the descendants of Diti, hear from me
the supreme truth; do not take my instruction otherwise for there is no
touch of covetousness. All creatures are born first, then they attain to
infancy and youth and then succeed gradually the inevitable decay; and
then they meet with death, O sons of the Daitya chiefs. This myself and
you all have witnessed. He who is dead is born again—this cannot be
gainsaid; the sacred texts warrant it. Birth is consequent upon the
virtue and vice of pristine actions. All conditions from conception to
re-birth are tinged with pain. The simpleton, in his childishness,
thinks that the alleviation of hunger, thirst, cold and the like is
identified with pleasure; but in sooth that is pain; for exercise gives
delight to those whose limbs are incapable of motion and suffering
affords pleasure to those whose understanding is blinded with delusion.
Where is this vile body which is a compound of phlegm and other humours
and where are its beauty, grace, loveliness and other qualities? The
foolish wight will take delight even in hell, who is fond of this body
composed of flesh, blood, matter, ordure, urine, membrane, marrow, and
bones. The agreeableness of fire is produced by cold; of water by
thirst; of food by hunger; and thus all other things are rendered
agreeable by their contraries. O children of Daityas, he, who will take
to a wife will introduce so much of pain into his bosom. The more a man
will create dear relations, the more deeply will be implanted the thorns
of anxiety in his heart. He, who has got large possessions in his house,
is troubled, wherever he goes, with the anxiety that they may be lost or
burnt or stolen. Then there is a great pain in being born: the dying are
afflicted by the tortures of Death and again by the pain of passing into
the womb. Fancy, there is not the least pleasure la the embryo state;
you must then admit that the world is full of miseries. Verily I speak
unto you, that in this ocean of the world infested with many miseries
Vishnu is your only stay. Do not consider yourselves as mere boys and
therefore ignorant of it for the spirit embodied in your bodies is
eternal. Birth, youth and decay are the properties of the body not of
the soul. I am now a child—when I shall be young I shall exert myself
for my behoof; I am yet a youth and when I shall grow old I shall work
for the benefit of my soul. I am old now—all my senses have failed me
and I cannot exert myself. What shall I do now, vicious-minded as I am?
I did not do anything when I was capable of doing it. Thus, men,
although thirsting after knowledge, having their minds distracted by
vain hopes, do not attain to beatitude. The ignorant, addicted to sport
in boyhood, to worldly things in youth, find, when they become
incapable, that old age is come upon them. Therefore let the soul even
in childhood exert itself for its welfare independent of the conditions
of infancy, youth or age. This is then what I speak unto you. If you
think that it is not true, do you, for my satisfaction, think of Vishnu
the liberator from all bondage. What trouble is there in calling him to
mind? When remembered he bestows prosperity upon people. And if you
recollect Him day and night there will be an end of all sins. Let your
mind be fixed on Him day and night who is present in all beings and you
shall laugh at every trouble. The whole world is subject to a
triple[229] affliction. What wise man would cherish hatred against
beings who are all objects of compassion? If others are crowned with
prosperity and I am incapable of enjoying the same why should I be
malignant against those who are more prosperous than myself? I should
rather be glad for their happiness for the suppression of malice is
itself a reward. Even those who cherish malice against foes are
considered as objects of pity by the wise, as being overwhelmed with
delusion. O Daityas, admitting the distinction between myself and all
other creatures, I have described to you the various reasons for
repressing hate. Hear briefly the duties of those who approach the
Deity. This whole world is the manifestation of Vishnu who is identified
with all beings. The wise therefore do not regard any difference between
themselves and all other creatures. Let us therefore renounce the angry
passions of our race and so exert ourselves that we may obtain that
perfect beatitude which is beyond the power of the deities of fire, of
the sun, of the moon, of wind, of Indra, of the regent of the sea, of
the Siddhas of the Rākshasas, of the Daitya-chief, of the serpents, of
Kinnaras, of men, or beasts or human weaknesses and which is
uninterrupted by various diseases such as fever, eye-disease &c., by
hatred, malice, passion or desire. The beatitude, which can not be
destroyed by others which is pure and eternal, can be enjoyed by him,
who fixes his mind on Kesava. Verily I speak unto you, that you shall
attain no satisfaction through various revolutions of this world. O
Daityas, regard all creatures with impartiality—this is the adoration of
the undecaying (Vishnu). He being propitiated what cannot be
attained—wealth, pleasure, virtues are things of the little
significance. Do ye resort to the exhaustless tree of true wisdom and
undoubtedly you shall reap precious fruits therefrom".


Parāçara said:—Having observed the conduct of Prahlāda, the Dānavas, out
of fear, reported it to the king. Hiranyakashipu sent for his cooks and
said "O cooks—my vile and wicked son is teaching others his impious
doctrines. Do ye slay him without his knowledge by mixing up deadly
poison with all his viands. Do not hesitate to destroy that wretch".
Parāçara said:—Thereupon they offered poison to the high-souled Prahlāda
as they were commanded by his sire. O Maitreya, repeating the name of
the imperishable and mixing that poison with his food he ate it up.
Prahlāda did not suffer any harm either in body or in mind for the very
name of the endless baffled the power of the poison. Beholding that
deadly poison digested by him, they stricken with fear approached the
king of Daityas and said: "O king of Daityas, deadliest poison was
offered by us but it was digested with food by thy son Prahlāda".
Hiranyakashipu said,—"Hasten, hasten, O ye priests of the Daityas: do ye
speedily perform the rites that will bring about his destruction".
Parāçara said:—Thereupon the priests approaching Prahlāda and beholding
him lowly consoled him and said,—"Thou hast been born in the family of
Brahmā celebrated in the three worlds and thou art the son of
Hiranyakashipu the king of Daityas. Why dost thou depend upon the gods?
Thy father is the refuge of all people:—thou dost also become the same.
Do thou renounce eulogising the enemy of thy family: know that a father
is the most venerable of all preceptors". Prahlāda said—"O illustrious
Brahmins, that ye have said is true—the family of Marichi is celebrated
in the three worlds—this cannot be gainsaid. My father has attained to
the foremost place in the world by his actions—I have known this to be
true—there is not the least shadow of untruth. That a father is the most
venerable of all preceptors—I do not find the least mistake in this
assertion. Forsooth, father is a venerable preceptor and is to be
respected with all care. Methinks I have not committed any offence in
this respect. You have said, 'Why do you seek shelter of the eternal?' I
do not know how far this statement is sound and reasonable". Having said
this Prahlāda remained speechless for some time to uphold their dignity.
And again smiling he said: "'Why do you seek shelter of the eternal,'
was it fair for you to accost me thus? What need of the eternal? Most
admirable, most worthy of you, O my preceptors. If it does not pain you,
hear what need there is of the eternal. Virtue, desire, wealth and
emancipation are the fourfold objects of men. Is it vain to adore him
who is the source of these four objects? Why do ye speak in vain?
Marichi and other ascetics, the Patriarch Daksha and other eminent men
attained to virtue and others and obtained the enjoyment of their
desires. Others, through true wisdom and holy contemplation, have come
to know his essence, and being freed from the bondage of the world have
obtained emancipation. The adoration of Hari, attainable by unity, is
the root of all wealth, dignity, glory, wisdom, progeny, piety and
emancipation. O twice-born one, virtue, wealth, desire and final
emancipation (all) proceed from him (and still you say) what need is of
the eternal? What is the use of speaking more, you are all my
preceptors—speak ye good or evil, limited is my understanding". The
priests said—"O boy thou wert about to be consumed by fire, but we saved
you thinking that you would not give vent to such words again. We know
how foolish you are. If you, at our words, do not remove this
hallucination we shall, O vicious-minded one, perform rites for your
destruction". Prahlāda said—"Who slayeth what living creature—who
preserveth what living creature? Every one is his own destroyer or
preserver accordingly as he follows evil or good". Parāçara said:—Being
thus addressed, the priests of the Daitya-chief were excited with rage,
and instantly, by virtue of their magical powers, created a female form
enveloped with fiery flame. That highly dreadful figure, under whose
tread earth trembled, greatly wroth, struck him instantly on his breast
with a dart. That fiery dart reaching speedily the breast of the boy
fell on the ground broken into hundred pieces. Even a thunder-bolt is
shattered against the breast of him in whose heart the imperishable Hari
resides—what to, speak of a dart? The magic, which was directed by the
vicious priests against the guileless (Prahlāda), then fell upon them
and slew them all; And beholding them thus consumed by fire the noble
Prahlāda exclaiming, "Save, O Krishna, O Eternal" approached them and
said—"O thou, spread all over the universe, O thou who art manifest in
the universe, O thou the creator of the universe, O Janārddana! do thou
save these Brāhmanas from the unbearable flame set up by their magical
incantations. As the omnipresent Vishnu, the preceptor of the world, is
present in all creatures, let these priests regain their life. Vishnu
being present everywhere, as I did not consider fire as my enemy let the
priests be restored to life. I regarded with a friendly attitude all
those who came to slay me, those who offered me poison, those who
kindled fire, the elephants of the skies and serpents by whom I was
bitten. And I never entertained malice against them; if this be true let
the priests of Asuras be restored to life". Parāçara said:—He having
said this they all, touched, rose up unhurt, and spoke to Prahlāda who
was humble,—"O boy, O foremost of all, be thou crowned with a long life,
undaunted strength and prowess". O great Muni, having said this, the
priests repaired to the king of Daityas and related to him every thing.


Parāçara said:—When Hiranyakashipu had heard that the magical charms (of
the priests) had been baffled he sent for his son and asked him of the
secret of his prowess,—"Prahlāda, thou art gifted with extraordinary
prowess—is it the result of your self-exercise or the outcome of magical
powers or thou art, from birth, gifted with it?"

Being thus interrogated by his father the Asura boy Prahlāda bowed down
to his father's feet and said,—"This not the outcome of magical powers,
O father—nor is it natural with me; This is trifling to him in whose
mind resides the undecaying. He who does not cherish malice against
others, O father, and regards all like his own self, is not visited by
any affliction inasmuch as the cause does not exist. He who tortures
others in act, thought or speech, sows the seed of numberless miseries.
I wish no evil to any; neither do nor speak it; I always meditate, in
me, upon Keshava who is existent in all beings. Why should miseries,
physical or mental, or those inflicted by elements, or the gods, affect
whose soul is purified? Considering that Hari exists in all beings the
learned should assiduously love all creatures". Parāçara said:—Having
heard this the Daitya-king, seated on the summit of his palace, having
his face darkened with ire, said to his attendants.—"Throw this
vicious-souled one from this palace which is a hundred yojanas in
height, down upon the tops of the mountains, so that his body may be
crushed into pieces against the rocks". Thereupon all these Daityas and
Dānavas hurled that boy down: and he fell down cherishing Hari in his
mind. And Earth, the upholder of the world, approaching, received him
falling who was devoted to Keshava the protector of the world. Thereupon
beholding him unhurt and having no bone fractured, Hiranyakashipu said
to Samvara the foremost of those conversant with charms:—"We have not
been able to slay this vicious-minded lad; thou art cognisant of various
charms: do thou slay him". Samvara said:—"Instantly shall I slay him, O
king of Daityas: do thou behold my power of illusion which can invent
thousands and myriads of artifices". Parāçara said:—Thereupon that silly
Asura Samvara, desirous of destroying the boy, practised his magical
charms against Prahlāda, looking upon all creatures with an impartial
eye. With a heart tranquil and void of malice even against Samvara, O
Maitreya, Prahlāda engaged in the meditation of the destroyer of Madhu.
Thereupon to protect him the excellent and flaming discus Sudarshana was
despatched by the Great God. Thereupon thousands of Samvara's illusions
were baffled by the quick-coursing discus for the protection of that

Thereupon the Daitya-king spoke to the withering wind saying,—"Do thou,
speedily, at my command, bring this vicious-minded boy to destruction".
Saying "So be it" the wind immediately penetrated into his body—cold,
cutting and insufferable, for his destruction. Perceiving that wind had
entered into his body the Daitya boy again meditated, in his mind, upon
the great upholder of the earth. And Janārddana, present in his mind,
wroth, drank up that dreadful wind. And the wind thus met with its own
destruction. All the magical charms being thus baffled, the wind being
thus annihilated, the high-minded Prahlāda again repaired to the abode
of his preceptor. And the preceptor instructed that boy daily in the
science of polity essentially necessary for the administration of the
government and invented by Usanas for the behoof of kings. When the
preceptor found him well-versed in all political sciences and humble, he
then communicated it to his father, saying,—"O lord of Daityas, thy son
Prahlāda has become conversant with the principles of government as laid
down by the descendant of Bhrigu". Thereat Hiranyakashipu said to his
son,—"Prahlāda, how should a king conduct himself towards friends or
foes and what steps he should take at the three periods (i.e. advance,
retrogression and peace)? How should he behave towards his ministers,
courtiers, the state and household officers, his emissaries, his
subjects, those of doubtful allegiance and his open enemies? With whom
should he make alliance; with whom enter into war; what sort of fortress
he should build; how forest and mountain tribes should be brought down
to subjection; how internal disturbances should be removed: all this and
all other things you have read, do thou relate to me: I wish to hear thy

Thereupon bowing to the feet of his father, Prahlāda, who had humility
as his ornament, said, with folded palms to that Daitya-king. "Forsooth
I have been instructed in all these by my preceptor and I have learnt
them; but I do not approve of all of them. For the subjection of friends
and foes four expedients have been prescribed by
all—namely—conciliation, gift, punishment, and sowing dissension. But O
father, be not angry, I know neither friends nor enemies. O thou of
mighty arms where there is nothing to be effected what is the use of
resorting to the means for effecting it? O father, it is useless to talk
of friend or foe in Govinda, who is identical with all beings, manifest
all over the universe, the lord of it and the Great Soul. The Great
Vishnu exists in thee, in me as well as in all other creatures; and then
what is the use of making such distinction as he is friend and he is
foe! It is useless therefore to cultivate such tedious and unprofitable
sciences which contain but false knowledge. It is but proper, O father,
to engage in the cultivation of the knowledge of self. O father, the
idea that ignorance is knowledge arises from ignorance only. A boy, O
lord of Asuras, regards the fire-fly as fire. That is (proper) action
that liberates us from the bondage of the world and that is (true)
knowledge that leads us to the path of emancipation; all other actions
lead but to weariness and all other knowledge is turned only into
cleverness of an artist. Considering all this knowledge as useless I
shall relate to thee respectfully what is really profitable; do thou, O
great king, hear it. Who does not think of a kingdom? Who does not
desire for riches? But all these are acquirable by the piety accumulated
in a pristine birth—so the pious obtain them both. O great king, all men
desire to be great—but this greatness is not acquired by exertion, it is
the destiny that confers it upon men. O lord, kingdoms are acquired by
fate, even by the stupid, the ignorant, the cowardly and those who are
ignorant of the science of government. Therefore, he, who longs for
greatness, should try to acquire piety. He, who desires for final
beatitude, should try to regard all people with an impartial eye. Gods,
men, animals, birds, reptiles, all are but diverse manifestations of the
eternal Vishnu and exist in a separate state. By him, who knows this,
the whole world, moveable and immoveable, is considered as at one with
him—all proceeding alike from Vishnu assuming the universal form. When a
man obtains this knowledge, the undecaying and eternal Vishnu—the
remover of all afflictions, is propitiated with him". Parāçara
said:—Having heard this and got up from the excellent seat, in great
rage, Hiranyakashipu spurned his son on the breast with his foot. And
burning in ire and wringing his hands as if bent upon destroying the
whole universe, he exclaimed: "Ho Viprachita! Ho Rāhu! Ho Vāli binding
this boy with serpents, do ye throw him unto the deep: delay not or else
the Daityas, the Dānavas and all other people shall be initiated into
doctrines of this stupid and vicious boy. We have prevented him many a
time and oft and still he persists in chanting the glories of our foe:
it is proper to destroy the wicked boy at once". Parāçara
said:—Thereupon obeying the mandate of their master the Daityas speedily
bound him with ropes and threw him into the water. Thereupon with
Prahlāda trembled the mighty deep; and being agitated throughout, it
rose in mighty waves. Beholding the earth about to be submerged by the
great ocean, Hiranyakashipu again said to the Daityas,—"O ye descendants
of Diti! Do ye bury this wicked boy in the deep with rocks. Fire did not
burn him; the weapons did not hurt him; the serpents could not bite him;
nor the withering blast, poison, and the magical incantations bring
about his destruction. He baffled the illusions (of Samvara), fell
unhurt from the loftiest mountains, foiled the elephants of the skies.
He is a wicked boy and his life is a perpetual source of miseries. Let
him be buried down with rocks into the deep. If he remains in that wise
for a thousand years he may lose his life". Thereupon the Daityas and
Dānavas, attacking Prahlāda in the mighty deep with rocks, covered
thousands of yojanas therewith. And lying at the bed of the deep covered
with racks, the high-minded Prahlāda, offered thus; with undisturbed
mind, his praise to the undecaying:—"Salutation unto thee, O
Pundarikāsha, salutation unto thee, O thou excellent Puhusha! Salutation
unto thee, O thou the soul of all worlds! Salutation unto thee, O thou
the wielder of sharp discus! Salutation unto the best of Brāhmanas! to
the friend of Brāhmanas and of kine! to Krishna, the benefactor of the
world and salutation to Govinda! Salutation to him, who as Brahmā
creates the universe and who, being existent all over, preserves it.
Salutation to thee, who dost at the end of Kalpa assume the form of
Rudra, and who art tri-form. Thou art, Achyuta, the cause of gods,
Yakhas, Asuras, Siddhas, serpents, choristers, dancers, goblins, demons,
men, beasts, birds, insects, reptiles, plants, and stones, earth, fire,
water, sky, wind, sound, touch, taste, colour, flavour, mind, intellect,
soul, time, and the properties of nature; and these are all
manifestations of thine. Thou art knowledge and ignorance, thou art
truth and untruth; thou art poison and nectar; thou art the performance
and continuance of acts and thou art the actions laid down in the Vedas.
Thou art the enjoyer of the fruits of all actions and the means for
effecting them. Thou, Vishnu, who art all, art the fruit of all acts of
piety. Thou art in me, in others and spread all over the vast universe.
Thy universal manifestation indicates might and goodness. O lord. The
ascetics meditate upon thee, the priests offer sacrifice to thee. Thou,
identical with progenitors and celestials, receivest burnt-offerings and
oblations. The universe is a huge manifestation of thine; the world is
lesser than that, O lord; and lesser than that are all the subtile
elements and elementary being and thy subtlest form is the subtile
principle within them that is called soul. Thou hast in thee a supreme
soul, better than this soul and beyond the perception of all subtile
elements and which cannot be conceived. Glory be to that Purusottam form
of thine. And salutation be to that imperishable form of thine, O lord
of gods, which is the soul of all creatures, another manifestation of
thy might and which is the refuge of all qualities. I bow unto that
supreme goddess who is beyond the perception of senses, the description
of the tongue and mind and who is to be distinguished only by the wisdom
of the truly wise. Salutation unto the Great God Vāsudeva, who is not
separate from any thing and at the same time separate from all.
Salutation again and again to that Great Spirit who has neither name nor
form and whose existence can only be perceived. Salutation unto that
Great Spirit, whose incarnate forms on earth the deities adore, being
unable to behold his true form. Salutation unto that Great God Vishnu,
the witness of all, who being present in all minds, beholds the good and
evil of all. Salutation unto that Vishnu, from whom this world is not
distinct. May He, who is the object of the world's meditation, its
beginning, and who is undecaying, be propitiated with me. May that Hari
have compassion upon me, who is the stay of all, in whom the universe is
warped and woven and who is imperishable and undecaying. Salutation
again and again unto Vishnu, in whom all things exist, from whom all
things proceed and who is the supporter of all. Salutation to him who
also am I, and who is everywhere and through whom all things are from
me. I am all things and all things are from me who am eternal. I am
undecaying eternal, the asylum of the supreme spirit. Brahmā is my
appellation that is at the beginning and end of all things".


Parāçara said:—O twice-born! Thus meditating upon Vishnu as identical
with himself he attained to that unification, which is desired by all
and regarded him as the undecaying divinity. He forgot his individuality
and was not conscious of anything. And he thought that he himself was
the endless, undecaying supreme soul. And on account of this efficient
notion of identity, the undecaying Vishnu, whose essence is wisdom,
appeared in his mind which was wholly purified from sin. When the Asura
Prahlāda had become identified with Vishnu by virtue of contemplation
all the bonds were at once severed, as soon as he shook. The mighty deep
rose up in waves and the monsters therein were terrified. And the earth
trembled with all her mountains and forests. And throwing aside the pile
of rocks that were placed by the Daityas on his breast, the high-minded
Prahlāda came out of waters. And beholding the outer world, earth and
heaven, he remembered who he was and knew himself to be Prahlāda. And
again the wise boy, with his mind solely devoted to him and controlling
his mind and speech, sang the glory of that excellent Purusha who is
without beginning: Prahlāda said,—"Salutation unto thee who art the true
wisdom, who art subtile and substantial, mutable and immutable,
perceptible and unperceptible, who art with form and without it,
indescribable and describable. Thou art the asylum of all attributes;
thou art without qualities and with them; thou art with shape and
without it; thou art minute and vast; visible and invisible; thou art
hideousness and beauty; O undecaying Hari! thou art wisdom and
ignorance. Thou art cause and effect; existence and non-existence; thou
dost comprise all that is good and evil; thou art the substance of all
perishable and imperishable elements and the refuge of all undeveloped
rudiments. Salutation unto thee who art both one and many, Vāsudeva and
the first cause of all. Salutation unto that excellent Purusha, who is
both large and small, manifest and hidden, who is present in all beings
and not, and from whom proceeds the universe although distinct from
universal cause". Parāçara said:—While with his mind thus devoted to
Vishnu Prahlāda chanted his praises; the Great Hari, clad in yellow
suddenly appeared before him. Beholding him, he respectfully rose and
with hesitating speech exclaimed repeatedly "Glory unto Vishnu" and
said,—"O thou who removest the affliction of thy followers, O Keshava,
do thou be propitious unto me. Do thou again purify me, O eternal god,
with thy sight". The Deity replied,—"I am propitiated with thee for thy
unshaken devotion unto me. Ask of me, Prahlāda, whatever thou wishest".
Prahlāda said,—"My faith in thee may never suffer decrease in all the
thousand births through which I may be doomed to pass. May my devotion
unto thee be as firm as the attachment cherished by the ignorant people
towards all worldly objects". The Deity replied,—"Thou hast already
devotion unto me—and it shall ever be the same; but do thou beg of me a
boon, O Prahlāda, whatever thou wishest". Prahlāda said,—"My father has
treated me malignantly for proclaiming thy praises. O lord, do thou
remove the sin he hath thus committed. He assailed me with weapons—he
had me thrown into fire, bitten by the serpents, had poison mixed up
with my viands, had me cast into the deep in bonds, and buried down with
rocks and many other ills he had wrought against me out of malice for
being devoted unto thee. May my father, O lord, by thy mercy, be
speedily relieved of the sin he hath thus committed". The Deity
replied,—"Prahlāda, all this shall be accomplished by my mercy. I wish
to confer upon thee another boon, O son of Asura, do thou beg it".
Prahlāda said,—"All my desires, O lord, have been fulfilled by the boon
thou hast conferred upon me, that my faith in thee may never suffer
decrease. What to speak of wealth, virtue or desire, even emancipation
is in his hands who has firm devotion in thee, the root of the universal
world". The Deity said,—"As unshaken is thy devotion unto me thou shalt
by my mercy obtain final emancipation from existence". Parāçara
said:—Having said this Vishnu disappeared from his sight, O Maitreya and
Prahlāda again went to his father and bowed down before him. Having
smelt his forehead, embraced him and shed tears, the father said, "Dost
thou live my child?" The Great Asura treated him with kindness and
repented for his past actions. And Prahlāda, conversant with piety,
attended diligently upon his father and preceptor. After his father had
been slain by Vishnu in the form of the man-lion, he became, O Maitreya,
the sovereign of the Daityas. And obtaining the splendours of royalty on
account of piety, he came by immense wealth and was blessed, with a
numerous progeny. At the expiration of the regal power and freed from
the consequences of moral merit or demerit, he obtained, by virtue of
his meditation of the deity final emancipation from future births. So
powerful was the wise Daitya Prahlāda devoted to Vishnu, O Maitreya,
about whom you asked me. Whoever listens to the story of Prahlāda, is
speedily freed from all sins. Forsooth a man is released from the
iniquities he commits day and night by once hearing or reading the
history of Prahlāda. The reading of this history, on the day of
full-moon, of new-moon or in the eighth and twelfth days of the lunar
half month, shall offer fruit tantamount to the gift of a cow, O twice
born one. As Hari protected Prahlāda in all his calamities so he shall
protect him who constantly listens to his history.


Parāçara said:—The sons of Sanglhada were Ayushman Sivi and Vashkala.
The son of Prahlāda was named Virochana, whose son was Vali who had a
hundred sons of whom Vāna was the eldest, O great Muni.

All the sons of Hiranyaksha were also gifted with great
prowess—Jharjhara, Sakuni, Bhutasantāpana, Mahānābha, Mahābāhu and

Dahu had many sons—Dwimurddha, Sankara, Ayomukha, Sankusiras, Kapila,
Samvara, Ekachakra, Mahābāhu, the mighty Tāraka, Swarbhānu,
Vrishaparvan, Pulomon and the mighty Viprachiti: these were the powerful
and renowned sons Danu.

Swarbhanu had a daughter named Prabhā and Sarmisthā was the daughter of
Vrishaparvan who had two other daughters named Upadānavi and Hayasirā.

The two daughters of Vaiswanara were named Pulomā and Kālikā who were
both married to Kasyapa and bore him sixty thousand celebrated Dānavas
called Paulomas and Kālakanjas, who were mighty, dreadful and cruel.

Viprachiti begot on Sinhikā several sons named—Vyansa, Salya the strong,
Nabha the powerful, Vātāpi, Namuchi, Hwala, Khasrima, Anjaka, Naraka,
Kālanābha, the Valiant, Swarbhānu and the mighty Vaktrayodhi. These were
the most eminent Dānavas who multiplied the race of Danu. Their children
and grand children were by hundreds and thousands.

In the family of the Daitya Prahlāda, the Nivāta Kavachas were born, who
were greatly purified by rigid austerities.

Six daughters, gifted with great energy, were born to Tāmra—named Suki,
Syeni, Bhāsi, Sugrivi, Suchi, and Gridhrikā. Suki gave birth to parrots,
owls, and crows, Syeni to hawks, Bhāsi to kites; Gridhrika to vultures,
Suchi to water-fowl; Sugrivi to horses, camels and asses. These were the
offsprings of Tāmra.

Vānati had two well-known sons, named Garuda and Varuna; the former also
called Superna was the lord of the feathered tribes and the dreadful
enemy of the serpents.

The offsprings of Surasā were a thousand powerful many-headed serpents
coursing the welkin.

Kadru had also a thousand powerful sons of unmitigated prowess—all
subject to Garuda and many-headed. The most celebrated amongst them
were, Sesha, Vāsuki, Takshaka, Sankha, Sweta, Mahāpadma, Kumbala,
Aswatara, Elapatra, Nāga, Karkkota, Dhananyaya, and many other deadly
and poisonous serpents.

Krodas gave birth to highly powerful monsters and Suravi gave birth to
cows and buffaloes. Irā was the mother of trees and creeping plants and
shrubs and every kind of grass: Khāsa of the Rākshasas and Yakshas: Muni
of Apsaras and Aristha of the celebrated Gandharvas.

These were the offsprings of Kasyapa whether moveable or stationary;
their children and grand children multiplied by hundreds and thousands.
Such was the creation, O Brahmana, in the Swarochisa (or the second)
Manwantara. In the present or Viavaswata Manwantara Brahmā being engaged
in sacrifices undertaken by Varuna I shall describe to you the manner in
which the progeny multiplied. The great Patriarch begot as his sons the
seven Rishis, who were in the days of yore, engendered by his mind.

O best of ascetics, when there was a quarrel amongst the Gandharvas,
serpents, Dānavas and gods, Diti, having lost all her children,
propitiated Kasyapa, Being perfectly adored by her, Kasyapa, the
foremost of the ascetics, promised her a boon and Diti prayed for it in
the shape of a valiant son capable of destroying Indra, O excellent
Muni, he granted his spouse that boon. And having granted her that boon
Kasyapa said—"You shall give birth to a son who shall destroy Sakra, if
with pious thoughts and a pure body, you carry the babe in your womb for
a hundred years". Having said this the ascetic Kasyapa remained with her
and she conceived being perfectly pure. Knowing that this conception was
for his own destruction, Indra the lord of immortals, came to her and
attended upon her with humility. And the slayer of Pāka wanted there to
thwart her intention. At last in the last year of the century he found
out an opportunity. Diti, without washing her feet, went to bed. And
when she was asleep the wielder of the thunder-bolt entered into her
womb and severed the embryo into seven pieces.

The child, thus severed, cried out bitterly in the womb but Sakra again
and again said "Do not cry". The embryo was thus cut into seven
portions, and Indra, wroth again, cut each portion into seven pieces
with his thunder-bolt. From these originated the swift-coursing deities
called Maruts (winds.) They got this name from the words with which
Indra had addressed the embryo (Ma—rooda—do not cry) and became
forty-nine divinities, the assistants of the wielder of the thunder


Parāçara said:—When Pritha was installed on the throne by the great
Rishis the great Patriarch by and by conferred kingdoms upon other
kings. He bestowed upon the moon the sovereignty of stars, planets,
twice-born ones, grass, creeping plants sacrifices and penances.
Vaisravana was made king over kings, and Varuna was made lord of waters.
Vishnu was made the king of Adityas and Pāvaka of Vasus. Daksha was made
the lord of Patriarchs and Vāsava of Maruts. And he conferred the
sovereignty ®f Daityas and Dānavas upon Prāhlada. And Yama, the king of
justice, was made the king of the manes (Pitris). Airāvata was made the
king of many elephants, Garuda of birds, Vāsava of the celestials.
Uchaisravas was made the king of horses and Vrishabba of kine. Shesha
became the king of serpents, the lion, the monarch of the beasts and the
holy fig-tree the king of the trees. Having thus divided the kingdom the
great Patriarch Brahmā appointed divinities to protect the different
quarters: he made Sudhanwan, the son of the patriarch Viraja, the
protector of the east; Sankhapada the son of the patriarch Kardama, of
the south; the immortal Ketumat, the son of Rajas, protector of the west
and Hiranyaroman the son of the patriarch Parjanya, protector of the
north. By these the whole earth, with its even islands and cities, was
righteously governed, each confining himself to his own limit.

All these and others appointed to govern the creation are but persons of
the Great Vishnu, O foremost of Munis, All the kings who have been and
who shall be, O foremost of twice-born ones, are the portions of Vishnu.
The lords of celestials, the kings of the Daityas, the sovereigns of the
Dānavas, the rulers of the demons, the kings of the beasts, birds, men,
serpents, Nagas, the best of trees, of mountains, of planets—those that
were, those that are, and those that shall be, are but portions of
Vishnu who is identical with the universe. None else is capable of
protecting the world, but Hari, the lord of all. O greatly wise ascetic,
the essence of the universal creation exists in him and none else. The
eternal Vishnu invested respectively with the qualities of foulness,
goodness, and darkness, creates the universe, preserves it and destroys
it. By a four-fold manifestation of himself he creates the world and in
the same way preserves and destroys it. In one manifestation as Brahmā,
the invisible (Vishnu) assumes a visible shape; in his second
manifestation, he appears as the patriarch Marichi and others; Kāla is
the third manifestation and all other beings constitute his fourth
manifestation. Thus he becomes four-fold in his creation invested with
the quality of goodness. The Deity in one portion as Vishnu, preserves
the creation; in his second portion he assumes the shape of Manu and
others; in his third portion he assumes the shape of time, and in his
fourth portion he assumes the shape of all beings. And thus invested
with the quality of goodness, the excellent Purusha preserves the
universe. And invested with the quality of darkness at the end of
creation the un-born Deity, in one portion, assumes the form of Rudra.
In another portion he assumes the shape of fire—in another he assumes
the shape of time, and in his fourth portion he assumes the shape of all
beings. And thus in his four-fold form he is the destroyer of the
universe. This is the four-fold division of the Deity, O Brahman, at all

Brahmā, Daksha, time and all beings, are the energies of the Great Hari,
which are the causes of creation. Vishnu, Manu, time and all beings are
energies, O twice-born one, of Vishnu, which are the causes of
preservation. Rudra, Antaka, time and all other creatures are the
energies of Janārddana that are intended for universal dissolution. In
the beginning of the creation, till the hour of dissolution, Brahmā, the
patriarchs and all other animals, are engaged with the work of creation.
At first Brahmā created the universe, then Marichi and others were
engaged in multiplying the race and then the other animals multiply it
every moment. O twice born one, Brahmā cannot create the universe unless
the proper time comes, and Marichi and other patriarchs as well as other
animals, independent of time, cannot help the creation. Thus at the time
of creation as well as that of dissolution the four-fold divisions of
the Great Deity are equally essential, O Maitreya. Whatever is generated
by any living being, O twice-born one—the agent is considered as a
portion of Hari. And whatever destroys any living being, moveable or
immoveable, is considered as the destroying portion of Janārddana as
Rudra. In this wise Janārddana is the creator, preserver and destroyer
of the universe. And assuming three qualities he is three-fold—in
creation, preservation and destruction—but his true form is void of
these qualities. And the four-fold manifestation of the Deity comprises
true wisdom, pervades the universe, and does not admit of any
similitude. Maitreya said:—"Describe to me, in sooth, O Muni, how could
the supreme condition of the Deity admit of four varieties?" Parāçara
said:—O Maitreya, that which is called the cause of a thing is the means
of accomplishing it; and what is the desire of the soul to accomplish is
the thing accomplished. The suspension of breath and the like
operations, of the Yogi who is intent upon obtaining final emancipation,
are his means and the end is the supreme Brahma from whom he does not
return to the world. O Muni, the means, adopted for liberation by the
ascetic, is the discriminative knowledge and this is the first variety
of the condition of Brahma, O great Muni, the second portion is the
knowledge that is to be obtained by the ascetics for liberation from
suffering. By the third sort, they arrive at the knowledge of the
identity of the end and the means and the rejection of the idea of
duality. The last sort is the removal of whatever differences may have
been formed regarding the three first varieties of knowledge and the
necessary contemplation of the true essence of soul. The highest
condition of Vishnu, who is identical with wisdom, is the knowledge of
the truth. This knowledge requires no exercise, is not to be taught, is
spread all over, admits of no comparison with anything, which does not
require any other thing to explain it, which is itself existent and docs
not require any explanation, which is calm, fearless and pure, which is
not the subject of reasoning and does not require any support. And this
knowledge is the excellent condition of Vishnu. O twice-born one, these
ascetics, who, by the destruction of ignorance, emerge themselves in
this knowledge of Brahma, lose the semenial property and do not
germinate in the field of worldly existence.[231] That which is the
excellent condition of Vishnu is pure, eternal, universal, undecaying
and uniform. And the ascetic who obtains this supreme condition of
Brahma is not required to be born again, for he is freed from the
distinction of virtue and vice and suffering.

There are two states of Brahma—one with shape and the other without
it—one perishable and the other imperishable. These two states are
manifest everywhere. As the blaze of fire, at one place, spreads light
and heat all around so this vast universe is nothing but the
manifestation of the energy of the undecaying and eternal Brahma. And as
the light and heat are stronger or feebler proportionate to the distance
of the spot, so the energy of Brahma is more or less manifest in beings
as they are more or less remote from him. O Brāhman, Brahma, Vishnu and
Siva are the most powerful energies of Brahma: next to them, O Maitreya,
are the inferior celestials—next to them are the patriarch Daksha and
others—next to them, men, beasts, birds and serpents and then the trees
and plants each growing feebler proportionate to their distance from the
Supreme God. In this way, the world, although eternal and
indestructable, appears and disappears as if being subject to birth and

The all-powerful Vishnu is but the manifestation of Brahma. He being
invested with form, the Yogis worship him at the very commencement. And
the great ascetics, with their minds unagitated, in whose minds exists
great spirit of devotion with the object to be meditated upon and along
with the means for effecting it, endeavour to bring about mystic union
with him. O great Muni, Hari is the most powerful of all the energies of
Brahma, because he is the most immediate. And he is an embodiment of
Brahma because he is composed entirely of his essence. In him the whole
universe is interwoven—from him and in him is the universe, O Muni.
Vishnu, the lord of the universe containing all that is destructable and
indestructable, holds the creation material and spiritual with his
ornaments and weapons.

Maitreya said:—"Do thou relate to me how does the great God Vishnu hold
the universe with his ornaments and weapons".

Parāçara said:—Having bowed down unto the mighty and indescribable
Vishnu I shall relate to you what was formerly described by Vasishtha,
The Great Hari holds the pure soul of the world uncontaminated and
divested of qualities like the Kaustava gem. The undecaying holds
Pakriti as Srivatsa mark and intellect exists in Mādhava in the shape of
his mace. The lord holds the two-folded divisions of egotism namely into
elements and organs of sense in the shape of his conch-shell and bow. He
holds in his hand, in the shape of discus, mind which is the strength of
all and excels wind in its flight. The necklace, of the holder of mace,
namely Vaijayenti, contains five precious gems (pearl, ruby, emerald,
sapphire and diamond) being the emblems of the five elemental rudiments.
Janārddana holds the faculties of action and perception in the shape of
numerous shafts. The holy wisdom is the bright sword of Achyuta
concealed sometimes in the scabbard of ignorance. In this wise, O
Maitreya, Hrishikesha is the refuge of soul, nature, intellect, egotism,
the elements, the senses, mind, ignorance and wisdom. And although Hari
is without any shape, yet, he, for the behoof of mankind, in his
dillusive form, embodies the elements of the world as his weapons and
ornaments. Then the lotus-eyed deity, the lord of the universe, holds
the nature and the universes. O Maitreya, true wisdom, ignorance, all
that is transient, all that is everlasting, exist in the slayer of
Madhu, the lord of all creatures. The time with its division of seconds,
minutes, days, months, seasons, and years, is but the manifestation of
the Great Hari. O Great Muni, the seven worlds, the earth the sky, the
heaven, the world of Patriarchs, of sages, of saints, of truth are but
diverse manifestations of his. His form is the whole universe; he is
first born before all the first-born. He is the refuge of ail being; he
is himself self-sustained; his various forms are celestials, men and
animals. Therefore he is the supreme lord of all; eternal; he has a
visible shape and is without it He is known in the Vedanta as the Rich,
Yajush, Sāma and Atharva Vedas, history and sacred science. The Vedas
with their manifold divisions, the institutes of Manu and the writings
of other law-givers, sacred lores and their translations, poems and all
that is said or sung are bodily forms of that Great Vishnu in the shape
of sound. All kinds of things with or without form—here or elsewhere are
the body of Vishnu. I am Hari; all this is Janārddana, cause and effect
proceed from none else but him. He, who is cognizant of these truths,
shall never be subject to the afflictions of worldly existence.

Thus, O twice-born one, the first portion of the Purāna, has been
related to you, hearing which one may be freed from sins. The man, who
hears this, obtains the fruit of bathing in the Pushkara lake[232] for
twelve years in the month of Kartik. O Muni, the celestials confer upon
him, who hears this Purāna, the dignity of a divine sage, of a
patriarch, or of a spirit of a heaven.




Maitreya said:—"O venerable Sir, O preceptor, you have fully described
unto me all that I asked you regarding the creation of the universe. But
there is a portion of this subject, O foremost of ascetics, which I
desire to hear again. Pryavrata and Uttanapada were the two sons of
Swayambhuva Manu and you related to me the story of Dhruva, the son of
Uttanapada. But, O twice-born one, you did not mention the progeny of
Pryavrata and I wish to hear from you an account of his family".
Parāçara said:—Prayvrata married Kanya,[233] the daughter of Kardama,
and had by her two daughters named Samrat and Kukshi and ten sons, wise,
valiant, humble, obedient to their father; named Agnidhra, Agnivāhu,
Vapushmat, Dyutimat, Medha, Bhabya, Savalā, Putra. And the tenth of them
was Jyotishman; and the significance of this name was made good by him.
All the sons of Pryavrata were celebrated for strength and prowess. Of
these three, Medha, Agnivāhu and Putra, were given up to religious
devotion. And those high-souled ones remembering the actions of their
pristine births, did not wish for kingdom. And they diligently and in
due time practised the rites of austerities, wholly disinterested and
expecting no reward. O Maitreya, O foremost of Munis, Pryavrata
conferred the seven islands upon his seven illustrious sons. The father
conferred upon Agnidhra the sovereignty of Jamvudwipa; to Medhathiti he
gave Plakshadwipa: he made Vapushmat the sovereign over the Dwipa of
Salmali: and appointed Jyotishmat, king of Kusadwipa: he made Dutimat
the king of Kraunchdwipa, Bhabya the king of Sakadwipa and Savala the
sovereign of the Dwipa of Pushkara.

O foremost of Munis, Agnidhra, the king of Jamvudwipa had nine sons, all
equal to the patriarchs in prowess.—Nābhi, Kimpurasha, Harwarsha,
Ilāvrita, Ramya, Hiranvat, Kuru, Bhadraswa and Ketumala, who was a
prince ever devoted to the practice of piety.

Hear next, O Brahman, from me how he divided Jamvudwipa amongst his
sons. He conferred on Nabhi the country called Hima, south of Himavān or
snowy mountains. And he gave to Kimpurusha the country of Himakuta and
to Harivarsha the country of Nishada. And he bestowed upon Ilāvrita the
country in the centre of which mount Meru is situated. And he conferred
upon Kamya the countries lying between it and the Nila mountain. He gave
to Hiravat the country lying to the north of it. He gave to Kuru the
country bounded by Sringavar. He gave to Bhadraswa the countries situate
on the east of Meru and he gave to Ketumala Gandhamadana which was
situate on the west of it. Thus that lord of men, conferred the various
portions of his kingdom, upon his sons. And having installed his sons as
kings of diverse regions that lord of earth retired to the holy place of
pilgrimage Salagrama and engaged in penance, O Maitreya.

O great Muni, the eight countries, Kintpurusha and others are places of
perfect enjoyment and spontaneous happiness. In those countries there is
no viccissitude of circumstances, no fear of decrepitude or death, no
distinction of virtue and vice, better or worse. Nor in these eight
countries are to be seen the effects wrought by the cycle of ages.

The high-souled Nabhi, who had obtained the country of Nimahwa as his
kingdom, had by his queen Meru, the highly effulgent son Rishabha; and
who had again a hundred sons, the eldest of whom was Bharata. Having
ruled over the kingdom piously and performed many sacrifices the
illustrious Rishabha installed his eldest son Bharata as the lord of the
earth and went to the hermitage of Pulastya, being bent upon practising
religious penance according to the prescribed rites of an anchoret. He
practised religious austerities duly until he was so reduced as to be
but a collection of skin and fibres. Thereupon putting a pebble in his
mouth he went naked to the great road. And from then the country was
handed over to Bharata by his father on retiring to woods and it was
called Bhārata.

Bharata had a highly pious son named Sumati. Having ruled the kingdom
for some time, the king Bharata, who was fond of sacrifices, conferred
it upon his son and invested him with all royal splendours. O Muni,
having engaged in austere practices, he renounced his life at the holy
place of Salagrama. He was again born in a distinguished family of
ascetics, which I shall describe to you later on.

From the illustrious Sumati was born Indradyumna: his son was Pratihara,
who had an illustrious son named Pratihartta; his son was Bhava who
begot Udgitha, who begot Prastara, whose son was Prithu. Prithu's son
was Nakta, whose son was Gaya, whose son was Nara, whose son was Virat.
Virat's son was the brave Dhimat who begot Maharta, whose son was
Manasyu, whose son was Twashtri, whose son was Viraja, whose son was
Raja, whose son was Satyjit, who had a hundred sons, of whom
Viswagyotish was the eldest. Under the rule of these princes
Bharatvarsha was divided into nine parts and their progeny successively
ruled the country for seventy-one cycles.

O Muni, this was the progeny of Swayambhava Manu, by whom the earth was
peopled, who was the lord of the first Manwantara in the Kalpa of


Maitreya said:—"O Brāhmana, you have related to me the progeny of
Swayartbhuva. I wish to hear from you an account of the earth. It
behoveth thee, O Muni to relate to how many oceans there are, how many
islands, how many kingdoms, how many mountains, forests, rivers, cities
of the gods's; its size, its contents, its nature and its form".
Parāçara said:—Do thou hear from me, O Maitreya, a brief account: I
cannot give you a detailed account even in a century.

O twice-born one, the earth consists of seven islands namely Jambu,
Plaksha, Sālmali, Kusa, Krauncha, Saku and Puskara: and they are
severally girt by seven great seas: the sea of salt water (Lavana), of
sugar-cane juice (Ikshu), of wine (Sura) of clarified butter (Sarpi), of
curds (Dadhi), of milk (Dugdha) and of fresh water (Jala).

Jambudwipa is situated in the centre of all these and in the centre of
that island is situate the golden mount Meru, which is eighty-four
thousand yojanas in height and sixteen thousand deep into the earth. The
diameter, at its top, is thirty-two thousand yojanas and at the base
sixteen thousand. And this mountain is like the seed-cup of the lotus of
the earth.

On the south Sumeru are the mountains Himavat, Hemakuta and Nishadha and
on its north are the boundary mountains Neela, Sweta and Sringhee. The
two mountain ranges situate in the centre are a hundred thousand yojanas
in extent. And others are ten thousand yojanas lesser in extent. They
are two thousand yojanas in height and breadth.

O twice-born one, the first country on the south of Sumeru is Bhārata,
then Kimpurusha and then Harivarsha. North of Meru is Ramyaka, next to
that is Hiranmaya and beyond the latter is Uttarakuru following the same
direction as Bhirata. And each of these Varshas, O foremost of the
twice-born ones, is extended over a nine thousand yojanas. Ilābrita is
also of the same size and the golden mount Meru is situate in the
centre, and the country extends nine thousand yojanas in each direction
from the four sides of the mountain. For fortifying the mount Meru four
mountains were created as buttresses, each ten thousand yojanas in
elevation. The one situate on the east is called Mandara, the one on the
south is called Gandhamādana, that on the west is called Vipula and that
on the south Suparswa. And on each of these stands severally a Kadamba
tree, a Jāmbu tree, a Pipal and a Vata. And all these trees were eleven
thousand yojanas in height, standing as if like the banners of the
mountains. O great Muni, because a Jāmbu-tree stands on that mountain
that insular continent is called Jāmbu-dwipa. And that tree produces
Jāmbu-fruits like so many huge elephants. And those huge fruits are
crushed into pieces as soon as they fall on the mountain. And out of the
juice of those fruits has come out the river Jāmbu. And the inhabitants,
who drink the water of that river, do not experience perspiration, bad
smell and are not subject to infirmities of age and organic decay. The
soil, on the banks of that river, receiving the juice of these fruits
and dried up by pleasant breeze, is turned into gold called Jāmbunada
out of which the ornament of the Siddhas are made. Vadraswa is situate
on the east of Meru and Ketumdlā on the west. And in the middle of these
two Varshas, O foremost of Munis, is situate Ilābrita, oh the east is
the Chaitrarath forest on the south Gandhamādana, on the west Baibhraju
and on the north the forest called Nandana. On the four sides of Meru
there are four tanks the water of which is partaken of by the celestials
namely Atunoda, Mahabhadra, Sitoda and Manasa. There are some mountain
ranges like the filaments from the root of a lotus on the coast of
Meru—namely Sitānta Mukunda, Kurāri, Mālayavān and Vaikanta.

And on the south Trikuta, Sisirā, Patanga, Ruchaka and Nishadha, on the
west Sikhivasasi Vaidurya, Kapila, Gandhamidana and Jārudho, and on the
north Sankhakuta, Rishabha, Nāga, Hansa and Kālanjara. These and others
extend from the heart of the Meru.

On the top of mount Meru, O Maitreya, there is a vast city, named after
Brahmā, extending for fourteen thousand yojanas, and celebrated in the
region of the celestials. And around it in the various quarters and
intermediate quarters are situate the magnificent cities of Indra and
other deities presiding over various quarters. Originating from the foot
of Vishnu, and watering the region of the moon, the Ganges falls from
the heaven into the city of Brahmā. Falling there she has divided
herself into four branches namely Sitā, Alakakandā, Chakshu and Vadrā.
Taking her course towards the east and going from one mountain to
another, in the welkin Sitā, watering Vadrawshwa has fallen into the
ocean. The Alakakandā flows southwards to the country of Bhārata and
dividing herself into seven branches on the way, falls into the ocean, O
great Muni. And Chakshu crossing over all the western mountains and
passing through the country of Ketumāla falls into the ocean. And Vadrā,
traversing the northern mountains and passing through the country of
Uttarakuru, falls into the northern ocean, O great Muni.

Meru is thus situated between the mountains Nila and Nishada (on the
north and south) and between Mālyavān and Gandhamādana (on the west and
east) and it lies there like the peri-carp of a lotus. And the countries
of Bhārata, Ketumāla, Vadrāshwa and Kuru, lying outside the mountains,
are like petals of the lotus of the world. Jathara and Devakuta are two
mountainous ranges extending northward and southward and connecting the
mountain Nila and Nishada. The two mountains Gandhamādana and Kailāsha
extend towards the east and west for eighty yojanas from sea to sea.
Like the two mountains on the east the two ranges Nishahad and Paripātra
are situated on the western side of Meru. The two mountains Trisringa
and Jārudhi are situated on the north of Meru and they extend east and
west from one sea to another. Thus I have described to you the eight
mountains, mentioned by the ascetics as bounding the mount Meru, and
situate in pairs on four sides. Sitānta and others which have been
described to you as filament mountains are extremely charming. The
vallies situate in the bosom of those mountains are frequented by
Siddhas and Charanas and there are many picturesque cities and forests,
containing the palaces of Vishnu, Lakshmi, Agni, Surya and other deities
and inhabited by the celestials. And in those pleasant vales Gandharvas,
Yakshas, Rākshasas, Daityas and Dānavas sport day and night. These are
the abodes of the pious, O Muni and are called the regions of paradise
on earth where the vicious, even after a hundred births, do not arrive.

In the country of Vadraswa, O twice-born one, Vishnu resides in his
horse-headed form, in Ketumala as the boar and in Bhārata as the
tortoise. And in Kuru Janārddana resides as the fish and Hari, the lord
of all and everything, resides everywhere in his universal form. And, O
Maitreya, he, the soul of the world, is the supporter of all things.

O great Muni, in the eight countries of Kimpurusha and others there is
neither grief, exhaustion, anxiety nor hunger. All the subjects are
healthy devoid of any fear, freed from all afflictions and live for ten
or twelve thousand years. Indra does not send rain there and people live
upon the water of the earth and there is no distinction of Satya, Treta
and other successive cycles. In each of these countries there are seven
principal mountainous ranges from which hundreds of river take their
rise, O foremost of twice-born ones.


Parāçara said:—The country that is situate on the ocean and south of the
Himālya is called Bhārata where reside the descendants of Bharata. The
extent of this land is nine thousand yojanas, and is the field of
action, on account of which men go to heaven or obtain final
emancipation. The seven principal mountain ranges in Bhārata are
Māhendra, Malaya, Sahya, Suktimat, Riksha, Vindhya and Pāripātra. From
this land people attain to heaven or final emancipation or some hence, O
Muni, fall into hell or pass into the condition of brutes. From here
people obtain heaven, liberation, or the state in mid-air, or the state
in the regions under the earth for no other portion of world is the
arena of actions.

Do thou again hear of the nine divisions of the country of Bhārata. They
are Indra-dwipa, Kasermut, Tāmravarna, Galehastimat, Nāgadwipa, Saumya,
Gandharva and Varuna. The last is encircled by the sea and is a thousand
yojanas in extent from north to south.

On the east of Bhārata live the Kiratas, and on the west Yavanas in the
centre live Brahmanas, Kshatriyas, Vaidyas, and Sudras engaged severally
in sacrifice, arms, trade and service.

The rivers Satadru, Chandrabhāga and others have taken their rise from
the Himālaya. Vedasmriti and others have taken their rise from the
Vindya range. Tapi, Poyoshni, Nirbindhā and others have taken their rise
from Riksha; Godaveri, Bhimarathi, Krishnaveni and others have taken
their rise from Sahya mountain. And all these remove the dread of sin.
Kritamala, Tamraparni and others flow from the Malaya hills; Trisama,
Rishikulya and others from the Mahendra; and the Rishikulya, Kumari and
others from the Suktimat mountains. There are thousands of rivers like
these and the tributaries thereof. The Kurus and Panchalas in the middle
districts, the inhabitants of Kāmrupa in the east, the Pundras,
Kalingas, Magadhas, and other southern nations, the Saurāsthras, Suras,
Bhiras, Arbudas in the west, the Karushas and Mālavas dwelling along the
Pāripātra mountains, the Sauviras, the Saindhavas, the Hānas, the Sālwas
the inhabitants of Sakala, the Madras, the Rāmas, the Ambasthas and the
Parishakas and others drink the waters of these rivers and live on their
banks happy and prosperous.

There are four Yugas or ages in the Bhārata-Varsha, O Great Muni, namely
the Krita, the Tretā, the Dwāpara, and Kali—there is no such cycle of
ages in any other land. Here the ascetics are engaged in penances, the
devout offer sacrifices, and the people distribute gifts for the sake of
another world. In Jāmbu-Dwipa, Vishnu, all sacrifice, in the shape of
sacrificial male, is worshipped by people with sacrifices—there is
altogether a different practice in other lands. O Great Muni, Bhārata
therefore is the best of all the divisions of Jāmbu-dwipa, for it is the
land of actions and all other divisions are places of enjoyment. O sage,
it is after many thousand births, and by the accumulation of piety, that
living beings are sometimes born in Bhāratavarsa as men. The celestials
themselves have chanted "Blessed are those who are born in Bhāratavarsa
as men even from the condition of the celestials for this is a land
which leads to Paradise and final liberation. And all actions, that are
performed by men born in this land and freed from sins, careless of the
merited rewards, are consigned by them to the eternal Vishnu, the Great
soul and then they emerge in him. We do not know when the actions, that
have secured for us heaven, shall bear fruits and when we shall be born
again. But Blessed are those who are born in Bhāratvarsha with perfect
faculties". O Maitreya, I have, thus in short, described to you the nine
divisions of Jambu-dwipa which extend over a hundred thousand yojanas
and which is girt, as if by a bracelet, by the ocean of salt water which
is similar in dimensions.


Parāçara said:—As Jambu-dwipa is encircled all around by the ocean of
salt water like a bracelet, so that ocean is also girt by the insular
continent Plaksha. The extent of Jambu-dwipa is a hundred thousand
yojanas and it is said, O Brahman, that the extent of Plaksha-dwipa is
twice as much.

Medhatiti, the king of Plaksha-dwipa, had seven sons, Santabhaya,
Sisira, Sukhodhaya, Ananda, Siva, Kshemaka and Dhruva. And all these
seven became kings of Plaksha-dwipa. The seven divisions were named
after them—Santābhaya-varsa, Sisira-varsa, Sukhada-varsa, Ananda-varsa,
Siva-varsa, Kshemaka-varsa, and Dhruva-varsa. These seven varsas had
seven mountain-ranges as their boundaries. Do thou hear, from me, the
names of these mountains, O foremost of Munis,—Gomeda, Chandra, Nārada,
Dundhubi, Somaka, Sumanas, and Vaibhraja. In all these picturesque
mountains the sinless inhabitants dwell perpetually along with the
celestials and Gandharvas. There are holy villages where people live for
a long time, freed from care and pain and enjoying uninterrupted
happiness. And in those divisions there are seven rivers all flowing
into the ocean—I shall relate their names, bearing which all sins shall
be removed. They are the Anutapā, Sikhi, Vipasā, Tridivā, Kramu, Amritā
and Sukritā. These are the principal rivers and mountains of
Plakshsa-dwipa, which I have described to you; but there are thousands
of others of inferior size. Those who partake of the waters of these
rivers, always live happy and contented; there is neither the increase
nor decrease of the population; the revolution of the four ages is not
known there; O thou of great mind, the time there is uniformly of the
character of Treta Yuga. In all these Dwipas, O Brahman, people live
peacefully for five thousand years, and religious rites are severally
performed by diverse castes and divisions of the people. There are four
castes which I shall relate to you. They are Aryaka, Kuru, Vivasa and
Bhavi corresponding respectively with Brahmanas, Kshatriyas, Vaiçyas and
Sudras, O foremost of Munis. As there is a huge Jambu-tree in the
Jambu-dwipa so there is a large fig-tree in this insular continent and
this Dwipa is called Plaksha after the name of that tree, O foremost of
twice-born ones. Hari, the all, the lord of all, the creator of the
universe, is worshipped in the form of the moon by the Aryakas and other
caste people. Plaksha-dwipa is girt, as if by a disc, by the sea of
molasses which is equal to the island in extent. I have thus given to
you, O Maitreya, in a brief compass, a description of the island called
Plaksha; I shall now describe the island Salmala; do thou hear it.

The heroic Vapusmat is the sovereign of the Salmala-dwipa; do thou hear
the names of his seven sons who gave names to the seven divisions of
this insular continent. They were Sweta, Harita, Jimuta, Rohita,
Vaidyuta, Manasa, and Suprabha. The sea of molasses is girt by this
insular continent on all sides, which is twice in extent. There are
seven mountain ranges containing precious jems and dividing the Dwipa
and there are seven rivers. They are Kumuda, Unnata, Valahaka, Drona,
abounding in medicinal herbs, Kanka, Mahisha and Kakkudwat. The
principal rivers are Yauni, Toya, Vitrishna, Chandra, Sukla, Vimochani
and Nivritti; the waters of all these remove sins. All the varsas namely
Sweta, Harita, Vaidyuta, Manasa, Jimuta and Suprava are very charming.
All these varsas are peopled by men of four castes. The four castes, O
great Muni, who reside in Salmala-dwipa, are severally known as Kapilas,
Arunas, Pitas and Rohitas (or tawny, purple, yellow and red)
corresponding to Brahmanas, Kshatriyas, Vaiçyas and Sudras, who all
perform sacrifices and worship the Great undecaying Vishnu, the soul of
all things, in the form of Vayu (wind) with pious rites. The people
there enjoy frequent association with the celestials. There is a huge
Salmali (silk-cotton) tree in this insular continent, which gives its
name and affords delight to gods.

This Dwipa is encircled on all sides by the Ocean named Suroda, which is
equal to the island in extent. This ocean Suroda is again girt on all
sides by the Kusa-dwipa which is twice the Salmali island in extent. The
king Jyotishmat in Kusa-dwipa had seven sons; do thou hear their names.
They are Udvida, Venuman, Swairatha, Lavana, Dhriti, Prabhakara and
Kapita after whom the seven varshas were severally named. There live men
along with the Daityas, Dānavas, gods, Gandharvas, Yakshas, and
Kimparushas. The four castes devoted to the performance of their
respective duties are called Damis, Sushinis, Snehas, and Mandehas
corresponding, in order to Brahmanas, Kshatriyas, Vaiçyas and Sudras.
They worship Janārddana in the form of Brahmā, in the Kusa-dwipa
according to the rites laid down in the Sastras for the protection of
their kingdom and setting aside actions which lead to temporal rewards.
There are seven mountain ranges (in this island) namely: Bidruma,
Hemasaila, Dyutimat, Pushpavan, Kusheshaya, Havi Mandarachala, O great
Muni. There are seven rivers—the names of which I shall relate in order,
do thou hear them. They are Dhutapapa, Siva, Pavitra, Sanmati,
Bidyudambha and Mahi. They all remove sins. Besides there are thousands
of small rivers and mountains. There is a huge clump of Kusa-grass and
the island is named after that. It is girt by the Ghrita sea (the ocean
of butter) of the same dimension as this insular continent.

The sea of Ghrita is encircled by Krauncha-dwipa which is twice as large
as Kusa-dwipa. Dyutiman was the sovereign of this island. The
high-souled king named the seven varshas after his seven sons. They were
Kusala, Mallaga, Ushna, Pivara, Andhakaraka, Muni and Dundhuvi, O Muni.
There are seven boundary mountains highly picturesque and resorted to by
the celestials and Gandharvas, O thou of great understanding; do thou
hear their names from me. They are Krauncha, Vamana, Andhakaraka,
Devavrita, Pundjirikavan, Dundhuvi, and Mahasaila—each of which is
double the preceding one in height as each dwipa is twice as extensive
as the one before it. In these charming mountains, people reside, freed
from fear, along with the celestials. In this island, O great Muni, the
Brahmanas, Kshatriyas, Vaiçyas and Sudras are respectively called
Pushkara, Pushkala, Dhanya and Tishpa. Do thou, O Maitreya, hear the
names of the rivers, the waters whereof are drunk by those men. There
are seven principal rivers and hundreds of small rivers. The seven
principal rivers are Gauri, Kumudvati, Sandhyā, Ratri, Mānojavā, Kshānti
and Pundarikā.

In this island the four caste people worship the great Janārddana in the
form of Rudra with various sacrifices. Krauncha is girt by the sea of
curds of a similar dimension and that again is encircled by Sāka-dwipa,
which is twice as much in extent, O great Muni.

The high-souled Bhavya, the king of Sāka-dwipa had seven sons upon whom
he severally conferred the seven portions. They are Jalada, Kumāra,
Sukumāra, Manecchaka, Kusumoda, Mandāki and Mahādruma. The seven varsas
were named in order after the seven princes. There are seven boundary
mountains. Of these one situate on the east is Udayagiri and others are
named Jatādhāra, Raivatak, Shyama, Astagiri, Anchikeya and Kesari. They
are all charming and excellent mountains. There is a large Sāka (Teak)
tree, frequented by the Siddhas and Gandharvas; and the wind produced by
its fluttering leaves, spreads joy. The holy lands of this insular
continent were inhabited by people of four castes. There are seven
sacred rivers which remove all sins—they are Sukumari, Kamari, Nalini,
Dhenuka, Ikshu, Benuka and Gavasti. Besides these seven rivers there are
numerous rivulets. There are hundreds and thousands of mountains. People
residing in Jalada varsa partake of the waters of these rivers. They
seem to have come down from heaven to earth. In those divisions there is
no decrease of virtue; there is no quarrel and there is no deviation
from honesty. The four castes, Nriga, Magadha, Manasa and Mandaga
correspond respectively to Brāhmmanas, Kshatriyas, Vaiçyas and Sudras.
They worship Vishnu, in the form of the sun, having controlled their
minds with diverse pious observances. Sāka-dwipa, O Maitreya, is girt by
the sea of milk on all sides, as by a bracelet, which is of the same
dimension as the continent.

The sea of milk, O Brahman, is again encircled on all sides by the
insular continent of Pushkara, which is twice the extent of Sāka-dwipa.
The king Savala of Pushkara had two sons; one was named Mahavira and the
other Dhataki; and the two varsas were named after them. O great sage,
there is only one mighty range of mountains, named Mānosattara, which
runs in a circular direction like an armlet. It is fifty thousand
yojanas in height and the same in breadth, circular on all sides, and
divides the island in the middle, as if like a bracelet into two
divisions. And being divided into two portions by that mountain they are
also of a circular form. There the people live for ten thousand years,
freed from disease, sorrow, anger and jealousy. There is neither virtue
nor vice, killer nor slain: there is no jealousy, envy fear, hatred,
malice, nor any moral delinquency. The varsa situate on the outside of
Mānosattara is called Mahavira and the one situate inside is called
Dhataki: they are both frequented by the celestials and Dānavas. And in
that island of Pushkara there is neither truth nor falsehood. And in
that insular continent divided into two portions there is no other
mountain nor river. All men and celestials here have the same form and
dress. There is no distinction of caste or order; they do not perform
rites and the three Vedas, Puranaa, ethics, polity and the laws of
service are unknown there. These two portions, O Maitreya, might be
denominated as paradise on earth. In these two varsas of Dhataki and
Mahavira, where time affords delight to the inhabitants who are freed
from sickness and decay. There is a Nyagrodha-tree (Fisucus-indica) on
this insular continent which is a favourite resort of Brahmā and where
he lives worshipped by the celestials and Asuras. Pushkara is encircled
by Syaduka ocean (sea of fresh water) which is of equal extent with the

In this way the seven insular continents are encircled by seven seas and
each ocean and island is twice the dimension of that which precedes it.
The water, in all these oceans, remains the same at all seasons and
never increases or diminishes. Like the water in a cauldron, which
expands in consequence of heat, the waters of the oceans swell with the
increase of the moon, O foremost of Munis. Except in the light and dark
fortnights the waters neither increase nor decrease. O great Muni, the
rise and fall of the waters is five hundred and ten inches. In this
island of Pushkara, O Brahman, foods are produced spontaneously and
people there enjoy viands of various flavours.

Beyond the sea of fresh water, there is the land of gold which is twice
its extent where no living beings dwell. Beyond that is the mountain
Lokaloka which is a ten thousand yojanas in height and as many in
breadth. The other side of the mountain is enshrouded with perpetual
darkness which again is encircled by the shell of egg.

Such, O Maitreya, is the earth with all its continents, mountains and
oceans and exterior shell. The extent of the earth is five hundred
millions. It is the mother and nurse of beings, the foremost of all
elements and the stay of all the worlds.


Parāçara said:—The extent of the earth has been related to you by me. I
have also said, O twice-born one, that the depth below the surface is
seventy thousand yojanas. O foremost of Munis, each of the seven regions
of Pātāla, extends over ten thousand yojanas. They are seven in
number—namely Atala, Vitala, Nitala, Gavastimat, Malmtala, Sutala and
Pātāla. Thus soil is severally white, black, purple, yellow, sandy,
stony and of gold. They are adorned with numberless palaces in which
reside Dānavas, Daityas, Yakshas and serpents by hundreds, O great Muni.
Once on a time Nārada, after coming back to heaven from these regions,
declared amongst the gods that Pātāla was much more charming than
heaven. He exclaimed "What can be compared with Pātāla where Nāgas are
adorned with beautiful and brilliant and pleasure-diffusing gems? This
region is embellished with the daughters of Daityas and Dānavas. Who
does not find delight in Pātāla? Even those who have retired from the
world find delight therein. By day, the rays of the sun diffuse joy and
not heat; by night the moon diffuses illumination and not cold. There
the sons of Danu, always happy in the enjoyment of sweet foods and good
wines, do not know how the time glides away. There are many charming
forests, rivers and ponds abounding in lotuses and the skies are
resonant with the Koil's song. Charming ornaments, fragrant perfumes,
unguents, the sweet music of the lute, pipe and tabor are always enjoyed
by the Daityas, Dānavas and serpents who dwell in the regions of

Below the regions of Patala there is a form of Vishnu called Sesha[234]
which is the outcome of the quality of darkness. The Daityas and Dānavas
are incapable of counting the glories of this Deity. This is called
Ananta by the ascetics of accomplished piety and is worshipped by the
celestials and great sages. He has a thousand heads which are adorned
with mystic lines. For the behoof of the world he illuminates all the
quarters with the jewels on his thousand fangs and all the Asuras are
disabled thereby. His eye rolls perpetually in consequence of
inebriation; he has an excellent Kundala, a diadem on his head and a
wreath upon each brow. He shined brilliantly like a white mountain
topped with flame. He always wears a purple raiment, is always drunk,
and adorned with a white necklace and appears like another Kailasha with
sable clouds and the Ganges flowing. In one hand he holds a plough and
in the other a mace. And he is being worshipped by the Goddess of wealth
incarnate and Vāruni (the goodness of wine). At the time of great
dissolution proceeds from his mouth the venomed fire in the form of
Rudra, which devours the three Worlds. This Sesha form of the great God
worshipped by celestials, is in Pātāla, bearing the entire world on his
head like a diadem. Even the celestials are not capable of describing or
knowing his strength, prowess, form and nature. Who can describe his
prowess who holds the entire earth like a garland of flowers tinged with
purple dye by the brilliance of jems on his crests?

When this Ananta, with his eyes rolling with intoxication, yawns the
entire earth with its oceans, rivers and forests trembles; the
Gandharvas, the Apsaras, Siddhas, Kinnaras, serpents and Charanas have
not been able to find out the end of the qualities of his Being without
end and hence he is called Ananta. The sandal paste, which is ground by
the wives of the Nagas, is spread around by his breath and scatters
fragrance all over the quarters.

Having worshipped him the ancient sage Garga obtained from him a
knowledge of astronomy, of the planets and of the good and evil presaged
by the aspects of the heavens.

The earth is supported by that Great Serpent, upon his head; and the
earth again holds the garland of spheres along with men, celestials and


Parāçara said:—O Brahman, there are some hells below the earth and the
waters into which sinners fall. I shall give you an account, O great

The names of the various hells are: Raurava, Sukara, Rodha, Tala,
Visāsana, Mahajwala, Taptakumbha, Lavana, Vimohana, Rudhirāndha,
Vaitarani, Krimishā, Krimibhojana, Asipatravana, Krishna, Lalābhaksha,
Daruna, Puyavāha, Pāpa, Vahnijwala, Adhosiras, Sandansa, Kālasutra,
Tamas, Avichi, Swabhojana, Apratishtha, and another Avichi. These are
the dreadful hells constituting the various provinces of the kingdom of
Yama dreadful with his instruments of torture, into which are hurled
down those persons, who are addicted to sinful actions.

Those who give false evidence, those who act as mediators through
partiality, those who speak untruth, are thrown into the Raurava
(dreadful) hell. He, who causes abortion, devastates a town, kills a
cow, or strangles a man to death goes to the Rodha hell (or that of
obstruction). He who drinks intoxicating liquors, destroys a Brāhmana,
steals gold or associates with them who perpetrate these crimes, goes to
the Sukara (swine) hell. He, who murders a Kshatriya or a Vaiçya or
commits adultery with the wife of his preceptor, is despatched to the
Tālā (padlock) hell. And one, who holds incestuous intercourse with his
sister or slays royal emissary, goes to Taptakumbha (heated jar) hell.
One, who sells his chaste wife, the jailor, one who deals in horses and
forsakes his followers, is sent to Taptalohā (red-hot iron) hell. One
who commits incest with a daughter-in-law and daughter is sent into
Mahajawla hell. That vile of a man who disrespects his spiritual guide
or his betters, who reviles the Vedas or sells them and who associates
with women to whom they should not go, is sent into Lavana hell. A thief
and a hater of prescribed rites fall into Vimohana hell. He who
disrespects his father, the Brahmanas and the gods, or one who spoils
gems, falls into the Krimibhoksha hell. He, who practises magic rites to
injure others, falls into Krimisa hell. That vile of a man who takes his
meals before offering food to the gods, to the manes and guests is
despatched into Lalabhoksha hell (where saliva is given for food.) One
who makes arrows is sent into Vidhaka hell. He, who makes lances, swords
and other weapons, is sent into the dreadful hell of Visashana
(murderous.) He who takes bribes is sent into Adhomukha hell (in which
head is inverted) as well as he who offers sacrifices to improper
objects and predicts the movements of stars and planets. One who eats
alone sweetmeats, a Brāhmana who deals in lac, flesh, liquors, sesamum,
or salt, one who commits violence, and those who rear up cats, cocks,
goats, dogs, hogs and birds are despatched into hell Puyavaha (or where
matter flows.) The Brāhman who leads the life of an actor, fisherman,
who depends upon a person born in adultery, who is a prisoner, an
informer, one who lives by his wife's immoral habits, who looks to
secular affairs on Parva days, who is an incendiary, a faithless friend,
a soothsayer, who vends birds, performs religious rites for the rustics,
who sells the juice of some trees is thrown into Rudhirandha hell (whose
wells are blood). He, who spoils honey or devastates a village, is sent
into Vaitarani hell. He, who causes impotence, trespasses upon others'
lands, is impure and lives on magic rites, is sent into the Krishna hell
(black). He who uselessly cuts down trees goes to Asipatravana hell;
Those who tend on sheep, those who hunt deer and those who give fire to
unbaked vessels are sent to Vahnijwāla hell or of fiery flame. One, who
violates his own vow or transgresses the rules of his own order, goes
into the Sandansana (or the hell of pincers.) The religious student who
sleeps in the day and becomes defiled and those who receive instruction
from their children go to the hell called Swābhojana (where they feed
upon dogs).

Besides these there are hundreds and thousands of other hells, where
persons, perpetrating diverse iniquities, are visited with various
punishments. There are thousands of hells like the numberless crimes
committed by men, in which they are punished according to the nature of
their offences. And those who swerve from the obligations laid upon them
by their caste or order, in thought, word or deed are thrown into these
hells. The celestials are seen by those who are thrown into these hells,
with their own heads inverted and the celestials also behold the
inhabitants of hell with their heads downwards. After undergoing the
sufferings of hell the sinners go through the various stages of
existence, namely:—inanimate things, the aquatic animals, birds,
animals, men, pious men, gods and liberated spirits. O great sage, each
of these stages is in succession a thousand degrees superior to that
which precedes it. People go through these stages until they obtain
emancipation. There are as many inhabitants in hell as are in heaven:
those who commit sin and do not make an expiation of guilt proceed to
hell. Becoming acts of expiation for every short of iniquity have been
laid down by the great sages. O Maitreya, Swayambhuba and others have
dictated severe penances for great crimes, and light ones for ordinary
offences. Amongst the numerous arduous penances laid down by them, the
remembrance of Hari is the foremost. For them, who are penitent after
having committed many iniquities, the greatest penance is the
remembrance of Hari. If a man meditates upon Hari either in the morning,
at sunset, midday or at night he is released from all sins. By
meditating upon Vishnu he is released from the heap of worldly
afflictions. He obtains final emancipation considering even heaven as
impediment. He, whose mind is devoted to Vāsudeva in prayer, burnt
offering or adoration, considers, O Maitreya, even the dignity of Indra
as an obstacle to the acquirement of final liberation. What is the use
of going to heaven whence it is necessary to come back to earth? And how
different is the meditation of Vāsudeva which leads to final liberation.
Therefore, O Muni, the man, who meditates upon Vāsudeva day and night,
is released from all sins and does not go to Naraka after death. O
foremost of twice-born ones, that which gives delight to mind is heaven,
and that which gives pain is hell, hence vice is denominated as hell and
virtue as heaven. The self-same thing some times gives delight,
sometimes produces pains, sometimes excites jealousy and sometimes
anger. Therefore every thing (in this world) is the source of
miseries.[235] The same thing at one time brings on anger and again
conduces to our delight. Therefore nothing in itself is either
pleasurable or painful; pleasure, pain and the like merely denominate
the various states of the mind. Therefore true wisdom consists only in
the knowledge of Brahmā, which brings on confinement to the world. True
wisdom pervades through the whole universe and there is the existence of
no other thing but this; ignorance and knowledge are therefore comprised
in true wisdom, O Maitreya. O twice-born one, I have thus described to
you the entire earth, all the divisions of the region under the earth
and the hells, the oceans, the mountains, the insular continents, and
the rivers. I have described all to you in short, what again do you


Maitreya said:—The entire earth has been described to me by you. O
Brahman, I wish to hear now, O Muni, an account of the regions above the
world, the Bhuvar-loka, the situation and dimension of the heavenly
bodies. Do you relate them to me, O great sage. Parāçara said—The
terrestrial sphere (or Bhurloka) comprising the oceans, rivers and
mountains extends as far as it is illuminated by the rays of the sun and
the moon. The atmospheric sphere (or the Bhuvar-loka), of the same
extent both in diameter and circumference, spreads upwards, O twice-born
one, as far as the heaven. The solar region is situated a hundred
thousand yojanas from the earth; and the region of the moon is situated
at an equal distance from the sun. About the same distance above the
moon is situated the orbit of all the lunar constellations. And two
hundred thousand yojanas, upwards, O Brahman, is situated the region of
the planet Budha (Mercury). And at the same distance above that is
situate the planet Sukra (Venus). And at the same distance above that is
Angaraka (Mars). And at the same distance above that is the priest of
gods (Vrihaspati or Jupiter). And Sani (Saturn) is two hundred and fifty
thousand yojanas above Jupiter. O foremost of twice-born ones, one
hundred thousand leagues above that is the region of seven Rishis. And
at a similar distance above that is Dhruva (the pole-star) the axis of
the circle of planets. Thus I have described to you, O great Muni, the
elevation of three spheres, which constitute the region of the fruits of
works. And the land of works is also here namely Bhārata. At a distance
of one Koti yojanas above Dhruva is Maharloha (the region of saints) the
inhabitants of which live for a Kalpa (or a day of Brahmā). And at a
distance of two Koti yojanas above that is Janaloka where reside the
pure-minded sons of Brahmā, Sananda and others, of whom I had described
to you before, O Maitryeya. And at a distance of eight Koti yojanas is
Tapa-loka where reside the celestials named Baibhrajas, unconsumable by
fire. At six times the distance from Tapa-loka is situated Satya-loka,
wherein the inhabitants do not know death and which is otherwise named
Brahmā-loka. Wherever earthly object exists which may be trodden by
feet, that makes up Bhur-loka whose dimensions I have already described
to you. The region that extends from the earth to the sun is called
Bhur-loka, inhabited by the Siddhas, Munis and others and which is
called the second sphere, O foremost of sages. The distance, between the
Sun and Dhruva which extends over fourteen hundred thousands leagues, is
called Swar-loka by those who are conversant with the position of
planets. These three spheres are called transitory, O Maitreya and
three, Jana, Tapa and Satya, are termed durable. And Mahar-loka, which
is situated between these two, partakes of the nature of the both and
though it becomes devoid of all beings at the end of Kalpa it is not
finally destroyed. I have thus described to you, O Maitreya, the seven
Lokas, and the seven Pātālas constituting the extent of the whole world.

As the seed is covered by its rind so the world is girt on every side
and above and below by the shell of the egg of Brahmā. And this shell
again, O Maitreya, is encircled by water which extends over space equal
to ten times the earth. And the waters again are encompassed on the
outer surface by fire. And this fire is encompassed by the air, and the
air by the sky, the sky by the origin of the elements and that again by
the intellect, O Maitreya. And each of these even extends ten times the
breadth of one it encircles, O Maitreya. And the last is encircled by
the Chief-Principle.[236] This supreme nature has no end and cannot be
measured. It is therefore called endless, immeasurable and the cause of
all existing things. This Prakriti, O Muni, is the source of the endless
universe and of thousand, ten thousands and millions and thousands of
millions of mundane eggs. As fire exists in wood, oil exists in
sessamum, so the self-conscious, all-spreading and self-irraviating soul
exists in this Pradhāna. O thou of great intellect, this nature and soul
exist as dependants and are encompassed by the energy of Vishnu, which
is the soul of the universe. O thou of great mind, this energy of Vishnu
separates them at the time of dissolution and unites them at the time of
creation. And this at the beginning of creation is the cause of this
agitation. As the wind agitates the surface of water in a hundred
bubbles so this energy of Vishnu which is at one with the nature and
soul influences the universe.[237] As a tree, containing root, stem and
branches, originates from an original seed and produces other seeds,
from which grow other trees, similar in kind to the first, so from
Pradhanā germinate intellect and other rudiments of things—from them
grow grosser elements—from them Asuras and others and who again are
followed by sons and sons of sons. As the first tree is not spoiled when
another grows out of it so there is no waste of beings by the creation
of others. As space, time and the like are the cause of the tree so the
divine Hari is the cause of the developments of the universe. As all the
portions of the plant remaining in the seed of rice, or the root, the
culm, the leaf, the short, the stem, the bud, the fruit, the milk, the
grain, the chaff, the ear, grow up when they come in contact with those
things which help their growth (earth and water), so the celestials, men
and other beings, remaining in the states to which they are destined in
consequence of their good or bad actions, appear in their full growth by
virtue of the energy of Vishnu. He is Vishnu, the great Brahmā, from
whom the creation of the universe has proceeded, who is the world, in
whom the world exists and in whom it will be dissolved. He is Brahmā,
the excellent abode, the excellent state, the essence of all that is
visible and invisible, from whom proceeds, the creation, animate and
inanimate. He is the primary nature, manifestation of the universe, in
whom all beings exist and in whom all beings will finally immerge. He is
the performer of all devotional rites, he is the sacrifice; he is the
fruit that it confers and he is the tools by which it is celebrated.
There is no other thing but Hari.


Parāçara said:—I have described to you the system of the universe in
general: I shall now describe the situations and dimensions of the sun
and other luminaries.

O foremost of Munis, the chariot of the sun is nine thousand leagues in
length and the pole is of twice that size; the axle is more than fifteen
millions and seven hundred thousand yojanas long, on which a wheel is
placed with three naves,[238] five spokes and six peripheries. It is
undecaying and continues for the year and consequently all the cycles of
the time are placed herein. The second axle of his chariot is forty five
thousand, five hundred leagues long. O thou of great mind, the two
halves of the yoke are respectively as long as two axles. The short axle
and the short yoke are supported by pole star: the end of the longer
axle to which is fixed the wheel is situate on Manasa mountain. The
seven steeds which draw the sun's car are the metres of the Vedas
Gāyatri, Vrihati, Ushnih, Jayati, Tristubh, Anustubh and Pankti.

The city of Vāsava is situated on the eastern side of the Mānosottara
mountain, on its southern side is the city of wealth, on its western
side is the city of Varuna and on the northern side is the city of Soma.
I shall relate the names of those cities; do thou hear them. The city of
Sakra is named Vaswoksārā, that of Yama is called Samyamani; that of
Varuna is named Mukhyā and that of Soma Vibhāvari.

O Maitreya, the glorious sun moves speedily like a dart on his southern
course attended by the constellations of the Zodiac; He creates day and
night and is the divine path of the sages who have got over the worldly

O Maitreya, while in one insular continent the sun shines in midday, in
the opposite Dwipas it will be midnight; rising and setting thus take
place at all seasons and are always opposed in the different cardinal
and intermediate points of horizon. Wherever the sun is visible he is
said to rise there and wherever he disappears from view he is said to be
set. In sooth, their is neither rising nor setting of the sun; for he
always exists; the appearance and disappearance of the sun are merely
called rising and setting.

When the sun is in the cities of Sakra and others, the three cities and
two intermediate points are illuminated; and when he is in an
intermediate point he extends light to the two cities and three
intermediate points. From the time of his rising till midday the rays of
the sun gradually increase; and from then he moves towards setting with
his diminishing rays. By the rising and the setting of the sun the east
and west quarters are ascertained. As far as the sun shines in front so
far he shines behind, and thus on both the sides illuminating all the
places except the court of Brahmā which is situate on the summit of
Meru—the mountain of the celestials. When the rays of the sun reach the
court of Brahmā they are repelled and driven back by the radiance which
prevails there. Consequently there is the alternation of day and night
in northern quarter in as much as all the insular continents are
situated on the north of Meru.

The radiance of the sun, after its setting, is deposited in fire and
hence fire is visible even at a greater distance in night. During day
the rays of fire enter into the sun by virtue of which the sun becomes
more brilliant. Elemental light and heat, proceeding respectively from
the sun and fire and mixing with each other, prevail in diverse degrees
both by day and night. When the sun prevails either in the northern or
southern hemisphere day or night goes into waters according as they are
attacked by darkness or light; it is for this reason that waters appear
dark by day because night is within them and white by night because when
the sun is set the light of the day enters therein.

When the sun goes to Pushkara Dwipa, a thirtieth part of the
circumference of the globe, his course is equal in time to one Muhurtta;
and whirling round like the circumference of the wheel of a potter he
alternately spreads day and night on the surface of the earth. At the
beginning of his northern course the sun passes to Capricornus, thence
to Aquarias, thence to Pisces, successively passing from one sign of the
Zodiac to another. After he has gone through them the sun gets at the
vernal equinox when he makes the day and night of equal duration. From
then the length of the night decreases and the day grows longer until
the sun reaches the end of Gemini when he follows a different course and
entering Cancer begins his declension to the south. The sun moves
quickly on his southern course like the circumference of a potter's
wheel revolving respectively. He glides along his course with the
velocity of the wind and traverses a great distance in a short time. In
twelve Muhurttas it goes through thirteen lunar asterisms and a half
during the day, and during the night, it goes through the same distance
only in eighteen Muhurttas. As the centre of the potter's wheel revolves
more slowly than the circumference so the sun in his northern course
revolves with less rapidity and passes over a less space of the earth in
a longer time, until at the end of his northern route the day is again
eighteen Muhurttas long and the night twelve the sun passing through
them by day and night respectively in those periods. As the lump of the
clay on the centre of the potter's wheel revolves most slowly, so the
polar star, which is the centre of the Zodiacal wheel, moves very slowly
and always remains in the centre like the clay. The relative length of
the day or night is dependant upon the greater or less motion with which
the sun revolves through the degrees between the two points of horizon.
During the midday when his diurnal course is quickest his nocturnal is
slowest and when he moves quickly by night he moves slowly by day. The
length of his journey in both the cases is the same; for during the day
and night he travels through all the signs of the Zodiac or six by night
and six by day. The length and shortness of the day are measured by the
extent of the signs; and the duration of day and night is measured by
the period which the sun takes to pass through them. When he declines
towards the north the sun moves quickest by night and slowest by day and
when he declines towards the south the case is thoroughly the reverse.

The night is called Ushā and the day is called Vyushta and the
intervening time between them is called Sandhyā. When the dreadful
Sandhya sets in, the awful Rākshasas named Mandehas attempt to devour
the sun. O Maitreya, the Patriarch Brahmā imprecated this curse upon
them that they should perish by day and revive at other times. For this
reason a fierce contest takes place daily between them and the sun. At
this time, O great Muni, the pious Brahmins scatter water purified by
the mystical Omkāra and consecrated by the Gayatri[239] and by means of
this water as by a thunder-bolt the dreadful Rākshasas are destroyed.
While during the course of morning rites the first oblation is offered
with solemn invocations, the sun, having thousand rays, appears with
unclouded splendour. Omkāra is the glorious Vishnu, the essence of the
three Vedas, the lord of speech; and by its mention the Rākshasas are
slain. The sun is a principal portion of Vishnu and light is his
immutable essence, the manifestation of which is made by the mystic
syllable Om. Light, spread by the utterance of Omkāra, becomes radiant
and burns up completely the Rākshasas denominated as Mandebas. Therefore
one should not be dilatory in the performance of Sandhyā sacrifice; for
he, who neglects it, is guilty of the murder of the sun. Being thus
protected by the Brahmanas called Bālakhilyas the sun proceeds to
protect the world.

Fifteen Nimeshas (twinkling of the eye) make a Kāshthā; thirty Kāshthās
make one Kalā; thirty Kalās a Muhurtta and thirty Muhurttas a day and
night; the divisions of the day become longer or shorter in the way
explained before. But as regards increase or decrease Sandhyā is always
the same for it is only one Muhurtta. From the time when half of the
sun's orb is visible to the expiration of three Muhurttas the interval
is called Prātar (morning) forming a fifth portion of the day. The next
portion or three Muhurttas from morning is called Sangava (forenoon);
the three next Muhurttas make the midday; the three next Muhurttas
constitute the afternoon; the three next Muhurttas make the evening; and
thus the fifteen Muhurttas of the day are divided into five portions of
three each. But the day comprises fifteen Muhurttas only at the
Equinoxes and increases and diminishes in number as the sun declines
towards the north or the south, when the day encroaches upon the night
and the night upon the day. The equinoxes take place during the spring
and autumn when the sun enters the signs of Aries and Libra. When the
sun enters Capricorn his progress towards the north begins and when he
enters Cancer his progress towards the south commences. Fifteen days of
thirty Muharttas each are called a Paksha (fortnight); two fortnights
make one month and two months a solar season and three seasons make one
Ayana (a northern or southern declination) and two Ayanas make one year.
Years are made up of four kinds of months[240] and five years make one
Yuga or cycle. The years are respectively called Samvatsara,
Parivatsara, Idvatsara, Anuvatsara and Vatsara. This is the time called
a Yuga.

The mountain that is situate in the north of Bhāratvarsa is called
Sringavān for its having three principal horns or peaks, one to the
north, one to the south and one in the centre. The last is called
equinoctial for the sun goes there in the middle of the two seasons of
spring and autumn, arriving at the equinoctical points in the first
degrees of Aries and Libra and making day and night of equal duration of
fifteen Muhurttas each. When the sun is in the first degree of Kirtikā
and the moon in the fourth of Visakhā or when the sun is in the third
degree of Visakhā and the moon is in the head of Kirtikā that
equinoctial season is holy and is called the Mahāvishubha. At this time
devout persons should make offering to the celestials and the manes and
gifts to the Brahmans, for such gifts produce happiness. Liberality at
the equinoxes is always fruitful to the donor, and day and night
seconds, minutes and hours, intercalary months, the day at full moon
(Paurnamāsi); the day of conjunction, when the moon rises invisible, the
day when it is first seen, the day when it first disappears, the day
when the moon is quite round and the day when one digit is deficient are
the seasons when gifts prove meritorious.

The sun declines towards the north in the months of Tapas, Tapasya,
Madhu, Mādhava, Sukra and Suchi and declines towards the south in the
months of Nabhas, Nabhashya, Isha; Urja, Sahas, Sahasya.

There live four devout protectors of the world on the mount Lokāloka of
which I had mentioned to you formerly. These are severally named
Sudhāman, Sankhapād—the two sons of Kardama, Hiranyaroman and Ketumat.
These four protectors of the world live around the mountain Lokāloka.
They are devoid of malice, haughtiness, are active and have not taken to

On the north of Agastya, and south of Ajabithi (the line of the Goat)
and outside the Vaiswānarapath is situate the road of the Pitris. There
live the great Rishis who offer oblations to the fire. They read those
portions of the Vedas which contain injunctions for the multiplication
of the progeny. They perform the duties of ministrant priests and at the
end of yugas they make new rules of conduct and re-establish the
interrupted ritual of the Vedas. And after their death they proceed by
the southern course. Mutually descending from each other in successive
births, progenitor coming from descendant and descendant from
progenitor, they repeatedly appear in different houses and races along
with their prosterity, austere practices and established rites, residing
to the south of the solar orb as long as the moon and stars endure.

The path of the celestials is situate on the north of the solar sphere
of the Nāgavithi and south of the seven Rishis. There reside the Siddhas
of subdued senses, continent and pure, not desirous of having offspring
and consequently victorious over death. Eighty-eight thousand of these
continent ascetics live in the regions north of the Sun till the time of
dissolution. They are freed from covetousness and concupiscence, love
and hatred and are not engaged in the work of procreation. They always
detect the deficiency of the properties of elementary matter and being
freed from these desires they do not meet with any obstacle in the way
of asceticism. For these reasons they are highly pure and have attained
to immortality. By immortality is meant existence to the end of the
Kalpa: living as long as three regions exist is exemption from death.
The consequences of the acts of impiety or piety such as Brahmanicide
and Aswamedha last until the end of a Kalpa when all within the interval
between Dhruva and the earth is destroyed. The region between the seven
Rishis and Dhruva, the third region of the sky is the excellent
celestial path of Vishnu and is the splendid abode, O twice-borne one,
of the ascetics, who have controlled their senses and are freed from
sins and in whom virtue and vice are annihilated. Those in whom virtue
and vice are annihilated and who are freed from the consequences of
piety or iniquity go to this excellent place of Vishnu where they never
suffer sorrow. There live Dharma, Dhruva and other spectators of the
world radiant with the superhuman faculties of Vishnu obtained by
virtue, of religious meditation. With this excellent place of Vishnu, O
Maitreya, are interwoven all that is and all that ever shall be, animate
or inanimate. The seat of Vishnu is being meditated upon by the wisdom
of Yogis at one with supreme light as the radiant eye of heaven. In this
portion the splendid Dhruva is stationed as the pivot of atmosphere. On
Dhruva are placed the seven great planets and on them depend the clouds.
O great Muni, from clouds, proceed the rains; from them the water which
is the nutriment and delight of all the celestials and the rest. The
celestials who receive oblations, being pleased by burnt offerings,
cause the rain to fall for the support of created beings. This holy seat
of Vishnu is the stay of the three worlds as it is the source of the

From this region, O Brahman, proceeds the river Ganges, that removes ail
sins, embrowned with the unguents of the nymphs of heaven. She issues
from the nail of the great toe of Vishnu's left foot.

Dhruva, with devotion, holds her on his crown day and night. And thence
the seven Rishis practise their devout austerities in her water
wreathing their braided locks with her waves. The orb of the moon,
surrounded by her accumulated current, increased in lustre by her
contact. Having issued from the moon she falls on the mount Sumeru and
thence to purify the world, flows to the four quarters of the earth.
Sitā, Alakanandā, Chakshu and Bhadrā are only the four divisions of one
river and are named so after the regions towards which it proceeds.
Alakanandā, which flows towards the south, was borne delightedly on his
head by Mahādeva for more than a hundred years. And having issued from
the braided locks of Sambhu and washed the sins of the sinful sons of
Sagara it raised them to heaven. O Maitreya, the iniquities of any man,
who bathes in this river, are instantly removed and they obtain
unprecedented virtue. And its water, if offered reverentially for three
years by the sons to their manes, gives them rare gratification. Having
worshipped the excellent Purusha, the lord of sacrifices, with
sacrifices in this river, many, born in the race of twice-born ones,
obtain whatever they desire either here or in heaven. Saints, who are
purified by bathing in the waters of this river, and whose minds are
devoted to Kesava, obtain final liberation. The sacred river, when heard
of, desired, seen, touched, bathed in, or hymned, day by day purifies
all beings. And those who living even at a distance of hundred yojanas
exclaim "Gangā and Gangā" are relieved of the sins committed during the
three previous existences. The place from which this river has issued
for the purification of the three Worlds, is the third division of the
celestial region—the seat of Vishnu.


Parāçara said:—The form of the glorious Hari containing the
constellations, in the shape of a porpoise in the tail of which is
attached Dhruva, is seen in heaven. As Dhruva revolves, it makes the
moon, the sun and stars to revolve also, and all the planets follow in
its circular path; for the sun, moon and all the luminaries are in sooth
tied to the polar star by aerial cords. The porpoise figure of the
celestial sphere, which has been described by me to you, is upheld by
Nārāyana, who himself, the source of all radiance, is seated in its
heart. And having worshipped the lord of people, Dhruva, the son of
Uttānpāda shines in the tail of the steller porpoise. Janārddana, the
lord of all, is the supporter of this porpoise-shaped sphere—and this
sphere is the supporter of Dhruva; and by Dhruva the sun is upheld. O
Brahman, I shall describe how this earth is upheld by the sun; do thou
listen to it attentively.

During eight months of the year the sun attracts the waters of the
earth, and during the remaining four months he pours them upon the
earth: from rain grows corn and by corn the whole world is upheld. The
sun absorbs the moisture of the earth by means of his scorching rays and
nourishes the moon thereby. And the moon through tubes of air
distributes them to the clouds which are made of smoke, fire and wind.
The clouds are called Abhras because their contents are not dispersed.
The waters in the clouds, being driven by the wind, and freed from
impurities by the sweetening process of the time, descend (upon earth),
O Maitreya. The glorious sun, O Maitreya, exhales moisture from four
sources, namely—seas, rivers, the earth and the living creatures. He
immediately pours down on earth, without turning it into cloud, the
water that he absorbs from Gangā of the skies, and people who are
touched by this water are freed from all iniquities and are not
constrained to see hell. This is called celestial ablution. When the sun
comes in view and the water comes down from the sky without cloud then
the waters of the Gangā in the skies are sprinkled by the rays of the
sun. And the water that falls from the sky when the sun is in the
mansion of Kirtikā and the other asterisms counted by odd numbers, the
water of the Gangā is scattered by the elephants of the spheres. The
water, that falls from the bright and cloudless sky when the sun is in
the mansion of Rohini and other even asterisms, is distributed by his
own beams. O twice-born one, both the waters are holy and they wash away
the sins of the people: it is the water of the Gangā in the skies and is
termed celestial ablution.

The water that the clouds distribute upon earth is in fact the ambrosia
of living beings, for it sustains the plants which are the support of
their existence. By this water all vegetables grow and are matured and
become the means of bringing about the well being of mankind, seen and
unseen. Those men, who have got holy scriptures as their eyes, perform
sacrifices with them and give gratification to the celestials. In this
wise all sacrifices, all celestials, Brāhmanas and other castes, all
infernal creatures, all animals and the whole world are supported by the
rains which produce food. O great Muni, this rain, which is the source
of manifold blessings, proceeds from the sun. And the sun, O foremost of
Munis, is upheld by Dhruva, which is again supported by the
porpoise-shaped sphere which is at one with Nārāyana; for the
ever-existing glorious Nārāyana, the supporter of the universe and the
primary deity, is seated in the heart of the porpoise-shaped steller


Parāçara said:—Between the extreme northern and southern points the sun
has to travel in a year one hundred and eighty degrees, ascending and
descending. His car is guided by divine Adityas, Rishis, Gandharvas,
Apsarās, Yakshas, serpents, and Rākshasas. The Aditya Dhatri, the sage
Pulastya, the Gandharva Tumburu, the nymph Kratusthalā, the Yaksha
Rathakrit, the serpent Vāsuki and the Rākshasas Heti, live in the sun's
car as its seven guardians, in the month of Madhu or Chaitra. In the
month of Vaisākha or Mādhava the seven are Aryamat, Pulaha, Nāreda,
Punjikāsthali Rathaujas, Kachanira and Praheti. In the month of Suchi or
Jaistha they are Mitra, Atri, Hāhā Menā, Rathaswana, Takshaka, and
Paurusheya. In the month of Sukra or Ashādha they are Varuna, Vasishtha,
Huhu, Sahajanyā, Rathachitra, Nāga and Budha. In the month of Nabhas or
Srāvana they are Indra, Angiras, Viswāvasu, Pramlochā, Srotas and
Elapatra. In the month of Bhādrapada they are Vivaswat, Bhrigu,
Ugrasena, Anumlocha, Apurana, Sankhapāla and Vyāghra. In the month of
Aswin they are Pushan, Gautama, Suruchi, Ghritachi, Sushena, Dhananjaya
and Vāta. In the month of Kārtik they are Parjanya, Bharadwāja,
(another) Viswāvasu, Viswāchi, Senajit, Airāvata and Chāpa. In
Agrahāyana or Mārgasirsha they are Ansu, Kasyapa, Chitrasena, Urvasi
Tarkshya, Mahapadma and Vidyut. In the month of Pausha, Bhaga, Kratu,
Urnayu, Purvachitti, Arishtanemi, Karkotaka, and Sphurja are the seven
who live in the sun's orbit and distribute light throughout the
universe. In the month of Māgha the seven are, Twashtri, Jāmadagni,
Dhritarāshtra, Tillattamā, Ritajit, Kambala, and Brahmāpeta. In the
month of Phālghuna those living in the sun are Vishnu, Visvamitra,
Suryaverchchas, Rambhā, Satyajit, Aswatara and Yajnāpeta.

In this wise, O Maitreya, a group of seven celestial beings supported by
the energy of Vishnu lives, during the several months, in the orb of the
sun. The sage chants his glory, the Gandharva sings and the nymph dances
before him; the night-rangers attend upon his steps; the serpent
harnesses his horses and the Yaksha trims the reins and the Bālakhilyas
surround his chariot. O foremost of Munis, these seven groups, residing
in the suns, orb at their respective seasons, become the instrumentals
in the distribution of cold, heat and rain.


Maitreya said:—I have heard as described by you, O holy preceptor, the
seven groups of beings who are present in the sun's orb and are the
agents in the distribution of heat and cold. You have also described the
individual functions of the Gandharvas, serpents, Rākshasas, sages,
Bālakhilyas Apswarās and Yakshas who, supported by the energy of Vishnu,
remain as guardians in the sun's car but you have not described the
function of the sun himself. If the seven beings stationed in the sun's
ear are the agents in the distribution of heat, cold and rain, how can
it also be true, as mentioned by you before, that rain proceeds from the
sun? If the act of the collective seven be same then why the people say
that the sun rises, reaches the meridian or sets?

Parāçara said:—O Maitreya, hear what you have asked The sun, though at
one with seven beings in his orbit, is separate from them being their
head. The whole and great energy of Vishnu, which is called the three
Vedas,—Rich Yajush and Sāman lightens the whole universe and destroys
its iniquity. This energy exists as Vishnu for the preservation of the
universe and abiding as the three Vedas within the sun. And wherever in
every month the sun exists there is the Vishnu-energy composed of the
three Vedas. The Richas shine in the morning, the hymns of Yajush at
noon and Vrihadrathantara and other portions of the Sāman in the
afternoon. This threefold manifestation of Vishnu designated under the
three Vedas is the energy of Vishnu that Influences the divine positions
of the sun.

The energy of Vishnu docs not exist only in the rob of the sun but is
also manifest in Brahmā, Vishnu and Kudra. At the time of creation it is
Brahmā consisting of the Rig-veda in the work of preservation it is
Vishnu composed of the Yajur-Veda;—and in the work of destruction it is
Rudra formed of the Sāma-Veda, the utterance of which is therefore

In this way the energy of Vishnu composed of the three Vedas exists in
the sun encircled by the seven beings. And the glorious sun becomes
radiant by that energy of Vishnu and destroys the entire darkness of the
universe. The sages chant his glories, the Gandharvas sing and the
nymphs dance before him; the Rākshasas follow his steps, the serpents
harness his steeds and the Yakshas trim his reins and the Bālakhilyas
are seated around him. The seven beings in the sun's orb rise and set
every month, but Vishnu, in the shape of his energy, never rises nor
sets and is at once the sevenfold sun and distinct from it. As a man,
nearing a mirror kept on a stand, observe in it his own image so the
energy of Vishnu is never disjoined but remains month by month in the
sun which he there placed.

The sovereign sun gratifying the manes, gods and men, revolves being the
instrument of day and night. The moon is cherished by the Sushumna ray
of the sun. And in the dark fortnight of the month the ambrosia of its
substance is drunk by the celestials. And at the last day of the half
month the two remaining digits are drunk by the manes; then the
celestials and the progenitors are nourished by the sun. The moisture
which the sun attracts from the earth he again distributes for the
nourishment of animals and plants and thus the sun is the source of
subsistance to every living being—gods, manes, mankind and the rest. The
sun gratifies the celestials for a fortnight, the progenitors once a
month, and men and other animals every day.


Parāçara said—The car of the moon has three wheels and is drawn by ten
steeds white as the Jasmine—five on the right half and five on the left.
The asterisms upheld by Dhruva move before the sun. And the cords that
fasten the moon are tightened or relaxed in the same manner like those
of the sun. O foremost of Munis, like the steeds of the sun, the horses
of the moon, sprung from the waters, drag its car for a whole Kalpa. O
Maitreya, when the moon is reduced, having its rays drunk up by the
celestials, to a single Kalā, the radiant sun supplied it with a single
ray. And as the moon is gradually exhausted by the celestials it is
replenished in the same way every day with his rays by the sun, the
plunderer of waters. Thus, O Maitreya, when in the half month the
ambrosia is deposited in the moon, the celestials drink it for it
constitutes their food, Thirty-six thousand three hundred and thirty
three divinities drink the ambrosia of the moon. When two kalās remain
the moon enters the orbit of the sun and lives in the ray called Amā and
the period is accordingly called Amavasyā. During this period the moon
is first immersed for a day and night in the water; thence it enters the
branches and shoots of the trees and thence it proceeds to the sun.
Hence any person, who cuts off a branch or casts down a leaf when the
moon is in the trees is guilty of the crime consequent upon the
destruction of a Brāhmin. When the remainder of the moon contains but a
fifteenth portion the manes near it in the afternoon and drink the last
but sacred Kalā which is composed of ambrosia and contained in the two
digits. The nectar that comes from the rays of the moon on the day of
conjunction is drunk by the progenitors—and they remain satisfied
thereby for a month. The progenitors are divided into three
classes:—Saumyas, Varhishadas, and Agnishwātta. In this wise, the moon,
with its cooling rays, nourishes the celestials in the light fortnight
and Pitris in the dark fortnight. It nourishes the plants with its cool
nectary aqueous atoms. And through the development of those plants it
sustains men, animals and insects and satisfies them with its radiance.

The chariot of Budha, the son of the moon, is made of the wind and fire
and is drawn by eight bay horses gifted with the velocity of the wind.
The huge car of Sukra (Venus) is carried by earth-borne horses, equipped
with a protecting fender and a floor, armed with arrows and adorned with
a pennon. The magnificent car of Bhauma (Mars) is made of gold, of an
octagonal shape, drawn by eight steeds of a ruby red originated from
fire. Vrihaspati (Jupiter) in a golden car drawn by eight pale-coloured
steeds, travels, at the end of the year, from one sign to another. The
slow-paced Sani (Saturn) travels in a car drawn by piebald horses. O
Maitreya, the chariot of Rāhu are drawn by eight black horses, which
once harnessed are attached to it for ever. At the time of lunar and
solar eclipses the Rāhu travels from the sun to the moon and comes back
again from the moon to the sun. The car of Ketu is is drawn by eight
horses having fleetness of the wind and of the dusky red colour of lac
or of the smoke of burning straw.

I have thus described to you, O Maitreya, the chariots of the nine
planets all of which are fastened to Dhruva by aerial cords. To Dhruva
are attached the orbs of all the planets, asterisms and stars. And they
all move in their respective orbits being kept in their places by their
respective cords of air. As many are the stars so many are the aerial
cords by which they are fastened to Dhruva. As they turn round they
cause the pole-star to revolve. As the oilman goes round the spindle and
makes it revolve, so the planets revolve suspended by the aerial cords
which are also whirling round a centre. The air is called Pravāha
because it bears along the planets like a disc of fire driven by the
aerial wheel.

I have related to you, O foremost of Munis, that Dhruva is fitted to the
tail of the celestial porpoise: I shall now describe in detail the
constituent parts; hear them as they are of great efficacy. People are
freed from the sins committed by them during the day when they behold
the celestial porpoise in the hight. And those who behold it live as
many years as there are stars in it, in the sky or even more. Uttānpada
is the upper jaw and sacrifice the lower jaw of that celestial porpoise.
Dhruva is situated on its brow and Nārāyana in its heart. The Aswinis
are its two fore-feet and Varuna and Aryamat are its two hinder legs.
Samvatsara is its sexual organ and Mitra is its organ of execretion.
Agni, Mahendra, Kasyapa and Dhurva are successively placed in its tail;
which four stars in this constellation never set.

I have thus related to you the situation of the earth and the stars. I
had already described to you the Varshas and rivers and the animals
living there. I shall again describe them in short: hear them.

From the waters which constitute the person of Vishnu originated the
lotus-shaped earth with its seas and mountains. The stars are Vishnu,
the words are Vishnu: forests, mountains, regions, streams, seas are
Vishnu—all that is, all that shall be—all that is not are Vishnu. The
glorious Vishnu is identical with knowledge. He has got endless forms
but is not a substance. All the mountains, oceans and the various
divisions of the earth you must consider to be the illusions of the
apprehension. When knowledge is pure, real, universal, independent of
actions, freed from defect then the varieties of substance, which are
the fruits of the tree of desire, cease to exist in matter. What is
substance? What thing is that which has got no beginning, no middle and
no end? And which is of one uniform nature? How can that object be
called real which is subject to change and which reassumes no more its
original character? The earth is seen as a jar; the jar is divided into
two halves which are again broken into pieces: they again become dust
and the dust is again reduced into atoms. Is this reality? And although
it is considered so by man it is because his self-knowledge is
obstructed by his own acts. Therefore, O Brahman, there is nothing
anywhere, or anything real at any time save discriminative knowledge. On
account of the diversity of their actions, people, having diverse
temperaments, consider that one knowledge as manifold. Knowledge perfect
and pure, freed from pains and renouncing attachments towards all these
which cause affliction—knowledge, single and eternal is the supreme
Vāsudeva, besides whom there is nothing. I have thus communicated to you
the truth—the knowledge which is truth; and all that differs from it is
false. That which is seen by the knowledge is but illusion of a temporal
and worldly nature. I have also described to you the sacrifice, the
victim, the fire, the priests, the acid, juce, the celestials, the
desire for heaven, the path followed by acts of devotion and the worlds
that are their outcome. In this universe which I have described to you
only those people travel who are subject to the influence of actions.
But he, who knows Vasudeva to be eternal, immutable, and of one
unchanging, universal form, should so perform them that he may enter
into the deity.


Maitreya said:—"O respected Sir, all that I ask of you, has been
perfectly related by you, namely the situation of the earth, seas,
mountains, rivers, and planets, the system of the three worlds of which
Vishnu is the support; you have also related that the holy knowledge is
pre-eminent. You said that you would relate the story of Bharata, the
lord of the earth: it becomes you now to relate that. Bharata, the
protector of the earth, lived at the holy pilgrimage of Sālagrām. And he
was engaged in devotion with his mind ever attached to Vāsudeva. Living
at a sacred place he was always devoted to Hari: Why then he failed to
obtain final liberation, O twice-born one? And why was he born again as
a Brahmin, O foremost of Munis? It becomes you to relate this".

Parāçara said:—The illustrious lord of the earth, O Maitreya, lived for
a long time at Sālagrām having his mind wholly devoted to the glorious
God. And having been considered, on account of his kindness and other
virtues, the foremost of the virtuous, he secured in the highest degree,
the entire control over his mind. The Raja was ever repeating the names
Yajnesa, Achyuta, Govinda, Mādhava, Ananta, Keshava, Krishna, Vishnu,
Hrishikesa. And nothing else than this did he utter even in his dreams:
nor did he meditate upon anything, but those names and their
significance. He accepted fuel, flowers and holy grass for the worship
of the deity and did he celebrate no other religious observance being
entirely given to disinterested abstract devotion.

One day he went to the river Mahānadi for the purpose of ablution. And
having bathed there he engaged in after ceremonies. Whilst thus engaged
there came to the same spot a doe big with young who had come out of the
forest to drink of the stream. Whilst the doe was drinking there was
audible a dreadful uproar of a lion capable of striking terror into all
creatures. Thereupon, the doe, greatly terrified, jumped out of the
water on the banks; on account of this great leap her fawn was suddenly
brought forth and fell into the river. And beholding it carried away by
the stream the king suddenly caught hold of the young one and saved it
from being drowned. The injury which the doe had received on account of
the violent exertion proved fatal. She lay down and died. Having
observed this the royal ascetic took the fawn in his arms and came back
to the hermitage. There he fed it and nursed it every day: and under his
fostering care it throve and grew up. It frolicked about the hermitage
and grazed upon the grass in its neighbourhood. And sometimes afraid of
a tiger it used to come to the ascetic. In this wise the young one
sometimes wandered far away in the morning and came back to the
hermitage in the evening and frolicked in the leafy bower of Bharata.

His mind, O twice-born one, was thus attached to that animal, playing
either in the neighbourhood or at some distance and he was unable to
think of anything else. And the king, although he had severed all bonds
of attachments towards his friends, his kingdom, his son and wife, grew
inordinately attached to this fawn. When absent for an unusually long
time he would think that it had been carried away by wolves, devoured by
a tiger or slain by a lion. He used to cry out,—'The earth is embrowned
with the prints of its hoofs. What has become of the fawn that was born
for my delight? How happy I should become if he had come back from the
forest. I felt his budding antlers rubbing against my arm. These tufts,
of sacred grass, the heads of which have been nibbed by his new teeth,
look like pious lads chanting the Shama-Veda.'

Whenever this fawn used to absent itself for a long time from the
hermitage the ascetic would think thus. And he was delighted and his
countenance grew animated whenever it neared him. His mind being thus
engrossed by the fawn his abstraction was interrupted although he had
renounced family, wealth and kingdom. His mind became unsettled with the
wanderings of the fawn. Whenever it wandered away to a great distance
the king's mind followed it and when it was silent his mind became
settled. Thus in the course of time the king became subject to its
influences and was watched by the deer with tearful eyes like a son
mourning for the father. And the king, when he died, saw the young fawn
only before him; and having his mind engrossed by him, O Maitreya, he
did not see anything else.

On account of such feeling at such an hour he was born again in
Jambumarga forest as a deer with the faculty of recollecting his former
life. Cherishing a distaste for the world on account of this
recollection he left his mother and again repaired to holy place of
Salagram. Living there upon dry grass and leaves he expatiated the acts
which had led to his being born in such a condition: and upon his death
he was born as a Brahmin still retaining the recollection of his former
life. He was born in a devout and illustrious family of ascetics who
rigidly observed devotional practices. Having been gifted with true
knowledge and acquainted with the spirit of all sacred writings he
observed soul as contra-distinguished from Prakriti (matter). And
acquainted with the knowledge of self he observed the celestial and all
other beings as the same. When he was invested with the Brahminical
thread he did not read the Vedas with a preceptor, did not perform the
ceremonies nor did he read the scriptures. And requested again and again
he replied incoherently in ungrammatical and unpolished speech. His body
was unclean and he used to wear dirty clothes. Saliva dribbled from his
mouth and he was treated with hatred by the people. Undue respect from
the people obstructs abstraction and hence the ascetics, disregarded by
people, attain to the consummation of their asceticism. Without
polluting the way treaded by the saints the ascetics should so behave
that the ordinary folk might hate them and not come in their company.
Having thus thought of this saying (Bharata) gifted with high intellect
assumed the appearance of a crazy idiot in the eyes of the people. He
used to live on raw pulse, potherbs, wild fruit and grains of corn and
whatever came in his way as a part of necessary but temporary

On the death of his father he was set to work in the field by his
brothers and nephews and fed by them with wretched food. He was firm and
stout like a bull and used to act like a simpleton and people used to
make him work and give him food only as his wages.

Once on a time the gate-keeper of the king of Sauvira, regarding him as
an idle uneducated Brahmin, considered him a worthy person to work
without pay and took him into his master's service to assist in carrying
the palanquin. One day O Brahman, the king wished to go in palanquin to
the hermitage of the great sage Kapila, situated on the banks of the
river Ikshumati, to consult the sage, who was conversant with the
virtues leading to liberation, what as most desirable in a world
abounding with care and sorrow. And he was one of those, who had, at the
order of the head servant, been compelled to carry the palanquin
gratuitously. And that Brahman, gifted with the only universal knowledge
and recollecting former birth, although compelled to do this, bore the
burden as the means of expatiating the sins for which was desirous to
atone. While the other bearers proceeded with alacrity, he, fixing his
eyes upon the pole, moved tardily. And perceiving the palanquin carried
unevenly the king exclaimed 'Ho bearers! what is this? keep equal
space.' Still it went on unsteadily and the king again cried out. ‘What
is this? How irregularly are you going?' When this had again and again
taken place the palanquin bearers at last replied to the king, 'It is
this man who lags in his space.' ‘How is this' said the king to the
Brahmin, 'Are you exhausted? You have carried your burden only a little
way. Are you unable to bear exhaustion? But you look very robust' To
which the Brahmin replied—‘It is not I, O king, who am robust nor is it
I who carry your palanquin. I am not exhausted, O king! nor am I capable
of fatigue.' The king said, ‘I distinctly perceive that you are stout
and the palanquin is carried by you, and a heavy burden is wearisome to
all persons.' The Brahmin said: ‘Tell me first what you have distinctly
seen of me and then you may distinguish my properties as strong or weak.
The statement, that you behold the palanquin borne by me or placed on
me, is unreal. Listen, O king, to my arguments about it. Both the feet
are placed on the ground: the legs are supported by the feet; the thighs
rest upon the legs; and the belly rests upon the thighs; the chest is
supported by the belly and the arms and shoulders are supported by the
chest; the palanquin is carried by the shoulders and then how can it be
considered as my burden? This body which is seated in the palanquin is
known as "thou" thence what is elsewhere called this is here
distinguished as thou and I. I and thou and others are made of elements
and elements, influenced by qualities, assume a bodily shape. Qualities
depend on acts, and acts perpetrated in ignorance influence the
condition of all beings. The soul is pure, imperishable, tranquil,
devoid of qualities, distinct from nature and is without increase or
diminution; and if it is freed from increase or diminution then with
what prosperity you say to me, ‘I see that you are robust? If the
palanquin is placed on the body, the body on the feet, the feet the
ground, then the burden is carried as much by you as by me. Why are not
others, O king, feeling the burden of this palanquin. If I am exhausted
with a burden that is being carried on another's shoulder, then why with
the weight of this palanquin, people may be worn out with the weight of
mountains, trees, houses and even of the earth, When the nature of men
is different, either in its essence or its cause, then it may be said
that fatigue is to be undergone by me. The material, with which the
palanquin is made, is the substance of you and me and of all others
being a collection of Elements collected by individuality.'

Parāçara said:—Having said this the Brahman became silent and went on
carrying the palanquin; the king too speedily got down from it and
touched his feet. The king said: O Brahman, leave off the palanquin and
be propitiated with me. Tell me who art thou under the disguise of a
fool? The Brahman replied "Hear me, king. Who I am it is not possible to
say; I go anywhere for receiving the fruits of good and bad luck. The
body is produced for the enjoyment of pleasure and endurance of pain.
Pleasure and pain originate from virtue and vice; therefore the soul
assumes bodily shape for enjoying pleasure and enduring pain consequent
upon virtue and vice. The universal cause of all living creatures is
virtue or vice, why therefore enquire after the cause of my coming to
this earth."

The king said:—"That virtue and vice are the causes of all actions and
that people migrate into various bodies for receiving their
consequences, there is not the least doubt about it; but as regards what
you have said that it is not possible for you to say who you are, it is
a matter which I wish to have explained. O Brahman, how cannot a man
declare himself to be that which he (really) is: there can be no harm to
one's self from applying to it the word 'I'".

The Brahmana said:—"To use the word ‘I' undoubtedly is detrimental; but
it is not improperly used if it is applied merely to the soul. But the
term is erroneous in as much as it conceives that to be the self or soul
which is not self or soul. The tongue articulates the word ‘I' assisted
by the lips, the teeth and the palate; and these are the origin of the
expression, as they are the causes of the production of speech.

"If by these instruments speech can utter the word 'I' it is not at all
proper to say that speech itself is ‘I.' O king, the body of a man
having hands, feet and other limbs is composed of various parts: to what
part shall we apply the word ‘I'? If another being had existed in this
body quite different from me, then it may be said, O king, that this is
I, that is the other; while one soul inhabits the whole body, then such
questions as 'Who are you? Who am I?' are useless. Thou art a monarch;
this is a palanquin: these are the bearers: these are thy followers; yet
it is untrue that these are thine. This palanquin, in which thou art
seated, is made of timber got from trees. Then tell me, what name, tree,
timber or palanquin, shall be applied to it, O king. The people shall
not say that their monarch is seated on a tree or on a timber but they
shall say that he is in the palanquin. The artificial assemblage of the
pieces of timber is called the palanquin: judge yourself, therefore, O
king, in what the palanquin differs from the wood. Again consider the
sticks of the umbrella, in their separate state. What then is the
umbrella? Apply this argument to thee and to me. A man, a woman, a cow,
a goat, a horse, an elephant, a bird, a tree, are names given to various
bodies, which they assume on account of their primitive actions. Man is
neither a god, nor a man, nor a beast, nor a tree: these are the various
shapes which he assumes on account of his acts. O king, your name is
Vasuraja and another name is Rajabhat—besides you have got various other
names—but none of these names is real and is nothing but the work of
imagination. And what thing is there in the world, O king, which being
subject to changes, does not in the course of time, go by different
names? You are called the king of the world, the son of your father, the
enemy of your foes, the husband of your wife, the father of your
children, what name the shall I apply to you? What is your situation?
Are you the head or the belly? Or are they yours? Are you the feet or
are they yours? You are, O king, separate in nature from the members of
your body. Then considering properly, do you think who I am. And since
the truth has been got at, how is it possible for me to recognize the
distinction and to apply to my individual the expression 'I'".


Parāçara said:—Having heard his words pregnant with the true essence of
things the king humbly said to the twice-born one; "What you have said,
O revered sir, is undoubtedly the truth—but in hearing this my mind has
been greatly worked up. What you have shown, O twice-born one, in
various creatures to be understanding and discriminative knowledge, is
very grand and distinct from plastic nature. I have not carried the
palanquin nor is it placed on my shoulders. The body, which has carried
the palanquin, is different from me. The three qualities influence the
actions of the animals and these three qualities are again influenced by
destiny. This reaching my ears, O thou conversant with profound truth,
my mind has been greatly disturbed for knowing that real and holy truth.
O twice-born, I had already addressed myself for going to the great
ascetic Kapila, to learn of him what in this life is the most desirable
object. But what you have said in the interim has attracted my mind
towards you for being acquainted with the profound truth. O Brahmin, the
great ascetic Kapila is a portion of the glorious Vishnu, who is at one
with all elements. He is born on earth to remove the illusions of the
world. But what you have said convinces me that the great Kapala, for my
well-being, has appeared within my vision. To me, who am thus asking, O
twice-born one, explain what is the best of things, for you are an ocean
overflowing with the waters of the divine wisdom". The Brāhmana
said—"You ask me, O lord of earth, what is the best of all things, not
the great end of life. There are many things which are best in the world
and there are many truths of life. O king, some worshipping the gods
desire for wealth, prosperity, children or kingdom: these are the best
things in their estimation. A sacrifice that gives heavenly pleasures is
also the best. That, which gives best rewards though not asked for, is
also the best. To him, who with concentration meditates upon the great
soul, union with it is the best. Thus there are hundreds and thousands
of best things but these are not profound truths. Hear, I shall describe
to you what is the profound truth. If wealth is the end of life then why
do people spend it for the acquisition of piety and for acquiring
desired-for objects? O lord of men, if son is the end of life then the
father of that son is another's end of life and he again is another's.
If then every action becomes the end of every cause then there exists no
supreme or final truth in this world. And if the acquirement of
sovereignty be characterized as the great end of life then finite ends
would sometimes be and some times cease to be. If you consider the rites
laid down by Rik, Yayur and Shāma Vedas as the ends of life, hear what I
have got to say on that head. Anything, that is the outcome of the
instrumentality of earth, partakes of its character and consists of
clay. So any act, that is performed by such perishable things as fuel,
clarified butter and Kusha grass, must be in nature perishable. The
great end of life must be considered by wise men as eternal and it would
be transient if it were accomplished through transitory things. If you
consider that which gives no reward to be the true end of life then that
which brings on final liberation is not the true end of life. If the
union of the individual soul with the Great soul is considered as the
supreme end of life then this becomes false: for one substance cannot
become substantially another. Thus there are undoubtedly very many best
things in this world: hear from me, in short O king, the true end of
life. It is soul, one, all-pervading, uniform, perfect supreme over
nature, freed from birth, growth and destruction, omnipresent
undecaying, made up of true knowledge, independent and not connected
with unreal things, with name, species and the rest and in time,
present, past and future. The spirit, which is essentially one in one's
own and in all other bodies, is the true wisdom of one who knows the
unity and the true principles of things. As air spreading all over the
world going through the perforation of a flute is distinguished as the
notes of the scale so the (true) nature of the great spirit is one
though it assumes various forms consequent upon the fruits of actions.
When the difference, between the various forms, such as that of god and
man, is destroyed then the distinction of things ceases".


Parāçara said—Having heard those words the king became speechless and
engaged in meditation and the Brahmin told a tale illustrating the
principles of unity.

The Brahmin said—"Hear O great king what in the days of yore Ribhu said
for the instruction of illustrious Nidagka. The great patriarch Brahmā
had a son by Ribhu, who was by nature, O king, conversant with true
wisdom. A son of Pulastya by name Nidagha became his disciple and
(Ribhu) greatly delighted gave him various instructions. O lord of men,
he being thus instructed, Ribhu did not doubt of his being fully
confirmed in the doctrines of unity.

"The residence of Pulastya was at Viranagara, a big, beautiful city,
situated on the banks of the river Devika. And there lived in a
beautiful grove near this river, Nidagha, the disciple of Ribhu,
acquainted with all devotional practices. After a thousand divine years
Ribhu went to the city of Pulastya to see his pupil who stood at the
gate after the completion of the sacrifice to Viswadevas. He was beheld
by his pupil who came there specially to offer him Arghya, (the usual
present) and led him into the house. And when his hands and feet were
washed and he was seated Nidagha requested him respectfully to eat.

"Ribhu said—‘O foremost of Brahmins, tell me what food is there in your
house? I do not like wretched food.'

"Nidagha said—‘There are cakes, of meal, rice, barley and pulse in my
house. Eat, O reverend Sir, whatever pleases you best.'

"Ribhu:—O twice-born one, these are wretched viands. Give me sweet
meats. Give me rice boiled with sugar, wheaten cakes and milk with curd
and molasses.'

"Nidagha said—'O dame, quickly prepare whatever is most excellent and
sweet in my house and satisfy him therewith.'

"Having been thus addressed the wife of Nidagha in consonance with her
husband's behest prepared sweet food and placed it before the Brahmin.
And, O king, he then, spoke humbly to the great Muni, who was
delightedly eating the meal.

"Nidagha—‘Have you been greatly delighted with this meal, O twice-born
one? Has your mind obtained contentment? Where is your residence, O
Brahmin and where are you going? And tell me, whence art thou coming, O
twice-born one?'

"Ribhu said:—‘O twice-born one, he, who has got appetite, is pleased
with his meals. I have got no appetite and hence have got no
satisfaction: why do you question me in vain? Hunger is created, when by
fire the earthly element is dried; and thirst is produced when the
moisture of the body is absorbed by internal heat. These are the the
functions of the body, O twice-born one, not mine—I am satisfied with
that by which they are removed. And pleasure and contentment are the
faculties of the mind, O twice-born one; ask those men about it whose
minds are affected by them. As regards your three other questions—Where
I dwell, wither I go and whence I come, hear my reply.

"'Man goes everywhere and penetrates everywhere like the ether. Then is
it rational to ask "Where is thy residence? Whence are you coming? And
where will you go?" I am not coming from anywhere. I shall not go
anywhere and I do not live in one place. Such is the case with you and
other men. What people see of you is not real you; what people see of
other men are not real they, and what people see of me is not real I. I
made distinction between the sweetened and not sweetened food only to
hear of your opinion about that: do thou hear my explanation about this,
O twice-born one. Is there anything really sweet and not sweet to him
who takes meals? That which is considered sweet is no longer so when it
causes the sense of repletion, and that which is not sweet, becomes so
when a man considers it as such. What food is there which is equally
delightful from the first to the middle and last? As a house built of
clay is strengthened by fresh plaster so this earthly body is maintained
by earthly atoms. And barley, wheat, pulse, butter, oil, milk, curds,
treacle, fruits and the like are made of earthly atoms. You have now
understood what is sweet and what is not; do you so act that you may be
impressed with the notion of identity which leads to final liberation.'

"Having heard those words explaining the true end of life, the
illustrious Nidagha humbly bowed to him and said—'Be then propitiated
with me, O twice-born one. Thou hast come here for my welfare. Tell me
whence thou hast come? Hearing thy words the infatuation of my mind is

"Ribhu said:—'O twice-born one, I am thy preceptor Ribhu. I have come
here to confer upon thee the true knowledge. Now I depart; for you have
been acquainted with the true end of life. Consider again this universe
to be one undivided nature of the supreme spirit Vāsudeva'.

"Having said 'so be it' Nidagha reverentially bowed to and worshipped
him. And Ribhu too repaired to his wished-for quarter".


"After the expiration of another thousand years Ribhu again repaired to
that city for conferring knowledge upon him. The ascetic beheld Nidagha
at the outside of the city when the king was about to enter it with a
huge army and a host of relations. He saw his illustrious pupil standing
at a distance avoiding the crowd—his throat was parched with hunger and
thirst consequent upon carrying thicket fuel and holy grass. Beholding
Nidagha and saluting him Ribhu said—'Why are you standing aloof, O
twice-born one?'

"Nidagha said:—'There is a great rush of people for the lord of men is
entering this huge and picturesque city; I am staying to avoid the

"Ribhu said 'O foremost of twice-born one, who is the king amongst
these? And who are his attendents. Methinks you know all these. Tell

"Nidagha said:—'He, who is seated on the infuriated elephant, huge as a
mountain, is the king: and all others are his attendents'.

"Ribhu said;—'You have simultaneously pointed out to me both the king
and the elephant, but you have not particularly said, who is the king
and which is the elephant. Therefore O illustrious one, tell me in
particular, who is the king and which is the elephant; I am anxious to
know it'.

"Nidagha said:—'That which is under is the elephant and one who is above
is the king. Who is not aware, O twice-born one, of the relation between
that which bears and that which is borne?'

"Ribhu said:—'Explain to me in the way in which I can understand it.
What is meant by the word underneath and what is meant by the word

"As soon as he had said this Nidagha jumped upon Ribhu and said—'Hear
what you have asked of me. I am above like the king, you are underneath
like the elephant. I show this example, O Brahman, for your better

"Ribhu said—'O foremost of Brahmins, it seems that you are as if the
king and I am the elephant and tell me now which of us two is you and
which is I'.

"Ribhu having said this, Nidagha speedily got down and falling at his
feet said, 'Sure thou art my saintly preceptor Ribhu. The mind of no
other person is so much acquainted with the principles of unity as that
of the mind of my preceptor. Therefore I know that thou art he'.

"Ribhu said:—'O Nidagha, I am your preceptor Ribhu. Pleased with the
attention which you had shown to me before, I have come here to give you
instructions O you gifted with a high mind. I have briefly described to
you the divine truth, the essence of which is the none-quality of all'.

"Having said this the learned Ribhu went away. Nidagha, too by his
instructions, was impressed with belief in unity. He began to observe
all beings in no way distinct from him. And being devoted to Brahmā he
obtained final liberation.

"Therefore, O king, O thou, conversant with duty, do thou, consider
thyself as one with all beings, regarding equally friend or foe, the
same sky looks apparently as white or blue so Soul, which is in reality
one, appears diversified to erroneous vision. That, which exists in the
universe, is one which is Achyuta. There is nothing distinct from Him.
He is I. He is thou. He is all. This universe is His form. Give up
therefore the misconceived notion of distinction".

Parāçara said:—The Brahmin having uttered this the king became cognizant
of the true end of life. He renounced all idea of distinction and the
Brahmin, who, on account of the recollection of former lives, had
obtained perfect knowledge, now acquired liberation from future births.

He, who will reverentially hear this story of Bharata or narrate it,
will have his mind illuminated and will not mistake the nature of
individuality. And he who remembers it even shall be considered an
object of reverence.




Maitreya said:—The situation of the earth and of seas the spurn of the
sun and the other planets, the creation of the celestials and the rest
and of the Rishis, the origin of the four castes and of the brute
creation and the stories of Dhruva and Prahlād have been fully described
by thee, my preceptor. Do thou describe to me, O Venerable Sir, all the
Manwantaras and all the presiding deities with Sakra as their chief. I
wish to hear this from you.

Parāçara said:—I shall serially describe to you all the Manwantaras that
had passed away and all that shall take place.

The first Manu was Swayambhuva. Then came Swārochisha then Auttami, then
Tāmasa, then Raivata, then Chākshusa: these six Manus have passed away.
Vaivaswata, the son of the sun now presides over the seventh Manwantara,
which is the present period.

The era of Swayambhuva Manu, which took place in the beginning of Kalpa
together with the celestials, saints and other personages, has been
related by me. I will now describe to you the period of Swārochisha Manu
together with the presiding deities, saints and his sons.

There flourished two classes of celestials in the Manwantara of
Swārochisha named Pārāvatas and Tushitas—and the king of the celestials
was the powerful Vipascbit; the seven Rishis were Urja, Stambha, Prāna,
Dattoli, Rishabha, Nischara, Arvarivat; and the sons of the Manu were
Chaitra, Kimpurusha and others. I have thus described to you the second
Manwantara. In the third Manwantara of Uttami, Susānti was the king of
the celestials, who were severally denominated as the Sudhāmas, Satyas,
Sivas, Pradersanas and Vasavertis and each of these orders consisted of
twelve deities. The seven sons of Vasishtha were the seven celestial
saints and Aja, Parasu, Divya and others were the sons of the Manu.

In the reign of Tāmasa the fourth Manu, the Surupas, Haris, Satyas and
Sudhis were the orders of the celestials each consisting of
twenty-seven. Sivi was their king who was named Satakratu by his
performance of hundred sacrifices; the seven Rishis were Jyotirdhāmā,
Prithu, Kāvya, Chaitra, Agni, Vanaka and Pivara. The sons of Tāmasa were
the powerful kings Nara, Khyāti, Sāntahaya, Jānujangha and others.

In the fifth Manwantara Raivata was the Manu: Indra was their king and
the celestials were Amitābhas, Abhutarajasas, Vaikunthas, and Sumedhasas
each consisting of fourteen divinities. The seven Rishis were
Hiranyaromā, Vedasri, Urddhabāhu, Vedabāhu, Sudhāman, Parjānya and
Mahāmuni. The sons of Raivata were Balabandhu, Susambhavya, Satyaka and
other brave kings.

These four Manus, Swārochishas, Uttami, Tāmasa and Raivata were born in
the race of Pryavrata who propitiated Vishnu by his devotions and
obtained in consequence thereof these rulers of Manwāntaras as his son.

In the sixth Manwantara Chākshusha was the Manu, when Manojava became
the king of the celestials who were grouped as Adyas, Prastutas,
Bhavyas, Prithugas, and the high-minded Lekhas each consisting of eight
divinities; the seven Rishis were Sumedhas, Virajas, Havishmat, Uttama,
Madhu, Abhinaman and Sahishnu. The sons of Chakshusha were the mighty
Uru, Puru, Satadyumna and other kings of the earth.

O twice-born one, the Manu, who reigns in the present period is the wise
and illustrious lord of obsequies the offspring of the sun. The
celestials are the Adityas, Vasus and Rudras. Their king is Purandara.
Vasishtha, Kasyapa, Atri, Jamadagni, Gautama, Viswamitra and Bharadwaja
are the seven Rishis. And the nine pious sons of Vaivaswata Manu are the
kings Ikshawku, Nabhaga, Dhrista, Sanyati, Narishyanta, Nabhanidishta,
Karusha, Prishadhra and the well known Vasumat.

The incomparable energy of Vishnu, at one with the quality of goodness
and preserving all created things, rules overall the Manwantaras in the
shape of divinity. From a part of that divinity Yajna was born in the
Swāyambhuva Manwantara the will-begotten child of Akuti. And at the
arrival of the Manwantara of Swārochisha the irrepressible Yajna was
born as Ajita along with Tushitas the sons of Tushitā. And at the advent
of the Manwantara of Auttama, Tushitas were born as the excellent
Satyas, of Satya. In the Manwantara of Tāmasa, Satya became Hari along
with the Haris, the children of Hari. And in the Raivata Manwantara of
Sambhuti the excellent Hari was born as Manasa along with the celestials
called Abhutarajasas.

In the next Manwantara Vishnu was born of Vikunthi, as Vaikuntha along
with the celestials called Vaikunthas. In the present period Vishnu was
again born as Vamana the son of Kasyapa by Aditi. With three paces he
conquered the worlds and having released them from all disturbances he
gave them to Purandara. By these seven persons, in the various
Manwantaras, the created beings have been preserved. He is called Vishnu
because his energy pervades the whole world from the root Vis to 'enter'
or 'pervade:' and all the celestials, the Manus, the kings of the gods
are but the impersonations of the power of Vishnu.


Maitreya said:—O foremost of Brāhmins, you have described to me the
seven Manwantaras that have passed away. It behoves you to describe now
the Manwantaras that shall take place in future.

Parāçara said Sanjnā, the daughter of Viswakarman, was the wife of the
sun, and bore him three children, the Manu Vaivaswata, Yama and the
goddess Yami. Being unable to endure the fervours of her husband, she
engaged Chāya in his attendance and repaired to the forest to practise
devout austerities. Considering that Chāya as Sanjnā, he got upon her
three other children—Sanaischra (Saturn) another Manu Sāvarni and a
daughter Tapati. Once on a time being offended with Yama, the son of
Sanjnā, Chāya imprecated a curse upon him and gave out to Yama and the
sun that she was not in reality Sanjnā the mother of the former. (Having
heard this) the sun, by his meditation saw her as a mare in the region
of Uttara Kuru.

Thereupon assuming the shape of a horse the sun begot upon Sanjnā three
other children, the two Aswins and Revanta, and brought her back to his
own house. To diminish his fervours Viswakarman placed him on his lathe
and reduced some of his effulgence; to the eighth portion, for more than
which was insperable. The portions of the divine Vaishnava effulgence
that were in the sun being filed off by Viswakarman, fell down shining
on the earth and the artist constructed of them the discus of Vishnu—the
trident of Siva, the weapon of the god of wealth, the lance of
Kartikeya, and the weapons of the other celestials: all these
Viswakarman made from the additional rays of the sun.

The son of Chāya, who was also called a Manu, was Sāvarni on account of
his belonging to the same caste as his elder brother the Manu
Vaivaswata. He rules over the coming or eighth Manwantara, the details
whereof and of those following I shall now describe.

In the era when Sāvarni shall be the Manu the orders of the celestials
will be Sutapas, Amitabhas and Mukshyas, each consisting of twenty-one
divinities. The seven Rishis will be Diptimat, Gālava, Rāma, Kripa,
Drauni: my son Vyāsa will be the sixth and the seventh will be
Rishyasringa. The chief of the celestials will be Bali—the innocent son
of Virochona who, on account of Vishnu's favour, is the king of a
portion of Patala. The sons of Sāvarni will be Virajas, Arvarivas,
Nirmoha and others.

O Maitreya, Daksha-Savarni will be the ninth Manu. The Paras,
Marichigarbhas and Sudharmas will be the three orders of the celestials
each consisting of twelve divinities. Indra Adbhuta will be their mighty
king. Savana, Dyutimut, Bhavya, Vasu, Medhatithi, Jyotishman and Satya
will be the seven Rishis. Dhritaketu, Driptiketu, Panchahasta, Niramaya,
Prithusrava and others will be sons of the Manu.

In the tenth period Brahmā-Savarni will be the Manu: the celestials will
be the Sudhamas, Viruddhas and Satasankhyas: their king will be the
powerful Santi. The Rishis will be Havishman, Sukriti, Satya,
Apammurtti, Nabhaga, Apratimaujas and Satyaketu and the ten sons of the
Manu will be Sukshetra, Uttamaujas, Harishena and others.

In the eleventh period Dharma-Savarni will be the Manu and the leading
celestials will be Vihangamas, Kamagamas and Nirmanaratis each
consisting of thirty; Vrisha be their king. The Rishis will be Nischara,
Agnitejas, Vapushman, Vishnu, Aruni, Havishman and Anagha. Savarga,
Sarvadharma, Devanika and others—the kings of the earth—will be the sons
of the Manu.

In the twelfth period Savarni, the son of Rudra, will be the Manu.
Ritudhama will be the king of the gods who will be Haritas Lohitas,
Sutnanasas, and Sukarmas, each consisting of fifteen divinities. The
Rishis will be Tapaswi, Sutapas, Tapomurtti, Taporati, Tapodhriti,
Tapodyuti and Tapodhana. And the Manu's sons will be Devayan, Upadeva,
Devareshta and others—who will be the powerful kings of the earth.

In the thirteenth period Rauchya will be the Manu. The gods will be the
Sudhmanas, Sudharmans and Sukarmans each consisting of thirty-three.
Their king will be Divaspati. The Rishis will be Nirmoha, Tatwadersin,
Nishprakampa, Nirutsuka, Dhritimat, Avyaya, and Sutpas. The sons of the
Manu will be Chitrasena, Vichitra, and others who will be the kings of
the earth.

At the fourteenth period Bhautya will be the Manu and Suchi will be the
king of the celestials who will be the Chakshushas, Pavitras,
Kanishthas, Bhrājiras and Vavriddhas. The seven Rishis will be Agnibahu,
Suchi, Sukra, Megadha, Grighra, Yukta and Ajita. Uru, Gabhira, Bradhna
and others will be the sons of Manu who will be the kings of the earth.

At the end of every four Yugas the Vedas disappear. And the seven Rishis
descending on the earth again establish them. In every Krita age the
presiding Manu becomes the legislator and during the Manwantaras the
celestials of the various classes receive sacrifices. And those born in
the race of Manus lord over the earth for that period. In every
Manwantara, the Manu, the seven Rishis, the king of the gods and the
sons of the Manu rule over the earth. In this wise, O Brahmin, fourteen
Manwantaras constitute a Kalpa. And it is succeeded by a night of
similar duration.

And the glorious Jannardana, wearing form of Brahmā, the essence of all
things, the lord of all, the creator of all, involved in his own
illusions and having swallowed up three spheres, sleeps upon the serpent
Sesha in the midst of the ocean. And awaking after sleep the undecaying
Hari, resorting to the quality of foulness, creates all things as they
were before. And by virtue of a part of his essence which is identical
with the quality of goodness he, as the Manus, the celestials, their
chiefs, kings, as well as the seven Rishis, preserves the universe. I
will now explain to you, O Maitreya, how Vishnu, who is regarded as
Providence all through the four ages, preserved (the universe).

In the Krita Yuga, He, for the behoof of all creatures, was born as the
great ascetic Kapila and imparted to them true wisdom. In the Treta Yuga
he was born as the Lord Paramount and repressed the wicked and protected
the three worlds. In the Dwapara Yuga He was born as Vyāsa and divided
the Vedas into four divisions which were again divided into various
branches; which were again divided into diverse sections. And at the end
of Kali the fourth Yuga, He shall be born as Kalki and shall lead again
the wicked to the paths of piety. Thus the endless Vishnu creates,
preserves and destroys the universe. And there is none else but Him. I
have thus described to you, O Brahman, the real nature of that Great
Being who is at one with all things, and besides whom there is nothing
else, nor has there been, nor will there be either here or elsewhere. I
have also described to you all the Manwantaras with their presiding
deities. What else do you wish to hear?


Maitreya said:—I had been informed before by you that this universe is
but the manifestation of Vishnu, that it exists in Him and that there is
nothing else distinct from Him. I wish now to hear how the illustrious
Vedvyāsa divided the Vedas into various sections in diverse Yugas.
Describe to me, O great Muni, who were the Vyāsas in different eras, and
what were the various divisions of the Vedas?

Parāçara said:—O Maitreya, the great tree of Vedas has a thousand
branches. It is impossible for me to describe them at length. Listen, I
shall, however, describe them in short.

O great Muni, the glorious Vishnu, in the form of Vyāsa, at every
Dwāpara Yuga, for the benefit of mankind, divided the Vedas into various
branches. Beholding the diminution of the prowess and energy of mankind,
He, for their behoof, divided the Vedas into various divisions. The
form, in which the glorious Vishnu divides the Vedas, is named
Veda-Vyāsa. Listen, I shall now describe to you, O Muni, who were the
Vyāsas in their respective periods and how they divided the Vedas.

In the Vaivaswata Manwantara in the Dwapara age, the Rishis divided the
Vedas twenty-eight times and accordingly twenty-eight Vyāsas have passed
away who divided the Vedas in their respective periods into four. In the
Dwapara age the distribution was made by Swayambhuva (Brahmā) himself;
in the second period Veda-Vyāsa was the Manu; in the third, Usanas; in
the fourth, Vrihaspatii in the fifth, Savitri; in the sixth, Mrityu; in
the seventh, Indra; in the eighth, Vasishtha; in the ninth, Sāraswata;
in the tenth, Tridhāman; in the eleventh, Trivreshan; in the twelfth,
Bharadwāja; in the thirteenth, Antariksha; in the fourteenth, Vapra; in
the fifteenth, Trayyaruna; in the sixteenth, Dhananjaya; in the
seventeenth, Kritanjaya; in the eighteenth, Rina; in the nineteenth,
Bharadwāja; in the twentieth, Goutama; in the twenty-first, Uttama, also
called Haryāttmā; in the twenty-second, Vena, who is otherwise named
Rājasravas; in the twenty-third, Somasushināpana, also Trina-Vindu; in
the twenty-fourth, Riksha, the descendant of Bhrigu, who is known by the
name Vālmiki; in the twenty-fifth my father Sakti was the Vyāsa; I was
the Vyāsa of the twenty-sixth period; and was succeeded by Jaratkaru:
the Vyāsa in the twenty-eighth period was Krishna Dwaipāyana. These are
the twenty-eight elder Vyāsas who divided the Vedas into four in the
preceding Dwāpara ages. In the next Dwāpara, Drauni, the son of Drona,
will be the Vyāsa when my son the Muni Krishna Dwaipāyana, who is the
actual Vyāsa, shall cease to be.

The syllable Om is defined to be the eternal monosyllabic Brahmā. The
word Brahmā is derived from the root Vriha to increase because it is
infinite and because it is the cause by which the Vedas developed. The
regions, Bhur, Bhuva and Swa exist in Brahmā, who is Om. Glory to
Brahmā, who is known as Om and who is at one with Rik, Yajur, and Shāma.
Salutation unto Brahmā who is the cause of creation and destruction, who
is the great and mysterious cause of the intellectual principle (Mahat),
who is devoid of limit in time and space and is freed from diminution
and decay, from whom proceeds worldly illusion and in whom exists the
end of soul through the qualities of goodness and foulness. He is the
refuge of those who are acquainted with the Sānkhya philosophy and those
who have mastered their thoughts and passions. He is the invisible and
imperishable Brahmā, assuming various forms but invariable in substance
and the chief self-create principle. He lightens the recesses of heart,
is indivisible, radiant, undecaying and multiform. Salutation unto this
supreme Brahmā, ever and ever—this form of Vāsudeva who is at one with
the supreme spirit. This Brahmā, although diversified as threefold, is
identical, is the lord of all, exists as one in all creatures, and is
perceived as many on account of their diversity of understanding. He,
composed of Rik, Shāma and Yajur Vedas, is at the same time their
essence as He is the soul of all embodied spirits. He, though at one
with the Vedas, creates them and divides them into various branches. He
is the author of these divisions—He is those branches collectively; for
that eternal lord is the essence of true knowledge.


Parāçara said:—The original Veda, divided into four branches, consists
of one hundred thousand Stanzas and from it originated sacrifice of ten
kinds—the fulfiller of all desires. In the twenty-eighth Dwāpara era, my
son Vyāsa divided the Veda into four branches.

As the Veda was divided by the intelligent Veda-Vyāsa, to it was divided
at various other periods by myself and other Vyāsas. In this way, O
foremost of twice-born ones, the Veda is divided into various branches
and the people of the four Yugas perform sacrifices. O Maitreya, know
this Krishna Dwaipāyana Vyāsa, as the Nārāyana, for who else on this
earth could have composed the Mahabhārata? How in the Dwāpara age the
Veda was divided by my high-souled son, I shall describe, O Maitreya, do
thou hear it.

When Vyāsa was engaged by Brahmā in the work of arranging the Vedas, he
took four persons, proficient in these works, as his disciples. He
appointed Paila reader of the Rich; Vaisampāyana of Yajush; and Jaimini
of the Shāma Veda. And Sumantu, who was acquainted with the
Atharva-Veda, was also the disciple of the learned Vyāsa. He also took
Suta, who was named Lomaharshana, as his disciple in history and

There was but one Yaju Veda, which he divided into four parts—from which
originated the sacrificial rite that is performed by the four orders of
priests. In this, the Muni enjoined the Adhwaryu to recite the prayers
of Yajuns; the Hotri to sing the hymn of (Rik-Veda); the Udgatri to sing
the hymns of Shāma-Veda and the Brahman to utter the formulæ of the
Atharva-Veda. He then compiled the Rig-Veda with the collection of these
hymns (Richas); the Yajur-Veda with the prayers and directions named
Yajush; and Shāma Veda, with those called Shāma; and with the Atharvas
he laid down the function of the Brahman and the rules for the
performance of all the ceremonies by kings.

In this way the huge Veda tree was divided into four stems, which soon
spread out into an extensive forest. O Brahmin, Paila first divided the
Rig-Veda and gave the two Sanhitas to Indra-Pramati and to Bhāshkali.
Bhāshkali again divided his Sanhita into four and handed them over to
his disciples Baudhya, Agnimathara, Yajtiawalka, and Parāçara; and they
studied these secondary branches from the original O Muni.

Indira-Pramati, O Maitreya, gave his Sanhita to his magnanimous son
Mandukeya, which thence descended through successive generations and
disciples. Vedamitra, otherwise called Sākalya, read the same Sanhita
and divided it into five Sanhitas which he gave to his disciples named
severally Mudgala, Goswalu, Vātsya, Sāliya and Sisira. Sākapuvni made a
different classification of the original Sanhita into three and added a
Nirukta (glossary) constituting a fourth. And he gave these three
Sanhjtas to his three pupils, Kraunch, Vaitalaki, and Valaka. And the
glossary was given to the fourth who was named Niruktakrit and who was
versed in the Vedas and their various branches.

In this way, O foremost of twice-born ones, Vedas, their divisions and
Sub-divisions sprang up. Bash kall composed three other Sanhitas which
he gave to his three pupils Kalayani, Gargya, and Kathajava. These are
they by whom various Sanhitas have been composed.


Parāçara said:—The high-minded disciple of Vyāsa, Vaisampayana made out
twenty-seven branches of the tree of Yajur-Veda and gave them to as many
disciples, of whom Yajnawalka, the son of Brahmarata was famous for
piety and obedience to his preceptor.

Formerly at one time the Munis had entered into a covenant that any one
of them, who at a certain time, did not join a council held on mount
Meru, should perpetrate the crime of Brahminicide within a period of
seven nights. Vaisampayana alone was not present at the appointed hour
and so broke the engagement. And he accidentally slew the child of his
sister by a kick of his foot. Thereupon he said to his disciples—"O my
disciples, do ye engage in such ceremonies as will remove the sin
consequent upon the destruction of a Brahmin on my behalf. You need not
hesitate in this". Thereupon Yājnawalka said—"What is the use of
troubling these miserable and inefficient Brahmans? I shall alone
perform this penance". Thereupon the high-minded preceptor, enraged,
said to him—"O thou who hast insulted these Brahmins, relinquish all
thou hast learnt from me. Dost thou that these Brahmins are inefficient?
What is the use of a disciple who disobeys my commands?" Whereto
Yājnawalka replied—"I spoke this out of my devotion to thee. It is more
than enough—do thou take, O twice-born one, what I have learnt from

Having said this, he ejected from his stomach the texts of Yajush
stained in blood. He then went away. The other pupils of Vaisampayana
transforming themselves into partridges (Tittiri) picked up the texts
which he had ejected, which, in consequence thereof, were called
Taittriya and the pupils were named the Charaka professors, of the
Yajush, from Charana[241] —'going through.' Yājnawalka too, O Maitreya,
who was accomplished in devout practices engaged in propitiating the
sun, being desirous of recovering the texts of the Yajush.

Yājnawalka said:—Salutation unto the sun who is the gate of final
emancipation, the spring of bright radiance, the three-fold source of
splendour as the Rig, the Yajur and the Sama-Vedas. Salutation unto him,
who is the Agnishome[242] sacrifice, the cause of the universe and who
is charged with radiant heat and the Sushumna ray. Salutation unto him,
who is identical with the idea of time and all its divisions of hours,
minutes and seconds, who is the visible form of Vishnu, as the
impersonation of the mystic Om. Salutation unto him, who is
gratification, who nourishes the moon with his rays and feeds the manes
and the gods with nectar and ambrosia; salutation unto the sun, who in
the form of three seasons distributes and absorbs the water in the time
of the rains, of cold and heat. Salutation unto Vaivaswata, who, alone
as the lord of the world, dispels darkness and who is clothed with the
quality of goodness. Salutation unto him, until whose rising people
cannot perform religious ceremonies, water does not purify and who is
the source of all religious rites. Salutation onto him who is the centre
and source of purification. Glory to Savitri, to Surya, to Bhaskara,
Vaivaswata, to Aditya, to the first-born of the celestials and demons.
Salutation unto him who is the eye of the universe borne in a golden car
whose banners scatter ambrosia.

Parāçara said:—Being thus eulogised by Yājnawalka the sun assumed the
form of a horse and said—"Ask of me what you desire". Having bowed unto
him Yājnawalka said—"Confer upon me a knowledge of those texts of Yajush
which even my preceptor does not know".

Being thus addressed, the sun gave to him the texts of Yajush called
Ayatayama which Vaisampayana even did not know. Because these texts were
imparted by the sun in the form of a horse, the Brahmins who study this
portion are called Vajis (horses). Fifteen branches of this school
originated from Kanwa and other pupils of Yājnawalka.


Parāçara said:—Hear O Maitreya, how Jaimini, the pupil of Vyāsa, divided
the branches of Sama-Veda. The son of Jarmini was Sumanta whose son was
Sukarman. They both studied the same Sanhita under Jaimini. The latter
composed Sahasra Sanhita which he gave to his two pupils named
Hiranyanabha, otherwise named Kausalya and Paushyinji. Fifteen pupils of
the latter composed as many Sanhitas and they were called the northern
chanters of Sāman. Hiranyanabha had as many disciples who were called
the eastern chanters of Sāman. Lokakshmi, Kuthami, Kushidi and Langali
were the pupils of Paushyinji; and by them and their disciples many
other branches were made. There was another learned disciple of
Hiranyanābha by name Kriti who gave twenty-four Sanhitas to as many
pupils; who again divided Sama-Veda into various branches.

I will now give you an account of the various branches of Atharva-Veda.
The highly illustrious ascetic Sumanta taught this Veda to his pupil
Kabandha who divided it into two and gave them to Devadersa and Pathya.
The disciples of Devadersa were Mandga, Brahmabali, Saulkāyani and
Pippalāda. Pathya had three disciples, Jājali, Kumudādi and Saunaka to
whom were severally given three Sanhitās. Saunaka divided his Sanhitā
into two and gave them to his disciples Babhru and Saindhavāyan and from
them originated two schools the Saindhavas and Munjakesas. The Sanhitās
of the Atharva-Veda are divided into five Kalpas or ceremonials; namely
Nakshatra Kalpa or rules for worshipping the planets; the Vaitāna Kalpa
or rules for oblations; the Sanhitā Kalpa or rules for sacrifices; the
Angirasa Kalpa or incantations and prayers for the destruction of
enemies; the Sānti Kalpa—or prayers for averting evil.

The glorious Veda-Vyāsa, conversant with the knowledge of Purānas,
composed a Paurānik Sanhitā consisting of historical and legendary
traditions, prayers and hymns and sacred chronology. He had a
distinguished pupil Suta, who was otherwise named Romaharshana, to whom
he gave the Purānas. Suta had six disciples, Sumati, Agnivarchas,
Mitrayu, Sānsapāyana, Akritavrana, who is otherwise called Kāsyapa and
Sāverni. The last three composed three principal Sanhitas and
Romaharsana himself compiled a fourth, which is named (after him)
Romaharshanika. The substance of these four Sanhitas is embodied in this

Brāhma is the first of all the Purānas. Those who are conversant with
the knowledge of Purānas enumerate them as eighteen—Brāhma, Padma,
Vaishnava, Saiva, Bhāgvata, Nāradya, Mārkandeya, Ageney, Bhavishyat,
Brahmā Vaivartta, Lainga, Varāha, Skanda, Vāmana, Kaurmma, Matsya,
Gārura, Brahmānda, The creation of the universe and its successive
generations, the genealogies of patriarchs and kings, the Manwantaras,
and the royal dynasties are described in the Purānas. The Purāna, which
I have described to you, O Maitreya, is Vaishnava and is next to Padma.
And in every part, in the creation of universe and the successive
generations, in the description of the genealogies of the patriarchs it
has declared the glory of the great Vishnu. There are fourteen principal
kinds of knowledge—namely, the four Vedas, the six Angas,[243] the
Mimānsa (theology,) Nyāya (logic,) Dharma (the institutes of law) and
the Purānas. And they are enumerated as eighteen with the addition of
these four—Aur-Veda, medical science taught by Dhunwantari; Dhanur-veda,
the science of archery, taught by Bhrigu; Ghāndharba-Veda, the art of
music, dancing &c. of which the Muni Bharata was the author; and the
Artha Sastram or the science of Government, taught by Vrihaspati.

There are three orders of Rishis—the royal Rishis or princes who have
devoted themselves to devotion as Viswamitra; divine Rishis or
demi-gods, as Nārada; and Brahman Rishis, who are the sons of Brahmā as
Vasishtha and others.

I have thus related to you the various branches of the Vedas and their
sub-divisions, the persons by whom they made and the object with which
they were ushered into existence. Such was the division in all the
Manwantaras. The primitive Veda, which was instituted by Brahmā at the
beginning of Kalpa, is eternal; these branches are but its

I have thus related to you, Maitreya, the Vedas which you desired to
hear. What else do you wish to hear now?


Maitreya said:—O twice-born one, you have related to me what I have
asked of you. I wish to hear one thing more from you: Relate that to me.
O great Muni, this egg of Brahmā, consisting seven zones, seven
subterrestial regions, and seven spheres, abounds in living creatures,
large or small, smaller and smallest, larger and largest. And there is
not the eighth part of an inch where they do not dwell; And all these
are bound by chains of acts and at the end of existence are subject to
the power of Yama by whom they are doomed to dreadful punishments. And
being freed from those inflictions they are born as celestials, men and
the like; And those living creatures, as Sastras inform us, perpetually
revolve. I wish to hear from you, performing what pure actions people
are freed from subjection to Yama.

Parāçara said:—O Muni, hear from me what his grandfather Bhishma said
when this question was put to him by the high-souled Nakula.

Bhishma said:—O my son, there came on a certain time, a friend of mine,
a Brahmin from Kalinga country, to visit me. He told me that he had put
this question to an ascetic who had the recollection of his previous
births. To which the Muni replied "What is now shall be (the same) in
future." What was said by that intelligent sage proved to be true. When
that twice-born one was again accosted by me with due reverence, he said
that he had never found otherwise what had been related to him. Once I
put to him the same question which you have asked. And he, remembering
the words of the Brahmin who retained the recollection of his former
births, said—"I shall reveal to you the mystery that was revealed to me
by the Brahmin retaining the recollection of his former births and I
shall describe to you a dialogue that took place between Yama and one of
his ministers".

The Brahmin of Kalinga said—"Beholding his own emissary with a noose in
hand approach, the Yama said to his ears 'Never bring here any one who
has obtained the shelter of the slayer of Madhu; for I am the lord of
all spirits but not of the spirits of those who are devoted to Vishnu. I
was appointed by Brahmā, honored by the immortals, to sit in judgment
upon the good and bad conduct of mankind. Hari is my lord; I am not
independent, for he can mete out punishment to me. As gold, though (in
reality) it is one substance, appears diversified as bracelets, tiaras
and earrings, so Hari, though He is one appears many as gods, animals
and man. As the drops of water, raised by wind from the earth, sink
again into the earth when the wind disappears, so gods, man and animals
created by the agitation of qualities are reunited with the eternal with
the end of disturbance. He, who reverentially bows unto Hari, whose
lotus-feet are being meditated upon by the celestials, is freed from all
iniquities. Do you avoid such a man who is freed from all sinful bonds
like unto fire fed with clarified butter".

Having heard these words of Yama, his messenger, with noose in hand,
said "Tell me, O Lord, how am I to distinguish the worshipper of Hari,
who is the Lord of all beings?" Yama said—"Consider him as the
worshipper of Vishnu who never swerves from the duties assigned to his
caste, who regards with an impartial eye his own self, his friends and
enemies, does not steal nor injure any body and whose mind is freed from
all passions. Know him to be a follower of Hari, whose heart is not
sullied by iniquities of Kali who meditates on Janārddana in his mind
freed from illusions. Consider that excellent man to be a worshipper of
Vishnu, who, looking upon good in secret, holds that which is another's
wealth as grass and devotes all his thoughts to the Lord.

"There is Vishnu as mountain of clear crystal: for how can he live in
the hearts of those men sullied with malice and envy? The glowing heat
of does not exist in the cluster of the cooling rays of the moon.
Vāsudeva always resides in his heart whose mind is pure, free from
malice, quiet, who has a pure character, is a friend to all, speaking
wisely and kindly, humble and sincere. The eternal Vishnu residing in
his heart a man appears lovely to all, as a beautiful young Sal-tree
declares that there is the excellent juice inside it. Depart, O my
emissary, speedily from those men, whose sins have been washed away by
self-control and moral discipline, whose minds are always devoted to the
undecaying and who are freed from avarice, unkindness and malice. If the
divine Hari, who is without beginning or end and is armed with a sword,
conch and mace, lives in the heart of a man he is freed from all sins:
for how can darkness exist in the sun? He, who pilfers another's wealth,
slays animals, speaks untrue and cruel words, whose mind is impure and
is addicted to impious actions, does not get the Endless in his heart.
Janārddana does not reside in the heart of that vile wight who cannot
bear the prosperity of another, who vilifies the pious, does not perform
sacrifices and does not make gifts to the pious. Consider not that
person, engaged in vile actions, as the worshipper of Vishnu, who by
foul means, earns wealth for his dear friend, wife, son, daughter,
father, mother or servants.

"That beast of a man is not a follower of Vāsudeva whose mind is
addicted to foul actions, who is always engaged in actions, who lives
for a long time in evil company and who always endeavours to drown
himself in sins. Do you stand aloof from those persons in whose hearts
resides Ananta; from him, who by his pure understanding conceives the
supreme male and ruler Vāsudeva as one with his devotees and the whole
world. Do you depart from those, O my emissary, who are freed from sins
and who always invoke the lotus-eyed Vāsudeva, Vishnu, the upholder of
the earth, the immortal wielder of the discus and the shell, the refuge
of the world do not approach him in whose heart dwells the imperishable
soul for he is protected against my power by the discus of his deity and
he is bound for the heaven of Vishnu".

The Brāhmin of Kalinga said—"O foremost of Kurus, these were the
instructions given by the king of justice, the son of the sun, to his
servant. That servant communicated those instructions to me and I have
in turn related them to you".

Bhishma said:—"This was communicated to me, O Nakula, by the Brahmin,
hailing from Kalinga. And I have duly related that to you, O my son, and
thus there is no protection in the ocean of the world but Vishnu. They
whose minds are always devoted to Keshava, have no fear from death, his
servant, his rod, his noose and his tortures".

Parāçara said:—O Muni I have thus described to you what you desired me
to say and what was related by the sort of Vivaswat. What else do you
wish to hear?


Maitreya said:—O reverend sir, tell me how should they worship the
glorious Vishnu, the lord of the earth, who desire to get at the other
end of the ocean of the world. I wish to hear from you, O great Muni,
what fruits can be be obtained by worshipping the glorious Vishnu.

Parāçara said:—The question you have put to me, was put to Aurva by the
high-souled Sagara. Do you hear from me what he said (on this). Having
bowed to Aurva, born in the race of Vrigu, Sagara said—"O foremost of
Munis, tell me the mode of worshipping Vishnu, and the fruits that a man
can obtain by worshipping him". Hear from me, O Maitreya, all that he
said when thus questioned (by Sagara).

Aurva said:—"Vishnu being worshipped, a man obtains the consummation of
all earthly desires and attains to the regions of the celestials and of
Brahmā and even final liberation. O king of kings, whatever a man
desires, either small, or great, he gets by the worship of Achyuta. O
king of earth, you have asked me how Vishnu can be worshipped. Hear I
shall relate all that to you. He is the true worshipper of Vishnu who
observes duly the duties of the four castes and rules of four Asramas.
There is no other means of satisfying Vishnu. He who offers sacrifices,
sacrifices to him; he who recites prayers, prays to him; he who injures
living beings injures him; for Hari is identical with all living beings.
Therefore, he who observes duly the duties of his caste, is said to
worship the glorious Janārddana. O lord of earth, the Brahman, the
Kshatriya, the Vaiçya, the Sudra by attending to the duties prescribed
by his caste, best worships Vishnu. He, who does not vilify another
either in his presence, or in his absence, who does not speak untruth,
does not injure others, pleases Keshava the best. Keshava is best
pleased with him, O king, who does not covet another's wife, wealth and
who does not bear ill feeling towards any. O lord of men, Keshava is
pleased with him who neither beats nor slays any animate or inanimate
thing. O lord of men, Govinda is pleased with that man who is ever
intent upon serving the gods, the Brahmans and his spiritual preceptor.
Hari is always satisfied with him who is ever anxious for the welfare of
all creatures, his children and his own soul. Vishnu is always pleased
with that pure-minded man whose mind is not sullied with anger and other
passions. He best worships Vishnu, O king, who observes the duties laid
down by scripture for every caste and condition of life; there is no
other mode". Sagara said:—"O foremost of twice-born ones, I wish to hear
of the duties of caste and condition. Relate them to me". Aurva
said:—"Hear attentively from me in order the duties of the Brāhman, the
Kshatriya, the Vaiçya and the Sudra. The duties of the Brāhmins consist
in making gifts, worshipping the celestials with sacrifices, studying
the Vedas, performing oblations and libations with water and preserving
the sacred fire. For maintenance, he may offer sacrifices for others,
teach others and may accept liberal presents in a becoming manner. He
must advance the well-being of all and do injury to none—for the
greatest wealth of a Brahman consists in cherishing kind feelings
towards all. He must consider with an equal eye, the jewel and stone
belonging to another. He should at proper seasons beget offspring on his
wife, O king of earth.

"The duties of the Kshatriyas consist in making gifts to the Brahmins at
pleasure, in worshipping Vishnu with various sacrifices and receiving
instructions from the preceptor. His principal sources of maintenance
are arms and protection of the earth. But his greatest duty consists in
guarding the earth. By protecting the earth a king attains his objects;
for he gets a share of the merit of all sacrifices. If a king, by
maintaining the order of caste, represses the wicked, supports the pious
he proceeds to whatever region he desires.

"O lord of men, the great Patriarch Brahmā has assigned to the Vaiçyas,
for their maintenance, the feeding of the cattle, commerce and
agriculture. Study, sacrifice and gift are also within the duties of the
Vaiçyas: besides these they may also observe the other fixed and
occasional rites.

"The Sudra must maintain himself by attending upon the three castes, or
by the profits of trade, or the earnings of mechanical labour. He may
also make gifts, offer the sacrifices in which food is presented and he
may also make obsequial offerings.

"Besides these, the four castes have got other duties namely—the
acquisition of wealth for the support of servants, co-habitation with
their wives for the sake of children, kindness towards all creatures,
patience, humility, truth, purity, contentment, decorum of manners,
gentleness of speech, friendliness, freedom from envy or avarice and the
habit of vilifying, these also constitute the duties of every condition
of life.

"In cases of emergency a Brāhmin may follow the occupations of a
Kshatriya or Vaiçya; the Kshatriya may adopt those of Vaiçyas and the
Vaiçya those of Kshatriya: but the last two should never adopt the
functions of the Sudra if they could avoid them. And if that be not
possible they must at any rate avoid the functions of the mined caste. I
will now describe to you, O king, the duties of the several Asramas".


Aurva said:—"O king, when a youth is invested with the sacred thread, he
must reside in the house of his preceptor and study the Vedas with a
concentrated mind, and leading a life of continence. He must, with pure
practices, wait upon his spiritual preceptor and with the performance of
religious rites acquire the Veda. He must, O king, with concentration,
worship both in the morning and evening, the fire and the sun and after
that he must bow to his spiritual guide. O King, he must stand when his
preceptor is standing, he must move when he is walking and he must sit
beneath him when he is seated; he must never sit nor walk, nor stand
when his teacher does the otherwise. Whatever portion of the Vedas he
shall be taught by his preceptor, he must read that with undivided mind
before him. He must beg when permitted by his teacher and eat the food
thus collected. He must bathe in the water which has been first used by
his preceptor and every morning he must bring for him fuel, water or
anything that he may require. Having thus completed his studies, he must
receive dismissal from his preceptor and then enter into the order of
the householder; and taking to himself with lawful ceremonies, house,
wife and wealth, he must discharge to the best of his power the duties
of his life. He must satisfy the manes with cakes, the celestials with
sacrifices, the guests with hospitality, the Rishis with holy study, the
Patriarch with progeny, the spirits with oblations and all the worlds
with truthful words. By thus discharging duties a householder may attain
to heaven. A householder is a refuge to those who depend upon alms for
their maintenance and those who lead an itinerant life of self denial;
thus the condition of the householder is the best of all. O lord, the
Brāhmins travel all over the earth either for studying the Vedas or for
beholding the holy places; many of them are houseless and without food
and live for the night at the house at which they arrive in the evening.
The householder is always a refuge to these people. O king, it is his
duty to welcome them and address them kindly and to provide them,
whenever they come to his house, with a bed, a seat and food. If a guest
goes back disappointed from a house he leaves behind his iniquities and
takes away the accumulated piety of the householder. In the house of a
good man, contumely, arrogance, hypocrisy, repining, contradiction and
violence are strictly prohibited: and the householder, who performs the
principal duty of hospitality, is freed from all chains and attains to
better stations after death.

"O king, having performed all these duties, when a householder is
stricken in years, he must proceed to woods, either with his wife, or
leaving her to the charge of his son. He must live there upon leaves,
roots and fruits; allow his hair and beard to grow, and braid the former
upon his brows and sleep upon the ground. His dress must be made of skin
or of Kāsa and Kusā grasses. He must bathe thrice a day, offer oblations
to the celestials and to fire and treat all his guests with hospitality.
He must beg alms and give food to all creatures. He must annoint himself
with such unguents as are found in the forest and while carrying on his
devout practices he must endure heat and cold. He, who leading the life
of a hermit, follows these rules, destroys like fire all imperfections,
and attains to the region of Brahman.

"The fourth condition of life, O king, is called by the sages, that of a
mendicant. I shall relate the characteristics thereof; do thou hear. O
lord of men, having relinquished attachments for wife, children and
other earthly objects, men leading the life of a hermit, must enter into
the fourth stage of life. He must forego the three objects of life,
namely pleasure, wealth and virtue either secular or religious. And
regarding all with an equal eye, he must be friend to all living beings.
And being devoted, he must not injure any living creature, human or
brute, either in act, word, or thought and renounce all attachments. He
must not live more than one night in a village and more than five nights
in a city. He must live in all those places where good feeling and not
animosity is created in mind. He must, for his maintenance, beg for alms
at the houses of the three first castes at the time when fires have been
put out and peoples have eaten. The itinerant beggar must not call
anything his own and must suppress desire, anger, covetousness, pride
and folly. The ascetic, who gives no cause of fear to any living
creature, does not apprehend any danger from them. The Brāhmin, who,
having placed the sacrificial fire in his own body, feeds that flame
with the butter that is procured by alms, through the altar of his
mouth, goes to his own proper abode. But the Brāhman who longs for final
emancipation, who has got a pure heart, and whose mind is perfected by
self-investigation, goes to the region of Brahman, which is quiet and is
as bright as the flameless smoke".


Sagara said:—"O foremost of twice-born ones, you have described to me
the duties of the four orders and four castes. I wish to hear from you
the religious observances of men. Methinks you know every thing, O
foremost of Vrigus, tell me all about these observances, either
invariable, occasional or voluntary". Whereto Aurva replied, "I shall
describe to you all you have asked, the invariable and occasional
ceremonies of men: do you hear, O king.

"As soon as a son is born his father should perform the ceremonies
consequent upon the birth of a child and all other initiatory ceremonies
as well as a Srādh which is the source of prosperity. He must feed two
Brāhminis, seated with their faces to the east and according to his
means must offer sacrifices to the celestials and the progenitors, O
lord of earth. He must delightedly offer to the manes, balls of meat,
mixed with curds, barley and jujubes with the four part of his finger.
On every occasion of prosperity, he must perform this with all offerings
and go through circumambulalations.

"Upon the tenth day after birth the father should give a name to the
child, the first term of which shall be the name of a god and the second
of a man as Sarman or Varman. The former is the proper designation of a
Brāhmin, and the second of a Kshatriya. And the Vaiçyas and Sudras
should have the designation of Gupta and Dāsha, A name should not be
devoid of any meaning, should not be indecent, absurd, inauspicious nor
dreadful. It should contain an even number of syllables; it should not
be too long nor too short, nor too full of long vowels, but contain a
due proportion of short vowels and be easily articulated.

"After going through these initiatory ceremonies and being purified the
youth should acquire knowledge from his preceptor. And having acquired
knowledge from the preceptor and given him presents, O king, he should,
desirous of entering the order of householders, marry. If he desires to
continue his life as a student, he should, taking that vow, engage in
the service of his preceptor and his descendant or he may, according to
his premeditated inclination, Q king, at once become a hermit or adopt
the order of the religious mendicant.

"He must marry a maiden, who is of a third of his age, one who has not
too much of hair, but is not without any, one who is not very black nor
yellow complexioned and is nor from birth a cripple or deformed. He must
not marry a girl, who is vicious or unhealthy, born of a low family, or
suffering from any disease; one who may have been badly trained, one who
talks improperly, one who inherited some disease from father or mother;
one who has a beard and has got a masculine appearance; one who speaks
thick or thin or croaks like a craven, who has got eyes without eye
lashes, or sufficiently covered with them; one who has got legs covered
with hairs, thick ankles; one who has dimples in her cheeks when
laughing. The learned should not marry a girl who has not got a tender
countenance, who has got white nails, and who has got red eyes. The wise
and prudent should not marry one whose hands and legs are heavy, who is
a dwarf, or who is very tall or one whose eyebrows meet, or whose teeth
are far apart and resemble tusks. O king, a householder should marry a
girl who is at least five degrees distant in descent from his mother and
seven degrees from his father.

"There are eight forms of marriage—namely, Brāhma, Daiva, the Arsha,
Prajāpatyā, Asura, Gāndharba, Rākshasa and Paisācha and the last is the
worst. And every one should marry according to the mode enjoined to his
caste by the sages and should never marry according to the Paisācha
mode. Thus entering the order of householders, if a man takes a wife
observing the same religious and civil obligations and perform all the
ceremonies of his orders in her company, he derives great benefit from
such a wife".


Sagara said—"O Muni, I wish to hear from you of such religious
observances, performing which a householder does not meet with the wane
of piety either in this world or in the next".

Aurva said—"Hear, O lord of earth, an account of all those religious
observances celebrating which a man conquers both this and the next
world. The term sat means Sādhu; and they are called Sādhus or saints
who are freed from all blemishes. And their practices are called
Sāddhachāras. O lord of earth, the seven Rishis, the Manus and the
Patriarchs are those who have laid down and observed those practices.
Let the wise, O king, get up at Brahmā Muhartta,[244] when the mind is
at rest, meditate upon virtue and wealth not incompatible with the
former. He should also meditate upon desire not conflicting with the
other two. And he must equally meditate upon the three ends of life for
the purpose of counteracting the unseen consequences of good or best
acts. He should renounce, O king, such wealth and desire as stand in the
way of virtue, and he should abstain from such religious acts as give
uneasiness, and as are not compatible with the rules of society. O lord
of men, having got up from bed early in the morning, he must offer
adoration to the sun and then proceeding to the South-East quarter at a
distance of a bow-shot or more, or somewhere remote from the village he
must void the impurities of nature. A man should not void the impurities
of nature either in the court yard of his house or in any place where is
the print of a man's foot. The wise should not pass urine either on his
own shadow, nor on the shadow of a tree, nor on a cow, nor against the
sun nor on fire, nor against the wind, nor on spiritual preceptor, nor
men of the first three castes. Nor he should pass excrement in a
ploughed field, or a pasturage, or in the company of men, or on a high
road, or in rivers and the like which are holy, or on the bank of a
river or in a cremation ground. O king, the wise should pass urine with
his face towards the north during the day and towards the south during
the night. While passing excrement he should spread grass on the earth
and cover his head with cloth and should not wait there long, and should
not speak during that time. To clean his hand he should not take earth
from an ant-hill, not a rat-hole, nor from water, nor from what has been
left after being used for that purpose, nor from what has been used to
plaster a cottage, nor that which has been thrown up by insects, or
turned over by the plough. He must avoid all these kinds of earth for
the purpose of cleanliness; he should use one handful after passing
urine, three handfuls after passing excrement, ten handfuls are to be
rubbed over the left hand and seven on both hands. He should then rinse
his mouth with pure water which is neither fetid, nor frothy nor full of
bubbles. After that, he should, being composed, use earth to cleanse his
feet, washing them well with water.

"He must then drink water thrice and wash his face twice with it and
then touch with his head, the cavities of the eyes, ears and nostrils,
the forehead, navel and the heart. Having finally washed his mouth he
must clean and arrange his hairs and must decorate his body, before a
looking glass with unguents, garlands and perfumes. He, then according
to the practice of his caste, should earn money for maintenance and
should worship the deities with firm faith. Sacrifices with acid juice,
those with clarified butter and those with offerings of food, may be
performed with wealth; therefore men should endeavour much to acquire

"For performing daily devotional rites a man should bathe in the water
of a river, a natural channel, or a mountain torrent or he should bathe
on a dry ground with the water drawn from well or he should bring that
water to his house if he had any objection to bathing on the spot.
Bathed and clad in clean clothes, he should, with concentrated mind
offer oblations to the manes and Rishis with that water. He should offer
water thrice for the satisfaction of the celestials, thrice for the
satisfaction of the Rishis and once for the patriarchs. He should make
three libations for the satisfaction of the manes. He should, with the
part of the hand sacred to the manes, offer wafer to his paternal grand
father, great grand father, maternal grand father, great grand father
and his father, and according to his pleasure to his own mother and his
mother's mother and grand mother, to the wife of his preceptor, to his
preceptor, his maternal uncle, and other relations, to a dear friend and
to the king. He should then, O king, offer water to the celestials for
the benefit of all animals, reciting the prayer. 'May the celestials,
demons, Yakshas, Serpents, Rākshasas, Gandharvas, Pisāchas, Guhyakas,
Siddas, Kushmandas, trees, birds, fish, all that inhabit the waters or
the earth, or the air, be propitiated by the water I have offered to
them. This water is presented by me for the mitigation of the sufferings
of all those who have been put to hell. Let them be propitiated with
this water who are my friends, who are not my friends, who were my
friends in my former birth and all those who expect water from me. May
this water and sesamum offered by me remove the hunger and thirst of all
those who are suffering therefrom wherever they may live'. The
offerings, of water, O king, in the manner I have described, give
satisfaction to all the world. Having offered water duly and
reverentially to all the sinless man obtains the piety that comes from
satisfying the world.

"Having rinsed his mouth he must offer water to the sun touching his
forehead with folded hands and reciting the following player—'Salutation
to the radiant Vaivaswat—the effulgence of Vishnu; to the pure
illuminator of the universe; to Sāvitri, the giver of fruits for all
actions'. He must then go through the family worship, offering water,
flowers, and incense to the tutelary deity. He must then offer oblations
to fire, first invoking Brahmā then Prajāpati. He must then offer water
to Guhya, Kāshyapa and Anumati in succession and then offer the
remainder to the earth, to water and to rain in a pitcher at hand. O
foremost of men, he must offer water to Dhātri Vidhātri at the doors of
his house and to Brahmā in the middle of it. Hear from me how he should
then worship the deities presiding over the various quarters.

"He should offer the Bali containing the remaining portions of the
oblations to Indra, Yama, Varuna and Soma on the four sides of his
house. And in the north-east quarter the wise should offer it to
Dhanwantari; then he should offer the remaining portion to Viswadevas,
then in the north-east to wind then in all directions to the cardinal
points, to Brahmā, to the atmosphere, and to the sun, to all the
celestials, to all beings, to the lords of beings, to the manes, and to
Yakshas. Thereupon taking other rice the learned should cast it on a
clean spot of ground as an offering to all beings and with a collected
mind should repeat the following prayer—'May celestials, men, animals,
birds, saints. Yakshas, serpents, demons, ghosts, goblins, trees and all
those who desire food from me; may ants, worms, moths and other insects
who are hungry and chained in acts, obtain satisfaction from food
offered by me and enjoy bliss. I offer this food on the ground for them
who have got no mother, no father, no friends, no food, nor the means
for preparing it. May they be satisfied with the food offered for their
satisfaction. All these animals, this food and myself are at one with
Vishnu—for there exists nothing but Vishnu; I am not different from all
beings, and therefore for their sustenance I offer this food. May all
beings, that belong to the fourteen orders of existent things, be
satisfied and delighted with the food offered by me'.

"Having repeated this prayer the householder should devoutly throw the
food on the ground for the benefit of all beings; for the householder is
thence the supporter of them all. He should also disperse food on the
ground for dogs, outcasts, birds and all mean and degraded persons.

"Thereupon to receive guests the householder should wait in the
courtyard of his house as long as it takes to milch a cow or for a
longer period if he pleases. If a guest comes he must be received with
all hospitality; he must be offered a seat, his feet are to be washed,
food should be respectfully given to him, he must be spoken to with all
kindness and civility and when he goes away, the friendly wishes of the
host must accompany him. The householder should pay attention to that
guest who comes from another place and whose lineage is not known. He
should not make him a guest who is an inhabitant of the same village. He
who feeds himself, neglecting a guest, who is poor, who is not his
relation, who comes from another place and is desirous of eating, goes
to hell. The householder should receive his guest regarding him as the
golden embryo[245] without inquiring his studies, his schools, his
practices or his race.

"A householder, O king, at the Srādha ceremony of his father, should
feed another Brāhmin, who is of the same village, whose pedigree and
practices are known and who performs the five sacramental rites. He
should also present to a Brāhmin, who is well versed in the Vedas, four
handfuls of food, set apart, with the exclamation Hanta. If he has got
means left after making these three sorts of gifts, the learned should,
according to his pleasure, make gifts to a mendicant and a religious
student. These three, with the addition of the mendicant described
before, are to be considered as guests; and he, who treats these four
sorts of persons with hospitality, is freed of the debt due to his
fellow beings. The guest, who goes elsewhere disappointed from any
house, transfers his own sins to the owner of the house and takes away
the house-holder's merits. Brahmā, Prajāpati, Indra, fire, the Vasus,
the sun are present in the person of a guest and share the food that is
offered to him. Therefore a man should assiduously satisfy the duties of
hospitality; for a man, who eats his food without giving any to his
guest, feeds only upon his own sin. Thereupon the householder must
satisfy with well-seasoned food the damsel living in her father's house,
those who are ill, the pregnant woman, the aged and the infants of the
house and then he should eat himself. The householder, who eats his food
without feeding these, feeds upon his own iniquity and after his death
is condemned in hell to feed upon phlegm. He, who eats, without
performing ablutions, feeds upon filth; he, who eats without repeating
his prayers, feeds upon matter and blood; he, who eats unconsecrated
food, drinks urine; and he, who eats before the infants and the aged are
fed, is doomed in hell to live upon ordure. O foremost of kings, I shall
now describe, do you hear, how a householder should eat and for which he
would not be sullied with iniquity, his perpetual health and increased
vigour would be secured and all evils and hostilities would be averted.
Having bathed and offered duly libations to the celestials, Rishis, and
manes and adorned his hand with precious jewels, having recited
introductory prayers, offered oblations with fire, food to guests, to
Brāhmans, to his elders and to his family, the householder should take
his meal, wearing unsullied cloth, excellent garlands and sprinkled with
perfumes. He must not eat, O lord, of men, with a single garment on, nor
with wet hands and feet.

"He must not eat with his face directed to my intermediate point of
horizon, but facing the east or the north; and with a smiling
countenance, happy and attentive, let him take good and wholesome food
boiled with clean water, procured from no mean person, nor by improper
means nor improperly cooked. Having given a part to his hungry
companions he should take food without reproach from a clean, handsome
vessels which must not be placed upon a low stool or bed. He must not
take his food in an unbecoming place or out of season or in an
unsuitable mood, giving the first morsel to fire. His food, O king, must
be consecrated with suitable texts, must be good and must not be stale
except in the case of fruit or meat. Nor it should be made of dry
vegetable substances other than jujubes or preparation of molasses. And
a man should never eat that of which the juices have been extracted. Nor
a man should so eat as nothing will be left of his meal except in the
case of flour, cakes, honey, water, curds and butter. He should with a
devoted mind first taste that which has good flavour; in the middle he
should take salt and sour things and in the end he should take those
which are pungent and bitter. The person, who begins his food with fluid
things, takes solid food in the middle and finishes with fluid things,
will ever be strong and healthy. In this wise he should take such food
as is not prohibited, should be silent at the time of eating and should
take five handfuls for the nutriment of the vital principle. After he
has taken his food, he should, facing the east or the north, rinse his
mouth, and having washed his hands up to the wrist he should again sip
water. Then with a satisfied and calm mind he should take his seat,
meditate upon his tutelary deity and pray 'May fire excited by air cause
this food to digest in the space afforded by the etherial atmosphere,
convert this into the earthly elements of this body and give me
satisfaction. May this food, when assimilated, contribute to the vigour
of the earth, water, fire, and air of my body and afford unmixed
satisfaction. May Agasti, Agni and submarine fire bring about the
digestion of the food I have taken and may I enjoy happiness consequent
thereupon and may my body be freed from all ills. May Vishnu, who is the
chief principle of all senses, of all bodies and souls, be propitiated
with my faith and may cause such assimilation the food I have eaten as
may invigorate my health. Verily Vishnu is the eater, the food and the
nourishment, may the food I have taken, through this faith, be

"Having recited this prayer he should rub his stomach with his hand, and
renouncing idleness should engage in such action as can easily he
performed. He should spend the day in the reading of sacred writings and
in such amusements as are authorized by the righteous and when the
Sandhya sets in he must engage in devotion. O king, he must perform the
morning rites before the stars have disappeared and perform the evening
rites before the sun has quite set. The morning and evening rites should
never be neglected except at seasons of impurity, anxiety, sickness or
alarm. He, who but for illness lies on bed at the hours of sunrise and
sunset, is guilty of iniquity. Therefore a man should rise before the
sun in the morning and sleep not until after he has set. Those, who
sinfully neglect the performance of both the morning and evening rites,
go to the hell of darkness after death. And having prepared food in the
evening, the wife, of the householder with a view to obtain the fruit of
the Viçwadeva rite, should give food, without offering any prayers, to
outcasts or unclean persons. The householder, as his means allow, should
again show hospitality to any guest who may come receiving him with the
salutation of evening and offering him water to wash his feet, a seat, a
supper and a bed. The sin, consequent upon not receiving hospitably a
guest who comes after sunset, is eight times greater than that of
turning away one who comes during the day. A person should therefore
particularly show respect to him who seeks refuge after sunset, for the
respect, given to his satisfaction, will afford pleasure to all the
celestials. The householder should, therefore, as his means permit him,
give a guest food, potherbs, water, a bed, a mat, or if he cannot give
any thing more, ground only on which to lie.

"Having taken his evening meal and washed his feet a householder should
take rest. His bed must be complete and made of wood, it must have ample
space, must not be cracked nor uneven, nor dirty nor infested by insects
and must have a bedding. The householder must sleep with his head either
to the east or to the south; any other position is unhealthy. In proper
time, under the influence of an auspicious planet and in an auspicious
moment he should go to his wife if she is not unbathed, sick, unwell,
unwilling, angry, pregnant, hungry or over-fed. He should also be free
from all these imperfections and should be neatly dressed and adorned
and excited by tenderness and affection. Having bathed, wearing
garlands, using perfumes, delighted and animated by desire he should go
to his wife—not being hungry and excited with anxiety. There are certain
days on which the use of unguents, flesh and women is prohibited as the
eighth and fourteenth lunar days, new-moon and full-moon and the
entrance of the sun into a new sign. On these occasions the wise should
control their appetites and engage in the worship of the celestials as
laid down in scripture, in meditation and prayer. And he, who acts
otherwise, will be doomed to a hell where he will be constrained to live
upon ordure. A man should not excite his desires by medicines nor
satisfy them with unnatural objects or in public or holy places. A man
should not go to a woman under a huge tree, in the courtyard, in a place
of pilgrimage, in pasturage, where four streets meet, in a cremation
ground, in a garden or in the waters. On all these occasions mentioned
before in the morning or in the evening or being unclean the wise should
not cohabit with women. If a man goes to a woman during the Parva he
loses wealth, if during the day he is visited with sin, if he cohabits
with a woman on ground he loses his fame. A man should not think
voluptuously of another's wife, nor should, he speak to her for that
purpose; for such a wight will be born in his next life as a creeping
insect. The cohabitation with another's wife is a source of fear to him
both in this life and in the next—for in this he loses his longevity and
in the next he is doomed to hell. Considering all these things a man
should approach his own wife in proper season or even at other times".


Alurva said:—"The householder should venerate gods, king, Brāhmanas,
saints, aged persons and holy preceptors. He should also observe duly
the two Sandhyas and offer oblations to fire. He should use untorn
garments, delicate herbs and flowers, wear emeralds and other precious
stones, keep his hair neat and clean, perfume his body with delicious
unguents and should always go out handsomely dressed and decorated with
garlands and white flowers. He should not misappropriate another's
property nor should treat him unkindly. He should always speak amiably
and the truth and should not speak out publicly another's faults. O
foremost of men, he should not envy another's prosperity—nor should he
create enmity with another; he should not use a broken conveyance, nor
should he sit under the shadow of a tree on the banks of a river. The
wise should not make friends with, nor should they wend the same way
with, one who is hated, who is a sinner or a drunkard, who has many
enemies, or who is lousy, with a harlot or her gallant, with a pauper or
a with a prodigal, a slanderer or a knave. A man should not bathe in
river when it is ebb-tide, should not enter a house when it is on fire
nor climb to the top of a tree; nor (when in the company of others)
clean his teeth, nor blow his nose nor grape without covering his mouth,
nor clean his throat, nor cough, nor laugh loudly, nor emit wind with
noise, nor bite his nails, nor cut grass, nor scratch ground, nor put
his beard into his mouth, nor crumble a clod of clay, nor look upon the
planets when he is unclean. He should not see another's wife when she is
naked nor see the sun at the time of its rising or setting. He should
not express disgust at a dead body for the odour of it is the produce of
the moon. He should avoid, during the night, the place where four roads
meet, the village tree, the forest adjacent to a cremation ground and a
loose woman. The wise should not pass across the shadow of a venerable
person, of an image of a deity, of a flag and of a heavenly luminary. He
should not travel alone in a forest nor sleep alone in an empty house.
He should live at a distance from hair, bones, thorn, filth, remnants of
offerings, ashes, chaff and earth wet with water in which another has
bathed. He should not seek the shelter of a degraded wight and should
renounce the company of wily persons. He should not approach voracious
animals and should not lie down on bed long after sleep is broken. He
should not, for a too long time, lie down on bed, sleep, keep up nights,
sit and take exercise. The wise should avoid, even at a distance,
animals with tusks and horns and exposure to frost, wind and sunshine. A
man should neither bathe, nor sleep nor rinse his mouth when he is
naked; he should not wash his mouth nor perform any sacred rite with his
waistband loosened. Nor he should, with one piece of cloth on, offer
oblations to fire, sacrifice to the celestials, wash his mouth, salute a
Brāhman or utter a prayer. He should not associate with evil
companions—the intercourse for half an instant, the pious is desirable.
The wise should not quarrel men inferior or superior to them; dispute
and marriage with equals are always desirable. The wise should never
enter into dispute and should always avoid useless enmity. It is better
to suffer a trifling loss but he should not acquire wealth by hostility.

"When bathed he should not wipe his limbs with the cloth he has put on
nor with his hands; he should not shake his hair nor rinse his mouth
before he has risen. He should not put one foot upon another nor spread
out his foot before his elders but should modestly sit in a posture
called Verāsana i.e., on his knees. He should not go round a temple upon
his left hand nor circumambulate any venerable object in the reverse
direction. The wise should not spit nor void impurities before the moon,
fire, the sun, water, wind, or any respectable person. Nor should he
pass urine standing or upon a public way; he should not pass over
phlegm, ordure, urine or blood; nor should he spit forth the mucus of
the throat at the time of eating, offering sacrifices or oblations or
reciting prayers or before a respectable person.

"A man should not treat women disrespectfully nor should he place too
much confidence in them. He should not deal with them impatiently nor
should he give them supremacy in important matters. O king, wise
persons, ever treading the path of morality, should not issue out of his
house without saluting the chaplets, flowers, jewels, clarified butter
and venerable persons. He should salute the places where four roads
meet, perform sacrifices at proper seasons, relieve the poor and
venerate the learned and good-natured. He who worships the celestials
and saints, gives cakes and water to the manes, and performs
hospitality, attains to exalted stations after death. He who speaks
wisely, moderately and compassionately proceeds to the regions which are
the perpetual sources of bliss. He who is intelligent, bashful,
forgiving, god-fearing and humble, proceeds to the region which is
attainable by the learned and those born in a pious race.

"The wise should not read the Vedas on the Parva days, on impure
seasons, upon untimetely thunder and the occurrence of eclipses. The
attainment of heaven is a trifling thing to him who allays the anger of
the angry, who is friend to all and freed from malice, and who removes
the fear of the pious. A man should use an umbrella to protect him
against the sun and rain; he should carry a rod when he goes by night or
through a forest and he should use shoes if he wishes to save his body
from being hurt. As he proceeds he should not look up nor about him, nor
afar off but keep his eyes upon the ground to the extent of a couple of

"He, who, having controlled himself, puts a stop to the sources of all
these imperfections, meets with no obstacle in the acquisition of piety,
wealth and desire. Final emancipation is in his grasp, who is sinless
towards them who commit mischief by him, who speaks amicably to them who
use harsh words and whose soul melts with the benevolence. The earth is
upheld by the truthfulness of those who have controlled their passions,
and who, always following pious observances, are not sullied by desire,
covetousness and anger. A man should therefore speak truth when it is
agreeable and he should be silent when that truth would give pain. He
should avoid agreeable words when they are detrimental and unreasonable,
for it is always better to speak those disagreeable words which would
produce salutary effect, although it would give offence. A prudent man
should always cultivate that, in act, thought and speech, which conduces
to the well-being of all living creatures both in this world and the


Alurva said:—"A father, without changing his cloth, should bathe when a
son is born; he should then go through the ceremonies consequent upon
the birth and perform the Srāddha which should always be celebrated upon
occasions of prosperity. With a composed mind and thinking on nothing
else, he should worship both the celestials and the manes and
reverentially go round keeping Brāhmans on his left hand and offer them
food. And standing with his face directed to the east, he should, with
the portions of the hand sacred to the celestials and Prajāpati, offer
balls of food with curds, unbruised grain and jujubes. He should perform
on every accession of prosperity the Srāddha ceremony, by which the
manes called Nāndimukhas are propitiated. On the occasion of the
marriage of a son or daughter, on entering a new house, on giving a name
to a child on performing his tonsure and other purificatory rites, at
the binding of the mother's hair during gestation, on first seeing the
face of a son and on similar other occasions a householder should
diligently worship the manes so named. I have described to you, O king,
the mode of worshipping the manes, as laid down by ancient sages; hear,
I shall now describe the rules for the performance of obsequial rites.

"Having washed the dead body with sacred water, adorned it with garlands
and reduced it to ashes outside the village, the relatives having bathed
with their clothes on, should stand with their faces to the south and
offer libations to the dead, addressing him by name and saying,
'Whatever thou mayst be.' (And if it is burnt during the day,) they
should return to the village along with the cattle coming from pasture,
and when stars appear, should go to rest, sleeping on mats spread upon
the earth. (And as long as the mourning lasts) every day a ball of food
should be placed on the ground as an offering to the dead and they
should take rice without flesh. And as long as the mourner wishes he
should feed the Brāhmans for the soul of the dead derives pleasure in as
much as his kinsmen are satisfied with their entertainment. (After the
death of a person) on the first day, or the third, or seventh or ninth,
his relatives should change their clothes and bathe out of doors and
offer a libation of water with sesamum-seeds. On the fourth day the
bones and ashes should be collected; after which the body, of one
connected with the dead by offerings of funeral cakes, should be touched
without thereby incurring impurity. And those who are related by
presentation of water are qualified for any business. The former class
of kinsmen are allowed to use beds but still they are prohibited from
using arguments and flowers and must observe continence after ashes and
bones have been collected. When a child is dead, or one who is abroad,
or one who is degraded, or one who is a spiritual guide, or when one
commits suicide, or when one destroys himself by water, fire or by
hanging, the period of uncleanliness is over as soon as the news is
received. The food of a family, in which a relation is dead, should not
be taken for ten days. During the period of uncleanliness, gifts,
acceptance, sacrifice and the study of sacred writings should be
suspended. The term of uncleanliness for a Brāhmin is ten days; for a
Kshatriya twelve days; for a Vaiçya fifteen days and for a Sudra a whole
month. On the first day after the period of impurity is over, the
nearest relative of the dead should feed Brāhmins at his pleasure, but
in uneven number and should offer to the dead a ball of rice upon holy
grass placed near the remaining portion of the food that has been
consumed. After the Brāhmans have been fed, the mourner, according to
his caste, should touch water, a weapon of goad or a staff—for he is
purified by such contact. He should then resume the duties assigned to
his caste and maintain his livelihood by the acquisition of wealth.

"He should then perform the Srāddha of his deceased relative on the day
of his death in each month (for a year). And then feeding the Brāhmins
in an uneven number he should offer balls to the deceased. The Brāhmins
should then be accosted by the sacrificer if they are satisfied and
after they have declared their satisfaction he should relate the prayer,
'May this ever satisfy such a one.'

"The Srāddha, which is called Ekoddistha, should be performed monthly
for one year after the death of a person. And at the expiry of one year
the ceremony called Sapindana should be observed, Hear, O king (I shall
describe) how shall that be celebrated. This ceremony should be
celebrated in the same way as monthly obsequies—only four vessels should
be placed with water perfumes and sesamum. O king, (of these four) one
should be dedicated to the deceased and three to the manes, and the
contents of the former should be transferred to the latter three. After
the deceased has been included in the list of manes, O king of earth,
the ancestors should be again worshipped with all the ceremonies of the
Srāddha. The persons connected by the offering of cake, who are
competent to celebrate the obsequial ceremonies, are the son, grandson,
great grandson, a kinsman of the dead, the descendants of a brother or
the prosperity of one connected by funeral offerings. And when all these
relations are wanting, the ceremony may be performed by those allied by
the offerings of water only or those allied by offerings of cakes or
water to maternal ancestors. When males, both in the maternal and
paternal families, are extinct, the funeral obsequies may be performed
by women or by those who are connected with the deceased in social and
religious institutions or by him who inherits his property.

"And even when friends and those who will inherit his property are
wanting the king may have his obsequia rites, initiative intermediate
and subsequent, celebrated. Hear, I shall now describe the difference of
these three classes of rites. The first are those which are performed
after the burning of the dead body until the touching of water, weapons
&c. The Srāddhas, called Ekoddistha which are performed every month, are
called intermediate rites; and the ceremonies, which follow
Sapindakarana when the deceased becomes one of his ancestors, are called
subsequent rites—from this time the ceremonies become general and
ancestral. The initiative ceremonies should be performed by the relative
of the father or mother whether allied by the offering of the cake or of
water by the companions of the dead man or by the king who inherits his
property. Both the intermediate and subsequent rites should be
celebrated by sons and other relations, and by daughter's sons and their
sons. In every year, O king, the obsequial ceremonies should be
performed either by males or females, in the same way as the ceremonies
of month by obsequies are enjoined. Hear O king, I shall now describe,
at what seasons and in what manner those ceremonies are to be


Aurva said:—"When a man celebrates reverentially the Srāddha of his
ancestors, Brahmā, Indra, Rudra, two Aswinis, the sun, fire, Vasus,
Maruts, Viçwadevas, Rishis, birds, men, beasts, reptiles, manes and all
other creatures, become propitiated. This should be performed, O king,
every month, on the fifteenth day of the dark fortnight, or the eighth
day of the same period in some months or at particular seasons. Hear, I
shall now explain them. A householder should celebrate it when he will
find all requisites ready, when a learned Brāhmin has come to the house
for which ancestral ceremonies are appropriate. He should voluntarily
offer sacrifice upon any atmospheric portent, at the equinoctial and
solstitial periods, at eclipses of the sun and moon, on the sun's
entrance into a Zodiacal sign, upon unpropitious aspects of the planets
and asterisms, on dreaming unlucky dreams and on eating the grain of the
year's harvest. The manes obtain satisfaction for eight years from
ancestral offerings upon the day of the new moon when the star of the
conjunction is Anurādhā, Visakhā or Swāti and for twelve years when it
is Pushya, Ardrā or Punarvasu. He, who desires to satisfy the celestials
or the manes, very seldom gets an opportunity on a day of new moon when
the stars are those of Dhanistha, Purvabhādrapāda or Satabhisā. Hear
also the description of another class of Srāddhas which give special
delight to the manes as explained by Sanatkumāra the son of Brahmā, to
the noble Pururavas when brimful with faith and devotion to the manes he
asked how he might please them. The third lunar day of the month of
Vaisakha (April, May) and the ninth of Kārtika (October, November) in
the light fortnight; the thirteenth of Nabha (July, August) and the
fifteenth of Magha (January, February) in the dark fortnight are called
by the sages of yore the anniversaries of the first day of Yuga and are
regarded as most sacred. On these days water mixed with sesamum-seed
should be duly offered to the progenitors as well as on every lunar and
solar eclipse; on the eighth lunations of the dark fortnights of
Agrahāyana, Māgha and Fālguna on the two days beginning the solstices
when the nights and days alternately begin to diminish; on the days
which are the anniversaries of the beginning of Manwantaras; when the
sun is in the path of the goat and on all these occasions when meteors
appear. A Srāddha, performed on these occasions, gives pleasure to the
manes for a thousand years; and this is the secret which they have
given. The fifteenth day, of the dark fortnight in the month of Māgha
when united with the conjunction of the asterism over which Varuna
rules, is also a sacred season when offerings particularly afford
delight to the manes. When the asterism Dhanishthā is united with the
day of new moon, food and water, offered by members of respectable
families, satisfy the manes for ten thousand years. And on the day of
new moon when Ardra is in the ascendant they rest satisfied by offerings
for a whole age.

"He, who after having offered food and libations to the manes bathes in
the Ganges, Satlaj, Vipasa, Saraswati or the Gomati at Naimisha, is
freed from all sins. The manes also sing—'After having obtained
gratification for a twelve month we shall derive further satisfaction by
libations offered by our descendants at some place of pilgrimage at the
end of the dark fortnight of Māgha'. (The songs of Pitris) confer upon
men purity of mind, prosperity, prosperous seasons, perfect rites and
firm faith and all other things which they desire. Hear, O king, I shall
repeat some verses as sung by the manes, hearing which, you will follow
them with a controlled mind. 'That wise man who does not shrink from
spending his wealth and presents us with cakes shall be born in an
illustrious family. He should, if he is rich, give to Brāhmans in our
honour, jewels, cloths, land, conveyances, wealth and various other
eatables. If he not got so much wealth he should feed with faith and
humility excellent Brāhmans according to his means. If he cannot afford
to give them food even he should according his might, present them with
unboiled grain or with some gifts however trifling they may be. Should
he be utterly unable even to do this, O king, he must give to some
excellent Brahmin, bowing before him sesamum-seeds, adhering to the tips
of his fingers. Or he should sprinkle water mixed with seven or eight
sesamum seeds to us upon the ground; or he should gather, as he may,
fodder for a day and give it to a cow, by which he will, if firm in
faith, give us satisfaction. And if it is impossible for him to go
through any of these he should go to a forest raise up his arms to the
sun and other planets and say aloud—'I have no money, nor property nor
grain nor any thing whatever which I may give as an offering to my
ancestors. So I reverentially bow unto my ancestors; may they be
propitiated with my devotion only—I throw up my arms in the air.' These
are the words of the progenitors. O king, he who endeavours to satisfy
their desires, performs the ancestral rite called Srāddha".


Aurva said:—"Hear, O king, what description of Brahman should be fed at
ancestral ceremonies. He must be Trinachiketa, Trimadhu and
Trisuparna;[246] or one who is versed in the six supplementary sciences
of the Vedas; one who is well acquainted with the Vedas; one who
practises the duties laid down in the Vedas,[247] one who is yogi,[248]
one who is Jestha Sāmaga;[249] an officiating priest, a sister's son, a
daughter's son, a son-in-law, a father-in-law, a maternal uncle, an
ascetic, a Brāhman who keeps up the five fires, a pupil, a kinsman; one
who respects his parents. O king, a man should employ the Brāhmans first
mentioned in the performance of the Srāddha ceremony of his ancestors;
and in the subsidiary rites performed to please his manes he should
engage the others. He should not invite at a Srāddha ceremony a false
friend, one who has got ugly nails, one who is eunuch, one who has got
black teeth, a ravisher, a Brāhman who neglects the service of fire and
sacred duty, a vender of Soma plant, a man accused of any crime, a
thief, a calumniator, a Brāhman who performs the religious ceremonies
for degraded persons, one who gives instructions to his servants in
sacred writings; or one who is instructed in it by his servant, the
husband of a woman who has been formerly betrothed to another, a man who
has neglected his parents, the protector of a Sudra, the husband of a
Sudra woman, and a Brāhman who worships idols. On the first day of the
Srāddha a wise man should invite eminent teachers of Vedas and other
Brahmins, and according to their instructions he must settle what is to
be dedicated to the celestials and what to the manes. And in the company
of the Brahmins he should abstain from anger, continence and hard work.
He, who having eaten himself in a Srāddha and fed Brahmans and appointed
them to their sacred offices, is guilty of incontinence, thereby dooms
his progenitors to shameful suffering. Therefore on the day before the
Srāddha, eminent Brāhmans should be invited. If a Brāhman, who has
controlled his senses, comes to the house uninvited he should also be
entertained with food. The Brahmins are to be respectfully received with
water for their feet and after they have rinsed their mouths and washed
their hands they should be offered seats. An uneven number of Brāhmins
for the manes and an even number for the gods, as many as he can, should
be employed; or one only on each occasion.

"Thus the householder, with faith, should offer oblations to the
maternal grand father along with the worship of Viswadevas or he should
perform the Viswadevas[250] ceremony. He should feed the Brahmins, who
are for the gods and maternal ancestors with their faces to the east.
And there who are for the paternal ancestors and ancestors in general
should be fed with their faces to the north. Some say, O king, that
separate Srāddha should be performed for these two classes of ancestors
and others hold that they should both be entertained with the same food.
The wise should spread Kusā grass for the seats of the Brāhmans and then
worship them with libations; and having received permission from them he
should then invoke the deities. Then the man who is acquainted with the
ritual should offer a libation to the gods with water and barley and
then flowers, perfumes and incense. Then he should offer libations to
the manes placed upon his left; and having first provided seats of Kusā
grass, he, with the permission of the Brāhmans, should invoke with the
usual prayers, the manes to the ceremony, offering libation on his left
hand of water and sesamum. If any guest arrives at the time who is
desirous of eating or who is passing along the road he should worship
him with the permission of Brāhmans; for the saints, for the behoof of
mankind, travel over the earth disguised in various shapes and forms. It
is for this reason, O king, that the wise worship a person who comes at
such an hour—and if a guest is neglected—the fruits of an ancestral
offering are baffled.

"With the permission of the Brāhmans assisting in the ceremony the
householder should offer food without salt and seasoning to fire three
several times, exclaming first, 'To fire, the Conveyance of oblations;
to the progenitors Swaha'. Next addressing the oblation to Soma, the
lord of the progenitors and giving the third to Vaivaswat. He should
then place the residue in the dishes of the ancestors. He should then
offer to Brāhmanas choice viands well dressed and seasoned and profuse
and request them most gently to partake of it at their pleasure. The
Brāhmanas should attentively, in silence and with smiling faces eat that
food. The sacrificer not hungrily, nor in haste but with devout faith
should offer that food. Thereupon repeating the prayers that slay
Rakshas and scattering sesamum-seeds on the ground he should regard
these eminent Brāhmanas as his ancestors and address them (saying). 'May
my father, grand father and great grand father enter the persons of
these Brāhmans and be propitiated with (my offerings). May my father,
grand father and great grand father derive satisfaction from these
oblations to fire. May my father grand father, great grand father derive
gratification from the balls of food placed by me upon the ground. May
my father, grand father, great grand father be propitiated with what I
have offered them, this day, in faith. May my maternal grand father, his
father and his father derive gratification from my offerings. May all
the celestials derive satisfaction and evil beings die. May the
imperishable Hari the lord of sacrifice accept the oblation offered to
the manes or to the celestials and may all malignant spirits and enemies
of the celestials depart from the ceremony'.

"When the Brāhmans have been entertained with food to their satisfaction
he should scatter a portion of the food on the ground and present them
individually with water to rinse their mouths. And then obtaining their
permission he should place upon the ground, balls made up of boiled rice
and condiments along with sesamum-seeds. He should then offer libation
along with sesamum-seeds with the part of the hand sacred to the manes:
and with the samri part of the hand he should offer cakes to his
maternal ancestors. He should diligently make gifts on all these
occasions in lonely places, naturally picturesque and by the side of
streams. Upon Kusā grass the tips of which are directed to the south and
lying near the remnants of meats the householder should present the
first ball of food consecrated with flowers and incense to his father;
second to his grand father and the third to his great grand father; and
then wiping his hands with the roots of Kusā grass he should satisfy
them who are contented with the wipings thereof. Then having satisfied
the maternal ancestors with balls of food consecrated with incense and
flowers he should offer water to the principal Brāhmans to rinse their
mouths. And then giving presents to the Brahmans with attention and
piety according to his means soliciting their benedictions accompanied
with the exclamation 'Swadha' and having distributed those presents to
the Brāhmans he should address the gods saying 'May the Viswadevas be
propitiated' and receive the reply thereto from the Brāhmans. The
Brāhmans having said ‘So be it,' and granted him blessings he should
first send away his paternal ancestors and then the celestials. The same
order as regards food, gift and dismissal should be observed with the
maternal ancestors and the gods. Beginning with the washing of the feet
and ending with the dismissal of the gods and Brāhmans all the
ceremonies should be first performed for paternal ancestors and then for
maternal ancestors.

"Thereupon he should dismiss the Brahmans with sweet words and
reverence, follow them to the gate and then come back with their
permission. The wise will then perform the invariable ceremony called
the worship of Viswadevas and then with a controlled mind he should take
his meals in the company of revered persons, friends and servants.

"The learned should then celebrate the ancestral ceremony—for the
ancestors being propitiated all his desires are fulfilled. The things
are specially considered sacred at obsequies namely a daughter's son, a
Nepal blanket and sesamum-seeds; the gift or naming or seeing of silver
is also auspicious. O king, the person performing a Srāddha ceremony
should abstain from anger, walking about and hurry and those who take
their meals at the Srāddha should also avoid them. O king Viswadevas,
paternal ancestors, and maternal ancestors are pleased with him who
performs these obsequial rites.

"O king, the moon is the supporter of the manes and he is sustained by
acts of austere devotion. Hence one, who practises austerities, should
be appointed at the performance of a Srāddha. O king, if there is one
Yogi in the midst of a thousand Brāhmans, he liberates both the
sacrificer and all those who take their meals there".


Aurva said—"Ancestors are gratified for a month with Havishya,[251]
fish, or the flesh of the hare, of birds, of the the goat, the antelope,
the deer, the gayal, or the sheep, or with the milk of the cow[252] and
various preparations thereupon, They are perpetually pleased with flesh
in general and with that of the long-eared white goat in particular, The
flesh of the rhinoceros, the Kālasāka, potherb and honey, give special
satisfaction to those who are adored at the obsequial ceremonies.
Blessed is he, and the king who performs at the due time the Srāddha
ceremony of his ancestors at Gya and that affords special delight to his
ancestors. Grains that spring up spontaneously, wild-rice, white and
black Panic forest vegetables, barely, wheat-rice, sesamum, various
kinds of pulse and mustard are considered specially fit for ancestral
offerings. O king, a householder should not offer any kind of grain that
is not rendered sacred by religious rites nor the pulse called
Rājamāsha, nor millet, nor lentils, nor gourds, nor garlick, nor onions,
nor nightshade, nor camel's thorn, nor salt, nor the efflorescence of
salt deserts, nor red vegetable extracts, nor any thing that looks like
salt, nor any thing that is hated by people. He should not offer that
water at a Srāddha that has been brought by night, or has been left off,
or is so little as cannot satisfy a cow, or smells badly or is covered
with froth. He should not offer milk of animals with undivided hoof, of
a camel, a ewe, a deer, or a buffalo. Neither the celestials nor the
manes will partake of the food if a Srāddha is looked at by a eunuch, a
foundling, an outcast, a heretic, a drunken man, or one diseased, a
cock, a naked ascetic, a monkey, a village hag, by a woman in her
courses or pregnant, by an unclean person, or by a carrier of corpses.
The ceremony should be celebrated on a plot of ground carefully
enclosed. The performer should scatter sesamum on the ground and drive
away evil spirits. He should not offer food that is fetid, or spoiled by
hairs or insects, or mixed with acid gruel, or stale. Whatever pure food
is offered to the manes, with faith and mentioning their names and race,
gives them nourishment. O king, in the days of yore, in the forest of
Kalāpa the Pitris said to Ikshwaku, the son of Manu 'Those, who shall
respectfully offer to us cakes at Gya, shall follow a righteous path.
May he be born in our family, who shall give us on the thirteenth of
Bhādrapada and Māgha milk, honey and clarified butter, who shall marry a
maiden, shall liberate a black bull and shall liberate a horse sacrifice
accompanied with liberal presents'".


Parāçara said:—In the days of yore the glorious Aurva, when accosted by
the illustrious king Sagara, said thus regarding the usages to be
practised by mankind. I have described to you all those observances
which no one should violate.

Maitreya said:—"O venerable Sir, I know all those who are called
Sanda,[253] Apabidha[254] and Udakee[255] but I wish to know who is
called Nagna; doing what he is called so, and what is the character of
such a person to whom you have referred".

Parāçara said:—The Rig, Yajur and Sama Vedas are the three-fold covering
of the several castes and the sinful wight who throws off this is called
naked or apostate. The three Vedas constitute the dress of all men and
when people neglect them they are left bare. Hear, what my grand father
the pious Vasishtha said about this to the noble Bhishma. O Maitreya I
heard what my grand-father said about this.

There took place in the days of yore a battle between the gods and
demons for the period of a divine year in which the gods were defeated
by the demons under the command of Hrāda. The celestials, who were
defeated, fled away to the northern shore of the milky ocean, where
being engaged in devout practices, they thus prayed to Vishnu—"May the
glorious Vishnu, who is without beginning, the lord of all beings, be
propitiated with the words that we are going to address to him. Who can
sing the glories of that great God from whom have originated all beings
and in whom they cease to exist? Though thy true greatness is not within
the reach of words still we have been engaged in glorifying thee being
discomfitted by our enemies. Thou art earth, water, fire, air, ether,
mind, Prakriti and Purusha. O thou at one with all souls, thy form,
visible or unvisible, pervades all from Brahmā to a stock diversified by
time and place. Salutation to thee, who art Brahmā originated from the
lotus springing from thy navel for the purpose of creation. Salutation
to thee who art Indra, the sun, Rudra, the Vasus, fire, the winds and
even also ourselves. Salutation to thee, O Govinda, who art at one with
all demons, who are the creature of arrogance and want of discrimination
uncontrolled by patience and self-control. Salutation to thee who art at
one with the Yakshas, whose minds have no idea of perfect knowledge and
who are accordingly of unmitigated prowess and whose nature is charmed
with sounds. Salutation to thee, O foremost of Purushas, who are at one
with all night-rangers, originated from the quality of darkness, fierce,
fraudulent and cruel. Salutation to thee, O Janārddana, who art that
virtue that gives rewards for the virtuous actions of those who live in
heaven. Salutation to thee who art at one with the saints of
accomplished piety, who are always contented and who traverse
unobstructed all permeable elements. Salutation to thee who art at one
with the serpents, double-tongued, impulsive, cruel, not satisfied with
enjoyment and having immense wealth. Salutation to thee who art at one
with the Rishis who are freed from sins and imperfections and at one
with wisdom and tranquility.

"Salutation to thee, O thou having lotus-eyes, who art at one with time
that devours, without any compunction, all created beings at the end of
Kalpa. Salutation to thee who art at one with Rudra, who dances with
delight after devouring all beings—gods and men. Salutation to thee,
Janārddana, who art at one with men, who, actuated by the quality of
foulness, engage in actions. Salutation to thee who art at one with
brute animals—the spirit that leads to perversity, which proceeds from
the quality of darkness and is encumbered with twenty-eight kinds of
obstruction. Salutation to thee who art that chief spirit that appears
diversified in the vegetable world and which are the substance of
sacrifice is the agent of accomplishing the perfection of the universe.
Salutation to thee who art identical with every thing and whose first
form is the objects of perception and heaven and animals and men and
celestials. Salutation to that form of thine, which is the cause of
causes and which is distinct from and superior to the endless universe
composed of intelligence, matter and the like and with which nothing can
be compared. Salutation to thee, O great God, who hast neither colour
nor extent nor dimensity and which is beyond all qualities and whose
essence, purest of the pure, can be conceived only by sages. Salutation
to the Brahma form of thine, who pervades in our bodies, who exists in
all objects, who is without birth or decay and distinct from whom
nothing exists. Salutation to thee, Vāsudeva, the supreme lord of all,
who is unsullied, the root of all things, freed from dissolution,
unborn, eternal, who in essence is the supreme condition of spirit and
in substance the whole of the universe".

Having thus recited the prayer the celestials beheld Hari the supreme
lord of all, seated on Garuda, armed with the shell, the discus, and the
mace. And having placed themselves before him they addressed him and
said "Have pity upon us, O lord, and save us, who have come to thee for
help, from the Daityas. O supreme lord, transgressing the commands of
Brahmā, the demons headed by Hrāda, have taken possession of the three
worlds and appropriated the offerings which are our portion. Though thou
art at one with the endless creation and we are a portion of thyself,
we, impressed by illusions, behold all things of the universe as
distinct. Our enemies are engaged in the duties of their respective
orders, follow the paths laid down by sacred writings and practise
religious penances so we cannot lay them. O thou of immeasurable wisdom,
do thou so instruct us that we may root out the enemies of the

When the glorious Vishnu heard their prayers he emitted from his person
an illusory form which he gave to the celestials and said. "This
illusory form shall so deceive the Daityas, that being led astray from
the path of the Vedas, they shall be slain; for all gods, demons and
others, who shall transgress the authority of the Veda, shall perish by
my prowess which I exercise for the preservation of the universe. Go
then; be not afraid; this illusory form shall go before you. O
celestials, it shall be of great service to you, this day".


Parāçara said:—Maitreya, having proceeded to the Daityas the illusory
form beheld them engaged in austere penances on the banks of the river
Nerbudā. And approaching them in the guise of a naked mendicant, with
his head shaven and carrying a bunch of peacock's feathers he addressed
them gently "O lords of Daitya race—why do you practice these devout
penances? Do you expect rewards in this world or in the next?" The
Asuras said:—"O thou of great mind, we have been engaged in these
penances with a view to reap fruits in the next world. Do thou tell us
if thou hast got anything to say on this". The deceptive figure
said:—"If you are desirous of final emancipation hear my words, for you
will obtain the revelation which is the door to final happiness. The
instructions, superior to which there is nothing, I will give you, are
the secret path to final emancipation. If you follow them you shall
either obtain heaven or exemption from future births. O ye gifted with
mighty strength, you are worthy of these instructions".

Parāçara said:—There did the illusory figure mislead the Daityas from
the teachings of the Vedas by various persuations and many specious
arguments, teaching that the same-thing might be for the sake of virtue
and of vice; might be and might not be; might or might not lead to final
emancipation; might be the supreme object and not the supreme object;
might be effect and not be effect; might be manifest and not be
manifest; might be the duty of those who go naked and who go richly
dressed. And thus were the Daityas led astray from the path of their
duties by the continued teachings of their illusory teacher, keeping up
the equal truth of contradictory teachings. And those were called
Arhatas from the phrase he had employed of "Ye are worthy (Arhatha) of
this great teaching" that is of the false teachings which he induced
them to follow. Thus did the illusory figure lead away the Asuras from
the teachings of the Vedas. And being impressed by those teachings the
Asuras initiated others in all those doctrines. They in their turn
became teachers of the same false doctrines and converted others. And
thus communicating their doctrines to each other, they were all led away
from the teaching of the Vedas.

Then pulling on garments of red colour, with collyrium in his eyes, the
illusory figure again addressed others of the same family in sweet and
mild accents—"O ye demons, gifted with strength, if ye wish for heaven
or final rest desist from the sinful massacre of animals and hear from
me what you should do. The whole universe is composed of discriminative
knowledge; understand my words well for they have been uttered by the
wise. The world is without stay and is perpetually revolving in the
straits of existence being engaged in the pursuit of erroneous knowledge
and sullied by passion and others".

Parāçara said:—In this wise exclaiming to them "Know" (Budhyadwam) and
they saying (Budhyate), "it is known," those Daityas were led away from
their own religion. They thus renounced their respective duties being
impressed by the reasonings and arguments of that illusory figure. O
Maitreya, they, impressed, persuaded others to do the same and thus the
heresy spread and many abandoned the practices laid down by the Vedas
and Smritis. O twice-born one, with various other erroneous teachings,
the illusory figure converted many other Daityas. Being thus deluded,
the Asuras, in no time, abandoned the doctrines and rites laid down by
the three Vedas. Some of them, O twice-born one, spoke ill of the Vedas
and others villified the celestials. Some spoke against the Vedic rites
and sacrifices and others calumniated the Brāhmans. "The precepts" they
preached "that lead to the sacrifice of animals, are highly culpable. To
lay that throwing clarified butter in fire produces rewards is simply
childishness. If any one, after having obtained godhead by multiplied
ceremonies, is fed along with Indra upon the wood used as fuel in holy
fire, he is lower than a brute which feeds upon leaves. If a beast,
being sacrificed, attains to heaven, why does not the sacrificer slay
his father in a sacrifice? If a dead person is satisfied if another is
fed at a Srāddha then why does not the food offered by his son reach him
who resides at a distance? All these words therefore depend upon
individual respect so it is better for you to neglect them and
appreciate mine. The words of authority, O mighty Asuras, do not fall
from heaven; reasonable words only are to be acknowledged by me and
persons like yourselves". By these and similar reasonings the Daityas
were led away and none of them any longer acknowledged the authority of
the Vedas.

After the Daityas have thus been led astray, the gods, with careful
preparations, addressed themselves for fight. And there again began a
terrible encounter between the gods and demons. And the demons were now
defeated and slain by the gods who had adhered to the righteous path.
Formerly the Daityas were protected by the armour of their own religion
and they were now slain for the desertion of that armour of religion.

For that time, O Maitreya, those, who have followed the religion
preached by the illusory figure, are called naked for they following a
wrong track have thrown off the garment of the Vedas. There are four
orders of men, namely; the religious student, the householder, the
hermit and the mendicant; there is no fifth order. The sinful man, who
after relinquishing the order of the householder, does not become either
a hermit or a mendicant, is said to be naked. The man, who, although
able, does neglect his permanent observances for one day, commits sin
for one day; and if he neglects them, not being in trouble, for a
fortnight he can be purified only by arduous expiation. The virtuous
must see the sun after looking upon a person who has neglected his
permanent observances for a year; if they have touched they must bathe
with their clothes on—but that vicious one has no individual expiation
for himself. There is no sinner on earth more culpable than one in whose
house the celestials, progenitors and spirits are left to sigh
unworshipped. No man should associate, in residence, sitting or society
with him on whose person or in whose house the gods, progenitors and
spirits sigh. Conversation, exchange of civilities or association with a
man is equally reprehensible who for a year has not observed pious
observances. And the man who eats in the house of such a man, or sits
down with him or sleep on the same couch with him, becomes instantly in
the same way culpable.

He who eats himself without satisfying the gods, manes, spirits and
guests feeds upon his own iniquity and there is no salvation for such a
person. The Brāhmans are men of other castes who neglect their
respective duties or take up a degraded profession are said to be naked.
To live in a place where there is an intermixture of four castes is
detrimental to the character of the righteous. Those who converse with
him who eats without offering a portion to the gods, the sages, the
manes, spirits and guests, are doomed to hell. A wise man should not
therefore talk with or come in contact with these heretics who are
rendered impure for renouncing the three Vedas. A Srāddha ceremony,
although performed with great care and devotion, if looked upon by these
heretics does not please the gods or progenitors.

As described, there was in the days of yore a king named Satadhanu whose
wife Saivya was a woman of great piety. She was faithful to her husband,
kind, sincere, pure, and gifted with every female accomplishment,
humility and discretion. The king, with his wife, worshipped with great
devotion Janārddana the lord of gods. He daily worshipped Him with
whole-mindedness, oblations to fire, prayers, gifts and fasting. One day
when they had fasted on the full moon of Kārtika and had bathed in the
Bhagirathi, they saw as they came up from the river a heretic to
approach them who was the friend of the king's military preceptor. The
king, out of his respect for the preceptor, entered into conversation
with him but his devoted wife Saivya did not utter a single word. And
thinking that she was fasting she turned from him and looked towards the
sun. Having arrived at home, the husband and wife as usual performed the
worship of Vishnu. After a time the king, who had defeated all his
enemies, died and the queen ascended the funeral pile of her husband.

On account of the sin committed by Satadhanu for speaking to a heretic
while fasting he was born again as a dog. His wife was born as the
daughter of the king of Kāsi having a knowledge of her former birth,
versed in every science and gifted with every virtue. Her father was
anxious to marry with a good husband, but she always opposed and the
king was prevented from celebrating the nuptials. The daughter of the
king of Kāsi, by the knowledge of her pristine birth, saw that her
husband was born as a dog in the city of Visidhā. And having gone there
she saw her husband in that plight. And knowing that animal to be her
husband she placed upon his neck the bridal garland going through the
marriage rites and prayers. And being pleased with the excellent food
offered, the animal expressed his joy after the manner of his species.
He thus sporting as a dog, she was greatly ashamed and bowing unto her
husband, born as a dog, she said "O king, remember the civilities shown
by you (towards your preceptor's friend) for which thou hast been born
as a dog and art fawning upon me. Dost thou not remember, O My lord,
that by conversing with a heretic after bathing in a sacred river, thou
hast been born as a dog?"

Parāçara said:—Being thus reminded the king called to his memory his
former condition and was wrapt in meditation and felt humiliation. With
a broken heart he went away from the city and falling dead in a desert
he was again born as a jackal. In the following year the princess, again
by knowledge, perceived that he was born as a jackal and went to the
mount Kotahala to find him out. Finding him there the beautiful daughter
of the king thus spoke to her lord as a jackal—"O king, dost thou not
remember thy conversation with the heretic which I called to thy memory,
when thou wast a dog?" Thus accosted the king perceived what the
princess had said was true. Thereupon he abstained from eating and died.
He was then born as a wolf but his wife repairing to a lonely forest
again called back to the recollection of her husband his former state.
"O noble lord, thou art not a wolf but the king Satadhanu. Thou wast
born as a dog, then as a jackal and thou hast been born as a wolf".

Parāçara said:—Upon thus recollecting his former state the king
renounced his life and was born again as a vulture. His loving queen
again found him in that state called back to his memory his former
condition. "O king" she cried out, "remember thy true self—do thou
renounce this ugly form to which thou hast been condemned by the sin
consequent upon thy conversing with a heretic". The king was next born
as a crow and the princess making him out by virtue of her knowledge of
the pristine birth thus spoke to her lord "O lord, thou art now being
born as a crow eating the tributary grain, to whom, in a previous birth,
all other kings paid tribute".

Parāçara said:—Being thus reminded of his former birth the king
renounced the body and was born again as a peacock. Thereupon the
beautiful princess began to pet him and feed him with such food as is
agreeable to the peacocks. Thereupon the king, Janaka, undertook the
celebration of a mighty horse sacrifice. In the ablutions with which it
ended the princess caused his peacock to be bathed, bathing also
herself. She then reminded Shatadhanu how he had been successively born
as various animals. One recollecting this he renounced his life. He was
then born as the son of the high-souled king Janaka.

Then the princess, having a slender person, expressed her desire to her
father to be wedded. Her father too announced for a Swayambara. When all
had assembled at that meeting that chaste damsel found out her (former)
lord and again elected him as her husband. The prince lived happily with
her and on the death of her father ruled over the country of Videha. He
celebrated many sacrifices and distributed many gifts and begot sons and
defeated many enemies in war. Having ruled duly and cherished the earth
that king renounced his life in battle as became the warrior caste. The
princess again followed him in death and in agreement with sacred
precepts once more mounted cheerfully his funeral pyre. Thereupon the
king, with the princess, attained to the regions beyond the region of
Indra, where all desires are for ever satisfied, obtaining eternal and
unequalled bliss in heaven, the consummate happiness that is the reward
of conjugal fidelity which is hardly attained.

I have thus described to you, O Maitreya, the sin consequent upon
conversing with a heretic and effects of bathing after the solemn
sacrifice of a horse. A man should therefore carefully avoid the
conversation or coming in contact with a heretic especially at seasons
of devotion and when engaged in the performance of the religious rites
before a sacrifice. The prudent should look at the sun after seeing a
person in whose house domestic ceremonies have been neglected for a
month. And there is the greatest need of expiation if they meet persons
who live upon other's rice and who have wholly abandoned the Vedas and
who dispute the doctrines of sacred writings. A man should not even talk
with heretics, those who do forbidden acts, pretended saints,
scoundrels, sceptics and hypocrites; communication with such sinful
wretches ever at a distance, all association with schismatics pollutes a
man; a man should therefore carefully avoid them.

These are the persons, O Maitreya, called naked, the meaning of which
term you wanted me to explain. If they witness a Srāddha ceremony that
becomes fruitless—communication with whom spoils the piety of one day.
These are the heretics with whom the wise should not converse—and
speaking to whom destroys the virtue he might have obtained that day.
Men fall into hell if they converse with them who uselessly assume the
twisted hair and shaven head, who eat without offering food to gods,
spirits and guest and those who do not offer cakes and libation of water
to their manes.




Maitreya said:—"O venerable sir, you have described to me the permanent
and occasional observances to be observed by those pious individuals who
are diligent in their devotions. You have also described to me the
duties which appertain to several castes and several orders of men. I
wish you to relate to me now the dynasties of the kings who have ruled
over the earth".

Parāçara said:— Hear O Maitreya, I shall describe to you the family of
Manu beginning with Brahmā and comprising a number of pious, high-minded
and heroic princes; It is said, that never does his family become
extinct who daily calls to his mind the family of Manu springing from
Brahmā. Hear, therefore, O Maitreya, an account of the origin of his
family, hearing which all sins shall be removed.

From the mundane egg originated Brahmā, who was Hiranyagarbha, the form
of that supreme Brahmā which consists of Vishnu as identical with Rig,
Yajur and Sama Vedas—the first, uncreated cause of all worlds. From the
right thumb of Brahmā originated the Patriarch Daksha whose daughter was
Aditi, who was the mother of the sun. From the sun sprang Manu whose
sons were Ikshawaku, Nriga, Dwrishta, Saryati, Narishyanta, Pransu,
Nabhaga, Nedishta, Karusha, and Prishadhra. Being desirous of having
offspring formerly Manu celebrated a sacrifice in honour of Mitra and
Varuna; but the ceremony being unsuccessful on account of some
irregularity from the presiding priest a daughter Ilā was born. But by
the mercy of the two deities however, her sex was changed and she became
a man under the name of Sudyumna. And he again became a woman under an
imprecation (from Siva) near the hermitage of Buddha, the son of the

One day while she was walking near the hermitage of Buddha, he became
attached to her and begot on her a son named Pururavas. After his birth,
the noble Rishis, desiring to restore Sudyumna to his sex, prayed to the
glorious Vishnu who is the essence of the four Vedas, of mind, of every
thing and of nothing and who is the sacrificed male. By his mercy Ilā
once more became Sudyumna, in which character he had three sons, Utkala,
Gaya and Vinata.

On account of his having been formerly born a female he did not receive
any portion of his paternal kingdom. His father however at the request
of Vasistha conferred upon him the city of Pratishtā, and he gave it to

Of the other sons of Manu, Prishadhra, on account of the sin consequent
upon slaying a cow, was degraded to the condition of a Sudra. From
Karusha sprang the heroic persons named Kārushas. The son of Nedistha,
named Nābhaga became a Vaiçya; his son was Bhalandana, whose son was the
well-known Vatsapri; his son was Pransu, whose son was Prajani, whose
son was Khanitra, whose son was the brave Chakshupa, whose son was
Vinsa, whose son was Vivinsati, whose son was Khaninetra, whose son was
the powerful, rich, and heroic Karandhama, whose son was Avikshit, whose
son was the powerful Marutta, regarding whom this celebrated verse is
recited—"Who else on this earth has been able to celebrate a sacrifice
like one celebrated by Marutta?" All the implements and utensils were
made of gold. Indra was intoxicated with the drinking of Soma juice and
all the Brāhmans were greatly pleased on having liberal presents. In his
sacrifice the winds were the guards and the other celestials were the
courtiers. Marutta was a lord paramount; he had a son named Narishyanta;
his son was Dama; his son was Rayavarddana; his son was Suddhriti; his
son was Nara; his son was Kevala; his son was Banduhmat; his son was
Vegavat; his son was Budha; his son was Trinavindu, who had a daughter
under name of Ilavita. Being enamored of Trinavindhu, the nymph
Alambushā bore him a son named Visāla by whom the city Vaisāli was

Vinata had a son whose name was Hemchandra; his son was Suchandra; his
son was Dhumraswa; his son was Srinjaya; his son was Sahadeva; his son
was Krisaswa; his son was Somadatta, who performed ten times the
sacrifice of a horse; his son was Janemajaya, whose son was Sunati.
These kings are known as Vaisālas, of them it is said—"By the mercy of
Trinavindhu all the kings of Vaisāli were long-lived, magnanimous and
just and brave".

Saryati had a daughter named Sukanyā. Chyavana married her. He had a
pious son named Anartta, who had a son called Revata who governed the
country called after the name of his father Anartta and lived at the
capital called Kusasthali. The son of this king was Raivata or Kakudmin,
the eldest of a hundred bretheren. He had a daughter named Revati. He
repaired with her to the region of Brahmā to consult with the god
springing from lotus upon whom to confer her. When he reached there the
Gandharvas, Haha and Huha, were singing before Brahmā and Raviata waited
till they had finished. And the ages passed away during the performance
seemed to him as a moment. When they had finished singing Raivata laid
himself low before Brahmā and asked him about a fit bridegroom. Brahmā
said—"Whom should you wish for a son-in-law?" And bowing again Raivata
mentioned to him various persons whom he liked. Nodding his head smiling
graciously Brahmā said to him—"Of those whom you have mentioned there is
no trace of their family on earth Many ages have passed away whilst you
were listening to the songs of Gandharvas. Now the twenty-eighth great
age of the present Manu is well-nigh gone. Kali is fast approaching. You
alone give away this jewel of a daughter to somebody; all thy friends,
ministers, servants, wife, kinsmen, armies, wealth have along since been
taken away by the hand of Time".

That king, being terrified again, said, bowing, to Brahmā "O lord, such
being the circumstance, upon whom shall I confer this daughter?"
Thereupon nodding, the preceptor of the seven worlds—the god, whose
throne is lotus, said to the king, standing humbly before—"The being,
whose beginning, middle or end we do not know, who exists in all, who is
the creator, whose real and infinite nature and essence we do not know
is (Vishnu). His power cannot be measured by time, consisting of moments
and hours and years; he has no birth or death—all objects are his
form—he is eternal—he has no form or name. By the mercy of that
imperishable being I am the agent of creation—Rudra is the agent of
destruction and Vishnu is the agent of preservation. He, assuming my
form creates the universe; in his own essence he provides for its
duration; in the form of Rudra he devours all things; and with the body
of Ananta he upholds them, In the person of Indra and other celestials
he protects mankind and as the sun and moon he dispels darkness.
Assuming the nature of fire he bestows warmth and maturity, and in that
of earth he nourishes all beings. In the shape of air he gives activity,
in the shape of water he gives satisfaction and in the shape of sky he
provides space for all objects. He, being creator, creates himself; he,
being preserver, preserves himself; he, being destroyer, destroys his
own universal form. He is imperishable; there is nothing distinct from
him. In him is the world; he is the world; and he, the primeval
self-born, is again present in the world. O king, the glorious Vishnu
has incarnated a portion of himself on earth. O king, your picturesque
city Kusasthali, like the city of Indra, is now called Dwārakā. There
reigns a portion of Kesava in the person of Baladeva. O king, confer
this daughter of thine upon him, who appears under the guise of a man.
He is an excellent bridegroom for this gem of a daughter and she is a
fit bride".

Parāçara said:—Being thus advised by the deity springing from lotus, the
king returned to earth and beheld mankind, greatly reduced in size and
vigour and weakened in intellect. Thereupon that king, having
incomparable wisdom, repairing to his own city Kusathali which he saw
greatly changed, gave his daughter to Baladeva whose breast was as fair
and radiant as crystal. And beholding that damsel of excessive height
the king, whose banner is a palm tree, shortened her with the end of his
ploughshare. Being thus shortened she became like other women. Balarāma
thus married duly Revali, the daughter of Raivata. And the king, too
giving away daughter, retired to the mountain Himalaya and engaged in
penances with a subdued mind.


Whilst Kakudmin Raivata was absent in the region of Brahmā, Rākshasas
named Punyjanas devastated his capital Kusasthali. His hundred brothers,
afraid of the enemies, fled in different directions and their
descendants the Kshatriyas settled all over the country.

From Dhristha originated the Kshatriya race of Dharshtaka; the son of
Nabhaga was Nābhaga; his son was Ambarisa; his son was Virupa; his son
was Prishadāswa; his son was Rathinara, of whom it is said—"These
princes of Rathinara family, although Kshatriyas by birth, were called
Angerasas or sons of Angera and were Brāhmans and Kshatriyas".

As Manu was sneezing Ikshawku was born from his nostril. He had a
hundred sons of whom the three well-known were Vikukshi, Nimi and Danda.
These and fifty under Sakuni were the rulers of the north. Forty-eight
were the rulers of the south.

Being engaged in the celebration of an ancestral rite upon Ashtaka day
Ikshawku ordered Vikukshi to bring him flesh suitable for the offering.
The prince, therefore, went into woods and slew many a deer and other
wild animals for the purpose. Being exhausted with hunting he was
hungry; accordingly he sat down and ate a hare. And being refreshed he
carried the rest of the game to his father. Vaisishtha, the family
priest of Ikshawakus, was invited to consecrate the food; but he said
that it was impure on account of Vikuksh's having eaten a hare from
amongst it. Being thus informed by his spiritual preceptor the father
abandoned his son who, in consequence thereof, received the epithet
Sasāda (hare-eater). On the demise of his father he piously ruled over
the earth. A son, Puranjaya by name, was born to him.

There took place a dreadful conflict in the Treta yuga between the gods
and demons in which the former were defeated. They accordingly repaired
to Vishnu for help and propitiated him by their adorations. Being
propitiated the primeval deity, the eternal ruler of the universe,
Nārāyana said to them—"What you have desired is known to me. Hear how
your desires shall be fulfilled. There is a foremost Kshatriya king
named Puranjaya, son of the royal saint Sasāda. Infusing a portion of
myself into his body I shall descend on earth and slay all the demons.
Do you so endeavour that Putanjaya might engage in the work of the
destruction of Asuras". Hearing those words the celestials bowed unto
the glorious Vishnu and went to Paranjaya and addressed him, saying, "O
foremost of Kshatriyas, we have come to thee to secure thy help in the
destruction of our enemies in which we have been engaged. It will not
behove thee to neglect our friendship who have come here". Being thus
addressed Puranjaya said—"If Indra, the lord of the three worlds, the
king of you all, who is known as the performer of hundred sacrifices,
agrees to carry me upon his shoulders, I shall then fight with your
enemies and help you". The celestials and Indra immediately said "so be

Thereupon Satakratu assumed the shape of a bull and the king mounted
upon his shoulder. And being invigorated by the power of the undecaying
God, the lord of all moveable and and immoveable things, he slew all the
Asuras in the battle between the gods and demons. And in consequence of
his destroying the Asura army whilst seated upon the hump of the bull he
obtained the appellation Kakutstha. The son of Kakutstha was Anenas,
whose son was Pritha, whose son was Viswagaswa, whose son was Arda,
whose son was Yuvanāswa, whose son was Sravasta, by whom the city of
Srāvasti was founded. The son of Sravasta was Vrihadawa whose son was
Kuvalayaswa. This prince, invigorated by the energy of Vishnu, slew the
Asura Dhundhu, who had disturbed the pious sage Uttanka, and he was
accordingly named Dhundhumara (slayer of Dhundhu). Whilst fighting with
the demon he was attended by his twenty one thousand sons, who all, with
the exception of three, were consumed by the fiery breath of Dhundhu.
These three Were Dhridhāswa, Chandrāswa and Kapilāswa. The son of
Dhridhāswa was Baryāswa, whose son was Nikumbha, whose son was
Sanhataswa, whose son was Krisāswa, whose son was Basenajit, whose son
was another Yuvanāswa.

Being aggrieved in consequence of having no son he lived in the
hermitage of saints. And being worked up with compassion of sages
engaged in the performance of a religious ceremony for this offspring.
When half the night had passed away they finished the ceremony and
having placed a vessel of consecrated water upon the altar they slept.

When they had slept the king, distressed with thirst, entered the
cottage and did not like to disturb the rishis. He then drank the water
in the vessel consecrated and rendered efficacious by sacred texts.

When the Rishis got up in the morning, they said—"Who has drunk this
consecrated water? Drinking this the wife of the king Yuvanāswa would
have given birth to a valiant son". Hearing this the king said—"I have
unknowingly drunk this water".

Accordingly a child was conceived in the belly of Yuvanāswa; it grew and
in proper time it ripped open the right side of the king and was born.
But the king did not die. The son being born the Rishis said—"Who will
be its nurse". There appeared the king of the celestials and said "He
shall have me for his nurse (mamayan dhāsyati)". He was thence called
Māndhāta. Indra put his fore-finger into the mouth of the infant, who
sucked it and drew it from heavenly nectar. And he grew up and became a
powerful king and brought the seven continents into his subjection. It
is said of him "From the rising of the setting sun all that is lighted
by his rays is the land of Māndhāta the son of Yuvanāswa".

Māndhāta married Vindumati, the daughter of Sasāvindu end begot on her
three sons Purukutsa, Ambarisha and Muchukunda; he had also fifty

An ascetic, named Saubhari, versed in Rig Veda lived in the waters for
twelve years. There lived a huge fish, who was the sovereign, named
Sammada, He had a numerous progeny. His children and grand children used
to sport around him in all directions and he lived happily amongst them,
playing with them day night before the ascetic. Being disturbed in his
devotions that ascetic, in the waters, beholding the sport of the king
of fish with his children and grand children, thought within
himself—"Blessed is the being, who, although born in a degraded state,
is sporting with his children and grand children. This has created envy
in me and I wish to sport with my children and grand children". Having
thus made up his mind the ascetic speedily came up from the water and
being desirous of becoming a householder went to Māndhāta to demand one
of his daughters as his wife.

Thereupon hearing of the arrival of the sage the king rose up from his
seat and worshipped him with libation. Having taken a seat Saubhari said
to the king—"I have made up my mind to marry. Do you, O king, give me
one of your daughters as a wife. Don't disappoint my love. If any one
comes to the race of Kakutstha with a desire he does not go back
disappointed. O king, there are many other sovereigns on this earth who
have got daughters; but thy family is renowned above all in granting
liberal gifts to them who come with that purpose. O king, you have got
fifty daughters—confer one of them upon me so that I may be relieved
from the anxiety I feel in consequence of the fear that my request may
not be granted".

Parāçara said—Hearing the words of the sage and beholding his body worn
out with infirmities (he did not like to satisfy his desire)—but afraid
of an imprecation he much disturbed in mind and lowering his head
thought some time. The Rishi said—"What are you meditating upon, O king?
I have not asked for any such thing which you cannot give. Your daughter
must be given to somebody. But if you fulfill my desires what is there
that cannot obtained by you?" Thereupon the king; afraid of his
displeasure, said—"O illustrious sir, such is the practice in our
family, that daughters must be given to such fitting persons as they
shall themselves select. I did never expect that such a request would
come from you—I do not know why such a desire has taken place in your
mind. This has created perplexity in me and I am at a loss what to do".
Hearing that the sage thought within himself—"This is merely an indirect
way of not yielding to my request, I am an old man, having no
attractions for women and his daughters will not accept me. Whatever it
may be, I shall to that". Thinking thus, the sage said to Māndhāta—"If
such be the custom of your family—give orders that I may be admitted
into the interior of your palace. If any one of your daughters selects
me I shall take her as my wife—if none of them be willing, I shall
desist from such an attempt considering that I am too old for it".
Having said this the sage was silent.

Being afraid of the imprecation of the sage, the king ordered the eunuch
to conduct him to the inner apartment. As he entered, he assumed a form
of beauty far exceeding that of men or gods. Addressing the princesses
his guide said to them—"Your father, young ladies, sends this pious sage
to you who wanted of him a bride. And the king has promised that he will
give her to him who will select him". Hearing these words the princesses
were all excited with desire and passion, and like a troop of female
elephants encircling the lord of the herd, they all contended to have
him as their husband. They said to one another—"Away away, sister, I
shall take him as my husband. He has already been selected by me; he is
not a meet bridegroom for you. He has been purposely created by Brahmā
for me as I have been created to become his wife. As soon as he entered
the house I selected him as my husband; why do you prevent him from
becoming so?" Thus there arose a conflict amongst the daughters of the
king, each contending that I have selected him as my husband. While that
blameless sage was thus selected by all the princesses the eunuch went
to the king and with down cast looks reported to him what had taken
place. Having received all information, the king, perplexed the more,
thought—"What is all this! What I am to do now! What is it that I have
said" and then with extreme reluctance gave away all his daughters to
the sage.

Thus the wished-for marriage of the great sage was accomplished and he
took away all the princesses to his hermitage. Thereupon he ordered
Viswakarmā like second Brahmā, the inventor of art, to construct
separate palaces for each of his wives, to furnish each palace with
elegant couches and seats and furniture and to attach to them spacious
yards, groves with reservoirs of water where the wild ducks and swans
should sport amidst beds of lotuses. Thereupon the celestial architect
carried out the orders of the sage. And at the behest of the great sage,
Saubhari, the divine and inexhaustible treasure Nanda lived there

Thereupon the princesses entertained there day and night all their
guests and dependant with richest and choicest viands.

Once on a time the king, attracted by his affection for the daughters,
went to the hermitage of the great ascetic to learn whether his
daughters were in poverty or happiness. Repairing there he beheld a
number of crystal palaces, brilliant as the rays of the sun and
picturesque gardens and tanks. Entering one of the palaces and embracing
his daughter, the king said to her with tears of affection and delight
in his eyes—"Dear child, tell me how are you here. Are you happy here or
not? Does the great sage treat you kindly? Do you remember thy early
home?" Being thus addressed the daughter said to her father—"O father,
this palace is picturesque surrounded by charming gardens with birds
emitting sweet notes, and tanks abounding in full-blown lotuses. I have
got here rich viands, fragrant unguents, precious ornaments, costly
clothes, soft beds and every other thing that wealth can give. But still
then, why should I not remember my early home. By thy favour I have
obtained all these things. But there is one source of my grief—my
husband never goes out of my house. He is solely attached to me and is
always at my side; he never goes to my sisters; for this my sisters are
sorry; this is the only cause of my uneasiness". Being thus addressed he
went to the second palace and embracing his daughter and taking his seat
he put the same question. The same account of the enjoyment of palaces
and other things was given by her; she also made the same complaint that
the sage was solely attached to her and paid no attention to her
sisters. Hearing this the king went round all the palaces, put the same
question to all his daughters and received the same reply. Having his
heart filled with satisfaction and wonder he repaired to the glorious
Saubhari who was alone and reverentially said to him—"O illustrious
sage, marvellous is thy power—I have never seen this in any other
person. Oh great is the reward of thy austere penances". Having bowed
unto the sage and been welcomed by him with great reverence the king
lived with him for some time and enjoying the pleasures of the place
returned to his capital.

As time went on the daughters of Māndhāta bore to Saubhari one hundred
and fifty sons. Gradually he became more and more attached to his
children and his mind was wholly engrossed with selfish thoughts. He
always used to think—"When will these sons of mine speak to me in sweet
accents? When will they learn to walk? When will they attain to youth?
When shall I see them wedded? When shall I behold them with their sons?"
With these anticipations, he spent some time and at last thought "What
exceeding folly is mine! There is no end of desires even in ten thousand
or a hundred thousand years. With one desire gratified another springs
up. I have seen my infants walk—I have seen their youth, their manhood,
their marriage, their children, still my desires are not gratified and
mind longs after seeing the descendants of their descendants. When I
shall see them another desire will spring up. When that is satisfied
another wish will be engendered.

"How can the growth of desires be prevented? I have now learnt that
there is no end of desires till death. His mind can never be devoted to
the supreme spirit who is a perpetual slave of desires. My devotions,
whilst I was in the waters, were thwarted by my attachment to my friend,
the fish. The outcome of that connection was my marriage and the result
of that marriage is the cycle of worldly desires. Birth with one body is
a source of many ills. By my marriage with the princesses I have got one
hundred and fifty sons so my miseries have been multiplied to that
extent. And they will be infinitely multiplied by their children, by
their wives and their progeny—thus a married life is a source of
individual anxiety. My devotions, which I practised in the waters, have
been thwarted by my worldly wealth and I have been beguiled by the
desire for the progeny which was created in me by the association with
Sammada. For the ascetics separation from the world is the only way to
liberation; association with others is a source of many evils. Even the
most accomplished ascetic is degraded by worldly attachments what to
speak of those whose observances are incomplete. Though my intellect has
been possessed by the desire of married life still I shall exert myself
for the salvation of my soul so that freed from human infirmities I may
be released from human sufferings. For that purpose by austere penances
I shall propitiate Vishnu, the creator of the universe whose form cannot
be ascertained, who is smaller than the smallest, larger than the
largest, the source of darkness and light—the king of gods. May my mind,
freed from sins, be devoted to his body which is both descrete and
indescrete substance, boundlessly mighty, at one with the universe so
that I may not be born again. I seek the refuge of that Vishnu, who is
the teacher of teachers, who is identical with, all beings, the pure
eternal lord of all, without beginning, middle or end and besides whom
there exists nothing".


Parāçara said—Having thus thought within himself Sauvari renounced his
children, his home, his splendour and wealth and repaired with his wives
to the forest. Having daily performed there the observances of the
ascetics called Vaikhānasas (or ascetics having families) he cleansed
himself from all iniquities. When his mind was ripe and freed from
passions he concentrated in his spirit the sacramental fires and became
a religious mendicant. Then having made over all his actions to the
glorious god he attained to the condition of Achyuta which is above
change, the vicissitudes of birth, transmigration or death. Whoever
shall read, hear, remember, or understand this story of Sauvari and his
marriage with the daughters of Māndhāta, shall never, for eight
successive births, be addicted to evil thoughts nor shall he act
unrighteously, nor shall he think of improper objects—nor shall he be
subject to selfishness; I shall now describe to you the progeny of

The son of Ambarisha, the son of Māndhāta, was Yuvanāswa; his son was
Harita from whom sprang Angirāsa Hāritas.

In the regions below the earth, the Gandharvas named Mauneyas, six
million in number, had defeated the snake-gods, usurped their kingdom
and stolen away all their precious jewels. Defeated by the Gandharvas
the serpent chiefs addressed the lord of celestials, sleeping on the
surface of the ocean of milk as he awoke from his sleep; and the
blossoms of his lotus eyes opened as he listened to their hymns.

They all bowing said—"How shall we be relieved from the fear of these
Gandharvas?" Where to the glorious god replied—"I shall enter into the
person of Purukutsa, the son of Māndhāta, the son of Yuvanāswa and slay
all the Gandharvas". On hearing these words the snake-gods bowed and
went away and returning to their country sent Narmadā to secure the help
of Purukutsa.

Accordingly Narmadā went to Purukutsa and led him to the regions below
the earth, where, being filled with the energy of Vishnu he slew all the
Gandharvas. He then returned to his own house. And the snake-gods
conferred upon Narmadā a boon that whosoever should think of her,
mention her name, should never have any fear from the snakes. This is
the invocation: "Salutation unto Narmadā in the morning; salutation unto
Narmadā at night, salutation to thee O Narmadā, save me from this
serpent's poison". Whoever shall repeat this day and night shall not be
bitten by a serpent in the dark or in entering a room. Nor shall he, who
shall remember this, suffer from poison, when he eats even food mixed
with it. They also conferred a boon on Purukutsa that none in this
family shall be bitten.

Purukutsa begot on Narmadā a son, named Trasadasya, whose son was
Sambbuta, whose son was Anaranja, who was killed by Rāvana when he
traversed the country for conquests. Anaranja's son was Prishadaswa; his
son was Haryyaswa; his son was Sumanas; his son was Tridhanwan; his son
was Trayyaruna; his son was was Satyavrata who received the name of
Trisanku and was degraded to the state of a Chandāla or outcast. Once on
a time there was a famine for twelve years. He used to suspend flesh
upon a fig-tree on the banks of the Ganges for the wife and children of
Viswamitra—he did not give it with his own hands for he might not accept
the present of a Chandāla. For this Viswamitra was highly pleased and
took him in his living body to heaven.

The son of Trisanku was Haris Chandra, whose son was Rohitaswa, whose
son was Harita, whose son was Chunchu, who had two sons named Vijaya and
Sudeva. Ruruka was the son of Vijaya and his son was Vrika whose son was
Bahu, This king was defeated by the tribes of Haihayas and Tālajanghas
and his country was devastated by them for which he fled into woods with
his wives. One of those was pregnant and the rival queen being jealous
gave her poison to prevent her delivery and the child was confined in
the womb for seven years. And Bahu, being stricken in years, died near
the hermitage of the sage Aurva. Having constructed the funeral pile the
queen was about to ascend it when the sage Aurva, who was cognisant of
past, present and future came out of the cottage and prevented her
saying—"Hold, hold! This is sinful; there is in thy womb a heroic
king—the sovereign of many kingdoms, the offerer of many sacrifices, the
slayer of his enemies and a lord paramount. Do not commit such an
unrighteous act". Being addressed thus the queen gave up her intention.
The sage then took her to his own cottage and after some time she gave
birth to a valiant son—and with him the poison came out. And after
performing ceremonies consequent upon birth, Aurva gave him, for that,
the name of Sagara (from sa with and gara, poison). He then invested him
with the sacred cord, taught him the Vedas and the use of all weapons
and especially those of fire called after Bhārgava. When Sagara grew up
he one day asked his mother, saying—"O mother why are we living here?
Who is my father? Where is he?" Being thus questioned his mother related
to him everything. Hearing this he was greatly enraged and promised to
recover his father's kingdom and destroy the Haihayas and Tālajanghas by
whom it had been devastated. When he grew up he destroyed all the
Haihayas and would have also destroyed the Sakas the Yavanas, Kambojas,
Paradas, and Pahnavas, had they not solicited the protection of
Vasishtha, the family priest of Sagara.

Vasishtha, making them deprived of their power, although living, thus
said to Sagara—"O my child, these, are already dead. What is the use of
pursuing them? To keep up your vow I have made them renounce their own
religion and the company of twice-born ones". Sagara reverentially
obeyed the request of his spiritual guide and imposed upon them peculiar
distinguishing marks. He made the Yavanas shave their heads entirely and
the Sakas partially. The Paradas wore their long hair and the Pahnavas
allowed their beards to grow according to his command. He withdrew from
these and other Kshatriya races the privilege of offering oblations to
fire and studying the Vedas. And being thus deprived from the
performance of religious rites and having been abandoned by the Brāhmins
they all became Mlechasas. Having thus recovered his kingdom Sagara
ruled over the earth having seven continents with undisputed sway.


Parāçara said:—Sagara had two wives Sumati, the daughter of Kasyapa and
Kesini, the daughter of king Viderbha. Having no offspring the king
earnestly solicited the help of the sage Aurva who conferred upon him a
boon that one wife should bear him a son who would keep up the race and
the other sixty thousand sons; but he allowed them to make their
election. Kesini chose to have one son and the other chose to have sixty
thousand. Within a few days Kesini gave birth to a son named Asamanjas
who upheld the family and Sumati the daughter of Vinata gave birth to a
sixty thousand sons. Asamanjas had a son whose name was Ansumat.

Asamanjas was very wicked from his boyhood. His father hoped that with
manhood he would reform his conduct. But he continued same even with age
so his father renounced him. The sixty thousand sons of Sagara followed
the example of their brother Asamanjas. The sons of Sagara having thus
trodden the paths of virtue and piety in the world the celestials went
to the ascetic Kapila, who was free from guilt, versed in learning and
in whom was a portion of Vishnu. Having bowed unto him they said—"These
sons of Sagara have followed the conduct of Samanjas. If they continue
so how will the world be upheld? Thou art incarnate for the protection
of the world". Hearing this Kapila said—"They shall soon be destroyed".

Thereupon Sagara undertook the celebration of a horse sacrifice. They
were all engaged to look after the horse. Nevertheless some one stole
the horse and carried it to the region below the earth. He then ordered
them to search out the steed. Then following the impressions of its
hoofs with perseverance they dug downwards each for a league. And coming
to the region beneath they saw the horse walking freely. They saw at a
distance Kapila, illuminating with the radiance of his person all the
quarters, up and down like unto the autumnal sun freed from clouds. Then
with uplifted weapons they rushed towards him, saying—"Slay him, slay
him; this villain has spoiled our sacrifice; he has stolen our horse".
Then turning his eyes a little Kapila looked towards them and with the
sacred flame that came out of his body, the sons of Sagara were in no
time reduced to ashes.

When Sagara came to know that all his sons, whom he had sent in quest of
the horse, had been destroyed by the might of the sage Kapila he sent
Asamanja's son to bring the animal. Ansumat, proceeding by the path
which Sagara's sons had dug, arrived where Kapila was and reverentially
bowing unto him so pleased him that he said—"Go my son and gave over the
horse to your grand father; ask of me a boon; thy grand-son shall bring
down the river of heaven on earth". Ansumat begged of the glorious Rishi
a boon that his uncles, who had died on account of his displeasure
although unworthy of it, might be raised to heaven. The Rishi said—"I
have told you that your grandson shall bring down the Ganges upon earth.
When the ashes and bones Sagara's sons shall be washed by her waters
they shall be raised to heaven. Such is the glory of the stream that
issues from the toe of Vishnu that they all, who bathe in it
intentionally or accidentally, go to heaven. Even those shall go to
heaven whose bones, skin, fibres, hair or any other part shall be left
after death upon the earth which is contiguous to the Ganges". Thereupon
reverentially bowing unto the sage and taking the steed, he went where
his grandfather was celebrating the sacrifice. On receiving back the
horse Sagara completed the sacrifice and in memory of his sons he gave
the name of Sagara[256] to the chasm which they had dug.

The son of Ansumat was Dilipa; his son was Bhagiratha who brought down
the Ganges on earth, whence she is called Bhāgirathi. The son of
Bhagiratha was Sruta, whose son was Nabhaga, whose son was Ambarisha,
whose son was Sindhudwipa, whose son was Ayutaswa, whose son was
Rituparna, the friend of Nala, well-skilled in dice; the son of
Rituparna was Sarvakāma, whose son was Sudāsa whose son was Sandasa
named also Mitrasaha.

Once going out on hunting, the son Sudāsa met with a couple of tigers
who had cleared the forest of the deer. He killed of these tigers with
an arrow. At the time of dying the form of the animal was changed and it
assumed that of a dreadful and hideous fiend. And the second disappeared
saying—"I shall take vengeance upon you".

After some time Saudāsa celebrated a sacrifice which was conducted by
Vasishtha. At the end of the ceremony Vasishtha went out when the Raksha
assuming the shape of Vasishtha said—"The sacrifice is finished to-day.
You must give me flesh to eat; I shall just now come back". Having said
this he went away and transforming himself into the shape of the cook
prepared some human flesh. Saudāsa placing it on a dish of gold, waited
for Vasishtha. As soon as the sage came back the king offered to him the
dish. Thereat the sage thought—"Alas! what improper conduct on the part
of the king that he is offering me flesh!" Then by virtue of his
meditation he came to know that it was human flesh. Being worked up with
ire accordingly he imprecated the king—"Since you have offered, though
you know it, to such holy men as we are what should not be eaten,
henceforth, your appetite shall be excited by similar food".

The king said—"It was yourself who commanded this food to be prepared".
Vasishtha said—"By me, how could that have been". And being engaged in
meditation again he found out the whole truth. Being pleased with the
king he said—"The food to which I have doomed you shall not be your
sustenance for ever; it shall be only so for twelve years". And the
king, taking water in his palms addressed himself for cursing the sage
but gave up his intention, being reminded by his queen Madayanti that it
ill became him to imprecate a curse upon a holy teacher who was the
guardian divinity of the family. Unwilling to throw the water upon the
earth lest it should wither up the grain for it was filled with
malediction and being equally unwilling to throw it up into the air lest
it should blast the clouds and dry up their contents, he threw it upon
his own feet. Scalded by the heat which was in the water on account of
his angry imprecation the feet of the king became spotted black and
white and he therefore obtained the name of Kalmashapāda (i.e. having
spotted feet).

On account of Vasishtha's curse the king used to become a cannibal every
third night and travelling through the forests devoured many men. Once
on a time he saw a pious sage engaged in dalliance with his wife. And
beholding that terrible Rākshasa form they fled away in fear but he got
hold of the husband whilst they escaping. Thereupon the wife of the
Brāhman begged of him her husband again and again—"Thou art the great
king Mitrasaha, the pride of Ikshwaku race—not the Rākshasa. It is not
proper for thee who knowest the nature of women, to carry off my husband
and devour him". In vain did she lament in many ways; he devoured the
Brāhman as a tiger devours a deer. Being worked up with ire the
Brāhman's wife addressed the king and said—"Since, you have devoured my
husband before I was satiated in his company, you shall die as soon as
you shall associate with your queen". Having thus cursed him she entered
the flames.

After the expiration of twelve years when he was freed of the curse, he,
being desirous of dallying with his wife, thought of Madayanti who
reminded him of the curse of Brahmani. He, therefore, abstained from
conjugal intercourse. Being childless he solicited the help of Vasishtha
and Madayanti became pregnant. The child was not born for seven years,
and the queen divided the womb with a sharp stone and a son was born who
was named Asmaka. The son of Asmaka was Mulaka. When the Kshatriyas were
rooted out from the earth, he was concealed by a number of women, hence
he was called Narikavachā (having woman for armour). The son of Mulaka
was Dasaratha; his son was Ilavile; his son was Viswasaha; his son was
Khatwanga, called also Dilipa, who, being invited by the gods in a war
with the Asuras, destroyed a number of them. Being pleased thereby the
celestials asked him to pray for a boon. Dilipa said—"If you press me to
accept a boon, tell me what is the duration of my life". The god said
"The length of your life is but an hour". Thereupon Khatwanga, who was
gifted with great velocity, came down, in his easy-coursing car to the
world of mortals. Having reached there, he prayed and said—"If my soul
has never been dearer to me than the sacred Brāhmans; If I have never
deviated from the satisfaction of duty; if I have never looked upon
gods, men, animals, vegetables, and all created things as different from
the imperishable, may I then attain unswervingly to that divine being,
upon whom the holy sages meditate".

Having thus spoken he was united with that supreme being—Vāsudeva who is
the preceptor of all the gods, who is abstract existence and whose form
cannot be described. Thus he was united with Vāsudeva and obtained

A stanza was cited by the seven rishis in the days of yore—"There shall
be no king on earth like Khatwanga. He came from heaven, dwelt an hour
on earth, and became united with three worlds by means of his liberality
and knowledge of truth".

The son of Khatwanga was Dirghābahu, whose son was Raghu, whose son was
Aja, whose son was Dasaratha. The glorious god, from whose navel the
lotus springs, was born for the protection of the world, as the four
sons of Dasaratha—namely Rāma, Lakshmana, Bharata and Satrughna. While a
boy Rāma was taken by Viswamitra to protect his sacrifice and slew
Tadakā. In the sacrifice, Māricha was slain and thrown away. Suvahu and
others were also slain by him. He removed the iniquity of Ahalyā by
merely looking upon her. Arriving at the palace of Janaka he easily
broke the bow of Maheswara, and received Sitā, self-born daughter of the
king Janaka as the meed for his prowess. He humbled the pride of
Parusharama—the Ketu of the Haihaya race and the slayer of all
Kshatriyas. At the behest of his sire and not being sorry for the loss
of kingdom he went to woods accompanied by his brother Lakshmana and his
wife, where he destroyed in battle Viradha, Kara, Dusana and other
Rākshasas, the headless demon Kavandha and Vali the king of monkeys.
Having constructed a bridge across the deep and slain all the Rākshasas,
he brought back his spouse Sitā who had been carried away by the
Ten-necked Rāvana. Having purified her by the fiery ordeal, and
accordingly her virtue chanted by the celestials, he returned with her
to Ayodhyā.

Having slain a number of Gandharvas, Bharata became the master of their
country and having slain the Rākshasa chief Lavana, the son of Madhu,
Satrughna took possession of their capital Muthrā.

Having thus by their unequalled might and strength the world from the
grasp of the wicked, Rāma, Lakshmana, Bharata and Satrughna went back to
heaven and were followed by those inhabitants of Kosala who were
one-mindedly devoted to those incarnate portions of Vishnu.

Rāma had two sons one was named Kusa and the other Lava. Lakshmana too
had two sons by the name of Angada and Chandraketu. The sons of Bharata
were Taksha and Pushkara. Subāhu and Surasena were the sons of

The son of Kusa was Atithi, whose sort was Nishadha, whose son was Nala,
whose son was Nabhas, whose son was Pundarika, whose son was
Kshernadhanwan, whose son was Devanika, whose son was Ahinagu, whose son
was Paripatra, whose son was Dala, whose son was Chhala, whose son was
Uktha, whose son was Vajranābha, whose son was Sāukanātha, whose son was
Abhyuthitaswa, whose son was Viswasaha whose son was Hiranyanabha, who
was a pupil of the great ascetic Jamini and imparted spiritual knowledge
upon Jajnawakla. The son of this pious king was Pushya whose son was
Dhruva Sandhi, whose son was Sudarsana, whose son was Agniverna, whose
son was Sighra, whose son was Maru who, by virtue of his power of
devotion, is still living in the village called Kalpā and who in future
will be the restorer of the Kshatriya race in the solar dynasty. Maru's
son was Prasusruta, whose son was Susandhi, whose son was Amarsha, whose
son was Mahaswat, whose son was Visrutavat, whose son was Vrihadbala,
who was slain in the great war by Abhimanyu, the son of Arjuna. These
are the most illustrious kings is the race of Ikshawku. Whoever hears of
account of them will be freed from all sins.


The son of Ikshawku, by name Nimi, instituted a sacrifice for a thousand
years and appointed Vasishtha as the presiding priest. Vasishtha said to
him—"I have been already appointed by Indra for presiding at a sacrifice
for five hundred years. Wait for some time, I shall come and officiate
as a priest at your sacrifice". Being thus addressed the king did not
answer. And Vasishtha went away supposing that he had agreed. Nimi in
the meantime engaged Gautama and other ascetics and conducted the
sacrifice. After the sacrifice of the king of celestials had been
finished, Vasishtha hurried on to celebrate Nimi's sacrifice and found
that it was being conducted under the superintendence of Gautama.
Vasishtha then imprecated a curse upon the king who was asleep, saying
"Since the king, not informing me, has entrusted Gautama with the charge
of the sacrifice, he shall cease to exist in a corporeal form". When
Nimi got up he came to know what had happened and in return imprecated a
curse upon his unjust preceptor that he should also cease to exist in a
corporeal form as the punishment of uttering a curse upon him without
previously communicating with him. Nimi then gave up his bodily form.
The spirit of Vasishtha, also renouncing his body, was united with the
spirits of Mitra and Varuna for some time, when at last on account of
their lustful desire for the nymph Urvasi he was born again in a
different body. Nimi's body continued to be handsome and being embalmed
with fragrant oils and resins it was not decomposed and remained like
the corpse of one just dead. When the gods arrived there to receive
their portion on the completion of the sacrifice the priests requested
them to confer blessings upon the celebrator of the sacrifice. And being
ordered by the celestials for the same Nimi said—"O celestials, you
remove all ills from the world. There is not in the world a greater
cause of distress than the separation of soul and body. I therefore wish
to dwell in the eyes of all beings and not to take up a corporeal form
any more". The celestials agreed to this and Nimi was placed by them in
the eyes of all living beings and therefore their eye-lids are ever
opening and shutting. As Nimi had no son the sages were afraid that the
earth would have no ruler. So they churned the body of the king and a
son was born who was named Janaka. As his father had no body Janaka was
also called Videha. He also received the name of Mithi for having been
produced by mathana or agitation. The son of Janaka was Udavasu, whose
son was Nandivarddana, whose son was Suketu, whose son was Devarata,
whose son was Vrihaduktha, whose son was Mahavirya, whose son was
Satyadhristi, whose son was Dhrishtaketu, whose son was Haryyaswa, whose
son was Maru, whose son was Pratibandhaka, whose son was Krisaratha,
whose son was Krita, whose son was Vibudha, whose son was Mahadhriti,
whose son was Kritirāta, whose son was Mahadhriti, whose son was
Suvarnaroman, whose son was Haraswaroman, whose son was Siradhwaja.

Siradhwaja ploughing the field, to make it ready for a sacrifice which
he undertook in order to obtain progeny, there sprang up in the furrow a
damsel who became his daughter Sitā. The brother of Siradhwaja was
Kusadhwaja who was king of Kasi. His son was named Bhanumat whose son
was Satadhyumna, whose son was Suchi, whose son was Urjjavaha, whose son
was Satyadwaya, whose son was Kuni, whose son was Anyana, whose son was
Retujit, whose son was Arishtanemi, whose son was Srutayas, whose son
was Sanjaya, whose son was Kshemari, whose son was Anenas, whose son was
Minaratha, whose son was Satyaratha, whose son was Upagu, whose son was
Sruta, whose son was Saswata, whose son was Sudhanwan, whose son was
Subhāsa, whose son was Susruta, whose son was Jaya, whose son was Rita,
whose son was Sunaya, whose son was Vitahadya, whose son was Dhriti,
whose son was Bahalaswa, whose son was Kriti with whom ended the family
of Janaka. These are the kings of Mithilā who shall be principally
well-versed in spiritual knowledge.


Maitreya said:—"O revered sir, you have described to me the solar
dynasty but I wish to hear now of the kings of the lunar dynasty, who
are still well-known for their glorious deeds. It behoves you to relate
it gladly to me".

Parāçara said:—O foremost of Munis, hear from me, a description of the
illustrious family of the moon which has produced many well-known kings
of the earth. This family is adorned with many kings gifted with regal
qualities of strength, valour, magnificence, prudence and energy such as
Nahusha, Yayati, Kartavirya, Yaryuna and others. Hear I shall describe
this family to you.

Atri was the son of Brahmā, the creator of the universe, who originated
from the lotus that grew from the navel of Nārāyana. The son of Atri was
Soma whom Brahmā made the king of plants, Brāhmans and of the stars.
Some celebrated a Rajshuya sacrifice and on account of the glory derived
therefrom and the vast sovereignty which he had acquired he grew haughty
and licentious. He carried off Tārā, the wife of Vrihaspati, the
preceptor of gods.

Soma did not give up Vrihaspati's wife though he was again and again
requested by him, commanded by Brahmā and remonstrated by the holy
sages. Usanas, who was an enemy of Vrihaspati, took the side of Soma.
Rudra, who was a pupil of Angiras, the father of Vrihaspati, assisted
his fellow student. Because their preceptor Usanas joined Soma, Jambha,
Kujambha, all the Daityas, Dānavas and other enemies of the celestials
came to his help. Indra and all other celestials assisted Vrihaspati.

Thus there took place a terrible combat which being on account of Tāraka
was called Tarakāmaya or Tarakā war. In this the celestials led by Rudra
hurled their weapons upon the Asuras and the Asuras equally overwhelmed
the gods with weapons. Thus in the conflict between the gods and demons
the universe, greatly overwhelmed, sought protection of Brahmā.
Thereupon the glorious God asked Usanas with the demons and Rudra with
the celestials to desist from fighting and give back Tārā to Vrihaspati.
Finding that she was pregnant Vrihaspati desired her no longer to keep
her burden and in satisfaction of his orders she was delivered of a son
whom she kept in a clump of long Munja grass. And the child as soon as
it was born proved its character of divinity by its radiance. Beholding
both Vrihaspati and Soma fascinated by the beauty of the child the
celestials, to know whose son it was, asked Tārā, saying "O damsel whose
son is he? Is he Vrihaspati's or Soma's". Being thus addressed Tārā was
ashamed and did not answer.

Though she was repeatedly asked by the celestials she was still mute and
the child, being enraged, was about to curse her, saying—"Unless, O vile
woman, you immediately speak out, who is my father, I shall so punish
you for your useless shame that no woman in future shall speak the
truth". Brahmā again interfered and pacifying the child said, addressing
Tara "Tell me my daughter, is this the child of Vrihaspati or of Soma?"
"Of Soma," said Tārā flushing. Thereupon the countenance of the king of
constellations became bright, and expanded with joy. He at once embraced
his son and said—"Well done my boy, forsooth thou art wise". And
accordingly the boy was named Budha.

I have already described how Budha begot Pururavas on Ilā. Paruravas was
a prince famous for liberality, devotion, magnificence, love of truth
and beauty. Having incurred the curse of Mitra and Varuna, Urvasi made
up her mind to live in the land of mortals and descending there saw
Pururavas. As soon as a she saw him she forgot all reserve and not
caring for the comforts to heaven became greatly attached to him. And
finding her far superior to all other females in beauty, elegance,
symmetry, and delicacy, Pururavas was equally enamoured of her. Both the
man and the woman were equally attached to each other and thought no
more of any other object. The king then boldly said—"Fair woman, I love
you; have pity on me and return my affection". Urvasi turning her face a
little through modesty said—"I will do so, if you satisfy the conditions
I propose to you".

"What are they?" asked the king "speak them out". "I have two rams" said
the nymph "which I love like my children; they must be kept by my
bed-side and shall not be allowed to be carried away. You must not be
seen by me undressed and clarified butter alone shall be my food". The
king readily agreed to these terms.

After this Pururavas and Urvasi lived together for sixty one thousand
years in Alakā, sporting amidst the groves and lakes of Chaitraratha
abounding in lotuses and the other forests. By these enjoyments Urvasi's
attachment increased every day and she forgot all desire for residing in
the region of immortals. In the absence of Urvasi heaven appeared devoid
of beauty to the celestials, nymphs, genii and quiristers. Knowing the
engagement that Urvasi had contracted with the king, Viswasvasu was
appointed by the Gandharvas to bring about its dissolution. And coming
by night to the room where they were sleeping he carried off one of the
rams: Urvasi got up by its cries and exclaimed—"Ah me! who has stolen
one of my children: Had I got a husband this would not have taken place.
To whom shall I go for help?" The king heard the lamentations but could
not go lest he might be seen undressed. The Gandharvas then took away
another ram. Again hearing the sound of its being stolen away in the sky
she lamented saying—"Alas I have got no husband. I have taken the
shelter of a dastardly person". Thinking "it is darkness" the king took
up a dagger and pursued them, saying—"stop, O wicked I shall soon slay
you". Immediately the Gandharvas created a flash of brilliant lightning
in the room and the king was seen undressed by Urvasi. The contract was
broken and she instantly disappeared. And leaving behind the rams the
Gandharvas too went to the region of the celestials. Taking the rams,
the king, delighted came back to his bed-room but found no Urvasi. Not
finding her he wandered naked all over the world like a maniac. At
length arriving at Kurukshetra he saw Urvasi sporting with four other
nymphs in a lake abounding in lotuses. Like a mad man the king neared
him and exclaimed—"O my wife, wait, speak with me, O thou of an iron
heart". Urvasi replied—"O great king useless is this inconsiderate
attempt. I am now pregnant, go away just now and come here again after a
year when I shall give you a son and remain with you for one night".
Being thus solaced Pururavas came back to his capital. Urvasi then said
to her mates. "This king is that excellent man bring drawn by whose
attachment I lived for such a long time". Hearing this the other nymphs
said, "Great is his beauty; we too with him could live happily for

After the expiration of a year the king again came to that place and
Urvasi gave him a son by the name of Ayus. Living with him for one night
she again became pregnant to bear to him five sons. She then said to the
king—"O king all the Gandharvas, on account of their regard for me, are
ready to confer upon thee a boon. Do thou pray for it". The king said—"I
have slain all my enemies—my faculties are all very powerful; I have
friends, relations, armies and treasures; so there is nothing which I
want but living with my Urvasi in the same region. So I wish to live
with her always".

After he had spoken this the Gandharvas brought to him a vessel with
fire and said,—"Take this fire and according to the precepts of the
Vedas divide it into three parts: then offer oblation to it for Urvasi
and your desires shall thus be gratified". The Gandharvas having said
this, the king took the vessel and went away. Then coming to a forest he
thought—"Oh, what stupid I am; I have brought this vessel but not
Urvasi". Then leaving the vessel there he came back to his capital. When
half the night had passed he awoke and thought—"The Gandharvas conferred
upon me this vessel of fire to enable me to live with Urvasi. I have
left that in the forest. I shall go there to bring it". Having said this
he went there but did not find the vessel. Then beholding a young
Ashwattha tree growing out of a Sami plant he argued within himself—"I
left here a vessel of fire and I now see a young Ashwattha tree growing
out of a Sami plant. I shall take this type of fire to my capital and
having created fire by their attrition I will worship it".

Having thus made up his mind he took the plants to his city and made
their wood for attrition with pieces of as many inches as there are
syllables in the Gayatri. He recited that verse and rubbed together
sticks of as many inches as he recited syllables in the Gayatri, Having
created fire there-from he divided it into three portions according to
the precepts of the Vedas and offered oblations to it with the view of
obtaining re-union with Urvasi. Having performed many sacrifices with
this fire he attained to the region of the Gandharvas and suffered no
more separation from his beloved Urvasi. Thus fire, that was at first
one, was made three-fold in the present Manwantara by the son of Ilā.


Pururavas had six sons—Ayus, Dhimat, Amāvasu, Viswavasu, Satayus, and
Srutayus. The son of Amāvasu was Bhima, whose son was Kānchana, whose
son was Suhotra, whose name was Jahnu. Whilst celebrating a sacrifice
this king beheld the whole of the place over-flowed with the waters of
the Ganga. Being offended therefore with his eyes red with anger he
united the spirit of sacrifice with himself and by the power of his
devotion drunk up the river. Thereupon the celestials and the sages
pleased him and got back Gangā in the capacity of his daughter.[257]

The son of Jahnu was Sumanta, whose son was Ajaka, whose son was
Valakāswa, whose son was Kusa, who had four sons, Kusamba. Kusanābha,
Amurttaya and Amāyasu.

Kusambha engaged in devout penances with the object of having a son
equal to Indra. Beholding the intensity of his devotions, Indra himself
took birth as his son lest a prince equally powerful like him might be
born. He was accordingly born as Gadhi or Kausika. Gadhi had a daughter
called Satyavati. Richika, one of the descendants of Bhrigu, wanted her
in marriage. The king was reluctant to give his daughter in marriage to
a peevish old Brāhmin and wanted from him as the bridal present a
thousand fleet steeds whose colour should be white with one black ear.
Having propitiated Varuna, the god of ocean, Richika obtained from him,
at the holy place called Awatirtha a thousand horses. And giving them to
the king he married his daughter.

In order to have a son he prepared a dish of rice, barley and pulse with
butter and milk for his wife to eat. And being requested by her he made
a similar mixture for her mother, by partaking of which she should give
birth to a martial prince. Keeping both the dishes with his wife and
giving her instructions which was intended for her and which for her
mother, the sage went to the forest. At the time of taking the food her
mother said to Satyabati—"Daughter, every one wants to have a son gifted
with great qualities—and no body wishes to be excelled by the qualities
of his mother's brother. It is therefore desirable for you to give me
the food which your husband has set apart for you and to partake of that
intended for me; for my son shall be the sovereign of the world. What is
the use of wealth, strength and prowess for a Brahmin". Being thus
addressed Satyavati gave her own food to her mother.

When the sage came back from the forest and saw Satyavati he said to
her—"Sinful woman, what hast thou done? Your body appears as very
fearful to me. Surely thou hast taken the food which was intended for
thy mother. Thou hast committed a wrong. That food I had consecrated
with the properties of power, strength and heroism; whereas your food
was consecrated with the qualities of a Brāhman—gentleness, knowledge
and resignation. As you have exchanged messes your son shall follow a
warrior's propensities and use weapons, and fight and slay; your
mother's son shall be born with the desires of a Brāhmin and shall be
devoted to peace and piety". Hearing this Satyavati fell at her
husband's feet and said—"I have done this through my ignorance. Be thou
propitiated so that I may not have such a son. If this is inevitably let
my grand son be such, not my son". Being thus addressed the sage
said—"So be it".

Thereupon she gave birth Jamadagni and her mother brought forth
Viswamitra. Satyavati afterwards became the Kausiki river, Jamadagni
married Renukā the daughter of Renu, born in the race of Ikshwaku and
begot on her a son, Parusarāma the destroyer of the Kshatriya race, who
was a portion of Nārāyana, the preceptor of the universe. Sunasepha was
conferred upon Viswamitra by the celestials as his son, who became known
as Devarata. Viswamitra had other sons—Madhuchandra, Yaya, Kritadeva,
Devashtaka, Kachapa and Hareetaka. These founded many families, all of
whom were known by the name of Kausikas, and inter-married with the
families of various Rishis.


Ayus, the eldest son of Pururavas, married the daughter of Rahu upon
whom he begot five sons, Nahusha, Kshatravridha, Rambha, Raji and

The son of Kshatravridha was Suhotra, who had three sons, Kash, Lesa,
and Ghritsamanda. The son of Ghritsamnada was Saunaka who first
instituted the distinction of the four castes. The son of Kasa was
Kasiraja, whose son was Dirghatama, whose son was Dhanwantari, who was
not subject to human infirmities and who had been master of universal
knowledge in every birth. In his past life Nārāyana had conferred upon
him the boon that he should be, in his next life, born in the race of
Kshatriya, should be the author of the eight fold system of medical
science and should be entitled to a share of offerings made to the
celestials. The son of Dhanwantari, was Kesumat, whose son was
Bhimaratha, whose son was Devadasa, whose son was Pratarddana, so called
from destroying the race of Bhadrasrenya. He had various other names—as
Satrujit. 'The victor of enemies' on account of his having defeated all
his enemies Vatsa or 'child' for his father used to call him often times
by that name; Ritadhwaja 'whose emblem was truth' for he was a great
observer of truth; and Kuvalayaswa for he had a horse called Kuvalaya.
His son was Alarka of whom this verse is recited in the present day—"For
sixty thousand and sixty hundred years, no other youthful king except
Alarka governed the earth". The son of Alarka was Santati, whose son was
Sunitha, whose son was Suketu, whose son was Dharmaketu, whose son was
Satyaketu, whose son was Vibhu, whose son was Suvibhu, whose son was
Sukumara, whose son was Dhristaketu, whose son was Vainahotra whose son
was Bharga, whose son was Bhargabhumi, who laid down the rules of the
four castes. These are the descendants of Kasa. We shall now enumerate
the descendants of Raji.


Raji had five hundred sons who were all gifted with great power and
heroism. Once on a time there arose a conflict between the gods and the
demons, and they, all desirous of slaying the other party, inquired of
Brahmā, saying "O glorious god, which of the parties shall be
victorious?" The deity said—"that for which Raji shall take up arms".
The Daityas immediately went to Raji to secure his help, which he agreed
to give if they would make him their king after defeating the
celestials. Hearing this the Asuras said—"We cannot say one thing and do
the otherwise. Prahlāda is our king and for him we wage war". Having
said this they went away and the celestials came to him for the same
purpose. Raji proposed to them the same conditions and the gods agreed
and said. "We shall make you our Indra". Thereupon Raji assisted the
army of the celestials and by his various weapons destroyed the Asuras.
When all the enemies were defeated, Indra the king of the celestials
placed Raji's feet on his crown and said, "Thou art our father since
thou hast released us from fear; thou art the supreme lord of all the
worlds, because, I, who am the lord of the three worlds, have
acknowledged thee as my father".

The king smiling said—"So be it. Even if the enemies admit humiliation
by flattering speeches that cannot be resisted". Saying this he repaired
to his own city. Satkratu too continued to rule as Indra.

A few days after the king went to heaven, and his sons, being incited by
the sage Nārada, demanded the rank of Indra as there hereditary right.
When he refused to give them the station the highly powerful princes
reduced him to submission and usurped his rank. When some tune had
passed, Indra, deprived of his share in the sacrifices of the three
worlds, spoke to Vrihaspati in a retired place,—"Give me a little of the
sacrificial butter not bigger even than a jujube for I am in want of

Vrihaspati said:—"Had you applied to me before I could have done any
thing for you; however I will now try to gain back for you your
position". Saying this he undertook the celebration of a sacrifice for
increasing the power of Indra and bringing about the downfall of Raji's
sons by leading them astray. When their understanding was bewildered the
princes became haters of the Brahmins, negligent of their duties and
regardless of the teachings of the Vedas; when they became devoid of
religion and morality, Indra slew them and gained back his sovereignty
by the help of the priest of gods. Whoever shall hear of Indra's
acquirement of the position, shall always keep his proper place and
shall not be guilty of iniquity.

Rambha, the third son of Ayus, had no offspring. Kshatravriddha had a
son named Pratikshatrā, whose son was Sanjaya, whose son was Vijaya,
whose son was Yajnakrit, whose son was Harshavarddhana, whose son was
Sahadeva, whose son was Adina, whose son was Jayasena, whose son was
Sankriti, whose son was Kshatradharma. These were the progeny of
Kshatravriddha. I will now enumerate those of Nahusha.


Nahusha had six brave sons namely, Yati, Yayati, Sanyati, Ayati, Viyati
and Kriti. Yati declined the throne and therefore Yayati succeeded. He
had two wives; Devayani, the daughter of Usanasj and Sarmishthā, the
daughter of Vrishaparvan. His genealogy is thus recited—"Devayani gave
birth to two sons, Yadu and Tarvasu. Sarmishthā, the daughter of
Vrishaparvan, gave birth to three sons, Druhya, Anu and Puru. Owing to a
curse of Usanas Yayati became untimely old and decripit. Having
propitiated his father-in-law however he got the permission to transfer
his old age to any one who would agree to take it. He first called his
eldest son Yadu and then said,—Your maternal grand-father has caused
this untime decripitude of mine. By his permission I may transfer it to
you for a thousand years, I am not still satisfied with worldly
enjoyments and wish to enjoy through your youth. Do not refuse
compliance with my request". Being thus addressed he did not agree to
take the decay upon him for which the king imprecated a curse,
saying—"No one in your prosterity shall be the king". He then
successively requested Druhya, Turvasu and Anu to give him their youth.
They all refused and were accordingly cursed by the king. Lastly he
called his youngest son Puru—the son of Sarmisthā and requested him for
the same. That youth, of ripe understanding, at once agreed and bowing
unto his father said—"I have been highly honored". He then took upon
himself his father's infirmities and gave him his youth in exchange.

Being thus gifted with renewed youth Yayati governed the kingdom for the
good of his people enjoying such pleasures as were suited to his age and
strength and were in consonance with piety. He enjoyed in the company of
a nymph Vishwachi day and night thinking that there would be an end of
all desires. By continued enjoyment all things began to appear more
pleasant to him and he then said—"Desire is never satiated by enjoyment
as fire, fed with oil, becomes the more intense. No one is satisfied
with barley, gold, cattle or women; therefore renounce excessive desire.
When a man does not cherish any sinful feeling towards creatures and
looks on all with, an equal eye he then finds everything full of
pleasure and delight. The wise become happy by renouncing that desire
which the feeble-minded cannot abandon and which grows not old with the
aged. With age the hair becomes gray, the teeth fall off but the love of
wealth and life is never gratified. A thousand years have expired and
still my mind is attached to worldly enjoyments: my desires are excited
every day by new objects. I shall therefore renounce all enjoyments of
sense and devote myself to the culture of spiritual truth. And
renouncing all attachments and not influenced by the alternatives of
pleasure and pain I shall roam in the forest with the deer".

Having thus made up his mind Yayati returned the youth to Puru and took
up his own decrepitude. He then made his youngest son the sovereign and
went to Tapovana (the wood of penance). He appointed as viceroys—Turvasu
of the south-east districts, Druhya of the west, Yadu of the south and
Anu of the north—and made Puru the supreme monarch of the earth.


Parāçara said:—I will first enumerate to you the descendants of Yadu,
the eldest son of Yayati—one of whom an incarnate portion of Vishnu—of
whom glory cannot be described though chanted for ever to confer the
fruit of their desires—whether for virtue, wealth, pleasure or final
emancipation—upon all created beings, upon men, saints, Gandharvas,
spirits of evil, nymphs, centaurs, serpents, birds, demons, sages,
Brahmanas and ascetics. Whoever shall hear of the descendants of Yadu
shall be freed from all iniquities, for the supreme spirit—devoid of any
form—Vishnu was incarnate in this family.

Yadu had four sons Sahasrajit, Kroshti, Nala and Raghu. Sasajit was the
son of the eldest brother and had three sons—Haihaya, Venu and Haya. The
son of Haihaya was Dharmanetra, whose son was Kunti, whose son was
Sahanji, whose son was Mahishmat, whose son was Bhadrasona, whose son
was Dardama, whose son was Dhanaka, who had four sons, Kritaviryya,
Kritagni, Kritayarman and Kritauyyas. Kritaviryya's son was Aryunu, who
was the king of the seven insular continents and the master of a
thousand arms. This king propitiated the sage Dattatreya, the descendant
of Atri who was an incarnate portion of Vishnu and obtained from him
these boons—a thousand arms, acting always justly, governing the world
with justice, protecting it impartially, victory over his enemies and
death by the hands of a person renowned in the three worlds. By these
means he governed the earth powerfully and justly celebrated ten
thousand sacrifices. Of him this verse is said—"The kings of the earth
shall never equal him in sacrifices, liberality, in devotion, in good
manners and in self-control". In his reign nothing was lost or injured,
so he governed the whole earth with undecayed health, prosperity, power
and strength for eighty-five thousand years. Arriving at the city of
Mahismati, on his tour of conquests whilst its king was sporting in the
waters of Narmāda excited with wine, Ravana, proud for defeating the
gods, demons, Gandharvas, and their king, was taken prisoner by
Karthaviryya and confined like a tame beast in a corner in his capital.
At the end of a long reign Karthaviryya was slain by Parashurāma Who,
was an incarnate portion of Vishnu. The king had a hundred sons of which
five were principal, namely Surasena, Vrishana, Madhu, and Jayadwaja.
The son of the last was Tālajangha who had a hundred sons named after
him Tālajanghas. The eldest of these was Vilipotrā, another was Bharata
who had two sons—Vrisha and Sujati. The sons of Vrisha was Madhu; he had
a hundred sons, the chief of whom was Vrishna and from him the family
obtained the name of Vrishni. From the name of their father Madhu they
were called Madhavas and from the name of their common ancestor Yadu
they were all called Yadavas.


Parāçara said—Kroshtri, the son of Yadu, had a son named Vrijinvat,
whose son was Suchi, whose son was Kushadra, whose son was Chitraratha,
whose son was Sasavindu, who was the master of the fourteen great gems.
He had a hundred thousand wives and a million of sons. The most famous
of them were Pryihuyasas, Prithuharman, Prithujaya, Prithukirtti,
Prithudaha and Prithusravas. The son of the last of these was Tamas,
whose son was Usanas who performed a hundred horse sacrifices. His son
was Siteyus, whose son was Rukmakavacha, whose son was Paradrit, who had
five sons, Rukmeshu, Prithurukman, Jyamagha, Pahta, and Harita. In the
present period the following verse is recited of Jyamagha—"Of all the
husbands obedient to their wives, who have been or who will be, the most
famous is the king Jyamagha, who was the husband of Saivya". Saivya was
barren—but Jyamagha was so much afraid of her that he could not, take
any other wife. Once on a time after a hard fighting with horse and
elephants the king defeated a powerful enemy who, leaving behind his
wife, children, relations, army, treasure and kingdom, fled. When the
enemy had fled Jayamagha saw a beautiful princess, exclaiming, "Save
father, save me, brother" while her expansive eyes rolled wildly with
fear. The king was much attracted by her beauty and cherished love for
her and said to himself—"This is accidental; I have no children and am
the husband of a barren lady. This maiden has fallen in my hands to keep
up my family. I will marry her. But I must take her in my car to my
palace, where I must have the permission of my queen for the marriage".
So he took the princess into his car and went back to his capital.

To welcome the return of the victorious king, Saivya came to the
palace-gate with the ministers, courtiers and the citizens. And
beholding a damsel on the left hand of the king Saivya with her lips
swollen and trembling in jealousy said to the king—"Who is this fickle
girl that is sitting with you in the chariot?" The king was not prepared
with a reply and made answer, all on a sudden through fear of his
queen—"This is my daughter-in-law?" "I have never had a son" said Saivya
"and you have no other children; of what son of yours then is this girl
the wife?" The king bewildered by the jealousy and anger which the words
of Saivya displayed, gave this answer to avoid further contention. The
king said,—"She is the young bride of the future son whom thou shalt
give birth". Hearing this Saivya gently smiled and said "so be it" and
the king entered into his great palace.

This conversation regarding the birth of a son having taken place in an
auspicious conjunction, aspect, and season, the queen, although she was
greatly advanced in years, became pregnant and bore a son. His father
named him Vidarbha and married him to the damsel he had brought home. He
had three sons, Kratha, Kaisika and Romapāda. The son of Romapāda was
Dhriti. The son of Kaisika was Chedi whose children were the Chaidya
kings. The son of Kratha was Kunti, whose son was Vrishni, whose son was
Nirvriti, whose son was Dasārha, whose son was Vyoman, whose son was
Jimuta, whose son was Vikriti, whose son was Bhimaratha whose son was
Navarathe, whose son was Dasaratha, whose son was Sakuni, whose son was
Karambhi, whose son was Devarata, whose son Devakshatra, whose son was
Madhu, whose son Anavarathu, whose son was Kuruvatsa, whose son son was
Anaratha, whose son was Puruhotra, whose son was Ansu, whose son was
Satwata, from whom the princes of this family were called Sātwatas. This
was the progeny of of Jyamagha. He, who will hear of the account, will
be freed from sins.


Parāçara said—The sons of Satwata were Bhajina Bhajamāna, Divya,
Andhaka, Devavriddha, Mahābhoja and Vrishni. Bhajamāna had three sons,
Nimi, Krikana, and Vrishni by one wife and as many by another, Satajit,
Sahasrajit and Ayutajit. The son of Devavridha was Babhru of whom this
verse is recited—"We hear, when we are at a distance and we see when we
are near that Babhru is the foremost of men and Devavriddha is equal to
the celestials: sixty six persons who were the disciples of one and six
thousand and eight who were disciples of the other obtained
immortality". Mahabhoja was a virtuous king his descendants were the
Bhojas, the kings of Mirttikāvati-thence denominated Mirttikāvāttas.
Vrishni had two sons Suimitra and Yudhajit: from the former Anamitra and
Sini were born. The son of Anamnitra was Nighna who had two sons Prasena
and Satrajit. The god Aditya or the sun was the friend of the latter.

Once on a time arriving at the banks of the ocean, Satrajit began to
hymn the praises of the sun, with his mind solely devoted to him, upon
which the deity appeared and stood before him. Seeing him in an
indistinct shape he said to to the Sun—"I see thee in this sky as a
globe of fire—I behold thee just now in the same shape and do not
perceive any distinction as a matter of favor". Being thus addressed the
divine sun took the jewell called Syamantaka from off his neck and
placed it at a distance and Satrajit saw him of a dwarfish form, with a
body like burnished copper and with slightly reddish eyes. While he
bowed unto him the divine Sun said to Satrajit—"I wish to confer upon
thee a boon; do thou pray for it". He then wanted that jewel. The sun
gave it to him and then resumed his place in the sky. Satrajit placed
that precious gem round his neck and lighting up all the quarters with
his radiance like the sun entered the city of Dwārakā. Beholding him
approach the inhabitant of Dwārakā went to that excellent Purusha,
without beginning, who, to carry the burden of the world, assumed a
mortal form, and said—"O lord, forsooth, the divine sun is coming to
visit you". But Krishna smiled and said, "It is not the sun but
Satrajit. He is coming here with the Syamantaka gem conferred upon him
by the sun. You all see him with a fearless heart". Hearing this the
inhabitants of Dwārakā repaired to their respective habitations.
Satrajit too having gone to his house placed that jewel which gave daily
eight loads of gold and through its uncommon power removed all fear of
portents, wild beasts, fire, robbers, and famine. Krishna thought that
the gem was worthy of the king Ugrasena and desired to take it but did
not do so lest it might some disturbance in the family. Understanding
that Krishna would ask of him the jewel Satrajit transferred it to his
brother Prasena. It was the peculiar virtue of that gem, that if worn
with all purity it would yield gold and prosperity of the kingdom but if
worn by a man of bad character it would bring on his death. Prasena
having taken the jewel and placed it round his neck mounted his horse
and went to the forest to hunt. While thus hunting he was killed by a
lion. The lion taking the jewel in his mouth was about to go when was
seen and killed by Jamvabat the king of the bears, who taking the jewel
went to his cave and gave it to his son Sukumara to play with.

When sometime had passed and Prasena did not come, the Yādavas began to
whisper, one to another, "This must be Krishna's doing; being willing to
get the jewel and not obtaining it he has committed the murder to get
this into his possession".

When these calamities reached the ears of Krishna he gathered some
members of the Yadu family and in their company followed the course of
Prasena by the impressions of his horse's hoofs. And having found it by
this way that he and his horse had been destroyed by the lion he was
acquitted by all people of any share in the death. Desirous of getting
back the jewel, he thence followed the foot-marks of the lion and at no
great distance came to the place where the lion had been killed by the
bear. Pursuing the foot-prints of the latter he arrived at the foot of a
mountain where having kept the Yādavas he pursued the course. And
following the impressions of the feet he found out a cavern and before
he entered it he heard the nurse of Sukumāra saying to him "The lion
killed Prasena; the lion has been killed by Jamvabat: weep not Sukumāra
the Syamantaka is your own". Having thus ascertained the truth Krishna
entered into the cavern and espied the jewel in the hands of the nurse
who was giving it as a plaything to Sukumāra. The nurse in no time found
out his approach and seeing his eyes eagerly fixed upon the jewel called
aloud for help. Hearing her cries, Jamvabat, worked up with anger, came
to that place and an encounter took place between him and the Achyuta
which continued for twenty, one days. The Yādavas who followed Krishna
waited there for seven or eight days expecting his return but as the
slayer of Madhu did not come they arrived at the conclusion that he must
have been destroyed in the cave. "It could not have taken so many days"
they thought "to defeat a foe". They therefore went away, and came back
to Dwārakā and announced that Krishna had been killed.

His relatives too performed ceremonies necessary for the occasion. Food
and water offered reverentially to worthy persons tended to support his
life and invigorate his strength in the conflict in which he was
engaged. While his enemy being exhausted by daily combat with a powerful
enemy, bruised in every limb by heavy blows and enfeebled by want of
food became unable to resist him. Being thus defeated by his powerful
enemy Jamvabat prostrated himself before him and said "O mighty being,
thou art, for sooth invincible, by the spirits of heaven, earth or hell,
thou canst not be defeated by man and powerless creatures in a human
shape—what to speak of such as we are—who are of brute origin. Methinks
thou art a portion of my lord Nārāyana the protector of the universe".
Being thus addressed by the lord of bears Krishna explained to him fully
that he had incarnated himself to take upon himself the burden of the
earth. And delightedly touching him with his palms he relieved him of
the pain which he had suffered from the fight. Jamvabat again laid
himself low before Krishna and presented to him his daughter Jamvabati
as a suitable offering to a guest. He also handed over to him the
Syamantaka jewel. Although it was not becoming to accept a present from
such an individual still he took the gem with a view to clear his
reputation. He then came back with his bride Jamvabati to Dwārakā.

When the inhabitants of Dwārakā saw Krishna come back alive they were
filled with joy so that even those who were greatly stricken in years
were filled with youthful strength; and all the members of the Yadu
family, men and women, gathered round Anakadundubhi, the father of the
hero and congratulated him. Krishna described to the assembled Yādavas
all that had taken place exactly and giving back the Syamantaka jewel to
Satrajit was cleared off the charge of murder. He then conducted
Jamvabati to the inner apartments.

When Satrajit thought that he had been the instrumental of the false
charge against Krishna he was terrified and to satisfy him he gave in
marriage with him his daughter Satyabhāmā. She had ere been sought in
marriage by many illustrious members of the Yadu family as Akrura,
Kritaverman, and Satadhanwan, who were greatly worked up with anger on
account of her being married to another, and formed a common cause of
enmity against Satrajit. The most leading man amongst them with Akrura
and Kritavarman said to Satadhanwan—"By given her daughter to Krishna
this caitiff Satrajit had insulted you and us grossly who wanted her:
why do you not kill him and take the jewel? Should Achyuta on that
account enter into conflict with you we will take your part". Having
secured this promise Satadhanwan undertook to destroy Satrajit.

When the intelligence reached Krishna that the Pandavas lad been burned
in the house of wax, he, who was acquainted with the real truth,
immediately started for Baranāvata to allay the enmity of Duryodhana and
perform the necessary duties of his relationship. Taking advantage of
his absence Satadhanwan killed Satrajit while asleep and secured the
jewel for himself. When Satyabhāmā came to know this, she, highly
angered on account of her father's murder, at once ascended the chariot,
went to Bāranāvat and told her husband how Satrajit had been killed by
Satadhanwan in anger on account of her being married to another, and how
the jewel had been taken away by him. And she requested him to take
immediate steps to avenge such a heinous crime.

Being thus informed Krishna, though pleased at heart, said to
Satyabhāmā, assuming an indignant look—"This is an insult to me! I shall
never brook it. One cannot destroy the birds that have built their nests
on a tree without assailing it. Remove excessive grief therefore; you
need not lament to excite my wrath". Immediately coming back to Dwārakā
Krishna took Baladeva apart and said to him. "A lion slew Prasena while
hunting in the forests; and now Satrajit has been killed by Satadhanwan.
As both these are gone, the jewel which belonged to them, is now our
common right. Up then, ascend your car and destroy Satadhanwan".

Being thus excited by his brother, Balarāma engaged in the work; but
Satadhanwan being aware of their hostile intention went to Kritavarman
and prayed for his help. Kritavarman did not agree saying that he was
not able to fight with both Krishna and Baladeva. Being disappointed he
again solicited Akrura for help who said—"You must go to some body else
for help. How should I be able to defend you? Even none, amongst the
celestials whose glories are chanted throughout the universe, is capable
of fighting with the holder of the discus, trodden by whose foot the
three worlds tremble, whose hand makes the wives of the Asuras widows,
whose weapons,—no army, however powerful can resist;—no one is able to
fight with the wielder of ploughshare, who by his very looks, nullifies
the prowess of his enemies, whose eyes roll with the joys of wine, and
whose huge ploughshare manifests his prowess by destroying the most
powerful enemies". Whereto Satadhanwan replied—"While such is the case
and you are unable assist me, you may at least help me by keeping this
jewel in your possession". "I can keep it" Akrura said "if you promise
that even in the last extremity you won't give out that the jewel is in
my possession". Satadhanwan agreed to this and Akrura took the jewel.
And mounting a fleet mare that could run a hundred leagues a day
Satadhanwan fled from Dwārakā.

When this intelligence reached Krishna, he made ready his four horses
Sarvya, Sugriva, Meghapushpa, and Balahakai, set them to his car and
accompanied by Balarāma, started in his pursuit. The mare went on
speedily and finished her hundred leagues but when she reached the
country of Mithilā, her strength was exhausted and she dropped down and
died. Having got down, Satadhanwan continued his flight on foot. When
the pursuers came to the place where the mare had died Krishna said to
Balarāma—"Do you remain in the car; I shall follow the villain on foot
and kill him; the ground here is bad; and the horses will not be able to
carry the car across it". Accordingly Balarāma remained in the car and
Krishna followed Satadhanwan on foot. When he had pursued him for two
Kos he discharged his discus and although Satadhanwan was at a
considerable distance the weapon dissevered his head. He then searched
his person and clothes very attentively but did not find the jewel. Then
coming back he said to Balarāma—"I have for nothing destroyed
Satadhanwan—for I have not found on his person the precious gem—the
quintessence of all worlds". When Balarāma heard this, he was excited
with anger and said to Vāsudeva—"Shame upon you—so greedy of wealth. I
don't acknowledge you as my brother. Here is my path. Go wherever you
like, I have done with Dwārakā, with you with all our house. It is
useless for you to try to deceive me with these perjuries". Having
remonstrated with his brother thus, who in vain tried to please him.
Balarāma went to the city of Videha, where Janaka received him
hospitably and there he remained. Vāsudeva came back to Dwārakā. While
Balarāma stayed in the house of Janaka, Duryodhana, the son of
Dhritarastra learnt from him the art of fighting with the mace.

In this way three years passed away. Babru, Ugrasena and other Yādavas
then repaired to the city of Videha and convinced Balarāma that Krishna
had stolen the jewel. They then brought him to Dwārakā.

Akrura too, to utilise the gold produced by the jewel, continually
engaged in the celebration of sacrifices. Considering that the murderer
of a Kshatriya or Vaiçya engaged in religious duties, is the slayer of
Brahmin, Akrura spent sixty-two years being protected by the armour of
devotion. And by virtue of that gem there was no death, nor pestilence
in the whole country. At the end of that period, Satrughna, the great
grandson of Satwata was killed by Bhojas. As they were connected with
Akrura he accompanied them in their flight from Dwārakā. From the time
of his departure various calamities, portents, snakes, dearth, plague
and the like began to take place. Thereupon the illustrious Krishna
called together Baladeva, Ugrasena and other Yādavas and consulted with
them to ascertain why so many prodigies should have taken place at the
same time. On this Andhaka one of the elders of the Yadu family
spoke—"Wherever Swaphalka the father of Akrura lived, there famine,
plague, dearth and other visitations were unknown. Once when there was
want of rain in the kingdom of Kasirāja, Swaphalka was brought there and
immediately there fell rain from the heavens. It also happened that the
queen of Kasirāja conceived and was big with a child but when the time
of delivery came the child did not come out of the womb. Twelve years
went away and still the girl was unborn. Then the Kasirāja spoke to the
child, saying 'Daughter, why is your birth thus delayed? Come out, I
wish to see you; why do you inflict this continued suffering upon your
mother?' Thus addressed the infant said—'O father, if you will present a
cow daily to the Brahmans I shall be born at the end of three years'.
Accordingly the king presented a cow every day to the Brahmans and at
the end of three years the girl came out of the womb. Her father called
her Gāndini and he afterwards gave her to Swaphalka when he came to his
palace to help him. Gāndini as long as she lived, gave a cow to the
Brahmans every day. Akrura was her son by Swaphalka. And he is thus born
from a combination of extraordinary excellence. When such a person is
absent from us it is likely that famine, pestilence and prodigies should
take place. Let him then be requested to come back; the weak points of
men of excellence should not be too severely criticized".

In accordance with the advice of Andhaka the elder, the Yādavas sent a
mission headed by Kesava, Ugrasena and Balabhadra, to assure Akrura that
no notice of his fault would be taken. And having convinced him that he
would expect no danger they brought him back to Dwārakā. As soon as he
arrived on account of the virtue of the jewel, the plague, dearth,
famine and every other calamity and portent disappeared. Seeing this
Krishna thought that the birth of Akrura from Gāndini and Swaphalka
could not bring about such an effect and he must have some other more
powerful virtue to arrest pestilence and famine. "Certainly" thought he
within himself "the great Syamantaka jewel must be in his keeping, for
these, as I have heard, are the properties of the jewel. Akrura too has
been performing many sacrifices; his own means are not sufficient for
the purpose, undoubtedly he has got the jewel in his possession". Having
arrived at this conclusion, he called together all Yādavas at his house
under the plea of celebrating some feast. After they had all taken their
seals and the object of the meeting had been explained to them and the
business finished Krishna began to converse with Akrura and laughing and
joking, said to him—"Kinsman, you are a prince in your liberality and we
know very well that the valuable gem which was stolen by Sudhanwan was
given to you and is now in your possession, to the great benefit of this
kingdom. So let it remain; we all derive advantage from its virtues. But
Bhalabhadra suspects that I have it and therefore, out of kindness to me
shew it to the assembly". When Akrura, who had the jewel in his
possession, was thus taxed he hesitated what he should do. He
thought—"If I deny that I have the jewel, they will search my person and
find the gem hidden amongst my clothes. I cannot submit myself to a
search". Thinking thus Akrura said to Nārāyana, the cause of the
universe "It is true, Syamantaka jewel was given to my care by
Satadhanwan when he left this place. I expected every day that you
should ask me for it and with great inconvenience to myself I have
retained it. The care of this has put me to so much anxiety that I have
not been able to enjoy any pleasure or a moment's rest. Being afraid
lest you might think, that I am unfit to keep this jewel which is the
source of welfare to the kingdom I did not mention to you that it is in
my possession. Now take it yourself and give its charge to any body you
like". Having said this Akrura got out of his clothes a small gold box
and took from it the jewel. When it was shown to the assembled Yādavas
the room in which they sat was illuminated with its radiance, "This"
said Akrura "is the Syamantaka jewel which was left to my care by
Satadhanwan. Let him to whom it belongs now take it".

When the Yādavas saw the jewel they were filled with surprise and loudly
expressed their joy. Balabhadra immediately claimed the jewel as his
property jointly with Achyuta as was formerly settled; whereas
Satyabhāmā wanted it as her rightful property for it belonged to her
father. Between these two Krishna considered himself as an ox between
the two wheels of a cart, and thus said to Akrura in presence of the
Yadavas—"This jewel has been shown to you all in order to clear my
reputation; it is the joint-property of Balabhadra and myself and is the
paternal property of Satyabhāmā. But as a source of advantage to the
kingdom this jewel must be consigned to the charge of one who leads a
life of perpetual continence; if worn by an impure man it will prove the
cause of his death. As I have sixteen thousand wives I am not qualified
to use it. It is not probable that Satyabhāmā would agree to the
conditions, satisfying which she may possess it And as regards
Balabhadra, he is greatly addicted to wine and sensual pleasures. We are
therefore all out of question. All the Yādavas, Balabhadra, Satyabhāmā
and myself request you, most liberal Akrura, to keep this jewel in your
possession, as you have done up to this time for the general behoof; for
you are qualified to keep it and in your hands it has proved beneficial
to the country. You must comply with your request".

Thus requested Akrura took the jewel and thenceforth wore it publicly
round his neck where it shone with dazzling radiance and he moved about
like the sun wearing a garland of light.

He, who remembers the vindication of Krishna's character from false
charges, shall never be subject to any false charge in the least degree
and living in the full display of senses, shall be freed from every sin.


Parāçara said:—The younger brother of Anamitra was Sini, whose son was
Satyaka, whose son was Yuyudhana, otherwise known as Satyaki, whose son
was Asanga, whose son was Yuni, whose son was Yugandhara. These princes
were named Saineyas.

Prisni was born in the race of Anamitra, whose son was Swaphalka the
purity of whose character has been described; the younger brother of
Swaphalka was named Chitraka. Swaphalka had by Gāndini, besides Akrura,
Upamadgu, Mridura, Sarimejaya, Giri, Kshatropa, Kshatra, Satrughna,
Arimarddana, Dharmadhris, Dhristasarman, Gandha, Mojavaha and Prativaha.
He had also a daughter, named Sutāra.

Devavat and Upadeva were the sons of Akrura. The sons of Chitrika were
Pritha and Vipritha and many others. Andhaka had four sons, Lukkura,
Bhojamana, Suchi, Kambalavarhish. The son of Kukkura was Vrishta, whose
son was Kapotaroman, whose son was Viloman, whose son was Bhava, who was
otherwise named Chandanodakadunbubhi; he was a friend of the Gandharva
Tumburu; his son was Abhejit, whose son was Punarvasu, whose son was
Ahuka; he had also a daughter called Ahuki. The sons of Ahuka were
Devaka and Ugrasena. The former had four sons Devavat, Upadeva, Sudeva
and Devarakshita And seven daughters—Vrikadevā, Upadevā, Devarakshitā,
Sridevā, Santidevā, Sahadeva and Devaki; and all the daughters were
married to Vasudeva. The sons of Ugrasena were Kansa, Nyagroddha,
Sunaman, Kanka, Sanka, Subhumi, Rashtrapala, Yuddhamushthi, and
Yushtimat and her daughters were Kansa, Kausavati, Sutana, Rashtrapali
and Kanki.

The son of Bhajamana was Viduratha, whose son was Sura, whose son was
Samin, whose son was Pratikshatra, whose son was Swayambhoja whose son
was Hrideka, who had Kritavarma, Satadhana, Devamidusha and others.
Sura, the son of Devamidhusa, was married to Marisha and had by her ten
sons, When Vasudeva, who was one of these sons, was born, the
celestials, to whom future is known, foresaw that the divine being would
be born in his race and they therefore joyously sounded the celestial
drums and accordingly Vasudeva was named Anakadundubhi. His brothers
were Devabhaga, Devasravas, Anadhristi, Karundhaka, Vatsabalaka,
Srinjaya, Syama, Samika and Gandusha. They had five sisters who were
named Pritha, Srutadeva, Srutakirti, Srutasrava and Rājādhidevi.

Sura had a friend named Kuntibhoja who had no son. And to him he
presented duly his daughter Pritha. She was married to Pandu and bore
him Yudhishthira, Bhima and Arjuna who were in reality the sons of the
deities Dharma, Vayu and Indra. And whilst she was a maiden she had a
son named Karna begotten by the divine sun. Pandu had another wife named
Madri who had by the twin sons of Aditya, Nasatya and Basra, two sons,
Nakula and Sahadeva.

A Karusha prince by name Vriddhasarman married Srutadeva and begot on
her a dreadful Asura named Dantavaktra. Dhristaketu king of Kaikeya,
married Srutakirti and had by her Santarddana and four others sons known
as the five Kaikeyas. Jayasena, king of Avanti married Rājādhidevi and
had two sons, Vinda and Anavinda. Damaghosa, the king of Chedi, married
Srutasravās and begot on her a son named Sisupala. This prince in his
pristine birth, was the wicked and valiant king of the Daityas,
Hiranyakashipu, who was killed by the divine guardian of creation. He
was in another birth was born as the ten-headed Ravana, whose
unequalled, strength, prowess and power were overcome by Rāma, the lord
of the three worlds. Having been destroyed by the deity in the shape of
Raghava, he was exempted from an embodied state for a long time as a
reward of his virtues but had now been born once more as Sisupala the
son of Damaghosa, king of Chedi, In this character he began to show
greatest hostility towards Krishna an incarnate portion of the glorious
Pundarikaksha to carry the burden of the world. He was killed by the
great God. And on account of his thoughts being entirely devoted to him
Sisupala was united with him after death; for the lord giveth to those
with whom he is propitiated what they desire and he confers a heavenly
and exalted station even upon those whom he destroys in displeasure.


Maitreya said:—Being killed by Vishnu as Hiranyakashipu and Ravana he
obtained enjoyments which are not attainable even by the immortals. Why
did they not obtain absorption albeit slain by Vishnu? And why as
Sisupala were they absorbed into the eternal Hari? O foremost of those
conversant with religion, I wish to hear of all these; I am greatly
stricken with curiosity; do thou relate them.

Parāçara said:—When the creator, preserver and destroyer of the universe
killed Hiranyakashipu, the king of Daityas, he assumed the figure of a
lion and man, he was not aware that his slayer was Vishnu. He thought
this wonderful figure was but the creation of his accumulated piety.

And the quality of passion being predominant in his mind he obtained
destruction from man-lion. And in consequence of his death at the hands
of Vishnu be obtained sovereignty over three worlds and immense riches
and enjoyments as Dasāsana. He was not absorbed into the supreme spirit
that is without beginning or end because his mind was not wholly devoted
to that object. Dasāsana, thus being entirely subject to love and being
entirely taken up by thoughts of Janaki, could not perceive that the son
of Dasaratha whom he saw, was in fact the divine Achyuta. At the time of
his death he was impressed with the idea that his enemy was a mortal and
therefore the fruit he obtained from being slain by Vishnu was his birth
in the illustrious family of the kings of Chedi and the possession of
extensive dominions. And he was known as Sisupala. In this birth many
circumstances occurred by which he was constrained to utter the name of
the great God and on all these occasions the enmity, that had
accumulated through successive births, influenced his mind. And always
speaking disrespectfully of Achyuta he repeated all his names. Whether
walking, eating, sitting, or sleeping his enmity was never at rest and
Krishna was always present to his mind in his ordinary form, having eyes
like lotus-petals, clad and bright yellow raiment, adorned with a
garland, with bracelets on his arms and wrists and a diadem on his
crown; having four stalwart arms bearing the conch, the discus, the mace
and the lotus. Uttering his names always although in malediction Krishna
was always present in his mind, and while inflicting his death Sisupāla
saw him radiant with shining weapons and in his true Brahma form void of
passion and enmity. Being slain by the discus of Vishnu at this moment
all his sins were removed by his divine enemy and he was united with him
by whose might be destroyed.

I have thus related to you everything. He, who names or remembers the
glorious Vishnu even in the enmity obtains final emancipation which is
not attainable by the gods or demons. It is useless to say that he, who
reverentially names or remembers him, obtains final liberation.

Vasudeva, otherwise named Anakadundubhi, and Rohini, Pauravi, Bhadra,
Madira, Devaki and several other wives. His sons by Rohini were
Balabhadra, Sārana, Saru, Durmada, and others. Balabhadra married Revati
and had by her Nisatha and Ulmaka. The sons of Sarana were Marshti,
Marshtimat, Sisu, Satyadhriti, and others. Bhadraswa, Bhadrabahu,
Durgama, Bhuta and others were born in the race of Rohini. The son of
Vasudeva by Madirā were Nanda, Upananda, Kritaka and others. By his wife
Vinsāli he had one son named Kausika. Devaki before him six sons:
Kritimat, Sushena, Udayin, Bhadrasena, Rijudāsa and Bhadradeha all of
whom were killed by Kansa.

When Devaki was again big with a child the seventh time, Yoganidrā (the
sleep of devotion), dispatched by Vishnu, extricated the embryo from
maternal womb at the mid-night and transferred it to that of Rohini; and
from having been thus taken away, the child (who was Balarāma) received
the name of Sankarshnā. Being desirous of relieving the world of the
burden, the divine Vishnu, the source of the vast universe, beyond the
understanding of all gods, demons sages, and men, past, present or
future, worshipped of Brahmā and all the celestials, who is without
beginning, middle or end, descended into the womb of Devaki and was born
as her son Vasudeva. Yaganidrā, always proud to satisfy his orders,
removed the embryo to Yasodā the wife of Nanda, the cow-herd. At this
birth the earth was relieved of all sins; the sun, moon and planets
shone with unclouded brilliance; all fear of evil portents was removed
and universal happiness prevailed. And from the time of his birth people
were led into the righteous path.

Whilst this powerful being lived in the land of mortals he had sixteen
thousand and one hundred wives of whom the Principal were Rukmini,
Satyabhāmā, Jamvabati, Jalahasini and four others. The divine Krishna,
the universal form without beginning, begot on all these wives a hundred
and eighty thousand sons, of whom thirteen were most celebrated:
Pradyumna, Charudeshna, Samba and others. Pradyumna married Kakudwati,
the daughter of Rukmini and had by her Aniruddha. Aniruddha married
Subhadrā, the granddaughter of the same Rukmini and she bore him a son
named Vajra. The son of Vajra and Bāhu and his son was Suchāru.

In this way the members of the Yadu family increased and were many
hundreds of thousands of them so that it would be impossible to repeat
their names in hundreds of years. Two verses regarding them are recited.
"The domestic teachers of the boys in the use of arms numbered three
crores and eighty lacs. Who shall enumerate the powerful members of the
Yadava family who were tens of ten thousands and hundreds of hundred
thousands in number?" Those powerful Daityas, who were slain by them in
the encounter between the gods and demons, were born again on earth as
men, as tyrants and oppressors. With a view to arrest their violence the
gods also descended to the land of mortals and became members of the
hundred and one branches of the family of Yadu. Vishnu was their teacher
and ruler and all the members were obedient to his commands.

Whoever hears often times of this account of the origin of the heroes of
the race of Vrishni shall be freed from all iniquities and shall attain
to the region of Vishnu.


Parāçara said:—I shall now briefly give you an account of the
descendants of Turvasu.

The son of Turvasa was Tahni, whose son was Gobhanu, whose son was
Traisamba, whose son was Karandhama, whose son was Marutta. Marutta had
no issue and he therefore adopted Dushyanta of the race of Puru by which
the line of Turvasa merged into that of Puru. This was brought about by
the curse imprecated on his son by Yayati.


The son of Druhya was Babhru, whose son was Setu, whose son was Aradwat,
whose son was Gandhara, whose son was Dharma, whose son was Dhrita,
whose son was Duryaman, whose son was Prachetas, who had a hundred sons
and they were the princes of the lawless Mlechehhas or barbarians of the


Anu, the fourth son of Yayati, had three sons, Sabhanara, Chakshusha and
Paramekshu. The son of the first was Kālānara, whose son was Srinjaya,
whose son was Puranjaya, whose son was Janamenjaya, whose son was
Mahāmani, whose son was Mahāmanas, who had two sons, Ushinara and
Titikshu. Ushinara had five sons: Sivi, Trina, Gara, Krimi, Darvan. Sivi
had four sons: Vrishadarva, Suvira, Kaikeya and Madra. Titikshu had one
son Ushadratha, whose son was Hema, whose son was Sutapas, whose was
Bali, on whose spouse five sons were begotten by Dirghatamas—namely
Anga, Banga, Kalinga, Sauhma and Pundra and their progeny and the
countries they inhabited were known by the same names.

The son of Anga was Para, whose son was Divaratha, whose son was
Dharmaratha, whose son was Chitraratha, whose son was Romapāda also
called Dasaratha, to whom on account of his having no offspring,
Dasaratha, the son of Aja gave his daughter Sāntā to be adopted. After
this Romapāda had a son named Chaturanga, whose son was Prithulaksha,
whose son was Champā who founded the city of Champā. The son of Champā
was Haryyanga, whose son was Bhadraratha, who had two sons, Vrihatkatman
and Vrihadratha. The son of the former was Vrihadbhanu, whose son was
Vrihanmanas, whose son was Jayadratha, who by a wife who was the
daughter of a Kshatriya father and Brāhman mother, had a son named

Vijaya had a son whose name was Dhriti, whose son was Dritabrata, whose
son was Satyakarman, whose son was Adiratha who found a son in a basket
on the banks of the Ganges. This was Karna, the son of Pritha in her
maidenhood. Karna's son was Vrishasena. These were the Anga kings. I
shall now describe to you the descendants of Puru.


Parāçara said:—The son of Puru was Janamenjaya, whose son was
Prāchinvat, whose son was Pravira, whose son was Manasyu, whose son was
Bhayada, whose son was Sudyunna, whose son was Bahugava, whose son was
Samyati, whose son was Ahamyati, whose son was Raudraswa, who had ten
sons: Riteyu, Kaksheyu, Sthanditeyu, Ghriteyu, Jaleyu, Sthaleyu,
Santaleyu, Dhaneyu, Vaneyu, and Vrateyu. The son of Riteyu was
Rantināra, whose sons were Tansu, Apratirtha and Dhruva. The son of the
second of these was Kanwa, whose son was Medhātithi, from whom the
Kanwayana Brāhmanas were sprung. Anila was the son of Tansu, who had
four sons of whom Dushyanta was the elder. The son of Dushymanta was the
Emperor Bharata regarding whom a verse is recited by the celestials.
"The mother is merely the receptable; it is the father by whom a son is
begotten. Rear up thy son, Dushyamanta, treat not Sakuntalā with
disrespect. Sons, who are born from the loins of their father, save
their manes from hell. Thou art father of this boy; Sakuntalā has spoken
the truth".

Bharata begat on his wives nine sons, beholding whom he said that they
were not after him. The queens, being afraid lest he might desert them,
destroyed those sons. The birth of sons being thus useless the king
celebrated a sacrifice in honour of Maruts. They gave him Bharadwaja,
the son of Vrihaspati by Mamatā, the wife of Utathya, expelled untimely
by the kick of his half brother Dirghatamas. The following verse
explains the meaning of the name—"Silly woman" said Vrihaspati "cherish
this child of two fathers (Bhara-dwa-jam)". "No, Vrihaspati" replied
Mamatā "you take care of him". So saying they both left him and from
these expressions the boy was named Bharadwaja. He was also called
Vitatha for both the sons of Bharata proved fruitless. The son of
Vitatha was Bhavanmanya, who had many sons, the principals among whom
were Vrihatkshatra, Mahaviryya, Nara and Garga. The son of Narn was
Sankriti, whose sons were Ruchiradhi and Rantideva. The son of Garga was
Sini and their progeny were respectively called Gargyas and Sainyas;
although Kshatriyas by birth they became Brāhmans. The son of Mahaviryya
was Urukshaya, who had three sons: Trayyaruna, Pushkarin and Kapi, the
last of whom became a Brahman. The son of Vrihatkshatra was Suhotta,
whose son was Hastin, who founded the city of Hastināpur. The sons of
Hastin were Ajamidha, Dwimidha, Purumidha. One son of Ajamidha was
Kanwa, whose son was Medhatithi; his other son was Vrihadishu, whose son
was Vrihadvasu, whose son was Vrihatkarman, whose son was Jayadratha,
whose son was Viswajit, whose son was Senajit, whose sons were
Ruchiraswa, Kasya, Dridhadhanusha and Vasahana. The son of Ruchiraswa
was Prithusena, whose son was Pāra, whose son was Nipa, who had a
hundred sons, of whom the chief Samara was the king of Kampilya. Samara
had three sons: Para, Sampara, Sadāswa. The son of Para was Pritha,
whose son was Sukriti, whose son was Vibhrata, whose son was Anuha, who
married Kritwi, the daughter of Suka and had by her Brahmadatta, whose
son was Viswaksena, whose son was Udaksena and whose son was Bhallata.

The son of Dwimidha was Yavinara, whose son was Dhrtimat, whose son was
Satyadhriti, whose son was Dridhanemi, whose son was Suparswa, whose son
was Sumati, whose son was Sannatimat, whose son was Krita, who was
taught by Hiramyanabha, the philosophy of Yoga and who compiled the
twenty-four Sanhitas for the use of the eastern Brāhmanas studying the
Sama Veda. The son of Krita was Ugrayudhas, who by his power destroyed
the Nipa race of Kshatriyas. His son was Kshemya, whose son was Suirra,
whose son was Nripanjaya, whose son was Baharatha. These were all called

Ajamidha espoused Nilini and by her had a son called Nilaj whose son was
Santi, whose son was Susanti, whose son was Purujanu, whose son was
Chakshu, whose son was Harryaswa, who had five sons: Mudgala, Srinjaya,
Vrihadishu, Pravira and Kampilya. Their father said—"These five sons of
mine are capable of protecting the countries" and hence they were called
Panchalas—(i.e. Pancha—five and alam—able). From Mudgala sprang the
Maudgahya Brāhmans. He had also a son called Bahwaswa, who had two
children, twins, a son and daughter—Divodasa and Ahalya. The son of
Saradwat or Gautama by Ahalya was Sātanands, whose son was Satyadhriti,
who was well versed in military science. Being enamoured of the nymph
Urvasi, Satyadriti begot on her two children, a boy and a daughter. The
king Sāntanu, a-hunting, found their children in a clump of long Sara
grass and feeling pity for them took them and reared them up. As they
were brought up through Kripā, pity, they were called Kripa and Kripi.
The latter became the wife of Drona and the mother of Aswathāman.

The son of Divodasa was Mitrāyu, whose son was Chyavanna, whose son was
Sudāsa, whose son was Saudāsa, also called Sahadeva, whose son was
Somaka, who had a hundred sons of whom the eldest was Jantu and the
youngest was Prishata. The son of Prishata was Drupada, whose son was
Dhrishtadyumna, whose son was Drishtaketu.

Another son of Ajamidha was called Riksha, whose son was Samvarāna,
whose son was Kuru, who gave his name to the holy district Kurukshetra.
His sons were Sudhanush, Jahnu, Parikshit, and many others. The son of
Sudanush was Suhotra, whose son was Chyavana, whose son was Kritaka,
whose son was Uparichara the Vasu, who had seven children: Vrihadratha,
Pratyagra, Kusamba, Mavella, Matysa and others. The son of Vrihadratha
was Kusagra, whose son was Rishabha, whose son was Pushpavat, whose son
was Satyadhrita, whose son was Sudhanwan, whose son was Jantu.
Vrihadratha had another son. He was born in two parts which were joined
together by a female fiend named Jarā and accordingly he was named
Jarāsandha. His son was Sahadeva, whose son was Somāpi, whose son was
Srutasravas. These were the kings of Magadha.


Parāçara said:—Parikshit had four sons—Janamejaya, Srutasena, Ugrasena
and Bhimasena. The son of Jahnu was Surathai whose son was Viduratha,
whose son was Sarvabhauma, whose son was Jayasena Aravin, whose son was
Ayutayus, whose son was Akrodhana; one of his sons was Devatithi and
another was called Riksha, whose son was Dilipa, whose son was Pratipa,
who had three sons, Devāpi, Sāntanu, and Bāhlika. The first took to a
forest life in childhood and Sāntanu became the king. Regarding him this
verse is recited throughout the earth—"Sāntanu is his name because if he
places his hands upon an old man he restores him to youth and by him men
obtain tranquility".

In Sāntanu's kingdom there was not rain for twelve years. When he
perceived that the whole kingdom was about to be devastated he called
together all the Brāhmans and said to them—"Why does not the God pour
rains in my kingdom? What fault have I committed?" They told him that he
was as it were a younger brother married before sm elder for he was
governing the kingdom which was the rightful property of his elder
brother. "What then am I to do?" said the king. The Brāhmanas
replied—"As long as the Brāhmanas shall not be displeased with Devāpi on
account of his deviating from the path of righteousness the kingdom is
his; you should therefore give it over to him". When the minister of the
king Amarisarin heard this he collected a number of ascetics who taught
doctrines opposed to those of the Vedas and sent them into the forest.
They met Devāpi, perverted the understanding of the simple-minded prince
and led him to cherish heretical notions. Being informed of his offence
by the Brāhmanas, Sāntanu was greatly pained. Accordingly he sent them
before him into the forest and then went there himself to restore the
kingdom to his elder brother. When the Brāhmans reached the hermitage of
Devāpi they informed him, that, according to the doctrines of the Vedas,
succession to a kingdom was the right of the elder brother. But he
discussed with them and set forth various arguments which were opposed
to the teachings of the Vedas. When the Brāhmans heard this they looked
towards Sāntanu and said "Come here king you need not put yourself
further trouble in this matter. The dearth is gone, this man has fallen
from his condition for he uttered disrespectful words to the authority
of the eternal uncreated Veda. When the elder brother goes down to a
degraded state there is no sin consequent upon prior espousals of his
junior". Thereupon Sāntanu came back to his capital and governed the
kingdom as before; his elder brother was degraded for declaring
doctrines opposed to the Vedas. Indra poured down abundant rain, which
was followed by rich harvests.

The son of Bahlika was Somadatta, who had three sons: Bhuri, Bhurisravas
and Sala, The son of Sāntanu was the well known and the learned Bhishma,
who was born to him by the holy Gangā. He had by his wife Satyavati two
sons, Chitrangada and Vichitraviryya. Chitrangada, in his youth was
slain in an encounter with a Gandharbha called Chitrangada.
Vichitraviryya married Ambā and Ambālika, the daughters of the king of
Kasi, and enjoying too much connubial pleasures was attacked with
consumption and died. By command of Satyavati, my son Krishna-Daipāyana,
who was always obedient to his mother, begot upon the widows of his
brother, the princes Dhritarastra and Pandu and upon a female servant
Vidura. Dritarashtra had Duryodhana, Dushāsana and others to the extent
of a hundred. Having incurred the imprecation of a deer whose mate he
had slain in a chase, Pandu was prevented from procreating children.
Accordingly his wife Kunti bore to him three sons who were begotten by
the deities, Dharma, Vayu and Indra—namely Yudhishthira, Bhima and
Arjuna. His wife Madri had two sons by the sons of Aswini—namely Nakula
and Sahadeva. These each had a son by Draupadi. The son of Yudhishthira
was Prativindhya; of Bhima, Srutasoma; of Arjuna, Srutakirti; of Nakula,
Satanika, and of Sahadeva, Srutakarman. The Pandavas had also other
sons. By his wife Yaudheyi Yudhishthira had Devaka; Bhima had by
Hidemba, Ghatotkacha, and had another by his wife Kasi, Sarvatraga.
Sadeva had by Vijaya, Suhotra and Niramitra was the son of Nakula by
Karenutmati. Arjuna had Irāvat by the serpent nymph Ulupi—by the
daughter of the king of Manipur he had Babrubabana, who was adopted by
his maternal grand father, by his wife Subhadrā, Abhimanyu, who even in
his boy-hood was famous for valour and strength and crushed the enemies'
cars in fight. The son of Abhimanyu by his wife Uttarā was Parikshit,
who after the destruction of all the Kurus, was killed in his mother's
womb by the weapon hurled by Aswathama. But by the mercy of Krishna at
whose feet bow all the gods and demons and who for his own pleasure had
assumed human shape he was restored to life. This Parikshit now governs
the earth with undisputed sway.


Parāçara said:—I shall now give you an account of the future kings. He,
who is the sovereign now, shall have four sons, namely Janamejaya,
Srutasena, Ugrasena, and Bhimasena. The son of Janamejaya shall be
Satāneeka. He shall study the Vedas from Jagnawalka, learn the use of
weapons from Kripa and then disassociate himself from worldly affairs.
And then receiving instructions regarding the knowledge of self from
Saunaka he shall attain final liberation.

From Satineeka shall be born Aswamedhadatta, whose son shall be
Adhiseemakrishna and whose son shall be Nichakshu who shall reside in
Kusambhi, when Hastināpur shall be at the bed of the Ganges. Nichakshu's
son shall be Ushna, whose son shall be Chitraratha, whose son shall be
Suchiratha, whose son shall be Brishnimān, whose son shall be Sushena,
whose son shall be Suneetha, whose son shall be Richa, whose son shall
be Nrichakshu, whose son shall be Sukhabala, whose son shall be
Pariplava, whose son shall be Sunaya, whose son shall be Medhabee, whose
son shall be Nripanjaya, whose son shall be Mridu, whose son shall be
Tigma, whose son shall be Trihadratha, whose son shall be Vasudāna,
whose son shall be the second Sataneeka, whose son shall be Udayana,
whose son shall be Aheenara, whose son shall be Khandapani, whose son
shall be Niramitra, whose son shall be Kshemaka. The following verse is
recited of Kshemaka—"The family of Kuru, that has produced many
Brāhmanas and Kshatriyas, that has been ornamented by many a royal
saint, shall end with Kshemaka in the Kali Yuga".


Parāçara said:—I shall now engage in giving you an account of the future
kings of the Ikshawku race.

The son of Vrihadvala shall be Vrihatkshana, whose son shall be
Guruksepa, whose son shall be Vatsa, whose son shall be Vatsabhuha,
whose son shall be Pratibyoma, whose son shall be Divākara, whose son
shall be Sahadeva, whose son shall be Vrihadaswa, whose son shall be
Bhānuratha, whose son shall be Suprateeka, whose son shall be Marudeva,
whose son shall be Sunakshatra, whose son shall be Kinnara, whose son
shall be Antariksha, whose son shall be Suverna, whose son shall be
Amitrajit, whose son shall be Vrihadwāja, whose son shall be Dharma,
whose son shall be Kritanjaya, whose son shall be Rananjaya, whose son
shall be Sanjaya, whose son shall be Sakya, whose son shall be
Krudhodana, whose son shall be Rātula, whose son shall be Prasenajit,
whose son shall be Kshrudraka, whose son shall be Kundaka, whose son
shall be Suratha, whose son shall be the second Sumitra. These kings of
the Ikswaku family are the descendants of Vrihadvala. There is a verse
often recited regarding this race—"The family of Ikshawku shall extend
up to Sumitra; with this king the family shall end in the Kali Yuga".


Parāçara said:—I shall now describe to you the future kings of Magadha
sprung from Vrihadratha. In this race were born Jarāsandha and other
powerful kings.

The son of Jarāsandha shall be Sahadeva, whose son shall be Somāpi,
whose son shall be Srutavan, whose son shall be Ayutayu, whose son shall
be Niramitra, whose son shall be Sukshatra, whose son shall be
Vrihatkarman, whose son shall be Senajit, whose son shall be Srutanjaya,
whose son shall be Vipra, whose son shall be Suchi, whose son shall be
Kshemya, whose son shall be Subrata, whose son shall be Dharma, whose
son shall be Susrama, whose son shall be Drirasena, whose son shall be
Sumati, whose son shall be Subala, whose son shall be Satyajit, and
whose son shall be Ripunjaya. The kings of the race of Vrihadratha shall
reign for a thousand years.


Parāçara said:—Ripunjaya, the last king of the race of Vrihadratha,
shall have minister by the name of Sunika. Slaying his Master he shall
place his own son Prodyuta on the throne. He shall have a son by the
name of Palaka, whose son shall be Visākayupa, whose son shall be
Janaka, whose son shall be Nandivardana. These five kings of the family
of Prodyuta shall govern the earth for a hundred and thirty eight years.

Thereupon Sisunāga (shall become the king). His son shall be Kākavarna,
whose son shall be Kshemadarman, whose son shall be Kshatraujas whose
son shall be Vidmisara, whose son shall be Ajatasatru, whose son shall
be Darvaka, whose son shall be Udayashwa, whose son shall be
Nanrdivardana, whose son shall be Mahanandi. These ten kings of the
family of Sisunāga shall lord over the earth for three hundred and
sixty-two years.

Mahapandi shall beget a son on a Sudra woman by name, Mahapadma Nanda,
who shall be very avaricious and shall extirpate all the Kshatriyas like
Parashurama. From that time Sudra kings shall govern the earth. And this
Mahapadma shall enjoy the earth as lord paramount, and his commands
shall no where be disobeyed. He shall have eight sons—Sumatya and
others. Mahapadma and his eight sons shall reign for a hundred years.
Thereupon a Brahman by name Kantilya shall root out Nanda and his sons.

After the family of Nanda, Mauryas shall lord over the earth. This
Kantilya shall install the Maurya king Chandra-Gupta on the throne. He
shall have a son by name Vindusāra, whose son shall be Asokavardana,
whose son shall be Sujasas, whose son shall be Dasaratha, whose son'
shall be Sangata, whose son shall be Sālisuka, whose son shall be
Vrihadratha. These Maurya kings shall reign for a hundred and
seventy-three years. After them the Sungas will enjoy the earth.

Thereupon slaying his own master the Commander-in-Chief Pushpamitra
shall establish himself on the throne. His son shall be Agnimitra, whose
son shall be Sujestsha, whose son shall be Vasumitra, whose son shall be
Ardraka, whose son shall be Pulindaka, whose son shall be Ghosavasu,
whose son shall be Vajramitra, whose son shall be Vagabata, whose son
shall be Devabhuti. These ten Sunga kings shall reign for one hundred
and twelve years. Thereafter the Kanwa kings shall lord over the earth.
Slaying his own master, the Sunga king Devabhuti who shall be addicted
to gambling, the minister Vasudeva shall place himself on the throne.
His son shall be Vumimitra, whose son shall be Nārāyana, whose son shall
be Susarma. These four Kanwa kings shall reign for forty-five years..

A servant by name Sipraka of the race of Andra shall slay Susarma, the
last Kanwa king and by force place himself on the throne. Thereafter his
brother Krishna shall govern the earth. Krishna's son shall be
Purnotsanga, whose son shall be Lambodara, whose son shall be Durlaka,
whose son shall be Meghaswati, whose son shall be Paruman, whose son
shall be Aristhakarman, whose son shall be Hāl, whose son shall be
Pathalaka, whose son shall be Prabillasen, whose son shall be the
beautiful Sātakarni, whose son shall be Sivaswati, whose son shall be
Gomatipatra, whose son shall be Patimari, whose son shall be
Sivasreesatakarma, whose son shall be Sivashkandha, whose son shall be
Yajnasree, whose son shall be Vijaya, whose son shall be Chandrasree,
whose son shall be Pulomarchi. These thirty illustrious Andhra kings
will govern the earth for four hundred and fifty years.

Thereafter seven kings of the Avira race, sixteen kings of Gardavila
race and sixteen Saka kings shall respectively govern the earth.

Thereupon eight Yavana kings, fourteen Tukhara kings, thirteen Munda
kings, and eighteen Manu kings shall rule the earth for thirteen hundred
and ninety-nine years. Thereafter eleven Paura kings shall govern the
earth for three hundred years.

When the Pauras shall spread all over the earth the Yavanas of Kailakila
shall become kings. And amongst them one Viridhyasakti shall be the lord
paramount. His son shall be Paranjaya, whose son shall be Ramchandra,
whose son shall be Dharma, whose son shall be Varanga, whose son shall
be Kritamandana, whose son shall be Sashinandi, whose son shall be
Nandiyasā, whose son shall be Sisaka, whose son shall be Pravira. These
nine kings shall reign for a hundred and sixty years.

Thereafter thirteen kings of this family, three of Valheeka,
Pushpamitra, Parupmitra and Padmamitra, the nine kings of Saptakosala
and then again nine kings of the country of Nishdha shall respectively

One king of the city of Magadha by name Viswasphatika shall create many
a new mixed caste. He will root out the Kshatriya or martial race and
elevate fishermen, barbarians and Brāhmans and other castes to power.
The nine Nāgas will reign in Padmāvati, Kāntipuri, and Mathurā; and the
Guptas of Magadha along the Ganges to Prayaga. A king by name
Devarakshita will reign in a city on the sea shore over the Kosalas,
Pundras and Tāmraliptas. The Guhas will occupy Kalinga, Māhihaka and the
mountains of Mahendra. The race of Manidhanu will occupy the countries
of Nishādas, Naimishikas and Kalatyas. The people called Kanakas will
occupy the Amazon country and that called Mushika. People of the
degraded three tribes and Abhiras and Sudras will occupy Saurāshtra,
Avanti Sura Arbuda and Marubhumi. And Sudras, outcasts and barbarians
will occupy the banks of the Jadus, Darvika, the Chandrabhāgā and

These and all the contemporary kings will be of churlish spirit; violent
temper and always addicted to falsehood and wickedness. They will
destroy women, children and cows; they will seize upon the property of
their subjects, will be of limited power; they will rapidly rise and
fall; the duration of their life will be very short; they will form high
expectations and acquire very little piety.

The people of the countries, they will rule over, will imbibe the same
nature. And the barbarians being powerful under royal patronage will
destroy the subjects. Wealth and virtue will decrease day by day until
the whole world will be depraved. Wealth will be the test of pedigree
and virtue; passion will be the only tie of marriage; falsehood will be
the only means of success in litigation; and women will be merely the
objects of sensual gratification. Earth will be respected for its
mineral treasures; sacrificial thread will be the only test of a
Brāhman; external marks will constitute the only distinction of orders
and wickedness will be the only means of livelihood. Weakness will be
the cause of dependence; menace will be the cause of learning; gifts
only will constitute virtue; wealth will be the only sign of honesty;
simple ablution will be purification; mutual consent will be the
marriage; a man wearing good clothes will be considered honest and water
at a distance will be considered a holy spring. When the world will be
thus sunk in faults, he, who will be the strongest amidst those castes,
shall be the king; They will grow avaricious and the subjects, unable to
bear the burden of various taxes, will take refuge amongst the valleys
of the mountains and will be glad to feed upon wild honey, herbs, roots,
fruits, flowers and leaves: their only covering will be the bark of
trees and they will be exposed to the cold and wind and sun and rain. No
man shall live more than three and twenty years. Thus in the end of the
Kali Yuga most of human-kind will be annihilated.

Thus when the ceremonies of the Vedas and the institutes of law shall
nearly have ceased, and the end of the Kali Yuga will approach, a
portion of that divine being, who is the creator of the whole universe,
preceptor of the mobile and immobile, who is the beginning and end of
all, who is at one with all, who is identical with Brahmā and all
created beings, shall incarnate himself on earth. He will be born in the
family of Vishnuyasas, an eminent Brāhman of Sambhala village as Kalki
gifted with the eight superhuman faculties. By his irrepressible power
he will slay all the Mlechchhas and thieves and all those who are
addicted to sins. His greatness and might shall be unobstructed.

He shall again establish virtue on earth and when the Kali Yuga will
completely close, the remaining people shall be awakened and their minds
shall be as pure as crystal. The people thus purified shall be the seeds
of human beings and shall procreate a progeny who shall follow the laws
of Krita-age. A verse is recited regarding this—"When the sun, moon, and
the lunar asterism Tishya and the planet Jupiter are in mansion the
Krita age shall come back".

Thus, O great sage, I have enumerated all the kings of the solar and
lunar dynasties—those who are past and those who are present and those
who shall be. From the birth of the king Parikshit and up to the
installation of king Nanda it is to be known that 1065 years have
passed. When the two first stars of the seven Rishis rise in the heavens
and some lunar asterism is seen at night at an equal distance then the
seven Rishis continue stationary in that conjunction for a hundred years
of men. At the birth of the king Parikshit they were in Magha and the
Kali Yuga then began which consists of twelve hundred divine years.

When the portion of Vishnu born in the race of Yadu went back to heaven
the Kali Yuga set in. But as long as he touched with his lotus feet the
earth the Kali Yuga could not effect it. As soon as the incarnation of
the eternal Vishnu has departed, Yudhisthira the son of Dharma and his
brothers renounced the kingdom. Seeing evil omens, on the departure of
Krishna the son of Pandu installed Parikshit on the throne. When seven
Rishis will be in Parvashadha, then Nanda will begin to reign and
thenceforth the influence of Kali will increase.

The day of Krishna's departure from the earth will be the first of the
Kali Yaga, the duration of which you shall learn from me. It will
continue tor 360,800 years of men. After twelve hundred divine years the
Krita-age shall come back.

Thus, O foremest of twice-born ones, thousands of eminent Brāhmans,
Kshatriyas, Vasyas, and Sudras have passed away. It will be tautology
and useless to mention the names and numbers of them born in various
families. I therefore refrain from doing so.

The king Devapi of the Puru race and Maru of the Ikswaku race, by virtue
of their great asceticism, are residing in the village of Kalapa. When
the Krita-age shall set in they will come to the city and give origin to
the Kshatriya dynasties. In this wise the earth is occupied through
every series of the first three ages, Krita, Treta and Dwāpara by the
descendants of Manu. As Devapi and Maru are still living so one of them
remains in the Kali Yuga, to serve as the seed of the renewed

I have thus related to you briefly the families of the various kings. To
relate them at length would be impossible in a hundred lives.

The kings mentioned above and others, who assuming frail bodies have
ruled over the ever-during world, and being binded by illusions have
indulged the feeling—"This earth is mine—it is my son's—it belongs to my
dynasty," have gone away. Those who reigned before them, those who
succeeded them, those who will be kings in future, have ceased and shall
cease to be. The earth, with her autumnal flowers, as if smiles,
beholding the king eager for conquest and fightings. Hear, O Maitrya, I
shall now recite some verses that were chanted by Earth and which the
Muni Asita communicated to Janaka, whose banner was virtue, "How greatly
are the princes, although reasonable, mistaken, that they consider
themselves immortal when they themselves are but foam upon the wave.
Before they have subdued themselves they endeavour to reduce their
ministers, their servant, their subjects to subjection; they then
attempt to defeat their enemies. They say 'We shall by and by subdue the
sea-girt earth?' Their minds being thus always taken up with those
thoughts, they cannot perceive the near approach of death. The
subjugation of the sea-girt earth is not so very difficult for him who
has subdued him; for the final liberation is another fruit of
self-control. It is through ignorance that the kings wish to possess me
whom their predecessors have been constrained to leave and whom their
fathers have not kept, by the selfish love of power fathers fight with
sons and brothers with brothers for occupying me. All the kings who
reigned on this earth and who are now dead foolishly thought—'All this
earth is mine—every thing is mine, it will be in my house for ever for
he is dead.' How is it possible that such vain desires should be
cherished by his descendants, who have seen their progenitor, on account
of the thirst of dominion, compelled to desert me, whom he called his
own and tread the path of dissolution. When I hear a king communicating
to another through his ambassador, ‘This earth is mine—you give up all
your claims for it,' I laugh at first but that laughter is soon turned
into pity for the infatuated fool".

Parāçara said:—These were the verses, Maitreya, which Earth chanted,
hearing which ambition melts away like snow before the sun. I have now
given you a complete account of the descendants of Manu amongst whom
many were endowed with a portion of Vishnu engaged in the preservation
of the universe.

He, who hears reverentially from the beginning to the end, of the
account of this family of Manu, gets his heart purified and all this
sins are removed. Hearing of the description of the illustrious solar
and lunar dynasties, people, with their faculties perfect, shall live in
unequalled affluence, plenty and prosperity. He who has heard of the
races of Ikshawku, Jahnu, Mindhāta, Sagara, Abiksheta, Raghu, Yayati,
and Nahusha, who have all perished and of other wealthy kings gifted
with great strength and power, who have been subdued by still more
powerful time and are now only tales, will learn wisdom and forbear to
call either children, or wife, or house or lands or wealth his own.
Those heroic men, who have performed penances for many years with
uplifted hands, those who have celebrated many sacrifices, have been
left by time as subjects of narration. That Pritbu, even, whose discus
dissevered many an enemy, who unobstructed travelled all over the
regions, has been destroyed by the last of time like the light down of
the Simal tree. Even Karlaviryya, who defeated numberless enemies and
conquered the seven Zones of the earth, exists now only as the topic of
a theme, a subject for affirmation or contradiction. The riches, of the
kings Dashānana, Raghava, Abikoluta and others, which dazzled all the
quarters, have all been reduced to ashes by the very frown of time. Oh!
fie upon such wealth. The lord paramount of the earth, by the name of
Māndhāta now exists only in name. And what pious man, hearing this
story, will be so foolish as to cherish the desire of possession in his
soul? Bhagiratha, Sagara, Kākutstha, Dasānana, Rāma, Lakshmana,
Yudhishthira and others have been. Is it so? Have they really existed?
Where are they now? We know not! The kings, who are now reigning, who
shall be kings in future, and those whose names have not been specified,
shall all remain only in names like their predecessors. The wise man,
cognizant of this, will not cherish attachment even for his own
self—what to speak of children, lands and properties.




Maitreya said:—You have described to me at length the origin and spread
of the families of kings. I wish to hear in particular, O venerable
saint, why Vishnu incarnated a portion of himself in the family of
Yadus. Tell me, O Muni, what actions did the illustrious and excellent
Purusha perform in his descent upon the earth.

Parāçara said:—I shall relate to you, O Maitreya, what you have
requested me to do—the birth, of a portion of Vishnu and the benefits
which his actions conferred upon the world. O great Muni, Vasudeva
espoused the illustrious god-like Devaki, the daughter of Devaka. After
their marriage, Kansa, the increaser of the race of Bhoja, drove their
car as charioteer. A voice was heard in the sky, loud and deep as
thunder, which addressing Kansa, said—"O foolish, the eighth child of
this damsel, whom thou art carrying in the car, along with her husband,
shall destroy thy life".

Hearing this the highly powerful Kansa uplifted his sword and was about
to slay Devaki when Vasudeva said—"O thou having long arms, Devaki
should not be slain by thee; I shall hand over to thee every child that
she shall bring forth".

O foremost of twice-born ones, saying 'so be it' Kansa obeyed Vasudeva's
request and out of respect for him did not slay Devaki.

In the meantime, Earth, oppressed by her heavy load, repaired to an
assembly of celestials on Mount Meru and addressing them, with Brahmā,
at their head, described in piteous accents all her distresses. "Agni"
said Earth "is the progenitor of gold; Surja, the rays of light; the
Supreme Nārāyana, is my guide and the guide of all spheres; He is
Brahmā, the lord of the lord of patriarchs, the eldest of the eldest
born, one identical with minutes and hours and time having form though
indiscrete. O celestials, you are all but a portion of Him. The Sun, the
winds, the saints, the Rudras, the Vasus, the Aswins, fire, patriarchs
of whom Attri is the first, are all but the forms of the mighty and
inscrutable Vishnu. The Yakshas, the Rākshasas, the Daityas, Pisachas,
Uragas, Dānavas, Gandharvas, and Apsaras are all but the forms of the
glorious Vishnu. The sky painted with stars, fire, water, wind, myself,
and this manifest universe are all identical with Vishnu. Still the
diverse forms of that manifold being encounter and succeed one another
night and day like the waves of the sea. Amongst them Kālanemi and other
Dānavas have occupied the regions under the earth and been distressing
the subjects continually. The mighty Vishnu destroyed the Daitya
Kālanemi and he has now been born as Kansa, the son of Ugrasena. The
Asuras, Aristha, Dhenuka, Keshi, Pralamba, Naraka, Sunda, Atyugravana,
and the son of Bali and other highly powerful ones born in various royal
families, cannot be counted. O celestials, many Akshauhini hosts of
powerful Daityas—the chiefs of their race, assuming beautiful shapes,
are now treading upon me. I am unable, being oppressed by this load, to
support myself; I have therefore come to you for help, O celestial
chiefs, O illustrious deities, it becomes you to relieve me of this
burden, lest helpless I sink into the nethermost abyss".

Parāçara said Hearing these words of Earth, Brahmā at their request,
explained to them how her burden might be lightened. "Deities" said
Brahmā "all that earth has said is true. Myself, Siva and you all are
but a portion of Nārāyana; the impersonations of his power are for ever
mutually fluctuating; and excess or diminution is indicated by the
predominance of the strong and the depression of the weak. Come,
therefore, let us go to the northern shore of the milky sea and having
glorified Hari, report to him what we have heard. He, who is the soul of
all and at one with the universe, descends, for the preservation of
Earth in a small portion of his essence, to establish righteousness
below". Accordingly Brahmā, accompanied by the celestials went to the
milky ocean and with minds devoted to him, praised him, whose emblem is
Garuda. Brahmā said "O lord, thou art distinct from the Vedas, thy
double nature is two-fold wisdom, superior and inferior, and thou art
the essential end of both. Thou, alike possessed and devoid of form, art
the two-fold Brahmā; smallest of the least and largest of the large; all
and knowing all things; that spirit which is language, that spirit which
is Supreme; that which is Brahmā and of which Brahmā is composed. Thou
art the Rich, the Yajush, the Sāman and the Atharvan Vedas. Thou art
accentuation, ritual, signification, metre and astronomy; history,
tradition, grammar, theology, logic and law and art inscrutable. Thou
art the doctrine that seeks to find out the distinctions between soul
and life and body and matter endowed with qualifications and that
doctrine is nothing else but thy nature inherent in and presiding over

"Thou art imperceptible, indescribable, inconceivable,—without name, or
colour, or hands or feet, pure, eternal and infinite. Thou hearest
without ears and seest without eyes. Thou art one and manifold. Thou
movest without feet and holdest without hands. Thou knowest all but art
not by all to be known. He who observes thee as the most subtile of
atoms, not substantially existent, puts an end to ignorance and the
final liberation is the meed of that wise man whose understanding
cherishes nothing but thee in the form of supreme delight. Thou art the
common centre of all, the protector of the universe and all beings exist
in thee. Thou art all that has been or will be. Thou art the atom of
atoms; thou art spirit, thou only art separate from primeval nature.
Thou, as the lord of fire, in four manifestations, givest light and
fertility to Earth. Thou art the eye of all and assumer of many shapes
and without any hinderance travellest the three regions of the universe.
As fire, though one, is variously lighted and though unchangeable in its
essence, is modified in many ways, so thou, lord, who art omnipresent,
takest upon thee all modifications, that exist. Thou art one supreme;
thou art that supreme and eternal state which the wise behold with the
eye of knowledge. There is nothing else but thou, O lord, nothing else
has been or will be. Thou art both discrete and indiscrete, universal
and individual, omniscient, all-seeing, omnipotent, possessed of all
wisdom and strength and power. Thou art subject, neither to increase nor
decrease. Thou art independent and without beginning. Thou art the
subjugator of all. Thou art not subject to weariness, sloth, fear, anger
or desire. Thou art free from sin, supreme, merciful, uniform,
undecaying, lord over all, the support of all, the fountain of light,
and imperishable. Salutation unto thee, uninvested by material
envelopes, unexposed to sensible imaginings, aggregate of elemental
substance, spirit supreme. Thou assumest a shape, O pervader of the
universe, not as the consequence of virtue or vice nor from any mixture
of the two, but for the sole object of upholding righteousness in the

Parāçara said:—Having heard these eulogiums, the unborn universal Hari,
pleased, said to Brahmā—"Tell me, Brahmā, what your and the celestials
desire—and consider that already gratified".

Beholding that divine and universal form of Hari, Brahmā again
prostrated himself and began to chant his glories—"Salutation unto thee,
again and again, O thou having a thousand forms, having a thousand arms,
many faces and many feet. Salutation unto thee, the illimitable author
of creation, destruction and preservation and the inscrutable. Be
propitiated with us, O god, O great soul, most subtile of the subtile,
most vast of the great; O thou, who art nature, intellect and
consciousness and who art other spirit even than the spiritual root of
those principles. O lord, this earth, oppressed by powerful Asuras and
shaken to her very foundation, comes to thee, the upholder of the
universe, to be relieved of her burden. Myself, Indra, the Aswins,
Varuna, Yama, the Rudras the Vasus, the sun, the winds, fire and all
other deities are prepared to do whatever thou shalt and desire us to
do. Do thou, who art perfect, O king of the celestials, give thy orders
to thy servants, we are ready".

When Brahmā had said this, the supreme deity plucked off two hairs, one
white and one black and said to the celestials—"These my hairs shall go
down upon earth and shall relieve her of the burden of her distress. Let
all the deities, in their own portions, descend upon earth and fight
with the proud Asuras who are there assembled and every one of them
shall be slain. Doubt not this—they shall be destroyed by the withering
glance of my eyes. This, my black hair, shall be impersonated in the
eighth conception of the goddess-like Devaki, the wife of Vasudeva and
shall destroy Kansa, who is the demon Kālanemi". Having said this, Hari
disappeared and the celestials, bowing to him, though invisible, went
back to the summit of the mount Meru from where they came down on earth.

Thereupon the illustrious Muni Nārada said that, the supporter of the
earth, Vishnu, would be the eighth child of Devaki, Hearing this from
Nārada, Kansa greatly excited with wrath, kept Vasudeva and Devaki in
secret confinement.

According to his promise Vasudeva delivered to Kansa each infant as soon
as it was born. It is said these, to the number of six, were the
children of the demon Hiranya-Kasipu, introduced into the womb of Devaki
by Yogonidra, at the behest of Vishnu, who was his illusory energy and
by whom the whole world is beguiled, and who is known as utter
ignorance. The great god said to her—"Go, Nidrā, to the nether regions
and by my command introduce there six princes to the womb of Devaki.
When these shall be destroyed by Kansa, the seventh conception shall be
a portion of Sesha, who is a portion of me. There is another wife of
Vasudeva in Gokula named Rohini and this you shall transfer to her,
before the time of birth. The rumour shall be that Devaki miscarries
through the anxiety of imprisonment and dread of the king of Bhojas. And
on account of his being extracted from his mother's womb, the child
shall be designated Sankarshana and he shall be like the peak of the
white mountain in bulk and complexion. I shall myself then descend in
the eighth auspicious conception of Devaki and you shall immediately
enter into the womb of Yasoda. In the night of the eighth lunation of
the dark half of the month of Nabhas in the season of the rains, I shall
be born. You will be born on the ninth. Being aided by my energy
Vasudeva shall carry me to the bed of Yasoda and you to that of Devaki.
When Kansa shall dash you against a stone, O worshipful dame, you shall
attain to the sky and then the thousand-eyed Indra, out of reverence for
me, shall bow unto you and shall accept you as his sister. Having
destroyed Sumbha and Nisumbha and thousands of other Daityas you shall
sanctify the earth in many places. You are wealth, progeny, fame,
patience, heaven and earth, fortitude, modesty, nutrition, dawn and
every other female (form or virtue). Those, who shall reverentially
invoke you, morning and evening, and praise and call you Aryā, Durgā,
Vedagarbhā, Ambica, Bhadrā, Bhadrakālikā, Kshemi, or Kshemankari, shall
receive, by my grace, whatever they desire. And pleased with their
offerings of wine and flesh and various other kinds you shall gratify
the prayers of mankind. By my favour all men shall have perpetual faith
in you. Assured of this, go, goddess, and satisfy my orders!"


Being thus ordered by the god of gods, Jagadhatri (the nurse of the
universe) transferred six embryos into the womb of Devaki. And the
seventh conception was conveyed into the womb of Rohini after which
Hari, for the behoof of the three worlds, entered into the womb of
Devaki. And as commanded by the great god, Yogonidrā, on that very day
entered into the womb of Yasoda. The portion of Vishnu having descended
on earth, the planets moved in auspicious order and the seasons became
regular and genial. No body could gaze upon Devaki, invested with
light—and beholding her thus dazzling, the minds of the people were
disturbed. The celestials, invisible to men and women alike, chanted the
praises of Devaki, day and night, from the time that Vishnu entered into
her person. They said—"Thou art that Prakriti infinite and subtile,
which formerly bore Brahmā in its womb. O nurse of the universe, thou
art his words—from thee have sprung the Vedas, O fair damsel, O thou
existing perpetually, thou art the very creation and in thy womb is the
Sun: thou art the seed of all—thou art the parent of the tri-form
Sacrifice. Thou art Sacrifice whence all fruit proceeds—thou art wood
whose attrition creates fire. As Aditi thou art the mother of the
celestials, as Diti thou art the mother of the Daityas their foes. Thou
art light which creates day-thou art humility—the mother of true wisdom;
thou art royal policy the mother of order—thou art modesty the mother of
affection. Thou art desire from whom love is produced—thou art
contentment from which resignation is produced; thou art intelligence,
the mother of knowledge, thou art patience the parent of fortitude; thou
art heavens whose children are stars, and from thee proceeds all that
exists. These and thousand others are thy mighty faculties, O goddess;
and numberless are the contents of thy womb, O mother of the universe.
That Vishnu, whose real form, nature, name, dimensions are above human
conception, is in thy womb, with whom are identical the whole earth,
embellished with oceans, rivers, continents, cities, villages, hamlets,
towns; all the fires, waters and winds, the stars, asterisms and
planets, the sky abounding in variegated cars of the celestials and
ether that provides space for all substance; the spheres of earth, sky
and heaven; of saints, sages, ascetics and of Brahmā: the white egg of
Brahmā, with all its populations of Gods, demons, spirits, snake-gods,
fiends, demons, ghosts and imps, men and animals, and whatever creatures
have life. Thou art Swahā, thou art Swadhā, thou art wisdom, ambrosia,
light and heaven. Thou hast descended upon earth for the preservation of
the universe. Have pity upon us, O goddess, and do good unto the world.
Be proud of bearing that deity by whom the universe is upheld".


Parāçara said;—Being thus eulogised by the celestials; Devaki conceived
in her womb the lotus-eyed deity—the saviour of the universe. The sun of
Achyuta rose in the dawn of Devaki to cause the lotus-petal of the
universe to expand. On the day of his birth, all the quarters were
lighted up with joy and it gave delight to all people like unto the rays
of the moon.

The pious obtained new delight; the strong wind were pacified and the
river flowed silently when Janārddana was about to be born. The oceans
made music with their murmurings, the Gandharvas began to sing and the
Apsaras began to dance. At the time of Janārddana's birth the
celestials, stationed in the sky, began to pour flowers and the holy
fires glowed with a mild flame. At midnight, when the supporter of all
was about to be born, the clouds began to emit low sounds and pour down
rain of flowers.

As soon as Anakadundhubhi saw the child, looking like full-blown
lotus-petals, having four arms and the mystic mark Sribatsa an his
breast; he began to chant his glories in terms of love and respect and
represented the fears he entertained of Kansa. Vasudeva said, "I have
known thee, O sovereign lord of the celestials, O thou the holder of
conch, discus and mace. Be pleased to withhold this thy celestial form,
for Kansa will surely destroy me when he will know that thou hast
descended in my dwelling". Devaki said,—"God of gods, who art identical
with all things, in whose person all the religions of the world exist
and who, by illusion, hast assumed the condition of an infant, have pity
me, withold thy four-armed shape. Let not Kansa, the wicked son of Diti,
know of this birth".

To this Bhagavat replied—"O worshipful dame, I was worshipped by thee
before to be born as thy son. Thy prayers have now been granted and I am
now born as thy son". So saying he was silent and Vasudeva, taking the
babe, went out the same night. The guards and gate-keepers of Mathura
were all charmed by Yoganidrā and none of them obstructed the passage of
Anakadundhubhi. It was raining heavily at that time and the many-headed
serpent Sesha followed Vasudeva spreading his hoods above their heads.
And when he, with the child in his arms, crossed the Yamuna, deep as it
was and dangerous with numerous whirlpools, the waters were silent and
rose not above his knee. On the bank he saw Nanda and others who had
come there to bring tribute to Kansa, but they did not see him. At that
time Yasoda was also influenced by Yoganidrā, whom she had given birth
as her daughter and whom the wise Vasudeva took up, placing his son in
her place by the side of the mother. He then speedily came back home.
When Yasoda awoke, she found she had been delivered of a boy as black as
the dark lotus-leaves; and she was greatly delighted.

Vasudeva, taking the female child of Yasoda, reached his house
unperceived and placed the child in the bed of Devaki. He then remained
as usual. The guards were awakened by the cry of the new-born babe and
starting up they informed Kansa that Devaki had given birth to a child.
Kansa immediately went to the house of Vasudeva where he got hold of the
infant. Devaki faintingly prevented him, crying out again and again—"Do
not destroy it! Do not destroy it". Kansa dashed it against a stone; it
at once went up to the sky and expanded into a gigantic figure, having
eight arms each bearing a formidable weapon. This terrible figure
laughed and said to Kansa. "What benefit have you derived, O Kansa, by
hurling me to the ground? He is born who shall destroy thee, the mighty
one amongst celestials, who was formerly the destroyer, Considering this
do thou accomplish what shall tend to thy welfare". Having said this,
the goddess, decorated with heavenly unguents and garlands, and
glorified by the spirits of the air, disappeared from the sight of the
king of the Bhojas.


Parāçara said:—Kansa, greatly disturbed in mind, called together all the
leading Asuras, Pralamba, Kesin and others and said to them—"O ye,
leading Asuras, Pralamba, Dhenuka, Putanā, Arishta and all others, hear
my words. O heroes, the wicked celestials, troubled by my power, have
been trying to destroy me—but I do not much care for them. Save
murdering the Asuras by fraud, what can the weak Indra and the ascetic
Hara or Hari do? What have we to fear from the Adityas, the Vasus, the
Agnis or any other of the immortals who have all been defeated by my
resistless arms? Have you not seen the king of the celestials, when he
had come out into the conflict, quickly fly from the field receiving my
arrows upon his back, not bravely upon his breast? When Indra withheld
rains from my kingdom, were not the clouds compelled by my arrows to
pour water as much as was acquired? Are not all the kings of the earth
afraid of my prowess and subject to my orders, save my father
Jarasandha? O ye leading and heroic Daityas, I have already got hatred
towards the celestials—it has created my laughter that they have been
trying to slay me. And it is my fixed determination to inflict still
deeper degradation upon those vicious and wicked-minded celestials.

"Let us therefore kill every man who is known for liberality (in making
gifts to gods and Brāhmans) and let every man who is celebrated for
performing sacrifices be slain; and thus the celestials shall the
deprived of the means they live upon. The goddess, who has taken her
birth as the child of Devaki, has said to me that he is again born who
destroyed me in one of my previous birth. Let us vigorously find out all
young children upon earth and let every boy in whom there are signs of
unusual vigour, be killed mercilessly".

Having passed these orders Kansa went to his palace and liberated
Vasudeva and Devaki from their captivity. He said to them.—"In vain have
I killed all your children, for he, who is destined to kill me, has
escaped. It is useless to regret the the past. The children, who shall
be born to you after this, may enjoy life till its natural close; no one
shall cut it short". Having thus consoled them, Kansa, greatly terrified
for himself, went into the inner apartments of his palace.


When Vasudeva was freed, he went to the wagon of Nanda and found him
greatly delighted that a son was born to him. He then kindly said to him
"It is a blessing that you have got a son in your old age. Have you
given your annual tribute to the king? If you have finished your work,
you should not wait here for you are men of property. Why do you wait
here since the work that has brought you, is finished? Go therefore,
speedily, O Nanda, to your Gokula. I have also got a son there, born of
Rohini, and he should be brought up by you as this your own son".

Parāçara said:—Thus having paid their dues to the king and placed their
goods in their wagons, Nanda and other cow-herds went to their village.
And while they were thus living in Gokula, Putanā the child-killer,
taking up Krishna, asleep in night, gave him her breast to suck. And
whatever child is suckled by Putanā in night, dies instantly having its
limbs wearied and exhausted. But laying hold of the breast with two
hands, Krishna sucked it with such violence that he drained it of the
life and the terrible Putanā, roaring aloud and giving way in every
point, fell on the ground dead. Hearing those cries, the inhabitants of
Vraja, terrified, got up and saw Putanā lying on the earth with Krishna
in her arms. Snatching up Krishna, Yasoda waved over him a
cow-tail-brush to guard him from harm, whilst Nanda placed dried
cow-dung powdered upon his head; he gave him also an amulet, saying at
the same time—"May Hari the lord of creation, he, from the lotus of
whose navel the world was produced and on the tip of whose tusks the
globe was upraised from waters, protect thee. May that Kesava, who
assumed the form of a boar, protect thee. May that Kesava, who, as the
man-lion, rent with his sharp nails, the bosom of his foe, save thee.
May that Kesava, who appearing first as the dwarf, traversed with all
his power with three paces, the three regions of the universe,
constantly protect thee. May Govinda guard thy belly, Janarddana thy
legs and feet, the eternal and irresistible Nārāyana thy face, thine
arms, thy mind and thy faculties of sense. May all ghosts, goblins and
malignant spirits, that shall be engaged in thy mischief, be destroyed
by the bow, the discus, the mace, the sword of Vishnu and the by echo of
his conch shell. May Vaikuntha guard thee in thy cardinal points and
Madhusudana in the intermediate ones. May Hrishikesha defend thee in the
sky and Mahidhara upon earth". Having recited these prayers to avert all
evil, Nanda caused the child to sleep in his bed underneath the wagon.
Seeing the huge carcass of Putanā the cow-herds were filled with
surprise and fear.


Parāçara said Once on a time while the slayer of Madhu was asleep
underneath the wagon, he cried for the breast and kicking up his feet he
overturned the vehicle and all the pots and pans were upset and broken.
Hearing the noise the wives of the cow-herds came exclaiming—"Ah! Ah!"
and there they found the child sleeping on his back. "Who could have
overturned the wagon?" exclaimed the cow-herds. "That child" said some
of the boys who saw the circumstance. "We saw him," said the boys,
"crying and kicking the wagon and so the wagon was upset; no one else
had anything to do with it".

The cow-herds were therefore greatly surprised and not knowing what to
do Nanda at once took up the boy and Yasoda offered worship to the
broken pieces of pots and to the wagon, with curds, flowers, fruits and
unbruised grain.

Being commissioned by Vasudeva, Garga performed the initiatory rites of
the two boys secretly in Vraja. The eldest was named Rāma and the other
Krishna by the wise Garga, the foremost of the intelligent. In a short
time they began to crawl about the ground, supporting themselves on
their hands and knees and creeping everywhere, often amidst ashes and
filth. Neither Rohini nor Yasoda was able to prevent them from getting
into the cow-pens or amongst the calves, where they amused themselves by
pulling their tails. When Yasoda could not prevent the two boys, who
always rambled together, from playing naughtily, she became angry and
taking up a stick remonstrated with Krishna having eyes like
lotus-petals. Fastening a cord round his waist she tied him to the
wooden mortar and being angry, she said to him "Now you wicked boy, get
away from here, if you can". Having said this, she went about her
domestic affairs. As soon as she had gone, the lotus-eyed Krishna,
trying to extricate himself, pulled the mortar after him to the space
between the two Arjuna trees that grew near together. Being dragged
there the mortar became wedged between the two trees, and Krishna having
pulled it, the two huge trees covered with many leaves, were uprooted.
Hearing the cracking noise the inhabitants of Vraja came to see what was
the matter and there they beheld the two huge trees with broken branches
and stems lying on the ground with the child fixed between them, with a
rope round his belly, laughing and shewing his white teeth, just budded.
It is from this that Krishna is called Dāmodara from the binding of dama
(rope) round his udara (belly). The elders among the cow-herds, with
Nanda at their head, looked upon these circumstances with alarm,
considering them as inauspicious signs. They said—"We cannot remain in
this place—let us go to some other part of the forest Here many evil
omens threaten us with destruction—the death of Putanā, the upsetting of
the wagon and the fall of the trees without their being uprooted by the
wind. Let us go away from here without any delay and go to Vrindavana,
where evil omens may no longer disturb us".

Having thus made up their minds, the inhabitants of Vraja communicated
their intention to their families and desired them to go without delay.
Accordingly they started with their wagons and their cattle, driving
before them their bulls and cows and calves; they threw away the
fragments of their household stores and in no time Vraja was overspread
with flights of crows. Vrindavana was selected by Krishna, who was above
the influence of actions, for the sake of providing for the nourishment
of the kine, for there in the hottest season the new grass springs up as
profusely as the rains. Having gone to Vrindavana from Vraja, the
inhabitants of the latter up their wagons in the form of a crescent.

As the two boys Rāma and Damodara grew up, they lived always together in
the same place and engaged in the same boyish sports. They made
themselves crests of the peacocks' plumes and garlands of forest flowers
and musical instruments of reeds and leaves or played upon the pipes
used by cowherds; their hair was arranged like the wings of the crow,
and they looked like two young princes and portions of the god of war.
They were robust, and walked about always laughing and playing sometimes
with each other, sometimes with other boys; driving, along with other
young cowherds, the calves to the pasture. Thus the two protectors of
the universe were keepers of cattle until they became seven years old in
the cow-pens of Vrindavana.

Then began the rainy season when the atmosphere was full of clouds and
the quarters of the horizon were blended into one by the driving
showers. The water of the rivers rose and overflowed their banks, and
spread beyond all limits like the mind of the weak and wicked
transported beyond restraint by sudden prosperity. The pure radiance of
the moon was obscured by heavy vapours as the teachings of the sacred
writings are darkened by the arrogant scoffs of the unbelievers. The bow
of Indra held its place unstrung in the sky like a worthless person
elevated to honour by an indiscreet king. White line of storks appeared
upon the back of the clouds in such contrast as the bright conduct of a
man of respectability opposes to the conduct of a scoundrel. The
ever-fickle lightning, being newly allied with the sky, was like the
friendship of a profligate for a man of substance. Overgrown by the
spreading grain, the paths became difficult of being traced like the
words of the ignorant carrying no definite meaning.

Krishna and Rāma, delighted, began to live in the forest in that
beautiful season maddening the peacocks and bees. Sometimes they sang
and danced with the cow-herds and sometimes sat under the cool shade of
a huge tree for rest. Sometimes they beautified themselves with garlands
of Kadamba flowers and again with garlands of peacocks' feathers;
sometimes they painted themselves with the minerals of the mountain;
sometimes they slept on beds of leaves and sometimes they rejoiced with
the infants of the cow-herds, hearing the muttering of the clouds;
sometimes they praised the songs of the boys, sometimes mimicked the cry
the peacocks and sometimes played on pipes.

Thus greatly attached to each other and participating, in various
emotions and sports, Rāma and Krishna delightedly resided in that
forest. And every evening they used to come back home like two cow-boys
along with the cows and cow-herds. And coming home in the evening, the
two deities heartily engaged in sports giving delight to the sons of the


Parāçara said:—Once on a time Krishna went to Vrindavana, without
Balarāma; and there, adorned with garlands of wild flowers, roamed he,
encircled by the cow-herds, He then repaired to the banks of Kalindi,
undulating and sparkling with foam and as if smiling when the waves
dashed against the banks. There he saw the pool with the dreadful
serpent Kāliya, boiling with the fires of poison. By the touch of that
poison the huge trees on the banks were withered and being touched by
the waters raised by the wind the birds were scorched. Beholding that
dreadful serpent, like the second mouth of death, the illustrious Slayer
of Mahdhu thought—"Forsooth, the wicked and poisonous serpent Kāliya
lives here, who, being defeated by me, was constrained to leave the
ocean whose waters were defiled. By him the waters of the Yamuna,
flowing to the ocean, have been poisoned, and the thirsty cows and
cow-herds cannot satisfy their thirst. I must slay this serpent, so that
the inhabitants of Vraja may live here happily freed from fear. I have
descended upon the land of mortals to chastise the wicked, led astray
into vicious paths; I shall therefore climb up the neighbouring Kadamba
tree and jump down into the pool".

Parāçara said:—Having thus thought within himself he bound his clothes
tightly about him and jumped boldly into the pool of the serpent-king.
The huge lake was agitated as soon as he fell into it, and the waves
raised thereby began to sprinkle the distant trees, which being touched
by the water and wind, thus poisoned, were immediately set on fire, and
the whole horizon was ablaze. Having dived into the lake, Krishna struck
his arms defiantly. Hearing that noise the serpent-king immediately
issued out—whose eyes were coppery and hoods were flaming with deadly
venom. He was encircled by many other powerful and poisonous snakes
living upon air and hundreds of serpent-nymphs adorned with rich
ornaments, whose earrings glittered with brilliance as the wearers moved
along. Coiling themselves around Krishna, they all bit him with teeth
from which fiery poison came out. Beholding him in the lake thus
surrounded by serpents, his companions immediately went to Vraja
bewailing aloud his fate. "Krishna has foolishly jumped into the lake of
the serpent Kāliya, and is being devoured by that serpent-king; do ye
come and behold him". Hearing those words, resembling the fall of
thunder, the cow-herds and their wives headed by Yasoda, proceeded
speedily towards the lake. "Alas where is Krishna gone" cried the wives
of the cow-herds greatly bewildered; and Yasoda, terrified, with
faltering steps, proceeded quickly. Rāma, gifted with great prowess,
Nanda and other cow-herds being anxious to see Krishna, arrived quickly
at the bank of the Yamuna and beheld him surrounded by, snakes,
possessed by the serpent-king and motionless. O foremost of Munis,
looking at the countenance of their son, the cow-herd Nanda and the
noble Yasoda became stupified. And the wives of the other cow-herds
stricken with grief and keeping, saw him; and with words expressive of
fear and affliction, they, out of love towards Keshava, said—"We shall
all with Yasoda enter this huge lake of the serpent-king; we shall not
be able to go back to Vraja. What is day without the sun, night without
the moon, cow without a bull and Vraja without Krishna? Without Krishna
we shall not return to Vraja, like unto a pond without water, in his
absence, nor shall we roam in the forest. We do not like to live there,
even if it be the house of our mothers, where there is not Hari, having
the countenance like lotus-petals. How shall we live sorrowfully without
beholding Hari in pasture having eyes resembling full-blown
lotus-petals? We shall not go back to the house of Nanda in Gokula
without the lotus-eyed Krishna, who with his pleasant conversation has
stolen all our hearts. O ye cow-herds! behold, Krishna is still casting
smiling looks upon us, although he is encircled by snakes engaged by the

Parāçara said:—Hearing those wards of the wives of the cow-herds and
beholding the cow-herds stricken with fear the highly-powerful son of
Rohini looked settled (for some time.) And then seeing Nanda, with fixed
looks towards Krishna and Yasoda almost in a swoon, he began to chant by
signs the glories of Krishna—"O god of gods, why art thou displaying
these human characteristics? Dost thou not perceive thyself at one with
one without end? Thou art the centre of creation, as the nave is of the
spokes of a wheel. A portion of thee, I have even also born, as thy
eldest brother. To share in thy sports as men, the celestials have all
descended under a like disguise. Having made all the goddesses descend
in Gokula for thy sport, thou hast afterwards descended, although thou
art existing perpetually. Wherefore Krishna dost thou neglect these
celestials who, as cow-herds, are thy friends and kin—and these
sorrowing females, who also are thy relations? Thou hast assumed, the
character of man; thou hast displayed the tricks of childhood. Now let
this dreadful snake although armed with poisoned fangs, be vanquished
(by thee)".

Being thus reminded of his real character by Rāma, Krishna smiled gently
and immediately freed himself from the coils of the snakes. And catching
with both his hands the middle hood of the serpent-king, that highly
powerful (Krishna) bent it down and set his foot upon the
hitherto-unbended hood; and danced upon it victoriously. And the hood of
the serpent was bruised by the treading of Krishna's feet, and wherever
the snake attempted to raise his head, it was again trodden down.
Trampled upon by the feet of Krishna as they changed position in the
dance, the snakes fainted and vomitted froth much blood. Seeing the head
and neck of their king thus bruised and blood flowing from this mouth,
the females of the snake-king implored the mercy of the Slayer of Madhu.

The females of the serpent-king said—"We have recognized thee, O god of
gods, O supreme lord of all. Thou art a portion of that supreme light
and the mighty lord. Thou art the self-existent lord and even the
celestials are unable to praise thee worthily, and how can the females
truly chant thy glories? How can we sing his glories whose portions are
earth, sky, water, fire and air? Even the holy ascetics have in vain
sought to know thy real essence. We bow to that form, which is the most
subtiles of atoms, the largest of the large; to him whose birth is
without a creator, whose end knows no destroyer and who alone is the
cause of duration. There is no anger in thee, thou protectest the world
and hence this punishment of Kāliya. Hear us. The virtuous should pity
women; and creatures are pitied even by the fools; let therefore the
foremost of the forgiving have compassion upon this poor creature. Thou
art the upholder of the universe and this snake is gifted with but
little strength, if and oppressed by thee, he shall in no time give up
his life. There is a vast difference between this poor serpent of
limited strength and thyself in whom the world reposes. Friendship and
enmity are felt towards equals and superiors and not for those who are
infinitely inferior to us. This unfortunate snake is about to die,—give
us therefore, as a matter of charity, our husband!"

Parāçara said:—When the wives of the serpent-king had said this, he,
too, although wearied, repeated feebly his prayers for clemency. "Pardon
me" he said—"O god of gods, how shall I address thee, who art possessed,
through thine own strength and essence, of the eight great faculties and
art in energy unmatched? Thou art the Supreme, the originator of the
supreme; thou art the supreme spirit and from thee, the Supreme
proceeds: thou art beyond all finite objects: how can I sing thy
glories? How can I chant his greatness from whom have sprung Brahmā,
Rudra, Chandra, Indra, the Maruts, the Aswins, the Vasus and the
Adityas—of whom but, a small portion is the whole universe, which is
destined to represent his essence and whose nature, primitive or derived
is beyond the conception of Brahmā and other immortals. How can I
approach him who is worshipped by the celestials with incense and
flowers culled from the groves of Nandana? How can I adore him whose
incarnate portion are being worshipped even by the king of celestials
and whose real nature he is not conscious of? How can I approach him,
whom the sages, having their minds withdrawn from external objects,
worship in thought and enshrining whose image in their hearts present to
it the flowers of sanctity? I am quite unable, O god of gods, to worship
thee or sing thy glories—by thy mercy only, be thou propitiated with me.
O Kesava, the serpents are by nature, crooked. I am born in that race,
so I am also wily, which is the characteristic of my own race, so I am
not to blame in this, O Achyuta. Every thing has been created by thee
and every thing is being destroyed by thee—and the species, form and
nature of all things in the world, are thy work. Even such and I as thou
hast created me in kind, in form and in nature. Such am I and such are
my actions. Should I act differently then indeed should I deserve
punishment; so thou hast destined. And that I have been punished by
thee, is indeed a blessing—for punishment from thee alone is a favour.

"Behold I am now divested of strength and poison—deprived of both by
thee. Save my life—I ask no more. Order me what shall I do".

Being thus addressed by Kaliya, Krishna said—"You must not wait here any
more; go immediately, with your family and followers, to the sea.
Garuda, the enemy of the serpents, will not injure thee if he sees the
impressions of my feet upon your hood". Having said this, Hari liberated
the serpent-king, who, respectfully bowing to his victor, went to the
ocean accompanied by all his wives, servants and children, leaving the
sight of all and the pool he had lived in. When the snake had departed,
the cow-herds received back Govinda as one risen from dead and embraced
him and bathed his forehead with tears of joy. Others, considering the
water of the river pure, were filled with surprise, and chanted the
glory of Krishna, who is above the influence of actions. Being thus
glorified by his illustrious exploits and eulogized by the cow-herds and
their wives, Krishna came back to Vraja.


Parāçara said:—Thereupon again driving their cattle, Kesava and Balarāma
rambled together in the forest, and on one occasion went to a pleasing
grove of palms. There lived in that pleasing grove a demon named
Dhenuka, resembling an ass in appearance and living upon the flesh of
deer. Beholding the fruits there ripe, the cow herds, being anxious to
take them, said—"O Rāma! O Krishna! Dhenuka always lives here and
therefore the trees are loaded with ripe fruits the smell of which
perfumes the air. We wish to eat some. Will you throw some down?"
Hearing those words, Krishna and Sankarsana brought down some fruits on
the ground. Hearing the sound of the falling fruits, the dreadful and
malignant demon Dhenuka, having the countenance of an ass, arrived there
speedily, and being angry began to kick Rāma on the breast with his
hinder heels. Catching him by his both hind legs, Rāma however hurled
him round till he died; then he threw up the dead body to the top of the
palm tree from the branches of which it struck down enough fruits like
rain drops poured down on earth by the wind. The relatives of Dhenuka
came running to his help, and Krishna and Rāma did the same thing with
them until the trees were filled with dead asses and the ground was
covered with ripe fruits. Thenceforth the cattle grazed unobstructed in
the palm groves and cropped the new pasturage where they had never gone


Parāçara said:—That demon, in the form of an ass, and all his relatives,
being slain, the cow-herds and their wives began to roam at pleasure in
that picturesque grove of palms. Having slain that fiend Dhenuka, the
two sons of Vasudeva, greatly delighted, repaired to the Bhāndira
fig-tree. They began to roam about shouting and singing and collecting
fruits and flowers from the trees—sometimes driving the cattle to a
distant pasture, sometimes calling them by their names, sometimes
carrying the foot-ropes of the kine upon their shoulders, sometimes
decorating themselves with garlands of forest flowers, they appeared
like two young bulls when the horns first appear. Dressed, the one in
yellow and and the other in sable garments, they appeared like two
clouds one white and one black, surmounted by the bow of Indra. The two
brothers, although lords of the universe, having descended upon earth,
began to sport mutually with frolics beneficial to the world. Adopting
human duties and assuming human character and engaged in human sports,
they stayed about in the forest. And these two highly powerful
(brothers) engaged in exercise, in swinging upon the boughs of trees, or
in boxing and wresting and hurling stones.

Having seen Krishna and Balarāma thus sporting, this Asura Pralamba, on
one occasion with a view to carry them away stealthily arrived there
assuming, the guise of a cow-herd. And that foremost of demons, assuming
a human shape, mixed with them, unsuspected. Then seeking their faults
he found Krishna irrepressible and made up his mind accordingly to slay
the son of Rohini.

The boys commenced playing at the game of leaping like deer, two and two
together. Govinda was matched with Sridama and Balarāma with Pralamba;
the other boys were coupled with one another and went leaping away.
Krishna beat his companion and Balarāma his, and the boys who were on
Krishna's side, were also victorious. The boys who were defeated,
carrying the victorious boys on their shoulders went to the Bhāndira fig
and then came back to the starting-place. And placing Sankarshana
speedily on his shoulders the demon Pralamba did not tarry there and ran
away like unto a cloud with the moon. Being unable to carry the weight
of Rohini's son that foremost of fiends began to increase in bulk like
unto a cloud in the rainy season. Beholding him like a scorched
mountain, his head crowned with a diadem and his neck hung round with
garlands, having eyes as large as cart wheels, a fearful form and
shaking the earth with his tread, Balarāma called out, as he was carried
away, "Krishna! Krishna! I am carried off by some demon, disguised as a
cow-herd and huge as a mountain! What shall I do? Tell me Madhusudana,
the villain runs away speedily".

Parāçara said:—The high-souled Krishna, cognisant of the prowess and
strength of the son of Rohini, opened his mouth, smiling and said—"O
thou the soul of all, the cause of cause and all that is alone when the
world the destroyed, why art thou assuming clearly the character of a
man? Dost thou not know that you and are alike the origin of the world
and have come to relieve it of its load? The sky is thy head; the waters
are thy person; earth is thy feet; eternal fire is thy mouth; the moon
is thy mind; the wind is thy breath; the four regions are thy arms and
hands. O big souled and highly powerful lord, thou hast a thousand
heads, a thousand hands and feet and bodies. Thou art the beginning of
all creation—Brahmā, sprung from lotus—and the sages have praised thee
in these terms for a thousand times. No one else knoweth thy divine
person. The celestials worship only thy incarnate person. Dost thou not
know that in the end the whole world will disappear in thee? O thou of
endless forms; thou art upholding all creation, mobile and immobile.
Thou, being identical with time with its division of hours and minutes,
devourest the world. As the waters of the sea, when swallowed up by
submarine fire, are transferred into winds and thrown in the form of
snow upon Himachala, where coming in contact with the rays of the sun,
re-assume the watery nature, so this world, devoured by thee at the time
of dissolution, is again created by thee at the end of a Kalpa through
thy creative energy. Thou and I, soul of the universe, are but one and
the same cause of the creation of earth, although for its protection we
exist as distinct individuals! Bringing to thy memory, who thou art, O
being of illimitable prowess, destroy thyself the demon. Suspending a
while your human character, do what is right".

Thus reminded by the noble Krishna, the powerful Balarāma laughed and
crushed Pralamba with his knees striking him simultaneously on the head
and face with his fists so as to beat out both his eyes. Vomitting blood
from his mouth and having his brain forced through the skull, the demon
fell upon the ground and died. Seeing Pralamba slain the cow-herds were
surprised and rejoiced and exclaimed "Well done!" and praised Balarāma.
Thus praised by his play-mates and accompanied by Krishna, Balarāma,
after the death of the demon Pralamba, came back to Gokula.


Parāçara said:—Whilst Krishna and Rāma were thus sporting in Vraja the
rainy season ended—the autumn appeared and the lotuses became
full-blown. The Safari fish in their watery burrows, were oppressed by
the heat like a man by his selfish desires, who is attached to his
family. The peacocks, renouncing all amusements, became silent like the
ascetics withdrawing themselves from worldly enjoyments considering
their unreality. The clouds of shining whiteness, exhausted of their
watery wealth, deserted the sky like the wise who have acquired wisdom,
departing from their home. Evaporated by the rays of the autumnal sun,
the lakes were dried up, like the hearts of men withered by the contact
of selfishness. The silent waters of the autumn were beautified by white
water-lilies, like the minds of the pure by the perception of truth. The
moon shone with undiminished brilliance in the sky crested with star
like the saint, who has reached the last stage of bodily existence in
the company of the pious. The rivers and lakes slowly went far off from
their banks as the wise by degrees shrink from the selfish attachment
that connects them with their wife and children. The swans again began
to frequent those lakes which they had abandoned before like false
ascetics whose devotions are interrupted and they are again stricken
with numberless afflictions. The ocean, with silent waters, became
perfectly calm like the accomplished saint who has gone through rigid
penances and has acquired undisturbed tranquility of spirit. Everywhere
the waters are as clear and pure as the minds of the wise who behold
Vishnu in all things. The autumnal sky was perfectly free from clouds
like the heart of the ascetic, whose cares have been devoured by the
fire of devotion. The moon allayed the fervours of the sun as
discrimination removes the pain consequent upon egotism. The autumn
removed the clouds from the sky; the muddiness of the earth and the
discoloration of the waters, as abstraction draws away the senses from
the objects of perception. The water of the lake, by becoming full,
stationary and again declined, performed as if the exercise of
inspiring, suppressing and expiring the vital air.

At this season, when the heavens were clear and bright with stars,
Krishna, once repairing to Vraja, saw the inhabitants engaged in the
celebration of a sacrifice in honor of Sakra. Beholding all the
cow-herds busily and anxiously engaged in making preparation, Krishna,
gifted with high, intellect, as if, out of curiosity asked the elders,
saying—"What festival of Sakra is this, in which you are taking so much
delight?" To him thus asking, the cow-herd thus lovingly said—"Satakratu
(performer of hundred sacrifices), the king of the celestials, is the
lord of the clouds and waters; ordered by him the clouds pour down water
on earth, by which the grain is produced, on which we and other embodied
beings live and by which we please the gods. By this too these cows bear
calves and give milk and are happy and well-nourished. Wherever the
clouds pour waters, the earth is neither barren of corn, nor bare of
verdure, nor is man stricken with hunger. Having drunk the milk of the
earth by means of the rays of the sun, Indra, the giver of water, pours
it again on earth for the sustenance of all the worlds. For this reason
all sovereign princes offer, with delight, sacrifices to Indra at the
end of the rainy reason, and so also do we and so do the other people".

Parāçara said:—Having heard the words of the cow-herd Nanda regarding
the worship of Sakra, Dāmodara, to excite the anger of the lord of
celestials, said—"We, father, are neither cultivators of the soil, nor
merchants—we are sojourners in the forests and cows are our gods. There
are four divisions of knowledge—logical, spiritual, practical, and
political. Hear from me, what is the practical science. Agriculture,
commerce and tending of cattle—the knowledge of these three professions,
O noble Sire, is the practical science. Agriculture is the means of
subsistence to the cultivators, buying and selling to the traders, and
tending of cattle is our subsistence. The practical science has thus
been divided into three branches. The object, that is cultivated by any
one, should be to him, his chief deity—he must worship that, for that is
his benefactor. O father, the man who worships another's deity,
receiving the fruit from his own, does not obtain a prosperous situation
either in this world or in the next. Where the land is no longer
cultivated there are limits assigned, beyond which begins the forest;
the forests are bounded by the hills and so far do our limits extend. We
are not confined within doors or walls, we have neither fields nor
homes; we wander about happily wherever we like in our wagons.[258] We
have heard that the spirits of these mountains, assuming whatever shapes
they like, walk in the woods upon their own precipices. If they are
displeased with those who inhabit the forests, then transforming
themselves to lions and beasts of prey, they will like the offenders. We
are thus bound to worship the mountains and sacrifices to cattle. What
have we to do with Indra? Cattle and mountains are our gods. Brāhmans
offer worship with prayer; cultivators of the earth worship their
landmarks; but we, who tend our cattle in the forests and mountains,
should worship them and our kine. Let prayer and offerings be then made
to the mountain Govardhana and let us duly kill a victim. Let milk be
collected from all stations and let us feed Brāhmans and all others who
wish to partake of it—no need of any judgment about it. When the
oblations have been presented and the Brahmans have been fed let the
cow-herds circumambulate the cows decorated with garlands of autumnal
dowers. If the cow-herds pay attention to these suggestions, they will
secure the favour of the mountain of the cattle and also mind".

When Nanda and other cow-herds heard the speech of Krishna, their faces
were brilliant with joy and they said that he had spoken well. "You have
judged aright, child" exclaimed they "we will do exactly as you have
said and offer worship to the mountain". Accordingly the inhabitants of
Braja worshipped the mountain presenting to it curds and milk and flesh;
and they fed hundreds and thousands of Brāhmans and many other guests
who came to the ceremony even as Krishna had directed; and when they had
made their offerings they circumambulated the cows and the bulls that
cried as loud as roaring clouds. Upon the summit of Govaradhana Krishna
stood and said "I am the mountain" and partook of the food presented by
the cow-herds; whilst in his own form as Krishna, he ascended the hill
with other cow-herds and worshipped his other self. Having promised them
many blessings the mountain-person of Krishna disappeared, and the
ceremony being finished the cow-herds returned to their homes.


Parāçara said—Being thus disappointed of offerings in the sacrifice, O
Maitreya, Sakra, greatly angry, addressed the attendant clouds called
Samvarttaka saying—"O ye clouds! hear what I say and do ye speedily
execute without any judgment my behests. The foolish cow-herd Nanda and
his companions, relying upon the protection of Krishna have withheld the
usual offerings to us. Now therefore, distress the cattle, with wind and
rain at my command, that are their subsistance and whence their
occupation is derived. Ascending my elephant, huge as a mountain summit,
I will give you assistance in strengthening the tempest".

Parsara said:—O twice-born one, being thus commanded by the
celestial-chief, the clouds came down in a fearful storm of rain and
wind to destroy the cattle. In a moment, the earth the points of the
horizon and the sky were all blended into one by the heavy and incessant
showers. Being afraid of the lightning's scourge, the clouds filled the
quarters with their muttering and pouring down uninterrupted torrents.
The clouds pouring down waters day and night, the earth was filled with
darkness; and above below and on every side the world was filled with
water. The cattle, pelted by the storm, shrank cowering into the
smallest size or gave up their breath. Some covered their calves with
flanks and some saw their young ones carried away by the flood.
Trembling in the wind, the calves cast their piteous looks at their
mothers or begged, in low moans, as if, the help of Krishna. Beholding
all Gokula moved with terror and cow-herds and cow-herdesses and cattle
stricken with consternations, Hari thus thought "This is the work of
Mahendra, who has been offended for withholding sacrifices from me; it
is therefore my duty to defend this village of herdsmen. I will uplift
this spacious mountain from its snowy base and hold it up as a large
umbrella over the cow-pens". Having thus made up his mind, Krishna
immediately upheld the mountain Govardhana with one hand as if in sport,
and said to the cow-herds—"Behold the mountain is on high; enter beneath
it speedily, and it will shelter you from the storm; here you will be
secure and happy in places defended from the wind; enter speedily and
fear not that the mountain will fall". Thereupon, all the people with
their cattle, wagons, goods, women, afflicted as they were by rain, went
to the shelter of the mountain which he held steadily over their heads;
and Krishna, as he supported the mountain, was contemplated with delight
and astonishment by the inhabitants of Vraja. As his eyes expanded with
joy and wonder, the cow-herds and cow-herdesses sang his glories. For
seven days and nights did the vast clouds, despatched by Indra, pour
down showers upon the Gokula of Nanda, to destroy the dwellers, but they
were protected by the height of the mountain. And being baffled in his
purpose, the Indra, the destroyer of Bala, ordered the clouds to cease.
The threats of Indra having been fruitless and the sky clear, all the
inhabitants of Gokula came out from the shelter and went back to their
respective habitations. Then Krishna, in the presence of the inhabitants
of the forests filled with surprise, restored the great mountain
Govardhana to its original site.


Parāçara said:—After the inhabitants of Gokula had been saved by the
upholding of the mountain Govardhana, the chastiser of Paka (Indra)
became desirous of seeing Krishna. Having mounted his huge elephant
Airavata, that lord of the celestials, the destroyer of enemies, beheld
the mighty Krishna on the mount Govardhana, tending cattle, assuming the
person of a cow-boy and encircled by the sons of cow-herds, although the
protector of the universe. He saw above his head, Garuda, the king of
birds, invisible to men, spreading out his wings to shade the head of
Hari. Descending from his elephant and taking him at a distance, Sakra,
having his eyes expanded with delight, said to the Slayer of
Madhu—"Hear! hear, O Krishna, why I have come here; why I have come to
thee; do not think otherwise of it. Thou, O lord, who art the supporter
of the universe, hast descended upon earth to relieve her of her burden.
Being enraged on account of my rites being obstructed, I sent the clouds
to deluge Gokula and they have done this evil deed. By upholding the
mountain, thou hast preserved the cattle and really, O hero, I am much
pleased with thy wonderous deed. The object of the celestials is, now, I
think, accomplished, for with thy single hand thou hast uplifted this
chief of mountains. Being commissioned by the cattle, O Krishna, I have
come to thee, to honour thee for thou didst save them. At their words, I
shall install thee as Upendra and as the Indra of the cows thou shalt be
called Govinda". Saying this, Mahendra took a ewer from his elephant
Airavata and with the holy water it contained performed the regal
ceremony of sprinkling. And as the ceremony was being performed, the
cattle deluged the earth with their milk.

Having thus inaugurated Krishna, Indra, the husband of Sachi, again
affectionately said—"I have done this at the request of the cattle;
hear, I shall speak something else to thee, O noble one, being desirous
of relieving the earth of her burden. O foremost of men, a portion of
mine, under the name of Arjuna, has descended upon earth—do thou protect
him always. He shall assist thee in relieving the earth of her burden.
He should be protected by thee, O Slayer of Madhu, like thy own Self".

The Deity said "I know that in the family of Bharata, thy son has been
born by Pritha. I shall protect him as long as I shall live on this
earth. O Sakra, O Slayer of foes, O lord of the celestials, as long I
shall be on this earth, no one shall be able to vanquish Arjuna in
conflict. The highly powerful Asura Kansa and Arishtha Keshi, Nāraka and
others being slain, there shall take place a terrible conflict, O king
of the celestials; know that, O thousand-eyed deity, as what will
relieve earth of her burden. Do thou go; it behoves thee not to be
anxious for thy son. No enemy of Arjuna shall grow in power before me.
For Arjuna I shall render back Yudhishthira and his brothers to Kunti
after the great battle of Kurukshetra".

Parāçara said:—Being thus addressed, the king of the celestials embraced
Janarddana and having mounted the elephant Airavata again went to the
celestial region. Krishna too with the cows and cow-herds came back to
Vraja by the way sanctified by the looks of the females of the


Parāçara said:—Sakra having departed, the cow-herds, on seeing him
uplift the mountain Govardhana, said to Krishna of wonderous deeds,
delightedly:—"O thou of mighty arms, thou hast saved us from a great
fear; by holding up the mountain thou hast protected the cows. Wonderful
are thy childish sports and insignificant is the condition of a herdsman
and all thy actions are those of a god. Tell us what is the meanings of
all this. Kaliya has been vanquished in the water; Pralamba has been
killed; Govardhana has been lifted up; our minds are filled with
surprise. We can swear by the feet of Hari, O thou of unbounded might,
that beholding thy powers we do not consider thee as man. O Kesava, the
woman, the children and the old of Vraja are all pleased with thee—even
all the celestials cannot perform the deeds thou hast done. Thy boyhood
and thy prowess; thy humiliating birth amongst us, are contradictions
that fill us with surprise whenever we think of them. Be thou a god, or
a demon or a Yaksha or a Gandharva, or whatever, we may consider thee,
we should respect thee for thou art our friend".

When they had finished, Krishna remained silent for some time as if hurt
and wounded and then said to them, "Herdsmen, if you are not ashamed of
my relationship, if I have deserved your praise, then what necessity
have you to discuss thus concerning me? If you have any love for me, if
I merit your praise, then consider me as your friend. I am neither a
god, nor a Gandharva nor a Yaksha nor a demon—I am born as thy friend
and you should not think otherwise of me".

Parāçara said Being addressed thus, O great Muni the cow-herds remained
silent and went into the woods leaving Krishna apparently displeased.
Beholding the clear sky with the autumnal moon, and the air perfumed
with the fragrance of the wild water-lily in whose buds the clustering
bees were murmuring their songs, he felt inclined to join with the
females of cow-herds in sport. Thereupon with Rāma he began singing
sweet low strains in various measures such as the woman loved; and they,
as soon as they heard the music, left their homes and hastened to meet
the Slayer of Madhu. One damsel gently sang an accompaniment to his
song, another attentively listened to his music: one called him by the
name and then shrank in bashfulness: whilst another, more bold and
prompted by love, pressed close to his side; one, as she came out, saw
some of the seniors of her family and dared not venture satisfying
herself with meditating on Krishna with closed eyes and whole-minded
devotion by which immediately all acts of merit were effaced by rapture
and all sin was expiated by regret at not seeing him: and others again,
reflecting upon the cause of the world, in the form of the Supreme
Brahma, obtained, by their sighing, final emancipation. Thus encircled
by the females of cow-herds Krishna thought the lovely moon-light night
of autumn suited to the Rāsa[259] dance. Many of them so imitated the
different actions of Krishna that in his absence they wandered through
Vrindavana representing his person. "I am Krishna" exclaims one "behold
the beauty of my movements". "I am Krishna" cries another "Listen to my
song". "Wait! wicked Kāliya, I am Krishna" cries out another striking
her arms defiantly. A fourth cries out: "Herdsmen, fear nothing, be
steady, there is no danger of the storm any more for I uplift the
Govardhana for your protection," and a fifth exclaims—"Now let the
cattle graze wherever they will, for I have slain Dhenuka". In this wise
the females of the cow-herds imitated the various actions of Krishna,
and in his absence removed their sorrow by mimicking his sports. One
damsel, looking on the earth with the down of her person erect and
expanded eyes, exclaims "See here are the impressions of Krishna's feet
and as he has gone, he has left those marks of the banner, the
thunder-bolt and the goad. What fortunate damsel is going with him
inebriate with her passion as her irregular footmarks prove? Here
Damodara has called flowers from on high, for we see alone the marks of
the tips of his feet. Here a nymph has sat down with him be-decked with
flowers, fortunate in having propitiated Vishnu in a pristine birth.
Having left her in a haughty mood because he had adored her with
flowers, the son of Nanda has gone by this road; for see, unable to
follow him with equal steps his companion has here tripped along upon
her toes; and that holding his hand, the damsel has passed on is evident
from the uneven and intermingled footsteps. The wicked Krishna merely
took her by the hand and then left her. The damsel, being disappointed,
is returning in faltering steps—for such her foot-marks indicate.
Forsooth he proposed to her that he would come back soon, for here are
his own footsteps returning with speed. Here he has entered the thick
forest but as the rays of the moon do not enter here his footsteps can
be traced no farther". Being hopeless of beholding Krishna, the females
of the cow-herds came back and arriving at the banks of the Yamuna, they
began to sing his songs. They immediately saw the protector of the three
worlds, with a smiling countenance, coming speedily towards them, on
which one cried out "Krishna, Krishna" being unable to utter any thing
else. One liked to contract her forehead with frowns as drinking with
the bees of her eyes the lotus of the face of Hari: another, shutting
her eyes, meditated, in her mind, upon his form as if being engaged in
an act of devotion. Thereupon coming amongst them Mādhaba conciliated
some with soft words some with gentle looks and some he took by the hand
and the illustrious deity sported with them in the stations of the
dance, after all the damsels had been propitiated. As each of the
damsels attempted to remain in one place close to the side of Krishna,
the circle of the dance could not be constructed. Thereupon taking each
by the hand and when their eyelids were closed by the effects of such
touch Hari formed the circle. Then began the dance in accompaniment with
the music of their clashing bracelets and songs that celebrated in sweet
melody the beauty of the autumnal season. Krishna sang the moon of
autumn, a mine of gentle rays but the damsels chanted the praise of
Krishna only. At times, one of them exhausted by the revolving dance,
threw her arms, adorned with the tinkling bracelets round the neck of
the Slayer of Madhu: another proficient in the art of singing his
praises embraced him. The drops of perspiration from the arms of Hari
were like fertilizing rain which produced a drop of dew upon the temples
of the damsels of cow-herds. Krishna sang the melody that was suited to
the dance. The damsels again and again repeated—"Bravo, Krishna," to his
song. When leading, they followed him, when coming back, they met him
and whether he went forwards or backwards they always followed his
footsteps. Whilst sporting thus with the females of the cow-herds, they
regarded one moment in his absence as a myriad of years. And although
prohibited in vain by their husbands and brothers, they went out in
night to sport with Krishna, the idol of their affection. Thus the deity
of unbounded prowess, the remover of all imperfections, assumed the
character of a youth amongst the damsels of Vraja, pervading their
natures and that of their lords, by his own essence all diffusive like
the wind, for even as in all creatures the elements of ether, fire,
water, and air are comprehended, so also is he everywhere present and in


One evening whilst Janārddana was engaged in Rāsa, the demon Aristha,
disguised as a bull, came there striking terror into the hearts of all.
His appearance was like a cloud saturated with waters—his two horns were
very sharp and his two eyes were bright like the sun. As he proceeded,
he ploughed up the ground with his hoofs: his tongue was repeatedly
licking his lips; his tail was erect; the sinews of his shoulders were
strong and between them rose a hump of enormous proportions; his
haunches were soiled with ordure and he was a dread to the herds; his
dewlap hung low and his face was marked with scars from butting against
the trees. Terrifying all the kine, and destroying hermits and ascetics
that demon, in the guise of a bull, haunts all the forests. Being
greatly stricken with fear on beholding that dreadful bull, the
cow-herds and their females cried out "Krishna, Krishna". Krishna then
shouted and slapped his arms in defiance. When the demon heard the
noise, he turned upon his challenger, and fixing his eyes and pointing
his horns at the belly of Kesava, he ran furiously upon the youth.
Krishna did not stir from his place, but smiling in sport and derision,
awaited the near approach of the bull, when he seized him, as an
alligator would have done and held him firmly by the horns, whilst he
pressed his sides with his knees. Having thus humiliated his pride and
held him captive by his horn, he wrung his throat as if it had been a
piece of wet cloth; and then tearing off one of the horns, he beat the
dreadful demon with it until he died vomiting blood from his mouth.
Seeing him slain the herdsmen glorified Krishna, as the companies of the
celestials of old praised Indra, when he triumphed over the Asura


After these things had happened, Aristha, the bull demon and Dhenuka and
Pralamba had been destroyed, Govardhana had been uplifted, the serpent
Kailya had been vanquished, the two trees had been broken, the female
fiend Putanā had been destroyed and the wagon had been overturned,
Nārada went to Kansa and related to him the whole, beginning with the
transference of the child from Devaki to Yosadā. Hearing this from
Nārada, Kansa was greatly enraged with Vasudeva and remonstrated with
him hard, and with all the Yadavas in an assembly of the race. Then
thinking what was to be done he determined to destroy both Krishna and
Rāma whilist they were yet young and before they had attained to
man-hood. Accordingly he made up his mind, to invite them from Vraja
under the plea of the solemn rite of the lustration of arms, when he
would engage them in a trial of strength with his chief boxers Chānura
and Mushtika, by whom they would undoubtedly be slain. "I will send" he
said "the noble Akrura, the son of Swapalka to Gokula to bring them
hither. I will order the dreadful Kesin, who frequents the forest of
Vrindavan, to attack him, and he is of unequalled prowess and will, for
certain, kill them; or if they come here, my elephant Kuvalayapida shall
trample to death these two cow-boy sons of Vasudeva". Having thus
planned to kill Rāma and Janārddana, the vicious Kansa sent for the
heroic Akrura and said to him, "O master of liberal gifts, hear my
words: and out of friendship for me perform my orders. Ascend your
chariot and go to the house of the milkman Nanda. The two vicious boys,
portions of Vishnu, have been born there, for the very object of
bringing about my destruction. On the fourteenth lunation I intend
celebrating the rite of the lustration of arms. I wish them to be
brought here by you to take part in the games and that the people may
behold them engage in a boxing match with my too skilled boxers Chānura
and Mushtika; or by chance, my elephant, driven against them by his
rider, shall destroy these vicious youngsters—the sons of Vasudeva. When
they are out of the way, I shall kill Vasudeva himself, the cow-herds
and my foolish father Ugrasena and I will get there by the flocks, herds
and all the properties of the rebelious cow-herds who have ever been
inimical to me. Save thou, lord of liberality, all the Yadavas have been
my enemies and I will find out means for their destruction; and I shall
then govern my kingdom with thee without any disturbance. If you regard
me, do thou go as I direct thee; and thou shalt command the cow-herds to
bring in speedily their supplies of milk and butter and curds".

Being thus advised the illustrious Akrura the immediately undertook to
see Krishna and ascending his magnificent chariot he went, out from the
city of Mathura.


Parāçara said:—Being commissioned by Kansa's emissary, Kesin, elated
with the confidence of his prowess, reached Vrindavana, being desirous
of bringing about the destruction of Krishna. He assailed the cow-herds,
spurning the ground with his hoofs, scattering the clouds with his mane
and obstructing the paths of the sun and the moon. Being terrified by
the neighings of the demon, assuming the shape of a steed, the cow-herds
and their females fled to Govinda for shelter exclaiming "Save us! Save
us!!" Hearing their cries, Govinda replied in a voice deep as the
roaring of the thunder cloud. Srikrishna said: "Away with the fears of
Keshin, O cowherds; being born as Gopals, why do you destroy my valour
and heroism? Why are you afraid of one of such little might whose
neighings are his only terrors, a galloping and vicious horse who is
ridden by the strength of Daityas? Come on, wretch. I am Krishna and I
will knock all thy teeth down thy throat, as the wielder of trident did
to Pushan". Thus defying him, Govinda went to fight with Kesin. The
demon with his mouth wide open, ran upon Krishna. But Krishna, enlarging
his arms, thrust it into his mouth and knocked down the teeth which fell
from his jaws like fragments of white clouds. Still the arm of Krishna
in the throat of Krishna continued to enlarge, as a disease, neglected
in the beginning, increasing till the dissolution. The torn lips of the
demon vomitted forth foam and blood; his eyes rolled in affliction; his
joints gave way; he struck the earth with his feet; his body was covered
with perspiration and he became incapable of any exertion. Having his
mouths rent open by the arm of Krishna, that dreadful demon fell down
like a tree struck and shattered by lightning, divided into two
portions. Each of those portions had two legs, half a back, half a tail,
one ear, one eye and one nostril. Krishna stood, unhurt and smiling
after the destruction of the demons encircled by the cow-herd, who,
together with their females, were filled with surprise at the death of
Kesin and glorified the lotus-eyed deity. Beholding the destruction of
Kesin, the Brāhmin Nārada, invisible and seated in a cloud, delightedly
exclaimed—"Well done, O lord of the universe who has easily destroyed
Kesin, the oppresser of the celestials. I have never heard of such a
combat between a man and a horse; being curious to behold it, I have
come from heaven. My heart is filled with joy and surprise, O slayer of
Madhu, on beholding the wonderful works thou hast done in thy descent
upon earth. O Krishna Indra and other celestials lived in fear of this
horse, who tossed his mane and neighed and looked down upon the clouds,
Because thou hast slain the impious Kesin thou shalt be celebrated in
the world by the name of Kesava. Farewell! I will now go. I shall meet
thee again, O subduer of Kesin, in two days more, when thou shalt be
engaged in a conflict with Kansa, When the son of Ugrasena, with his
follwers shall have been slain, then, O upholder of the earth earth's
burden will have been lightened by thee. Many are the battles of the
kings that have to see, in which thou shalt be renowned; I will now go
away, O Govinda. Thou hast accomplished a great deed admired by the
celestials, I have been much pleased with thee and take my leave". When
Nārada had departed, Krishna, who was the cynosure of the eyes of the
damsels of Vraja, not the least surprised, went back with the cow-herds
to Gokula.


Parāçara said:—Having issued out of the house of Kansa, Akrurā being
desirous of seeing Krishna, proceeded towards the house of Nanda in a
swift-coursing car. He thought within himself. "There is none more
fortunate than I, for I shall behold the countenance of a portion of the
holder of discus. To-day my life has borne fruit, my night is followed
by the dawn of day, for I shall behold the countenance of Vishnu
resembling full-blown lotuses. Blessed are my eyes and blessed are my
words, for on beholding Vishnu a conversation shall take place between
him and me. I shall behold the countenance of Vishnu having lotus eyes,
which, when seen only in imagination, removes all sins. I shall behold
to-day the mouth of Vishnu—the glory of glories, whence proceeded the
Vedas and all their divisions. I shall behold the lord of the universe
by whom the world is sustained, who is worshipped as the best Purusha
and as the male of sacrifice in sacrificial rites. I shall behold
Keseva, who is without beginning or end, by worshipping whom with a
hundred sacrifices, Indra obtained the sovereignty over the celestials.
That Hari, whose nature is unknown to Brahmā, Indra, Rudra, the Aswins,
the Vasus, the Adityas and Maruts, will this day touch my body. He, who
is the soul of all omniscient, is identical with everything,
omnipresent, permanent, undecaying, all-pervading, shall converse with
me. He, the unborn, who has preserved the world in diverse forms of a
fish, a tortoise, a boar, a horse, a lion, will this day talk with me.
The lord of the universe, who assumes shapes at will, has taken upon him
the condition of humanity to satisfy some object of his heart. The
endless, who holds the earth upon his crest and who has descended upon
earth for its protection, will this day call me by my name. Glory to
that being, whose deceptive adoption of father, son, brother, friend,
mother, and relative, the world is unable to comprehend. Salutation unto
him, who is identical with true knowledge, who is inscrutable and
through whom, when seated in his heart the ascetic gets over the worldly
ignorance and illusion, I bow to him, who, by the performers of holy
rites, is denominated Yajnapurusha (the male of a sacrifice), Vāsudeva,
by the devotees and Vishnu by the adepts in Vedānta philosophy. May he,
who comprises in himself, cause and effect and the world itself, be
pleased with me, through his truth, for I always confide in that unborn
and eternal Hari, by meditating on whom man becomes the repository of
all auspicious things".

Parāçara said:—Thus meditating upon Vishnu, Akrura, having his mind
animated by devout faith, reached Gokula a little before sun-set; and
there he beheld Krishna amongst the cattle, dark as the leaf of the
full-blown lotus; his eyes of the same colour and his breast adorned
with Srivatsa mark; long-armed, broad-chested; having a high nose, a
graceful countenance with smiles; treading firmly on the ground with
feet whose nails were tinted red; dressed in yellow raiments and
be-decked with a garland of forest flowers; having a creeper just
collected in his hands, and a chaplet of white lotus-flowers on his
head. Akrura also saw there Balabhadra, white as a jasmine, a swan or
the moon dressed in a blue dress; having large and mighty arms and a
countenance as radiant as a blue lotus, like the Kailāsa mountain
adorned with a wreath of clouds.

When Akrura, beheld these two young men, his countenance expanded with
joy and the down of his body stood erect with delight. And he
thought—"This is the supreme happiness and repository; this the double
manifestation of the divine Vāsudeva; blessed are my eyes for I have
seen the protector of the universe and my bodily form shall yield fruit,
when by the favour of the deity it shall come in contact with his
person. Shall that assumer of infinite forms place his hand on my back
by the touch of whose fingers alone all sins are dispelled and
imperishable, felicity is secured. And by this hand holding the fierce
irresistible discus blazing with all the flames of fire, lightning, and
the sun, were slain the Daitya chiefs, and the collyrium from the eyes
of their females was washed. Into this hand Bali poured water and
obtained enjoyments in the region under the earth and immortality and
dominion over the celestials for a whole Manwantara without danger from
any enemy. Although I am not sinful, perhaps he will despise me for my
connection with the vicious Kansa. If so, cursed is my birth who is
counted amongst the wicked. What is there unknown to him who resides in
the hearts of all men, who is ever existent, freed from imperfection,
the aggregate of the quality of purity and at one with true knowledge?
With a heart animated with devout faith I approach the lord of lords,
the descended portion of that excellent Purusha, Vishnu, who his without
beginning, middle or end".


Parāçara said Thus meditating, Akrura, born in the race of the Yadus,
bowed his hand down to the feet of Hari saying—"I am Akrura". And
Krishna placed his hand upon him, which was marked with the flag, the
thunder-bolt, the lotus, and drew him towards him and affectionately
embraced him.

Being thus honored by him, Balarāma and Kesava, delighted, entered with
him their own habitation. Having entered into conversation with them and
been fed, he related to them everything duly, how their father
Anakadundhubi, the princess Devaki and even his own father had been
insulted by the wicked demon Kansa and for what purpose he had been
despatched. Having heard all from him the illustrious slayer of Kesin
said—"O thou of liberal gift, I know all thou hast said; O great one, I
shall devise proper measures for this—do not think otherwise of this;
consider Kansa as already slain. Rāma and I will go to Mathura tomorrow
along with you. The elders of the cow-herds shall accompany us carrying
sufficient offerings. Rest here tonight and drive all thy anxiety.
Within three nights I will destroy Kansa and all his followers".

Having thus commanded the cow-herds, Akrura with Kesava and Rāma retired
to rest and slept soundly in the house of Nanda. The next morning was
clear and the young men prepared to proceed to Mathura with Akrura. The
females of the cow-herds, on seeing them about to depart, were much
afflicted. They wept bitterly—their bracelets were loose upon their
arms—and they thus thought within themselves—"If Govinda goes to
Mathura, how will he come back to Gokula? His ears will be pleased by
the sweet and finished conversation of the damsels of the city. And
being used to the language of the graceful females of Mathura he will
never again like the rustic expressions of the Gopees. Hari, the pride
of our village is taken away and a fatal blow is laid upon us by
inexorable destiny.

"The women of the city have sweet smiles, graceful language, beautiful
air, elegant gait and significant glances. Hari is of rustic breeding,
and, captivated by their fascinations, what likelihood is there of his
returning to the society of any one amongst us? Kevasa, who has mounted
the car to go to Mathura, has been deceived by the cruel, vile, and
desperate Akrura. Does not the unfeeling traitor know the affection that
we all here feel for our Hari, the joy of our eyes, that he is taking
him away? Unkind that he is, Govinda is departing from us, along with
Rāma: haste! let us stop him! Why talk of telling our seniors that we
cannot bear his loss? What can they do for us, we are consumed by the
fires of separation? The Gopas, with Nanda at their head, are themselves
preparing to depart; no one makes any attempt to detain Govinda. Bright
is the morning that succeeds to this night for the women of Mathura, for
the bees of their eyes will feed upon the lotus face of Achyuta. Happy
are they who may go hence without impediment, and behold, enraptured,
Krishna on his journey. A great festival will delight today the eyes of
the inhabitants of Mathura when they will behold the person of Govinda.
What pleasurable dream was seen by the happy damsels of the city that
their graceful eyes shall behold unobstructed the countenance of
Krishna! Alas! the eyes of the females of cow-herds have been deprived
of their vision by the relentless Brahmā, after he had shown them this
great treasure. Hari departing with his love for us decayed, the
bracelets from our arms slip. The cruel-hearted Akrura urges on the
steeds; who does not feel pity for females like us who are bewailing?
Alas! behold the dust of Krishna's chariot-wheels! and now he is
distanced from us by that for even that dust is no longer to be seen".
Thus lamented by the damsels, Kesava and Rāma left the hamlet of Vraja.
Travelling in a car drawn by quick-coursing steeds they reached, at
noon, the banks of the Yamuna when Akrura requested them to halt a
little whilst he performed the usual daily ceremonial in the river. They
having agreed to this, the high-minded Akrura bathed in the water and
rinsed his mouth and then entering the stream he stood meditating upon
the Supreme Being. He beheld, in his meditation, Balabhadra, having a
thousand-hooded heads, a garland of jasmine flowers, having large-red
eyes resembling lotus petals, surrounded by Vasuki, Rambba and other
mighty serpents, praised by Gandharvas, decorated with garlands of wild
flowers, clad in dark-coloured raiment, crowned with a chaplet of
lotuses, adorned with brilliant ear-rings, drunk and standing at the
bottom of the river in the water. He saw on his lap Vishnu, having four
arms, and holding conch, discus, and mace, having the complexion of
cloud, coppery and expansive eyes, excellent ear-rings and an elegant
form, clad in yellow clothes, adorned with many coloured flowers and
appearing like a cloud adorned with streams of lightnings and the bow of
Indra; his breast was marked with celestial sign, four arms were adorned
with keyuras and head with a brilliant crown: he was attended by
Sanandana and other holy sages, who, fixing their eyes upon the tips of
their noses, were absorbed in profound meditation.

Understanding them as Krishna and Balarāma, Akrura was struck with
amazement; and he thought how they could so quickly have got there from
the chariot. He desired to ask them of this, but Janarddana deprived him
of the faculty of speech at that moment. Having come out of the waters
he then came to the chariot and saw there, like before, Rāma and Krishna
stationed in their human forms. And having entered the stream again he
saw those two forms praised by Gandharvas, great ascetics, Siddhas and
great serpents. Apprehending then their real nature he eulogized the
eternal deity gifted with discriminative knowledge.

Akrura said:—"Salutation to thee, who art uniform and manifold, all
pervading, Supreme spirit, of inconceivable glory and who art simple
existence. Salutation to thee, O inscrutable, who art truth and the
essence of oblations. Salutation to thee, O Lord, whose nature is
unknown, who art beyond primeval matter, who existest in five forms,
identical with the elements, with the faculties, with matter, with the
living soul and with the Supreme spirit. Be propitiated with me, O soul
of the universe, essence of all things, perishable or eternal, whether
addressed by the name Brahmā, Vishnu, Siva or like. I adore thee, O God,
whose nature is indestructible, whose purposes cannot be deciphered,
whose name even is unknown; for the attributes of kind or appellation
are not applicable to thee, who art that, the supreme Brahman, eternal,
unchangeable, uncreated. But as our objects can not be accomplished but
through some specific from, thou art termed by us Krishna, Achyuta,
Ananta or Vishnu. Thou, unborn divinity, art all the objects of these
impersonation; thou art the gods and all other beings; thou art the
whole world, thou art all. Soul of the universe, thou art free from
change and there is nothing except thee in all this existence. Thou art
Brahmā, Pasupati, Aryaman, Dhātri and Vidhātri! Thou art Indra, air,
fire, the regent of the waters, the god of wealth and the judge of the
dead; and thou, although but one, presidest over the world with various
energies directed to various purposes. Thou, identical with the solar
ray, createst the universe: all elementary substance is composed of thy
qualities; and thy supreme form is denoted by the imperishable term Sat.
I bow to him who is identical with true knowledge and who is and is not
perceptible. Salutation to him the lord Vasudeva, to Sankarsana, to
Pradyumna and to Aniruddha".


Parāçara said:—Having thus praised Vishnu, standing in the stream that
descendant of the Yadu race worshipped the lord of all with flowers,
incense and all other beautiful articles. Having withdrawn his mind from
every thing else and devoted it to Vishnu, he engaged, for some time, in
the meditation, "I am Brahman" and then desisted from his abstraction.
Then considering himself as blessed, the high-minded Akrura got up from
the waters of the Yamuna and came to the chariot. Like before, he again
saw stationed on the car Rāma and Krishna. Seeing Akrura thus amazed,
Krishna said—"Forsooth, O Akrura, your eyes are expanded with surprise.
Methinks you have seen something wonderful in the waters of the Yamuna".

Akruka said:—"O Achyuta, the wonder I saw in the waters, I behold here,
before me in a bodily shape; I am united with thee, Krishna, the marvel
I have seen and whose wonderous form is the universe. No more of this,
let us go to Mathura, O Slayer of Madhu—I am afraid of Kansa. Oh! fie on
them who eat the bread of another". Saying this he urged on the quick
steeds and they arrived after sunset, at Mathura, When they came in
sight of the city, Akrura said to Krishna and Rāma "You must now go on
foot, whilst I proceed alone in the car; and you must not go to the
house of Vasudeva for the elder has been banished by Kansa on your

Parāçara said:—Having said this Akrura alone entered the city of
Mathura, Rāma and Krishna proceeded thereto following the public road.
All the females and males of Mathura espied the two brothers with
delight. And they went along sportively looking like two young
elephants. As they roamed about, they saw a washerman colouring clothes
and, with smiling countenances, they went and wanted of him some of his
fine linen. He was a washerman of Kansa and was made insolent by his
master's favour, so he remonstrated hard with Rāma and Kesava. Thereupon
Krishna, in rage, struck down the head of that vicious-souled
(washerman) on earth. Having thus killed him and taken yellow and blue
raiment Krishna and Rāma, delightedly came to a flower-seller's shop.
Seeing them, having expansive eyes, the flower-seller was astonished and
thought, O Maitreya, who could they be or whence could they have come.
Beholding two youths so lovely, dressed in yellow and blue garments, he
took them to be divinities descended upon earth. Being asked for some
flowers, by them, having mouths budding like lotuses he placed his hands
upon the ground and touched it with his head, saying—"My lords have
shown me great kindness, by coming to my house, fortunate that I am; I
will pay them homage". Having said this, the flower-seller, with a
smiling face, gave them whatever choice flowers they selected, to gain
their favour. Prostrating himself again and again before them, he
presented them again and again with flowers beautiful, fragrant and
fresh. Being much pleased with him, Krishna gave him the
blessing—"Fortune, O good friend, who depends on me, shall never forsake
thee. Thou shalt never lose strength or wealth and thy family shall
never be extinct. Enjoying many things, thou shalt, in the end,
remembering me, attain to the region of the celestials. O good friend,
thy mind shall always be in virtue and those, who shall be born in thy
race, shall be long-lived. O great one, as long as the sun shall exist,
none, in thy race, shall be disturbed with famine or other troubles".

Parāçara said:—Having said this and been worshipped by the
flower-seller, O foremost of Munis, Krishna in the company of Balarāma,
issued out of his house.


While thus going along the high road, Krishna saw a young girl, who was
crooked, carrying a pot of unguent. Krishna addressed her in sweet words
and said—"For whom are you carrying that unguent? Tell me, lovely
maiden, tell me truly". Being thus addressed by him through affection,
Kubja being attracted by his affection and well disposed towards Hari,
replied to him also mirthfully:—"Do you not know, my lord, that my name
is Tribakra, I am the servant of Kansa and appointed to prepare his
perfumes. Kansa does not like perfumes prepared by any other female and
for this he loves me greatly and shows me favour". Krishna said:—"O thou
having a lovely countenance, give us sufficient unguent used by the
king, to rub upon our bodies". "Take it," Kubja said and she gave them
as much of the unguent as was required for their persons and they rubbed
it on various parts of their bodies and faces, till they looked like two
clouds, one white and one black, decorated by the many-tinted bow of
Indra. Then Krishna skilled in the curative art, took hold of her under
the chin, with the thumb and two fingers and lifted up her head, whilst
with his feet he pressed down her feet and in this way he made her
straight. Being thus rendered straight, she became the most beautiful of
damsels. Then filled with affection, she took Govinda by the garment and
said "Come to my house". Hari, smiling, replied—"I shall come to your
house sometime after". Having thus dismissed her and cast his looks
towards Rāma, he laughed aloud.

Dressed then in blue and yellow raiment and annointed with fragrant
unguents and adorned with beautiful garlands, Kesava and Rāma went to
the hall of arms. They then inquired of the warder which excellent bow
they would take. Being informed, Krishna at once took up a bow and bent
it; then drawing it with violence he snapped it in two and all Mathura
resounded with the noise made by its fracture. Abused by the guards for
breaking the bow, Krishna and Rāma retorted and defied them and left the

When Kansa came to know that Akrura had returned and Krishna had snapped
the bow, he then said to Chānura and Mushtika:—"Two cow-herd boys have
arrived—You must kill them both before me in a trial of strength, for
they always try to kill me. When you two, gifted with great strength,
shall destroy these two cow-herd boys—I shall give you whatever you will
desire. These two boys are my enemies; by means, whether foul or fair,
you must kill them both. They killed, the kingdom shall be ours in
common". Having thus commanded the two wrestlers, he sent for his
elephant-driver and said to him loudly:—"You must place my great
elephant Kuvalayāpida who is as huge as a cloud charged with rain, near
the gate of the arena and drive him upon the two boys when they shall
attempt to enter". Having given these orders, he ascertained that the
platforms were all ready and waited for the rising sun, not conscious of
his impending death.

In the morning the citizens assembled on the platforms set apart for
them, and the princes with the ministers and courtiers occupied the
royal seats. Kansa made all those sit in front who were judges of the
games whilst he himself sat apart, close by, upon a lofty throne.
Separate platforms were also set up for the ladies of the palace and
they sat there. Nanda and cow-herds had places set apart for them at the
end of which sat Akrura and Vasudeva. Amongst the wives of the citizens
was Devaki, mourning for her son, whose lovely countenance she desired
to see even in the hour of destruction. Thereafter the bugles were
sounded and Chānura sprang forth and Mushtika clapped his arms defiantly
and people cried aloud "Alas". Covered with the temporal juice and blood
of the elephant, whom they had killed when driven against them by the
driver, Balabhadra and Janarddana confidently entered the arena, like
two lions amidst a herd of deer, with proud looks towards all. There
arose exclamations of pity and expressions of surprise from all the
arena and people said "This is Krishna! This is Balabhadra!! This is
that Krishna by whom the she-demon Putanā was killed. This is that
Krishna by whom the wagon was upset. This is that Krishna who uprooted
the two trees. This is that Krishna—the boy who danced upon the hooded
fangs of the serpent Kāliya and who for seven days upheld the mountain
Govardhana. Behold, this is that Krishna, who easily destroyed the
demons Aristha, Dhenuka and Kesin. This is that Achyuta. There is his
elder brother Balabhadra, before him, having long arms. He is young,
sportively affording delight to the minds and eyes of the damsels. It
has been foretold by the wise, skilled in the sense of Purānas that he
shall, as a cow-herd, exalt the depressed Yadu race. This is a portion
of the all-existing, all-generating Vishnu descended upon earth, who
will assuredly lighten her load". The citizens having thus described
Rāma and Krishna, Devaki's heart was filled with compassion and milk
oozed out of her breast out of affection. And on beholding the faces of
his son, Vasudeva forgot his infirmities and felt himself young again.
The women of the palace, and the females of the city beheld Krishna with
eyes wide open. "Look friends" said they to their companions "Look at
the face of Krishna; his eyes are reddened by his conflict with the
elephant and the drops of perspiration stand upon his cheek outweighing
a full-blown lotus in autumn studded with glittering dew. Make your
birth blessed and the faculty of vision fruitful, by beholding the
breast of the boy, the seat of splendour and marked with the mystic sign
Sribatsa; and see his arms menacing destruction to the enemies. Do you
not see Balabhadra coming with him, clad in a blue raiment, having his
countenance fair as the jasmine, as the moon and as the fibres of the
lotus stem? See, how he gently smiles at the gestures of Mushtika and
Chānura as they spring up. And see Hari is advancing to meet Chānura. Is
there no elder present here who will judge rightly? How can the delicate
form of Hari, just in his youth, match the huge and adamantine form of
the great demon Chānura? Two youths of delicate and beautiful forms are
on the one side and the athletic fiends headed by Chānura on the other.
Is this fair? This is a great sin in the umpires to allow a contest
between boys and strong men".

Parāçara said:—The women of the city having thus conversed with one
another, Hari tightened his girdle and danced in the ring shaking the
ground on which he trod. Balabhadra too, slapping his arms defiantly,
danced—and wonder it is that the earth was not riven asunder by his
trodding. The highly powerful Krishna engaged with Chānura and the demon
Mushtika, well-versed in wrestling, began to fight with Balabhadra.
Mutually entwining and pushing and pulling and beating each other with
fists, arms and elbows and pressing each other with their knees,
interlacing their arms, kicking with their feet, pressing with their
whole weight upon another, fought Hari and Chānura. And at the time of
this national festival, dreadful was the encounter, though without
weapons, displaying strength and heroism. And as long as the contest
continued, Chānura was gradually losing something of his original vigour
and the wreath upon his head trembled from his fury and distress, whilst
the world-comprehending Krishna wrestled with him but sportively. Seeing
Chānura losing and Krishna gaining strength—Kansa, worked up with ire,
ordered the music to cease. And as soon as music was stopped by Kansa
countless celestial bugles were sounded in the welkin. And the
celestials, greatly delighted and invisible, said "Krishna be thou
crowned with success; Kesava, do thou slay that demon Chānura".
Thereupon sporting for a long time with Chānura, Krishna, the slayer of
Madhu, at last lifted him up and whirled him with the intention of
slaying him. Having whirled Chānura round a hundred times until his
breath was expended in the sky, he dashed his body on the ground. As
soon as it fell it was sundered into a hundred pieces and the earth was
strewn with a hundred pools of gory mire. Whilst this happened, the
powerful Baladeva was engaged likewise with the demon bruiser Mushtika.
Striking him on the head with his fists and on the breast with his
knees, he stretched him on the ground, and pummelled him there till he
was dead. Again, Krishna encountered the royal bruiser Tomalaka, and
felled him to the earth with a blow of his left hand. When the other
athletes saw Chānura, Mushtika, and Tomalaka killed, they fled from the
field; and Krishna and Sankarshana danced victorious on the arena,
dragging along with them by force the cowherds of their own age. Kansa,
his eyes reddening with wrath, called aloud to the surrounding people,
"Drive those two cow-boys out of the assembly; seize the villain Nanda,
and secure him with chains of iron; put Vasudeva to death with tortures
intolerable to his years; and lay hands upon the cattle, and whatever
else belongs to those cowherds who are the associates of Krishna".

Upon hearing these orders, the destroyer of Madhu laughed at Kansa, and
springing up to the place where he was seated, laid hold of him by the
hair of his head, and struck his tiara to the ground: then casting him
down upon the earth, Govinda threw himself upon him. Crushed by the
weight of the upholder of the universe, the son of Ugrasena, Kansa the
king, gave up the ghost. Krishna then dragged the dead body, by the hair
of the head, into the centre of the arena, and a deep furrow was made by
the vast and heavy carcass of Kansa, when it was dragged along the
ground by Krishna, as if a torrent of water had run through it. Seeing
Kansa thus treated, his brother Sumālin came to his succour; but he was
encountered, and easily killed, by Balabhadra. Then arose a general cry
of grief from the surrounding circle, as they beheld the king of Mathura
thus slain, and treated with such contumely, by Krishna. Krishna,
accompanied by Balabhadra, embraced the feet of Vasudeva and of Devaki;
but Vasudeva raised him up; and he and Devaki recalling to recollection
what he had said to them at his birth, they bowed to Janārddana, and the
former thus addressed him: "Have compassion upon mortals, O god,
benefactor and lord of deities: it is by thy favour to us two, that thou
hast become the (present) upholder of the world. That for the punishment
of the rebellious, thou hast descended upon earth in my house, having
been propitiated by my prayers, sanctifies our race. Thou art the heart
of all creatures; thou abidest in all creatures, and all that has been,
or will be, proceeds from thee, O universal spirit! Thou, Achyuta, who
comprehendest all the gods, art eternally worshipped with sacrifices:
thou art sacrifice itself, and the offerer of sacrifices. The affection
that inspires my heart and the heart of Devaki towards thee as if thou
wast our child, is indeed but error, and a great delusion. How shall the
tongue of a mortal such as I am call the creator of all things who is
without beginning or end, son? It is reasonable, that the lord of the
world from whom the world proceeds should be born of me, except through
illusion? How should he, in whom all mobile and immobile beings exist,
be conceived in the womb and born of a mortal being? Have pity on me,
therefore, O Supreme lord, and being incarnate do thou protect the
universe. O god, thou art not my son: thou comprisest the whole universe
from Brahmā to a tree. Therefore, O great soul, why dost thou beguile
me? Blinded by illusion I considered thee, as my son and hence I was
afraid of Kansa. And therefore I did carry thee to Gokula where thou
hast grown up; but I no longer consider thee as mine own son. Thou
Vishnu the supreme lord of all, whose actions Rudra, the Maruts, the
Aswins, Indra and the celestials cannot equal although they behold them;
thou, who hast descended amongst us for the behoof of the universe, art
recognized, and delusion is no more".


Parāçara said:—Beholding Devaki and Vasudeva obtain true discriminative
knowledge on seeing his wonderful feat, Krishna, being anxious to
beguile them and other descendants of Yadu race, spread again the
illusions of Vishnu. Thereupon he said to his parents—"O father, O
mother, my elder brother Baladeva was all along anxious to behold you.
It is out of fear of Kansa he could not do so. So long the pious do not
serve their parents that portion of their life is spent in vain. O
father, blessed is the birth of those men who serve their spiritual
preceptors, celestials, Brāhmanas and their parents. Thou shouldst
therefore forgive us, O father, for the violations committed. For up to
this time we were greatly distressed and under the influence of another
on account of the prowess and strength of Kansa". Saying this Krishna
bowed unto his parents and other elderly members of the Yadu race and
duly honoured the citizens. Thereupon Kansa's mothers and wives being
stricken with grief and sorrow, began to lament encircling Kansa lying
dead on the ground. Hari then expressed his regret for what had
happened, and with eyes saturated with tears he consoled them. The
slayer of Madhu then released Ugrasena from prison and placed him on the
throne rendered vacant by the death of his son. Being installed on the
throne the Yadava-chief performed the funeral rites of Kansa and of the
rest of the slain. When the ceremony was finished and Ugrasena had taken
his royal seat, Krishna addressed him and said:—"O Supreme lord, order
me freely what else to be done. By the curse of Yayati, our race cannot
govern—but having me as your servant you may order even the celestials.
How should kings disobey them?"

Parāçara said:—Having said this, Kesava, assuming human shape summoned
mentally the deity of the wind, who immediately came there, and said to
him—"Proceed, Vāyu, to Indra and tell him to lay aside his pomp, and
resign to Ugrasena his splendid hall Sudharman: tell him that Krishna
commands him to send the royal hall, the unrivalled gem of princely
courts, for the assemblage of the race of Yādu". Accordingly Vāyu went
and delivered the message to the husband of Sachi, who immediately gave
up to him the hall Sudharman, and Vāyu conveyed it to the Yādavas, the
chiefs of whom thenceforth possessed this celestial court, emblazoned
with jewels, and defended by the arms of Govinda. The two excellent Yadu
youths, versed in all knowledge, and possessed of all wisdom, then
submitted to instruction, as the disciples of teachers. Accordingly they
repaired to Sāndipani—who, though born in Kāsi, resided at Avanti—to
study the science of arms, and, becoming his pupils, were obedient and
attentive to their master, exhibiting an example to all men of the
observance of instituted rules. In the course of sixty-four days they
had gone through the elements of military science, with the treatises on
the use of arms, and directions for the mystic incantations, which
secure the aid of supernatural weapons. Sāndipani, astonished at such
proficiency, and knowing that it exceeded human faculties, imagined that
the sun and the moon had become his scholars. When they had acquired all
that he could teach, they said to him, "Now say what present shall be
given to you, as the preceptor's fee". The prudent Sāndipani, perceiving
that they were endowed with more than mortal powers, requested them to
give him his dead son, drowned in the sea of Prabhāsa. Taking up their
arms, they marched against the ocean; but the all-comprehending sea said
to them, "I have not killed the son of Sāndipani; a demon named
Panchajana, who lives in the form of a conch shell, seized the boy; he
is still under my waters". On hearing this, Krishna plunged into the
sea; and having slain the vile Panchajana, he took the conch shell,
which was formed of his bones (and bore it as his horn), the sound of
which fills the demon hosts with dismay, animates the vigour of the
gods, and annihilates unrighteousness. The heroes also recovered the boy
from the pains of death, and restored him in his former person to his
father. Rāma and Janārddana then returned to Mathura, which was well
presided over by Ugrasena, and abounded in a happy population both of
men and women.


Parāçara said:—The mighty Kansa had married the two daughters of
Jarāsandha, one named Asti, the other Prāpti. Jarāsandha was king of
Magadha, and a very powerful prince, who, when he heard that Krishna had
killed his son-in-law, was much incensed, and, collecting a large force,
marched against Mathura, determined to put the Yādavas and Krishna to
the sword. Accordingly he invested the city with three and twenty
numerous divisions of his forces. Rāma and Janārddana sallied from the
town with a slender, but resolute force, and fought bravely with the
armies of Magadha. The two youthful leaders prudently resolved to have
recourse to their ancient weapons, and accordingly the bow of Hari, with
two quivers filled with exhaustless arrows and the mace called
Kaumodaki, and the ploughshare of Balabhadra, as well as the club
Saunanda, descended at a wish from heaven. Armed with these weapons,
they speedily discomfited the king of Magadha and his hosts, and
re-entered the city in triumph.

Although the wicked king of Magadha, Jarāsandha, was defeated, yet
Krishna knew that whilst he escaped alive he was not subdued; and in
fact, he soon returned with a mighty force, and was again forced by Rāma
and Krishna to fly. Eighteen times did the haughty prince of Magadha
renew his attack upon the Yādavas, headed by Krishna; and was as often
defeated and put to the rout by them, with very inferior numbers. That
the Yādavas were not overpowered by their foes, was owing to the present
might of the portion of the discus-armed Vishnu. It was the pastime of
the lord of the universe, in his capacity of man, to launch various
weapons against his enemies; for what effort of power to annihilate his
foes could be necessary to him, whose fiat creates and destroys the
world? But as subjecting himself to human customs, he formed alliances
with the brave, and engaged in hostilities with the base. He had
recourse to the four devices of policy, or negotiation, presents, sowing
dissension, and chastisement; and sometimes even betook himself to
flight. Thus imitating the conduct of human beings, the lord of the
world pursued at will his sports.


Parāçara said:—Syāla having called Gargya, the Brāhmana, whilst at the
cow-pens, impotent, in an assembly of the Yādavas, they all laughed; at
which he was highly offended, and repaired to the shores of the western
sea, where he engaged in arduous penance to obtain a son, who should be
a terror to the tribe of Yadu. Propitiating Mahādeva, and living upon
iron sand for twelve years, the deity at last was pleased with him, and
gave him the desired boon. The king of the Yadanas, who was childless,
became the friend of Gārgya; and the latter begot a son by his wife, who
was as black as a bee, and thence called Kālayavana. The Yavana king
having placed his son, whose breast was as hard as the point of the
thunderbolt, upon the throne, retired to the woods. Inflated with the
conceit of his prowess Kālayavana demanded of Nārada who were the most
mighty heroes on earth. To which the sage answered. "The Yādavas".
Accordingly Kālayavana assembled many myriads of Mlechhas and
barbarians, with a vast armament of elephants, cavalry, chariots, and
foot, advanced impatiently against Mathura and the Yādavas; wearying
every day the animal that carried him, but insensible of fatigue

When Krishna knew of his approach, he reflected that if the Yādavas
encountered the Yavana, they would be so much weakened by the conflict,
that they would then be overcome by the king of Magadha; that their
force was much reduced by the war with Magadha, whilst that of
Kālayavana was unbroken; and that the enemy might, therefore, be
victorious. Thus the Yādavas were exposed to a double danger. He
resolved therefore to construct a citadel for the Yadu tribe, that
should not be easily taken; one that even women might defend, and in
which therefore the heroes of the house of Vrishni should be secure; one
in which the male combatants of the Yādavas should dread no peril,
though he himself should be drunk or careless, asleep or abroad. Thus
reflecting, Krishna solicited a space of twelve furlongs from the ocean,
and there he built the city of Dwārakā, defended by high ramparts, and
beautified with gardens and reservoirs of water, crowded with houses and
buildings, and splendid as the capital of Indra, Amarāvati. Thither
Janārddana conducted the inhabitants of Mathura, and then awaited at
that city the approach of Kālayavana.

When the hostile army encamped round Mathura, Krishna, unarmed, went
forth, and beheld the Yavana king. Kālyavana, the strong-armed,
recognising Vāsudeva, pursued him; him whom the thoughts of perfect
ascetics cannot overtake. Thus pursued, Krishna entered a large cavern
where Muchukunda, the king of men, was asleep. The rash Yavana entering
the cave and beholding a man lying asleep there, concluded it must be
Krishna, and kicked him; at which Muchukunda awoke, casting on him an
angry glance, the Yavana was instantly consumed, and reduced to ashes.
For, in a battle between the gods and demons, Muchukunda had formerly
contributed to the defeat of the latter; and being overcome with sleep,
he solicited of the gods as a boon that he should enjoy a long repose.
"Sleep long and soundly," said the gods; "whoever disturbs you shall be
instantly burnt to ashes by fire emanating from your body".

Having burnt up the iniquitous Yavana, and beholding the foe of Madhu,
Muchukunda asked him who he was. "I am born," he replied, "in the lunar
race, in the tribe of Yadu, and am the son of Vasudeva". Muchukunda,
recollecting the prophecy of old Garga, fell down before the lord of
all, Hari, saying. "Thou art known, supreme lord, to be a portion of
Vishnu; for it was said of old by Garga, that at the end of the
twenty-eighth Dwāpara age, Hari would be born in the family of Yadu.
Thou art he, without doubt, the benefactor of mankind for thy glory I am
unable to endure. Thy words are of deeper tone than the muttering of the
rain cloud; and earth sinks down beneath the pressure of thy feet. As in
the battle between the gods and demons, the Asuras were unable to
sustain my lustre, so even am I incapable of bearing thy radiance. Thou
alone art the refuge of every living being who has lighted on the world.
Do thou, who art the alleviator of all distress, show favour upon me,
and remove from me all that is evil. Thou art the oceans, the mountains,
the rivers, the forests; thou art earth, sky, air, water, and fire; thou
art mind, intelligence, the unevolved principle, vital airs, the lord,
life—the soul; all that is beyond the soul; the all-pervading; exempt
from the vicissitudes of birth; devoid of sensible properties, sound and
the like: undecaying, illimitable, imperishable, subject neither to
increase nor diminution; thou art that which is Brahmā, without
beginning or end. From thee the immortals, the progenitors, the Yakshas,
Gandharvas, and Kinnaras, the Siddhas, the nymphs of heaven, men,
animals, birds, deers, reptiles, and all the vegetable world, proceed;
and all that has been, or will be, or is now movable or fixed. All that
is amorphous or has form, all that is subtile, gross, salable, or
movable, thou art, O creator of the world; and beside thee there is not
anything. O lord, I have been whirled round in the circle of worldly
existence for ever, and have suffered the three classes of affliction,
and there is no rest whatever. I have mistaken pains for pleasures,
sultry vapours for a pool of water; and their enjoyment has yielded me
nothing but sorrow. The earth, dominion, forces, treasures, friends,
children, wife, dependants, all the objects of sense, have I possessed
imagining them to be sources of happiness; but I found that in their
changeable nature, O lord, they were nothing but vexation. The gods
themselves though high in heaven, were in need of my alliance. Where
then is everlasting repose? Who, without adoring thee, who art the
origin of all worlds, shall attain, O supreme deity, that rest which
endures for ever? Beguiled by thy delusions, and ignorant of thy nature,
men, after suffering the various penalties of birth, death, and
infirmity, behold the countenance of the king of ghosts, and suffer in
hell dreadful tortures, the reward of their own deeds. Addicted to
sensual objects through thy delusions, I revolve in the whirlpool of
selfishness and pride; and hence I come to thee, as my final refuge who
art the lord deserving of all homage, than whom there is no other
asylum; my mind afflicted with repentance for my trust in the world, and
desiring the fullness of felicity, emancipation from all existence".


Thus praised by the wise Muchukunda, the sovereign of all things, the
eternal lord, Hari, said to him, "Go to whatever celestial regions you
wish, lord of men, possessed of might irresistible, honoured by my
favour. When you have fully enjoyed all heavenly pleasures, you shall be
born in a distinguished family, retaining the recollection of your
former births; and you shall finally obtain emancipation". Having heard
this promise, and prostrated himself before Achyuta, the lord of the
world, Muchukunda, went forth from the cave and beholding men of
diminutive stature, now first knew that the Kali age had arrived. The
king therefore departed to Gandhamāddana, the shrine of Naranārāyana, to
perform penance.

Krishna having by this stratagem destroyed his enemy returned to Mathura
and took captive his army, rich in horses, elephants and cars, which he
conducted to Dwārakā, and delivered to Ugrasena, and the Yadu race was
relieved from all fear of invasion. Baladeva, when hostilities had
entirely ceased, being desirous of seeing his kinsmen, went to Nanda's
cow-pens, and there again conversed with the herdsmen and their females,
with affection and respect. By some, the elders, he was embraced;
others, the juniors, he embraced; and with those of his own age, male or
female, he talked and laughed. The cowherds made many kind speeches to
Halayudha; but some of the Gopis spoke to him with the affectation of
anger, or with feelings of jealousy, as they inquired after the loves of
Krishna with the women of Mathura. "Is all well with the fickle and
inconstant Krishna?" said they; "Does the volatile swain, the friend of
an instant amuse the women of the city by laughing at our rustic efforts
(to please him)? Does he ever think of us, singing in chorus to his
sons? Will come here once again to see his mother? But But why talk of
these things? It is a different tale to tell for him without us, and for
us without him. Father, mother, brother, husband, kin, what have we not
abandoned for him; but he is a monument of ingratitude. Yet tell us,
does not Krishna talk of coming here? Falsehood is never, O Krishna, to
be uttered by thee. Verily this is Dāmodara, this is Govinda, who has
given up his heart to the damsels of the city, who has no longer any
regard for us, but looks upon us with disdain". So saying, the Gopis,
whose minds were fixed on Krishna, addressed Rāma in his place, calling
him Dāmodara and Govinda, and laughed and were merry; and Rāma consoled
them by communicating to them agreeable, modest, affectionate, and
gentle messages from Krishna. With the cow-herds he talked mirthfully,
as he had been wont to do, and rambled along with them over the lands of


Whilst the mighty Sesha, the upholder of the globe, was thus engaged in
wandering amidst the forests with the herdsmen, in the disguise of a
mortal—having rendered great services to earth, and still considering
what more was to be achieved—Varuna, in order to provide for his
recreation, said his wife Vāruni (the goddess of wine), "Thou, Madirā,
art ever acceptable to the powerful Ananta; go therefore, auspicious and
kind goddess, and promote his enjoyments". Obeying these commands,
Vāruni went and established herself in the hollow of a Kadamba bee in
the woods of Vrindāvana. Baladeva, roaming about, came there, and
smelling the pleasant fragrance of liquor, resumed his ancient passion
for strong drink. The holder of the ploughshare observing the vinous
drops distilling from the Kadamba tree, was much delighted, and gathered
and quaffed them along with the herdsmen and the Gopis, whilst those who
were skilful with voice and lute celebrated him in their songs. Being
inebriated with the wine, and the drops of perspiration standing like
pearls upon his limbs, he called out, not knowing what he said, "Come
hither, Yamunā river, I want to bathe". The river, disregarding the
words of a drunken man came not at his bidding: on which Rāma in a rage
took up his ploughshare, which he plunged into her bank, and dragged her
to him, calling out, "Will you not come, you jade, will you not come?
Now go where you please (if you can)". Thus saying, he compelled the
dark river to quit its ordinary course, and follow him whithersoever he
wandered through the wood. Assuming a mortal figure, the Yamunā, with
distracted looks, approached Balabhadra, and entreated him to pardon
her, and let her go: but he replied, "I will drag you with my
ploughshare in a thousand directions, since you condemn my prowess and
strength". At last, however, appeased by her reiterated prayers, he let
her go, after she had watered all the country. When he had bathed, the
goddess of beauty, Lakshmi, came and gave him a beautiful lotus to place
in one ear, and an ear-ring for the other; a fresh necklace of lotus
flowers, sent by Varuna; and garments of a dark blue colour, as costly
as the wealth of the ocean: and thus decorated with a lotus in one ear,
a ring in the other, dressed in blue garments, and wearing a garland,
Balarāma appeared united with loveliness. Thus decorated, Rāma sported
two months in Vraja, and then returned to Dwārakā, where he married
Revati, the daughter of king Raivata, by whom he had two sons, Nishātha
and Ulmuka.


Bhishmaka was king of Vidarbha, residing at Kundina. He had a son named
Rukmin, and a beautiful daughter termed Rukmini. Krishna fell in love
with the latter, and solicited her in marriage: but her brother who
hated Krishna, would not assent to the espousals. At the suggestion of
Jarāsandha, and with the concurrence of his son, the powerful sovereign
Bhishmaka affianced Rukmini to Sisupāla. In order to celebrate the
nuptials, Jarāsandha and other princes, the friends of Sisupāla,
assembled in the capital of Vidharba; and Krishna, attended by
Balabhadra and many other Yādavas, also went to Kundina to witness the
wedding. When there, Hari contrived on the eve of the nuptials, to carry
off the princess, leaving Rāma and his kinsmen to sustain the weight of
his enemies. Paundraka, the illustrious Dantavakra, Viduratha, Sisupāla,
Jarāsandha, Salya, and other kings, indignant at the insult, exerted
themselves to kill Krishna, but were repelled by Balarāma and the
Yādavas. Rukmin, vowing that he would never enter Kundina again until he
had slain Kesava in fight, pursued and overtook him. In the combat that
ensued, Krishna destroyed with his discus, as if in sport the host of
Rukmin, with all its horses, and elephants, and foot, and chariots, and
overthrew him, and hurled him on the ground; and would have put him to
death, but was withheld by the entreaties of Rukmini. "He is my only
brother," she exclaimed, "and must not be slain by thee; restrain your
wrath, O divine Lord, and give me my brother in charity".

Thus addressed by her, Krishna, whom no acts affect, spared Rukmin; and
he (in pursuance of his vow) founded the city Bhojakata, and ever
afterwards dwelt therein. After the defeat of Rukmin, Krishna married
Rukmini in due form, having first made her his own by the Rākshasa
ritual. She bore him the gallant Pradyumna, a portion of the deity of
love. The demon Sambara carried him off, but he slew the demon.


Maitreya saidr—How, Muni, happened it that the hero Pradyumna was
carried away by Sambara? And in what manner was the mighty Sambara
killed by Pradyumna?

Parāçara said:—When Pradyumna was but six days old, he was stolen from
the lying-in chamber by Sambara, terrible as death; for the demon
foreknew that Pradyumna, if he lived, would be his destroyer. Taking
away the boy, Sambara cast him into the ocean, swarming with monsters,
into whirlpool of roaring waves, the haunt of the huge creatures of the
deep. A large fish swallowed the child, but he died not, and was born
anew from its belly: for that fish, and others, was caught by the
fishermen, and delivered by them to the great Asura Sambara. His wife
Māyādevi, the mistress of the household, lorded over the cooks. And she
espied, when the fish was cut open, a beautiful child looking like a new
shoot of tree of love. When struck with curiosity she was asking "Who is
this child? How has it come into the belly of the fish?" Nārada came and
said to her:—"This is the son of Krishna who creates and destroys the
universe. He was stolen away from the nursery room by Samvara. He was
devoured by the fish when thrown into the ocean; now he has come under
thy control; do thou, O beautiful damsel, tenderly rear this jewel of

Parāçara said:—Thus addressed by Nārada, she took charge of the child
and brought it up from boyhood being attracted by the beauty of his
person. O great saint, when the boy attained to youth, Māyāvati, moving
like a she-elephant, began to cherish desire for him. And fixing her
mind and eyes upon the high-minded Pradyumna, Māyāvati, blinded with
lust, gave unto him all her magic powers, Beholding that lotus-eyed
damsel thus passionately attached unto him, Krishna's son said to
her:—"Why dost thou indulge in feelings which do not become a mother?"
She said to him:—"Thou art not my son; thou art the son of the
illustrious Vishnu; Kāla Samvara stole thee and threw thee into the
ocean; thou wast swallowed by a fish but rescued by me from its belly
cut open. O lord thy loving mother is still weeping for thee".

Parāçara said;—Hearing those words Pradyumna invited Samvara for battle.
And worked up with ire that highly powerful one fought with him. In the
battle the son of Mādhava killed the entire host of Samvara. Having
seven times baffled the delusions and mastered them in the eighth he
destroyed that demon Samvara. And having got into the welkin with her he
proceeded to his father's house. And beholding him descend into the
inner apartment with Māyāvati, Krishna's wives considered him as Krishna
himself. The highly beautiful Rukmini with her eyes full of tears
lovingly said:—"Blessed is the woman who has got such a son in the bloom
of youth. Had he been alive my own son Pradyumna would have been his
age. Who is the fortunate mother adorned by thee? From the affection I
feel for thee and from thy appearance I think thou art assuredly the son
of Hari".

Parāçara said:—At this time Krishna arrived there with Nārada; and the
latter delightedly said to Rukmini. "This is thy own son who has come
here after slaying Sambara, by whom he was carried away when a child
from the lying-in chamber. This is the pious Māyāvati, his spouse and
not the wife of Samvara. Hear the reason; when Manmatha had perished,
the goddess of beauty, being desirous of effecting his revival,
fascinated Samvara by the charms of her delusive form. And she, having
eyes rolling with inebriation, exhibited herself to him in various
illusory enjoyments. This thy son is the incarnation of Kama and this
his spouse is the goddess Rati. Do not doubt the least that she is your

Thereupon Rukmini and Keshava were worked up with delight and the whole
city resounded with the exclamations of praise. And beholding Rukmini
regain a son who bad been long lost all the people of Dwārakā were


Parāçara said:—Rukmini bore Krishna these other sons Charudeshna,
Sudeshna, Charudeha, Sushena, Charugupta, Bhadracharu, Charuvinda,
Sucharu and the very powerful Charu; also one daughter Charumati.
Krishna had seven other beautiful wives:-Kālindi, Mitravrindā, the
virtuous Nāgnajiti, the queen Jāmbavati; Rohini, of beautiful form; the
amiable and excellent daughter of the king of Madra, Mādrí; Satyabhāmā,
the daughter of Satrujit; and Lakshmanā, of lovely smiles. Besides
these, he had sixteen thousand other wives. The highly powerful
Pradyumna took the beautiful daughter of Rukmin at her public choice of
a husband and she too accepted Hari's son. Of her was born a highly
powerful son Aniruddha, fierce in fight on account of prowess and the
subduer of enemies. Keshava demanded in marriage the grand daughter of
Rukmin and though the latter was inimical to Krishna he gave him his
grand daughter. On the occasion of his nuptials Rāma and other Yādavas
accompanied Krishna to Bhojakata, the city of Rukmin. After the wedding
had been finished several of the kings headed by him of Kalinga said to
Rukmin "Although the wielder of plough-share is ignorant of dice he has
got a great passion for it; why may we not fight with him and beat him
in play?"

Parāçara said:—The powerful Rukmin replied to the kings, saying "so be
it" and he engaged Balarāma at a game of dice in the palace. Balarāma
lost to Rukmin a thousand gold coins; he betted a second time and lost
another thousand to Rukmin. And the third time he staked ten thousand
Niskshas and this time also won Rukmin the foremost of those expert of
gambling, At this time the king of Kalinga laughed aloud and the weak
and vain Rukmin groaned and said:—"By me this Baladava, ignorant of
gambling, has been defeated; and blinded by a vain passion for play he
think that he understands dice". Beholding the king of Kalinga laugh
aloud and hearing the contemptuous words of Rukmin the wielder of
plough-share was worked up with ire and increased his stake to ten
millions of Niskshas Rukmi accepted the challenge and threw dice.

This time Baladeva won and cried aloud. "This stake is mine". Rukmin
cried loudly and said that he was the winner. "Tell no lies Bala," cited
he. "It is true that the stake is yours, but I did not agree to it;
although this be won by you, yet still I am the winner".

Thereupon a deep voice was heard in the welkin increasing the more the
ire of the high-minded Baladeva, saying:—"Baladeva has justly won the
whole amount; Rukmin speaks lies; although he did not accept the pledge
in words he did so by his acts". Thus inflamed and having his eyes
reddened with rage, Balarāma got up and struck Rukmin with the board on
which the game was played and slew him. And holding the trembling king
of Kalinga, Bala forcibly knocked out the teeth which he had shown when
he laughed. And uprooting a huge golden column he, enraged, killed
therewith all those princes who had assisted his adversaries. Thereupon,
O twice-born one, Bala being enraged, the whole circle cried out with
fear and fled on all sides from his terror. When the slayer of Madhu
heard that Rukmin had been slain by Bala he could not speak anything,
being afraid of Rukmin on one hand and Bala on the other. Thereupon
taking with him the newly wedded Aniruddha and the Yadu tribe he
returned to Dwārakā.


Parāçara said:—Thereupon Sakra, the lord of the three worlds, came
mounted on his infuriated elephant Airāvata to visit Sauri at Dwārakā.
Having entered Dwārakā and been welcomed by Hari he communicated unto
him the actions of the demon Naraka. (He said) "O slayer of Madhu, by
thee, the lord of the deities, although situated in mortal condition,
all afflictions have been soothed; thou hast slain Arishta, Dhenuka,
Chānura, Mushtika, Kesin,—all the demons who were slaying the ascetics.
Kansa, Kavalayapida and child-destroying Putanā, as well as other
oppressors of the world have all been slain by thee. The three worlds
being protected by thy valour and wisdom, the deities, obtaining the
share of sacrifices undertaken by the devout, enjoy satisfaction. Hear,
O Janārddana, for why I have come to thee and try to remedy it. O slayer
of enemies, residing in the city of Pragyotish, the demon Naraka, son of
Bhumi, has been inflicting the creatures. Carrying off the maidens of
the celestials, saints, demons and kings he shuts them up in his own
palace. He has carried away the umbrella of Varuna, always producing
water, the jewel mountain crest of Mandara, and the nectar-dropping
ear-rings of my mother Aditi; and he now demands my elephant Airāvat. O
Govinda, I have thus related unto thee the oppressions of the demon
Naraka—do thou now consider what thou shouldst do in this". Having heard
this, the illustrious son of Devaki gently smiled and taking Vāsava by
the hand rose up from the excellent seat. Thereupon the lord thinking of
the eater of serpents Garuda, he immediately appeared there. And having
first placed Satyabhāmā on his back he ascended and flew to the city of
Pragyotish. Having ascended the elephant Airivat, Indra, the lord of the
celestials, set out for his city in the sight of the inhabitants of

O foremost of twice-born ones, the four sides of the city Pragyotish to
the extent of a yojana were environed by nooses made by the demon Mura,
whose edges were as sharp as razors. But throwing his discus Sudarshana
amongst them Hari sundered them into pieces. Thereupon Mura rose up but
Krishna killed him and burnt his seven thousand sons like so many moths
with the flame of the edge of his discus. Having slain Mura, Hayagriva,
and Panchajana the wise Hari soon reached the city of Pragyotish. There
ensued a dreadful conflict with Naraka's troops in which Govinda slew
thousands of demons. And the annihilator of the demon tribe cut in two
with his discus Bhumi's son Naraka who came there showering arrows and
weapons upon the celestials. The demon Naraka being slain, Earth, taking
the two ear-rings of Aditi, approached the lord of the world and said "O
lord, when I was upheld by thee in the shape of a boar, then this my son
was engendered by thy contact. Thou didst confer this son upon me and
thou hast slain him now. Do thou now take this pair of ear-rings and
protect his progeny. Thou, O lord, whose aspect is ever pleasing, hast
incarnated on this sphere a portion of thyself to lighten my burden.
Thou art the eternal creator, preserver and destroyer of the universe,
the origin of all the worlds and identical with the universe; how can we
worthily chant thy glories? Thou art the pervader and that which is
pervaded, the act, the agent and the effect—thou art the soul of all
creatures and how can we sufficiently chant thy glories? Thou art the
great soul—the sentient and living soul of all beings and
imperishable—there is no praise worthy of thee—how can we chant thy
glories? Have pity, O universal soul and forgive the iniquities which
Naraka has committed. Verily it is for his purification that he hath
been killed by thee".

Parāçara said Having replied to the Earth saying "so be it" the lord,
who is the substance of all creatures, took various jewels from Naraka's
abode. Having entered the female apartment the highly powerful Krishna
saw sixteen thousand and one hundred damsels. He also found in the
palace sixteen thousand huge elephants each having four tusks,
twenty-one lakhs of horses of Kāmboja and other excellent breeds. All
those Govinda sent to Dwārakā in charge of the servants of Naraka.
Thereupon he placed Varuna's umbrella and the golden mountain on
Garuda's back, And having ascended with Satyabhāmā he repaired to the
city of celestials to restore to Aditi her ear-rings.


Carrying the umbrella of Varuna, the jewel mountain and Hrishikesh with
his spouse on his back, Garuda went along lightly and sportively. When
Hari arrived at the gate of Swarga he blew his conch on which the
celestials came forward to meet him bearing respectful offerings. Having
received the homage of the celestials he proceeded to the palace of the
mother of gods whose turrets resembled the white clouds and found Aditi
there. Thereupon having bowed unto her along with the king of celestials
he conferred the pair of ear-rings upon her and related unto her the
destruction of the demon Naraka. Well-pleased, Aditi, the mother of Gods
with her thoughts wholly devoted unto Hari, the protector of the
universe, began to chant his glories:—"Salutation unto thee, O thou
having lotus eyes, who removest all fear of the devotees, who art
eternal, the soul of all creatures, the creator of all and identical
with all. Thou art at one with the three qualities and the creator of
mind, intellect and senses. Thou art beyond the three qualities, exempt
from contraries, pure, residing in the hearts of all; void of colour,
extension and every transient modification and uninfluenced by the
changes of birth and death and sleep and waking. Thou art evening, night
and day, earth, sky, air, water and fire, mind, intellect and
individuality. Thou art the agent of creation, preservation and
destruction and the lord over the agent—thou appearest in various forms
which are Brahmā, Vishnu and Siva—and thou art the master of all these
thy forms. Thou art Gods, Yakshas, Daityas, Rākshasas, Sidhas, Pannagas,
Kushmandas, Pisāchas, Gandharvas, men, animals, deer, elephants,
reptiles, trees, shrubs, creepers, climbers, and grasses—all things,
large, middling, and small, immense or minute; thou art all bodies
whatsoever composed of aggregated atoms. Those who are ignorant of thy
true nature cannot understand thy illusion—the fools (only) follow the
illusion and think 'this is mine'. O Lord, thy illusion is the mother of
the world—and the notions 'I am, this is mine' are but delusions. O
Lord, those men, who attentive to their duties, worship thee, obtain
salvation after traversing these illusions. Brahmā and all the
celestials, men and animals are alike enshrouded by the thick darkness
of delusion in the abyss of the illusions of Vishnu. This is also thy
delusion, O lord, that men having worshipped thee seek the gratification
of desires and their own preservation. That people having worshipped
thee desire for the total annihilation of themselves is but the outcome
of thy delusion. That I have worshipped thee for son and the destruction
of the enemies and not for salvation is also the result of thy
fascination. It is the fruit of the iniquitous acts of the impious (to
pray for vain things to one who is able to give better things) like
asking for a rag to cover nakedness from the tree that confers whatever
is solicited from it. Be propitious with me, O thou imperishable, who
hast deceived the whole universe with thy delusion. O lord of creatures,
do thou remove this ignorance of mine—the notion that I am wise;
salutation unto thee, the holder of discus; salutation unto thee the
wielder of bow; salutation unto thee, the holder of a club; salutation
unto thee, the holder of a conch. O god, I do perceive thy perceptible
form—but cannot perceive thy real form; do thou therefore be propitious
with me".

Parāçara said:—The mother of gods, having thus chanted the glories of
Vishnu, he smiling said:—"Thou art our mother, O goddess, be thou
propitious and confer upon me a boon".

Aditi said:—"So be it, ever as thou wilt; O foremost of men, as long as
shalt thou dwell in the land of mortals thou shalt be invincible by
celestials and demons". Thereupon Satyabhāmā, along with Sachi, bowed
unto Aditi again and again and said, "Be thou pleased". Whereto Aditi
replied saying:—"Fair-browed dame, by my favour thou shalt never
experience decrepitude or loss of beauty; thou shalt be of a blameless
person and asylum of all graces".

Parāçara said:—Being commanded by Aditi, the lord of the celestials duly
honored Janārddana. Thereupon Krishna, accompanied by Satyabhāmā beheld
Nandana and other pleasant gardens of the celestials. There Kesava, the
lord of the universe and the slayer of Kesi, saw Pārijāta, the favourite
of Sachi, having golden bark, young sprouting leaves of a copper colour
and bearing numerous fragrant clusters of flowers, and which was
produced when the ocean was churned for ambrosia. Beholding that tree, O
foremost of twice-born ones, Satyabhāmā said to Govinda. "Why should not
this celestial tree be taken to Dwārakā. If what you always say is true
that I am really dear to you then take this tree from here for the
gardens of my dwelling. O Krishna, you always say 'O Satya, neither
Rukmini nor Jāmbavati is beloved unto me like thee,' if this is true and
not mere flattery then let this Pārijāta be the ornament of my dwelling.
Wearing the flowers of this tree in the braids of my hair I wish to
appear graceful amidst my fellow queens".

Parāçara said:—Thus requested by Satyabhāmā Hari, smiled and taking the
Pārijāta plant placed it upon Garuda.

The guards said: "O Govinda, this tree belongs to Sachi, the queen of
the king of celestials; it is not becoming for thee to remove it. When
the ocean was churned by the celestials this tree was produced for the
purpose of providing Sachi with flowery ornaments; thou shalt not go
with it uncatched. This is the property of one whose countenance the
king of the celestials delights to look; it is out of ignorance that
thou dost attempt to take it—taking this no one shall be suffered to
depart in peace. Forsooth shall the celestial chief punish this
audacity; and when he shall take up his thunderbolt all the deities
shall follow him. O thou imperishable, it is not proper for thee, to
enter into conflict with all the divinities. The wise never undertake a
work that terminates fatally". The guards having said this Satyabhāmā
was greatly worked up with ire and said: "How does this Pārijāta belong
to Sachi? Who is Sakra, the lord of the celestials? If this had been
produced when the ocean was churned by the celestials then all have
equal right over it—why shall Vāsava alone possess it? O ye warders of
the garden, ambrosia, the moon and Lakshmi are the common properties of
all; so is this Pārijāta tree. If Sachi has taken possession of it
forcibly by the valour of her husband, do ye go and communicate unto her
that Satyabhāmā is taking it away and let not Sachi forgive her. Do ye
soon go to her and according to my instructions tell her that Satyabhāmā
has given vent to these proud words. 'If thou art dear unto thy husband,
if he is under thine control then let him take back the Pārijāta tree
which my husband is taking away. I know thy husband Sakra is the master
of the three worlds. Still being a mortal I take away this Panjata

Parāçara said:—Being thus accosted, the warders went to Sachi and
communicated unto her everything duly. And Sachi excited the lord of the
three worlds. Thereupon accompanied by the army of the celestials,
Indra, issued out to fight with Hari, in defence of the Pārijāta tree.
The celestials were armed with clubs, swords, maces and darts and Indra
wielded the thunderbolt. As soon as Govinda beheld the king of the
celestials proceeding against him mounted on his elephant attended by
the immortals he blew his shell so that all regions were filled with the
sound thereof and he smilingly showered myriads of shafts upon his
assailants. When the celestials saw that all the directions and
atmosphere were overspread with arrows they also in return hurled
numberless missiles. But all these, the slayer of Madhu, and the lord of
the three worlds, sundered easily into a thousand pieces with his
shafts. Garuda, the devourer of serpents, laid hold of the noose of the
king of seas and tore it to pieces with his beak as if it had been a
little snake. Devaki's son hurled his mace at the club of Yama and cast
it broken upon the ground; he sundered in pieces the litter of the lord
of riches with his discus; his eye-looks overclouded the radiance of the
sun; he cut Agni into a hundred parts with his shafts and scattered the
Vasus through the realms of the space; he sundered with his discus the
points of the tridents of the Rudras and cast themselves upon the earth;
and with the arrows shot from his bow he scattered the Sadhyas, Viswas,
Maruts and Gandharvas through the sky, like fleeces of cotton from the
pods of the Simal tree. Garuda also diligently plied his beak and wings
and bit and bruised and scratched the celestials who opposed his lord.
Like unto two heavy clouds showering raindrops the king of the
celestials and the slayer of Madhu overpowered each other with
numberless arrows. Garuda fought with Airavata in that conflict and
Janārddana engaged with his discus with all the celestials. When all
other weapons had been sundered into pieces Indra stood armed with his
thunderbolt and Krishna with the discus Sudarshana. Beholding them thus
ready for fight all the inhabitants of the three worlds, cried aloud
"Alas! Alas!" In vain did Indra hurl his bolt for Hari caught and
arrested it. He however, did not hurl his discus, but only called out to
Indra to stay. Beholding Indra disarmed and his elephant disabled by
Garuda and the deity about to fly away Satyabhāmā said to him:—"O king
of three worlds, it becomes not the husband of Sachi to run away. She
will approach you adorned with Pārijāta garlands. What shalt thou do
with the kingdom of heaven when no longer thou dost behold Sachi
approach thee, like before, embellished with Pārijāta garlands? Fly not
O Sakra; you must suffer shame, take the Pārijatā; let the celestials be
no longer annoyed. Worked up with the pride of her husband Sachi has not
welcomed me to her dwelling with her respectful presents. O king of the
celestials, I am a woman and therefore of light purpose and am anxious
of my husband's fame; for this I have instituted this fight with thee. I
do not require the Pārijatā any more. Why shall we steal another's
property? What female is not inflated with the pride of her husband? But
she is proud of her beauty".

Parāçara said:—Thus addressed by her the king of the celestials turned
back and said:—"O wrathful dame, thou shouldst not afflict thy friend
with further reproaches. I am not ashamed of being defeated by him who
is the author of the creation, preservation and destruction of the
world, who is the substance of all things, and in whom the universe
exists, without beginning or middle, and from whom and by whom at one
with all things, it proceeds and will cease to be. O goddess, what
disgrace it is to any one, to be vanquished by him who is the agent of
creation, preservation and destruction? His form, though infinitely
subtle, is the parent of all worlds and is known to those only by whom
all that may be known is known; who is capable of defeating the unborn,
unconstituted, eternal lord, who has, of his own accord, descended for
the behoof of the world?"


Thus chanted by the king of the celestials, Kesava smiled and replied
gravely saying:—"Thou art, O Indra, the king of the celestials: we are
mere mortals, O king of the universe. Thou must therefore forgive me,
for the offence I have committed. Let this Pārijatā tree be taken to its
proper place. I remove it to satisfy Satya's desire. Take back also this
thy thunderbolt which thou didst hurl at me; for this is your proper
weapon—O slayer of thy enemies". Whereto Indra replied, saying:—"O lord,
thou dost beguile us in calling thyself mortal. We are endowed with
subtlety of discernment and therefore know thee as gifted with six
qualities. Whoever thou mayst be, O slayer of thine enemies, thou art
engaged in the active preservation of earth and thou removest the thorns
implanted in her bosom. O Krishna, do thou take this Pārijatā tree to
the city of Dwārakā and when thou shalt renounce this land of mortals it
shall no longer remain on earth".

Parāçara said:—Having agreed to the proposal of the king of the
celestials Hari returned to earth eulogised by attendant sages, saints
and quiristers of heaven.

When Krishna arrived over the city of Dwārakā he blew his conch and
delighted the inhabitants with the sound. Thereupon alighting from
Garuda he proceeded with Satyabhāmā to her garden, and there planted the
great Pārijāta tree the smell of which extended over the earth for three
furlongs and an approach to which enabled every one to recollect the
events of a pristine existence. And beholding their faces in that tree
the Yadavas know themselves in their (original) celestial forms. Then
Krishna took possession of wealth, elephants, horses and men which he
had recovered from Naraka and which had brought to Dwārakā by the
servants of the demon; and at an auspicious hour he married all the
maidens whom Naraka had carried off from their friends; and
simultaneously at the same time in different mansions he received the
hands the damsels. The number of the maidens was sixteen thousand and
one hundred and in so many forms did the slayer of Madhu appear, so that
every one of them thought that he had wedded her in his single person.
Hari the creator of the world and the assumer of the universal shape
lived severally in the mansion of each of these his wives.


Parāçara said:—I have enumerated to you Pradyumna and other sons
begotten on Rukmini by Krishna. Satyabhāmā bore Bhanu and Bhairika. The
sons of Rohini were Diptimat, Tamrepakshi and others; Jamvabati gave
birth to the powerful Samba and other sons. Bhadravinda and other
valiant youths were the sons of Nagnajiti. Saivya bore several sons of
whom Sangramajit was the chief. Vikra and others were begotten by Hari
on Madri. Lakshmanā gave birth to Gatravat and others; and Sruta and
others were the sons of Kālindi. Besides Krishna had sons by his other
wives, in all one hundred and eighty thousand. The eldest of the whole
was Pradyumna, the son of Rukmini; his son was Aniruddha, whose son was
Vraja; his mother was Ushā, the daughter of Bāna the grand daughter of
Bāli, whom Aniruddha won in war. On that occasion a dreadful onset
endued between Hari and Sankara in which the thousand arms of Bāna were
cut off by the discus of the former.

Maitreya said: How is it, O venerable Brahman, that a contest took
place, on account of Ushā, between Siva and Krishna? And in what manner
did Hari cut off the thousand arms of Bāna? I am stricken with curiosity
to hear this story of Hari—do thou, O venerable Sir, relate this.

Parāçara said: Having seen Pārvati dallying with her lord Sambhu, Ushā,
the daughter of Bāna, was inspired with a similar desire. The charming
Gauri, knowing the hearts of all, said to her:—"Do not grieve; you shall
have a husband". "But when will this be and who shall be my husband?"
thought Ushā within herself, on which Pārvati said:—"He who shall appear
to you, princess, in a dream, on the twelfth lunation of the light half
of Vaishāk, shall be your lord". Accordingly, in consonance with the
goddess' foretelling a youth appeared in dream to Ushā on that lunar
day, of whom she became enamoured. When she got up and no longer saw him
she was distressed with grief and not caring for modesty asked of her
companion whither he had gone. This companion and friend of the princess
was Chitralekha, the daughter of Kubandha, the minister of Bāna. She
said to Ushā "of whom do you speak?" But ashamed she did not reply.
However gaining her confidence Chitralekha heard from her everything.
And again Ushā requested her who had been informed of all, to devise
means by which she might be united with the person whom she had beheld
in dream.

Parāçara said:—Thereupon Chitralekha painted the figures of the most
eminent celestials, demons, spirits and mortals and showed them to Ushā.
Putting aside the likenesses of celestials, spirits, snake-gods and
demons, the princess selected those of mortals and amongst them the
heroes of the races of Andhaka and Vrishni. And when she found the
portraits she was bewildered by shame; then she took her eyes away with
shame from the portrait of Pradyumna. But as soon as she saw the picture
of his son, the object of her passions, she set aside all bashfulness
and with wide expanded eyes, cried aloud, "This is he! this is he!" Her
friend, who was gifted with magic power, requested her to be cheerful
and started for Dwārakā through the air.


Parāçara said:—Before this, once Bāna prayed to the three-eyed deity
saying "O lord I am humiliated by the possession of a thousand arms; let
some conflict take place in which I may make use of my arms. Without any
war what is the use of these arms; they are but a burden to me".

Sankara said:—"When this peacock banner shall be broken thou shalt have
war, the delight of the evil spirits that live on human flesh".
Thereupon pleased and bowing unto Sankara he returned to his house where
he found the standard broken which increased his joy.

At that time the foremost of Apsaras, Chitralekha, came back from
Dwārakā and by virtue of her magic powers brought Aniruddha with her.
Finding him there with Ushā, the warders of the inner apartments
reported it to the king, who immediately sent a number of his retinue to
seize the prince. But taking up an iron club the powerful youth killed
all his adversaries. Thereat Bāna ascended his chariot, proceeded
against him and tried to kill him. Finding however that Aniruddha was
not to be vanquished by power he followed the counsel of his minister
and brought his magical faculties into the conflict, by which he
succeeded in capturing the Yadu prince and binding him in serpent bonds.

When Aniruddha was found missing from Dwārāvati and the Yādavas were
inquiring of one another whither he had gone, Nārada came and
communicated unto them that he was a prisoner of Bāna having been taken
by a female by virtue of her magical abilities to Sonitpura. When they
heard that he had been taken to Sonitpura, by a damsel, conversant with
magical powers, they did not place confidence in his words. Thereupon
Krishna thought of Garuda who immediately arrived there. And mounting
upon him along with Bala and Pradyumna he started for the city of Bāna.
On their approach to the city they were opposed by the attendant spirits
of Rudra; but they were soon slain by Hari and he and his companions
entered the city. Thereupon mighty fever, an emanation of Maheshwara,
having three feet and three heads, fought desperately with the holder of
conch in defence of Bāna. Baladeva, upon whom his ashes were scattered,
was seized with burning heat and his eye-lids trembled—but he obtained
relief by clinging to the body of Krishna. Thereupon fighting with the
holder of bow, the fever, emanating from Siva, was soon driven out from
Krishna's person by the fever engendered by himself; Beholding the Saiva
fever bewildered by the strokes of the arms of Krishna, Brahmā, the
patriarch of the deities, entreated him to desist, upon which the slayer
of Madhu refrained and absorbed into himself the fever he had created.
The rival fever then went away saying to Krishna; "Those men who shall
recollect the fight between us shall be freed from febrile disease".

Thereupon Vishnu overcame and destroyed the five fires and with perfect
ease slew the Dānavas. Then the son of Bali, with the entire Daitya
army, aided by Sankara and Kartikeya fought with Krishna. A dreadful
battle ensued between Hari and Sankara. Scorched by their burning
weapons, all the regions trembled and the celestials thought for certain
that the end of the universe was at hand. With the weapon of Yawning
Krishna set Sankara agape; then the attendant demons and demi-gods
attendant upon Siva were slain on all sides, for Hara, overcome with
incessant gaping, sat down in his car and was unable to fight with
Krishna any longer, who is above the influence of any acts. The deity of
war Kartikeya, wounded in the arm by Garuda, struck by the weapons of
Pradyumna and disarmed by the shout of Hari, fled away. Beholding
Sankara disabled, the demons slain, Guha fled and Siva's attendants
destroyed, Bāna proceeded in his huge car, the steeds of which were
harnessed by Nandisha, to fight with Hari and his associates Bala and
Pradyumna. Attacking the army of Bāna, the valiant Balabhadra wounded
them in diverse ways with his shafts and put them to a shameful
confusion. And their king saw them dragged about by Rāma with his
ploughshare or beaten by him with his mace and pierced by Krishna with
his shafts; he therefore attacked Krishna and a fight took place between
them; they hurled at each other burning arrows that pierced through
their armour; but Krishna intercepted with his arrows those of Bāna and
sundered them into pieces. Bāna however wounded Kesava and the wielder
of the discus wounded Bāna; and both of them, desirous of victory and
endeavouring angrily to bring about the death of his antagonist, hurled
diverse missiles at each other. When a number of weapons had been
sundered into pieces and the weapons began to be exhausted, Krishna
determined to slay Bāna. Thereupon the destroyer of the demons took up
his discus Sudarshana shining with the radiance of a hundred suns. As he
was about to meet it the mystical goddess of Kotair, the magic lore of
the demons, stood naked before him. Beholding her before him, Krishna,
with open eyes, cast Sudarshana to cut off the arms of Bāna. The discus
lopped off successively the numberless arms of Bāna which proved useless
the missiles discharged by the celestials. When the slayer of Madhu
again took in his hand the discus, after ten thousand arms had been
sundered, for the total destruction of Bāna the destroyer of Tripura
came to know it. Beholding blood gushing out from the dissevered arms of
Bāna the husband of Umā approached Govinda and requested him to put off
his hostilities, said:—"O Krishna, the lord of the universe, I know
thee, the excellent Purusha, the supreme lord, the infinite felicity
without beginning or end and beyond all things. This sport of universal
being in which thou assumest the person of god, animals and men is a
subordinate attribute of thy energy. Be propitious, therefore O lord,
unto me. I have given Bāna assurance of safety, do not thou falsify my
words. O thou eternal, this Bāna has grown old under my protection, let
him not incur thy displeasure. I conferred a boon on this Daitya and
therefore I am begging thy forgiveness".

Being thus addressed, Govinda, dismissing his resentment against the
Asura, smilingly said to Umā's lord, the holder of trident "O Sankara,
let this Bāna, the king of demons draw his breath since thou hast
conferred a boon upon him; to honour thy words, I withhold my discus;
the assurance of safety given by thee, is also given by me. Do not
consider me as distinct from thee. The celestials, Asuras and men and
the whole universe are not distinct from us. Those who have been
possessed by ignorance consider me as separate from thee".

Having said this Krishna went to where Aniruddha was; and the snakes
that bound him were destroyed by the breath of Govinda. And placing him
along with his wife upon the celestial bird, Krishna with Pradyumna and
Rāma returned to Dwārakā.


Maiteya said:—"Having achieved a mortal form Sauri performed mighty
achievements and discomfitted Sakra and Siva and all other attendant
divinities. O great sir, do thou also describe unto me, his other
exploits by which he humiliated the prowess of the celestials; I am
desirous to hear them".

Parāçara said:—Hear with respectful attention, O Brāhman, as described
by me of the burning of Vārānashi by Krishna in the course of his
relieving the burden of the earth.

There was a king of Pundra, who was known as Vasudeva and flattered by
the ignorant people as the descended deity until he thought himself to
be the Vāsudeva who had come down upon earth. Forgetting his real
character he assumed the emblems of Vishnu and sent an ambassador to the
high-minded Krishna with this message. "Give up thy discus, O foolish
man, lay aside all my insignia, my name and the character of Vāsudeva
and come and do me homage and I shall grant thee, the means of
subsistence". Hearing those words and laughing, Janārddana said to the
messenger "Go back, messenger to Paundraka and tell him in my name 'I
shall hand over my emblem, the discus to him. Thou wilt properly
understand my meaning and consider what is to be done; for I shall come
to thy city bringing the discus with me and shall surely give it over to
thee. If thou dost command me to come I immediately obey and be with
thee tomorrow and shall not delay, and having sought thy protection I
shall so manage, O king, that I shall not have to fear anything from
thee.'" So saying he sent away the messenger to communicate these words
unto the sovereign, and summoning Garuda mounted him and started for the
city of Paundrāka.

When the king of Kāsi heard of the preparations of Kesava he sent his
army to help Paundrāka, himself bringing up the rear, and with the army
of the king of Kāsi and his own troops, the false Vasudeva marched to
meet Krishna. He beheld him at a distance standing in his car holding a
disc, a club, a mace, a scimitar and a lotus in his hands adorned with a
garland of flowers, and bearing a bow; and having his standard made of
gold, he had also the mystical mark Sribatsa on his breast; he was robed
in yellow raiment and embellished with ear rings, and a tiara. When the
god, whose emblem is Garuda, saw him, he laughed aloud and engaged in
encounter with the hostile army of cavalry and elephants fighting with
swords, scimitars, maces, tridents spears and bows. Showering upon the
enemy the arrows from his Sāranga bow and hurling at them his mace and
discus he soon destroyed both the army of Paundrāka and that of the king
of Kāsi. He then addressed the former who was foolishly wearing his
emblems saying:—"Paundrāka, you wanted me through your messenger, to
resign to you all my insignia, I now deliver them to you. Here is my
discus; here is my mace; and here is Garuda, let him mount upon thy
banner". Saying this he discharged the discus and mace by which
Paundrāka was sundered to pieces and cast on the ground; whilst the
Garuda which was on the banner of Paundrāka was destroyed by the Garuda
of Vishnu. Beholding this the people cried "Alas! alas"; but the brave
king still siding the imposture of his friend carried on the encounter
till Sauri cut off his head with his arrows and shot into the city of
Kāsi to the surprise of all the inhabitants. Having thus destroyed
Paundrāka and the king of Kāsi with all their retinue Sauri came back to
Dwārakā where he resided enjoying heavenly delights.

When the inhabitants of Kāsi beheld the head of their king shot into the
city they were much surprised and wondered how it could have been
accomplished. Having come to know that the king had been slain by
Krishna, the king's son together with the priest of the family
propitiated Sankara. Well pleased on account of being worshipped in the
sacred place Avimuktā the deity asked the prince to pray for a boon, on
which he said:—"O lord, mighty god, through thy favour, let thy mystic
spirit slay Krishna, the murderer of my father!"

"It shall be so" answered Sankara and from out of the southern fire up
sprang a vast and formidable female like flame out of fire, blazing with
ruddy light and fiery radiance streaming amidst her hair. Worked up with
ire she called upon Krishna and departed to Dwārakā. There the people
seeing her were struck with terror and fled for protection to the slayer
of Madhu the refuge all worlds. Understanding that the fiend had been
created by the son of the king of Kāsi through his worship of the deity
whose emblem is the bull, the wielder of the discus being engaged in
sport and playing at dice said to the discus "Kill this dreadful
creature whose tresses are of plaited flame". Accordingly Sudarshana,
the discus of Vishnu, attacked the fiend in no time, dreadfully covered
with fire and wearing tresses of plaited flame. Terrified at the might
of Sudarshana, the creation of Maheswara did not wait for his attack but
fled quickly followed by him with equal velocity until she arrived at
Varānashi repelled by the superior prowess of the discus of Vishnu.

The arms of the king of Kāsi and the whole number of the attendant
divinities of Siva armed with various weapons marched out to oppose the
discus. But an expert in the use of arms he consumed the whole host by
his radiance and then set fire to the city, in which the magic power of
Siva had concealed herself. Thus was Varanashi burnt with all its
princes and their followers, its inhabitants, elephants, horses and men,
treasures and granaries, houses, palaces and markets. The whole of the
city that was inaccessible to the celestials was thus covered with
flames by the discus of Hari and was totally destroyed. The discus, with
unsoothed wrath, blazing fiercely and not satisfied with the
accomplishment of so easy a task, then returned to the hands of Vishnu.


Maitreya said:—O Brahman, I have a great desire to listen to some other
exploits of Balarāma; do thou describe them unto me. You have related to
me, O reverend Sir, his dragging the Yamuna and other mighty deeds; do
thou now recount some other of his acts.

Parāçara said:—Listen O Maitreya, to the exploits accomplished by Rāma
who is the eternal, illimitable Sesha, the upholder of the earth. At the
choice of a husband by the daughter of Duryodhana, the princess was
taken away by the hero Sāmba, the son of Jāmbavati. Being pursued by
Duryodhana, Karna, Bhishma, Drona and other illustrious chiefs who were
enraged for his audacity, he was defeated and taken prisoner. When the
Yādavas heard of this event they were greatly enraged with Duryodhana
and his companions and addressed themselves to fight with them. But
Baladeva, in accents suppressed by the effects of inebriety, forbade
them and said, "I will go alone to the sons of Kuru and at my request
they will let Sāmba free". Accordingly he went to Hastināpur and took
his abode in a grove outside the town which he did not enter. When
Duryodhana and others were informed of his arrival, they sent him a cow,
a present of fruits and flowers and water. Bala received the offering in
the customary form and said to the descendants of Kuru "Ugrasena
commands you to liberate Sāmba". When Duryodhana, Karna, Bhishma, Drona
and others heard this they were worked up with ire, and Bāhlika and
other friends of the Kauravai who considered the Yadu race as having no
claims to regal dignity said to the wielder of the club. "What is this,
O Balarāma, that thou hast uttered? What Yadava shall command the chiefs
of the Kurus? If Ugrasena thus commands the Kuravas, we will take away
the white umbrella which he has usurped and which is only fit for the
kings. You should go away therefore, Balarāma; you are entitled to our
respect; but Sāmba has been guilty of an improper conduct and we shall
not let him free either at Ugrasena's commands or yours. The Kukkura and
Andhaka races might not pay the homage due to us, their superiors, but
who ever heard of a servant commanding his master? You have been
rendered arrogant by our treating you equally with seat and food; we
have committed a great mistake in neglecting the policy, for our great
friendship for you. The present that we sent you today was a sign of
personal regard, but it was not fit for us to have offered nor for yours
to have expected".

Having said this, the Kuru chiefs unanimously refused to liberate Hari's
sons and came back to their city. Moving about with intoxication and
anger caused by their insolent words, Bala struck the ground furiously
with his heel so that it burst to pieces with a loud sound that
reverberated through the regions of space. His eyes reddened with rage
and his brow curved with frowns he exclaimed. "What pride is this in
such vile and pithless creatures. The sovereignty of Kauravas as well as
our own is the work of destiny whose decree it also is that they now
disrespect or disobey the commands of Ugrasena. Indra may, as is his
right, command the celestials and Ugrasena exercises equal authority
with the lord of Sachi. Fie upon the pride that boasts a throne, the
leavings of a hundred mortals. Is not he the sovereign of earth, the
wives of whose servants adorn themselves with the blossoms of the
Pārijāta tree? Ugrasena shall be the undisputed lord of kings; for I
will not return to his capital until I have rid the world wholly of the
sons of Kuru. I will destroy Karna, Duryodhana, Drona, Bhishma, Bāhlika,
Dussāsana, Bhurisrava, Somadatta, Salya, Bhima, Arjuna, Yudhishthira,
the twins, and all the other wretched sons of Kuru with their horses,
elephants and chariots. I will liberate the hero Sāmba and carry him
along with his wife to Dwārakā where I shall again behold Ugrasena and
the rest of my kinsmen. Or commanded by the king of celestials, to
remove the burden of the earth, I will take this capital of the Kauravas
with all the sons of Kuru, and throw Hastināpur into the Bhāgirathi".

Saying this with his eyes reddened with ire, Baladeva, the wielder of
the club, plunged the blade of his ploughshare downwards beneath the
ramparts of the city, and drew them towards him. When the Kauravas
beheld Hastināpur tottering, they were much afraid, and called loudly on
Rāma, saying, "O Rāma! Rāma! hold, hold; supress your anger and have
compassion upon us. Here is Sāmba and his wife also delivered up to you.
Forgive the sins committed by us ignorant of your wondrous power".
Accordingly the Kauravas hurried out of the city and delivered Sāmba and
his wife to the mighty Balarāma, who, bowing to Bhishma, Drona and
Kripa, who pacified him, said, "I am satisfied," and desisted. The city
bears the mark of the shock even to the present day—such was the might
of Rāma proving both his strength and power. The Kauravas then, offering
homage to Sāmba and Bala, sent away the former with his wife and dowry.


Parāçara said:—Listen, O Maitreya, to another achievement accomplished
by the powerful Balarāma. The great Asura, Naraka, the enemy of the
friends of the celestials, had a friend of exceeding might in a monkey
named Dwivida, who was worked up with implacable hostility against the
celestials, and vowed to revenge on all of them the destruction of
Naraka by Krishna at the instigation of the king of the celestials, by
preventing sacrifices and bringing about the total destruction of the
world. Blinded by ignorance therefore, he interrupted all religious
practices, put down all righteous observances, and brought about the
death of living creatures; he set fire to forests, to villages and
towns; sometimes he deluged cities and villages with a downpour of rocks
or lifting up mountains in the waters he cast them into the ocean; then
placing himself in the midst of the deep, he agitated the waves until
the foaming sea rose above its confines and swept away the villages and
cities situated upon its shores. Dwivida, who was capable of assuming
shapes as he liked, enlarged his bulk to an immense proportion, and
rolling and tumbling and trampling amidst the corn-fields, he crushed
and spoiled the harvest. The whole world, disorganised by this vicious
monkey, was deprived of sacred study and religious ceremonies, and was
greatly afflicted.

Once on a time Halāyudha was drinking in the groves of Raivata along
with the illustrious Revati and other beautiful females; and the
celebrated Yadu whose glories were sung and who was pre-eminent amidst
graceful and sportive women, resembled Kuvera, the god of riches, in his
palace. In the meantime, the monkey Dwivida came there and stealing the
ploughshare and the club of Balarāma, grinned at and mocked him, and
laughed at the women and threw over and broke the cups filled with wine.
Enraged at this, Balarāma threatened the monkey; but the latter
disregarded his threats and chattering noise. Thereupon Balarāma started
up and seized his club in anger, and the monkey laid hold of a large
rock which he hurled at the hero. And casting his club at it as it
approached him, Bala broke it into a thousand pieces, which together
with the club, fell upon the ground. Beholding the club thus fallen, the
monkey sprang over it and struck the Yādava violently on the breast with
his paws. Bala returned it with a blow of his fist upon the fore-head of
Dwivida which felled him, vomiting blood and lifeless to the earth. The
crest of the mountain on which he fell was sundered into a hundred
pieces by the weight of his body, as if the Thunderer had shivered it
with his thunder-bolt. The celestials threw down a shower of flowers
upon Rāma and approached him and praised him for the glorious feat he
had performed.

"Well has the world been freed" said they "by thy prowess, O hero, of
his vile ape, who was the enemy of the celestials". Then well pleased,
they and their attendant spirits returned to heaven. Many such
inimitable deeds were performed by the illustrious Baladeva, the
impersonation of Sesha, the supporter of the earth.


In this way, Krishna, aided by Baladeva, destroyed, for the behoof of
the earth, demons and iniquitous kings, and along with Phalguna also did
he relieve earth of her burden by the death of seven Akshauhini hosts.
Having thus relieved the earth of her load and destroyed many impious
kings, he exterminated, by the plea of an imprecation denounced by
Brāhmanas, his own Yādava race. Thereupon quitting Dwārakā and
renouncing his mortal frame, the self-born with all his emanations
re-entered his own sphere of Vishnu.

Maitreya said:—Tell me how Janārddana brought about the extermination of
his own family under the pretext of a Brāminical curse and in what
manner did he renounce his human body.

Parāçara said;—At the holy place of Pindarika, Viswāmitra, Kanwa and the
great sage, Nārada, were seen by some boys of the Yadu family. Inflated
with their youths and influenced by predestined results, they dressed
and adorned Sāmba, the son of Jāmbavati, as a female and taking her to
the sages, they addressed them with usual reverence, saying:—"What child
will this female, the wife of Babru, who is anxious to have a son, give
birth to?" The sages, who were gifted with divine wisdom, enraged at
this insult, said:—"She will give birth to a club that will exterminate
the entire Yādava race".

Thus addressed by the sages, the boys went to Ugrasena and related to
him what had happened; and after sometime, as foretold, a club was
produced from the belly of Sāmba. Ugrasena had the club, which was made
of iron, ground to dust and thrown into the sea, and particles of the
dust there became rushes, There was one part of the iron club which was
like the blade of a lance and which the Andhakas could not break; this
when thrown into the sea was swallowed by a fish; the fish was caught,
the iron spike was extracted from its belly, and was taken by a hunter
named Jāra. The all-wise and illustrious slayer of Madhu did not think
it proper to counteract the predestination of fate.

In the interval an emissarry despatched by the celestials came to
Krishna and said to him in private:—"I am sent to thee, O lord, by the
celestials; and do thou hear what Indra together with the Viswas,
Maruts, Adityas, Sādhyas and Rudras respectfully represent. More than a
century has gone by since thou in compliance with the request of the
celestials, descended upon earth for the purpose of relieving it of its
load. The demons have been destroyed and the burden of earth has been
removed; now let the immortals once again see their king in heaven. More
than a hundred years have passed, and if thou dost wish, do thou return
to heaven. This is the prayer of the celestials. And if this be not thy
will, do thou remain here as long as it may be desirable to thy
dependants". Whereto Krishna replied, "I am well aware of all thou hast
said. The earth is not relieved of her load until the Yādavas are
extirpated. I shall also speedily bring it about in my descent, and it
shall take place in seven nights. Having restored the land of Dwārakā to
the ocean and destroyed the race of Yadu, I shall proceed to the region
of the celestials. Inform the celestials that having renounced my mortal
frame and been accompanied by Sankarshana, I will then return to them.
The tyrants that oppressed the earth, Jarāsandha and the rest, have been
slain and a youth even of the race of Yadu is so less than they an
incumbrance. Having removed this huge weight of the earth, I will
proceed to the mansions of the celestials. Say this to them".

Parāçara said:—O Maitreya, being thus addressed by Vāsudeva, the
messenger of the celestials bowed and took his heavenly course to the
king of the deities. The illustrious Krishna too now espied signs and
portents both on earth and in heaven prognosticating day and night the
destruction of Dwārakā. Beholding those evil omens, he said to the
Yādavas; "Behold these dreadful portents; let us hasten to Prabhāsa to
avert them". When he had thus said to the eminent Yādavas, the
illustrious Uddhava saluted and said to him: "Tell me, O lord, what it
is proper that I should do, for it seems to me that thou wilt destroy
all this race. The signs that are manifest declare nothing less than the
annihilation of the race". Then Krishna replied:—"Do thou, by my favour
proceed, this celestial course, to the holy place Badrikāsrama in the
Gandhamādana mountain, the shrine of Nara Nārāyana; and on that spot
sanctified by them, thou, meditating upon me, shalt obtain perfection
through my favour. Having extirpated this Yadu race, I shall proceed to
Baikuntha; and after I have quilted Dwārakā; the ocean shall inundate

Parāçara said:—Being thus addressed by him and commanded by Kesava,
Uddhava proceeded to the holy shrine of Nara Nārāyana. And the Yādavas,
with Krishna, Balarāma and others, having ascended swift-coursing cars,
proceeded to Prabhāsa. Having reached Prabhāsa, the Kukkuras and
Andhakas bathed there and, being excited by Krishna, indulged in liquor.
As they drank, the destructive fire of dissension was engendered amongst
them by mutual collision and fed with the fuel of abuse. Worked up with
ire by the divine influence, they attacked one another with missile
weapons, and when these were finished, they had recourse to the rushes
growing nigh. The rushes in their hands became like thunder-bolts, and
they assailed one another with them. Pradyumna, Syāmba, Kritavarman,
Satyaki, Aniruddha, Prithu, Vipathu, Charuvannan, Charuka, Akrura, and
many others, struck one another with the rushes, which became hard like
thunder-bolts. Thereupon Krishna arriving there prevented them: but they
thought that he was taking part with each severally and continued the

Thereupon, enraged, Krishna took up a handful of rushes to destroy them,
which became a club of iron; and with this he killed many of the
murderous Yādavas, whilst others fighting fiercely destroyed one
another. At this time in the very presence of Krishna's charioteer, his
swift steeds carried off his Jaitra car and entered into the sea. The
discus, the club, the bow, the quiver, the shell and the sword of
Kesava, having circumambulated their master, flew along the path of the
sun. In a short time there was not a single Yādava left alive save the
mighty Krishna and Dāruka. Going towards Rāma, who was sitting at the
root of a tree, they saw a huge serpent coming out of his mouth. Having
issued out of his mouth, the mighty snake proceeded towards the ocean
hymned by saints and other great snakes. Bringing an offering of
respect, the ocean came to him and then the majestic being worshipped of
all the attendant snakes, entered into the waters of the deep. Beholding
the departure of the spirit of Baladeva, Kesava said to Dāruka—"Do thou
go to Vasudeva and Ugrasena and communicate unto him this. Go and inform
them of the departure of Balabhadra, and the destruction of the Yādava
race, and also that I shall engage in religious meditation and renounce
my body. Do thou also inform Ahuka and the inhabitants of Dwārakā that
their city shall be inundated by the ocean. And do ye await the arrival
of Arjuna at Dwārakā. When Arjuna, the descendant of Pāndu, shall issue
out of the city, none of you should wait there but go whither the
descendant of Kuru shall repair. Do thou also go to the son of Kunti and
tell him that he may at my request protect my family according to his
might. Then go to Hastināpur with Arjuna and all the inhabitants of
Dwārakā and let Vajra be installed king over the race of Yadu".

Parāçara said:—Thus instructed and having bowed unto and circumambulated
Krishna again and again, Dāruka departed as he had been desired; and
having conducted Arjuna to Dwārāvati, the intelligent servant of Krishna
established Vajra as king. Thereupon having concentrated in himself that
supreme spirit which is identical with Vāsudeva, the divine Govinda was
identified with all beings. Respecting the words of the Brāhmana, the
curse of Durvāsas, the illustrious Krishna sat engaged in meditation,
placing his foot upon his knee. Then there came a hunter named Jāra,
whose arrow was tipped with a blade made of the iron club, which had not
been reduced to powder; and espying from a distance the foot of Krishna,
he mistook it for a part of a deer, and shooting his arrow, lodged it in
the sole. Approaching his mark, he saw the four-armed king and falling
at his feet, repeatedly besought his forgiveness, exclaming, "I have
done this deed unknowingly, thinking I was aiming at a deer. Have pity
on me who am consumed by my crime; for thou art able to consume me".
Thereupon Bhagavān said: "Thou needst not have the least fear, hunter;
by my favour, thou shall repair to the region of the celestials". As
soon as Krishna had said this, the celestial car arrived there,
ascending which the hunter repaired to the region of the celestials.

Thereupon the divine Krishna having united himself with his own pure,
spiritual, inexhaustible, inconceivable, unborn, undecaying,
imperishable, and universal spirit, which is one Vāsudeva, renounced his
mortal frame and his connection with the three qualities.


Parāçara said:—Having found the bodies of Krishna and Rāma, Arjuna
performed for them and the rest of the slain the obsequial rites. The
eight queens of Krishna, who have been named with Rukmini at the head,
embraced Hari and entered the funeral fire. O foremost of the pious,
embracing the corpse of Rāma, Revati too entered fire which was cool to
her happy heart in contract with her lord. Thereupon hearing all this
Ugrasena and Vasudeva with Devaki and Rohini entered fire. Having
performed duly the obsequious rites of the Yadavas, Arjuna, with the
inhabitants of Dwārakā and Vajra, issued out of the city. And Kunti's
son proceeded slowly with thousands of Krishna's wives and the residents
of Dwārakā. With the departure of Krishna from the land of mortals both
the Sudharman palace and the Pārijāta tree proceeded to heaven; and on
the same day that Hari departed from the earth the dark-bodied Kali age
set in. The ocean rose and inundated the whole of Dwārakā, except only
the dwelling of the deity of the race of Yadu. The sea has not been able
to wash away that temple and there even up to the present day Kesava
constantly resides; whoever visits that holy shrine where Krishna
pursued his sports is freed from sins.

O foremost of ascetics, one day while proceeding, Arjuna, the son of
Pritha, halted the people he had brought from Dwārakā in the Panchanada
country; in a rich and fertile spot; the desires of the neighbouring
robbers were excited When they saw a number of widowed females and
immense riches in the possession of Arjuna alone. Worked up with their
cupidity they assembled their villainous herds and said to them:—"This
Arjuna, alone with his bow, is passing amongst us having immense riches
and numberless women with him, whose husbands have been slain; cursed is
thy strength therefore. His pride hath been increased by the death of
Bhishma Drona, Jayadratha, Karna and others; he is not cognisant of the
prowess of the simple villagers. Up, up, take your long thick staves;
this stupid fellow hates us. Why should we not lift up our arms?" Saying
this they rushed armed with cudgels and clods of earth, upon the people
who were without their lord. Arjuna met them and said to them in
contempt: "Go away, O ye wretches, ignorant of what is right, if you do
not wish to die". But they neglected his threats seized his treasures
and women, the wives of Viswaksena.

Thereupon Arjuna began to brace his celestial bow Gāndiva, irresistible
in encounter, but it was in vain, for in spite of his efforts to lighten
it, it continued flaccid; neither could he recollect the incantation of
superhuman weapons. Losing all patience he discharged, as best as he
could, his arrows upon the foes, but they merely scratched the skin. The
shafts that were given him by Agni for certain destruction, were
themselves destroyed and proved fatal to Arjuna in his encounter with
herdsmen. Thereupon he tried to recall the prowess of Krishna by the
strength whereof his shafts had slain many a mighty king; but he tried
in vain, for they were either put aside by peasants or they flew at
random wide of their marks. His arrows being all exhausted he beat the
robbers with the horn of his bow. They laughed at his blows and in the
very sight of Arjuna the barbarians carried off all the women of the
Vrishni and Andhaka tribes and went their way. Thereupon Jishnu was
greatly sorry, and lamented bitterly saying "Alas! Alas! I am deserted
by my lord". And immediately the bow, the heavenly arms, his car and
steeds perished entirely like a donation to an unlearned Brahmin. "Alas!
how powerful is the destiny" said he "deprived of my illustrious friend
I have been defeated by the base. These two arms are mine; mine is this
fist, this is my place; I am Arjuna, but without that righteous help all
these are pithless. The bravery of Arjuna, the strength of Bhima was all
his work; without him I am defeated by peasants; it cannot be from any
other cause". Saying this, Arjuna went to the city of Mathurā and there
installed the Yādava prince Vajra as a king. There he saw Vyāsa who was
living in a forest and he approached the sage and saluted him
respectfully. The ascetic observed him for some time as he lay prostrate
at his feet and said to him. "How is it that I see you shorn of lustre?
Have you been guilty of an illicit intercourse with a woman or
Brahmincide? Or have you suffered any grievous disappointment that you
are so dejected. Have your prayers for offspring or other good gifts
proved fruitless? Or have you indulged improper passions that your
lustre has been clouded? Or have you devoured the meal given to
Brahmanas? Arjuna, say, have you seized upon the property of the poor?
Has the wind of a winnowing basket lighted upon you? Or has an evil eye
gazed upon you that you look so miserable. Have you been touched by the
water of a finger nail? Or has the water of a water-jar sprinkled you?
Or, what is most probably the case, have you been beaten by your
inferiors in battle?"

Having sighed deeply Arjuna described to Vyāsa all the circumstances of
his defeat, and said:—"Hari who was our strength, our heroism, our
might, our prowess, our prosperity and brightness, has left us and
departed. Deprived of our illustrious friend who was ever kindly
speaking we have become as feeble as if made of straw. Excellent
Purusha, he, who was the living vigour of my weapon, my arrow, my bow,
has departed. When he looked upon us, fortune, fame, wealth and dignity
crowded us; but Govinda has departed from our midst. That Krishna has
left earth by whose power Bhishma, Drona, the king of Anga, Duryodhana
and the rest were slain. Not I alone but earth has grown old, miserable
and lustreless in the absence of the holder of the discus. Krishna,
through devotion to whom Bhishma and other powerful men perished like
moths in the flame of my valour, has departed and I am now vanquished by
cow-herds. The bow Gāndiva, that was celebrated all over the
three-worlds, has been foiled, on account of his departure, by the
sticks of peasants. The numberless women, over whom I was lord, have
been carried off from me by thieves armed only with cudgels; the whole
household of Krishna, O Krishna, has been forcibly carried off by
peasants, who with their staves have put my strength to shame. I do not
wonder that I am shorn of my lustre; it is a marvel that I live. Surely
grandsire, I am so shameless that I survive the stain of indignity
inflicted by the vile".

Vaysa replied to Arjuna and said, "Think no more my son of the
indignity; it does not behold you to grieve. Know that time subjects all
beings to similar vicissitude: Time brings out the production and
dissolution of all creatures. All that exists is founded on time. Know
this, Arjuna, and preserve thy fortitude. Rivers, oceans, mountains, the
entire earths, celestials, men, animals, trees, are all created and will
all be destroyed by time. Be thou sober, knowing that all that is the
effect of time. These mighty works of Krishna, whatever they have been,
have been performed to relieve earth of her load; for this he has come
down. Oppressed by her load earth has had recourse to the assembly of
the celestials and Janārddana, who is identical with time, has descended
on that account. This object has now been accomplished: all the kings of
the earth have been destroyed; no more remained for him to accomplish.
Therefore the lord has departed whither he pleased, his ends being all
fulfilled. At the period of creation the god of gods creates; in that of
duration he preserves, at the end of all he is the powerful destroyer.
Now all is done. Therefore O Arjuna, be not pained by thy defeat; the
power of mortals is the gift of time. Bhishma, Karna and other kings
have been slain by this alone; this was the work of time; and why should
not therefore thy defeat by those inferior to thee occur? In the same
manner as through thy devotion to Vishnu these were overthrown by thee,
so has thy discomfiture by cursed thieves been brought about by time.
That divinity, assuming various shapes, preserves the world; and in the
end the lord of creatures destroys it. O son of Kunti, on the occasion
of thy good fortune, the illustrious Janārddana was thy help; in thy
decline thy enemies have been favoured by Kesava. Who will now believe,
that thou didst alone defeat Bhishma and other Kauravas. Who would
believe peasants have defeated thee? Know it for certain, O son of
Pritha, that it is but the sport of the Universal Hari that the Kauravas
have been slain by thee and thou hast been vanquished by herdsmen. As
regards the women for whom thou dost grieve and who have been carried
off by the thieves, hear from me an ancient story that will explain why
this has happened.

"In ancient time, a Brāhman, named Ashtāvakra, was pursuing his
religious penances, standing in water and meditating on the eternal
spirit for many years. On account of the overthrow of the Asuras there
was a great festival on the summit of Meru; on their way to which
Rambhā, Tilottamā and hundreds of other beautiful nymphs praised and
hymned him for his devotions. They bowed unto him and eulogised him when
he was immersed in water up to his throat, his hair twisted in a braid.
They sang in honour of him whatever they thought would be agreeable to
that most eminent of Brāhmanas. Ashtāvakra at last said to them:—'I am
well pleased with you, illustrious damsels; ask of me whatever you wish
and I will give it however difficult it may be of attainment'. Thereupon
all these nymphs, Rambhā, Tillottamā and others mentioned in the Vedas,
replied:—'It is enough for us that thou art pleased, what else need we
say, O Brāhman?' But some amongst them said:—'If you are indeed pleased
with us, O illustrious sire, thou grant us a husband, the best of men
and sovereign of Brāhmanas'. Thereupon saying 'so be it,' Ashtāvakra
came up from the waters. When the nymphs observed him coming out of the
water and saw that he was very ugly and crooked in eight places they
could not restrain their merriment and laughed aloud. The Muni was very
angry and imprecated them with a curse, saying 'Since you have been so
impertinent as to laugh at my deformity, I denounce upon you this curse;
through the favour I have shown unto you, you shall obtain the first of
males for your husband; and on account of my curse, you shall afterwards
fall into the hands of thieves'. When the nymphs heard this imprecation
they tried to appease the Muni, and they so far succeeded that he told
them that they should finally go to the region of the celestials. It is
on account of the curse of the ascetic Ashtāvakra that these women, who
were the wives of Kesava, have fallen into the hands of the barbarians;
and there is nothing for you, Arjuna to regret it in the least. All this
destruction has been brought about by the lord of all, and your end is
also near at hand, since he has withdrawn from your strength, splendour,
valour and pre-eminence. Death is the doom of every one who is born;
fall is the end of exhaltation; union terminates in separation and
growth tends only to decay. Knowing all this, wise men are neither
subject to grief nor joy; and those who know these ways are equally free
from pleasure or joy. Do you therefore, most excellent prince,
understand this truth and along with your brothers relinquish everything
and repair to the holy forest. Go now and say from me to Yudhishthira
that he, to-morrow with his brethren, will tread the path of heroes".

Thus instructed by Vyāsa, Arjuna went and described to the other sons of
Pritha all that he had seen, experienced and heard. When he had related
unto them the message of Vyāsa, the sons of Pandu placed Pārikshit on
the throne and went to the forest.

I have thus described to you, O Maitreya, in detail the actions of
Vāsudeva when he was born in the race of Yadu.




Maitreya said:—"Thou hast described unto me in detail, O illustrious
sage, the creation of the universe, the genealogies of the Patriarchs,
the duration of the Manwantaras and the dynasties of the princes. I am
willing to hear from you an account of the dissolution of the universe,
the time of total destruction and that which occurs at the expiration of
a Kalpa".

Parāçara said:—Hear from me exactly, O Maitreya, the circumstances
attending the dissolution of the world either at the expiration of a
Kalpa or that which occurs at the close of the life of Brahmā. A month
of men constitutes a day and night of the progenitors; a year of men is
a day and night of the celestials. Twice a thousand aggregates of the
four ages is a day and night of Brahmhā. The four ages are the Krita,
Treta, Dwāpara and Kali, comprehending altogether twelve thousand years
of the celestials. There are infinite successions of those four ages of
a similar description, the first of which is always called Krita and the
last the Kali. In the first, the Krita is that age which is created by
Brahmā; in the last, which is the Kali age, a dissolution of the
universe takes place.

Maitreya said:—"O venerable Sir, It behoves thee to give a description
of the nature of the Kali age in which the four-footed virtue suffers
total extinction".

Parāçara said:—Hear, O Maitreya, of the nature of the Kali age,
regarding which you have enquired and which is now approaching

In the Kali age, people will not serve caste, order and institutes, nor
the ceremonial enjoined by the Sāma, Rik and Yayur Vedas. Marriages in
this age will be celebrated according to the rituals, nor will the rules
that connect the spiritual protector and his disciple be in force; the
laws that regulate the conduct of husband and wife will be neglected and
oblations to the celestials with fire no longer be offered. A powerful
and rich man, in whatever family he may be born, will have right to
marry maidens of every tribe. In the Kali age, a Brāhmana will be always
regarded as such even if he be not initiated properly, and many forms of
penance will be prescribed. O Maitreya, O twice-born one, all texts will
be considered as Sastras in the Kali age; all celestials will be
considered in equal light and all orders of life will be common alike to
all persons. In this Kali age, fasting, austerity, liberality practised
according to the pleasures of those by whom they are observed will
constitute piety. Every trifling property will make men proud of their
wealth. Pride of beauty will be inspired by hair. Gold, jewels,
diamonds, clothes will all have perished, and then hair will be the only
ornament with which women can decorate themselves. Wives will desert
their husbands when they will lose their wealth; and the rich only will
be considered by woman as their lords. He who will distribute immense
wealth, will be considered as master of men and prestige of birth will
no longer be a title to supremacy. Accumulated wealth will be spent on
ostentatious dwellings. The minds of men will be wholly occupied with
earning money and that even will be spent on the gratification of
selfish desires. Women will follow their own inclinations and be given
up to pleasure-seeking. Men will endeavour to acquire riches even
dishonestly. No man will part with the smallest fraction of his wealth
at the sacrifice of his own interest even when requested by his friends.
In the Kali age all people will consider themselves as equal with the
Brāhmanas; and cows will be held in reverence only because they supply
milk. People will be always in fear of dearth and scarcity and will
watch accordingly the appearances of the sky. They will all live, like
anchorets, upon leaves and roots and fruits and put a period to their
lives through fear of famine and want. Deprived of wealth, people will
be perpetually subject to famine and other afflictions; and they will
never enjoy pleasure and happiness. At the advent of the Kali they will
take their food without previous ablutions and without worshipping fire,
celestials or guests or offering obsequial libations to their
progenitors. The women will be fickle, short of stature, gluttonous;
they will all have many children and little means. And scratching their
heads with both hands they will pay no attention to the commands of
their husbands or parents. They will be selfish, abject and slovenly;
they will be scolds and liars; they will be indecent and immoral in
their conduct and will ever attach themselves to dissolute men. And
disregarding the rules of studentship youths will study the Vedas.
Householders will neither sacrifice nor practise becoming liberality.
Anchorets will live upon food accepted from rustics and mendicants will
be influenced by regard for friends and associates. Princes will plunder
their subjects instead of protecting them and under the pretext of
levying customs they will rob merchants of their property. In the Kali
Vuga every one, possessing cars and elephants and horses, will be a
Raja; every one who is feeble will be a slave. Vaiçyas will abandon
agriculture and commerce and gain a livelihood by servitude or exercise
of mechanical arts; Sudras, seeking a subsistence by begging and
assuming outward marks of religious mendicants, will become the impure
followers of impious and heretical doctrines.

Oppressed by famine and taxation men will desert their native countries
and repair to the lands which are fit for coarser grains. The path of
the Vedas being obliterated and people having deviated into heresy,
iniquity will flourish and the duration of life will therefore decrease.
On account of the horrible penances enjoined by scripture and of the
vices of the rulers, children will die in their infancy. Women will bear
children at the age of five, six or seven years and men will beget them
when they are eight, nine or ten. Men will grow old at the age of twelve
and no one will live more than twenty years. Men will possess little
sense, vigour virtue and will therefore die in a short time. O Maitreya,
the wise then estimate the approach of Kali when the number of heretics
increases. Whenever, O Maitreya, number of the pious devoted to the
lessons of the Vedas, diminishes, the efforts, of the individuals who
cultivate virtue, become relax; the first of males becomes no longer the
object of sacrifice; respect for the teachers of the Vedas declines and
regard is cherished for the disseminators of heresy, the wise estimate
the augmented influence of the Kali.

O Maitreya, in the Kali age corrupted by unbelievers, men will refrain
from adoring Vishnu, the lord of sacrifice and the creator and sovereign
of all and will say "Of what authority are the Vedas? What are the
celestials or Brahmanas? What need there is of purification with water?"
At the approach of the Kali, O Vipra, the clouds will yield scanty rain;
the corn will be light in ear and the grain will be poor and of little
sap: garments will be mostly made of the fibres of the San: the
principal of trees will be the Sami; principle caste will be the Sudra;
millet will be the more common grain; the milk in use will be chiefly
that of goats; unguents will be made of Ushira grass. The mother and
father-in-law will be venerated in the place of parents; and a man's
friend will be his brother-in-law or one who has a wanton wife. Men will
say "Who has a father? Who has a mother? Every one is born according to
his deeds"; therefore they will regard the wife's or the husband's
parents as their own. Gifted with little sense they will be subject to
all sorts of infirmities of mind, speech and body and will daily commit
sins; and every thing that is likely to afflict beings, vicious, impure
and wretched will be generated in the Kali Yuga. Thus, O Brahman, when
holy study, oblations to fire and convocations of the celestials shall
be stopped some few people shall live at a holy place. And at this place
with the least trouble that piety shall be accumulated which could be
acquired with the greatest exertions in the Krita age.


Parāçara said:—Hear, O highly illustrious one, I shall describe fully
what the great Vyāsa has related upon the subject.

Once on a time, the sages assembled and discussed at what season the
least morality obtained the greatest reward and by whom it was most
easily displayed. In order to terminate the discussion they went to Veda
Vyāsa to remove their doubts. They saw the illustrious sage, my son,
immersed in the water of the Ganges, and awaiting the close of his
ablutions, the sages remained on the banks of the sacred river under the
shelter of a grove of trees. As my son plunged into the water and rose
up from it the sages heard him exclaim. "Excellent is the Kali age".
Again dived he and again did he exclaim in their hearing. "Well done,
well done, Sudra, thou art happy". Again he sank down and again did they
hear him say "Well done, well done, women, they are happy who are more
fortunate than they". After this my son finished his bathing and the
sages met him as he approached to welcome them. After they had been
seated and offered their respects the son of Satyavati said to them "For
what you have come here?" The Rishis said. "Having entertained some
doubts regarding a subject we have come here to consult thee; but let
that remain at present; explain to us some thing else. We heard you say
'Excellent is the Kali Yuga!' We are anxious to learn why this was said
and why you repeatedly called them happy. Explain to us the meaning of
it if it be not a mystery. We will then place before you the question
that engages our thoughts".

Being thus accosted by the ascetics Vyāsa smiled and said to them "Hear
excellent sages, why I said 'Well done Well done!' The fruit of penance
of continence, of silent prayer and the like, practised in the Krita age
for ten years, in the Treta for one year, in the Dwāpara for a month is
obtained in the Kali age in a day and night; therefore I did say
'Excellent, excellent is the Kali age'. The reward, which a man obtains
in the Krita age by abstract meditation in the Treta by sacrifice, in
the Dwāpara by adoration, he receives, in the Kali Yuga by merely
reciting the names of Kesava. O pious and great ascetics, in the Kali
age, by very little exertion men attain to exalted virtue and it is for
this reason I speak highly of the Kali Yuga. Formerly the Vedas were to
be acquired by the twice-Born through the diligent observance of
self-denial and it was their duty to celebrate sacrifices in accordance
with the ritual. Thereafter, idle prayers, idle feats, fruitless
ceremonies were performed, only to mislead the twice-born; for although
observed by them devoutly, yet in consequence of some irregularity in
their celebration sin was incurred in all these works and what they ate
or what they drank did not bring about the fulfilment of their desires.
In all their objects the twice-born enjoyed no independence and attained
their respective spheres only with exceeding pain. On the other hand,
the Sudra, more fortunate than they, attains to his assigned station by
rendering their service and performing merely the sacrifice of preparing
food in which no rules determine what may or may not be eaten, what may
or may not be drunk. Therefore, excellent sages, the Sudra is fortunate.

"Men should acquire wealth by means not incompatible with their
religious duties and it should be given to the worthy and spent upon
sacrifices. There is great trouble in their acquisition as well as their
preservation. And it is equally difficult for them to spend them on
pious observances. O excellent Brāhmanas, by undergoing these troubles
and other diverse ones people attain to the holy region of Prajāpati. A
woman has only to honour her husband in act, thought and speech to reach
the same region to which he is elevated and she thus accomplishes her
object without any great exertion. This was the meaning of my
exclamation ‘Well done' the third time. I have thus related to you what
you asked. Now put to me in any way you please the question for which
you came and I will make you a clear reply".

The ascetics then said to Vyāsa. "The question that we purposed to put
to you has already been answered by you in your reply to our subsequent
enquiry". Hearing this Krishna-Daipāyana laughed and said to the pious
sages who had come to see him whose eyes were wide open with surprise.
"By virtue of my divine knowledge I perceived the question you intended
to put to me and in reference to this I uttered the expressions 'Well
done! Well done!' In fact in the Kali age duty is performed by the
mortals with very little trouble, whose sins are all washed away by the
water of their individual piety—by Sudras through the diligent service
of the twice-born ones and by women through the slight effort of
obedience to their husbands. It is for this reason O Brāhmanas, that I
did thrice express my admiration of their happiness; for in the Krita
and other ages great were the toils of the regenerate to perform their
duty. I did not wait for your enquiry but replied at once to the
question you wanted to put. Now what do ye, conversant with virtue, wish
me to tell you?"

Thereupon the ascetics saluted and praised Vyasa and freed by him from
uncertainty departed as they came. I have also communicated to you. O
excellent Maitreya, the secret—this one great virtue of the otherwise
vicious Kali age. I shall now describe to you the dissolution of the
world and the aggregation of the elements.


Parāçara said The dissolution of existing beings is of three kinds,
incidental, elemental and absolute. The incidental is that which relates
to Brahmā and takes place at the end of a Kalpa: the elemental is that
which occurs after two Parārdhas; the absolute is final liberation from

Maitreya said:—"Tell me, O excellent preceptor, what is the enumeration
of a Parārdha, the expiration of two of which is the period of elemental

Parāçara said:—Parardha, O Maitreya, is that number which takes place in
the eighteenth place of figures enumerated according to the rule of
decimal notation. At the end of twice that period elemental dissolution
takes place when all the discrete products of nature are withdrawn into
Their indiscrete source. The shortest period of time is Mātrā which is
equal to the twinkling of the human eye; fifteen Mātrā make a Kāshthā;
thirty Kāshthās one Kalā: fifteen Kalās one Nādhikā. A Nādhikā is
determined by a measure of water with a vessel made of twelve Palas and
a half of copper in the bottom of which there is to be a hole made with
a tube of gold of the weight of four Māshas and four inches long.
According to the Māgadha measure the vessel should hold a Prastha (or
sixteen Palas) of water. Two of these Nādis make one Muhurta; thirty of
which make one day and night. Thirty such periods constitute a month;
twelve months make a year, or a day and night of the celestials; and
three hundred and sixty such days, constitute a year of the celestials.
An aggregate of four ages consists of twelve thousand divine years; and
a thousand periods of four ages complete a day of Brahmā. That period is
also termed a Kalpa during which fourteen Munis preside and at the end
of it takes place the incidental or Brahmā dissolution. The nature of
this dissolution is very dreadful; hear, I shall describe this as well
as that which takes place as the elemental dissolution.

At the end of a thousand period of four ages the earth is for the most
part exhausted. A total dearth takes place which lasts for a hundred
years; and on account of the failure of food all beings become languid
and exanimate and at last entirely die. The eternal Vishnu then takes
the character of Rudra the destroyer and comes down to reunite all his
creatures with himself. He enters into the seven rays of the sun, drinks
up all the waters of the earth and causes all moisture, whatever in
living bodies or in the soil to evaporate, thus drying up the whole
earth. Thus fed with his intervention with profuse moisture, the seven
solar rays dilate to seven suns, whose radiance glows above, below and
on every side and sets the three worlds and Pātāla on fire. The three
worlds, consumed by these suns, become rugged and deformed all over
their mountains, rivers and seas; and the earth bare of verdure, and
destitute of moisture alone remains resembling in appearance the back of
a tortoise. Hari, the destroyer of all things, in the form of Rudra, who
is the flame of time, becomes the scorching breath of the serpent Sesha
and thereby reduces Pātāla to ashes. The great fire, when it has reduced
all the divisions of Pātāla to ashes, proceeds to the earth and consumes
it also. A vast whirlpool of eddying flame then spreads to the region of
the atmosphere and the sphere of the celestials and wraps them in ruin.
The three spheres shew like a frying pan amidst the surrounding flames
that prey upon all movable and stationary things. O great saint, the
inhabitants of the two upper spheres, having satisfied their respective
duties and being assailed by the heat, repair to Maharloka. When that
becomes heated its inhabitants, who after the full period of stay, are
desirous of ascending to higher regions depart for the Janaloka.

Having consumed the whole universe in the person of Rudra, Janārddana,
breathes fourth heavy clouds, and those called Samvartta resembling huge
elephants in bulk overspread the sky, roaring and darting lightnings.
Some are as white as the water-lily, some are dusky like smoke; some are
yellow; some are of a dun colour, like that of an ass; some like ashes
sprinkled on the forehead; some are deep blue, as the lapis lazuly; some
azure like the sapphire; some are white at the couch or the jasmine;
some are black as colly rum; some are like the lady-bird; some are of
fierceness of red arsenic and some are like the wing of the painted joy.
Such is the colour of these massy clouds; in form some resemble towns,
some mountains, some are like houses and hovels and some are like
columns. Huge in size and loud in thunder they fill space. Showering
down torrents of water, those clouds quench the dreadful fires which
involve the three worlds and then rain incessantly a hundred years and
deluge the whole universe. Showering down in drops as large as dice
these rains overspread the earth and fill the middle region and inundate
the celestial sphere. The world is now enshrouded in darkness and all
things animate and inanimate having perished, the clouds continue to
pour down waters for more than a hundred years.


Parāçara said:—O great ascetic, the waters having reached the region of
the seven Rishis the whole of three worlds becomes one ocean. The breath
of Vishnu, thereupon, becomes a strong wind, which blows for more than a
hundred years until all the clouds are dispersed. The wind is then
re-absorbed and he, of whom all beings are made, the lord by whom all
things exist, he, who is inconceivable, without beginning of the
universe, reposes sleeping upon Sesha in the midst of the ocean. The
creator Hari, sleeps upon the ocean in the form of Brahmā glorified by
Sanaka and the saints who had departed to the Janaloka and contemplated
by the holy inhabitants of Brahmaloka, anxious for final
liberation—involved in mystic slumber, the celestial personification of
his own illusions and meditating on his own ineffable spirit which is
called Vāsudeva. This, O Majtreya, is the dissolution called incidental,
because, Hari, in the form of Brahmā, sleeps there as its incidental

When the universal spirit wakes, the world revives: when he clears his
eyes, all things fall upon the bed of mystic sleep. In the same manner a
thousand great eyes comprise a day of Brahmā so his night consists of
the same period: during which the world is submerged by a vast ocean.
Awaking at the end of his night the unborn Vishnu, in the character of
Brahmā, creates the universe anew in the manner formerly described unto
you. I have thus related to you the intermediate dissolution of the
world taking place at the end of every Kalpa. I will now, O Maitreya,
describe to you elemental dissolution. When by dearth and fire all the
worlds and Patalas are dried up and the modification of Mahat and other
products of nature are by the will of Krishna destroyed the progress of
elemental dissolution is begun. At first the waters swallow up the
property of earth which is the rudiment of smell; and earth, deprived of
its property, proceeds to destruction. Devoid of the rudiment of odour
the earth becomes identical with water. The water then being much
increased roaring and rushing along fill up all space whether agitated
or still. When the universe is thus pervaded by the waves of the watery
element its rudimental flavour is licked up by the element of fire and
on account of the destruction of these rudiments the waters themselves
are destroyed. Devoid of the essential element of flavour they become
identical with fire and the universe is therefore entirely filled with
flame which drinks up the water on every side and gradually overspreads
the whole of the world. While space is envelope in flame above, below
and all around the element of the wind seizes upon the rudimental
property or form which is the cause of light, and that being withdrawn,
all becomes of the nature of air. The rudiment of form being destroyed
and fire deprived of its rudiment, air extinguishes fire and spreads
resistlessly over space which is deprived of when fire mages into air.
Air then accompanied by sound which is the source of ether, extends
everywhere throughout the ten regions of space until ether seizes upon
contact, its rudimental property; by the loss of which air is destroyed
and ether remains unchanged: devoid of form, flavour, touch and smell,
it exists unembodied and vast and pervades the whole of space. Ether,
whose characteristic property and rudiment is sound exists alone
occupying all the vacuity of space. At then the radical element egotism
devours sound and all the elements and faculties are at once merged into
their original. This primary element is conscientiousness combined with
the property of darkness and is itself swallowed up by Mahat whose
characteristic property is intelligence; and earth and Mahat are the
inner and outer boundaries of the universe. In this manner, as in the
creation were the seven forms of nature (Prakriti) reckoned from Mahat
to earth; so at the time of elemental dissolution these seven
successively re-enter into each other. The egg of Brahmā is dissolved in
the waters that surround it, with its seven zones, seven oceans, seven
regions, and their mountains. The investure of water is drunk up by
fire; the stratum of fire is absorbed by that of air: air blends itself
with ether; the primary element of egotism devours the ether and is
itself taken up by intellect, which, along with all those, is seized
upon by nature. Equilibrium of the three properties, without excess or
deficiency, is called nature (Prakriti), origin (Hetu), the chief
Principle (Pradhāna) cause (Kārana), supreme (Param). This Prakriti is
essentially the same, whether discrete or indiscrete; only that which is
discrete finally is lost or absorbed in the indiscrete. Spirit also
which is one, pure, imperishable, eternal, all-pervading is a portion of
that supreme spirit which is all things. That spirit which is other than
embodied spirit, in which there are no attributes of name, species or
the like—which is one with all wisdom and is to be understood as sole
existence, that is Brahmā, infinite glory, supreme spirit, supreme
power, Vishnu, all that is from whence the perfect sage returns no more.
Prakriti, which I have described to you as being essentially both
discrete and indiscrete and spirit both resolve into spirit, supreme
spirit is the upholder of all things and the ruler of all things and is
glorified in the Vedas and in the Vedanta by the name of Vishnu.

Works as sanctioned by the Vedas are of two kinds, active and quiescent;
by both of which the universal person is worshipped by mankind. He, the
lord of sacrifice, the male of sacrifice, the most excellent Purusha, is
worshipped by men in the active mode, by rites enjoined in the Rik,
Yayur and Sama Vedas. The soul of wisdom, the person of wisdom, Vishnu,
the giver of emancipation is worshipped by the sages in the quiescent
form through meditative devotion. The exhaustless Vishnu is whatever
thing that is designated by long, short or prolated syllables or that
which is without a name. He is that which is dissolute or that which is
indescrete: he is exhaustless spirit, supreme spirit, universal spirit,
Hari, the assumer of universal forms. Nature, discrete or indiscrete is
absorbed unto him, and spirit also merges into the all diffusive and
unobstructed spirit. The period of two Parārdhas, as I have related to
you, O Maitreya, constitutes a day of that powerful Vishnu, and whilst
the products of nature are merged into this source, nature into spirit
and that into the supreme, that period is called his night and is of
equal duration with his day. But in reality, to that supreme spirit
there is neither day nor night and these distinctions are only
figuratively applied to the Almighty. I have thus explained to you the
nature of elemental dissolution and will now explain to you which is


Parāçara said:—O Maitreya, having investigated kinds of worldly pain and
having acquired true wisdom and detachment from worldly objects the wise
man obtains final liberation. The first of the three pains, or
Adhyatmika is of two kinds—physical and mental. Bodily pain, as you
shall hear, is of many sorts. Affections of the head, catarrh, fever,
cholic, fistula, spleen, hemorrhoids, intumescence, sickness, opthalmia,
dysentary, leprosy, and many other diseases constitute physical
affliction. Mental pains are love, anger, fear, hate, covetousness,
stupefaction, despair, sorrow, malice, disdain, jealousy, envy and many
other passions that are created in the mind. These and diverse other
afflictions, mental or physical, are comprised under the class of
worldly sufferings which is called Adhyatmika, The pain Adhibhautika, O
excellent Brāhman, is every kind of evil that is inflicted upon men by
beasts, birds, men, goblins, snakes, fiends, or reptiles and the pain
that is called Adhidaivika or superhuman is the work of cold, heat,
wind, rain, lightning and other phenomena. Affliction, O Maitreya, is
multiplied in thousands of shapes in the progress of conception, birth,
decay, disease, death and hell. The tender animal exists in the embryo
surrounded by abundant filth, floating in water and distorted in its
back, neck and bones; enduring severe pain even in the course of its
development and disordered by the acid, bitter, pungent and saline
articles of its mother's food; incapable of extending or contracting its
limbs, reposing amidst slime of ordure and urine; every way incommoded
with conciousness and calling to memory many hundred previous births.
Thus exists the embryo in profound affliction bound to the worlds by its
former works.

When the child is about to be born, its face is besmeared by excrement,
urine, blood, mucus, and semen; its attachment; to the uterus is
ruptured by the Prajāpati wind: it is turned head downwards and
violently expelled from the womb by the powerful and painful winds of
parturition; and the infant, losing; for a time all sensation when
brought in contact with the external air, is immediately deprived of its
intellectual knowledge. Then born the child is tortured in every limb,
as if pierced with thorns or cut to pieces with a saw, and falls from
its fetid lodgement as from a sore, like a crawling thing upon the
earth. Unable to feel itself, unable to turn itself, it is dependent on
the will of others for being bathed and nourished. Laid upon a dirty
bed, it is bitten by insects and mosquitoes and has not power to drive
them away. Many are the pangs attending birth and many are those which
succeed to birth; and many are the afflictions that are inflicted by
elemental and superhuman powers in the state of childhood covered by the
gloom of ignorance; and internally bewildered man knows not whence he
is, who he is, whither he goeth nor what is his nature; by what bonds he
is bound; what is cause and what is not cause; what is to be done and
what is to be left undone; what is to be said and what is to be kept
silent, what is righteousness and what is iniquity; in what it consists
or how; what is right, what is wrong; what is virtue, what is vice. Thus
man, like a brute beast addicted only to animal gratification, suffers
the pain that ignorance brings about. Ignorance, darkness, inactivity
influence those devoid of knowledge so that pious works are neglected;
but hell is the consequence of neglect of religious acts, according to
the great sages, and the ignorant therefore suffer affliction both in
this world and in the next.

When old age comes in, the body is infirm, the limbs are relaxed; the
face is emaciate and shrivelled; its skin is wrinkled and scantily
covers the veins and sinews; the eyes discern not a far off, and the
pupil gazes on vacuity: the nostrils are stuffed with hair; the trunk
trembles as it moves; the bones appear beneath the surface; the back is
bowed and the joints are bent; the digestive fire is extinct and there
is little appetite and little vigour; walking, rising sitting, sleeping
are all painful efforts; the ear is dull; the eye is dim; the mouth is
disgusting with dribbling saliva; the senses no longer are obedient to
the will; and as death approaches, the things that are perceived even
are immediately forgotten. The utterance of a single sentence is
fatiguing and wakefulness is perpetuated by difficult breathing,
coughing and painful exhaustion. The old man is lifted up by some body
else; he is an object of contempt to his servants, his children and his
wife. Incapable of cleanliness, of amusement, or food, or desire, he is
laughed at by his dependents, and disregarded by his kin; and dwelling
on the exploits of his youth, as on the actions of a past life, he sighs
deeply and is sorely distressed. Such are some of the pains to which old
age is doomed. I will now describe to you the agonies of death.

The neck droops, the feet and hands are relaxed; the man is repeatedly
exhausted, subdued and visited with interrupted knowledge; the principle
of selfishness afflicts him and he thinks what will become of my wealth,
my lands, my children, my wife, my servants, my house? The joints of his
limbs are tortured with severe pains as if cut by a saw or as if they
were pierced by the sharp arrows of the destroyer; he rolls his eyes and
tosses about his hands and feet; his lips and palate are parched and dry
and his throat obstructed by foul humours and deranged vital airs, emits
a rattling sound; he is afflicted with burning heat, thirst and hunger:
and he at last passes away tortured by the servants of the judge of the
dead, to undergo a renewal of his sufferings in another body. These are
the afflictions to which a man is doomed when he dies. I will now
describe to you the tortures which they suffer in hell.

Men are bound, when they die, by the servants of the king of Tartarus,
with cords, and beaten with their sticks and have then to encounter the
fierce aspect of Yama and the horrors of their terrible route. In the
different hells there are various intolerable tortures with burning
sand, fire, machines, and weapons; some are severed with saws, some
roasted in forges, some are chopped with axes, some buried in the
ground, some are mounted on stakes, some cast to wild beasts to be
devoured, some are gnawed by the vultures, some torn by tigers, some are
boiled in oil, some rolled in caustic slime, some are precipitated from
great heights, some are tossed upwards by engines. The number of
punishments inflicted in hell, which are the consequences of sin, is
infinite. But not in hell alone do the souls of the deceased undergo
pain: there is no cessation even in heaven for its temporary inhabitant
is even tormented with the prospect of descending to earth again. He is
again liable to conception and to birth; he is merged again into the
embryo and repairs to it when about to be born; then he dies, as soon as
born, or in infancy, or in youth, or in manhood or in old age. Death
sooner or later is inevitable. As long as he lives he is immersed in
manifold afflictions, like the seed of the cotton amidst the down that
is to be spun into thread. In acquiring, losing, and preserving wealth
there are many griefs; and so there are in the misfortunes of our
friends. Whatever is produced that is most acceptable to man; that,
Maitreya, becomes a seed whence springs the tree of sorrow. Wife,
children, servants, houses, lands, riches, contribute much more to the
misery than to the happiness of mankind. Where could man, scorched by
fires of the sun of this world, look for felicity, were it not for the
shade afforded by the tree of emancipation? Attainment of the divine
being is considered by the wise as the remedy of the three-fold class of
ills that beset the different stages of life, conception, birth and
decay, as characterised by that only happiness which effaces all other
kinds of felicity however abundant, and as being absolute and final.

It should therefore be the assiduous endeavour of wise men to attain
unto god. The means of such attainment are said, great Muni, to be
knowledge and works. Knowledge is of two kinds, that which is derived
from scripture, and that which is derived from reflection. Brahma that
is the word is composed of scripture. Brahma that is supreme is produced
of reflection, ignorance is utter darkness, in which knowledge, obtained
through any sense, shines like a lamp; but the knowledge that is derived
from reflection breaks upon the obscurity. What has been said by Manu,
when appealing to the meaning of the Vedas with respect to this subject,
I will repeat to you. There are two forms of spirit or god, the spirit,
which is word, and spirit, which is supreme. He who is thoroughly imbued
with the word of god obtains supreme spirit. The Atharva Veda also
states that there are two kinds of knowledge; by the one, which is the
supreme, god is attained: the other is that which consists of the Rik
and other Vedas. That which is imperceptible, undecaying, inconceivable,
unborn, inexhaustable, indescribable; which has neither form, nor hands
nor feet; which is almighty, omnipresent, eternal; the cause of all
things, and without cause, permeating all, itself unpenetrated, and from
which all things proceed, that is the object which the wise behold, that
is Brahma, that is the supreme state, that is the thing spoken of by the
Vedas, the infinitely subtle, supreme condition of Vishnu. That essence
of the supreme is defined by the term Bhagavat: the word Bhagavat is the
denomination of that primeval and eternal God: and he who fully
understands the meaning of that expression, is possessed of holy wisdom,
the sum and substance of the three Vedas. The word Bhagavat is a
convenient form to be used in the adoration of that supreme being, to
whom no term is applicable; and therefore Bhagavat expresses that
supreme spirit which is individual, almighty, and the cause of causes of
all things. The letter Bh implies the cherisher and supporter of the
universe. By ga is understood the leader, impeller, or creator. The
dissyllable Bhaga indicate the six properties: dominion, might, glory,
splendour, wisdom, and dispassion. The purport of the letter va is that
elemental spirit in which all beings exist, and which exists in all
beings. And thus this Great word Bhagavān is the name of Vāsudeva, who
is one with the Supreme Brahma and of no one else. This word therefore,
which is the general denomination of an adorable object, is not used in
reference to the supreme in a general but a special signification. When
applied to any other thing or person it is used in its customary or
general import. In latter case it may purport one who knows the origin
and end and revolutions of being and what is wisdom and what ignorance.
In the former it denotes wisdom, energy, power, dominion, might, glory,
without end and without defect.

The term Vāsudeva means that all beings abide in that supreme spirit and
that he abides in all beings as was formerly explained by Kesidhwaja to
Khāndikya called Janaka when he enquired of him an explanation of the
name of the immortal Vāsudeva. He said "He dwelleth internally in all
beings and all things dwell in him; and thence the lord Vāsudeva is the
creator and preserver of the world. He though identical with all beings
is beyond and separate from material nature, from its products, from
properties and from imperfection; he is beyond all investing substance;
he is universal soul; all the interstices of the universe are filled up
by him; he is one with all good qualities; and all created beings are
endowed with but a small portion of his individuality. Assuming at with
various shapes he bestows benefits on the whole world, which was his
work. Glory, might, dominion, wisdom, energy, power and other attributes
are collected in him. Supreme of the supreme, in whom no imperfections
abide, lord over finite and infinite, god in individuals and universals,
visible and invisible, omnipotent, omnipresent, omnicient, almighty. The
wisdom, perfect, pure, supreme, undefiled and one only by which he is
conceived, contemplated and known, that is wisdom; all else is


Parāçara said:—The Purusottama is also known by holy study and devout
meditation; and either, as the cause of attaining him, is entitled
Brahma. From study let a man proceed to meditation and from meditation
to study; by perfection in both supreme spirit becomes manifest. Study
is one eye wherewith to behold it and meditation is the other: he who is
identical with Brahma sees not with the eye of flesh.

Maitreya said:—"Revered preceptor, I am desirous to know what is meant
by the term Yoga, by understanding which I may behold the supreme being,
the upholder of the universe".

Parāçara:—I will repeat to you, O Maitreya, the explanation formerly
given by Kesidhwaja to the high-minded Khāndikya also called Janaka.

Maitreya: "Tell me, first. Brahman, who Khāndikya was, and who was
Kesidhwaja; and how it happened that a conversation relating to the
practice of Yoga occurred between them".

Parāçara. There was Janaka named Dharmadhwaja who had two sons
Amitadhwaja and Kritadhwaja; and the latter was a king ever devoted to
the existent supreme spirit; his son was the celebrated Kesidhwaja. The
son of Amitadhwaja was Janaka called Khāndikya. Khāndikya was diligent
and celebrated on earth for pious observances. Kesidhwaja on the other
hand was gifted with spiritual knowledge. These two were engaged in
hostilities and Khāndikya was driven from his principality by
Kesidhwaja. Expelled from his dominions he wandered with a few
followers, his priest and his counsellors, amidst woods and mountains
where destitute of true wisdom, he performed many sacrifices expecting
thereby to obtain divine truth and to escape from death by ignorance.

Once on a time, while Kesidhwaja, the best of those who are skilled in
devotion, was engaged in devout practices a fierce tiger slew his milch
cow in the lonely forest. When the Raja heard that the cow had been
killed he asked the ministering priests what sort of penance would
expatiate the crime. They said that they did not know and referred him
to Kaseru. And consulted by the king Kaseru told him that he did not
know and Sunaka would be able to tell him. Accordingly the Raja went to
Sunaka; but he said too. "I am as unable, O great king, to answer your
question as Kaseru has been; there is no one on earth who can give you
the information except your enemy Khāndikya, whom you have vanquished".

Being thus accosted Kesidhwaja said:—"I will go then and pay a visit to
my enemy; no matter, if he kill me, for I shall then obtain the reward
that attends being slain in a holy cause; whereas if on the other hand
he tells me what penance to perform then my sacrifice will be unimpaired
in efficacy". Accordingly he ascended his car, having clothed himself in
the deerskin and went to the forest where the wise Khāndikya lived. When
Khāndikya saw him approach his eyes reddened with ire and he took up his
bow and said to him "You have armed yourself with deerskin to bring
about my destruction thinking that in such a dress you will be safe from
me; but fool, the deer upon whose backs this skin is seen are slain by
you and me with sharp arrows so I will slay you; you shall not go free
whilst I am living. You are an unprincipled felon, who have robbed me of
my kingdom and are deserving of death". To this Kesidhwaja replied: "I
have come here Khāndikya, to consult you about my doubts and not with
any hostile intention; lay aside therefore both your arrow and anger".
Thus addressed Khāndikya retired for a while, with his counsellors and
his priest and consulted with them what course to adopt. They strongly
urged him to slay Kesidhwaja who was in his grasp and by whose death he
would again become the monarch of the whole world. Khāndikya replied to
them: "It is undoubtedly true that by such an act I would become the
monarch of the whole world but he would thereby conquer the next world:
whilst the earth would be mine. And if I do not slay him I shall conquer
the world to come and leave him this earth. It appears to me that this
world is not so much valuable as the next: for the subjugation of the
next world continues for ever while the conquest over this is but
temporary. I will therefore not kill him but tell him what he wishes to

Coming accordingly to Kesidhwaja, Khāndikya asked him to propose his
question which he promised to answer. And Kesidhwaja related to him what
had taken place, that death of the cow and desired to know what penance
be should perform. Khāndikya, in reply, explained to him fully the
expiation that was suited to the occasion; and then with his permission
Kesidhwaja returned to the place of sacrifice and regularly fulfilled
every necessary act. Having completed the ceremony with its
supplementary rites Kesidhwaja accomplished all his objects: but he then
reflected thus "The priests whom I invited to attend have all been duly
honoured; all those who had any request to make have been pleased with
my complying with their desires; all that is proper for this world has
been effected by me; why then my mind should feel as if my duty had been
unfulfilled". Thinking this he remembered that he had not presented to
Khāndikya the gift that it is proper to offer to a spiritual preceptor
and mounting his chariot he immediately started for the dense forest
where the sage resided. Upon his reappearance Khāndikya took up arms to
slay him; but Kesidhwaja exclaimed "Forbear, venerable sage; I have not
come hither injure you; throw off your wrath, Khāndikya, know that I
have come here to offer you that present which is due to you as my
instructor. Through your lesson I have fully completed my sacrifice and
I am therefore desirous to give you a gift. Demand what it shall be".

Having once more consulted his counsellors, Khāndikya told them the
purpose of his rival's visit and asked them what he should demand. His
friends recommended him to take back his whole kingdom for prudent men
acquire them without conflicting hosts. The king Khāndikya reflecting
laughed and said to them "Why should a person like me be desirous of a
temporary earthly kingdom? Indeed you are very good advisers as regards
the present worldly affairs—but you are undoubtedly ignorant of the life
to come". Saying this he returned to Kesidhwaja and said to him "Is it
true that you wish to make me a gift as to your preceptor?" "Indeed I
do" answered Kesidhwaja. Whereto Khāndikya replied "Then, as it is known
that you are learned in the spiritual learning that teaches the doctrine
of the soul, if you will communicate that knowledge unto me you will
have discharged your debt to your preceptor. Communicate unto me what
acts are efficacious for the alleviation of human sufferings".


Kesidhwaja said "But why have you not demanded of me my kingdom free
from all troubles; what else save dominion is acceptable to the
warrior?" Whereto Khāndikya replied "I will tell you why I did not make
such a demand nor require that territory which is an object of ignorant
ambition. It is the duty of the warrior to protect his subjects in peace
and to kill in fight the enemies of his way. It is no fault that you
should have taken my kingdom from one who was unable to defend it, to
whom it was a bondage and who was thus freed from the incumbrance of
ignorance. My desire of dominion originated from my being born to
possess it; the ambition of others which proceeds from human frailties,
is not compatible with virtue. To solicit gift is not the duty of a
prince and warrior. It is for this reason I have not demanded of you the
kingdom, a request which is the outcome of ignorance. Those only, who
are ignorant, whose minds are attached to selfishness and who are
intoxicated with the liquor of self-sufficiency, desire kingdoms; not
such as I am".

Parāçara said:—Being greatly delighted, the king Kesidhwaja praised
Khāndikya and said to him affectionately "Listen to my words. Through
the desire of escaping death by the ignorance of works I exercise the
regal power, celebrate various sacrifices and enjoy pleasures subversive
of purity. Fortunate it is for you that your mind has attached itself to
the dominion of discrimination. Pride of your race now listen to the
real nature of ignorance. The mistaken notion that self consists in what
is not self and that property consists in what is not one's own
constitute the double seed of the tree of ignorance. The ill judging
embodied being, bewildered by the darkness of fascination situated in a
body composed of five elements, loudly asserts 'This is I' but who would
ascribe spiritual individuality to a body in which soil is distinct from
ether, air, fire, water and earth. What man of understanding assigns to
disembodied spirit corporeal fruition or what lands, houses and the like
that it should say, 'These are mine?' What wise man entertains the idea
of property in sons or grandsons begotten of the body after the spirit
has abandoned it? Man performs all acts for the purpose of bodily
fruition and the consequence of such acts is another body; so that their
result is nothing but confinement to bodily existence. In the same
manner as a mansion of clay is plastered with clay and water, so the
body which of earth is perpetuated by earth and water. The body
consisting of five elements is nourished by substances equally composed
of those elements; but since this is the case, what is there in this
life that man should be proud of? Travelling the path of the world for
many thousands of births, man attains only the weariness of bewilderment
and is smothered by the dust of imagination. When that dust is washed
away by the bland water of real knowledge, then the weariness of
bewilderment, sustained by the wayfarer through repeated births, is
removed. When that weariness is relieved the internal man is at peace
and he obtains that supreme felicity which is unequalled and
undisturbed. This soul is pure and composed of wisdom and happiness. The
properties of pain, ignorance and impurity are those of nature and not
of soul. O Muni, there is no affinity between fire and water but when
the latter is placed over the former in a cauldron, it bubbles and boils
and exhibits the properties of fire. In the same manner when soul is
associated with Prakriti it is vitiated by egotism and the rest and
assumes the qualities of grosser nature although essentially distinct
from them and compatible. Such is the seed of ignorance as I have
explained it to you: there is but one remedy for earthly sorrows—the
practice of devotion; no other is known".

Thereupon Khandikya said:—"Do you then the foremost of those versed in
contemplative devotion explain to me what that is, for in the race of
the descendants of Nimi you are best acquainted with the sacred writings
in which it is taught". Whereto Kesidhwaja replied: "Hear the account of
the nature of contemplative devotion, which I am imparting to you and by
perfection in which the sage attains resolution into Brahma and never
suffers birth again. The mind of man is the cause both of his bondage
and his liberation its addiction to the objects of sense is the means of
his bondage; its separation from objects of sense is the means of his
liberation. The sage, who is capable of discriminative knowledge, must
therefore restrain his mind from all objects of sense and therewith
meditate upon the supreme being, who is identical with spirit, in order
to obtain liberation; for that supreme spirit attracts to itself him who
meditates upon it, and who is of the same nature, as the lodestone
attracts the iron by the virtue which is common to itself and to its
products. Contemplative devotion is the union with Brahma effected by
that condition of mind which has attained perfection through those
exercises which complete the control of self; and he, whose
contemplative devotion is characterised by the property of such absolute
perfection, is in truth, O sage, expectant of final liberation from the

"The Yogi, when he first gives himself up to the practice of
contemplative devotion, is called the novice or practitioner; when he
has attained spiritual union, he is called the adept or he whose
meditations are accomplished. Should the thoughts of the former be
unvitiated by any obstructing imperfection, he will obtain freedom after
practising devotion through several lives. The latter speedily obtains
liberation in that existence, all his acts being consumed by the fire of
contemplative devotion. The sage, who would bring his mind into a proper
state for the performance of devout contemplation, must be devoid of
desire and observe invariably continence, compassion, truth, honesty,
and disinterestedness; he must fix his mind upon the supreme Brahma,
practising holy study, purification, contentment, penance and
self-control. These virtues, respectively termed the five acts of
restraint and five of obligation bestow excellent rewards when practised
for the sake of reward and eternal liberation and when they are not
prompted by the desire of transient benefits. Endowed with these merits,
the sage, self-restrained, should sit in one of the modes termed
Bhadrāsana and engage in contemplation. Bringing his vital airs called
Prāna under subjection, by frequent repetition is thence called
Prānāyāma which is, as it were, a seed with a seed. In this, the breath
of expiration and that of inspiration are alternately obstructed
constituting the act two-fold; and the suppression of both modes of
breathing produces a third. The exercise, of yogi, whilst endeavouring
to bring before his thoughts the gross form of the eternal, is
denominated Alambana. He is then to perform Pratyāhāra, which consists
in restraining his organs of sense from susceptibility to outward
impressions, and directing them entirely to mental perceptions. By these
means the entire subjugation of the unsteady senses is effected: and if
they are not controlled the sage will not accomplish his devotions. When
by the Prānāyāma the vital airs are restrained and the senses are
subjugated by Pratyāhāra then the sage will be able to keep his mind
steady in its perfect asylum".

Khāndikya then said to Kesidhwaja "Illustrious sage, inform me what is
that perfect asylum of the mind resting on which it destroys all the
products of human infirmity". To this Keshidhwaja replied. "The asylum
of mind is Brahma, which, of its own nature, is two-fold; as being with
or without form; and each of these, is supreme and secondary.
Apprehension of Brahma or spirit is again three-fold. I will explain the
different kinds to you, they are that which is called Brahma, that which
is named from works, and that which comprehends both is the third. So
that mental apprehension is three-fold. Sanandana and other were endowed
with the apprehension of the nature of Brahma. The celestials and others
whether animate or inanimate are possessed of that which regards acts.
The apprehension, that comprehends both works and spirit, exists in
Hiranyagarbha and others, who are possessed of contemplative knowledge
of their own nature and who also exercise certain active functions as
creation and the rest. Until all acts, which are the causes of notions
of individuality, are discontinued, spirit is one thing and universe is
another, to those who contemplate objects as distinct and various; but
that is called true knowledge or knowledge of Brahma which recognises no
distinctions, which contemplates only simple existence which is
undefinable by words and is to be discovered solely in one's own spirit.
That is the supreme unborn, imperishable form of Vishnu, who is without
form and characterised as a condition of the supreme soul, which is
variously modified from the condition of universal form. The sages, in
the early stage, cannot perceive this form so they must direct their
minds to the gross form of Hari, which is of universal perceptibility.
They must meditate upon him as Hiranyagarbha, as the glorious Vāsava, as
Prajāpati, as the winds, the Vasus, the Rudras, the suns, stars,
planets, Gandharvas, Yakshas, Daityas, all the celestials, and their
progenitors, men, animals, mountains, oceans, rivers, trees, all beings
and all sources of beings, all modifications of natures, and its
products, whether sentient of unconscious, one-footed, two-footed, or
many-footed; all these are the sensible form of Hari, to be apprehended
by three kinds of apprehension. All this universal world, this world of
moving and stationary beings is pervaded by the energy of Vishnu, who is
of the nature of supreme Brahma. This energy is supreme, or when it is
that of conscious embodied spirit it is secondary. Ignorance, or that
which is denominated from works, is a third energy; by which the
omnipresent energy of embodied spirit is ever excited and whence it
suffers all the pains of repeated worldly existence. Obscured by that
energy, the energy that is denominated from embodied spirit, is
characterised by different degrees of perfection in all created beings.
In inanimate things it exists in a very small degree; it is more in
things that have life, but are (without motion); in insects it is still
more abundant, and still more in birds: it is more in wild animals and
in domestic animals the faculty is still greater: men have more of this
faculty than animals, and thence arises their authority over them; the
faculty exists in a supreme degree in Nāgas, Gandharvas, Yakshas,
celestials, Sakra, Prajāpati and Hiranyagarbha; and is above ail
predominant in that male (Vishnu) of whom all these various creatures
are but the diversified forms, permeated universally by his energy, as
all-pervading as the other.

"That state of Vishnu, which is without form, is to be meditated upon by
the sages and this imperceptible and shapeless form of Brahma is called
by the wise 'that which is' and in which all the energies, described
before, reside. O lord of men, from this state of Vishnu and which is
formless, proceeds his universal form and other great form and other
forms endowed with his diverse energies. For the behoof of the universe
he assumes various forms, that of the celestial, birds and men—but he is
never born being influenced by his pristine actions; he is
all-comprehending and irresistible. This universal form of his is to be
meditated upon by the sage for the purpose of purification for it washes
away all sins. As the fire, combined with wind, consumes twigs with its
increased flame, so this form of Vishnu, when meditated upon by the sage
in his heart, destroys all sins. Let us therefore fix our mind
resolutely upon him who is the asylum of three fold energies and this is
the operation of the mind which is called perfect Dhāranā: and thus the
perfect asylum of individual as well as universal spirit, that which
beyond the three modes of apprehension, is attained for the eternal
emancipation of the sage. O foremost of men, the gods and others who
rest in the minds are impure and spring from acts. The apprehension by
the mild, of that visible form of Vishnu without regard to subsidiary
forms is thence called Dhāranā and I will now describe to you the
perceptible form of Hari which no mental retention will manifest except
in a mind that is fit to become the receptacle of the idea. The
meditating sage must think of Vishnu as having a delightful and lovely
countenance with eyes like the leaf of the lotus, smooth cheeks, and a
broad and brilliant forehead; ears of equal size, the lobes of which are
embellished with splendid pendants, a painted neck and a broad breast on
which shines the mystic mark of Sribatsa; a belly falling in graceful
fold, with a deep-seated navel; eight long arms or else four; and firm
and well knit thighs and legs, with well-formed feet and toes. Let him,
with well-governed thoughts, contemplate, as long as he can persevere
with undivided attention, Hari as clad in a yellow raiment, wearing a
rich diadem on his head and brilliant armlets and bracelets on his arms
and bearing in his hands, the bow, the shell, the mace, the sword, the
discus, the rosary, the lotus and the arrow. The Yogi may believe his
retention to be perfect when this image never vanishes from his mind,
whether he be going or standing, or be engaged in any other voluntary
act. The sage may then meditate upon the form of Vishnu without his arms
as the shell, mace, discus and bow and as placid and bearing only his
rosary. When the idea of this image is firmly retained, then he may
meditate on Vishnu without his diadem, bracelets or other ornaments. He
may next contemplate him as having but one single limb and may then fix
his whole thoughts upon the body to which the limbs belong. The process
of forming a lively image in the mind exclusive of all other objects,
constitutes Dhyāna, or meditation, which is perfected by six stages and
when an accurate knowledge of self, free from all distinction, is
attained by this mental meditation that, is termed Samadhi.

"After accomplishing this stage the Yogi acquires discriminative
knowledge, which is the means of enabling living soul when all the three
kinds of apprehension are destroyed to attain the attainable supreme
being. Embodied spirit is the user of the instrument, which instrument
is true knowledge; and by it that identification of the former is
attained. Liberation which is the object to be effected being
accomplished discriminative knowledge ceases. When endowed with the
apprehension of the nature of the object of enquiry, then there is no
difference between the individual and supreme spirit; difference is the
outcome of the absence of true knowledge. When that ignorance which is
the cause of the difference between the individual and universal spirit
b destroyed finally and for ever who shall ever make that distinction
between them which does not exist? Thus I have, O Khāndikya, in reply to
your question, explained to you what is meant by contemplative devotion
both fully and summarily. What else do you wish to hear?"

Khāndikya replied to Keshidhwaja and said:—"The explanation that has
been given by you of the real nature of contemplative devotion, has
satisfied all my wishes and removed all impurity from my mind. The
expression 'mine' that I have been accustomed to use is untruth and
cannot be otherwise declared by those who know what is to be known. The
words 'I' and 'mine' constitute ignorance; but practice is influenced by
ignorance. Supreme truth cannot be defined for it is not to be explained
by words. Depart, therefore, Keshidwaja; you have done all that is
necessary for my real happiness, in teaching me contemplative devotion,
the exhaustible bestower of liberation from existence".

After receiving becoming homage from Khāndikya, Keshidhwaja came back to
his capital. And having made his son Raja he repaired to woods to
accomplish his devotions, his whole mind being intent on Govinda. His
whole mind being devoted to one object only and being purified by the
practice of self-restraint, self-control and the rest he obtained
absorption into the pure and perfect spirit which is termed Vishnu. And
in order to obtain liberation Keshidhwaja became averse from his own
perishable works and lived amidst objects of sense and practised
religious rites without expecting any benefit therefrom. Being freed
from ail sins by pure and auspicious fruition he obtained that
perfection which removes all miseries.


Parāçara said:—I have thus explained to you the third kind of worldly
dissolution, that which is absolute and final which is liberation and
resolution into eternal spirit. I have related unto you the primary and
secondary creation, the families of patriarchs, the periods of the
Manwantaras and the genealogical histories of the kings. I have
described briefly to you, who were desirous of hearing it, the
imperishable Vaishnava Purāna which destroys all sins, the most
excellent of all sacred writings and the means of attaining the great
end of man. If you have any thing else to ask, put the question and I
will answer it.

Maitkeya said:—"Holy preceptor, you have indeed said unto me all I
wished to know and I listened to it with devoted attention. O great
saint, all my doubts have been removed and my heart has been purified.
By thy favour, I have been acquainted with the account of creation,
preservation and destruction. I have also learnt from you of Vishnu in
his collective fourfold form; his three energies; and the three modes of
apprehending the object of contemplation. By thy favour I have acquired
a thorough knowledge of all this and there is nothing else worthy to be
known when it is once understood that Vishnu and his world are not
mutually distinct. By your kindness, O great Muni, you have removed all
my doubts since you have instructed in the duties of the several tribes
and in other deities; the nature of active life and discontinuance of
action and derivation of all that exists from works. And I have nothing
else to enquire of you, O Venerable Brahmin; and pardon me, if by
answering to my questions you have been fatigued in any way. Pardon me
for the trouble I have given you through that amiable quality of the
virtuous which makes no distinction between a disciple and a child".

Parāçara said:—I have related to you this Purāna which is equally as
sacred as the Vedas by hearing which all sins are expatiated. In this,
have been described to you the primary and secondary creation, the
families of the patriarchs, the Manwantaras, the regal dynasties; the
celestials, Daityas, Gandharvas, serpents, Rākshasas, Yakshas,
Vidhyidharas, Siddhas, and heavenly nymphs; ascetics, endowed with
spiritual wisdom and practisers of devotion, the distinctions of four
castes, and the actions of the most eminent amongst men; holy places on
the earth, holy rivers and oceans, sacred mountains, and legends of the
truly wise, the deities of the different tribes and observances enjoined
in the Vedas. By hearing this, all sins are obliterated. In this also
the glorious Hari has been revealed the cause of the creation,
preservation and destruction of the world; the soul of all things and
himself all things; by the repetition of whose name man is freed from
all sins which fly to the wolves that are frightened by a lion. The
repetition of his name with devout faith is the best remover of all
sins, destroying them as fire purifies the metal from the dross. By the
mere recollection of the name of Hari all the stains of Kali Yuga are
removed and piety is increased. That Hari, who is all existing things,
who is Hiranyagarbha, Indra, Rudra, the Adityas, the Aswins, the winds,
the Kinnaras, the Vasus, the Sādhyas, Viswadevas the celestials, the
Yakshas, serpents, Kikshasas, the Sidhas; Daityas, Gandharyas, Dānavas,
nymphs, the stars, asterism, planets, the seven Rishis, the regents and
warders of the quarters, men, Brāhmans and the rest, animals tame and
wild, insects, birds, ghosts and goblins, trees, mountains, woods,
rivers, oceans, legions living underneath the earth, the divisions of
the earth and all perceptible object—he who is identical with all
things, who knoweth all things, who is the form of all things being
himself without form and who is everything from the mount Meru to an
atom, he the glorious Vishnu and the destroyer of all sins, is described
in this Purāna. The reward, which one obtains by hearing this Purāna, is
equal to that obtained by the performance of a horse-sacrifice or by
fasting at the holy places of Pryaga, Pushkara, Kurukshetra or Arbuda,
Hearing this Purāna once only is as efficacious as offering oblations in
a perpetual fire for one year.

The man, who having controlled his passions, bathes at Mathurā on the
twelfth day of the month of Jyeshtha and beholds the image of Hari,
obtains a great reward and so does he who with his mind devoted to
Kesava, recites this Purāna. The man, who bathes in the river Jamunā, on
the twelfth lunation of the light fortnight of the month in which the
moon is in the mansion Jyeshtha, and who fasts and worships Achyuta in
the city of Mathurā, receives the recompense of an uninterrupted
horse-sacrifice. Beholding the ancestors of some eminent amongst men,
attaining prosperity by the pious observances of their descendants,
another man's parents and their parents exclaim, "If any of our
descendants, having bathed in the Jamunā and fasted, worships Govinda in
Mathurā, in the light fortnight of Jyestha, he will secure for us an
elevated position". Having worshipped Janārddana in the light fortnight
of Jyeshtha a man of good birth will offer cakes to his fortunate
ancestors in the Yamunā. By reading with devotion one section of this
Purāna one can acquire the same merit which he will reap by bathing in
the Yamunā during the light fortnight of Jyeshtha, by giving gifts to
the manes and worshipping Janārddana with a devoted merit. Those who
have fallen into the ocean of worldliness and been stricken with terror,
may be liberated by reading this Purāna which frees one from bad dreams
and imperfections.

This Purāna was originally composed by the Rishi Nārāyana and was
communicated by Brahmā to Ribhu; he described it to Pryabrata who again
related it to Bhāguri. Bhāguri recited it to Tambamitra, and he to
Dadicha, who gave it to Sāraswata. Bhrigu received it, who imparted it
to Purukutsa and he taught it to Narmadā, The goddess gave it to the
Nāga King, Dhritarashtra and to Purāna of the same race, by whom it was
given to their king Vāsuki. He imparted it to Vatsa and he to Ashawtara
from whom it successively proceeded the Kambala and Elapatra. When the
ascetic Vedasiras descended to Pātāla, he there received the whole
Purāna from the Nāgas and communicated it to Pramati. Pramati imparted
it to the wise Jātukarna and he taught it to many other holy persons. By
the blessing of Vasistha I have been acquainted with it and I have
faithfully related it to you. O Maitreya, you will teach it at the end
of the Kali age to Samika. Whoever hears this great mystery which
removes the stain of Kali shall be freed from his sins. He who hears
this every day acquits himself of his obligations to his manes,
celestials and men. Hearing ten chapters of this Purāna one obtains the
rare and great merit that a man acquires by the gift of a brown cow. He
who hears the whole of this Purāna meditating on his mind, Achyuta, who
is all things and of whom all things are made, who is the stay of the
whole universe—the asylum of spirit; who is knowledge and that which is
to be known; who is without beginning or end and the benefactor of the
celestials—certainly obtains the reward which can be acquired by the
uninterrupted celebration of the horse-sacrifice. He who recites and
retains with faith this Purāna in the beginning, middle and end of which
is described the glorious Achyuta, the lord of the universe in every
stage—the master of all that is stationary or movable composed of
spiritual knowledge acquires such purity as exists not in any world the
eternal state of perfection which is Hari. The man who fixes his mind on
Achyuta does not go to hell; he who meditates upon him considers even
celestial bliss as an impediment; he, in whose mind he abides, thinks
little of the region of Brahmā; for when present in the minds of those
who are pure, he bestows upon them eternal freedom. What wonder is there
that all sins shall be removed by chanting the name of this Vishnu? What
else should be heard of but that Hari, whom, those devoted to acts
worship with sacrifices continually as the god of sacrifice; whom those
devoted to meditation contemplate as primary and secondary; composed of
spirit; by obtaining whom man is not born, nor nourished nor subjected
to death; who is both cause and effect; who as the progenitors receives
the libations made to them; who, as the gods, accepts the offerings
addressed to them, the glorious being who is without beginning or end;
whose name is both Swāhā and Swadhā; who is the asylum of all spiritual
power; in whom the limits of finite, things cannot be measured, and who,
when he enters the ear destroys all sin.

Salutation unto the first of gods, Purusottama who is without end and
beginning, without growth and decay and death, who is substance that
knows no change. Salutation unto that undecaying Purusha, Vishnu who
assumed sensible qualities, who though pure became as if impure,
assuming various shapes, who is gifted with divine wisdom and who is the
lord of the preservation of all creatures. Salutation unto him who is
the instrument of meditative wisdom and active virtue, who confers
enjoyments upon human beings; who is identical with three-fold
qualities; who is without any change and is the cause of the evolution
of the world and who is without any birth or decay. Salutations unto him
who is called heaven, air, fire, water, earth and who confers all
objects that satisfy sense, who benefits mankind, and who is
perceptible, subtle, and imperceptible. May that unborn eternal Hari,
who is seen in manifold forms, whose essence consists of both nature and
spirit, confer humanity that blessed condition which is without birth or


[1] This mystic monosyllable plays a prominent part in Sanskrit
scriptural literature. Composed, according to some, of the letters a, u,
and ma. signifying Brahmā, Creator; Vishnu, Preserver; and Siva,
Destroyer;—it expresses the three in One; and is said to possess great
power spiritually.—T.

[2] In this translation, such epithets as, although compounded of
general terms, have through usage come to mean some particular
individual, have been retained untranslated, their renderings being only
appended in footnotes.—Vasudeva is Vasudeva's son, an appellation of
Krishna; which, again, although the name of the most celebrated
incarnation of Vishnu, means—dark blue or brown.—T.

[3] Pundarika-aksha—having eyes resembling the pale lotus.—T.

[4] Hrishika—organ of sense, and ica—lord. Hirshikesha—sovereign of the
senses,—i.e. the cause of their action and abstention.—T.

[5] Vishnu means all-pervading.—T.

[6] The three cardinal qualities—goodness, passion and darkness.—T.

[7] Unformed Nature is designated by several epithets—Pradhana,
Prakriti, Avyakta (unmanifested), etc.—T.

[8] Wealth is of eight kinds, viz., animā, laghimā, prāpti, prākamya,
mahimā, içitwa, vaçitwa, and kāmāvaçāyitā.—Animā is the power of
reducing one's self to the minutest proportions; laghimā is that of
rendering one's self exceedingly light,—prāpti is the power of
obtaining anything that is wished; prākamya is irresistibility of the
Will; içitwa is supremacy; vaçitwa is the power of bringing all under
sway; and Kāmāvaçāyitā is the power of suppressing desire.—T.

[9] A Purāna treats of these five subjects, viz., (1) the creation, (2)
destruction and renovation of the world, (3) royal dynasties, (4) reigns
of the Manus, and (5) geneologies.—T.

[10] The reigns of Manus.

[11] A kalpa is a day and night of Brahmā, consisting of 4,320,000,000
solar sidereal years, or years of mortals, measuring the duration of the

[12] An order of saints.

[13] The text has puman—male beings.—T.

[14] An oblation of various ingredients offered by way of respect.—T.

[15] An arrangement of the text of the Vedas into short sentences; or a

[16] Vasudeva is named from his residing in all objects and his endowing
them with splendour. Moksha Dharma.—T.

[17] Vyakta and Avyakta—the names respectively of formed and unformed

[18] According to the Sankhya system, which the author follows in his
cosmogony, prior to creation, the Universe existed in Nature like a
mangoe tree existing latent in a mangoe-stone; and in the fullness of
time, favored by the Primeval male and Time, the evolution of all was
brought about.—T.

[19] Male being.—T.

[20] Followers of the Sankhya Philosophy hold that the equilibrium of
the three principles or modes, is Prakriti—Primal nature.—T.

[21] "Here let us remind our readers of the argument by which we are led
to conclude that the visible system (vyakta) is not the whole universe,
and that there must be an invisible order of things (Avyakta) which will
remain and possess energy when the present system has passed away. It
is, moreover, very closely connected with the present system, inasmuch
as this may be looked upon as come into being through its means". The
italics are mine. Unseen Universe, p. 157.

[22] Emanation of Divinity.

[23] Or Buddhi—the Intellect. This is also called Mahat—the Great one.
It is the substance or essence by which the soul obtains a knowledge of
external things.—T.

[24] Ahankara is the substance or ens connected with thought Buddhi, in
which consciousness inheres. It is the Mid-stuff of Prof. Clifford,
assumed as the original ground of our being i.e. of all formal being.—T.

[25] Connected successively with goodness, passion and foulness.—T.

[26] Ahankara relating to foulness.

[27] Cardinal Point, Wind, Sun, Pracheta [regent of water], Acwini
Kumara, Fire, Indra, Upendra, Krishna, Mitra, and Prajāpati.—T.

[28] "Mind" says Maudesley in Physiology of mind "used in the sense of
substance or essence, and brain used in the sense of organ of mental
function, are, at bottom, names of the same substance". In the system of
Kapila, which the author follows, everything connected in function with
sensuous objects, is as material as the objects themselves, being
equally an emanation from Prakriti—T.

[29] As Hiranyagarbha.—T.

[30] Lit. the Great one—so consciousness or egoism is styled.—T.

[31] Vide ante.—T.

[32] The three gunas—generally translated qualities,—but more properly
modes or principles—have a physical as well as a moral significance in
the sacred literature of the Hindus. "They are not mere accidents of
nature, but are of its essence and enter into its composition". Davis'
Hindu Philosophy.—T.

[33] Vide ante.—T.

[34] This is an appellation of Vishnu, meaning, he who is worshipped.
This Purana as the locus classicus of the Vaishnavas, recognises Vishnu
as in one the Greater and the Destroyer, without assigning the function
of destruction to Siva.—T.

[35] The hundred-hooded serpent, Sesha or Ananta, also conceived as a
form of Vishnu himself.—T.

[36] The acts of human beings, etc., are also his property.

[37] A nimesha is the twinkling of an eye.

[38] Dwāpara and Kali.

[39] The division of the Yugas.

[40] A generic name of the Progenitors of mankind.

[41] I fail to perceive the sense of this, unless it meant as they have
been created aforetime.—T.

[42] Lacs.

[43] One million.

[44] Ten millions.

[45] Manwantaras.

[46] Extending over as many Manwantaras.

[47] Persons practising a certain process entitled Yoga.

[48] The time of creation.

[49] A divine personage sprung from Brahmā.—T.

[50] A name of Vishnu.—T.

[51] This term, a common appellation of Krishna, is derived variously.
Go—language [the language of the Vedas] and vinda—who knows; or
go—heaven or a cow, and vid—to obtain,—by whom heaven is obtained, or
who obtains felicity by protecting kine.—T.

[52] Madhava being one of the names of Krishna, Madhavi means related to

[53] Oblation into fire with the utterence of Vashata.—T.

[54] The utterence of Om.—T,

[55] Another appellation of Krishna, from the root, hri—to take or
seize. Hari possibly means he that takes men's hearts.—T.

[56] i.e. belonging to the Sama Veda, which used to be sung.—T.

[57] An appellation of Krishna, derived from Ka—Brahmā, and ica—Siva and
va—who goes—i.e. one that goes before Brahmā and Siva, or from
Kesa—hair, and va—who possesses—fair-haired.—T.

[58] Sacrificial stake.

[59] Hymns of the Rig Veda.—T.

[60] Hindu scriptures are broadly divided into (1) Sruti—audition; and
(2) Smriti—reminiscence. The former corresponds to the Christian
Revelation, and the other is tradition.—T.

[61] This approaches wonderfully the theory of Spontaneous creation,
which is accepted by the out-and-out apostles of Modern Science—The most
uncompromising advocates of Evolution could not outdo the Hindu sage of
yore, in formulating their faith in (to give a Spencerian turn to the
expression) the unknowable force, which, unintelligent itself, brings
about this wonderful system of things instinct with infinite wisdom and
love! Queer, however, would the classification read,—Parāçara, Darwin,
Spencer, Huxley, Heckel, Tyndall, etc.—T.

[62] Ancestral manes.

[63] Tamas brings about love of one's own person, etc., moha produces a
sense of authority over offspring, etc. mahamoha generates desire of
sensual gratification, tamisra causes anger on any impediment coming in
the way of enjoyment, and through andhatamisra one is led to conserve
health and the good things of life.—T.

[64] Lit. the stream of beings living according to nature.—T.

[65] Some of these are physical, such as leprosy, deafness, blindness,
inertia, dumbness, smellessness, impotence; some are mental and moral.
It is, however, difficult for us of these times to see how beasts, &c.
are more subject to these evils than human beings. The author may
possibly have a meaning of his own, which, in the absence of adequate
commentary, we fail to arrive at.—T.

[66] The stream of being, tending upwards.—T.

[67] Lit. soul-satisfying.—T.

[68] The first circumstance, remarks the commentator, is owing to the
presence, the next, to that of passion.—T.

[69] Lit. the creation of the elements.

[70] i.e. pertaining to Indriyas—the organ of sense.

[71] From Prakriti—nature.

[72] Creation of the gods.

[73] An order of deities.

[74] i.e. relating to the excited condition of anything.

[75] This passage is very obscure. It is not clear how acts, whether
fair or foul or indifferent, can apply to immobile objects, the very
statement of whose name carries with it a negation of movement.—T.

[76] In Sanskrit tamas means darkness, along with the principle of

[77] Meaning, going before twilight.

[78] From Raksha—protect.

[79] From the verb ha leave.

[80] Serpents.

[81] Serpents.

[82] A fabulous animal, having eight legs, inhabiting the snowy
mountainous regions.—T.

[83] Bos Gavus.

[84] A species of deer.

[85] i.e. belonging to village.—T.

[86] The most sacred hymn in all the Vedas, in praise of the Sun, as
representing the Supreme Sun of the spiritual Universe.—T.

[87] Hymns of the Rig-Veda.

[88] A kind of sacrifice.

[89] A division of the Sama Veda, so named.

[90] A sacrifice.

[91] A division of the Vedas.

[92] Song of the Sama Veda.

[93] A part of the Sama Ved. Vrihat means great.

[94] A metre of the Sama Veda.

[95] Songs of the Sama Veda.

[96] A kind of Sacrifice.

[97] A kind of Sacrifice.

[98] Inferior spectres reveling in the morally foul and the physically

[99] Horse-hipped beings.

[100] Horse-faced beings.

[101] A profound view, in imaginative vesture, of Heredity. The Author
imparts a comprehensiveness and sublimity to the doctrine which is

[102] A little liberty has been indulged in translating this sentence,
at the construction of the original is involved and complicated.—T.

[103] subject to duality, i.e. came under the Law of Relativity, in the
sense of Professor Bain. See Senses and Intellect.

[104] Rice of various kinds; of which eight only are enumerated by the

[105] A medicinal plant, and perfume, Panicum Italicum.

[106] A species of grain eaten by the lower people Paspalum Kora.

[107] A sort of panic, P. miliaceum.

[108] A sort of kidney bean:—phaseolus radiatus.

[109] Phaseolus mungo.

[110] A sort of pulse or lentil—Eroum Hirsutum; cassia alata.

[111] Dalichos biflorus.

[112] Cytius cajan.

[113] From grāma—village.

[114] From aranya—wood.

[115] Panicum mantacium. Also P. coloumn.

[116] Wild sessamum.

[117] Coix barbata.

[118] A fruit.

[119] i.e. the Wind-god.

[120] Ambrosia.

[121] A formula, embodying the name of Vāsudeva.

[122] viz. the upper, middle, and nether regions.

[123] Mildness

[124] Insolence

[125] Meek.

[126] Wild.

[127] White.

[128] Dark.

[129] Having an hundred forms.

[130] Sacrifice.

[131] Gift in sacrifice to Brahmanas.

[132] Veneration

[133] The goddess of wealth.

[134] Patience.

[135] Satisfaction.

[136] Nourishment.

[137] Intelligence.

[138] Act.

[139] Intellect.

[140] Bashfulness.

[141] Body.

[142] Success.

[143] Fame.

[144] Righteousness.

[145] Renown.

[146] Chaste.

[147] Birth.

[148] Memory.

[149] Gratification.

[150] Forgiveness.

[151] Reverence.

[152] Good-natured.

[153] Energy.

[154] This and the last are words uttered while one is offering

[155] Sexual desire.

[156] Lakshmi.

[157] Pride.

[158] Restraint.

[159] Satisfaction.

[160] Contentment.

[161] Nourishment.

[162] Greed.

[163] Intellect.

[164] Knowledge.

[165] Action.

[166] Punishment.

[167] Justice.

[168] Humility.

[169] Intellect.

[170] Apprehension.

[171] Body.

[172] Exertion.

[173] Felicity.

[174] Fame.

[175] Cheerfulness.

[176] Malice.

[177] Unrighteousness.

[178] Falsehood

[179] Wickedness.

[180] Fear.

[181] Hell.

[182] Illusion.

[183] Pain.

[184] Death.

[185] Tapa—lit. heat—here means the three kinds of pain,—natural,
supernatural and that coming from spirits. The word tapa for pain refers
to the physical phenomenon accompanying all pain—namely, heat in the
part affected. And physical pain in any part of the body is invariably
found to be accompanied with heat at that locality.—T

[186] Misery.

[187] Disease.

[188] Decrepitude.

[189] Grief.

[190] Thirst.

[191] Anger.

[192] The reader will readily perceive that all this is allegorical,
although the allegory is by no means on all fours. The entire fabric, it
may truly be said, of Hinduism is upreared upon an allegorical
foundation; but the allegory having been missed, it has degenerated
itself into a system of degrading superstition.—T.

[193] Clarified butter as offered in oblations to fire with cakes of
ground barley meal that have been well steeped in it.—T.

[194] The room opposite to that which contains the materials for an
oblation and in which the family and friends of the sacrifice

[195] An oblong with quadrangular sides.

[196] A sacrificial stake.

[197] The hymns of the Sama Veda.

[198] A division of time.

[199] Wife of Yama.

[200] Time taken up by the twinkling of an eye.

[201] A kind of celestial tree.

[202] Ten thousand.

[203] A designation of Om, for which see before.

[204] Lit.—celestial saints—an order of saints.

[205] The preceptor of the deities.

[206] Lit three-eyed—a name of Siva.

[207] Suns keeping company with the Sun proper, who presides over them.

[208] The bow, or the Trident of Siva.

[209] The Wind-god.

[210] Himansu—name of the Moon.

[211] The Esculapius of the Hindus.

[212] A vessel so named.

[213] A hymn of the Rig Veda.

[214] A scimitar—a sacrificial knife.

[215] Lit.—the performer of an hundred sacrifices. It is a name of

[216] Another name of Vishnu.

[217] The genius of ill-luck,

[218] According to the commentator this distinction is derived from the
Vedas. The first class or Agnishwattas consists of those householders
who when alive, did not offer burnt sacrifices; the second of those who
presented oblations with fire.

[219] The other wife of the king.

[220] Contact with the universe—meaning who is not restricted by its

[221] The material universe.

[222] Brahmā the creator.

[223] Manu.

[224] Receiving oblations Indra pours rains by which harvest grows and
upon which the world lives.—T.

[225] Another text reads Vivardhita, meaning—And they were thenceforth
piled upon one another.

[226] A class of deities to whom daily offerings are to be made.

[227] Are the personifications of Vedic rites and prayers.

[228] The milky way.

[229] The three kinds of affliction referred to in the Sankhya
Philosophy, internal, bodily or mental affliction. External, such as
injuries received from men or animals. Superhuman—such as miseries
inflicted by gods, or through some supernatural agency.

[230] There is another reading which has been translated by Wilson. "The
mighty-armed and Valiant Taraka".

[231] i.e. Those who obtain this highest knowledge regarding the
condition of Brahma are freed from future births i.e. they are not
required any more to go through the cycle of births.

[232] This lake is still to be seen near Ajmere.

[233] Markandeya and Vayu Puranas have Kamya as the name of the daughter
of Kardama. Wilson has adopted this name.

[234] He is the great serpent upon which Vishnu rests during the
intervals of divine creations. And the world is supported on his
thousand heads.

[235] There is another reading Vastu Vastatmakan kuta: which when
translated stands as "Whence they can be considered as essentially the
same with the either".

[236] This is Prakriti or supreme nature.

[237] There is another reading Pradhana purushattakam qualifying the
universe i.e. universe consisting of inert nature and soul.

[238] The three naves are the three portions of the day namely, morning,
noon and night; the five spokes are the five cyclic years and the six
peripheries are the six seasons.

[239] It is a vedic verse in the shape of a short prayer to the sun.

[240] (a) The Saura containing the sun's passage through a sign of
    zodiac; (b) Chandra containing thirty lunations; (c) Savana
    containing thirty days of sunrise and sunset; (d) Nakshatra or the
    moon's revolution through the twenty-eight lunar mansions.

[241] That is performing the expiatory rites for their master.

[242] Therein another reading Agnisoma Bhutaya which professor Wilson
has adopted i.e., who as fire and the moon.

[243] These are the subsidiary portion of the Vedas—namely (a) Siksha,
rules for reciting prayers (b) Kalpa, ritual (c) Vyakarana, (grammar)
(d) Nerukta, glossary (e) Chandas, metre (f) Voytish, astronomy.

[244] The third Muhurtta about two hours before sunrise.

[245] The mundane egg floating on the water at creation, of that metal,
or similar colour from which the deity issued according to some legends;
i.e. he should treat him with all reverence.

[246] The Brāhmans here are classed into Trinachiketa, Trimadhu and
Trisuparna. The first is so called from reciting three Anuvakas of the
Katha-Ka branch of the Yajur-veda, beginning with the term Trinachiketa
&c.; the second from three Anuvakas of the Sama Veda
beginning Madhuvata; and the third from a similar portion commencing
Brahmavan namami.

[247] There is some difference between veda vit and Srotya—The first
studies the Vedas only and the second practises the rites thereof.

[248] Yogi is one who practices strictest penances.

[249] A chanter of the principal Sama-veda. Portions of it contained in
the Aranyaka are called the Jyestha ‘elder' or principal Saman.

[250] It is a ceremony which comprehends offerings to both paternal and
maternal ancestors or ancestors in general.

[251] Havishya i.e. offerings made of rice or other grains with
clarified butter.

[252] The expression Gavya literally means all that is derived from cow.
But being associated with flesh readers may mistake it for the flesh of
a cow. Though the sacrifice of a cow or calf formed part of the ancient
Srāddha it is proscribed in the present age. So it must mean here milk
or any preparation of it.

[253] Eunuch.

[254] One ejected from the society.

[255] A woman in her course.

[256] Sagara is still the name of the Bay of Bengal at the mouth of the
Ganges which is held in great reverence by the Hindus. There is an
island there of the same name where there is a pilgrimage of Kapila
where still now takes place an annual fair.

[257] For this the Gangā is called Jāhnavi i.e. issuing from Jahnu.

[258] The word in the text is chakracharina—it means also those
ascetics, who make wherever they arrive in the evening, their homes.

[259] The Rāsa dance is danced by men and women holding each other's
hands going round in a circle singing the airs to what they dance.

*** End of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "A Prose English Translation Of Vishupuranam - (Based on Professor H. H. Wilson’s translation.)" ***

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