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Chapter 65

Mahabharata English - ANUSASANA PARVA

“Bhishma said, ‘The illustrious Atri, the son of the Grandsire Brahman,said, ‘They who make gifts of gold are said to make gifts of everythingin the world.’ King Harischandra said that the gift of gold issin-cleansing, leads to long life, and becomes productive ofinexhaustible merit unto the Pitris. Manu has said that a gift of drinkis the best of all gifts: therefore should a man cause wells and tanksand lakes to be excavated. A well full of water and from which diversecreatures draw water, is said to take off half the sinful acts of theperson who has excavated it. The whole race of a person is rescued fromhell and sin in whose well or tank or lake kine and Brahmanas andrighteous people constantly quench their thirst. That man transcendsevery kind of calamity from whose well or tank every one draws waterwithout restraint during the summer season. Ghee is said to gratify theillustrious Vrihaspati, Pushan, Bhaga, the twin Aswins, and the deity offire. Ghee is possessed of high medicinal virtues. It is a high requisitefor sacrifice. It is the best of all liquids. The merit a gift of gheeproduces is very superior. That man who is desirous of the reward ofhappiness in the next world, who wishes for fame and prosperity, shouldwith a cleansed soul and having purified himself make gifts of ghee untothe Brahmanas. Upon that man who makes gifts of ghee unto the Brahmanasin the month of Aswin, the twin Aswins, gratified, confer personalbeauty. Rakshasas never invade the abode of that man who makes gifts untothe Brahmanas of Payasa mixed with ghee. That man never dies of thirstwho makes gifts unto the Brahmanas of jars filled with water. Such aperson obtains every necessary of life in abundance, and has never toundergo any calamity or distress. That man, who with great devotion andrestrained senses makes gifts unto the foremost of Brahmanas, is said totake a sixth part of the merits won by the Brahmanas by their penances.That man who makes presents unto Brahmanas having the means of life, offirewood for purposes of cooking as also of enabling them to drive cold,finds all his purposes and all his acts crowned with success. Such a oneis seen to shine with great splendour over all his enemies. Theillustrious deity of fire becomes pleased with such a man. As anotherreward, he never becomes divested of cattle, and he is sure to achievevictory in battles. The man who makes a gift of an umbrella obtainschildren and great prosperity. Such a person is never affected by anyeye-disease. The merits also that spring from the performance of asacrifice become his. That man who makes a gift of an umbrella in theseason of summer or rains, has never to meet with any heart-burning onany account. Such a man quickly succeeds in freeing himself from everydifficulty and impediment. The highly blessed and illustrious RishiSandilya has said that, of all gifts, the gift of a car, O king, is thebest.'”

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