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Chapter 100

Mahabharata English - ARANYAKA PARVA

“Yudhishthira said, ‘O best of regenerate ones, I desire again to hear ofthe achievements in detail of Agastya–that illustrious Rishi endued withgreat intelligence.'”

“Lomasa said, ‘Listen now, O king, to the excellent and wonderful andextraordinary history of Agastya, as also, O monarch, about the prowessof that Rishi of immeasurable energy. There were in the Krita age certaintribes of fierce Danavas that were invincible in battle. And they wereknown by the name of Kalakeyas and were endued with terrible prowess.Placing themselves under Vritra and arming themselves with diverseweapons they pursued the celestials with Indra at their head in alldirections. The gods then all resolved upon the destruction of Vritra,and went with Indra at their head to Brahma. And beholding them standingbefore him with joined hands, Parameshthi addressed them all and said,”Everything is known to me, ye gods, about what ye seek. I shall indicatenow the means by which ye may slay Vritra. There is a high-souled andgreat Rishi known by the name of Dadhicha. Go ye all together unto himand solicit of him a boon. With well-pleased heart, that Rishi ofvirtuous soul will even grant you the boon. Desirous as ye are ofvictory, go ye all together unto him and tell him, ‘For the good of thethree worlds, give us thy bones.’ Renouncing his body, he will give youhis bones. With these bones of his, make ye a fierce and powerful weaponto be called Vajra, endued with six sides and terrible roar and capableof destroying even the most powerful enemies. With that weapon will he ofa hundred sacrifices slay Vritia. I have now told you all. See that allthis is done speedily.’ Thus addressed by him, the gods with theGrandsire’s leave (came away), and with Narayana at their head proceededto the asylum of Dadhicha. That asylum was on the other bank of the riverSaraswati and covered with diverse trees and creepers. And it resoundedwith the hum of bees as if they were reciting Samans. And it also echoedwith the melodious notes of the male Kokila and the Chakora. Andbuffaloes and boars and deer and Chamaras wandered there at pleasurefreed from the fear of tigers. And elephants with the juice tricklingdown from rent temples, plunging in the stream, sported with theshe-elephants and made the entire region resound with their roars. Andthe place also echoed with the loud roars of lions and tigers, while atintervals might be seen those grisly monarchs of the forest lyingstretched in caves and glens and beautifying them with their presence Andsuch was the asylum, like unto heaven itself, of Dadhicha, that the godsentered. And there they beheld Dadhicha looking like the sun himself insplendour and blazing in grace of person like the Grandsire himself. Andthe celestials saluted the feet of the Rishi and bowed unto him andbegged of him the boon that the Grandsire had bade them do. ThenDadhicha, well pleased, addressing those foremost of celestials, said,’Ye celestials, I will do what is for your benefit. I will even renouncethis body of mine myself.’ And that foremost of men with soul undercontrol, having said this, suddenly renounced his life. The gods thentook the bones of the deceased Rishi as directed. And the celestials,glad at heart, went to Twashtri (the celestial Artificer) and spake tohim of the means of victory. And Twashtri, hearing those words of theirs,became filled with joy, and constructed (out of those bones) with greatattention and care the fierce weapons called Vajra. And havingmanufactured it, he joyfully addressed Indra, saying, ‘With this foremostof weapons, O exalted one, reduce that fierce foe of the gods to ashes.And having slain the foe, rule thou happily the entire domain of heaven,O chief of the celestials, with those that follow thee.’ And thusaddressed by Twashtri, Purandara took the Vajra from his hand, joyfullyand with proper respect.”

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