Chapter 138

Mahabharata English - ARANYAKA PARVA

“Lomasa said, ‘At that very time, the mighty king, Vrihadyumna, of highfortune, who was the Yajamana of Raivya, commenced a sacrifice. And thetwo sons of Raivya, Arvavasu and Paravasu, were engaged by thatintelligent monarch, to assist him in the performance of the ceremony.And, O son of Kunti, taking the permission of their father, they two wentto the sacrifice, while Raivya with Paravasu’s wife remained in thehermitage. And it came to pass that one day, desirous of seeing his wife.Paravasu returned home alone. And he met his father in the wood, wrappedin the skin of a black antelope. And the night was far advanced and dark;and Paravasu, blinded by drowsiness in that deep wood, mistook his fatherfor a straggling deer. And mistaking him for a deer, Paravasu, for thesake of personal safety, unintentionally killed his father. Then, O sonof Bharata, after performing the funeral rites (of his father), hereturned to the sacrifice and there addressed his brother saying, ‘Thouwilt never be able to perform this task unassisted. I again, have killedour father, mistaking him for a deer. O brother, for me do thou observe avow, prescribed in the case of killing a Brahmana. O Muni, I shall beable to perform this work (sacrifice), without any assistant.’ Arvavasusaid, ‘Do thou then thyself officiate at this sacrifice of the giftedVrihadyumna; and for thee will I, bringing my senses under perfectcontrol, observe the vow prescribed in the case of slaying a Brahmana.’

“Lomasa said, ‘Having observed the vow relative to the killing of aBrahmana, the sage Arvavasu came back to the sacrifice. Seeing hisbrother arrive, Paravasu, in accents choked with malice, addressedVrihadyumna, saying, ‘O king, see that this slayer of a Brahmana enternot into thy sacrifice, nor look at it. Even by a glance, the killer of aBrahmana can, without doubt, do thee harm.’ O lord of men, immediately onhearing this, the king ordered his attendants (to turn out Arvavasu). Oking, on being driven out by the king’s attendants, and repeatedlyaddressed by them–‘O slayer of  a Brahmana–Arvavasu more than oncecried, ‘It is not I that have killed a Brahmana. Not did he own that hehad observed the vow for his own sake. He said that his brother hadcommitted the sin, and that he had freed him therefrom.’ Having said thisin anger, and being reprimanded by the attendants, the Brahmana sage ofaustere penances, retired in silence into the woods. There betakinghimself to the severest penances, the great Brahmana sought theprotection of the Sun. Thereupon, the revelation teaching the mantrarelative to the worship of the Sun, became manifest unto him and thateternal deity who obtaineth his share (of the sacrificial butter) first,appeared before him in an embodied form.’

“Lomasa said, ‘The celestials, O king, were well pleased with Arvavasufor his acts. And they made him engaged as the chief priest in thesacrifice (of Vrihadyumna), and Paravasu to be dismissed from it. ThenAgni and the other celestials (of their own accord) bestowed boons onArvavasu. And they also prayed that his father might be restored to life.He further prayed that his brother might be absolved from his sin; thathis father might have no recollection of his having been slain; thatBharadwaja and Yavakri might both be restored to life; and that the solarrevelation might attain celebrity (on earth). Then the god said, ‘So beit,’ and conferred on him other boons also. Thereat, O Yudhishthira, allof these persons regained their life. Yavakri now addressed Agni and theother deities, saying, ‘I had obtained a knowledge of all the Vedas, andalso practised penances. How came it then, O chiefs of the immortals,that Raivya succeeded in killing me in that way?’ Thereupon the godssaid, ‘O Yavakri, never act again as those have done. What thou askestabout is quite possible, for thou hast learnt the Vedas without exertion,and without the help of a preceptor. But this man (Raivya) bearingvarious troubles, had satisfied his preceptor by his conduct, andobtained (from the latter) the excellent Vedas through great exertionsand in a long time.’

“Lomasa said, ‘Having said this to Yavakri, and restored all those tolife, the celestials with Indra at their head, ascended to heaven. Here,O Yudhishthira, is the sacred hermitage of that sage embellished withtrees bearing blossoms and fruits at all seasons. O tiger among kings,dwelling at this spot, thou wilt be delivered from all thy sins.'”

Chapter 116
Chapter 139