Chapter 26

Mahabharata English - ARANYAKA PARVA

Vaisampayana said, “While the illustrious son of Pandu continued to dwellin the Dwaita woods, that great forest became filled with Brahmanas. Andthe lake within that forest, ever resounding with Vedic recitations,became sacred like a second region of Brahma. And the sounds of theYajus, the Riks, the Samas, and other words uttered by the Brahmanas,were exceedingly delightful to hear. And the Vedic recitations of theBrahmanas mingling with the twang of bows of the sons of Pritha, produceda union of the Brahmana and Kshatriya customs that was highly beautiful.And one evening the Rishi Vaka of the Dalvya family addressedYudhishthira, the son of Kunti seated in the midst of the Rishis, saying,’Behold, O chief of the Kurus, O son of Pritha, the homa time is come ofthese Brahmanas devoted to ascetic austerities, the time when the(sacred) fires have all been lit up! These all, of rigid vows, protectedby thee, are performing the rites of religion in this sacred region! Thedescendants of Bhrigu and Angiras, along with those of Vasishta andKasyapa, the illustrious sons of Agastya, the offspring of Atri all ofexcellent vows, in fact, all the foremost Brahmanas of the whole, are nowunited with thee! Listen, O son of the Kuru race born of Kunti, thyselfwith thy brothers, to the words I speak to thee! As are aided by the windconsumeth the forest, so Brahma energy mingling with Kshatriya energy,and Kshatriya might mingling with Brahma power, might, when they gatheredforce, consume all enemies! O child, he should never desire to be withoutBrahmanas who wisheth to subdue this and the other world for length ofdays! Indeed, a king slayeth his enemies having obtained a Brahmanaconversant, with religion and worldly affairs and freed from passion andfolly. King Vali cherishing his subjects practised those duties that leadto salvation, and knew not of any other means in this world thanBrahmanas. It was for this that all the desires of Virochana’s son, theAsura (Vali), were ever gratified, and his wealth was ever inexhaustible.Having obtained the whole earth through the aid of the Brahmanas, he metwith destruction when he began to practise wrong on them! This earth withher wealth never adoreth long as her lord a Kshatriya living without aBrahmana! The earth, however, girt by the sea, boweth unto him who isruled by a Brahmana and taught his duties by him! Like an elephant inbattle without his driver, a Kshatriya destitute of Brahmanas decreasethin strength! The Brahmana’s sight is without compare, and the Kshatriya’smight also is unparalleled. When these combine, the whole earth itselfcheerfully yieldeth to such a combination. As fire becoming mightier withthe wind consumeth straw and wood, so kings with Brahmanas consume allfoes! An intelligent Kshatriya, in order to gain what he hath not, andincrease what he hath, should take counsel of Brahmanas! Therefore, O sonof Kunti, for obtaining what thou hast not and increasing what thou hast,and spending what thou hast on proper objects and persons, keep thou withthee a Brahmana of reputation, of a knowledge of the Vedas, of wisdom andexperience! O Yudhishthira. Thou hast ever highly regarded the Brahmanas.It is for this that thy fame is great and blazeth in the three worlds!”

Vaisampayana continued, “Then all those Brahmanas who were withYudhishthira worshipped Vaka of the Dalvya race, and having heard himpraise Yudhishthira became highly pleased. And Dwaipayana and Narada andJamadagnya and Prithusravas; and Indradyumna and Bhalaki and Kritachetasand Sahasrapat; and Karnasravas and Munja and Lavanaswa and Kasyapa; andHarita and Sthulakarana and Agnivesya and Saunaka; and Kritavak andSuvakana Vrihadaswa and Vibhavasu; and Urdharetas and Vrishamitra andSuhotra and Hotravahana; these and many other Brahmanas of rigid vowsthen adored Yudhishthira like Rishis adoring Purandara in heaven!”

Chapter 25
Chapter 27