Chapter 313

Mahabharata English - ARANYAKA PARVA

Vaisampayana continued,–“Commanded by the Lord of justice to thus spendin disguise the thirteenth year of non-discovery, the high-souledPandavas, observant of vows and having truth for prowess, sat beforethose learned and vow-observing ascetics that from regard were dwellingwith them in their exile in the forest. And with joined hands they saidthese words, with the intention of obtaining permission to spend thethirteenth year in the manner indicated. And they said, ‘Ye know wellthat the sons of Dhritarashtra have by deceit deprived us of our kingdom,and have also done us many other wrongs! We have passed twelve years inthe forest in great affliction. The thirteenth year only, which we are tospend unrecognised, yet remaineth. It behoveth you to permit us now tospend this year in concealment! Those rancorous enemies of oursSuyodhana, the wicked-minded Kama, and Suvala’s son should they discoverus, would do mighty wrong to the citizens and our friends! Shall we allwith the Brahmanas, be again established in our own kingdom? Having saidthis, that pure-spirited son of Dharma king Yudhishthira, overwhelmedwith grief and with accents choked in tears, swooned away. Thereupon theBrahmanas, together with his brothers began to cheer him up. Then Dhaumyaspake unto the king these words fraught with mighty meaning,–‘O king,thou art learned and capable of bearing privations, art firm in promise,and of subdued sense! Men of such stamp are not overwhelmed by anycalamity whatever. Even the high-souled gods themselves have wanderedover various places in disguise, for the purpose of overcoming foes.Indra for the purpose of overcoming his toes, dwelt in disguise in theasylum of Giriprastha, in Nishadha and thus attained his end. Beforetaking his birth in the womb of Aditi, Vishnu for the purpose ofdestroying the Daityas passed a long time unrecognised, assuming the formof the Haya-griba (Horse-necked). Then how disguising himself in the formof a dwarf, he by his prowess deprived Vali of his kingdom, hath beenheard by thee! And thou hast also heard how Hutasana entering into waterand remaining in concealment, achieved the purpose of the gods. And Othou versed in duty, thou hast heard how Hari with the view of overcominghis foes, entered into Sakra’s thunder-bolt, and lay concealed there.And, O sinless one, thou hast heard of the office the regenerate RishiAurva at one time performed for the gods, remaining concealed in hismother’s womb. And O child, living in concealment in every part of theearth, Vivaswat, endued with excellent energy, at last entirely burnt upall his foes. And living disguised in the abode of Dasaratha, Vishnu ofdreadful deeds slew the Ten-necked one in battle.’ Thus remaining indisguise in various places, high-souled persons have before thisconquered their enemies in battle. Thus cheered by these words ofDhaumya, the virtuous Yudhishthira, relying on his own wisdom and alsothat acquired from the scriptures regained his composure. Then thatforemost of strong persons, the mighty-armed Bhimasena endued with greatstrength encouraging the king greatly, spake these words, ‘Looking up tothy face (for permission), the wielder of the Gandiva, acting accordingto his sense of duty hath not yet, O king, shown any rashness! Andalthough fully able to destroy the foe, Nakula and Sahadeva of dreadfulprowess have been ever prevented by me! Never shall we swerve from thatin which thou wilt engage us! Do thou tell us what is to be done! Weshall speedily conquer our enemies! When Bhimasena had said this, theBrahmanas uttered benedictions on the Bharatas, and then obtaining theirpermission, went to their respective quarters. And all those foremost ofYatis and Munis versed in the Vedas, exceedingly desirous of againbeholding the Pandavas, went back to their homes. And accompanied byDhaumya, these heroes, the five learned Pandavas equipped in vows set outwith Krishna. And each versed in a separate science, and all proficientin mantras and cognisant of when peace was to be concluded and when warwas to be waged those tigers among men, about to enter upon a life ofnon-recognition, the next day proceeded for a Krose and then satthemselves down with the view of taking counsel of each other.

Chapter 312
Chapter 9
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