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Chapter 28

Mahabharata English - ASRAMAVASIKA PARVA

“Vaisampayana said, ‘After the high-souled Pandavas had all been seated,Satyavati’s son Vyasa said,–O Dhritarashtra of mighty arms, hast thoubeen able to achieve penances? Is thy mind, O king, pleased with thyresidence in the woods? Has the grief that was thine, born of theslaughter of thy sons in battle, disappeared from thy heart? Are all thyperceptions, O sinless one, now clear? Dost thou practise the ordinancesof forest life after having made thy heart firm? Does my daughter-in-law,Gandhari, allow herself to be overwhelmed by grief? She is possessed ofgreat wisdom. Endued with intelligence, that queen understands bothReligion and Wealth. She is well conversant with the truths that relateto both prosperity and adversity. Does she still grieve? Does Kunti, Oking, who in consequence of her devotion to the service of her seniors,left her children, attend to thy wants and serve thee with all humility?Have the high-minded and high-souled king, Yudhishthira, the son ofDharma and Bhima and Arjuna and the twins been sufficiently comforted?Dost thou feet delight at seeing them? Has thy mind become freed fromevery stain? Has thy disposition, O king, become pure in consequence ofthe increase of thy knowledge? This aggregate of three, O king, is theforemost of all concerns, O Bharata, viz., abstension from injury to anycreature, truth, and freedom from anger. Does thy forest life any longerprove painful to thee? Art thou able to earn with thy own exertions theproducts of the wilderness for thy food? Do fasts give thee any pain now?Hast thou learnt, O king, how the high-souled Vidura, who was Dharma’sself, left this world? Through the curse of Mandavya, the deity ofRighteousness became born as Vidura. He was possessed of greatintelligence. Endued with high penances, he was high-souled andhigh-minded. Even Vrihaspati among the celestials, and Sukra among theAsuras, was not possessed of such intelligence as that foremost ofpersons. The eternal deity of Righteousness was stupefied by the RishiMandavya with an expenditure of his penances earned for a long time withgreat care.[45] At the command of the Grandsire, and through my ownenergy, Vidura of great intelligence was procreated by me upon a soilowned by Vichitraviryya. A deity of deities, and eternal, he was, O king,thy brother. The learned know him to be Dharma in consequence of hispractices of Dharana and Dhyana.[46] He grows with (the growth of) truth,self-restraint, tranquillity of heart, compassion, and gifts. He isalways engaged in penances, and is eternal. From that deity ofRighteousness, through Yoga-puissance, the Kuru king Yudhishthira alsotook his birth. Yudhishthira, therefore, O king, is Dharma of greatwisdom and immeasurable intelligence. Dharma exists both here andhereafter, and is like fire or wind or water or earth or space. He is, Oking of kings, capable of going everywhere and exists, pervading thewhole universe. He is capable of being beheld by only those that are theforemost of the deities and those that are cleansed of every sin andcrowned with ascetic success. He that is Dharma is Vidura; and he that isVidura is the (eldest) son of Pandu. That son of Pandu. O king, iscapable of being perceived by thee. He stays before thee as thy servitor.Endued with great Yoga-puissance, thy high-souled brother, that foremostof intelligent men, seeing the high-souled Yudhishthira, the son ofKunti, has entered into his person. These also, O chief of Bharata’srace, I shall unite with great benefit. Know, O son, that I am come herefor dispelling thy doubts. Some feat that has never been accomplishedbefore by any of the great Rishis, some wonderful effect of mypenances,–I shall show thee. What object is that, O king, whoseaccomplishment thou desirest from me? Tell me what is that which thouwishest to see or ask or hear? O sinless one, I shall accomplish it.’

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