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Chapter 15

Mahabharata English - ASWAMEDHA PARVA

Janamejaya said, ‘O the best of regenerate beings, when the Pandavas hadreconquered and pacified their kingdom, what did the two warriors,Vasudeva and Dhananjaya do?

Vaisampayana said, ‘O lord of the earth, Vasudeva and Dhananjaya werehighly pleased when the Pandavas had succeeded in regaining and pacifyingtheir dominions, and they deported themselves with great satisfaction,like unto Indra and his consort in the celestial regions, and amidstpicturesque woodland sceneries, and tablelands of mountains, and sacredplaces of pilgrimage, and lakes and rivers, they travelled with greatpleasure like the two Aswins in the Nandana garden of Indra. And, OBharata, the high-souled Krishna and the son of Pandu (Dhananjaya)entering the beautiful hall of assembly at Indraprastha, whiled awaytheir time in great merriment. And there, O prince, they passed theirtime in recounting the stirring incidents of the war, and the sufferingsof their past lives. And those two high-souled ancient sages, glad atheart, recited the genealogy of the races of saints and gods. ThenKesava, knowing the full import of all matters, addressed Partha in asweet and beautiful speech of excellent style and import. And thenJanarddana comforted the son of Pritha afflicted by the death of hissons, and thousands of other relatives. And he of great ascetic merit andknowing the science of all things having duly consoled him, Arjuna restedfor a while, as if a great burden had been removed from his own person.Then Govinda (Krishna) consoling Arjuna with sweet speech addressed thesewell-reasoned words to him.

Vasudeva said, ‘O Arjuna, the terror of thine enemies, this whole earthhas been conquered by the king, the son of Dharma, relying on the powerof thy arms. And O the best of men, the virtuous king Yudhishthira nowenjoys the sovereignty of the earth without a rival, by the might ofBhimasena and the twin brothers. O thou who knowest what virtue is, itwas by righteousness alone that the king has been able to regain hiskingdom free from all enemies (thorns), and it was by the action ofrighteousness that king Suyodhana has been killed in battle, and, O sonof Pritha and pillar of the Kuru race, the wicked sons of Dhritarashtra,avaricious, always rude in speech, and bent upon an unrighteous course ofconduct, having been exterminated with their followers, the king, the sonof Dharma and lord of the earth, now peaceably enjoys the entire kingdomof the earth with thy aid, and I too, O son of Pandu, have beenpleasantly whiling away my time in thy company, amidst woodland scenes. Oterror of thine enemies, what more need I tell thee, but that where thouand Pritha, and the king, the son of Dharma, and the mighty Bhimasena andthe two sons of Madri are, there am I attracted with exquisite delight. Odescendant of Kuru, in these delightful and sacred and heaven-like hallsof assembly a long time hath fleeted away in thy company without myseeing Vasudeva, Valadeva and other leaders of the Vrishni race. And nowI am desirous of repairing to the city of Dwaravati. Do thou therefore, Omost valorous of men, assent to my departure. When king Yudhishthira wassmitten heavily with affliction, I with Bhishma, have recited to him manyappropriate legends suited to the occasion with a view of assuaging hisgrief, and the pliant and high-minded Yudhishthira, though our sovereignand versed in all lore paid due heed to our words. That son of Dharmahonours truth, and is grateful and righteous, therefore will his virtueand good sense and the stability of his power always endure. And now, OArjuna, if it pleases thee, do thou go to that high-minded prince andtell him of my intention to depart from this place. For, O thou of mightyarms, even if death cometh to me, I am unwilling to do anything that maydisplease him, leaving alone my going to the city of Dwaravati. O son ofPritha and descendant of Kuru, I now tell thee truly, desiring to do onlywhat is good and agreeable to thee, and there can be nothing equivocal init in any way, that the necessity for my staying here no longer exists,because, O Arjuna, that monarch the son of Dhritarashtra bath been slainwith his armies and attendants, and the earth, my friend, with its girdleof seas and its mountains and woods and forests, and the kingdom of theKuru king filled with various gems, have passed under the sway of thatwise son of Dharma. And O foremost prince of Bharata’s race, may thatvirtuous prince administer the entire kingdom of the earth inrighteousness, and with the respect and approbation of numeroushigh-souled Siddhas, and having his praises always extolled by the courtheralds. Do thou, O chieftain of Kuru’s race, accompany me to-day to thepresence of the king, the great aggrandiser of the Kuru race, and soundhim of my intended return to Dwaraka. As Yudhishthira the high-souledking of the Kurus always commands my love and respect, I have, O son ofPritha, placed this my body and all the wealth that I have in my house,at his disposal. And O prince Partha (son of Pritha), when this earth hascome under thy sway and that of the worshipful Yudhishthira of excellentcharacter, there no longer remains any necessity for my staying hereexcept for my affection for thee. And O monarch, when the redoubtableArjuna had been thus accosted by the noble-hearted Janarddana, he,showing all the honours due to him, sorrowfully replied by merely saying’be it so.’

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