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Chapter 190

Mahabharata English - DRONA PARVA

“Sanjaya said, ‘Beholding those feats of the Satwata hero, Duryodhana andothers, filled with rage, quickly encompassed the grandson of Sini on allsides. Kripa and Karna, of also thy sorts, O sire, in that battle,quickly approaching the grandson of Sini, began to strike him with keenarrows. Then king Yudhishthira, and the two other Pandavas, viz., the twosons of Madri and Bhimasena of great might surrounded Satyaki (forprotecting him). Karna, and the mighty car-warrior Kripa, and Duryodhanaand others, all resisted Satyaki, pouring showers of arrows on him. Thegrand son of Sini, however, contending with all those car-warriors,baffled, O monarch, that terrible downpour of arrows, so suddenly createdby his foes. Indeed, in that dreadful battle, Satyaki, by means of hisown celestial weapons, duly resisted all those celestial weapons aimed athim by those illustrious warriors. The field of battle became full ofmany cruel sights upon that encounter of those royal combatants,resembling that scene of yore when Rudra, filled with rage, had destroyedall creatures. Human arms and heads and bows, O Bharata, and umbrellasdisplaced (from cars), and yak-tails, were seen lying in heaps on thefield of battle. The earth became quickly strewn with broken wheels andcars, and massive arms lopped off from trunks, and brave horsemendeprived of life. And, O foremost one among the Kurus, large number ofwarriors, mangled with falling arrows, were seen in that great battle toroll and writhe on the ground in agony of the last spasms of death.During the progress of that terrible battle, resembling the encounter indays of old between the celestials and the Asuras, king Yudhishthira thejust, addressing his warriors, said, Putting forth all your vigour, rush,ye great car-warriors, against the Pot-born! Yonder the heroic son ofPrishata is engaged with Drona! He is endeavouring to the utmost of hismight, to slay the son of Bharadwaja. Judging from the aspect he ispresenting in this great battle, it is evident that filled with rage, hewill today overthrow Drona. Uniting together, all of you fight with thePot-born.’ Thus ordered by Yudhishthira, the mighty car-warriors of theSrinjayas all rushed with great vigour to slay the son of Bharadwaja.That mighty car-warrior, viz., Bharadwaja’s son, quickly rushed againstthose advancing warriors, knowing for certain that he would die. WhenDrona, of sure aim, thus proceeded, the earth trembled violently. Fiercewinds began to blow, inspiring the (hostile) ranks with fear. Largemeteors fell, seemingly issuing out of the sun, blazing fiercely as theyfell and foreboding great terrors. The weapons of Drona, O sire, seemedto blaze forth. Cars seemed to produce loud rattles, and steeds to shedtears. The mighty car-warrior, Drona, seemed to be divested of hisenergy, His left eye and left hand began to twitch. Beholding Prishata’sson, again, before him, and bearing in mind the words of the Rishis abouthis leaving the world for heaven, he became cheerless. He then desired togive up life by fighting fairly. Encompassed on all sides by the troopsof Drupada’s son, Drona began to career in battle, consuming largenumbers of Kshatriyas. That grinder of foes, having slain four and twentythousand Kshatriyas, then despatched to Yama’s abode ten times tenthousand, by means of his shafts of keen points. Exerting himself withcare, he seemed to stand in that battle like a smokeless fire. For theextermination of the Kshatriya race, he then had recourse to the Brahmaweapon. Then the mighty Bhima, beholding the illustrious and irresistibleprince of the Panchalas carless and weaponless, quickly proceeded towardshim. Beholding him striking at Drona from a near point, that grinder offoes took up Dhrishtadyumna on his own car and said unto him, ‘Save theethere is no other man that can venture to fight with the preceptor. Bequick to slay him. The burden of his slaughter rests upon thee.’ Thusaddressed by Bhima, the mighty-armed Dhrishtadyumna speedily took up astrong, a new and a superb bow capable of bearing a great strain. Filledwith rage, and shooting his arrows in that battle at the irresistibleDrona, Dhrishtadyumna covered the preceptor, desirous of withstandinghim. Those two ornaments of battle then, both foremost of fighters andboth filled with rage, invoked into existence the Brahma and diverseother celestial weapons. Indeed, O king, Dhrishtadyumna covered Dronawith many mighty weapons in that encounter. Destroying all the weapons ofBharadwaja’s son, the Panchala prince, that warrior of unfading glory,began to slay the Vasatis, the Sivis, the Valhikas and the Kurus, thatis, them, who protected Drona in that battle. Indeed, O king, shootingshowers of arrows on all sides, Dhrishtadyumna at that time lookedresplendent like the sun himself shedding his thousands of rays. Drona,however, once more cut off the prince’s bow and pierced the vitals of theprince himself with many arrows. Thus pierced, the prince felt greatpain. Then Bhima, of great wrath, holding the car of Drona, O monarch,slowly said these words unto him: If wretches amongst Brahmanas,discontented with the avocations of their own order, but well-versed inarms, did not fight, the Kshatriya order then would not have been thusexterminated. Abstention from injury to all creatures hath been said tobe the highest of all virtues. The Brahmana is the root of that virtue.As regards thyself, again, thou art the foremost of all personsacquainted with Brahma. Slaying all those Mlecchas and other warriors,who, however, are all engaged in the proper avocations of their order,moved thereto by ignorance and folly, O Brahmana, and by the desire ofwealth for benefiting sons and wives; indeed, for the sake of an onlyson, why dost thou not feel ashamed? He for whom thou hast taken upweapons, and for whom thou livest, he, deprived of life, lieth today onthe field of battle, unknown to thee and behind thy back. KingYudhishthira the just hath told thee this. It behoveth thee not to doubtthis fact.’ Thus addressed by Bhima, Drona laid aside his bow. Desirousof laying aside all his weapons also, Bharadwaja’s son of virtuous soulsaid aloud, ‘O Karna, Karna, O great bowman, O Kripa, O Duryodhana, Itell you repeatedly, exert yourselves carefully in battle. Let no injuryhappen to you from the Pandayas. As regards myself, I lay aside myweapons.’ Saying these words, he began loudly to take the name ofAswatthaman. Laying aside his weapons then in that battle, and sittingdown on the terrace of his car, he devoted himself to Yoga and assuredall creatures, dispelling their fears. Beholding that opportunity,Dhrishtadyumna mustered all his energy. Laying down on the car hisformidable bow, with arrow fixed on the bow-string, he took up a sword,and jumping down from his vehicle, rushed quickly against Drona. Allcreatures, human beings and others, uttered exclamation of woe, beholdingDrona thus brought under Dhrishtadyumna’s power. Loud cries of Oh andAlas were uttered, as also those of Oh and Fie. As regards Drona himself,abandoning his weapons, he was then in a supremely tranquil state. Havingsaid those words he had devoted himself to Yoga. Endued with greateffulgence and possessed of high ascetic merit, he had fixed his heart onthat Supreme and Ancient Being, viz., Vishnu. Bending his face slightlydown, and heaving his breast forward, and closing his eyes, and restingort the quality of goodness, and disposing his heart to contemplation,and thinking on the monosyllable Om, representing. Brahma, andremembering the puissant, supreme, and indestructible God of gods, theradiant Drona or high ascetic merit, the preceptor (of the Kurus and thePandavas) repaired to heaven that is so difficult of being attained evenby the pious. Indeed, when Drona thus proceeded to heaven it seemed to usthat there were then two suns in the firmament. The whole welkin wasablaze and seemed to be one vast expanse of equal light when the sun-likeBharadwaja, of solar effulgence, disappeared. Confused sounds of joy wereheard, uttered by the delighted celestials. When Drona thus repaired tothe region of Brahman, Dhrishtadyumna stood, unconscious of it all,beside him. Only we five amongst men beheld the high-souled Drona rapt inYoga proceed to the highest region of blessedness. These five weremyself, Dhananjaya, the son of Pritha, and Drona’s son, Aswatthaman, andVasudeva of Vrishni’s race, and king Yudhishthira the just, the son ofPandu. Nobody else, O king, could see that glory of the wise Drona,devoted to Yoga, while passing out of the world. In fact, all humanbeings were unconscious of the fact that the preceptor attained to thesupreme region of Brahman, a region mysterious to the very gods, and onethat is the highest of all. Indeed, none of them could see the preceptor,that chastiser of foes, proceed to the region of Brahman, devoted to Yogain the company of the foremost of Rishis, his body mangled with arrowsand bathed in blood, after he had laid aside his weapons. As regardsPrishata’s son, though everybody cried fie on him, yet casting his eyeson the lifeless Drona’s head, he began to drag it. With his sword, then,he lopped off from his foe’s trunk that head,–his foe remainedspeechless the while. Having slain Bharadwaja’s son. Dhrishtadyumna wasfilled with great joy, and uttered leonine shouts, whirling his sword. Ofa dark complexion, with white locks hanging down to his ears, that oldman of five and eighty years of age, used, for thy sake only, to careeron the field of battle with the activity of a youth of sixteen. Themighty-armed Dhananjaya, the son of Kunti, (before Drona’s head was cutoff) had said, ‘O son of Drupada, bring the preceptor alive, do not slayhim. He should not be slain.’ Even thus all the troops also had criedout. Arjuna, in particular, melted with pity, had cried out repeatedly.Disregarding, however, the cries of Arjuna as also these of all thekings, Dhrishtadyumna stew Drona, that bull among men, on the terrace ofhis car. Covered with Drona’s blood, Dhrishtadyumna then Jumped from thecar down upon the ground. Looking red like the sun, he then seemed to beexceedingly fierce. Thy troops beheld Drona slain even thus in thatbattle. Then Dhrishtadyumna. that great bowman, O king, threw down thatlarge head of Bharadwaja’s son before the warriors of thy army. Thysoldiers, O monarch, beholding the head of Bharadwaja’s son, set theirhearts on flight and ran away in all directions. Meanwhile Drona,ascending the skies, entered the stellar path. Through the grace of theRishis Krishna (Dwaipayana), the son of Satyavati, I witnessed, O king,the (true circumstances about the) death of Drona. I beheld thatillustrious one proceeding, after he had ascended the sky, like asmokeless brand of blazing splendour. Upon the fall of Drona, the Kurus,the Pandavas and the Srinjayas, all became cheerless and ran away withgreat speed. The army then broke up. Many had been slain, and manywounded by means of keen shafts. Thy warriors (in particular), upon thefall of Drona, seemed to be deprived of life. Having sustained a defeat,and being inspired with fear about the future, the Kurus regardedthemselves deprived of both the worlds. Indeed, they lost allself-control.[255] Searching for the body of Bharadwaja’s, son, Omonarch, on the field covered with thousands of headless trunks, thekings could not find it. The Pandavas, having gained the victory andgreat prospects of renown in the future, began to make loud sounds withtheir arrows and conchs and uttered loud leonine roars. Then Bhimasena, Oking, and Dhrishtadyumna, the son of Prishata, were seen in the midst ofthe (Pandava) host to embrace each other. Addressing the son of Prishata,that scorcher of foes, viz., Bhima said, ‘I will again embrace thee, Oson of Prishata, as one crowned with victory, when that wretch of aSuta’s son shall be slain in battle, as also that other wretch, viz.,Duryodhana.’ Having said these words, Bhimasena, the son of Pandu, filledwith transports of joy, caused the earth to tremble with slaps on hisarmpits. Terrified by that sound, thy troops ran away from battle,forgetting the duties of the Kshatriyas and setting their hearts onflight. The Pandavas, having become victors, became very glad, O monarch,and they felt great happiness, derived from the destruction of their foesin battle.'”

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