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Chapter 2

Mahabharata English - SABHAKRIYA PARVA

“Vaisampayana said,–“Janardana deserving the worship of all, havinglived happily at Khandavaprastha for some time, and having been treatedall the while with respectful love and affection by the sons of Pritha,became desirous one day of leaving Khandavaprastha to behold his father.

That possessor of large eyes, unto whom was due the obeisance of theuniverse, then saluted both Yudhishthira and Pritha and made obeisancewith his head unto the feet of Kunti, his father’s sister. Thus reveredby Kesava, Pritha smelt his head and embraced him. The illustriousHrishikesa approached his own sister Subhadra affectionately, with hiseyes filled with tears, and spoke unto her words of excellent import andtruth, terse proper, unanswerable and fraught with good. Thesweet-speeched Subhadra also, saluting him in return and worshipping himrepeatedly with bent head, told him all that she wished to be conveyed toher relatives on the paternal side. And bidding her farewell and utteringbenedictions on his handsome sister, he of the Vrishni race, next sawDraupadi and Dhaumya. That best of men duly made obeisance unto Dhaumya,and consoling Draupadi obtained leave from her. Then the learned andmighty Krishna, accompanied by Partha, went to his cousins. Andsurrounded by the five brothers, Krishna shone like Sakra in the midst ofthe celestials. He whose banner bore the figure of Garuda, desirous ofperforming the rites preparatory to the commencement of a journey,purified himself by a bath and adorned his person with ornaments. Thebull of the Yadu race then worshipped the gods and Brahmanas with floralwreaths, mantras, bows of the head, and excellent perfumes. Havingfinished all these rites, that foremost of steady and virtuous personsthen thought of setting out. The chief of the Yadu race then came out ofthe inner to the outer apartment, and issuing thence he made untoBrahmanas, deserving of worship, offerings of vessel-fulls of curd andfruits, and parched-grain and caused them to pronounce benedictions uponhim. And making unto them presents also of wealth, he went round them.Then ascending his excellent car of gold endued with great speed andadorned with banner bearing the figure of Tarkhya (Garuda) and furnishedalso with mace, discus, sword, his bow Sharnga and other weapons, andyoking thereunto his horses Saivya and Sugriva, he of eyes like lotusesset out at an excellent moment of a lunar day of auspicious stellarconjunction. And Yudhishthira, the king of the Kurus, from affection,ascended the chariot after Krishna, and causing that best charioteerDaruka to stand aside, himself took the reins. And Arjuna also, of longarms, riding on that car, walked round Krishna and fanned him with awhite chamara furnished with a handle of gold. And the mighty Bhimasenaaccompanied by the twin brothers Nakula and Sahadeva and the priests andcitizens all followed Krishna from behind. And Kesava, that slayer ofhostile heroes, followed by all the brothers, shone like a preceptorfollowed by his favourite pupils. Then Govinda spoke unto Arjuna andclasped him firmly, and worshipping Yudhisthira and Bhima, embraced thetwins. And embraced in return by the three elder Pandavas, he wasreverentially saluted by the twins. After having gone about half a Yojana(two miles), Krishna, that subjugator of hostile towns, respectfullyaddressed Yudhishthira and requested him, O Bharata, to stop followinghim further. And Govinda, conversant with every duty, then reverentiallysaluted Yudhishthira and took hold of his feet. But Yudhishthira soonraised Kesava and smelt his head. King Yudhishthira the just, the son ofPandu, having raised Krishna endued with eyes like lotus-petals and theforemost of the Yadava race, gave him leave, saying,–‘Good bye!’ Thenthe slayer of Madhu, making an appointment with them (about his return)in words that were proper, and preventing with difficulty the Pandavasfrom following him further on foot, gladly proceeded towards his owncity, like Indra going towards Amravati. Out of the love and affectionthey bore him, the Pandavas gazed on Krishna as long as he was withinsight, and their minds also followed him when he got out of sight. AndKesava of agreeable person soon disappeared from their sight, unsatiatedthough their minds were with looking at him. Those bulls among men, thesons of Pritha, with minds fixed on Govinda, desisted (from following himfurther) and unwillingly returned to their own city in haste. And Krishnain his car soon reached Dwaraka followed by that hero Satyaki. ThenSauri, the son of Devaki, accompanied by his charioteer Daruka reachedDwaraka with the speed of Garuda.”

Vaisampayana continued,–“Meanwhile king Yudhishthira of unfading glory,accompanied by his brothers and surrounded by friends, entered hisexcellent capital. And that tiger among men, dismissing all hisrelatives, brothers, and sons, sought to make himself happy in thecompany of Draupadi. And Kesava also, worshipped by the principal Yadavasincluding Ugrasena, entered with a happy heart his own excellent city.And worshipping his old father and his illustrious mother, and saluting(his brother) Valadeva, he of eyes like lotus-petals took his seat.Embracing Pradyumna, Shamva, Nishatha, Charudeshna, Gada, Aniruddha andBhanu, and obtaining the leave of all the elderly men, Janardana enteredthe apartments of Rukmini.”

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