“Vaisampayana said,–“Then Maya Danava addressed Arjuna, that foremost of successful warriors, saying,–‘I now go with thy leave, but shall comeback soon.
On the north of the Kailasa peak near the mountains of Mainaka, while the Danavas were engaged in a sacrifice on the banks ofVindu lake, I gathered a huge quantity of delightful and variegated vanda(a kind of rough materials) composed of jewels and gems. This was placedin the mansion of Vrishaparva ever devoted to truth. If it be yetexisting, I shall come back, O Bharata, with it. I shall then commencethe construction of the delightful palace of the Pandavas, which is to beadorned with every kind of gems and celebrated all over the world. Thereis also, I think, O thou of the Kuru race, a fierce club placed in thelake Vindu by the King (of the Danavas) after slaughtering therewith allhis foes in battle. Besides being heavy and strong and variegated withgolden knobs, it is capable of bearing great weight, and of slaying allfoes, and is equal in strength unto an hundred thousand clubs. It is afit weapon for Bhima, even as the Gandiva is for thee. There is also (inthat lake) a large conch-shell called Devadatta of loud sound, that camefrom Varuna. I shall no doubt give all these to thee. Having spoken thusunto Partha, the Asura went away in a north-easterly direction. On thenorth of Kailasa in the mountains of Mainaka, there is a huge peak ofgems and jewels called Hiranya-sringa. Near that peak is a delightfullake of the name of Vindu. There, on its banks, previously dwelt kingBhagiratha for many years, desiring to behold the goddess Ganga, sincecalled Bhagirathee after that king’s name. And there, on its banks, Othou best of the Bharatas, Indra the illustrious lord of every createdthing, performed one hundred great sacrifices. There, for the sake ofbeauty, though not according to the dictates of the ordinance, wereplaced sacrificial stakes made of gems and altars of gold. There, afterperforming those sacrifices, the thousand-eyed lord of Sachi becamecrowned with success. There the fierce Mahadeva, the eternal lord ofevery creature, has taken up his abode after having created all theworlds and there he dwelleth, worshipped with reverence by thousands ofspirits. There Nara and Narayana, Brahma and Yama and Sthanu the fifth,perform their sacrifices at the expiration of a thousand yugas. There,for the establishment of virtue and religion, Vasudeva, with piousdevotion, performed his sacrifices extending for many, many long years.There were placed by Keshava thousands and tens of thousands ofsacrificial stakes adorned with golden garlands and altars of greatsplendour. Going thither, O Bharata, Maya brought back the club and theconch-shell and the various crystalline articles that had belonged toking Vrishaparva. And the great Asura, Maya, having gone thither,possessed himself of the whole of the great wealth which was guarded byYakshas and Rakshasas. Bringing them, the Asura constructed therewith apeerless palace, which was of great beauty and of celestial make,composed entirely of gems and precious stones, and celebrated throughoutthe three worlds. He gave unto Bhimasena that best of clubs, and untoArjuna the most excellent conch-shell at whose sound all creaturestrembled in awe. And the palace that Maya built consisted of columns ofgold, and occupied, O monarch, an area of five thousand cubits. Thepalace, possessing an exceedingly beautiful form, like unto that of Agnior Suryya, or Soma, shone in great splendour, and by its brillianceseemed to darken even the bright rays of the sun. And with the effulgenceit exhibited, which was a mixture of both celestial and terrestriallight, it looked as if it was on fire. Like unto a mass of new cloudsconspicuous in the sky, the palace rose up coming into view of all.Indeed, the palace that the dexterous Maya built was so wide, delightful,and refreshing, and composed of such excellent materials, and furnishedwith such golden walls and archways, and adorned with so many variedpictures, and was withal so rich and well-built, that in beauty it farsurpassed Sudharma of the Dasarha race, or the mansion of Brahma himself.And eight thousand Rakshasas called Kinkaras, fierce, huge-bodied andendued with great strength, of red coppery eyes and arrowy ears,well-armed and capable of ranging through the air, used to guard andprotect that palace. Within that palace Maya placed a peerless tank, andin that tank were lotuses with leaves of dark-coloured gems and stalks ofbright jewels, and other flowers also of golden leaves. And aquatic fowlsof various species sported on its bosom. Itself variegated withfull-blown lotuses and stocked with fishes and tortoises of golden hue,its bottom was without mud and its water transparent. There was a flightof crystal stairs leading from the banks to the edge of the water. Thegentle breezes that swept along its bosom softly shook the flowers thatstudded it. The banks of that tank were overlaid with slabs of costlymarble set with pearls. And beholding that tank thus adorned all aroundwith jewels and precious stones, many kings that came there mistook itfor land and fell into it with eyes open. Many tall trees of variouskinds were planted all around the palace. Of green foliage and coolshade, and ever blossoming, they were all very charming to behold.Artificial woods were laid around, always emitting a delicious fragrance.And there were many tanks also that were adorned with swans andKarandavas and Chakravakas (Brahminy ducks) in the grounds lying aboutthe mansion. And the breeze bearing the fragrance of lotuses growing inwater and (of those growing on land) ministered unto the pleasure andhappiness of the Pandavas. And Maya having constructed such a palatialhall within fourteen months, reported its completion unto Yudhishthira.”