Chapter 155

Mahabharata English - SANTI PARVA

“Narada said, ‘Without doubt, O Salmali, the terrible and irresistiblegod of the wind always protects thee from friendliness or amity. Itseems, O Salmali, that a close intimacy has come to subsist between theeand the Wind. It seems thou hast said unto him these words, viz., ‘I amthine,’ and it is for this reason that the Wind-god protects thee. I donot see the tree or mountain or mansion in this world that may not, Ithink, be broken by the Wind. Without doubt thou standest here with allthy branches and twigs and leaves, simply because, O Salmali, thou artprotected by the Wind for some reason or reasons (unknown to us).’

“The Salmali said, ‘The Wind, O regenerate one, is neither my friend normate nor well-wisher. Indeed, he is neither my great Ordainer that heshould protect me. My fierce energy and might, O Narada, are greater thanthe Wind’s. In truth, the strength of the Wind comes up to about only aneighteenth part of mine. When the Wind comes in rage, tearing up treesand mountains and other things, I curb his strength by putting forthmine. Indeed, the Wind that breaks many things has himself beenrepeatedly broken by me. For this reason, O Celestial Rishi, I am notafraid of him even when he comes in wrath.’

“Narada said, ‘O Salmali, thy protection seems to be thoroughly perverse.There is no doubt in this. There is no created thing which is equal tothe Wind in strength. Even Indra, or Yama, or Vaisravana, the lord of thewaters, is not equal to the god of the wind in might. What need,therefore, be said of thee that art only a tree? Whatever creature inthis world, O Salmali, does whatever act, the illustrious Wind-god it isthat is at all times the cause of that act, since it is he that is thegiver of life. When that god exerts himself with propriety, he makes allliving creatures live at their ease. When, however, he exerts improperly,calamities overtake the creatures of the world. What else can it be thanweakness of understanding which induces thee to thus withhold thy worshipfrom the god of wind, that foremost of creatures in the universe, thatbeing deserving of worship? Thou art worthless and of a wickedunderstanding. Indeed, thou indulgest only in unmeaning brag. Thyintelligence being confounded by wrath and other evil passions, thouspeakest only untruths, O Salmali! I am certainly angry with thee for thyindulging in such speeches. I shall myself report to the god of the windall these derogatory words of thine. Chandanas, and Syandanas, and Salas,and Saralas and Devadarus and Vetavas and Dhanwanas and other trees ofgood souls that are far stronger than thou art, have never, O thou ofwicked understanding, uttered such invectives against the Wind. All ofthem know the might of the Wind as also the might that is possessed byeach of them. For these reasons those foremost of trees bow down theirheads in respect to that deity. Thou, however, through folly, knowest notthe infinite might of the Wind. I shall, therefore, repair to thepresence of that god (for apprising him of thy contempt for him).'”

Chapter 156
Chapter 154
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