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Chapter 356

Mahabharata English - SANTI PARVA

“The host replied, ‘I have heard these words of thine, that are soconsoling, with as much gratification as is felt by a person heavilyloaded when that load is taken off his head or shoulders. Thegratification that a traveller who has made a long journey on foot feelswhen he lies down on a bed, that which a person feels when he finds aseat after having stood for a long while for want of room, or that whichis felt by a thirsty person when he finds a glass of cool water, or thatwhich is felt by a hungry man when he finds savoury food set before him,or that which a guest feels when a dish of desirable food is placedbefore him at the proper time, or that which is felt by an old man whenafter long coveting he gets a son, or that which is experienced by onewhen meeting with a dear friend or relative about whom one had becomeexceedingly anxious, resembles that with which I have been filled inconsequence of these words uttered by thee.[1931] Like a person withupturned gaze I have heard what has fallen from thy lips and amreflecting upon their import. With these wise words of thine thou hasttruly instructed me! Yes, I shall do what thou hast commanded me to do.Thou mayst go tomorrow at dawn, passing the night happily with me anddispelling thy fatigue by such rest. Behold, the rays of the divine Suryahave been partially dimmed and the god of day is proceeding in hisdownward course!”

“Bhishma continued, ‘Hospitably waited upon by that Brahmana, the learnedguest, O slayer of foes, passed that night in the company of his host.Indeed, both of them passed the night happily, conversing cheerfully witheach other on the subject of the duties of the fourth mode of life, viz.,Sannyasa (Renunciation). So engrossing was the nature of theirconversation that the night passed away as if it were day. When morningcame, the guest was worshipped with due rites by the Brahmana whose hearthad been eagerly set upon the accomplishment of what (according to thediscourse of the guest) was regarded by him to be beneficial for himself.Having dismissed his guest, the righteous Brahmana, resolved to achievehis purpose, took leave of his kinsmen and relatives, and set out in duetime for the abode of that foremost of Nagas, with heart steadilydirected towards it.'”

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