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Chapter 114

Mahabharata English - UDYOGA PARAVA

“Narada said, ‘Garuda then, that foremost of winged beings, addressed thecheerless Galava and said, ‘Because it is created by Agni, in the bowelsof the earth and augmented by Vayu, and because also the earth itself issaid to be Hiranmaya, therefore, is wealth called Hiranya. And becausewealth supports the world and sustains life, therefore, is it calledDhana. It is for serving these ends that Dhana (wealth) exists from thebeginning in the three worlds. On that Friday, when either of the twoconstellations–the Purvabhadra or the Uttarabhadra–is ascendant, Agni,creating wealth by a fiat of his will, bestoweth it on mankind for theincrease of Kuvera’s stock. The wealth that is embowelled in the Earth isguarded by the deities called the Ajaikapats and the Ahivradnas, and alsoby Kuvera. Exceedingly difficult of attainment, that wealth, therefore, Obull among Brahmanas, is rarely attained. Without wealth there is nochance of thy acquisition of the promised steeds. Beg thou, therefore, ofsome king born in the race of some royal sage, who may, withoutoppressing his subjects, crown our suit with success. There is a kingborn in the lunar race, that is my friend. We shall go to him, for he,amongst all on Earth, hath great wealth. That royal sage is known by thename of Yayati, and he is the son of Nahusha. His prowess is incapable ofbeing baffled. Solicited by thee in person, and urged by me, he will givewhat we seek, for he hath immense wealth, equal unto what belongeth toKuvera, the lord of treasures. Even thus, by accepting a gift, O learnedone, pay off thy debt to thy preceptor.’ Talking thus, and thinking uponwhat was best to be done, Garuda and Galava together went to king Yayati,who was then in his capital called Pratisthana. The king received themhospitably and gave them excellent Arghya and water to wash their feet.And the king then asked them the cause of their advent. And thereuponGaruda answered, saying, ‘O son of Nahusha, this ocean of asceticism,called Galava, is my friend. He had been, O monarch, a disciple ofViswamitra for many thousand years. This holy Brahmana, when commanded byViswamitra to go away whithersoever he chose, addressed his preceptor atthat time, saying,–I desire to give something as preceptor’s fee.Knowing this one’s resources to be poor, Viswamitra did not ask foranything. But when he was repeatedly addressed by this Brahmana on thesubject of the tutorial fee, the preceptor, under a slight accession ofwrath, said, ‘Give me eight hundred white steeds of good pedigree and oflunar radiance, and each having one ear black in hue. If, O Galava, thoudesirest to give anything to thy preceptor, let this then be given!’ Itwas thus that Viswamitra endued with wealth of asceticism said unto himin anger. And this bull among Brahmanas is on that account smarting withgreat grief. Unable to fulfil that command (of his preceptor), he hathnow come to take thy shelter. O tiger among men, accepting this as almsfrom thee, and filled once more with cheerfulness, he will, after payinghis preceptor’s debt, devote himself again to serve ascetic penances. Aroyal Rishi as thou art, and, therefore, endued with wealth of asceticismof thy own, this Brahmana, by giving thee a portion of his wealth ofasceticism, will make thee richer in wealth of that kind. As many hairs,O lord of men, as there are on a horse’s body, so many regions of bliss,O ruler of Earth, are attained by him that giveth away a horse in gift.This one is as fit to accept a gift as thou art to make a gift. Lettherefore, thy gift in this instance be like milk deposited in aconch-shell.'”

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