Chapter 98

Mahabharata English - UDYOGA PARAVA

“Kanwa said, ‘When Matali was wending his way, he saw the great RishiNarada proceeding at his pleasure to pay a visit to Varuna (the god ofthe waters). And beholding Matali, Narada asked him, saying, ‘Whitherdost thou go? Is it, O charioteer, on any mission of thy own, or is it atSatakratu’s command, that this journey of thine is undertaken?’ Thusaddressed on the way by Narada who was proceeding towards hisdestination, Matali duly informed Narada, of his mission. And the Rishi,informed of everything, then said unto Matali, ‘We shall go together. Asregards myself, it is to see the Lord of the waters that I am proceeding,having left the heavens, searching the nether regions, I shall tell youeverything. After a good search there, we shall select a bridegroom, OMatali! And penetrating then into nether regions, that illustriouscouple, Matali and Narada, beheld that Regent of the world–the Lord ofthe waters. And there Narada received worship due to a celestial Rishi,and Matali received that equal to what is offered to the great Indra. Andboth of them skilful in business, informed Varuna of their purpose, andobtaining his leave they began to wander in that region of the Nagas. AndNarada who knew all the residents of the nether regions then began todescribe in detail unto his companion all about the dwellers of the Nagaworld.’

“And Narada said, ‘Thou hast, O charioteer, seen Varuna surrounded by hissons and grandsons. Behold the dominions of the Lord of the waters. It isdelightful all round, and full of riches. The son, endued with greatwisdom, of Varuna, the Lord of the Ocean, is even much distinguished forhis conduct and disposition and for his holiness. Possessed of eyes likelotus leaves, this Pushkara is, indeed, Varuna’s much-loved son, enduedwith great beauty and delightful to behold. He has been chosen by Soma’sdaughter as her husband. That daughter of Soma, equal in beauty unto asecond Sree, is known by the name of Jyotsnakali. Indeed, it is said,that she had once before chosen the eldest and foremost of Aditi’s son asher lord. Behold now, O companion of the Lord of the celestials, thatabode, made entirely of gold, and full of the wine called Varuni. Indeed,having obtained that wine, the gods acquired their god-heads. Theseblazing weapons also of every kind that thou seest, belonged, O Matali,to the Daityas who have been deprived of their sovereignty. These weaponsare incapable of deterioration, and when hurled at the foe always returninto the hand that hurleth them. Obtained by the gods as the booty ofwar, they require considerable mental energy to be used against foes.Here dwelt in days of yore many tribes of Rakshasas and Daityas,possessed of many kinds of celestial weapons, but they were allvanquished by the gods. Behold, there, in Varuna’s lake is that fire ofblazing flames, and that discus of Vishnu surrounded by the lustroussplendour of mighty caloric. Behold, there lieth that knotty bow that wascreated for the destruction of the world. It is always protected withgreat vigilance by the gods, and it is from this bow that the one wieldedby Arjuna hath taken its name. Endued with the strength of hundredthousand bows, the power it assumes at the hour of battle isindescribably great. It punishes all punishable wicked kings endued withthe nature of Rakshasas. This fierce weapon was first created by Brahman,the utterer of the Vedas. The great preceptor Sukra hath said that thisweapon is a terrible one in respect of all kings. Endued with greatenergy, it is held by the sons of the Lord of waters. Behold, there inthe umbrella-room is the umbrella of the Lord of the waters. It droppethrefreshing showers like the clouds. The water dropped from this umbrella,though pure as the moon, is yet enveloped by such darkness that it cannotbe seen by anybody. There, in these regions, O Matali, innumerable arethe wonders to be seen. Your business, however, will suffer if we spendmore time here. We will, therefore, leave this region soon.'”

Chapter 99
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