“Yudhishthira said, “Tell me of that, O grandsire, which is the root ofall duties, which is the root of kinsmen, of home, of the Pitris and ofguests. I think this should be regarded as the foremost of all duties,(viz., the marriage of one’s daughter). Tell me, however, O king, uponwhat sort of a person should one bestow one’s daughter?’
“Yudhishthira said, ‘Through inducements offered by wealth, or throughmere lust, or through ignorance of the true order of birth (of both malesand females), or through folly, intermixture happens of the several orderWhat, O grandsire, are the duties of persons that are born in the mixedclasses and what are the acts laid down for them? Do thou discourse to meon this!’
“Yudhishthira said, ‘Amongst all those gifts that are mentioned in thetreatises other than the Vedas, which gift, O chief of Kuru’s race, isthe most distinguished in thy opinion? O puissant one, great is thecuriosity I feel with respect to this matter. Do thou discourse to mealso of that gift which follows the giver into the next world.'
“Yudhishthira said, ‘People accept with affection the declarations of theSrutis which say, ‘This is to be given.’ ‘This other thing is to begiven!’ As regards kings, again, they make gifts of various things untovarious men. What, however, O grandsire, is the best or foremost of allgifts.’
‘The Deities said, ‘The Asura named Taraka who has received boons fromthee, O puissant one, is afflicting the deities and the Rishis. Let hisdeath be ordained by thee. O Grandsire, great has been our fear from him.O illustrious one, do thou rescue us. We have no other refuge than thee.’
“Yudhishthira said, ‘If Brahmanas that are in the observance of a vow(viz., fast) eat, at the invitation of a Brahmana, the Havi (offered at aSraddha), can they be charged with the transgression or a violation oftheir vow, or should they refuse the invitation of a Brahmana when suchinvitation is received by them? Tell me this, O grandsire!’
“Yudhishthira said, ‘I have, O chief of the Bharatas, heard what themerits are that are won by presenters of flowers and incense and lights.I have heard thee speak also of the merits that attach to a dueobservance of the ordinances in respect of the presentation of the Vali.