OM! AFTER HAVING bowed down to Narayana, and Nara, the foremost of men,and unto the goddess Saraswati also, must the word Jaya be uttered.

“Vaisampayana said, ‘Thus addressed, O thou of Kuru’s race, by the oldking, the citizens and the inhabitants of the provinces stood sometimelike men deprived of consciousness.

“Vaisampayana said, ‘After that night had passed away, Dhritarashtra, theson of Amvika, despatched Vidura to Yudhishthira’s mansion.

“Arjuna said, ‘O Bhima, thou art my elder brother and, therefore, mysenior and preceptor. I dare not say anything more than what I havealready said.

“Vaisampayana said, ‘Thus addressed by king Yudhishthira, Vidura, thatforemost of all intelligent persons, returned to Dhritarashtra and saidunto him these words of grave import.

“Vaisampayana said,–‘The royal son of Amvika, viz., Dhritarashtra,having settled the hour of his departure for the woods, summoned thoseheroes, the Pandavas.

“Vaisampayana said, ‘Great was the uproar, at that time, O king, of bothmen and women standing on the terraces of mansions or on the Earth.

“Kunti said, ‘It is even so, O mighty-armed son of Pandu, as thou sayest.Ye kings, formerly when ye were cheerless, it was even in this way that Iexcited you all.

“Vaisampayana said, ‘Hearing these words of Kunti, the sinless Pandavas,O best of kings, became ashamed.

“Vaisampayana said. ‘Following the advice of Vidura, the king took up hisabode on the banks of the Bhagirathi which were sacred and deserved to bepeopled with the righteous.

“Vaisampayana said, ‘Thus worshipped by the Pandavas, the royal soil ofAmvika passed his time happily as before, waited upon and honoured by theRishis.

“Vaisampayana said, ‘Those foremost of ascetics, viz. Narada and Parvataand Devala of austere penances, came there to see king Dhritarashtra.

” Vaisampayana said, ‘Upon the retirement of the chief of the Kurus intothe forest, the Pandavas, O king, afflicted besides by grief on accountof their mother, became very cheerless.

“Vaisampayana said, ‘Those foremost of men, the heroic Pandavas,–thosedelighters of their mother–became exceedingly afflicted with grief.

“Vaisampayana said. ‘That foremost one of Bharata’s race, then orderedhis troops, which were protected by heroes that were headed by Arjuna andthat resembled the very guardians of the universe, to march out.Instantly, a loud clamour arose consisting of the words–Equip,Equip!

“Vaisampayana said, ‘The Pandavas alighted, at a distance, from theircars and proceeded on foot to the retreat of the king, bending themselvesin humility.

“Vaisampayana said, ‘The king, O chief of Bharata’s race, with thoseforemost of men, viz., his brothers, who were all possessed of eyes thatresembled lotus-petals, took his seat in the retreat of his eldest sire.

“Dhritarashtra said. ‘O Yudhishthira, art thou in peace and happiness,with all thy brothers and the inhabitants of the city and the provinces?

“Vaisampayana said, ‘They passed that night which was characterised byauspicious constellations even thus, O king, in that retreat of righteousascetics.

“Vaisampayana said, ‘After the high-souled Pandavas had all been seated,Satyavati’s son Vyasa said,–O Dhritarashtra of mighty arms, hast thoubeen able to achieve penances? Is thy mind, O king, pleased with thyresidence in the woods?

“Janamejaya said, ‘Tell me. O learned Brahmana, what that wonderful featwas which the great Rishi Vyasa of high energy accomplished after hispromise to the old king, made when

“Vaisampayana said, ‘The people who lived in the Kuru kingdom failed tonotice any variance in the cordiality that subsisted between kingYudhishthira and the father of Duryodhana.

“Kunti said, ‘O holy one, thou art my father-in-law and therefore, mydeity of deities. Verily, thou art my god of gods. Hear my words oftruth.

“Vyasa said, ‘Blessed be thou, O Gandhari, thou shalt behold thy sons andbrothers and friends and kinsmen along with thy sires this night like menrisen from sleep.

“Vaisampayana said, ‘When night came, all those persons, having finishedtheir evening rites, approached Vyasa.

“Vaisampayana said. ‘Then those foremost of men divested of wrath andjealousy, and cleansed of every sin, met with one another, agreeably tothose high and auspicious ordinances that have been laid down byregenerate Rishis.

“Sauti said, ‘Hearing this story of the re-appearance and departure ofhis forefathers, king Janamejaya of great intelligence became highlypleased.

“Vaisampayana said, ‘King Dhritarashtra had never beheld his own sons.Obtaining eye-sight through the grace of the Rishi, he beheld, for thefirst time, O perpetuator of Kuru’s race, those children of his that werevery like his own self.

“Janamejaya said, ‘Having seen his sons and grandsons with all theirfriends and followers, what, indeed, did that ruler of men, viz.,Dhritarashtra, and king Yudhishthira also, do?’

“Vaisampayana said, ‘After two years had elapsed from the date of thereturn of the Pandavas (from the retreat of their sire), the celestialRishi, Narada, O king, came to Yudhishthira.

“Yudhishthira said, ‘When such a fate overtook that high-souled monarchwho was engaged in austere penances, notwithstanding the fact of hishaving such kinsmen as ourselves all alive, it seems to me, O regenerateone, that the end of human beings is difficult to guess.

“Narada said, ‘The king has not been burnt to death by an unsanctifiedfire. I have heard this there.

“Vyasa said, ‘O mighty-armed Yudhishthira, do without any scruple whatDhritarashtra of Kuru’s race hag said. This king is old. He has, again,been made sonless.

“Vaisampayana said, ‘Having received the king’s permission, kingDhritarashtra of great energy then proceeded to his own palace, followedby Gandhari. With weakened strength and slow motion, that king of greatintelligence walked with difficulty, like the leader, worn out with age,of an elephantine herd.

“Dhritarashtra said, Thou shouldst always ascertain the Mandalas thatbelong to thee, to thy foes, to neutrals, and to those that are disposedequally towards thee and thy foes, O Bharata.

“Dhritarashtra said, ‘O best of kings, thou shouldst also reflectproperly on war and peace. Each is of two kinds.

“Yudhishthira said, ‘O lord of Earth, I shall do as thou biddest me. Oforemost of kings, I should be further instructed by thee. Bhishma hasascended to Heaven.

“Dhritarashtra said, ‘Santanu duly ruled this Earth. Similarly,Vichitraviryya also, protected by Bhishma, ruled you. Without doubt, allthis is known to you. It is also known to you how Pandu, my brother, wasdear to me as also to you.