Mahaabhaarat | Kathaa-G | 4-Van

3-Van Parv, 311-311  of 313
Kathaa-G - 4-Van - page 54

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Yaksh Questions

The Yaksh asked - "What is that the Sun makes rise? Who keeps him company? Who causes him set? And in whom is he established?"
Yudhishthir answered - "Brahmaa makes the Sun rise. The gods keep him company. Dharm causes him to set. And he is established in Truth."

The Yaksh asked - "By what does become learned? By what does he attain what is very great? How can one have a second? And, O King, How can one acquire intelligence?"
Yudhishthir answered - "It is by the [studies of the] Shruti that a person becomes learned. It is by ascetic austerities one acquires what is very great. It is by intelligence that a person acquires a second; and it is by serving the old that one becomes wise."

The Yaksh asked - "What constitutes the Divinity of the Braahman? What is their practice that is like that of the pious? What is the human attribute of the Braahman? And what practice of theirs is like that of the impious?"
Yudhishthir answered - "The study of the Ved constitute their Divinity. Their asceticism constitutes their behavior like that of a pious. Their liability to death is their human attribute. And defamation is their impiety."

The Yaksh asked - "What institutes the Divinity of Kshatriya? What is their practice that is like that of the pious? What is the human attribute of the Kshatriya? And what practice of theirs is like that of the impious?"
Yudhishthir answered - "Arrows and weapons are their Divinity. Celebrations of sacrifices is their act like that of a pious. Liability to fear is their human attribute. And refusal of protection is their act of impiety."

The Yaksh asked - "What is that which constitutes the Saam of the sacrifice? What are the Yaju of the sacrifice? What is that which is the refuge of the sacrifice? And what is that which sacrifice cannot do without?"
Yudhishthir answered - "Life is the Saam of the sacrifice. Mind is the Yaju of the sacrifice. Rik is the refuge of the sacrifice. And it is Rik alone without which sacrifice cannot do without."

The Yaksh asked - "What is of the foremost value to those that cultivate? What is of the foremost value to those that wish for prosperity in the world? And what is of the foremost value to those that bring forth."
Yudhishthir answered - "That which is of foremost value to those that cultivate is rain. That of the foremost value to those that sow is seed. That of the foremost value to those that bring forth is offspring."

The Yaksh asked - "What person enjoying all the objects of the senses, endued with intelligence, regarded by the world and liked by all the beings, though breathing does not offer to anything to these - gods, guests, servants, Pitri and himself; though endued with breath, is not yet alive?
Yudhishthir answered - "------"

The Yaksh asked - "What is weightier than the Earth? What is higher than the Heavens? What is fleeter than the wind? What is more numerous than grass?"
Yudhishthir answered - "The mother is weightier than the Earth. Father is heavier than the Heavens. Mind is fleeter than the wind. And our thoughts are more numerous than grass."

The Yaksh asked - "What is that which does not close eyes while sleeping? What is that which does not move after birth? What is that which is without heart? And what is that which swells with its own impetus?"
Yudhishthir answered - "A fish does not close his eyes while sleeping. An egg does not move after birth. A stone is without heart. And a river swells of its own impetus."

The Yaksh asked - "Who is the friend in exile? Who is the friend of the householder? Who is the friend of his who ails? And who is friend of whom he is about to die?"
Yudhishthir answered - "A companion is the friend in exile or in distant land. A householder's friend is his wife. A friend of an ailing man is physician. And the friend of a dying man is charity."

The Yaksh asked - "Who is the guest of all creatures? What is the eternal duty? What is Amrit? And what is the entire Universe?
Yudhishthir answered - "Agni is the guest of all creatures. Cow's milk is Amrit. Hom is the eternal duty. Universe consists of air alone. [Yudhishthir has the authority of the Shruti for saying that the one pervading element of the universe is air.]

The Yaksh asked - "What is that which sojourns (stays at one place) alone? What is that which is reborn after its birth? What is the remedy of cold? And what is the largest field?
Yudhishthir answered - "The Sun sojourns alone. The Moon takes birth anew. Fire is the remedy of cold. And the earth is the largest field."

The Yaksh asked - "What is the highest refuge of virtue? What of fame? What of Heaven? And what of happiness?"
Yudhishthir answered - "Liberality is the highest refuge of virtue. Gift is highest refuge of fame. Truth is the highest virtue of Heaven. And good behavior is the highest virtue of happiness.

The Yaksh asked - "What is the soul of man? Who is that friend bestowed on man by the gods? What is man's chief support? And what is his chief refuge?"
Yudhishthir answered - "The son is a man's soul. The wife is the friend bestowed on man by the gods. The clouds are man's chief support. Gift is a man's chief refuge."

The Yaksh asked - "What is the best of all laudable things? What is most valuable of all of his possessions? What is the best of all gains? And what is the best of all kinds of happiness?"
Yudhishthir answered - "The best of all laudable things is skill. The best of all possessions is knowledge. The best of all gains is health. And contentment is the best of all happiness.

The Yaksh asked - "What is the highest duty in the world? What is the virtue which which always bears fruits? What is that which, if controlled, leads not to regret? And who are they with whom an alliance cannot break?
Yudhishthir answered - "The highest of duties is to refrain from injury (Ahinsaa or non-violence). The rites ordained in the three Ved always bear fruit. The mind if controlled, leads to no regret. And an alliance with the good never breaks."

The Yaksh asked - "What is that which if renounced, makes one agreeable? What is that which if renounced, leads to no regret? What is that which if renounced makes one wealthy?"
Yudhishthir answered - "When pride is renounced, it makes one agreeable. Wrath (anger) if renounced leads to no regret. Desires, if renounced, makes one wealthy. When avarice (greed) is renounced, it makes one happy."
Go Dhan Gaj Dhan Baaji Dhan, Aur Ratan Dhan Khaan
Jab Aave Santosh Dhan, Sab Dhan Dhoori Samaan

The Yaksh asked - "For what does one give away to Braahman? For what does one give away to mime and dancers? For what does one gives away to servants? For what does one give away to King?"
Yudhishthir answered - "One gives away to Braahman fro religious merit. One gives away to mime and dancers for fame. One gives away to servants to support them. And one gives away to King to get relief from fear."

The Yaksh asked - "With what is the world enveloped? What is that owing to which a thing cannot discover itself? For what are friend forsaken? And for what does one fail to go to Heaven?"
Yudhishthir answered - "The world is enveloped with darkness. Darkness does not permit a thing to show itself. It is for avarice that friends are forsaken. And it is connection with the world for one fails to go to Heaven."

The Yaksh asked - "For what may one be considered as dead? For what may a kingdom be considered as dead? For what may a Shraaddh be considered as dead? And for what may a sacrifice be considered as dead?"
Yudhishthir answered - "For want of wealth may a man be regarded as dead. For want of a king may a kingdom be regarded as dead. For want of a learned priest may a Shraaddh be regarded as dead. For want of gift (Dakshinaa) may a sacrifice be regarded as dead."

The Yaksh asked - "What constitutes the way? What has been spoken of as water? What has been spoken of as food? And what has been spoken of as poison? Tell me what is the proper time of Shraaddh? And you can drink water as much as you like."
Yudhishthir answered - "Good people constitute the way. Space has been spoken of as water [Shruti say so]. The cow has been spoken of as food [The Shruti speak of the cow as the only food in the following sense, that the cow gives milk, the milk gives butter, the butter is used in Hom, the Hom is the cause of the clouds, the clouds give us rain, and the rain makes the seed to sprout forth and produce food]. The request has been spoken of as poison. And a Braahman is regarded the proper time of Shraaddh [means whenever one gets a good Braahman, that is the time for Shraaddh]. I do not know what do you think of all these."

The Yaksh asked - "What is the sign of asceticism? What is true restraint? What constitutes forgiveness? And what is shame?"
Yudhishthir answered - "Staying in one's own religion is asceticism. The restraint of mind is true restraint. Forgiveness is enduring enmity. Shame in withdrawing from all unworthy acts.

The Yaksh asked - "What is said to be the knowledge? What is tranquility? What constitutes mercy? And what is called simplicity?"
Yudhishthir answered - "True knowledge is that of Divinity. True tranquility is that of of the heart. mercy consists in wishing happiness to all. And simplicity is of equanimity of heart."

The Yaksh asked - "What enemy is invincible? What constitutes an incurable disease for man? What sort of a man is called honest? And what dishonest?"
Yudhishthir answered - "Anger is the invincible enemy. Wrong desire for wealth is an incurable disease for a man. He is honest who desires for the welfare of all creatures. And he is dishonest who is unmerciful."

The Yaksh asked - "What is ignorance? What is pride? What is to be understood by illness? And what has been spoken as of grief?"
Yudhishthir answered - "Ignorance is not knowing one's duties. pride is being conscious of one's being himself an actor or sufferer in life. Idleness is not discharging one's duties and ignorance in grief."

The Yaksh asked - "What has steadiness been said by the Rishi to be? What about patience? What about real ablution? And what is charity?"
Yudhishthir answered - "Steadiness is in staying in one's own religion. True patience is in subjugation of the senses. A true bath is washing the mind clean of impurities. And charity is protecting all creatures.

The Yaksh asked - "What man should be regarded as learned? Who is called atheist? Who is ignorant? What is called desire and what are its sources? And what is envy?"
Yudhishthir answered - "Learned is he who knows his duties. An atheist is he who is ignorant. Ignorant is he who is atheist. Desire is due to object of possession. And envy is nothing else than grief of heart."

The Yaksh asked - "What is pride and what is hypocrisy? What is the grace of the gods and what is wickedness?"
Yudhishthir answered - "Unmovable ignorance is pride. Setting up a religious rule is hypocrisy. Grace of gods is the fruit of our gifts (charity). And wickedness is speaking ill of others."

The Yaksh asked - "Virtue, profit and desire are opposed to one another. How could the things which are opposite to each other exist together?"
Yudhishthir answered - "When a wife and virtue agree with each other, then all the three you have mentioned may exist together."

The Yaksh asked - "Who is he who is condemned to everlasting Hell? Give me its answer soon."
Yudhishthir answered - "He who invites a poor Braahman, promises to make a gift, and then tells him that he has nothing to give, goes to everlasting Hell. He who attributes falsehood to Ved, scriptures, Braahman, god, and the Tarpan for Pitri, also goes to everlasting hell. he also goes to Hell who has wealth and he neither gives it away, nor enjoys it because of greed."

The Yaksh asked - "By what, birth or behavior, study or learning, a person becomes Braahman? Tell us with certainty."
Yudhishthir answered - "Listen O Yaksh, neither from birth, nor study, nor learning one becomes a Braahman. It is his behavior that makes him Braahman. One's behavior should always be well-guarded, especially by a Braahman. His conduct should be unimpaired, is impaired himself. Professors and their students, all who study scriptures, if addicted to bad habits, are regarded as illiterate wretches. Only he is learned who performs his religious duties. If a Braahman doe not perform his duties, he is lower than the Shoodra. Only he is Braahman who performs Agnihotra."

The Yaksh asked - "What does one gain who speaks agreeable words? What does he gain who always acts with judgment? What does he gain who has many friends? And what does he gain who is devoted to virtue?"
Yudhishthir answered - "He who speaks agreeable words becomes agreeable to all. He who acts with judgment gets whatever he seeks. He who has many friends lives happily. And who is devoted to virtue lives happily [in the next world]."

The Yaksh asked - "Who is truly happy? What is most wonderful? What is the path? and what is the news?"
Yudhishthir answered - "A man who cooks in his own house in the 5th or the 6th part of the day with scanty vegetables, who is not in debt, who does not move from his home is truly happy. Daily creatures go to Yam's abode, yet those remained behind believe themselves immortal - what can be more wonderful than this? Arguments lead to no conclusions, Shruti are different from one another, there is not even one Rishi whose opinion can be accepted by all, the truth about religion and duty is hidden in caves, therefore that alone path is treadable on which great people have gone. The world full of ignorance is like a pan, the Sun is fire, and days are nights are fuel. The months and seasons are the wooden ladles. Time is the cook that is cooking all creatures in the pan - this is the news."

The Yaksh said - "You have answered my all questions correctly. Tell me who is truly a man and what man truly possesses every kind of wealth."
Yudhishthir said - "The report of one's good action reaches Heaven and spreads in the world. As long as that report lasts, so long is a person, to whom the agreeable and disagreeable, friend or foe, the past and the future are all same is said to be possessed of every kind of wealth."

The Yaksh said - "You have truly answered who is a man who is that man who possesses every kind of wealth. Therefore I can bring your one brother to life among these." Yudhishthir said - "He who is of dark complexion, whose eyes are red, let that Nakul live." Yaksh said - "Bheem is very dear to you, and this Arjun is the one on whom you all depend? Why then, O Son of Paandu, you wish to revive your stepbrother Nakul? How can you leave Bheem who has the strength of 10,000 elephants and ask me to revive Nakul? Leaving Arjun whose arms are worshipped by you all, you are asking me to revive Nakul?" Yudhishthir said - "He who sacrificed virtue, then he who sacrifices it, himself is lost, so virtue also cherishes the cherisher. That is why I regard virtue and by not sacrificing us, it may not sacrifice us. I never leave virtue. Ahinsaa is the highest virtue and is the highest object of attainment. I try to practice that virtue. Therefore O Yaksh, Revive my Nakul. I will never move from my duty. My father had two wives - Kuntee and Maadree. Let both of them have their children alive. As Kuntee is to me, so is Maadree. There is no difference between them. Therefore O Yaksh, Revive Nakul."

Yaksh said - "Since Ahinsaa is your highest Dharm, higher than both profit and pleasure, therefore I revive your all brothers."


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Created by Sushma Gupta On 05/27/04
Modified on 02/10/13