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12-Shaanti Parv, 17-22
Kathaa-G - 12-Shaanti - page 3

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All Advice Yudhishthir-2

Yudhishthir said - "Bheem, this sovereignty causes attachment to worldly things, might, vanity, anxiety etc. Winning them is the root of happiness, then why do you admire the other course of life? Desires cannot be fulfilled in a day, in a month, in a year, or even in a lifetime. If you fuel the fire it ill blaze but if you don't fuel it, it will extinguish. Fools ask more food for more food, conquer your hunger first. You have won this kingdom, you admire this kingdom. Who take minimum food only they are able to conquer the Hell. You are not liberated from desires. There are two paths - one is Pitar's path and the other is Devtaa's path. [Pitar's path is following the Vaidik rites path to attain bliss hereafter, and Devtaa's path is abandoning the religious rites path for contemplation and pious conduct].

By penance, following Brahmcharya, by studying Ved great Rishi have gone to higher regions. While worldly pleasures binds a person to cycle of birth and death. They are also called action. Liberated from these sins - action and bondage, one attains the highest regions. Raajaa Janak has said - "I have many things, still I have nothing. Even if the whole Mithilaa is burned, nothing of mine is burned." Who are learned, they see people grieving for those things for which they should not grieve. In the same way when one sees all kinds of creatures to be all and the same, know him as he has attained Brahm." [He has attained Brahm who ceases to see himself separate from the world. Selfishness, the root of the sin and injury disappears from him.]

Hearing this, Arjun became very sad, so he spoke again - "Listen to the conversation between the Videh king and his queen. The queen said to king when the king left his kingdom and resolved to lead a life of a Sanyaasee. He left his wealth , children, wives; shaved his head and put on a Sanyaasee's clothes. Then the queen said - "Why have you adopted this life while you have a kingdom full of wealth and corn? Will you be able to satisfy your guests, Devtaa, Pitar etc with this handful of barley fallen from the stalks and picked from the fields? You have been feeding thousands of Braahman everyday, how you will beg your own food from them today? Your mother has been without son today and your wife, princess of Koshal, a widow. You are a sinner who is going to woods leaving your wife. And if you say that a handful of barley are same for me as the kingdom then why do you leave the latter one? By satisfying Devtaa, guests and all creatures, by observing the duty of charity, by worshipping Braahman, by speaking the Truth we shall surely attain the regions of bliss."

Vaishampaayan Jee said - "At this Yudhishthir said - "I am well conversant with both Ved and scriptures that guide the way to Brahm Lok. Ved support both kinds of views - following the actions, and leaving the action. The scriptures are confused and their conclusions are based upon reasons. The truth that is in Mantra, is known to me. You are conversant with weapons, you cannot understand the sense of scriptures. Whatever you have said to me, you have said it with brotherly affection. There is no warrior like you who understands all subtleties of the war, in the world, so you can speak about them, but do not doubt my intelligence. You have never been with elders.

Wise say that among penance, renunciation and knowledge about Brahm, the second one is better than the first, and the third one is batter than the second. Your thinking about wealth that there is nothing superior to that, is wrong. I tell you about this so that you consider wealthy people better than others. All righteous men are seen to be devoted to do Tap and to study of Ved. Rishi who have many eternal regions also get them by penance. Pious men restrain their desires, remove their ignorance by knowledge and proceed to the regions reserved for those who have practiced for renunciation. The path which is in south (lunar path) is reserved for those who practice actions. these people come back to earth to be born again and again. Yog is the best way to attain salvation. It is not easy to explain it to you. Those are wise, reflect on scriptures desire of finding what is unreal. But even after mastering Ved and Aranyak, they miss the real. Some do not believe in its unity consider this soul possessed of the attributes of desire and others.* (see the note below)

Incapable of being seen by eyes, exceedingly subtle and inexpressible by words, it revolves in a cycle of rebirths among the creatures of the earth. ** (see the note below) After restraining all desires of mind, and stopping all actions one becomes perfectly independent and happy. When there is such a path which is attainable by knowledge, then O Arjun, why do you ask me to accept wealth which is the root of all kinds of trouble. There are some fools who deny the existence of soul because of their bad Karm in previous lives. They cannot understand the truth of final emancipation. Those learned people go around making speeches and do not regard the emancipation. Who else will succeed in understanding what we do not understand? O Arjun, people get Brahm by asceticism and intelligence and happiness by emancipation."

Vaishampaayan Jee says - "After Yudhishthir has said this, Rishi Devasthaan said - "As Arjun has said to you about wealth, I wish to say something on this. You have won this Prithvi righteously so it is not right for you to abandon without any reason. There are four ways of life indicated in Ved (Dharm, Arth, Kaam and Moksh), you should pass them one by one. The Vaikhaanas preach that those people are superior who do not seek wealth to those people who seek wealth.***(see the note below) But at present you should do sacrifices with abundant gifts. Some Rishi do sacrifices according to Ved, while some do them as presented by knowledge. Thus Rishi are also addicted o Karm. They collect things to perform these sacrifices, while others distribute things to undeserving people not knowing that they are earning the sin of killing fetus. The Supreme being created wealth for sacrifice, he created man to take care of wealth and do sacrifice, so one should spend all of his wealth on sacrifice. Indra also has done the same thing, got the chieftainship and now shines. Even Mahaadev, the wearer of deer skin, offered himself in a sacrifice called "Sarv" and became the first of Devtaa. King Marutt, son of Avikshit, surpassed even Indra in sacrifices. He used gold pots and Shree herself came in person. Harishchandra also got happiness after performing sacrifice. That is why one should give everything in sacrifice."

Devashthaan continued - "There is an old history in relation to this, once Brihaspati told Indra. He said - "Contentment is the highest Heaven, highest bliss. When one draws away desires like a tortoise draws his limbs, his soul soon manifests itself. When one's all desires are over then only he can see his soul. When one does not injure others by mind, speech and action, and is free from any desire then he is said to attain Brahm. Whatever religion they follow, they earn fruits according to their Karm. Awaken yourself with this consideration. Some praise peace, some praise exertion, some praise contemplation, some praise sacrifice, while other praise renunciation, some praise gifts and others praise acceptance. Observing all this the learned say, "only that religion is the highest which doesn't injure others." Manu himself has said - "Who doesn't injure others, speaks truth, follows justice and compassion, has control over himself, produces children from his wife, equally regards all whether dear or not dear, subsists on remains of sacrifice, goes to woods in the last is sure to obtain excellent fruits. The emancipation you are talking about is very difficult to obtain and it is very difficult to pursuit."

Hearing this Arjun again said - "By following your duties you have attained this sovereignty which was difficult to attain. So after winning it why do you grieve? This is the duty of Kshatriya, penance and renunciation are the duties of Braahman. Duties of a Kashtriya are very difficult, they are always related to weapons, and when time comes he should die in battle field. Even the Braahman who has adopted Kshatriya duties is not condemnable because Kshatriya have sprung from Braahman. Indra himself became Kshatriya and fought with his kinsmen 810 times and his actions are praised. So don't be grieved and accept the kingdom."

* It refers to well-known definition of soul or mind according to the philosophy of Nyaaya, which says that it is distinguished by the attributes of desire, aversion, will, pleasure and pain and the cognitive faculties.

** The reason of this rebirth is A-Vidyaa (ignorance, or illusion). In the absence of true knowledge people engage in action. When the soul is freed from A-Vidyaa, actions are stopped and the soul is seen in its true form which is without attributes.

*** It means that it is better not to do even sacrifices if they need wealth, and one is poor.


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Created by Sushma Gupta On 03/09/02
Modified on 10/19/11