"Pandavas"

Skandham-1.

 

Chapter-15.

 

Slokam- 1 to 51.  

 

 

The Pândavas Retire

 

 

 (1) Sûta said: "While Arjuna, the friend of Krishna, was thus subjected to the various forms of doubt and speculation by his elder brother the king, he turned out to be very aggrieved of his feelings of separation. (2) From his grief his mouth and lotuslike heart had dried up and his bodily luster had vanished. Thinking of the Supreme Lord S'rî Krishna he wasn't able to reply properly. (3) While with great difficulty checking the force of his sadness, wiping the tears of his eyes, the more he eagerly thought about Him out of his affection, the more distressed he became. (4) Remembering Him as well-wisher, benefactor, intimate associate and charioteer, Arjuna, heavily breathing of being overwhelmed, began to speak to his eldest brother the king. (5) He said: 'O my King, the Personality of Godhead Hari who treated me like His intimate friend has left me. Now I am bereft of the astounding power that even astonished the gods. (6) I lost Him of whom being separated but for a moment certainly would make all universes appear unfavorable and void of all life, like they were all dead bodies. (7) By the strength of His mercy I could vanquish all the princes who lusted for power at the selection of the bridegroom at King Drupada's palace where I gained Draupadî's hand by piercing the fish-target with my bow. (8) Of His standing by my side I had the dexterity to conquer over Indra and his godly associates and have his forest ablaze by the god of fire, and could I attain to the wonderful assembly house of art and workmanship built by Maya [out of gratitude for saving him from that fire in the forest named Khândava] where all the princes assembled to your honor. (9) Under His influence could your younger brother [Bhîma], who has the strength of a thousand elephants, kill him who was worshiped by the many kings [Jarâsandha] who had his power collected from them sacrificing to the Lord of the ghosts [Mahâbhairava]. They paid you tribute upon their release. (10) He took the life of the husbands [the Kurus] of the wives whose hair was condemned to be loosened because your wife [Draupadî] had her hair loosened, which was beautifully clustered and sanctified during the great ceremony, as she was caught [from a bet] by the miscreants [the Kurus headed by Duhs'âsana], upon which she in tears fell down at the Feet. (11) He protected us when we got into trouble, endangered in the forest by the intrigue of our enemies with Durvâsâ Muni, who came to eat with his ten thousand disciples. By simply beforehand accepting the remnants of the food He satisfied all the three worlds as well as giving the Munis who were bathing at that time the thought that they had been fed already. (12) Under His influence once I could astonish the Personality of God with the Trident [Lord S'iva] and his wife the daughter of the Himalaya, because of which He and other gods rewarded me with their own weapons so that in this body I definitely could obtain a half-elevated seat in the House of Indra. (13) As a guest of that heaven could I with both my arms, with my bow Gândiva, Indra and all the gods, kill the demon Nivâtakavaca, being empowered, o descendant of King Ajamîdha, by Him, the Supreme Personality whom at present I am bereft of. (14) From His friendship alone I, seated on the chariot, could cross the insurmountable ocean of the invincible existences of the military strength of the Kauravas, and from His friendship alone, I could return with the enormous wealth of the enemy; the brilliance of jewels I took from their heads by force. (15) It was He who by the power of His glance ended the mental agitation sprouting from the fruitive life of all the chariot fighters at the battlefield, o great King, in whose midst I went forward facing the immensity of great royal personalities like Bhîshma, Karna, Drona and S'alya. (16) Under His protection the very powerful invincible weapons applied by Drona, Bhîshma, Karna, Bhûris'ravâ, King Sus'armâ, S'alya, King Jayadratha, Bâhlika [a brother of Bhîshma] etc., couldn't touch me just like when Prahlâda [the famous devotee of Nrisimhadev, the lion-incarnation] was threatened by the demons. (17) Thinking erroneously of Him as only my chariot driver He, whose feet are rendered service by the intelligent for the sake of salvation, delivered me - and by His mercy my enemies were absentminded and didn't attack me when I descended for my thirsty horses. (18) With His smiling face He was joking and frank with me addressing me as'son of Prithâ','friend'and'son of the Kuru dynasty'and such; heartful sayings of my Mâdhava [Krishna] that touch and overwhelm my soul remembering them. (19) When sleeping, sitting, walking and dining together, confronting one another and so on, I took Him mistakingly for a friend alike me in truth, while He tolerated me, like a friend would or a father with a child, being great in His glory, despite my seeing Him lower in my offenses. (20) O Emperor, without the Supreme Personality, my dearmost friend and well-wisher, my heart and soul are vacant and recently I was defeated like a weak woman by infidel cowherds while protecting Krishna's wives. (21) Having the same bow, arrows, chariot and horses, I am the same Arjuna and chariot fighter whom all the kings offered their respects - all in a moment this, missing Him, became useless like butter offered to ashes, money obtained by magic or seeds sewn on barren land'.

 

 

 

 

(22-23)'O King, as you inquired about our friends and relatives in Dvârakâ: they were cursed by the brahmins as a consequence of which they like fools killed one another with sticks being drunk with rice wine, not even recognizing each other in that intoxicated state. Only four or five of them remained. (24) It is from the will of the Supreme Personality, our Lord, that sometimes the living beings kill one another while at other times they of Him protect one another. (25-26) Like in the ocean where the bigger eat the smaller and the stronger devour the weaker, o King, so also in a duel, the Omnipotent One took the burden of all the Yadus together of the earth, by having the stronger Yadu kill the weaker one and the bigger Yadu killing the smaller one. (27) With in mind the words spoken by Govinda I remember how attractive they are, and they, imbued with importance and appropriate to the time and circumstance, put an end to the pain in the heart'."

 

 

 

 (28) Sûta said: "Thus thinking of the lotus feet of the Lord and what He instructed in the intimacy of deep friendship, Arjuna pacified with a mind finding freedom from all material concerns. (29) Constantly remembering the feet of Vâsudeva, Arjuna's devotion grew rapidly, ending the endless ruminations. (30) Reviving the instructions of the Supreme Lord about the transcendental in the midst of the battle and thinking of His time and actions he dispelled the darkness of his ignorance and became the master of his senses. (31) Free from lamentation, by his spiritual capacity managing to cut with the doubts of duality of being merged with matter, was he, due to the transcendence being without the material form, freed from the entanglement of birth and death. (32) Upon the deliberations about the disappearance of the Supreme Lord to His abode and the end of the Yadu dynasty, Yudhishthhira decided to withdraw himself and leave for the sake of the soul also. (33) Queen Kuntî, who had overheard what Arjuna told about the end of the Yadus and the disappearance of the Lord, as well as all others undivided in their devotion to the Lord's transcendence, found in their soulful commitment release from their material existence. (34) By taking away the burden of the world was that body [of the Yadu dynasty] relinquished by the Unborn One the way a thorn used to extract another thorn is thrown away, for to the Lord they are one and the same. (35) Like in His Matsya-incarnation e.g., as a magician giving up one body to accept another one, relinguished He the body He manifested to diminish the burden of the world. (36) When Mukunda [the Lord of Liberation] the Fortunate One so worthwhile to hear about, left this earth - manifested from that very day on Kali[-yuga] itself in full, inauspicious to all whose minds have not awakened.

 

 

 

 (37) Yudhishthhira keenly in his capital, state and home as also in the self seeing things grow worse with the vicious circle of avarice, falsehood, dishonesty, irreligion and violence and such, understood that it was time to leave and dressed himself accordingly. (38) The emperor to that in the capital of Hastinâpura enthroned his grandson [Parîkchit], who was properly trained and equal to himself in all respects by his qualities, as the master of all land bordered by the seas. (39) At Mathurâ he made Vajra [the son of Aniruddha] king of S'ûrasena, after which he had a Prâjâpatya-sacrifice performed for being able to find the fire in himself to attain his goal. (40) Renouncing his belt, ornaments and all of that, he became uninterested in perfect detachment from the unlimited bondage. (41) He withdrew his speech into his mind, his mind with his other senses into his breath, his breath he withdrew in death, and in full dedication he united that with the body made of the five elements. (42) Having offered those five elements to the three qualities of nature, he united the thoughtful in one indifference, fixing the sumtotal of that in the soul directed to the spiritual soul of the inexhaustible Brahman. (43) Accepting torn clothes, refusing solid food, stopping to talk and untying his hair, he began to look like a dumb madman and an unengaged urchin not listening anymore as if he had become deaf. (44) Heading for the north he treaded, as all others going there, the path of his mindful forefathers, passing his days constantly thinking from within his heart of the Supreme Beyond wherever he went.

 

 

 

 (45)Seeing from their friend that the Age of Kali and its irreligion had overtaken the citizens on earth, all the brothers followed the older one leaving home. (46) All of them, having performed with all virtue and knowledge of holiness, kept themselves, with the ultimate of the living being in mind, steadfast to the lotusfeet of the Lord of the place without fear [Vaikunthha]. (47-48) That is the destination of those who by positive meditation purified in devotion found liberation, being fixed in intelligence on the transcendental feet of the One Nârâyana. They attained, with their material contaminations washed off, by their selfsame bodies to the abode that for the materialists absorbed in material concerns is very difficult to attain. (49) Also Vidura after quitting his physical self at Prabhâsa went, with his mind and actions devoted to Krishna, accompanied by his manes to his own abode [Yama's realm]. (50) Draupadî at the time being without the care of her husbands, concentrated, absolute in the full knowledge of Him, herself on Lord Vâsudeva, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and obtained Him thus. (51) Anyone who hears with devotion of this departure for the ultimate goal of the sons of Pându, that are so dear to the Supreme Lord, will find nothing but good fortune and purity as he gains in perfection in devotion to the Lord."