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Chapter XVI

On the glory of the Devi

1. Vyasa said :– After gaining the victory in the battle, the king Yudhajit returned to the city of Ayodhya with his huge army and asked where are SudarSana and Manorama? He wanted to kill SudarSana.

2. He repeatedly exclaimed “Where are they gone?” and sent his servants

on their search. Then, on an auspicious day, he installed his daughter’s son on the throne.

3. Maharsi VaSistha was engaged as the priest; he and the other ministers began to chant the auspicious hymns of the Atharvaveda and with the jars, filled with water, and consecrated by these hymns, installed Satrujit on the throne.

4. O best of the Kurus ! Conch shells resounded; drums, bheris and turiyas, resounded; and great festivals and rejoicings took place in the city.

5. The reciting of the Vedic mantrams by the Brahmans, the chanting of hymns by the bards and the auspicious acclamation of Victory to the new king resounded the whole city of Ayodhya with joy.

6. When the new king Satrujit ascended on the throne, the subjects were filled with joy; everywhere hymns were sung; drums were resound. At this Ayodhya looked as fresh as ever.

7-8. O King ! Though there were thus great rejoicings and festivals, yet some good persons were found that remembered SudarSana and gave vent to this feeling of sorrow, thus :–“Alas ! Where has that prince gone? Where has that chaste queen Manorama gone with her son? Oh ! The enemies have killed his father for greed of kingdom.”

1.         The saints with their views impartial, thus rendered uneasy, sorry, began to pass away their time there subject to Satrujit.

2.         After installing duly his daughter’s son on the throne and after having made over the charge of the kingdom to the wise councillors, Yudhajit turned towards his own city.

11-12. Afterwards Yudhajit heard that SudarSana was staying in the hermitage with the Munis. He started at once for Chitrakuta and went quickly to DurdarSa, the chief of the city of Sringavera, being accompanied by Bala, the chief of the Nisadas.

13-15. Hearing that Yudhajit was coming there with his army, Manorama began to think that his son was a minor and became very sorrowful, distressed and terrified. Then she with tears in her eyes addressed the Muni thus :– “Yudhajit is coming here; what shall I do and whither shall I go? He has slain my father, and has installed his daughter’s son on the throne. Still he is not satisfied and he is now coming with his army here to kill my minor child.”

16-21. O Lord ! In days of yore, I heard that the Pandavas, when they went to the forest, lived in the holy hermitage of the Munis with Draupadi. One day the five brethren went a hunting,

and the beautiful Draupadi stayed without any fear with other maid servants in the hermitage where there was the chanting of the Vedas by Dhaumya, Attri, Galava, Paila, Javali, Gautama, Bhrigu, Chyavana, Kanva of the Atrigotra, Jatu, Kratu, Vitihotra, Sumantu, Yajnadatt, Vatsala, RaSasana, Kahoda, Yavakri, Yajnakrit, Kratu and other holy high souled Risis like Bharadvaja and others.

22-23. While the five great heroes Arjuna and others, the destroyers of their enemies, were roaming in the forests, Jayadratha, the king of Sindhu came with his army to the hermitage, hearing the reciting of the Vedic hymns.

24. Hearing thus, that king quickly descended from the chariot so that he might have a sight of these holy maharsis.

25-27. Accompanied by two attendants only, he approached to the Munis and, finding them engaged in the study of the Vedas, waited there with folded hands for an opportunity. O Lord ! When the king Jayadratha on entering the hermitage took his seat, the wives of the Munis came there to see the king and began to enquire “Who is this person?”

28. With the wives of the Munis came there also the beautiful Draupadi. Jayadratha looked upon Draupadi as if she were the second goddess Laksmi.

29-30. Looking at that lovely royal daughter who looked like the Deva girls Jayadratha asked the Maharsi Dhaumya, “Who is this beautiful lotus eyed lady? Whose wife is she and who is her father? What is her name? Oh ! From her beautiful appearance it seems that the goddess Sachi has come down on earth.”

1.         This fair woman is shining like the celestial nymph Rambha surrounded by the Raksasis or like the beautiful creeper Lavangalatika encircled by thorny trees.

2.         O good ones ! Tell truly whose beloved is she? O Brahmins ! It seems that she is the wife of some king, not the wife of a Muni.

3.         Dhaumya said :– “O king of Sindhu ! She is the daughter of Panchala; her name is Draupadi; she is the wife of the Pandavas; they are residing in this forest, having got rid of their fears.”

4.         Jayadratha said “Where have those powerful Pandavas of great prowess gone now? Are they dwelling in this forest, free from fears?”

5.         Dhaumya said :– “The five Pandavas have gone out on hunting, ascended on a chariot. They will return at noon with their game.”

36-37. Hearing the Muni’s words Jayadratha got up, and going near to Draupadi, bowed down to her and said :– “O Fair One ! Is there everything well with you? Where have your husbands gone? To-day it is eleven years that you are residing in the forest.”

1.         Draupadi then said :– “O prince ! Let all be well with you, wait here for a short while; the Pandavas are coming quickly.”

2.         While Draupadi thus spoke, that powerful king, being overpowered with greed and avarice, stole her away, disregarding all the Munis present there.

40-42. O Lord ! The wise should never trust any body; if on any body he places his trust, he will surely come to grief. For example, see the case of the king Bali. Bali, the son of Virochana, and the grandson of Prahlada, was prosperous, devoted to his religion, true to his promise, performer of sacrifices, generous, always giving protection to and liked by the saints and a great warrior. His mind never turned to any irreligious subject and he performed ninety nine Yajnas with full Daksinas (remunerations).

43-44. But the Bhagavan Visnu, who is all full of Sattvic purity and who is never affected with passions and changeless, who is always worshipped by the Yogis, He, in the form of a dwarf in his Vamana incarnation as the son of KaSyapa Risi, to serve the Devas, stole away his whole seagirt earth and kingdom deceitfully on hypocritical pretext.

1.         O Lord ! I heard that the son of Virochana was a generous large hearted king. He truly resolved to give what was wanted; but Visnu behaved with him deceitfully to serve the cause of Indra.

2.         When the pure, Sattvik Visnu could assume this dwarf incarnation to bring about the hindrance to Bali’s Yajna, what wonder is that other ordinary mortals would practise things like that?

3.         Therefore never trust on any body in any way. Lord ! Where there are greed and avarice, reigning in one’s heart, what fear can he have to perpetrate any evil deed?

48-49. O Muni ! It is through avarice that men commit sinful deeds; they do not care what good or bad will happen to them in the next world. Thoroughly overpowered by greed, they take away in mind, word and deed other’s things; and thus they become fallen.

50-51. Lo ! Human beings always worship the Gods for wealth; but the Devas do not give them wealth instantly; they give them these things through others by making them carry on trade, make gifts, or shew their strength or by making them steal.

1.         The VaiSyas worship the Gods simply because they think they will be highly prosperous and therefore they sell many things as grains, cloth and the like.

2.         O Controlled one ! Is there not the desire to take away the other’s property in this act of merchandise? Certainly there is. Besides the merchants, when they find that when people are in urgent need of buying articles from them, expect that the price of those articles might run higher.

3.         O Muni ! Thus every one is anxious to take away other’s properties. How, then, can we trust them?

4.         Those who are clouded by greed and delusion, their going to places of pilgrimages, their making charities, their reciting the Vedas, all are rendered useless. Though they go to the holy places, etc., still these things bear no fruits to them, as if they have not done these things at all.

5.         Therefore O Enlightened one ! You make Yudhajit go back to his own place. Then I will be able to remain here, like Sita, with my son.

57-58. On Manorama’s thus speaking to the Muni, the fiery Maharsi went to Yudhajit and said :– “O King ! You better go back to your own place or anywhere else you like. The son of

Manorama is a minor; that queen is very much grieved; she cannot come to you now.”

1.         Yudhajit said “O peaceful ones ! Kindly cease showing this impudence and give me Manorama. I will never go away leaving her. If you do not give her easily, I will take her away by force.”

2.         The Risis said “O King ! If there be any strength in you, you can take away Manorama by force; but the result will be similar to that when the King Visvamitra wanted to take away the heavenly cow by force from the hermitage of VaSistha.”

Thus ends the Sixteenth Chapter on the glory of the Devi and the going of the King Yudhajit to the hermitage of Bharadvaja, to kill SudarSana, in the the 3rd Adhyaya of Sri Mad Devi Bhagavatam by Maharsi Veda Vyasa.