Chapter 71 to 137

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Markandeya said: – There was on earth a king Swarastra by name, famous, and full of energy, the performer of many sacrifices, wise, and unconquerable in battle. (1) Worshipped by his councillor the sun-god gave him long life, and O thou twice-born one, his wives were a hundred in number. (2) Of him, the long-lived one, the wives were not long-lived, O Muni! and in time the servants and the councillors similarly all were dead. (3) In this way separated from his wives as also from his attendants who were born with him, being restless in mind he began to lose his energy day by day. (4) Then at that time, (a king) by name Bimardda deposed him from his kingdom, – who had lost his vigour and was sad, having been forsaken by most intimate attendants. (5) He, the possesser of the eight good qualities, deposed from his kingdom, with his mind bowed down by sorrow and bereavement, going to the forest, and living on the banks of the river Vitasta, practised penances. (6) He practised the penance of the five fires in summer, and got himself wetted in the waters of the clouds during the rains, and lying in water during winter, he lived without food, taking the vow of self-control. (7) Then while he was thus practising the penances, during one rainy season, there was a great deluge owing to an incessant down-pour from the clouds. (8) The quarters could not be distinguished, neither the east, nor the south nor the west, nor the north; everything seemed to be covered with darkness. (9) Then owing to the great deluge that king was carried away by the extremely rapid current of the river, and though praying for rescue he did not find its banks. (10) Next the lord of the earth, carried to a long distance by the current of water, came across a deer in that water; and he caught her by the tail. (11) By that craft (of a tail) was he conducted here and there, in that darkness, on this earth, and at last he found land. (12) Having crossed extensive and deep sloughs, pulled by that deer, that king found another pleasant forest. (13) In that darkness did the deer draw the lord of the world attached to her tail, and grown lean (and weak) by cruel austerities. (14) Walking about again and again in that darkness, his mind being moved by passion, he found great pleasure in her touch. (15) In that forest knowing that lord of men full of love (towards her) and engaged in touching her back, that deer (thus) spoke to him. (16) “Why dost thou touch my back with trembling hands, O lord of men? This action has taken a contrary course. (17) Thy mind, O lord, is not set on an unworthy object; thy connection with me is not forbidden – but this Lola stands in the way of my union with thee. (18)

Markandeya said: – Hearing this speech of that deer the lord of the world, moved by curiosity, spoke this word to the deer. (19)

The King said: – Tell me who thou art, O deer, and how dost thou speak like a human being and who again is this Lola who stands as an obstacle to thy connection with me. (20)

The deer said: – I am, O king, thy wife, known before as Utpalavati, the chief queen among a hundred wives, and the daughter of Dridadhana. (21)

The King said: – But what didst thou do by which thou hast found this birth. Why has she, who was devoted to her husband, and assiduous in the observance of the law, come by such a state. (22)

The deer said: – In my fathers’s house, as a maiden, I went with my friends and companious to the forest for a pleasure-walk, and there saw a he-deer united with a female-deer. (23) Then by me, who went near, was the female deer driven away and through fear of me she went to another place; then the male deer being angry said. (24) “Thou fool, why hast thou become so mad; fie to thy evil disposition, by which is this my union frustrated!” (25) Hearing his word, who was speaking like a human being over-taken with fear I told him this – “who art thou that hast attained this birth. (26)

Then he said: – “I am the son of the Rishi Nribrittichakshu, Sutapa by name; being moved by desire for this female deer, I have become a deer. (27) And become subject to her through

love, I was also desired by her in this forest; but O evil one, we are separated by thee; therefore shall I curse thee.” (28)

By me was also spoken this: – “O Muni, through ignorance I have offended thee; be gracious to me, it is not meet, O respected one, that thou shouldst curse me.” (29) Thus being spoken to, O lord of the earth, that Muni also told me this: – “I will not curse thee, if I may give myself to thee.” (30) By me was also spoken (this) – “I am not a female deer, thou who art of the form of a deer shalt find another female deer in the forest; therefore control thy passion for me.”

(31) Being thus spoken to, he said, with his eyes becoming blood shot through anger, and his lips trembling, “I am not a female deer,” by thee has this been spoken; thou, fool, shalt become a female deer. (32) Then being extremely pained I told the Muni, who, though he had been exceedingly angry, was now fully composed, again and again after salutation, – “be gracious to me!. (33) I am a mere girl, inexperienced in (the use of) words, therefore has this been spoken by me; in the absence of the father alone is the husband accepted by the maidens themselves. (34) O most excellent Muni, when my father exists, how can I accept (thee); or even if I am guilty, be gracious to me, O lord, I salute thee.” (35) O thou high-souled one! to her who was saying – be gracious, be gracious, after salutation, that most superior Muni said this. (36) “The word spoken by me shall never be otherwise; thou, being dead, shalt surely become a female deer even in this forest, in the next birth. (37) In thy state as deer will the son of the Muni Siddhabirya, O thou lovely one! Lola by name, mighty of arm, find thy womb (i.e., will be born of thee). (38) Thou shalt regain thy memory of thy former birth, on that pregnancy occurring to thee, and finding thy lost memory, thou shalt speak in the tongue of men. (39) At his birth, being liberated from the state of the deer, and honoured by thy husband, thou shalt gain those lokas which are not attainable by the workers of iniquity. (40) That Lola also, mighty of energy, having killed his father’s enemies and conquered the entire world, shall at last become Manu.” (41) Being thus cursed, and attaining the state of the beast after death, by thy touch is this foetus born in my womb. (42) Therefore I say that thy mind, set on me, has not been misplaced, nor am I beyond the range of thy lawful love, but this Lola in my womb has created an obstacle. (43)

Markandeya said: – Then being thus spoken to that king also found supreme delight (in the thought) that my son having conquered my enemies shall be a Manu on earth. (44) Then that female deer brought forth that son endowed with all good signs, and at his birth all beings found delight. (45) More particularly this king, on the birth of this son, mighty of strength, found great delight, and that female deer, released from the curse, found most excellent lokas. (46) Then, O most excellent Muni! all the Rishis coming to him, and seeing his future glory, gave a name to that high-souled one. (47) He is born of a mother who found a Tamasa birth, and the world also is covered by Tama therefore this one will be (known as) Tamasa. (48) Then that Tamasa, nursed by that father in the forest, when his intelligence grew, spoke this to the father, O most excellent Muni!. (49) “Who art thou father, and how am I thy son, who is also my mother, and why hast thou come (here) tell me this in truth.” (50)

Markandeya said: – Then the father, the lord of the world, mighty of arm, related to that son all that happened commencing with his deprivation of his own kingdom. (51) Having heard all this, he, also after worshipping the sun, found in all fullness divine and fatal arms. (52) Thus being an adept in arms, having conquered the enemies and brought them to the father, by him, established in the observance of the duties of his station, were they released, according to the order of the father. (53) His father also, having found the happiness caused by the sight of the son’s face, separated from the body found the lokas earned by penances and sacrifices. (54) Having conquered all the world that king, called Tamasa, became the Manu called Tamasa; hear of his Manwantara from me, (55) of all those who were the gods, and who was the lord – the king of the gods, as also who were the Rishis, and those who were the sons of that Manu, – the rulers of the earth. (56) O Muni, the Satyas and similarly others the Siddhis, the Surupas, and likewise the Haris, these were the twenty-seven classes of gods in that (Manwantara). (57) Similarly the lord of those gods was the Lord Shikhi, mighty of strength and energy, and joined to a hundred sacrifices. (58) O Brahman, Jyotirdhama, Pritha, Kavya, Chaitra, Agni, Balaka and Pivara, these seven were the seven leading Rishis. (59) The

kings exceedingly powerful, – Nara, Kshanti, Skanda, Danta, Jangha &c., were likewise the sons, of Tamasa. (60)