Chapter 71 to 137

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KROUSHTHUKI said: – O revered Sir, you have described to me in full the story of Karandhama as well as that of Avikshita. (1) I wish now to hear the story of the high-souled king Marutta, Avikshita’s son. I have heard he was greatly energetic, lord Paramount, noble, heroic, beautiful, highly intelligent, conversant with piety. He performed many religious acts and governed well the earth. (2-3)

MARKANDEYA said: – Having obtained the kingdom from his grand-father with the consent of his father he governed it piously like a father taking care of his own begotten sons. (4) He duly performed many Yajnas terminated with gifts and gladly carried out the command of Ritwikas and priests. (5) His wheel was unobstructed in the seven insular continents and his movement was unimpeded in heaven, Patala and water. (6) Having obtained riches, O Vipra, he duly performed his own actions and propitiated the gods headed by Indra with Yajnas. (7) The inferior castes too zealously engaged in their respective duties, and performed, with the wealth obtained from him, Rishtha and Purtha ceremonies. (8) The earth being governed by the high-souled Marutta the celestial region, with its inhabitants, grew prosperous, O foremost of the twice-born. (9) He not only surpassed all the kings of the earth but with sacrifices even the king of the gods, the performer of a hundred Yajnas. (10) His Ritwika was the high-souled ascetic Samvartta, the son of Angiras and the brother of Vrihaspati. (11) He broke down the golden mountain Munjavan, where the celestials used to go for he had pilfered the conch shell of that king. (12) O twice-born one, by giving away lands in his Yajna he pleased all the ascetics. (13) All the Rishis sing fully the story of Marutta and read it as well, (14) “There is no other king on this earth who can perform Yajnas like Marutta, in whose Yajna all the Rishis have been pleased. (15) He distributed Soma juice amongst all the gods headed by Shakra and Dakshinas amongst all the twice-born. (16) In the Yajna of what king like that of Marutta will the twice-born one leave aside profuse gold in houses filled with jewels? (17) All his palaces were made of gold. All the three Varnas gained something or other from him and equally gave it away. (18) All those men, who had their ends achieved with the remnant left off by him, performed many Yajnas therewith in different countries. (19) O foremost of Munis, while he was reigning and governing his subjects an ascetic came to him and said: -(20) “O king, having seen a host of ascetics assailed by the poison of serpents, elated with pride your grand-mother has communicated this to you. (21) ‘Having governed the earth well your grand-father has gone to heaven. I too, incapable of carrying on penances, am living in the hermitage of Urva. (22) O king, yourself governing the kingdom of your grand¬father, I see an irregularity (that never took place during the regime of) your predecessors.

(23) Forsooth, you have been blindly attached to the objects of enjoyment and have lost all control over senses, since you do not understand who are wicked and who are not. (24) Having come from Patala the serpents have bitten seven Muni boys and vitiated the water.

(25) They have also desecrated the purified Havi with urine, excreta etc. Perceiving your shortcoming do you soon offer food to the serpents. (26) These Munis are capable of consuming the serpents – but they have no right in this – it is within your province. (37) O king, the children of the kings should so long enjoy as long as the water of installation does not fall on their heads. (28) (They should always think), “Who are my friends? Who is my enemy? What is the measure of the enemy’s strength? Who am I? Who are my ministers? What kings are on my side? (29) What man in this city or in the kingdom has been dissatisfied with me or alienated from me by the enemies? What is the matter with the enemies? (30) Who performs religious acts? Who is ignorant? Who behaves well? Who is to be punished? Who is to be protected? What persons should be looked after by me? (31) For fear of the break of treaty, a king, understanding well the time and place, should send spies to bring him intelligence. (33) A king should always engage spies (to ascertain the conduct of) ministers and others. (33) Having his mind daily engaged in such actions, a king should spend his days and nights and should not indulge in enjoyments. (34) O king, the kings live not for enjoyment but for suffering pain and for the protection of the earth and virtue. (35) If a king maintains well this earth and observes his duties, he suffers great trouble in this world but attains to supreme delight in the next. (36) Understanding this and relinquishing all pleasures, O king, you should promise to undergo every trouble for governing the earth. (37) This great calamity of the Rishis that has

come from the serpents during your rule, you do not know, O king. (38) What is the use of speaking more? Inflict punishment on the wicked and protect the good. You are the king and are entitled to the sixth portion of virtue. (39) By not protecting them and subduing the wicked you will be visited by all sins. Do this if you like. (40) I have thus communicated all to you. I am your grand-mother. Do this if you like, O king. (41)