Mahabhart Maha bharat
Dharmaja asked Bhishma : “O Grandsire Bhishma! in Vedas, Dharma, Ardha, Kama are mentioned. Amongst these three, which is the best?”
“O Dharmaja! In this connection, I will narrate you a story of Kundadhara. One Brahmin intended to perform a Yajna. He had no money with him. He performed Tapassu for the sake of money.
The divine bodies deputed one Kundadhara to the Brahmin to enquire about his desire. Kundadhara asked Brahmin about his desire. The Brahmin said that he was in need of money. Kundadhara summoned Manibhadra, a deputee of Kubera. Manibhadra appeared there.
“O Mani Bhadra! give this Brahmin sufficient money.” asked Kundadhara. Manibhadra agreed to give money. Meanwhile, Kundadhara entertained an idea.
“This brahmin is a humanbeing. He will die one day or other. Therefore, money is not necessary for this Brahmin. If I am able to convince him follow a righteous path, he will acquire enormous wealth.”
Kundadhara told the Brahmin about his idea. The Brahmin accepted that idea. Kundadhara prayed the divine powers to bless the brahmin with righteous path. Accordingly, the brahmin intended to perform Tapas. He told Kundadhara:
“O Kundadhara! so far my mind is inclined to earn money. With your divine grace, my mind is now fixed in performing Tapas. Now I am not in need of money.Kindly permit me to perform Tapas” asked brahmin. Kundadhara permitted the Brahmin to perform Tapas and disappeared.
The brahmin performed Tapas with great devotion.His mind was filled with divine grace and he attained divine powers.
“Now I am empowered to give money and kingdoms to those who seek my blessings” the Brahmin thought in his mind. At that time, Kundadhara appeared before the Brahmin.
“O Brahmin! you always follow Dharma and practice Yoga ant unite your mind with Atma.” said Kundadhara and disappeared.
Dharmaja! this is the story of Kunda Dhara. Now I will narrate another story.
One Brahmin along with his wife was living in aforest. He was eking his livelihood by collecting the grains in the fields after harvest. He was strictly performing the principle of non-violence. Even while performing Yajnas, he was offering Havis by burning fruits and not meat, knowing fully well that it was not permitted by Vedas. His wife knew about this but kept quiet out of fear of curses from her husband.
But Indra and other deities were not inclined to receive their due shares (Havis). Hence Agni lost his power. At that time, one deer came there and abused the wife of the Brahmin for not educating his husband about the offerings to be made. The deer requested the wife of the brahmin to kill and offer its flesh as Havis to the divine bodies. But the Brahmin did not agree.
Then the deer told the Brahmin: “O Brahmin! I have given you divine vision. Look. How Apsarasas, Gandharvas and other divine bodies are waiting for you in the heaven. If you do as I say, you will be taken to heaven.” said the deer. The Brahmin also observed Apsaras and Gandharvas waiting for his arrival. He agreed to kill the deer and offer it as Havis to deities.
Meanwhile, the deer appeared before the brahmin in the form of Dharma Devata. “O Brahmin! only to test you I appeared before you as deer. I will tell you one Dharma. Unnecessarily you should not kill animals. But whenever it is necessary, you have to resort to violence. Because we are performing Yajnas, we should not kill animals more than required. Killing animals during Yajna to minimum extent does not amount to violence.” said Dharma Devata.
Therefore, Dharmaja! killing animals whereever necessary is a must.” said Bhishma to Dharmaja.
“O Grandsire Bhishma! What is the reason behind committing any sin? What is the reason behind performing any righteous deeds? How a person gets rid of either righteous deeds or sinful acts. Kindly tell me.” asked Dharmaja.
“O Dharmaja! Human being smells, tastes etc., through sense organs. While doing so, he is influenced by greediness and infatuation. When he is influenced by greediness and infatuation, he will resort to Adharma and commit sinful acts, as a result of which he will be inflicted with sin. Had he known this, he would have avoided his sense organs and control them, as a result of which, he performs righteous deeds only according to Dharma. At the end,he attains Moksha.” said Bhishma.
“O Grandsire Bhishma! you told me this complicated subject in a nutshell. Kindly explain me in detail.” asked Dharmaja.
“O Dharmja! To make a pot, the potter shall have soft earth, potter wheel and skill to make pots. Therefore, to make anything and everything, skill is essential. We can avoid anger, with the quality of forgiveness; passions by avoiding thinking about them; excessive sleep with eternal vigilance; love and hatredness with courage; fear by avoiding dangers; lust and infatuation towards worldly pleasures by avoiding them; all diseases by taking limited food; all wordly pleasures by awareness that all are not certain; greediness with contentment; etc.
By strictly observing the above, one can avoid lustful passions and anger but cannot attain Moksha. But one can attain Moksha by skilfully practising the above.” said Bhishma.
“O Grandsire! In this great war, brothers, fathers, grand fathers, relatives and friends were killed only by overambition. How can we avoid this ambition? Kindly tell me.” asked Dharmaja.
“O Dharmaja! In this connection, I will narrate you the conversation between Janaka and Mandavya.
Once saint Mandavya came to King Janaka and requested King Janaka to punish him in order to kill his ambitions. King Janaka told Saint Mandavya thus:
“O Saint Mandavya! The riches and wealth brings us sorrows and vices. If we do not have ambition to acquire wealth and riches, we will not be tainted with sorrows nd vices. Therefore, even if the City Mithila is burnt, I never feel fot that.
The happiness which we derive by abandoning ambitions and desires is not equivalent to any lustful pleasure. If we avoid the feelings that “this is mine, these are my people, this is my wealth, these are my relatives, this is my house etc.” our ambitions will wither away gradually.”
“O Saint! if one lives peacefully with contentment, by eating what he gets, he will never be influenced by desires and ambitions. But the bad and wicked will never leave avarice and ambition. For avarice, there is no old age disease and death. It will simply take away our life. One who conquers averice and ambition, he attains eternal happiness. Therefore, O saint! dont be influenced by the duals like pleasures and sorrows and live peacefully.” said King Janaka.
The same words will apply to you also” said Bhishma to Dharmaja.
“O Grandsire! What would be behaviour of a humanbeing ain his last days? I remember you told me about this in the past. But I wish to hear again in detail.” asked Dharmaja.
“O Dharmaja! There was a brahmin boy called Medhavi. One day he asked his father: “While the age of the human being is diminishing day by day, what shall he do?”
“O my son! every human being shall adopt the four stages in his life viz, Brahmacharya, Grihastha,Vanaprastha and Sanyasa. During Brahmacharya, he will learn Vedas. Then he will marry, beget children, earn money, perform Yajnas, and Yagas. Then Vanaprastha and Sanyasa. Whatelse one can do more than this.” replied father.
“O father! since his birth, old age and death will be after him. How can he follow Varna Ashrama Dharma leisurely without the fear of death and old age. He will try to discharge his duties quickly because death will not wait for him till he completes all his duties. Lord Yama will take away his life while he discusses about good and bad leisurely.
O my father, both Mruthyu and Amruta are in our body. The lust and passion are our death. Our philosophical thinking is our Amruta. Jnana Yajna is much better than Yajnas performed by killing animals. I prefer to perform Yajna without violence. Desires certainly invite troubles always. There is no greater happiness in this world except abandoning all our desires. We know that the outside world is uncertain, so also, the sensual pleasures. Therefore, have an innersight and keep your mind peaceful.” said the son to his father.
“O Dharmaja! try to understand the words of that Brahmin boy and follow them.” said Bhishma.
“O grandsire! with what kind of character, one can attain Brahma. Kindly tell me.”
“O Dharmaja! by taking limited food, abandoning sensual pleasures and trying to attain Moksha, one can attain Brahma. In this connection, I will narrate Harita Gita.
In the past, there was a saint called Harita.He taught to some scholars the following principles:
A sadhaka shall leave his house and be averse towards desires. Either by his words or deeds, he shall not intend to cause harm to others and keep friendly relations with others. He shall not be overjoyous towards boasting or be distressed towards curses. He shall not live in dwelling houses. He shall dwell either in temples or in caves. He shall go for begging only at meals time. He shall not receive more than what he needed. He shall always have innersight and unite with his Atma. A Sadhaka of this character will attain Moksha without any effort.” said Bhishma.
“O Bhishma! I am a Kshatriya and an emperor. How can I attain that Brahma, by leaving all these royal plesures, and abandoning the sensual happiness etc.” asked Dharmaja.
Bhishma smiled at him. “Dharmaja! why you are so hurry. Time will solve all problems. You have to follow time. By efflux of time, you will lose interest on Varna Ashrama Dharmas. Then you will relinquish all your Karmas and be eligible for Sanyas.
In this connection I will tell you Vruthra Gita. There was a Rakshasa King called Vrutrasura. He was defeated by Indra. His friends moved him to a safer place. But Vruthrasura was with unperturbed mind and with smiling face.
Rakshasa Guru, Sukra Acharya asked Vrutra: “O King Vrutra! you are defeated and all your riches and wealth were grabbed by your enemies. Are you not distressed? What is the reason?” asked Sukra Acharya.
“O my Guru! having riches and losing riches
are common. They will be coming and going. Only ignorant feel happy
when they are rich and distressed when they lose those riches. A wise
who knows that all these riches are uncertain never feels distressed
when they are lost.
Sukra Acharya wanted to know his inner feelings. “O King Vruthra! You are the King of Rakshasas. Is it proper on your part to speak like this.” said Sukra.
“O Guru! previously, I fought with divine forces and conquered them. I ruled all the three regions and enjoyed all divine pleasures. Now I lost them. I might have committed a sin. Hence I lost all my divine pleasures. Why should I feel sorry for that. Hereinafter,I will remain neutral, without resorting to either good deeds or bad deeds. With purified mind, I will take refuge of Vishnu.
While I was fighting with Indra, Vishnu was standing by his side. O Guru! kindly tell me about the virtues of Vishnu” asked Vruthra.
Meanwhile, Sanatkumara, a Brahma Manasa Putra, arrived there. Sukra requested him to enlighten Vruthra about Vishnu. Sanatkumara told Vruthra thus:
“Vishnu is omnipresent. For Vishnu, earth is feet, sky is head, sides are arms. In this manner, Vishnu is all prevasive. Vishnu will be creating, sustaining and destroying the creatures as a playful act. During the life of a man, there are severl shades. Black, gray, green, ellow, red and white. With respect to his past deeds, he will be enjoying the above shades in the next life.
Jeeva will take birth either as good, middle or worst. Divine life is a good birth. Human life is middle birth. Beastly life is worst birth. One who is bad and wicked will have a beastly life in next birth. One who leads virtuous and righteous life in this birth will have divine life in next birth. One who feels always white shade in his mind always thinks about Vishnu.” said Sanatkumara to Vruthra.
On hearing those words of Sanatkumara, Vruthra left the mortal body and joined Vishnu.” said Bhishma.
“O grandsire Bhishma! Vrithra was such an great intellectual and a devotee of Vishnu. Why he developed animosity with Devendra and fought with him?” asked Dharmaja.
“ Indra, with his enormous divine troops waged war against Rakshasa King, Vritrasura. But beholding the mighty Rakshasa troops, Devendra trembled with fear. Vritrasura attacked Devendra like a mountain. With his miracle power, Vritrasura made Devendra to faint. Vasishta, the preceptor of Devendra, with his divine power made Devendra to gain senses and instigated Devendra to fight with Vritrasura.
Brihaspati prayed Maha Siva to bless Devendra with victory. The splendour of Maha Siva entered Devendra. Devendra lifted his Vajrayudha to kill Vritra. Maha Vishnu entered Vajrayudha. Then Rudra told Devendra thus: “O Devendra! Vritra did tapassu about Brahma about 60,000 years. Pleased with his tapassu, Brahma blessed Vritra with enormous and fiercest strength. I will destroy that power with my splendour.” said Rudra.
At an appropriate time, Indra struck Vritra with his
Vajrayudha. Vritra fell down. Divine forces acclaimed Devendra.
(Vritra was a Brahmin. By killing Vritra, Indra was inflicted with Brahma Hatya Pataka.).
Indra sought the advice of Brahma. Brahma told Indra to distribute his Brahma Hatya amongst all. Indra summoned Agni, herbs, trees and grass, ladies and water.
“Look. As per the advice of Brahma, I divided the Brahma Hatya Pataka into four parts. You have to receive each one part.” ordered Indra.
All of them asked Brahma: “O Brahma! we will certainly obey your orderes. But when shall we get rid of that great sin.”
Brahma said thus: “O Agni! if any body burns Havis while there are no flames, your sin will pass on to him.
O Trees, grass and herbs! If anybody cuts your leaves, small branches etc, unnecessarily, your will sin will pass on to him.
O Ladies! if anybody tries to have sexual intercourse with you during periods, your sin will pass on to him.
O water! if anybody eases or passes urine in water, your sin will pass on to him.
In this manner, you all will get rid of your great sin” said Brahma.
Accordingly, Agni, trees, ladies and water received their shares of Brahma Hatya from Indra. Indra got rid of his Brahma Hatya Pataka. Later, with the permission of Brahma, Indra performed Asvamedha Yaga.
When Devendra killed Vritra, blood oozed from his body. Later, those blood stains transformed into mushrooms. Brahmins never consume mushrooms as they are considered to be non-vegetarian.
Therefore, O Dhramaja! you also conquer your enemies and acquire name and fame.” said Bhishma.
But Dharmaja enteretained another doubt: “O Grandsire! I heard that Vritra suffered from fever. What is meant by fever? How it emanated?” asked Dharmaja.
“Once, on Kailasa Mountain, Siva along his with his wife, Sati, surrounded by Pramadha Ganas, was holding court. At that time, Sati observed crowds of divine bodies proceeding through Kailasa.
“O my husband, Siva, to where they are all going?” asked Sati.
“Sati! they are all going to the Yajna to be performed by Daksha, to receive their respective shares of Havis.” said Siva.
“Then why you are not going to that Yagna. You have to receive your due share in that Yajna” asked Sati.
“Daksha did not invite me to Yaga and did not allot a share in Havis to me. Hence, I am not going” said Siva.
Sati enraged with great wrath against Daksha for not allotting a share in Havis to Siva. But she kept quiet. Having understood the feelings of his wife, Sati, Siva along with his Pramadha Ganas rushed to that Yajna and destroyed it. The sages and divine bodies who attended Yajna fled away in all directions.
Meanwhile, Brahma approached Siva and told him that Siva will be allotted a share in Havis. On hearing that, Siva remained peaceful.
“O Siva! from the sweat on your forehead, a form was created. It is called fever. It overcomes all human beings. If this fever is in one form, it will be hazardous to human beings. Hence, kindly divide the fever in various forms.” prayed Brahma.
“O Brahma! as per your wish, I divide fever in the following manner.
For elephants, it will be headache; for snakes, it will be its skin; for cows: it will be leg pain; for deers it will be their inability to look back; for horses it will be side pain; for peacocks it will be feather lost; for nightingales it will be eye disease; for parrots like hiccups; for goats in the form of its confusion; for human beings in the form of distress at the time of birth and death.” said Siva to Brahma. Dharmaja! this is the story of fever.” told Bhishma.
“O Grandsire Bhishma! for an ignorant, everything is doubtful. What kind of duties he discharges?” asked Dharmaja.
“O Dharmaja! Worshipping teachers, serving old and aged; studying and hearing about Vedas are their utmost duties. The same things was told by Narada to Galava.
Once Galava asked Narada: “O Narada! I studied many texts and discussed many matters. Still some doubts are lingering in my mind. Kindly bless me with complete knowledge.” requested Galava.
“O Galava! Human being shall first know thoroughly about four Ashrams viz., Brahmacharya, Grihastha, Vanaprastha and Sanyasa and discard all acts leading to commtting sin. They shall always involve in doing virtuous deeds with purified mind. They shall always spend time in the company of virtuous people and show compassion towards all creatures. They shall speak softly and worship deities, Pitaras. They shall eschew egoism and shall not beg others for anything. They shall be away from sensual pleasures and maintain control of sense organs. Accusing others and boasting himself shall be stopped. One shall not be Lazy,proud,talkative,jealous, or angry and shall always worship guests. He shall stay where Vedas are studied and discussed, Yajnas are performed and Brahmins are worshipped. If a human being leads the above virtuous life, all his sins shall vanish and he becomes wise.” said Narada to Galava.
Dharmaja! with this your doubt is clarified.” said Bhishma.
“O Bhishma! the time is eternal and unbreakable. How can a person like me can break this time?” asked Dharmaja.
“O Dharmaja! the conversation between King sagara and Saint Arishtanemi clears your doubt. Arishtanemi told King Sagara thus:
“The mind of a human being is always disturbed due to the love and affection towards his wife, children, wealth, cattle etc. Such a humanbeing cannot attain Moksha. He might have enjoyed all pleasures during his young age. Atleast, after becoming old, he shall leave his wife and children and retire to a lonely place and start meditation. Then only he will have peace and detachment.
But human being always thinks about his wife children and relatives and he cannot live without them. He will be serving them throughout his life. But those wife, children and relatives will never come to his rescue at any time. Therefore, he should maintain detachment towards wife, children and relatives from the beginning. Even if he serves his sons and relatives, they cannot help him in attaining Moksha. Therefore, relinquishing Samsara is best of all.
We are beholding daily, several births and deaths. None is bringing anything into this world or taking away anything from this world. If we observe this fact keenly, we will realise that nothing is eternal in this world. Then we look at Moksha. One who is swimming in the ocean of Samsara will never attain moksha. Therefore, human being shall first come out of these duals. One must look at pleasures and sorrows equally.
Several kings and emperors ruled this earth. All of them perished in course of time. They never carried anything along with them. One who realises this truth, attains moksha. In this world, earning money is difficult. But while earning money, sorrows and pains will surround him easily. One, who realises this truth, will never be trapped by this birth and death cycle and strive hard for Moksha.
Therefore, King Sagara! even if you are in Grihastha Ashrama, keep yourself detached. Dont unnecessarily invole in these loves, passions and affections. Dont feel proud that you are a king. Always think that ruling people is your duty. Then you will attain Moksha” said Arishtanemi.
Dharmaja! this will clear off your doubt” said Bhishma.
“O Grandsire Bhishma! All Danavas always hate Dharma. How Sukra Acharya happened to be their Minister. How he got that strange name, Sukra.” asked Dharmaja.
“O Dharmanandana! the original name of Sukra Acharya was Bhargava. Bhargava got enormous yogic strength. Bhargava grabbed all the riches of Kubera. Kubera approached Maha Siva and told him about Bhargava grabbing his riches. Maha Siva grew angry. He took his Trisool and rushed against Bhargava. Bhargava ran away and took shelter behind a bush. Maha Siva caught him and swallowed him. Maha Siva closed all the outlets in his body except the genital organ. Bhargava came out from the genital organ of Maha Siva in the form of Sukra (semen). From then onwards, Bhargava was called as Sukra.” said Bhishma.
“O Grandsire Bhishma! All my doubts are cleared. Still I would like to hear more from you. Kindly tell me about Dharma.” asked Dharmaja.
“O Dharmaja! I will now tell you about Parasara Gita. Once Saint Parasara told King Janaka thus: Human being enjoys pleasures either in this world or in the other world in a virtuous manner. If one does virtuous deeds, he enjoys pleasures. If one is involved in wicked deeds, he suffers. If one does not follow Adharma either by words or deeds, or mind and looks, he always travels in virtuous path. Virtuous path means speaking truth, controlling sense organs, controlling mind, and be nonviolent.
Our desires are like a chariot. The sense organs are horses tied to that chariot which drag the chariot, as they like. Wisdom are the reins. We have to control the sense organs with wisdom. Then only, chariot like desires will move in a right direction.
God has given us long life. But with our unnecessary worries and bad habits, we are cutting short our life to minimum extent. By following virtuous path, one can lead long life with prosperity. By doing wicked deeds, one can get temporary happiness and profits. In long run, they evaporate. Always sorrows are lurking behind pleasures and bite when time comes.
Therefore, following virtuous path is best of all. Praising Vishnu, performing Tapas, following Dharma, acquire knowledge and mental peace. However cruel and wicked he may be, if he follows the above path, he certainly transorms into a virtuous being.
Veda says that whoever keeps Agni in his house is a virtuous person. Because, mother, father, Guru, righteous path, strength and wisdom are all the forms of Agni. By associating with virtuous people, a wicked will turn into virtuous.
By serving Brahmins, Sudras enjoy pleasures both in this world and other world. Human life is uncertain. It is not eternal. By knowing this truth, all human beings are not influenced either by pleasures or sorrows. Everybody shall follow it and be neutral. One should not indulge in doing lesser sinful deeds for getting greater benefit. One also should not abstain from doing a greater virtuous deed though he derives lesser benefit.
Everybody shall follow his own Dharma. Without following his own Dharma, performing any amount of virtuous deeds are useless. Brahmin who does not perform Yajnas, a kshatriya who does not protect his citizens, a vysya who does not earn money by lawful means, a sudra who does not serve Brahmins are considered to be followers of Adharma, even though they perform many virtuous deeds.
Even one-fourth of lawfully earned money gives more benefit than one crore of money earned by illegal means. If a brahmin, on account of his poverty, is unable to follow his own dharma, he can follow the Kshatriya Dharma or Vysya Dharma but shall not serve others which is Sudra dharma. A vysya who consumes liquor and meat goes to hell. A sudra who is unable to follow his own dharma, may follow Vysya dharma viz., rearing cattle and doing cultivation.
O King Janaka! in the past, all human beings were doing virtuous deeds. Unable to tolerate that, Rakshasas possessed humans. With that, human beings abandoned their own dharma. Pride, anger and egoism entered their minds. They stopped studying Vedas and performing Yajnas.
Beholding this, divine bodies were annoyed. They went to Lord Siva and sought his advice. Siva sent his Trishool and destroyed the ignorance of Human beings. From then, human beings started studying vedas and performing yajnas as usual.
Therefore, King Janaka, you also try to destroy the cruelty and wickedness in humanbeings and develop righteousness and virtuous qualities in them.
Now I will tell you about Tapas and its effect. Great
sages, Vidyadharas and divine bodies did Tapas and got greatest grandeur.
Even Brahma could create the entire universe only by doing Tapas. In
the past also, Kings and Emperors did Tapas and got great name and fame.
When the human being is vexed with the wealth, wife and children, his
only solace is Tapas to give him mental peace.
“O Saint Parasara! human beings are divided into four classes according to their characters and activities. But why there are differences in between those classes. Generally it is said that father takes birth as his own son. How far it is true?” asked King Janaka.
Parasara said : “O King Janaka! Brahins were born from the face, Kshatriyas from arms, Vysyas from thighs and Sudras from feet. According to their places of birth, differences were created. With which feeling, father instals his semen in the womb of his wife, with the same feeling, son will born. Rishyasrunga was born in the same fashion viz., Rishya Srunga’s father was a saint. Rishya Srunga was also a saint. His mother was a deer. Hence he got a horn on his head.” said Parasara.
“O Saint Parasara! Kindly enlighten me about the characteristics of the four classes” asked King Janaka.
Parasara said: “There are general and special characteristics to four classes. The special characteristics of Brahmins are--receiving gifts, performing Yajnas, teaching Veda to others. The special charactersitic of Kshatriya is protecting his citizens. Rearing of cattle, cultivation, trade, earning money are the special characteristics of Vysyas. Serving the above three classes is the special characteristic of Sudras.
But there are some general characteristics to all the four classes. They are.......telling truth, maintaining cleanliness, practising non-violence; not bearing grudge towards others; performing Sradha Karma to Pitaras; serving guests; leading marital life with his own wife. While following the general characteristics, by performing their special characteristics, people will attain Moksha. One gets sin if he abandons his special characteristics and follows the special characteristics of other classes.
Control of mind and control of sense organs are important for a human being. Both will be obtained by adopting non-violence. But during war, non-violence is a must. But there are some remedies. In the war field, one should not kill the enemy if he falls down; if he flees away, if he is deprived of his sword; if he falls down from his horse or chariot.
Even if one does many virtuous deeds, they are no match to non-violence. If a warrior dies during a just and non-violent war, he will certainly attain Moksha. If a warrior kills another warrior who is more mightier than him, he will go to higher regions.
One does not resort to wicked deeds if he is aware of the fact that his body was made up of five elements and five organs and three characteristics. Death is imminent for those who takes birth. Pleasures or sorrows are also not certain. Will any body trangress Dharma for the sake of this uncertain body?
A virtuous and righteous person dies in Uttara Ayana and attains moksha. A wicked and greedy person dies in Dakshina Ayana by committing suicide. The only enemy of a human being is his own ignorance. Due to his ignorance only, he does all kinds of wrong and wicked deeds and at last perish.
In whatever class he is born, human birth is best, the reason being that one can attain higher regions only in human form. A human being, whether he gives away all his wealth as charity, takes a holy dip in all rivers and worships guests daily, all should be done without aspiring for any returns. Then only he will attain eternal happiness” said Parasara to King Janaka.
“O Saint Parasara! What is the best deed which will help a human being. What is meant by ultimate status. Which is an imperishable deed?” asked King Janaka.
“O King Janaka! The best thing is, not influenced by worldly desires. Acquiring knowledge is the ultimate status. Of all the deeds, Tapassu is imperishable. A wise and learned will never care for worldly desires. He always remains neutral. Even though he moves daily in the outside world, he moves as a drop on lotus leaf. That is the result of acquiring knowledge. But ignorant are always enamoured of worldly affairs. They are always attached to sensual desires.
Generally, human mind responds for all righteous deeds. If one thinks about God always in mind, such feeling will remain in his mind eternally. But human being, from birth to death, always thinks about worldly affairs and forgets about uplift of his own self. Blind man moves in his house effortlessly from this side to that side. Similarly, an ignorant always moves in Samsara like blind. He never tries to come out of Samsara. One should wash his mind with purified knowledge. Then only the Samsara dirt is removed.
Throughtout his life, human being strives hard to fill his belly and satisfy his sexual desires and wastes his precious life. He is not aware of the death lurking behind him to take away his life.
Generally, if the wight is more, the boat sinks. Similarly, if the sensual desires are more, the life boat sinks and he cannot cross Samsara river. Desires for acquiring wealth and sensual pleasures are always followed by pains and sorrows. Pleasures are meagre.Therefore, one should cut his ambition for money and desire to enjoy sexual pleasures.
Human being always strives hard to feed his wife, children, brothers etc. During his old age, none of his sons and brothers comes to his rescue. Everybody should be aware of the fact that during old age, the knowledge acquired by him will only help him.” said Parasara to King Janaka. King Janaka was very happy with the above teachings.” said Bhishma to Dharmaja.
“O Grandsire! you are always praising the greatness of the qualities like control of sense organs, truthfulness, forgiveness etc. Are they so great?” asked Dharmaja.
“O Dharmaja! Unless I narrate Hamsa Geeta, your doubts are not cleared. Once, Brahma, in the form of a swan, was moving in a pond. Some Sadhyas, passing that side, saw that divine swan.
“O Swan! we are Sadhyas, divine bodies. We heard that you know many things. We got some doubts. Kindly clarify them? Which is the best of all? With which the heart is always united? By which, Purusha will be liberated from the bondage of Karma?” asked Sadhyas.
Brahma in the form of swan replied thus: “Forgiveness, control of sense organs, truthfulness are magnificent of all. Of all the other Dharmas, the above are to be glorified. Words which are painful to others, words tainted with immorality, not fit for virtuous deeds are not considered to be truthful. A righteous man never speaks such words.
The essence of truthfulness is control of sense organs. The essence of controlling sense organs is Moksha. Therefore, by adopting truthfulness, Moksha will be attained. One who controls his sense organs, he is considered to have adopted all Dharmas. By controlling sense organs, all sins vanish. If the sins are vanished, mind will be purified. That is the way for attainment of Moksha.
One who controls his mind and mouth (words), all Vedas, Tapas and charities are handful. Anger is by all means harmful. All vratas, Japa, worship of deities, worshipping Pitaras, Tapas, charities, Yajnas etc. done by a person inflicted with anger are useless.
Instead of keeping quiet, it is better to speak some useful words. Therefore, speaking truthful and pleasing words are always better. All deities bless them.” said Brahma in the form of Swan.
Then Sadhyas asked Brahma: “O swan! by which this universe is covered? By which Jiva is not shining in our body? For what reason, friends leave us? By which, we attain Moksha?” asked Sadhyas.
“The entire universe is covered by ignorance. Tainted with malice and jealousy, Jiva in our body does not shine. Greedy man will be left by his friends. One who always indulges himself in sensual pleasures, never attains Moksha.” said Brahma.
“O Swan! who rejoices for himself? Who pleases
others? Who is most mightiest of all? Who keeps away himself from quarrelsome
path?” asked Sadhyas.
“O Swan! By which, a Brahmin attains divinity. By which Brahmin attains righteousness? By which he becomes wicked? By which he attains humanity?” asked Sadhyas.
“By studying Vedas, Brahmin attains divinity. By virtue of his pious deeds, he becomes righteous. By virtue of his wicked deeds, he becomes wicked. By virtue of his constant indulgence in sensual pleasures, and fear of death, he lives as an ordinary human being.” said Brahma.
Then Brahma appeared before Sadhyas in his original form. Brahma blessed them and disappeared.
O Dharmaja! by hearing Hamsa Gita, are your doubts cleared?” asked Bhishma.
“O Grandsire! when one doubt is cleared, another doubt is sprouted. Kindly teach me about Sankhya and Yoga and their difference.” asked Dharmaja.
“O Dharmanandana! Sankhyas and Yogis tell that their path is better. To me, both are one and same. Yogis believe factuals whereas Yogis believe what is said in Vedas and Sastras and other texts. But their goal is same. Though there is difference in their paths, their practice is same. Showering love and affection on his fellowmen, adopting best principles and cleanliness are there in both paths. Therefore, there is no difference between Sankhya and Yoga.” said Bhishma.
“O Grandsire! when all the principles in both paths are one and same, why there are different scriptures and texts.” asked Dharma Raja.
“ Dharmaja! Yogis, by virtue of their divine power, remove all bad qualities like passions, likes and dislikes, desires and anger, and attain higher regions. Those who are deprived of divine power, cannot cut these bonds viz., likes and dislikes, desires, passion and lust. They always indulge in Samsara. Therefore, for a Yogi, divine power is must.
If a weak person falls in a stream, he will be washed away. Similarly, yogi without divine power, always indulges in sensual pleasures. If an elephant lies down across a stream, the speed of the stream will diminish. Similarly, yogi with divine power, diminishes the speed of sensual pleasures and turns his mind towards salvation. Even death dare not approach such a yogi. Yogi moves in the outside world as he pleases but he never indulges in Samsara. Yogi attains dexterity in Yoga. Then only he reaches the goal of Moksha.” said Bhishma.
“O Grandsire! what are the food habits of a Yogi?” asked Dharmaja.
“O Dharmaja! a yogi shall not consume oily foods.
Yogi takes limited food and water. He shall not fill the belly because
the food is tasty. Yogi eschews Kama, Krodha, sleep, ambitions, and
fear. Yogi shall have to stay in a lonely place and control his breath.
It is not so easy. It is like walking on the edge of a sharp sword.
Such yogi does not show any interest on wordly affairs. He never attaches
any importance either to his birth or death. He always remains calm
and quiet. Dharmanandana! I explained about the doctrine of yoga.”
Sound for ear, touch for skin, form for eyes, taste for tongue, smell for nose, hunger for stomache, water in fire, earth in water, hands in Indra, legs in Vamana, greediness in wealth, wisdom in Tamas, Tamas in Rajas and Satva in Tamas, are united one in the other. Such Satva quality is connected with Atma. Atma is united with Paramatma. That Paramatma always interested in liberation. Liberation is independent, not connected with any other element.
In Prakriti (nature) which is the abode for Satva, Rajas and Tamas, there are 16 Vikaras. They are, 5 main elements, 10 sense organs, and one mind. Atma is connected with Prakriti. Atma is a shining splendid entity. Atma shines of its own accord.
There are two forms to Atma. One form enjoys the worldly objects through sense organs. Second form remains neutral, witnessing all that is happening. The Vayu is one inside our body but it works fivefold. Those are Prana, Apana, Vyana, Udana and Samana. If the human being is able to control those five forms of Vayu, he attains inner sight. Such a human being realises the pain and suffering at the time of birth and death, idiotic attitude in young age, likes and dislikes during youth, and the pitiable condition during old age and always tries to emancipate from them.
If a human being does virtuous deeds, he enjoys divine pleasures. If one remains neutral, he takes birth as human being and entangles in worldly affairs. One who does wicked and sinful deeds, he will take birth as beasts and birds. A Jnani who realises about Papa and Punya and the differences in births, tries for Moksha.
An ignorant never anticipates his impending old age. He always feels for others’ old age and death. One in thousand realises the natural events in his life like youth, middle age, old age and death and always tries for Moksha. The rest feels that they live for ever, without death.
O Dharmanandana! there are five faults in our body. They are passion, anger, fear, sleep, sigh. One can eradicate anger with forgiveness; passion without involving in it; fear by avoding dangers; sleep in association with virtuous people and sighing by taking limited food. Sankhya Yogis follow the above methods. Sankhya Yogi keeps aside all worldly objects, gets into a boat of Sankhya, and crosses the Samsara sea with the help of Jnana rudder.
In the sea of Samsara, the water is sorrow. The crocodiles are deaths. Snakes are fears. The flow is violence. Interest in sensual pleasures is the silt. Ambitions are whirlpools. Underneath the sea, there are diamonds of happiness and pleasure. The bank of the sea is truth. Jiva, who crosses the sea of Samsara, will be taken by Sun to his Loka. Then that jeeva, with subtle body, travels through a lotus stem. That jeeva will be carried by a wind called Pravaha into cosmos. Then that jeeva unites with Parama Atma.” said Bhishma.
“O Grandsire! I got a small doubt. I could not understand whether the Jeeva who unites with Paramatma, remembers his past births and deaths or he forgets about them. After unision with Parama Atma what would be the status of Jeeva. Will he be different from his status on this earth. Does he remember or not about his previous birth, even after salvation. Kindly tell me.” asked Dharmaja.
“O Dharmanandana! Saint Kapila told about this in detail. I will narrate the same to you.
Human being cannot have knowledge about Atma either by hearing or touching. Human being knows about sense organs through mind only. Wise and learned never benefited in any manner, either by knowing or not knowing, about sense organs through mind. An emancipated soul treats these sense organs as motionless objects. Sense organs discharge their routine duties without the participation of mind. Sadhaka who attains Moksha, beholds the acts of sense organs in immutable state. Sadhaka suppresses the five elements, intellect and mind and unites with Parama Atma. Such Sadhaka never comes back. He attains liberation from birth and death. It is called Moksha. There is no greater state than this.
Dharmaja! this is called Sankhya path. There is no other better path except this path to attain Moksha. Dharmaja! you also follow Sankhya path and attain Moksha.
So far, I told you about Yogis and Sankhyas. The difference between them is subtle. There is no difference in their vision also. Yogis and Sankhyas follow the same path. The difference is only in names, one is visible in the other. Wise and learned see no difference between these two paths. Human being follows either Yoga path or Sankhya path and tries to attain Moksha.
If by chance, they lost their path, they go to Svarga.
After enjoying diving pleasures in Svarga again takes birth in the family
of rich, wise and learned and continue his practice to attain Moksha.
At last, he attains Moksha.
Saint Vaisampayana continued to tell King Janamejaya the story of Mahabharata.