अनुक्रमणिकापर्व - The List of Contents

Ugraśravas meets the ṛṣis in Naimiṣa forest and begins to recite the Mahābhārata to them.

Translation by Krishna Mohan Ganguly (with some modifications).

Preliminary Obeisance and Salutations

ॐ नारायणं नमस्कृत्य नरं चैव नरोत्तमम् । देवीं सरस्वतीं चैव ततो जयमुदीरयेत् ॥

ॐ नमो भगवते वासुदेवाय । ॐ नमः पितामहाय । ॐ नमः प्रजापतिभ्यः । ॐ नमः कृष्णद्वैपायनाय । ॐ नमः सर्वविघ्नविनायकेभ्यः ॥

Om! Having bowed down to Nārāyaṇa and Nara, the most exalted male being, and also to the goddess Sarasvatī, must the word Jaya be uttered. Salutations to Bhagavat Vāsudeva, Pitāmaha, Prajāpati, Kṛṣṇa Dvaipāyana and Gaṇeśa, remover of all obstacles.

Ugraśravas meets the ṛṣis in Naimiṣa forest

लोमहर्षणपुत्र उग्रश्रवाः सूतः पौराणिको नैमिषारण्ये शौनकस्य कुलपतेर्द्वादशवार्षिके सत्रे ।१।

समासीनानभ्यगच्छद्ब्रह्मर्षीन्संशितव्रतान् विनयावनतो भूत्वा कदाचित्सूतनन्दनः ।२।

तमाश्रममनुप्राप्तं नैमिषारण्यवासिनः चित्राः श्रोतुं कथास्तत्र परिवव्रुस्तपस्विनः ।३।

अभिवाद्य मुनींस्तांस्तु सर्वानेव कृताञ्जलिः अपृच्छत्स तपोवृद्धिं सद्भिश्चैवाभिनन्दितः ।४।

अथ तेषूपविष्टेषु सर्वेष्वेव तपस्विषु निर्दिष्टमासनं भेजे विनयाल्लोमहर्षणिः ।५।

सुखासीनं ततस्तं तु विश्रान्तमुपलक्ष्य च अथापृच्छदृषिस्तत्र कश्चित्प्रस्तावयन्कथाः ।६।

कुत आगम्यते सौते क्व चायं विहृतस्त्वया कालः कमलपत्राक्ष शंसैतत्पृच्छतो मम ।७।

Ugraśravas, the son of Lomaharṣaṇa, surnamed Sauti, well-versed in the Purāṇas, bending with humility, one day approached the great sages of rigid vows, sitting at their ease, who had attended the twelve years' sacrifice of Śaunaka, surnamed Kulapati, in the forest of Naimiṣa. Those ascetics, wishing to hear his wonderful narrations, presently began to address him who had thus arrived at that recluse abode of the inhabitants of the forest of Naimiṣa. Having been entertained with due respect by those holy men, he saluted those sages (muni) with joined palms, even all of them, and inquired about the progress of their asceticism. Then all the ascetics being again seated, the son of Lomaharṣaṇa humbly occupied the seat that was assigned to him. Seeing that he was comfortably seated, and recovered from fatigue, one of the ṛṣis beginning the conversation, asked him, 'Where do you come from, O Lotus-eyed Sauti, and where have you spent the time? Tell me, who ask you, in detail.'

सूत उवाच

जनमेजयस्य राजर्षेः सर्पसत्रे महात्मनः समीपे पार्थिवेन्द्रस्य सम्यक्पारिक्षितस्य च ।८।

कृष्णद्वैपायनप्रोक्ताः सुपुण्या विविधाः कथाः कथिताश्चापि विधिवद्या वैशंपायनेन वै ।९।

श्रुत्वाहं ता विचित्रार्था महाभारतसंश्रिताः बहूनि संपरिक्रम्य तीर्थान्यायतनानि च ।१०।

समन्तपञ्चकं नाम पुण्यं द्विजनिषेवितम् गतवानस्मि तं देशं युद्धं यत्राभवत्पुरा पाण्डवानां कुरूणां च सर्वेषां च महीक्षिताम् ।११।

दिदृक्षुरागतस्तस्मात्समीपं भवतामिह आयुष्मन्तः सर्व एव ब्रह्मभूता हि मे मताः ।१२।

अस्मिन्यज्ञे महाभागाः सूर्यपावकवर्चसः कृताभिषेकाः शुचयः कृतजप्या हुताग्नयः भवन्त आसते स्वस्था ब्रवीमि किमहं द्विजाः ।१३।

पुराणसंश्रिताः पुण्याः कथा वा धर्मसंश्रिताः इतिवृत्तं नरेन्द्राणामृषीणां च महात्मनाम् ।१४।

The bard said: Having heard the diverse, sacred and wonderful stories composed by Kṛṣṇa-Dvaipāyana in the Mahābhārata, recited in order by Vaiśampāyana at the snake-sacrifice of the high-souled royal sage Janamejaya, in the presence also of that chief of princes, the son of Parikṣita, and having wandered about, visiting many sacred waters and holy shrines, I journeyed to the country venerated by the dvijas (twice-born) and called Samantapañcaka where formerly was fought the battle between the children of Kuru and Paṇḍu, and all the chiefs of the land ranged on either side. Thence, anxious to see you, I am come into your presence. You reverend sages, all of whom are to me as Brahmā; you greatly blessed who shine in this place of sacrifice with the splendour of the solar fire: you who have concluded the silent meditations and have fed the holy fire; and yet who are sitting without care, what, O you dvijas (twice-born), shall I declare: shall I recount the sacred stories collected in the Purāṇas containing precepts of religious duty and of worldly profit, or the acts of illustrious saints and sovereigns of mankind?

ऋषय ऊचुः

द्वैपायनेन यत्प्रोक्तं पुराणं परमर्षिणा सुरैर्ब्रह्मर्षिभिश्चैव श्रुत्वा यदभिपूजितम् ।१५।

तस्याख्यानवरिष्ठस्य विचित्रपदपर्वणः सूक्ष्मार्थन्याययुक्तस्य वेदार्थैर्भूषितस्य च ।१६।

भारतस्येतिहासस्य पुण्यां ग्रन्थार्थसंयुताम् संस्कारोपगतां ब्राह्मीं नानाशास्त्रोपबृंहिताम् ।१७।

जनमेजयस्य यां राज्ञो वैशंपायन उक्तवान् यथावत्स ऋषिस्तुष्ट्या सत्रे द्वैपायनाज्ञया ।१८।

वेदैश्चतुर्भिः समितां व्यासस्याद्भुतकर्मणः संहितां श्रोतुमिच्छामो धर्म्यां पापभयापहाम् ।१९।

The ṛṣis said: The Purāṇa, first promulgated by the great ṛṣi Dvaipāyana, and which after having been heard both by the gods and the brahmaṛṣis was highly esteemed, being the most eminent narrative that exists, diversified both in diction and division, possessing subtle meanings logically combined, and gleaned from the Vedas, is a sacred work. Composed in elegant language, it includes the subjects of other books. It is elucidated by other śāstras, and comprehends the sense of the four Vedas. We are desirous of hearing that history also called Bhārata, the holy composition of the wonderful Vyāsa, which dispels the fear of evil, just as it was cheerfully recited by the ṛṣi Vaiśampāyana, under the direction of Dvaipāyana himself, at the snake-sacrifice of king Janamejaya.

Ugraśravas begins the narration of the Mahābhārata.

सूत उवाच

आद्यं पुरुषमीशानं पुरुहूतं पुरुष्टुतम् ऋतमेकाक्षरं ब्रह्म व्यक्ताव्यक्तं सनातनम् ।२०।

असच्च सच्चैव च यद्विश्वं सदसतः परम् परावराणां स्रष्टारं पुराणं परमव्ययम् ।२१।

मङ्गल्यं मङ्गलं विष्णुं वरेण्यमनघं शुचिम् नमस्कृत्य हृषीकेशं चराचरगुरुं हरिम् ।२२।

The bard said: Having bowed down to the primordial being Īśāna, to whom multitudes make offerings, and who is adored by the multitude; who is the true incorruptible one, Brahman, perceptible, imperceptible, eternal; who is both a non-existing and an existing-non-existing being; who is the universe and also distinct from the existing and non-existing universe; who is the creator of high and low; the ancient, exalted, inexhaustible one; who is Viṣṇu, beneficent and the beneficence itself, worthy of all preference, pure and immaculate; who is Hari, the ruler of the faculties, the guide of all things moveable and immoveable.

महर्षेः पूजितस्येह सर्वलोके महात्मनः प्रवक्ष्यामि मतं कृत्स्नं व्यासस्यामिततेजसः ।२३।

आचख्युः कवयः केचित्संप्रत्याचक्षते परे आख्यास्यन्ति तथैवान्ये इतिहासमिमं भुवि ।२४।

इदं तु त्रिषु लोकेषु महज्ज्ञानं प्रतिष्ठितम् विस्तरैश्च समासैश्च धार्यते यद्द्विजातिभिः ।२५।

अलंकृतं शुभैः शब्दैः समयैर्दिव्यमानुषैः छन्दोवृत्तैश्च विविधैरन्वितं विदुषां प्रियम् ।२६।

I will declare the sacred thoughts of the illustrious sage Vyāsa, of marvellous deeds and worshipped here by all. Some bards have already published this history, some are now teaching it, and others, in like manner, will hereafter promulgate it upon the earth. It is a great source of knowledge, established throughout the three regions of the world. It is possessed by the twice-born both in detailed and compendious forms. It is the delight of the learned for being embellished with elegant expressions, conversations human and divine, and a variety of poetical measures.

निष्प्रभेऽस्मिन्निरालोके सर्वतस्तमसावृते बृहदण्डमभूदेकं प्रजानां बीजमक्षयम् ।२७।

युगस्यादौ निमित्तं तन्महद्दिव्यं प्रचक्षते यस्मिंस्तच्छ्रूयते सत्यं ज्योतिर्ब्रह्म सनातनम् ।२८।

अद्भुतं चाप्यचिन्त्यं च सर्वत्र समतां गतम् अव्यक्तं कारणं सूक्ष्मं यत्तत्सदसदात्मकम् ।२९।

यस्मात्पितामहो जज्ञे प्रभुरेकः प्रजापतिः ब्रह्मा सुरगुरुः स्थाणुर्मनुः कः परमेष्ठ्यथ ।३०।

प्राचेतसस्तथा दक्षो दक्षपुत्राश्च सप्त ये ततः प्रजानां पतयः प्राभवन्नेकविंशतिः ।३१।

पुरुषश्चाप्रमेयात्मा यं सर्वमृषयो विदुः विश्वेदेवास्तथादित्या वसवोऽथाश्विनावपि ।३२।

यक्षाः साध्याः पिशाचाश्च गुह्यकाः पितरस्तथा ततः प्रसूता विद्वांसः शिष्टा ब्रह्मर्षयोऽमलाः ।३३।

राजर्षयश्च बहवः सर्वैः समुदिता गुणैः आपो द्यौः पृथिवी वायुरन्तरिक्षं दिशस्तथा ।३४।

संवत्सरर्तवो मासाः पक्षाहोरात्रयः क्रमात् यच्चान्यदपि तत्सर्वं संभूतं लोकसाक्षिकम् ।३५।

In this world, when it was destitute of brightness and light, and enveloped all around in total darkness, there came into being, as the primal cause of creation, a mighty egg, the one inexhaustible seed of all created beings. It is called Mahādivya, and was formed at the beginning of the yuga, in which we are told, was the true light Brahman, the eternal one, the wonderful and inconceivable being present alike in all places; the invisible and subtle cause, whose nature partakes of entity and non-entity. From this egg came out the lord Pitāmaha Brahmā, the one only Prajāpati; with Suraguru and Sthāṇu. Then appeared the twenty-one Prajāpatis, viz., Manu, Vasiṣṭha and Parameṣṭi; ten Prachetas, Dakṣa, and the seven sons of Dakṣa. Then appeared the man of inconceivable nature whom all the ṛṣis know and so the Viśvedevas, the Ādityas, the Vasus, and the twin Aśvins; the Yakṣas, the Sādhyas, the Piśācas, the Guhyakas, and the Pitṛs. After these were produced the wise and most holy brahmaṛṣis, and the numerous rājaṛṣis distinguished by every noble quality. So the water, the heavens, the earth, the air, the sky, the points of the heavens, the years, the seasons, the months, the fortnights, called pakṣas, with day and night in due succession. And thus were produced all things which are known to mankind.

यदिदं दृश्यते किंचिद्भूतं स्थावरजङ्गमम् पुनः संक्षिप्यते सर्वं जगत्प्राप्ते युगक्षये ।३६।

यथर्तावृतुलिङ्गानि नानारूपाणि पर्यये दृश्यन्ते तानि तान्येव तथा भावा युगादिषु ।३७।

एवमेतदनाद्यन्तं भूतसंहारकारकम् अनादिनिधनं लोके चक्रं संपरिवर्तते ।३८।

And what is seen in the universe, whether animate or inanimate, of created things, will at the end of the world, and after the expiration of the yuga, be again confounded. And, at the commencement of other yugas, all things will be renovated, and, like the various fruits of the earth, succeed each other in the due order of their seasons. Thus continues perpetually to revolve in the world, without beginning and without end, this wheel which causes the destruction of all things.

त्रयस्त्रिंशत्सहस्राणि त्रयस्त्रिंशच्छतानि च त्रयस्त्रिंशच्च देवानां सृष्टिः संक्षेपलक्षणा ।३९।

दिवस्पुत्रो बृहद्भानुश्चक्षुरात्मा विभावसुः सविता च ऋचीकोऽर्को भानुराशावहो रविः ।४०।

पुत्रा विवस्वतः सर्वे मह्यस्तेषां तथावरः देवभ्राट्तनयस्तस्य तस्मात्सुभ्राडिति स्मृतः ।४१।

सुभ्राजस्तु त्रयः पुत्राः प्रजावन्तो बहुश्रुताः दशज्योतिः शतज्योतिः सहस्रज्योतिरात्मवान् ।४२।

दश पुत्रसहस्राणि दशज्योतेर्महात्मनः ततो दशगुणाश्चान्ये शतज्योतेरिहात्मजाः ।४३।

भूयस्ततो दशगुणाः सहस्रज्योतिषः सुताः तेभ्योऽयं कुरुवंशश्च यदूनां भरतस्य च ।४४।

ययातीक्ष्वाकुवंशश्च राजर्षीणां च सर्वशः संभूता बहवो वंशा भूतसर्गाः सविस्तराः ।४५।

The generation of devas, in brief, was thirty-three thousand, thirty-three hundred and thirty-three. The sons of Divas were Bṛhadbhānu, Cakṣus, Ātma Vibhāvasu, Savitṛ, Ṛchīka, Arka, Bhānu, Āśāvaha and Ravi. Of these sons of Vivasvat, Mahya was the youngest whose son was Devabhrāṭ. The latter had for his son, Subhrāṭ who, we learn, had three sons - Daśajyoti, Śatajyoti, and Sahasrajyoti - each of them producing numerous offspring. The illustrious Daśajyoti had ten thousand, Śatajyoti ten times that number, and Sahasrajyoti ten times the number of Śatajyoti's offspring. From these are descended the family of the Kurus, of the Yadus, and of Bharata; the family of Yayāti and of Īkṣvāku; also of all the Rājaṛṣis. Numerous also were the generations produced, and very abundant were the creatures and their places of abode.

भूतस्थानानि सर्वाणि रहस्यं त्रिविधं च यत् वेदयोगं सविज्ञानं धर्मोऽर्थः काम एव च ।४६।

धर्मकामार्थशास्त्राणि शास्त्राणि विविधानि च लोकयात्राविधानं च संभूतं दृष्टवानृषिः ।४७।

इतिहासाः सवैयाख्या विविधाः श्रुतयोऽपि च इह सर्वमनुक्रान्तमुक्तं ग्रन्थस्य लक्षणम् ।४८।

विस्तीर्यैतन्महज्ज्ञानमृषिः संक्षेपमब्रवीत् इष्टं हि विदुषां लोके समासव्यासधारणम् ।४९।

मन्वादि भारतं केचिदास्तीकादि तथापरे तथोपरिचराद्यन्ये विप्राः सम्यगधीयते ।५०।

विविधं संहिताज्ञानं दीपयन्ति मनीषिणः व्याख्यातुं कुशलाः केचिद्ग्रन्थं धारयितुं परे ।५१।

तपसा ब्रह्मचर्येण व्यस्य वेदं सनातनम् इतिहासमिमं चक्रे पुण्यं सत्यवतीसुतः ।५२।

पराशरात्मजो विद्वान्ब्रह्मर्षिः संशितव्रतः ...

The mystery which is threefold; the Veda, Yoga, and vijñāna; dharma, artha, and kāma; also various books upon the subject of dharma, artha and kāma; also rules for the conduct of mankind; also histories and discourses with various śrutis; all of which having been seen by the ṛṣi Vyāsa are here in due order mentioned as a specimen of the book. The ṛṣi Vyāsa published this mass of knowledge in both a detailed and an abridged form. It is the wish of the learned in the world to possess the details and the abridgement. Some brāhmaṇas read the Bharata beginning with Manu, others with the story of Āstīka, others with Uparicara. Men of learning display their various knowledge of the institutes in commenting on the composition. Some are skilful in explaining it, while others, in remembering its contents. The son of Satyavati having, by penance and meditation, analysed the eternal Veda, afterwards composed this holy history. The learned brahmaṛṣi of strict vows, offspring of Parāṣara ...

Click for additional verses 1.1.55-93 in the Gītā Press Edition

... तदाख्यानवरिष्ठं स कृत्वा द्वैपायनः प्रभुः ॥

कथमध्यापयानीह शिष्यान्नित्यन्वचिन्तयत् । तस्य तच्चिन्तितं ज्ञात्वा ऋषेर्द्वैपायनस्य च ॥

तत्राजगाम भगवान् ब्रह्मा लोकगुरुः स्वयम् । प्रीत्यर्थं तस्य चैवर्षेर्लोकानां हितकाम्यया ॥

तं दृष्ट्वा विस्मितो भूत्वा प्राञ्जलिः प्रणतः स्थितः । आसनं कल्पयामास  सर्वैर्मुनिगणैर्वृतः ॥

हिरण्यगर्भमासीनं तस्मिंस्तु परमासने । परिवृत्यासनाभ्याशे वासवेयः स्थितोऽभवत् ॥

अनुज्ञातोऽथ कृष्णस्तु ब्रह्मणा परमेष्ठिना निषसादासनाभ्याशे प्रीयमाणः शुचिस्मितः ॥

... the noble Dvaipāyana Vyāsa, having finished this greatest of narrations, began to consider how he might teach it to his disciples. And Brahmā, the world's preceptor, knowing of the anxiety of the ṛṣi Dvaipāyana, came in person to the place where the latter was, for gratifying the saint, and benefiting the people. And when Vyāsa, surrounded by all the tribes of munis, saw him, he was surprised; and, standing with joined palms, he bowed and ordered a seat to be brought. And Vyāsa having gone round him who is called Hiraṇyagarbha seated on that distinguished seat stood near it; and being commanded by Brahmā Parameṣṭhi, he sat down near the seat, full of affection and smiling in joy.

उवाच स महातेजा ब्रहाणं परमेष्ठिनम् । कृतं मयेदं भगवन् काव्यं परमपूजितम् ॥

ब्रह्मन् वेदरहस्यं च यच्चान्यत् स्थापितं मया । साङ्गोपनिषदां चैव वेदानां विस्तरक्रिया ॥

इतिहासपुराणानामुन्मेषं निर्मितं च यत् । भूतं भव्यं भविष्यं च त्रिविधं कालसंज्ञितम् ॥

जरामृत्युभयव्याधिभावाभावविनिश्चयः । विविधस्य च धर्मस्य ह्याश्रमाणां च लक्षणम् ॥

चातुर्वर्ण्यविधानं च पुराणानां च कृत्स्नशः । तपसो ब्रह्मचर्यस्य पृथिव्याश्चन्द्रसूर्ययोः ॥

ग्रहनक्षत्रताराणां प्रमाणं च युगैः सह । ऋचो यजूंषि सामानि वेदाध्यात्मं तथैव च ॥

न्यायशिक्षाचिकित्सा च दानं पाशुपतं तथा । हेतुनैव समं जन्म दिव्यमानुषसंज्ञितम् ॥

तीर्थानां चैव पुण्यानां देशानां चैव कीर्तनम् । नदीनां पर्वतानां च वनानां सागरस्य च ॥

पुराणां चैव दिव्यानां कल्पानां युद्धकौशलम् । वाक्यजातिविशेषाश्च लोकयात्राक्रमश्च यः ॥

यच्चापि सर्वगं वस्तु तच्चैव प्रतिपादितम् । परं न लेखकः कश्चिदेतस्य भुवि विद्यते ॥

Then the greatly glorious Vyāsa, addressing Brahmā Parameṣṭhi, said, "O divine Brahmā, by me a poem has been composed which is greatly respected. The mystery of the Veda, and what other subjects have been explained by me; the various rituals of the Upaniṣads with the aṅgas; the compilation of the Purāṇas and history formed by me and named after the three divisions of time, past, present, and future; the determination of the nature of decay, fear, disease, existence, and non-existence, a description of creeds and of the various modes of life; rule for the four castes, and the import of all the Purāṇas; an account of asceticism and of the duties of a religious student; the dimensions of the sun and moon, the planets, constellations, and stars, together with the duration of the four ages; the Ṛk, Sāma and Yajur Vedas; also the Adhyātma; the sciences called nyāya, śikṣā and treatment of diseases; charity and Paśupata dharma; birth celestial and human, for particular purposes; also a description of places of pilgrimage and other holy places of rivers, mountains, forests, the ocean, of heavenly cities and the kalpas; the art of war; the different kinds of nations and languages: the nature of the manners of the people; and the all-pervading spirit - all these have been represented. But, after all, no writer of this work is to be found on earth."

तपोविशिष्टादपि वै विशिष्टान्मुनिसंचयात् । मन्ये श्रेष्ठतरं त्वां वै रहस्य ज्ञानवेदनात् ॥

जन्मप्रभृति सत्यां ते वेद्मि गां ब्रह्मवादिनीम् । त्वया च काव्यमित्युक्तं तस्मात् काव्यं भविष्यति ॥

अस्य काव्यस्य कवयो न समर्था विशेषणे । विशेषणे गृहस्थस्य शेषास्त्रय इवाश्रमाः ॥

कावस्य लेखनार्थाय गणेशः स्मर्यतां मुने । एवमाभाष्य तं ब्रह्मा जगाम स्वं निवेशनम् ॥

Brahmā said: "I esteem you for your knowledge of divine mysteries, before the whole body of celebrated munis distinguished for the sanctity of their lives. I know your speech since birth is truthful and knowledgeable of Brahman. You have called this a kāvya, wherefore it shall be a kāvya. There shall be no poets whose works may equal the descriptions of this kāvya, even, as the three other āśramas are ever unequal in merit to the householder āśrama. Let Gaṇeśa be thought of, O muni, for the purpose of writing the poem." Brahmā having thus spoken to him, retired to his own abode."

ततः सस्मार हेरंबं व्यासं सत्यवतीसुतः । स्मृतमात्रो गणेशानो भक्तचिन्तितपूरकः ॥

तत्राजगाम विघ्नोशो वेदव्यासो यतः स्थितः । पूजितश्चोपविष्टश्च व्यासेनोक्तस्तदानघ ॥

लेखको भारतस्यास्य भव त्वं गणनायक । मयैव प्रोच्यमानस्य मनसा कल्पितस्य च ॥

श्रुत्वैतत् प्राह विघ्नेशो यदि मे लेखनी क्षणम् । लिखतो नावतिष्ठेत तदा स्यां लेखको ह्यहम् ॥

व्यासोऽप्युवाच तं देवमबुद्ध्वा मा लिख क्वचित् । ॐ इत्युक्त्वा गणेशोऽपि बभूव किल लेखकः ॥

Then Vyāsa began to call to mind Gaṇeśa. And Gaṇeśa, obviator of obstacles, ready to fulfil the desires of his votaries, was no sooner thought of, than he repaired to the place where Vyāsa was seated. And when he had been saluted, and was seated, Vyāsa addressed him thus, "O guide of the gaṇas! may you be the writer of the Bhārata which I have formed in my imagination, and which I am about to repeat." Gaṇeśa, upon hearing this address, thus answered, "I will become the writer of thy work, provided my pen do not for a moment cease writing." And Vyāsa said unto that divinity, "Wherever there be anything you do not comprehend, cease to continue writing." Gaṇeśa having signified his assent, by repeating the word Om! proceeded to write.

ग्रन्थग्रन्थिं तदा चक्रे मुनिर्गूढं कुतूहलात् । यस्मिन् प्रतिज्ञया प्राह मुनिर्द्वैपायनस्त्विदम् ॥

अष्टौ श्लोकसहस्राणि अष्टौ श्लोकशतानि च । अहं वेद्मि शुको वेत्ति संजयो वेत्ति वा न वा ॥

तच्छ्लोककूटमद्यापि ग्रथितं सुदृढं मुने । भेत्तुं न शक्यतेऽर्थस्य गूढत्वात् प्रश्रितस्य च ॥

सर्वज्ञोऽपि गणेशो यत् क्षणमास्ते विचारयन् । तावच्चकार व्यासोऽपि श्लोकानन्यान् बहूनपि ॥

By way of diversion, Vyāsa knit the knots of composition exceeding close; by doing which, he dictated this work according to his engagement. I am acquainted with eight thousand and eight hundred verses, and so is Śuka, and perhaps Sañjaya. From the mysteriousness of their meaning, O Muni, no one is able, to this day, to penetrate those closely knit difficult ślokas. Even the omniscient Gaṇeśa took a moment to consider; while Vyāsa, however, continued to compose other verses in great abundance.

अज्ञानतिमिरान्धस्य लोकस्य तु विचेष्टतः । ज्ञानाञ्जनशलाकाभिर्नेत्रोन्मीलनकारकम् ॥

धर्मार्थकाममोक्षार्थैः समासव्यासकीर्तनैः । तथा भारतसूर्येण नृणां विनिहतं तमः ॥

पुराणपूर्णचन्द्रेण श्रुतिज्योत्स्ना प्रकाशिताः । नृबुद्धिकैरवाणां च कृतमेतत् प्रकाशनम् ॥

इतिहासप्रदीपेन मोहावरणघातिना लोकगर्भगृहं कृत्स्नं यथावत् संप्रकाशितम् ॥

The wisdom of this work, like unto an instrument of applying collyrium, has opened the eyes of the inquisitive world blinded by the darkness of ignorance. As the sun dispels the darkness, so does the Bhārata by its discourses on religion, profit, pleasure and final release, dispel the ignorance of men. As the full-moon by its mild light expands the buds of the water-lily, so this Purāṇa, by exposing the light of the śruti has expanded the human intellect. By the lamp of history, which destroys the darkness of ignorance, the sanctum sanctorum of the world is properly and completely illuminated.

संग्रहाध्यायबीजो वै पौलोमास्तीकमूलवान् । संभवस्कन्धविस्तारः सभारण्यविटङ्कवान् ॥

अरणीपर्वरूपाढ्यो विरोटोद्योगसारवान् । भीष्मपर्वमहाशाखो द्रोणपर्वपलाशवान् ॥

कर्णपर्वसितैः पुष्पैः शल्यपर्वसुगन्धिभिः । स्त्रीपर्वैषीकविश्रामः शान्तिपर्वमहाफलः ॥ 

अश्वमेधामृतरसस्त्वाश्रमस्थानसंश्रयः । मौसलः श्रुतिसंक्षेपः शिष्टद्विजनिषेवितः ॥

सौतिरुवाच । तस्य वृक्षस्य वक्ष्यामि शश्वत्पुष्पफलोदयम् । स्वादुमेध्यरसोपेतमच्छेद्यममरैरपि ॥ ५५-९३

This work is a tree, of which the chapter of contents is the seed; the divisions called Pauloma and Āstīka are the root; the part called Sambhava is the trunk; the books called Sabhā and Araṇya are the roosting perches; the books called Araṇī is the knitting knots; the books called Virāṭa and Udyoga the pith; the book named Bhiṣma, the main branch; the book called Droṇa, the leaves; the book called Karṇa, the fair flowers; the book named Śalya, their sweet smell; the books entitled Strī and Aiṣika, the refreshing shade; the book called Śānti, the mighty fruit; the book called Aśvamedha, the immortal sap; the denominated Āśramavāsika, the spot where it grows; and the book called Mausala, is an epitome of the Vedas and held in great respect by the virtuous brāhmaṇas. The tree of the Bhārata, inexhaustible to mankind as the clouds, shall be as a source of livelihood to all distinguished poets.

The bard said: I will now speak of the undying flowery and fruitful productions of this tree, possessed of pure and pleasant taste, and not to be destroyed even by the immortals.

... मातुर्नियोगाद्धर्मात्मा गाङ्गेयस्य च धीमतः ।५३।

क्षेत्रे विचित्रवीर्यस्य कृष्णद्वैपायनः पुरा त्रीनग्नीनिव कौरव्याञ्जनयामास वीर्यवान् ।५४।

उत्पाद्य धृतराष्ट्रं च पाण्डुं विदुरमेव च जगाम तपसे धीमान्पुनरेवाश्रमं प्रति ।५५।

तेषु जातेषु वृद्धेषु गतेषु परमां गतिम् अब्रवीद्भारतं लोके मानुषेऽस्मिन्महानृषिः ।५६।

जनमेजयेन पृष्टः सन्ब्राह्मणैश्च सहस्रशः शशास शिष्यमासीनं वैशंपायनमन्तिके ।५७।

स सदस्यैः सहासीनः श्रावयामास भारतम् कर्मान्तरेषु यज्ञस्य चोद्यमानः पुनः पुनः ।५८।

विस्तरं कुरुवंशस्य गान्धार्या धर्मशीलताम् क्षत्तुः प्रज्ञां धृतिं कुन्त्याः सम्यग्द्वैपायनोऽब्रवीत् ।५९।

वासुदेवस्य माहात्म्यं पाण्डवानां च सत्यताम् दुर्वृत्तं धार्तराष्ट्राणामुक्तवान्भगवानृषिः ।६०।

Formerly, the spirited and virtuous Kṛṣṇa-Dvaipāyana, by the injunctions of Bhiṣma, the wise son of Gaṅga and of his own mother, became the father of three boys who were like the three fires by the two wives of Vicitravīrya; and having thus raised up Dhṛtarāṣṭra, Paṇḍu and Vidura, he returned to his recluse abode to prosecute his religious exercise. It was not till after these were born, grown up, and departed on the supreme journey, that the great ṛṣi Vyāsa published the Bhārata in this region of mankind; when being solicited by Janamejaya and thousands of brāhmaṇas, he instructed his disciple Vaiśaṃpāyana, who was seated near him; and he, sitting together with the sadasyas, recited the Bhārata, during the intervals of the ceremonies of the sacrifice, being repeatedly urged to proceed. Vyāsa has fully represented the greatness of the house of Kuru, the virtuous principles of Gāndhārī, the wisdom of Vidura, and the constancy of Kuntī. The noble ṛṣi has also described the divinity of Vāsudeva, the rectitude of the sons of Paṇḍu, and the evil practices of the sons and partisans of Dhṛtarāṣṭra.

Click for additional verse 1.1.101 in the Gītā Press Edition

इदं शतसहस्रं तु लोकानां पुण्यकर्मणाम् ॥ उपाख्यानैः सह ज्ञेयमाद्यं भारतमुत्तमम् ।

The compilation of hundred thousand ślokas of the sacred deeds of humans together with the narratives should be known as the primary Bhārata.

चतुर्विंशतिसाहस्रीं चक्रे भारतसंहिताम् उपाख्यानैर्विना तावद्भारतं प्रोच्यते बुधैः ।६१।

ततोऽध्यर्धशतं भूयः संक्षेपं कृतवानृषिः अनुक्रमणिमध्यायं वृत्तान्तानां सपर्वणाम् ।६२।

इदं द्वैपायनः पूर्वं पुत्रमध्यापयच्छुकम् ततोऽन्येभ्योऽनुरूपेभ्यः शिष्येभ्यः प्रददौ प्रभुः ।६३।

Vyāsa executed the compilation of the Bhārata, exclusive of the episodes originally in twenty-four thousand verses; and so much only is called by the learned as the Bhārata. Afterwards, he composed an epitome in one hundred and fifty verses, consisting of the introduction with the chapter of contents. This he first taught to his son Śuka; and afterwards he gave it to others of his disciples who were possessed of the same qualifications.

Click for additional verse 1.1.105-107 in the Gītā Press Edition

षष्टिं शतसहस्राणि चकारान्यां स संहिताम् ॥

त्रिंशच्छतसहस्रं च देवलोके प्रतिष्ठितम् । पित्र्ये पञ्चदश प्रोक्तं गन्धर्वेषु चतुर्दश ॥ एकं शतसहस्रं तु मानुषेषु प्रतिष्ठितम् ॥

After that he executed another compilation, consisting of six hundred thousand verses. Of those, thirty hundred thousand are known in the world of the devas; fifteen hundred thousand in the world of the pitṛs: fourteen hundred thousand among the gandharvas, and one hundred thousand in the regions of mankind.

नारदोऽश्रावयद्देवानसितो देवलः पितॄन् गन्धर्वयक्षरक्षांसि श्रावयामास वै शुकः ।६४।

Narada recited them to the devas, Devala to the pitṛs, and Śuka published them to the gandharvas, yakṣas, and rākṣasas.

Click for additional verse 1.1.108-10 in the Gītā Press Edition

अस्मिंस्तु मानुषे लोके वैशंपायन उक्तवान् ॥

शिष्यो व्यासस्य धर्मात्मा सर्ववेदविदां वरः । एकं शतसहस्रं तु मयोक्तं वै निबोधत ॥

In this world they were recited by Vaiśampāyana, one of the disciples of Vyāsa, a man of just principles and the first among all those acquainted with the Vedas. Know that I, Sauti, have also repeated one hundred thousand verses.

दुर्योधनो मन्युमयो महाद्रुमः स्कन्धः कर्णः शकुनिस्तस्य शाखाः दुःशासनः पुष्पफले समृद्धे मूलं राजा धृतराष्ट्रोऽमनीषी ।६५।

युधिष्ठिरो धर्ममयो महाद्रुमः स्कन्धोऽर्जुनो भीमसेनोऽस्य शाखाः माद्रीसुतौ पुष्पफले समृद्धे मूलं कृष्णो ब्रह्म च ब्राह्मणाश्च ।६६।

Duryodhana is a vast tree, formed of rage; Karṇa is its trunk; Śakuni, its branches; Duḥśāsana is its full-grown fruit and flowers; and its root is the unwise Dhṛtarāṣṭra. Yudhiṣṭhira is a vast tree, formed of dharma; Arjuna is its trunk; Bhīmasena, its branches; the two sons of Mādrī are its full-grown fruit and flowers; and its roots are Kṛṣṇa, Brahman, and the Brāhmaṇas.

A Brief Sketch of the Mahābhārata

पाण्डुर्जित्वा बहून्देशान्युधा विक्रमणेन च अरण्ये मृगयाशीलो न्यवसत्सजनस्तदा ।६७।

मृगव्यवायनिधने कृच्छ्रां प्राप स आपदम् जन्मप्रभृति पार्थानां तत्राचारविधिक्रमः ।६८।

मात्रोरभ्युपपत्तिश्च धर्मोपनिषदं प्रति धर्मस्य वायोः शक्रस्य देवयोश्च तथाश्विनोः ।६९।

Paṇḍu, after having subdued many countries by his wisdom and prowess, took up his abode with the munis in a certain forest as a sportsman, where he brought upon himself a very severe misfortune for having killed a stag coupling with its mate, which served as a warning for the conduct of the princes of his house as long as they lived. Their mothers, in order that the ordinances of the law might be fulfilled, admitted as substitutes to their embraces the gods Dharma, Vāyu, Śakra, and the divinities the twin Aśvins.

Click for additional unnumbered verse in the Gītā Press Edition

ततो धर्मोपनिषदः श्रुत्वा भर्तुः प्रिया पृथा । धर्मानिलेन्द्रान् स्तुतिभिर्जुहाव सुतवाञ्छया । तद्दत्तोपनिषन्माद्री चाश्विनावाजुहाव च ।

तापसैः सह संवृद्धा मातृभ्यां परिरक्षिताः मेध्यारण्येषु पुण्येषु महतामाश्रमेषु च ।७०।

ऋषिभिश्च तदानीता धार्तराष्ट्रान्प्रति स्वयम् शिशवश्चाभिरूपाश्च जटिला ब्रह्मचारिणः ।७१।

पुत्राश्च भ्रातरश्चेमे शिष्याश्च सुहृदश्च वः पाण्डवा एत इत्युक्त्वा मुनयोऽन्तर्हितास्ततः ।७२।

And when their offspring grew up, under the care of their two mothers, in the society of ascetics, in the midst of sacred groves and holy recluse-abodes of religious men, they were conducted by ṛṣis into the presence of Dhṛtarāṣṭra and his sons, following as students in the habit of brahmacārins, having their hair tied in knots on their heads. 'These our pupils', said they, 'are as your sons, your brothers, and your friends; they are Pāṇḍavas.' Saying this, the munis disappeared.

तांस्तैर्निवेदितान्दृष्ट्वा पाण्डवान्कौरवास्तदा शिष्टाश्च वर्णाः पौरा ये ते हर्षाच्चुक्रुशुर्भृशम् ।७३।

आहुः केचिन्न तस्यैते तस्यैत इति चापरे यदा चिरमृतः पाण्डुः कथं तस्येति चापरे ।७४।

स्वागतं सर्वथा दिष्ट्या पाण्डोः पश्याम संततिम् उच्यतां स्वागतमिति वाचोऽश्रूयन्त सर्वशः ।७५।

तस्मिन्नुपरते शब्दे दिशः सर्वा विनादयन् अन्तर्हितानां भूतानां निस्वनस्तुमुलोऽभवत् ।७६।

पुष्पवृष्टिः शुभा गन्धाः शङ्खदुन्दुभिनिस्वनाः आसन्प्रवेशे पार्थानां तदद्भुतमिवाभवत् ।७७।

तत्प्रीत्या चैव सर्वेषां पौराणां हर्षसंभवः शब्द आसीन्महांस्तत्र दिवस्पृक्कीर्तिवर्धनः ।७८।

When the Kauravas saw them introduced as the sons of Paṇḍu, the distinguished class of citizens shouted exceedingly for joy. Some, however, said, they were not the sons of Paṇḍu; others said, they were; while a few asked how they could be his offspring, seeing he had been so long dead. Still on all sides voices were heard crying, "They are on all accounts welcome! Through divine Providence we behold the family of Paṇḍu! Let their welcome be proclaimed!" As these acclamations ceased, the plaudits of invisible spirits, causing every point of the heavens to resound, were tremendous. There were showers of sweet-scented flowers, and the sound of shells and kettle-drums. Such were the wonders that happened on the arrival of the young princes. The joyful noise of all the citizens, in expression of their satisfaction on the occasion, was so great that it reached the very heavens in magnifying plaudits.

तेऽप्यधीत्याखिलान्वेदाञ्शास्त्राणि विविधानि च न्यवसन्पाण्डवास्तत्र पूजिता अकुतोभयाः ।७९।

युधिष्ठिरस्य शौचेन प्रीताः प्रकृतयोऽभवन् धृत्या च भीमसेनस्य विक्रमेणार्जुनस्य च ।८०।

गुरुशुश्रूषया कुन्त्या यमयोर्विनयेन च तुतोष लोकः सकलस्तेषां शौर्यगुणेन च ।८१।

Having studied the whole of the Vedas and sundry other shastras, the Pāṇḍavas resided there, respected by all and without apprehension from any one. The principal men were pleased with the purity of Yudhiṣṭhira, the courage of Arjuna, the submissive attention of Kuntī to her superiors, and the humility of the twins, Nakula and Sahadeva; and all the people rejoiced in their heroic virtues.

समवाये ततो राज्ञां कन्यां भर्तृस्वयंवराम् प्राप्तवानर्जुनः कृष्णां कृत्वा कर्म सुदुष्करम् ।८२।

ततः प्रभृति लोकेऽस्मिन्पूज्यः सर्वधनुष्मताम् आदित्य इव दुष्प्रेक्ष्यः समरेष्वपि चाभवत् ।८३।

स सर्वान्पार्थिवाञ्जित्वा सर्वांश्च महतो गणान् आजहारार्जुनो राज्ञे राजसूयं महाक्रतुम् ।८४।

अन्नवान्दक्षिणावांश्च सर्वैः समुदितो गुणैः युधिष्ठिरेण संप्राप्तो राजसूयो महाक्रतुः ।८५।

सुनयाद्वासुदेवस्य भीमार्जुनबलेन च घातयित्वा जरासंधं चैद्यं च बलगर्वितम् ।८६।

दुर्योधनमुपागच्छन्नर्हणानि ततस्ततः मणिकाञ्चनरत्नानि गोहस्त्यश्वधनानि च ।८७।

After a while, Arjuna obtained the virgin Krishna at the svayaṃvara, in the midst of a concourse of kings, by performing a very difficult feat of archery. And from this time he became very much respected in this world among all bowmen; and in fields of battle also, like the sun, he was hard to behold by foe-men. And having vanquished all the neighbouring princes and every considerable tribe, he accomplished all that was necessary for the king (his eldest brother) to perform the great sacrifice called rājasuya. Yudhiṣṭhira, after having, through the wise counsels of Vāsudeva and by the valour of Bhīmasena and Arjuna, slain Jarāsandha (the king of Magadha) and the proud king of Cedi, acquired the right to perform the grand sacrifice of rājasuya abounding in provisions and offering and fraught with transcendent merits. And Duryodhana came to this sacrifice; and when he beheld the vast wealth of the Pāṇḍavas scattered all around, the offerings, the precious stones, gold and jewels; the wealth in cows, elephants, and horses;

Additional verse 1.1.133 in the Gītā Press Edition

विचित्राणि च वासांसि प्रावारावरणानि च । कंबलाजिनरत्नानि रङ्कवास्तरणानि च ॥

the curious textures, garments, and mantles; the precious shawls and furs and carpets made of the skin of the Ranku;

समृद्धां तां तथा दृष्ट्वा पाण्डवानां तदा श्रियम् ईर्ष्यासमुत्थः सुमहांस्तस्य मन्युरजायत ।८८।

विमानप्रतिमां चापि मयेन सुकृतां सभाम् पाण्डवानामुपहृतां स दृष्ट्वा पर्यतप्यत ।८९।

यत्रावहसितश्चासीत्प्रस्कन्दन्निव संभ्रमात् प्रत्यक्षं वासुदेवस्य भीमेनानभिजातवत् ।९०।

he was filled with envy and became exceedingly displeased. And when he beheld the hall of assembly elegantly constructed by Maya (the Asura architect) after the fashion of a celestial court, he was inflamed with rage. And having started in confusion at certain architectural deceptions within this building, he was derided by Bhīmasena in the presence of Vāsudeva, like one of mean descent.

स भोगान्विविधान्भुञ्जन्रत्नानि विविधानि च कथितो धृतराष्ट्रस्य विवर्णो हरिणः कृशः ।९१।

अन्वजानात्ततो द्यूतं धृतराष्ट्रः सुतप्रियः तच्छ्रुत्वा वासुदेवस्य कोपः समभवन्महान् ।९२।

नातिप्रीतमनाश्चासीद्विवादांश्चान्वमोदत द्यूतादीननयान्घोरान्प्रवृद्धांश्चाप्युपैक्षत ।९३।

निरस्य विदुरं द्रोणं भीष्मं शारद्वतं कृपम् विग्रहे तुमुले तस्मिन्नहन्क्षत्रं परस्परम् ।९४।

And it was represented to Dhṛtarāṣṭra that his son, while partaking of various objects of enjoyment and diverse precious things, was becoming meagre, wan, and pale. And Dhṛtarāṣṭra, some time after, out of affection for his son, gave his consent to their playing (with the Pāṇḍava) at dice. And Vāsudeva coming to know of this, became exceedingly wroth. And being dissatisfied, he did nothing to prevent the disputes, but overlooked the gaming and sundry other horried unjustifiable transactions arising therefrom: and in spite of Vidura, Bhīṣma, Droṇa, and Kṛpa, the son of Śāradvat, he made the Kṣatriyas kill each other in the terrific war that ensued.

Dhṛtarāṣṭra's lamentations to Sañjaya

जयत्सु पाण्डुपुत्रेषु श्रुत्वा सुमहदप्रियम् दुर्योधनमतं ज्ञात्वा कर्णस्य शकुनेस्तथा धृतराष्ट्रश्चिरं ध्यात्वा संजयं वाक्यमब्रवीत् ।९५।

शृणु संजय मे सर्वं न मेऽसूयितुमर्हसि श्रुतवानसि मेधावी बुद्धिमान्प्राज्ञसंमतः ।९६।

न विग्रहे मम मतिर्न च प्रीये कुरुक्षये न मे विशेषः पुत्रेषु स्वेषु पाण्डुसुतेषु च ।९७।

वृद्धं मामभ्यसूयन्ति पुत्रा मन्युपरायणाः अहं त्वचक्षुः कार्पण्यात्पुत्रप्रीत्या सहामि तत् मुह्यन्तं चानुमुह्यामि दुर्योधनमचेतनम् ।९८।

राजसूये श्रियं दृष्ट्वा पाण्डवस्य महौजसः तच्चावहसनं प्राप्य सभारोहणदर्शने ।९९।

अमर्षितः स्वयं जेतुमशक्तः पाण्डवान्रणे निरुत्साहश्च संप्राप्तुं श्रियमक्षत्रियो यथा गान्धारराजसहितश्छद्मद्यूतममन्त्रयत् ।१००।

तत्र यद्यद्यथा ज्ञातं मया संजय तच्छृणु श्रुत्वा हि मम वाक्यानि बुद्ध्या युक्तानि तत्त्वतः ततो ज्ञास्यसि मां सौते प्रज्ञाचक्षुषमित्युत ।१०१।

And Dhṛtarāṣṭra hearing the ill news of the success of the Pāṇḍavas and recollecting the resolutions of Duryodhana, Karṇa, and Śakuni, pondered for a while and addressed to Sañjaya the following speech. "Attend, O Sañjaya, to all I am about to say, and it will not become you to treat me with contempt. You are well-versed in the śāstras, intelligent and endowed with wisdom. My inclination was never to war, not did I delight in the destruction of my race. I made no distinction between my own children and the children of Paṇḍu. My own sons were prone to wilfulness and despised me because I am old. Blind as I am, because of my miserable plight and through paternal affection, I bore it all. I was foolish after the thoughtless Duryodhana ever growing in folly. Having been a spectator of the riches of the mighty sons of Paṇḍu, my son was derided for his awkwardness while ascending the hall. Unable to bear it all and unable himself to overcome the sons of Paṇḍu in the field, and though a soldier, unwilling yet to obtain good fortune by his own exertion, with the help of the king of Gāndhāra he concerted an unfair game at dice. Hear, O Sañjaya, all that happened thereupon and came to my knowledge. And when you have heard all I say, recollecting everything as it fell out, you shall then know me for one with a prophetic eye.

यदाश्रौषं धनुरायम्य चित्रं विद्धं लक्ष्यं पातितं वै पृथिव्याम् कृष्णां हृतां पश्यतां सर्वराज्ञां तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१०२।

यदाश्रौषं द्वारकायां सुभद्रां प्रसह्योढां माधवीमर्जुनेन इन्द्रप्रस्थं वृष्णिवीरौ च यातौ तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१०३।

यदाश्रौषं देवराजं प्रवृष्टं शरैर्दिव्यैर्वारितं चार्जुनेन अग्निं तथा तर्पितं खाण्डवे च तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१०४।

When I heard that Arjuna, having bent the bow, had pierced the curious mark and brought it down to the ground, and bore away in triumph the maiden Kṛṣṇā, in the sight of the assembled princes, then, O Sañjaya I had no hope of success. When I heard that Subhadrā of the race of Madhu had, after forcible seizure been married by Arjuna in the city of Dvārakā, and that the two heroes of the race of Vṛṣṇi (Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma, the brothers of Subhadrā) without resenting it had entered Indraprastha as friends, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that Arjuna, by his celestial arrow preventing the downpour by Indra, the king of the gods, had gratified Agni by making over to him the forest of Khāṇḍava, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success.

Click for additional verses 1.1.153-156 in the Gītā Press Edition

यदाश्रौषं जातुषाद् वेश्मनस्तान् मुक्तान् पार्थान् पञ्च कुन्त्या समेतान् युक्तं चैषां विदुरं स्वार्थसिद्धौ तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ॥

यदाश्रौषं द्रौपदीं रङ्गमध्ये लक्ष्यं भित्त्वा निर्जितामर्जुनेन शूरान् पञ्चालान् पाण्डवेयांश्च युक्तांस्तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ॥

यदाश्रौषं मागधानां वरिष्ठं जरासंधं क्षत्रमध्ये ज्वलन्तम् दोर्भ्यां हतं भीमसेनेन गत्वा तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ॥

यदाश्रौषं दिग्विजये पाण्डुपुत्रैर्वशीकृतान् भूमिपालान् प्रसह्य महाक्रतुं राजसूयं कृतं च तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ॥

When I heard that the five Pāṇḍavas with their mother Kuntī had escaped from the house of lac, and that Vidura was engaged in the accomplishment of their designs, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that Arjuna, after having pierced the mark in the arena had won Draupadī, and that the brave Pañcālas had joined the Pāṇḍavas, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that Jarāsandha, the foremost of the royal line of Magadha, and blazing in the midst of the Kṣatriyas, had been slain by Bhīma with his bare arms alone, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that in their general campaign the sons of Paṇḍu had conquered the chiefs of the land and performed the grand sacrifice of the rājasūya, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success.

यदाश्रौषं हृतराज्यं युधिष्ठिरं पराजितं सौबलेनाक्षवत्याम् अन्वागतं भ्रातृभिरप्रमेयैस्तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१०५।

यदाश्रौषं द्रौपदीमश्रुकण्ठीं सभां नीतां दुःखितामेकवस्त्राम् रजस्वलां नाथवतीमनाथवत्तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१०६।

When I heard that Yudhiṣṭhira, beaten by Saubala at the game of dice and deprived of his kingdom as a consequence thereof, had still been attended upon by his brothers of incomparable prowess, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that Draupadī, her voice choked with tears and heart full of agony in the season of impurity and with but one raiment on, had been dragged into court and though she had protectors, she had been treated as if she had none, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success.

Click for additional verse 1.1.158 in the Gītā Press Edition

यदाश्रौषं वाससां तत्र राशिं समाक्षिपत् कितवो मन्दबुद्धिः दुःशासनो गतवान् नैव चान्तं तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ॥

When I heard that the wicked wretch Duḥśāsana, was striving to strip her of that single garment, had only drawn from her person a large heap of cloth without being able to arrive at its end, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success.

यदाश्रौषं विविधास्तात चेष्टा धर्मात्मनां प्रस्थितानां वनाय ज्येष्ठप्रीत्या क्लिश्यतां पाण्डवानां तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१०७।

यदाश्रौषं स्नातकानां सहस्रैरन्वागतं धर्मराजं वनस्थम् भिक्षाभुजां ब्राह्मणानां महात्मनां तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१०८।

यदाश्रौषमर्जुनो देवदेवं किरातरूपं त्र्यम्बकं तोष्य युद्धे अवाप तत्पाशुपतं महास्त्रं तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१०९।

When I heard that the virtuous Pāṇḍavas weeping with affliction had followed their elder brother to the wilderness and exerted themselves variously for the mitigation of his discomforts, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that Yudhiṣṭhira had been followed into the wilderness by snātakas and noble-minded brāhmaṇas who live upon alms, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that Arjuna, having, in combat, pleased the god of gods, Tryambaka (the three-eyed) in the disguise of a hunter, obtained the great weapon Pasupata, then O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success.

Click for additional verse 1.1.162 in the Gītā Press Edition

यदाश्रौषं वनवासे तु पार्थान् समागतान् महर्षिभिः पुराणैः उपास्यमानान् सगणैर्जातसख्यान् तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ॥

यदाश्रौषं त्रिदिवस्थं धनंजयं शक्रात्साक्षाद्दिव्यमस्त्रं यथावत् अधीयानं शंसितं सत्यसंधं तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।११०।

When I heard that the just and renowned Arjuna after having been to the celestial regions, had there obtained celestial weapons from Indra himself then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success.

Click for additional verses 1.1.164-166 in the Gītā Press Edition

(यदाश्रौषं कालकेयास्ततस्ते पौलोमानो वरदानाच्च दृप्ताः देवैरजेया निर्जिताश्चार्जुनेन तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ॥

यदाश्रौषमसुराणां वधार्थे किरीटिनं यान्तममित्रकर्शनम् कृतार्थं चाप्यागतं शक्रलोकात् तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ॥

यदाश्रौषं तीर्थयात्राप्रवृत्तं पाण्डोः सुतं सहितं लोमशेन तस्मादश्रौषीदर्जुनस्यार्थलाभं तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ॥ १६४-१६६)

When I heard that afterwards Arjuna had vanquished the Kālakeyas and the Paulomas proud with the boon they had obtained and which had rendered them invulnerable even to the celestials, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that Arjuna, the chastiser of enemies, having gone to the regions of Indra for the destruction of the Asuras, had returned thence successful, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success.

यदाश्रौषं वैश्रवणेन सार्धं समागतं भीममन्यांश्च पार्थान् तस्मिन्देशे मानुषाणामगम्ये तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१११।

यदाश्रौषं घोषयात्रागतानां बन्धं गन्धर्वैर्मोक्षणं चार्जुनेन स्वेषां सुतानां कर्णबुद्धौ रतानां तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।११२।

यदाश्रौषं यक्षरूपेण धर्मं समागतं धर्मराजेन सूत प्रश्नानुक्तान्विब्रुवन्तं च सम्यक्तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।११३।

When I heard that Bhīma and the other sons of Pṛtha (Kuntī) accompanied by Vaiśravaṇa had arrived at that country which is inaccessible to man then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that my sons, guided by the counsels of Karṇa, while on their journey of Ghoṣayātrā, had been taken prisoners by the Gandharvas and were set free by Arjuna, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that Dharma (the god of justice) having come under the form of a Yakṣa had proposed certain questions to Yudhiṣṭhira then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success.

Click for additional verses 1.1.169-170 in the Gītā Press Edition

यदाश्रौषं न विदुर्मामकास्तान् प्रच्छन्नरूपान् वसतः पाण्डवेयान् विराटराष्ट्रे सह कृष्णया च तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ॥

यदाश्रौषं कीचकानां वरिष्ठं निषूदितं भ्रातृशतेन सार्धम् द्रौपद्यर्थं भीमसेनेन संख्ये तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ॥

When I heard that my sons had failed to discover the Pāṇḍavas under their disguise while residing with Draupadī in the dominions of Virāṭa, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success.

यदाश्रौषं मामकानां वरिष्ठान्धनंजयेनैकरथेन भग्नान् विराटराष्ट्रे वसता महात्मना तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।११४।

यदाश्रौषं सत्कृतां मत्स्यराज्ञा सुतां दत्तामुत्तरामर्जुनाय तां चार्जुनः प्रत्यगृह्णात्सुतार्थे तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।११५।

यदाश्रौषं निर्जितस्याधनस्य प्रव्राजितस्य स्वजनात्प्रच्युतस्य अक्षौहिणीः सप्त युधिष्ठिरस्य तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।११६।

यदाश्रौषं नरनारायणौ तौ कृष्णार्जुनौ वदतो नारदस्य अहं द्रष्टा ब्रह्मलोके सदेति तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।११७।

यदाश्रौषं माधवं वासुदेवं सर्वात्मना पाण्डवार्थे निविष्टम् यस्येमां गां विक्रममेकमाहुस्तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।११८।

When I heard that the principal men of my side had all been vanquished by the noble Arjuna with a single chariot while residing in the dominions of Virāṭa, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that the king of Matsya, had offered his virtuous daughter Uttarā to Arjuna and that Arjuna had accepted her for his son, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that Yudhiṣṭhira, beaten at dice, deprived of wealth, exiled and separated from his connections, had assembled yet an army of seven akṣauhiṇīs, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard Nārada, declare that Kṛṣṇa and Arjuna were Nara and Nārāyaṇa and he (Nārada) had seen them together in the regions of Brahmā, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that Vāsudeva of the race of Madhu, who covered this whole earth by one foot, was heartily interested in the welfare of the Pāṇḍavas, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success.

Click for additional verse 1.1.175 in the Gītā Press Edition

यदाश्रौषं लोकहिताय कृष्णं शमार्थिनमुपयातं कुरूणाम् शमं कुर्वाणमकृतार्थं च यातं तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ॥

When I heard that Kṛṣṇa, anxious to bring about peace, for the welfare of mankind had repaired to the Kurus, and went away without having been able to effect his purpose, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success.

यदाश्रौषं कर्णदुर्योधनाभ्यां बुद्धिं कृतां निग्रहे केशवस्य तं चात्मानं बहुधा दर्शयानं तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।११९।

यदाश्रौषं वासुदेवे प्रयाते रथस्यैकामग्रतस्तिष्ठमानाम् आर्तां पृथां सान्त्वितां केशवेन तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१२०।

यदाश्रौषं मन्त्रिणं वासुदेवं तथा भीष्मं शांतनवं च तेषाम् भारद्वाजं चाशिषोऽनुब्रुवाणं तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१२१।

यदाश्रौषं कर्ण उवाच भीष्मं नाहं योत्स्ये युध्यमाने त्वयीति हित्वा सेनामपचक्राम चैव तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१२२।

यदाश्रौषं वासुदेवार्जुनौ तौ तथा धनुर्गाण्डिवमप्रमेयम् त्रीण्युग्रवीर्याणि समागतानि तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१२३।

यदाश्रौषं कश्मलेनाभिपन्ने रथोपस्थे सीदमानेऽर्जुने वै कृष्णं लोकान्दर्शयानं शरीरे तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१२४।

यदाश्रौषं भीष्मममित्रकर्शनं निघ्नन्तमाजावयुतं रथानाम् नैषां कश्चिद्वध्यते दृश्यरूपस्तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१२५।

When I heard that Karṇa and Duryodhana resolved upon imprisoning Kṛṣṇa displayed in himself the whole universe, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that at the time of his departure, Pṛthā (Kuntī) standing, full of sorrow, near his chariot received consolation from Kṛṣṇa, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that Vāsudeva and Bhīṣma the son of Śantanu were the counsellors of the Pāṇḍavas and Droṇa the son of Bhāradvaja pronounced blessings on them, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When Karṇa said unto Bhīṣma - I will not fight when you are fighting - and, quitting the army, went away, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that Vāsudeva and Arjuna and the bow Gāṇḍiva of immeasurable prowess, these three of dreadful energy had come together, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that upon Arjuna having been seized with compunction on his chariot and ready to sink, Kṛṣṇa showed him all the worlds within his body, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that Bhīṣma, the desolator of foes, killing ten thousand charioteers every day in the field of battle, had not slain any amongst the Pāṇḍavas then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success.

Additional verse 1.1.183 in the Gītā Press Edition

यदाश्रौषं चापगेयेन संख्ये स्वयं मृत्युं विहितं धार्मिकेण तच्चाकर्षुः पाण्डवेयाः प्रहृष्टास्तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ॥

When I heard that Bhīṣma, the righteous son of Gaṅgā, had himself indicated the means of his defeat in the field of battle and that the same were accomplished by the Pāṇḍavas with joyfulness, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success.

यदाश्रौषं भीष्ममत्यन्तशूरं हतं पार्थेनाहवेष्वप्रधृष्यम् शिखण्डिनं पुरतः स्थापयित्वा तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१२६।

यदाश्रौषं शरतल्पे शयानं वृद्धं वीरं सादितं चित्रपुङ्खैः भीष्मं कृत्वा सोमकानल्पशेषांस्तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१२७।

यदाश्रौषं शांतनवे शयाने पानीयार्थे चोदितेनार्जुनेन भूमिं भित्त्वा तर्पितं तत्र भीष्मं तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१२८।

यदाश्रौषं शुक्रसूर्यौ च युक्तौ कौन्तेयानामनुलोमौ जयाय नित्यं चास्माञ्श्वापदा व्याभषन्तस्तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१२९।

यदा द्रोणो विविधानस्त्रमार्गान्विदर्शयन्समरे चित्रयोधी न पाण्डवाञ्श्रेष्ठतमान्निहन्ति तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१३०।

यदाश्रौषं चास्मदीयान्महारथान्व्यवस्थितानर्जुनस्यान्तकाय संशप्तकान्निहतानर्जुनेन तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१३१।

यदाश्रौषं व्यूहमभेद्यमन्यैर्भारद्वाजेनात्तशस्त्रेण गुप्तम् भित्त्वा सौभद्रं वीरमेकं प्रविष्टं तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१३२।

यदाभिमन्युं परिवार्य बालं सर्वे हत्वा हृष्टरूपा बभूवुः महारथाः पार्थमशक्नुवन्तस्तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१३३।

यदाश्रौषमभिमन्युं निहत्य हर्षान्मूढान्क्रोशतो धार्तराष्ट्रान् क्रोधं मुक्तं सैन्धवे चार्जुनेन तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१३४।

यदाश्रौषं सैन्धवार्थे प्रतिज्ञां प्रतिज्ञातां तद्वधायार्जुनेन सत्यां निस्तीर्णां शत्रुमध्ये च तेन तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१३५।

When I heard that Arjuna, having placed Śikhaṇḍin before himself in his chariot, had wounded Bhīṣma of infinite courage and invincible in battle, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that the aged hero Bhīṣma, having reduced the numbers of the race of Somakas to a few, overcome with various wounds was lying on a bed of arrows, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that upon Bhīṣma's lying on the ground with thirst for water, Arjuna, being requested, had pierced the ground and allayed his thirst, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that Indra and Sūrya united as allies for the success of the sons of Kuntī, and the beasts of prey (by their inauspicious presence) were putting us in fear, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When the wonderful warrior Droṇa, displaying various modes of fight in the field, did not slay any of the superior Pāṇḍavas, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that the great warrior Saṃśaptakas of our army appointed for the overthrow of Arjuna were all slain by Arjuna himself, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that our disposition of forces, impenetrable by others, and defended by Bhāradvaja himself well-armed, had been singly forced and entered by the brave son of Subhadrā, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that our great warriors, unable to overcome Arjuna, with jubilant faces after having jointly surrounded and slain the boy Abhimanyu, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that the blind Kauravas were shouting for joy after having slain Abhimanyu and that thereupon Arjuna in anger made his celebrated speech referring to Saindhava, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that Arjuna had vowed the death of Saindhava and fulfilled his vow in the presence of his enemies, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success.

यदाश्रौषं श्रान्तहये धनंजये मुक्त्वा हयान्पाययित्वोपवृत्तान् पुनर्युक्त्वा वासुदेवं प्रयातं तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१३६।

यदाश्रौषं वाहनेष्वाश्वसत्सु रथोपस्थे तिष्ठता गाण्डिवेन सर्वान्योधान्वारितानर्जुनेन तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१३७।

यदाश्रौषं नागबलैर्दुरुत्सहं द्रोणानीकं युयुधानं प्रमथ्य यातं वार्ष्णेयं यत्र तौ कृष्णपार्थौ तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१३८।

यदाश्रौषं कर्णमासाद्य मुक्तं वधाद्भीमं कुत्सयित्वा वचोभिः धनुष्कोट्या तुद्य कर्णेन वीरं तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१३९।

यदा द्रोणः कृतवर्मा कृपश्च कर्णो द्रौणिर्मद्रराजश्च शूरः अमर्षयन्सैन्धवं वध्यमानं तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१४०।

यदाश्रौषं देवराजेन दत्तां दिव्यां शक्तिं व्यंसितां माधवेन घटोत्कचे राक्षसे घोररूपे तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१४१।

यदाश्रौषं कर्णघटोत्कचाभ्यां युद्धे मुक्तां सूतपुत्रेण शक्तिम् यया वध्यः समरे सव्यसाची तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१४२।

यदाश्रौषं द्रोणमाचार्यमेकं धृष्टद्युम्नेनाभ्यतिक्रम्य धर्मम् रथोपस्थे प्रायगतं विशस्तं तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१४३।

यदाश्रौषं द्रौणिना द्वैरथस्थं माद्रीपुत्रं नकुलं लोकमध्ये समं युद्धे पाण्डवं युध्यमानं तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१४४।

यदा द्रोणे निहते द्रोणपुत्रो नारायणं दिव्यमस्त्रं विकुर्वन् नैषामन्तं गतवान्पाण्डवानां तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१४५।

When I heard that upon the horses of Arjuna being fatigued, Vāsudeva releasing them made them drink water and bringing them back and reharnessing them continued to guide them as before, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that while his horses were fatigued, Arjuna staying in his chariot checked all his assailants, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that Yuyudhāna of the race of Vṛṣṇi, after having thrown into confusion the army of Droṇa rendered unbearable in prowess owing to the presence of elephants, retired to where Kṛṣṇa and Arjuna were, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that Karṇa even though he had got Bhīma within his power allowed him to escape after only addressing him in contemptuous terms and dragging him with the end of his bow, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that Droṇa, Kṛtavarman, Kṛpa, Karṇa, the son of Droṇa, and the valiant king of Madra (Śalya) suffered Saindhava to be slain, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that the celestial śakti given by Indra (to Karṇa) was by Madhava's machinations caused to be hurled upon rākṣasa Ghaṭotkacha of frightful countenance, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that in the encounter between Karṇa and Ghaṭotkacha, that śakti was hurled against Ghaṭotkacha by Karṇa, the same which was certainly to have slain Arjuna in battle, then, O Sañjaya. I had no hope of success. When I heard that Dhṛṣṭadyumna, transgressing the laws of battle, slew Droṇa while alone in his chariot and resolved on death, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that Nakula. the son of Mādrī, having in the presence of the whole army engaged in single combat with the son of Droṇa and showing himself equal to him drove his chariot in circles around, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When upon the death of Droṇa, his son misused the weapon called Nārāyaṇa but failed to achieve the destruction of the Pāṇḍavas, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success.

Additional verse 1.1.204 in the Gītā Press Edition

यदाश्रौषं भीमसेनेन पीतं रक्तं भ्रातुर्युधि दुःशासनस्य निवारितं नान्यतमेन भीमं तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ॥

When I heard that Bhīmasena drank the blood of his brother Duḥśāsana in the field of battle without anybody being able to prevent him, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success.

यदाश्रौषं कर्णमत्यन्तशूरं हतं पार्थेनाहवेष्वप्रधृष्यम् तस्मिन्भ्रातॄणां विग्रहे देवगुह्ये तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१४६।

यदाश्रौषं द्रोणपुत्रं कृपं च दुःशासनं कृतवर्माणमुग्रम् युधिष्ठिरं शून्यमधर्षयन्तं तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१४७।

यदाश्रौषं निहतं मद्रराजं रणे शूरं धर्मराजेन सूत सदा संग्रामे स्पर्धते यः स कृष्णं तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१४८।

यदाश्रौषं कलहद्यूतमूलं मायाबलं सौबलं पाण्डवेन हतं संग्रामे सहदेवेन पापं तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१४९।

यदाश्रौषं श्रान्तमेकं शयानं ह्रदं गत्वा स्तम्भयित्वा तदम्भः दुर्योधनं विरथं भग्नदर्पं तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१५०।

यदाश्रौषं पाण्डवांस्तिष्ठमानान्गङ्गाह्रदे वासुदेवेन सार्धम् अमर्षणं धर्षयतः सुतं मे तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१५१।

यदाश्रौषं विविधांस्तात मार्गान्गदायुद्धे मण्डलं संचरन्तम् मिथ्या हतं वासुदेवस्य बुद्ध्या तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१५२।

यदाश्रौषं द्रोणपुत्रादिभिस्तैर्हतान्पञ्चालान्द्रौपदेयांश्च सुप्तान् कृतं बीभत्समयशस्यं च कर्म तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१५३।

यदाश्रौषं भीमसेनानुयातेन अश्वत्थाम्ना परमास्त्रं प्रयुक्तम् क्रुद्धेनैषीकमवधीद्येन गर्भं तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१५४।

यदाश्रौषं ब्रह्मशिरोऽर्जुनेन मुक्तं स्वस्तीत्यस्त्रमस्त्रेण शान्तम् अश्वत्थाम्ना मणिरत्नं च दत्तं तदा नाशंसे विजयाय संजय ।१५५।

यदाश्रौषं द्रोणपुत्रेण गर्भे वैराट्या वै पात्यमाने महास्त्रे द्वैपायनः केशवो द्रोणपुत्रं परस्परेणाभिशापैः शशाप ।१५६।

When I heard that the infinitely brave Karṇa, invincible in battle, was slain by Arjuna in that war of brothers mysterious even to the gods, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that Yudhiṣṭhira, the Just, overcame the heroic son of Droṇa, Duḥśāsana, and the fierce Kṛtavarman, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that the brave king of Madra who ever dared Kṛṣṇa in battle was slain by Yudhiṣṭhira, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that the wicked Subala of magic power, the root of the gaming and the feud, was slain in battle by Sahadeva, the son of Paṇḍu, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that Duryodhana, spent with fatigue, having gone to a lake and made a refuge for himself within its waters, was lying there alone, his strength gone and without a chariot, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that the Pāṇḍavas having gone to that lake accompanied by Vāsudeva and standing on its beach began to address contemptuously my son who was incapable of putting up with affronts, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that while, displaying in circles a variety of curious modes (of attack and defence) in an encounter with clubs, he was unfairly slain according to the counsels of Kṛṣṇa, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard the son of Droṇa and others by slaying the Pañcālas and the sons of Draupadī in their sleep, perpetrated a horrible and infamous deed, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that Aśvatthāman while being pursued by Bhīmasena had discharged the first of weapons called Aiṣika, by which the embryo in the womb (of Uttarā) was wounded, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that the weapon Brahmaśira (discharged by Aśvatthāman) was repelled by Arjuna with another weapon over which he had pronounced the word "Svastī" and that Aśvatthāman had to give up the jewel-like excrescence on his head, then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success. When I heard that upon the embryo in the womb of Virāṭa's daughter being wounded by Aśvatthāman with a mighty weapon, Dvaipāyana and Kṛṣṇa pronounced curses on him (then, O Sañjaya, I had no hope of success).

शोच्या गान्धारी पुत्रपौत्रैर्विहीना तथा वध्वः पितृभिर्भ्रातृभिश्च कृतं कार्यं दुष्करं पाण्डवेयैः प्राप्तं राज्यमसपत्नं पुनस्तैः ।१५७।

कष्टं युद्धे दश शेषाः श्रुता मे त्रयोऽस्माकं पाण्डवानां च सप्त द्व्यूना विंशतिराहताक्षौहिणीनां तस्मिन्संग्रामे विग्रहे क्षत्रियाणाम् ।१५८।

तमसा त्वभ्यवस्तीर्णो मोह आविशतीव माम् संज्ञां नोपलभे सूत मनो विह्वलतीव मे ।१५९।

इत्युक्त्वा धृतराष्ट्रोऽथ विलप्य बहुदुःखितः मूर्च्छितः पुनराश्वस्तः संजयं वाक्यमब्रवीत् ।१६०।

संजयैवंगते प्राणांस्त्यक्तुमिच्छामि माचिरम् स्तोकं ह्यपि न पश्यामि फलं जीवितधारणे ।१६१।

तं तथावादिनं दीनं विलपन्तं महीपतिम् गावल्गणिरिदं धीमान्महार्थं वाक्यमब्रवीत् ।१६२।

Alas! Gāndhārī, destitute of children, grand-children, parents, brothers, and kindred, is to be pitied. Difficult is the task that has been performed by the Pāṇḍavas: by them has a kingdom been recovered without a rival. Alas! I have heard that the war has left only ten alive: three of our side, and the Pāṇḍavas, seven, in that dreadful conflict eighteen akṣauhiṇīs of kṣatriyas have been slain! All around me is utter darkness, and a fit of swoon assails me: consciousness leaves me, O Suta, and my mind is distracted. Dhritarashtra, bewailing his fate in these words, was overcome with extreme anguish and for a time deprived of sense; but being revived, he addressed Sañjaya in the following words: After what has come to pass, O Sañjaya, I wish to put an end to my life without delay; I do not find the least advantage in cherishing it any longer. The wise son of Gāvalagaṇa (Sañjaya) then addressed the distressed lord of earth while thus talking and bewailing, sighing like a serpent and repeatedly tainting, in words of deep import.

Sañjaya consoles Dhṛtarāṣṭra

श्रुतवानसि वै राज्ञो महोत्साहान्महाबलान् द्वैपायनस्य वदतो नारदस्य च धीमतः ।१६३।

महत्सु राजवंशेषु गुणैः समुदितेषु च जातान्दिव्यास्त्रविदुषः शक्रप्रतिमतेजसः ।१६४।

धर्मेण पृथिवीं जित्वा यज्ञैरिष्ट्वाप्तदक्षिणैः अस्मिँल्लोके यशः प्राप्य ततः कालवशं गताः ।१६५।

You have heard, O King, of the greatly powerful men of vast exertions, spoken of by Vyāsa and the wise Nārada; men born of great royal families, resplendent with worthy qualities, versed in the science of celestial arms, and in glory emblems of Indra; men who having conquered the world by justice and performed sacrifices with fit offerings (to the brāhmaṇas), obtained renown in this world and at last succumbed to the sway of time.

वैन्यं महारथं वीरं सृञ्जयं जयतां वरम् सुहोत्रं रन्तिदेवं च कक्षीवन्तं तथौशिजम् ।१६६।

बाह्लीकं दमनं शैब्यं शर्यातिमजितं जितम् विश्वामित्रममित्रघ्नमम्बरीषं महाबलम् ।१६७।

मरुत्तं मनुमिक्ष्वाकुं गयं भरतमेव च रामं दाशरथिं चैव शशबिन्दुं भगीरथम् ।१६८।

ययातिं शुभकर्माणं देवैर्यो याजितः स्वयम् चैत्ययूपाङ्किता भूमिर्यस्येयं सवनाकरा ।१६९।

इति राज्ञां चतुर्विंशन्नारदेन सुरर्षिणा पुत्रशोकाभितप्ताय पुरा शैब्याय कीर्तिताः ।१७०।

तेभ्यश्चान्ये गताः पूर्वं राजानो बलवत्तराः महारथा महात्मानः सर्वैः समुदिता गुणैः ।१७१।

पूरुः कुरुर्यदुः शूरो विष्वगश्वो महाधृतिः अणुहो युवनाश्वश्च ककुत्स्थो विक्रमी रघुः ।१७२।

विजिती वीतिहोत्रश्च भवः श्वेतो बृहद्गुरुः उशीनरः शतरथः कङ्को दुलिदुहो द्रुमः ।१७३।

दम्भोद्भवः परो वेनः सगरः संकृतिर्निमिः अजेयः परशुः पुण्ड्रः शम्भुर्देवावृधोऽनघः ।१७४।

देवाह्वयः सुप्रतिमः सुप्रतीको बृहद्रथः महोत्साहो विनीतात्मा सुक्रतुर्नैषधो नलः ।१७५।

सत्यव्रतः शान्तभयः सुमित्रः सुबलः प्रभुः जानुजङ्घोऽनरण्योऽर्कः प्रियभृत्यः शुभव्रतः ।१७६।

बलबन्धुर्निरामर्दः केतुशृङ्गो बृहद्बलः धृष्टकेतुर्बृहत्केतुर्दीप्तकेतुर्निरामयः ।१७७।

अविक्षित्प्रबलो धूर्तः कृतबन्धुर्दृढेषुधिः महापुराणः संभाव्यः प्रत्यङ्गः परहा श्रुतिः ।१७८।

Such were Vainya, the valiant car-warrior, Sṛñjaya, great amongst conquerors, Suhotra, Rantideva, Kakṣivat, and Auśij; Bālhika, Damana, Śaibya, Śaryāti, the unconquerable Jita; Viswamitra the destroyer of foes; Ambarīṣa, great in strength; Marutta, Manu, Īkṣvāku, Gaya, and Bharata; Rāma the son of Daśaratha; Śaśabindu, and Bhagīratha; (Kṛtavīrya, the greatly fortunate, and Janamejaya too); and Yayāti of good deeds who performed sacrifices, being assisted therein by the celestials themselves, and by whose sacrificial altars and stakes this earth with her habited and uninhabited regions has been marked all over. These twenty-four kings were formerly spoken of by the celestial ṛṣi Nārada unto Śaibya when much afflicted for the loss of his children. Besides these, other kings had gone before, still more powerful than they, mighty charioteers noble in mind, and resplendent with every worthy quality. These were Puru, Kuru, Yadu, Śūra and Viṣvagaśva of great glory; Aṇuha, Yuvanāśva, Kakutstha, Vikramī, and Raghu; Vijita, Vītihotra, Bhava, Śveta, and Bṛhadguru; Uśīnara, Śataratha, Kaṅka, Duliduha, and Druma; Dambhodbhava, Para, Vena, Sagara, Saṅkṛti and Nimi; Ajeya, Paraśu, Puṇḍra, Śambhu and holy Devavṛdha; Devāvhaya, Supratima, Supratīka and Bṛhadratha; Mahotsāha, Vinītātma, Sukratu and Nala, the king of the Niṣadhas; Satyavrata, Śāntabhaya, Sumitra, and the chief Subala; Jānujaṅgha, Anaraṇya, Arka, Priyabhṛtya, Śubhavrata, Balabandhu, Nirāmarda, Ketusṛṅga, and Bṛhadbala; Dhṛṣṭaketu, Bṛhatketu, Dīptaketu and Nirāmaya; Avikṣipta, Prabala, Dhūrta, Kṛtabandhu and Dṛḍheṣudhi; Pratyaṅga, Parahā and Śruti, celebrated in the Mahāpurāṇas.

एते चान्ये च बहवः शतशोऽथ सहस्रशः श्रूयन्तेऽयुतशश्चान्ये संख्याताश्चापि पद्मशः ।१७९।

हित्वा सुविपुलान्भोगान्बुद्धिमन्तो महाबलाः राजानो निधनं प्राप्तास्तव पुत्रैर्महत्तमाः ।१८०।

येषां दिव्यानि कर्माणि विक्रमस्त्याग एव च माहात्म्यमपि चास्तिक्यं सत्यता शौचमार्जवम् ।१८१।

विद्वद्भिः कथ्यते लोके पुराणैः कविसत्तमैः सर्वर्द्धिगुणसंपन्नास्ते चापि निधनं गताः ।१८२।

तव पुत्रा दुरात्मानः प्रतप्ताश्चैव मन्युना लुब्धा दुर्वृत्तभूयिष्ठा न ताञ्शोचितुमर्हसि ।१८३।

श्रुतवानसि मेधावी बुद्धिमान्प्राज्ञसंमतः येषां शास्त्रानुगा बुद्धिर्न ते मुह्यन्ति भारत ।१८४।

निग्रहानुग्रहौ चापि विदितौ ते नराधिप नात्यन्तमेवानुवृत्तिः श्रूयते पुत्ररक्षणे ।१८५।

भवितव्यं तथा तच्च नातः शोचितुमर्हसि दैवं प्रज्ञाविशेषेण को निवर्तितुमर्हति ।१८६।

विधातृविहितं मार्गं न कश्चिदतिवर्तते कालमूलमिदं सर्वं भावाभावौ सुखासुखे ।१८७।

कालः पचति भूतानि कालः संहरति प्रजाः निर्दहन्तं प्रजाः कालं कालः शमयते पुनः ।१८८।

कालो विकुरुते भावान्सर्वाँल्लोके शुभाशुभान् कालः संक्षिपते सर्वाः प्रजा विसृजते पुनः

(कालः सुप्तेषु जागर्ति कालो हि दुरतिक्रमः) कालः सर्वेषु भूतेषु चरत्यविधृतः समः ।१८९।

अतीतानागता भावा ये च वर्तन्ति सांप्रतम् तान्कालनिर्मितान्बुद्ध्वा न संज्ञां हातुमर्हसि ।१९०।

These, O chief, and other kings, we hear enumerated by hundreds and by thousands, and still others by millions, princes of great power and wisdom, quitting very abundant enjoyments met death as your sons have done! Their heavenly deeds, valour, and generosity, their magnanimity, faith, truth, purity, simplicity and mercy, are published to the world in the records of former times by sacred bards of great learning. Though endued with every noble virtue, these have yielded up their lives. Your sons were malevolent, inflamed with passion, avaricious, and of very evil-disposition. It does not behove you to grieve over them. You are versed in the śāstras, O Bharata, and are intelligent and wise; they never sink under misfortunes whose understandings are guided by the śāstra. You are acquainted, O King, with the lenity and severity of fate; this anxiety therefore for the safety of your children is unbecoming. Moreover, it behoves you not to grieve for that which must happen: for who can avert, by his wisdom, the decrees of fate? No one can leave the way marked out for him by providence. Existence and non-existence, pleasure and pain all have Time for their root. Time creates all things and Time destroys all creatures. It is Time that burns creatures and it is Time that extinguisheth the fire. All states, the good and the evil, in the three worlds, are caused by Time. Time cuts short all things and creates them anew. (Time alone is awake when all things are asleep: indeed, Time is incapable of being overcome.) Time passes over all things without being retarded. Knowing, as you do, that all things past and future and all that exist at the present moment, are the offspring of Time, it behoves you not to throw away your reason.

Ugraśravas eulogises the reading of the Mahābhārata

सूत उवाच

अत्रोपनिषदं पुण्यां कृष्णद्वैपायनोऽब्रवीत् भारताध्ययनात्पुण्यादपि पादमधीयतः श्रद्दधानस्य पूयन्ते सर्वपापान्यशेषतः ।१९१।

देवर्षयो ह्यत्र पुण्या ब्रह्मराजर्षयस्तथा कीर्त्यन्ते शुभकर्माणस्तथा यक्षमहोरगाः ।१९२।

भगवान्वासुदेवश्च कीर्त्यतेऽत्र सनातनः स हि सत्यमृतं चैव पवित्रं पुण्यमेव च ।१९३।

शाश्वतं ब्रह्म परमं ध्रुवं ज्योतिः सनातनम् यस्य दिव्यानि कर्माणि कथयन्ति मनीषिणः ।१९४।

असत्सत्सदसच्चैव यस्माद्देवात्प्रवर्तते संततिश्च प्रवृत्तिश्च जन्म मृत्युः पुनर्भवः ।१९५।

अध्यात्मं श्रूयते यच्च पञ्चभूतगुणात्मकम् अव्यक्तादि परं यच्च स एव परिगीयते ।१९६।

यत्तद्यतिवरा युक्ता ध्यानयोगबलान्विताः प्रतिबिम्बमिवादर्शे पश्यन्त्यात्मन्यवस्थितम् ।१९७।

The bard said: Kṛṣṇa Dvaipāyana composed this holy Upaniṣad. The study of the Bhārata is an act of piety. He that reads even one foot, with belief, has his sins entirely purged away. Herein devaṛṣis, brahmaṛṣis and rājaṛṣis have been spoken of; and likewise yakṣas and great uragas (nāgas). Herein also has been described the eternal Vasudeva. He is the true and just, the pure and holy, the eternal and supreme Brahma, the constant and eternal light, whose divine deeds wise and learned recount; from whom has proceeded the unreal, real and real-and-unreal universe with principles of generation and progression, and birth, death and re-birth. That also hath been treated of which is called Adhyatma (the superintending spirit of nature) that partaketh of the attributes of the five elements. The ātman has been described, the unmanifest consisting of the five elements and the guṇas, and the highest which the great yatis endowed with the power of meditation behold dwelling in their hearts as a reflected image in the mirror.

श्रद्दधानः सदोद्युक्तः सत्यधर्मपरायणः आसेवन्निममध्यायं नरः पापात्प्रमुच्यते ।१९८।

अनुक्रमणिमध्यायं भारतस्येममादितः आस्तिकः सततं शृण्वन्न कृच्छ्रेष्ववसीदति ।१९९।

उभे संध्ये जपन्किंचित्सद्यो मुच्येत किल्बिषात् अनुक्रमण्या यावत्स्यादह्ना रात्र्या च संचितम् ।२००।

भारतस्य वपुर्ह्येतत्सत्यं चामृतमेव च नवनीतं यथा दध्नो द्विपदां ब्राह्मणो यथा ।२०१।

ह्रदानामुदधिः श्रेष्ठो गौर्वरिष्ठा चतुष्पदाम् यथैतानि वरिष्ठानि तथा भारतमुच्यते ।२०२।

The man of faith, devoted to piety, and constant in the exercise of virtue, on reading this section is freed from sin. The believer that constantly hears recited this section of the Bhārata, called the Introduction, from the beginning, falls not into difficulties. The man repeating any part of the introduction in the two twilights is during such act freed from the sins contracted during the day or the night. This section, the body of the Bhārata, is truth and nectar. As butter is in curd, brāhmaṇa among bipeds; as the sea is eminent among receptacles of water, and the cow among quadrupeds; as are these (among the things mentioned) so is the Bhārata said (to be among histories).

यश्चैनं श्रावयेच्छ्राद्धे ब्राह्मणान्पादमन्ततः अक्षय्यमन्नपानं तत्पितॄंस्तस्योपतिष्ठति ।२०३।

इतिहासपुराणाभ्यां वेदं समुपबृंहयेत् बिभेत्यल्पश्रुताद्वेदो मामयं प्रतरिष्यति ।२०४।

कार्ष्णं वेदमिमं विद्वाञ्श्रावयित्वार्थमश्नुते भ्रूणहत्याकृतं चापि पापं जह्यान्न संशयः ।२०५।

य इमं शुचिरध्यायं पठेत्पर्वणि पर्वणि अधीतं भारतं तेन कृत्स्नं स्यादिति मे मतिः ।२०६।

यश्चेमं शृणुयान्नित्यमार्षं श्रद्धासमन्वितः स दीर्घमायुः कीर्तिं च स्वर्गतिं चाप्नुयान्नरः ।२०७।

He that causes, even a single foot thereof, to be recited to brāhmaṇas during a śrāddha, his offerings of food and drink to the manes of his ancestors become inexhaustible. By the aid of history and the Purāṇas, the Veda may be expounded; but the Veda is afraid of one of little information: "he will attack me". The learned man who recites to other this Veda of Vyasa reaps advantage. It may without doubt destroy even the sin of killing the embryo and the like. He that reads this holy chapter on each 'parva' earns the merit of studying the whole Bhārata, I think. The man who with reverence daily listens to this sacred work acquires long life and renown and ascends to heaven.

चत्वार एकतो वेदा भारतं चैकमेकतः समागतैः सुरर्षिभिस्तुलामारोपितं पुरा महत्त्वे च गुरुत्वे च ध्रियमाणं ततोऽधिकम् ।२०८।

महत्त्वाद्भारवत्त्वाच्च महाभारतमुच्यते निरुक्तमस्य यो वेद सर्वपापैः प्रमुच्यते ।२०९।

तपो न कल्कोऽध्ययनं न कल्कः स्वाभाविको वेदविधिर्न कल्कः प्रसह्य वित्ताहरणं न कल्कस्तान्येव भावोपहतानि कल्कः ।२१०।

In former days, having placed the four Vedas on one side and the Bhārata on the other, these were weighed in the balance by the gods and sages assembled for that purpose. The latter proved superior in importance and weight. Being esteemed superior both in substance and gravity of import it is called Mahābharata. He that knows this etymology is saved from all his sins. Tapa is innocent, study is harmless, the ordinance of the Vedas prescribed for all the tribes are harmless, the acquisition of wealth by exertion is harmless; but when they are abused in their practices it is then that they become sources of evil.