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p. 188


(Sambhava Parva continued)

"Vaisampayana said, 'While that king of kings dwelt in heaven--the home of the celestials, he was reverenced by the gods, the Sadhyas, the Maruts, and the Vasus. Of sacred deeds, and mind under complete control, the monarch used to repair now and then from the abode of the celestials unto the region of Brahman. And it hath been heard by me that he dwelt for a long time in heaven.

"One day that best of kings, Yayati, went to Indra and there in course of conversation the lord of Earth was asked by Indra as follows:

'What didst thou say, O king, when thy son Puru took thy decrepitude on Earth and when thou gavest him thy kingdom?'

"Yayati answered, 'I told him that the whole country between the rivers Ganga and Yamuna was his. That is, indeed, the central region of the Earth, while the out-lying regions are to be the dominions of thy brothers. I also told him that those without anger were ever superior to those under its sway, those disposed to forgive were ever superior to the unforgiving. Man is superior to the lower animals. Among men again the learned are superior to the un-learned. If wronged, thou shouldst not wrong in return. One's wrath, if disregarded, burneth one's own self; but he that regardeth it not taketh away all the virtues of him that exhibiteh it. Never shouldst thou pain others by cruel speeches. Never subdue thy foes by despicable means; and never utter such scorching and sinful words as may torture others. He that pricketh as if with thorns men by means of hard and cruel words, thou must know, ever carrieth in his mouth the Rakshasas. Prosperity and luck fly away at his very sight. Thou shouldst ever keep the virtuous before thee as thy models; thou shouldst ever with retrospective eye compare thy acts with those of the virtuous; thou shouldst ever disregard the hard words of the wicked. Thou shouldst ever make the conduct of the wise the model upon which thou art to act thyself. The man hurt by the arrows of cruel speech hurled from one's lips, weepeth day and night. Indeed, these strike at the core of the body. Therefore the wise never fling these arrows at others. There is nothing in the three worlds by which thou canst worship and adore the deities better than by kindness, friendship, charity and sweet speeches unto all. Therefore, shouldst thou always utter words that soothe, and not those that scorch. And thou shouldst regard those that deserve, thy regards, and shouldst always give but never beg!"'

Next: Section LXXXVIII