Wednesday, 26 February 2020

AN ACCOUNT OF VENA AND PRITHU | HARIVAMSA PARVA SECTION 05

CHAPTER V

(AN ACCOUNT OF VENA AND PRITHU)


VAISHAMPAYANA said :- Formerly the Patriarch Anga, born in the race of Atri, and equally all-powerful like him, became the protector of religion (1). A highly impious son by name Vena was born to him. That Patriarch was begotten on Sunithā the daughter of Death (2). Imbibing the defect of his maternal grand-father, that son of Kāla's daughter deviated from his own duties and preached freedom of conduct in the world (3). That king established an irreligious order and disregarding Vedic observances he engaged in impious actions (4). During his administration the study of the Vedas and the performance of the Vedic rites were suspended. And the celestials did not get Soma juice consecrated in Yajnas (5). 

Such was the dreadful promise of the Patriarch that no one would perform, even at the time of destruction, either Homa or Yajna (6). O foremost of Kurus, (he said) I am worthy of being adored, I am the agent of Yajna, I am identical with Yajna—you should dedicate all your Yajnas and Homas unto me (7). Beholding him thus transgress the order and partake unduly and unfairly of the sacrificial offerings the great Rishis, headed by Marichi, said (8):–"We shall enter upon the initiation ceremony for many long years—therefore do not act irreligiously, O Vena, for such is the eternal religion (9). After the death of Atri you have forsooth been born as a Patriarch. And you made the contract that you would govern the subjects" (10). After they had said this the wicked and ill-disposed Vena, laughing, said to all those great Rishis, the following evil words (11). Vena said "Who else will be the founder of religion? Whom shall I hear? Who else is superior to me on this earth in learning, energy, prowess, asceticism and truth (12)? All creatures and especially all forms of religion have originated from me. You are all stupid and void of consciousness and therefore you do not know me (13). If I wish I can burn down the earth or overflow it with water. I can obstruct the heaven and earth: there is no need of discussing it (14)". When the noble Rishis could not make Vena humble on account of his pride and egotism, they, worked up with anger, belaboured that highly powerful king and began to churn his left thigh (15–16). When the thigh of that king was thus churned there arose from it a greatly short and dark person (17). O Janamejaya, he stood there, stricken with fear and folding his arms. Beholding him thus possessed by fear Atri said to him "Nishida" Sit down (18). O foremost of speakers, he became the originator of the race of Nishadas (hunters) and procreated the race of fishermen begotten of the sins of Vena (19). And Tukhāras, Tumuras and other races taking delight in impiety who live on the Vindhya mountain were also born of Vena (20). Thereupon, those high-souled Rishis, worked up with anger, began to churn the right arm of Vena like a piece of wood used for kindling fire (21). From that arm originated Prithu resembling the very flame, and burning in effulgence like the fire itself (22). The highly illustrious Prithu was born with his most excellent prime bow Ajagava, heavenly arrows and a highly lustrous coat of mail to protect his body (23-24). At his birth all the creatures were filled with delight and Vena too, O monarch, repaired to the celestial region (25). O descendant of Kuru, the great Prithu, a good son, being born he saved Vena from the hell called Put[1] (26). Taking all the jewels the oceans came to him with water for his installation (27). The Divine Brahmā with the Devas, the offspring of Angiras, and all other creatures, mobile and immobile, came there and installed the effulgent king, the son of Vena, the lord of an extensive kingdom (28-29). The highly energetic and powerful son of Vena, Prithu, was installed as the first king by the leading Rishis conversant with the Vedas and other scriptures (30) By him were pleased the subjects who had been dissatisfied by his father. On account of his being the object of their love he was called Rājā (king) (31). When he used to make a voyage in the ocean the water used be grow hard as land and the mountains made way for him and the branches of the trees were not broken down (32). The earth grew easy of production and yielded articles of food as soon as thought of. The kine gave milk whenever milched and honey grew in every leaf (33). In the meantime at the sacred Yajna of Brahmā, was born the highly intelligent Suta (34). At that great Yajna was also born the wise Māgadha. They were invited by the celestial saints for chanting the glories of Prithu (35). All the Rishis said to them "Do ye sing the glories of this king. This is a work that befits you and this king too is also an worthy subject for it (36)". Then Suta and Māgadha said to all those Rishis:—"We shall, with our own actions, delight the gods and Rishis (37). O ye twice born ones, we are not cognizant of the actions, characteristics and fame of this energetic king. How shall we then chant his glories (38)?" They were then engaged by the Rishis (to chant his glories) saying "Do ye chant his glories by the deeds which the highly powerful Prithu did in the previous Kalpa (39). This king speaks truth, has a good character, keeps his promise, is modest, does good unto all, is forgiving, powerful, represses the wicked, observes his duties, is grateful, merciful, always speaks sweet words and respects those who deserve it, performs Yajnas, is devoted to Brāhmanas, is of a quiet temperament, and observes the rules of society." Since then, O Janmejaya, at the time of chanting glories Sutas and Māgadhas (panegyrists) pour their benedictions in this world (40-42). Being highly pleased with their eulogy the king Prithu conferred upon Suta the province of Arupa, and on Māgadha, that of Magadha (43). Thereat delighted the great Rishis and the subjects said "The king will forsooth grant us maintenances in abundance (44)". Thereupon at the words of the great saints, the subjects approached the son of Vena and begged of him their maintenances (45). Thus approached by his subjects and with a view to do them good the powerful king took up his bow and assailed the earth (46). Thereupon assuming the form of a cow the earth fled away in fear of Vena's son. Prithu too, taking up his bow, pursued her (47). Traversing the region of Brahmā and all other regions in fear of Vena's son she saw him everywhere before her with the bow in his hand (48). He looked effulgent like the burning eternal fire with his sharpened arrows and even the immortals could not repress that high-souled one (49). Even when repairing to the region of Brahmā she could not find safety; the earth, adored even by the three worlds with folded hands then said to the son of Vena:—"You should not perpetrate the iniquity of slaying a woman. Without me, how will you be able, O king, to protect your subjects (50-51). O king, all the worlds are situated on me, and this universe is sustained by me. Know this, O king, that with my destruction all the creatures will be destroyed (52). O king, if you wish to encompass the well being of your subjects it does not behove you to kill me. Listen to these words of mine (53). If works are undertaken commensurate with their means they are crowned with success. Do you, O king, find out the means by which you will protect your subjects (54). By slaying me, O king, you will not be able to protect your subjects by any means. O you of great effulgence, I will find it out; do you restrain your anger (55). Even women of inferior births should not be slain. Therefore, O king, you should not forsake your morality (56)."

Hearing those various words of the earth the high-souled and pious king, restraining his anger, said to her (57).

[1] It is a hell where all those who have no son born to them go after death. It is for this that the Hindus look so eagerly to the birth of a son.

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Source: https://archive.org/details/AProseEnglishTranslationOfHarivamsh

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அக்ரூரன் அக்னி அசமஞ்சன் அதிரதன் அந்தகன் அரிஷ்டன் அர்ஜுனன் அனு அஜமீடன் அஸ்தி ஆபவர் ஆயு ஆஹுகன் இந்திரன் இளை உக்ரசேனன் உக்ராயுதன் உசீநரன் உதங்கர் உபரிசரவசு உல்பணன் ஊர்வசி ஊர்வர் ஏகலவ்யன் ஔர்வர் கக்ஷேயு கங்கை கசியபர் கண்டரீகர் கண்டூகன் கபிலர் கமலாதேவி கம்ஸன் கருடன் கர்க்கர் கர்ணன் காதி காந்திதேவி கார்த்தவீர்யார்ஜுனன் காலநேமி காலயவனன் காலவர் காளியன் கிருஷ்ணன் குசிகன் குணகன் குரோஷ்டு குவலயாபீடம் குவலாஷ்வன் கூனி கைசிகன் சகடாசுரன் சக்ரதேவன் சங்கன் சததன்வன் சத்யகர்மன் சத்ருக்னன் சத்வதன் சந்தனு சந்திரன் சனத்குமாரர் சன்னதி சாணூரன் சாந்தீபனி சால்வன் சிசுபாலன் சித்திராங்கதன் சிருகாலன் சிவன் சுனீதன் சூரன் சூரியன் சைசிராயணர் தக்ஷன் தசரதன் தந்தவக்ரன் தமகோஷன் தரதன் தன்வந்தரி தாரை திதிக்ஷு திரிசங்கு திரிவிக்ரை திருமிலன் திரையாருணன் திலீபன் திவோதாஸன் துந்து துந்துமாரன் துருவன் துஷ்யந்தன் தூம்ரவர்ணன் தேவகன் தேவகி தேவாவ்ருதன் தேனுகன் நந்தன் நரகாசுரன் நஹுஷன் நாரதர் நாராயணன் நாராயணி நிகும்பன் நிசுந்தன் நித்ராதேவி நீபன் பஞ்சஜனன் பத்மாவதி பப்ரு பயோதன் பரசுராமர் பரதன் பரத்வாஜர் பலராமன் பார்வதி பிரதீபன் பிரம்மதத்தன் பிரம்மன் பிரலம்பன் பிரஸேனன் பிராசேதஸ் பிராப்தி பிருது பிருதை பிருஹதாஷ்வன் பிருஹஸ்பதி பீஷ்மகன் பீஷ்மர் புதன் புரூரவன் பூதனை பூமாதேவி பூரு பூஜனி மதிராதேவி மது மதுமதி மயன் மஹாமாத்ரன் மாயாதேவி மார்க்கண்டேயர் முசுகுந்தன் முஷ்டிகன் யசோதை யது யயாதி யுதிஷ்டிரன் ரஜி ராமன் ருக்மவதி ருக்மி ருக்மிணி ரேவதி ரைவதன் ரோஹிணி லவணன் வசிஷ்டர் வருணன் வஸு வஸுதேவன் வாயு விகத்ரு விதர்ப்பன் விப்ராஜன் விரஜை விருஷ்ணி விஷ்ணு விஷ்வாசி விஷ்வாமித்ரர் விஷ்வாவஸு விஸ்வகர்மன் வேனன் வைவஸ்வத மனு ஜராசந்தன் ஜஹ்னு ஜாம்பவான் ஜியாமோகன் ஸகரன் ஸத்யபாமா ஸத்யவிரதன் ஸத்ராஜித் ஸத்வான் ஸஹஸ்ரதன் ஸ்ரீதாமன் ஹயக்ரீவன் ஹரி ஹரியஷ்வன் ஹரிஷ்சந்திரன் ஹிரண்யகசிபு