The Mahabharata Home
"Sanjaya said, It is even so, O great king, as thou, O Bharata, sayest. On the event of battle, the destruction of the Kshatriyas by means of Gandiva is certain. This, however, I do not understand, how when thou art always wise and especially acquainted with the prowess of Savyasachin, thou followest yet the counsels of thy sons. Having O bull of the Bharata race, injured the sons of Pritha from the very beginning, having in fact, committed sins repeatedly, this is not, O great king, the time (to grieve). He that occupies the position of a father and a friend, if he is always watchful and of good heart, should seek the welfare (of his children); but he that injures, cannot be called a father. Hearing of the defeat of the Pandavas at dice, thou hadst, O king, laughed like a child, saying, 'This is won, this is acquired!' When the harshest speeches were addressed to the sons of Pritha, thou didst not then interfere, pleased at the prospect of thy sons winning the whole kingdom. Thou couldst not however, then see before thee inevitable fall. The country of the Kurus, including the region called Jangala is, O king, thy paternal kingdom. Thou hast, however, obtained the whole earth by those heroes. Won by the strength of their arms, the sons of Pritha made over thee this extensive empire. Thou thinkest, however, O best of kings, that all this was acquired by thee. When thy sons, seized by the king of the Gandharvas, were about to sink in a shoreless sea without a raft to save them, it was Partha, O king, that brought them back. Thou hadst, like a child, repeatedly laughed, O monarch, at the Pandavas when they were defeated at dice and were going into exile. When Arjuna poureth a shower of keen arrows, the very oceans dry up, let alone beings of flesh and blood. Falguna is the foremost of all shooters; Gandiva is the foremost of all bows; Kesava is the foremost of all beings; the Sudarsana is the foremost of all weapons; and of cars, that furnished with the banner bearing the blazing Ape on it is the foremost. That car of his, bearing all these and drawn by white steeds, will, O king, consume us all in battle like the upraised wheel of Time. O bull of the Bharata race, his is even now the whole earth and he is the foremost of all kings, who hath Bhima and Arjuna to fight for him. Beholding the host sinking in despair when smitten by Bhima, the Kauravas headed by Duryodhana will all meet destruction. Struck with the fear of Bhima and Arjuna, the sons, O king, and the kings following them, will not, O lord, be able to win victory. The Matsyas, the Panchalas, the Salways and the Surasenas, all decline
to pay thee homage now and all disregard thee. Acquainted with the energy of that wise king, all of them, however, have joined that son of Pritha, and for their devotion to him they are always opposed to thy sons. He that, by his evil deeds, afflicted the sons of Pandu, who are all wedded to virtue and undeserving of destruction, he that hateth them even now,--that sinful man, O monarch, who is none else than thy son,--should, with all his adherents, be checked by all means. It behoveth thee not to bewail in this strain. Even this was said by myself as well as by the wise Vidura at the time of the gambling match at dice. These thy lamentations in connection with the Pandavas, as if thou wert a helpless person, are, O king, all useless.'"
Next: Section LV