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p. 126


"Dhritarashtra said, 'He whom we have never heard to speak a falsehood, he who hath Dhananjaya to fight for him, may have the sovereignty of even the three worlds. Reflecting from day to day I do not find the warrior who may, on his car, advance in battle against the wielder of Gandiva. When that wielder of Gandiva will shoot winged arrows and Nalikas and shafts capable of piercing the breast of warriors, there is no rival of his in battle. If those bulls among men, those heroes,--Drona and Karna,--those foremost of mighty men, versed in weapons and invincible in battle, withstand him, the result may be very doubtful, but I am sure that the victory will not be mine. Karna is both compassionate and heedless, and preceptor is aged and hath affection for this pupil. Partha, however, is able and mighty, of firm grasp (of the bow). Terrible will be the encounter between them, without resulting in any one's defeat. Conversant with weapons and endued with heroism, all of them have earned great fame. They may relinquish the very sovereignty of the gods, but not the chance of winning victory. There would be peace, without doubt, upon the fall of either of these two (Drona and Karna) or of Falguna, There is none, however, who can either slay or vanquish Arjuna. Alas, how may his wrath that hath been excited against my foolish sons be pacified. Others there are acquainted with the use of weapons, that conqueror are conquered; but it is heard that Falguna always conquereth. Three and thirty years have passed away since the time, when Arjuna, having invited Agni, gratified him at Khandava, vanquishing all the celestials. We have never heard of his defeat anywhere, O child. Like the case of Indra, victory is always Arjuna's, who hath for his charioteer in battle Hrishikesa, endued with the same character and position. We hear that the two Krishnas on the same car and the stringed Gandiva,--these three forces,--have been united together. As regards ourselves, we have not a bow of that kind, or a warrior like Arjuna, or a charioteer like Krishna. The foolish followers of Duryodhana are not aware of this. O Sanjaya, the blazing thunderbolt falling on the head leaveth something undestroyed, but the arrows, O child, shot by Kiritin leave nothing undestroyed. Even now I behold Dhanajaya shooting his arrows and committing a havoc around, picking off heads from bodies with his arrowy showers! Even now I behold the arrowy conflagration, blazing all around, issuing from the Gandiva, consuming in battle the ranks of my sons. Even now it seemeth to me that, struck with panic at the rattle of Savyasachin's car, my vast army consisting of diverse forces is running away in all directions. As a tremendous conflagration, wandering in all directions, of swelling flames and urged by the wind, consumeth dry leaves and grass, so will the great fame of Arjuna's weapons consume all my troops. Kiritin, appearing as a foe in battle, will vomit innumerable arrows and become irresistible like all destroying

p. 127

[paragraph continues] Death urged forward by the Supreme Ordainer. When I shall constantly hear of evil omens of diverse kinds happening in the homes of the Kurus. and around them and on the field of battle, then will destruction, without doubt, overtake the Bharats.'"

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