Bhisma Parva, Mahabharata/Book VI Chapter 6
Mahabharata Book VI Chapter 6:English
mentions names of rivers and mountains
"Dhritarashtra said,--'The names of rivers and mountains, O Sanjaya, as also of provinces, and all other things resting on the earth, and their dimensions, O thou that are acquainted with the measures of things of the earth in its entirety and the forests, O Sanjaya, recount to me in detail.'
"Sanjaya said,--'O great king, all things in the universe, in consequence of the presence (in them) of the five elements, have been said to be equal by the wise. These elements, are space, air, fire, water, and earth. Their (respective) attributes are sound, touch, vision, taste, and scent. Every one of these elements possesses (in addition to what is especially its own) the attribute or attributes of that or those coming before it. The earth, therefore, is the foremost of them all, possessing as it does the attributes of all the other four, besides what is specially its own, as said by Rishis acquainted with truth. 1 There are four attributes, O king, in water. Scent does not exist in it. Fire has three attributes viz., sound, touch, and vision. Sound and touch belong to air, while space has sound alone. These five attributes, O king, exist (in this way) in the five principal elements depending on which all creatures in the universe exist. They exist separately and independently when there is homogeneity in the universe. 2 When, however, these do not exist in their natural state but with one another, then creatures spring into life, furnished with bodies. This is never otherwise. The elements are destroyed, in the order of the one succeeding, merging into the one that proceeds; and they spring also into existence, one arising from the one before it. 3 All of these are immeasurable, their forms being Brahma itself. In the universe are seen creatures consisting of the five elements. Men endeavour to ascertain their proportions by exercising their reason. Those matters, however, that are inconceivable, should never be sought to be solved by reason. That which is above (human) nature is an indication of the inconceivable.
"'O son of Kuru's race, I will, however, describe to thee the island called Sudarsana. This island, O king, is circular and of the form of a wheel. It is covered with rivers and other pieces of water and with mountains looking like masses of clouds, and with cities and many delightful provinces. It is also full of trees furnished with flowers and fruits, and with crops of diverse
kinds and other wealth. And it is surrounded on all sides with the salt ocean. As a person can see his own face in a mirror, even so is the island called Sudarsana seen in the lunar disc. Two of its parts seem to be a peepul tree, while two others look like a large hare. It is surrounded on all sides with an assemblage of every kind of deciduous plants. Besides these portions, the rest is all water. What remains I will describe to thee shortly. The rest I will speak of afterwards. Listen now to this that I describe in brief. 1"
12:1 I have rendered 4 and 5 a little too freely. The language of the original is very terse.
12:2 Samyam is homogeneity. The allusion is to the state of the universe before creation, when there exists nothing but a homogeneous mass or Brahma alone. The first compound of the 2nd line is read differently. The Burdwan Pandits and the Bombay edition read anyonyam (in the accusative); many of the Bengal texts read anyonyena (in the instrumental). The meaning is scarcely affected by this difference of reading.
12:3 The order of destruction is that earth merges into water, water into fire, fire into air, and air into space. And so the order of birth is that from space arises air, from air arises fire, from fire arises water, and from water arises earth.
13:1 Nilakantha explains the last six slokas as having an esoteric meaning. By Sudarsana he understands the mind. The rest is explained consistently. Interpretations, however, are not rare among commentators seeking to put sense in non-sense.
Mahabharata Book VI Chapter 6:Sanskrit
नथीनां पर्वतानां च नामधेयानि संजय तदा जनपथानां च ये चान्ये भूमिम आश्रिताः 2 परमाणं च परमाणज्ञ पृदिव्या अपि सर्वशः निखिलेन समाचक्ष्व काननानि च संजय 3 पञ्चेमानि महाराज महाभूतानि संग्रहात जगत सदितानि सर्वाणि समान्य आहुर मनीषिणः 4 भूमिर आपस तदा वायुर अग्निर आकाशम एव च गुणॊत्तराणि सर्वाणि तेषां भूमिः परधानतः 5 शब्थः सपर्शश च रूपं च रसॊ गन्धश च पञ्चमः भूमेर एते गुणाः परॊक्ता ऋषिभिस तत्त्ववेथिभिः 6 चत्वारॊ ऽपसु गुणा राजन गन्धस तत्र न विथ्यते शब्थः सपर्शश च रूपं च तेजसॊ ऽद गुणास तरयः शब्थः सपर्शश च वायॊस तु आकाशे शब्थ एव च 7 एते पञ्च गुणा राजन महाभूतेषु पञ्चसु वर्तन्ते सर्वलॊकेषु येषु लॊकाः परतिष्ठिताः 8 अन्यॊन्यं नाभिवर्तन्ते साम्यं भवति वै यथा यथा तु विषमीभावम आविशन्ति परस्परम तथा थेहैर थेहवन्तॊ वयतिरॊहन्ति नान्यदा 9 आनुपूर्व्याथ विनश्यन्ति जायन्ते चानुपूर्वशः सर्वाण्य अपरिमेयानि तथ एषां रूपम ऐश्वरम 10 तत्र तत्र हि थृश्यन्ते धातवः पाञ्च भौतिकाः तेषां मनुष्यास तर्केण परमाणानि परचक्षते 11 अचिन्त्याः खलु ये भावा न तांस तर्केण साधयेत परकृतिभ्यः परं यत तु तथ अचिन्त्यस्य लक्षणम 12 सुदर्शनं परवक्ष्यामि थवीपं ते कुरुनन्थन परिमण्डलॊ महाराज थवीपॊ ऽसौ चक्रसंस्दितः 13 नथी जलप्रतिच्छन्नः पर्वतैश चाभ्रसंनिभैः पुरैश च विविधाकारै रम्यैर जनपथैस तदा 14 वृक्षैः पुष्पफलॊपेतैः संपन्नधनधान्यवान लावणेन समुथ्रेण समन्तात परिवारितः 15 यदा च पुरुषः पश्येथ आथर्शे मुखम आत्मनः एवं सुदर्शन द्वीपॊ थृश्यते चन्थ्रमण्डले 16 थविर अंशे पिप्पलस तत्र थविर अंशे च शशॊ महान सर्वौषधिसमावापैः सर्वतः परिवृंहितः आपस ततॊ ऽनया विज्ञेया एष संक्षेप उच्यते
Mahabharata Book VI Chapter 6:Transliteration
nadīnāṃ parvatānāṃ ca nāmadheyāni saṃjaya tathā janapadānāṃ ca ye cānye bhūmim āśritāḥ 2 pramāṇaṃ ca pramāṇajña pṛthivyā api sarvaśaḥ nikhilena samācakṣva kānanāni ca saṃjaya 3 pañcemāni mahārāja mahābhūtāni saṃgrahāt jagat sthitāni sarvāṇi samāny āhur manīṣiṇaḥ 4 bhūmir āpas tathā vāyur agnir ākāśam eva ca guṇottarāṇi sarvāṇi teṣāṃ bhūmiḥ pradhānataḥ 5 śabdaḥ sparśaś ca rūpaṃ ca raso gandhaś ca pañcamaḥ bhūmer ete guṇāḥ proktā ṛṣibhis tattvavedibhiḥ 6 catvāro 'psu guṇā rājan gandhas tatra na vidyate śabdaḥ sparśaś ca rūpaṃ ca tejaso 'tha guṇās trayaḥ śabdaḥ sparśaś ca vāyos tu ākāśe śabda eva ca 7 ete pañca guṇā rājan mahābhūteṣu pañcasu vartante sarvalokeṣu yeṣu lokāḥ pratiṣṭhitāḥ 8 anyonyaṃ nābhivartante sāmyaṃ bhavati vai yadā yadā tu viṣamībhāvam āviśanti parasparam tadā dehair dehavanto vyatirohanti nānyathā 9 ānupūrvyād vinaśyanti jāyante cānupūrvaśaḥ sarvāṇy aparimeyāni tad eṣāṃ rūpam aiśvaram 10 tatra tatra hi dṛśyante dhātavaḥ pāñca bhautikāḥ teṣāṃ manuṣyās tarkeṇa pramāṇāni pracakṣate 11 acintyāḥ khalu ye bhāvā na tāṃs tarkeṇa sādhayet prakṛtibhyaḥ paraṃ yat tu tad acintyasya lakṣaṇam 12 sudarśanaṃ pravakṣyāmi dvīpaṃ te kurunandana parimaṇḍalo mahārāja dvīpo 'sau cakrasaṃsthitaḥ 13 nadī jalapraticchannaḥ parvataiś cābhrasaṃnibhaiḥ puraiś ca vividhākārai ramyair janapadais tathā 14 vṛkṣaiḥ puṣpaphalopetaiḥ saṃpannadhanadhānyavān lāvaṇena samudreṇa samantāt parivāritaḥ 15 yathā ca puruṣaḥ paśyed ādarśe mukham ātmanaḥ evaṃ sudarśana dvīpo dṛśyate candramaṇḍale 16 dvir aṃśe pippalas tatra dvir aṃśe ca śaśo mahān sarvauṣadhisamāvāpaiḥ sarvataḥ parivṛṃhitaḥ āpas tato 'nyā vijñeyā eṣa saṃkṣepa ucyate
Back to Bhisma Parva, Mahabharata