Mahabharata Sabha Parva - Translation by KM Ganguly

Mahabharata Adiparva

Section X

"Narada said,--'Possessed of great splendour, the assembly house of Vaisravana, O king, is a hundred yojanas in length and seventy yojanas in breadth. It was built, O king, by Vaisravana himself using his ascetic power. Possessing the splendour of the peaks of Kailasa, that mansion eclipses by its own the brilliance of the Moon himself. Supported by Guhyakas, that mansion seems to be attached to the firmament. Of celestial make, it is rendered extremely handsome with high chambers of gold. Extremely delightful and rendered fragrant with celestial perfumes, it is variegated with numberless costly jewels. Resembling the peaks of a mass of white clouds, it seems to be floating in the air. Painted with colours of celestial gold, it seems to be decked with streaks of lightning. Within that mansion sitteth on an excellent seat bright as the sun and covered with celestial carpets and furnished with a handsome footstool, king Vaisravana of agreeable person, attired in excellent robes and adorned with costly ornaments and ear-rings of great brilliance, surrounded by his thousand wives. Delicious and cooling breezes murmuring through forests of tall Mandaras, and bearing fragrance of extensive plantations of jasmine, as also of the lotuses on the bosom of the river Alaka and of the Nandana-gardens, always minister to the pleasure of the King of the Yakshas. There the deities with the Gandharvas surrounded by various tribes of Apsaras, sing in chorus, O king, notes of celestial sweetness. Misrakesi and Rambha, and Chitrasena, and Suchismita; and Charunetra, and Gritachi and Menaka, and Punjikasthala; and Viswachi Sahajanya, and Pramlocha and Urvasi and Ira, and Varga and Sauraveyi, and Samichi, and Vududa, and Lata--these and a thousand other Apsaras and Gandharvas, all well-skilled in music and dance, attend upon Kuvera, the lord of treasures. And that mansion, always filled with the notes of instrumental and vocal music, as also with the sounds of dance of various tribes of Gandharvas, and Apsaras hath become extremely charming and delicious. The Gandharvas called Kinnaras, and others called Naras, and Manibhadra, and Dhanada, and Swetabhadra and Guhyaka; Kaseraka, Gandakandu, and the mighty Pradyota; Kustumvuru, Pisacha, Gajakarna, and Visalaka, Varaha-Karna, Tamraushtica, Falkaksha, and Falodaka; Hansachuda, Sikhavarta, Vibhishana, Pushpanana, Pingalaka, Sonitoda and Pravalaka; Vrikshavaspa-niketa, and Chiravasas--these O Bharata, and many other Yakshas by hundred and thousands always wait upon Kuvera. The goddess Lakshmi always stayeth there, also Kuvera's son Nalakuvera. Myself and many others like myself often repair thither. Many Brahmana Rishis and celestial Rishis also repair there often. Many Rakshasas, and many Gandharvas, besides those that have been named, wait upon the worship, in that mansion, the illustrious lord of all treasures. And, O tiger among kings, the illustrious husband of Uma and lord of created things, the three-eyed Mahadeva, the wielder of the trident and the slayer of the Asura called Bhaga-netra, the mighty god of the fierce bow, surrounded by multitudes of spirits in their hundreds and thousands, some of dwarfish stature, some of fierce visage, some hunch-backed, some of blood-red eyes, some of frightful yells, some feeding upon fat and flesh, and some terrible to behold, but all armed with various weapons and endued with the speed of wind, with the goddess (Parvati) ever cheerful and knowing no fatigue, always waiteth here upon their friend Kuvera, the lord of treasures. And hundreds of Gandharva chiefs, with cheerful hearts and attired in their respective robes and Viswavasu, and Haha and Huhu; and Tumvuru and Parvatta, and Sailusha; and Chitrasena skilled in music and also Chitraratha,--these and innumerable Gandharvas worship the lord of treasures. And Chakradhaman, the chief of the Vidyadharas, with his followers, waiteth in that mansion upon the lord of treasures. And Kinnaras by hundreds and innumerable kings with Bhagadatta as their chief, and Druma, the chief of the Kimpurushas, and Mahendra, the chief of the Rakshasas, and Gandhamadana accompanied by many Yakshas and Gandharvas and many Rakshasas wait upon the lord of treasures. The virtuous Vibhishana also worshippeth there his elder brother the lord Kuvera (Croesus). The mountains of Himavat, Paripatra, Vindhya, Kailasa, Mandara, Malaya, Durdura, Mahendra, Gandhamadana, Indrakila, Sunava, and Eastern and the Western hills--these and many other mountains, in their personified forms, with Meru standing before all, wait upon and worship the illustrious lord of treasures. The illustrious Nandiswaras, and Mahakala, and many spirits with arrowy ears and sharp-pointed mouths, Kaksha, Kuthimukha, Danti, and Vijaya of great ascetic merit, and the mighty white bull of Siva roaring deep, all wait in that mansion. Besides these many other Rakshasas and Pisachas (devils) worship Kuvera in that assembly house. The son of Pulastya (Kuvera) formerly used always to worship in all the modes and sit, with permission obtained, beside the god of gods, Siva, the creator of the three worlds, that supreme Deity surrounded by his attendants. One day the exalted Bhava (Siva) made friendship with Kuvera. From that time, O king, Mahadeva always sitteth on the mansion of his friend, the lord of treasures. Those best of all jewels, those princes of all gems in the three worlds, viz., Sankha and Padma, in their personified forms, accompanied by all the jewels of the earth (also in their personified forms) worship Kuvera." "This delightful assembly house of Kuvera that I have seen, attached to the firmament and capable of moving along it, is such, O king. Listen now to the Sabha I describe unto thee, belonging to Brahma the Grandsire."