Mahabharata – Sabha Parva – Sabhakriya Parva – 1-4
(Translated literally from the original sanskrit text)
Edited and published by Manmatha Nath Dutt, M.A. M.B.A.S. Rector, Keshub Academy. Author of the English Translations of the Ramayana, Vishnu Purana, Srimad Bhagavatam, Bhagavat Gita and other works.
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Choice of land for the assembly-hall
1Having saluted the Supreme Deity (Narayana) and the highest of all male beings (Nara) and also the Goddess of Learning (Sarasvati), let us cry “success”.
2Vaishampayana said: Thereupon again and again worshipping Partha before Vasudeva, Maya spoke to him with joined hands and in sweet words.
3Maya said: O son of Kunti, I have been saved by you from this angry Krishna and this Pavaka fire who was desirous of consuming me. Tell me what I shall do for you.
4Arjuna said: O great Asura, every thing has been done by you. Be blessed. Go (wherever you like). Be always well-disposed towards me as we are well-disposed towards you.
5Maya said: O lord, O best of men, what you have said fully deserves you. O descendant of Bharata, I gladly desire to do something (for you).
6I am a great artist, (in fact I am) the Vishvakarma of the Danavas. Therefore, O son of Pandu, I desire to do something for you.
7Arjuna said: O sinless one, you consider that your life has been saved by me from instant death. Such being the case, I cannot make you do anything for me.
😯 Danava, I am not willing to frustrate your intention also. Do something for Krishna; that will be sufficient requital for my services to you.
9Vaishampayana said: O best of the Bharata race, thus requested by Maya, Vasudeva (Krishna) reflected for a moment thus, “what should be done for me?”
10Thereupon the lord of the universe the creator of things, Krishna, having reflected (for a moment), thus commanded Maya.
11Krishna said: O best of artists, O son of Diti, if you desire to do some good to me, build a large assembly-hall for Dharmaraja (Yudhishthira), a hall to your own liking.
12Build such an assembly-hall that persons belonging to this world may not be able to build another like it, though he sits within it and observed it carefully.
13O Maya, build an assembly-hall in which we may see all the celestials, Asura, and human designs of architecture.
14Vaisltampayana said: Having heard these word, Maya became exceedingly glad. He drew up a design of an auspicious palace for the Pandavas.
15Then Krishna and Partha, having told every things to Dharmaraja Yudhishthira, introduced Maya to him.
16O descendant of Bharata, Yudhishthira received him with all the honour he deserved; and Maya accepted them showing all respects (to Yudhishthira).
17O king, O descendant of Bharata, then that son of Diti (Maya) narrated before the sons of Pandu the old history of (Vrishaparva).
18After resting for some time, that Vishvakanna (Maya) commenced after much reflection to build an assembly-hall for the illustrious Pandavas.
19According to the wishes of the illustrious sons of Pritha (the Pandavas) and of Krishna, the greatly energetic (Maya) performed on an auspicious day initiatory rites of propitiation.
20That greatly powerful (Danava) gratified thousands of excellent Brahmanas with Payasa (sweetened milk and rice) and with presents of various kinds of wealth.
21He then measured out a piece of land five thousand cubits square; it was well suited to the exigencies of every season, it was celestials-like and it was delightful.