Description of Bharatavarsa ||45||
1Samsapayana said: O holy lord, the two continents in the east and the west have been narrated to us. Now tell us about the people dwelling in the northern and southern continents as well as those on the mountains.
2Suta said: South of the Sveta mountain and north of the Nila, there is a sub-continent called Ramanaka where human beings are born.
3Animals (thereof) fulfil desires in all seasons. People are free from the stink of old age (They do not become senile or decrepit). They are a good-looking people descended from a noble, fair-complexioned race.
4There is a great divine Nyagrodha tree (the Indian fig tree) called Rohina. The people subsist on the juice of its fruit.
5Those excellent people are always delightful and happy. They live for eleven thousand five hundred years.
6To the north of the Sveta and to the south of the mountain called Srngavan, there is a sub-continent called Hiranyata (Hiranvat in A) where a river Hairanyati (Hairanvati in A) flows.
7Very strong and brilliant men are born there who are Sattvic in quality, bestower of desires in all seasons. They are rich and comely in appearance.
8These people of unlimited splendour live upto twelve thousand five hundred years.
9In that country there is the great Lakuca tree (Breadfruit tree) yielding six tastes. Men maintain themselves on the juice of its fruits.
10There the Sringavan mountain has three great and lofty peaks. Out of them one is full (lit. consists) of diamonds, the second, of gold and the third, full of all kinds of precious stones. They are embellished with mansions.
11On the southern shore of the northern sea is the holy country of the Kurus which is resorted to by the Siddhas.
12The trees there provide sweet fruits and flowers throughout the year. They put forth clothes and ornaments along with fruits.
13Many are the charming trees that bear fruits desired by all. They exude excellent honey of exquisite taste, colour and fragrance.
14There are other charming trees called Ksirin. They always yield milk like nectar yet presenting six types of tastes.
15The entire ground is full of jewels, even the fine sand being gold which is pleasant to touch. It is auspicious, free from impurities and thorns.
16Descending from the world of Devas, people are born as auspicious men. They are born in fair complexioned families and have perpetual youth.
17The charming women give birth to twins who imbibe the nectarine juice of the Ksirin (milk-yielding) tree.
18The twins are born simultaneously and grow up together. They are of similar forms, traits and conduct of life. They also die together.
19Like the couples of Gakravaka birds, they are affectionate to each other. They enjoy life, not knowing disease, sorrow or suffering.
20They have great vigour and vitality. They live up to fourteen thousand five hundred years. They never resort to others’ women.
21North of Jarudhi, the king of mountains, are then northern Kurus. The land is glorified in all directions. Now listen to its detailed description.
22-23There are two lofty Kula-Parvatas, Candrakanta and Suryakanta. They are embellished by many caves, crevasses, cavities and rivulets; they possess many bushes and hedges. They are decorated with minerals of various colours. They contain many kinds of metals; they are adorned with all kinds of mineral ores. They have trees with perpetual fruits, flowers and roots; they are resorted to by Siddhas and Caranas.
24-25The whole of that country is pervaded by hundreds of their peaks and ridges. The great river Bhadrasoma2 flows in between the two mountains, Candrakanta and Suryakanta.
26There are thousands of other rivers with pure and tasty water, sufficient for the Kuru people for drinking.
27Similarly there are thousands of great rivers flowing with milk, honey, butter and the intoxicant beverage Maireya.
28There are hundreds of pools full of curds. There is a huge mountain rich in tasty food, nectarine, ripe fruits of different kinds.
29There are roots and fruits of sweet fragrance, taste and colour. Their fragrance can be smelt from a distance of five Yojanas.
30There are thousands of flowers of different colours and shapes, large, pleasant and conducive to welfare.
31There are forests of Tamala, Aguru and sandal-wood pleasant to touch and rich in fragrance, colour and taste.
32The forests are in full bloom. Bees hum and hover round. The forests abound in pleasant trees, hedges and creepers.
33O excellent Brahmana, there are thousands of lakes abounding in lotuses and lilies wherein bees hum and birds chirp.
34-35There are many charming grounds of sports affording pleasure in all the seasons. There foodstuffs, garlands, unguents, beds, seats and other articles of enjoyment are ever available. Birds of beautiful shape and variegated colours chirp there.
36The grounds of sports are flourishing and richly embellished in gold and jewels. There are bowers and grottos of plantain and other trees as well as rocks.
37There are thousands of bowers of creepers all around. They are very pleasant. There are hundreds of underground houses as lustrous and pure as conch shells.
38The windows are made of gold adorned with a network of diamonds. They are very large and of various sizes with wonderful workmanship in gold and gems.
39There are thousands of excellent trees. The clothes are of various shapes (and fashions). They are of fine texture and very pleasant (to the sight).
40There are various musical instruments like Mrdahga, Venu, flute, Panava which are widely used. There are hundreds and thousands of Kalpa trees bearing fruits.
41There are parks of that description everywhere and so are the cities all over (the Kurus). The whole land is joyous, full of men and women. The wind blows wafting the fragrance of different flowers.
42That country is always the abode of happiness, providing relief from fatigue. There, the gods descend from heaven in the shape of human beings and take their birth. Thus this excellent land is heaven itself, (maybe) even better than that.
43The men living on the eastern ridge of the Candrakanta mount are dark in colour, while those on Suryakanta are dark as well as fair. They are excellent and happy.
44In that land, there are excellent men, strong and valorous like the Devas. They always enjoy themselves as much as they please. They look very refulgent.
45They are bedecked in bangles, bracelets, shoulderlets, necklaces and earrings. They wear garlands of various colours and coronets. Their upper garments and clothes are of various colours.
46They never grow old. They have perpetual youth. They are fond, affectionate and comely in appearance. They live up to many thousand years.
47They do not procreate nor do they decline in numbers. Pairs are born of the tree unlike each other but befitting each other.
48-49The riches are common to all. They do not have the sense of possession. There is no virtue, no vice, no sickness, no old age, no mental confusion, no feeling of exhaustion. On completing their full length of time, they disappear like bubbles of water.
50They are extremely happy, devoid of all miseries. Being passionately attached, they do not observe (the restrictions of) Dharma. For Dharma grows from misery.
51-52To the southern side of Northern Kurus, there is the famous country called Candradvipa shaped like the disc of the moon. It is at a distance of five thousand Yojanas beyond the region of gods. (Being a seaside land) it is ever decorated with garlands of sea waves and is resonant with many sounds.
53-55It extends to one thousand Yojanas in area and is full of fruits and flowers. It is fertile and flourishing. It is one hundred Yojanas in breadth and so much in height. There is an excellent mountain Kumudaprabha in its centre, inhabited by Siddhas and Caranas. It has various gems equal in lustre to the moon. These have all good traits and shine in their lunar shape. There are lilies of diverse colours, paRiks and gardens of variegated hues. There are many rivulets and caves. It is decorated with great ridges, precipices, crevasses and bushy hedges.
56The excellent river of many waves, Candravarta flows from this mountain. It is full of pure and holy water, bright like the moon’s rays.
57There is the excellent abode of the moon, the lord of stars. The moon, the lord of planets, always resides there.
58There is a famous mountain known by the name of the moon. The great land called Candradvipa is famous both in this world as well as in heaven.
59All the people here shine like the moon. They resemble the moon, with their faces shining like the moon. They are free from dirt and consider the moon their deity.
60The people there, are very virtuous, gentle, truthful and brilliant. Their conduct is good and their span of life extends to a thousand years.
61-62To the west of this western continent is the land called Bhadrakara four thousand Yojanas from the ocean. It is a circular zone ten thousand Yojanas in diameter. It looks splendid with different kinds of flowers.
63The place is rich and abounds in food grains. It is ruled over by many kings. It is joyous, prosperous and beautiful on account of the great mountains.
64There is a very splendid seat of Vayu there, embellished with various jewels. There, the embodied form of Vayu is worshipped always on Parvan days.
65-66The people living there have golden complexion. They are bedecked in gold. They are as refulgent as the immortal Devas. Their garments and garlands are of variegated colour. They are blessed, vigorous, joyous and truthful. They live up to five hundred years. They consider Vayu their deity.
67Suta said: These are the natural characteristics of the countries in Bharata as seen by the knowers of the supreme truth. What else shall I narrate to you?
68When this was said by the intelligent son of Suta, the sages eager to listen to the sequal asked him thereafter.
69-71The Sages said: O excellent one, it is in this Bharata country that the fourteen Manus, Svayambhuva and others, are born at the time of the creation of subjects. We wish to know this further. Please narrate. On hearing their words Suta Lomaharsana, well-versed in the Puranas and of pious mind, described this in detail to the sages of purified souls.
72Suta said: The natural traits of the Kurus have been precisely recounted. Now I shall mention the features of Bharata. Understand them.
73-74O excellent Brahmanas, in the sacred centre to the south of the southern mountain Himavat, extending from east to west is the Bharata sub-continent. It behoves you to listen now to the details of the countries in the Bharata Varsa and of the people there.
75With its diverse features giving rise to auspicious and inauspicious results, this sub-continent is in the middle, to the north of the ocean and to the south of Himavat.
76Since the country (Varsa) is called Bharata the people are Bharatis. Since Manu ruled over the people, he is called Bharata. Etymoligically derived thus the Varsa (country) is called Bharata.
77It is from here alone that one goes to heaven or attains salvation.3 The middle course—heaven as well as the end, the final emancipation—is attained from here. Rituals for human beings are not ordained anywhere else on earth.
78There are stated to be nine divisions of this Bharata Varsa.4 Being separated by oceans, they are mutually inaccessible.
79-81They are Indradvipa, Kaseru, Tamravarna, Gabha- stiman, Nagadvipa, Saumya, Gandharva and Varuna, This Bharata, the ninth among them, is surrounded by the sea. From south to north it extends to a thousand Yojanas, from Kumari to the source of Ganga. Sideways in the north it extends to nine thousand Yojanas.
82On the eastern boundary are Kiratas and Yavanas at the western boundary.
83Within it dwells Brahmanas, Ksattriyas and Vaishyas attending to sacrifices, war and trade respectively. The Sudras live in different parts.
84There are mutual dealings among these based on virtue, wealth and love. The different castes are engaged in their own functions.
85People perform the duties of the five stages of life, the fifth being that of Sankalpa. They possess the human tendency to endeavour to attain heaven and salvation.
86He who conquers this ninth Dvipa entirely, along with the countries extending sideways, is declared an emperor (Samrat).
87He who conquers this world is remembered as Samrat, the conquerer of Antariksa as Virdt, while the conquerer of the other world is called Svarat. I shall explain this later on.
88There are seven great mountain systems with excellent knot-like ridges in this Varsa. They are Mahendra, Malaya, Sahya, Suktiman, Riksaparvata, Vindhya and Pariyatra.
89There are other thousands of mountains adjacent to these. They are endowed with all qualities and have broad and variegated summits.
90-92The chief of them are the excellent mountain Mandara, Vaihara, Dardura, Kolahala, Surasa, Mainaka, Vai- dyuta, Patandhama, Pandura, Gantuprastha, Krshnagiri, God- hana, Puspagiri, Ujjayanta, Raivataka, Sriparvata, Karu and Kutasaila.
93There are other smaller mountains with thin population. The land strips between them have a mixed population consisting of Aryas and Mlecchas.
94-96The rivers rising from the foot of Himavat, of which those people drink the water are: Ganga, Sindhu, Sarasvati, Satadru, Candrabhaga, Yamuna, Sarayu, Iravati, Vitasta, Vipasa, Devika, Kuhu, Gomati, Dhutapapa, Bahuda, Drsadvati, Kausiki, Trtiya, Niscira, Gandaki, Iksu and Lohita.
97-98The rivers issuing from Pariyatra are: Vedasmyti, Vadavati, Vftraghm, Sindhu, Varna sa, Candana, Satira, Mahati, Para, Carmanvati, Vidisa, Vetravati, Sipra and Avanti. Satadru (Sutlej), Candrabhaga (Chenab), Iravati (Ravi), Vitasta (Jhe- lum), Vipasa (Beas), Devika (Deeg, a tributary of Ravi), Kuhu (Kabul), Dhutapapa (Barada, with its headstreams), Bahuda (Rapti), Drsadvati (Chitang, a tributary of Ghaggar), Kausiki (Kosi with its three headwaters), Lohita (Brahmaputra).
99-101The rivers originating from Riksaada and having crystal-clear water are: The great Nada Sona, Narmada, Sumahadruma, Mandakini, Dasarna, Citrakuta, Tamasa, Pippala, Sroni, Karatoya, Pisacika, Nilotpala, Vipasa, Jambula, Valuva- hinl, Siteraja, Suktimati, Makruna, and Tridiva.
102-103The auspicious rivers of holy waters issuing from the slopes of the Vindhya mountains are: Tapi, Payosni, Nirvindhya, Madra, Nisadha, Venya, Vaitarani, Sitibahu, Kumudvati, Toya, Mahagauri, Durga and Antasila.
104The rivers of the southern land rising from the slopes of Sahya mountains are the Godavari, Bhimarathi, Krshnavaini, Vanjula, Tungabhadra, Suprayoga and Kaveri.
105The rivers issuing from the Malaya mountains are Kritainala, Tamra varna, Puspajati and Utpalavati. All of them are very splendid. Their waters are very cool.
106The rivers originating from Mahendra mountains are Trisama, Rtukulya, Iksula, Tridiva, Larigulini and Vamsadhara.
107The rivers issuing from the mountain Suktiman3 are Rsika, Sukumari, Mandaga, Mandavahini, Kupa and Palasini.
108All of them are sacred like Sarasvati. All of them flowing into the sea are (holy like) Ganga. These are the mothers of the world and are declared as removers of the sins of the world.
109-111The branches and tributaries of these rivers are hundreds and thousands. The countries in Central Region (Madhyadesa) are chiefly Kurupancalas, Salvas, Jangalas, Surasenas, Bhadrakaras, Bodhas, Satapathesvaras, Vatsas, Kisasnas, Kulyas, Kuntalas, Kasikosalas, Tilangas in the borderland, Magadhas and Vrikas.
112Now along the northern half of Sahya mountains where the river Godavari flows is the most delightful region within the whole of this earth.
113-114There is a heavenly city named Govardhana. It was built by the king of Devas for Rama’s spouse. Trees and herbs were planted by the sage Bharadvaja for the sake of Rama’s spouse. He made this delightful wooded tract the private part of the palace.
115-119The colonies of Ksattriyas are Vahlikas, Vadha- dhanas, Abhiras, Kalatoyakas, Aparitas, Sudras, Pahlavas, Carmakhandikas, Gandharas, Yavanas, Sindhus, Sauviras, Bhadrakas, Sakas, Hradas, Kulindas, Paritas, Harapurikas, Ramatas, Raddhakatakas, Kekayas and Dasamanikas. The tribes of Vaishyas and Sudras are: Kambojas, Daradas, Barbaras, Priyalaukikas, Pinas, Tusaras, Pahlavas, Bahyatodaras, Atreyas, Bharadvajas, Prasthalas, Kaserukas, Lampakas, Stanapas, Pidikas and Juhudas.
120Apagas, Alimadras, Tomaras, Hamsamargas, Kasmiras and Tanganas are the tribes of Kiratas.
121These along with Culikas, Ahukas and Purnadarvas are the northern peoples. Now hear from me the people in the East.
122-123People in the east, Andhravakas, Sujarakas, Antargiris, Bahirgiris, Pravarigas, Vangeyas, Maladas, Mala- vartins, Brahmottaras, Pravijayas, Bhargavas, Geyamarthakas, Pragjyotisas, Mundas, Videhas, Tam(r) aliptakas, Maias, Magadhas and Govindas are the counties in the east.
124-131Now the other people who dwell in the southern region are: Pandyas,Keralas, Caulyas (Colas),Kulyas, Setukas, Musikas, Kumanas, Vanavasikas, Maharastras, Mahisakas, Kalirigas, Abhiras, Caisikas, excellent Atavyas, Pulindras, Vindhyamulikas, Paunikas, Maunikas, Asmakas, Bhogavardhanas, Nairnikas, Kuntalas, Andhras, Udbhidas, Nalakalikas. Now hear from me the names of other people: Surpakaras, Kolavanas, Durgas, Kalitakas, Puleyas, Suralas, Rupasas, Tapa- sas, Turasitas, all the Paraksaras, Nasikyas and others; those lands in the valley of Narmada, viz.: Bhanukacchas, Samas, Heyas, Sahasas, Sasvatas, Kacchiyas, Surastras, Anartas, Anartas, Arbudas and Samparitas. Now listen to the residents of the Vindhya mountains.
132-134Malavas, Karusas, Mekalas, Utkalas, Uttamarnas Dasarnas, Bhojas, Kiskindhakas, Tosalas, Kosalas, Traipuras, Vaidikas, Tumuras, Tumburas, Satsuras, Nisadhas, Anupas, Tundikeras, Vitihotras, Avantis. These are the kingdoms on the Vindhya mountains.
135-137Now I shall mention mountainous territories. These are: Nigarharas, Hamsamargas, Ksupanas, Tanganas, Khasas, Kusapravaranas, Hunas, Darvas, Hudakas, Trigartas, Malavas, Kiratas and Tamasas. The learned know of four ages in this Bharata, viz. Krita, Treta, Dvapara and Kali. I shall explain their natural features later.