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Book VI: [Chaṁdakanivartanaṁ]
[The Dismissal of Chaṁdaka]
tato muhūrte 'bhyudite jagaccakṣuṣi bhāskare |
bhārgavasyāśramapadaṁ sa dadarśa nṛṇāṁ varaḥ || 6.1
1. Then when the sun, the eye of the world, was just risen, he, the noblest of men, beheld the hermitage of the son of Bhṛgu,
suptaviśvastahariṇaṁ svasthasthitavihaṁgamam |
viśrāṁta iva yaddṛṣṭā kṛtārtha iva cābhavat || 6.2
2. Its deer all asleep in quiet trust, its birds tranquilly resting, — seeing it he too became restful, and he felt as if his end was attained.
sa vismayanivṛttyarthaṁ tapaḥpūjārthameva ca |
svāṁ cānuvartitāṁ rakṣannaśvapṛṣṭhādavātarat || 6.3
3. For the sake of ending his wonder and to show reverence for the penances observed, and as expressing his own conformity therewith, Svāṁ cānuvartitāṁ rakṣan. [The Tibetan has the obscure raṅ·gi rjes·su baruṅ·va la = sva+anu+rakṣan? H.W.]01 he alighted from the back of his horse.
avatīrya ca pasparśa nistīrṇamiti vājinam |
chaṁdakaṁ cābravīt prītaḥ snāpayanniva cakṣuṣā || 6.4
4. Having alighted, he stroked the horse, exclaiming, ‘All is saved,’ and he spoke well-pleased to Chaṁdaka, bedewing him as it were with tears from his eyes :
imaṁ tārkṣyopamajavaṁ turaṁgamanugacchatā |
darśitā saumya madbhaktirvikramaścāyamātmanaḥ || 6.5
5. ‘Good friend, thy devotion to me and thy courage of soul have been proved by thy thus following this steed whose speed is like that of Tārkṣya. An old mythic representation of the sun as a horse.02
sarvathāsmyanyakāryo 'pi gṛhīto bhavatā hṛdi |
bhartṛsnehaśca yasyāyamīdṛśaḥ śakta eva ca || 6.6
6. ‘Bent even though I am on other business, I am wholly won in heart by thee, — one who has such a love for his master, and at the same time is able to carry out his wish.
asnigdho 'pi samartho 'sti niḥsāmarthyo 'pi bhaktimān |
bhaktimāṁscaiva śaktaśca durlabhastvadvidho bhuvi || 6.7
7. ‘One can be able without affection, and affectionate though unable; but one like thee, at once affectionate and able, is hard to find in the world.
tatprīto 'smi tavānena mahābhāgena karmaṇā |
dṛśyate mayi bhāvo 'yaṁ phalebhyo 'pi parāṅmukhe || 6.8
8. ‘I am pleased with this noble action of thine; this feeling is seen towards me, even though I am regardless of conferring rewards.
ko janasya phalasthasya na syādabhimukho janaḥ |
janībhavati bhūyiṣṭhaṁ svajano 'pi viparyaye || 6.9
9. ‘Who would not be favourably disposed to one who stands to him as bringing him reward? but even one's own people commonly become mere strangers in a reverse of fortune. Janībhavati may be a quaint expression for parajano bhavati,—this seems the meaning of the Tibetan. Or we might read janyo bhavati.03
kulārthaṁ dhāryate putraḥ poṣārthaṁ sevyate pitā |
āśayāśliṣyati jagannāsti niṣkāraṇāsvatā || 6.10
10. ‘The son is maintained for the sake of the family, the father is honoured for the sake of our own (future) support; the world shows kindness for the sake of hope; there is no such a thing as unselfishness without a motive.
kimuktvā bahu saṁkṣepātkṛtaṁ me sumahatpriyam |
nivartasvāśvamādāya saṁprāpto 'smīpsitaṁ vanam || 6.11
11. ‘Why speak many words? in short, thou hast done me a very great kindness; take now my horse and return, I have attained the desired wood.’
ityuktvā sa mahābāhuranuśaṁsacikīrṣayā |
bhūṣaṇānyavamucyāsmai saṁtaptamanase dadau || 6.12
12. Thus having spoken, the mighty hero in his desire to show perfect gentleness Ānṛśaṁsa (for ānṛśaṁsya), see Pāṇini V, 1, 130 gaṇa.04 unloosed his ornaments and gave them to the other, who was deeply grieved.
mukuṭoddīptakarmāṇaṁ maṇimādāya bhāsvaram |
bruvan vākyamidaṁ tasthau sāditya iva maṁdaraḥ || 6.13
13. Having taken a brilliant jewel whose effect illumined his diadem, he stood, uttering these words, like the mountain Mandara with the sun resting on it:
anena maṇinā chaṁda praṇamya bahuśo nṛpaḥ |
vijñāpyo 'muktaviśraṁbhaṁ saṁtāpavinivṛttaye || 6.14
14. ‘By thee with this jewel, O Chaṁda, having offered him repeated obeisance, the king, with his loving confidence still unshaken, must be enjoined to stay his grief.
jarāmaraṇanāśārthaṁ praviṣṭo 'smi tapovanam |
na khalu svargatarṣeṇa nāsnehena na manyunā || 6.15
15. “I have entered the ascetic-wood to destroy old age and death, — with no thirst for heaven, with no lack of love nor feeling of anger.
tadevamabhiniṣkrāṁtaṁ na māṁ śocitumarhasi |
bhūtvāpi hi ciraṁ śleṣaḥ kālena na bhaviṣyati || 6.16
16. “Do not think of mourning for me who am thus gone forth from my home; union, however long it may last, in time will come to an end.
dhruvo yasmācca viśleṣastasmānmokṣāya me matiḥ |
viprayogaḥ kathaṁ na syādbhūyo 'pi svajanādibhiḥ || 6.17
17. “Since separation is certain, therefore is my mind fixed on liberation; how shall there not be repeated severings from one's kindred?
śokatyāgāya niṣkrāṁtaṁ na māṁ śocitumarhasi |
śokahetuṣu kāmeṣu saktāḥ śocyāstu rāgiṇaḥ || 6.18
18. “Do not think of mourning for me who am gone forth to leave sorrow behind; it is the thralls of passion, who are attached to desires, the causes of sorrow, for whom thou shouldst mourn.
ayaṁ ca kila pūrveṣāmasmākaṁ niścayaḥ sthiraḥ |
iti dāyādabhūtena na śocyo 'smi pathā vrajan || 6.19
19. “This was the firm persuasion of our predecessors, — I as one departing by a common road am not to be mourned for by my heir.
bhavaṁti hyarthadāyādāḥ puruṣasya viparyaye |
pṛthivyāṁ dharmadāyādā durlabhāstu na saṁti vā || 6.20
20. “At a man's death there are doubtless heirs to his wealth; but heirs to his merit are hard to find on the earth or exist not at all.
yadapi syādasamaye yāto vanamasāviti |
akālo nāsti dharmasya jīvite caṁcale sati || 6.21
21. “Even though thou sayest, ‘He is gone at a wrong time to the wood,’ — there is no wrong time for religious duty (dharma), life being fragile as it is.
tasmādadyaiva me śreyaścetavyamiti niścayaḥ |
jīvite ko hi viśraṁbho mṛtyau pratyarthini sthite || 6.22
22. “Therefore my determination is, ‘I must seek my supreme good this very day;’ what confidence can there be in life, when death stands as our adversary?"
evamādi tvayā saumya vijñāpyo vasudhādhipaḥ |
prayatethāstathā caiva yathā māṁ na smaredapi || 6.23
23. ‘Do thou address the king, O friend, with these and such-like words; and do thou use thy efforts so that he may not even remember me.
api nairguṇyamasmākaṁ vācyaṁ narapatau tvayā |
nairguṇyāttyajyate snehaḥ snehatyāgānna śocyate || 6.24
24. ‘Yea, do thou repeat to the king our utter unworthiness; through unworthiness affection is lost, — and where affection is lost, there is no sorrow.’
iti vākyamidaṁ śrutvā chaṁdaḥ saṁtāpaviklavaḥ |
vāṣpagrathitayā vācā pratyuvāca kṛtāṁjaliḥ || 6.25
25. Having heard these words, Chaṁda, overwhelmed with grief, made reply with folded hands, his voice choked by tears :
anena tava bhāvena bāṁdhavāyāsadāyinā |
bhartaḥ sīdati me ceto nadīpaṁka iva dvipaḥ || 6.26
26. ‘At this state of mind of thine, causing affliction to thy kindred, my mind, O my lord, sinks down like an elephant in the mud of a river.
kasya notpādayedvāṣpaṁ niścayaste 'yamīdṛśaḥ |
ayomaye 'pi hṛdaye kiṁ punaḥ snehaviklave || 6.27
27. ‘To whom would not such a determination as this of thine cause tears, even if his heart were of iron, — how much more if it were throbbing with love?
vimānaśayanārhaṁ hi saukumāryamidaṁ kva ca |
kharadarbhāṁkuravatī tapovanamahī kva ca || 6.28
28. ‘Where A common expression (which occurs also in Persian poetry) to imply the incompatibility of two things.05 is this delicacy of limb, fit to lie only in a palace, — and where is the ground of the ascetic forest, covered with the shoots of rough kusa grass?
śrutvā tu vyavasāyaṁ te yadaśvo 'yaṁ mayā hṛtaḥ |
balātkāreṇa tannātha daivenaivāsmi kāritaḥ || 6.29
29. ‘When, on hearing thy resolve, I first brought thee this horse, — it was fate only, O my lord, which made me do it, mastering my will.
kathaṁ hyātmavaśo jānan vyavasāyamimaṁ tava |
upānayeyaṁ turagaṁ śokaṁ kapilavastunaḥ || 6.30
30. ‘But how could I, O king, by mine own will, knowing this thy decision, — carry back the horse to the sorrow of Kapilavastu?
tannārhasi mahābāho vihātuṁ putralālasam |
snigdhaṁ vṛddhaṁ ca rājānaṁ saddharmamiva nāstikaḥ || 6.31
31. ‘Surely thou wilt not abandon, O hero, that fond old king, so devoted to his son, as a heretic might the true religion?
saṁvardhanapariśrāṁtāṁ dvitīyāṁ tāṁ ca mātaram |
deva nārhasi vismartuṁ kṛtaghna iva satkriyām || 6.32
32. ‘And her, thy second mother, worn with the care of bringing thee up, — thou wilt not surely forget her, as an ingrate a benefit?
bālaputrāṁ guṇavatīṁ kulaślāghyāṁ pativratām |
devīmarhasi na tyaktuṁ klīvaḥ prāptāmiva śriyam || 6.33
33. ‘Thou wilt not surely abandon thy queen, endowed with all virtues, illustrious for her family, devoted to her husband and with a young son, as a coward the royal dignity within his reach?
putraṁ yāśodharaṁ ślāghyaṁ yaśodharmabhṛtāṁ varaḥ |
bālamarhasi na tyaktuṁ vyasanīvottamaṁ yaśaḥ || 6.34
34. ‘Thou wilt not abandon the young son of Yaśodharā, worthy of all praise, thou the best of the cherishers of religion and fame, as a dissolute spendthrift his choicest glory?
atha baṁdhuṁ ca rājyaṁ ca tyaktumeva kṛtā matiḥ |
māṁ nārhasi vibho tyaktuṁ tvatpādau hi gatirmama || 6.35
35. ‘Or even if thy mind be resolved to abandon thy kindred and thy kingdom, thou wilt not, O master, abandon me, — thy feet are my only refuge.
nāsmi yātuṁ puraṁ śakto dahyamānena cetasā |
tvāmaraṇye parityajya sumitra iva rāghavam || 6.36
36. ‘I cannot go to the city with my soul thus burning, leaving thee behind in the forest as Sumitra This is the Samantra of the Rāmāyaṇa II, 57.06 left the son of Raghu.
kiṁ hi vakṣyati rājā māṁ tvadṛte nagaraṁ gatam |
vakṣyāmyucitadarśitvātkiṁ tavāṁtaḥpurāṇi vā || 6.37
37. ‘What will the king say to me, returning to the city without thee? or what shall I say to thy queens by way of telling them good news?
yadapyātthāpi nairguṇyaṁ vācyaṁ narapatāviti |
kiṁ tadvakṣyāmyabhūtaṁ te nirdoṣasya muneriva || 6.38
38. ‘As for what thou saidst, "thou must repeat my unworthiness to the king" — how shall I speak what is false of thee as of a sage without a fault?
hṛdayena salajjena jihvayā sajjamānayā |
ahaṁ yadyapi vā brūyāṁ kastacchraddhātumarhati || 6.39
39. ‘Or even if I ventured to speak it with a heart ashamed and a tongue cleaving to my mouth, who would think of believing it?
yo hi caṁdramasastaikṣṇya kathayecchraddadhīta vā |
sa doṣāṁstava doṣajña kathayecchraddadhīta vā || 6.40
40. ‘He who would tell of or believe the fierceness of the moon, might tell of or believe thy faults, O physician of faults.
sānukrośasya satataṁ nityaṁ karuṇavedinaḥ |
snigdhatyāgo na sadṛśo nivartasva prasīda me || 6.41
41. ‘Him who is always compassionate and who never fails to feel pity, it ill befits to abandon one who loves, — turn back and have mercy on me.’
iti śokābhibhūtasya śrutvā chaṁdasya bhāṣitam |
svasthaḥ paramayā dhṛtyā jagāda vadatāṁ varaḥ || 6.42
42. Having heard these words of Chaṁda overcome with sorrow, — self-possessed with the utmost firmness the best of speakers answered:
madviyogaṁ prati cchaṁda saṁtāpastyajyatāmayam |
nānābhāvo hi niyataṁ pṛthagjātiṣu dehiṣu || 6.43
43. ‘Abandon this distress, Chaṁda, regarding thy separation from me, — change is inevitable in corporeal beings who are subject to different births.
svajanaṁ yadyapi snehānna tyajeyaṁ mumukṣayā |
mṛtyuranyonyamavaśānasmān saṁtyājayiṣyati || 6.44
44. ‘Even if I through affection were not to abandon my kindred in my desire for liberation, death would still make us helplessly abandon one another.
mahatyā tṛṣṇayā duḥkhairgarbheṇāsmi yayā dhṛtaḥ |
tasyā niṣphalayatnāyāḥ kvāhaṁ mātuḥ kva sā mama || 6.45
45. ‘She, my mother, by whom I was borne in the womb with great thirst and pains, — where am I now with regard to her, all her efforts fruitless, and where is she with regard to me?
vāsavṛkṣe samāgamya vigacchaṁti yathāṁḍajāḥ |
niyataṁ viprayogāṁtastathā bhūtasamāgamaḥ || 6.46
46. ‘As birds go to their roosting-tree and then depart, so the meeting of beings inevitably ends in separation.
sametya ca yathā bhūyo vyapayāṁti valāhakāḥ |
saṁyogo viprayogaśca tathā me prāṇināṁ mataḥ || 6.47
47. ‘As clouds, having come together, depart asunder again, such I consider the meeting and parting of living things.
yasmādyāti ca loko 'yaṁ vipralabhya parasparam |
mamatvaṁ na kṣamaṁ tasmātsvapnabhūte samāgame || 6.48
48. ‘And since this world goes away, each one of us deceiving the other, — it is not right to think anything thine own in a time of union which is a dream.
sahajena viyujyaṁte parṇarāgeṇa pādapāḥ |
anyenānyasya viśleṣaḥ kiṁ punarna bhaviṣyati || 6.49
49. ‘Since the trees are parted from the innate colour of their leaves, why should there not still more be the parting of two things which are alien to each other?
tadevaṁ sati saṁtāpaṁ mā kārṣīḥ saumya gamyatām |
laṁbate yadi tu sneho gatvāpi punarāvraja || 6.50
50. ‘Therefore, since it is so, grieve not, my good friend, but go; or if thy love lingers, then go and afterwards return.
brūyāścāsmāsvanākṣepaṁ janaṁ kapilavastuni |
tyajyatāṁ tadgataḥ snehaḥ śrūyatāṁ cāsya niścayaḥ || 6.51
51. ‘Say, without reproaching us, to the people in Kapilavastu, “Let your love for him be given up, and hear his resolve.
kṣiprameṣyati vā kṛtvā jarāmṛtyukṣayaṁ kila |
akṛtārtho nirālaṁbo nidhanaṁ yāsyatīti vā || 6.52
52. “Either he will quickly come back, having destroyed old age and death; or else he will himself perish, having failed in his purpose and lost hold of every support.” '
iti tasya vacaḥ śrutvā kaṁthakasturagottamaḥ |
jihvayā lilihe pādau vāṣpamuṣṇaṁ mumoca ca || 6.53
53. Having heard his words, Kaṁthaka, the noblest of steeds, licked his feet with his tongue and dropped hot tears.
jālinā svastikāṁkena vakramadhyena pāṇinā |
āmamarśa kumārastaṁ babhāṣe ca vayasyavat || 6.54
54. With his hand whose fingers were united with a membrane and which was marked with the auspicious svastika, and with its middle part curved, Professor Keilhorn suggests cakra-madhyena, ‘with a wheel in its centre’, cf. VIII, 55.07 the prince stroked him and addressed him like a friend:
muṁca kaṁthaka mā vāṣpaṁ darśiteyaṁ sadaśvatā |
mṛṣyatāṁ saphalaḥ śīghraṁ śramaste 'yaṁ bhaviṣyati || 6.55
55. ‘Shed not tears, Kaṁthaka, this thy perfect equine nature has been proved, — bear with it, this thy labour will soon have its fruit.’
maṇitsaruṁ chaṁdakahastasaṁsthaṁ tataḥ sa dhīro niśitaṁ gṛhītvā |
kośādasiṁ kāṁcanabhakticitraṁ vilādivāśīviṣamudbabarha || 6.56
56. Then seizing the sharp jewelled sword which was in Chaṁdaka's hand, he resolutely drew out from the sheath the blade decked with golden ornaments, like a serpent from its hole.
niṣkāsya taṁ cotpalapattranīlaṁ ciccheda citraṁ mukuṭaṁ sakeśam |
vikīryamāṇāṁśukamaṁtarīkṣe cikṣepa cainaṁ sarasīva haṁsam || 6.57
57. Having drawn it forth, dark blue like a blue lotus petal, he cut his decorated tiara and his hair, and he tossed it with its scattered muslin into the air as a grey goose into a lake.
pūjābhilāṣeṇa ca bāhumānyāddivaukasastaṁ jagṛhuḥ praviddham |
yathāvadenaṁ divi devasaṁghā divyairviśeṣairmahayāṁ ca cakruḥ || 6.58
58. And the heavenly beings, with a longing to worship it, seized it respectfully as it was thrown up; and the divine hosts paid it due adoration in heaven with celestial honours.
muktvā tvalaṁkārakalatravattāṁ śrīvipravāsaṁ śirasaśca kṛtvā |
dṛṣṭvāṁśukaṁ kāṁcanahaṁsacitram vanyaṁ sa dhīro 'bhicakāṁkṣa vāsaḥ || 6.59
59. Having thus divorced his ornaments and banished all royal magnificence from his head, and seeing his muslin floating away like a golden goose, the stedfast prince desired a sylvan dress.
tato mṛgavyādhavapurdivaukā bhāvaṁ viditvāsya viśuddhabhāvaḥ |
kāṣāyavastro 'bhiyayau samīpaṁ taṁ śākyarājaprabhavo 'bhyuvāca || 6.60
60. Then a celestial being, wearing the form of a hunter, pure in heart, knowing his thoughts, approached near him in dark-red garments; and the son of the Śākya king thus addressed him:
śivaṁ ca kāṣāyamṛṣidhvajaste na yujyate hiṁsramidaṁ dhanuśca |
tatsaumya yadyasti na saktiratra mahyaṁ prayacchedamidaṁ gṛhāṇa || 6.61
61. ‘Thy red garments are auspicious, the sign of a saint; but this destructive bow is not befitting; therefore, my good friend, if there is no strong preference in the matter, do thou give me that dress and take this of mine.’
vyādho 'bravītkāmada kāmamārādanena viśvāsya mṛgān nihatya |
arthastu śakropama yadyanena haṁta pratīcchānaya śuklametat || 6.62
62. The hunter replied, ‘It has given me my desire, I havetaken ārātas from ā + rā, but Professor Keilhorn suggests that it might mean ‘near’. ‘Although in this dress I make the deer come confidently close to me and then kill them, yet take it if you want it’. [The Tibetan seems to have read kāmasārāt,—dod·pa sñin·po las, ‘from essence of desire’. H.W.]08 O giver of desires, as by this I have inspired animals with confidence and then killed them; but if thou hast need of it, O thou who art like Indra, accept it at once and give me the white dress.’
pareṇa harṣeṇa tataḥ sa vanyaṁ jagrāha vāso 'ṁśukamutsasarja |
vyādhastu divyaṁ vapureva bibhrat tacchuklamādāya divaṁ jagāma || 6.63
63. With extreme joy he then took that sylvan dress and gave away the linen one; and the hunter, assuming his heavenly form, having taken the white garment, went to heaven.
tataḥ kumāraśca sa cāśvagopastasmiṁstathā yāti visismiyāte |
āraṇyake vāsasi caiva bhūyastasminnakārṣṭāṁ bahumānamāśu || 6.64
64. Then the prince and the attendant of the horse were filled with wonder as he was thus going, and forthwith they paid great honour anew to that sylvan dress.
chaṁdaṁ tataḥ sāśrumukhaṁ visṛjya kāṣāyasaṁvidvṛtakīrtibhṛtsaḥ |
yenāśramastena yayau mahātmā saṁdhyābhrasaṁvīta ivādrirājaḥ || 6.65
65. Then the great-souled one, having dismissed the weeping Chaṁda, and wearing his fame veiled by the sign of the red garment, went towards the hermitage, like the king of mountains wrapped in an evening cloud.
tatastathā bhartari rājyaniḥspṛhe tapovanaṁ yāti vivarṇavāsasi |
bhujau samutkṣipya tataḥ sa vājibhṛdbhṛśaṁ vicukrośa papāta ca kṣitau || 6.66
66. While his master, thus regardless of his kingdom, was going to the ascetic-wood in mean garments, the groom, tossing up his arms, wailed bitterly and fell on the ground.
vilokya bhūyaśca ruroda sasvaraṁ hayaṁ bhujābhyāmupaguhya kaṁthakam |
tato nirāśo vilapanmuhurmuhuryayau śarīreṇa puraṁ na cetasā || 6.67
67. Having looked again he wept aloud, and embraced the horse Kaṁthaka with his arms; and then, hopeless and repeatedly lamenting, he went in body to the city, not in soul.
kvacitpradadhyau vilalāpa ca kvacit kvacitpracaskhāla papāta ca kvacit |
ato vrajan bhaktivaśena duḥkhitaścacāra bahvīravaśaḥ pathi kriyāḥ || 6.68
68. Sometimes he pondered, sometimes he lamented, sometimes he stumbled, and sometimes he fell; and so going along, wretched through his devoted attachment, he performed all kinds of actions in the road without conscious will.
iti śrībuddhacarite mahākāvye chaṁdakanivartanaṁ nāma ṣaṣṭhaḥ sargaḥ || 6 ||
[Such is the sixth chapter in the great poem Śri Buddhacarita,
called The Dismissal of Chaṁdaka]
last updated: October 2010