Mahabharata Bhishma Parva Chapter 3

Mahabharata Bhishma Parva (Jamvu-khanda Nirmana Parva) Chapter 3

Vyasa said,—'Asses are taking births in kine. Some are having sexual pleasure with mothers. The trees in the forests are exhibiting unseasonable flowers and fruits. Women quick with child, and even those that are not so, are giving birth to monsters. Carnivorous beasts, mingling with (carnivorous) birds, are feeding together. Ill-omened beasts, some having three horns, some with four eyes, some with five legs, some with two sexual organs, some with two heads, some with two tails, some having fierce teeth, are being born, and with mouths wide open are uttering unholy cries. Horses with three legs, furnished with crests, having four teeth, and endued with horns, are also being born. O king! in thy city is also seen that the wives of many utterers of Brahma are bringing forth Garudas and peacocks. The mare is bringing forth the cow-calf and the bitch is bringing forth, O king, jackals and cocks, and antelopes and parrots are all uttering inauspicious cries.[1] Certain women are bringing forth four or five daughters (at a time), and these as soon as they are born, dance and sing and laugh.

The members of the lowest orders are laughing and dancing and singing, and thus indicating direful consequences. Infants, as if urged by death, are drawing armed images, and are running against one another, armed with clubs, and desirous of battle are also breaking down the towns (they erect in sport). Lotuses of different kinds and lilies are growing on trees. Strong winds are blowing fiercely and the dust ceaseth not. The earth is frequently trembling, and Rahu approacheth towards the sun. The white planet (Ketu) stayeth, having passed beyond the constellation Chitra. All this particularly bodeth the destruction of the Kurus. A fierce comet riseth, afflicting the constellation Pusya. This great planet will cause frightful mischief to both the armies. Mars wheeleth towards Magha and Vrihaspati (Jupiter) towards Sravana. The Sun's offspring (Sani) approaching towards the constellation Bhaga, afflicteth it. The planet Sukra, ascending towards Purva Bhadra, shineth brilliantly, and wheeling towards the Uttara Bhadra, looketh towards it, having effected a junction (with a smaller planet). The white planet (Ketu), blazing up like fire mixed with smoke, stayeth, having attacked the bright constellation Jeshtha that is sacred to Indra. The constellation Dhruva, blazing fiercely, wheeleth towards the right. Both the Moon and the Sun are afflicting Rohini. The fierce planet (Rahu) hath taken up its position between the constellations Chitra and Swati.[2] The red-bodied (Mars) possessed of the effulgence of fire, wheeling circuitously, stayeth in a line with the constellation Sravana over-ridden by Vrihaspati. The earth that produceth particular crops at particular seasons is now covered with the crops of every season.[3] Every barley-stalk is graced with five ears, and every paddy-stalk with a hundred. They that are the best of creatures in the worlds and upon whom depends the universe, viz., kine, when milked after the calves have their suck, yield only blood. Radiant rays of light emanate from bows, and swords blaze forth brilliantly. It is evident that the weapons behold (before them) the battle, as if it were already arrived. The hue of weapons and the water, as also of coats of mail and standards, is like that of fire.



  1. Both the Bengal and the Bombay editions have Kukkuran for Kukkutan as the Burdwan Pundits correct it. A bitch producing dogs and bitches would be no anomaly.
  2. Unlike the Bengal editions, the Bombay edition correctly includes this sloka, or rather half sloka, within the 17th, making the 17th a triplet instead of a couplet. For the well-known word Dhishthitas however, the Bombay text has Vishthitas.
  3. The Bombay text reads Paricchanna for Paricchinna. The former is better.]