Srimad Bhagvata Mahapurana: Book 1: Chapter 4: Verses 1-15
A sense of frustration overtakes Vedavyasa Vedavyasa says : When Suta spoke thus, Saunaka, who was a student of Rgveda and the head of a large seminary,and was the oldest of the sages assembled for that long sacrificial session, applauded him and said: Saunaka said : Suta, you are highly blessed and the foremost of expositors. Pray, repeat to us the same sacred story of the Lord as the divine sage Suka recited (to king Pariksit). In which particular Yuga (aeon) was the discourse held and at what place, and what was the occasion for it ? And at whose instance did the sage Krsna (Vedavyasa) compose this Samhita (large collection of poems) ? His son (Sukadeva) is a great Yogi (mystic), viewing all alike, in whose eye diversity has ceased to exist, whose mind is exclusively set upon God and who has awoke from the sleep of worldliness. He remains incognito and is therefore taken for a stupid fellow. On perceiving the sage Vyasa (closely) following his son (who was retiring to the forest as a recluse) the ladies (who happened to be bathing in a pond on the roadside), covered themselves out of modesty, even though the sage had clothes on, while they took no notice of his son (who was stark naked). Noticing this strange behaviour on their part the sage asked them to account for it; thereupon the ladies told him that he was still alive to the difference of sex, but not so his son, whose vision was faultless (who perceived no difference at all ). How did the citizens of Hastinapura come to recognize him when he visited the Kuru-Jahgala country and went about that city like one mad, dumb and dull ? And, how did the royal sage Pariksit (a scion of Pandu) come to have a talk with that sage, in the course of which the latter recited this Bhagavata-Purana ?
That highly blessed sage (Sukadeva) waits at the door of householders to sanctify their abode only for such time as one takes in milking a cow. They say king Pariksit (Abhimanyu's son), O Suta, was counted among the foremost devotees of the Lord. Kindly narrate to us the story of his most wonderful birth and doings. Why did that emperor, who served to enhance the glory of the Pandavas, take his seat on the bank of the Ganga with a vow to fast unto death, spurning his imperial fortune ? Enemies bowed at his footstool, bringing to him riches for their own security. It is really strange,dear Suta, how did that valiant prince, while he was so young, take it into his head to relinquish that fortunem which is so difficult to renouncce, as well as his life. men who are solely devoted to the Lord of excellent fame live, not for teir own sake, but only for (promoting) the welfare, affluence and prosperity of the world. Why, then, did he cast off his body , which was the support of other beings, in a spirirt of aversion ? Thereforem, pray, tell us all that we have asked you on this occasion; for we know you have mastered the entire range of sacred lore baring, of course, the Vedas. Suta replied : In the Dwapara age, the third Yuga of the present Caturyugi (the period of four Yugas from Satya to Kali) the great Yogi, Vyasa, who is a part manifestation of Sri Hari, was born of Satyavati (who had sprung from the seed of Uparicara Vasu) through the sage Parasara. One day, after taking his bath in the sacred water of the Saraswati he sat in a lonely place just at sunrise.