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Quotes from Mahabharata

A collection of my favourite quotes from the Mahabharata with verse numbers from various recensions.

Key:

nārāyaṇaṃ namaskṛtya naraṃ caiva narōttamam dēvīṃ sarasvatīṃ vyāsaṃ tatō jayam-udīrayēt

This ṣaṭ-namaskāra must be performed before beginning the writing of any book. This verse offers obeisances to Nārāyaṇa, Nara, Narōttama, Dēvī, Sarasvatī and Vyāsa.

First up is Nārāyaṇa, because He is the Supreme Principle. All the Vedas, Purāṇas and Itihāsas are meant to glorify Him alone. In order to reach Him, we need two energies guiding us: Nara and Narōttama. Nara signifies the triad of Garuḍa, Śēṣa, and Rudra. Narōttama denotes the pair of Brahmadēva and Vāyudēva. Then one prays to Lakṣmīdevī who is the presiding deity of all Vedas. Sarasvatī-Bhāratī are due next since they are the deities of speech. Lastly, one prays to Guru Vyāsadēva, who is an avatāra of Viṣṇu Himself. Source

ahanya-hani bhūtāni gacchantīha yamālayam śeṣāḥ sthāvaram-icchanti kimāścaryam-ataḥ param — BORI N/A, KE 3.314.118, PPSS N/A, GP 3.313.116

Hundreds and thousands of living entities meet death at every moment, but a foolish living being nonetheless thinks himself deathless and does not prepare for death. This is the most wonderful thing in this world.

(PPSS skips all verses between GP3.313.87—3.313.118 aka KE3.314.89—3.314.120)