Thursday, August 18, 2016

Overview: Macfie. Mahabharata, A Summary

Title: The Mahabharata, A Summary
Author: John Mandeville Macfie
Year: 1921

Comments: As summaries go, this one is VERY readable! It is not as good as Balakrishnan's Mahabharata in a Nutshell ($2.99 at Amazon), but this one is free online. Because this is a summary, it is written in a very abbreviated style, but it also includes some episodes that will be new to you because it is more complete than the selection version of the Mahabharata that you read earlier.

Free Online: See all the links at Freebookapalooza. The links below are to the Hathi Trust presentation of the book.

Length: three weeks. I've divided the reading into six parts: Part A - Part B (one week of reading), Part C - Part D (another week of reading), and Part E - Part F (three weeks of reading). You do not need to read this in order, and you can use it just for a half-week of reading or one or two or three weeks of reading; it's up to you, based on what parts of the epic you are most interested in.

Reading Part A pp. 25-61
1. The Book of Beginnings
Daughters of Prajapati.
Churning of the Ocean.
The Story of Garuda.
The Story of Jaratkaru.
Death of King Parikshit.
The Great Snake Sacrifice.
The Birth of Vyasa.
The Lunar Race.
The Story of Shukra.
Dushmanta and Shakuntala.
Birth of Dhritarashtra, Pandu, and Vidura.
Birth of Dhritarashtra's Children.
Pandu Cursed and His Death.
Feuds Between the Pandus and Kurus.
Drona Appointed Teacher.
Drupada Conquered.
Yudhishthira Made Heir-Apparent.
Precepts for Kings.
Conspiracy to Destroy the Pandus.
The Flight of the Pandus.
Bhima Slays Vaka.
Birth of Draupadi and Her Brother.
Previous History of Draupadi.
Vishvamitra and Vashishtha.
Draupadi's Swayamvara.
Marriage of Draupadi.
Story of the Five Indras.
The Pandus Found Indraprastha.
Narada's Advice.
Arjuna Leaves Indraprastha.
The Burning of Khandava Forest.
2. The Assembly Book.
Maya Offers to Build a Palace.
Narada Proposes a Rajasuya.
Defeat and Death of Jarasandha.
The Pandus Conquer the World.
Celebration of the Rajasuya.
The Gambling Match.
Cruel Treatment of Draupadi.
The Second Gambling Match.
The Departure of the Pandus.

Reading Part B pp. 62-101
3. The Forest Book
Forest Life.
Visit from Krishna.
Discontent of Draupadi.
Arjuna and the Celestial Weapons.
Arjuna in Indra's Heaven.
Nala and Damayanti.
The Search for Nala.
Nala Discovered.
Nala Recovers His Kingdom.
Tirathas Described.
Visit to Tirathas.
The Rishi Agastya.
Agastya Drinks the Ocean.
How the Ganges Came Down from Heaven.
Story of Rishyashringa.
The Story of Parashurama.
Visit from Krishna.
The Boar Incarnation.
Bhima Meets Hanuman.
Arjuna Comes Back from Heaven.
Who is a True Brahmin?.
Visit from Rishi Markandeya.
Story of the Flood.
Four Ages of the World.
Markandeya in Vishnu's Stomach.
Story of the Fowler.
Adventures of the Kurus.
Karna Loses His Earrings.
Story of Savitri.
Four of the Pandus Fall Dead.

Reading Part C pp. 100-139
4. The Virata Book
The Disguise of the Pandavas.
The Pandus in Virata.
The Invasion of Virata.
The Pandus Throw Off Their Disguise.
5. The Effort Book
Seeking Krishna's Help.
Shalya and Duryodhana.
How Indra Lost and Won His Throne.
Sanjaya's Mission to the Pandus.
Vidura's Philosophy.
Krishna Goes to the Kurus.
Both Sides Prepare for War.
6. The Bhishma Book
Sanjaya's Description of the Earth.
Seven Continents and Seven Seas.
Yudhishthira's Visit to the Kurus.
First Ten Days of Battle.
Bhishma is Overthrown.
7. The Drona Book
Drona's Leadership.
Death of Abhimanyu.
Great Deeds of Ghatotkacha.
Drona Deceived and Dies.
Drona's Son Seeks to Avenge his Father's Death.
Shiva Greater than Vishnu.
8. The Karna Book
Karna's Leadership.
Quarrel between Yudhishthira and Arjuna.
Bhima Slays Duhshasana.
9. The Shalya Book
Shalya as Commander.
Flight of Duryodhana.
Pandus Enter the Kuru Camp.

Reading Part D pp. 140-175
10. The Book of Slumber
The Sauptika Parva.
The Kurus Encounter Vishnu and Shiva.
The Sleeping Pandu Army Slain.
The Pursuit of Ashwatthaman.
11. The Book of the Women
Dhritarashtra Visits the Battlefield.
Gandhari's Lament.
Krishna Cursed by Gandhari.
The Funeral Rites Performed.
12. The Book of Consolation
Yudhishthira and the Forest.
Yudhishthira Assumes Sovereignty.
The Pandus Visit Bhishma.
Bhishma on the Duties of Kings.
The Origin of Kingship.
The Duties of the Four Orders.
Four Modes of Life.
How to Consolidate a Kingdom.
Village Government.
The Rules of War.
Secret of Success in Life.
The Jackal and the Tiger.
The Ministers a King Should Choose.
The Rishi Who Ate Dog's Flesh.
The Fowler and the Pigeons.
The Origin of Sin.
Some Moral Aphorisms.
The Origin of All Things.
Doctrine of Salvation.
Sin of Sacrificing Animals.
Fear of Life and Death.
Origin of Fever.

Reading Part E pp. 176-215
Sankhya and Yoga.
Power of Yoga.
Narada's Visit to the White Island.
The Gods and Liberation.
Devotion Greater than Knowledge.
13. The Book of Precepts
Yudhishthira Still Needs Comfort.
Wrong to Teach Low-Caste People.
Names of Shiva.
All Women are Evil.
The Greatness of Brahmins Once More.
Rules Relating to Marriage.
Greatness of Gifts.
The Glory of Cows.
The Merit of Fasting.
Various Precepts.
Bhishma Dies.
14. The Horse Sacrifice
Preparations for the Sacrifice.
The Anugita.
Krishna Leaves for Dwaraka.
Stories about Utanka.
Krishna Reaches Dwaraka.
Marutta's Wealth Secured.
The Birth of Parikshit.
The Wanderings of the Horse.
The Sacrifice Begins.
A Mongoose Speaks.
Seeds Not Animals for Sacrifice.
15. The Hermitage Book
Pandus and Kurus Live Happily Together.
Dhritarashtra Goes to the Forest.
Life in the Forest.
The Dead Heroes Called Up.
Death of Dhritarashtra, Gandhari, and Kunti.

Reading Part F pp. 216-252
16. The Book of Clubs
The Curse of the Rishis.
The Destruction of Yadus.
Death of Balarama and Krishna.
Arjuna Arrives at Dwaraka.
17. The Book of the Great Journey
On the Way to Heaven.
The Heroes Fall Down.
18. Book of the Ascent to Heaven
Yudhishthira Descends to Hell.
Yudhishthira Returns to Heaven.
Appendix 1: Giving Gifts to Brahmins.
Appendix 2: The Woman Whose Sex Was Changed.
Appendix 3: How Death Was Born.
Appendix 4: The Indian King Midas.
Appendix 5: Vishnu, Shiva's Arrow, and Brahma His Charioteer.
Appendix 6: King Shibi, The Hawk, and the Pigeon.
Note 1: The Epic Priest.
Note 2: The Four Ages of the World.
Note 3: Prajapati, The Prajapatis, and the Rishis.
Note 4: The Lunar Race.
Note 5: Vashishtha and Agastya.
Note 6: Durvasa.
Note 7: Drinking Customs.
Note 8: The Rishi Narada.
Note 9: Draupadi and Yudhishthira.
Note 10: Rakshasas and Yakshas.
Note 11: Asuras, Daityas, and Danavas.
Note 12: Manu.
Note 13: Gandharvas and Apsarases.
Note 14: The Bhagavad-Gita.
Note 15: Nara-Narayana.
Note 16. Exaggerations.
Note 17. The Sankhya and the Yoga.
The Vedas.

No comments:

Post a Comment