ABOUT THE MAHABHARATA
The Mahabharata is the greatest epic of India, and arguably the greatest epic of any country. It is well known for including the Bhagavad Gita, an important scripture that has influenced great thinkers like Gandhi, Aldous Huxley, Thoreau, J. Robert Oppenheimer, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Carl Jung, and Herman Hesse. However, the Gita represents only 700 verses out of 200,000 total in this epic. In addition to its philosophical chapters, the Mahabharata is a great work of imagination and adventure. When you read it you will be transported to a world where demigods and goddesses sport with men and women. A beautiful girl can take birth from the belly of a fish. A prince might get a wife from archery competitions or kidnapping. And God Himself (Krishna) might be your best friend. There is no other book like it.
ABOUT THIS EDITION
Anyone who has studied the Bhagavad Gita must be interested in reading the whole book. When I was a Hare Krishna devotee I certainly wished I could do that.
Several summaries of the Mahabharata exist, but it is impossible to condense eighteen books into one without omitting anything worthwhile. The only complete English translation of the book is this one, by Kisari Mohan Ganguli.
These volumes are based on a text file scanned at sacred-texts.com. If you have a Kindle you can read this translation without cost by downloading it from http://www.gutenberg.org/. Amazon.com also has their own versions of these books which you may download for free from the Kindle Store.
While reading these free e-books I decided that I really wanted a bound and printed version. The books have thousands of footnotes, which doesn’t work well in e-book format. While this translation is still in print, every existing edition leaves something to be desired. When I was in the Hare Krishnas I owned a complete set of their books, and they were the most beautiful books you can imagine. I wanted to have an edition of the complete Mahabharata that was worthy to share the same book case as those books, so I decided to prepare a new edition using Create Space and offer it for sale at the lowest possible price.
Each volume in this edition represents many hours of work. I have moved the footnotes in these volumes (again, thousands of them) from the end of the book back to the bottoms of the pages for easier reading. I have replaced archaic words like “behoveth” with “behooves”, etc., where it was possible to do so without rewriting the sentences where they appear. I have also fixed hundreds of variant spellings, and replaced obscure words like "welkins" and "horripliated" with more common ones. Finally, the original work did not translate the titles of the individual books, so I have used the names found on Wikipedia. Thus Adi Parva in the original becomes The Book Of The Beginning.
The illustrations are from a Hindi translation of the Mahabharata that has also fallen into the public domain. (http://openlibrary.org/books/OL23365037M/Mahabharata.) I have used page images provided at archive.org and have cleaned them up using The GIMP software. The results speak for themselves. When all the volumes are published there will be nearly 300 full page illustrations.
In short, I have spared no effort to make this the most complete, most readable, and most attractive edition of the Mahabharata in English.
While I no longer practice the Vaishnava religion I hope that these books will meet with the approval of my former godbrothers and godsisters. I do not believe that they will find anything offensive in them.
"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.
KRISHNA DWAIPAYANA VYASA was born in humble circumstances. His mother plyed a ferry boat for those who wished to cross the river Yamuna, and his father was the great Rishi Parasara. He was given the names Dwaipayana (island born, because he was born on an island in the Yamuna) and Krishna (because of the dark color of his skin). Later he would earn the name Vyasa (the divider or arranger) for his work of dividing the Vedas into four parts.
Vyasa is not only the author of the Mahabharata, he is also an important character in it. When the Bharata line was about to go extinct after the death of his step brother, King Vichitravirya, his mother asked him to sire children upon the king's widows. In doing so he began the central conflict in this great epic.
Other books by Vyasa include the Bhagavata Purana and the Harivamsa.
KISARI MOHAN GANGULI is the author of the first complete English translation of the Mahabharata, published between 1883 and 1896 by Pratap Chandra Roy. The two men wanted to create a work that would show the richness of their Indian heritage to their British rulers and to foreigners in general. It was an enormous undertaking and a labor of love, as most copies of the book were given away.
"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.
Book Description CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform. Paperback. Book Condition: Brand New. 662 pages. 9.00x6.00x1.66 inches. This item is printed on demand. Bookseller Inventory # zk1492887269