III. Vana Parva
Section XLII.
deutsche ‹bersetzung der Ganguli-‹bersetzung

Vaicampayana said, "After the Lokopalas had gone away, Arjuna -- that slayer of all foes -- began to think, O monarch, of the car of Indra! And as Gudakeca gifted with great intelligence was thinking of it, the car endued with great effulgence and guided by Matali, came dividing the clouds and illuminating the firmament and filling the entire welkin with its rattle deep as the roar of mighty masses of clouds. Swords, and miscrias of terrible forms, and maces of frightful description, and winged darts of celestial splendor, and lightnings of the brightest effulgence, and thunderbolts, and Tutagudas[1] furnished with wheels and worked with atmospheric expansion and producing sounds, loud as the roar of great masses of clouds, were on that car. And there were also on that car fierce and huge-bodies Nagas with fiery mouths, and heaps of stones white as the fleecy clouds. And the car was drawn by tenthousand horses of golden hue, endued with the speed of the wind. And furnished with prowess of illusion, the car was drawn with such speed that the eye could hardly mark its progress. And Arjuna saw on that car the flag-staff called Vaijayanta, of blazing effulgence, resembling in hue the emerald or the dark blue lotus, and decked with golden ornaments, and straight as the bamboo. And beholding a charioteer decked in gold seated on that car, the mighty-armed son of Pritha regarded it as belonging to the celestials. [...] Matali the charioteer of Cakra, hearing these words of Arjuna, soon mounted the car and controlled the horses. [...] Arjuna, blazing like the sun itself, ascended the celestial car. And the Kuru prince, gifted with great intelligence, with a glad heart, coursed through the firmament on that celestial car effulgent as the sun and of extraordinary achievements. And after he had become invisible to the mortals of the earth, he behold thousends of cars of extraordinary beauty. And in that region there was no sun or moon or fire to give light, but it blazed in light of its own, generated by virtue and ascetic merit. And those brilliant regions that are seen from the earth in form of stars, like lamps (in the sky) -- so small in consequence of their distance, though very large -- were beheld by the son of Pandu, stationed in their respective places, full of beauty and effulgence and blazing with splendor all their own[2]. [...] 'These, O son of Pritha, are virtous persons, stationed in their respective places. It is these whom thou hast seen, O exalted one, as stars from the earth!'"

Section XLIII.

[...] city of Indra [...] Arjuna went of the city of Indra to that large and extensive starry way[2] called by the name of Suravithi. There he met Sadhyas[3], Vicuras, Haha & Huhu, [enumeration of other races ...].

Tutagudas: Evidently canon. There are other passages in the Mahabharata pointing to this engine of destruction being known to the Hindus of this period, if, indeed, the whole passage it not an interpolation.
lit. the celestial way or road of the celestials
Vipulum nakshatra-margam: lit. large starry way


The Mahabharata
translated by Kisari Mohan Ganguli
published by Pratap Chandra Roy
Calcutta 1886-1890