"Is there nothing then that will go with me after my death?" was
" Yes ", said Narada, " It is Dharma alone that
accompanies the soul " and he recited:
"Mritam sariram utsrijya Kasthaloshtasamam kshito", Vimukha
bandhava yanti Dharmastam anugacchati. Dharmena hi sahayena tamastarati dustaram.
"Friends turn back leaving behind the dead body like a piece of
stone or wood; Dharma alone followed him. By the help of Dharma alone one crosses the
terrible darkness of death."
As the somber words fell on the ears of Padmavarna,
he looked up and
seeing their shining faces wondered if they were men or gods.
"Who are you?" he asked, "mortals or devas?"
Brahma and Narada manifested their divine forms, instructed him in the
ways of Dharma and vanished.
Years rolled on. Padmavarna gave up all his evil ways and did penance.
He realized the majesty of Dharma and declared it to the world.
"Law is the king of kings, far more powerful and rigid than they;
nothing can be mightier than law by whose aid, as by that of the highest monarch, even the
weak may prevail over the strong." (S.B. 14. 4, 2.23, Br. Ar. Up. I. 4. 14).
As he was the descendant of the gotra of Gautama, he came to be known
as Rishi Gautama.